Local New Yorkers can agree that the sight of a decorated street pole, covered in mosaic-style tiles, is not an uncommon sight to see. These pieces of New York City culture are thanks to one man, Vietnam War veteran Jim Power; better known as the Mosaic Man.
“The people in the Village love this art. When you go to the Empire State Building, you look at it and walk away from it. When you come to the East Village you walk through the art. It’s a museum all around.” said Power. His art gives the city a unique flair that only the people can provide.
Power, who has been creating his mosaics since 1985 to honor workers all around the city, is now currently homeless. He is living in an assisted living facility with no money or support from the city. NYC presidents have instead decided to rally together to become his support system, as a GoFundMe page was put up to help assist Power.
It’s estimated that Power decorated 80 poles across the city, especially focusing on the East Village, using small objects, tiles, ceramics, glass and mirrors. In 2004, Mayor Mike Bloomberg even commended Power for “beautifying the city with distinctive, artful mosaics,” and the city gave him full permission to keep creating his art on public property.
“Now living in an assisted living facility, Power spent many years on the streets of the East Village, homeless. Even with no money, he found a way to find the thousands of glass pieces and ceramic fragments used to create his work, “ said GoFundMe organizer Jerami Goodwin. “… Jim is now 75 years old and can hardly walk. His life’s mission is to continue his mosaic trail and teach artists to make it bigger than just him. Let’s help Jim fulfill his dreams to finish his Mosaic Trail.”
In just a few hours of going live the GoFundMe page received nearly $6,000 in support, currently the page has raised $13,027 out of the $15,000 goal. If you would like to contribute click here.