The Poison Cauldron of the Newtown Creek
Taught by Mitch Waxman
Mitch Waxman was raised in Brooklyn, attended the School of Visual Arts in Manhattan, and worked for many years as a comic book writer and artist. He also worked in advertising production and as a photo retouching specialist for several advertising agencies. He has always had a certain fascination with historical material.
After a health scare several years ago, medical personnel advised him that he should start running to improve his health. Having grown up, as aforementioned, in Brooklyn – Mitch cannot run unless something is chasing him so he began to walk the earth and brought the camera along to keep things interesting. Soon, he found the occluded reality of the Newtown Creek and hasn’t left the place since.
Mitch started the Newtown Pentacle website in 2009 to document his adventures along the Newtown Creek(and in the greater harbor and city beyond). He has served the City of New York as a Parade Marshall three times, has been named the Newtown Creek Alliance’s group historian, is a Steering Committee member of the Working Harbor Committee, and offers regular walking, bus and boat tours of the Newtown Creek Watershed. He resides in Astoria, Queens, with his wife Catherine and their little dog.
His photography and unique point of view have attracted no small amount of attention, and Mitch has appeared in several documentaries about the Creek and is often quoted in news articles about the subject. A book collecting his photos and discoveries- Newtown Creek for the Vulgarly Curious, is available for order at lulu.com, and a second book will be published soon.
Photo credit: Steve McCann
Join us for a three hour exploration of the petroleum and waste transfer districts of the Newtown Creek watershed in North Brooklyn. This fascinating tour covers about three miles of the heart of the Greenpoint Oil Spill. We will be heading for the thrice damned Kosciuszko Bridge, which is scheduled for a demolition and replacement project which will be starting in 2013. Photographers, in particular, will find this an interesting walk through a little known and quite obscure section of New York City.
Be prepared for rough terrain and possible heavy truck traffic. Dress and pack appropriately for hiking and whatever the weather may bring. Closed-toe shoes are highly recommended. Bathroom opportunities will be found only at the start of the walk.
Meetup at the corner of Kingsland and Norman Avenues in Greenpoint, Brooklyn. Drivers, leave your cars in the vicinity of McGolrick Park in Greenpoint.