Public art – love it or hate, it if it starts a conversation and captures one’s imagination it has fulfilled its purpose. Given Jersey City’s thriving art community, public displays of artistic talent are seen all over the Heights. From the statues at Leonard Gordon Park to the decorated utility boxes on Central Avenue, a simple stroll through the Heights can turn into a wonderful cultural experience. The map you find here identifies the locations of public art in Jersey City Heights. Please check back soon as more public art is added to this inventory. Do you have a suggestion to be included here? Email it to us.
Pubic Art in the Heights
The Heights neighborhood of Jersey City welcomes artists. The Heights now has an arts district known as the “Riverview Arts District” (RAD) attracting the attention of many New York City Artists looking for accommodating housing options.
On February 27, 2013, a city zoning amendment was approved to create an Artist Overlay Zone covering a large portion of the eastern Heights and allows artists to have studios or work/ live units within the District. Artists can have an “artist studio workspace” to make their art or sell it as an accessory use to the studio; they can also have a work/live artist studio defined as “a single, enclosed, private space of 900 sq. ft or more, where at least one-half of the total space is devoted to workspace for the creation, display, and sale of art, and the remainder is used for living purposes…”
Wall Art in the Central Avenue Shopping District
Besides being a great place to shop, Central Avenue in the Heights offers an outdoor gallery of artistic expression. Artists from the community were commissioned to paint murals on a select hand full of the exposed building walls. Our district is home to a growing series of murals that have caught the eyes and attention of many visitors and shoppers. Well executed murals have reenergized the City by making it an artist destination. From vivid descriptions of Central Avenue to notable landmarks around the City, each Central Avenue mural has something special to offer. The professional artists who created these works are proud of the stories each piece tells of the rich history of Jersey City.
The “Streetscapes” Beautification Art Project is an artistic way to beautify the Heights. A stroll down Central Avenue is needed to fully appreciate the awe-inspiring transformations of the City’s utility boxes. Each of the seven located at the traffic lights on Central Ave and its cross streets was done by artists from the community. Each artist used his or her creativity to change the visual interpretation of the boxes.
Several historic art sculptures and some new ones are located in the Heights section of Jersey City. You just have to know where to look to find them: Washington Park, Lenoard J. Gordan Park, and Pershing Field to name a few locations.
One example, the “Wave” (pictured right) is located in Hudson County’s Washington Park at the intersection of Central Avenue and Paterson Plank Road. Created by noted artist Chakaia Booker, a Jersey native, the brushed stainless steel sculpture piece stands 14 feet high and 35 feet wide.