A typical art museum, 5pointz is not. Just hop on the subway to Long Island City’s Court Square, and you’ll get a preview of what’s to come when you spot a complex of edifices emblazoned with fuchsia and cyan graphics. As you walk underneath the elevated train tracks along Davis Street, the outdoor museum of graffiti art comes into focus. This defunct factory-zone-cum-public-gallery is like one gigantic canvas for the spray-painted art form—and an ever-changing one, too. Artists from every corner of the world trek to this graffiti mecca to leave their own stamp. Play Where’s Waldo in spotting all the smiling light-bulb graphics, try to decipher artists’ tags, drift away into some depicted fantasy worlds, or dream up your own aerosol artwork proposal. (Be advised, though, that you need a permit from resident artist and 5 pointz head, Meres One, to paint here).

All photos copyright Sheila Kim