’08 Greatest Hits: The Manhattan Artist Emigration

longislandcity 08 Greatest Hits: The Manhattan Artist EmigrationMore from The Observer‘s archives for the year that almost was:

April 1

Long Island Rock City!

Robert Prichard hopes to illuminate Long Island City with some emphatic Times Square-style signage.

“I’d like it to be visible from the 59th Street Bridge,” he said. “First, it flashes ‘Queens,’ then ‘Bridge,’ then ‘Theater,’ and then ‘Queensbridge Theater.’ And then maybe an arrow that lights up and points down to our loading dock.”

Mr. Prichard, 52, has long had a flair for the dramatic. This is the same guy, after all, who nearly a decade ago led a conga line up Avenue A in protest of the city’s antiquated cabaret laws.

Nowadays, he’s participating in a perhaps farther-reaching kind of procession—the ongoing exodus of artists, musicians and other creative types abandoning Manhattan in droves.