About Fourth Arts Block

FABnyc’s mission is to strengthen the cultural vitality of the Lower East Side. We implement this mission through a range of programs and collaborations with local cultural organizations, independent artists, community-based organizations and neighborhood nonprofits. We work as cultural producers, facilitators, and organizers with an ongoing interest in how arts and culture can advance community health, inclusiveness, and equity.

Fourth Arts Block (FABnyc) is a neighborhood nonprofit founded in 2001 by a coalition of cultural and community groups to transfer 8 properties from NYC for $1 each, securing them as permanently affordable spaces for non-profit arts and cultural organizations, and establish the East 4th Street Cultural District, between 2nd Avenue and Bowery.

The East 4th Street Cultural District is nationally recognized as an incubator for new work and its outstanding records for racial and ethnic diversity, free and low cost programs, and training for emerging artists and youth. Today, it is home to more than a dozen arts groups, 10 cultural facilities, and 17 performance and rehearsal venues, attracting an annual audience of more than 250,000, serving over 2000 artists, and providing more square feet of active cultural space than any other block in New York.

In 2007 FABnyc expanded its geographic focus to serve the entire Lower East Side, including the East Village, Loisaida, Two Bridges, and Chinatown.

Current programs address:

Mapping cultural assets and community needs.

Commissioning public art and community engaged arts projects.

Organizing and managing affordable workspace for artists

Creating programs which celebrate the diverse populations of immigrants, workers, artists and radicals who shaped the cultural history of the Lower East Side.

Partnering with community-based organizers to address issues such as resiliency, small business preservation, and access to public space.

Supporting local cultural organizations through capacity building, advocacy, and relationship building.

Sharing events and opportunities through regular eblasts, postings, and media.

Building dialogue around best practices in community based arts engagement through podcasts and peer exchange.

Playing an active role in citywide alliances advocating for the value of neighborhood based arts and culture.