Manhattan’s Lower East Side “Loisaida” is a legendary immigrant neighborhood that is becoming a hip art and night club district.
The neighborhood’s tenements were the first homes for generations of immigrant families. It was once New York City’s “Little Germany.” It became a legendary Jewish community. It’s become a Puerto Rican and Dominican neighborhood and is now gentrifying.
Of all of Manhattan, the Lower East Side retains some of the feel of anything-goes 1970s New York City. It’s mostly visual now in terms of art and graffiti. The New Museum of Contemporary Art changed the neighborhood completely.
Latin Culture in the Lower East Side
The Lower East Side has long been one of New York City’s great forges of culture.
Abrons Arts Center is the performing arts center of the Henry Street Settlement social services…
The New Museum is Manhattan’s only museum dedicated solely to contemporary art. New Museum Tickets…
Teatro SEA is NYC’s Latino theatre for young audiences. This bilingual puppet theatre is one…
The Clemente or Clemente Soto Vélez Cultural and Educational Center is a community cultural center…
Lower East Side Government
U.S. Representative NY District 7. First Latina on the New York City Council and first Puerto Rican woman in U.S. Congress.
Lower East Side, East Village
Brooklyn Heights, Bushwick, Carroll Gardens, Greenpoint, Red Hook, Williamsburg
Maspeth, Ridgewood, Woodside
New York City Council District #2
East Village, Gramercy Park, Kips Bay, Lower East Side, Murray Hill, Rose Hill
“Loisaida” is the Puerto Rican name for the neighborhood. It comes from a poem by Nuyorican poet pioneer Bimbo Rivas.
He may have been paying tribute to Yuíza, the legendary cacique (Indigenous Taíno chief) of what is now Loíza, Puerto Rico. By the way, Yuíza was a woman. We have strong traditions of female leadership in both Indigenous Africa and the Indigenous Americas. The similarities between the two cultures are striking.
The Lower East Side used to run up to 14th St. Above Houston St, it was rebranded as the “East Village” in the 1960s. This was partly due to the development of New York City’s contemporary art community which began in SoHo and moved up to Greenwich Village, then moved east into the Lower East Side.