Andrea Ferber

Over the bridge - Bed-Stuy

2009. The neighborhood is best known through the rhymes and lyricism of famous music icons like the rapper Jay-Z and his predecessor, the late Biggie Smalls aka Notorious B.I.G.. Walls are covered with memorials commemorating the victims of gang wars and the constant hustle. Poverty, drugs and violence are still characteristic of this part of Brooklyn.

But Bed-Stuy is changing. Real Estate values are on a steady rise and the crime rate is declining. Many families have been living here for two or three generations and have developed a pride for their home, their “hood”. Furthermore, the hard work of parents and the political victories of the civil rights movement gave them an improved financial and legal foundation. The residents can invest money into their neighborhood.
I decided to stay and watch. Step by step I discovered the beauty and aesthetic of the hood. I meet people who invited me to submerge into the everyday life of Bed-Stuy. They opened their doors and invited me into a fascinating new world. A world, where people know the meaning of fear, hatred and loss first hand, yet out of it still flows a genuine cordiality, warmth, and friendship.
Coincidence guided me onto that bridge, where I could see the connection of the conflictive sides of this colorful neighborhood, within this unique borough that is Brooklyn.