About the Film
This Film is Dedicated to Connie Crothers
1941 - 2016
Blues for 475 (c)
a Chase/Cevallos Film
a L'ORAGE Production
Featuring music of Connie Crothers
A brutal mass eviction is the catalyst for BLUES FOR 475 KENT, filmed over a period of ten years, as a requiem to the last artist community in Brooklyn. A filmmaker immersed with sculptor, Deborah Masters and Jazz pianist, Connie Crothers, captures the lives of artists living on the edge.
“The creative work that Tyler is doing with this beautiful film about a building where artists are being thrown out, where Root Shock is going on and the very important significance of that, is educating a public that doesn’t really know anything, not just about the right to adequate housing but of the enormous damage that is done economically, psychologically, culturally to a community, to a nation to an international community when these kinds of massive violations take place.” - Salih Booker, Executive Director of the Center on Housing Rights and Eviction viewed a screening of a segment of this work at the United Nations in Geneva for the UPR of Human Rights Violations of the USA.
Something is deeply wrong in Brooklyn...
In the 1990s, 475 Kent, a warehouse in Brooklyn, is transformed into lofts by a group of reputable artists with permission of the landlord, using their own funds. The close knit community thrives and is welcomed into the community until ten years later on a cold Sunday night in January of 2008 when without warning their building is invaded by firemen and government agencies who with menacing military precision evict the three hundred families, some with babies as young as six weeks old. What could have caused such a rash decision?... A decision by an unknown authority that the grain stored for the famous Matzo Factory (operating for ten years in the basement) was in imminent danger of exploding. Although the grain could have been removed within hours the people of 475 Kent were on the street and homeless.
Despite insurmountable odds, this community courageously unites against dire circumstances with unprecedented results. The filmmaker shares the world of Deborah Masters - Sculptor, Guy Lesser - Writer/Educator and legendary Jazz Pianist - Connie Crothers over the course of ten years, documenting the long-term results of this eviction on their health, their work and on the place that once was a thriving artistic community.
The filmmaker seeks out answers and become involved with Human Rights Award Winner, Shula Koenig who introduces her into the world of Human Rights and extraordinary individuals like Cathy Albisa and Tiffany Gardner of NESRI, Dr. Mindy Fullilove, Author of Root Shock who clarifies the concept of Root Shock at its inception as a community loses the creative elements that pervade its ecosystem.
Footage from this work was screened as testimony for the UPR sessions of the United Nations in Geneva, Switzerland where L'ORAGE Productions participated as an NGO.Tyler was accredited by the Center for Women's Global Leadership to attend the United Nations Universal Periodic Review of Human Rights Violations in Geneva, Switzerland. She also participated on the human rights in housing panel at that session. Soon after, Tyler was part of a review discussion at the White House feedback event. Her work was also screened as testimony at the UPR of Human Rights at Columbia University for representatives of the Obama administration.