Long Island City Is a Creative Community to Watch

The Cigar Factory Is Proud to Call LIC Home

One of the prerequisites for The Cigar Factory was that it had to be rooted in a creative area. Naturally, we started looking at Long Island City, a place with a long-standing history of fostering an immense and diverse creative culture that goes back decades. We’ve compiled a list of some favorite inspirational local artists and chefs in the Long Island City area. If you’re in the area, be sure to check them out!

Long Island City Artists

Jody MacDonald

Hailed as an artist that “mischievously encourages us to investigate our own eccentricities and behaviors and accept the absurd nature of being”, Jody MacDonald and her creations are something to behold. The graduate of Emily Carr University has shown her work – which delves into the complexities of self identity and social structures/hierarchies – across NY and Canada. 

Anastasiya Gutnik

This artist has shown her work throughout Long Island City and NY as well as abroad. Her interdisciplinary creations focus on life cycles in nature, such as the “processes of decay and renewal and the intersections between the human and natural world”. To emphasize these relationships in nature and humanity, Gutnik only uses natural materials and physical “relics that once held significance, neglected through time”.  

Cecilia André

While simultaneously curating shows in Brazil, this Lebanese artist focuses on sculptural art that highlights the beauty and mystery of natural light. She was recently 1 of 6 women to receive a Queens Council on the Arts grant to create an outdoor installation at the Queens Botanical Garden which was displayed July-September 2020. 

Long Island City Chefs

Chintan Pandya

Fans of comfort food and Indian cuisine, rejoice! Because you’ve never seen Indian food like this before. Chef Chintan Pandya is a James Beard nominee with a local LIC restaurant called Adda, an eatery that specializes in “’unapologetically’ authentic Indian food”, such as junglee maas and paneer tikka. Spice lovers, ready your palates! 

Helen You

Owner and chef, Helen You, is behind Flushing’s Dumpling Galaxy, an eatery dedicated to some of China’s most popular comfort foods, most notably – the dumpling. With both savory and sweet options, there is something for everyone at this cozy restaurant. There’s also a cookbook available!

Ghaya Oliveira 

This renowned James Beard winning pastry chef is striking out on her own for the first time in Jacx & Co., a new food hall featuring several local artisans now open in Long Island City. The Tunisia native’s restaurant is named Ghaya and features food from her home country (such as poulet and pkaila) as well as some signature sweet delicacies, like pumpkin pie with chai whipped cream. Sign us up…

Are You a Chef or Artist In Need of Space? The Cigar Factory Can Help!

The Cigar Factory’s goal was always to provide creative office space to the creative professionals of NYC. When we found this spot with so much history attached to it, we knew we had found the perfect place. 

Are you an artist or chef who’s looking to expand into commercial space? We have several “white box” spaces available ranging from 800 to over 4,000 square feet that you can customize to fit your needs whether you’re an artist needing studio and/or showing space or a chef needing commissary space, we have spaces that will work for everyone. Contact us today to learn more!

Long Island City
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9-20 35th Ave, Long Island City, NY 11106
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