This Week’s Must-See Art Events: Immortalizing Bushwick

by Paddy Johnson and Michael Anthony Farley on September 26, 2016 Events

Join Bushwig queens Horrorchata and Merrie Cherry for brunch post open studios!

Join Bushwig queens Horrorchata and Merrie Cherry for brunch post open studios!

What a week ahead of us. It begins Monday with the first presidential debate, so naturally, we’ve got a conversation with artist and political hound Martha Rosler on Tuesday. Ostensibly, the conversation will cover Rosler’s career, but knowing her, a good portion will be dedicated to discussing the current political climate.

There’s plenty going on between now and Friday, but let’s face it: pretty much everything that falls over the weekend will take a sideline to Bushwick Open Studios. So, kick off your Friday with the beloved indie-pop band Lower Dens at Pioneer works and prepare to spend the rest of your time gallivanting around Bushwick. Expect to see crass real estate dealings and misguided beer sponsored art events, mitigated by inspiring artist-led exhibitions, performances and open studios.

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Dia Art Foundation

535 W 22nd Street
New York, NY
6:30 p.m. - 8:00 p.m. Website

Artists on Artists: Andrea Bowers on Martha Rosler

Dia’s “Artist on Artist” series invites an artist to talk about another artist’s work. Here we get to see Andrea Bowers in conversation with Martha Rosler, discussing Rosler’s long, groundbreaking career. Based on the image, it looks like If You Lived Here might be a topic of discussion, which is one of my all-time favorite books and a must-read for artists concerned about gentrification and urban politics.

Storefront for Art and Architecture

97 Kenmare St
New York, NY
7:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m.Website

Work In Progress

New York is getting one more (very small) construction site. Storefront for Art and Architecture is getting wrapped up in green construction netting, mirroring and interrogating the aesthetics of the city’s development boom, from the barely-there “finger buildings” to sprawling megaprojects. On the exterior, artists and designers will propose their own alternative growth models.

Fans of Martha Rosler should note she’s involved in this project as well. You are therefor faced with a conundrum of which Martha-Rosler-related event to attend. 

Work from: AGENCY: Ersela Kripa + Stephen Mueller; Al-Hamad Design; Daisy Ames; Antoine Catala; Nick DeMarco; DSGN AGNC: Quilian Riano; Aaron Gemmill, Marc Handelman, and Prem Krishnamurthy; The Living; LOT-EK; MEGA CORP. (Michael Tingen); Michael Sorkin Studio; MOS Architects; OOF (Tom Hancocks and Carrie Smith); Paloma Powers; Lisa Park; Alan Paukman; PLAYLAB, INC.; POWERHOUSE; PUCON; Martha Rosler; Jesse Seegers; Miriam Simun; Andrew Strasser; SYC

Work Initiated By: Storefront for Art and Architecture and POWERHOUSE in collaboration with PARA Project, Naho Kubota, Bryant Wells



134 Bowery 4S
New York, NY
7:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m.Website

Mathieu Malouf: Facilities

You never know what you’re going to get with Mathieu Malouf’s work. There could be an installation or figurative painting and sculpture or what Corinna Kirsch once described as “ really just jewlery for the walls”. A punk-esque flyer announcing the title “Facilities” is the sole promotional material for the show, so we’re guessing it’s bathroom-themed. Malouf once created a transparent blue deluxe porta-potty inpired by a condo building in the LES, and he’s produced one of the most tenderly beautiful oil paintings of a toilet I’ve ever seen. It takes a lot to make the scatalogical seem smart beyond just humor, and for that we give Malouf a thumbs up.  



The James Gallery at CUNY

365 5th Ave
New York, NY
6:30 p.m. - 8:30 p.m.Website

Dwelling, Dislocation and the Digital


As part of the exhibition The House of Dust by Alison Knowles, CUNY has invited poet and scholar Meena Alexander to join art critic, historian, and curator David Joselit in a discussion about displacement and belonging in the globalized, digital age.

It’s pretty remarkable that Knowles’ early experiment with computer-generated poetry from the 1960s still feels so timely and relevant.



Pioneer Works

159 Pioneer St
Brooklyn, NY
8:00 p.m. - 11:00 p.m.Website

Lower Dens with Ornament

Lower Dens is so, so great. They’re known for super-listenable indie pop where there always seems to be something dark or a little off lurking just below the surface. Here, they’ll be performing from within inflatable sculptures in the exhibition The Present is the Form of All Life: The Time Capsules of Ant Farm and LST. Definitely a can’t-miss evening.


Literally Everywhere

Brooklyn, NY
11:00 a.m. - 9:00 p.m. SundayWebsite

Bushwick Open Studios

It’s that time of the year again. Visiting Bushwick Open Studios is pretty much impossible to plan—the huge event now sprawls from the neighborhood’s southeastern most corner and up into Greenpoint and Ridgewood. Hundreds of artist studios, dozens of galleries, and plenty of tie-in events are competing for attention for 48 hours. Most of the art will be terrible. There will be lots of commercial schlock. But it will be fun, and we almost certainly will discover at least a few great artists.  

Bite the bullet, pick a random L train stop, and let yourself enjoy getting lost in endless open studios. Good luck trying to navigate the event’s online directory (it has a somewhat functional map?) or Brooklyn’s infamously tortuous grid. OR….


Bushwick Open Studios

117 Grattan Street
Brooklyn, NY
11:00 a.m. - 7:30 p.m.Website

Lisa & Nina's Excellent Studio Tour Adventures

Instead of getting lost on your own, follow Lisa Levy & Nina Kineally’s studio tour. The two art professionals have the goal of making the open studios crawl feel less like a chore and more like the social, fun event it should be. The Saturday morning tour meets at 117 Grattan street, but there are chances to join in throughout the day, ending with an afterparty at The Bodega.

11am meet at 117 Grattan Street
Artists: Andrew Robinson, Etty Yaniv, Deanna Lee, Brendan Roche and more!
2pm Meet at 119 Ingraham Street
Artists: Jaynie Gillman Crimmins, Sharilyn Neidhart/Cibele Viera, Leslie Tucker, Cate Woodruff, ETTY YANIV, and more!
4pm Meet at 44 Stewart Avenue
Artists: SONOMI KOBAYASHI, Kerry Lessard, Linda Schmidt, Carolina Arevalo, Erik Hanson and more!
5-7:30 The Bodega, 24 St. Nicholas Avenue


The Silent Barn

603 Bushwick Ave
Brooklyn, NY
12:00 p.m. - 6:30 p.m.Website

Paper Jam Small Press Festival 6


In the ever-crowded field of alt-art-press/print fairs, Paper Jam holds a special place in our hearts for more than just its superb name. The twice-annual festival still feels punk-as-fuck, and this iteration happily coincides with Bushwick Open Studios. It’s a good opportunity to buy some art objects you might actually be able to afford and have your faith restored in stuff-makers after a grueling day trekking around the neighborhood.

Stout Projects

55 Meadow St, # 310
Brooklyn, New York
4:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m.Website

Bushwick Chronicle

History is built on documentation and historization. It’s no surprise, then, that writer James Panero and photographer Meryl Meisler have set to illustrate the importance of Bushwick by restaging Nina Leen’s 1950 portrait of the Abstract Expressionists and Art Kane’s 1958 portrait of jazz musicians in “A Great Day in Harlem” They will cast gallerists, journalists and organizers of Bushwick together for these portraits and pair with Panero’s writing on the Bushwick art scene.

The press release describes New York as unsentimental and ever changing, but we like that this particular project comes from the heart. Over the years Panero and Meisler have generously dedicated a lot of writing and thinking to the scene. This monument not only reflects that work and dedication, but the lasting legacy of self-organized artist communities.

Bureau of General Services—Queer Division

208 W 13th St, Rm 210
New York, NY
6:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m.Website

Coney Island Babies: Visual Artists from The Brooklyn Drag Scene

A big reason Brooklyn’s drag scene is so awesome and so unique is its singular permeability with the art world. Here, plenty of drag queens honed their (face) painting and sewing skills in MFA programs, exhibit or work in galleries, and have studio practices that often overlap with their alter egos’ nocturnal activities. This exhibition, presented by Fire Island Artist Residency at the Bureau of General Services—Queer Division, examines this local phenomenon with art objects and performances that exist in both the drag and fine art spheres.

Artists: Fred Attenborough (Sophi Skin-Tight), Tyler Ashley, Brad Callahan, Luc Craig (Lucy Balls), Harry James Hanson (Amber Alert), Hystée Lauder, Chris of Hur, Matthew de Leon (Untitled Queen), Raul de Nieves, Donald C Shorter, Sisters in the Attic (Anthony Argentina and Glossy Bohemond), Montgomery Perry Smith (Patti Spliff), Sasha Steinberg (Sasha Velour), Vincent Tiley (Jon Benet Glamsey)


El Cortez

17 Ingraham St
Brooklyn, NY
12:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.Website

BOOM presents Bushwig Brunch


If you didn’t get enough Brooklyn drag realness from Coney Island Babies, head to El Cortez on Sunday for performances from the Bushwig crew! We love Bushwig.

Featuring mojito slushies, burritos, and music/performances by:


Bushwick Open Studios

55 Meadow Street
Brooklyn, NY
1:00 p.m.Website

Lisa & Nina's Excellent Studio Tour Adventures

Day two of Lisa & Nina’s Excellent Studio Tour Adventures begins at 1 pm and features just two buildings. This sounds like a perfectly relaxed Sunday afternoon.

1pm Meet at 55 Meadow Street
Artists: David Dixon, Jessica Hargreaves, Ben Boothby, Niki Lederer, Katherine Gagnon, and more!
3pm Meet at 1717 Troutman
Abel Lenz,Gary Fernandez, Gordon Fearey, Dane Rex, Olivie Ponce and more!

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