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Emily Greenberg

People Have The Power: “Of the people” At Smack Mellon

by Emily Colucci on July 6, 2016
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“Register to vote here,” reads a sign board in front of Smack Mellon. This sign is an unexpected sight, even for a Brooklyn non-profit art space known for its provocative shows. While art and politics frequently meet theoretically in the contemporary art world, they don’t often merge in such a blatantly practical way.

The connection between electoral politics and art drives Smack Mellon’s current exhibition Of the people. Curated by Erin Donnelly, Of the people arrives just in time for both the Democratic and Republican national conventions this month. The timing was not lost on Donnelly who brings together a multidisciplinary group of artists from around the United States to investigate, as the press release describes, “the of-the-moment political opinions shaping the 2016 presidential race.”

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This Week’s Must-See Events: Queer Power Edition

by Paddy Johnson and Michael Anthony Farley on June 13, 2016
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Monday’s been a rough day for us here at AFC as I’m sure it has for many readers. We’re still processing the horrific news of Orlando’s mass killing Sunday morning and it’s made writing much of anything difficult. Is there anything that can be said on the subject of guns, prayers, Islam, hate crimes and ISIS that social media hasn’t covered?

Probably not, that doesn’t diminish our need to mourn. One way we’ve decided to do this is to  focus on queer events in this week’s must see events. It’s a small gesture to be sure—we’re not saving any lives. But it’s what we can do to say to the families, friends and lovers of those lost that, “you’re not alone.”  

So, let’s talk all things homo-tastic: Monday night, Neil Goldberg revisits the David Lynch classic ERASERHEAD with a queer perspective. Tuesday, the unsung godfather of glam illustration Antonio Lopez gets his long-overdue retrospective at El Museo del Barrio, and two events at BRIC and Mitchell Innes & Nash bring queer/feminist perspectives to the city’s affordability crisis. Wednesday night, dyke icon K8 Hardy opens a mysterious solo show at Stap-On Projects while Thursday offers a one-night-only performance/installation from Scottish duo Ruby Pester and Nadia Rossi, who will be tackling sexuality, gender, and more at Bannerette. Friday night, head to Bushwick, where the Hot Summer Nights gallery crawl has some queer-tastic highlights in time for Pride month—be sure to catch Los Ojos’s all-LGBTQ group show and Vincent Tiley’s solo project at Christopher Stout Gallery. Also in Brooklyn Friday night: solo shows from AFC favs Björn Meyer-Ebrecht and Rachel Stern at Studio 10 and Black & White Projects, respectively, both located in the same building.

If you’re not politically/emotionally exhausted by the weekend, we recommend checking out the massive group show Of the people on Saturday at Smack Mellon. It’s all about the issues involved in this fucked, fucked election cycle. So when you’re feeling thoroughly anti-establishment, check out the Queens Museum’s Sunday panel on the visual legacy of punk.

It’s too late to wish everyone a happy Pride Month, but hopefully we can at least have a thoughtful one.

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This Week’s Must See Events: So Many Open Studios

by Paddy Johnson and Michael Anthony Farley on April 26, 2016
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Okay, this map above might be hard to read at this size (big one here), but it gives you an idea of the scale of Greenpoint Open Studios, which runs this weekend and will feature hundreds of artists. That kicks off tonight (Tuesday) with a meet-and-greet happy hour at Le Fanfare. Before that starts, head to Hauser & Wirth for a retrospective of midcentury painter Philip Guston. Wednesday, laugh (or maybe be scared) with Nao Bustamante at MoMA. Thursday, there’s a solo show of Anthony Cudahy’s funeral-inspired paintings at Mumbo’s Outfit in Geary Contemporary and a group show that positions artworks as set pieces at 99¢ Plus in Brooklyn.

The weekend begins with yet more open studios at SVA’s MFA program, followed by the IRL reception and performances for AC Institute’s current online exhibition. More online/offline fun is to be had late night in MoMA’s lobby, where social media artist/rapper Yung Jake presents a multimedia art and music experience that sounds like it will be quite the party. If you’re not too hungover, head to Greenpoint Open Studios on Saturday, followed by a bizarre-sounding Yale MFA show at the Abrons Art Center and a Xiu Xiu performance of music from Twin Peaks at the Kitchen. In a week of “must-see” events, that stands out as a can’t miss. Sunday, Michael Mahalchick’s solo show at CANADA promises to be weird and wonderful, and Greenpoint Open Studios wraps up with yet another party. Wear layers—the weather, like so much art, is going to be unpredictable while you’re trudging around North Brooklyn.

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