The pendulum always swings back in the other direction” remains the faith based initiative for the banal hope of a reactionary tendency. “It’s our turn now” reimagines creative tendencies of yore in tome form. Such is the poetic justice of today as we progress five quarters past the inconceivable notion for those that cling. As the world of allies and alliences shatters into less and less recognizable form, distant revelations expose the notion of governing as the most paranoid actor on the block, paralyzed by inescapable representation. Can the arts project a less static notion of reality to the intractable indifference of the disillusioned? Who has not lost everything yet?
The exhibitionist notion of the city as a quiet stage has reduced all hustle and bustle to a smeared blur. More messy than in styles past, we are left with a certain solitary experience of urban space when we finally succeed in tuning it all out. Dropping into an introspective void of structure and form the commons is not quite yet uninhabited.
Moving on from a dearth of the neutral in the not quite objectified form, we escape the present political conundrums of climate and environment with the slow, deliberate meditation on the cyclical. Progress creeps in stark contrast to continued reclamation of the wild. Weeds and brambles track the seasons better than our derailed notion of progress.
How green can we be?
Is there salvation at the end of the tunnel?
To gather an overview with a positive notion it might be fun to pivot to the everyday creative. Leaving spectator mode let’s spin a yarn of sly circumstance.
Space extends beyond the pale – you may try the goods!
One final stop for future thought reborn: Detroit gathers a state of…
The Bed Stuy – Bushwick metroplex area is fast becoming the bike mecca for gallery hopping doted on by roving scenes of loose artist collectives. One crew kicking off the fourteen with a massive set of interventions is Brooklyn Wild. The place they selected to inflict their damage is a spot called The Bishop, like the chess piece. The spot straddles an area of Bed Stuy sporting roving Hasidics in immense furry hats in winter and massive homebrew sound systems dotting the blocks in summer.
The Bishop, firmly on the black side of the checkerboard, not waiting to do a move though, is run by a crew up from DC. Formerly Pratt affiliated, the space now does gentle recounting in supreme artistic effort, an approach heralding from the DC African American fine arts, especially print making, still very much non-described, non-researched as already supplanted by more rootless, more etsy manifestations.
Somehow I got myself in the 12 day group show on Brooklyn with a piece I’d been meaning to get back to the party from which it sprang. On the New Year for twelve, as it happened, I was chasing some tail at off-the-hook Rubulad three spaces party. I bumped into an acquaintance at the first spot who had been comped a wristband. We ripped the band in half while on the party bus and stuck it on our wrists with spittle.
Once in, I roved the second spot, like I was promoting, making snaps, but when I got back to the door knew it would be sketchy trying to go in and out with the half band spittle stuck to my wrist. In my moment of hesitancy I started to notice all the people trying to show the bouncer with their raised wrists that they were legit.
I started to photograph that moment tween out and in as there was a never-ending stream of people. Nine of these photographs is what I wheeled to The Bishop in the guise of Comped in Brooklyn.
Arrived a bit fashionably but didn’t feel too much out of place as this seemed more legit than the university connected pop ups dotting much of the calendar in Brooklyn now, where art is but a temporary deviance on the road to either ruin of hard drugs or the blissful arrival at settled down feeling with the two kid garage, alleviating anxiety with the, still in some sense, American dream. Above all, those spots though are placeholders for the next next wave of realtor speculation making the seeming choice above profitable.
The last spot available was on a windowsill, so once I balanced the blocks I caught sight of the piece next door where a few photographs framed and hung kept close watch on a bunch more strewn on the floor just in front.
This installation was by Alan Rules, and the photos were all covered in grime and looked like they were of the tragic destruction from Hurricane Sandy – if it weren’t for boobies in all the shots.
I asked the chicken egg question on how the Sandy grime had gotten on the photos clearly shot in the devastation and Mr. Rules showed me on his phone how he had ruined a box truck to get that flood line on each photo post-disaster. Next door Jonnie Flatbush whipped out a glue gun to add a final spectacle to his cartoon inspired masks. A light heart reprieve to the Sandy devastation on either side of his.
Mr. BK Wild curating the assemblage is of course renaissance man Chris Carr. Someone to watch as he brings massive outlays of fun to events simply to post rent.
There are few that can bootstrap art these days outside of institutional bubble. Mr. Carr can and does, showing a massive print with dozens of photos from gatherings genuinely off-the-hook. The art he assembled by simply being openly inclusive accurately linked the semblance of Brooklyn being the diverse nexus, pined for around the world, in what remains this.