photography and mix media

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Highlights from the BOS Film Festival

This gallery contains 4 photos.

The First Bushwick Open Studios Film Festival Andrea Monti and Elle Burchill are two independent cinema devotees who have brought Microscope Gallery to Bushwick, NY. From the video they exhibit, to the lectures, screenings, and BYOK nights (“bring your own … Continue reading

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Williamsburg Veteran Makes a New Home on the Ridge

Fred Valentine’s salt-and-pepper hair easily betrays his status as an O.G. of the New York art scene. In the nineties, long before the condos came, he helped to create art and performance happenings in Williamsburg under the names Organism and Mustard. A mix of art, performance, and music mayhem, they were the forebears of the warehouse events now publicized by the likes of Nonsense NYC. Fred’s involvement in this scene climaxed in 1995 when he co-founded Galapagos Art Space in its old guise on N. 6th street. Unfortunately it didn’t take very long before he and his cohorts were priced out of the scene that they helped to start. But now Freddy’s back to launch VALENTINE Gallery in Ridgewood–Bushwick’s quieter, better-looking cousin. Just don’t call him a pioneer. Read more on The Bushwick Dream.
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Artist Profile: Hiroshi Tachibana

Hiroshi Tachibana uses a gel transfer method to make “physical paintings”. During Bushwick Open Studios Hiroshi told me that he doesn’t choose which of the colorful layers should go together on a given piece, but instead listens to how they “talk together” and uses this “conversation” to guide him. The results are colorful, quietly exuberant pieces that don’t feel forced in any way. Recently he answered a few more questions about his work and life in Bushwick. Read on »

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A Discussion with Cathy Choi





Cathy Choi is a sculptural painter based in Bushwick and she recently participated in BOS ’11. For this post, I’ve posed a few questions about Choi’s practice and views of our community in contrast to the other art communities she’s experienced abroad.

Audrey Tran (AIB): Tell me about any current projects you have going on.  (This can be anything, shows, collaborations, projects in your studio, or even just any of the latest fascinations you might have with materials, learning process, etc).

Cathy Choi: I’m continuing my series of “Liquid” paintings and would like to do larger scale works. I’m very excited to see where it will lead me. I’d also like to explore a kinesthetic sound/sculpture installation based on a person’s body frequency in reaction to color and light and sound. The idea came from one of my glue paintings. It leans more toward a conceptual approach that is more metaphysical. I’m in the process of researching materials and how to do it technically. Since these ideas are in its infancy, I need to let it sit in my brain and let it maturate a bit.

AIB:  What attracted you to Bushwick NY?
Choi: To be honest, I had no idea that the studio I found in Bushwick is in the midst of a burgeoning art scene. I came here from a very practical necessity of finding an affordable studio. Synchronicity is wonderful.

AIB: I noticed that you studied Art both here in the U.S and abroad, and you also were born in Korea.  What kind of differences did you notice in the different educational systems?

Choi: Having this mix of cultural backgrounds has been confusing growing up yet a great asset as I’ve gotten oler. I’ve always thought my influences came primarily from a western perspective in art. It hasn’t been until recently I’m realizing how much influence my Eastern heritage has affected my inclinations and proclivities with my creative process and so much of who I am and why I’m drawn to certain things.

When I was doing my graduate studies in Italy, the biggest difference I noticed was the Italian system stressed apprenticeship, learning from a “master” first. And a subtle difference was their approach to critiquing the student’s work.

Italy and Switzerland surprised me the most because no matter who on the street you spoke to, no matter the person’s educational background, they seemed to revere you because you’re an “artist” – in ways not so prevalent in the American milieu.

AIB: Have you participated in Bushwick Open Studios before?  If so, are there any good moments you’d like to share?

Choi: This is the first BOS I’ve participated in. It’s really been a positive experience because BOS provided a venue to meet other artists that are practically your neighbors but somehow paths never crossed – even though you may share the same street address to your studio. The BOS really facilitated a “meeting of minds” and created a way to connect by opening your door.

The other aspect of BOS I appreciate is that it by-passes some of the “gates” you have to navigate through to have your work shown. This event empowers the artist to dictate how and what you show and helps to connect with artists, collectors, and the public in an independent way.

AIB: Can you share a past memory involving water? 

This sounds like a really interesting fascination. Or perhaps you there are other pieces of art/or music/ or films involving water that have influenced your work?

Choi: There is work by Masaru Emoto that shows human consciousness has an effect on the molecular structure of water. It’s quite astounding how complex this element is. There is also a documentary video I’ve seen recently, done by Voice Entertainment that explains how water retains memory.

There is an artist who made me think about color in a different way. Even though Wolfgang Laib’s work is not related to water, his sensitivity to material is brilliant. Using collected pollen, he sifts them as a square onto the floor. It is the most intense yellow I’ve ever seen. It’s left an indelible impression.

But ultimately for me, it’s simply the visual sensation of seeing flowing water that I get excited about. I can watch water flowing over rocks for hours. It’s those memories from direct experience that I directly tap into and helps to motivate me to create work.

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Artist Profile: Rafael Fuchs

And you thought that you were busy during Bushwick Open Studios. The work of photographer Rafael (Rafi) Fuchs was included in five different shows during the event, including an exhibit of thirty prints from his Postcards from Bushwick project at Café Swallow. Here are his views on art, Bushwick and life in general. Read on »

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BOS Blogger Favorites

This is one of the first year’s we’ve had a blog up and running for an AIB festival, and we couldn’t have made it happen without the work of dedicated and talented volunteer bloggers. See below for a few of our bloggers’ favorite BOS2011 experiences, shows and artists.

JACOB McPHERSON: Top 2 Locations
1) Hart Studios: Brand new art and exhibition space in an old barber shop with a focus on conceptual and experimental art.

2) Bushwick Beer Garden: DIY space with a hand-crafted backyard garden. Like the Facebook page to get info on events at this homemade beer garden.

1) Wandering into The Hive NYC and being so warmly welcomed. After ogling the amazing art and taking a quick tour of the terrific space (including a visit to the rooftop beehive), the artists laid out an amazing spread of homemade food for us: boiled eggs, hummus, couscous salad, avocados and cheese.

2) Traipsing through the seemingly endless Schoolhouse (330 Ellery St.), being assailed by a roller-skating guitarist, a lollipop maker/screenprint artist, mobiles, photographs, collages, collections…just room after room after room of incredible art.

JENIECE PRIMUS: Top 2 Performances
1) Seeing Gordon Voidwell perform at the Natural Ass Sessions presented by Pedal Power NYC. First of all, anything featuring bicycles is likely to get high marks from me. Pedal Power gets volunteers on bike-mounted generators and uses the energy created to power live performances by some amazing bands. They took over a warehouse on Troutman Street and created such an amazing energy–literally. I was fortunate enough to catch Gordon Voidwell doing his thing on stage, it was awesome!

2) Listening to Listener at the Bushwick Dream Secret Rooftop Show. I think we’ve all been waiting for the summer to arrive so as to enjoy one of the best Bushwick traditions–rooftop parties. This secret show on Jefferson St. will be a tough act to follow. La Confidential, Homeless Gospel Choir, Ancient History and Timatim Fitfit all played but the highlight for me was Listener. They’re a “talk music” band with impactful lyrics and a unique stage presence. They hail from out of state but seemed perfectly suited to the Bushwick night air!

1) I was completely taken by surprise by the Onderdonk House. It’s this 18th century farmhouse down on Flushing (1820 Flushing Ave.) with preserved architectural and interior design and CHICKENS. Actual chickens, a small graveyard in the backyard and a sculpture garden set up for BOS–who knew something like this could be found in Bushwick? Throw in some free knishes and live music, and it was a near perfect way to spend an afternoon.

2) One of our early posts this season was on Factory Fresh, and since reading Jeniece’s coverage, I’d been pumped about visiting. I finally made my way out there and LOVED it. Zeitgeist + Bushwick spirit = Factory Fresh for sure. The best part was being welcomed to relax on one of the outdoor pieces (“KEEP ON GRASS”) by one of the Skewville brothers. The sun was shining, had ice cream in hand…what peace.

What were your Top 2′s? Let us know by shooting us an email at press@artsinbushwick.org!

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Artist Profile: Artur Ratton Kummer

Filmmaker and photographer, Artur Kummer is one of the 350 artists who participated in BOS ’11. He exhibited his work as part of an artist collective, Pixel Playground, which includes Cern One, Cyphered Threads, Kika von Kluck, Lilka Hara, and several other Bushwick-based artists and musicians. Rebecca Baird-Remba, one of AIB’s volunteer writers from the NYU community, prepared the following interview with Artur before BOS weekend.

Rebecca Baird-Remba: What’s your favorite medium of expression/what kind of art do you do?

Artur Kummer: I am a filmmaker, and I often mix fiction and documentary. I am interested in capturing performances by non-actors and method actors to create a narrative full of surprises. I am also a cinematographer and photographer, and lately I’ve been doing collage work and exploring my fear of performing by putting myself on stage. During the Bushwick Open Studios I will be coming out as a performance artist for the first time in my life.

RBR: What most inspires your work?

AK: People’s ability to survive the pains of life with humor and bravery, New York City, record covers, wild jazz musicians, National Geographic Mags from the 70′s, Brazilian psychedelia, comedians and classic cinematography. I am also very inspired by the colors red and yellow.

Read on »

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Artist Profile: Eric Trosko

Eric Trosko is surrounded by ducks. Many of the paintings in his Troutman Street studio include the critters. For the most part they are portrayed in ways not found in nature. Why the interest in the web-footed creatures?

“Ducks have personality,” he explains. Indeed. There’s also a UMass connection: as a student there Eric was fascinated by the huge pond that dominated the campus. Unfortunately ducks are in short supply in Bushwick. Nevertheless Eric, who’s also a member of the enigmatic FLAN collective, still likes it well enough. Read on »

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Artist Profile: Steve Myers of Mighty Fine

Did you check out any of the music that went down at BOS this year? SO GOOD. We caught up with Steve Myers of Mighty Fine, one of the bands that played at this year’s music festival. What’s he got to say? Here it goes…

What did you do for BOS2011?
What we do at every event or show that Mighty Fine plays. “A rump shaken good time!”

Read on »

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