Brooklyn Goes to the Art Fairs

Most of the art world in NYC is head over heels crazy just now and with good reason...Yes, it's Armory Week again! So in the midst of finishing your gallery install and procuring your VIP passes, we offer a few suggestions to add to your art fair itinerary; basically, wherever Brooklyn is at the various art fairs, so too should you be. 

We start with the Big Daddy and namesake of the week, The Armory Show. We mention Pierogi's presence there (because they are awesome and we love them) but especially because you can take the gallery out of Brooklyn but you can't take Brooklyn out of the gallery! So please find Pierogi (on Pier 94 Booth 744) offering a selection from their fine stable of artists as well as on Pier 92 (just to the side of the main entrance) where they offer "Slow Motion Car Crash" by artist Jonathan Schipper; an actual car moves 1/4 inch per hour into a static wall, resulting in the eventual demolition of the object in real time...American politics anyone? 

At Art On Paper please find first-class gallerist Owen Houhoulis and his Owen James Gallery (booth P3) where he will show examples of his expanding programming including Lilliputian gems from artist duo Adam Frezza & Terri Chiao as well as the always-alluring works of Norwegian based Elin Rodseth

The Pulse Art Fair (125 W. 18th St, Manhattan) shows 3 Brooklyn stalwarts; Front Room Gallery (booth A-301) showing new NASA-themed watercolors by Thomas Broadbent, Black & White Projects (booth A-105) showing photo-constructions from Isidro Blanco, and Honey Ramka (booth A-117) offering engaging works on paper from warlock of visual media, artist Lars Van Dooren

Brooklyn is all over the VOLTA Art Fair with appearances by American Medium (booth XI), Slag Gallery (booth C03), Victori + Mo (booth A13), Studio 10 (booth D03) showing the stapled fabric wall panels of Elana Herzog and the re-constituted text-based works of Meg Hitchcock. Also at Volta find Robert Henry Contemporary (booth F01) offering colorful geometric abstractions from Jerry Walden, Kayrock Screen Printing (booth X03) showing day-glo and jewel-toned works from Kristen Schiele, and MoCADA (booth X05) presenting powerful, large scale digital prints from artistKameela Janan Rasheed's series "HOW TO SUFFER POLITELY (and Other Etiquette)". Find solo Brooklyn appearances at the following fairs; Clearing at Independent New York, Transfer at Moving Image (269 11th Ave., Manhattan), Luhring Augustine at The ADAA Art Show, and an appearance by Weathervane at the petite but charming Salon Zurcher (33 Bleeker St.). 

Last but not least, find everyone else from Brooklyn at the teeming and triumphant SPRING/BREAK Art Show a curator driven art fair that offers much greatness, including Rachel Phillips (from The Parlour Bushwick) showing sensorial works by Katie Bell, Andy Cross, Max Warsh, and Robin Kang among others. Jennifer McCoy and Jennifer Dalton (of Auxiliary Projects) offer works by Susan Hamburger, and artist/curator Will Hutnick teams with curator Christopher Stout (of Christopher Stout Gallery) to show a lively mix of works including those by Anne Sherwood Pundyk, Polly Schindler, and MaDora Frey. Also at SPRING/BREAK don’t miss Krista Saunders Scenna (of Ground Floor Gallery) presenting a dizzying array of touching works including narrative polaroids from artist/curator/critic Brendan Carroll as well as artist Linda LaBella teaming with artworks and memories of her secretly artistic father, the late Nick LaBella. Be on the lookout also for what's sure to be a great show from the artist/curators of Present Company (Vince Contarino, Brian Balderston, Chad Stayrook, and Jose Ruiz) as well as a sure to wow solo presentation of gifted mystical painter Matthew F. Fisher from 106 Green Director John Lutz. On Saturday Evening, March 5th, Bushwick Gallery Late Night, 24 Galleries in the Bushwick area will keep their doors open until 9pm! A perfect chance to catch up with any shows you were intending to see or just want to re-visit! Enjoy the Fairs. Stay BK.

-Enrico Gomez

The Winter Groups

David KramerIt's that time of year again, filled with holidays of all sorts, jacket weather. When you head out to an opening, it will certainly be as dark as midnight even if it's 4pm. Some of the galleries are packing up for Art Basel Miami, and some are boarding up for winter. With so many distractions, plus the urge to hibernate, how will the art world keep our attention here in NY? The Winter group show! That's right! you and thirty of your closest friends will be exhibiting in a gallery near you, and just in time for those seasonal presents you might be pondering. 

At last count there were more than a dozen exhibitions opening in November and December in Brooklyn that feature more than fifteen artists. That means that in a jaunt around Brooklyn you might possibly see works by more than 180 artists. So you might just consider cancelling that trip to Miami and sticking around here. 

In Red Hook the venerable Kentler International Drawing Space is celebrating a quarter of a century in business with a show chock-full of stalwarts of the Brooklyn art community. 

In WilliamsburgFigureworks is opening "Life Drawings," featuring works from the weekly Saturday morning sessions that it has held for over fifteen years (for artists who don't sleep in Saturday morning and then go directly out to brunch). Pierogi has a group exhibition titled "Identities," with portraits and narrative works centered around the concept of identity, with works by the crowd-pleasing artists that you'd expect from Pierogi. 

This Fall Greenpoint definitely takes the prize for best show titles, with "Calicornicopia 4" opening at Calico and "The Show Me State" opening atAuxiliary. "Calucornicopia 4" is Calico's annual holiday show, featuring reasonably priced artworks aimed at the seasonal audiences. "The Show Me State" is a delightful exhibition built on the themes of desire and display (and having absolutely nothing to do with Missouri). 

In Bushwick TSA (Tiger Strikes Astroid) pulls open their drawers again for "Flat Files: Year Three" with 33 artists selected from an open call and working in all mediums. Be sure not to miss "Volume 2: Black & White," which is still up through December 6th at Schema Projects, and was curated by Mary Judge and WAGMAG's very own Enrico Gomez. "Volume:2" explores the ways in which artists respond to paper and transform it from the 2 dimensional into the 3 dimensional in innovative and engaging ways. Wayfarers opens it's "Family Album" in December, displaying the artists that have been near and dear to them in the past 5 years. 

In Dumbo Minus Space presents "Fiber Optic," featuring artists working on the intersection of geometry and fiber and brings together a multi-generational cast of artists from across the country. "Subtle Interchange" at NARS Foundation in Sunset Park features selections from the works of its season IV artists in its residency program. 

And again this year Open Source Gallery in Park Slope will host it's December "Soup Kitchen," in which artists are invited to cook dinner and present artwork (visual, performance, music) for all comers. Open Source does this EVERY NIGHT in December. It's just crazy, and crazy fun! Be sure to dress warmly though. 

September Season Openers

Johan Nobell
Fall 2015 kicks off this September with more galleries, bigger and better shows, performances and installations! At last count WAGMAG featured over 160 galleries in Brooklyn and the number continues to climb, with new galleries showing up every day. We will mention just a few: In Dumbo the photo-based, shipping-container-based Photoville is back this fall in Brooklyn Bridge Park and is a do not miss destination. Photoville is a modular venue build from shipping containers, which become makeshift galleries for the photography and video, and is definitely worth a trip down to the park. This year Galleries have shifted spaces in Dumbo and 4 galleries: KlompchingMaster's ProjectsMinus Space, and United Photo Industries now occupy the gorgeous old stable building where Galapagos was. Stop by and see their new digs and be sure to see Minus Space's exhibition of Gabriele Evertz's "The Gray Question," featuring large format paintings investigating the color gray. Also in DumboSmack Mellon opens the season with Karin GiustiMichael Kukla and will feature open studios of their artist's residency program. 

Bushwick is brimming with openings, performances and installations.Alexis de Chaunac searches out artifacts from different cultures for archetypal links between the personal and the historical at Art 3.Anastasia Ax uses her body and black ink to stage a live intervention with compressed shredded paper bales at Black & WhiteLuhring Augustine features "Looking Out," an exhibition of early works on paper and recent sculpture by Rachel WhitereadMicroscope's video exhibition "Play," features some previously unseen video works by Emma Bee Bernstein, Alex McQuilkin, Erica Scourti, Jessie Stead, Mickalene Thomas, Martha Wilson. Through repetition and innovative practices, the three artists' abstract works-Jane Harris, Alex Paik, Gelah Penn—create poetic and visceral expressions transforming paper into experience at Odetta. The venerable Soho (and Chelsea) gallery Soho20opens this month at 56 Bogart with exhibitions by Petra NimtzandLindsay Packer. At The Parlour "No Irony Here," featuring work byDavid Kramer, Cate Giordano, Paul Gagner, and Claudia Bitranproves to be somewhat ironic. At Studio 10 Elana Herzog addresses the relationship between material and memory, activating the space through drawing, painting and stitching. Brooklyn Fireproof's Temporary Storage Gallery features "Maker Marks," curated by Alex Gingrow andMichael Scoggins. A group show of work by meticulous mark-makers. 

Williamsburg is busy as ever, with galleries starting the season with some longtime favorites and brilliant new arrivals. Pierogi opens the season with "Contents Under Pressure," Jane Fine works ranging from tiny paintings on paper, to one explosive six-and-a-half foot emblazoned with the American flag. And in the back room "Scape-ism," featuring Kirsten Deirup, Jonathan Herder, Johan Nobell. At Art 101Katherine Koos's new work is meditative sculpture, evoking poetry and music. AtFigureworksRoyal Young's paintings inspired by vintage Playboys, noir movie stars, exhibit a Pop Art sensibility. "Jumping the Shark," at The Royal Society of American Art features Disney Nasa Borg, Dana James, David Opdykeand Savannah Spirit. At Front Room GalleryStephen Mallon looks at largescale industrial operations in his photos of the largest ship ever built. 


Join us Thursday May 21st to Support WAGMAG Brooklyn Art Guide

For the past fourteen years WAGMAG has supported Brooklyn art communities by establishing a forum to promote art exhibitions and events and has coordinated an effort to unify neighbor galleries and artists. 
There will be approximately 100 pieces of artwork generously donated by local galleries and artists for the raffle during the event evening. EACH TICKET HOLDER IS GUARANTEED A WORK OF ART. Enjoy a festive atmosphere with hors d'oeuvres, coctails, beer and wine, and a spectacular exhibition of cutting-edge artwork from prominent artists in Brooklyn.
Please help support our mission to promote the arts in Brooklyn. WAGMAG, Brooklyn Art Guide is a 501c3 nonprofit, and the only Brooklyn art guide that chronicles the art activities of art venues in Brooklyn, on a monthly basis, in print and online.  

This year features the inaugural presentation of the Lisa Levy Awards!
As an additional honor, selected artists will be acknowledged for outstanding merit by WAGMAG Benefit Committee member Lisa Levy, who will be awarding ribbons to acknowledge some of the fabulous art for it's specific outstanding qualities. To that end, she will be awarding ribbons to a selection of artworks that contain those special qualities such as Most Clashing Colors, Most Impractical to Bring Home. Most Time Consuming to Make and more!

Each raffle ticket guarantees an artwork. Artwork will be selected on the benefit evening by a raffle-style drawing, which determines the order in which ticketholders make their selection.
Tickets for the artwork raffle are available for $200 up until May 10th, after which tickets will be available for $250 each. Each ticket guarantees a work of art. There will be an entrance fee for admission to the benefit event of $20 for non-ticket holders.

Brooklyn Oenology Winery will be pouring a selection of their award-winning wines throughout the evening.
VIP preview tickets are availble for $350, these limited tickets grant early access for four guests from 6:00-7:00pm with a guided tour and include a ticket for the artwork raffle (7-9pm). Specialty cocktails will be served during this portion of the evening, proxies are available to be assigned to help make artwork selections and will act as stand ins during the raffle in the case that VIP guests are unable to attend the artwork drawing. VIP ticket holders will also receive a color checklist with images and descriptions of available works.
All proceeds will go towards the operation and production of WAGMAG, Brooklyn Art Guide.
Many Thanks to The Boiler  for hosting this year’s event.

Passersby at Owen James Gallery

Owen James Gallery2015-04-01

In a city teeming with millions, markers of resident and visitor individuality can become, over time, an accretive blur; faces, nationalities, ages, and body types smear together into a general human backdrop of the proto-typical, urban experience. Aspects of this paradox between the particular and the plural are explored within the figurative works on paper of Oslo-based artist Elin Rødseth, currently on view at Owen James Gallery (61 Greenpoint Avenue, Suite #315) through April 18th.

The show, entitled Passersby, assembles many works from the artists current series of the same name; small photopolymer prints on paper reminiscent of family photos or keepsakes wherein the primary countenances of the subjects are obscured while secondary elements; hair, clothing, and physical postures are foregrounded through the effects of a mediated printing process. Evidence of the artist’s hand and gestures soften while the more material qualities of paper and ink seem to register higher in one’s noticing. A personal favorite, “Passerby 9” presents a faceless girl before a “Nails” sign, blowing hair disintegrating into a black, crackle field. This “Christina’s World”-like image, though small in scale, prods and pulls at your sense of place and familiarity. “Passerby 5” depicts a presumedly young girl, hunched over and lacing up her boot. With body angles and composition that gently recall the drawings of Egon Schiele, this work seems to catch a bit of the magic inherent in our everyday repetitions; habitual, meditative, and insouciant. The works in this series evince memory, in that funny way where the crisp specifics of our minds eye can fuzz over and blur when viewed through the lens of time.

The parlour-like installation of these images underscores the read of them as family heirlooms or yearbook snapshots and the feelings of deja vu that these works can manifest are both hauntingly pleasant and warmly disquieting.

The show also includes works from Rødseth’s Bystander series, wherein woodcut and photopolymer interior elements are juxtaposed and re-purposed within the series, like props on a theatrical stage. Last and honorable mention is given to “Men”, a singular woodcut monotype wherein a group of faceless male figures shuffle and huddle together, peering out into nothing. The background here is spare (there isn’t one) and through composition and placement alone, the viewer can assume a horizon line and ground for the action, only there isn’t any. Like a contemporary riff on Godot, these men gather and wait and stare outwardly, with themselves as their only reward.

For additional figurative work, sans facial features, in Brooklyn visit Faceless, Figuring Immediacy + New Nudes at Outlet Gallery (253 Wilson Avenue) which opens April 4th and features the dreamy psychedelic paintings of Jen Hitchings, the gem-toned, modernist musings of figurative painter Gili Levy, the charged figurations of Julie Curtiss, and minimal, humorous takes on the figure by Dan Flanagan. (through May 10th).

—Enrico Gomez

Greenpoint Gallery Night - Friday, March 20, 7-10pm

Is there a better way to celebrate the snowy happy first day of spring in NYC than planning a route through a lovely neighborhood during Greenpoint Gallery Night tonight from 7-10pm?

GGN is an ongoing effort to shed light on Greenpoint’s exceptional galleries, art organizations, and businesses that feature artwork. Participating locations have scheduled opening receptions and extended hours to coincide with the event.

GGN official afterparty 10pm - onward at Broken Land, 105 Franklin St.

The Spring '15 edition includes:
106 Green - 104 Green St

Booklyn Artist Alliance - 37 Greenpoint Ave

Calico - 67 West St

Dusk Editions - 61 Greenpoint Ave

Greenpoint Terminal Gallery - 67 West St

G-Spot - 66 Greenpoint Ave (CoCo66)

The Java Project - 252 Java St

Owen James Gallery - 61 Greenpoint Ave

The Yard - 33 Nassau Ave
work by: Miryam Prodanovic

Brouwerij Lane - 78 Greenpoint Ave

Dandelion Wine - 153 Franklin St
work by: Paul Richard

Greenpoint Gallery Night, March 20, 2015

Mapping Brooklyn at BRIC House and Brooklyn Historical Society


If you haven't visited Downtown Brooklyn Cultural District recently, things are bustling in the area. Elizabeth Ferrer, Director of Contemporary Art at BRIC and Deborah Schwartz, President of the Brooklyn Historical Society have teamed up to co-present "Mapping Brooklyn." This exhibition leads viewers on a tour through Brooklyn's history and offers chance for re-orientation of personal perspectives on the borough.

Patricia Smith Historic maps are juxtaposed with contemporary artists' works, which incorporate cartography, exploration and maps in their art-making processes. One standout in this exhibition is Jennifer Maravillas' "71 Square Miles" a massive collage of paper litter collected from her extensive walks throughout Brooklyn. Going beyond geographical mapping, Patricia Smith's "Upper Brooklyn Recovered Memory Tureen" presents a map of the mind, with designations of thoughts meticulously drawn and detailed.

Katarina Jerinic We have all seen them: free standing boulders in the oddest of places, Katerina Jerinic informs us that they are left behind by glaciers and invites visitors on a tour of these “Erratic Monuments”. And be sure not to miss BRIC’s Project Room with data transformed into colorful and impactful maps. A vintage road map from the World’s Fair adds a nice counterpoint to Justin Blinder's interactive digital installation, "Vacated," which processes public data to present a stunning view of the changes from the ground up in Brooklyn neighborhoods.

Some of the other impressive map based works in the show include projects by: Aaron Beebe, Daniel Bejar, Francisca Benitez, Gail Biederman, Justin Blinder, Christine Gedeon, Katarina Jerinic, Joyce Kozloff, Laura Kurgan, Peter Lapsley, Jennifer Maravillas, Simonetta Moro, Bundith Phunsombatlert, Jan Rothuizen, Patricia Smith, Nick Vaughan & Jake Margolin, and Sarah Williams. On view through May 3rd at BRIC House (647 Fulton) and Brooklyn Historical Society (128 Pierrepont Street).

—K. Vance