Wednesday, February 11, 2009

March 2009: New York City

It's February and people are choosing to keep in indoors for one reason or another (be it the cold weather or the police insurgence). Today's post comes from Steve Loeb in New York City. Along with his colleagues John Robie, Royce Bannon, and the Endless Love Crew, Loeb is organizing an event to benefit local charities. He writes:

"The Endless Love Crew and The Combine are curating a benefit event at 112 Greene Street on March 26th. The proceeds will be donated to public school art programs. The theme of the show is “Work To Do,” inspired by President Obama. Afrika Bambaata and Soulsonic Force will be performing their new song at the show’s opening." 

"It is the personification and most importantly, the application of Barack Obama’s belief that: 'In reaffirming the greatness of our nation, we understand that greatness is never a given. It must be earned. What is required of us now is a new era of responsibility - a recognition, on the part of every American, that we have duties to ourselves, our nation, and the world, duties that we do not grudgingly accept but rather seize gladly, firm in the knowledge that there is nothing so satisfying to the spirit, so defining of our character, than giving our all to a difficult task. It has been the risk-takers, the doers, the makers of things - some celebrated but more often men and women obscure in their labor, who have carried us up.'"

"112 Green Street was one of the first conceptual art galleries in the seventies, showing artists like Gordon Matta-Clarke and Chuck Close. Before Greene Street Recording, 112 Greene Street was the home of the 112 Workshop. The collective began in 1970 when Jeffrey Lew, an artist with boundless energy and charisma, opened his raw ground floor and basement space at 112 Greene Street in Soho to a loose knit community of artists, known and unknown."

"The artists had complete control over their shows and the freedom to do anything to the space itself. What resulted was an anarchic flow of installations and events that acted like a magnet, bringing in dancers, musicians, poets, filmmakers, video and performance artists. Conventional distinctions between art making and art exhibiting naturally dissolved. Disciplines were shared and new forms evolved in the casual but charged ambience of 112's decrepit, elegant space."

"The artists who participated, reads like a who's who of contemporary artists including: Joseph Beuys, Chris Burden, Philip Glass, Dennis Oppenheim, Gordon Matta-Clark, Richard Serra, Marisol, James Rosenquist, Italo Scanga, William Wegman, Laurie Anderson, Billy Apple, Jacki Apple, Al Loving, Kate Millet, Richard Mock, Michael Balog, Chuck Close, Larry Rivers, Patrick Ireland, Joanne Leonard to name but a very, very few. It later moved and renamed White Columns. Then the space became the legendary Greene Street Recording Studios where many of the seminal hip hop songs were recorded. Right now it’s 4000 sq ft of raw space (30' x 80') with eleven-foot ceilings. We can paint, paste, and build all over it."

So far, the lineup includes Aiko, Cake, Deeker, Celso, Infinity, Bobby Hill, Chris RWK, Matt Siren, Chris, Buildmore, Abby Goodman, Chris Brennan, Pufferella, Anera, Abe Lincoln Jr., Christopher Gordon, C. Damage, Avoid Pi and Maggie Vending Machines, Ad Deville, Skewville, Erica Faulke, NohJ Coley, Avone, David, OHM, and Bast.

Sounds like a good time, Steve! If you're in the area, be sure to check it out. In other news, is anyone as surprised as I am that Shepard Fairey is suing the AP? I'd love to hear what people are thinking so sound off in the comments section. (Don't feel bound by English, either; I can always translate!)

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