First Look at the Albany Barn

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On Friday, the Albany Barn held a sneak peek event to showcase what they’ve been up to for the past few years. They have completely renovated St. Josephs Academy, which was a long vacant school located at North Swan and Second Street. The barn has apartments for artists to live in as well as studios for non-residents to use. If you are unfamiliar, I strongly recommend reading their about page to get a better feel for the whole project.

The preview of the space was incredible. The gym was turned into a performance area with a stage, a balcony, and studios throughout. They had residents (and non-residents) performing on stage while people perused the barn and checked out the artwork of the residents. The show was laid out very well and it was really special to be able to check out the whole space, while checking out art (and the artist’s bios) the whole time.

I’m incredibly excited to have a place like this exist here, and I am even more excited to see what they have planned for the future. Thanks to everyone involved for making this event as good as it was.

Screen Print Biennial Catalog on Kickstarter

I recently posted about an awesome event coming up in September in Troy. Since then, the idea of publishing an awesome, high quality exhibition catalog has gotten enough traction to get them to about exactly half of their funding goal. Check the artists list to get an idea of how rad this show will be.

About the event:

In September, 2014, the Arts Center of the Capitol Region in Troy, NY will be hosting the first ever East Coast National Screenprint Biennial. There is currently no screenprint biennial in the United States, and this exhibition will be an opportunity to begin a dialog that can expand the discipline of screenprinting and its place in the world of art. This exhibition will showcase a range of screenprint-based art applications, from framed, editioned prints, to installation, sculpture, video, ephemera, and posters.

Check out the Screen Print Biennial exhibition website and if you’re into it, back em on Kickstarter and get this book printed!

Scope & Fountain NYC: Recap & Photos

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Earlier this month, I made trip to the city for just under a 24-hour period, warrior Megabus style, in order to catch up with some friends and check out this year’s New York City installment of the annual Scope and Fountain art fairs, in conjunction with Armory Arts Week.

This year marked my third year attending, and each time, I always wish I had more time to visit. If you’ve never been to an art event such as these, essentially it is a collaborative showcase with around 150 galleries displaying work all under the same giant roof. You can walk around for hours and hours, and still not get a solid view of all of the art. That’s part of the fun, soaking it all in at once, and of course, making several pitstops at the donation-based bars and pausing to talk with the artists that are present.

This year’s highlights for me were the displays from Art Now NY, which included a Banksy piece from his recent NYC residency, and Thinkspace Gallery, which showed the most work from my favorite artist, Know Hope, that I’ve ever seen in person in one place. This year, I was pleased to find that the art I was exposed to was created by a majority of artists whose work I wasn’t formerly aware of. I love seeing work from artists whose work I do know and admire, but it’s great to make these art shows feel like you’re doing your homework and discovering new and up-and-coming artists. It’s all part of the fun.

Hit the jump to check out some of my favorite pieces from this year’s fairs.

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Sun Ra’s ‘Space Is the Place’ at the UAG

On Wednesday, February 12th, the Albany Sonic Arts Collective presents a night of film and music at the UAG. The film portion kicks off at 7 with Sun Ra‘s 1974 sci-fi film Space Is the Place.

The following is the first sentence of the plot of the film:

Sun Ra, who has been reported lost since his European tour in June 1969, lands on a new planet in outerspace with his crew “The Arkestra” and decides to settle African Americans on this planet.

Yep.

The musical portion of the night kicks off at 9 with crazy synth-dude M. Geddes Gengras. Each portion of the night is a suggested donation of $5 and will be a rad way to enjoy the arts on a random Wednesday in February.

Miami Art Basel 2013: Photos and Recap

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Last year, I made the trek to Miami for the internationally acclaimed Art Basel, on a total whim. That’s the thing about Miami – it’s such a popular travel destination that if you play your cards right and search online diligently, even booking last minute, you can fly there roundtrip for way less than one month’s rent.

This year, I almost didn’t make it happen but my friend Christina helped me to remember that traveling is always worth it and we’d make it work financially later. This year, we had a better footing of how to begin with the art beast that is Art Basel and didn’t get quite as lost. To put it simply, every day throughout the long weekend, you wake up, get ready, figure out your first meal of the day, come up with your first art-related destination and then let the day run its course. You likely will end up a cool gallery you didn’t know existed or an after-party with an open bar and amazing DJ. There is so much going on with Basel, the first rule is to accept that you cannot and will not see it all.

This year we did pretty well, hitting up the Wynwood Arts District (during the day and at night, it’s two different vibes), the SCOPE art fair (which this year, took place right on the beach), The Miami Project art fair and the Select art fair, which took place in a gutted hotel. It is an art overload, as it features the who’s who of the contemporary art world mixed in with thousands of upcoming talented artists and galleries.

There is no perfect map or guide to attending the fairs during Art Basel – you just have to follow the path you are visually drawn to. The same goes for nightlife and music. This year we managed to catch sets from SBTRKT, Ryan Hemsworth, Jubilee, L-VIS 1990, Danny Brown, Trick Daddy, A-Trak, Schlohmo, Jaques Greene, Gooddroid and SZA; all in three nights. We didn’t hit up the food trucks this year, but made up for it with sandwiches from Jimmy’z Kitchen. We also managed to spend some time poolside and see the beach, which last year we didn’t have time for. I think I’d prefer to visit Miami during Art Basel weekend over any other time of year. Basel is great time to visit Miami because people travel from all over and for different reasons, and you end up meeting a lot of people through the simple common interest of checking out art and music.

For those of you who can’t quite make Miami happen or want to check out certain art fairs prior to next December, several are hosted annually in New York City, such as SCOPE, which will be returning in March 2014. It is definitely worth a city trek; I made it last year to SCOPE in the city, and it’s a great taste of a slice of what is on display in Miami for Basel.

Hit the jump to see some photos from this year’s trip!

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Marina Abramovic launches crowdfunding campaign for Hudson-based performance art school

Marina Abramovic, who is most recently famous for her 2010 performance, “The Artist is Present” at MoMa, is looking to crowdfund the Marina Abramovic Institute. The institute is located at 620 Columbia Street in Hudson and is looking to fund it’s next phase through kickstarter. If you honestly don’t know who she is, read her Wikipedia page. Seriously, do it.

From the kickstarter page:

Marina Abramovic Institute is dedicated to the presentation and preservation of long durational work, including that of performance art, dance, theater, film, music, opera, and other forms that may develop in the future. MAI will foster collaboration between art, science, technology, and spirituality, bringing these fields into conversation with long durational work. MAI will provide an educational space to host workshops, lectures, residencies, and research.

MAI will be a platform for long durational work. A long durational work is any work (of performance art, dance, theater, film, music, opera, and others) whose performance exceeds six hours.

The performer’s use of time is a crucial element of this genre. By slowing down, lengthening, or repeating actions normally unexamined, a long durational work encourages both its performers and audience to step outside of traditional conceptions of time and examine what this experience means to them.

This is seriously incredible to have this so close to us. Read through the kickstarter campaign, watch the video below and if you can afford it, donate!

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