Songs for Presidents
Artist-and-curator-run Songs for Presidents provides an alternative art space that educates the local audience in the subject of contemporary art and creative thinking. Their winter 2015 exhibition presented the works of Kelly Kaczynski, Julia Klein and Nancy Shaver. Plant Stand was, as the name suggests, built around the set of three plant stands that were found by the artists at an antique store in Chicago. The uniqueness revealed by the specific fusion of art and craft inspired Kaczynski, Klein and Shaver to create an art show touching the subject of transgressive art, crossing the boundaries of different disciplines and raising the question of their relevance.
In its mission statement, A.I.R Gallery clearly describes that its main is to provide female artists with the opportunity to promote and express their artistry in a professional and permanent manner. This artist-run space operates its practice through exhibitions, lecturer, debates and a Fellowship Program that stimulates social and political awareness by creating a new voice on the subject of women in the arts. In its winter 2015 show titled Making and Taking: Pictures Reconsidered, female artists selected through the open call explored the history of photography by ‘investigating the intersection of hand produced and photographic pictures’.
The Still House Group
An artist-run space that promotes beginners by providing them with residency and studio programs, The Still House Group was founded in 2007 by Isaac Brest and Alex Perweiler, and was originally a strictly online-based concept. Since that time, the collective has hosted numerous shows around the world and developed its main space in Red Hook, Brooklyn, by creating a balanced environment allowing free flow of ideas. This results not only in conceptualized aesthetics, but also in award-winning exhibitions. We experienced this multi-faceted and highly engaging art institution at their winter exhibition titled Such Stuff as Dreams are Made On, curated by their 14th resident, Germain Hamel.
The small, artist-run 440 Gallery was named ‘The Best Gallery in Brooklyn’ by The L Magazine in 2013. Its founders aim to collaborate with artists and curators whose work can enhance the local community and set up a process of cultural exchange. Consequently, the spectrum of represented art genres and different media is wide and complex. In the winter of 2015, 440 Gallery hosted the 10th edition of its Annual Small Works Show. The anniversary exhibition was juried by Bill Carroll, a curator collaborating with Dia Art Foundation, the Brooklyn Museum or Nancy Graves Foundation, who made a selection of over seventy artists working within different genres by keeping the idea of coherency determined by dimensions.
440 Gallery, 440 Sixth Avenue, Brooklyn, New York, NY, USA +1 718 499 3844
Founded in 1994 in the vibrant Brooklyn neighborhood of Williamsburg, Pierogi has a long record of drawing public attention to emerging artists rooting their works in a wide variety of media. The success of the space led to the idea of bringing two additional spots to life – The BOILER and the Flat Files. The first is adapted in a way to display large–scale installations, while the last project space became an archive for portfolios of over 750 artists. Pierogi invited viewers for two shows in the winter; Daniel Davidson’s The Smuggler and Brian Dewan’s Pop and Paregoric. Davidson mixed styles and characters to create hybrids that reflect on the condition of the modern world and society. Dewan also interpreted sociological issues by exploring the role of filmstrips and their pedagogical aspects.
By Paulina Kowalczyk
Paulina Kowalczyk is an independent curator. She received her MSc in Film, Exhibition and Curation from the University of Edinburgh. She was involved in many film festivals, including Glasgow Film Festival and East London Film Festival. She works mainly in the area of immersive and interactive installations based on the works of contemporary and independent artists.