Photo Essays

My Very Personal Beat Nite in Photos, Part 1

The Beat Nite pre-pre-party with Artist Austin Thomas and curator Jason Andrew as they play nice before one drops a bomb on my lap and the other tries to drop me to the floor with bourbon shots. Artist Rico Gatson obviously knows what's going on and looks at me with pity. (click to enlarge)

This is the third in a series of posts documenting Bushwick’s 5th Beat Nite, which took place on Saturday, February 18, 2011. This one is very very subjective.

While most people’s Beat Nite started last Friday night, mine began the night before at Norte Maar, where artist Austin Thomas had bitch slapped surprised me with the bombshell that she took the liberty of designing the Hippie Potluck tshirts without me (“I understand, Austin, really, let me just find that voodoo doll I made of you…”) and Norte Maar and Storefront co-founder Jason Andrew decided that he wanted to try and drink me under the table. Thankfully for me, the second helped blunt the pain of the first. Needless to say, things ended up blurry that night. Ok, I think I blacked out … details, details.

Next day, after wrestling a massive Bushwick hangover (they always seem to be), I was ready to navigate the streets in search of art. I arrived back at Norte Maar to look for my keys that I thought I had lost there during my epic shot-fest when Austin blinded me with the t-shirt she designed. She forced me to say I like it. The place was packed and Jason grabbed me, Hyperallergic publisher Veken Gueyikian, and book futurist Joanne McNeil to transport us to Famous Accountants gallery.

Our night had officially begun.

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A corner art work at Norte Maar was one of the first things I saw Saturday night. I wish I knew this was by but the curator won’t return my calls.

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A new work by Cathy Nan Quinlan signals some of the new directions in her recent work. I curated a group show that included her work last summer and boy do I wish I could’ve included this visual beauty.

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The New Criterion’s James Panero and Centotto’s Paul Agostino get territorial over  Jason Andrew’s bitch, Fern, during the mini-van rides around Bushwick. Andrew allowed a small group of us to tag along in his van as he darted across Bushwick.

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Walking into Famous Accountants gallery, it wasn’t obvious where the art was. My first reaction was that the lines on the wall and floor was the result of an earthquake or some problem with the building’s foundation.

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Nope, turned out it was all part of Meg Hitchcock’s sprawling cord of Koranic text that spelled out the entire Book of Revelation. Someone wondered if the gallery would be hit with some Muslim protests. My reaction, “Give me a break. Burn a Koran and then we’ll talk.”

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Famous Accountant co-founder Kevin Regan explains Hitchcock’s work (though I have to say I forgot almost everything he said), while Hyperallergic publisher Veken Gueyikian takes a closer look. I had trouble concentrating on Hitchcock’s work when it demanded my full attention, but the room was filled with gallery goers.

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A close-up of Hitchcock’s textual play. I think this is the part in the Book of Revelations that tells us that we’re all fucked. Yah!

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Blogger Joanne McNeil does her best impression of an actress in a Jean-Luc Godard film, while Veken wonders if artist Zane Wilson had killed a unicorn (or narwhal) to make his scary sex toy art at the Centotto apartment gallery.

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Some of Zane Wilson’s objects look like they were stolen from the cartoon homes of The Flintstones or The Simpsons.

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A urinal by an unknown artist (to me anyway) and a wheatpaste by Kill Shop Kill reminded me that Bushwick still has street style.

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Overunder rules the streets of north Brooklyn. If you haven’t seen his stylized paper planes around the area then you’re not looking. I knew this one would look better in pixels than in person, boy, was I right.

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I have no idea what this means.

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The newest artist at English Kills art gallery, Steven Thompson hails from Athens, Georgia. He has a knack of amassing natural materials and their synthetic twins. Notice the guy brown bagging it through the gallery. It is Bushwick, after all.

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This work by Steven Thompson was my favorite in the show with its mix of new and old, folksy and urbane. Jason Andrew and I are planning to go back to the gallery and steal this when no one is looking.

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A view of the main gallery of English Kills with works by Thompson. It felt like a really good flea market at the Bauhaus.

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Across the street from the entrance to English Kills, (center) a freaky blue figure by Don Pablo Pedro reaches toward a Chris Stain stencil of a mother and child.

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Mary Judge showing at Storefront gallery on Wilson Avenue. Her wall painting was pretty lovely, graphic, and used the space well. Her square works, not so much.

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Some works by Judith Bruan of Work of Art notoriety (on right) and giant flowers by Mary Judge in background.

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Kill Shop gets a good editor.

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A Jef Aerosol wheatpaste crouches under bands of graffiti and beside a faded work by Know Hope. Considering how his pieces never seem to survive the streets of New York, I was impressed this one is still up (it has been running for quite a while).

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Bushwick’s 5th Beat Nite took place on Saturday, February 18, 2011.

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