Art

Beyond the Book or Zine Hunting in Booklyn

"Hunter/Gatherer" zine catalogue

Enter a loft building next to Greenpoint’s Pencil Factory, walk up four floors, and you will find two tiny rooms that belong to Booklyn Artists’ Alliance. In this studio space, Booklyn has been extensively involved in the production of limited edition chapbooks, small-run artists’ books and the archiving of related projects for over ten years.

This past June, artist and curator Aimee Lusty took over as Booklyn’s gallery director. Lusty proposed a program that promotes artists primarily working in print: each show she curated would include print artists showing fine art work, and each show would result in a zine catalogue with contributions and samples from every artist (a concept Hyperallergic is certainly familiar with). Hunter/Gatherer, Booklyn’s most recent exhibit, is a more sculptural show than one would expect and features work by Evan Roberts, Jason Kachadourian, Jessica Williams, Jon Bocksel and Scott Meyers.

Jessica Williams works

In full disclosure: I am a fan of Aimee Lusty; as a colleague of mine, and one of the major actors in Brooklyn zine-making, I am thrilled by her framing zine work in a gallery context. The shows at Booklyn have surpassed any preconceptions one could have about a show of zine artists.

Sculpture by Jason Kachadourian
Jason Kachadourian letterpress prints

Jason Kachadourian contributes both curious sculpture and elegant letterpress puzzle piece prints to the show. Knowing Kachadourian’s work, both the patterning and the architecture are familiar, having presented themselves in premature forms in his earlier silkscreen works; the letterpress and illuminated sculptures suit him.

Jon Bocksel wall piece

Jon Bocksel’s striking, clean paintings evoke a cross between sign painting and graffiti, pairing weathered surfaces with meticulous brush work.

Sculptural collage by Scott Meyers

Scott Meyers’ mixed media collages — or drawings? — are a welcome component, displaying the connections between print and sculpture, and how the artistic processes of working with either is not mutually exclusive. In Hunter/Gatherer‘s curatorial statement, Lusty emphasizes each artist’s use of found objects. While clearly a commonality, each artist uses found objects in a different way, making the work that much more dynamic.

Jessica Williams' zines

Not only does each Booklyn show come with its own zine catalogue, but the artists are encouraged to create and display their own zines as well.

In the most recent Williamsburg Greenpoint News + Arts (aka WG News), Lusty designed an insert, promoting Hunter/Gatherer as well as Booklyn’s latest efforts. Unfortunately, aside from this WG mention, I haven’t read much about Booklyn’s summer shows, a disappointment considering I find them to be some of the most thoughtfully arranged group shows I’ve seen in a while.

Hunter/Gatherer will continue until August 21 at Booklyn (37 Greenpoint Avenue, 4th Floor, Greenpoint, Brooklyn).

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