You don't need a passport to cross the border into the vital arts scene of Bushwick, Brooklyn, but it can help to have a guide. That's why Jason Andrew, the co-owner of Storefront Gallery and the director of the Bushwick nonprofit Norte Maar, organizes Bushwick Beatnite. For these semi-annual events, usually on Fridays, Bushwick's galleries stay open late. Jason and his co-sponsor, Hyperallergic.com, issue maps listing all the venues. The gallery crawl then concludes at a bar starting around 10. In this case, the Cedar Tavern of Bushwick is a place called Bodega.
Here's what the scene looked like at Friday's event. Katarina Hybenova of Bushwick Daily has more. Most of these shows just opened, so there's still time to see the art over the next few weeks.
Beatnite poster by the singular Bushwick assemblage artist Andrew Hurst
Some of the work on view at Fortress to Solitude, the gallery run by Guillermo Creus, who seeks out an eclectic range of artists. The center two pieces are by Jenna Bauer.
Paul D'Agostino of Centotto talks with Jason Andrew. Dove-tailed sculptures and rope made of styrofoam and acrylic by artist Zane Wilson.
Artist Ashley Zelinskie is the co-founder of the ambitious new Bushwick collective Curbs and Stoops, an "art accessibility think-tank." On the wall is a painting by Angel Otero, whose inaugural New York show is now on view at Lehmann Maupin. I write about a studio visit with Otero in my next column for The New Criterion, out March 1.
Gwen Skaggs of Sugar shows paint skins by the artist Erika Keck.
Much of the party centered around Norte Maar, Jason Andrew's home gallery. Here Austin Thomas has curated a group show in the living room. Austin's t-shirt references her newest venture, Hippie Potluck, a regular symposium of artists and writers hosted at the offices of Hyperallergic.
Not pictured, but also on my rounds, was Meg Hitchcock's obsessive text work of Biblical proportions at Famous Accountants (check out this James Kalm Report for more), the closing party for Mary Judge at Storefront, and the gallery Laundromat in its new location across from Norte Maar.
My thanks to Jason, and all of the participating artists and gallery owners, for keeping the lights on and allowing us to see a creative neighborhood in its prime.
UPDATE: Hrag Vartanian has published a "personal beatnite in photos" at hyperallergic.com. Caught on film is the author (left) on assignment with Paul D'Agostino (right) and Fern Dog (center), the unofficial mascot of Beatnite.