Art/Music

Local Love Blooms: Greenpointers Annual Spring Market Returns With Groovy Flower Power! (Sun, April 7)

A packed house at our seasonal markets

Spring into peace, love, and local business! Our sensational Flower Power Spring Market returns to the Greenpoint Loft (67 West Street, fifth floor) on Sunday, April 7 from 1 to 7 PM.

This far out event will spotlight local vendors, indie artists, and neighborhood artisans of all stripes. Thousands of neighbors and guests flock to buy and see the fruit of these artists’ labors.

The Greenpoint Loft will transfigure into a floral kingdom of hippy love and neighborhood harmony. 60+ highly curated vendors will be hawking their wares, and an exciting lineup of FREE dreamy activities awaits:

As always, our Flower Power Photobooth will be donned with an art installation made in collaboration with artist Colleen Blackard for professional photos shoots by Gustavo Ponce Photography. It’s going to be as gorgeous as the roses in our last market, so stop by, throw up the peace sign, and say, “Groovy!” Continue reading

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Memories of a 90s Childhood in Williamsburg Recalled in Group Photo Exhibit

Before the Williamsburg and Greenpoint waterfront ushered in dozens of luxury buildings with the 2005 rezoning, the yearning to create something out of nothing permeated the native youth in the 1990s recalls Dominic Bielak, who was born and raised with his identical twin brother Damian on Berry Street.

Dominic and Damian in McCarren Park in 1999

“Things felt neglected,” Dominic said recalling the days when he would explore the abandoned, decrepit industrial buildings near the Williamsburg waterfront.

A group photo exhibition, “I CAN BE PRETTY TOO” from the creative collective The Brooklyn Social Club, which includes the Bielak twins and photographer Terrence Miele, will showcase 90s-era photos from their forthcoming book on Friday, March 29, at the Sideshow Gallery (319 Bedford Ave.) at 7 p.m. The show will be displayed through March 31st.

 

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Williamsburg Waterfront. North 7th Street and Kent Avenue. 1991. Photograph by Ted Barron. When me and my brother were young this was our playground. In some ways it was dangerous and it other ways it was safe. It felt safe for us always maybe because we were small and Naive from the worlds dangers. No one bothered you here and no one owned it so you were able to get away with anything and everything. My dad used to come here and go fishing and drinking with his polish friends and sometimes catch a fish maybe to eat it or throw it back into the east river restoring its life. #Williamsburg #Brooklyn #Film #Photo #Photography #Pretty #Escape #Greenpoint #Williamsburgbridge #Home #Family #documentary

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Open Jazz Session Launches at Warsaw for Monthly Series

Warsaw Jazz Sessions launched in Feb. 2019

A monthly live jazz night for local musicians and jazz-appreciators launched last month in Greenpoint hosted by keyboardist Jesse Lynch. The second session happens on Wednesday, March 20th, at Warsaw (261 Driggs Ave.) from 9 p.m. – 12 a.m.

Lynch, a Greenpoint-based pianist began hosting live jazz sessions at a Greenpoint loft last year under the name Brooklyn Vortex. With the Warsaw Series, he hopes to bring together local jazz players to exercise their improv skills.

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The Break, Amber Tamblyn, Eckford St. Art Party and The Wild Honey Pie — What’s Happening, Greenpoint? (3/6 – 3/12)

WEDNESDAY 3/6

* Parks & Waterfront Committee Mtg — Community Board 1, Brooklyn @ CB1 District Office (435 Graham Ave.), 6:30pm, FREE, More Info
♦ An Evening with Craig Baldwin @ Light Industry (155 Freeman St.), 7pm, $8 suggested, found-footage filmmaking, More Info
♦ An Evening with Morbid Anatomy: Carnival of Souls @ Nitehawk (136 Metropolitan Ave.), 7pm, $18, Buy Tix
^ WORD + the William Vale Present Amber Tamblyn and Uzo Aduba @ The William Vale (111 N 12th St.), 7:30pm, $29, includes signed copy of Era of Ignition, Buy Tix

THURSDAY 3/7

* 25th Anniversary Screening: The Break with Q&A @ Stewart Cinema (79 West St.), 8pm, $5 suggested, Greenpointers and present a 25th Anniversary Screening of The Break! We’ll be joined by Ben Jorgensen aka ‘Monk,’ who will be taking questions regarding his upcoming book, he may even read a chapter; More Info
♫ Aurora @ Brooklyn Steel (319 Frost St.) 7pm, $25, Buy Tix
# Puerto Rican Dinner with Chef Ana Ortiz @ Archestratus Books and Foods (160 Huron St.), 7pm, $65, Buy Tix
♫ Jorge Ben vs Willie Colón @ Black Flamingo (168 Borinquen Pl.), 10pm, FREE, dress to sweat, Buy Tix Continue reading

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Eckford Street Studio Hosts Family Art Party Sunday (3/10)

The exterior of local gem Eckford Street Studio

Ready your paintbrushes: Eckford Street Studio will host a Family Art Party on Sunday, March 1 from 10 AM to 2 PM at the studio’s home base, 70 Eckford Street. Families will enjoy food, games, drinks, and art (with supplies provided by the studio). Tickets start at just $35 for one adult and child, and $50 for two adults and two kids. But note: prices will go up at the door, so be sure to get yours today!

Every ticket purchased helps fulfill Eckford Street Studio’s mission to bring high-quality, affordable, and accessible art education to all members of our community.

Plus, those who attend will enjoy first dibs on the event’s auction, full of gift certificates, bar tabs, class passes, memberships, and more from some favorite hot spots including Artist & Craftsman, Artshack Brooklyn, Awoke Vintage, The Blue Stove, Brooklyn Academy of Music, The Brooklyn Kitchen, Burson and Reynolds, Glasserie, Greenpoint Massage, Greenpoint YMCA, Hosh Yoga, Kanga’s Playspace, The Karcher, The Land of Barbers, Le Fanfare, Nanno, New Love City, Nitehawk Cinema, The Noguchi Museum, The Palace , Paulie Gee’s, Pheasant, Pies ‘n’ Thighs, PLAY Greenpoint, The Rack Shack, Ramona, Ringolevio, Rockin’ Locks, The Sketchbook Project, True North Training, wBees Forest School, Welcome Home Studio, Whitney Museum of American Art, The Williamsburg Hotel, Woops, The Yard, and Your Spoiled Pets .

So come have a colorful afternoon, bond as a family, and support a thriving local institution!

Program support generously provided by The Atlantic Philanthropies Director/Employee Designated Gift Fund, Jonathan and Rebekah Ambjor, Jonathan Nadler, and Jessica and Ryan Demler.

Families enjoy communal painting at Eckford Street Studio

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Thursday Spotlight: Meet Director Dina Vovsi

Dina Vovsi

When we discuss the art scene in Greenpoint, we often focus on the Pencil Factory’s many inhabitants or the other visual artists working out of their studios, homes, and even in our neighborhood parks. But North Brooklyn has always been teeming with artists of many different stripes, including versatile theatermakers like director Dina Vovsi. Dina has worked in collegiate and Off-Broadway theaters, crafted plays centering on immigrant experiences, and created immersive experiences in outdoor settings. Below, we get to know the Greenpoint-based director while discussing her career, the importance of affordable housing, and — of course — her dog Bruce.

Greenpointers: How long have you lived in Greenpoint, and what brought you here? 

Dina Vovsi: I’ve lived in Greenpoint for about two and a half years. Before moving here, my partner and I were in Kensington for a year, and before that, I lived in Williamsburg for six years, so I’ve spent a lot of time in North Brooklyn. I am super lucky — my name was drawn in the affordable housing lottery for an apartment in a brand-new, mixed-income building, which has made being an artist significantly more possible over the past couple of years. It’s been a financial game-changer, and I can’t stress enough how everyone needs to be submitting for these buildings on NYC Housing Connect; I know quite a few people who have been selected recently, so it’s really not as impossible as legend says. We live in the quieter, north end of the neighborhood, and I love being near the water and walking our dog, Bruce, to Transmitter Park and Greenpoint Landing. More people know his name than mine, which I’m totally fine with. Continue reading

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Lucas Lucas to Present New Birth-Inspired Exhibit, “Magna Chroma”

by Darcy Lauren Briks

Lucas Lucas (57 Conselyea Street) will soon present Magna Chroma, the first solo show by Darcy Lauren Briks. The new exhibit opens Feb 21 and will be in the East Williamsburg gallery’s space through March 23.

The body of work began after the birth of Briks’ first child and completed after her second was born. Each piece is born from an intentional meditation; each an abstract exploration of a current issue, whether personal, political or global. Often reflecting on global or political overarching themes, Briks — who attended Mass Art post graduate before embarking on a career in graphic design and ultimately launching her own agency — found an entire new breadth of inspiration in marriage and motherhood.

Although Briks does not intend on forcing anything onto the viewer she conscientiously aims to set a positive spin on the subject, no matter how daring the subject of her meditation.

“I’m excited to see these works, my largest and boldest to date, displayed in the gallery together and look forward to the viewer interpreting their own objective feelings from the abstract shapes and color combinations, especially the pairs in the Magna Series,” Briks said.

The show is curated by Stacie Lucas. Lucas Lucas is located right off the Lorimer L/Metropolitan G stop in Williamsburg and operates by walk-in and appointment. All work will be available to purchase online here starting February 21.

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Dance Along With Kendra Morris and Love Always at Greenpointers Vintage Rose Valentine’s Market (2/10)

The musical guests are sure to warm your heart and liven up your soul at the Greenpointers Vintage Rose Valentine’s Market this Sunday, February 10 from 1-7pm.

Super fun Brooklyn-based supergroup Love Always crafts sunny musical vibes with Jamaican/roots, rocksteady, reggae and lovers rock influences.

Love Always will perform two sets on Sunday at 2pm and 3pm.

Patricia Verdolino (vocals), Michael O’Connor (guitar), and Andy Shaw (bass) are original members of 90s Ska band Metro Stylee. Shaw also plays bass in the popular Brooklyn band Bikini Carwash, while drummer Ron Salvo plays with .357 Lover and keyboardist Jeannie Oliver played in Si Se. Checkout a clip from their performance at our Polar Vortex Holiday Market last December.

Kendra Morris (Credit: Taylor Ballantyne)

With powerful vocals and a passion for 60s and 70s funk and soul developed through her parents’ record collection Kendra Morris began recording songs by herself in the closet of her bushwick loft.

Morris released the album Banshee (2012) on Wax Poetics Records and in 2013 returned with the covers album Mockingbird. She released new music in 2018 with her first single “Nothing” off of an upcoming record and the second single “Playing Games” following close behind in April 2018 along with a Greg Nice of Nice & Smooth on the Break Up Mix and her cover “Virgin” with DâM-FunK playing shoulder synth on the breakdown.

Kendra Morris takes the stage with her band at 4pm.

 

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St. Amour Jazz Collective Brings Unique Vibrancy to FourFiveSix

St. Amour Jazz Collective by Gabi Light

If I could spend the next six weeks of winter in one spot, it would be tucked in a cozy corner of FourFiveSix (199 Richardson Street) surrounded by the eclectic decor and art, absorbing the rhythmic musical stylings of the St. Amour Jazz Collective. On Sunday evening, the collective performed at the popular neighborhood jazz bar, offering a carefree alternative to Super Bowl festivities.

The St. Amour Jazz Collective features Jim St. Amour on the vibraphone, Luke Markham on drums, and Alex Heigl on bass guitar. It’s St. Amour’s passion project: a percussionist of 35 years, he made a natural transition to the vibraphone to start composing his own works.

“As a composer, I am inspired by the drum n’ bass and neo-soul genres of music. The vibraphone is a beautiful instrument, and its range and percussive tonal characteristics really fit nicely with the harmony and melody of both styles of music,” St. Amour said. He integrated the drums and bass guitar into his compositions, thus shaping the group’s unique sound.

Markham has been a drummer for 19 years. He is well-versed in various genres and plays with a number of groups. When he plays, the drumsticks seem like extensions of his own arms. Both he and St. Amour also teach. Heigl was 15 when he started on the bass guitar. His initial genre was punk before classically training with a jazz bassist soon after. This was the groundwork for his success as an independent bassist. As a group, this trio feeds off each other’s energy, talent, and love of music in an authentic way that makes for a spirited and contemporary live performance.

by Gabi Light

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Thursday Spotlight: Meet The Artist Behind That Winning G Train Doodle

Nadeesha Godamunne’s all-too-accurate doodle.

We’ve all rushed for the G train, but few have captured its whimsy and hysteria as winningly as local artist Nadeesha Godamunne. (Mokshini, the mononym you may know her by, is actually her first name.) Her post on Instagram, combined with its repost on Greenpointers, received almost 3,000 hits, and in this Thursday Spotlight, Greenpointers got to know Nadeesha, her artistic ethics, and the importance of “putting humor into something that most people get frustrated with.”

Greenpointers: Do you live in the neighborhood, and if so for how long?
Nadeesha Godamunne: No, but I’ve always been a fan of the artisan vibe of Greenpoint, and recently got my art studio right by Transmitter Park — I love it! 

On Instagram, you wittily calls yourself a “professional doodler.” I’m wondering, given how much artists need to work to stay afloat, how much of your doodling is for your own enjoyment, like the G Train piece?
Every artist finds this a challenge. It’s about striking a balance between the money jobs that pay the bills, but perhaps don’t inspire you as much, and the ones that fulfill you and bring joy. I draw for myself every day and maintain a journal of experiences and things I see. I try not to share this journal with people or on social media. This is vital because it reminds me to create first and foremost for me. A lot of these doodles inform the illustrations that you see on Instagram. 

Nadeesha Godamunne at work

Did the impending shutdown in any way help inspire this G train piece?
Absolutely! It’s amusing to me that the G train is so short. I find myself sprinting to catch the train and laughing at the same time because the whole situation is just so ridiculous. Putting humor into something that most people get frustrated with just keeps things fun and relatable.

Your art has a wonderfully textured and vivid style to it; can you discuss how this came to be part of your brand and whether or not you have any influences?
I try not to take myself too seriously, and i think that’s what comes across in my work. My style is constantly evolving; currently, I’m going through a bolder, more playful phase. I’ve noticed a shift since I started freelancing. It’s interesting. My focus when I draw, however, is not so much about the style — it’s about the message. I try to push the ideals of fashion illustration with whimsical yet relatable characters, satirical fashion storytelling, and humor. Some of my favorite artists are Rene Gruau, Toulouse Lautrec, Kenneth Paul Block, and Egon Schiele.

Central Park by Nadeesha Godamunne

Are there any upcoming projects you’re excited about?
Really excited about an upcoming collaboration with Vans, where they showcased my art and personal journey in a video format. We did a time lapse of me drawing and some animation work too. Should turn out great!

Do you have a favorite cafe, restaurant, or locale in Greenpoint?
I love Ovenly for their amazing pastries, the Stuart Cinema and Cafe for their soup, and Alameda and Citroen for their cocktails! There’s too many!

Nadeesha Godamunne
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