Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Bushwick Gallery Guide

By Charles Kessler
Bushwick Gallery Guide

Bushwick was slow to recover from the looting and rioting after the infamous blackout of 1977, so it was a relatively dangerous area well into the 1990's. But now, like in the rest of New York, drug activity and crime are way down. I personally have never felt unsafe anywhere I've gone in the area.
It’s a diverse neighborhood with a large population of Puerto Ricans, Dominicans and South Americans as well as many other nationalities; and even the artists are not all young hipsters but are all ages. Bushwick is also a varied urban environment with  two- and three-family townhouses next to six-family tenements next to four- and six-story factories mixed in with stores, restaurants, bars and now art galleries. But it’s the large supply of loft buildings at relatively low rent, as well as the convenience of many nearby subway stops, that has attracted artists — many of them from nearby Williamsburg.
The galleries are spread out over a large area. What is being called “Bushwick” actually includes parts of eastern Williamsburg and Ridgewood, Queens. If you have the energy, it’s possible to do it all in one afternoon (it's about 4 1/2 miles), but, if you want, you can easily split the tour into eastern and western sections. For the eastern section you can end with Factory Fresh (G) and walk back to the Morgan Street L stop from there. For the western section you can start from the Myrtle/Wyckoff L and M subway station and tour in reverse order beginning with Famous Accountants (K). You can return via the Jefferson Street L (at Wyckoff and Troutman).
Most galleries are open Friday - Monday, 1 - 6 pm, but not all of them. I only included galleries that are at least consistently open on Sundays from 1:00 - 6:00, but it's a good idea to check their websites (gallery names below are linked to their websites), email them, or call the galleries in advance to confirm. It’s also a good idea to take the gallery phone numbers with you because in some cases you may need be let in.
I took the opportunity to list some bars and a variety of restaurants along the route, as well as galleries that are only open by appointment. These are not on the map but are placed in the listings next to the galleries they are closest to. 
To start the tour, take the L train to Morgan Avenue and go out the Bogart Street exit (toward the back of the train if you’re coming from the west). 56 Bogart is across the street from where you exit.

A - 56 Bogart Street galleries:

     Bogart Salon - (203) 249-8843

     Interstate Projects   tom@interstateprojects.com

     Momenta Art - (718) 218-8058   email them via their website

     NURTUREart - (718) 782-7755   gallery@nurtureart.org 

     Studio 10 - (718) 852-4396   studio10bogart@gmail.com 
     Luhring Augustine Gallery - 25 Knickerbocker Ave (at Ingraham)
     (212) 206-9100; info@luhringaugustine.com 
     The gallery will not be open until at least January. This is the first big-time Chelsea gallery to
     open a branch in Bushwick. (Rumors are the Andrea Rosen Gallery will be next.)

B -  To go to:  Centotto - 250 Moore St  (Call to be let in: 908-338-3590)
Head south on Bogart St two blocks
Turn right onto Moore St ½ block
      Destination will be on the left

     Roberta's Restaurant  261 Moore St (near Bogart Street), (718) 417-1118; 
     Open Daily 11a.m.-Midnight

     MoMo Sushi Shack, 43 Bogart Street (near Moore Street), (718) 418-6666
     Open for lunch and dinner Tuesday through Sunday

 C - To go to:  English Kills - 114 Forrest St -- use door to the garden on the right
Head back on Moore St to Bogart St
Turn right onto Bogart St, go 0.1 mi
Turn left onto Flushing Ave, go 269 ft
Sharp right onto Forrest St
      Destination will be on the left
      (917) 375-6266, info@englishkillsartgallery.com

     Grace Exhibition Space (Performance art), 840 Broadway, 2nd Floor. (646) 578-3402

D - To go to:   Airplane - 70 Jefferson St - basement
Continue southwest on Forest St to the end, 276 ft
Take the first left onto Central Avenue, go 0.2 mi, 4 short blks
Turn right onto Jefferson Street, go 0.1 mi
Turn right onto Evergreen and take a quick left to stay on Jefferson
      Destination will be on the left
      (646) 345-9394; airplanegallery@gmail.com

E - To go to:   Microscope  - 4 Charles Pl
Continue southwest on Jefferson, turn left on Bushwick Avenue, go 0.1 mi
Slight left onto Myrtle Avenue (just before the subway bridge)
Take an immediate left onto Charles Pl. 
      Destination will be on the right
      (347) 925-1433; info@microscopegallery.com

     Tandem (Bar and Restaurant), 236 Troutman Street (between Wilson and Knickerbocker)  (718) 386-2369

F - To go to:  Storefront - 16 Wilson Ave
Head back on Charles Pl to Myrtle Avenue and quick turn left onto Willoughby Ave
Go 1 blk and turn left onto Evergreen 
Go 1 short blk on Evergreen and turn right onto Troutman St, go 0.3 mi, 2 long blks
Turn left onto Wilson Ave, go 0.2 mi, about 4 short blocks
      Destination will be on the left
      (646) 361-8512;  jandrewnyc@yahoo.com
Update: Co-founder Jason Andrew will be leaving the gallery on December 18th and Deborah Brown, Storefront's other founder will be taking over the lease. The gallery will be called Storefront Bushwick.

     Narrows Bar1037 Flushing Ave (near Morgan) 
     Opens around 5 pm, (281) 827-1800

G - To go to:  Factory Fresh - 1053 Flushing Ave
Continue northwest on Flushing Ave
      Destination will be on the left
      (917) 682-6753;       ali@factoryfresh.net

     Cafe Ghia Restaurant, 24 Irving Ave (at Jefferson Street)
     (718) 821-8806, open Sun-Thur 11-10pm, Fri-Sat 11-11pm 

     Arepera Guacuco (Venezuelan restaurant), 44 Irving Ave (at Troutman Street)
     (347) 305-3300, Open for lunch and dinner every day.

     The Bodega (Bar/Restaurant), 24 Saint Nicholas Avenue (corner of Troutman St.)
     Kitchen open until 2 am.

     Sugar Art Gallery, 449 Troutman St (between St Nicholas and Cypress Avenues) 
     Open by appointment only. (718) 417-1180

H - To go to:  Norte Maar - 83 Wyckoff Ave
Continue of Flushing Ave 3 blocks
Turn right onto Wyckoff Ave and walk 5 short blks
      Destination will be on the left:
      (646) 361-8512; email them via their website

I - To go to:  Regina Rex  - 1717 Troutman St - ring bell #329
(The numbers change when you cross the Queens border -- it's not as far as the address would imply.)
Head back on Wyckoff Ave for 2 blks
Turn right onto Troutman St for 2 ½ long blks
      Destination will be on the left:
      (646) 467-2232; info[at]reginarex.org

     Northeast Kingdom (Restaurant/Bar), 18 Wyckoff Avenue (at Troutman), (718) 386-3864

     Sardine  286 Stanhope Street (between Irving and Wyckoff), a small gallery/boutique

J - To go to:  Valentine -  464 Seneca Ave
(This is a bigger space than it appears to be from outside.)
Head back on Troutman St ½ blk
Turn left onto Cypress Ave and walk 5 short blks 
Turn left onto Dekalb Ave, go 0.3 mi, 3 long blocks
Turn right onto Seneca Ave, go 0.2 mi, 3 1/2 blks
      Destination will be on the right:
      (718) 381-2962; valentineridgewood@gmail.com

K - To go to: Famous Accountants   -   1673 Gates Ave
Continue southeast on Seneca Ave, 0.3 mi, 7 1/2 short blks
Turn right onto Gates Ave
      Destination will be on the right:
      (917) 309-3540

     Small Black Door (Art Gallery), 19-20 Palmetto St. (before Forest Ave)
     Open during receptions and by appointment only. 
     Use contact form on their website to get in touch with them.

Charles Kessler is an artist and writer who lives in Jersey City.


Kyle Gallup said...

Charles, this is a very well organized, informative and easy to navigate post on Bushwick galleries. Thank you. It will be very helpful when going to the neighborhood.

sarah said...

Gorgeous map. I've been going to SUGAR, a space on Troutman, #449, that is very well run, and have followed their program with interest. Could you map them?

Charles Kessler said...

Sugar is a good gallery, and it is listed -- it's under G. Factory Fresh. I didn't put it on the map because, at least for now, it's by appointment only. If they ever have regular gallery hours I'll add them to the map.

Anonymous said...

Just a heads up, as it seems you are not aware, Norte Maar is by appointment only as well. At least according to the website.

It's places like SUGAR that make Bushwick unique. And everyone has a cell phone to call ahead of time, if not just a few minutes beforehand while they are walking, or per your map, passing by.

Thanks for the mention in the bar and eatery section, nonetheless.

Founder of SUGAR

Charles Kessler said...

Sarcasm aside you have a point. I'll research it some more and think about changing the map.