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See Biggie as a Faberge Egg and Slick Rick as a European Noble in This ‘History of Hip Hop’

Biggie (Faberge egg)

Biggie Faberge egg. (Photo courtesy Amar Stewart)

Back in 2014 we told you about British painter Amar Stewart’s “Hip-Hop Royalty” series at the Cotton Candy Machine in Bushwick, a display of “Golden Age”-inspired oil paintings of influential hip hop artists like Rick Ross, Action Bronson, and 10 other rap royals. As of June 2, he’ll be back at it again in Bushwick, with a six-week (maybe longer, depending upon popularity) exhibition and residency at Sweet Science.

His new exhibition, titled “The History of Hip Hop” has all-new work, including more than 20 new portraits of major New York hip hop artists in place of European nobles, as originally portrayed by your Rembrandts and Van Dykes, two recreated “Imperial” Faberge eggs (originally crafted for the last Russian Czar Nicholas II) on canvas, and Stewart’s first-ever sculpture, a collaboration with Russian sculptor Anton Tishchenko. (Check out our photo gallery for a sneak peek, courtesy of Stewart.)

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Hit the Beach and Snoop Inside of an Art-Filled Garage at Backyard Rockaway

The work-in-progress garage space and backyard. (Photo courtesy Backyard Rockaway)

The work-in-progress garage space and backyard. (Photo courtesy Backyard Rockaway)

It’s difficult to predict the exact start date of yard sale season– or as I like to call it, “that time a stranger tried to haggle with my dad for the driveway basketball net that I was actively playing with.” As one Maine-based blogger Julie-Anne Baumer quips, “there seems to be a mysterious mathematical equation involving air temperature, the chance of precipitation, and square feet of house junk.” Looking at the weather forecast– and around my apartment– it would seem the season for distracted-er driving and voyeuristic perusal of neighbors’ undesirables is upon us. But for one “yard sale style display” in Rockaway, the start date is more than a month from now, on Independence Day.

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Curves and Hair Lift ‘Burden’ on Ancient Women at Sappho-Inspired Art Show

One of Melanie Park's "What If Sappho" works. (Photo courtesy Mary Judge)

One of Melanie Park’s “What If Sappho” works. (Photo courtesy Mary Judge)

The sardonic #Hoffsome-approved Tumblr posts of “All Male Panel” keep us painfully aware of how underrepresented women are, well, everywhere, but especially in the world of art conferences, culture Q+As, academic panels, and business summits. (Oh wait, that’s just the entire public realm.) At least the female form will be better represented on paper starting tomorrow, with the opening of Italian Airs, the first-ever pop-up show hosted by Schema Projects, an all-art-on-paper, all-the-time gallery in Bushwick. (The exhibition will also be included in the inaugural Bushwick Hot Summer Nights.)

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Spooky Action at a Distance: an Art Show Haunted By Grave Ghosts

Work by Langdon Graves

Animal Hypnosis by Langdon Graves

A new show at Bushwick gallery Victori + Mo approaches the supernatural from a firmly grounded perspective. By exploring the ephemerality of memory and the power of belief, artist Langdon Graves walks a tricky line on the edges of the occult while still keeping a healthy dose of skepticism.

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John Murray Goes to Dexter-esque Lengths to Create Incredible Replicas of Body Parts

(Photo: Karissa Gall)

(Photo: Karissa Gall)

On a recent Sunday afternoon in a Bushwick art studio, I took my top off, changed into a paper-thin, full-body Tyvek suit, and took a seat in front of a tall, blond man twirling a pair of surgical scissors. He cut off the top of the disposable suit and then wrapped my chest with clear tape, effectively pinning my arms to my sides. “This is starting to get a little too Dexter,” he said, before covering my neck with alginate.

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And Now There Are Two Art Fests Looking to Fill the Bushwick Open Studios Void

Bushwick Open Studios (Photo: B+B)

Lisa Levy performing “Rockin’ Granny Love,” Diego Barnes in her arms at Bushwick Open Studios 2015 (Photo: Jordan Abosch)

Stephanie Theodore of Theodore:Art was massively disappointed when Arts in Bushwick announced that Bushwick Open Studios was moving from summer to fall in an attempt to close the door on an eight-year tradition. But AiB had their reasons– BOS had ballooned into something of circus, an event that they believe had been co-opted and used by corporate interests and party promoters looking to cash-in on the thousands of people who swarmed the neighborhood each June. But galleries and individual artists also benefitted from the huge influx of people and the visibility that BOS brought to the area, so Theodore was hardly alone. “A lot of other galleries wanted something to replace BOS,” she told B+B over the phone today.

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Powrplnt Grows Its ‘Outsider’ Space for Contemporary Art

Raul De Nieves "Fat Man" 2010 (Photo: Nicole Disser)

Raul De Nieves “Fat Man” 2010 (Photo: Nicole Disser)

Over the weekend fancy people in an “acquisitive mood” milled around Frieze Art Fair, discreetly making it rain while rubbing shoulders with art dealers, the dapperly dressed, and a donkey named Sir Gabriel– an animal brought there by an artist who  recently broke a personal record when his statue of Hitler sold for $17.2 million at auction.

Back in Bushwick, however, less absurd things were going down at a very different kind of art happening. As far as we can tell, there wasn’t a VIP section at the opening night of Body Language, the second art show to happen at Angelina Dreem’s art and technology educational hub, Powrplnt, and the first one dedicated to paintings and other 2D works by emerging and established artists.

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16 Works We Loved at 1:54 Contemporary African Art Fair

Silk tapestry by Bill Zangewa (Photo: Nicole Disser)

Silk tapestry by Bill Zangewa, Afronova Gallery (Photo: Nicole Disser)

It’s pretty screwy that here, now, in the year 2016 many people still have a hard time grasping that Africa is an incredibly diverse continent home to vastly different cultures, languages, landscapes, and art traditions. Thankfully, we have things like the 1:54 Contemporary African Art Fair (held May 6 through 8 at Pioneer Works in Red Hook) at our fingertips to keep us in the know about the incredible (and, ahem, marketable) art work coming out of the 54 countries on the African continent.

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21 Way Cool Things We Saw at Frieze Art Fair

(Photo: Nicole Disser)

(Photo: Nicole Disser)

If you made it to Frieze New York this weekend, chances are pretty slim that you managed to see everything the elite art fair had to offer, including more than 200 booths dedicated to “the world’s leading galleries” (or so the fair boasts), countless individual art works, installations, roving performances, and outdoor displays. Between the enormous octopus tentacles, the ultra-defensive IRL Soylent reps, and the live donkey, there simply weren’t enough hours in the fair’s four-day span (or alcohol in their refrigerators) to do so.

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Follow Along as We Hit the Quirkiest Corners of Gowanus With Brooklyn Spaces

If you read Brooklyn Spaces online or have a copy of Brooklyn Spaces: 50 Hubs of Culture and Creativity, published last year, you know the site’s founder, Oriana Leckert, has a lock on the quirkiest, coolest places in the borough. Now she has teamed up with veteran tour guide Jonah Levy to make some of those Brooklyn spaces more physically and financially accessible.

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NADA To See Here: Our 6 Favorite Things at the NADA Art Fair

(Photo: Luisa Rollenhagen)

(Photo: Luisa Rollenhagen)

This week, even more so than usual, art aficionados are really spoiled for choice in New York. Not only is Frieze Fair going on, but NADA (the New Art Dealers Alliance) returned to Pier 36 on the Lower East Side today. With 105 exhibitors showing through May 8, the selection can be quite overwhelming, so we went ahead and did the work for you and picked out six of our favorite exhibits.

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Many Nudes, None By Dudes, at This Art Show Dedicated to the Female Gaze

Amanda Charchian "Ana in Costa Rica," 2012 at "In The Raw: The Female Gaze on The Nude" Exhibit, (Courtesy of Untitled Space Gallery, New York)

Amanda Charchian
“Ana in Costa Rica,” 2012 at “In The Raw: The Female Gaze on The Nude” Exhibit, (Courtesy of Untitled Space Gallery, New York)

Opening night for In the Raw: The Female Gaze on the Nude (on view now through May 21 at The Untitled Space) was predictably packed, and not just because it’s Frieze week and the gallery was giving out free booze. I’d like to think that people were there for the actual art exhibition, which was billed as an all-female, all-nude art show where 20 women artists, aged 21 to 60-something, from Russia, Chile, and beyond, “explore a perspective less chartered, that of a woman’s eye on another,” and in the process “challenge the status quo with a liberating and authentic beauty.” Or maybe they were there because Victoria de Lesseps (daughter of Real Housewives “star” Countess LuAnn de Lesseps) is also on the roster of participating artists. Who could tell?

Indira Cesarine, who curated the multimedia art show along with Coco Dolle of Milk and Night, told me that she felt the exhibition was a “timely” one. Dolle told Whitehot magazine that the work is “saleable.” They’re in no way wrong.

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