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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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Participatory Budgeting Time! Tell the City Where, Exactly, It Can Stuff Your Tax $$s

(Map via NYC City Council)

(Map via NYC City Council)

As Participatory Budgeting has been adopted here in New York City over the last few years, residents of each participating district can now vote on how to allocate a minimum of $1 million of the city budget to the local improvement efforts they they care most about. In North Brooklyn, the budgetary contenders chosen by neighbors include projects in schools, parks, playgrounds, transportation, and public housing. (Sorry, Lower East Side and East Village– you’re left out again this year.)

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Powrplnt, the Netty Hang Center for Bushwick Teens, is Officially Turned On

It's offish, Powrplnt is open (Photo: Nicole Disser)

It’s offish, Powrplnt is open (Photo: Nicole Disser)

Powrplnt– the ambitious non-profit pet project of artist, proud weirdo, and retired Bushwick party girl Angelina Dreem– has officially flipped on the lights and begun watering the plants, so to speak. “Hey–” she started, glancing over at Jake Sollins, one of the teachers setting up to teach teens about Photoshop and Illustrator for a class called “How to Make Money.”

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Protect Your Awkward Selfies From Big Brother at This Skill Share in Bushwick

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An anti-surveillance skill share is happening at Mayday (Image via Mayday/Facebook)

Ever heard of a yottabyte? It’s 1,000 times the size of the internet and the amount of data the U.S. government can hold in its Utah Data Center, Jonathan Stribling-Uss, the director of Constitutional Communications, tells me.

If you haven’t seen Citizenfour yet or read any of Glenn Greenwald‘s stuff, here’s a newsflash: The U.S. government is keeping track of all your online and phone interactions, 24/7, picking up every last awkward text message to a crush or drunk phone call you’d rather forget. (Not to mention the hackers who are getting ever better at infiltrating your system.)

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Angelina Dreem Has an IRL Space For PowrPlnt, her ‘Net Art School for Indigo Children’

(Photo: Nicole Disser)

Angelina Dreem (Photo: Nicole Disser)

Where, I wondered, does one without children find children? “Everyone asks that, and it’s funny because there are kids everywhere– if you try, how can you not reach kids?” Angelina Dreem found my question pretty funny. Dreem is the artist and the founder of Powrplnt, a non-profit organization dedicated to providing underserved kids (and sometimes adults) with access to digital tools and technology. Angelina recently dubbed it “a net art school for indigo children,” on Twitter. “I feel like there is a real invisibility in the hipster world of everybody else who lives in New York City– it’s like, ‘Well I don’t see them at the bars,’ but for real, there’s a lot of kids.” Touché.

But now I’ll have no excuse about wondering where to recruit children for dastardly deeds, because they’ll be all in one place: Powrplnt just landed an IRL place of its very own in Bushwick, the organization’s first permanent space. “We’ll be starting the first round of classes in January, when the kids get back to school,” Angelina explained. But first up, there’s a fundraising event tonight (featuring the inimitable Junglepussy, believe it or not) and some very orange walls to get rid of immediately after. “On Monday, I’m definitely gonna start painting it white,” Angelina said.

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I Took a Class in ‘How to Master the NYPD’

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Pioneer Works isn’t just an art gallery, residency program, and book shop — it’s an educational center, too. Pay a nominal fee and get learn’d on the basics of paper marbling, wet plate photography, and how to whip up a mole sauce from scratch– you know, cute stuff. So a two-day course, “How to Master the New York City Police Department,” taught by NYU urbanization researcher Patrick Lamson-Hall, kinda stopped me in my browsing tracks with its promise of a historical look at the NYPD and discussion about how to improve community-police relations. One of Patrick’s early suggestions: “As stupid as it sounds, maybe they need to start every day with yoga.”

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Founded in 1894, Third Street Music School is Getting a 21st Century Facelift

Proposed auditorium (Photo courtesy of Third Street Music School Settlement)

Proposed auditorium (All images courtesy of Third Street Music School Settlement)

Fresh off its 120th anniversary celebration, Third Street Music School Settlement is ready to face the future with a $5.3 million construction project. Proposed renovations include a state-of-the-art recital hall with acoustic paneling that promises to “envelop audiences in the sound of music,” the school announced today.

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Near Joey Ramone Way, De Blasio Touts First 100 Days As ‘Rockaway Beach’ Plays

(Photo: Daniel Maurer)

(Photo: Daniel Maurer)

Today while the rest of us were celebrating Stephen Colbert’s succession of David Letterman, Mayor Bill de Blasio was celebrating himself. Specifically, his first 100 days in office, which he marked in a speech at Cooper Union’s Great Hall.

Students of the college brought back the red “Free Education To All” banner that made several appearances during the doomed two-year battle to keep Cooper Union tuition-free. It didn’t last long.
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Cooper Union’s Ping-Pong Protesters Might Be In For a Paddling

(Courtesy Free Cooper Union)

(Courtesy Free Cooper Union)

Cooper Union wants it to be known that you can’t just unleash 2,100 ping-pong balls on a four-story staircase and get away with it. In a campus-wide e-mail forwarded to B+B, Alan Wolf, the school’s safety coordinator, says he wants the ping-pong protesters to be held accountable. Here’s the full statement, in case you were about to bulk order some Slinkies.
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Apparently, Padma Lakshmi Wants NYU to Pack Its Knives and Go

(Photo: Randi Eichenbaum)

(Photo: Randi Eichenbaum)

Whelp, this land-use matter just got a whole lot sexier! Opponents of NYU’s plan to expand in Greenwich Village have gotten a few more bold-face names behind their lawsuit against the school.

A rep for Faculty Against the Sexton Plan (one of the groups suing the school) tells us Padma Lakshmi of “Top Chef” (and of the East Village) will join Village-based authors Peter Carey and Joseph McElroy in the audience at State Supreme Court on Thursday.
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