Everyone loves T-Shirts, so instead of lining up for the latest Supreme drop or overpaying for a musty smelling vintage concert tee, Bushwick Print Lab is giving you two chances to buy hand-screened works of wearable art. Founded in 2009, The BPL is throwing its fifth annual “Art of The T” party at The Cobra Club tonight, complete with art, music, and a full bar to inspire some boozy purchases. The DIY space decided to do it big, booking the back of their favorite local bar and taking the art out of the lab.
Don’t expect the bar’s walls to be lined with more unnecessary Joy Division or Black Flag parody tees, as the focus is on showcasing short-run/one-of-a-kind wearable art, created by local artists. Bushwick resident Matt Landon has been swinging a squeegee for three decades and spoke to his love of improvising prints and the medium itself: “I can do whatever I want — print upside down or crooked if I feel like it, the window is always open to new ideas because it is your stuff and anything is possible.”
Music will be provided tonight by The Space Merchants, with DJs Ateller and Mae Palty mixing it up, while the closing party on Sunday will be even trippier, with projections and live music by The Azerbaijan A/C Club and Gabe Gordon. But BPL founder and Pratt graduate Ray Cross wants everyone to know that the party isn’t limited to just T-Shirts — if you can wear it, you can screen it. “Over the years we have received garments covered in lithographic patches, one-of-a-kind couture, block printed button-downs, mono-printed neckties, some non-silver photography on textiles, a little of everything,” he said, looking back on the history of the show.
So cop some wearable art and if you’re inspired, anyone is welcome to swing by the BPL on Troutman Street. $20 will give you an hour of access to their ink and equipment, just bring or purchase a screen and find something to print on — anything.
“Expect to see an improvisational approach the silkscreen media on apparel,” Cross said of the submissions in this year’s show. “All the garments are hand printed, with a great deal of variation and a focus on the use of the screen stencil as a tool for image collage.”