While Bushwick Open Studios is fighting back against the bro-vasion of a festival that started out, anyway, as a means of celebrating local artists and the neighborhood where they live and work, Greenpoint Open Studios has remained the nerdy (not actually related) little sister that never had to tell corporate bandits and party promoter tagalongs to beat it. We’re guessing this has something to do with the G train– whatever it is that’s holding back a heavy influx of too many non-art and non-Greenpoint related interests, keep doing what you’re doing.
OK, so there are a fewwww sponsored things going on this year at GOS, but the greedy capitalist overlords in this case are, like, a potato chip maker and Greenpoint Beer & Ale Co. (oh, and one advertising interest, but we’ll get to that later). We’d be crazy to hate on free salty snacks and local beer! But remember: it’s all about the art and more than 300 local artists and their often pretty cool studio spaces.
As you might expect, the best way to do the GOS thing is on foot. Grab yourself a map at any one of the various festival hubs around the neighborhood, including Alter, Java Studios, Brooklyn Art Library, PencilWorks, and Van Leeuwen Artisan Ice Cream. Oh, and A/D/O is included on that list too– it’s, er, the weird BMW outpost at the old Brooklyn Night Bazaar spot that sounds something like a research laboratory where the doctors are ad execs and the rats are “creatives.” Heh, they’re also “supporting” GOS. We’ll just have to wait and see what exactly that means in real terms.
Maps can also be found in coffee shops, public spaces, and such. Unfortunately the deadline has already passed for artists hoping to participate in GOS and make it on to the printed map, but if that’s you, there’s always the option of going from studio to studio, sighing loudly until someone asks you what’s wrong and then begs you to join them at their lovely, naturally-lit studio occupied by paintings, macramé sculptures, and matching wiener dogs. (It’s ok, they’re friendly.) You can still sign up to be included in the online map, though you’ll just have to deal with toiling away in digital obscurity.
GOS is a pretty simple concept from there– move around the neighborhood, pop in at various studios, chat with the artists, plant your selfie stick and charming face somewhere they don’t belong, and break for dranks in-between. But it’s not gonna be like some red Solo cup affair with a rotating cast of Velvet Revolver cover bands and wristbands and whatever (*cough* Bushwick Open Studios). If we’ve learned anything from years past, there’s a steady flow of people at GOS, but none of that bounce house block party insanity.
Instead of having constant celebrations for no real reason, GOS is hosting two parties that will act as the reasonably healthy bread to the delicious GOS sandwich. The fest officially starts with a launch party on Friday April 29, 8 pm at the Java Project (inside Java Studios located on, yep, Java Street) with plenty of intriguing entertainment options including live music from Teen Body, Ocho Ocho Ocho, and surprise “special guests,” as well as art works to peruse, booze to lose, and what the organizers are describing as “medical ‘advice’ from Woodhull Hospital”– which indicates either a deep distrust of doctors or an MD-led improv comedy routine. Both sound cool!
Then there’s the wrap party on Sunday, May 1 to celebrate the end of a long weekend happening at Cassette (Henry Moynahan Rich’s new-ish Greenpoint outpost). Everyone’s welcome but free food and drinks are reserved for participating artists, soooo definitely get started on that whole loud sighing thing– it’s an art in and of itself, truly.
Greenpoint Open Studios is happening Friday April 29 through Sunday May 1.