Brooklyn Art Space

Out on Main Street in Dumbo is a neat exhibitions space called the Powerhouse Arena. Note, I've never actually been there (well I've been to Dumbo and I've even worked on Main street...but never been to this arena), but was put on to them just now by Around The Way Girls blog and am impressed with what I see. So many good exhibits are ending today, but some pics are up so you can get a taste of what you missed. Visit the Powerhouse website here.

A few missed exhibits

Black in White America: From what I can tell its a collection of black and white portraits dedicated to portraying a sample of the black experience in America, but on a real level. The pictures don't immediately shock or anger, but is reality on a day to day basis. There are kids playing in hydrants, ladies with rollers in their hair, and the such. Still through it all you get a sense of what life is : the highs and the lows, and injustices that occurred. I wish I could tell you more but I don't have much to go by. The photos are from Leonard Freed, a prolific photographer and artist.

Partnered with Black in White America is Jamel Shabazz's Seconds of My Life. I can't lie, I'm feeling the photo with the Nike Jackets and the parts in the hair( These are the same jackets Kanye blogged about on his blog, tho he didn't mention the book Seconds of My Life...I also think there's a pic of Ye in the book with Johnny, either its them or all black people look the same to me). This is another day to day exhibit and it goes far beyond the materialism of Nike and their hold on the black community (I'm taking Spike on for that one day...but that should be an exhibit in and of itself...Nike and the Urban Community). He also captures performances, ceremonies, a girl with a scary cat and a Sistah Souljah book, and what appears to be The Nation of Islam along with Israelites (well not in the same picture). The pictures also range over time, from people rocking fades and using Nynex pay phones to murals of Dipset. You can also check out the book and more images there from one of the links on the URL that is linked above.

Another two exhibits that are partnered together are The Breaks: Stylin and Profilin 1982-1990 and Born in the Bronx. These two exhibits take two different but complementary looks at Hip Hop culture in the early years. The Breaks, photographed by Janette Beckman showcases the B-Boy stance and shows a lot of images of both male and female artists, crews, djs...etc. It's EastCoast/NY centered and captures some of the more influential folk of the Period. Born in the Bronx examines hip hop as originating from the Bronx (even tho Run DMC sneaks there way in there) and was done by Joe Conzo. Looking at the Bronx, the Hispanic influence and participation receives more of a focus, but not an overpowering one. It's something that makes sense since it is the Bronx/NYC (and we all know NuYoricans are a huge part of the culture and its all jumbled anyway), but not something that's thought about (at least I never thought about it) that much: so a history lesson for all. They were in there before Big Pun and Fat Joe.

And according to the PowerHouse website, the Smithsonian is now taking on a Hip Hop brace yourself.

All in all, a neat exhibition space and someplace to keep in mind for the future. Brooklyn has so much to offer...if you can take it in, don't let it pass you by.


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