I’m moving next week after having my studio in the same space for 14 years. When I moved in it was a large warehouse space that was being subdivided and converted into live/work spaces in an industrial park in Brooklyn. I moved in sometime in September of 1999 and spent the winter living in a tent made out of plastic, sheets and boxes. I built the first part of the loft that winter and spent the next year building walls, running electricity, putting in gas lines, painting the floor and ceiling and fixing and replacing windows. We didn’t have a roof on the bathroom for several years which made showering in the winter very cold and it took almost ten years to build a proper kitchen which was made using my parents old kitchen. When I first moved in there was nobody living in our part of the neighborhood (we are next to sanitation) and I used to pass packs of wild dogs on my walk back from the subway and on Monday mornings there would often be burnt out cars, relics from a weekend of thievery. After about 5 years we got a coffee shop and a little after that a restaurant. I noticed that more and more people were getting off at the same subway stop and then after 10 years out rent went up significantly because the area was popular for artists and people looking for more space. Then Bushwick Open Studios started and I realized that there were a lot of artists living around me. All of the empty warehouses that I used to look in at years earlier were now full of artists. If I moved I could no longer afford to stay in my own neighborhood. Then the Loft Law happened and I applied on behalf of our building which made me both a target for scorn and a savior of sorts since it kept us from being evicted by the NYFD which were constantly harassing us at the time. I am moving before the benefits of this law would apply to me but I’m doubtful that the building would would ever be able to legalize unfortunately since there’s a printing press on the first floor and a lot of chemicals polluting the air.
Anyway, part of this move involves getting rid of a lot of stuff including artwork that I didn’t think were successful or that I don’t think that I’ll ever show again. A lot of the work that got tossed were paintings from graduate school. Below is a list of artwork that made it into the trash bin:
ICB (Battleship), GE: We Bring Goods Things To Light, (OL), the two light paintings from All Memories Are Traces of Tears, The Wall, a painting of a drone, a painting of a mirrored bridge, The Problem of a Compounded Abstraction (The Field) and all of the landscape panels that I had in storage from Epicenter City and The Future Living Projects Planned Residential Development.