New York Daily Photo Analytics

Monday, May 22, 2006

ABC No Rio

This was taken in front of ABC No Rio, a large artist's collective on Rivington Street, well known for decades for political activism and its drive to be a community social center, combining art, music, poetry and intense activism on many political and economic issues affecting local residents. They have been one of the major centers for the performance of spoken word/poetry slams and host a regular weekend matinee show of indie punk thrash metal music, amongst many other activities. We were passing by during one of the concerts and we could hear the music a block away. They are surrounded by the changing demographic of the neighborhood, which is now becoming a place of fashionable and expensive restaurants and designer stores, in spite of the deliberately grungy aesthetic that is embraced. The front of the building, whose ownership has been in dispute all along, is decorated with salvaged metal parts and murals depicting moments of nihilistic despair, somewhat ironic because the general aims of the organization are very optimistic - art studio access for everyone, fair and affordable housing and educational outreach to the unfortunate, such as prisoners. More photos here...

7 comments:

Rob said...

Interesting and well-written post. It does seem a paradox.

Anonymous said...

It is commendable that these people are looking to preserve affordable housing for artists and ex-cons.
I suppose there are many who see the work in this picture as "art". I am not one of them. However, I do admire their blatant pluck at making life hell for the gentrifiers by blaring their music so loudly it can be heard a block away. That should discourage new yuppies.

grainofsand said...

this place does look like a metal music joint.

karine said...

That's the kind of place I like to discover in New York! Thanks for sharing that interesting info :)

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