Dumbo Arts Festival 2011 Preview

This weekend, Dumbo Brooklyn is host for the 2011 Dumbo Arts Festival and will feature open artists studios, exhibitions, and outdoor projects throughout the neighborhood. This year’s festival will feature more than 500 artists, 120 open art studios, 40 live performances, family programming and more — all free of charge.

(Immersive Surfaces)

Friday’s performance art highlights include:

  • 8:30 PM – 9:00 PM: Janet Biggs’ premier of Wet Exit, a multi-media performance that combines projected video images and musicians with choreographed kayakers performing in the East River.
  • 6:00 PM – 9:00 PM: Carl Skelton and Luke DuBois’ Sweet Stream Love’s River gives guests the chance to text short love notes from their smart phones to be projected glowing in the rippling surface of the water at Empire Stores. Visitors to the festival are invited to send short love notes via SMS from their smartphones to 646-389-1766 to be displayed on the Main Street façade of the Empire Stores.
  • 6:00 PM – 9:00 PM: Immersive Surfaces projects video onto the Manhattan Bridge anchorage and surrounding cityscape to blur boundaries between perception, art and technology. (Locations: The Triangle at Pearl & Front St., Jay & Water St., Front & Adams St.

There’s also The DUMBO Underground, a benefit party for Free Arts NYC: “Help us kick-off the DUMBO Arts Festival on with a night of burlesque, music and raffles to help raise funds for Free Arts NYC, a wonderful organization that provides arts and mentorship programs to under-served children in NYC.” (on Friday, 9/23 10pm-3am. 1 Front Street, Corner of Front St & Old Fulton, Brooklyn, 11201) *Use code: DUMBONYC to receive $5 off when purchasing tickets online*

Below are some additional preview items you don’t want to miss.

1) Smack Mellon Gallery – Isidro Blasco

Isidro Blasco

Madrid-born New York-based artist Isidro Blasco creates photographic sculptures and multimedia installations composed of images of places where he has lived, worked and visited. In Tilted, Blasco creates perspectival fragmentations of Smack Mellon’s gallery space alongside a prismatic recreation of a Dumbo streetscape. Photographs taken from multiple perspective points are combined to create mosaic-like patterns and are then mounted onto three dimensional ramshackle constructions built from repurposed wood. More info.

Exhibition Dates: September 24 – October 30, 2011
Artists’ Reception: Saturday, September 24, 5-8pm
Location: Smack Mellon, 92 Plymouth Street, upper level

2) Smack Mellon Gallery – Rachel Beach

Rachel Beach
Distance Trance

Re-imagining the basics of structure and image, Rachel Beach’s skillfully constructed architectonic objects curiously hover between sign and real, visible and invisible. Highlighting the tension between artificial and natural, Beach’s new series of sculptures methodically combine contrasting surfaces of trompe l’oeil veneers with salvaged construction beams left in their aged condition. Brightly painted edges carve out illusions of space from the chunky cuts of wood. In dialogue with the sculptures are new series of silkscreens in which monochromatic patterns of formal geometric abstraction become symbols of space. More info.

Exhibition Dates: September 24 – October 30, 2011
Artists’ Reception: Saturday, September 24, 5-8pm
Location: Smack Mellon, 92 Plymouth Street, upper level

3) Dumbo Arts Center’s video_dumbo

Dumbo Arts Center’s video_dumbo is a festival for contemporary video art curated by Caspar Stracke and Gabriela Monroy. The festival provides local emerging artists with an exhibition platform and is augmented by a number of established, international selections.

Location: 112 Water Street, Brooklyn, NY

4) Dan Wonderly’s PORTALS at 30 Washington St

From Dan Wonderly: “The inspiration for this body of work stems from years of looking at my surroundings, imagining how things might appear if I could shrink down to an inch tall and go exploring. For the series, I scoured the DUMBO neighborhood and photographed different PORTALS—defined as a doorway, gate, or other entrance—to create 16 macro or near-macro vignettes of drains, cracks, holes or miniature environments I envision as entrances into another world.”

Location: 30 Washington Street (dumboartsfestival.com/events/portals-dumbo)