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Exhibition Opening Friday Explores Essex Street Market’s Histories Before the Big Move

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essex street market

It’s almost time to say goodbye to the old Essex Street Market, which has operated out of the same facility on the Lower East Side since 1940. In just a few months, the vendors will be moving across the street to a brand new space as part of the Essex Crossing project. Cuchifritos Gallery + Project Space, a market tenant, will be acknowledging the momentous occasion with a special exhibition opening tomorrow (Friday, April 27).

The show, In, Of, and Crossing Essex, features projects from three artists, offering visitors, “opportunities to explore the public and private histories of the Market through the stories, perspectives, and lived experiences of the people who work and shop there every day.”

Sonia Louise Davis, Dillon de Give and Hatuey Ramos-Fermín have created a series of installations and public programs that will take place in the market through June 10.

Among the scheduled events:

April 27-May 13 (Thursday through Sunday from 2-6 P.M.)
Send a Message From Essex Street Market
Work with a facilitator to construct and send immaterial “postcards” from Essex Market before its historic relocation.

Monday, May 14 from 6:30-8 p.m.
PANEL: Small Businesses as Cultural Contributors
This discussion will bring together artists, business owners, and city organizers to discuss the contributions of small businesses to the Lower East Side’s cultural fabric. Panelists will consider how artists and cultural organizations in the neighborhood have aligned with small businesses, and consider ways to strengthen the foundation of how cultural vibrancy is represented in a city-wide context.

Tuesday May 29 from 6:30-8:30 p.m.
WORKSHOP: After-Hours Performance Workshop with Sonia Louise Davis
Explore Essex Street Market in a unique movement/sound-based experience led by Sonia Louise Davis. Participants will improvise in the empty market while it is closed to shoppers and create scores to guide their private performances.

Saturday, June 2 from 2-6 p.m.
WORKSHOP: Drop-in Score Making with Sonia Louise Davis
Stop in for an afternoon of hands-on score making. Informed by a wide range of artists’ graphic notations, participants can practice drawing or invent their own marks and symbols.

Sunday, June 10 from 3-7 p.m.
Roundtable and Closing Reception
What steps can artists take to support small businesses? Looking at the ways artists and organizers in Lower East Side have worked together to support small businesses, this roundtable discussion will question how artists and cultural institutions can engage as active community members by supporting small businesses – and what this kind of support looks like in concrete, day-to-day actions.

The May 14 and June 10 events will be presented  in partnership by Artists Alliance Inc, and The People’s LES/FABnyc. Tomorrow’s opening reception takes place from 6-8 p.m. Click here for more details.

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