I live in Bedford-Stuyvesant, which is not a corner of Brooklyn generally known for a surplus of art institutions. I was pretty excited to hear about a fairly new alternative gallery, Bed-Stuy Love Affair, whose fourth exhibition, “Turnkey of Forever After,” opens tonight. I chatted with gallery mastermind Jared Madere about running a gallery out of his kitchen, plus his favorite Indian delivery spot in the neighborhood.
Can you tell me about the Bed-Stuy Love Affair space? Does it double as your home when it’s not open officially as a gallery?
A lot of the time when young artists in NY finally get to do a show at a commercial gallery or other institution they feel all this pressure to put their best foot forward in this corny way that’s really stunting in terms of giving them a chance to actually experiment. I wanted to have a space where artists could take risks and actually execute their ideas in as uncompromised a way as possible, even if that means having the freedom to do a total belly flop.
I live here too. The apartment has got a room with a bed and a TV, a room I use as a studio (and to play PlayStation/burn sage in), a bathroom where I take lot of bubble baths, and the biggest room, the kitchen, where we put on shows.
Where did the name come from?
The name for the space comes from a cocktail they served at the nearby restaurant Peaches. I think they might have actually taken it off the menu but it was really good while it lasted. Lots of peach schnapps.
This corner of Bed-Stuy – a bit far from Pratt, close to the edge of Bushwick – is a bit lacking in terms of nightlife and art institutions. That said, what are some of your favorite spots in the neighborhood?
I like Soul II Soul. There’s this place called India House that’s really good too that I always get delivery from, but one time I got my lamb saagwaala with a rack of staples in it… but it was cool because they comped a free meal for me and David Flaugher. The food is really good though, for real, you should try it.
Can you tell me a bit about what to expect from the group show opening tonight?
Jeffrey Joyal is in the show, so there will probably be tons of hot girls here. There might be beer also, I’m not sure, I just went on unemployment and this rent is high so to tell you the truth might have maxed out that budget already and I don’t really drink so not really a lot of incentive there. All the art is really good though, way better than most of the shit you see around NYC.
New York neighborhoods change quickly, to say the least. What do you think Bed-Stuy will look like 5 years from now?
My downstairs neighbor who grew up in this house (the building used to be a home to single family before it was bought out and renovated), got kicked out by the landlord/management company/whatever so it could be renovated and rented for an exponentially higher price. He was so cool, built his own remote control planes (big ones, six-foot wingspans), DJed block parties in the neighborhood, had three awesome kids…they haven’t rented his old apartment out yet so I guess we’ll see what happens. Rent out here is getting nuts though, landlords are gutting these buildings and fitting them with all these goofy aspirational yuppie appliances/countertops/faucets/central air/whatever and then charging Manhattan rent so I guess there will be some new grocery stores with an organic/locavore slant and maybe some artisanal donut shops getting put in or something and people will just keep getting pushed further and further out, unless a tidal wave/meteor/plague knocks out lower Manhattan, crime shoots up, looting, people get scared, move away, and then everything can be cool and cheap again.
Before this impending crime and natural disaster apocalypse hits Bed-Stuy, visit Bed-Stuy Love Affair tonight for the opening of “Turnkey of Forever After.”