BROOK­LYN

The Weekend Australian - Travel - - TRAVEL & INDULGENCE - MATT HUYNH

GO: With spi­ralling Man­hat­tan real es­tate costs, many work­ing artists have moved to other city bor­oughs to set up their stu­dios. I love (and live in) the Wil­liams­burgBush­wick­Green­point area of Brook­lyn, just across the East River from lower Man­hat­tan. A favourite spot is Owen James Gallery, unashamedly down­stairs from my stu­dio; you’re as likely to dis­cover an af­ford­able work by a new artist here as stum­ble across a Ray­mond Pet­ti­bon. It’s no­table for an em­pha­sis on South­east Asian art and, if you peek around the cor­ner, you might also find il­lus­tra­tor Is­abel Roxas in her stu­dio; owen­james­gallery.com.

EN­JOY: Be­hind an orig­i­nal Si­cil­ian bread shop fa­cade lies Desert Is­land, a quirky comic book store that hosts ex­hi­bi­tions and launches by fan­tas­tic car­toon­ists. The store al­ways has a strik­ing win­dow dis­play and its se­lec­tion is wide, in­clud­ing rare art edi­tions next to glossy su­per­hero comics and hand­sta­pled ‘zines from the neigh­bour­hood’s as­pir­ing artists; de­ser­tis­land­brook­lyn.com.

EX­PLORE: Su­gar­lift is New York’s on­line art gallery, but what it lacks in bricks and mor­tar, it com­pen­sates with reg­u­lar events. Keep on your toes and you’ll find your­self at a pri­vate pop-up art show by Aus­tralian singer-song­writer-artist Court­ney Bar­nett (nom­i­nated this week for eight ARIA awards) or a Bush­wick rooftop party. Then slink home to bed and buy af­ford­able art on­line, in­clud­ing by Aus­tralia’s Karan Singh and Justin Maller; su­gar­lift.com.

LEARN: A fac­tory fa­cade hides Tiger Strikes As­ter­oid, the NYC chap­ter of an artist-run net­work (also with lo­ca­tions in Los An­ge­les and Philadel­phia). Its at­trac­tion is the cu­ra­to­rial voice of its di­verse artists, and the pro­fes­sional de­vel­op­ment pro­grams de­vised by those who are do­ing it them­selves. The space is con­nected to Trans­mit­ter gallery, so you can dou­ble up on your visit; tiger­strike­sas­teroid.com; trans­mit­ter.nyc/.

FIND: The neigh­bour­hood of Red Hook, fur­ther south in Brook­lyn, is known for a huge IKEA store and a great blue­grass mu­sic dive, Sunny’s Bar, but its re­mote, in­dus­trial spa­ces have also at­tracted many artists. Pioneer Works is a non-profit ex­per­i­men­tal cen­tre set up by artist Dustin Yellin; his pas­sion in­fuses the build­ing, from work­shop fa­cil­i­ties to huge ex­hi­bi­tion hall and gar­den. It’s fun to snoop around the stu­dios of artists in res­i­dence; sun­nysred­hook.com; pi­o­neer­works.org/.

Matt Huynh is a Viet­namese-Aus­tralian artist, now based in Brook­lyn, who most re­cently il­lus­trated an in­ter­ac­tive graphic novel based on The Boat by Nam Le, for SBS On­line; matthuynh.com; sbs.com.au/the­boat/. In­sid­ers editor: Gra­ham Erbacher Gra­ham.Erbacher@news.com.au

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