The Brucennial began in 2008 at our first studio, a former weed growing operation next to the High Times Deliverance Church on the edge of Bushwick and Bed-Stuy under the JMZ. Whether or not we were ‘putting on a show,’ we were always on view. People would stop by. And at some point we had the bright idea to ask them to bring in whatever they made and put it on the walls. And so a hundred or so friends and friends of friends came over and we made the first Brucennial.
Since that auspicious beginning the Brucennial has expanded into larger spaces including hundreds more artists from all over the world. It has grown into an unmistakable and vital infusion of energy into the New York scene, a bold proclamation that artists truly are the center of the art world. But the spirit of the show remains the
same. It’s not a curated group show or an anointment ceremony into the art market or a “taking of the temperature” or a codification of style. It’s a celebration of, and catalyst for, an ever-widening community of artists.
Why the last?
It’s our interest to design circumstances that grow this community, both in numbers and in critical depth, beyond the limitations of a temporary exhibition.
In 2009 we founded a free art school, BHQFU, in a former Sufi book store in Tribeca. Five years later, we’ve moved to the East Village, and BHQFU has grown into a truly remarkable experiment in artistic community with over 700 enrolled students, a summer residency program, and even a forthcoming production of the musical, West Side Story.
With all this momentum we think the right thing to do is to take the energy and resources that have made The Brucennial a successful community moment, and direct them toward the activities of BHQFU: expanding our class offerings, residency opportunities, and student-organized exhibitions, publications, and other showcases.
So this is it. The grand finale. The coup de grâce. The Last Brucennial. It’s going to be amazing.
More information: www.brucennial.com