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Protesting Slum Lords with Art at ABC No Rio
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An arts collective and performance space on Rivington Street, ABC No Rio bills itself as a cultural incubator, combining community activism with dynamic artworks. Starting with its energetic founding, the spirit of ABC No Rio has carried it through 25 years of community presence, bringing the...

downloadDescription:

An arts collective and performance space on Rivington Street, ABC No Rio bills itself as a cultural incubator, combining community activism with dynamic artworks. Starting with its energetic founding, the spirit of ABC No Rio has carried it through 25 years of community presence, bringing the neighborhood with it. At the time of its founding, the Lower East Side had few commercial spaces to show for the community of artists that had started to settle in its squalid spaces, many of which remained abandoned. So on December 30th, 1979, a group of artists decided to create one. Members of a various artist collectives who were interested in collaboration, performance and spontaneity, illegally entered the demolished skeleton of a tenement building at 123 Delancey. They turned on a heater and a radio, and spent the day hosting various groups that performed, drew on the walls, and interacted. Participant remember an unannounced group of children entering the room at one point the first afternoon, and performing an ongoing play in the corner. The space was packed through the new year, with the glass-waxed windows allowing this group of squatters to go unnoticed by authorities, while welcoming the word-of-mouth audience that found its way there. On January 1, what had been dubbed, “The Real Estate Show” opened to the general public where it was received enthusiastically.

ABC No Rio, New York City
Art, Community, Real Estate