All posts by FEAST

Winner! The Great Trans-Gowanus Cable

Awarded $1000 FEAST grant

PROJECT SUMMARY : The Great Trans-Gowanus Cable

We will be building a telegraph along and across the Gowanus Canal, from the corner of Second St. and Second Ave. to the corner of Third St. and Third Ave. At either end of the telegraph wire will be stations outfitted with vintage telegraph keys and a guide to Morse Code. Posted will be Morse’s famous transmission: “What Hath God Wrought.” Passerby will be able transmit their answers to this question (with brevity), as well as receive responses. All sent messages will also be transmitted to us, off-site (call it wire-tapping; call it what you will).

How will your proposal manifest at the next FEAST?
As participants answer the question “What Hath God Wrought?”, their morse code answers and communications are digitally recorded to disk and translated for presentation at the next FEAST as a slideshow presentation through the duration of the event.

How will you use funding (approx $500-$700) towards the realization of your project?
The “technology” required is relatively inexpensive (it’s been around for centuries). Costs include vintage telegraphs, a microcontroller, materials for a “Telegraph Station” and a very long cable.

Microcontroller: $120
Vintage Telegraph Relays (manufactured in Brooklyn!) $50.
“The Great Trans-Gowanus Cable” $200 for 1000ft.
Materials for a telegraph station: Virtually free, from the street.

Why is this project critical to the FEAST community? (max 100 words)
Brooklynites spend a lot of time documenting changes in our space; unprecedented and unbridled housing/development boom has ramped up (rightly so) our attention to what spaces were and are. Our goal is anthrogeographical: we want to highlight that people are talking and thinking about the Gowanus Canal in many of the same ways that they were just after the Civil War, by implementing a communication technology that requires interacting with the landscape in the same fashion that it would have been then. The Gowanus Canal, while obviously changing in some ways, has actually remained rather constant over the last 100+ years. It made headlines in 1877 for being “Very Vile” and just this week for its proposed designation as a Superfund site.

After the completion of its residency along the canal, we will move the telegraph to other Brooklyn locations that have similar closed loops of history.

Thanks again for your consideration. Sincerely,

Benjamin Cohen & Sierra Pettengill
Director, The Gowanus Studio Space Inc.

Winner! Brooklyn Torch Project

Awarded $400 FEAST grant

The Brooklyn Torch Project aims to create a local currency to benefit the local area businesses and artists. The project will bring together both artist communities and immigrant communities in our area to improve integration of social groups and economies and boost our pride.

The Brooklyn Torch Project is looking for interested persons for all aspects: Steering Committee Members, Local Business Owners, Artists/Designers, Local Printmakers, and Public Relations Specialists. Please contact for more information on how to participate.

The manifestation of the Brooklyn Torch project will unfold in two FEAST dinners. The next FEAST will be an opportunity for the presentation of renderings for the new currency and a list of expectant participating local merchants. A following FEAST will be the official launch of the paper Brooklyn Torch. Each FEAST attendee will receive one bill to begin trading with other FEASTers and local merchants upon entrance.

The funds will be used towards operational costs of starting up the Brooklyn Torch as a physical and communal object. This ranges from establishing start up materials and designing/implementing to public relations. Additionally, a portion of the funds are intended to grant FEASTers with the first issuance of the Brooklyn Torch.

We have a lot of key elements to make a successful local currency here: a strong sense of community and pride, a wealth of talent ranging from artists and designers to food purveyors and health care as well as emerging micro industries. In a time of economic decline, we aim to support these startups as well as maintain traffic for local merchants that are already here. This is an exciting opportunity to synthesize our wealth from our community! The Brooklyn Torch aims to continue as long as our community finds it useful.#mce_temp_url#

Winner! Work for Pay

Awarded $400 FEAST grant


I will hire three unemployed or underemployed artists as dancers in a new performance piece. The performance piece, titled work for pay, will be made collaboratively over the course of four weeks during twice-weekly rehearsals. I will recruit artists with no prior dance experience through an open call. During the rehearsal process we will discuss their individual artistic processes and how those relate to movement. We will use improvisational scores in order to create the choreography of the final piece.

work for pay will be performed at the next FEAST as an installation during the “downtimes” of the evening—as people are gathering and leaving and during breaks in other presentations. As part of the installation, FEAST participants will be able to access digital copies of the dancers’ resumes and email them to friends—instantaneous networking. This piece will continue to be performed in public and private settings (Bushwick Open Studios, dinner parties, etc.) until the dancers have found employment.

The primary use of funds will be to pay the dancers $8/hour.

Two 3-hour rehearsals/week, for 4 weeks = 24 hrs/person

x $8/hour = $192/person

x 3 dancers = $576 (dancer fees)

24 hours of $5/hour rehearsal space at Chez Bushwick = $120 (rehearsal space)

= $696 TOTAL

work for pay is a critical project in the discussion of sustainable tactics in art. It aims to create a discreet economy in which artists are paid for creative research—the artists I “hire” as dancers are deepening their creative process by engaging in mine. I believe that dance is a uniquely valuable tool in creative research—it helps artists explore concepts with their physical body so as to establish an emotional and physical connection. work for pay also suggests a new model of connecting artists to resources by using the art itself as a means of communication.

Winner! Urban Homesteading Project

Awarded $200 FEAST grant

UHP GREENpoint (2009)

Recycled structures made out of plastic bottles containing plants were hung on fences and installed in empty “green” spaces on the sidewalks on an industrial street in Greenpoint, Brooklyn. We collaborated with residents and local businesses to collect bottles, build the structures and care for the plants.

In a neighborhood that suffers from environmental degradation and a lack of designated public space for a cooperative “greening” efforts, UHP – GREENpoint* is an opportunity for a community of residents, business owners and artists to make an impact on the environment in which we live and work. UHP – GREENpoint seeks to encourage grassroots, collective solutions to neighborhood issues, and to promote a larger dialogue about the ways in which waste management and environmental sustainability may be addressed through direct action.

Urban Homesteading Project