Recess’s mission is to support the creative process of contemporary artists by providing a space for
productive activity and a platform for a partnership with the public. By offering artists flexible work/ exhibition space, artists are given agency to determine the visibility of their work and the parameters of its presentation.

Free of charge and open to the public, Recess facilitates everyday interactions between artists and the
community in order to promote the productive space of the working artist as a site of valuable visual and intellectual interactions. Our endeavors offer critical exposure for the artists we support while fostering an inclusive environment in which artists and the public can engage in a meaningful exchange of art and ideas.

Recess was formed in May 2009 to address concerns that emerging artists cannot afford to live or work
in proximity to exhibition communities. Securing a platform to gain visibility and develop creative goals and a professional career is often a daunting task. The organization was likewise founded to actively respond to changing modes of production. Contemporary artwork, unlike more traditional forms, can be site-specific, performance-based or ephemeral in nature. The traditional gallery space is often unable to accommodate the interactive, process-based artistic production. The artist’s studio is also changing: no longer bound to conventional space, the studio of the contemporary artist is the street, the gallery, or anywhere the practitioner chooses to work. Session was conceived to directly take on the evolving conditions of contemporary art, realizing ambitious projects that don’t always “fit” in the customary context.
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Wed Aug 17, 2011 12:00 - Sat Oct 22, 2011

New York, New York
United States of America

galería perdida will begin two months of work at Recess as part of
its signature program, Session. Session invites artists to use its
storefront space as studio, exhibition venue and grounds for
experimentation. For their project, Matryoshka, the collective will
complicate the role of artist and curator. galería perdida will build a
series of galleries that will nest within one another utilizing the
Russian doll as its model. In total there will be five exhibitions over
the two month period, each thematically distinct from the last. By the
final phase, Matryoshka will be the sum of its parts, with each
iteration serving as an additional layer to the whole. To complete the
experience, visitors will need to be on hands and knees to view the
final exhibition.  Recess will remain open to the public as new walls
are built, allowing the construction and installation phases to bleed
into one another. 
Matryoshka will serve as an interactive sculpture and will expose traditionally shrouded dialogues: the slippage between art production and presentation, space as a mediator of the viewer’s experience, and the audience as a necessary determinant
of an object. Ultimately, Matryoshka will occupy dual roles: exercising
the act of curating as a simultaneous sculpture.
Exhibition Schedule :
Video, Eric Baudelaire, Jamal Cyrus, Cyprien Gaillard, Galería Perdida,
Stanya Kahn, Joey Lehman Morris, Ian Pedigo, Emily Roysdon
• September 9 Some of the Things I Really Must Do Before I Die—A show of work of G_org_s P_r_c
• September 23 Curiouser, Curiouser— Marcus Civin, Ellie Ga, Emilie Gossiaux, Will Rogan, Erin Shirre
• September 30 As soft as concrete— Henry Chapman, Daniel Lefcourt, Carl Suddath
• October 7 Alice Könitz


Larry Bob Phillips: Wiggle Room

Sat Jun 18, 2011 12:00 - Sat Aug 06, 2011

New York City, New York
United States of America

On June 18, 2011, Larry Bob Phillips will begin work on his project Wiggle Room, as part of Recess’s signature program, Session. Session invites artists to use its storefront space as studio, exhibition venue and grounds for experimentation.
Over the course of two months, Phillips will record four collaborative events, covering the walls inside 41 Grand Street with large-scale, and densely detailed drawings. Phillips will invite artists to join him in the space for temporary performances, and will draw these interventions. The artist’s anticipation and memory of the performance will inform the content of Phillips’ wall drawings. Visitors to Recess can engage in performances and witness their own integration into the ongoing drawing.
Throughout this Session, visitors to Recess in SoHo will witness a diverse series of collaborations, starting with Michael Beitz’s construction of “exhibition furniture” for Wiggle Room. Later, Phillips’ drawings will become a backdrop for an evening of humor and music hosted by musician-writer-stand-up comedian Jeffrey Joe Jensen. Phillips will collaborate with Amy Pina to add a final layer of color to the drawing installation, which will create a vibrant atmosphere for CHERYL, a spirited and dynamic group that uses the dance party formula to explore both playful and controversial themes.
Visitors to Wiggle Room can expect, in the words of the artist, “a raucous, unpredictable, but dramatic ride.”
Wiggle Room will feature the following events:
Tuesday July 12th Reception/Viewing for Michael Beitz
Thursday July 21st Jeff Jensen Night of Laughs
Friday July 29th Chuleta & Hennessy Youngman Bury Post Black
Thursday August 4th CHERYL closing performance


Jonathan Durham: Them That Believe

Tue Jul 05, 2011 12:00 - Sat Sep 10, 2011

Brooklyn, New York
United States of America

YORK, July 5, 2011—On July 5, 2011, Jonathan Durham will begin work on his
project, Them That Believe, as part of Recess’s signature program, Session. Session invites artists to use
its public space as studio, exhibition venue and grounds for
experimentation.  Durham’s project
will take place at Recess’s new outpost in Red Hook, Brooklyn, continuing
Recess’s ongoing collaboration with Charlotte Kidd and Dustin Yellin from Kidd
Yellin Studios
the course of two months, Durham will generate a series of photos, videos and
sculptures that explore a literal translation of belief into radical action.
religious “edgeworkers”, people or groups operating on the fringes of their
belief system, will inform and guide the work done over the course of the
project.  Durham will navigate the
physical manifestations of the belief systems of Fanny Crosby, a prolific
songwriter who penned over 8,000 
hymns despite being blind since infancy.; Jim D. Adkisson, an out of
work truck driver and former soldier who gunned down a group of his own church
members in 2008; and the serpent handlers of Southern Appalachia who repeatedly
put themselves in harm’s way with full faith in God’s power to protect them
from poisonous snakes.
Visitors to Them That Believe are invited to participate in a series of actions,
that engage with the iconography and rituals common to these edgeworkers
including dancing alongside projected images of snake handlers, writing and
passing notes found in the back of church pews, composing songs and writing out
secrets and burning them.  This
exchange between the artist and visitors will take the form of “Community
Potlach,” a kind of semi-destructive import/export zone that allows people to
take away or deposit objects and new meaning as desired.


Be Black Baby: a House Party Presents

Fri Jun 17, 2011 17:00 - Sat Jun 18, 2011

This fourth installment of Be Black Baby, entitled "Edouard Glissant: Inhabit His Name" and curated by Madeleine Hunt-Erlich and Simone Leigh, will track the collapse of contemporary space and follow the individual through the entanglements of language and locale. Taking Glissant's seminal text The Poetics of Relation as a point of departure, artists and thinkers will venture into the many mutations of multilingualism that is Creolisation. The exhibition will feature work by Becca Albee, Vanessa Agard-Jones, Firelei Baez, Kelly Josephs, Kaiama Glover, Hanna Herbertson and Blackgold Dancers, Devin KKenny, Legacy Russel, and more. This playful yet rigorous intellectual undertaking evolves into a dance party.


Closing Reception for Jeff Williams' "Worn Thin"

Sun Jun 12, 2011 18:00 - Sun Jun 12, 2011

New York, New York
United States of America

Join us in celebrating the final stage of our current Session, Recess Activities' signature program! Throughout the course of his artist residency, Jeff Williams has developed a series of sculptures and videos as well as a stratum of accumulated site-specific experiments. Playing with different devices of decay, "Worn Thin" has explored the processes that slowly wear down Williams' various materials.