“New Art Syndicate Opens on Bangs Avenue”, Michelle Gladden, Asbury Park Sun
A new arts nonprofit has landed on Bangs Avenue in Asbury Park.
The New Art Syndicate is branded as a collective that uses art as a community collaboration.
Located at 529 Bangs Ave, founders Carrie Ruddick and John Amelchenko have been a part of the city’s downtown art scene for years. The couple says they are advocates for different works of art, different conversations and different ways to ally with our communities.
Their inaugural showcase, which debuted earlier this month is entitled Grocery, done in collaboration with Kula Urban Farm, located on Atkins Avenue. Founded in 2014, the farm like the cafe by the same name, is a social enterprise program that provides on-site job training, educational programs and free fresh produce to those in need.
“We are utilizing this pop-up event to introduce ourselves to the community and learn more about how we can further use art as a vehicle of collaboration and inclusion,” Ruddick said.
Grocery features large-scale, commercially-fabricated hanging and fixed two-dimensional totems. The show is an attempt to meditate on the beliefs of growth, death, identity and consumption, Ruddick said.
Kula Farm’s fully sustainable and dispensable hydroponic grow tower provides a real-time local balance to the other pieces’ suggestive consumerism – with life becoming death, she said. The hydroponically grown vegetables include chives, chocolate mint, sage, and an array of lettuces.
The installation runs through month’s end and patrons can stop by to fill a grocery bag with the aforementioned vegetables for a suggested $5 donation.
Plans are also in the works to bring performance art, poetry and an open mic event to the space. The city residents are also accepting donations to help fund an arts mentorship program for high school students and a mobile arts resource station.