The Spring/Break Art Show is the surly new kid on the block and everyone involved could not be more excited. Now in its third year, this rough little gem of a fair is organized by Ambre Kelly and Andrew Gori in what was once an old school house in NoLita. This is in fact the name of the venue: Old School. The charm of the location was left completely intact as hardly anything has changed when you look around. Equipped with the same bathroom stalls you can remember being stuffed into, dusty chalkboards waiting for you to write your sorry excuse for an answer in front of the class, and that lovely patchwork of worn linoleum squeaking under your feet, Old School isn’t short memories for anyone who went to elementary school somewhere in the United States.
The art that inhabits these spaces fits the theme as well. It is curated by a group of independent curators who each have their own space, giving each former classroom it’s own distinct style and feel. The artists are of the younger generation for the most part, pumping out ambitious work that still feels slightly less polished, and teems with that obvious creative excitement that young hands seem to have in ample supply.
This isn’t to say that this fair leaves anything to be desired. If you look around on opening night, you see smiling faces sharing laughs, making connections, and congratulating one another on putting together a great show. The pretension and thick, stuffy air that can be found wafting through most any other fair is nowhere to be found at Spring/Break. I think the artists and curators alike do their best to keep it that way.
It should go without saying that the experience is not to be missed. You may never get another chance to rumble through classic movie make-out scenes in a custom painted VW bug, to make a wish on a sumptuous wishing pelt, or hang with a sculpture made out of actual human bones. Go back to grade school before it’s too late.
The following images are a selection of some of our favorite works to be seen throughout the exhibition. We won’t tell you who they were made by. You have to go to Spring/Break to find out.
By Matthew Hassell