Category Archives: Gallery

June 2: Artist Panel & Performance: Yael Ben-Zion’s STILL LIVES

Please join photographer Yael Ben-Zion, and collaborators and artists Marcus Moore, Maaji Newbold, and Michael Deegan, as they engage in a public conversation about the STILL LIVES exhibition. Moderated by Veronica Liu.


According to a recent report of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, there are currently more than 550,000 homeless people in the U.S. In New York City, more than 63,000 people are sleeping in shelters every night, a number that almost doubled over the past decade.

STILL LIVES—Yael Ben-Zion’s new exhibition of photographs—questions a society that enables the phenomenon of homelessness to exist and perpetuate.

Through a series of large-format stilllife photographs portraying the objects and belongings of people who have experienced homelessness with whom the artist collaborated, Yael Ben-Zion references the rich tradition of stilllife paintings, in turn hoping to spark a critical dialogue about materialism, how we value objects and human beings, and how perceptions could be challenged.

The ongoing and recent effects of gentrification in Yael’s neighborhood, Washington Heights—and the very real notion that “every New Yorker is one paycheck away from being homeless”—spur questions and assumptions, as a whole community grapples with an issue so local yet so globally persistent.

Collaborators on this project include satirist Marcus Moore, aka The Homeless Poet, an activist and spoken-work artist; Maaji Newbold, an actress with Theatre of the Oppressed NYC; and Michael Deegan, a self-taught painter.

With special thanks to Picture the Homeless, a grassroots organization founded and led by homeless people that is organizing for social justice issues and putting forward an alternative vision of community; NoMAA; and Lantern Community Services.


Yael Ben-Zion is a New York-based artist whose work often considers the relationship of the personal to the political. Yael was born in Minneapolis, MN and raised in Israel. She is a graduate of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Yale Law School and the International Center of Photography. Yael’s work has been exhibited in the United States, Europe and Israel is also included in the MTA-Artists Unite Subway Elevator Poster Project. She is the recipient of ICP’s Directors’ Scholarship Award, the International Photography Awards and grants from NoMAA and the Puffin Foundation. Yael’s first monograph, 5683 miles away (Kehrer, 2010), was selected as one of photo-eye’s Best Books of 2010 and for the PDN Photo Annual 2011. It was also a nominee for the German Photo Book Award 2011. Intermarried, her second monograph with Kehrer, was selected for American Photography 30 and featured, among others, in the NY Times Sunday Review, PDN Magazine and the Forward.

Artist Panel: Yael Ben-Zion’s STILL LIVES
Saturday, June 2, 2018
Word Up Community Bookshop/Librería Comunitaria
2113 Amsterdam Avenue
New York NY 10032


February 27–March 28: Art Exhibition: I Am

P.S. 132–Juan Pablo Duarte, Urban Arts Partnership, and Word Up Community Bookshop/Librería Comunitaria present the art exhibition I AM, on view from February 27 through March 28.

Art Exhibition: I Am
Tuesday, February 27, 2018- Wednesday, March 28, 2018 
Word Up Community Bookshop/Librería Comunitaria
New York NY 10032


On view now through February 25: Visiones / Visions

This weekend is the last opportunity to catch Word Up volunteer Juliana Torres Forero’s art exhibition. We hope you can make it!

Observar con el ojo de adentro. Profundizar en el instante. Colores, trazos, movimientos que van moldeando la naturaleza de una visión, de un paisaje intuido, adentro, se construye. Imagino teologías del presente: las formas aparecen como una ofrenda al tiempo.

To observe with the inside eye. Deepen in the moment. Colors, traces, movements that molds the nature of a vision, an intuitive landscape, inside, you build it. I imagine theologies of the present:forms appear as an offerings to the moment.

Juliana Torres Forero is a poet, translator, teacher, and Word Up collective member. Originally from Colombia, Juliana presents “Visiones,” some of her paintings from her time in New York City, in an exhibition on view till February 25.

Juliana Torres Forero: Visiones/Visions
On view through February 25, 2018
Word Up Community Bookshop/Librería Comunitaria
2113 Amsterdam Avenue
New York NY 10032

November 2 – SELF: self portraits by the Lantern Arts Collective

SELF: self portraits by the Lantern Arts Collective
A new art exhibition at Word Up Community Bookshop
November & December 2017

Opening reception, with short films by the LANTERN ARTS COLLECTIVE and VIVIAN DUCAT: Thursday, November 2, 5–7pm 

The Lantern Arts Collective unites artists of diverse backgrounds and experience who live in Lantern Community Services supportive housing buildings. Members of the groups meet on a weekly basis to explore a variety of media, guided by Chantal Heijnen, Sonja Rohde and Emily Sharp. Their work was recently displayed at the Ron Taylor Gallery as part of Arts to End Violence. The Lantern Arts Collective also presented their work in the 2017 Northern Manhattan Arts Alliance Uptown Arts Stroll. A collaborative piece they created, Block Party, was featured in the 2016 Community Partnership Art Show at the Museum of Modern Art.

To celebrate the opening of this new exhibition, we’re screening two short films examining portraits and their curation.

Stonefaced is a documentary short about the architect, author, photographer, and professor Robert Arthur King, who is obsessed with gargoyles. As Robert walks around the New York City capturing images, he muses on these curious figures embedded in our city’s great architecture. Stonefaced is produced and directed by Vivian Ducat, whose other credits include producing, directing, and writing the documentary feature All Me: The Life and Times of Winfred Rembert, and more than 20 long-form documentaries for broadcast. Vivian spent the first part of her career in London, working for the BBC, and has also produced and directed interactive media short films, touchscreen kiosks and digital exhibitions for many New York City–based institutions, including the Malcolm X and Dr. Betty Shabazz Memorial and Educational Center and the New-York Historical Society. Vivian lives with her family in Washington Heights, where she is the co-chair of the Riverside Oval Association, an organization dedicated to the greening of the area west of Broadway between 155th and 158th Streets and the development of a sense of identity for the area.

Self > Selfie is a short film exploring the ways we curate our images for public consumption, and examining what our screens fail to capture and communicate about life experience. Self > Selfie was made in collaboration with Lantern and teaching artist Kerry Downey, in conjunction with the Museum of Modern Art Community Partnership Program. Since 2007, MoMA’s Community Partnership Program has been working with nonprofit and community-based organizations throughout New York City to create new ways of accessing MoMA’s collection and resources. As a multidisciplinary video artist, Downey is interested in finding creative ways to explore our contemporary relationship to media and technology.

August 30 – Leslie Jimenez & Carlos Jesus Martinez Dominguez’s Thursday Exhibit: Works on Paper

Leslie Jimenez & Carlos Jesus Martinez Dominguez/FEEGZ
Thursday Exhibit: 
Works on Paper
August 31–October 31, 2017
Opening reception: Thursday, August 31, 2017 | 6:30–8:30pm
Word Up Community Bookshop
2113 Amsterdam Avenue @ 165th St.

Thursday Exhibit brings together collective mates Leslie Jimenez and Carlos Jesus Martinez Dominguez, two local artists, in a collaborative effort to share their work with the community. A selection of their mostly black-and-white drawings on paper about the neighborhood will be on display at Word Up Community Bookshop. Using simple elements such as line and contrast – with materials such as pen, marker, thread, tape and spray paint – these artist aim to capture snapshots of their relationships with Uptown Manhattan. In addition, a mural will be drawn by the artists inside the space before the opening, and will remain on view throughout the exhibition.

Leslie Jimenez makes art about the people and places of the neighborhood she calls home, which has become a great source of daily inspiration during morning walks with her daughter. In her practice, Jimenez explores the relationships children develop with public spaces, and the power of representation, by depicting parents as the humble heroes of the neighborhood. In her series Uptown Humble Heroes (a series of stitched drawings), she honors and celebrates the life, the work, and the diversity of Upper Manhattan residents.

Caribbean New Yorker, Atheist on some days, Non Theist Agnostic on others, Liberal, Socialist, Agitator, Ethical Polyamorist, Marijuana Advocate, HS dropout, GED holder, Autodidact, Educator, Debater, white people fearing, All people loving, LGBTQ allying, Hip Hop, Sneaker, Comic and Sci-fi loving Dominican Puerto Rican Interdisciplinary Artist born on a military base in North Carolina in 1976. Carlos Jesus Martinez Dominguez a.k.a FEEGZ, Figaro & Firo173 has exhibited taught and spoken in dozens of institutions nationally and internationally, really. NYC since 82.


Leslie Jimenez y Carlos Jesus Martinez Dominguez/FEEGZ31
Una exhibición para un jueves: Obras en papel
de agosto–31 de octubre, 2017
Recepción de apertura: jueves, 31 de agosto de 2017 | 6:30-8:30pm
Librería comunitaria Word Up
2113 Avenida Amsterdam (en calle 165)

En Una exhibición para un jueves Leslie Jimenez y Carlos Jesus Martinez Dominguez, miembros del mismo colectivo, colaboran para compartir su trabajo con la comunidad. Se trata de una selección de sus dibujos en papel sobre la ciudad, en su mayoría  en blanco y negro, que serán exhibidos en la librería comunitaria Word Up.  Utilizando elementos sencillos, tales como línea y contraste – con materiales tales como pluma, marcador, hilo, cinta, y pintura con spray – estos artistas buscan plasmar instantáneas de sus relaciones con el Alto Manhattan. Además, un mural que también formará parte de la exhibición, será dibujado por los artistas dentro del espacio antes de la apertura..  

Leslie Jimenez hace arte sobre las personas y los lugares del barrio, al que ella llama su hogar, lo cual se ha convertido en una fuente de inspiración regular durante sus caminatas diarias con su hija. En su práctica artística, Jimenez explora las relaciones que los niños desarrollan con los espacios públicos y el poder de la representación al retratar a los padres como los héroes humildes del barrio. En la serie “Héroes humildes del alto Manhattan” (una serie de dibujos de puntada), ella celebra y honra la vida, el trabajo, y la diversidad de los residentes del Alto Manhattan.

Neworkino caribeño, ateo algunos días, No-teísta agnóstico otros días, liberal, socialista, agitador, poliamoroso ético, defensor de la marihuana, Abandonó la escuela secundaria, titular del GED, autodidacta, educador, polemista, le tiene miedo a la gente blanca, ama a todo el mundo, aliado de la comunidad LGBTQ, amante del Hip Hop, los tenis, comics y Sci-fi. Dominicano y Puertorriqueño, artista interdisciplinario nacido en una base militar en Carolina del Norte en 1976. Carlos Jesús Martínez Dominguez, alias FEEGZ, Figaro y Firo173 ha expuesto, enseñado y hablado en docenas de instituciones a nivel nacional e internacional, de verdad. En Nueva York desde el 82.