Cooler Than Blue

December 3rd, 2021 – Ongoing
NICO Kitchen + Bar, 1 Center Street, Newark, NJ

Gallery Aferro, after almost two decades of existence as an artist-run space, draws on the intimacy of proximity to creative lives, and the diffuse vastness of artist networks for Cooler Than Blue. A group exhibition is a kind of visualization of relationships, including those sustained over time, and Cooler Than Blue is also a celebration of artist studio culture, the specific knowledge taught, traded, and passed among painters: the legend and lore of specific colors.

Blue is believed to be the first color synthesized by the Egyptians around 2,200 BCE. Since then, new colors have continued to be a source of excitement and intrigue among artists, with Ultramarine, Indigo, Prussian Blue, YInMn blue, Ultrablack, and others. Painters, printmakers, and photographers included in the exhibit, whether working in an abstract or figurative manner, have an intense working relationship to the color blue.

Elevator Music 8: Boston Typewriter Orchestra

Curated by Juno Zago

Elevator Music 8: Boston Typewriter Orchestra, curated by Juno Zago, beckons visitors to walk inside a refurbished, early-1900s Otis Elevator and embrace the creative rhythms and playful whimsy of one of America’s most eclectic musical troupes.

Founded in 2004, the Boston Typewriter Orchestra (BTO) is a collective percussive ensemble for typewriter and voice based in the greater Boston area. Entertaining with collaborative rhythmic, comedic, and satiric performances, BTO seeks to educate and evangelize the archaic machines they use, and grant folks an opportunity to experience a visceral connection to history and industrial technology like never before.

In Elevator Music 8, BTO has taken their upcycled, recontextualized music, and returned to the office, this time in the warm, seemingly stale confines of an Otis elevator car. This original piece produced for Gallery Aferro’s unique installation harmonizes existing compositions with new evocative sounds, callouts, and textures, and explores the intimacy and anxiety we all feel when fleetingly sharing 150 cubic feet with a group of strangers.

In addition to their original works, BTO is pleased to include collaborations here from other sonic visionaries: interdisciplinary artist Brian Dewan of Catskill, New York, and grindcore legends Full of Hell of Ocean City, Maryland. Elizabeth Donovan of Brookline, Massachusetts, delivers the “next stop” announcements, a calming beacon amidst the irascible machines.

BTO has released several singles and five albums, the most recent of which is a collection of remixes entitled Delegation. The ensemble members included/includes: Derrik Albertelli, Jeff Breeze, James Brockman, Alex Holman, Chris Keene, Erik Lindahl, Steve Mazzulli, Jay O’Grady, Brendan Quigley, and Chris Webb.

Learn more about BTO at www.bostontyperwriterorchestra.com, then follow them on FacebookInstagramYouTube and Twitter, then purchase their work via their Bandcamp page.

Image courtesy of BTO