Pop-Up Museum Challenges Misconceptions in Gowanus

Pop-Up Museum of the Gowanus Canal
Pop-Up Museum of the Gowanus Canal

If you live in the New York area, you simply must get to the Pop-Up Museum of the Gowanus Canal. We all hear about how polluted the canal is and what a blight on our existence it is; rather than complaining, some talented people are doing something about this image.

The museum opened on March 3 at the Observatory and will be opened to the public until April 22.   Curated by Ethan Gould and Wythe Marschall, founders of the arts movement Hollow Earth Society, and by Rob Peterson and Lindsay Reynolds, the museum challenges viewers to see Gowanus as a place where art blossoms.

As Marschall said,

“We’re interested in the process of junk space becoming un-junk space again. [Gowanus] becoming an individuated, new neighborhood is really cool. And maybe that’s already here.”

While challenging how we see art, the museum also challenges how we see artistic space. It is both user-friendly and wildly accessible.   All of the pieces are in one large room and all are easily accessible to the viewer without any glass enclosed boxes or ropes. There are paintings, sculptures, murals and more here.

As CAS senior Zo-Ee Chee said,

“You know, artists who make it into museums like the Met, it means that you’ve achieved something, that you’re culturally important. So this is kind of breaking down that aspect, that idea of hierarchy or this privilege you have to earn.”

Get your hands on real art made by real people at the Observatory and stretch your horizons about Gowanus today!


James Allenby is the editor of Gowanus Lounge, bringing to his position a vast background on New York, and especially Brooklyn history, culture and lifestyle. Born and bred in the heart of "the County of Kings" James Allenby knows what it means to be a Brooklynite, and imparts this meaning at all times to his readers. Contact James at info(at)gowanuslounge.com.