A Workplace for Play, a Party for Your Art


We heart Amit Gupta. The entrepreneurial wunderkind — whose fantastic newsletter, Photojojo, influenced the design of Brooklyn Based — is one of those people who follows through on good ideas. First he and a friend came up with Jelly, the twice-monthly fix for people who get bored working from home. Every other week, freelancers are invited to bring their work and laptops to Amit’s Manhattan apartment for a free coworking session, where you can mooch off his wifi and do some of that cross-pollination thing that comes from working with other great minds.

Tomorrow, his former roommate Saha Hammari is hosting the first Brooklyn installment of Jelly in Crown Heights, but that’s only one of their bright ideas that has come to fruition here.

lamp.jpgThe second is bARTer, an art exhcange Amit, Saha and Isuru Senev first held in their apartment in May. “We wanted to come up with a creative way to hold a non-traditional party that wasn’t a pot luck,” explains Amit. So Saha, inspired by an online swap meet hosted by Coudal Partners, suggested they hold their own version.

Guests were asked to bring a piece of art, preferably handmade, like a painting, a silk-screened T-shirt, or lamp, like the one industrial designer Joey Roth brought, above, and were given points at the door using an arbitrary metric based upon its dimensions. “We don’t judge the art,” says Amit, “but we hope people bring something cool.”

The guests got other chances to win points that night by coming up with and playing random games — building the tallest tower out of gum and spaghetti, say — and at the end, they used their points to bid for the artwork they wanted to bring home.

Next Friday, bARTer comes to Brooklyn, specifically to the one-stop shop for DIY enthusiasts, Etsy, who is co-hosting the event at their HQ on Gold Street in Dumbo.

In addition to selling handmade crafts and art from designers worldwide on their site, etsy.com, Etsy Labs also holds workshops on arty skills like mosaic and jewelry making… And if they’re on the guest list, you know the the stuff they’re bringing has got to be good.

Spaces — there are just 55 or so left — will fill up fast for the August 24 party, so if you’ve got something to swap, post a comment here. And for those who can’t make it to the actual event, there’s also an online swap.

Sent by Nicole

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