Handcrafted wooden Joseph C. Furniture lined the walls of the Cargo Project Gallery (CPG) on its opening night. Created by Brooklyn-based Korean designer Joseph Chun, the furniture featured in the 11-by-17 foot space was inspired by Chun’s background growing up in different cultures. Enamored of Chun’s backstory and how it informs his work, CPG founder Kika Espejo was thrilled that CPG opened with Joseph C. Furniture.
Espejo created CPG to diversify New York’s mainstream art scene by giving underrepresented international artists a platform to showcase their work. CPG draws its name from its industrial surroundings. And it plays off the term “project cargo,” which refers to shipping heavy, complex, or valued cargo. CPG’s exhibitions will be one-night shows, featuring diverse art such as animation, photography, design, illustration, and film. Espejo hopes that CPG will be a space where people can connect with each other through engaging art.
Espejo is interested in showcasing international artists who create socially engaging work. As an artist originally from Spain, she knows how difficult it is for foreign artists to promote their work and to find a space to display their work in the U.S. She hopes that the artists featured at CPG will network professionally and socially, forming a kind of support group.
“It’s not only about the art,” says Espejo. “It’s about the people that are creating [it] and the communities that are created around it.”
Living in Bushwick since 2011, Espejo has seen the effects of gentrification. She doesn’t want CPG to be another new business that takes away space from older communities in the area.
“I want to give preference to foreigners,” says Espejo, “but not limit [CPG to them] because then you don’t get a community that’s fully integrated.” So CPG will also feature local artists who are underrepresented.
Images courtesy of Kika Espejo. Cover photo of Joseph Chun at CPG.
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