"What It Feels Like" Pop-Up Gallery

"What It Feels Like" Pop-Up Gallery

WIFL pop-up gallery layout

Brooklyn Space Modern Furniture presents "What It Feels Like", a pop-up art gallery curated by Brooklyn-based artist Nicolette McClendon.

Located in Brooklyn Space's DUMBO showroom, WIFL was an immersive experience showcasing emerging Black Artists. The show highlighted the joys and sorrows of what it feels like to be an artist; to be seen; to feel unheard; or to be an Artist of color in the art world today.

The showcase opened June 19th in recognition of Juneteenth - a holiday celebrating the emancipation of enslaved Africans in the United States. McClendon chose to honor this day and the Artists of “What It Feels Like.” 

“What It Feels Like” was not designed to provide answers, but to provoke questions. Curator McClendon led viewers through each artist’s process, the emotions and vulnerability of what it takes for them to create, but she also posed a question to viewers - what does it feel like to be on the opposite side of that creation, and how does it relate to one’s own life?

Photographer Azikiwe shoots curator Nicolette McClendon with her art

The collaboration consisted of many parts. Each artist was professionally shot by Azikiwe Aboagye with their work in the Brooklyn Space showroom. Video footage of the artists was taken by Black Pixel Productions regarding the question of what it feels like to be an artist of color. This footage was then edited by @ciara_leone365 and a soundtrack was created by @ghettofalsetto

The showroom was then transformed into a gallery space. Curator McClendon rearranged the furniture, pairing sofas and artwork according to color and style. Some of the sofas were turned onto their sides so that artwork could be hung from them.

Photos from WIFL pop-up gallery exhibit

A photo wall was created through the collaborative efforts of other small businesses in the Brooklyn Space warehouse building; a contractor built and cut the W design of the wall; the curator and Brooklyn Space team sanded and painted the wood; Smooth Technology created the lettering which was then glued, piece by piece, to the wall; finally, floral design studio Olivee Floral  decorated the wall with eucalyptus and roses over a number of days, staggering the roses so that they would deteriorate at different rates.

Photograph from WIFL pop-up art gallery


As a soft opening, Brooklyn Space hosted a Friends and Families night in which the artists were toasted with champagne and snacks, and each could spend time celebrating with loved ones. Opening night was Juneteenth; there was a great turn out, and from then on guests filtered in and out of the space for the next few weeks. The overall effect was a beautiful and thought-provoking art show that brought together many communities and challenged them to acknowledge the joys and challenges particular to Black Artists. 

To collaborate with Brooklyn Space, please apply for an Artist Partnership here.

Back to blog