Knickerbocker Maw presents an ongoing project of small-batch series that explore the novelties and commerce of Knickerbocker Avenue in Bushwick, around the corner from my studio. The imagery and the pricing of these objects are inspired by the bargain blasting bustle of Knickerbocker.
In 1809, Washington Irving published “A History of New York” under the pseudonym Deidrich Knickerbocker. A long-winded satyrical text, the book presents the lamentations of a fictitious Mr. Knickerbocker at the passing of the genteel Dutch colonial society and mannerisms that he once enjoyed to a modern age marked by fewer scruples, of “degeneracy and refinement.” Knickerbocker takes great liberties in conveying to his devoted reader the story of the invasion and eventual takeover of Manhattan and its surroundings by “the Yankee Race,” which culminated in the change in the name of our city from “Nieuw Nederlandts” to New York along with a change in governance. The Name Knickerbocker has since become emblematic of many things New York, most famously becoming the namesake of the New York Knickerbockers, or Knicks, and of course, of Bushwick’s Knickerbocker Avenue, now the shopping hub of the neighborhood. Since Irving’s time, and indeed before, New York City itself has become synonymous with transition, playing host to an ever-changing cast of social groups, and accompanying cycles of economic decline and subsequent gentrification.
As Bushwick braces itself for another such transition, Knickerbocker Maw is a project with the aim of harnessing something of the glaring and grotesque collision of social spheres that pervades the neighborhood, and in the process, having a bit of fun with that classic New York situation, the conflict between hustling and holding on, in the Knickerbocker fashion.
All orders from Knickerbocker Maw are made securely through Paypal and include free shipping within the continental United States, free shipping or delivery within the New York metropolitan area. If you would like visit the store (studio) in person to see the products firsthand, you may contact the artist at email@example.com for an appointment.