The word “indie” sparks mixed emotions amongst artists of all shapes and sizes. But in terms of fine art in Fishtown and Kensington, there’s not much that could be considered mainstream. Even while Frankford Avenue’s clientele blossoms as a bro bar crawl on the weekends, both temporary and permanent residents are full of artistic capacities. Here’s where you can go check it out.
The Convent Philly
1648 E. Berks St.
This delightfully macabre space could be considered a darker, more sinister complement to Old City’s Arch Enemy Arts. Their specialties lie in comic-inspired caricatures, gothic portraits, and even affordable (still not for everyone) illustrations and prints. To give you a glimpse, they just hosted Hannah Carter and Caitlin McCormack performing a (likely) Tim Roth-approved puppet show.
1331 Frankford Ave.
At this point, they’re a Philly staple with five locations (they’re also in West Philly, Queen Village, on Passyunk Avenue and in the Piazza), and there’s never a shortage of art on their walls. Sure, some of it’s kitsch and vintage in nature, maybe brutally framed. But that’s part of its affordable magic. But at the Frankford Avenue location, you can catch regular shows of rotating artists coordinated by Sam Heimer.
1526 Frankford Ave.
Rumor has it that the Frankford Avenue front may be on its last legs and that, on its Front Street side, new art ideas are getting kicked about. But until July 1, they’ve got “Daysleeping Sleepwalking” on display, Joshua Ben Long’s exploration of design and materials yielding sculptures big and small, ranging from adorable to terrifying.
2430 Coral St.
At this point, LB has been holding it down for years in Kensington as one of the vanguard art spaces, a cooperative-run space that fuses performance art, a gallery experience and always encouraging community-building. Up now is Ethan Patrick Sherman’s curation of four artists exploring “Developer” (through June 30) — images that explore built environment around the world (Izaak Schlossman, Matt Mancini, Rory Rosenberg and Ricky Yanas).