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Albany Barn exterior 2:14.jpg

Albany Barn Dana Owens apt 2.jpg

Albany Barn Dana Owens apt 1.jpg

Albany Barn Dana Owens Apt 3.jpg

Albany Barn Dana Owens apt. Kitchen.jpg

Albany Barn Dana Owens painting.jpg

Albany Barn painting and brushes.jpg

Albany Barn 2:14 from stage.jpg
Looking out from a stage that's under construction.

Albany Barn 2014 stage.jpg
The stage.

Albany Barn 2014 Rehearsal Suite in progress.jpg
A rehearsal suite still under construction.

Checking out the (nearly) finished Albany Barn

The Albany Barn live/work loft apartments are now fully occupied

So now that all of the 22 live/work apartments at The Albany Barn are occupied, who lives there? And what does the space look like?

Kristen Holler, The Barn's executive director, says the mix of artists is just what they hoped for. "We couldn't have gotten a more diverse group if we planned it that way. The youngest resident is 23 and the oldest is in his 60s. There's a good mix of men and women and different types of art."

One of The Barn's residents is Dana Owens -- illustrator, Smallbany creator, and founder of The Machine Artist Co-Op.

Owens gave us a look at his new place recently, and shared some thoughts on what it's been like for him at the Barn so far.

There are more large format photos above -- click or scroll all the way up.

Owens moved into his apartment in January. Before that he says he was sharing an apartment with two other guys in Albany's, ahem, education district. "There were a lot of students. There was a lot of yelling." Owens says it was harder to get things done.

Albany Barn apartment

The Barn is the converted St. Joseph's Academy in Arbor Hill, a handful of blocks northwest of The Palace. The high ceilings and huge windows in all of the apartments give them a very light, airy feel and make them seem much larger than might otherwise appear.

Dana Owens

Other residents of The Barn include:

Michael Ortega - filmmaker
Kayla Sacco - filmmaker
Lee-Ann Clarkson - visual Artist
Caitlin McCourt - printmaker/painter
Megan Ruch - painter
Caroline Morgan - painter
B.A. Feldman
Ed O'Connell - sculptor & painter
Emeline Hobbs - collage & photography artist
Jordan Taylor-Hill -- a drummer, working on establishing the not-for-profit Niombato Library Project in Senegal
Carey Taylor Noble - writer, creator of FarmFreshtoMarket.com
J.C. Woods - guitarist and illustrator
Emily Dorr - collage installation artist
Charles Sweeney - writer/musician
Nicole Campon - photographer
Dwayne Murphy - comedian

Part of the goal of The Barn is to encourage collaboration between these artists. Owens says that's already happening. He's done some screen printing for some of the artists at the Barn, including Jordan Taylor-Hill. In return, Hill has featured Owens and The Machine on a radio program he hosts. Owens has also opened a screen printing shop and studio on Lark Street with some friends and will soon be curating art for Caffé Vero.

Another goal of the project is to get the artists involved in the surrounding neighborhood. Owens is thinking about working on a mural project. "Something like Living Walls, but with much more of a community feel."

Eventually The Barn will hold open house events, in which artists will open their apartments and studios to the public.

The other half of The Barn will soon house performance, office, studio and rehearsal space. It's expected to be finished in the next moth or so, and tenants have already begun reserving spaces.

Albany Barn open space

As mentioned, the 22 residential units in The Barn are occupied. But the org is currently accepting applications from artists interested for when units open up. That link includes information about the process, including the household income limits for applicants.

The Barn is holding a fundraiser March 27 at The Comedy Works featuring resident and comedian Dwayne Murphy. The headliner is Tom Briscoe.

Earlier on AOA:
+ In progress: the Albany Barn
+ Raising the Albany Barn

The Albany Barn advertises on AOA.

Find It

The Albany Barn
North Swan St and 2nd Street
Albany , NY 12210

Comments

Thank you for sharing this. Very encouraging to see it come together. Although the benefits to the community at large might be neither obvious nor direct, I am confident they will accrue. The organizers of the Barn and its residents are to be applauded. More projects like this, please!

Well said, Randal!

What a fantastic project. Arbor Hill is becoming more revitalized and we're supporting these creative people. Albany is a richer more interesting city when these types of people can stay, live, and prosper in the city.

I love the fact that someone had an idea and saw it through to fruition. Congrats! Looks like a great space.

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