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Brooke Singer
Date and place of birth
b. 1979, Chicago, IL
Current location
Brooklyn, NY
Year(s) of residency and/or fellowship
201011, Research Resident

Brooke Singer is a New York City–based media artist, co-founder of the art, technology and activist group Preemptive Media, and a professor of New Media at Purchase College, State University of New York.

Singer works across disciplines engaging technology and science as an artist, educator, and collaborator. Her work exists in the form of websites, photography, maps, installations, workshops, and performances that involve public participation with an eye to social change.

She is also co-founder and president of South Williamsburg community garden La Casita Verde in Brooklyn, one of 11 sites in the borough, as of April 2015, slated to be developed for “affordable” housing. She was a former fellow at Eyebeam (2010 – 2011)  and recipient of an Open Society Foundations grant, and an NYSCA Individual Artist grant, among several other awards.

National and international exhibitions include MoMA/PS1, Warhol Museum of Art, The Banff Centre, Neuberger Museum of Art, Matadero Madrid, Diverseworks and The Whitney Artport.  Her work is in the collections of the Whitney Museum of American Art, Microsoft and Melva Bucksbaum and Raymond Learsy.  Brooke has received awards from the Open Society Foundations, New York State Council on the Arts (NYSCA), Helsinki International Artist Program, Headlands Center for Arts, Patagonia, Eyebeam, among others.

Excess NYC (2011)

In Collaboration with Ricardo Miranda Zúñiga

In 2011, she and artist and husband Ricardo Miranda Zúñiga participated in a cross-cultural residency with Madrid-based artists Beatriz Marcos, José Luis Bongore, and Sissa Verde. The work that resulted, Excedentes, was the development of a cart system during the economic downturn in Spain to allow scavengers to bypass dumpsters. The artists wheeled the cart with edible but unsaleable food from the mercardo destined for the trash into a public space and displayed it for people to take—a more humane way of picking up free food than dumpster diving. The project became a discussion about liability issues for the merchants and a group proposing legislation so a cart like this could be a more permanent solution and not a temporary intervention in Madrid.

Upon their return to the States, the couple evolved a Brooklyn component of Excedentes, building a mobile bodega and composting machine, communicating with small businesses in their Prospect Heights/Crown Heights community, to help keep, educate, and encourage others about keeping food out of landfills. The performance-demonstration entitled Excess NYC travelled to Stamford and New Haven, Connecticut.

The website for Excess NYC includes video and still documentation of Singer and Zúñiga’s performances and the two tons of organic waste they were able to hold off in their neighborhood, as well as interviews with area food activists like a founding member of the Park Slope Food Coop and the director of the New York City Coalition Against Hunger. It also includes a link to a related project by Singer, Field Guide to the Electric Underground, an online catalog of video footage of microscopic samples taken in 2012–13 that compares dirt from the Brooklyn Botanic Garden, Casita Verde, a Harlem community garden, and a boutique reseller of Brooklyn compost.

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