Archive for February, 2016

The Essex Street Market Recordings 7

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After 25 years of having a store front in the Lower East Side, Puebla Mexican Food moved into the Essex Street Market. In 2015, they lost their lease and the new rent was beyond what they could afford. The Essex Street Market presented a new home and strong future. Listen to Irma Marin of the Puebla Mexican Food list the various plates that she offers:

Listen to the full collection of recordings.

Written by ricardo

February 29th, 2016 at 8:00 am

The Essex Street Market Recordings 6

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Stephen Bickford is a board member of the gallery Cuchifritos at the Essex Street Market and he sometimes sits at the gallery. As I was recording recipes from people at the market, I asked Stephen if he had a contribution. After a few notes to recall all the ingredients, Stephen shared the “Caveman Gratin”:

Listen to the full collection of recordings.

Written by ricardo

February 24th, 2016 at 8:00 am

The Essex Street Market Recordings 5

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I met Chris Bickford at the Cuchifritos gallery when I was doing audio recordings at the Essex Street Market and as a visitor to the market, I asked if he had a recipe to contribute to my project. Chris obliged with his corn chowder meal:

Listen to the full collection of recordings.

Written by ricardo

February 21st, 2016 at 8:00 am

The Essex Street Market Recordings 4

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Charlotte Pradie from Saxelby Cheese Mongers at the Essex Street Market presented a detailed account of the making of the Pawlet Sandwich. Listen to Charlotte’s description below:

Listen to the full collection of recordings.

Written by ricardo

February 19th, 2016 at 8:00 am

The Essex Street Market Recordings 3

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Arancini Bros is the latest addition to the Essex Street Market and their rice balls are delicious. I met Julia de la Gata at the new location and she shared the recipe for the Bianco Verde as well as its history. Listen to Julia’s account below:

Listen to the full collection of recordings.

Written by ricardo

February 17th, 2016 at 8:00 am

The Essex Street Market Recordings 2

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Ramona Rodriguez of Luis Meat Market in the Essex Street Market sells a prepared pork for the holidays. This is the recipe that she shared with me when I was soliciting recipes from the vendors – “El Pernil Adobado”. Click the play button below to listen to Ramona’s preparation.

Listen to the full collection of recordings.

Written by ricardo

February 15th, 2016 at 8:00 am

The Essex Street Market Recordings

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Recetas y Gangas

Proposed work “Recetas y Gangas” audio montage of vendors projected onto the street through a bullhorn mounted on the facade of the Essex Street Market

Commonly street markets around the world have both an outdoor and indoor space. The perimeters of the market may extend on to the street to invite pedestrians in to the market. Rather than walls, street markets may present large openings and awnings to create an arcade where people are at once outside and inside. The Essex Street Market in the Lower East Side of New York City does not have a side walk extension beyond sandwich boards and signage outside its brick wall. The Essex Street Market facade does not even present pedestrian level windows for those outside to peer in to the interior. The facade is rather an uninviting brick facade, perhaps a planned institutional barrier that Mayor La Guardia desired as he sought to take cart vendors off the sidewalk in an effort to clean up the streets from obstacles and noise. For the exhibition “Lettuce, Artichokes, Red Beets, Mangoes, Broccoli, Honey and Nutmeg: The Essex Street Market as Collaborator” at Cuchifritos curated by Nicolás Dumit Estévez Raful , I have sought to extend the Essex Street Market on to the sidewalk through sound.

There is a long history of market vendors announcing, singing or chanting their goods to the public. On Essex Street before cart vendors were moved off the street and into the market, they would call out their goods, hoping to attract buyers. I imagine that when the market first opened this practice continued. Today, walk through a traditional Latin American market and you will hear various products sung in to the air. To develop my project, I solicited vendors to vocalize their products and the more performative, the better. Only two vendors played along, one eagerly – Rosella Albanese from Pain d’Avignon and another through a bit of coaxing – Yanivis Rodriguez of Luna Brothers. You may listen to each of their recordings below.

Yanivis Rodriguez, Luna Brothers


Rosella Albanese, Pain d’Avignon


When I was trying to talk Yanivis into the recording while she worked the register, a shopper began to tell me about her recipes for preparing yams. It was an older Dominican woman, perhaps in her 60s who after describing her recipe, told me about the many health benefits of yams.

As I was having a difficult time convincing vendors to sing or chant their goods, I decided to request a recipe from them. This turned out effective as I’ve collected several recipes from vendors and customers. Over the next few weeks, I will describe the interactions with the subjects and you may listen to the shared recipe. The final piece is an audio montage that captures a portrait of the Essex Street Market through the voices of vendors and customers alike all recorded within the market. The audio montage is titled “Recetas y Gangas” (Recipes and Deals) and is available online. And please check out the show at Cuchifritos in the Essex Street Market opening on February 22nd, 2016.