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Clayton Gallery
Outlaw Art Museum

the strategic
juncture where
artistic production
and socio-cultural
action meet.




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April 3rd, 2023 | I regret and am saddened to report another member of our community has died, .Leaonard Abrams - 2016 NY ACKER recipient. Leonard Abrams Community Newspaper Event Organizer - Alice Torbush, Chris Flash, Leonard Abrams.

Leonard Abrams, Alternative Publisher and Event Producer

Leonard Abrams is a writer, editor and filmmaker best known for publishing and editing the East Village Eye, the monthly magazine about culture, politics and societal issues with a focus on New York’s East Village and environs from 1979 through 1987, its years of publication. The Eye is noted for its groundbreaking coverage of the emerging punk, new wave and hip hop music scenes of the time, as well as those of art, literature, film and performance.

Abrams was instrumental in producing the underground clubs Milky Way and Hotel Amazon, pioneering interracial dance music venuesthat mixed early hip hop with reggae, funk, soul and house music, in the late 1980s. Abrams produced and directed the feature documentary film “Quilombo Country,” about contemporary Brazilian communities founded by escaped slaves, in 2006, and since 2014 has been working on a new documentary film about a major slave insurrection in 19th century Brazil.

He is concurrently organizing the upcoming East Village Eye Show, scheduled for September 2016 at New York’s Howl Happening Gallery, and the East Village Eye Book, as well as selecting a permanent home for the East Village Eye archive.


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March 30, 2022 | LES is coming alive.

poster #1

Freaky Frige presents the very 1st "I’M EVERYWHERE POP-UP"
at the CLLCTV.NYC 209 E. 3rd Street, LES NYC 10009
In collaboration with Clayton Patterson
Tha 6 Boro | Sneak Peek! | Doves
Special Guest Danny Cortes
April 1st, 2nd, 3rd  2022

Frige has been a constant Front Door photo for a few decades.  I have created a cap with Frige. This will be our first major collaboration together. -- cp

Doors open at 2pm for a pop-up that will prove to be more like a hip hop variety show of art, photography, talent, rare goods, and more. Fridge is guaranteed to have many surprise guests pop-in and pop-off! This is the Lower East Side and Alphabet City at its best! Come say what’s up to the Mayor who is known throughout the LES, but is also known to be EVERYWHERE! 


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May 29, 2022

PLAQUE: Clayton Archive is being honored with a designation plaque from City Lore.  The plaque will be on our building 161 Essex Street.  Hopefully, if find support, the Clayton Archive Foundation.  A museum, a gallery, a place to study, learn and to share the wealth of art, educational and history material.


We are in the depths of the struggle to save the Clayton Archive.  We do need help.  Clayton Archive is the largest photo/video collection of LES underground history and goings on - dates 80's and up, loads of obscure and important ephemera, art work, books published on specific Lower East Side history, 100's of written pieces, home of specific LES history podcasts, court cases, and on and on.

Ribbon cutting May 31. 2 o'clock.

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Lower East Side History project. And to celebrate the publishing of the Covid 6...  could not exist if not for the support of John Strausbaugh and Julian Voloj and Tej Hazarika and Medi Matin

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Soon to be published by Clayton Books, 1988 Minority Report (Police Riot) auth Clayton Patterson and Joel Myers, with an updated Cop Watch article written by Dennis Flores.  When it comes to documenting police behavior in protests and arrests, Dennis is a brilliant tactical strategist with both street savvy and archiving capabilities.  He is the best I know.

To begin the process of putting together, under the guidance of publisher Patrick Kitzel,  the next major anthology undertaking.... NY Tattoo History. Target date - Christmas 2022.  Material collected Patrick putting into order.. It is a large undertaking.  Will be the most comprehensive NY tattoo history.

To add if any interest in tattoo history - .Shane Enholm's Tattoo Machine Discourse Vol.1  the most authoritative book on tattoo machines. First 2 editions sold out.

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To bring notice to the fact Anthony Pardone is the master in charge of digitizing the photo video part of the Clayton Archive and spearheading the conversation with a power company to make a video series using the tapes.

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And to remember the 2 great loves of my life...  First and most important I would be nowhere if not for the love and support of my spiritual partner  of 50 years Elsa Rensaa.  And the other ingredient that saved my life was having the luxury to work on projects we loved.  The fact that Elsa and I traded a career for an adventure and the incredible blessing to be able to work on projects that elevated us to places we never knew existed. The Lower East Side has blessed us with so much love, knowledge and survival tools. and, so far, the ability to escape sometimes very dangerous situations.  One of the most cherished blessings was our connection to the Puerto Rican and Dominican part of the community.

We have always been outsiders.  Yes, we had to fight hard for our definition of freedom, and fight we did, but, in the end, we have lived, for us, the American Dream.

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NY ACKERS. #8 | June 19th Theater for the New City.

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March 19, 2023
We are supporting Village Works. We are doing a book signing.

poster #1

An inside look - In The Shadows- The New York City Tattoo Underground years- 1962-1997

Clayton Patterson and his wife Elsa began to document and nurture the culture, art and personalities of illegal, underground New York City tattooing during the mid-1980s. “In the Shadows- The People’s History of New York City Underground Tattooing” is the record of their important effort.

Rumors abound but the practice of tattooing in New York City was not illegalized in October 1961 because of health considerations. Instead, the practice was banned for culturally valuistic reasons. To this day, the NYC Health Department has no record of any substantiated complaints of infection caused by tattooing on or around 1961. In its decision, the New York State Appellate Division called tattooing “A barbaric survival often associated with a morbid or abnormal personality.” During a time of supposed modernizing attitudes, tattooing was identified by some in power as an embarrassing pastime of the past that needed to go.

Tattooing did not disappear in the city in 1961. Instead, existing tattoo artists and patrons adapted to the ban and strategized how best to carry on in the shadows with the insuppressible art form. For 36 years until the relegalization of tattooing in the city in 1997, the practice was reframed by its new underground, countercultural, outsider mystique. Some tattooers like the Coney Island legend Brooklyn Blackie retired and moved upstate. Others went underground; Coney Island Freddie tattooed in Staten Island, Tony Polito and Mike Perfetto in Brooklyn, Angelo Scotto in the Bronx through the 1960s, ‘70s, ‘80s and ‘90s with an aura of tradition. During the 1970s, in iconoclastic, trendsetting downtown Manhattan, tattooers Thom deVita, Mike Malone, Richard Tyler, Ruth Marten, Mike Bakaty, Cat and others tattooed an expanded image lexicon from their artist loft studios. For a few years during the early 1980s saxophone player Bob Roberts, tattooed a rock and roll clientele in his loft a few blocks away from the legendary Max’s Kansas City night club where he played with notable punk rock bands.

The book documents several noteworthy underground New York City tattoo shop settings that played the odds there would be little if any consequence to tattooing illegally. Jonathan Shaw and his influential Fun City Tattoo shop is featured. Shaw operated in the back of a custom leather shop on E. 1st Street between 1st and 2nd Ave in the East Village several years before the 1997 re-legalization. He invited groundbreaking tattoo friends like Filip Leu to do guest spots at his shop and this upgraded the overall vibe of the illegal backdrop. Lori Levin and her New York Adorned jewelry boutique is featured in the book. Located between E. 2nd and E. 3rd Streets on Second Ave., the ‘back room’ area of the boutique established a reputation in the pre-relegalized scene and invited respected and talented tattooers to do guest spots. Timothy Hoyer, Marcus Pacheco, Sean Vasquez and CIV also cut their teeth in the underground NYC scene and are featured in the book.

“In the Shadows- The People’s history of New York City Underground Tattooing” documents the diversity of voices and images of the irrepressible New York City tattoo community that together represented the art and culture of tattooing that refused to go away during the “Shadow Years”.

PRE ORDERS AVAILABLE VIA: / @tribalpublishing --- cp

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