Sunday, October 31, 2010

Kelly Carvin - Trenton singer/wongwriter explains why the Capitol City needs the TA

Kelly Carvin gives her words on why we need a place like the Trenton Atelier.

For more about Kelly Carvin, please visit

or check out her facebook fanpage at

Saturday, October 30, 2010

A National Rally

The Trenton Atelier is Keeping Fear Alive and Restoring Sanity in Washington, DC today, October 30, 2010.

Heading to DC!!

Trenton Atelier and friends will be leaving for DC today at 6:30 AM for the Sanity Rally / Fear March!!

Only the day will show what the true meaning of this gathering is.  If you hapen to also be going down, or would like to pile into the van with us, be sure to call or text one of us by 6:00AM...rather ambitious but I might as well try.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010


Fall colors are quickly creeping into Trenton, as seen by the beautifully colored foliage along the canal path. Change is in the air.

Bryan finally moved the c30 out of the shop to a shelter across the street - still needs brakes, lights, and exhaust.

SPX threw some shoulder power in to help get the beast into the Galamo, where she will rest in winter hibernation.

He has been interning at Terracycle once a week for the past few months, aiding primarily with the interior office rennovations. Seen below is a shelving unit made from cardboard cores from wrapper rolls, and wooden slat-pallets.

Graham and Jeanine are hard at work studying for college courses - many members of the Trenton Atelier are current college students working toward obtaining a degree while also exploring and creating at the Atelier.

Bryan and Erik went to town again on the upstairs - sealing in more of the exterior wall with insulation to get everyone through the winter months ahead.

Monday, October 25, 2010

This Morning at 220 Allen

Pete helps local Trentonian Altheria Greene fabricate a metal sculpture for his wife's birthday.  Altheria is excited to be learning a new skill to further his career opportunities and creative potential.

Altheria uses the angle grinder to polish his piece for Jackie.  Sparks fly and creativity blossoms here at Allen Street.

Pete admires the work Bryan did creating a basket for the front of the land-cruiser.  Just need to get the rear trailer back in working order and our urban pickup vehicle will be ready for action.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

In The Community

Trenton Atelier art is on display! A guerilla installation of Dali's Table at TCNJ by Erik.

The bike guy visited Modern Metal Work again with an oldie but a goodie.

Leon Rainbow finished his mural on the oursite of the 220 Allen St. Workshop.

Erik and Bryan also ran into some local skateboarders on Warren St, while returning from Saturday afternoon meetings with the Trenton Peacekeepers and Princeton Green

B Home at GDN Princeton university

Modern Metal Work
B Home Project & Princeton GDN: collaboration on humanitarian architecture

Pete and crew have been asked to present to the Global Development Network Class at Princeton University on November 8th the concepts of the emergency modular shelter and spacial enclosement system known as the B home.

The B Home Project is a design concept and working prototype for a new way to enclose space. Functioning primarily as a modular, mobile, disaster relief shelter system, the B Home Design can also be utilized as an efficient, temporary or permanent mobile enclosement system.

Princeton students interested in engaging in a humanitarian development project are invited to attend to learn how they can be involved in a interdisciplinary, entrepreneurial collaboration with local industry.

The B Home Project would like to offer internship and potential job opportunities to interested students, with he potential to earn credit toward your degree.

Modern Metal Work is looking forward to working with local college students to help further this project and many more.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

It's been an interesting week already..and it's only Wednesday!

So,I've been slacking. I'm not a big blogger, really. Like Facebook statuses and ims are usually enough writing for me..but there has been a lot going on lately..
Last week, on Friday, i think, I decided to clear out the front kitchen space while the guys were otherwise occupied..I know it's a metal shop, but it's a shop with a kitchen, and I'm a kitchen person. I grew up sitting on my Nanie's counter top, watching her cook..and most of the families i have been close with made their most important decisions and had their most wonderful memories built around a kitchen. I'm am in a culinary arts class that will give me tools and skills to be a personal chef, so i wanted it to be more functional, and to develop the warmth of those very important kitchens of my past. It isn't my kitchen, i'm not here on a professional cooking capacity - everyone cooks here..but I am the most neurotic about kitchen stuff in particular.
It was a lot of work..several hours of just moving stuff and organizing shelves, but when it was all done, it felt homey, and the next thing you know, we're having meals and singalongs at the table.
Then, Trenton Atelier had our first official meeting (around the table, of course!) on Sunday to discuss the future of the collective. After the meeting had dissolved, Erik was energized and bored, and felt more organization was in order, so he, Bryan and I put away anything that wasn't completely necessary for a functional kitchen, which took us until 3am.
Tuesday, Pete brought in chicken, and I marinated it and some zucchini for a feast on the grill. Pete took the grillmaster title, and Ghandi contributed some yummy shrimp to the mix, and we all sat down for a lovely lunch before i had to head to school.
I came back a little later in the evening, and the guys were hard at work insulating and repairing one of the upper rooms to give us more usable space. When everything settled down a bit, and i had nothing else on my agenda, really late at night, I actually used the mig welder! I love playing with the power tools! the grinder, the chopsaw, the welder...I get so excited..but i'm also a bit embarrassed about making the little things i make, because the guys make these big, beautiful pieces, and i'm so new to it. I eventually want to blow everyone's mind with big powerful fire bowls, and sweet metal tables too, but practice makes perfect, and i need to get better first, in my opinion.

Today was one of those days when i had to buckle down and stick to my laptop before heading into the kitchen at school - getting caught up on atelier emails, installing programs we use, well as uploading the photos i took of my little projects from last night. Jeremy happened to be in the shop as I was struggling and showed me how to make that happen..and taught me a bunch of shortcuts that i didn't know about that will save me a bunch of time. then it was off to school..and back to the shop to finish this blog.. (sorry if it isn't what you're used to - i tend to ramble a bit :)

Monday, October 18, 2010

First Organizational Meeting EVER!

Sunday lasted long, and we all accomplished a great deal for the Trenton Atelier. Extended Members Tim Heath, of HeathHousePro Video, and audio specialist Ken Palmer paid a much-appreciated visit to the TA to film for our upcoming promotional video. Through the process we all gained a greater sense as to what each of our roles is, and what we can offer to the TA.

As we filmed, a group of inspired Trenton youth wandered into our space and we were happy to help them work on their bikes and show them around a bit. We hope to see the youngsters return in the future so we can help them create!

After filming and packing up, we held our first ever organizational meeting. Don't feel threatened if you happened to be unable to make the meeting, as we will be having our second first ever organizational meeting on Sunday, November 14th 2010 from 4pm to 6pm at The Trenton Atelier; 220 Allen Street, Trenton NJ. The Meeting will be broadcast live over Ustream, which will be embedded in this website and posted to Facebook, and recorded, saved and archived on our Facebook fanpage.

At the meeting the following was discussed:


Attendance: Pete, Jeremy, Lia, Kamal (SPX), Erik, Bryan, Brando, Graham (5:41), Gadget(5:49), Ghandi GPS and Lady Soul(6:04)

Second First Ever Organizational Meeting - Sunday Nov 14th 2010 4-6pm

Goals: To gear efforts towards mission. Lights off, energy use, be conscious of these things.

By Next Meeting:
Orange iMac for membership. Lia write membership form.
Bryan - Plans for building layout
ALL - Personal Goals
Clean Galamo/Roof: SPX

3 months: T-Shirt for organization designed made and printed. - SPX
Membership/Instruction video: Pete and Jeremy
Stamps for business cards. - Bryan
Measure and buy Tarps for tall roof.
LIA - Samara find grants for us.

6 months: Membership drive. Donor drive. Earthday - Whole Earth.
Networking - City Council Meetings. Everyone should know who we are, what we are about,. Princetononline interns.
SPX: Reach out to highschools
Erik: Reach out to college art depts.
Jeremy: TA Website, E+B - Articles and filler text.
Spring Planting effort

Art All Night: Live Huge Pendy Paint. Gadget will organize Fire Performance. Live Firebowl weaving. SPX paint the TA Truck.

1 year: Art All Time, Harvest Party

5 year: Established, Classes, Community Gardening, Income (donations) Salaried Positions, Sustainability (Water, Energy, Recycling, Compost) Be Home Living. Expand Vision to other Cities.

Resident Members - Live at TA. 24 hrs a day
Extended Members - Barter or hours of work. 15-20 hours a week
Paid Membership -

Constitution: Till next meeting

      • Slogan
      • Empowerment through Art.
      • Creative awakening.
      • Waking up the city.
      • Sustainability Art Community
      • Art.
      • Community.

Changes have also been made to the way the kitchen will operate from now forward, and next time you come in, you will see what we mean...

Sunday, October 17, 2010

“Every great dream begins with a dreamer. Always remember, you have within you the strength, the patience, and the passion to reach for the stars to change the world.”

H. Tubman

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Around the TA 10-13-10 to 10-15-10

Pete was caught munching on some freegan "Shop Slop" here at 220 Allen on Thursday afternoon. We cooked up some home-grown beets, cabbage, potatoes, and found spices as part of the culinary arts program at the Trenotn Atelier. Also on the menu was a bunch of extra spanish food from a local event - food that would have otherwise been thrown away.

Freegan cooking is just one of the ways the TA hopes to help both the environment, people, and makes economic sense. When we reuse unwanted food locally, we are using stored energy more efficiently and helping reduce the emissions from transporting "waste" long distances to landfills. Most of our freegan food waste is collected within 1 mile of our facility, and was saved on foot, by bicycle, or on an already planned car trip.

Bryan finished welding his cable table for Nancy in Washington State! Our custom wire rope furniture is spreading across the continent thanks to the Jeremy's website development!

The 63 Chevy is nearly in order. She purrs like a lion, but needs some electrical work. Replaced the fuses and lights, checked wires but just can't figure it out.

Erik made a melted table "Dali" for display at TCNJ.

We got some energy out on a piece of molding wax - smashed with rebar and metal pipes, then lit on fire, and finally plastered to the upstairs shop wall as "Wall Faces".

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Kasso and Rain on 220 Allen

Trenton Spray Muralist's Leon Rainbow and Will Kasso of SAGE Collective are outside putting the finishing touches on murals on the facade of the 220 Allen St. Trenton Atelier.

Rain talks his can to the wall to start his mural.

Kasso setting up his ladder to hit up our wall!

Kasso's daughter takin the marker to the paper in the Creation Station.

Work in progress...

Lookin good.

The Big Move

Today, we managed to move the office from downstairs to our scenic loft upstairs. It's warmer, cleaner, and all around better for getting things done. There's a heater, too, which we'll be needing for when the winter comes around. There's already a chill in the air down in Trenton, and we're cracking the sweaters and fleece in preparation. Coffee is almost always on the perk, and we're keeping busy making Firebowls and other cool things to stay warm and get some bankroll saved for the cold days ahead. There's going to be some smaller things to be made soon as well, like belt buckles, We'll see how things turn out for our intrepid heroes as they scavenge, salvage, and forage for survival and attempt to gain a livelihood in this urban jungle.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Around The Shop 10-11-10

A productive day at 220 Allen!

Pete Abrams of Modern Metal Work works on a firebowl this beautiful Monday morning.

Pete taught SPX the Firebowl making process. The oxi-aceteline welder was sparked and used to make rebar more pliable for the firebowl.

Local MC, poet, and gear-head Ghandi dropped by to help get the 63 Chevy running. Ghandi is the MC of Ghandi's Poetry Spot (GPS) every other Friday night at Cafe International. Thanks for the help Ghandi!

Bryan filled up the tank and gave it a crank, but she just wont keep running. The fuel lines are clear, new spark plugs and wires, air filter, fuel filter, oil filter, and oil, mechanical fuel pump installed but the fuel just isn't getting to the carburator. We think it just needs an in-line pump and she should be crankin!

Local Mercer County Community College faculty J. Carlos Avila stopped by the shop to discuss our mission, arts endeavors, and the arts scene of Trenton. Thank you Mr. Avila - we look forward to working with you.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Spraypaint Ambitions - an SPX production!

Friday night on Allen Street.

Gallamo prepped and painted.  Clear sky and crisp autumn breezes.  Shuffling feet and light laughter.  Lights on, music up, key the first word.

The Boys and Girls Club of Trenton visited the Gallamo / Trenton Atelier this past Friday for a night of poetry, expression, spoken word, and unity.  Presented by SPX, the poetry night brought together a multicultural crowd of enthusiastic youth, Trenton Atelier members, and a special appearance by local MC, Ghandi of Ghandi's GPS at Cafe International.

During a break in the many performances, members of the Trenton Atelier gave a tour of the facility to the young adults.  
"Who would have thought this kind of place existed in Trenton."  
"I never would have thought a place like this was here." 
Slowly the community is becoming aware of the TA's presence in the area and we were happy we could make these young people's night a special one.


Friday, October 8, 2010

SprayPaint Ambitions: An Urban Art Exhibition by SPX

Friday Afternoon and SPX is putting the finishing touches on the Galamo for an urban art exhibition.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Walkin the Walk

Props out to Mr Erik Hendrickson for recognizing the need for a metal waste collection bin at TCNJ food service,
taking sawzall in hand and re appropriating a Segal box for collection
There is now an area for collection of said crap.

Worms on the Move!

Our little creepy-crawly critters provided by Jim (Isles) have been working wonders on our organic compost waste.  Since delivering the bin several months ago, the worms have been working magic on our wastes, turning it all back into organic soil we will be using next year for planting.

Pete adds some shredded paper to the bin.  These worms like paper in particular and will happily help us recycle.

The bin in full of life, and baby worms can be seen below the main chambre of the setup.  This one goes out to the small guys, thank you.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Pumkin Pie Oh My!

Lia and Tucker cooked over the weekend, producing a healthy store of hand-picked, from scratch pumpkin pie, pumpkin-peanut butter cookies, and pumpkin-walnut muffins for the TA gang to munch on. EFFIN AMAZING!!!

Gadget cooked up an extraordinary breakfast this morning - egg & cheese omelets with bacon! Very very tasty. Thanks Gadget!

Pete drilled some hole this morning also, to enable more space for bending rebar. Got a truck full today, and about 1500 pounds of steel cable yesterday - plenty of metal creations to come.

Rebar pile - 580 pounds of post-industrial waste soon to be functional art!

Tucker took the liberty to take a shot at the '63 Chevy - changed the oil, filter and plug wires. 10-10-10 is gettin close...

Bryan aquired some old wine barrels for a Terracycle desk project. After cutting the barrels (in the background), he also crafted some table legs from rebar, pipe cuttings, angle iron, and an exhaust pipe.

Pete created a funky "Simon Says" firebowl from the salvaged rebar and wire rope.

Weldy weld!

Git in durr nice n deep like
Gotta feed the ego...
Such a brave soul.

Voilaaaa! Simon Says!