Upon entering GGrippo on 174 Grand Street, Williamsburg, one is confronted with an assortment of very original products: from handmade hand warmers, to notebooks, to jewelry and children’s toys. Yet it’s not until you reach the end of the seemingly small space do you find the real store: down on a second level is an atelier/apparel section/art gallery where you can spy GGrippo himself pottering around finishing up his latest creation. What exactly do they sell here you may ask? The answer is everything that is there (even the sewing maching should you desire).
An Argentinian born multi-disciplinary apparel and interior designer, photographer and installation artist, GGrippo has lived in the area for 15 years and seen it develop from an area with just one little store to the bustling area it is today. Prior to setting up his first shop in Williamsburg (it was cheaper then to buy a store and use it as a studio than to actually rent one) he worked in Argentina, London and for various apparel brands within New York City, before finally creating the first GGrippo Art and Design.
The space is a piece of art in itself. When he bought the building with his architect husband, they carefully designed the entire space–their home above and the shop space. Then he filled it with his creations and whatever took his fancy, creating a space which speaks of his taste and character.
The downstairs on the other hand is a multi-purpose space, used simultaneously as his atelier and a place to showcase and sell his own brand ‘trash-Ãƒ -porter’ (‘aqua’ for children) as well as the creations of fellow designers. The space is further used to exhibit the artwork of friends or artists he admires. As he says ‘everything is for sale’!
His clothes are unique–instead of the traditional approach of creating pieces with people in mind or for a certain figure, he creates the pieces to stand on their own, and the right person will come along and enhance the piece by wearing it. The use of the shop space as an atelier also adds another unique dimension to the store as you can see the process of the artwork being created-from the conception, to the making to the finished product which you can then walk out in. All of this is further enhanced by the warm, charming and bubbly personality of the designer whose passion for his work and what he is attempting to create in the store just comes out.
Starting after the summer he wants to focus more on the space and create for the space-his idea is to use the space in collaboration with one artist who will create a work of art for the space itself which will then be displayed for a certain period of time. At the same time he will be creating a line for the Brooklyn Museum as part of the ‘GO’ project which the public vote for, as well as a Book on Williamsburg style.