Specials on C art space in a bodega destroyed by Hurricane Sandy NYC Untapped CitiesPhoto via Specials on C’s Facebook page

When Hurricane Sandy came ripping through New York City, as many Untapped readers will recall, Lower Manhattan was consumed by a blackout and awash in floods. For many small businesses, the damage was devastating. Yet, where one bodega was wrecked, the community seized the opportunity to do something productive. Thus, Specials on C was born.

The vacant bodega on the corner of East 12th Street and Avenue C has found new life as a creative space for social projects. According to Specials on C’s website, “It’s not a gallery, or a venue, it’s a safe space for your social experiments.” The former bodega hosts art shows, interactive and performance art, concerts, pop-up shops, workshops and video nights. 

Specials on C bodega art space Rae NYC Untapped CitiesTransformed into art by Brooklyn-based artist Rae. Photo via Specials on C.

They’ll be projecting videos and digital art by artists from the US, Russia and Eastern Europe in the windows until Wednesday. Come back next week for Superhero training—part of Richard Clarkson’s MFA at SVA. Other events include a silent gathering that turns into an all-out jam session, a solo show by street artist Brandon Sines, an exhibition of work by the seniors in Parsons’s  high school program, and a fitness and lifestyle boutique.

Specials on C bodega as pop-up shop NYC Untapped CitiesTransformed into a pop-up shop by Go East Holiday Shop for independent makers. Photo via Specials on C.

Specials on C gate by Rae bodega turned community space NYC Untapped CitiesGate by Rae. Photo via Specials on C.

Anyone can organize an event at Specials on C. You can follow them on Facebook and Twitter for news and events. Send an email to to organize an event.

 Art Show, Bodegas, Hurricane Sandy, pop-up, pop-up shop

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