HABITAT: Travess Smalley

Travess Smalley in his Sunset Park studio, photographed June 11, 2015.


Habitat is a new weekly series that visits with artists in their workspaces.

This week’s studio: Travess Smalley, Sunset Park. “Have you ever seen Reddit battlestations? I love looking at computer setups,” Smalley said as he crouched over the computer in his Sunset Park studio. The Virginia-born artist moved into the space about a year ago from his former studio in Union Square where, he regularly visited the Strand to peruse for art books. This is still a weekly ritual that helps inform his process, albeit a less convenient one now. Some of Smalley’s book recommendations: Perfume Area by Sydney Shen and Laurel Schwulst, Heroes: Mass Murder and Suicide by Franco “Bifo” Berardi, and Re-Collection: Art, New Media, and Social Memory by Richard Rinehard and Jon Ippolito.

“I also spend a whole lot of time searching for music.” Smalley said as a Pender Street Steppers mixtape played in the background. “I’m part of a few Facebook groups that post great tunes, and some other albums on repeat this summer in the studio are Contemplating Jazz by Hanna, Obey the Time by The Durutti Column, and Bluesmaster 2 by Guitar Roberts, to name a few.” In the slideshow below, Travess takes us around his studio and shares some details about how he works.


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