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Free Community Art Studio Opens in Bed-Stuy

 The Bed-Stuy BrainStore is a free, open art studio for anyone in the community to use.
The Bed-Stuy BrainStore
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BEDFORD-STUYVESANT — Creativity is the price of admission.

A group of friends is looking to turn an ex-jazz club into a free, nonprofit open community studio for Bed-Stuy artists to practice their craft.

Take the walk up a flight of steel steel steps outside 30 Macon St. and you'll find the Bed-Stuy BrainStore, a second floor artists' clubhouse run by Bryson Turner, Koji Frahm and Charles Greene, three friends who were looking for a place to be creative.

"What a lot of us feel is missing is a community space that's actually that," Frahm said. "I just don't know of a any places open to a lot of people where you can walk in and feel welcome around a lot of creative energy."

"Customers" of the free space can bring whatever it is they use to be creative — whether it be an easel, a computer or a musical instrument — and come work on their own projects. Original paintings from local artists adorn the walls, while dance and martial arts classes take up a portion of the large second-floor space.

The space also fosters a cooperative element: musicians who come to practice leave their instruments overnight for others to play, and a "library" purchased partly from the now-closed True South Bookstore requires only that you sign your name before taking out a book.

The hope is that by being surrounded by other artists, the space can foster new ideas for people, Frahm said.

"The Renaissannce didn't happen because because people kept to themselves," Frahm said. "Whether you come once a day, week, month, year, you know there's a strong community of ideas."