Free Sale
Avena Gallagher

December 2019
22 East Broadway
New York, NY

In December 2019, Avena Gallagher mounted the fourth iteration of her ongoing artistic intervention Free Sale. For this iteration, Gallagher built what could be described as a functioning ecosystem at 22 East Broadway in New York. The shop was open for the month of December and inside, every single item was free. With Red Bull Arts as a silent financial backer, Gallagher and her collaborators Topical Cream were able to build a three-level department store filled with items from Gallagher’s personal and professional archive. Freesale 2019 also included a one-night opening/closing party and art exhibition, a New Year’s Shinto ceremony, a performance by I.U.D., free daily meals from Replate, and free Red Bull energy drinks for shoppers. Topical Cream took this opportunity to connect Freesale with our nonprofit partners, Women’s Prison Association and Streetworks, whose clients were invited to a special appointment where they were given exclusive access to the store.

Julien Archer, Payton Barronian, Lizzi Bougatsos, Marlous Borm, Drake Carr, Emily Sasmor, Kyla Chevrier, Susan Cianciol, Tony Cox, Nathaniel DeLarge, DIS, Doris Guo, Sean Kierre, Josh Kline, Rosalie Knox, Paul Kopkau, Maia Ruth Lee, Maggie Le, Marlene Marino, Gloria Maximo, Shawn Maximo, Mari Ouchi, Isabel Penzlien, Ser Serpas, Nick Sethi, Shane Smith, Analisa Teachwort, Bernadette Van Huy, Anicka Yi, Carissa Rodriguez

Mari Ouchi



A small operation that asks questions
and seeks to do an ordinary thing differently.

An act of alternative recycling
a personal excor-cise in self-healing of hoarding, A pawning-off of a (mostly) personal hoard.
A collaboration between the giver and the taker,
a kind of group therapy –

an anti-capitalistic exchange,
a political act.
A mitigation.
A new store, an interesting experience.
A pop-up. An influence.
An old wind.
A matter of transformation,
A matter-transformation.
Something dull that glimmers one day or hopefully someday.
A magpie’s bits, sidewalk sale, sidewalk, something abandoned, something forgotten, garbage.

A key on the street.
Santa pants in the gutter.
Red gown in a trash can.
The invitation of the random.

Freesale is a small hustle, a quiet performance, a ritualized release, an emo-baptism by unclutching, surrender of an irrational armory-cum-bunker, whose bricks are lonely single socks, who once lived on better feet, in a better life, once before – awaiting a new life…
Charged bits of string from locales of untold obscurity, interesting and uninteresting old clothes, objects held hostage, phantoms of emotional protection from painful recollections or compulsive mind-programs… a vain attempt in claiming useless objects as a way to claim the

orphan within.



other things,
converter things, conduits, mascots, sentiments, human evidence, evidence of humanity. Excuses.
Piles of threads.
Old stories. Shoes someone got mugged in once.
Something from an exotic trip.
Something from a boring place.
Something stained with a song. Stained with tears.
Pockets full of packets.
Pockets of shock.
Something torn, something mended. Something dirty. Something cute. Something nobody cares about. Something you might like. A curation of curious taste.

Some stuff is haunted.

Some stuff is happy;

ready to be accepted, Harbored, Admired, enjoyed, Worn, Used, Given, eaten.

Some stuff wants you to be proud of it.

Some stuff is sorry.
Some people don’t think this much about some stuff.
Some things are people
Some things are feelings
Some things are for you or for someone or for you to take to someone.
Things conduct energy. Stuff projects emotions

Some stuff has projections. Some energy is inside things. But
It’s only stuff.
Feelings are not everything.
Feelings are not stuff.
Movement is inevitable, accumulation can be problematic, waste is a shame.
Some stuff is shame.
Letting go is good.
Giving is good.
Congestion should disperse.
Heavy is not fluid.
Cumbersome is burdensome.

- Avena Gallgher