One of my all-time favorite manifestos is Platform 21’s “Repair Manifesto.” Too often we discard things that a simple fix-it would add years of life to. Take my favorite black boots for instance. I take them to the cobbler every two years or so and he tacks on new soles and I’m good to go for another two years—for $25.00! But what if I could fix all this stuff myself? Now that would be something. My broken blackberry; my dvd player; my bike (which is being a pain in my butt)? Well, now I can and so can you.
On the third Thursday of every month (that’s tonight, P.S.) The Fixers Collective gathers at the amazing Proteus Gowanus, in Brooklyn—where it all began three years ago. How does it work? Good question and they’ve got a good answer: “Bring your broken thing and place it on the fixing table for collective consideration. The assembled group will share ideas and techniques for repairing, mending, enhancing or repurposing the objects before us. Our skilled Master Fixers provide support and guidance as needed.” Awesome.
On a side-note, there was a band in my hometown called “Wonderful Broken Thing.” They were really good and I always loved their name. The Fixers Collective probably would too. Their mission statement leaves little doubt to that: “The goal of the Fixers Collective is to increase material literacy in our community by fostering an ethic of creative caring toward the objects in our lives. The Fixers Collective seeks to displace cultural patterns that alienate us from our things, by collectively learning the skills and patience necessary to care for them. Intentionally aligning itself with forces generated in reaction to the current economic crisis, the Fixers Collective promotes a counter-ethos that values functionality, simplicity, and ingenuity and that respects age, persistence and adequacy. The Collective also encourages participants to take liberties with designated forms and purposes, resulting in mended objects that may exist both as art and within a more limited, utilitarian context.”
It’s not too late. For a measly $5.00 donation you can get to fixing and stretch your intellect at the same time! 7:00 pm. Proteus Gowanus is located at the corner of Union and Nevins Streets in Brooklyn. See you there!