ABC No Rio is a community arts center located at 156 Rivington Street on Manhattan's Lower East Side. Our gallery and performance space was founded by artists committed to an actively engaged culture that promotes critical analysis and a vision of expanded possibility for our lives, our neighborhoods, our cities and our society. We've retained these values to the present.

ABC No Rio is a place where people share resources and ideas in an atmosphere of camaraderie and mutual support. Since our founding in 1980, we've been a welcoming and supportive venue for thousands of emerging artists, performers, poets and musicians.

Our regular events today include: exhibitions of visual art; weekly open poetry readings; hardcore/punk matinees every Saturday; and a weekly series of experimental and improvisational music. Our facilities include a screenprinting shop, a darkroom, a 'zine library, and a computer center. Affiliated projects include the New York City chapters of Books Though Bars and Food Not Bombs. We offer classes in photography to neighborhood youth and host meetings and benefits for scores of organizations and activist groups.

On June 29, 2006, we purchased our building for one dollar from the New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development.

The existing building is distressed and in disrepair. In 2007, our architect and engineer determined that existing conditions would make responsible repair and renovation difficult and not significantly less costly than new construction.

Through new construction we will able to build dramatically improved facilities for our cultural, community and educational activities. We will:

  • -- double the size of our gallery and performance space
  • -- provide more efficient insulation and soundproofing
  • -- create spaces specifically designed for our programs and events
  • -- install an elevator and make the building wheelchair accessible
  • -- install new energy- and water-efficient building-wide systems, and increase our capacity for alternative energy use


For more information about our planned new facility, please visit: