I used to make pictures of small, free-standing businesses, and then I moved into a house that had a small shed out back. The previous owner used it as an office, and it had windows, insulation, lights, and ethernet cables. I decided to host a series of small businesses there, each one lasting a short time.

I named the space The Meow because it’s the sound cats make when they want attention from humans. It’s also cute, like a small cat. I like cats and I live with two. I often sing meow songs to them.

The Meow is large enough to welcome customers and visitors, to perform a service, or to keep a small stock of goods. It’s small enough for one person to run and to customize. The Meow can be completely transformed between businesses if need be. Very literally, it’s a “decorated shed.”

The Meow is an exhibition space. When a small business is operating out of The Meow, it’s an exhibition. The people running businesses there are artists. They might think of their exhibition at The Meow as a performance, or it could be simply something they do to make some money. The role of The Meow is to host and to help. There is no rent at The Meow. Artists charge what they want and keep what they earn.

The first business opened May 29, 2016. The Dirty Poke, a tattoo shop run by Joel Kyack and Matthew Johnson, was open for 5 Sundays. Shop hours were 12-8. Joel and Matt created the interior of the shop, which included a counter and several sheets of flash inspired by the local environs. Their ongoing participation was a performance, one that resulted in lifetime marks on customers.

To see a video about the project made by Super Deluxe, go here.

For more information, please visit themeow.la

Interior of The Dirty Poke at The Meow Matthew Johnson and Joel Kyack 2016

Interior of The Dirty Poke at The Meow
Matthew Johnson and Joel Kyack
2016