Proteus Gowanus is an interdisciplinary gallery and reading room. Named for the Greek sea god of change and the adjacent Gowanus Canal, Proteus Gowanus acts as an interpreter of culture and place, deepening the community’s sense of context and connection.

Current Exhibition


December 6, ’14 – February 22, ’15

On December 6, we will open our next Commerce exhibition, Labor, exploring questions of debt, invisible labor, minimum wage, manufacturing and the decline of industry. These concerns will be augmented with conversations and workshops on topics ranging from student debt to slavery to labors of love. A three-month Project In Residence by Meredith Degyansky entitled TimeDebt will be a part of the exhibition and include regular workshops. [more]

Archival Exhibits

Our exhibition spaces include archival installation that accrue and slowly evolve: Hall of the Gowanus and Reanimation Library. Come and spend a quiet hour or two browsing the books, studying old maps, examining curious artifacts.



Since its inception, Proteus has created or hosted eight Projects-in-Residence, located in spaces adjacent to the central gallery. Some of these projects grew directly from our yearlong exhibitions, while other initiatives were invited to join based on their shared love of books, their wide-ranging intellectual curiosity, and their desire to engage the community in inclusive interdisciplinary explorations.

Arts Gowanus
bkbx [Brooklyn Box]
Fixers’ Collective
Hall of the Gowanus
Reanimation Library
Writhing Society


Study Hall

Proteus Gowanus invites you to join Study Hall, a place for contemplation, study and work. Members use the Proteus galleries and reading rooms to work in quiet community with others in a setting filled with art, artifacts and books. [more]

Ongoing Events

Writhing Society

Wednesdays at 7pm

The Writhing Society, open to writers and non-writers alike, practices methods of constrained writing invented by the French group Oulipo and others. [more]

Fixers Collective

Third Thursday of every month

The Fixers Collective is a social experiment in improvisational fixing. Bring your broken thing and together we will see what can be done. [more]

Drawing the Gowanus: a Zone A Workshop

Saturdays 10 am – 12 pm

An introduction to drawing techniques, including charcoal, graphite,  pen and ink and collage, artist and instructor Lado Pochkhua leads this workshop for parents and/or children, 8-16 years old.  [more]


Space Rental

Proteus Gowanus rents out all or some of its galleries for events, readings, photo shoots, product launches and parties. Our book- and art-filled rooms offer intimate spaces for gathering, as well as a larger area for presentations. [more]


Upcoming Events

Traces of the Trade: A Story from the Deep North

Tuesday, December 16, 7pm

Join us for a screening of the documentary exploring one family’s discovery that their New England ancestors were the largest slave-trading family in U.S. history. A Q&A will follow with a member of the DeWolf family who appears in the film and has extensive experience discussing these issues. [more]

TimeDebt Services for All

Sunday, December 21, 3-6pm

TimeDebt services will be available every Sunday afternoon at Proteus Gowanus from Dec. 21 through Feb. 15. Come in for one-on-one consultations with The Work Intern. You can obtain Work Evaluations to assess your work life, including the uncompensated and unrecognized labor you do; discuss alternatives such as barter for paying off debt; and identify alternative education models that won’t bankrupt you. [more]

Don’t Forget to Support Proteus Gowanus This Year

Your donations are what keep our yearlong explorations going from year to year! We hope you will give generously this year to ensure that this unique cultural resource can continue to thrive. [more]

Holiday Closings

Proteus Gowanus will be closed on Thursday and Friday, December 25 and 26 and also on Thursday and Friday, January 1 and 2. We will be open on those weekends (12/27-28 and 1/3-4.)