André van Hoek
Brooklyn optics (aka A.vanhoek Retro optics)
71 montrose ave.,
Brooklyn, NY, 11206
André van Hoek is a consummate builder and likes to share his knowledge as a volunteer master builder/teacher with the Brooklyn based fixers’ collective. http://proteusgowanus.org/fixers-collective/
While volunteering as master craftsman in a public learning workshop, André helps people gain the practical ability to attach shelving, pictures, drilling, and anchoring - all things which equip people with control and empowerment over their own built environment. This activity was well documented in the following article which states:
Van Hoek begins with an overview: “Today, so much is discarded. I see furniture every day that is designed to last five or six years. The Fixers is a counterpoint to that. Fixing things gives you a sense of empowerment. It’s a way for us to take some control of our environment.”
By the end of the night, van Hoek’s students have hung a mirrored medicine cabinet on a gallery wall.
According to the Fixers’ website, the Collective’s goal is “to increase material literacy in our community by fostering an ethic of creative caring toward the objects in our lives.” http://brooklynrail.org/2010/03/local/the-fixers-collective
He would also like people to get the “Brooklyn Zeist” by visiting the parent group “Proteus Gowanus” of the fixers’: http://proteusgowanus.org/ which embodies some of the richness and alacrity Brooklyn has to offer.