Upcoming Events


Steve Ardo: Monsters
Opening Friday February 9th 6-9PM | INVITE
On View: February 9-28
Gallery Hours: Fridays 5:30-7:30PM, during events and by appointment.

Sugar City Art Gallery is pleased to announce Steve Ardo: Monsters, the first solo exhibit focusing upon the work of artist, graphic designer and local punk Steve Ardo. Monsters will serve as Ardo’s introduction to the wider public within Western New York, and the art community by and large. He has been an avid graphic designer and punk rock enthusiast since graduating from the University at Buffalo with a Bachelors in Fine Arts degree.

Ardo has participated in smaller group shows and several surveys of local artwork in the past – in venues such as Glow Gallery and the Western New York Book Arts Center (WNYBAC) – Monsters will be his first ever solo exhibit, allowing audiences to unpack and unravel his wide-ranging oeuvre and dive deep into his punk rock portfolio. Having worked outside of the mainstream gallery system and the concentric circles of contemporary art practice, Ardo’s work, like the artist himself, retains a sincere heart encircled by rough edges characteristic of many do-it-yourself, queer, punk kids from the City of Good Neighbors.

Monsters will focus upon several branches of Ardo’s multifaceted practice, including the “Buffalo (Hand)Bills” series, a series of hand bills, or fliers, produced on the fly for punk bands; his “Merch Guy” series, a suite of t-shirts designed, screen printed and distributed by Ardo for a number of local bands; and his “Paper Monsters” series, a set of layered, cut-paper creations evoking pop culture touchstones such as Pokémon and Digimon, alike. Additionally, there will be a selection of process works, ranging from sketches done on transparencies, pencil and ink gouaches, and selections from Ardo’s own sketchbook-cum-diary.

Inspired in equal measure by Buffalo’s DIY scene, punk bands, the aforementioned popular culture and the artwork of Keith Haring, Ardo’s work encapsulates the invaluable vigor outsider’s can bring to the fore within contemporary art; watering it and refreshing it anew with outside perspectives, and art gleaned from lonely days of introspection and heady nights of revelry, each. This exhibit also begins to grapple with what is beneath the surface of all of Ardo’s work; work made in the face of poverty, abjection and anxiety is as unfailingly buoyant as Mark Rothko’s signature clouds of pigment on canvas.

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Fri 2/16 5:30-7:30PM | Gallery Hours | INVITE Steve Ardo: Monsters

Tues 2/27 7-9PM | READING | FREE | INVITE Join the Buffalo DSA in our second installment of our two-part discussion of the “Luigi of Communism,” Friedrich Engels! We will be reading his famous work, “The Origin of the Family, Private Property, and the State.” Even if you missed the first one, you’re more than welcome to join us for the second part! The entire book is only around 150 pages. This meeting we will cover the second half of the book, chapter 5 through the end. An electronic version of the text is available for free here.

Fri 3/2 6:00-9:00pm | DANCE PARTY | Donation of one unopened box of menstrual pads (only, no tampons) -OR- $5 individual/$10 family | INVITE | Round two of the Resistance Dance Party will be collecting donations of feminine products for Buffalo Public School girls in need. DJs Jen & Bill Page will be spinning tunes!

Sat 3/3 6:30-11PM | MUSIC | $10 | INVITE Crafter (Boston Hardcore), At The Heart of It (Post-Hardcore FFO: Thursday), EgoDestroys (Syracuse Hardcore), Wrong the Oppressor (Buffalo Hardcore), Main Breaker (Buffalo Punk)

Tues 3/6 7:30-8:30PM | MEETING | INVITE Sugar City’s Open Meeting! Program, Volunteer, Collaborate! Would you just like to volunteer? Or maybe you are just curious about how we manage this an endeavor? Are you a current volunteer that wants to dive deeper into programming? Well come out to our open monthly meeting! Sugar City just entered year 4 of our 5 year lease at 1239 Niagara ST. WOOOWWEEEEEEEEE!!! Since Sugar City is all volunteer run we are always in need of help for events and are open to the community’s input for our programming.

Weds 3/7 7-9PM | MEETING | INVITE Buffalo DSA March General Meeting -Electoral Strategy Discussion

Sat 3/10 12-3PM | INVITE Queen City Music Lottery #5: The Drawing | In a nutshell, the Queen City Music Lottery is a showcase of “new” Buffalo area bands formed entirely at random!
These “new” bands must complete a few simple but super important tasks to remain eligible to perform in a final showcase Saturday June 2nd ! How does it work? To participate you must come to this SIGN UP meeeting. At the meeting all names of the willing participants will be DRAWN at RANDOM and you will be formed into a BAND! Once your band is formed you will have roughly 12 weeks to write a 15 minute set of music which your new band will perform at a showcase with all the other bands from the project. IMPORTANT-Bands ARE NOT chosen based on participants musical “skill” or what instruments they might play. ALL BANDS ARE FORMED AT RANDOM. For example: this means that any given band could consist of multiple members that primarily play guitar or maybe your band consists of people that normally play drums, or maybe no one in your band actual knows how to play anything and you are all complete strangers!!! The point is to met new people, play new instruments, and DO SOMETHING NEW AND FUN!

sun 3/11 7-10PM | COMEDY | $15 | Nite of A Thousand Laughs: Freddie Cothran, Miesha Booze, Derrick Florence, Mike Got Jokes – Hosted by: Sierra Mone’t Music by: Lil Mac


From Your Collection
Opening Thursday August 24th, 6-9PM | INVITE
On view until Sunday September 17th.
Gallery hours are Fridays 5:30 to 7:30pm, during all events, and by appointment.

Sugar City is proud to present the third round of our collaborative group exhibition featuring works from your collection. We believe that everyone owns a piece of creative work that has value. We like to give a platform to share these items with a broad audience. Let us do away with the mystery of where art comes from and what authority assigns value and celebrate the art that we each have.

Over the last two years we have shown close to 75 pieces! People were gracious enough to loan us a variety of work as the theme pretty open to interpretation: items range from paintings, videos, prints, to tchotchkes you hold dear. The only rule is that the piece cannot be something the owner didn’t create. This exhibition follows the Sugar City do-it-together ethos and seeks to further empower everyone’s creative endeavors.


Thurs 8/3 6-10PM | MUSIC | PWYC | INVITE

As part of Buffalo's Infringement Festival WBNY Invades Sugar City:

Always Cool Society (poetic lyricist hip hop) A poetic lyricist with the ability to lead and inspire her generation, dev11n is a breath of fresh air in Hip Hop. Her jazz influenced style, coupled with her thought provoking lyrics, create a sound reminiscent of the 90’s with an all new feel. After the release of her debut EP #The11thHour, she launched a docu-series “I Am: dev11n” to document her journey as an up and coming artist.

Spliff (hip hop artist/vocalist )

Chronic Collective (emcees) Alibi and Illusive. Earth dwelling meanderthals/space travel experimentalists. One time got high score on Gallaga in another dimension in a dive bar.

Tilapia (3 piece funk jam band) three piece funky jam band that believes in two chains not three.

Diverze (vocals)

Dark Matter Trio (new music) Kevin Urso on fender rhodes/bass keys, Ryan Campbell on drums, and Nick Randall on guitar this group creates a sound bigger than the word 'trio' suggests. This energetic yet soulful merge to stand on the shoulders of great improvisors like Medeski Martin & Wood; John Scofield; Soulive; Joshua Redman; and Brad Mehldau, and adds an edge reminiscent of 90's grunge. You may recognize some of the melodies despite them being distorted through a kaleidoscope of captivating rhythms and jazz harmony. Their own fabrications come and go as only a temporal art like music can allow, yet they are truly

Deadwolf (psych rock) 5-piece Psychedelic Pop/Rock band that started off in the fall of 2015 with the objective of crafting larger-than-life songs that have a timeless atmosphere. Having recorded in their own studio, Afterglow Studios, they created the 65-minute long, 14 track album titled, Heavy Heart. Deadwolf has been hailed as, “Psychedelic Rock gods” and “The Harmony Kings.” In a Recent review by Buffablog, they said, “Half A Man, the latest single from Buffalo psych rockers, blew my mind straight up. If you haven’t already gotten this towering, epic jam into your ears, you really need to do so immediately.


Ghosts In the Sunlight: Photographs by Nick Torsell
Opening: July 27, 6:00-9:00 PM | INVITE
On view: July 28 – August 12
Gallery Hours: Fridays 5:30-7:30 PM, during events and by appointment.
Ghosts In The Sunlight are photos that were made from a car looking for a patch of dirt on the side of the road to park on. I pick up my camera wrapped in an old t-shirt and look for the thing I thought I saw in the car. Usually it’s an emptiness, a potential for something new or imagined to happen in that space.

I majored in literature at University at Buffalo. So I wasn’t an art major in college, and I haven’t always looked at things in pictures, but once I started to I realized I was looking for them all along, in old movies, in television, on the side of the highway looking up at the power lines. Photography gave me a way to compose the world into something more manageable.

About Nick Torsell: Nick Torsell was born in 1989 and started taking photos a few years ago. Though Nick has exhibited previously, this will be his first solo gallery show in Buffalo, NY. His sense of reality was deeply shaken by the 2016 Cubs winning the World Series for the first time since 1908. Wait ’til he gets his money right. Instagram: nftorsell