In 1986, Drew Vogelman, a drummer and an engineer, opened his first studio, Dessau Recording, in Manhattan. (It closed in 1999.) Twenty-five years later, when his son, Lucas, wanted to learn the business, Vogelman set up his wall of analog gear at their home in Brooklyn. The Garden was born.
Vogelman was soon inspired to expand the space, an idea he attributes to his friend and business partner, Grammy-winning engineer and producer Ben Kane (D’Angelo). And when in 2015 the two stumbled upon a former bean-sprout factory in Williamsburg, the idea found a home.
“A studio is a weird beast,” says Kane. “You’re trying to get inspired by the space -- and make something inspiring at the same time.” They enlisted visual artist Missy Ablin, who helped design the studio with circular shapes to channel feminine energy, says Kane, and installed a wobbling wooden circle above the mixing desk (think psychedelic redwood donut). Another artist, Danny Ebru, made floor panels and wall coverings with a Turkish dipping practice using oil and water. The rooms are packed with analog gear that Vogelman has been collecting since the 1980s, including a Studer 2-inch tape deck, the kind of machine that studios were ditching 10 years ago. Adds Kane: “The whole [place] is a piece of art.”