About Alistair Mackay

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Life of a Piformance Artist

Pi Written From Memory, 0-4000. 18" x 24"
Oil on canvas
2013
Pi is used as a pattern on individual plains, echoing the cubist use of lettering and collage. (Photo: Courtesy of the artist)

Pi Written From Memory, 0-4000. 18″ x 24″
Oil on canvas
2013
Pi is used as a pattern on individual plains, echoing the cubist use of lettering and collage. (Photo: Courtesy of the artist)

For approximately π seconds, it seems like Evan Daniel Smith is lost. His dark eyebrows point down towards the almost empty page in front of him while he murmurs to himself. His narrowed eyes focus intently on the sequence of twelve tiny numbers he has etched in black ink: 972177528347. These seemingly random digits have been read aloud to him – a life raft in a sea of numbers. All he knows is this sequence could be anywhere in the first 10,000 digits of pi. Smith taps his pen. The page stares back at him, blankly.
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The True Story of Mr. and Mrs. Claus, the North Pole and Brooklyn Beer

Until we return from vacation Jan. 3, enjoy this daily series of longer pieces in which we unravel the histories of storied buildings. Presenting: A Lot About a Plot.

(Photo: Alistair Mackay)

(Photo: Alistair Mackay)

If you’ve ever hoisted a bottle of Brooklyn Lager and really looked at its Milton Glaser-designed logo, you may have noticed the words “Pre-Prohibition Style” hovering above the baseball-style “B.” And you may have asked yourself: how exactly can a brewery founded in 1988 claim to make “The Pre-Prohibition Beer”?

The answer lies miles away from Brooklyn Brewery’s Williamsburg headquarters, at 670 Bushwick Avenue. That’s where a three-story home resembling the mansion from Royal Tenenbaums – cast in deep red brick, with a conspicuous rounded tower – lurks behind a chain-link fence and a “No Trespassing” sign.

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