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Ian Vanek of Japanther: ‘If You Want to Say Fuck Williamsburg, You Better Not Be Talkin Bout the Southside’

(Photo: Jesus Rivera)

(Photo: Jesus Rivera)

Japanther, an art and rock n’ roll project established in 2001 by Pratt students Ian Vanek and Matt Reilly, might just be obsessed with phone booths. In the “Phone Booth” project, presented at Alanna Heiss’s now defunct Clocktower Gallery, the artists served farm-to-table meals in exchange for stories told by their guests. A 1970s phone booth was re-configured to record when the phone was taken off the hook and, later, played stories back to an audience of one.
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The Directors of Fort Tilden Traveled From Williamsburg to Rockaway to SXSW

(Photo courtesy of "Fort Tilden")

(Clare McNulty and Bridey Elliott in Fort Tilden.

It’s hard to get accepted by the South by Southwest film festival — especially if you’re not from New York. This year’s festival features eight films, chosen from 1,324 submissions, and more than half of them have roots here: The Heart Machine, directed by Village Voice film critic Zachary Wigon; Wild Canaries, Lawrence Levine’s Brooklyn-based film; The Mend, set in Harlem and directed by John Magary, who attended Columbia University’s graduate film program; Brooklyn resident Leah Meyerhoff’s I Believe in Unicorns; and the world premier of Fort Tilden, about two girls’ “needlessly complicated” bike ride from Williamsburg to Rockaway’s Fort Tilden beach, co-directed by two NYU MFA film candidates.
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