Kinfolk has been occupying a significant slice of Williamsburg’s bustling Wythe Avenue for some time now, with their event and studio space at 90 Wythe and their adjacent Kinfolk 94, a multidisciplinary space with a menswear boutique at its front. The company’s clothing has a multifaceted basis in streetwear, sportswear, and heritage styles, offering a variety of pieces such as bold and colorful bomber jackets, pastel-hued blazers, Kinfolk-branded Adidas jerseys, and poppy graphic tees.
Posts by Cassidy Dawn Graves:
Portrait of myself as my
Continues through September 17 at BAM Fisher, 7:30 pm: $25.
Choreographer Nora Chipaumire, born in Zimbabwe and based in Brooklyn, takes the medium of traditional African dance and dresses it up in the masculine garb of a boxing ring in this piece that explores and explodes traditional notions of black masculinity through the spirit of her estranged father. He will appear in multiple forms, symbolically summoned as a “specter” through two dancers, Kaolack (also known as Senegalese dancer Pape Ibrahima Ndiaye) and the Jamaican-born Shamar Watt. The three performers will step into the ring, don their gloves, and fight it out. Or dance it out. Or maybe there’s less of a difference than we think.
Yours Truly, Georgia Brown
Opening Tuesday September 13 at International Studio and Curatorial Program, 6 pm to 8 pm. On view through October 11.
In this show, artist Raque Ford takes on the character of Georgia Brown, a “temptress” figure from the 1940s film and Broadway musical Cabin in the Sky. The show made history as the first production to feature an entirely African-American cast, but the creators were (shocking!) all white. Using a variety of techniques, including plexiglass sculpture and a zine of handwritten letters that attendees can take home with them, Ford will reexamine and rewrite the narrative of Georgia Brown through a rigorous and contemporary lens.
The Internet has been quietly aflutter lately with a sort of drag debate: drag kings rallying for their place in the scene after RuPaul recently said kings and queens “don’t really mix”; “faux queens” or “bio-queens” asserting that their drag is as valid and subversive as other drag queens only to garner an entire response essay picking apart their argument. Though drag is indeed replete with layers and a multifaceted history, including its ongoing relationship with trans and gender non-conforming folk, Ru did classically say, “We’re all born naked, and the rest is drag.” However, one could look to the ever-growing medium of Internet Thinkpieces and get a sense that the scene is much more fragmented than that.
XXX: Kim Fatale Turns 30
Thursday, September 8 at Bizarre Bushwick, 8 pm doors, 9 pm show: $5 suggested.
Dominatrix and performance artist Kim Fatale will be ringing in her third decade and entrance into the “age of desire,” and not just through any old birthday party. This will be a true show, with appearances from some of the city’s weirdest and wildest creators and performance artists, including Wild Torus (who I once saw perform running naked covered in goo), Jenna Kline (who I once saw with slabs of meat attached to her face, respectively), and Geraldo Mercado. Expect tunes from ski-bass-wielding burst of energy Borts Minorts, the “alluring and feminine” Huisi He, and the birthday star herself, in a performance made in collaboration with sound group SPREADERS. Roll on over to Bizarre and submit yourself to art.
Opening Friday September 9 at Disclaimer Gallery (inside the Silent Barn), 6 pm to 9 pm. On view through October 2.
Though artist Megan Tatem often works in illustration, creating works for magazines and doing graphic design over at Hearst Media, this “tongue-in-cheek” exhibition will showcase another side of her work: photography. The show provides commentary on imagery related to racial stereotypes, but wrapped up in a tight layer of sarcasm. This results in lighthearted visual observations on assumptions like “white people can’t dance” and who holds the highest proclivity for fried chicken, but also delves into darker, serious territory, also acknowledging how racial stereotypes like the assumption that people of color are dangerous or prone to crime can (and has) lead to unwarranted violence against them.
Everyone knows New York real estate is tough. Two people who know it particularly well are Tom Tenney and Robert Prichard. Both were involved with experimental Lower East Side performance space Surf Reality, which garnered repeat mentions in the Times for their contributions to the alternative comedy scene of the mid-late ’90s and was one of the home bases for the Art Star community, along with nearby Collective Unconscious. Surf Reality went a similar route of many experimental venues in the neighborhood, and closed in 2003. It’s since been replaced with a Bikram yoga studio. Faced with the inevitability of an unaffordable rent and changing tides, they turned to the airwaves and began online community radio station Radio Free Brooklyn in May of 2015.
Brooklyn performance art duo Wild Torus are known for their wild, orgiastic, and messy shows, which often get the audience involved. They’ve always been a bit extreme, but found themselves in a situation that shocked even them when, in April, a performance art festival they did with Estonian performance collective Non Grata at East Williamsburg space The Paper Box was shut down mid-show without warning.
Mike Berlant (aka Vlady VØz Tokk, one half of Wild Torus along with Amy Mathis / Mág Ne Tá) recounted their experience on Facebook, in a post that was shared over 50 times and led to many in the surrounding arts community leaving bad reviews of the venue (including bad experiences some organizers had with other shows done there) and calling for it to be blacklisted. A month later, Wild Torus found themselves being sued by Paper Box for defamation and for “trashing” the space. They say they weren’t informed of the suit until the New York Post called them for comment for a piece they wrote about it.
At Housing Works Bookstore Cafe, 7 pm: FREE.
If you’re not the type to sit around watching short-form video clips all day, this is the show for you. Impressively funny ladies Jo Firestone and Aparna Nancherla are bringing their Refinery29 web series, “Womanhood,” to a real, live venue. No more straining your eyes staring at bright screens to get your laugh on– these are 100% in-person joke-tellers, which is probably a lot more fun than 100% in-person bank tellers. Firestone and Nancherla have graciously assembled a group of nice folk to help them teach you all about the complex terrain of women’s bodies and lives, including Dylan Marron, Naomi Ekperegin, Marlena Rodriguez, and Diana Kolsky (who will truly contain multitudes as “The Haters.”) You might wanna take your headphones off for this one.
It’s relatively common for people to write plays that are autobiographical, and then perform in those plays. Less common is an autobiographical play performed in the same neighborhood where events took place that led the play to happen, and produced by the very person that runs the theater where the writer used to squat. If this sounds a little convoluted, it is. But it’s also the very true nature of J.Stephen Brantley’s new play The Jamb, about two queer punks in their forties: one gone straight-edge, one stuck in the wild days of his youth.
Up Against The Wall
Opening Tuesday August 30, 7 pm to 10 pm at Booklyn. On view through September 27.
Greenpoint “artist and bookmakers organization” Booklyn, which has impressively been hanging around since 1999, presents this exhibition of prints by two projects: Imagining Apartheid, a Montreal-based initiative bringing awareness to Palestinian liberation and the BDS movement with a focus on Israeli Apartheid, and Celebrate People’s History: Iraq Veterans Against the War, a portfolio project which aims to highlight veteran and active duty members who were against the war and have spoken out over the last ten years. Placed side-by-side, these prints and posters highlight years of a common struggle and fight for demilitarization and justice regardless of country or nationality.
“It’s like that dream you had where you’re at your high school dance but it’s not your high school, your ex is there but it’s not really your ex, your mom’s in the corner…”
This isn’t a retelling of a long-winded and elaborate joke, but a description of folk group Prairie Empire‘s dreamy new music video for their song “Circles,” off their impressive new record The Salt. In it, Prairie Empire’s leader Brittain Ashford finds herself quite literally dancing circles around and with people of all sorts as the innocent goings-on of a dance hall unfold in slow motion around her and Ashford’s melancholy vocals soar.