The big news coming out of Coney Island today isn’t that the city just bestowed Scenic Landmark status on the Riegelmann Boardwalk. Sure, it’s cool that the 95-year-old boardwalk is joining the Cyclone and the Parachute Jump as a permanently protected icon. But that news pales in comparison to word that Pauly D, one third of Jersey Shore‘s MVP trio, will be spinning at Coney Art Walls this summer.
Downtown guitarist and composer Glenn Branca died last night at the age of 69. The longtime West Villager died in his sleep of throat cancer, his wife and collaborator Reg Bloor announced in a Facebook post.
“His musical output was a fraction of the ideas he had in a given day,” Bloor wrote. “His influence on the music world is incalculable.”
For obvious reasons, “Wide Awake!” has pretty much been my daily wakeup song ever since Parquet Courts dropped the single off their forthcoming album of the same name. Not to be confused with the Katy Perry song of the same name, it’s a funky, Minutemen/Clash-esque jam that kicks your ass out of bed and gets you “movin’ and groovin’ and I ain’t ever losin’ the pace,” as the song’s posi-vibes chant goes. Other singles off the album– including the more recent “Mardi Gras Beads,” a mellow number evoking Pavement’s “Shady Lane”– are pretty great, too. But then what else would you expect from the Brooklyn band that produced the universally admired 2016 album Human Performance?
Opening Tuesday, May 15 at Gagosian, 6 pm to 8 pm. On view through June 23.
When you look into the body of work that Swiss artist Urs Fischer is created, you’ll quickly see a common theme is how the human form can be manipulated and distorted, whether that’s crafting grotesque collages of faces that once looked typical or sculpting a huge bust of Katy Perry and inviting onlookers to alter it with clay. He’s also interested in how everyday objects (a block of cheese, a gallery floor) can be broken open or picked apart until something new and surprising is created. Average objects will once again be on display in his latest show at Midtown’s Gagosian, aptly titled Things. The central “thing” of the show is a life-size rhinoceros sculpture with household items like vacuum cleaners and copiers clinging to it as if it was some sort of huge magnet for domestic chores or office tasks. And isn’t everyone, unfortunately, at some point in their lives? Keep Reading »
Williamsburg’s Legion Bar closed its doors early Sunday morning for a legion of regulars. The closing was bittersweet for Merle Chornuk, who opened Legion in 2005 with the hopes of it being a busier bar than it turned out to be. “It’s the end of an era,” he told me. “I’m moving on to other things.”
Jim Jarmusch, Rosie Perez, and Other Downtown Legends Basked in Basquiat at the Opening of ‘Zeitgeist’
By all appearances, downtown filmmaker Sara Driver had a pretty good weekend. On Friday night, Boom For Real, Driver’s evocative, propulsive, and genuinely moving documentary of Jean-Michel Basquiat’s late teenage years (and the late 1970s Lower East Side art scene that nurtured his extraordinary talent), had its world premiere at the IFC, following a rave review in the Times. It’s a terrific movie, functioning equally well as a we-were-there record of how Basquiat went from homeless kid spraying Samo© to instant sensation at PS1’s New York/New Wave in 1981, his first-ever public show; and as a loving portrait of a neighborhood abandoned by the rest of the city, and all craziness and creativity that ensued.
Then on Sunday evening Driver and a coterie that included the likes of her partner Jim Jarmusch, Lee Quinones, Rosie Perez, Katie Taylor Legnini, Jimmy Webb, Henry Chalfant, Jeffrey Deitch, Luc Sante, and Alexis Adler crammed into the opening of a big group exhibition at the Howl! Happening space. A line to get in formed early and extended all the way over to Bowery for much of the night.
While sexism and homophobia persist in the mainstream gaming industry, a “vibrant scene of queer game developers” has emerged. This month, several members of that community are combining their talents into one video-game cabinet that will be unveiled at Bushwick queer space The Dreamhouse.
Bedford + Bowery chatted with Danler on the phone this week after the Sweetbitter premiere last Sunday. We talked city life, oysters, and how she can tell which of the season’s six episodes were directed by women.
Elsewhere’s new rooftop isn’t the only outdoor spot making a summer programming announcement today. That old standby, Union Pool’s Summer Thunder series, just announced its lineup of free shows, and it’s a good one.
This year’s program, presented with the good folks over at Academy Records, leans distinctly toward jazz and African music, with some real heavy hitters in the mix: Sun Ra Arkastra on June 28, Songhoy Blues on July 7, Jemeel Moondoc on July 21, Mamadou Kelly on July 28, and Joe Bataan on Aug. 25. The Sadies will add a twang of country-western on June 30. On the obligatory indie rock front, Drag City outfit Wand will play songs off their forthcoming EP, Perfume, on June 16. And it all starts off with the eerie, mystical vocals of ex Dirty Projectors member Deradoorian on June 1.
Last month we shared news that Elsewhere was opening up its rooftop for summer concerts, DJ parties, happy hours, film screenings, and food pop-ups. Now the good folks over at East Williamsburg’s newest venue have sent over some photos of the roof, along with some more details about what to expect.
West Village residents voiced their concerns last night about the city’s plans to deal with the effects of the L train shutdown, but MTA and DOT officials held firm in their belief that the current plan to mitigate the upcoming L-pocalypse will cause the least amount of pain for all involved.
Rooftop Films Summer Series
May 19 to TBA, various locations.
Rooftop Films had already released its preliminary lineup of more than 45 outdoor screenings around the city (among the highlights: Desiree Akhavan’s gay conversion film The Miseducation of Cameron Post); and now it drops the details of its short films programs, starting with the fest’s opening night on May 19 at Green-Wood Cemetery. Of note are Michael Sugarman’s documentary about Anthology Film Archives founder Jonas Mekas; SXSW winner Charlie Tyrell’s My Dead Dad’s Porno Tapes, in case you missed it over at the Times; and pizza-porn film Slice Thing. Closing night will feature modern-ruins photographer Nathan Kensinger’s documentary Managed Retreat, about the city’s post-Sandy efforts to return three Staten Island coastal communities to the wild. The shorts will be presented in 10 installments, grouped by themes including “eerie existential thrillers,” dark cartoons, romance, love and lust, “dangerous” documentaries, New York docs, bold women, and Sundance picks. Al fresco venues include Industry City’s courtyards in Sunset Park, the roof of the New Design High School on the Lower East Side, and the roof of the Old American Can Factory in Gowanus.