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How a Bunch of Brave New Futurists Zapped the Old Pearl River Mart Back to Life

A booth dedicated to the old Pearl River Mart (Photo: Nicole Disser)

A booth dedicated to the old Pearl River Mart (Photo: Nicole Disser)

“Preservationist” has become something of a slur, used to denigrate the old-timers and neo-hippies who’d rather save ratty old tenant buildings and dusty mom-and-pop stores than make way for clean big-box stores with cheap stuff for everyone, and skyscraping mixed-use luxury complexes with their affordable housing pittance. It’s sorta like: C’mon, New York City is, by its nature, dynamic and changing. But the ever-faster pace of development and the lightyear rate of change have made for an urban landscape where transformation takes place exponentially and squeezes out the very people who have made this city vibrant and interesting in the first place.

Over the weekend, a slew of more than 40 local and visiting artists, as well as organizations like the Chinatown Art Brigade (a grassroots effort tackling the divisive issue of gallery-led gentrification in their neighborhood) demonstrated that preservation doesn’t have to be backward-looking.

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‘Style Wars’ Producer Henry Chalfant Offers Panoramic Views of Graffiti’s ‘Golden Age’

Henry Chalfant's subway photographs now on view (Image courtesy of Eric Firestone Gallery)

Henry Chalfant’s subway photographs now on view (Image courtesy of Eric Firestone Gallery)

Since Thursday, the white walls at Eric Firestone Gallery have been wholly devoted to just a small portion of Henry Chalfant’s  archive of “subway photographs.” Henry Chalfant: 1980 focuses on a year in which graffiti was still regarded as subversive and dangerous. At the same time, street art was at its most vibrant and anarchic. The work offers not only a trip back to the “golden age of graffiti,” but a thorough “visual anthropology,” as Chalfant describes it– a studied view of street culture back when it actually came from the streets.

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First He Took Manhattan: Leonard Cohen’s Breakthrough Years in NYC

(Photo: @sashaandlucca on Instagram)

(Photo: @sashaandlucca on Instagram)

We remember him well in the Chelsea Hotel, but Leonard Cohen’s New York City existence spanned beyond just the hotel where a makeshift memorial sprung up on Thursday after his death at the age of 82. Cohen came to New York City in 1966, just a year before the Summer of Love, and his breakthrough years there brought him into the orbit of Warhol and the Velvet Underground, the Beats, Bob Dylan, Joni Mitchell, and Jimi Hendrix. He wrote songs for Nico and penned “Chelsea Hotel No. 2” after a night with Janis Joplin.

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Weekend Warriors: Thousands of New Yorkers Keep Up Protests Against Trump

(Photo: Scott Lynch)

(Photo: Scott Lynch)

Anti-Trump protesters once again poured into the city streets over the weekend. On Saturday, thousands of people shut down Fifth Avenue for more than two miles as they marched from Union Square to Trump Tower, in Midtown East, screaming messages of disgust and defiance at the president-elect. On Sunday afternoon, activists gathered their forces outside of Trump International Hotel & Tower, near Columbus Circle, to protest looming policy measures that would have major consequences for undocumented immigrants and their families.

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Three Shot Outside of Williamsburg Bar; Bushwick Gets More Coffee

Three people were shot just before 2 a.m. yesterday when a pair of armed men began arguing outside of Don Pedro, a Williamsburg bar. None of the injuries are life-threatening and police arrested one of the shooters, a 36-year-old man who took a bullet to the knee. [NBC NY]

In Union Square, a 48-year-old man was arrested on a recent Saturday after allegedly threatening someone with brass knuckles and a hammer. [Town & Village]

Spicewala Bar Indian Cuisine will soon replace East Village Burritos & Bar on First Avenue. [EV Grieve] Keep Reading »

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Edgar Oliver Recounts Love and Loss, Beggars and Bakeries in Attorney Street

(photo: Maria Baranova)

(photo: Maria Baranova)

Edgar Oliver is a memorable man. I feel as though I could listen to him recite a portion of the phone book and throughout it I would find humor, joy, and sorrow. That’s not to say he has a terribly wide range of vocal inflection, but rather quite the opposite. Somehow he treats every word nearly the same way, with the same great deal of care and dramatics, and yet an entire world opens itself up among the syllables.

In Attorney Street, Oliver’s third solo storytelling show, he explores a new chapter of his life in a new apartment on the Lower East Side after being made to leave the small East Village SRO he’d remained for decades. With this major change, he also tracks other shifts in his life and surroundings: a vacant lot he cherished is now no more, a young boy that awakened desire in him as a child now has a child of his own, and so on.

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After Trump’s Victory, Local Immigrants Brace For Impact

(Photo: Cassidy Dawn Graves)

(Photo: Cassidy Dawn Graves)

With the announcement of Donald Trump’s jaw-dropping victory on Wednesday morning, a massive question mark now hangs over the country. Will Trump’s reign be equally as volatile as the GOP candidate’s campaign? Hard to say, since the guy clearly gave very few shits about consistency. What’s more, it’s often next to impossible to understand what, if anything, Trump believes in (even his own ghostwriter has described Trump as a “living black hole”). But our first “orange president” has made one promise resoundingly clear: Immigrants are going to get hit hard.

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Madam Geneva Ghosts, Is Replaced By Mexican Cocktail Spot, Ghost Donkey

Madam Geneva (Shanna Ravindra for NY Mag)

Madam Geneva (Shanna Ravindra for NY Mag)

It’s out with the gin, in with the mescal.

Madam Geneva was one of those places that routinely made lists of the best bars in the city and heck, even the country. But if you’re a mixologist, sometimes you just gotta shake things up, har har. That’s exactly what Eben Freeman, a true master of the cocktail craft, has done. Madam Geneva, the gin-loving cocktail den attached to sister spot Saxon + Parole, has ghosted and has been replaced with a new spot, Ghost Donkey.

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Here’s Your Chance to Give Bernie Sanders an Awkward Hug

Screen Shot 2016-11-11 at 12.10.55 PMHave you heard the one about the mom who decided to shake off her post-election blues by taking a walk through the woods in Chappaqua, only to bump into Bill and Hillary Clinton, walking their dog? The resulting photo has swept the internet, and offered some degree of solace to Clinton supporters. Meanwhile, Bernie Sanders die-hards are probably thinking, “Boy, I wouldn’t mind running into Bernie somewhere. I bet that guy could use a hug, too.” Don’t worry, Berners– you needn’t go trekking through the woods of Vermont to make it happen. (“Oh, hi, Bernie! I was just here for some maple syrup.”) This Monday, the candidate will be at the Barnes & Noble at 555 Fifth Avenue, in Midtown, posing with fans who’ve bought a copy of his new book, Our Revolution: A Future to Believe In.

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Local Leaders Support East River Skyway; Greenpoint Residents Against Paulie Gee’s

Thus far, 214 Greenpoint residents have signed a petition to prevent the forthcoming Paulie Gee‘s Slice Joint from obtaining a liquor license. [Gothamist]

Fives Leaves, the Greenpoint bistro that was the brain child of the late actor Heath Ledger, has ended its partnership with soon-to-rebrand neighbor Nights and Weekends and will now open outposts in other cities, beginning with Los Angeles. [Eater NY]

This month, three local leaders signed a letter asking Mayor de Blasio to support the East River Skyway, an aerial gondola that would aid residents who will be inconvenienced by the 2019 L train shutdown. [DNA Info] Keep Reading »

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No Spin Zone: When Will the Cube Be Uncaged?

(Photo: Michael Garofalo)

(Photo: Michael Garofalo)

The Cube’s return to Astor Place has been glorious and all, but have we basked in the glow long enough that we can now address the elephant in Alamo Plaza? The Cube is back, yes, but the sculpture is imprisoned behind a crude cage of orange barricades. It’s downright inhumane (incubane?). It’s time to uncage the Cube and let it spin free, the way it was meant to. Keep Reading »

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Performances To Soothe The Pain: Laughs, Hopeful Open Mics, and Party People

THURSDAY

(image via Reductress / Facebook)

(image via Reductress / Facebook)

Haha, Wow! By Reductress: Hillary Clinton Won!
Thursday, November 10 at UCB Chelsea, 8 pm: $5.

Everyone’s favorite (and maybe the only) satirical women’s magazine Reductress, fresh off the release of How To Win At Feminism (check our interview here), gears up for another edition of its monthly live show. Hosted by Reductress associate editor Nicole Silverberg, the show offers chuckles, lady power, and “tips on how to sex good,” duh. But this one’s a little different. The theme is “Hillary Clinton Won.” I’m not sure if this title was decided upon before Tuesday, but either way it’s gonna be a little painful to emerge back into the world once the show concludes. But for one hour of blissful pretending, you can “live your life like Hillary Clinton won with some of our favorite comedians.” Take it while you can. The show features Sydnee Washington, Alyssa Limperis, Shalewa Sharpe, and JANDA. Keep Reading »