Hey, if Awkwafina can pen a New York City guide, why shouldn’t Abbi Jacobson of Broad City do a NYC coloring book? Like Onur Tukel, Jacobson is that rarest of combos, an actor-illustrator, and next month she’ll talk about Color This Book: New York City at the Strand, which is actually featured in the book alongside Washington Square Park, UCB, Artichoke Pizza and other landmarks.
Arts + Culture
It’s becoming increasingly more difficult to keep your attention, dear readers. What with palm tree paradises popping up at Rockaway and the smell of BBQs now ubiquitous. Don’t miss out on such luxuries, dear readers. But if you don’t want to turn into an unfeeling blob, sucking down nothing but frozen margs and “beach reads” (shudder), then you gotta keep dosing yourself with a hefty shot of culture every now and then, now don’t you? Well this week we’ve got a variety of fantastic films, documentaries, and never-realized TV series for you to choose from. Consume wisely.
Call me a hyper-sensitive freak, but when I first heard the buzzing sound of a drone hovering above the smooth concrete floor at Knockdown Center, I got the chills. There’s something deeply ominous about drones, not least of all because they’ve become synonymous with a futuristic, one-sided (for now anyway) kind of warfare that’s shrouded in secrecy. Somewhat evil undeniably, but drones are also fascinating. “I have a drone newsfeed and stuff pops up like every day, probably 10 or 15 different stories ranging from ‘Three People Killed in Pakistan’ to ‘Drone Captures Surfing Dolphin’ or ‘Perverts are Spying on People,’” said Michael Merck, the creative director at Knockdown Center. It’s no wonder, then, that the Queens-based art center has chosen drones as the centerpiece of its summer exhibition.
Two of the summer’s biggest fests, Bushwick Open Studios and Northside Festival, have now revealed their full schedules and lineups, showing us just what we can expect next month. To make things extra fun, they’re running back-to-back this year, with BOS slated for June 5 to 7, and Northside happening June 8 to 14. So, yeah, cancel any plans to hit the new Riis Park Beach Bazaar during those dates.
Given all the advertising around town, you probably already know about Red Hot + Arthur Russell!, the tribute to legendary East Village musician Arthur Russell that’s happening May 29 and 30 at BAM as part of the same Red Bull Music Academy Festival that brought La Monte Young out. If the $35+ entry free is discouraging you from buying tickets (still available) to see Devonté Hynes, Cults, Richard Reed Parry of Arcade Fire, and Jake Shears of Scissor Sisters pay tribute to Russell (Hynes, by the way, recently posted some new music to YouTube), you may want to hit Baby’s All Right tonight for what’s sure to be an equally stirring tribute to the influential composer and cellist.
After three years of hosting the Webbys, Patton Oswalt ceded the honors to Williamsburg comic Hannibal Buress last night. “I guess the Webbys wanted a new host that would acknowledge WorldStarHipHop,” Buress told the crowd of diners at Cipriani Wall Street. His monologue, which you can watch below, referenced everything from farty Uber rides to Kim Kardashian’s shiny posterior (“it was so shiny that when you looked at it you would just see a reflection of who you really are as a person”). At one point he brought up the Mad Men finale: “I’m still a little bitter that Jon Hamm beat me out for that role years ago. You don’t know the story? It was down to me, Jon Hamm, and Flea from Red Hot Chili Peppers.”
When you’re Karen O of the Yeah Yeah Yeahs, your baby shower cake ain’t coming from Carvel. So her friends — including her Greenpoint-based stylist Christian Joy — tapped DJ/baker Justine D to make her a cake. Wait, “DJ/baker?” you say? Yep. The doyenne of dance, who has a monthly residency with Nancy Whang of LCD Soundsystem at the McCarren Park Hotel, graduated from the French Culinary Institute five years ago, and now she does pastries in addition to parties. “When called upon to do a baby shower cake for Karen O. of The YYY’s,” she writes on her site, “I knew it would be a Rock and Roll adventure complete with studs, fondant to look like leather and hand painted band pins.” Here’s a closer look at those studs.
Dina Gadia’s pulpy, graphic collages, now on view at Greenpoint’s Owen James Gallery, bring to mind a ’50s wholesomeness and tropical kitsch while at the same time challenging it. Her collages are at once subtle and unabashedly clear, familiar and obscure, paradoxes that hold fast because Gadia, a Filipino artist living and working in Manila, is working in two, if not three registers by exploring the impact of Spanish but especially American influence on Filipino culture.
It’s been a very Abbi Jacobson couple of days: Saturday at Irving Plaza we saw her sit in with Paul Scheer and Jason Mantzoukas during a taping of their “How Did This Get Made” podcast (spoiler alert: they shredded Arnold Schwarzenegger’s Hercules in the City), and this morning she and her Broad City co-creator Ilana Glazer kicked off Internet Week with a conversation with Marie Claire editor Anne Fulenwider.
One of the most eye-grabbing things we saw at Select art fair — aside from Michael Alig’s prison paintings and Junglepussy’s rooftop set, of course — was this rendering of Williamsburg by Amsterdam-based artist Jan Rothuizen. It was part of “Mapping Brooklyn,”. an exhibit of old maps and the map-driven work of contemporary artists that appeared at BRIC House and the Brooklyn Historical Society. While part of the exhibit remains on view at the Historical Society, this creation and others are on display at Select through the weekend.
Once upon a time there were things called subcultures, that managed to thrive despite promotion through “social channels” or sponsorships from energy drinks. Since 1980, 156 Rivington Street has been a subculture enclave for activists, artists, counter culturists, and assorted noisemakers, providing a non-profit space to exchange ideas and physically interact. It’s not secret that the hardcore punk scene was once a magnet for such individuals, so when the storied matinee shows at CBGB became too violent in the late-’80s, punk turned off the Bowery to Rivington Street to ABC No Rio.
Nevermind the 190+ international galleries showing — with food vendors like Roberta’s, Dimes, and Marlow & Sons, the trek to this year’s Frieze Art Fair is almost totally worth it. But let’s face it, trying to Uber it off of Randall’s Island is enough to drive you to the nearby psychiatric center. In fact, the experience can be so harrowing for art-world blue bloods that Korakrit Arunanondchai has installed massage chairs throughout the tent, as you can see above. But for those who just don’t have it in them to make the trip to Frieze when there are so many alternatives, we’ve rounded up this year’s most eye-grabbing pieces.