chinatown

No Comments

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.

Keep Reading »

No Comments

You Can Slurp Booze Out of All of the Art at ‘Slow, Dimwitted Carnage’

(Photo courtesy of Coustof Waxman)

(Photo courtesy of Coustof Waxman)

Attending an art opening usually means agreeing to a trade-off: in exchange for free booze and the company of other humans, you won’t be seeing much, if any of the art work. But at “Slow, Dimwitted Carnage,” the second exhibition from newcomer gallery Coustof Waxman, guests can have their art and, um, drink it too.

Keep Reading »

No Comments

This Week’s Art: A Fish Market Repurposed and Many Types of ‘Graphic Art’

Mike Taylor (image via Idio Gallery)

Mike Taylor (image via Idio Gallery)

Mike Taylor: Condensed Flesh
Opening Thursday October 13 at Idio Gallery, 6 pm to 11 pm. On view through October 30.

East Williamsburg space Idio Gallery put out a call for crowdsourced financial support several months ago, which very well could have signaled that it was beginning to scale down. However, with a show at Bushwick Open Studios and another show opening shortly after, they don’t appear to be going anywhere. This one is a solo show, presenting works on paper and paintings by renowned graphic artist Mike Taylor, created between 2012 and now. Finished works won’t be the only thing on display in this show, as Idio’s downstairs basement space will be transformed into a showcase of the artist in-process, with drawings not yet done, prints, and “printmaking debris” on view as well. Taylor’s work is bold and bright, often utilizing neon colors and mixing abstract patterns with notes of realism and the human form filtered through the style of the illustrator and comic artist.

Keep Reading »

No Comments

Protesters Urge Council Member to Curb Luxury Housing in Chinatown and LES

De Blasio as Monopoly man. (Photo: Nicole Disser)

De Blasio as Monopoly man. (Photo: Nicole Disser)

Perhaps you thought that the Coalition to Protect Chinatown and the Lower East Side sounded angry earlier this year when about 60 activists associated with the group gathered outside Gracie Mansion in the bitter February cold to protest the mayor’s “big scam” of a housing plan. But that demonstration was nothing compared to the one staged Thursday, when the Coalition led a large, supremely loud protest against the loss of affordable housing.

Keep Reading »

No Comments

Taiyaki Wants to Get You Hooked On Soft-Serve in a Fish Cone

(image via Taiyaki NYC / Facebook)

(image via Taiyaki NYC / Facebook)

Fish and ice cream typically don’t mix, though I wouldn’t put it past the crazy milkshakes at Black Tap to offer up some sort of weird thing like that. But at Taiyaki NYC, a Japanese ice cream shop having its grand opening today on the border of Little Italy and Chinatown, this union is oh-so sweet.

Keep Reading »

No Comments

A Chinatown Aquarium Store Stays Afloat

(Photos: Angelina Xu)

(Photos: Angelina Xu)

When Chi Hung Cho was four, his brother’s girlfriend bought him his very first pet fish–two Ryukin goldfish. The pair lived in his 10-gallon aquarium inside his family’s Chinatown apartment for the next five or so years. Since then, “fishkeeping” as he calls it, has become a big part of his life.
Keep Reading »

No Comments

Exclusive Clip: The Lost Arcade, a New Doc on the Old-School Arcade’s End Game

Tonight, a new documentary about the life and death of a legendary Lower East Side arcade, Chinatown Fair, will be screened at The Metrograph, kicking off The Lost Arcade‘s first theatrical run. We first told you about the film– the passion project of Kurt Vincent (director) and Irene Chin (producer) who raised money through a Kickstarter campaign– when it premiered at the NYC DOC festival last fall. To celebrate the theatrical arrival of The Lost Arcade, we’ve got exclusives from the filmmakers: a clip from the doc (see above) and shots taken inside the otherworldly Chinatown Fair by photographer Chris Bernabeo.

Keep Reading »

No Comments

Downtown Leaders Flocked to Trump Building, Gave GOP Candidate the Bird

(Photo: Luisa Rollenhagen)

Protestors outside of The Trump Building on Tuesday (Photo: Luisa Rollenhagen)

Most New Yorkers don’t like to be reminded that the current orange-hued Republican presidential nominee is technically one of us. Yes, it’s true. Say it with us: Donald J. Trump is a New Yorker. (Ugh– we know, we hate to admit it too). Considering that Trump’s name can be found all over the city, usually in huge gold letters, you’d think that our tiny-handed GOP candidate has something to prove. Whatever the motive, Trump’s habit of branding his structures with his own name serves as a constant, nauseating reminder of his inextricable ties to the city.

Keep Reading »

No Comments

Art Openings: Pins N’ Patches, Cheap Art, Magazines IRL

(via Strike Gently Co / Facebook)

(via Strike Gently Co / Facebook)

The Pin and Patch Show
Tuesday, August 2 at Chinatown Soup, 16 Orchard Street, Chinatown. Opening reception 6-9pm, show on view through August 9. More info here. 
Gallery and art space Chinatown Soup will host this event that’s part art show, part pop-up shop showcasing the work of 10 local companies who make pins and patches. Don’t expect vintage band logos or anything of that sort, as this is a show of new, original work by artists. The first 50 who come to the opening will receive a free pin or patch from Strike Gently Co., and free PBR will be a-flowing. Get there feeling eager, and leave full of beer with a slew of cool new accessories for your denim vest, tote bag, or whatever you’d like.

Keep Reading »

No Comments

Lifeforce Ditches Our Dystopian Present For a Post-Gender Cyborg Future

"Olympia" by Kelsey Bennett (Image courtesy of Kelsey Bennett)

“Olympia44” by Kelsey Bennett (Image courtesy of Kelsey Bennett)

I don’t think I’m alone in feeling like everything on this place we call Planet Earth is terrible right now. Mostly because a bigoted, beady-eyed mop man partial to Valencia-orange spray tans has power boated, ass pinched, and butt picked his way to the Presidential contest. The whole charade is sort of starting to feel like the first few chapters of a sci-fi paperback– when the autocratic overlord is hurtling toward consolidating his dystopian reign, and you can’t believe that no one saw it coming.

Keep Reading »

No Comments

Take a Break From Pokemon and Catch These Docs About Really Rabid Gamers

Still from The Dwarvenaut.

Still from The Dwarvenaut.

Between Pokemon Go bar crawls and the reboot (in miniature form) of the classic Nintendo Entertainment System, we may have reached peak gaming nostalgia. If that dude who fell into Prospect Park Pond convinced you it’s safer to watch than to play, check out these two soon-to-be-released docs, about rabid gamers in the B+B zone.

Keep Reading »

No Comments

Breakthrough in Effort to Limit Height of Chinatown Buildings, But Some Are Torn

(Photo by Kavitha Surana)

(Photo by Kavitha Surana)

An opening for the Chinatown Working Group’s rezoning proposal may finally be on the horizon. Last night, Community Board 3’s chair, Gigi Li, presented a new development to the Land Use Committee– after two years of sending resolutions supporting the plan to the Department of City Planning, its director, Carl Weisbrod, responded on June 7th expressing willingness to engage in discussion. Still, some community groups remain frustrated that the rezoning process isn’t moving fast enough to keep up with the quickening pace of high-rise development, while board members warned that unity from various stakeholders would be key to achieve comprehensive changes.

Keep Reading »