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Disco Is Ah, Ah, Ah Stayin’ Alive at Museum of Sex’s New Exhibit Cum Nightclub

(Photos: Daniel Maurer)

(Photos: Daniel Maurer)

When we popped into the Museum of Sex last night for a preview of their new exhibit on erotic outsider art, we didn’t expect to find a discotheque on the premises. But there it was: An exhibit titled “Night Fever” has brought a massive Richard Long Audio System (the type used at Studio 54 and Paradise Garage) to MoSex’s bar space, and it’s absolutely killer. Back when we visited MoSex for Kayvon Zand’s sadly short-lived weekly, the bar had a fusty library look, with couches set between bookcases. But Jason Volenec, designer of atmospheric restaurants like Miss Lily’s and Tertulia, has given it a ‘70s vibe via silver-foiled walls (a la Warhol’s factory), disco balls, and swiveling glass coffee tables.

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Gowanus BBQ Joint Pig Beach Opens a Grown-Up Spot, Pig Bleecker

(Photo: Katie B. Foster)

(Photo: Katie B. Foster)

Just a couple of months after Gowanus barbecue joint Pig Beach converted itself into a seasonal burger joint, the restaurant remains on Eater’s “heat map” of the hottest restaurants in Brooklyn. Now, good news for Manhattanites: You’ll no longer have to persevere the F train to get a taste of it. Pig Beach just opened a Greenwich Village outpost.

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What the Tuk? Williamsburg’s Newest Hotel Has Its Own Auto Rickshaw

(Photo: Daniel Maurer)

(Photo: Daniel Maurer)

Having just returned from two weeks in India, I definitely don’t miss the honking: it’s enough to make Rudy Giuliani rip out the rest of his hair and run crying into the bosom of Daddy Trump. But I do miss the cute little tuk tuks, bobbing and weaving through traffic Mario-Go-Kart-style. So, you can imagine my delight when I passed by the newly soft-opened Williamsburg Hotel and saw this gleaming new ride outside.

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One Less Place to Shop For Kooky Keychains on the LES

(Photo: Daniel Maurer)

(Photo: Daniel Maurer)

The Lower East Side art scene is facing its first loss of the new year, as Object_ify 139 is packing up its bodega bags and going online-only. Bogota-born artist Maria L. Candanoza opened the “art object” shop on Essex Street in October of 2014, and during its first year it stocked quirky items from a roster of 20 artists. During its two-year run, it hosted guest curators like Benjamin Barron (books) and Mister Saturday Night (vinyl), threw book release parties, and popped up in Miami and Tokyo.

In a message inviting friends to a goodbye party at the store Friday evening, Candanoza says the enterprise will live on: “We have had an online store for a while but our commitment is to make it even better and to keep bringing new objects, prints, books and exciting artist collaborations to you every month.” In the meantime, buy a faux fur koozie and pour one out for the store’s IRL incarnation.

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Smell the Magic: Inside Blaine’s Brain and a Chance to Snap a Levitating Selfie

Roll up for the magical mystery tour and steal some magicians’ secrets next week.

TimesTalks: David Blaine
Jan. 18, 7pm, Florence Gould Hall, 55 East 59th Street, tickets $40.
Okay, so you may have gotten douchechills when New York immortalized David Blaine as a member of Leo DiCaprio’s “pussy posse” back in 1998. But trust, his ABC special Beyond Magic, now on Netflix, is worth watching if only to see Woody Allen nearly upchuck as the musclebound magic bro swallows a live goldfish and spits it back up it into a bowl. Even better is Ricky Gervais’s reaction, above, when Blaine (seemingly?) runs a needle through his arm.

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Panorama Lineup: NIN, Frank Ocean, Tame Impala, Tribe, and More

image006Perhaps a mental exercise will help you cope with this frigid Monday morning: Imagine you’re on an island, in a field of grass. The summer sun is shining and water is sparkling all around you. You’re holding an ice-cream-topped egg waffle and Trent Reznor is yelling, “Slave screams!”

Snap off the icicle tears. We’re just 199 days away from that reality, because Panorama is returning to the shores of Randall’s Island on July 28. The weekend festival, which debuted last year with an epic LCD Soundsystem comeback, just announced the lineup for its second edition, and headliners include R&B crooners Frank Ocean and Solange on Friday, commonwealth acts Tame Impala and Alt-J on Saturday, and Lollapalooza throwbacks Nine Inch Nails and A Tribe Called Quest on Sunday. Others highlights include DJ Shadow, Future Islands, Belle & Sebastian, Sofi Tukker, and Cloud Nothings.

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Basquiat’s Place: How a Site of Mob Beef Became a Boutique Butcher Shop

This week, we present a series of longer pieces unraveling the histories of storied buildings.

Japan Premium Beef at 57 Great Jones Street. (Photo: Hanna Wallis)

Japan Premium Beef at 57 Great Jones Street. (Photo: Hanna Wallis)

Below the sparkling glint of a crystal chandelier, slabs of meat rest behind glass as if displayed in a museum. Each label is handwritten in gold ink on a black card, leaving a sense of mortal weight; something lost, commemorated, aggrandized.

The little butcher shop at 57 Great Jones Street lacks any trace of blood or a stained smock. It gives no hint of the secrets lurking in the building’s history, like an art icon’s untimely death or the 1905 murder that catalyzed the decline of the Italian mob in the Bowery. The shop’s unexpected elegance hides the death intrinsic to each of its products. Steaks appear as objects of art, an impression their price tags reinforce.

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All John Gotti Wanted For Christmas Was This Infamous Address

This week and next, we present a series of longer pieces unraveling the histories of storied buildings.

Nothing, at least nothing widely known, has happened at the Ravenite Social Club since Christmas Eve thirty-one years ago, when it became the court of John Gotti. Some 200 well-wishers filed across its rosette-tiled floor to pay their respects to the newly anointed boss of the Gambino crime family. FBI detectives concealed in a van watched the procession as the start of a new dynasty began.

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Hallelujah, Film Forum Is Screening the Leonard Cohen Tour Doc, ‘Bird On a Wire’

If you’re still mourning the loss of Leonard Cohen last month, this may help: Film Forum is screening Tony Palmer’s classic documentary Leonard Cohen: Bird on a Wire for two weeks starting January 18. A lovely antidote to all those “Hallelujah” covers, the doc follows Cohen on a month-long tour of Europe in the spring of 1972, after his salad days in New York City. While it starts off with the obligatory footage of the band boarding planes and signing autographs (Cohen was already a big deal at the time, having released his first three albums), it soon takes a far more pensive turn.

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Is Mission Chinese Planning a Vietnamese Offshoot?

(Photo: Paul Wagtouicz for Grub Street)

(Photo: Paul Wagtouicz for Grub Street)

Mission Cantina has apparently closed after three years of serving up Mexican-Chinese-whatever food, but that doesn’t necessarily mean Danny Bowien’s Lower East Side empire is shrinking. According to a Community Board 3 calendar of meetings sent out today, an entity by the name of Mission Vietnamese is interested in a liquor license in the former Pies ‘n’ Thighs space.

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Newly Signed Law Will Help Keep OId Folks Homes From Becoming Rich Folks Homes

(Photo: Kavitha Surana)

(Photo: Kavitha Surana)

It’s too late to save Rivington House, the former HIV treatment facility that a non-profit nursing home operator unexpectedly flipped to a luxury developer after the city quietly lifted a deed restriction. But a bill signed into law today should do something to prevent buildings designated for community use from becoming luxury condos.

The new law requires the city to maintain a searchable online database of properties with deed restrictions, and forces developers who want to have them lifted to inform their local City Council member, community board, and borough president. The law requires the mayor, a specially formed committee, and the Department of City Planning to review any such requests, and approve them with the mayor’s personal sign-off only if they’re deemed to be in the city’s best interest. While there had been talk of requiring the city’s stringent Uniform Land Use Review Procedure in such scenarios, the new law stops short of that.

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