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Coney Island’s New Vintage Pinball Arcade Is Ready to Roll

The Mystic Machine

Photo credit: Norman Blake

Last week we shared the news that the Coney Island Museum is expanding with a new (playable) pinball exhibition. We’ve obtained more details about the pinball gallery, which had its soft opening yesterday.

“We had machines in the bar being played nonstop,” said Dick Zigun, founder of Coney Island USA and “unofficial mayor” of Coney Island.

Not all the machines are installed yet; by this coming weekend everything should officially be in place.

There are going to be 10 pinball machines – six in the Coney Island Museum storefront and another three or four in the Freak Bar in the lobby of the nearby Arts Center.

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The Mermaid Parade Has Been Saved, and Coney Island Museum Is Adding a Pinball Wing

Mermaids at last year's parade.

At last year’s Coney Island Mermaid Parade.

The Mermaid Parade, Coney Island’s annual crowd-pleaser and glitter-industry Black Friday, is back on solid financial footing — and not a moment too soon — thanks to an unexpected deus ex machina: the intervention of two generous private donations supplementing an ongoing crowdfunding campaign.

Despite the recent news that Debbie Harry and Chris Stein of Blondie fame will raise their scepters as this year’s Queen Mermaid and King Neptune, the Parade had been struggling. A “Feed the Mermaids” crowdfunding campaign to save the parade has so far raised $9,000, far short of its $50,000 goal.

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Meet This Muppet at a Bernie-Themed Art Show Featuring Shepard Fairey and More

LA_DonnyMiller

Bernie Sanders has been compared to a muppet time and time again, but as far as we know, only one artist has lovingly turned him into one. (That said, we have seen a Bernie puppet before). Donny Miller’s handiwork, above, will be on display on the Bowery this weekend, as part of a pro-Bernie art exhibit, “The Art of a Political Revolution.”

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Week in Film: DJ Party Life, Cops in Action, and One Legendary Wig

We’ve got a lot to look forward to this summer when it comes to film, we’re rather pleased to hear about a couple of serious outdoor film fests spotlighting movies for film heads. But if rain does hit or you get sick of sunning it up in favor of a cold, dark, refrigerator-like vacation from people and sun-fun and this most jolly of seasons, you’ve always got our humble lil list to tap for ways to escape. This week, we’ve got a film about the whirlwind romp that was one French DJ’s life, one very important wig, and the cray cray life of a Beach Boy.

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Hear Jack Ridley of Drowners Play While Your Mind Is Flooded With Photos of NYC

(Photo: Pete Voelker)

(Photo: Pete Voelker)

When photographer Pete Voelker first arrived in New York, he found the city overwhelming—and immediately began to document the constant movement and shifting surfaces of the urban streets. Now, six years in, he wants others to be similarly overwhelmed during his one night-only exhibition (and first ever solo show) Might As Well Enjoy It, which collates over 600 photographs in a projection video just under 5 minutes long. That’s 120 photographs a minute, or 2 every second.
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Alex Prager Used 20 Tons of Sand (and Her Sister) to Stage This Beach Scene

ALEX PRAGER Crowd #3 (Pelican Beach), 2013 archival pigment print 59.5 x 92 inches, 151.1 x 233.7 cm 60.5 x 93.56 x 2.25 inches (framed), 153.7 x 237.6 x 5.7 cm Edition of 6 Courtesy the artist and Lehmann Maupin, New York and Hong Kong

ALEX PRAGER Crowd #3 (Pelican Beach), 2013 archival pigment print 59.5 x 92 inches, 151.1 x 233.7 cm 60.5 x 93.56 x 2.25 inches (framed), 153.7 x 237.6 x 5.7 cm Edition of 6 Courtesy the artist and Lehmann Maupin, New York and Hong Kong

Alex Prager is not especially intimidating. The Los Angeles-based photographer is often smiling, rather petite and generally endearing. So it’s amusing to envision her atop a cherry picker, directing hundreds of actors like some sort of omniscient being, which is precisely what she did for her latest body of work, Face in the Crowd. Shot over four days on a sound stage in LA, the project features a slew of universally relatable locations (bleachers at a sports game, the beach, an airport, a generic looking rec room) populated with Prager’s friends, family and countless extras styled in flamboyant wigs and exaggerated makeup.
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Nightclubbing | The Dead Boys

Pat Ivers and Emily Armstrong are sifting through their voluminous archive of punk-era concert footage as it’s digitized for the Downtown Collection at N.Y.U.’s Fales Library. Here’s this week’s trip down memory lane, starting with a word form Jeff Magnum, bassist for the Dead Boys.

Stiv Bators (Credit: Emily Armstrong/Nightclubbing)

Stiv Bators (Credit: Emily Armstrong/Nightclubbing)

I was working in a record store, it was horrible. Farmers would come in demanding John Denver, or say, “Do you have that record they play on the radio…” But at least there was Rocket From the Tombs. They were the only good band in Cleveland in the early 1970s, and I went to see ’em play a lot! I heard they were breaking up but they were playing one last gig (Bators and Cheetah were gonna start a new band). I went to that last gig and I walked up to Cheetah, who I never met, and told him, “I’m the bass player yer lookin’ for!” That new band was called Frankenstein (Bators, Cheetah, Blitz, Zero, and me).” [In 1976, the band left for New York without Magnum, and booked a gig at CBGBs. They came back for him, and returned to the city as the Dead Boys.] We went on this 20-hour car ride, the whole time them telling me how great it will all be, that they had a place and that we would be playing at the greatest club in the world. I got to the club and said, “What a shit-hole.” But it became our living room. We were there every night and when we played, we kicked ass.— Jeff Magnum

The Dead Boys held a special status at CBGBs. They were managed by the club’s owner, Hilly Krystal, and played there more than any other band. Keep Reading »