Daniel Menche, Container, MV Carbon, Eartheater, Greg Fox, Ben Vida, Horse Lords, Profligate Saturday, July 30, 5 pm at Pioneer Works: $20.
“A $20 show?” you’re probably saying doubtfully. “At Pioneer Verks no less?!” Well, yes, people– this superbly lined and fine-art surrounded setting might be an affair that’s just a tiny– ok, huge– step up from your usual scum-dwelling listening experience and therefore cooking up some wallet anxiety in you, but stay with me for a moment. For an Issue Project Room affair especially, we’re talking about a steal right here. Maybe more convincing for money flinging is the lineup, which is damn close to overflowing and replete with some of the best artists out there right now doing danceable, shapely noise-techno, including Profligate, and Eartheater.
Silk tapestry by Bill Zangewa, Afronova Gallery (Photo: Nicole Disser)
It’s pretty screwy that here, now, in the year 2016 many people still have a hard time grasping that Africa is an incredibly diverse continent home to vastly different cultures, languages, landscapes, and art traditions. Thankfully, we have things like the 1:54 Contemporary African Art Fair (held May 6 through 8 at Pioneer Works in Red Hook) at our fingertips to keep us in the know about the incredible (and, ahem, marketable) art work coming out of the 54 countries on the African continent.
Armory weekend is upon us y’all, and you know what that means– if you’re gonna hoof it to the West side to get cultured and not just slammed at the after parties (which is perfectly alright, too) it’s best to have some idea of where you’re headed, and we’re guessing it’s probably not going to be in the direction of those $45 Armory tickets. Hoo boy. No, thank you. Besides, there’s plenty else going on that’s not gonna nuke your wallet.
Get ready this week for films that are at once fantastical and grounded in sometimes harsh reality. Our top picks include an art-house sci-fi film that says more about immigration than extra-terrestrials, one werewolf flick that proves the Scandinavians are masters of mixing the banality of small town life and horror, and more. Peep on.
Pioneer Works isn’t just an art gallery, residency program, and book shop — it’s an educational center, too. Pay a nominal fee and get learn’d on the basics of paper marbling, wet plate photography, and how to whip up a mole sauce from scratch– you know, cute stuff. So a two-day course, “How to Master the New York City Police Department,” taught by NYU urbanization researcher Patrick Lamson-Hall, kinda stopped me in my browsing tracks with its promise of a historical look at the NYPD and discussion about how to improve community-police relations. One of Patrick’s early suggestions: “As stupid as it sounds, maybe they need to start every day with yoga.”
Pioneer Works’ new bookstore in Red Hook, which had its grand opening on Tuesday night, is a remarkably small shop. Maybe the size of a very bitty studio apartment. “Wait, is this is? Or do you have back-stock somewhere?” we asked Zach White, the shop clerk. He laughed. “Nope, this is pretty much it.” But that’s kind of the point. “It’s almost like an installation, in a sense, because it’s so small and ever changing,” Zach explained. “I don’t feel like it will ever be a place for ‘I’m looking for this book, maybe Pioneer Books has it’ — instead you’ll come here and know that a book is gonna find you.”
Northside’s over, and we trust that you made like either a baby or an old person and wore earplugs to every damn one of those million or so shows to protect your ear hairs, mockery be damned. But look who’s laughing now? Instead of having to shout “WHAT?” at absolutely everyone this week, you’ve got room for more shows. We’ll be honest though, this lineup isn’t gonna be much quieter at all. In fact, dare we say at least some of these shows we’ve selected for this week’s Good Shows, will be way, way louder than anything you saw last week. So maybe this time around get yourself some good looking ear plugs? Fashion them out of cotton balls, or perhaps bananas to save yourself some cash? Whatever you do, deal with it somehow– and hey, the Presidential campaigns are picking up speed, so you’re going to need them like what come fall– but most of all do it coz we’ve got a whole other fest for you to attend (with 30 plus bands and cheap, cheap, cheap– we promise), a night of legendary punk and indie players, and the return of one local hardcore band we haven’t seen nearly enough of.
Robyn Renee Hasty is no stranger to outsiders, countercultures, and misfits. So it might feel a little strange for the artist to be in the midst of what’s becoming a mainstream social movement and media obsession to match, as embodied in the debut of Caitlyn Jenner. A new exhibition featuring Hasty’s most recent work, opening Thursday at Brooklyn’s Pioneer Works, couldn’t be more timely. But even with a newfound frank (but still sometimes fraught) discussion of the transgender experience going mainstream, Hasty’s nude portraits of transgender, gender non-conforming, and cisgender people are still subversive.
‘Untitled,’ photo by Bobson Sukhdeo Mohanlall on view at 1:54 Contemporary African Art Fair (Photo from 1:54 website and courtesy of Axis Gallery)
If there’s anything to say about Frieze that speaks to the massive annual art fair as a whole is that it’s wholly impossible to see everything. Last year, there were 190 participating art dealers from all over the globe. And that’s just at Frieze alone. What’s more the art fair brings so many art people into the city and out of their studios in “far-flung” neighborhoods to Manhattan, that several satellite festivities coincide with the event in places other than the Frieze tent. So take your pick and get ready for two parts shmoozing and feigning interest and one part legitimate enthrallment!