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The Museum of Interesting Things Is a Roving ‘Speakeasy’ Run By a Quirky Curator

How did we watch films at home before Netflix and DVD? And before VHS? Denny Daniel will show you at his Museum of Interesting Things. This “speakeasy museum” pops up weekly at various locations in the city to show how our current-day technology is based on earlier inventions, often going all the way back to the late 19th century. From 1960s solar-powered walkie-talkies to carousel animations and parts of the original World War II Enigma machine, Daniel has collected a wide array of antiques and curiosa.

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Bowery Wall Tagged After Getting Mural By Controversial Pick, David Choe

(Photo courtesy of Shannon Barbour)

Taggers wasted no time marking up the Bowery wall’s newest mural.

The wall, on Houston Street and Bowery, has featured work by artists like Keith Haring and Kenny Scharf in the past and is now host to David Choe’s mural, completed last week.

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Artists & Fleas Brings Williamsburg to Soho With a New Market

After a decade and a half as a staple of the Williamsburg flea market scene, Artists & Fleas is opening its fourth location, smack dab in the middle of Soho, on the corner of Prince and Broadway. Look out, Prada.

Founded by Brooklyn-based Amy Abrams and Ronen Glimer in 2003, A&F allows independent artists and designers to sell their wares (or wears. . .get it?), resulting in a hodge podge of hip stuff: vintage clothing, jewelry, leather products, art items, handbags, food, and, of course, beard oil. 

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This Museum Has ‘Expanded Visions’ For Queering and Preserving Art

Installation view, Expanded Visions: Fifty Years of Collecting, at Leslie-Lohman Museum of Gay and Lesbian Art, 2017. (photo: Riya Lerner)

Despite the suffocating amount of luxury stores, there are still some small pockets of Soho that retain the neighborhood’s old gritty art spirit. As you pass The Performing Garage, where experimental troupe The Wooster Group and others still rehearse and perform, you’ll now encounter an new and improved iteration of the Leslie-Lohman Museum of Gay and Lesbian Art. After lengthy renovations, the museum has reopened and nearly doubled in size with Expanded Visions: Fifty Years of Collecting, an exhibition rich in the history and scope of queerness and the artistic expression surrounding it.

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Williamsburg’s Dokonoko Launches Debut Women’s Line at Soho Pop-Up

(Photo courtesy of Dokonoko)

Dokonoko, a new Williamsburg-based womenswear brand, launched its debut line last night in Manhattan. For the next three months, you can peruse the label’s colorful, funky pieces at the new Soho location of Bulletin, the local-designer showcase that also has a store in Williamsburg.

Dokonoko was launched by Tokyo-born graphic designer Reina Sugiyama and her fellow New Yorker Lacey Voss, who has designed for American Outfitters and Victoria’s Secret. The brand describes itself as “a play on many things: Japanese and American cultures, femininity and feminism, identity and stereotypes, and the seriousness of the retail world.” The quintessential “Dokonoko woman,” according to the brand’s manifesto, had an international upbringing (Sugiyama was a globe-trotting diplomat’s daughter) and “found her freedom to be truly herself” in New York City.

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NADA to See Here: Best of the New Art Dealers Alliance Fair

The annual NADA New York art fair kicked off yesterday in Soho. With a new space (Skylight Clarkson North) and a new time of year (Armory Week), NADA remains a cacophony of serious art enthusiasts and neophytes. Among the 100 exhibitors are a host of downtown galleries like Jack Hanley Gallery, Regina Rex, Rawson Projects, Alden Projects, and Brennan & Griffin. In classic style, nearly everyone was dressed in an all-consuming black. Here’s a look at what was on display this year.

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This Week: Art Fair Affairs, Club Kid Portraits, and Anything But Trash

(image via Volta NY)

Volta NY
Opening Wednesday March 1 at Pier 90, 7 pm to 10 pm. On view through March 5.

Now is the time for art fairs aplenty, and Volta NY is just one of many. Volta stands out singularly (ha) because they focus on solo artist projects only. Though they’re all about solo stuff, by no means are they taking a minimalist route. At Pier 90 you can catch not only the water, but the work of artists from 38 nations shown by 96 galleries and art spaces across 5 continents and 36 cities. You needn’t be a math whiz to figure out that is a lot of art to place your eyes on. Only not literally, that could cause vision issues and probably a lot of side-eyeing. If you stop by on the first night, it’s free to enter, but any other day it’ll cost you $25.

This is Volta’s tenth year of existence, so you can expect they’re pulling out all the stops this time. This week you can also catch The Armory Show (ticket bundles are available, which get you into Volta and Armory) and SPRING/BREAK, in a new location in Times Square. If you wish, you can pop around the piers all weekend for a veritable art adventure. The art doesn’t stop there: the Architectural Digest Design Show will be from March 16-19, also on the pier. And we can only wonder: will The Mars Volta be at Volta NY?

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BRUJAS Gather Around a Caldron of ‘Tricky, Politically-Incorrect Ideas’

Herbal Workshop with Antonia Perez, Installation shot (image courtesy of Recess)

Herbal Workshop with Antonia Perez, Installation shot (image courtesy of Recess)

On a chilly but pleasant afternoon, a group of people sat at tables in Soho art space Recess, poring over strips of film. One person scratches designs onto a strip, another adds metallic star-shaped stickers. Croatia-born artist Željka Blakšić, who also uses the name Gita Blak, has been conducting what she calls a “direct filmmaking workshop.” In it, 16mm film strips are directly altered through the use of collage, drawing, scratching, and other tactics. Each person’s customized film strip is individual, but soon they will all be assembled into one motley creation, fed into a projector, and screened for all its creators to behold.

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About Those Geodesic Domes That Have Popped Up in Soho

(Photos: Daniel Maurer)

(Photos: Daniel Maurer)

Our love of geodesic domes is such that we’re willing to travel uptown for them, so imagine our excitement when we noticed a trio of them being erected at the corner of Varick and Canal, near the Holland Tunnel. OMG, could these be the orgy domes of the future? A new pied–à–terre for Jack White’s brother? The latest iteration of PS1’s art dome? A long-overdue Buckminster Fuller museum?

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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.

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Chinese Food Stories, Dirty Drawings, and More Art This Week

(flyer via Mia Schachter / Facebook)

(flyer via Mia Schachter / Facebook)

Co//Modified: A Showcase of Design Artists
Opening Monday October 3 at The Living Gallery, 7 pm to 10 pm. One night only. 

In this one-night-only show curated by Mia Schachter, eight artists who “straddle the line of intention between utilitarian design and art” will make their way to Bushwick’s The Living Gallery to show their work. Many of these artists make work that they predominantly try to sell as useful objects, like hyperstylized papier-mâché percussion instruments, ceramic mugs or pots, and embroidery. This show seeks to lay their salesperson spirit to rest momentarily so they can merely show off their creations as art. But if you’d like to go home with a piece or two, you’ll be able to do so as well.

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Many Marys, and a Broome Street Salon and More Performance Picks

(image via Future Forms / Facebook)

(image via Future Forms / Facebook)

WEDNESDAY

Future Forms
Wednesday, September 28 at Throne Watches, 8 pm: FREE. 

The future may not be looking very great for the country/society as a whole, but it’s looking okay for the four hosts of this recurring comedy show: Mary Houlihan recently went viral for her hilarious and biting interview with Martin Shkreli, “space prince” Julio Torres was recently hired as an SNL writer, Sam Taggart was named one of Brooklyn’s funniest people, and Joe Rumrill‘s face is currently comedian Tig Notaro‘s Twitter avatar. While they’re all certainly busy with all this and more, they still find time to gather in this Williamsburg watch store and host a comedy show.

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