Before the B+B Newsroom launched, we promised you cats — and on our pop-up’s final night tomorrow, Sunday, we’re giving you Cat. That’s right: Cat Marnell. And because one East Village firebrand deserves another, we’re pairing her with photographer Richard Kern for what’s sure to be a lively discussion about pushing boundaries and pushing buttons.
You know Cat Marnell: as beauty editor at xoJane she obliterated the cliches of fashion writing with autobiographical, semi-stream-of-conscience posts that bounced between hilarious irreverence and poignant introspection. Her real talk about drugs, sexuality and life as a woman-about-town won her a legion of fascinated readers but also unnerved those who worried that her boss, Jane Pratt, was facilitating her misadventures. She moved on from that gig to contribute, briefly, to Vice and is now at work on a much buzzed-about memoir.
Richard Kern‘s most recent photography show, and his new book, Contact High, delves into similar issues of drugs and sexuality. Kern rose to underground fame during the early ’80s, directing Cinema of Transgression classics like “Manhattan Love Suicides,” starring fellow downtown deviants Nick Zedd and David Wojnarowicz. (The cover of Sonic Youth’s Evol is famously a still from his movie Submit to Me). In the ’90s, Kern honed a distinctive style of portraiture: the recently published Shot by Kern (his fourth book with Taschen) collects some 300 of his playful, revealing photographs of young women from his travels around the world.
Join us Sunday at 7 p.m. — at 155 Grand Street, off of Bedford Avenue, in Williamsburg — as these two trailblazers bring their signature rawness and honesty to the Newsroom. The discussion will be moderated by Porochista Khakpour, a former East Villager whose author photo was shot by Kern before the publication of her acclaimed novel Sons and Other Flammable Objects. The event is free and your questions are encouraged; just let us know you’re coming.