About Allyson Shiffman

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Sochi Is Over and All We Got Was These Not-So-Lousy T-Shirts

Shelter Serra's "Dripping Rings" and Ray Geary's "Happy Putin" (Photo: Courtesy of Currentee)

Shelter Serra’s “Dripping Rings” and Ray Geary’s “Happy Putin” (Photo: Courtesy of Currentee)

If the Sochi Olympics have taught us anything, it’s that Russia is a strange, strange place. On the flipside, putting the spotlight on Russia and its political and social climate has brought about brave reactions from those advocating for freedom of speech, acceptance of diversity and the wellbeing of stray dogs.
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Will Fussell Of Mood Rings Settled For This Tattoo Instead Of an Iggy Pop One

Welcome to Why That Tat?, in which we bring you the origin stories of the best/strangest/most hilarious/bizarre tattoos we encounter.

Will Fussell's mantra

Will Fussell’s mantra. (Photo: Allyson Shiffman)

When we last chatted with Will Fussell, the charming frontman of the band Mood Rings, we discovered he lives on a futon in his manager’s apartment and enjoys wearing turtlenecks. What we did not discover is that he has this totally awesome tattoo on his wrist. Yesterday evening, shortly before Will dug into a quinoa bowl at Dimes in LES, we asked our favorite eccentric weirdo, “Why that tat?”
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Starving Artist? NewPatron Will Find You a Medici

Michael Ellis working on a photorealistic painting. It takes 3-6 months for Ellis to complete a piece

Michael Ellis working on a photorealistic painting. It takes 3-6 months for Ellis to complete a piece. (Photo: Courtesy of NewPatron)

Unless you can survive without sleep or food or your parents have lots and lots of money, it’s tough being an emerging artist in New York these days. Studio spaces are expensive, the fancy gallerists and dealers don’t give a shit about you and neither do their patrons. On the flip side, unless you’re a gazillionare and/or have a formal art education, buying art in New York can be a rather daunting endeavor (the fancy gallerists and dealers don’t give a shit about you either).
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Aim to See Steven Soderbergh’s School-Shooting Play and Guns: A Cabaret

Screen shot 2014-02-18 at 5.49.16 PMGuns seem to be trending in New York theaters this spring. Yes, guns.

Steven Soderbergh may have retired from the world of filmmaking (after setting the LES back 100 years), but luckily that doesn’t seem to extend to the world of theater. Tickets are now  for the world premiere of the Soderbergh-directed The Library, which is set to run at The Public from March 27 to April 27 (use the code EARLY before March 25 to get your $15 discount – then use that extra cash to see a movie not directed by Soderbergh).
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We’re Wigging Out About Rob Pruitt’s Andy Warhol Sale

unnamedIf (like most living, breathing human beings) you’re a fan of Andy Warhol, set your homepage to Rob Pruitt’s eBay Store. The post-pop artist is commemorating the 27-year anniversary of the pop art founder’s death (on Feb. 22) by featuring various Warhol memorabilia on the Rob Pruitt Flea Market all week long (today’s item is an Esquire magazine from 1969 featuring Warhol drowning in a Campbell’s soup can on its cover). All items come from Pruitt’s personal stock of nicknacks and oddities.

Will John Waters finally be able to cross “Andy Warhol’s old prescription bottle for Obetrol diet pills” off of his wish list? Don’t let him down, Rob!

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The Bowery Riots Have One Eye On the Past, One Eye On Tonight’s Show at Cameo

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Justin Dean Thomas and TJ Rosenthal of The Bowery Riots

As one might infer from their name, which comes from marrying the 19th Century gang the Bowery Boys with the Astor Place Riot of 1849, The Bowery Riots are not your run-of-the-mill downtown New York indie band. Their garage-punk-meets-blues aesthetic (both sonically and visually) comes from a heartfelt respect for the New York bands of yore and the history of the neighborhood they still call home (that neighborhood is now called “Nolita”). And it certainly doesn’t hurt their street cred that Andy Rourke of The Smith produced their first EP.
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Because You’re Good Enough, You’re Smart Enough: Give Yourself a Doggone Trophy

LISA'S CHOICE: Grand Prize Trophy for The Person Who Is Better Thank Everyone Here  Photo: Phil Buehler

Grand Prize Trophy for The Person Who Is Better Than Everyone Here (Photo: Phil Buehler)

These days, kids get a trophy just for showing up, so why shouldn’t we? At this month’s Lisa’s Choice Awards at the Pine Box Rock Shopeveryone goes home a winner, no matter how unexceptional, boring, untalented or otherwise crappy they may be! Attendees are invited to do anything they’re proud of (dance, sing, tell jokes, breathe, gaze around the room awkwardly, eat an empanada) at which point they’re awarded a FREE certificate and the guarantee of a boost in self-esteem. And if you’re really feeling shitty about yourself, you can go ahead and shell out between $140 and $400 for a personalized mirrored trophy. What could possibly bring you more self-fulfillment?
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Now That Hanksy’s the Shit, Buy One of His $1,500 James Franco Toilet Seats

Hanksy toilet seats. Photo: courtesy of Krause Gallery

“Gatspee” and not “Leonard DiCraprio”? (Photo courtesy of Krause Gallery)

If you hate Bansky, you probably abhor Hanksy – his cheap viral, pun-enthused knockoff. But say what you will, the Bushwick-based parody artist knows how to make a quick buck with minimal effort, and there’s only one way we feel about that — jealous.
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Tonight, Digest Some Words That Are Sexier Than ‘Be Mine’

1902940_10153861171425192_1724211845_nFor those of you preparing for the spoken word romances of our dystopian future society a la Spike Jonze’s Her, we’ve got two Valentine’s Day happenings you don’t need a physical body to enjoy.

First, from 7 to 9 p.m. at 384 Broome Street, The Poetry Brothel is offering what its very own iteration of the “quickie,” in which you get to sidle up beside the “Poetry Whore” of your choosing and bask in 15 minutes worth of his or her sweet, sweet spoken words. In this case, physical existence doesn’t hurt the experience, as there are calligraphist body painters present to leave you with a parting gift.
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