When Bret Easton Ellis strode into a Midtown auditorium for his TimesTalk last night, I was almost surprised to hear the enthusiastic applause. After all, his just-published first collection of essays, White, has provoked reviews with headlines like “Bret Easton Ellis’s Non-Fiction Is Lazy, Boring” and “Bret Easton Ellis’s Book ‘White’ and Why You Don’t Need to Read It.” Add to that, a New Yorker interview about Trump that was so awkward that a friend forwarded it to me with an “Oof.” For a moment, it seemed like the author of American Psycho—the writer who “was canceled before cancelling was a thing,” as fellow provocateur Bari Weiss recently put it— was about to truly be canceled in much the same way his most famous novel was ditched by its original publisher.
With a slowdown of the L line beginning April 26, Manhattan residents are protesting the MTA’s plan to cut around 17 stops from the bus line that runs across 14th Street and through Alphabet City.
The proposed plan would turn the M14 A/D bus, which crosses 14th and runs up and down Avenues A and D, into a Select Bus Service (SBS) line. Certain local stops will be gone as soon as June or July, with every other stop in the Lower East Side being eliminated.
A marching band stumbled into Sage Kitchen on April 2, welcoming the Persian-Israeli restaurant to the neighborhood with some NoHo cheer. The long-time catering company opened its first brick-and-mortar store on the Bowery this month, bringing its apricot-fig jam, mango relish, and pickled fennel to a restaurant and marketplace.
If you thought Persepolis was the only work of Iranian culture to make waves in recent years, Emruz Festival is hoping to change that. Happening over two long weekends, April 19-21 and 26-28, at the Spectrum performance space in the Brooklyn Tech Triangle, the inaugural festival will consist of musical performances, theater productions, and short films by independent Iranian artists living inside and outside of the United States.
Emruz means “today” in Farsi, and the festival’s organizers are interested in asking “What are we today, right now?” and “What is happening with us as immigrants in this country?” said theater director/choreographer Shadi Ghaheri. She and Iranian composer Niloufar Nourbakhsh wanted to interrogate the role of the artist in addressing these contemporary issues of identity.
They say hope floats, and while we were never quite sure what that movie title meant, we can say for certain that some of the best bars in New York City float. And if you were hoping they’d reopen, you’re in luck.
Everyone in the train car looked up in comic bewilderment as the E train glided past the platform of Roosevelt Island Station. “Due to police activity, the E train will not stop at this station,” the conductor announced. Confused and in a futile, panicked hurry, the passengers rushed out at the next stop to beat the growing crowd to the opposite platform; they would try again. It was already 3:36pm, and the Roosevelt Island Cherry Blossom Festival was well underway.
Drama gripped Museum Mile this month with heightened debates about the Sackler family’s contributions to the Met, Guggenheim…and the opioid epidemic. This weekend, the American Museum of Natural History made controversial news of its own when it was discovered that the museum had rented space to a nonprofit planning to honor Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro, nicknamed “The Trump of the Tropics,” with its Person of the Year Award.
The Hester Street Fair entered its 10th season in lovely, spring-weather style this past weekend, filling its familiar home in Seward Park with artisans, herbalists, designers, CBD pushers, vintage clothing fanciers, ceramists, queer activists, and, of course, the sweet, sweet smoke from open grills cooking up large plates of good, cheap food for the locals. Because even after all these years, the Hester Street Fair remains very much a community-oriented event, with plenty of room for the odd, the passionately niche, the delightfully DIY.
Opening Thursday, April 11 at Unix Gallery. On view through May 18.
Though many people still deny it, climate change is here to stay, and it will only get worse as time goes on. It’s even commonplace to hear people casually joke about how nothing matters because climate change is going to kill us all soon enough anyway! While it’s not quite as darkly humorous as such quips, the latest crop of work by painter Ellen de Meijer comments on the type of elite who think that sure, global warming is a thing, but I can just keep living my fancy life and everything will be fine, we’ll just adapt. Feast your eyes upon a lanky, formally-dressed man furnished with a pout and arm floaties, another large-eyed man with a hat made of newspaper, and more, and remember that global warming has no income bracket.