Art + Culture

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Know Wolf Eyes From Lazyeyes Lest You Get Stink Eye

wolfeyeslazyeyes
Bands Apart is a new weekly column wherein we outline the sometimes vast differences between bands with not-so-different names. Soak up this super important knowledge and we guarantee you’ll impress your friends, bore your mother, and alienate your dog. Up this week: Lazyeyes versus Wolf Eyes.
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Up Now: Artwork the Late Mayor of Williamsburg Kept Close By

Ray Abeyta's early work is on display at Littlefield throughout the Motorcycle Film Fest (Photo: Nicole Disser)

Ray Abeyta’s early work is on display at Littlefield throughout the Motorcycle Film Fest (Photo: Nicole Disser)

There’s plenty to see and do at the third annual Motorcycle Film Festival, which kicked off Wednesday. Kid Congo & the Pink Monkey Birds are playing an after party, the “lost film crew” of Easy Rider will convene for a revealing discussion, and– in case the name wasn’t hint enough– there are a variety of motorcycle-themed films to attend. But while you’re knocking back beers and mingling in the Littlefield atrium between screenings, look around. You’ll probably notice some small but intriguing paintings. On display are early works by artist Ray Abeyta, the late “Mayor of Williamsburg,” and close friend of the film festival.
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Go Hear Kevin Beasley Heighten the Sounds of the High Line

Kevin Beasley

Kevin Beasley

At 6pm this evening, tomorrow, and Thursday on the 12th Avenue Overlook of the High Line, sculptural artist Kevin Beasley wants you to stop and smell the roses — and while you’re at it, give them a good listen, too. To assist you with this sensory challenge, Beasley spent his summer months traversing the old West Side Line track, recording sounds – “natural, human, and machine” – that he’ll present tonight as “Untitled Stanzas: Staff/Un/Site.”
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Rashaad Newsome’s ‘Coming Out’ Ball in Bushwick Was Insane

(Photo: Nicole Disser)

(Photo: Nicole Disser)

I made a couple of mistakes when I first spoke with Rashaad Newsome—  a visual and performance artist who makes digital and video work largely inspired by vogue– ahead of his third King of Arms art ball. In these situations I usually shrug and move on, but what I assumed were slight missteps actually indicated a larger misunderstanding on my part of some essential tenets of ballroom culture. Thankfully the King of Arms, held Sunday night in Bushwick, offered an introduction to the pillars of vogue for many newcomers like myself, while pushing the medium beyond its bounds for the old school ballroom crew in attendance.
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M. Lamar’s Black Radical Impulse Brings Together Metal and Devil-Worshipping Blues

(Photo: Serena Jara)

(Photo: Serena Jara)

It’s an interesting experience being in a public place with M. Lamar. Even in Bushwick, you can feel every eye in the room traveling back and forth between his long, stick-straight black hair, his various spikes, and jet black clothing. The artist– who performed Destruction, his multi-faceted theatrical black-metal opera last night at Issue Project Room— is probably like no one you’ve ever seen before. For one, M. Lamar truly lives his art (which is like nothing else out there at the moment), as evidenced in his speech and appearance: he drapes himself in the darkest blacks and speaks with passionate conviction. “Lately, I’ve been calling myself a ‘negro gothic devil-worshipping free black man in the blues tradition,'” he explained. It’s actually a modest description of what Lamar’s all about.

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How the ‘Fuck Paintings’ of Betty Tompkins Landed in Art Jail

"Ersatz Kiss #1" by Betty Tompkins (Photo: Nicole Disser)

left, “Ersatz Kiss #1” and right, “Masturbation Painting #9” by Betty Tompkins (Photo: Nicole Disser)

Betty Tompkins spent decades working as, in her own words, “your typical rejected artist.” On and off again since 1969, she’s painted up-close-and-personal images of sex– literally, contact between nether regions, penetration, and other intimate moments. But it wasn’t until more than 30 years later that her work, more specifically her “fuck paintings,” began getting more attention than shame. Recently, the artist has revived the subject that inspired her the most and continues to evolve her process, as seen in her latest work now on view at BHQFU‘s project space and gallery FUG (Foundation University Gallery) in the East Village, as part of Tompkins’ solo show, Real Ersatz. 

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Royal Young Taps into Death, the Damned, and ‘Lost Generation’ for Lush Doom

Royal Young in his old habitat (Photo: Nicole Disser)

Royal Young returns to his old habitat (Photo: Nicole Disser)

Royal Young is currently living in his grandparents’ attic in Long Island. While that may not sound like the most inspiring place for a 30-year-old writer and now painter (especially one who’s spent almost his entire life living in the city) the journalist and author of Fame Shark seems to be loving it. “New York City sucks, let’s be real,” he laughed. Royal only recently admitted defeat, something he still seems to have a hard time believing. Nevertheless, his early retirement has been a productive one as evidenced by a series large, colorful paintings, currently on view at Figureworks gallery in Williamsburg as part of Lush Doom.

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Will the New Sheen Center Be the Catholic 92nd Street Y?


Historically, arts and the Roman Catholic Church have enjoyed a fruitful working relationship. Good branding, divine inspiration – whatever you wanna call it, most will agree that the church’s patronage ranks as one of the nobler pursuits done in the name of a higher being. Today, the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of New York continues this fine tradition with the grand opening of the Sheen Center for Thought & Culture in Greenwich Village.
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A Guide to the Most Affordable Art at the ‘Affordable Art Fair’

Eric Guo, $400

Eric Guo, $400

There could be no better statement on the status-driven nature of collecting art than use of the term “affordable’ in describing the art for sale at the 20th annual Affordable Art Fair, running this weekend at The Metropolitan Pavilion. Affordable is defined as something “reasonably priced.” In this particular instance, that means art with a price tag ranging between $100 and $10,000, which begs the question (as it pertains to contemporary art), what the fuck even is “reasonable”?
Is it the price tag in relation to the cost of the materials (srsly, there ain’t enough gold leaf in the world)? Perhaps, it relates to the creative originality of the work, which is a whole different kettle of fish. More likely, it’s something closer to the economic value attached to an artist’s name. This is nothing new. The intersection of art and commerce has long been a topic of heated debate. Yet still, adding insult to injury, this word – affordable.
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Founder of Bushwick Art Crit Group to Open Gallery Dedicated to ‘Subversive’ Art


“This gallery is my baby,” explained Christopher Stout, founder of the Bushwick Art Crit Group. This fall, Stout will host his inaugural exhibition as a gallery owner at his new space, the first of several anticipated art institutions inside an East Williamsburg warehouse space. BACG is “a not-for-profit community resource for everybody,” Stout explained. “But it felt like it was increasingly challenging– in a negative way– to make programming that was about everyone.” In order to host exhibitions that relate to specific subjects that Stout is more personally invested in, without having to worry about “alienating everyone else,” he said, “it really needed to be separate and become its own thing.”
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