We waited with bated breath last week for what we expected to be an epic reopening of Lit Lounge. Last month the bar, which is nearing its end of days in the East Village, posted on Facebook that “after a much needed deep cleaning and even more crucial maintenance and repairs,” the place would reopen on Friday, September 11. But that date came and went, and the gates at the downtown institution remained down.
When Lit Lounge’s co-owner Erik Foss announced a month ago that the East Village institution would close after 13 years, we thought the place would have at least a few more wild nights in store if not the goodbye party of the decade. But after a particularly unseemly incident (even for Lit) a couple of weeks ago, the bar unceremoniously shuttered without so much as a nod and a “later, guys.”
Lit, the onetime “place where the Strokes hang out” and the only place that was Lit before a hundred places were “the new Lit,” is turning 16. In New York City nightlife years, that’s about 95, so who can blame the East Village bar for entering its teenage/golden years with a killer b-day party. Sure, the den of depravity atop a cavern of chaos has seen some changes over the years, but as you can see from the Friday the 13th-themed flyer, it can still draw a virtual dream team of downtown scenesters, including Ben Cho (Dima Dubson’s right-hand man during Morrissey night at Sway), Eric Duncan of Rub N Tug, Lit owner Erik Foss, and many more. It all happens Monday, Feb. 23, from 10pm to 4am — if nothing else, go chat up Paul Sevigny so you have a chance in hell of getting into his new place.
Woody Allen wannabes mingled with finance types in cowboy boots and a few fellas who looked like they could be Keith Richards’s little brothers last night at at the opening of “All | Together | Different,” an exhibition celebrating nearly 100 artists working on the Lower East Side.
“I recognize a lot of faces here from the East Village in the ’80s,” said John Lloyd, a painter who was not featured in the show. “It’s good to see so many old farts still looking quirky and funky. It’s a wonderful reminder of what was going on. We took it for granted and it disappeared, but it’s good to see that everyone is still around.” The camaraderie was palpable, like a high school reunion with just as much booze and half the awkwardness.
Rostarr, the artist who did a mural for our pop-up newsroom a little over a year ago, has taken things to a whole new level — the rooftop level of The Standard, High Line, to be exact. On Friday, friends of Romon Kimin gathered in the hotel’s gift shop to raise their champagne glasses at his epic new work covering the ground of Le Bain, the hotel’s 18th-floor lounge.
For better or for worse, we live in a world in which things you text to one person have the potential to get screen captured and blasted to their 2,475 followers. That’s precisely what happened to Lit Lounge co-owner Erik Foss following this week’s “Lit Mondays.”
We’ve been hearing rumblings that the folks behind Lit, which just celebrated 12 years in the East Village, were working on a new bar in the McKibbin lofts. Back in December, Erik Foss said those were just rumors, but now he’s let the cat out of the bag.
After Fuse Gallery closed behind Lit Lounge, owner Erik Foss gave us a preview glimpse into the new back room, which will now hold a pool table, games, seating, and rotating installations on the wall (unlike when the space was a gallery, the artwork won’t be for sale and will be covered over by each new artist). Now the space has a name (Fuse Room) and an opening date (Wednesday, Oct. 16). The launch party for “Rollers” (the debut installation from Ivory Serra, BÄST, and Lance De Los Reyes) looks like a blast (a BLÄST?): there’s an open vodka bar from 9 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. and DJs include Steve Lewis, Jonathan Toubin, and Prince Terrence.
For the serious part, we go over to Foss: “We at Fuse and Lit felt that making a change was the best way to ensure our place in downtown culture and keep our vision of exposing the masses to things they would probably not normally get to see in person,” he writes in the invite, “and also to continue to help artists.”