Monthly Archives: November 2019

  • Serve a Full Thanksgiving Meal on an L Train? Only in New York City!

    Jodell Lewis, a local comedian, wanted to do something different for Thanksgiving this year, so he and a few friends came up with an elaborate idea: a full meal on the subway.

    After months of planning, they decided to go ahead with it, hosting a Thanksgiving dinner — bird and all — on a Brooklyn-bound L train. Video of the meal surfaced on social media and almost immediately went viral.

    The New York City subway is no stranger to wild stunts, like the annual No Pants Subway Ride or the time a man riding in a car, dressed as a turkey, carved and ate an actual turkey, or when two people set up a Ping-Pong match.

    In videos of the meal, Jordell’s friends and collaborators and surprised strangers shared a meal of turkey, collard greens and macaroni and cheese. “A lot of people haven’t had black Thanksgiving,” Jordell, who is African-American, said. So, the idea, he said, was to “make people feel like we’re inviting you to our home.” Jodell, who works with a group of New York-based comedians and artists, said his aim was to “feed hungry New Yorkers and give back.”

    The entire journey took about an hour, taking the group from Union Square all the way to Rockaway Parkway. There, they cleaned up and gave some of their leftovers to the homeless.

    “It was amazing to provide a classic New York City moment,” Jordell said. “Nothing else can compare to being able to eat Thanksgiving with random strangers on a New York City train,” he said. “That’s what people come to our city for.” LOCALIKE’s comment: ❤️
    Click here to watch a short video about the dinner: youtu.be/pude-VCbI_Q

  • Every Day I Pray for Love

    Explore new work by world-famous Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama at the David Zwirner gallery on 537 West 20th Street in Chelsea. The exhibition features new paintings, new sculptures, an immersive installation, and the debut of a new infinity room.

    One of the most influential artists of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries, Kusama occupies a unique position within recent art history. Since her early assimilation of pop art and minimalism in the 1960s, she has created a highly personal oeuvre that resonates with a global audience. Distinctly recognizable, her works frequently deploy repetitive elements—such as dots—to evoke both microscopic and macroscopic universes.

    The gallery debuts Infinity Mirrored Room - Dancing Lights That Flew Up to the Universe 2019, which offers an immersive and poetic experience of endless space. The continuous mirroring of the flickering lights ultimately underscores Kusama’s determination throughout her art to convey an “eternal unlimited universe and the eternity of interrelationships.”

    The exhibition also introduces new paintings in the artist’s iconic My Eternal Soul series. Created in a more intimate format on view for the first time in the United States, these works are singular explorations of line and form. Minutely detailed, yet with bold explorations of color, they are at once abstract and figurative. Framed by the paintings and addressing a similar dialectic is a large, new floor-based constellation composed of almost a hundred different stainless-steel elements. Viewers navigate an all-encompassing environment of organic-looking, cloud-like forms whose reflections envelop its audience and reinforce an impression of perpetuity and infinity.

    The exhibition is free of charge and open to the public until December 14th, 2019. No tickets are required—the show is first come, first entry. It is extremely popular. The average wait time is usually more than 2 hours to enter into the exhibition.
    More info: davidzwirner.com

  • Inside The Renovated And Expanded MoMA

    This past June, just as prime summer tourist season was about to kick in, the Museum of Modern Art, the city's third most popular museum with more than three million visitors a year, closed its doors for four months. The reason? A $450 million expansion, construction, and renovation project that not only increased the gallery space by 40,000 square feet or 30% (and "other" public space by 25%), but also entailed a complete rethinking, reorganizing, and rehanging of MoMA's vaunted permanent collection. And now the job is done! On October 21st MoMA is open once again. Here's a first look at the reboot.

    That dramatically-lit canopy jutting out over the entrance on 53rd Street is new, but it's not until you enter the building that you notice how different everything is on the ground floor. The lobby itself is pretty much just a big empty space now, save for a new high tech coat room—there are no tickets; you enter your phone number on the touch screen and get a text with all the necessary info—which the staff says will speed up this most dreaded of all MoMA lines. To the east is a new Member's Desk, and the entrance to the beloved, unchanged Sculpture Garden.

    To the west, there's a large new ticket-buying area, which now includes a bank of electronic kiosks, as well as a few spots to lounge about while overlooking the stylish new subterranean gift shop, which features a two-story "wall of books." Keep going and you'll discover the two new free-to-the-public galleries at the lobby level, called 1 North and 2 North, showcasing emerging artists.

    On floors two, four, five, and six is where the increase in gallery space really hits you. The soaring Atrium is intact but basically everything else has expanded west, and you can tell you're entering new territory whenever you pass through a black-framed entranceway. There are an extraordinary number of (re)discoveries to be made on these floors, especially now that they've included many recent acquisitions by African, African-American, Asian, and Latin American artists, as well as more work by women artists in general.

    There are other new exhibition spaces throughout, including a performance "Studio" (on the 4th floor) that features a wall of windows and an engaging sound installation. Accessible via a separate stairwell or elevator, is the new Terrace Cafe, notable for its outdoor tables.

  • Grab The Train At Grace Jones, Get Off At Yoko Ono: Exploring NYC's New 'City Of Women’ Map

    If you look at a map of the United States, you might think that only men live here. Writer Rebecca Solnit once said, “The peaks of our mountains sound like a board of directors of an old corporation.”

    And nowhere is manscaping more on display than in New York City, where there are 200 plus statues and landmarks named after men in history, including the Lincoln Center, Columbus Circle and Rockefeller Center, to name a few. Meanwhile, the most prominent woman is the Statue of Liberty, which isn’t even based on a real person.

    The lack of women on display sparked the idea behind the “City of Women” map, which renames each of New York’s 424 subway stops after famous women who lived, worked or reveled there. The map was created by Solnit and geographer Joshua Jelly-Schapiro.

    “Our map was also designed as a kind of intervention in a conversation that's really picked up steam in the last few years about gender and public space and the ways in which our names and our public spaces do honor and welcome a certain segment of the population that may not feel as welcoming to others,” Jelly-Schapiro says.

    The women on this map run the gamut, Jelly-Schapiro says. In Queens, the subway stop near the U.S. Open stadium is named after Venus and Serena Williams. Out in Bayside, Queens, the map honors the three ladies of seminal hip-hop group Salt-N-Pepa.

    “We wanted it to be a mix,” Jelly-Schapiro. “We wanted to have the politicians — the Elizabeth Holtzmans or Bella Abzugs — but also absolutely entertainers, singers, community activists, curators.” Jelly-Schapiro says this map is really so powerful in making women more visible because the map of the subway “is the map of New York City that New Yorkers know best. It's fabulous fun now all the time to think about giving directions or getting around the city by saying, 'I'm going to get on the train at Grace Jones and get off at Yoko Ono,' ” he says.

    The map has had an impact on people of all genders, not just women, which Jelly-Schapiro says he didn’t expect. “It's shown me the sort of the power of representation and the ways in which it matters to see ourselves and people we recognize and admire recognized in public,” he says.

    More information: nonstopmetropolis.com/theposter