This Week in New York Insider's Guide to Arts & Culture in New York City Since 2001


Chuck Palahniuk will be signing copies of Adjustment Day at BookCon

Chuck Palahniuk will be signing copies of Adjustment Day at BookCon

Javits Center
655 West 34th St. at 11th Ave.
Saturday, June 2, $45, and Sunday, June 3, $40 (kids six to twelve $10 per day)

As BookExpo America became more and more an industry trade show, ReedPOP started BookCon, two days of literary events at the Javits Center organized for book lovers not necessarily in the business. Taking place June 2 and 3, BookCon includes panel discussions, Q&As, autograph sessions (must be digitally ticketed in advance), screenings, quiz shows, podcasts, sneak peeks at new books, and more, divided into Kids & Family, Adult & Fiction, YA, Sci-Fi & Fantasy, and Aspiring Writers. Among the 2018 participants are Amanda Lovelace, Angie Thomas, Brad Meltzer, Cassandra Clare, Charlaine Harris, Chuck Palahniuk, StacyPlays, Trista Mateer, David Baldacci, Holly Black, Kiersten White, Jacqueline Woodson, Jason Reynolds, Kami Garcia, Marie Lu, Marissa Meyer, Sandra Brown, Tahereh Mafi, Walter Mosley, Megan Abbott, and many others. Below are only some of the highlights. (Full disclosure: In another part of my life, I work in children’s book publishing.)

Saturday, June 2
Marching Along with Congressman John Lewis, with John Lewis, Andrew Aydin, and Afua Richardson, Downtown Stage, 12 noon

Love Them More: Taye Diggs and Shane Evans, moderated by Jason Reynolds, Room 1E10, 12:30

Refugee Writers on Refugee Lives, with Viet Thanh Nguyen, Thi Bui, Porochista Khakpour, Joseph Azam, and Novuyo Tshuma, moderated by Ingrid Rojas Contreras, Room 1E16, 1:45

Social Justice Warriors: Redefining Youthful Rebellion, with DeRay Mckesson, Angie Thomas, Jacqueline Woodson, and Jason Reynolds, moderated by Kwame Alexander, Room 1E10, 3:00

Spotlight on Diane Guerrero, with Diane Guerrero, moderated by Cristina Arreola, Downtown Stage, 3:15

Steven Levenson, Benj Pasek, Justin Paul, and Val Emmich will discuss the making of the Dear Evan Hansen novel at BookCon

Steven Levenson, Benj Pasek, Justin Paul, and Val Emmich will discuss the making of the Dear Evan Hansen novel at BookCon

Sunday, June 3
President Bill Clinton & James Patterson / The President Is Missing, with President Bill Clinton and James Patterson, Main Stage, 11:00 am

Dear Evan Hansen: The Novel, with Steven Levenson, Benj Pasek, Justin Paul, and Val Emmich, moderated by Crystal Bell, Room 1E10, 12:15

PBS: The Great American Read, with Veronica Roth, Daniel José Older, Glynnis MacNicol, and Yahdon Israel, Main Stage, 2:15

RE-orientation: LGBTQ Creators of Mass Media, Culture, and the Stories People Want to Read, with Emily Jordan, Damon Suede, Dhonielle Clayton, Harper Miller, Heidi Heilig, and Mackenzi Lee, Room 1E16, 2:30

Beyond Books, with Zach King, Elizabeth Acevedo, and Tiffany Jackson, moderated by Sarah Enni, Room 1E16, 3:30


secret society of the sisterhood

Green-Wood Cemetery Chapel Steps
Fifth Ave. & Twenty-Fifth St.
Tuesday, May 29, $25-$30, 7:00 - 11:00 pm

The Secret Society of the Sisterhood is making its New York City debut on the night of the full moon, May 29, at historic Green-Wood Cemetery in Brooklyn. Dubbed “An Evening of Storytelling for Women and Fierce Allies of Women,” the show is hosted by BanterGirl founder Trish Nelson, a self-identified producer, performer, writer, and waitress who hopes “that other women across the land will be able to see that no matter where you come from, or where you currently are in life, you do not have to wait around for someone else to give you permission to execute your dreams.” The theme of the May 29 event is “Soooo... THAT happened!,” with actress and poet Amber Tamblyn, writer and activist Lorri Davis, bestselling author Dhonielle Clayton, and comedian Ayanna Dookie sharing true tales. There will also be live music by Kaki King and a song by Treya Lam, visual art by Aditi Damle, Rebekah Harris, and Marguerite Dabaie, and a dance party led by DJ Tikka Masala. Proceeds from the festivities will go to Girls Write Now, which provides mentoring programs, college prep courses, reading series, digital exhibitions, workshops, and more to empower young women. So you’re not going to want to miss this opportunity not only to hear and see cool things — it all takes place under candlelight — but also to get to hang out at an amazing cemetery during a full moon. We already can’t wait to tell people, “Soooo... THAT happened!”


Maggie Gyllenhaal will be at the Vulture Festival to discuss The Deuce and four other projects

Maggie Gyllenhaal will be at the Vulture Festival to discuss The Deuce and four other projects

Milk Studios (and other venues)
450 West Fifteenth St. between Ninth & Tenth Aves.
Saturday, May 18, and Sunday, May 19, free - $160

New York magazine’s fifth annual Vulture Festival takes place this weekend at Milk Studios and other locations, celebrating pop culture. Below are only some of the nearly three dozen events that encompass film, music, comedy, art, podcasts, books, and more; all tickets include complimentary access to the Vulture Lounge following the event. Among the other participants are Julianna Margulies, Rachel Bloom, Adam Pally, Sutton Foster, Hilary Duff, Debi Mazar, Darren Star, Wendy Williams, Johnny Knoxville, Cameron Esposito, Marti Noxon, Rachael Ray, Adam Platt, Michelle Yeoh, Jonathan Groff, Liev Schreiber, David Edelstein, Bo Burnham, and Wyatt Cenac.

Saturday, May 19
John Leguizamo: In Conversation, moderated by Matt Zoller Seitz, followed by a book signing, Milk Studios — Penthouse, $30, 11:30 am

One Book, One New York, One Event: Jennifer Egan in conversation with Adam Moss, Milk Studios — Studio 1, free with advance registration, 2:30

Maggie Gyllenhaal in Five Acts, conversation focusing on five of her projects, Milk Studios — Penthouse, $30, 4:00

Roxane Gay and Amber Tamblyn Present Feminist AF, with special guests Jennine Capó Crucet, Sharon Olds, and Morgan Parker, Milk Studios — Studio 1, $30, 6:45

Tracy Morgan in Hilarious Conversation, moderated by Matt Zoller Seitz, Milk Studios — AT&T Studio, $30, 8:00

Claire Danes and Jim Parsons will be at Milk Studios on May 20 to discuss their new film, A Kid Like Jake

Claire Danes and Jim Parsons will be at Milk Studios on May 20 to discuss their new film, A Kid Like Jake

Sunday, May 20
Jerry Saltz’s Masterly Tour of the Met Breuer, tour of the Met exhibit “Like Life” led by Jerry Saltz, Met Breuer, $150, 9:00 am

Boozy Brunch with Your Best Friends Gillian Jacobs, Vanessa Bayer, and Phoebe Robinson, conversation with stars of new Netflix film Ibiza, moderated by Michelle Buteau, Milk Studios — Studio 4, $30, 12 noon

Claire Danes and Jim Parsons’s A Kid Like Jake, discussion of new movie with actors Claire Danes and Jim Parsons, director Silas Howard, and writer Daniel Pearle, Milk Studios — Studio 1, $30, 2:15

In Conversation with Samantha Bee, the Full Frontal Team, and Rebecca Traister: discussion with Samantha Bee, Melinda Taub, Ashley Nicole Black, Allana Harkin, Mike Rubens, and Amy Hoggart, moderated by Rebecca Traister, Milk Studios — AT&T Studio, $40, 5:45

Ava DuVernay and the Cast of Queen Sugar, with Ava DuVernay, Rutina Wesley, Dawn-Lyen Gardner, and Kofi Siriboe, Milk Studios — Studio 4, $30, 6:45


Chitra Ganesh (b. 1975, Brooklyn, NY); Dakini Eclipse; 2018; mixed media on paper; 40 x 60 in.; courtesy of the artist

Chitra Ganesh, “Dakini Eclipse,” mixed media on paper, 2018 (courtesy of the artist)

Rubin Museum of Art
West 17th St. between Sixth & Seventh Aves.
Friday, May 4, $10-$15, 6:00 - 11:20
Programs continue through June
Exhibitions run through November 4 and January 7

The Rubin Museum is handing over much of its always fascinating programming for May and June to innovative multimedia artist and Brooklyn native Chitra Ganesh, whose “drawing-based practice brings to light narrative representations of femininity, sexuality, and power typically absent from canons of literature and art,” as explained in her artist statement. In February, the Rubin opened Ganesh’s “The Scorpion Gesture,” featuring magical large-scale animated interventions in the “Gateway to Himalayan Art” and “Masterworks” exhibitions, and “Face of the Future,” a fellowship program consisting of new works on paper and collage-based pieces by Ganesh in addition to contributions from emerging artists Maia Cruz Palileo, Nontsikelelo Mutiti, Tammy Nguyen, Jagdeep Raina, Sahana Ramakrishnan, Anuj Shrestha, and Tuesday Smillie. On Friday, May 4, Ganesh will be at the museum for “Celebrate Chitra Ganesh: A Night with DJ Rekha, Special Tours, and Performances,” including a dialogue with the art collective BUFU, remarks by Ganesh, docent-led tours of Ganesh’s two shows, a performance by Jacolby Satterwhite (Blessed Avenue), a dance party in the K2 Lounge with DJ Rekha, and a screening of Fred M. Wilcox’s 1956 sci-fi classic, Forbidden Planet, introduced by Ganesh.

Chitra Ganesh will participate in a series of special events at the Rubin Museum (photo courtesy Brooklyn Museum)

Chitra Ganesh will participate in a series of special events at the Rubin Museum (photo courtesy Brooklyn Museum)

Ganesh, a Rubin Museum Future Fellow whose “Eyes of Time” was on view at the Brooklyn Museum in 2015, has also selected the films and speakers for the Cabaret Cinema “Face of the Future” series, which continues May 11 with Gojira (Godzilla) (Ishiro Honda, 1954), introduced by Nguyen; May 18 with Ghost in the Shell (Mamoru Oshii, 1995), introduced by Ramakrishnan; June 8 with Born in Flames (Lizzie Borden, 1983), introduced by Smillie; and June 22 with Barbarella (Roger Vadim, 1968), introduced by Palileo. In addition, there will be a series of conversations pairing scientific and legal experts with artists and activists, beginning May 9 with “The Future of Feminism” with Linda Sarsour and Ganesh and continuing May 16 with “The Future of Transformation with Qasim Naqvi,” May 23 with “The Future of Evidence” with Alexis Agathocleous and Elizabeth Phelps, May 30 with “The Future of Science Fiction” with Nisi Shawl and the Otolith Group, June 6 with “The Future of #Mood” with Janelle James and Richard Friedman, June 13 with “The Future of Mythology” with Mimi Mondal and Ganesh, June 20 with “The Future of Responsibility” with the Guerrilla Girls and Ganesh, and June 27 with “The Future of Justice” with sujatha baliga and Robert Yazzie.


Sylvia Palacios Whitman, Passing Through, Sonnabend Gallery, 1977, documentation of performance (photo by Babette Mangolte)

Sylvia Palacios Whitman, “Passing Through,” documentation of performance, Sonnabend Gallery, 1977 (photo © 1977 by Babette Mangolte)

Brooklyn Museum
200 Eastern Parkway at Washington St.
Saturday, May 5, free (“David Bowie is” requires advance tickets, $25), 5:00 - 11:00

Latin art is the centerpiece of the Brooklyn Museum’s free First Saturday program on May 5. There will be live performances by Batalá New York, Flamenco Vivo Carlota Santana (Mujeres Valientes), Combo Chimbita, and Jarina De Marco (with visuals by Screaming Horses); a curator tour of “Radical Women: Latin American Art, 1960–1985” led by Catherine Morris; a community talk about the Sylvia Rivera Law Project; a hands-on art workshop in which participants can make a mask honoring their cultural heritage; a candle-decorating collage workshop with feminist collective Colectiva Cósmica, featuring a set by Ecuadorian-Lithuanian producer, DJ, and cultural activist Riobamba; screenings of experimental short films by Latin American women filmmakers, hosted by Jesse Lerner; a book-club talk about Marta Moreno Vega’s When the Spirits Dance Mambo; and pop-up gallery talks on “Radical Women: Latin American Art, 1960–1985” by teen apprentices. In addition, the galleries will be open late so you can also check out “William Trost Richards: Experiments in Watercolor,” “Arts of Korea,” “Infinite Blue,” “Ahmed Mater: Mecca Journeys,” “A Woman’s Afterlife: Gender Transformation in Ancient Egypt,” and more. However, please note that advance tickets are required to see “David Bowie is,” at the regular admission price.


BRIC House exhibit serves as inspiration for four-day free festival on borders (photo by twi-ny/mdr)

BRIC House exhibit serves as inspiration for four-day free festival about borders (photo by twi-ny/mdr)

BRIC House
647 Fulton St., Brooklyn
April 26-29, free (advance RSVP recommended)

The theme of this year’s BRIC OPEN festival is “Borders,” four days of free programs focusing on borders both real and imagined, physical and ideological. The series is being held in conjunction with the exhibition “Bordering the Imaginary: Art from the Dominican Republic, Haiti, and Their Diasporas,” a collection of sculpture, painting, installation, and video that, in the words of BRIC contemporary art vice president Elizabeth Ferrer, “consider the complicated interrelated histories of two Caribbean countries that share a single island, their tradition of cultural and social exchange, and the social injustices that have long burdened the people of both nations.” The exhibit includes impressive work by Raquel Paiewonsky, Pascal Meccariello, Fabiola Jean-Louis, iliana emilia garcia, Patrick Eugène, and others. “Borders” begins April 26 at 7:00 with “Art Intersecting Politics,” a conversation between Paola Mendoza and Darnell L. Moore, preceded by a spoken-word performance by slam poet Venessa Marco. Friday night’s schedule consists of a concert by Blitz the Ambassador, Lido Pimienta, and the Chamanas (as well as a screening of Blitz’s fifteen-minute film, Diasporadical Trilogia), the ninety-minute walking tour “Borders We Carry” led by Kamau Ware through downtown Brooklyn, an Immigration Action Fair, and Alicia Grullón’s “Empanar!” mobile art project.

On Saturday, there will be a family art-making workshop in which participants can add to a Building Bridges mural; a Greenlight Bookstore pop-up shop; a “Drawn Together” workshop led by “Bordering the Imaginary” artists Vladimir Cybil Charlier, Antonio Cruz, and garcia; Juanli Carrión’s “Memelismos: Memories from the Other Side” participatory storytelling installation; more walking tours; screenings of short films and Jeremy Williams’s On a Knife Edge; the discussions “Reflections on the DACA and the DREAM Act: Erika Harrsch & Yatziri Tovar” and “Haiti-NYC-DR: Reflections from the Diaspora,” the latter with Suhaly Bautista-Carolina, Edward Paulino, Albert Saint Jean, Ibi Zoboi, and moderator Carolle Charles; and a RAGGA x BRIC dance party with DJs Oscar Nñ of Papi Juice, Serena Jara, LSXOXOD, and Neon Christina and a live performance by Viva Ruiz. Sunday features a gallery tour and the closing talk “Biscuits without Borders” by Jess Thorn, aka Touretteshero. In addition, the exhibitions “Under the Same Sky . . . We Dream” by Erika Harrsch and “What time is it there?” by Katie Shima will be on view throughout the festival.


New monograph on Philip Taaffe kicks off discussion on contemporary painting at the Cooper Union

New monograph on Philip Taaffe kicks off Cooper Union panel discussion on contemporary painting

Who: Lois Dodd, Thomas Nozkowski, Philip Taaffe, Barry Schwabsky, Faye Hirsch, John Yau
What: Panel discussion
Where: The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art, the Great Hall in the Foundation Building, 7 East Seventh St. between Third & Fourth Aves.
When: Thursday, April 19, free with advance RSVP, 6:30
Why: In conjunction with the publication of the first monograph on Philip Taaffe as part of the Lund Humphries Contemporary Painters series, the Cooper Union is hosting the panel discussion “Rewriting Painting” on April 19 at 6:30, featuring Cooper graduates, artists, and Lund Humphries subjects Lois Dodd, Thomas Nozkowski, and Philip Taaffe along with critics Barry Schwabsky (the editor of the Lund Humphries series), Faye Hirsch (who wrote the book on Dodd), and John Yau (who wrote the book on Taaffe). The free event explores the state and shape of contemporary painting, asking the questions “How far have artists extended the boundaries of the medium in the twenty-first century, and what does it mean to be identified as a painter today?,” “Is the word ‘painting’ still adequate to describe a practice which no longer necessarily involves paint or flat surfaces?,” and “And to what extent do the ways in which we write about painting influence both the public’s reception of the work and contemporary practice itself?” The discussion will be followed by a book signing with all of the participants.