NEW YORK COMIC CON / NEW YORK SUPER WEEK
Jacob K. Javits Convention Center
655 West 34th St. (11th Ave. between 34th & 39th Sts.)
Thursday, October 9, $35, 12 noon - 7:00
Con continues through October 12; New York Super Week runs October 3-12
New York Comic Con continues to get more and more popular every year, with bigger and bigger guests and longer and longer lines. Tickets for the ninth annual event, running October 9-12 at the Javits Center, are already sold out for Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, and the organizers haven’t even announced the full slate of activities for any of the days. So your only chance for getting in will be to go on Thursday, when there will be appearances by such spotlight guests as Giancarlo Esposito of Breaking Bad, Hollows series author Kim Harrison, and Kristian Nairn (Hodor) and Natalia Tena (Osha) of Game of Thrones and such featured guests as Jason David Frank of Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, Ben Templesmith, Bob McLeod, Dustin Nguyen, Jimmy Palmiotti, Peter David, Stuart Moore, and Terry Moore, and dozens of special guests as well. In conjunction with NYCC, New York Super Week runs October 3-12 at various locations throughout the city, consisting of related events, including a thirtieth anniversary screening of The Karate Kid at the 92nd St. Y with Ralph Macchio, William Zabka, and Martin Kove; metal monsters X Japan at Madison Square Garden; Neil Gaiman as the subject of host Ophira Eisenberg’s “Ask Me Another” live show at the Y; “Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog Sing-Along and Whedonverse Party” at Union Hall; “The First (and Probably Last) Annual New York Feline Film & Video Festival for Humans” at Galapagos Art Space; a “Dr. Who Trivia and Costume Contest” at the Way Station; “Cure You or Kill You: 19th Century Medical Science and Quackery” at the Museum of Morbid Anatomy; and “Rave of Thrones,” a DJ set by Nairn with special guests Zedd Stark and Trance Rayder at B. B. King’s.
702 Union St. at Fifth Ave.
Friday, August 22, $8, 8:00
John Hughes was one of the architects of our teen years, showing us the possibilities of what life and love have to offer in such seminal coming-of-age flicks as Sixteen Candles, The Breakfast Club, Pretty in Pink, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, and Some Kind of Wonderful. For us, it wasn’t WWJD but WWDD (What would Duckie do?) Although it’s probably best that writer, director, and producer Hughes, who died in 2009 at the age of fifty-nine, never revisited these teen characters (although there were multiple editions of Vacation and Home Alone), we occasionally wonder what might have happened to Sam Baker, Ted the Geek, Claire and Bender, Blane, Gary and Wyatt, Watts, and, of course, Bueller . . . Bueller . . . Bueller. Well, we can find out August 22 at Union Hall in Brooklyn when Emily Flake, Rupinder Gill, Todd Hanson, Lux Alptraum, Liam McEneaney, and host Joe Garden gather together for “Forty-Six Candles: An Evening of Fiction in Which John Hughes Characters Grow the F&ck Up,” sharing their tales of where they all are today. Here’s hoping we don’t find out what happened to Curly Sue.
Both MoMA PS1 director Klaus Biesenbach and multidisciplinary artist Patti Smith had close ties to the Rockaways prior to the destruction wrought by Hurricane Sandy in October 2012, each having homes there that were affected by the disaster. As part of the continuing recovery effort, the two have teamed up with the Jamaica Bay-Rockaway Parks Conservancy, the Rockaway Artists Alliance, and the National Park Service for the free public arts festival “Rockaway!” Held in conjunction with the reopening of Fort Tilden, a former U.S. Army Coast Artillery Post established nearly a century ago and a place that Smith visited often with Robert Mapplethorpe back in the 1970s, “Rockaway!” consists of several projects spread throughout the vast acreage. In the military chapel, which is undergoing restoration, Janet Cardiff has installed her delightful audio piece “The Forty Part Motet,” which has previously been shown at MoMA PS1’s home base in Long Island City and at the Cloisters, the first contemporary artwork ever presented at the Met’s medieval-themed outpost in Fort Tryon Park. “The Forty Part Motet” consists of forty speakers on stands arranged in a circle, each speaker playing the voice of one of the forty members of the Salisbury Cathedral Choir as they perform Thomas Tallis’s sixteenth-century choral composition “Spem in Alium Nunquam habui,” the English translation of which is “In no other is my hope,” a title that is particularly appropriate given the location. First walk around to hear each unique voice, then sit in the middle and let the glorious full music envelop you. “The Forty Part Motet” is on view through August 17; the rest of the show is up through September 1.
In another building, Smith and her daughter, Jesse, pay tribute to one of Patti’s heroes, Walt Whitman, with the short film The Good Gray Poet, in which Patti reads the New York-born writer’s “Country Days and Nights,” “Mannahatta,” and “Crossing Brooklyn Ferry” (“Flood-tide below me! I see you face to face! . . . On the ferry-boats the hundreds and hundreds that cross, returning home, are more curious to me than you suppose”) while wandering through the Camden cemetery where he is buried. The film also includes shots of other places related to Whitman’s life, and there are various historical items in a display case and a bookshelf where visitors are invited to read more by and about the Bard of Democracy.
The centerpiece of the exhibition is Smith’s “Resilience of the Dreamer,” a gilded four-poster canopy bed positioned in the middle of building T9, a former locomotive repair facility that has been filled with junk and detritus since Sandy. The piece, which calls to mind the destruction of so many homes along the beach, their facades ripped away during the storm, exposing people’s lives, has been decaying since its installation in June; the canopy is ripping, the sheets turning yellow, dirt collecting on the bed as the elements lay waste to it through the broken windows and battered roof. In a heavily graffitied side room, Smith has collected white stones and placed them in a large birdbath, where people are encouraged to pick one out and place it somewhere else — there are rocks in virtually every nook and cranny, from light switches and windowsills to holes in the wall and floor — or even take one home as a memory. In addition, in the sTudio 7 Gallery, Smith is displaying more than one hundred small-scale black-and-white photos primarily of possessions of friends, colleagues, and influences as well as gravesites. Among the images are Robert Graves’s hat, William Burroughs’s bandanna, Virginia Woolf’s cane, Mapplethorpe’s star mirror, and the Rimbaud family atlas, as well as beds belonging to Woolf, Victor Hugo, John Keats, Vanessa Bell, and Maynard Keynes and the tombs and headstones of Susan Sontag, Herman Hesse, Percy Bysshe Shelley, and Jim Morrison. There is also a stage in the room where musical performances are held on Sunday nights; the next one will be the Jammin Jon Birthday Concert Bash on August 17 at 6:00, with fusion trio Dream Speed and experimental guitarist and Brooklyn native Jammin Jon Kiebon.
Scattered throughout Fort Tilden, which is part of the Gateway National Recreation Area, are five granite cubes on which Smith has put Whitman quotes (“O madly the sea pushes upon the land, with love, with love”; “Passing stranger! You do not know how longingly I look upon you”) in addition to a dozen small mud-and-straw nests from Adrián Villar Rojas’s “Brick Farm” series, which evoke both home and protection. There’s a map to help locate these objects; wear long pants and closed-toe shoes because several of the passageways are laden with poison ivy. And be sure to walk to the top of the battery for a spectacular view, then make your way down a winding path to the beach. “Rockaway!” is a not only an exciting artistic venture but a terrific exploration of the past, present, and future of the area, so decimated by Hurricane Sandy but even more determined to rebuild its way of life.
(The exhibition is supplemented by a satellite show of works by more than seventy artists — from Marina Abramović and Ryan McNamara to Michael Stipe and Laurie Simmons, from Doug Aitken and Olaf Breuning to Olafur Eliasson and Ugo Rondinone — at Rockaway Beach Surf Club. There are several ways to get to Fort Tilden, all of which involve multiple modes of transportation. You can take the $3.50 Rockaway ferry from Pier 11 downtown to Beach 108th St., then get on the Q22 bus, or take the A train to Broad Channel, switch for the shuttle, then get the Q22 at 116th St. None of the options are quick and easy, but the ferry ride does go past Coney Island and the Statue of Liberty and under the Verazzano-Narrows Bridge. Yes, it’s a hassle, but it’s well worth it.)
During the 1970s, Bronx native Steven Ogburn began turning subway trains into his canvas. Taking the street name BLADE, he went on to tag more than five thousand cars between 1972 and 1984. The man also known as the King of Graffiti and the King of Trains is now coming to the Museum of the City of New York in conjunction with the exhibit “City as Canvas: Graffiti Art from the Martin Wong Collection.” On August 8, BLADE will sit down for an intimate conversation, accompanied by a slideshow, with Chris Pape, his cowriter on the new book Blade: King of Graffiti (Schiffer, June 2014, $39.99). “I was just developing my moral compass at the time,” BLADE writes near the beginning of the book, “and if there’s one thing I learned it’s that everyone drew the line in the sand somewhere.” BLADE will talk about the line and more as he examines his life and career; the discussion will be followed by a book signing. “City as Canvas” continues at MCNY through September 21.
Multiple locations in Chelsea
Thursday, July 24, free, 5:00 - 8:00
More than one hundred galleries from Sixteenth to Thirtieth Sts. between Ninth and Eleventh Aves. will keep their doors open until 8:00 tonight for the fifth annual Chelsea Art Walk. The evening includes open studios, artist talks, panel discussions, book signings, receptions, photo shoots, and other events. Below are some of our recommended highlights.
Wearable Art Photo Shoot: Everyone is invited to show up wearing some kind of self-made art (clothing, makeup, hair, nails), 530 West 25th St., 6:30 – 7:30
Bertrand Delacroix Gallery
Sneak peek at Federico Infante’s fall exhibition, “The Space Between,” including raffle of original Infante drawing, 535 West 25th St., 5:00 – 8:00
Churner and Churner
Performance and reception for opening of Ander Mikalson’s “Three’s Company for Eight Performers,” 205 Tenth Ave., three performances, 5:00 – 8:00
Dean Borghi — NBR Contemporary
Book reading, White Collar Slavery: Based on a Bit of Truth and a Few White Lies by Laurance Rassin and Tracy Memoil, 5:00; live music by Clusterfunk and short film Art Sharks, 6:00 - 8:00, 547 West 27th St.
Hauser & Wirth
Sterling Ruby “Sunrise Sunset” panel discussion with Michael Darling, Jeremy Strick, and Huma Bhabha, 511 West 18th St., 6:30
Opening reception for group show “Summer Garden” featuring works by Osamu Kobayashi, Shinji Murakami, and Gail Stoicheff, with free special Mizu Shochu cocktails and live performance by Zander Padget at 7:00, 521 West 26th St.
“The Art of Painting Portraits,” lecture by artist Alphonse van Woerkom, 115 West 30th St., 5:15
Yossi Milo Gallery
Book signing, Horizons by Sze Tsung Leong, 245 Tenth Ave., 6:00 – 8:00
Andrew Edlin Gallery
134 Tenth Avenue between 18th & 19th Sts.
Thursday, July 10, free, 6:00
On May 10, Sam Gordon curated a marathon poetry reading as part of the NADA New York art fair, presented with BOMB magazine. Gordon, NADA, and BOMB have joined forces again with the follow-up, “Contemporary Poetry Too,” taking place July 10 at Andrew Edlin Gallery in Chelsea. Held in conjunction with the group exhibition “Purple States,” which explores the differences between insiders and outsiders and the merging of blue and red states, and “Café Dancer Pop-Up,” in which Jessie Gold and Elizabeth Hart have turned Edlin’s reception area into a “Gone Fishin’” party space, “Contemporary Poetry Too” will feature approximately eighteen poets reading their works in combination with performance and video art; the participants include Alina Gregorian, Angelo Nikolopoulos, Bianca Stone, Emily Skillings, Jameson Fitzpatrick, Juliana Huxtable, not_I (Ana Boziĉević & Sophia Le Fraga), and Sampson Starkweather. DJs S&M (Shannon Michael Cane and Matt Conners) will provide the music.
200 Eastern Parkway at Washington St.
Saturday, July 5, free, 5:00 - 11:00 ($10 discounted admission to “Ai Weiwei: According to What?”)
The Brooklyn Museum is throwing a summer party for its July free First Saturdays program, centered by a twenty-fifth-anniversary screening of Spike Lee’s Bed-Stuy classic, Do the Right Thing. In addition, there will be music from Matuto, Blitz the Ambassador, DJ Uhuru, and Nina Sky, a female comedy showcase hosted by Erica Watson, a talk and fashion show led by Afros: A Celebration of Natural Hair author Michael July, a sidewalk chalk drawing project organized by the City Kids, a hula hoop demonstration with Hula Nation, an art workshop in which participants will learn figure drawing with a live model, and an interactive talk with “Brooklyn in 3000 Stills” creators Paul Trillo and Landon Van Soest. In addition, you can check out the current quartet of exhibitions, all of which deal with activism through art: “Ai Weiwei: According to What?,” “Swoon: Submerged Motherlands,” “Chicago in L.A.: Judy Chicago’s Early Works, 1963–74,” and “Witness: Art and Civil Rights in the Sixties.”
The powerful, wide-ranging “Witness,” which has just been extended through July 13 (the other three exhibits continue into August or September), is a traveling show being held in conjunction with the fiftieth anniversary of the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. More than one hundred paintings, sculptures, photographs, and installations are on view, divided into eight thematic categories: “Integrate Educate,” “American Nightmare,” “Presenting Evidence,” “Politicizing Pop,” “Black Is Beautiful,” “Sisterhood,” “Global Liberation,” and “Beloved Community.” In Bruce Davidson’s “USA. Montgomery, Alabama. 1961,” a black Freedom Rider sits by a window on a bus being escorted by the National Guard. David Hammons’s “The Door (Admissions Office)” is not exactly a welcoming sight. Norman Rockwell’s “New Kids in the Neighborhood (Negro in the Suburbs)” depicts three white children and two black children stopped on a sidewalk, curiously looking at each other. Melvin Edwards’s “Chaino” evokes slavery and lynchings. A trio of cartoonish KKK members drive into town in Philip Guston’s “City Limits.” There are also works by Romare Bearden, Jacob Lawrence, Norman Lewis, Jack Whitten, Faith Ringgold, Ben Shahn, Betye Saar, Gordon Parks, Jim Dine, Yoko Ono, Barkley Hendricks, Robert Indiana, Richard Avedon, and others that examine the civil rights movement from multiple angles, displaying America’s continuing shame.