"Bushwick Christmas" is how my pal Tania describes Bushwick Open Studios, which takes place in early
June each year (June 6-7 this year). Visitors throng the 'hood, seeking out art, drink, and camaraderie.
The artists get their work noticed, the locals see a shit-ton of eye candy, and the bar staff pull their largest
paychecks for the season. Everyone hits a roof-top party to watch the sun set on Manhattan. Celebrate!
Like any holiday, participants make elaborate plans in the months before to display their latest bit
of artistic brilliance, only to rush around in the hours prior assembling something, anything, for their
soon-to-arrive visitors. This year especially so, it seemed. BOS2015 could have been called the "seat-of-our-pants" year,
to hear a few artists describe their last-minute frantic preparations. Still there was a lot of cool art to check out.
After all, something is new if you haven't seen it before... Click to Read More...
Even during the apocalypse, people will still check their smart phones, I bet.
Here, westward-facing onlookers wait for the sun to descend between the two columns of
New York City skyscrapers along 42nd Street, Friday, May 29, 2015, 8:10 PM. The urban equinox.
ManhattanHenge. You can blame Neil deGrasse Tyson.
Click to See The Photo...
Go on and call on your telephone. The number is right there on the For-Sale sign under the
windshield 350-9801 all seven digits ask the guy who answers how much for the blue Chevy Impala with the 400 ci V8.
He will tell you its a Historic Car. I bet he tries to sell it for $800 but you could talk him down to $600.
It runs too. Do not believe him when he tells you it gets more than 8 mpg.
Click to See The Photo...
The Uncertainty Principle is not difficult to understand. It is not weirdly spooky and beyond explanation. It does not involve electrons copying themselves, appearing in two locations at once, or somehow sensing our presence.
The Uncertainty Principle simply states that, at quantum levels, you can not measure something without disturbing what you are measuring.
"No one can explain any more than we have just explained," famed physicist Richard Feynman told his students in a 1962 CalTech lecture.
Click to Read More...
I love how Instagram forces me to be in the now, if only for a few seconds.
You can plan for an Instagram moment, but the freshest ones are those off-the-cuff.
Observation takes the place of preparation.
So, that said, Click Here!
for an Instagram video of a caterpillar haulin' ass across the backyard picnic table
to the transistorized sounds of The Ventures.
As giant piles of rocks go, the Mayans did a phenomenal job building El Castillo at Chichen Itza, in Yucatan Mexico. The pyramid, built sometime between the 9th and 12th centuries, has 91 steps on each side, adding to a total of 364 steps.
An additional single step at the top brought the temple in align with the modern yearly calendar of 365, one trip, more or less, around the giant ball of fire in the sky. Was this design intentional?
Click to Read More...
People forget, but BB King used to make the young women
holler and swoon back in the day. He had some good advice for the menfolk too.
1965's "Live at the Regal"
was one of the most electrifying live albums I've ever encountered. Anyone who only vaguely knows of King as some majestic older
blues guitarist should give this album a spin. It'll be a revelation, I promise. He drives the audience to the throes of ecstasy...
Click to Read More...
Something that I can (probably) safely cop to, now that I'm on the senior side of 50,
is getting my drink on and listening to Bob Dylan.
I mean, I've never been a Dylanologist, per se. But the man's music has been with me for
pretty much my entire life, in one form or another. Some of it is pleasant; A lot of it is crap.
I can't really defend Dylan to anyone otherwise uninclined. He's creaky, cranky and makes a
That said, at three distinct times a Dylan song has crashed into my life,
speaking to me directly with a lucidity I never thought possible from a pop song.
These times, and from these times alone, I see why Dylan could be one
of those rarest of artists, one of an Olympian stature.
Click to Read More...
Street art is like television for urban perambulators.
A secret channel open to anyone who just tunes in, it tells stories
and captures your attention with brash spectacles of color and form.
When I first started walking about New York City five years ago,
Roycer700 was one of the first street artists whose works I'd come to recognize.
I'd see his monsters about town, everywhere. On neglected walls, hidden into industrial crevices,
on anonymous post boxes, on the Williamsburg Bridge. The man clearly got around.
America is a vast country. Even today,
there is probably too much land for the people who inhabit the place,
and we lay a lot of it to waste. The land itself can be breathtaking, though the tangles of roadway connecting our homes and
points of interest are rarely scenic; they are littered on each side with hastily erected
fast food joints, strip malls, scrub land.
Which is why Margaret Morrison's latest series of oils,
shown by the Woodward Gallery in NYC, are so fascinating.
She draws beauty from these ravaged wastelands, using not only the colors
they exude, but also the promises they hold. Click to See the Art...
I don't know much about art, but one thing I do know a little bit about is LP covers. I grew up before MTV,
which is to say before music came with visual accompaniment. Those days, when you bought an album, you took
it home, put it on the record player and just listened. If you wanted visuals, you scanned the LP cover.
Which is why, at this year's Pulse NYC Contemporary Art Fair, I gravitated to the oil paintings of J.P. Roy.
His work reminded me of those album covers from progressive rock-era British bands of the 1970s,
especially those from Roger Dean and the Hipgnosis studio. Click to Read More...
"Beard oil," I thought when I first heard this latest album from Sun Kil Moon. From a remove, it rang out from a similarly rarefied level of attention,
a fussy rough-hewn acoustic guitar churning along at a somber pace of introspection, accompanied by vocals of unrelenting gravitas.
But while "Benji" comes in the husk of hipsterism, there's something much more going on here.
I've never heard an album quite like this, an intensely personal musical novella where each song is a chapter that
builds on the others, that, all totaled, offers an almost uncomfortable intimacy of one man's life at 50,
both the wisdom and the warts. Click to Read More...
Machine learning models can solve any problem at hand, given infinite data and time for training.
With infinite resources, you could simply map into memory every possible answer,
and then every possible path to every answer.
The challenge in making deep learning practical is to find a way to get the
desired result with only a finite amount of resources, namely,
what you have on hand. Click to Read More...
If you're over, say, 45, and lived in the states,
"Long Tall Glasses" is pretty much in your DNA, even tho you probably don't remember it now.
And when you hear it again, you'll probably recalled that you hated it.
But, really, back then, whenever it floated over from some nearby radio, you dug it (maybe secretly).
That'd be my guess, anyway.
Some nights words do not describe how cold New York can get. Last Thursday was one of those evenings. Gallery hopping through Chelsea, we called it early, but before heading back to the E, we stumbled into an exhibit of Janet Bohman's linen wall sculptures.
I don't know why exactly, maybe I was finally warming up from the frigid temp, but walking into the room of Bohman's works,
I felt a surprising and somewhat unexpected sense of joy. Life seemed to pour into the wet, drab hallway.
Perhaps, for starts, the acrylic colors of the sculpture within subtly festive. Click To See The Art!
I'm not entirely sure how many cultures this image could piss off, really. It's a quick camera phone capture of some rain-washed paste-up street art in Williamsburg. A veiled, topless woman, rife with religious symbols, gives the viewer a heavily tattooed finger, with what appears to be "thug" tatt'ed across her stomach.
But it was probably the nips that got it taken down from Instagram.
Young prince Telemachus was hanging
around the fam's castle, increasingly fed up with all these
sycophantic suitors sucking up to Mom, wearing down his long-lost
father's riches with all their feasting, dancing and having their
hands washed by his family's servants.
The suitors are all like "Telemachus,
you old man be dead. Get over it."
True, Odysseus had been gone for 10
years. He left to plunder Troy, but was waylaid on the return voyage,
by Poseidon blowing fierce winds in his path, and by the affections
of a bewitching calypso who held him back "deep in her arching
caverns." Nymph be "craving him for a husband."
The Tower of Babel, for me, was always a cautionary tale about the
limits of technology: The more sweeping your vision, the more complex to build,
and once its gets too complex, it will
collapse entirely because no one working on the thing
will understand what anyone else on the project is actually doing..
Confusion of tongues (confusio linguarum) is how Book of Genesis11:1–9 witnessed it.
Anyway, those were the contours of the Babel Palace as I roughly
envisioned. But like any great myth that aids in human understanding,
Babel be preggers with multitudes.
This is Cassie,
Karoaking in Laddie's, a neighborhood bar in Hedgesville, a small
West Virginia town just outside of Martinsburg.
When I came in, on
New Year's Eve, Cas was singing Dolly Parton's frisky “Romeo.” She was the best singer in the place. In between bouts of
Karaoke, Cas ran the pool table in the back of the small room,
handily besting a series of male opponents.
I didn't know Cas, but nonetheless I couldn't help to ask if she knew any Tanya Tucker, perhaps presumptively assuming
that any woman rocking a cowboy hat would be familiar with the first Bad Girl of country music.