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WHITE SWALLOW READING SERIES: B.C. EDWARDS LL BEN FAMA LL ELY SHIPLEY @ CORNELIA.
Tuesday, September 6 · 6:00pm – 7:30pm
B.C. EDWARDS lives in Brooklyn. He is the recipient of the 2011 Hudson Prize put out by Black Lawrence Press which will be publishing his collection of short fiction, The Aversive Clause in 2012 and his collection of poetry From the Standard Cyclopedia of Recipes in 2013. His work can be found in Red Line Blues, The Sink Review, Food-i-Corp, Hobart and others. His short story “Illfit” is being adapted into a piece by the Royal Ballet of Flanders. BEN FAMA is the author of the chapbook Aquarius Rising (UDP 2009) and NEW WAVES (Minutes Books). He is the founding editor of Supermachine Poetry Journal. His work has been featured in GlitterPony, notnostrums, LIT, Poor Claudia, and on the Best American Poetry Blog, among others. He has contributed tips to gawker, words to urban dictionary, and has an ongoing correspondence with Lady Gaga. ELY SHIPLEY’s first book, Boy with Flowers, won the 2007 Barrow Street Press book prize judged by Carl Phillips, the 2009 Thom Gunn Award, and was a Lambda Literary Award finalist. His writing appears in the Western Humanities Review, Prairie Schooner, Diagram, Gulf Coast, and elsewhere. He holds a PhD in Literature and Creative Writing from the University of Utah and currently teaches at Baruch College, CUNY. Hosted by Angelo Nikolopoulos $7 cover includes a house drink.
Filed under: THE WEEK/THE WEEKEND | Tags: $10, Accrochage, alto, AMAYO, and, annual, ARKISTRA, at, ATTICUS:, BAMBOO, bass, Brand, building, CARNEVALE! TIMOTHY, carolina, carter, center, Christine, churner, Churner Im, clarinet, class, daniel, day, Der, DJ, drums, every, federico, First, Flute, FU, Graph, graphics, HD, Idle, in, is, johnson, juried, KAYAK, Kuchar, Letha, LIBERUM ARLEKINO, made, Maggot, manhattan, MARE, mast, max, MICKEY, modern, Mulherin, Nguyen, Nitsch Matthew, Occasions, of, PEREZ, photo, presents, saxophones, Schatten, shadow, Show George, Soprano, space, streets, Sunnyside, symphony, Tenor, the, theater, Times in, TROUPE, trumpet, Ughi, university, UNZIPPED Pay, Visible, Wilson, with, ZEBULON
An open, no-cover party at Screen Slate HQ featuring live music byStrange Rivals, DJing by Colin Beckett and Max Diamond and 16mm projections by Ryan Marino. Spirits available including beer lovingly provided by Brooklyn Brewery. 15 Bushwick Ave., 11211, two blocks from the Graham or Grand L stops in Williamsburg, Brooklyn.
In this workshop you will be introduced to the old world craft of Hatmaking. The skills involved in making a hat evolved in the 14th century and have hardly changed since. Participants will become familiar with all the basic tools, materials and terminology. Over the four classes participants will handblock a Panama straw hat, and learn to finish and trim it just in time for the Fall.
Co-Executive Producer – Kimberly Knox/ Ubiquita Worldwide
Executive Producer Co-Founder of WBA-Jim WildeSunday, August 14th 2011 at Le Poisson Rouge in New York City will see the undisputed Godfather of Noise Rahzel (the Roots) and Rakaa (DilatedPeoples) headlining the post-championship concert of the 2nd American Beatbox Championships. America’s top 16 beatboxers will battle it out live in an “8 mile style” beat down for the crown of America’s Best Beatboxer. Beatboxing’s finest will go mic to mic as Hasan Salaam and Eternia MC the evening with DJ Boo holding down the Red Bull decks alongside Colin Dean’s Roots & Grooves. (READ MORE.)
28th Annual Roots of American Music Festival
(FULL SCHEDULE, VARIOUS LOCATIONS.)
SID SELVIDGE & SONS OF MUD BOY
SUN RECORDS ORAL HISTORIES
Sat, Aug 13 at 2:00
Hearst Plaza Stage
Clawhammer banjoist Abigail Washburn has emerged as a gifted singer-songwriter after perfecting the most unlikely of fusions—between Appalachian music and Chinese folk. Soulful folk-rocker Sid Selvidge’s astonishing voice takes the Memphis blues to another level, joined by Luther and Cody Dickinson, the sons of the influential late producer-musician Jim “Mud Boy & the Neutrons” Dickinson. Roots of American Music producer Spike Barkin starts the day with an onstage talk with the pioneering alumni of Sun Records, whose stories and recollections are a historical treasure trove.
Radio Happy Hour: The Final Episode
August 12, 2011
Radio Happy Hour, the radio show not on the radio, has announced the end of their 2+ year run as the Village’s best variety show. After a US tour, appearances on public radio, feature articles in NY Post, Nylon, and many other places, the hit comedy show is ending its run. “Secretly, I was always surprised that anyone ever came to see a murder mystery on a fake radio show, or that anyone ever agreed to be on the show. Apparently, New Yorkers have a real appetite for idiocy,” says show host and head writer Sam Osterhout.
Friday, August 12th
COMPLIMENTARY “MIDNIGHT MARTINI’S” AND SPECIALTY DRINKS FOR ALL!
Please join us for the launch of the new web series “The Midnight Archives: Tales From the Observatory.” The series is the work of many time Observatory presenter Ronni Thomas (Alias Ronni Raygun) of the IKA Collective and is centered around the esoteric and always exotic personalities that spring from the Brooklyn Observatory. It attempts to briefly document some of the truly unique people, talents and objects from around the world who gather there on a weekly basis. Mummies, Taxidermy, 18th century robotics, early French demonic 3d horror… its all here.
JAMES BROWN dance party w/JAMES CHANCE live and more @Zebulon
Sat Aug 13
Williamsburg, Brooklyn – Zebulon (258 Wythe): James Brown dance party w/DJs Jonathan Toubin and James Chance plus a live performance by JAMES CHANCE AND THE J.C.’S (playing 2/3 James Brown and 1/3 Contortions songs! Supergroup featuring James Chance, Ivan Julian (Richard Hell and the Voidoids), Robert Aaron (avant-jazz legend who’s also played with everyone from B-52s and Blondie to Afrika Bambataa and Wu Tang Clan), Kim Clark (Defunkt and dozens of jazz projects), and Richard Dworkin [James White and the Blacks, Alex Chilton, etc), JAMES CHANCE SOLO, JAIL BAIT, and more at Zebulon…
AND ON SUNDAY NEW YORK NIGHT TRAIN’S DJ MR. JONATHAN TOUBIN! @ UNION POOL.
Twig Terrariums @MAD.
Saturday, August 13, 2011 – 11:00 am to 6:00 pm
Each Saturday in August join Brooklyn based artist collaborative Twig Terrariums as as they reveal their processes in creating small worlds within antique, vintage, and new glass containers.
Generative crowd sourced sculpture with music performances @ Devotion.
Opening: Friday, August 12th, 2011.
Sol LeWitt knew that artists of many diverse types use simple forms to their own ends. Musician and multimedia artist, Morgan Packard believes that simple rules, when allowed to unfold, create the splendor of the world. In Euclidean geometry the simplest non-curved flat shape is the triangle, and the simplest non-curved three-dimensional shape is four triangles connected by their edges—the tetrahedron. In this crowd-sourced artwork the public is invited to create tetrahedrons from recycled office paper and a few pieces of tape while musicians perform. Under Morgan’s direction the participants will attach the vertices of the tetrahedrons to create a constantly expanding sculpture, filling the gallery with a geometric wonderland intersected by sonic vibrations.
InDigest 1207 Reading Series w/ Matt Bell , Michael Czyzniejewski and Robert Lopez
Sun., August 14, 2011 / 7:00 PM FREE
InDigest 1207 Reading Series
InDigest also presents InDigest 1207, a reading series that takes place monthly in New York City and quarterly in Minneapolis. In addition to their own work, readers are encouraged to bring in something that has informed or influenced them in some way. The result is often funny, sometimes strange, but always interesting, showing us how we are all constantly influenced by what we see, hear, and read.
PORTAL: Perspectives on Video Performance Contemporary Video from Sydney @ Regina Rex.
Friday, August 12th
Curated by Janis Ferberg, organized by Stephen Truax
Portal is pleased to present a one-night screening of video works by Sydney-based artists engaged with performance mediated through video at Regina Rex in Ridgewood, New York.
This selection of work offers an alternative point of entry to the practice of performance, whereby video is used not as a medium for documentation, but rather as an end in itself.
Saturday August 13th6th Annual Celebration of Progressive Culture
Now a Manhattan mainstay, the Dissident Arts Festival was founded in upstate NY in 2006 with a primary goal of establishing an annual showcase of politically progressive music, poetry and performance art—perhaps the only such vehicle in the nation. This Festival has sought to bring together a wide variety of sounds and styles, tearing down boundaries, bending rules and infusing the arts with the strongest, most radical activism, where folk-protest song meets free improvisation and contemporary composition. Featured among our past performers and speakers were actor/raconteur Malachy McCourt, folk legend Pete Seeger, poet Louis Reyes Rivera, revolutionary hip hop group ReadNex Poetry Squad, protest/garage band The Last Internationale, labor luminary Henry Foner, topical singer Bev Grant, ‘anti-folk’ singer Lach, jazz artist Ben Barson and filmmaker Kevin Keating (“Giuliani Time”). And we presented tributes to Woody Guthrie, Paul Robeson, Bertolt Brecht and Phil Ochs along the way. As of 2010, the Festival became affiliated with NYC’s Brecht Forum, a center of Left education and culture which has proven itself the perfect host of the Dissident Arts Festival. This year, Dissident Arts focuses on the improvisational and modernist heart of Protest Music while also featuring topical folk/acoustic performance, radical film and revolutionary poetry.
Friday, Saturday and Sunday
Sanda Weigl@ Cornelia St. Cafe.
Saturday, August 13, 9:00 PM
OH THE SHARK HAS PRETTY TEETH DEAR, SONGS OF THE WEIMAR ERA
Sanda Weigl, vocals; Anthony Coleman, piano
Noam Faingold Presents a night of Chamber Music plus a Rock Orchestra @ CAFE ORWELL.
SATURDAY 8/13. 8-midnight.
From Noam: The Noam Faingold Orchestra will play a set, then it’s members and some special guests will play contemporary chamber music by Jeremy Forbis, Jacob Druckman, Kurtag and others, and then we will play another set of Aleatoric pieces by Christian Wolff, Terry Riley, Louis Andriessen and others.
Saturday, August 13th
Noon through much much later…
$10 arrive before 3pm : $20 after
Sunday, August 14th
Noon through Midnight
$10 all day + Cheap Drinks
3rd Ward, Macro-Sea, Artists Wanted, TheDanger and Chashama have spent the past several weeks building out a fantastic oasis in the creative heart of Queens. A couple blocks from PS1, we are opening The Palms, a late summer ode to the Boca Raton Resort Pools of the 1940’s (with more music, spectacle and hedonism).
BAMBOO KAYAK BUILDING WITH MARE LIBERUM
ARLEKINO THEATER TROUPE PRESENTS: CARNEVALE!
TIMOTHY ATTICUS: UNZIPPED
Pay Day / Sunnyside / The Idle Class & Modern Times in HD @ Symphony Space.
Manhattan Graphics Center First Annual Juried Show
George Kuchar, Occasions @Mulherin + Pollard.
Local Party on the Block @Local Project.
Lemonaids: A collaboration between Jason Fritz/Matthew Momchilov
Going Green@ Crossing Art.
SANKALPA: Art Therapy in India.
Music in the Garden Series @ The Noguchi Museum
The Official Bass Island After Party featuring: FreQ Nasty (Giveback.net) , Virtual Boy (Alpha Pup records) , Proper Villains (Nightshifters/Play Me Records) andWilly Whompa (Muti Music) @LPR
CAN’T HEAR THE REVOLUTION.
FLOAT: FIELD OF DREAMS
I Am Still Alive: Politics and Everyday Life in Contemporary Drawing
Filed under: THE WEEK/THE WEEKEND | Tags: $10, 00, 1, 10pm, 16, 16–January, 2012 RAY'S, 20th, 2nd, 3, 529, 5th, a, accordion, and, Artaud, Assembly, at, august, AXIS Wit's, bell, bill, brad, Brenmar, burlesque, cabaret, calerie, Canasta, carter, collective, cominic, Cornelia, dan, daniel, daryl, dave, Deacon Mostly, Deacon other, DJ, Do, double, Driven, end, ENTREPRENEURS, EPISODE, EttesPITCH, exhibition, expanding, Fantastic, FREE, from, Gallery Le, Gallery Round, Gemini, guests, HAG, half, henkel, Henson's, Highline, House, i, in, institute, Jamie, jeff platz, jim, joshua, july, Killing, Kuehne, lask, LAUGH, Lindsay, Liner, LPR, mad, man, Miller, monday, monthly, MOSHE, MOTMI, music, Nasty, night, of, other, people, Percussion's, play, PM Group, present Wasablanca, public, r., ras, residence, robin, Scorpio, set, shawn, so, society, SOSI, special, spectacle, Squeezebox, street, students, summer, supdercoda, supersharpshooter, surprises, the, Variety HOSPITAL, w, wade, Wasabassco, West, world, xx
Peter Evans, trumpet; Jon Irabagon, saxophone; Moppa Elliot, bass; Kevin Shea, drums.
The art made by Baltimore artist Dan Deacon is about community and how to organize and inspire it. From founding a now well-known art collective (Wham City), to organizing and running an annually sold-out DIY music festival (Whartscape), to conceiving, planning and curating a massive 60 person/30 band tour (Baltimore Round Robin Tour), it’s clear to see that community and bringing people together is the major theme of his work. Bromst is the embodiment of that way of thinking. (READ MORE.)
Summer Group Exhibition 2011
August 4 to August 27, 2011
Joshua Liner Gallery is pleased to present the 2011 Summer Group Exhibition showcasing 17 artists, including established gallery regulars and several newcomers to the gallery. The exhibition will feature painting, collage, and drawing, with works by the following artists:
Cameron Gray, Chloe Early, Damon Soule, Dave Kinsey, David Ellis, Evan Hecox, Evelyn Rydz, Greg Lamarche, Herbert Baglione, Oliver Vernon, Pema Rinzin, Ryan McLennan, Shawn Barber, Stephen Powers, Tiffany Bozic, Tomokazu Matsuyama and Tony Curanaj.
xperi-MENTAL Festival 3
August-5, 6, 7
Three days or avant garde and experimental music madness!
Curated by Robert L. Pepper (PAS) and Valerie Kuhne (Prehistoric Horse)
Goodbye Blue Monday
J Train to Kosciusko St
Round Robin Collective in Residence at A.I.R Gallery
August 5th through August 27th A.I.R Gallery will host Round Robin Collective in Residence at A.I.R Gallery.
Opening Reception: Thursday, August 4th, 6-9pm.
Gallery Hours during this exhibition: Thursday 5:30 – 8:30pm, and Fri – Sun, 11 to 6pm.
A Monthly Night of Accordion-Driven Variety
The first Monday of every month, David F. Slone, Esq. invites you to join him in a celebration of the beauty of the bellows with Brooklyn’s hottest underground accordionists, dancers, strippers, singers, comedians and magicians!
HOSPITAL: EPISODE 3 @ AXIS
Axis Company’s episodic play Hospital, about the interior life of a person in a terminal coma, is something of a signature for the company, which has produced a new installment of the drama nearly every year since 1997. Conceived, written and directed by Randy Sharp (Edgar Oliver’s East 10th Street: Self Portrait with Empty House), the show is a summer downtown phenomenon beloved for its balance of horror, humor, and weirdness. The company will present the 11th production in the series July 8 – August 20.
Filed under: THE WEEK/THE WEEKEND | Tags: $10, 011 FIRST, 40, 8, 911, a, Absolom, ACCORDIANISTS, Aerial, american, and, AND INAUGURATION, annual, Aperture Painting, art, arts, ASSOCIATION The, bandcamp, Baraat Naam, bass, Battle, BDG, blue, BOBKO, brown, by, Cahill, celebration, Chashama MARY, Chip, CHRISTA, Chuck, circle, clarinet, class, coda, com, com SATURDAY, com http, concert, Coney, Confluence, Cornelia MASTER, covers, CultureFix Shanghi, Damaged, Dominic, door, dr, drums, Eisenstadt, ENERGY PAUL, ESCAPE, EUNAH, Falzone, festival, for, Forgotten, Foxtrot, FREE, Freight+Volume, gallery, GALLERY Miroslav, GENEVIEVE, great, ground, halvorson, Harris, harvey, Hatter, http, Hudson SKYBOX, huntronik, HYUNG, in, island, Island WATER, james, john, Jul, kim, kirk, KLOTZ, Knuffke, landscapes, Lash, lower, mad, MAIWALD Black, Maslov, Massive, Mau, MERIDITH, midnight, migration, mike, min, modine, NADA, Nate, Nirvana, ny, of, opening, out, Parkins, Party Sarah, perfectly, photographers, PINGREE, poetry, presents, pride, project, Quartet James, quintet, reception, record, red, reGeneration, release, review, riferecoil, S, sasha, screen, season, Sep, series, show, show A, Show http, space, STEIN KLOTZ, stone, Stone Zeena, storefront, summer, Sun, super, SUSPENDED, tea, the, thebackpockets, Tichý, today, tomorrow, trumpet, urbanism, variety, Village HAZMAT, white, with, Wooley, years
Saturday, July 30
9:30 pm – late
SWIMMING CITIES in collaboration with SEA WORTHY present: A Celebration of The Battle for Mau Mau Island with Rusty Lazer (New Orleans, Bounce.), Dirtyfinger (Black Label), Geko Jones (Que Bajo?.) and Barney Iller (Rubulad).
Last weekend the naval gangs of New York assembled to Battle for Mau Mau Island (see photos here). Come see the fallen soldiers, harvested booty, and glorious victors at a new two-story space in Bed-Stuy. Mau Mau gangs, gladiator raft jousting, cocktail catacombs, clothing optional watergun fight, underground casino & film screenings of eerily beautiful movies set on the water, slide show and videos of the battle, and an awards presentation for the victors. Wet & wild all night long.
$5 for gangs in matching costumes, Mau Mau vets, or before 11pm, $10 otherwise; 21+.
All proceeds go directly to the Swimming Cities India project.
WATER LANDSCAPES/SUSPENDED ENERGY
PAUL BOBKO @ KLOTZ GALLERY.
July 7th-August 19th.
In his magnum opus, Gravity’s Rainbow, Thomas Pynchon introduces us to the German concept of Brenschluss in the telemetry of the flight of the V2 rocket. The rocket is propelled by its engines and travels along its parabolic arc. At a certain point the engines turn off, this flameout is called brenschluss. At brenschluss the rocket’s ascendancy is checked by gravity, and before it begins to fall to its target on earth, it hesitates for just a moment. After this moment gravity and momentum alone, not a rocket engine, define the inexorable trajectory of descent to its inevitable, calamitous end. (READ MORE.)
July 7th-August 19th.
Harvey Stein has been a fixture on the New York photo scene for many years. He has photographed the city from every angle with every kind of camera, at every time of day and night. Beyond these shores he has led photographic seminars and workshops all over the world…He’s gone everywhere, and for the last 40 years he’s been going to Coney Island…where New York City flows into the Atlantic Ocean at the end of Ocean Avenue, in Brooklyn.
Filed under: THE WEEK/THE WEEKEND | Tags: $10, 07, 08, 5, 6, 7, ACTION Barbez, and, arby, art, baby, band, barbes, BARBES Billy, Blackbirds, blunt, Bullets, calisto proteus, cavallis, CB, CD, club, cordially, days yes, Eisenstadt, ELLA, fox, francesco, Fri, gallery thunder, GARNIEZ, gowanus brooklyn better, Harris, her, july, Khaïra, KRUGLYANSKAYA, la, Le, Mapper, mast, MEGAFAUNA, mind, Mitra, NAG, naked camel, Neuroscientist, noah, Partha, pm, poisson, presents, RACHELLE, release, rouge, S, science, secret, september, show, SODA, space, stone, the, Thu, trio, tuesday, Wednesday, yours The
Khaïra Arby (pronounced: Hī-ra Arbē), the Nightingale of the North, born in the village of Abaradjou in the Sahara Desert north of Timbuktu. Khaira’s parents came from different ethnic backgrounds, mother Songhai and father Berber. You can hear these cultures in her music; she sings in several languages. The instrumentation and rhythms are just as varied with electric guitar and bass, calabash, ngoni, traditional violin, and percussion creating a complex mixture of sound and structure. Some people compare the effect to the rhythms of the camel caravans crossing the Sahara.
The Brooklyn-based duo The Mast creates a propulsive and expansive sound featuring Haale’s layered, undulating vocals and hypnotic electric guitar riffs dancing with Matt Kilmer’s polyrhythmic drumming.
READ A REVIEW FROM MATT MOWATT.
Fernando Hereñu AKA PulpoCorporate @TACHE GALLERY.
Thursday July 7th, 6-9pm
July 7th – August 2nd 2011
Tache Gallery Opening Exhibition of Fernando Hereñú AKA Pulpo
Exhibition July 7 – 2011
” The argentinean artist Pulpo has been part of the Latin American creative scene for many years.
With his series, ‘Hidden Drawings’, Pulpo’s work is focused on the Childhood Trauma & Hidden Emotion
Fernando Hereñu makes some amazingly bizarre drawings, the kinds that make you feel uncomfortable and inspired at the same time. “
ARTIST PROFILE INFORMATION
Laura Ball: Animus @ MORGAN LEHMAN. July 7 – August 19, 2011
The Ladybug Transistor @KNITTING FACTORY
The Beets, James Ausfahrt (of Love Is All)
Wed, July 6, 2011
Doors: 7:30 PM / Show: 8:30 PM
Since the 1990s, the Ladybug Transistor has created formalist pop-rock albums with a dreamy, articulate sound that spans decades and genres. Anchored by Gary Olson’s organizing vision and restrained baritone, their music boasts intricate arrangements and soaring melodies that are at once modern and timeless.
This band’s narrative holds a rich history of heartfelt collaboration, tireless devotion, quiet and outspoken romance, new arrivals, unexpected departures, achy break-ups, and unspeakable loss. They have become agile at adjustment.
In 2007, the untimely passing of their beloved drummer San Fadyl left members Olson, Kyle Forester, and Julia Rydholm at an unimaginable loss, struggling with a prevailing sense of “What now?” At a time where moving forward felt possibly impossible, the band quietly gathered new recruits (Mark Dzula, Eric Farber, Michael O’Neill) and embarked on writing a new album with the memory of San squarely in mind.
The resulting effort is their forthcoming release Clutching Stems-a lush collection of potent refrains and brought-to-one’s-knees ballads. Set to an invigorated soundtrack of wave-pop arrangements, the songs detail stories of humbling heartbreak, profound longing, undoing distress, nagging regret, and coming-of-age awakenings. Olson’s lyrics express an overarching search to find one’s voice in the face of moments that knock the wind and words right out of a person.
This new line-up has found a distinct voice that honors diverse influences and the band’s own precedent sound. Clutching Stems assuredly underlines that while love can tear things apart, it can also capably mend them back together once again.
Filed under: INTERVIEWS | Tags: $10, 1997, 5th, 6pm, academy, and, Ariane, art, Beale, belly, ben, biodegradable, borget, Bourget, brigantine, Brooke, brooklyn, carelessness, charles, chicago, chris, Christine, cleveland, coded, colorado, colorcoded, colored, corn, crowley, currnets, currnt, Daria, disintergrationm ratess, doug, earth, elecric, enviromental, Flavio, francisco, francisoco, garbage, george, ghost, girlfriend, google, graham, grassroots organiation, great, grey, gyre, horizon, Ingram, ink, institute, Irle, Jersey, june, kaisei, karavani, Karen, Laina, landfill, lania, largest, laura, leon, Lindsay, lindsey, Linsday, litter, little, littlefield, luca, Luttrell, Mara, Mariana, mary, Mauricio, Medina, Molandes, MOORE, musicians, nets, new, Nguyen, north, ocean, oceanographer, oceanography, of, of san, oil, orbelian, organization, pacific, panoramic, park, party, patch, peterson, photographer, planet, plastic, pollution, Poppelen, porjfect, post, print, productions, project, Ricardo, robin, san, scripps, shop, Silva, simon, slick, slope, Smalley, soy, start, sunday, sustainable, sustyparty, t, tapioca, team, Tessler, the, tracker, Travis, true, van, vessel, Villavicencio, vortext, voyage, whale, woodring, world's
In the middle of the Pacific Ocean, thousands of miles away from land, and humans, there is enormous floating reminder of the indelible mark we leave from afar. Called the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, the Plastic Vortex and the world’s largest landfill, the North Pacific Gyre is a combination of currents and carelessness that makes up what some suggest is a wasteland filled with plastic. Rife with fantastic sounding aquatic traps such as “ghost nets,” it is suggested that its collection is of such a scale that, as of yet, no one has been able to calculate its true size.
In a song by local Park Slope musicians Whale Belly, there is an interesting lyric “I know what I hate, I just don’t know why.”
The upcoming show Whale Belly is slated to perform in, Post Plastic Project at Littlefield in Brooklyn, plans to remedy just such ignorance through a feast of artists, musicians and comedians curated to raise money, and awareness for the environmental organization, Project Kaisei.
Discovered by chance in 1997 by oceanographer Charles Moore, the North Pacific Gyre is Project Kaisei’s main focus. Kaisei itself began in late 2008 when co-founders, Doug Woodring, George Orbelian, and Mary T. Crowley, found a need to bring attention and research to the growing problem of plastic pollution. In 2009 Kaisei launched its brigantine vessel (the namesake of Kaisei, meaning “Ocean Planet”) and an oceanography vessel called “New Horizon,” donated from partnering organization Scripps Institute of Oceanography. The mission was to collect and calculate data on the amount, type, and breakdown rates of plastic litter that is trapped in the middle of the ocean.
Some findings maintain that certain types of plastic are breaking down at rates much faster than imagined. Most recently the rate was a year or less for some materials to completely disintegrate and penetrate waters and wildlife, raising concerns about toxin levels in fish and other saltwater animals. Utilizing a variety of technological outlets to get their message across, Team Kaisei reports directly from the boat with updates on their findings, and even has a voyage tracker via Google Earth that allows you pinpoint the location, and view interactive message from crew members.
When I asked Lindsay Bourget, one of the curators of the Post Plastic Project, “Why Kaisei?” she answered directly, “I started this project because I wanted to find someone to donate to that made the most sense and they [Project Kaisei] made the most sense to me, because their number one goal is to capture the plastic vortex and that’s exactly what I was most concerned about, so it seemed like a natural fit.” Some debate remains about the severity and size of the litter in the North Pacific Gyre, along with concerns about disturbing wildlife in the effort to collect, as well as the idea that full collection of all the plastic is a Sisyphean task. Nevertheless when I asked Lindsay about her concern for the validity of such projects in the face these doubts as well as major global disasters (particularly oil spills) she acknowledged “it can be really discouraging, but then you think there’s only one way to really start making a change.”
Co-curator Laina Karavani adds, “Sometimes artists and musicians are the only one’s that people really listen to and can help illicit change, and that’s what this is all about, moving towards that change.”
Post Plastic Project will demonstrate by example, using soy ink, and semi-recycled paper in their printing materials through Long Island City based, ColorCoded, and party materials (cups, plates, etc) provided by SustyParty, a New York based company that provides a line of eco-friendly, biodegradable party products made from corn oil, tapioca starch and other recycled materials, along with a bin to collect and ensure compost.
The artists and musicians are pooled from both Lindsay and Laina’s art and design background. Lindsay currently works in packing and architectural design, and went to Colorado Institute of Art, while Laina is photographer originally from New Jersey. Laina moved to San Francisco to attend the Art Academy of San Francisco, and found herself in an environment of high sustainability expectations. Drawing from this experience and from a childhood where recycling was the norm, Laina and Lindsay were eventually introduced by a professor who thought they might be a good match (their birthdays are only two days apart.) As the project grew larger both realized that this kind of grassroots organization for a less dire cause might be exactly what people were looking for.
The show is a powerhouse in itself with fifteen artists, four bands, and two MC’s. Mostly local fare, the artists were friends of or approached directly by Lindsay and Laina, and much to their surprise, nearly all said yes. With the increase of sustainable forms of living becoming the norm in Brooklyn it was easy to see that Lindsay and Laina’s project provided the perfect outlet for supporters looking for a more manageable idea of altruism.
The line up for music is strong and ranges from the pipes of a classically trained opera singer (singing in a rock band of course) Little Grey Girlfriend, the upbeat and introspective words and sound of Whale Belly (Park Slope), The Robin Electric with nostalgic twinges of their Cleveland roots, and string band turned electric from Chicago, Panoramic and True.
Artists include talent like artist and curator Ben Peterson, Christine Nguyen, illustrator Mariana Silva, award-winning motion graphics designer Mauricio Leon, illustrator Travis Simon, Daria Tessler and many more.
The show takes place this Sunday June 5th at Littlefield in Brooklyn
Doors open at 6, with a free art reception and $10 cover for the music.
All proceeds will benefit the effort of Project Kaisei.