Summertime at McCarren Park in Williamsburg is picturesque. It’s often filled with a mix of people, old and young, picnicking or sitting in the shade, running along the track or playing soccer (or football, depending on where you’re from). It’s also connected to a now defunct McCarren (swimming) pool which transforms into an outdoor concert space on Sundays during the summer. In the past, performers such as Leslie Feist, M.I.A., The Yeah Yeah Yeahs, and Broken Social Scene have performed.
Disregard the buzz that surrounds those other cupcake shops in New York City. Cheeks Bakery in Williamsburg houses the best cupcakes that I’ve eaten. The clean and understated decor extends to the menu, where being fancy doesn’t rule on the cupcake shelves. Cheeks offers, simply, vanilla and chocolate cupcakes with either vanilla or chocolate cream. […]
We asked some of New York’s more creative residents where they like to hang out in the city, and got a mixed bag of responses back. We’ll be running their insider tips over the next few weeks. This is illustrator Marcos Chin on his favorite arcade bar, aptly named … wait for it … Barcade: ‘Barcade is a time-warp into the 1980s when going to the arcade was the major past time for many of my friends and I. Lined throughout the space are a series of classic 25 cent video arcade games, like Q-bert, Donkey Kong, Arkanoid and Tetris. There’s also a pool table near the back of the space, and a terrific selection of beers to choose from. And yes, you can drink-and-play. It’s located near the Lorimer stop on the L train, at 388 Union Avenue, in Williamsburg’.
I met Marisa Aragona a few years ago while she was orchestrating a somewhat scandalous photo shoot in my backyard in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. Ever since then I’ve been captivated with her style. Her work reminds me of photos you might find left behind in a storage unit. Mysterious yet tangible, a glimpse into the world of a stranger.
Having lived in Brooklyn’s Williamsburg for some time now, it’s been a much enjoyed revelation checking into The Burg.tv site every week or so to get an even clearer window into the remarkably entertaining community that skirts up and down Bedford Avenue each afternoon. The website asks the question: ‘who says gentrification isn’t funny?’ while […]
New York-based retro lovers unite, especially the world-weary 80s tragics amongst you. The second installment of my monthly 1980s themed night at Williamsburg’s Monkey Town is on next Tuesday night [September 4]. It’s a movie and music night, celebrating that gloriously kitsch and devastatingly over the top decade when computers were friendly, nerdy was cool, […]
This is one for all you New York-based 80s tragics out there (yes, that means you. And you too, hiding in the corner wearing the hyper-color t-shirt and Scritti Politti bangs). I’m kicking off a monthly 1980s themed night at Williamsburg’s Monkey Town on Wednesday August 1. It’ll be a movie and music night, celebrating […]
The Rotating Gallery is run by Williamsburg, Brooklyn couple Alana Celii and Grant Willing who have transformed their living room wall into a small gallery space that changes every month. ‘We like to showcase found objects, drawings, photographs, and other multi-media pieces that fit within a monthly theme’, says Celii. ‘Some current themes we have […]
We’ve featured him before, but it bears repeating: the work of Brooklyn-based photojournalist Boogie is so gritty and personal it makes you feel as though you’re right there in the front row, rolling with the punches as he documents the malaise of contemporary urban society. His photos are not so much a critique of the worlds that his subjects inhabit but rather a candid portrayal of what goes on when the rest of us have our backs turned. With themes such as the New York subways, the Serbian counter-culture, the Nazis of Belgrade, and the crack houses of New York City, his work is raw and honest – there are few windows lurking beneath what’s captured in the frame. And yet, while it’s confronting and challenging, it never degrades the subjects or the choices they’ve made in their lives. Instead his photo essays allow the essence of the characters to shine, never overwhelming the moment with unnecessary visual clutter, in the process adding a nice sense of pathos to an otherwise still existence. And then there are the moments of genuine tension where he exploits the potential for explosive action for everything it’s worth. It’s vibrant, compelling work, all cloaked in a sense of underlying melodrama – as if something is just about to happen at any moment, whether or not anyone is watching. Yet they are. And they’re armed with a rather expensive camera.
It’s true, fate does work in mysterious ways. How else can I explain my metamorphosis over the past few months from serious musician to … well … a sweetly-oiled backing track to a potential world whistling champion.
Ok, some random news and observations about this thriving, jiving metropolis that is New York City. 1. There are that many tattoos around Williamsburg, Brooklyn that I reckon I’m making more of a statement by not having one! Seriously. People nod at me on the street as if to say, ‘cool man, I love that clean skin. Where’d ya get it done?’