New York City

Underground and Alternative Magazines from the ’70s and ’80s That Capture NYC’s Downtown Art World

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If you wanted to find out the real deal behind the fashion, culture, nightlife, music, art, and film happening in New York City during the 1970s, ‘80s, and ‘90s, there was only one place to turn. Alternative and indie publications of the time like Paper Mag, New York Rocker, and Art-Rite captured the diverse intersection of art and life — and the covers of these magazines were just as exciting as the contents within.
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Otherworldly Aerial Photos of Couples Lounging in Central Park

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Sheep Meadow in Central Park “was originally the home to a flock of pure bred sheep from 1864 until 1934.” Since then, the area has been restored and maintained, becoming the city’s first Quiet Zone. A tiny slice of Zen for sunbathers, picnickers, and families looking for a quick getaway from the rat race, Sheep Meadow is also a draw for photographer Michael Massaia. The artist captures photos of couples lounging on Sheep Meadow from above, presenting them in abstract form, divorced from their surroundings. We’re left with the language of an embrace or a languid pose. Massaia exhibits the photos vertically with a dark background, which makes it seem as though each couple is floating in the ether, an otherworldly space and time.
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Resting NiceFace Wields the Velociraptor Claw: Links You Need to See

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Teachers just can’t teach these days, it seems, without bringing a jammer into the classroom to get their students to stop texting and pay attention! Or, at least, that’s what this one Florida science teacher thought when he did just that (earning the ire of Verizon and possibly the FCC, and a five-day suspension). But things could have been even worse — as this professor points out — if a student had complained that the teacher was not “sensitive enough toward his feelings.” Apparently, professors are facing career-ending consequences for presenting difficult concepts and texts to students. But, while we’re avoiding mental harm in the classroom, anyone from the public at large is allowed to stroll through an airport carrying an AR-15, fully loaded with a 100-round drum in Georgia. With no consequences.
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Knausgaard vs. Wood: Novelist to Face Critic in Lit-Fest Drumming Battle

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We know many things about Karl Ove, the “character” featured in Karl Ove Knausgaard’s time-friending auto-epic novel My Struggle. We know, for instance, what his feces looked like as a child. We know, too, the texture of the cornflakes he once ate for breakfast. But we do not yet know that Knausgaard played the drums in a college band called Lemen (“Lemming”). And we also do not know that this band’s previous name was Kafkatrakterne (“Kafka-maker,” like “coffee maker”). The reason we do not know these things: the fifth volume of My Struggle has not been translated.
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“Pleasure Is the Ultimate Rebellion”: Lydia Lunch on Making Poetry Out of Horror, Uncompromising Self-Love, and Her First Major Retrospective

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Lydia Lunch, no wave queen and teenage runaway turned Teenage Jesus, is back in New York City, where it all started for her in the 1970s. Lydia Lunch: So Real It Hurts, her first major retrospective, opens at Howl! Happening May 8 and surveys her photography series The War Is Never Over, the provocative installation You Are Not Safe in Your Own Home, and the many letters, posters, and ephemera from her incredible, nearly 40-year career. Performances and live events accompany the exhibit, which runs through June 5. A contrarian, hysterian, and hedonist, Lunch’s song lyrics, writings, photography, and spoken word performances peel back the skin and peer deep into the chasm of contemporary culture. While she searches for a home for her archives, readies for a new release from her band Retrovirus, preps to teach at a university summer writing program, and sees a vinyl reissue of the powerful Conspiracy of Women on Nicolas Jaar’s label Other People, the iconoclast shared her views on how to be the ultimate confrontationist.
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An Exhaustively Complete Food Tour of ‘Seinfeld’

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Seinfeld’s magical nihilism seems to reach its peak with the juxtaposing of serious dramas with trivialities, the most common of which involve foodstuffs. The show’s gastronomical leaning is often, itself, toward the aggrandizing of the trivial: the gravity with which a food group that can only be described as “light nibbles” is dissected by the characters usually far outweighs that with which they approach larger meals, relationships, friendship, and, just generally: life. The takeaway may not be that Seinfeld is a show about “nothing.” Rather, it’s a show about everything, and how said “everything” is just a little less important than, say, a tiny mint, a very big salad, or the absence of a very delicious chocolate babka. After looking through this comprehensive guide to Seinfeld’s most crucial food references, you, too, might feel as though you’ve just stumbled upon the “meaning of it …Read More

How to Steal A Mountain: Links You Need to See

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Artistic processes are manifold, and hierarchizing the way we create is futile: but artist Oscar Santillon literally did climb to the top to make a recent work of art: he took a piece of England’s highest mountain. Said accomplishment will provide an incredibly impressive line on a resume, but it’s also angered Cumbria Tourism, who wants him to return it. Regardless of the ultimate decision about what happens to this inch of mountaintop, not many other people can put “Mountain Thief” on their list of qualifications. The only artistic feat that may be more impressive is an entire book of poems about Kanye West. Which exists, and is available for purchase on Amazon. Do with that what you will.
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