Jul 20 Thu Met Breuer Exhibition Illuminating the Career of Italian Architect and Designer Ettore Sottsass (Jul 21 Fri–Oct 8 Sun)

Ettore Sottsass: Design Radical

A seminal figure in 20th-century design, the Italian architect and designer Ettore Sottsass (1917–2007) created a vast body of work, the result of an exceptionally productive career that spanned more than six decades. The exhibition at The Met Breuer, Ettore Sottsass: Design Radical, opening July 21, will reevaluate Sottsass’s career in a presentation of his key works in a range of media—including architectural drawings, interiors, furniture, machines, ceramics, glass, jewelry, textiles and pattern, painting, and photography. The exhibition will present Sottsass’s work in dialogue with ancient and contemporaneous objects that influenced his practice. This juxtaposition will offer new insight into his designs, situating him within a broader design discourse.

Perhaps best known for his work with the design collective Memphis in the 1980s, Sottsass’s work evolved over the course of his career from modernism to postmodernism. Born in Innsbruck, Austria and educated in Turin, Italy, Sottsass established his studio in Milan in 1947. In his early career, he designed iconic works that reflected a functional and rationalist approach, especially as Olivetti’s design consultant in the creation of the Elea 9003 mainframe computer (1958) and numerous machines and furnishing systems. By the 1960s, Sottsass began to move away from his own modernist beginnings in favor of qualities beyond the functional: he created objects imbued with symbolism, emotional appeal, and global and historical references. Moreover, he infused modern design with a sensitivity for the human condition that many at the time felt modernism largely ignored. The shift in his ideology coincided with a broadening of influences gained through travel to the United States, where he worked briefly in the designer George Nelson’s office, and, especially, to India in 1961, as reflected in the works Ceramics of Darkness (1963) and Tantric Ceramics (1968).

 Ettore Sottsass, "Carlton" Room Divider, 1981. Wood, plastic laminate. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, John C. Waddell Collection, Gift of John C. Waddell, 1997. © Ettore Sottsass

Ettore Sottsass, “Carlton” Room Divider, 1981. Wood, plastic laminate. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, John C. Waddell Collection, Gift of John C. Waddell, 1997. © Ettore Sottsass

The exhibition at The Met Breuer will highlight landmark projects, including 5 of the original industrial ceramic totems that comprised the Menhir, Ziggurat, Stupas, Hydrants, and Gas Pumps (1965-66) project displayed at the Galleria Sperone in 1967; the iconoclastic and minimalist “Superboxes” (begun 1966); and the “Environment”—a system of modular cabinets for MoMA’s 1972 exhibition Italy: The New Domestic Landscape. Designed as a conceptual prototype/provocation in the 1970s spirit of questioning social norms, the “Environment” proposes liberation from traditional architectural structures and the social values associated with home ownership in favor of an open-source shared domestic utility catering to a more nomadic or communal existence. This sequence of visionary projects introduced many of the concepts, materials, and techniques that informed the founding of Memphis in 1981.

Sottsass and a small international group of like-minded designers called themselves Memphis in a nod to the Bob Dylan song “Stuck Inside of Mobile with the Memphis Blues Again,” the ancient capital of Egypt, and the modern city in Tennessee. The collective produced furnishings that were a radical departure from accepted design conventions by reinterpreting design’s basic elements: function, form, material, surface, and color. The totemic “Carleton” Room Divider from 1981 is an outstanding example; its visually disjointed form is antithetical to neatly ordered conventional bookcases. Sottsass justified the odd angles by claiming that books never stand straight anyway. Like Memphis, “Carleton” self-consciously embodies pop and vernacular references that play with perceptions of high and low-veneered in cheap plastic laminates like those used on countertops of 1950s American diners but constructed using very fine cabinetmaking techniques. While marketed and priced beyond the reach of average consumers, the example demonstrates Memphis’s insistence on a designer’s creativity and agency to determine the final product, a value that today contributes to the blurring of the art and design markets and the rise of “collectible design.”

“Masters,” the final section of the exhibition, will present selections of Sottsass’s lesser-known late work in dialogue with pieces by four important 20th-century artists and designers: Piet Mondrian, Jean Michel Frank, Gio Ponti, and Shiro Kuramata. Sottsass’s writings, which often reference the objects that influenced him, appear throughout the exhibition. The inclusion of Frank’s Low table (1983) and a few examples of Sottsass-influenced contemporary design serve as formal comparisons that elucidate basic design and aesthetic principles and how Sottsass diverged from them to become a true design radical.
Ettore Sottsass: Design Radical is organized by Christian Larsen, Associate Curator of Modern Design and Decorative Arts in The Met’s Department of Modern and Contemporary Art.

In celebration of the exhibition, The Met Store will offer an assortment of limited edition items designed by Sottsass, members of Memphis, and contemporary artists inspired by Memphis, including furniture and home gifts.

Education programs will include a Sunday at The Met on Sunday, October 1 at 2:00 pm, featuring the design icon and co-founder of the design firm IDEO, David Kelley, on Sottsass. There will also be Family Tours at The Met Breuer, in conjunction with the exhibition, on Saturday, August 12, at 11:00 am and 2:00 pm.

The exhibition will be featured on the Museum’s website, as well as on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter using the hashtag #Sottsass and #MetBreuer.

Exhibition Dates:
July 21–October 8, 2017
Exhibition Location:
The Met Breuer, Floor 3

Exhibition Illuminating the Career of Italian Architect and Designer Ettore Sottsass to Open July 21 at The Met Breuer

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Jul 12 Wed-13 Thu CE Week-Showstoppers-GetgeekedNY at The Metropolitan Pavilion 125 W 18 St

CE Week 2017 – What’s in store …
Once again this year, CE Week has partnered with getgeeked New York and ShowStoppers to create the tech industry’s only “B2E” (business-to-everyone) event. Participating companies can set up once at the Metropolitan Pavilion and meet with the press, industry attendees, influencers, and enthusiasts over the course of two carefully curated days.

Attendees will see hundreds of amazing new products from tech’s biggest brands and hottest startups on the show floor. They can attend conference sessions featuring tech industry thought leaders, check out exciting special events like the Young Innovators To Watch Awards, take advantage of show specials in the getgeeked Shopping Zone, and lots more.

One Location. Two Days. Three Events.
For over 10 years, CE Week has been where the tech industry goes to lay the foundation for success in the second half of the year, but this year it will deliver participating companies more ROI than any other tech industry event.

That’s because CE Week has partnered with getgeeked New York and ShowStoppers to deliver exhibitors all the audiences they need to engage to be successful in the second half of 2017 at one event.

Whether a company signs up with CE Week, getgeeked New York, or ShowStoppers, all CE Week exhibitors are invited to participate in all three events at the Metropolitan Pavilion in Midtown Manhattan on July 12th and 13th.

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Jun 25 Sun-27 Tues Summer Fancy Food Show Will Be Largest, With Italy in Lead

Taste cornucopia
One of the great celebrations of summer in NYC is the Fancy Food Show, where if the weather is fine the attendees are well dressed and an upbeat party mood prevails as for example this year when 180,000 special concoctions of tasty food and drinks were offered by more than 2,550 exhibitors from 55 countries, thus quite beyond any one human’s ability to sample more than a fraction, but we stepped up to the mark nonetheless and using serendipity as a guide found some very notable choices, none of them winners of one of the many show awards but in our opinion including many newcomers deserving of gold medals for their inspired achievement in creativity and flavor and ones which we hope will be taken up by distributors who are increasingly clogged by sheer numbers but still feel they have a real duty to introduce the best to the huge American market:

Navitas Organics’ Brooke Golden

At Navitas Organics Brooke Golden from Novato Ca. offered various powders from their range of ‘essential superfoods’ which to make smoothies possibly including every plant phytochemical, protein, probiotic, enzyme and vitamin under the sun either in their Vanilla and Greens blend or in individual packets such as their Peruvian organic cacao powder to pure goji berries from China, with her card bearing the motto “Live Life Positive”, who seemed to benefit from the company herself having been with Navitas for three years but admitted she had an unfair start by being obviously in the pink of health from the start so couldn’t say if the powders had made any actual difference to the way she felt, but she had found it very useful to have a smoothie after a heavy night in the morning before going in to work, and if you want to join her the powders are on the shelves of Whole Foods.

Natalie Morse, marketing manager of Chosen Foods

Chosen Foods of San Diego presented a magnificent lineup of five or six jars of Mayo made from their own supplies of 100 pure avocado oil from Mexico of which they are the world’s biggest supplier and supply 85% of the avocado used in the US by other brands that simply use it as an ingredient under their own label and charge double the price, but their own is available at retail at $7.99 TO $9.99 FOR 12 fluid ounces though not yet at Whole Foods, so you can buy it direct and thus not only pay less but also be sure that it hasn’t been adulterated with lower quality seed oil in an industry which is as much liable to fraud as the more famous case of olive oil, and using avocado oil will have the further advantages of a smoke or burn level of 500 degrees compared to extra virgin olive oil of 320 degrees and thirdly of not masking the taste of what is being fried, as became clear when we tried the jar of Wasabi Mayo, which clearly would be perfect on a nice steak, and as Peggy Fyffi and later Natali Morse of Chosen Food marketing recounted, made it understandable how the company started seven years ago at first struggling until it won a place in Costco and became the biggest in the industry and one in 2016 that used 15 million avocados including sending 30 to 40 truckloads of oil to retail serving for example Spectrum in Whole Foods here in NY which charges double for the same oil, none of it GMO by the way, avocados are not at risk for GMO but dressings with other ingredients of course are, Natalie assuring us that Chosen Foods is very careful to avoid such adulteration, maintaining that quality partly through her assiduous use of PubMed to check scientific publications all as part of Chosen Foods commitment to ethical values of such as transparency and personal respect.

Spyros Nastopoulos of <strong>Greek Family Farm of Magnisia</strong>,

Spyros Nastopoulos of Greek Family Farm of Magnisia,

Spyros Nastopoulos of Greek Family Farm of Magnisia, central Greece, offered the Greek ‘Great Flavors’ Campaign feta from his 3000 sheep either pure or mixed in as one fifth of sheep/cow cheese (Naxos Graviera with its superior taste award in 2015 from the Brussels International Taste and Quality Institute produced by the Naxos Union of Agricultural Cooperatives) together with straight cow, and after a conversation outlining its PDO (Protected Destination of Origin) labeling produced a pure feta package from his cabinet without any label at all covered with real herbs, perhaps oregano, tarragon, and thyme, all of which cheeses without exception had that special feel of purity and access to inherent taste that marks a cheese unprocessed by anything but Nature herself, suggesting that there is nothing better in feta from Greece or anywhere else if that is your criterion, and making it fit that in contributing this achievement to human welfare, including with any luck the land on this side of the Atlantic, if deserved distribution is achieved here, the energetically entrepreneurial Spyros went on to bemoan the state of Greece where the present government is failing to lead the nation out of its excess of welfare unproductivity because in his view it shares the same unwillingness to risk loss of its own sinecures and now he employs 65 people in his expanding export operation yet finds young Greeks often refusing his offer of 800 Euros a month to join in because they prefer to live off their grandpa’s pension and go drinking at night, even though he agrees that this state should actually be the end point of civilization sooner or later if we are ever going to get the burden of excessive growth off the shoulders of the planet, although one admits that the language barrier may have prevented him from realizing that his production of Feta perfection leads to that conclusion if it becomes generalized, and his success in starting his farm with his two cousins in 2000 when they were all in their twenties benefited from hard work and luck, just as the Greek New York mayoral candidate John Catsimatidis said, and he believes in that as the key to success plus choose a job you love and have a vision, and it is such a pity that the young of Greece don’t realise this, although other problems of Greece he mentions are the tendency for the well educated to leave for other lands, and the bad philosophy which leads people to shortchange tourists so they never come back.

Coconut Collaborative with James Averdieck

Arriving at the surprisingly short British row of booths we found the Coconut Collaborative with James Averdieck and Katherine Tyler showing off a novel replacement for yogurt with his Indonesian coconut oil based ultra smooooth little desserts mixing his mild coconut cream combining juice and flesh with flavors in chocolate or lemon or (best) mango and passion fruit that completely dominate the result which therefore has none of the imagined drawbacks of dairy, though Averdieck one of the brains behind the start up and its principle of substituting the health virtues of coconut oil over dairy seemed somewhat winded by the previous week’s American Heart Association meta review of 100 scientific papers since the 1950’s advising that getting rid of saturated fats for mono and polyunsatured fats can reduce heart risk by nearly a third, as much as statin drugs, and since coconut oil contains 82% saturated fat and it can raise bad LDL cholesterol as much as butter, the popular press is now headlining reports with “Forget coconut oil” and similar, rather overlooking the fact that butter and other animal fat long supposed to be heart threats have now been largely redeemed of late with the new-old view of labeling too much sugar as the universal diet villain, not to mention with saturated fat recognized as one the basic building blocks of the nervous system and coconut oil a star performer in building immunity by directly knocking out viruses, such as even the supposedly harmful HIV.

Along the way Olivia Hope-Hawkins of the The Buttermilk Kitchen proffered Crumbly Salted Caramel Fudge and other ways of living dangerously for those who may be aware that English fudge is over 3/4 sugar but are unable to resist its siren call because its lack of restraint in that particular allows it to achieve a peak of perfection not otherwise available to rivals for the top prize such as Polish fudge, even though a hit may be comparable to risking cocaine addiction and at the very least should be followed assiduous toothbrush use including the top surface of the tongue, but if this is done there is certainly nothing like it.

Across from both these standouts in the Brit gallery Alexandra Chamberlain and Julian Dyer of Pots and Co purveyed high quality desserts for the start up desk jockey or time short homebody or stressed air traveler who can have delivered a four star restaurant kitchen crafted dessert in a small but beautiful ceramic ‘pot’ useful around the house for baking or nuts later, and meeting the very highest standards in taste and ingredients for chocolate mavens.

Perdinci from Tuscany now in Florida for the finest possible Tuscany salami, period. Incomparable.
Bradburys Cheese and Chris Chisnall for their White Stilton which those with a liking for soft cheese will rate perfection, pure and simple.
Rebel Kitchen with Rachel Curley and its Coconut drinks, pure or flavored, pink with antioxidants, said to be $2.99 at Fairway, not too bad at all.
Nutribug cricket protein from David Binns, where one kilo of powder is the yield from 10,000 roasted crickets (with oil removed the taste is minimal, he assured us, but we are glad that circumstances so far have not forced us to confirm this).
A major advance on popcorn, Rooted’s popped lotus flower seeds, where popcorn meets quinoa, served by Arun Shroff, who proved that novelty in snacks can still be a long leap forward into fun and satisfaction.
The supreme Polish Wedel chocolate from Warsaw, unchanged by the Korean investors who have taken over the company who at least use the original factory to make it preserved in its original form in the capital, via Christopher Kolodko, Brooklyn Imports, whose sample bars and boxes showed us that nothing can taste as good for you as Wedel milk chocolate with walnuts.
Enrique de Chelminski of Gourmet Fields and chocolate from Costa Rican cacao turned out so good that even 100% pure cacao is perfectly palatable, without a trace of bitterness.

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Jun 20 Tues 8pm Sparkling Polish Gem at Soho International Film Fest: The Eccentrics (On the Sunny Side of the Street)

Freedom through music
An unobtrusive comedy much better than the simple description in the Soho International Film Festival program at Village East Cinema at 2nd Ave and 12th st, The Eccentrics: On the Sunny Side of the Street is an intelligent Polish mix of amusing social commentary, spy mystery, and political satire which is also a fine philosophical celebration of upbeat, soulful swing as a come together refuge from atrocious politics, in this case the wooden and dangerous absurdities of Communism in the fifties in beleaguered Poland.

This very accomplished film is a delicate, many petaled rose of good humor, satirical intelligence and unexpected takes on what would be in lesser hands a straightforward tale, but after a brief slow start when the underlying deadly seriousness of the Polish war and postwar experience is quickly established, every scene is made interesting by a skilfully provocative script by Wlodzimierz Kowalewski (it’s his original novel) and effortless acting by all.

A wholly interesting and amusing standout shouldn’t be blushing unseen on the festival program at Village East Cinema (189 2nd Avenue), where it will be run once at 8pm-10pm on Tuesday, June 20, and we advise anyone with a taste for worldly wit and emotional teasing of the most sophisticated yet pointed kind, the most achieved in Polish comedy that has been seen in Manhattan for years, should make sure to catch it.

For that will be the only chance here to catch what is the current cap from 2015 to director Janusz Majewski’s body of work which is widely admired in Poland and abroad. The Eccentrics unreels a deadpan saga where every scene is a pleasing turn and interesting surprise, from the unexpected bonding of official and suspect just returned from London exile over a piano which leads to the suspiciously easy recruitment of good players for his big band renditions of American Patrol and many other top tunes, to the romantic denouement where the uphill seduction by our hero of his personally challenging lead singer (“I won’t tell! – the less you know the more you’ll care!” is her reply to his post success inquiry as to her past life) crumbles catastrophically, revealing that it is political machinations behind the scenes which fill the story with intriguing off kilter interruptions.

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Jun 14 Wed 6-8pm Susan Eley Art Beyond the Ban: Contemporary Iranian Art

Iranian Art Here

Many of the 200,000 Iranians in the region arrived at Susan Eley’s increasingly prominent brownstone gallery on West 90 last evening and they networked with a gusto that filled the spaces of her two up-one-flight rooms and corridor with well dressed bodies and loud conversation so visitors from other ethnic groups generally had a hard time getting an unrestricted view of the great variety of paintings and photographs of contemporary Iranian art on the walls which were not blocked by handsome young dark stubbled faces or young curves clad in bright colors but the great range of works gathered by distinguished gallerina Eley was the keynote of the interesting art which they were ignoring, from the rose flowered scarf through which the figure of a woman could be discerned hung in pride of place above the fireplace, a photograph by black bearded Hossein Fatemi whose 2013 series advancing the image of Iranian culture beyond the crude simplicities of Washington politics has been featured in the Times under the heading “Virtual Truth”, through two exquisite classically styled paintings, to the crude but charmingly evocative work hanging over the spicy snack nuts in the back alcove, a painting of a modestly beaming suitor holding flowers, which was being revisited by a lady from the previous evening, when Eley had gathered a smarter crowd who might be more likely to be potential buyers, who said that the painting spoke to her and she had to come again to take a second look, and when we left young Iranians were still arriving including at the foot of the stairs the short but articulate coffee expert Goli who is working at the Heavenly Rest Cafe for now after cutting short her translation of a book about coffee and moving on from Sweden to the US having decided it was the place to be despite the arrival of the new inhabitant of the Oval Office who might have discouraged a less intrepid young literata, and planning to go with her girl friend to the Philharmonic concert in Central Park afterwards like so many on this warm but cloudless summer evening.

Mina by Hossein Fatemi from Veiled Truth series (2013) Archival inkjet print 35×35 in

Beyond the Ban: Contemporary Iranian Art
June 14 – August 30, 2017

Beyond the Ban is a group exhibition showcasing the work of leading Iranian artists based in the United States. It features painting, photography and prints by such luminaries as Shirin Neshat, Nicky Nodjoumi, Nahid Hagigat, Shoja Azari, Shahram Karimi, Jason Noushin, Afshin Naghouni, Nazanin Noroozi, Raha Raissnia and Hossein Fatemi.

American Art has thrived through the contribution of its immigrants. Beyond the Ban celebrates this dynamic tradition of diversity in American art by showcasing the stunning contributions of one of the immigrant groups targeted by President Trump’s travel ban.

Proceeds will benefit the Center for Human Rights in Iran, a non-profit based in New York City. The exhibit demonstrates the rich stylistic and thematic variety of art being produced today by the vibrant community of Iranian artists living in the US.

Beyond the Ban
Opening Reception
Wednesday, June 14, 6-8pm at Susan Eley Fine Art
46 West 90St Floor 2

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Jun 13 Tue 4pm-7pm 120 Park Avenue Bloomberg’s Government’s “Building the Economy of the Future: Central Europe in a Post-Brexit World

Hungary charms investors
Hungary in the person of Budapest architecture professor Erno Rubik came up with the most famous technotoy of all time in 1974, since when 350 million plus copies of the impossible Cube have been sold, and the much visited country is now advertising its receptivity to investors who are keen to foster the next work of genius in Budapest or alternative cities in the provinces of a land far from the sights of ISIS, where haircuts and lunches are still well below New York prices and where IBM has been present for 80 years, and now shares Ustream achievements with founder Gyula Feher, who says “our only lack is thinking big” and proceeded to think big himself and lead Ustream’s lab in Budapest “which can compete with anyone” into engineering what promises to be a major advance in scooping data from audiovisual on the Web far more efficiently than humans, while David Wiernik from Israel the co-founder of NVN Kft says “we came for the cost and people” but found government officials will phone every week to find out how they can be of help, in fact they have already legislated away taxes on startup revenue, and after giving up selling in China where his software was so popular there were illegal copies on every street corner, he pivoted to autos and won a 30% jump in sales with Toyota adoption in 2010 and now plans to be out in front of cybersecuring the navigation which will steer the autonomous driving that is now being tested at a government center, and which is now the focus of his thousand software engineers in Budapest, and Miklos Santa a partner at Ernst and Young agreed that government support and credits was helpful but emphasized another advantage was security, as shown by his tale of one company that chose a different location but two years later hurried to Hungary after finding that their auto software ‘traveled’ out of their control rather too quickly, all of which added up to numerous pluses for Hungary over other nations for investors though no actual measures were cited, and one left out of the reckoning might be the sense of undisturbed civilization which its residents project at least in the person of the Consul General Ferenc Kumin, who awarded a prize to IBM named for the Chain Bridge which connects the two halves of the city and which therefore celebrated the bridge IBM has built between the US and Hungary in investing in its future, achieving a total of 6000 jobs with 400 added this year, in the same spirit of amicable hospitality that imbued the networking party hosted afterwards with Hungarian wines and beers and chocolates in red heart shaped covers fueling a storm of conversation backed up by canapes and shrimp on sticks which vanished as fast as they could be served.

Left in the lurch, or free to forge ahead?

Left in the lurch, or free to forge ahead?

Bloomberg’s Government’s “Building the Economy of the Future: Central Europe in a Post-Brexit World”
June 13, 4:00 – 7:00 pm EST

On Tuesday, June 13, Bloomberg Government will host an invitation only-event sponsored by the Hungarian Investment Promotion Agency and the Hungarian Consulate with top investors, government and business leaders and innovative entrepreneurs to examine the challenges and opportunities as countries in Central and Eastern Europe respond to Brexit and other geopolitical and economic realities while transforming their economy from one reliant on low-cost manufacturing to one increasingly powered by technology and high-value products and services.

Our program will take a deep dive on how industry and markets are viewing opportunities in the region post-Brexit and examine the impact of restrictions to the flow of skilled EU workers to Britain. Will talent head east? How viable are the innovation hubs that are rapidly developing in the region?

Speakers include:
– Karan Bhatia, Vice President and Senior Counsel, Global Government Affairs and Policy, General Electric
– Robert Esik, President, Hungarian Investment Promotion Agency
– Gyula Feher, Co-Founder and CTO, Ustream, an IBM Company
– Ferenc Kumin, Consul General, Hungary
– Levente Magyar, State Secretary for Economic Diplomacy, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, Hungary
– Kevin A. Murray, Managing Director and CEO, Central Europe, Citibank
– Miklos Santa, Partner, Eastern European Business Group, Global Tax Desks, Ernst & Young
– David Wiernik, Co-Founder and President, NavNGo

When: Tuesday, June 13, 4:00 – 7:00 pm EST
Where: Bloomberg L.P., 120 Park Avenue, New York City, NY 10017

For more information, visit:

Building the Economy of the Future: Central Europe in a Post-Brexit World

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Jun 12 Mon 10am-Noon Met – Bamboo Art of Japan, Abbey Collection, The Sackler Wing Galleries (Jun 13-Feb 4 18)

Bamboo art and time
Fast growing, enduring, and pliable when treated bamboo is the preferred food of pandas who live on its shoots, part of the daily life of East Asia for two millennia (the Chinese and Japanese characters for bamboo are incorporated in a thousand others including flute, writing brush, box and basket) and the malleable material of patient and dedicated artists in a five hundred year tradition in Japan that is still going strong, combining the abstract qualities of fine art and the hands on satisfaction of usefully transforming Nature, as well as symbolizing longevity, strength and hardiness, and this revelatory show is an outstanding selection of what has resulted over the last two centuries, from flower vases and boxes and shapes in the form of a cicada and other representations of nature to splendidly woven bowls and wave forms and even a huge spiralling wave rising over the entrance to the exhibition ordered from a current master (Tanabe Chikuunsai IV), all of it imbued with the timeless quality of extended and careful attention and construction taking as long as a year or more, starting with the initial personal choice of wood from the north, middle or south of Japan, which runs accordingly from hard to soft, and including here seventy one choice works promised the Met by Diane and Arthur Abbey, collectors who became fascinated by bamboo art in 1999, and will now transform the Met’s holdings of this art form which started with Edward Moore designer at Tiffany who in 1891 gave the museum nearly eighty bamboo baskets as well as other Japanese craft work, and the unfolding of these exquisite forms in the spacious low lit Sackler Wing galleries under the kindly gaze of tall Buddhist statues is informed by a very well illustrated magazine format monograph by curator Monika Bincsik which celebrates the emergence of this art form to world attention in the last forty years.

Honma Hideaki. Flowing Pattern, 2014. Japanese timber bamboo, dwarf bamboo, and rattan. Promised Gift of Diane and Arthur Abbey

Honma Hideaki. Flowing Pattern, 2014. Japanese timber bamboo, dwarf bamboo, and rattan. Promised Gift of Diane and Arthur Abbey

A spectacular loan exhibition devoted to masterworks of Japanese bamboo art—including award-winning works by six artists who were designated as Living National Treasures—will go on view at The Metropolitan Museum of Art beginning June 13. Featuring more than 90 works dating from the late 19th century to the present, Japanese Bamboo Art: The Abbey Collection will explore the refined beauty and technical sophistication of Japanese bamboo, which has been little known in the West until recent years. Opening with a monumental bamboo sculpture by Tanabe Chikuunsai IV (b. 1973)—a site-specific installation created for The Met—the exhibition will highlight key stages in the modern history of Japanese bamboo art while introducing the main lineages of bamboo masters and showing the emergence of a contemporary bamboo art. The Diane and Arthur Abbey Collection is one of the finest assemblages of Japanese baskets and bamboo sculpture in private hands. The majority of the works have never before been presented to the public, and more than 70 are recent promised gifts to The Met.

The exhibition is made possible by Diane and Arthur Abbey.
For hundreds of years, simple, everyday utensils as well as refined bamboo vessels were made according to local traditions and techniques passed down from generation to generation. It was not until the end of the 19th century that bamboo craftsmanship began to be recognized as one of the traditional Japanese decorative arts, and later as an art form.

Organized broadly by three geographical production areas—Kansai, Kanto, and Kyushu—the exhibition will feature masterworks by pioneer bamboo artists of the Meiji (1868–1912) and Taisho (1912–1926) periods as well as later masters such as Iizuka Rokansai, who created innovative works that became the foundation for contemporary bamboo art. The show will also feature pieces by modern bamboo artists. The works will be augmented by a selection of paintings and decorative arts exploring related themes, such as the four seasons, floral compositions (ikebana), and the tea ceremony.

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Jun 7 Wed 7.30pm HBO’s VICE presents “Taking Back Iraq & Lost Generation” with New America NYC and discussion between “Lost Generation” editor Joe Langford and producer David McDougall, hosted by correspondents Aris Roussinos and Isobel Yeung at Lincoln Center David Rubenstein Atrium Bway 62/63

VICE correspondent Isobel Yeung rides with the Sunni militia. (Jerry Ricciotti for VICE on HBO)

VICE correspondent Isobel Yeung rides with the Sunni militia. (Jerry Ricciotti for VICE on HBO)

Bullseye shorts make even makers cry

On the huge screen in the David Rubenstein Atrium two shorts on Iraq offered with thunderous sound track brief but arrow-penetrating glimpses of the on-the-ground reality of Iraq, first with Taking Back Iraq dynamic coverage of troops advancing towards the Isis held city Mosul through a nearby town, where a two day old horrid corpse lies with rotting empty rib cage (and enough hair that the Iraq militia commander takes off his cap to expose his own shining baldness and joke “He should give it to me!”), and a vast machine is dragged from underground where it had carved an extensive tunnel network behind the front line, and this exciting glimpse of war was followed by The Lost Generation, where the boldly challenging Isobel Yeung investigates the whole as yet untalked of catastrophe of a huge new generation of Iraqi teens more numerous than adults now who have no job or life role except as fodder for the ongoing religious war between Sunni and Shia with no end in sight, with irresponsible mullahs urging them towards death without compunction (Isobel Yeung asks one whether he is right to sit on his throne in comfort and keep his sons by him while he sends others’ sons to die) and one 14 year old sobbing on the grave of one of his many lost friends that he would willingly have gone instead, and showing the camera his phone with images of severed heads of the enemy he keeps to make himself feel better while expecting death sooner or later himself, and admitting that for all his commitment to his local religious cause he wishes he lived somewhere else where he could have a decent normal life, and from the audience afterwards an ex CBS researcher brought up the question of the age old conflict felt by journalists who cover vulnerable people by asking the panel made up of the producer and editor and supervising producer of The Lost Generation if they too suffered the guilt she had later felt in having to leave behind the subjects they had exploited without rescue or recompense, and David McDougall the producer of The Lost Generation said yes but that the journalistic line of objectivity and uninvolvement had to be respected in doing the work, and that bonding with the subject and wanting to do something for them was an occupational hazard about which nothing could be done, and in conversation afterwards both the skillful and notably well informed and thoughtful editor of The Lost Generation Joe Langford, and Beverly Chase the supervising editor at VICE on HBO, who produces this series for Friday nights aimed at informing youth in the US about major issues, both admitted that they frequently have shed tears for their subjects but again, there was nothing to be done, objectivity had to be maintained, though Beverly allowed that our suggestion that an independent foundation might be set up to take referrals might have potential.

HBO’s VICE presents “Taking Back Iraq & Lost Generation” with New America NYC at Lincoln Center’s David Rubenstein Atrium.
“Taking Back Iraq & Lost Generation” is hosted by correspondents Aris Roussinos and Isobel Yeung.

Wednesday, June 7 at 7:30PM
David Rubenstein Atrium at Lincoln Center
Broadway between 62nd and 63rd Streets

The city of Mosul has been central in the war to defeat Islamic State. Last October, a U.S. supported coalition of Iraqi and Kurdish troops announced a long-awaited offensive to retake the city. In the latest episode of HBO’s VICE, correspondent Aris Roussinos embedded with Iraqi forces on the road to Mosul as they began their assault on Islamic State’s last stronghold in Iraq. Then, with Islamic State seemingly on the verge of defeat in Iraq country, the question of what happens next is far from certain. VICE correspondent Isobel Yeung travels to Iraq, with one of the youngest populations of any country in the world to see what the future looks like through the eyes of the youth. Watch the trailer here.

The screening will be followed by a discussion between “Lost Generation” editor Joe Langford and producer David McDougall, moderated by VICE’s Beverly Chase. Please note: Seating is limited and first come first served.

Spread the word: #VICEonHBO, @NewAmericaNYC and @LincolnCenter.
Broadway between 62nd and 63rd Streets
Wednesday, June 7 at 7:30PM

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Jun 2 Fri-4th Sun Massive Resistance – CUNY Left Forum at John Jay College

Will the President of the United States be swept away by the incoming tide of the massed resisters assembling at the 13th annual Left Forum?

Join us for Left Forum, 2017 (June 2nd – 4th) at John Jay College in New York City. John Jay College of Criminal Justice 899 10th Avenue.
Now in its 13th year, Left Forum has grown into one the largest annual convergences of the left. The 2016 conference featured over 350 workshops/panels, multiple musical performances and film screenings, a comedy show, and a large grassroots-organization/book fair. In 2016, over 4000 people – including artists, activists, and great thinkers from around the globe – were drawn to NYC to engage in critical discussions and debates, build coalitions, socialize with new friends and long-time allies, learn, reflect, and strategize for a new future.

Building our collective strength as a movement and as a community committed to social justice is more important than ever. Join us for Left Forum 2017

More on the Program - Sessions and Plenary
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May 31 Wed-Jun 2 Fri Vast BookExpo offers Treasure Trove of Science and Current Affairs Books

Nothing like this huge, multilayered annual celebration of books, the ultimate in handy briefings on the cutting edge on science and current affairs of every field. A great must-go event, bursting with books and book fans of every kind, booksellers, popular authors, and long lines for signed copies of current and future hits.

But the key aspect we have in mind is that it also contains academic press treasure troves of past, present or forthcoming individually polished gems of scholarship and independent research in science and other solid topics, works which unlike the daily or even weekly or monthly media news and talk shows benefit from authors who take personal responsibility for the accuracy and quality of their work, completed outside the confines of government and corporate walls where censors and pr spokesmen prowl.

So get excited about BookExpo coming up fast in NYC at Javits on May 31 Wed to June 2 Fri, it’s for all those interested in books on paper between hard or soft covers as the last easily available repository of the latest worthwhile information from independent authors that unlike the fleeting smartphone or desktop screen display does not vanish into virtual reality, but remains stationery on the page ready for reference with precise marking or emendation or query in the margin, inside real physical books placed within manual grasp on a nearby bookshelf, or displayed open on the desk next to the working screen, or on the bedside table to stabilise one’s last waking moment before peaceful slumber induced by the restful quiet of the night broken only by the turn of the page, that’s what we are talking about and looking forward to – Manhattan’s greatest annual showplace of ideas!

Our particular interest is the state of the academic publishing industry as part of it gravitates to competing more significantly with the trade press, which renders a lot of deep data more accessible, and in the state of science publishing, especially in the first days of a new era where the new President of the US is apparently happy to remain in total ignorance of what science reveals about the state of the world and its future, and to contradict it whenever it conflicts with his personal interests and profit motive, or his belief in himself as the most admirable human being in the world.

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May 13 Sat 3pm Vaughan Williams and Barber – Tami Petty Soprano Malcolm J. Merriweather Baritone with Choral Society Director John Maclay at Grace Church 11th and Bway

Dissonant icing on glorious choral cake
A grand space without muddying echo once again provides a beautiful backdrop for two composers who are generally more palatable than their more advanced 20th Century rivals and this selection of their music related to the Almighty and his philosopher explicators generally pleased the crowd which overlooked the themes of sins and their punishment as reasons to seek the forgiveness of a feared God but since the resolution of every work seemed as much in a minor key as its other parts we found the impressive choral experience somewhat more pessimistic in color than the bright sunny afternoon outside on a warm example of continuing climate change, though the baritone was especially handsome and resonant, and the grand choir as aurally magnificent as ever, but luckily we were able to join a very amiable and heartwarming social occasion at the nearby Ukrainian restaurant where Wiener Schnitzel and uplifting beer restored our impression that the world was a hospitable place safe from the threat of the hereafter, at least for the moment.

Magnificent space at Grace Church of New York for 150 member Choral Society to sing its heart out

May 13 Sat 3pm Vaughan Williams and Barber – Tami Petty Soprano Philip Cutlip Baritone Choral Society Director John Maclay Grace Church of New York 11th St and Bway

Second and final chance to hear Barber’s ‘Prayers of Kierkegaard’ + Ralph Vaughan Williams’ ‘Dona Nobis Pacem’ with our 150 voices and orchestra. Door tickets available $30. thechoralsociety.org

BREAKING NEWS: Philip Cutlip, our replacement baritone now has bronchitis! To the rescue comes Malcolm J. Merriweather. You can learn all about Malcolm here (and if you click on ‘Listen’, watch a video of him singing Vaughan Williams):

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May 12 Fri Noon Molly Barnes at Roger Smith presents Phyllis Tuchman

Portrait of Phyllis Tuchman. Pencil on paper by Phong Bui. Inspired by a photo portrait by Owen Keogh.

Portrait of Phyllis Tuchman. Pencil on paper by Phong Bui. Inspired by a photo portrait by Owen Keogh.

Critic and curator Phyllis Tuchman has curated shows of George Segal and Robert Motherwell at Guild Hall, the Smithsonian and the Long House Reserve. She writes for Art and Auction, the New York Observer and the New York Times.
phyllis tuchman @eddegas

Brooklyn Rail:

PHYLLIS TUCHMAN with Joyce Beckenstein
Art historian and critic Phyllis Tuchman orchestrated an exuberant collection of works, many of them seldom seen, for Robert Motherwell: The East Hampton Years, 1944 –1952 on view at Guild Hall in East Hampton through October 13. Tuchman, who also wrote the exhibition’s accompanying catalogue, recently met with Joyce Beckenstein to discuss Motherwell’s influences; who he, in turn, influenced; and his years in East Hampton.


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May 11 Thu Noon Molly Barnes at Roger Smith presents Elizabeth Sadoff

Elizabeth Sadoff

Elizabeth Sadoff

Art Consultant Artist
An insider talk about life in marketing art in the modern era where millions of dollars from Russian launderers or Chinese nouveau super riche might otherwise drown out the once ruling early stage of young buyers forming their taste by scoring bargain works from up and coming artists whose names are not yet household in the investor galleries, by a one time artist who knows how to make things herself from her early days and now advises those same early generation buyers and she says is no longer ashamed as she once was of not being first a scholar, but is instead a hands on graduate and therefore good guide to acquisitions based on taste and understanding and not on the monetary standards used by those who appreciate the price of everything but the value of very little.

Curator and art advisor, Elizabeth Sadoff introduced mid career artists like Sys Solomon, Al Copley, and Dan Christensen to prospective collectors. She is currently staging work in the Woolworths Building downtown.

As a child, Sadoff’s parents, deeply involved in the architecture and design community of Los Angeles, California encouraged her to study art. She was an apprentice to a sculptor in L.A. from ages 12 to 18 and was carving stone at 14. Later, Sadoff held an stone-carving apprenticeship with two artisans in Pietrasanta, Italy. Her studio practice branched out into bronze casting, welding, mural painting and finally printmaking.

In 1999, Sadoff created a successful New York mural and decorative painting company, which seven years later morphed into FindAMuralist, a nationwide referral service for muralists and decorative painters. From 2004 to 2009 she was director of two small galleries in Santa Monica, California, as well as head of corporate art development for the David Findlay Jr. Gallery in New York.

Sadoff is a member of ArtTable. As co-chair for Bailey House’s annual auction since 2011, Sadoff helps raise funds to provide permanent housing and other vital services to New Yorkers with HIV/AIDS. She is a member of LMNOP Networking Group and an active member of the International Interior Design Association (IIDA) Residential Forum Committee.


526 West 26th Street
Suite 303
New York, NY


You are invited to Molly Barnes’Brown Bag Lunch Talks at the Roger Smith Hotel 501 Lexington Avenue, at 47th Street New York City 10017 Thursday, May 11,2017 at 12:00 noon to hear a talk with ELIZABETH SADOFF

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May 10 Wed 6-8pm Writing, Publishing, and Reviewing Books About Science 28 Cooper Square 7th Fl Commons NYU Arthur Carter Inst

Truthtelling Mentors
An occasion which marked the distinction of NYU’s Arthur L. Carter Journalism Institute in serving up key insiders to inform ingenues of the reality underpinning their dreams, with the NYTimes apparently lone science daily reviewer (did we understand correctly?) Jennifer Senior giving a few basics about which of the 15 choices served her weekly (check that) she might immediately throw into the circular file (ones in which self serving contrarianism was detected quickly earned this distinction), then a remarkably enlightened publisher-editor Eamon Dolan of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt who vouchsafed he was looking for texts which “changed my mind”, and finally Harold Varmus, a scientist who had climbed to a peak of renown by winning the Nobel but who then found that writing the required book induced a feeling comparable to “sitting down in the dentist’s chair”, though when it was suggested that he might enjoy more writing a second book morally reviewing science and its needed reforms from his observation post at his current tippy top position helping guide research at the nation’s leading cancer research center Memorial Sloane-Kettering after running the whole NIH for a time, and perhaps include a way to save distinguished leaders of science in his field such as the famously exact Peter Duesberg of Berkeley from the noxious consequences of flouting group think by their reviewing and dismissing the favorite paradigm of the field which he Varmus had conquered so decisively, he allowed it might be a good idea but he felt that the topic of that particular colleague was one that people had understandably got tired of after thirty years, since it was after all water under the bridge, even if it was true that Duesberg’s original papers had never been refuted on the same intensively peer reviewed level in the same prestigious journals as they were launched.

Lab Lit: Writing, Publishing, and Reviewing Books About Science

In this inaugural “Random Walk” event, sponsored by the NYU Science Communication Workshops and Science, Health and Environmental Reporting Program, with the support of the Simons Foundation, we convene three experts to discuss what goes into a compelling book about science, what reviewers look for, and how to get it published.

We will also be celebrating the debut of the Cooper Square Review, an online publication devoted to book reviews, essays and musings from and about the world of science.

Sharing their expertise at the event will be:

* Jennifer Senior, daily book reviewer, New York Times

* Eamon Dolan, editor, Eamon Dolan Imprint/Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

* Harold Varmus, former director of NIH, Nobel Laureate, author of The Art and Politics of Science

As part of an experiment in science communication, our guests will briefly discuss science publishing in a traditional panel discussion, and then will fan out around the room to interact with smaller groups of audience members interested in their particular area of expertise. Audience members will move from speaker to speaker in a “Random Walk.”

We’ll be serving wine and appetizers along with good conversation.
This event is open to the public.

May 10th, Wed, 2017
6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
Arthur L. Carter Journalism Institute
7th Floor Commons
20 Cooper Square, NY

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May 9 Tues Met: Renowned Collection of American Indian Art from Fenimore Art Museum at Gallery 359 (May 9 Tues- Oct 8 Sun)

No this is not a rude gesture. Potlatch figure holding a copper (detail), c. 1880-1895. Kwakwaka’wakw (Kwakiutl), northwest Vancouver Island, British Columbia. Red cedar, paint, nails. Thaw Collection of American Indian Art, Fenimore Art Museum, Cooperstown, New York. Photo: Richard Walker

A selection of 38 superb works of art created by Native North American artists will go on view at The Metropolitan Museum of Art beginning May 9 Tues. Drawn from the more than 870 pieces assembled by philanthropists Eugene and Clare Thaw, American Indian Art from the Fenimore Art Museum: The Thaw Collection attests to the long-standing excellence of the aesthetic traditions of North America’s Native peoples.

Spanning the first millennium to the 20th century, it will showcase indigenous masterpieces in various media—sculpture, painting, drawing, basketry, textiles, ceramics, and decorative arts. Among the highlights are a rare whelk shell gorget (ca.1100–1400) carved by a Mississippian sculptor; a monumental war record (ca. 1880) vividly painted on animal hide by Plains masters; a rare, nearly life-size Kwakwaka’wakw potlatch figure from the late 19th century; and a waterproof Kamleika garment (or parka) made of seal or other sea-mammal gut from the Arctic region.

The exhibition will feature a variety of Native artistic creations, including an ancient Arctic carving made of sea mammal ivory; examples of the dramatic sculptural arts of the Pacific Northwest; painted ceramics and weaving from the millennia-long tradition in the Southwest; refined basketry from California and the Great Basin; iconic pictorial narratives chronicling events of the Plains; and robust aestheticized weaponry of the Eastern Woodlands.

The impressive achievements of female basket weavers from California and the Great Basin region are evident in an award-winning basket made by the renowned practitioner of that art form, Louisa Keyser (or Dat So La Lee); a signature work by her sister-in-law, Scees Bryant Possock; and, by the Yokuts weaver Mrs. Dick Francisco, a monumental woven gambling tray made for a dice game called huuchuish.

Also of great emphasis in this selection of Fenimore holdings is a collection of several singular Plains Indian creations, the most notable of which is a rare 19th-century war record memorializing a battle between the Lakota and Crow (Apsa’alooka). A landmark intact ledger book by the artist Black Hawk (Sans Arcs Lakota) is a treasure trove of information about life on the Plains; it illustrates hunting and dance scenes and includes natural history drawings and numerous depictions of warfare and ceremony.

Exhibition Dates: May 9–October 8, 2017 Exhibition Location:
The Met Fifth Avenue, Gallery 359

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