scenes from a pause

06/9/2020

yesterday, NYC officially ended our lockdown pause and entered phase 1 of reopening. Over the almost 90 days that I’ve been home since mid-march, I’ve collected photos that I never posted on instagram or elsewhere, and thought I would just round them up here, now that we’re very slowly emerging from our shells.

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sunday in the park with…no one.

04/5/2020

I’ve been trying to take walks early in the morning, before too many people are up and about, mostly on days where I have some other reason to leave my apartment (and it could be anything – if I had packages delivered the day before, a morning walk means my doorman puts them all together for me and I pick them up on my way back in the building after they’ve sat overnight. Today it was just that it was sunday and I needed some fresh air. So I grabbed my sneakers and my gloves (even though I planned on touching nothing) and my improvised face covering, and walked over to the park, where the flowers and trees don’t know there’s a pandemic and insist on blooming like it’s spring or something.

These are all just iPhone shots. Pictures were a bit of an afterthought until I saw the tulips.

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quarantine art, week three…warhol edition

04/4/2020

(I realize I’m going to run out of these soon and I’m going to have to start just posting my backlog of random other stuff I’ve never gotten around to posting, but in the meantime, MORE ART!)

This week, I’m going a little further back in time. In the winter of 2018, the Whitney mounted a massive Warhol show that perfectly coincided with my time off from work for the holidays, so I spend a nice friday afternoon wandering among the crowds and the art (remember when we used to just wander among crowds?).

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transitions (judd at moma)

03/28/2020

this week’s ‘art in the time before COVID-19’ is from a trip to the Museum of Modern Art immediately before we all started shutting down. The beginning of March, which was the beginning of public nervousness and social distancing, also coincided with some major art shows around the city and the opening of this fairly major show at the MoMA. My stepmom and I decided to venture out to this (rather than, say, theater, where I couldn’t at least run across the room from a coughing person), and we were some of the very few people to do so – A show like this would normally attract sold-out crowds and lines, but instead it was like a private viewing.

This was the last time I left my apartment for anything other than work (which became work-from-home a few days later) or essentials.

From the MoMA’s description of Judd’s work:

By the mid-1960s, Judd commenced his lifelong practice of using industrial materials, such as aluminum, steel, and Plexiglas, and delegating production of his work to local metal shops. With the help of these specialized fabricators, he developed a signature vocabulary of hollow, rectilinear volumes, often arranged in series. In the following years, “boxes,” “stacks,” and “progressions” continued as Judd’s principal framework to introduce different combinations of color and surface. Judd surveys the complete evolution of the artist’s career, culminating in the last decade of his life, when Judd intensified his work with color and continued to lay new ground for what ensuing generations would come to define as sculpture.

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life before (vida americana)

03/21/2020

One week in to our new lives of living in social isolation, working-from-home, quarantining ourselves to protect the world from an ever more rapidly spreading pandemic, and trying to find slightly more productive things to do than just sitting on my couch and watching streaming TV all day (not having kids to wrangle right now is definitely making my individual situation much easier), I thought it was a good time to go through the massive backlog of photos I keep meaning to post and never get around to.

I thought I would start with some art from now shuttered museums around NY. First up…I went to the Vida Americana show at the Whitney in February. I don’t normally take a ton of photos of other peoples’ art, for a variety of reasons, up to and including that I can’t do the original art justice, but since no one can see the art except for online anymore, I thought i’d share the few pics I did take.

I was particularly taken with these two flower themed photos of women (the first is “Calla Lilly Vendor” by Alfredo Ramos Martinez and the second is “Flower Vendor” by Miguel Covarrubias):


next, the juxtaposition of these two images, the near painting named “Zapatistas” by Alfredo Ramos Martinez in front of an actual portrait of Zapata by Diego Rivera, was only possibly intentional given their placement on different walls.

Lastly, this is a recreation, given that the original was destroyed by Rockefeller and the actual recreation by Rivera is a mural in Mexico that cannot be moved, but it is, at minimum, a nice fuck you to see Rivera’s Rockefeller Center mural recreated in the city where Rockefeller had it smashed to pieces (the official title is “Man, Controller of the Universe”).

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one more time for good measure

01/18/2020

I wasn’t sure if I was going to go to the NYC women’s march this year. Between the dueling group infighting last year, the focus on elections rather than just general “protest” this year, and the fact that it was going to be bitterly cold in New York today, I was wavering. But then I read about how the National Archives (the goddamn national archives) had “edited” (aka censored) official photos from the original women’s march to blur out criticism of the orange menace, and I just…well, there’s always something new to get me out the door. (yes, there’s a typo. no, twitter STILL doesn’t have an edit button)

So anyway, here’s photos from this year’s march. it was bitterly cold, and it started snowing A LOT right in the middle, so that made it even more fun. but the National Archives can’t get their grubby, co-opted edit button on these.

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the view

09/30/2019

Last weekend was a bit of a wedding explosion in my family. Two weddings, in two different cities, including MY BROTHER! and his wonderful now-wife. Pics from all of those things are mainly family only, but for post-wedding lunch on Monday, we went to a super fancy restaurant on the 60th floor of a building downtown, and, well…

The view!


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mister softee

07/4/2019

A while back, The NY Times wrote about how mister softee vendors were in a turf war with some upstart competitors who were using gangland tactics to push them out of various neighborhoods. The juxtaposition of childhood treats with straight-up street gang tactics was…something.

It has definitely become harder to find a genuine mister softee truck in parts of the city, but you can still find them on the upper west side.

(By the way, mister softee is the best, because they’re the only trucks that ever have the good sugar cones instead of the regular cones that taste like styrofoam.)

NYT article on the ice cream truck wars

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Italian gourmet

06/23/2019

I walk by this little shop on 45th street fairly often, with its classic sign, wedged in between giant midtown office buildings, wondering how it survives, and glad that it does.

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stars at rest

06/16/2019

Caught this Central Park performer taking a little nap break.

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