New York State of Mind Amoeblog #54: New Yorker Lou Reed, Halloween Parade, Monsters Of Rap, Clocktower Gallery + more

Posted by Billyjam, October 30, 2013 11:12am | Post a Comment

New York City is still in mourning over the loss of one of its most beloved, longtime citizens: Lou Reed who sadly passed on Sunday at age 71. The Velvet Underground co-founder represented New York City more than most artists ever did and referenced it repeatedly in his work over the years. Sure New York City changed a lot since Reed sang about "waiting for my man" and walking "on the wild side" but so too did Reed himself who in more recent years would be seen with his wife Laurie Anderson walking their small dog on the gentrified streets of lower Manhattan. In the interview clip above, from the 1990's documentary Blue In The Face, the influential singer/songwriter/guitarist talks about his affinity for the New York City and what it meant to him in comparison to other cities. Right is an impromptu piece of graffiti dedicated to the late artist, pictured in the East Village, that appeared within hours of the news of Reed's passing on Sunday.

For the past four decades Halloween in New York City has been a most distinctive, memorable annual event thanks the mega scale annual Halloween Parade in the Village that attracts hundreds of thousands of revelers every October 31st for the parade that anyone and everyone (provided they are in costume) can join in and travel uptown from Sixth Avenue and Spring in the Village at 7pm (that is when it starts but get there earlier).  This year’s Parade will be extra special and will include a total of 53 bands playing a myriad of musical styles, hundreds of puppets, dozens of dancers of various styles, and incredible floats and costumes and art creations. The weather forecast for tomorrow, Halloween night, is mild with a chance of showers, but compared to this time last year that is no big deal.  As you may recall last year the Parade had to be suffered an unprecedented last minute cancellation following the devastation of Hurricane Sandy. As a result Last year the Parade was the first event cancelled due to Hurricane Sandy. Hence this year's Parade is a celebratory return Parade - one that will be honoring "NYC's superheroes" that the Parade organizers called: "the REAL ones — those folks who stepped up to help the city out of that disaster and the NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital/Weill Cornell Medical Center Transplant Team and Jeff Bratcher—longtime Parade volunteer—who donated a kidney to the Parade Director’s son;  and all those who have volunteered to marshal and animate giant puppets throughout the Parade’s long history and kept this humble arts organization going!" Enter the line-up of the Parade on 6th Ave. from the East and South between Canal and Spring. See Parade map above and for more parade info click here.
Among the many concerts happening Halloween night is the Monsters Of Rap showcase at the Hammerstein Ballroom with Jadakiss, French Montana, Juelz Santana and many more including the late great Jam Master Jay's young son DJ Get Live who will be doing a special turntable tribute to his late great legendary father. The Hammerstein is located at 311 West 34th Street between 8th and 9th Aves. Tickets are $65 and available at TicketMaster

Another (and less expensive) way to celebrate Halloween in NYC tonight is happening at the Galapagos Art Space in Brooklyn where they're presenting a Halloween themed burlesque show and throwing a special spooky Kabarette Halloween-themed costume ball. Performers will include aerial artists and burlesquers including Medianoche, Go-Go Harder, Madame Rosebud, and Jenny Rocha and Her Painted Ladies. Tickets are $20 and avail in advance here.

Public Art on Billboard on Tenth Ave in Chelsea District
Dale Henry: The Artist Who Left New York - the very final art exhibition at the downtown Clocktower Gallery at 1894 McKim in the Mead & White building (pictured left) in Lower Manhattan near Canal Street which, after forty years, is losing its unique home  (the gallery was on the top floor of a court-house and to gain access you had to pass through court security). As well as a gallery space it was also home in recent years to  the internet radio station Art on Air.

The exit of this art space is another sad reminder of the changing (ever gentrifying) face of New York City where funky art spaces are an endangered species. Over the years The Clocktower presented groundbreaking solo exhibitions by such artists as the aforementioned widow of Lou Reed Laurie Anderson, Joel Shapiro, Richard Tuttle, James Bishop, and Dennis Oppenheim. The Dale Henry exhibition opened yesterday, October 29th, and will run through November 23rd when the space closes for good. More info here.
                                                     Graffiti-ed storefront Chrystie Street, NYC

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