Given the constant deluge of disheartening headlines this year, we could all use a laugh, couldn’t we? Tara Jepsen, author of the newly released novel, Like a Dog (City Lights Publishers), plans to provide just that in conversation with Beth Lisick at WORD bookstore (126 Franklin St) today (December 5th) at 7pm.
“Even when we’re not living under a kleptocracy like we are now, my gift and what I always want to do is give people a soul-soothing moment,” Tara said. “I just hope to give people a little relief and make them laugh.”
Tara is an LA-based writer, actor, sketch comedian, and rad feminist skateboarder who has appeared on the Emmy-award winning series Transparent. She and Lisick have been collaborating on comedy projects together since 1999, including their original web series Rods and Cones, released by Jill Solloway on Wifey.tv, and their queer cabaret Sister Spit. Tara also, alongside Miriam Klein-Stahl, illustrator of the Rad Women book series, co-founded queer skateboard brand Pave the Way Skateboards. Despite years of writing short stories and comedy, Like a Dog is Tara’s debut novel.
“I thought since I was a little kid that I would be a novelist. When I was on tour with Sister Spit in the 90s I just started farting around and writing stories,” she said. “I’m a total fucking ham and always have been, so this just seemed like the natural evolution of what I’ve been doing.”
Just in time to kick off Halloweekend, Boy Harsher held a sold-out record release show last Friday at Saint Vitus (1120 Manhattan Ave) to debut their new EP, “Country Girl.”
Toronto-based goth/industrial trio, Odonis Odonis, provided a foreboding start to the evening as they played from their latest album,No Pop. Perhaps in keeping with the smartphone-dystopian themes of the record, the band maintained an aloofness from the crowd throughout their set. Lead vocalist Dean Tzenos, whose sonorous voice was processed through a vocoder, came off as very reserved during his performance, which isn’t to say Odonis Odonis was dull. No Pop’s minimalist instrumentation, comprised solely of synths and an electronic drumkit, were spellbinding live, punctuated by Tzenos’ sparse screams. The trio sonically made up for what they lacked in charisma, filling Saint Vitus’ intimate space with heady waves of synth and echoing vocals.
Passion for coziness and a reverence for Dolly Parton sound like the perfect combo in an artist, and Caroline Z. Hurley boasts both of those things. Hurley was originally trained in painting at RISD, but her Greenpoint-based eponymous label (with a shop at 155 Freeman Street) produces textiles for the home using age-old, hands-on processes like block-printing, quilting, and weaving. Greenpointers had the pleasure of catching up with Caroline and hearing more about her artistic process, and how she managed to turn an “accident” into a full-fledged, sustainable manufacturing business. Continue reading →
New York is known as the ultimate city for countless things: fashion, finance, art, Instagrammable food trends – the list is longer than the line at a Supreme drop in Soho. When it comes to espionage, however, the city doesn’t necessarily come to mind the way Moscow or Washington, DC (especially as of late) might. Lucie Levine, a native Manhattanite turned Greenpointer, makes a strong case for her hometown as the ultimate spy city with Archive On Parade, her new tour and event company that reveals NYC’s fascinating history of espionage.
“What makes New York special is that it is the capital of so many industries, with more goods coming into NY harbor by 1900 than anywhere on Earth, and people always moving here from all over the world,” Lucie shares. “For a spy, that means a larger array of possible disguises and aliases, because anybody can be here doing any trade. Nothing seems out of place.”
Archive On Parade launched in February with two distinct walking tours, one in Lower Manhattan following the footsteps of Washington’s Revolutionary War spies and the other in Midtown covering espionage sights during both World Wars. Lucie, a self-proclaimed “history nerd,” does all of the writing, research, and tour guiding. Prior to starting her own business, she gave guided tours on the double decker red buses you see jam-packed with tourists. Continue reading →
Alison Owen is a Greenpoint-based artist and art teacher whose work is committed to no set medium, but rather to the notion of “responsible consumption.” Her multimedia pieces are highly interactive with their environments, using the neglected materials of an art gallery space to demonstrate how what is no longer valued can be transformed into something beautiful. Alison scavenges for defunct installation tools, old hardware, scraps of forgotten artworks—and even collected dust—to create her innovative and conceptual exhibitions.
In recent years, Alison has masterfully picked up ceramics, which unlike her installations requires a more defined use of media and more prescriptive processes. In addition to her residency at the Wave Hill Estate in the Bronx, she will also be having a spring exhibition at Greenpoint Hill (100 Freeman St.) right in our neighborhood that kicks off on March 30. In the meantime, preview Alison’s diverse works on her website.
GP: How will your upcoming show at Greenpoint Hill be different than past shows you’ve had, and how will it be similar?
Alison: I tend to work site-specifically, responding to the architecture, the history, or the current use of the spaces where I show. I gather up materials from the site or from people connected to the site, and use those in the space. At this point, I have a large collection of materials that have been donated or scavenged from other artists over the years, and I have been using these materials to make collages and paintings and small sculptures that I’ll show at Greenpoint Hill. This will be less of a site-specific installation and more a show of individual works, which is kind of new for me. Continue reading →