Maybe you’ve noticed too, but in the last year or so, it seems there was a noticeable shift in the way people use Facebook. Suddenly my more exhibitionist friends stopped posting updates of every move they made, and the ones who had always been more social networking reticent started posting more regularly. The sudden lack of status updates like “Just fed the cat, sitting down with the newspaper.” was at first an incredible relief, and then incredibly illuminating. No one was typing that anymore because no one was doing it anymore, and that was partly because Facebook itself had turned into a news and human interest Reader’s Digest of sorts, compiled and edited by our online friends. Why kill a tree when all the stories you need to stay up to speed with your friend-circle are right there on your screen?
So, yesterday, when one of my Facebook friends made a contribution to the Daily Digest of a photo of John Waters with the quote caption, “We need to make books cool again. If you go home with somebody and they dont’ have books, don’t **** them”, I had to smile. If you’re in agreement about the fast-disappearing tactile experience of holding a book, if you love smelling the ink, feeling the quality of the paper on the edge of your thumb, or the irreplaceable suspense of turning a page to discover who-knows-what, oh, AND YOU’RE IN NEW YORK CITY THIS WEEKEND, head straight to the NY Art Book Fair at MoMA PS1 between today and Sunday October 2nd.
Apart from 200 exhibitors of contemporary art catalogs, monographs and art periodicals, this year introduces an outdoor tent of 60 zinesters to the mix of international presses, booksellers, antiquarian dealers, artists and independent publishers that make up the NY Art Book Fair. This year also includes special projects, screenings, book signings, and performances, details of all of which can be found on their website. One not to miss is e-Flux’s presentation of Liam Gillick and W.A.G.E. launching the new e-Flux reader Are You Working Too Much? Post-Fordism, Precarity, and the Labor of Art with special readings October 1st and 12noon.
Just as irreplaceable as the feeling of physically holding a beautifully made book, make White Line Hotels edit The Greenwich Hotel your place in NYC.
all photos http://nyartbookfair.com/
The other day a friend of mine, a self-confessed coffee nerd, told me that right now we are experiencing a “Third Wave of Coffee”. Until that day I had never ever heard something like that, but being interested in all things having to do with food culture my interest was triggered right away and I was curious to find out more.
The first wave of American coffee culture started around the 19th century and was all about serving drip coffee anywhere, anytime at low prices. With the second wave, starting in the 60s, coffee drinkers became more interested in the region or country their coffee had been imported from. This wave ended in globally franchised companies, such as Starbucks, serving overpriced espresso milk drinks.
In the third wave, however, vicinity and direct relations with the coffee farmers are now as important as putting thought and effort into roasting and brewing techniques to bring out the unique characteristics of each coffee bean.
Stumptown Coffee Roasters opened in Portland, Oregon in 1999 and has been riding this third wave of coffee culture very successfully ever since. These pioneers opened their one and only New York coffee bar at 29th and Broadway ten years later. Whereas New York used to rely on imported specialty coffee, people there finally get to enjoy the unsurpassed taste of freshly roasted beans from the nearby Stumptown roaster in Red Hook, Brooklyn. The location itself reflects the urbanity of downtown New York, with light flooding through the storefront, a dark wooden counter and a polished marble floor. With uniforms including neckties and old-timey hats, the male baristas look more like bartenders from the 1930s than your average coffee shop employee. All of it is being part of Duane Sorenson’s concept. The founder and proprietor of Stumptown Coffee Roasters wants us to see that coffee is more than just a commodity. Like wine or chocolate, coffee is very complex and coffee making a real science. It begins with the kind of varietal you decide to grow in which region, it depends on the harvesting and roasting and ends with how and from what kind of espresso machine it gets pulled.
There is too much to write about Third Waves and Stumptown’s unique way of doing business, like how they treat farmers fairly, or how employees all get full health benefits and can take time off to tour in their bands….
Stumptown is like the Portland embassy, and one of a kind for offering some of the freshest and best tasting coffee you will find in New York.
For something every bit as artisan as a cup of Stumptown’s Coffee, head over to White Line Hotels edit The Greenwich Hotel, a taste of neighbourhood heritage with a distinctive signature.
Contributing writer: Julia Schröder
Images courtesy www.stumptowncoffee.com
I fly, on average, once a year from Berlin to Phoenix. Maybe someday air links will be better in and out of the German capital, even if it means losing my very beloved Tegel Airport, but for now the only direct connections to the USA are New York and, I think, Miami. Now, there’re lots of reasons to go to either of those cities, but for a West Coast girl like myself trying to get home from time to time, what this amounts to is a puzzle of connecting flights. Via London or Newark? Save $50 and add a stop in either Chicago or Dallas? It can be a patchwork effort. I can tell you, though, every year I consider spending $100 or so more, not to mention the extra time, just to have a couple hour layover at Denver International Airport.
You could call me crazy – and you very well might be right – but no crazier than the legends and their physical traces surrounding that airport, which I think I’d still have to see with my own eyes to believe. From the blue mustang sculpture best described as simply terrifying, to the Masonic symbol on its capstone, to text mysteriously engraved around the building, to the now legendary murals I won’t try to describe (one’s below, find the others online), there’s plenty to keep one busy, and puzzled, for at least an afternoon. As for the conspiracy theories of the center of the New World Order occupying a massive 8-story structure underneath the airport, an excessively large on-site power station, and frequent and mysteriously cracked windscreens, rather than any summery I could give, I suggest typing “What’s going on at Denver Airport” into Google.
It’s a lot of material to deal with, but in her New York debut artist Deb Sokolow doesn’t just have her own mind wrapped around it all, she draws us in with her. Upon entering the gallery space, you are transformed into “You”, a third party detective figure going through your own findings that jump from the illogical to moments that cast doubt not just on Denver Airport, but maybe just a little bit on everything around you. If you ever loved a good spy story, if not a good conspiracy theory, don’t miss this exhibition.
Because of the opening hours, you probably can’t get there under the cover of darkness, but you can check out the show at Abrons Arts Center until September 3rd. And have no doubt, there’s no conspiracy at White Line Hotels edit The Greenwich Hotel, just an honestly amazing place.
Photos from Abrons Arts Center/Henry Street Settlement, Extraordinary Intelligence, and The Ministry of Exposing Lucifer and his Hidden Agenda. It takes all sorts, doesn’t it?
This year, those who can find ways to keep cool in the city can look forward to more than the Royal Shakespeare Company’s rare 6-week residency at Lincoln Center with White Line Hotels edit The Greenwich Hotel’s special summer packages.
Enjoy the summer from the Courtyard and Superior Rooms at special rates and including some appealing extras. Whether the Summer Getaway Package (including spa vouchers and a bottle of champagne), the Shibui Spa Package (including poolside treatments and an arrival fruit plate), the Family Package with everything a family could ask for, or the Custom Shopping Package with everything the avid shopper needs, there’s something to tempt you for a summer in the city. Whatever tempts you the most, all packages are available for stays of 2 nights or longer until September 5th. Contact the Reservations Department and reference your chosen Getaway Package.
Finding a restaurant in New York that has endured a century of food trends could seem a nearly hopeless task, but Keens Steakhouse on 36th Street between 5th and 6th Avenue is one of a small handful that, like a fine suit worn for long enough, will always come back in style. After all, they’ve been making slow food since before fast food was even invented.
Established in 1885, its genuinely old dining rooms with dark wood paneling, giant oil paintings and heavy red curtains preserve the rustic charm of the city in the early 20th century. The restaurant sprawls over two levels, divided into a main dining room, a pub and smaller dining rooms, such as the Bull Moose room, available for private events and occasions.
Keens’ collection of Churchwarden pipes is the biggest in the world and evokes a time when dinner was accompanied by political debates and billowing tobacco smoke. The ceilings are covered with 90,000 of the clay pipes, a tradition with its origins the 17th Century when pipes were too fragile to be carried around and were left at one’s favorite stomping grounds.
Formerly a private club boasting the membership of Teddy Roosevelt, Albert Einstein and Liza Minelli, Keens is now as known for its outstandingly good meat as for its exclusivity. Their 26 oz. mutton chop is legendary, and like all their cuts of USDA Prime and dry aged meat, is always grilled to perfection. Served juicy and tender with lots of smoky grilled flavor, pair it with a bottle of red from their short, but terrific, wine list. No matter if your choice is filet mignon, porterhouse, or even salad, the portions are big enough to demand a digestive from Keens pub next door; they stock an impressive list of whisky, and nearly any other classic spirits you could name.
Even after that digestive, a long walk might be in order. While visiting New York, head back to another gem that transcends the trends, White Line Hotels edit The Greenwich Hotel.
photos courtesy www.keens.com
Contributing writer: Julia Schröder