Saturday, 27 November 2010

Impressions day #16: 5Pointz

... trainspotting is one of my new favorites: The elevated 7 Flushing Subway led us to this Street Art Mecca in Long Island City; 5 Pointz Aerosol Arts Centerwhere artists from around the globe paint colorful pieces on the walls of a 200,000-square-foot / 19,000 m2 factory building. 

Not a museum nor a gallery - 5 Pointz is a living collage of graffiti art covering a converted warehouse full of artist studios. 

Wednesday, 24 November 2010

Impressions day #15: International Center of Photography

Today we went to see the exhibitions at the International Center of Photography - The Mexican Suitcase and Cuba In Revolution. Both exhibitions were really impressive - yet Cuba in Revolution that facinated me the most. It tells the undeniably stirring story of the rise and triumph of Fidel Castro and his followers. The exhibition explore Cuba before and after the Cuban Revolution - from Alberto Korda's famous "Heroic Guerilla" picture of Che Guevara, to more or less known photographer's documentation and artwork - from the propaganda to the everyday life -  and also never-before-seen images of Che's death in Bolivia. The pictures were just so strong and beautiful - the story so gripping.

- Mamma, you would have loved this. :)

Picture found here.

Tuesday, 23 November 2010

Impressions day #14: Green-Wood Cemetery

Exploring our neighbourhood in Brooklyn has always been on our schedule, yet we never seem to do it. Nevertheless, yesterday - originally on the search for Gus' Pickles - we ended up walking through the streets of Sunset Park and in the facinating Tim Burton-esque Green Wood Cemetery.

We came in via the maintenance entrance.

- Eh, Ladies! An elderly African American park-guard peaked out of his shed. A sly smile. - Have you ever been to Green-Wood before? No?? Pause. -You can get lost y'know - like many have before you. And y'aint wanna get lost in there. Pause. - Look what I've got! He handed us a map.  So you're here now - that's a pond, that and that and that entrance is only open in the weekends, that's the chapel, the mausoleum and the crematory. Careful by the crematory - look what happend to me! He started laughing. -Enjoy the park and the peace, ladies!

The Green-Wood Cemetery opened in 1838 and was, at the time, the largest outdoor park in New York City. It's really beautiful: Winding paths, rolling hills, Victorian sculpture, manmade lakes and nature.

We were met by a sign saying photographing was not allowed. As law-abiding Norwegians we didn't take any. The pictures shown were found here. 

We might have been too law-abiding in this case though - considering that so many has photographed it already. The Green-Wood Cemetery is a photographer's heaven.

Monday, 22 November 2010

Impressions day #13: Fat Pigs and Famous Bookstores

Today we've been exploring the famous Strand Book Store and the Christmas Market at Union Square. The marked was crowded - yet not "all that". Strand and its "18 Miles of Books" on the other hand was amazing. The store is famous among New Yorkers for its giant collection of publishers' overstock, used, rare, and out-of-print books, as well as the chaos on and around its shelves. We stayed for hours - looking in the beautiful selection of photography and art books, feeling the paper and texture. Sadly the luggage allowance stops me from buying. I've created quite a big wish list though.. Avadon, Leibovitz, Goldin, Levitt, Capa, the list goes on and on... have you read or simply got inspired by one lately - let me know!

Being a food entusiast - I find that I've been blogging surprisingly little about food. We went to the critical acclaimed restaurant Fette Sau (German for fat pig) for a proper American meal this evening. This place is in a fenced-in lot and cinderblock building - an auto-body repair shop, in Williamsburg. Note to self - this joint seems to be anti-vegetarian and also über-masculine - I automatically thought of my brother in law when I came in. (Probably due to his passionate talk of meat and sausages last time I saw him.)  

So, Lars imagine this:  A garage with rustique picnic tables and a wood-beamed, cement-floored interior. The smell of cured meats and spice rubs. A wide selection of local beers served in huge glass jars or gallons if you're really thirsty. All meats are sold by weight and served on butcher paper with sauce on the side.  Hungry now, are you? ;)

In Norwegian:
Lars, se for deg dette: En garasje med rustikke picnic-bord, massive bjelker og sementgulv. Det lukter røkt kjøtt og krydderblandinger. Bak baren finnes bredt utvalg av lokale øl servert i store, tykke glass eller mugger hvis du er skikkelig tørst.  Kjøttet selges i løsvekt - og serveres på slakterpapir med diverse grillsauser til. ( Man velger mellom et utvalg tilbehør - sure agurker, surkål, cole slaw, hjemmelagede tomatbønner, chips og/eller brokkoli.) Sulten nå, eller? ;)

Saturday, 20 November 2010

Impressions day #11: MoMA

MoMA - where to start? Visiting this heaven for the first time leaves you with an overwhelming impression - a beautiful mosaic of a collection of arts - some that you know already, the ones you've bearly heard of, and the artist you don't know at all. This mosaic sticks with you.

My personal favourites were the photography exhibitions 'New Photography 2010' and 'Pictures by Women: A History of Modern Photography'.

I could just see them again and again....

 Ilse Bing. Self-Portrait in Mirrors.

Barbara Morgan. Martha Graham, "Letter To the World".  

 Nan Goldin. Nan and Brian in Bed.

Sally Mann. Untitled.

Pictures found here. 

MoMA is free of charge every Friday between four and eight - but have really good membership deals if you want to visit often.

Friday, 19 November 2010

Impressions day #10: Hanne's Birthday

Yesterday was my sister Hanne's birthday - hence we let our day be inspired by her: What would Hanne done if she was spending her big day in NYC?

Rough start. We were out of coffee. Hanne surely wouldn't like that. On her birthday!! We dressed up in our smarest clothes and headed for Manhattan. Our first stop of the day?

Porto Rico Importing Co. in The Village - for a good, fresh cup of black coffee AND half a pound of medium roast Brazilian Espresso. Mmmm! So, Hanne would probably have chosen Starbucks - but she hasn't been to Porto Rico, has she?

A vintage shop - or three - on the way, of course.

..and then we just had to stop by Magnolia Bakery in Bleecker Street for a cupcake! My sister is highly associated with cupcakes among her friends - not particularly for eating them - but for the domestic art of making the most beautiful kind. Magnolia's cupcakes are a good alternative. They look and taste amazing!

Gift shopping.. at Marc by Marc Jacobs! Just a little something, Hanne.. don't get over-excited :) And some christmas shopping and other shopping as well. The Marc Jacobs Bookshop BookMarc in Bleecker Street if you're into arts, fashion and photography - great place for inspiration! My Mamma is starting to get nervous for how I'm going to get all this stuff home - I look more than I shop, of course.

 The New Museum - a leading destination for new art and new ideas. The exhibitions The Last Newspaper and Free were both very interesting; a meeting point for the old and new medias and their artistic values. AND it's free entrance at thursdays between 7 and 9 pm! Perfect!

At last - satisfied and slightly tired - we went to Von to have a good closure on a really good day. Crowed place, but good vibe!

So, you had a very good birthday in NYC, Sis! I hope you've had an absolutely fabulous day back home :)

Heaps of love,


Wednesday, 17 November 2010

Impressions day #8: Hip, Hipper, Hipster.

Yesterday was a good one: Had a proper New York Lunch at the original Shake Shack by Madison Square Park - known for their remarkably good burgers and milkshakes and the two hour line! Delish!

Lene got her photos developed. I actually miss the analogue cameras - just something about the waiting, the expectations and the exited feeling of getting the actual prints in your hand!

Arriving at The Music Hall for yesterdays Glasser concert the same evening it came apparent: The indie indie-scene of Hipsterville aka Williamsburg is so indie that it almost isn't indie anymore. They all look alike - AND they all look ilke we do back home - I mean even the 'Party Swedes' are present. So, have we all been Hipsters all this time whitout realizing? Is the laid back Scandinavian comfort clothing the trendsetter for the hipsters in NYC - or did the hipsters first arrive in Williamsburg? Who's the copy cat and who is the trendsetter? A classic "hen or the egg"-theory - yet it's somewhat irrelevant. Don't get me wrong; many of them look great! The facts to face though, is that the hipsters of 2010 are lacking to be innovative - just like it's been a long time since the indies really were independent. 

Hipsters aside; We enjoyed ourselves at a cool venue with hip and beautiful people AND last but not the least, an amazing gig by Glasser!

(I expect that they'll be on a Norwegian festival line-up or two next season)

Tuesday, 16 November 2010

Impressions day #7: Pretty Park Slope

Today we've spent the day in Park Slope, Brooklyn - an area that by word of mouth in the city - is known for it's number of strict mums and spoiled brats. We didn't see too many of them ( I don't know wether it's beacuse we're used to the enourmous stroller-parades at Grunerløkka in Oslo - hence are immune - or if they actually were hiding out somewhere today). Nevertheless we did find beautiful boutiques, cafes and a charming and laid back neighbourhood.

My personal favourite:
The Vintage Boutique

Monday, 15 November 2010

Impressions day #5 & 6: The Fabulous Hells Kitchen Flea Market

This weekend has been fabulous! What's better than letting your shopaholic loose at The Hells Kitchen Flea Market on a warm summersday or two in Mid-November? This market is divine - a true heaven for vintage enthusiasts: Jewelry, clothes, bags, shoes, furniture, all the bits and bobs you can imagine - to bargain prices. We've been shopping and peaking. One of the sellers, a lovely Parisienne lady, even invited me home to explore more of her vintage treasures! Might just be a new add to our 'to do'-list (as well as going back to the marked next weekend of course).

Saturday, 13 November 2010

Impressions day #4: Dumbo, the Bridge and the Photo box

Some days just tend to be better than other - a fortunate event or two that gives that special vibe, impuls or inspiration. Today it's partly been the lovely lunch and atmosphere at Dumbo General Store, the view from Brooklyn Bridge in the beautiful weather and the PHAIDON book store. They all made their influence - BUT it was when Lene and I more or less by accident dumped into a community-based photography venue we were blown away. Does this kind of place really excist?! Sponsored by Levi's - 'to celebrate NYC and it's people'! The Big Apple has long been the photographer's muse, and in this public facility you get free access to a professional studio, vintage cameras (rental, but so worth it!), print, scan, read, go to workshops or what have you!

We're going back of course. See you there :)

Friday, 12 November 2010

Impression day #3: Laid back Williamsburg

After two days of proper touristing we desided to slow down the pace - hence I forgot to take a lot of pictures! So sorry!

Williamsburg is a good place for relaxing and such - it has what you need for it; a slower tempo, cute shops, yummy Brooklyn bagels, coffee and beer! Sweet.

Actually, most of our day went by searching rack after rack of 2nd hand treasures at the vintage heaven Beacon's Closet. I ended up with two cardies and a bag - and we're going back when we're up for more. I must say; 2nd hand shopping is an art - an art that demands skills and a whole lot of patience. I don't have to much patience - but aparently I giggle when I fall asleep. Haha!


Thursday, 11 November 2010

Impressions day #2: Coney Island

Talking with my dear Mamma prior to my journey to NYC - Coney Island became a subject of interest; a place she imagined we'd enjoy visiting. I don't really know what I expected, but Coney Island is one of the most surreal places I've been - the imagined lively and vibrant atmosphere was only a vague shadow of itself. Yet, the quiet surroundings, the people and the history made it fascinating; the number of Russians who couldn't speak English; the lonely man with the endless stories from the past; the scenery companioned by the beautiful weather.

Worn out Stars and Stripes.

 "Shoot the freak - Live Human Targets"

 Nostalgia #1 - fainted and overexposed.

 Nostalgia #2 - Black and White.

 Peaceful atmosphere.

- So, What else did we do today? 

We went back to The Village; to a place I've been before actually - with my Mamma in 2004: Arturo's Pizzaria - The best pizza in New York by reputation.. The place has a great atmosphere, live jazz AND the cutest waitress ever.