Edit – September 2018
Gertrude Abercrombie at Karma
There is something in the month of September that triggers a shift within. Perhaps it is as simple as the imprinted memory of the start of a new school year, or the increasingly subtle transition from boiling heat to crisp cool, or perhaps it is the sudden realization that the year is nearing its end — a time to implement meaningful change in our routine before we must face a new rotation around the sun. This September, the calendar is full and varied, from bitters-based cocktails at Amor y Amargo and words with artist Lulu Meng to the annual design festival in Seattle and Ferragosto in the Bronx.
Lulu Meng is an artist who immediately fascinated us with her use of everyday objects to convey complex narratives. As our awareness of her work grew, so did our admiration, and it was only a matter of time before we found ourselves exploring her studio, gripping tightly onto her every word. After getting better acquainted with her philosophies, we found that we looked at few things the same way again — but none more so than the white button-up shirt.
- Location Deyoung San Francisco
- Date Sept 22 - Jan 6
In a world where the attire of Muslims is frequently and openly scrutinized by people outside their faith, San Francisco’s de Young Museum decided it was high time to give Islam-practicing fashion designers a space to speak for themselves. Through press clippings, social media posts, visual art, architecture, and of course, clothing, this exhibit aims to celebrate and explore the regional and historical factors that continue to help these designers push Muslim fashion into new and exciting territory. This show is also meant as a wake up call for those that view this religion’s garments as one-dimensional. By creating a cohesive survey of everything from sportswear to streetwear to luxury goods, viewers will be given the opportunity to see the diverse and innovative ways in which the fashion industry is connecting to the 1.8 billion people who consider themselves Muslim.
AMOR Y AMARGO
- Date Forever
- Location New York
Living through a New York summer is like running a marathon through a swamp, but instead of a shiny ribbon or gleaming trophy bestowed upon us for our efforts... we get September. No matter the metaphor, it’s a celebratory time in the city, and for some of us, a celebration requires a drink. Forget the spritz or whatever mixologist's sugary nightmare you ordered because you wanted to feel like you were on a yacht. With less of a need for immediate refreshment due to the cooler evenings, you can once again feel open to exploring concoctions with a bit more bite and body. The minds behind Amor y Amargo are world-renowned for crafting cocktails that tick those boxes through their expertise with bitters, giving each of their signature drinks a botanical complexity to match its deliciousness. They have digestives derived from some of the most exotic ingredients you can imagine, and they are certainly up for you selecting a few to design a cocktail around, but when the menu options boast everything from figgy pudding bitters to island spices and leather, it's not as tempting to choose your own adventure. Experience these masterful beverages under their gorgeous molded ceiling in prime proximity to Tompkins Square Park and A-1 Records, and you will know you've found the perfect place to pat yourself on the back.
- Date Sept 3
- Location Pioneer Works
Originally released in 1988 under the pseudonym Logo, the song "Businessmen" was one of the oddest and most beloved tunes of the Belgian New Beat explosion. Unlike the numerous driving synth tracks that scene was most known for, this delightfully quirky piece of music plods along eerily, beguiling you with its mysterious tales of fictitious transactions. 30 years later, the highly respected Belgian record label STROOM.tv will be reissuing this track on vinyl under the musician's real name — along with three previously unheard pieces of music.
SEATTLE DESIGN FESTIVAL/
BOCCI AT TOTOKAELO SEATTLE
- Location Seattle/Totokaelo Seattle
- Date Sept 6 - Sept 21
In a space where the word 'design' is so often synonymous with elitism, broadly accessible opportunities to engage meaningfully with art and design are more and more precious every day. Enter the Seattle Design Festival, a comprehensive 14-day program organized by local nonprofit Design In Public with the guiding theme of TRUST. Assessing the state of things at large, the festival asks how design can affirm and strengthen critical connections of trust in the community. Nearly all of the events planned for the Festival are free of charge, open to the public, and do not require an RSVP, including two massive block parties on the 8th and 9th in Occidental Park, multiple design talks, and — last but not least — a reception at our very own Seattle location to celebrate the introduction of a new lighting installation from Pacific Northwest design collective, BOCCI, on the 13th. If you are in Seattle, we hope to see you there.
SHOULD I STAY OR SHOULD I GO?
- Social Justice
- Location Housing Works Bookstore + Cafe
- Date Sept 17
It is said that the best part of living in New York is leaving it. For residents of this particular metropolis, living conditions are so constrained, so expensive, and so extreme that whether their tenure has been lifelong or just recently begun, an exit strategy is always tucked away at back of mind (whether in the guise of a weekend away or a one-way ticket out). Our choices to live in or leave a city are predicated on numerous factors, and their consideration must come from all sides — balancing cost with convenience, glamour with reality, and space with substance. Housing Works, the groundbreaking nonprofit organization dedicated to improving the lives of those affected by homelessness and AIDS, is set to broker this very conversation in collaboration with the Brooklyn Book Festival's Bookend program within their SoHo bookstore and cafe this month, with a series of five-minute lectures by writers from both in-city, out-of-state, upstate, and beyond slated to speak to their experiences in New York and their decisions to stay — or not to stay.
NY ART BOOK FAIR
- Date Sept 21-23
- Location MoMA PS1
MoMA PS1 is a haven not frequented enough due to its location in seemingly far-off Long Island City, but we find that most New Yorkers worth their mettle will make the trip for the New York Art Book Fair. Now in its thirteenth year, the festival, hosted by art book non-profit Printed Matter, offers artists and independent booksellers the unprecedented opportunity to share their work with the community on a massive scale. Zines, artists’ books, antiquarian texts, and contemporary art editions combine in one space, many of them with the artists themselves present, for a full weekend of exchanged ideas and enriched libraries. The booths we're most looking forward to: Bushwick music commodity distributor Primitive Languages, LGBTQIA+ publishing group Raw Meat Collective, Los Angeles's Ooga Booga, and Mexico City's hallowed kurimanzutto outpost, to name just a few.
- Date Sept 9
- Location Arthur Avenue Bronx
Ferragosto is a late-summer festival first instituted by the emperor Augustus in 18 BCE to mark the end of harvest season. Traditionally, the festival is celebrated in decreased formality between workers and supervisors, celebratory high-stakes horse races, and a day off for beasts of burden, who are instead decorated with flowers. In New York City, although harvest season is considerably less physically taxing, Ferragosto remains one of the Italian-American community's favored celebrations — especially on the Bronx's Arthur Avenue, a Little Italy whose distance from other boroughs and still-lively Italian population makes it several notches cooler than its touristy Lower Manhattan brother. This is not to say that Arthur Ave is in any way less popular, as over 25,000 visitors attend Ferragosto each year, and it's easy to see why: rides, live entertainment, and unbelievably delicious street vendors peddling sizzling salsiccia, arancini, gelati, and more provide limitless temptations. While you are up there, might we suggest also doing a little grocery shopping at Teitel Brothers and Madonia Bakery — their selections of house-made breads, imported meats and cheeses, and specialized delicacies frankly boggle the mind, and if the street-sold beverages aren't enough, finish off with a foaming brew pulled from the local beer hall, housed in a covered market wherein hand-rolled cigars, fresh produce, and gorgeous butchery are brokered at breakneck pace.
SYDNEY SHEN +
- Location Hotel Art Institute NY
- Date Sept 8 - Oct 6
In a nondescript backyard in Brooklyn, there sits a gleaming white structure that could either be a small guest house or a big toolshed. As the center of operations for the newest iteration of the Hotel Art Pavilion, this wooden box has provided a space for some of the most compelling art shows of the last year. On September 8th, they return from their summer break with Poor Thing, which combines Totokaelo collaborator Sydney Shen’s diabolical creations with the labyrinthian illustrations of Kyung Me. The pairing of these artists feels too good to be true, and the New York variety of a cabin in the woods is the best possible place to experience their particular brand of work.
- Music + Art
- Location Basilica Hudson
- Date Sept 14
Dubbed "the antifestival," Basilica Soundscape is a carefully curated paradise constructed each year in September in Hudson, New York with a lineup whose excellence is matched only by its diversity, as visual art and literature carry as much weight as music in the program. Housed in and around what was once a forge and foundry for steel railway wheels, the Hudson Valley's ample space and stunning vistas offer an idyllic setting for art of all media. This year, the weekend's musical highlights include watery solo project Grouper, iconic Rhode Island noise two-piece Lightning Bolt in a blended set with Hisham Akira Bharoocha's new project Yokubari, and an orchestral piece by Sunn O)))'s Stephen O'Malley performed by a 76-piece band. A poetry reading by Hanif Abdurraqib, site-specific art installations by Laleh Khorramian, Jungil Hong, and Tabita Rezaire, and a multidisciplinary performance by Brooklyn duo Trouble round out the program. If you need us, we'll be at Miho Hatori's sound bath.