The PEN World Voices Festival of International Literature held their opening procession on Monday with the Parade of Illuminations on The High Line. It featured puppets designed by the Processional Arts Workshop group and constructed by volunteers in the group’s West Village studio. (The Workshop also produced the i of the Beholder pieces in the 2011 Village Halloween Parade.)
Processional characters included large paper mache visions of Patience and Fortitude, the lions outside of the New York Public Library. Scattered throughout the procession were marchers carrying hand-held projectors displaying text from the authors included in this year’s PEN festival. The text was projected onto large magnifying glasses, scrolls and participants dressed in white. The act was designed to symbolize how, in the age of digital text and tablet devices, words are floating all around us and we catch them as we move past.
Check out the sights and sounds of this year’s East Village Halloween Parade in NYC. The theme of the parade was The i of the Beholder.
So, yep, I was back north last weekend in the Bay State. Made it over to the MFA to check out their relatively new American wing, and picked up a few life instructions.
Kinda like a big tent circus for intellectuals, the Guggenheim Lab is parked on Houston Street in NYC until October 16. They bill their set up as “A mobile laboratory traveling around the world to inspire innovative ideas for urban life.” (Dream big, people.)
Never heard of Candy Darling? Me neither. But she hung out with the Warhol crowd and was a famous transsexual actress in the 1970’s.
The jury’s still out on the inspiration and innovative ideas I hatched at the Lab, but there are worse pop-ups to visit on Houston Street. Go while you can.
Probably because the stock market doesn’t have the same physical hold on the neighborhood as it used to, things here are pretty quiet during the morning of August 12, 2011. But also because the country’s not as angry as it needs to be. We don’t need the riots London saw earlier this week, but we need something.
At home, we have a generation of college graduates crippled by student debt. Abroad, we owe so much money to China that they’re about to demand our proverbial first born, despite their one child policy.
So get with it America. A country this lazy can’t be expected to grow its own food, but I have the feeling that pretty soon we’re all going to have to remember how to make a victory garden. Are we up for that? We’re going to have to be. The only alternative is for the government to grow a pair, and that’s as unlikely as increasing the voter turnout rate.
Yeah, I have an easy life. But I gotta mouth and a blog and I bitch. Today, let’s focus on the crowds. The masses of NYC draw the famous and the infamous here for us to ogle. Perfect. Until it comes to the lines, the crowds, the sold out tickets, and the hordes of sheep with the biggest Canon that will fit around their neck.
Most of the time, I go with the flow, but sometimes, say, when you turn the corner in Dumbo on your way to the Estria International Graffiti Battle and you see the line stretch down the street, you just give up. Which is fine, because it’s not like you had to wait in that line for clean water or HIV meds. And besides, there’s probably another festival on the next block.
But on the Estria International Graffiti Battle I gave up. Instead I took pictures of the graffiti outside of the ticketed area, listened to the music that traveled through the chain link fence, ate some ice cream, and took in the city skyline with the wedding parties getting their picture taken. Like I said, an easy life.