Dog Star / A Creative Arts Guide






Image above: Vik Muniz

A Bar at the Folies-Bergère after Édouard Manet, from the Pictures of Magazines 2 series, 2012.

Out of the refuse of modern life—torn scraps of outdated magazines, destined for obscurity—Muniz has assembled an ode to one of the first paintings of modern life. Édouard Manet’s A Bar at the Folies-Bergère, painted in 1882, explores the treachery of nineteenth-century Parisian nightlife through the depiction of a bartender attending to a male patron reflected in the mirror behind her. Muniz plays on Manet’s style, replacing Manet’s visible brushstrokes with the frayed edges of torn paper and lending the work immense visual interest.

“Thank you for DogStarNYC, in general. The site speaks to so many kinds of interests; it discerns which qualities will appeal to many different tastes in a tremendous number of activities. I love how it encourages young people to pay attention to the unusual.

In New York we let so many teens walk around the periphery, mildly shell-shocked by life, while the information that they need to make sense of their world sits in the center of the room. DogStarNYC welcomes them into the middle of the room; the blog tells them how to walk there. ” - Stacy L.


DOG STAR is the creation of a high school English teacher in New York City. This blog began in 2008 as an online community for a journalism class and has since evolved into a curated site on the creative arts, arts-related news and a guide to free and low-cost events for teens. Our mission is to offer teens real-life options for enjoying all the creative arts in New York City. May wisdom guide you and hope sustain you. The more you like art, the more art you like!

IMPORTANT NOTICE OF NON COMMERCIAL & EDUCATIONAL CONTENT Unless otherwise stated, we do not own copyrights to any of the visual or audio content that might be included on this blog. Dog Star is for criticism, commentary, reporting and educational purposes under the FAIR USE ACT: Copyright Disclaimer Under Section 107 of the Copyright Act 1976, allowance is made for "fair use" for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, and research. Fair use is a use permitted by copyright statute that might otherwise be infringing. Non-profit, educational or personal use tips the balance in favor of fair use. If you own the copyright to any images and object to them being included in this blog, please advise and the content will be removed. No attempt is made for material gain from this blog's content.

Friday, December 31, 2010

Dog Star's childhood favorite in a new animated adaptation of Peter & The Wolf

DOG STAR remembers seeing an animated version of Prokofiev's 1936 opera as a child, but it wasn't this one.  In this clip from the Oscar award-winning animated short, Peter and the duck enjoy a frozen pond while the cat stalks the bird.  HERE FOR MORE ON PETER & THE WOLF

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Global Environmental Disaster Already Started: Extinction of Animals Happening Right Now in Antarctica

Photo above: Adélie penguins struggle to save eggs submerged by snowmelt.
Climate change is warming the poles faster than many other places on the planet, which means that polar scientists are coming to grips with these changes sooner than most anyone else.
Now, the long carbonic reach of industrialized society is quickly wiping out one of the toughest creatures on earth, a species that’s hard-wired to the polar desert and cannot adapt.
Adélie penguins, like other polar species, have always faced daunting challenges. But today, Adélies are confronting conditions for which nothing in their evolutionary history has prepared them. According to Fraser, the colonies around Palmer Station have reached a tipping point: they’ll be gone within his lifetime.
“Fraser’s Penguins,” portions of which appeared in The New Yorker, warns that what’s happening on the Antarctic Peninsula now is a taste of unsettling changes, elsewhere, to come. Should the West Antarctic Ice Sheet continue to melt, global sea levels could rise dramatically, in one NASA scientist’s opinion inundating Washington — and other coastal cities — by the end of this century.
Excerpts from December 12th NY Times

FREE! Teen Workshop with Karthik Pandian at Whitney Museum (RSVP to let them know you are coming!)

Thursday, January 13 4:30–6 pm
Whitney Annex 33 East 74th St between Madison and Park Avenues (not at the museum building but nearby)
Artist Karthik Pandian uses film and sculpture to explore the relationships between ancient and modern cultures, focusing on the ways contemporary societies treat the monuments of the past. Unearth, his current exhibition on view at the Whitney, investigates the ancient American city of Cahokia, the remains of which are located right outside and underneath present day East St. Louis, IL. Join the artist for a conversation and hands-on art making workshop that explores the architecture of New York City and the new monuments you might propose to build here.  Art-making materials will be provided, and you are welcome to take home your project. This program is free of charge and open to all high school students, but registration is required as space is limited. When you register, you will receive a confirmation email with additional details about this event.

*RSVP is French for respondez s'il-vous plait (pronounced ruhponday seal voo play) and means "respond please"

So long to 2010!

Go to Brooklyn Museum this Sunday, Jan 2 for FREE ADMISSION for everybody ALL DAY! (Start the new year with great art in Brooklyn!)

DOG STAR will likely be here since this is the last day for the Fred Tomaselli show.  A holiday gift to the community:  FREE admission for everyone at the Brooklyn Museum (here) and many great shows to see.

One thing to see - on permanent view - is THE DINNER PARTY:  Judy Chicago and her collaborators created a giant dining table with places set for women through history - she gives historical figures (all female) "a place at the table."  See picture above and go to the link (here).  It's an incredible display of artistic and intellectual hard work coming together for something grand and beautiful.  And yes!  You CAN walk around it entirely and see the place mats, dinner ware and tiles which are all hand made by female artists and crafts women.  Bring family members and show them all this cool stuff!

Attention All Science Fans & Future Doctors! Check out BRAIN: THE INSIDE STORY at American Museum of Natural History

DOG STAR thinks this is a great field trip with younger family members! It's on view until August 15, 2011! (Here for website!) Devoted readers who are also science fans or future doctors will enjoy the interactive and immersive displays on all things BRAINY - including how our brains will change in the coming years! AND YOU REALLY CAN PAY JUST $1 TO GET IN SO DON'T HESITATE TO WALK UP TO THE DESK AND PAY $1 PER PERSON! Step into your brain. In this exhibition, explore how the brain—a product of millions of years of evolution—produces thoughts, senses, and feelings; experience how the brain is continually changing at different stages of life; and discover how new understanding of the workings of the brain may help scientists repair and reverse declines in brain function.  

An installation at the beginning of Brain: The Inside Story will immerse visitors in the nonstop communication that occurs among the brain's tangled forest of 100 billion interconnected neurons, or brain cells. Throughout the rest of the show, visitors will explore how the nervous system processes information from the senses and how the brain creates perception, how brain imaging and advances in biochemistry are deepening the understanding of the emotional brain, and how the highly developed neocortex allows humans to make plans and predictions as well as engage in symbolic thought. Visitors will also learn how the brain's plasticity allows changes at different stages of life and how 21st century science can repair and improve the brain. Throughout the exhibition, challenge your brain with interactive puzzles and games that probe neural connections and pathways.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

FREE AFTER SCHOOL PROGRAMS FOR TEENS AT MoMA! Many art classes still available but applications due Jan 14!

WHOA!  How did this get away from us?  DOG STAR readers know we always try to spread the word on upcoming classes and workshops for teens!  These MoMA classes are great for beginners or more experience art-makers (Evalise and Alberto have taken these classes!) Applications are due January 14!

Museum Studies

16 Sessions | Wednesdays, February 2–May 18, 2011
View Detail

Museum Studies offers students a chance to explore curatorial and museum work while directing their own exhibition of teen artwork. The sixteen-week program introduces students to various careers in the arts through conversations with curators, exhibit designers, artists, and other museum staff.
This class meets in the spring. Applications will be available in late December 2010 and are due in January 2011. This class is open to NYC high school students. Students must apply. For more information or to apply, download the application in PDF format (Adobe Acrobat Reader required).

Dog Star Flick Picks: Go See THE KING'S SPEECH for something fresh and totally free of CGI nonsense!

Short video - Cat puts on his own rabbit mask!

THIS ONE IS FOR ANYBODY WHO HAS EVER HAD A BREAK UP: Comedian Margaret Cho Performs a Faux-Cabaret Number Called "Eat Shit & Die"

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

HAVE YOU SEEN THIS? Halftime show from Uconn - Real dancer / puppet performance with bad songs including the worse song from the 90's.

Discover THE LIVES THEY LIVED - Special Series on NY Times Website Features Short Bios of People Who Lived Lives with Passion & Brio (It's not an obituary series but more like an "appreciation" series!)

DOG STAR read nearly all these short biographies - we especially loved the piece on our favorite poet Lucille Clifton - and we think you will enjoy meeting these people, too.  It's from the Magazine section of the paper and they ran a series of selected article son people who died in the past year.  It really is eye-opening and inspiring to discover these lives even after the fact.


HAVE YOU SEEN THIS? Wall Street Bull Gets Guerilla Art Make-Over Before Shedding Crochet Coat (No permit!)

DOG STAR likes this kind of wacky stuff!  NYC-based artist Olek crochets just about anything you could imagine, best viewed through her website here. She recently made-over the famous Wall Street Bull, done up in mix of neon yarns and covered completely from head to toe. The stunt took about two hours to complete according to Olek, although it was removed shortly after. This is surely some of the coolest street art news we’ve heard in a bit.

Wow! Winter Wonderland Created by Brazilian Twin Graf Artists Os Gemeos for Spectacle Near Paris

DOG STAR is a huge fan of OS Gemeos and we're glad to see they're visiting Europe and spreaidng the graffiti love!  They have created a piece for a Winter festival near Paris!  The Brazilian art duo Os Gemeos collaborate with The Moulin project and Slava’s SnowShow as part of the Dépayz’arts exhibition which opened on December 27th. The work done by Os Gemeos represents Slava’s head and is reproduced on a trailer. Dépayz’arts concludes on December 31st with Slava’s SnowShow representing just one of several different spectacles.

We saw Flipbundlez Gave 21Qwest a Shout So We Gotta Give One, Too!

 (Fiendin') To Hold You by Ken-I

Imaginary Dog Star Soundtrack: We're bumpin' to the new track THE SHOW MUST GO ON by Lupe Fiasco ("None for the ones holding you back!")

Imaginary Dog Star Soundtrack: We’re bumpin’ to New Order “Blue Monday” – How does it feel / To Treat me like you do?

FREE! Hear Bach's Vespers Every Sunday at Holy Trinity Church

Holy Trinity Church on New York’s Upper West Side has been offering Bach Vespers for 40 years. Here the composer’s works are performed in the sacred tradition, with a professional choir and period instruments. In this profile, come inside this house of worship where Bach Vespers are offered every Sunday at 5pm.

Monday, December 27, 2010

Snow Day Photo Album: Here's Dog Star's Brooklyn Neighborhood in Photos By flatbushnelson

Dog Star Flick Picks: TRUE GRIT worth getting out in the snow to see it with friends!

True Grit

Only a wool-hatted fool would skip this movie.

Still from True Grit. Click image to expand.
The Coen brothers make two kinds of movies: ones that obsess over the existence of evil and ones that muse on it, accept it merrily, and plow on.True Grit (Paramount Pictures) is the second type, which I tend to prefer. I fear this nimble seriocomic Western won't be recognized as the fine movie it is, both because the Coens were so recently bathed in Oscar glory for No Country for Old Men and because critical opinion seems to prefer it when these smart Jewish boys from Minneapolis go deep and dark. A Serious Man, their last film, was a beautifully crafted puzzle that retold the Book of Job—or possibly Ecclesiastes—as a suburban domestic comedy. It was chilly, smart, bleakly hilarious, and cinematically virtuosic to a near-pathological degree. But like much of their work, it wasn't exactly a movie that offered itself up for the audience's love. True Gritdoes, and some Coen brothers fans may think that makes it pandering or lightweight. I think it makes it wonderful.

Changing New York: 1948 Snowstorm View of New York Public Library on Fifth Avenue

Changing New York: 1948 Winter Scene in Central Park (Photo by Drahomir Josef Ruzicka)

QUOTE OF THE DAY (Is this one so true or what?)

People only see what they are prepared to see.
Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882)

CLOSES SOON! How did artists respond to their world between the two World Wars? Discover how many tried to make sense of it all in a new show at the Guggenheim!

DOG STAR is excited to see so many of our favorite European painters in one show at the Guggenheim Museum.  This place is one of New York's most famous buildings and it was designed by the great American architect Frank Lloyd Wright.  

It's easy to reach at 90th Street & Fifth Avenue.  Go on Saturdays from 5:45 to 7:45 and pay just $1.00!

Fernand Léger, Woman Holding a Vase (definitive state) (Femme
tenant un
vase [état définitif]), 1927
Fernand Léger, Woman Holding a Vase (definitive state) (Femme tenant un vase [état définitif]), 1927. Léger is a French painter who was friends with Calder, Giacometti, Braque, Chagall and Picasso.


October 1, 2010–January 9, 2011 
Chaos and Classicism: Art in France, Italy, and Germany 1918–1936 will be the first exhibition in the United States to focus upon this international phenomenon and to examine its manifestations in all media.  Among the artists represented are Balthus, Giorgio de Chirico, Jean Cocteau, Otto Dix, Hannah Höch, Fernand Léger, Henri Matisse, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, Pablo Picasso, and August Sander.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Decoding Jay-Z from PBS Series Need to Know by Jackie Pou

An interview with writer Dream Hampton, who collaborated with the rap artist on "Decoded"

Now rap music, once vilified for its glorification of urbanity’s ills, is being examined by the academic world and itself entered into the annals of lyric poetry. Adam Bradley, an English professor and one of the editors of “The Anthology of Rap,” wrote, “Thanks to the engines of global commerce, rap is now the most widely disseminated poetry in the history of the world,” he wrote. “The best MCs — like Rakim, Jay-Z, Tupac, and many others – deserve consideration alongside the giants of American poetry.”
In his new book, “Decoded,” Jay-Z, one of the greatest American artists, dissects his own lyrical prose. And for those questioning the “greatest American artist” accolade, Jay-Z has more album sales then Elvis Presley, giving him the number two spot, right behind the Beatles.
Jay-Z’s collaborator was journalist and friend Dream Hampton. The two worked together on an autobiography of the artist, but the project was shelved because he couldn’t imagine the details of his life in the hands of someone else. “Decoded” is a more creative take – part memoir, part commentary, overflowing with photographs of Jay-Z’s New York. Some have referred to Hampton as the ghost writer or co-writer of the book; she uses the term “filter.”
Need to Know’s Jackeline Pou interviewed Hampton about her friendship with Jay-Z and the experience of working on “Decoded.”

Imaginary Dog Star Soundtrack: We're bumpin' to John Mayer's "Clarity": By the time I recognize this moment / This moment will be gone

Discover photographer Kevin Bauman's "100 Abandoned Houses" on the slow death of Detroit's communities

DOG STAR knows a Detroit native and, while she has not lived there in years, she feels the pain of what is happening to her childhood city.  Acres of homes are abandoned, the city is closing in tightly on reducing its borders and urban farms are being established with pot luck dinners.

Photographer Kevin Bauman documents the decline of Detroit in 100 Abandoned Houses. Over the past 60 years, the city has gone from thriving metropolis, to a city in steady, undeniably decline. Over 50% of its population has left in the last 60 years, and the process shows no sign of stopping. These homes are a testament to where once there was progress and growth.

Friday, December 24, 2010


1.  Ice Skating in Bryant Park

2.  BRAIN exhibit at American Museum of Natural History

3.  Houdini at The Jewish Museum (free on Saturdays)

4.  Elegant Sunday Afternoon (with mom or others) at The Frick (FREE!)

5.  Chelsea gallery hopping (always free)

6.  Visit the Cathedral of St. John the Divine on the Upper West Side (free to visit, concerts cost more)

7.  Finally go inside the main building of the New York Public Library and up to the top floor and see the football field sized Rose Reading Room with clouds painted on the ceiling (always free to visit the reading room and exhibitions - on view now:  THREE FAITHS on Islam, Judaism, and Christianity)

8.  Walk the Brooklyn Bridge and Brooklyn Heights Promenade for spectacular skyline views of Manhattan (we see it, we say we will, but if not now, when?)

9.  Go to the bottom of Manhattan - Bowling Green station - and visit the Museum of the American Indian (always free)

10.  Sunday, Jan 2 FREE ADMISSION ALL DAY at Brooklyn Museum

LAST TWO WEEKS! Yoshitomo Nara: Nobody’s Fool at the Asia Society on Park Avenue between 70th & 71st Streets (FREE on Friday nights from 6pm!)

DOG STAR knows you'll recognize some of the artwork in this show at Asia Society even if you don't know Nara's name.  He has been working for years to create a special style and image.  This GIANT show at the galleries feature sculpture, video, installation and paintings.  This is a must -see show for manga fans, Japan fans, and anybody who likes to see something fresh.  The show is divide into three sections:  ISOLATION, REBELLION and MUSIC (it's practically like life, right?) - there's even an iPhone app available on the Asia Society website.
Exhibition dates: Sept. 9, 2010–Jan. 2, 2011
Hours: Tuesday–Sunday, 11:00 am–6:00 pm
Cost: $10; $7 for seniors and $5 for students with ID; free for members and persons under 16. 
Location: Asia Society Museum, 725 Park Avenue (at 70th Street), New York, NY

View Larger Map
Here for exhibition website (lots of fun!)

THIS SUNDAY! Kwanzaa Celebration at American Museum of Natural History (80th Street & Central Park West) - bring your friends and family - Pay $1 each!

SUNDAY - December 26 from 12pm - 5pm

Milstein Hall of Ocean Life, first floor

For 44 years, Kwanzaa has celebrated African-American life and heritage. The Legacy Continues…KWANZAA 2010! is a vibrant all-day event that honors the seven African-based principles of Kwanzaa, called Nguzo Saba in Swahili, with performances of song, dance, and spoken word.
The seven “life” principles of Kwanzaa serve as inspiration for the day’s programs: Umoja (Unity), Kujichagulia (Self-determination), Ujima (Collective Work and Responsibility), Ujamaa (Cooperative Economics), Nia (Purpose), Kuumba (Creativity) and Imani (Faith).

An international marketplace is also part of the celebration.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Watch Jorge Columbo use Brushes App on the iPad to draw view from an apartment window

OPEN NOW! FREE FOR TEENS! Discover the Whitney Museum's new show "Modern Life: Edward Hopper & His Time" (On view until next April 2011) - Bring your friends and stay late on Fridays until 9pm

DOG STAR is excited about this new show at the Whitney Museum, "Modern Life:  Edward Hopper & His Time."  Why would you like it?  At a time - early 20th century, 1915-1960s - when many, many artists moved away from realistic painting to abstract shapes (Pablo Picasso) and then, later, to pop art (Andy Warhol), Hopper NEVER changed the way he painted.  He is an artist who always painted figures and landscapes realistically even if the popular trend was changing.

In this giant show at the Whitney, you will get to see some of Hopper's most famous pictures - including the one above, one of our favorites, called "South Carolina Morning."  The regal and proud woman in that red hat and dress is just stunning to see in person.  Who is she?  Is she waiting for someone?  Just enjoying the morning light?

And the best part:  ALWAYS FREE FOR TEENS!

Map image
Whitney Museum of American Art
945 Madison Avenue at 75th Street
New York, NY 10021
General Information: (212) 570-3600
How to get here:
Subway: 6 Train to 77th Street

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Imaginary Dog Star Soundtrack: We're bumpin' to kd lang's CONSTANT CRAVING (We want you to see concert video and see link below for official music video!)

Watch the music video for the song it is quite interesting with a vaudevilian production design.  (What is "vaudevillian"?  Click here!)
Here for kd lang's CONSTANT CRAVING (Warner Brothers Records blocked the code to post the video!)


The wise through excess of wisdom is made a fool.
Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882)

Dog Star says, this one took us a moment to reflect on its meaning...go too far with the wise ways and you may end up a fool.  Overly cautious anyone?  So risk-avoidant that you miss out on any real gains or real fun?

Antoine Dodson Releases "Chimney Intruder" - Follows Up Viral Video "Bed Intruder"

FREE! Bring your family for the holidays! Enjoy the Met Museum's incredible Christmas Tree in the Medieval Art Gallery (You must see this in person to get the full effect!)

DOG STAR enjoys this annual Neapolitan Christmas tree in the Metropolitan Museum.  The last day to see the tree is January 6!
The Christmas Tree and Neapolitan Baroque Crèche at The Metropolitan Museum of Art is a long-established yuletide tradition in New York.  The brightly lit, twenty-foot blue spruce—with a collection of eighteenth-century Neapolitan angels and cherubs among its boughs and groups of realistic crèche figures flanking the Nativity scene at its base—once again delight holiday visitors in the Museum's Medieval Sculpture Hall.  Set in front of the eighteenth-century Spanish choir screen from the Cathedral of Valladolid, with recorded Christmas music in the background, the installation reflects the spirit of the holiday season.

Jackie Hoffman Spoofs Lady Gaga in "Old Lady Gaga" Alejandro Video

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

South Park Classic: The kids rehearse for the Nativity Pageant and Kyle's Mother Protests Her Son Playing Joseph

GREAT FRENCH ART! Go see Edgar Degas at Morgan Library - He did what you do now: He kept a sketchbook and created little scenes and figures in pencil, watercolor and pastel nearly every day (Bring friends on a Friday for free admission!)

DOG STAR is excited we still have a few weeks to get to the Morgan Library to see this show of drawings and sketchbooks from Paris in the early years of the 20th century.  This is also the setting of the film "Moulin Rouge" and Degas (pronounced day-gah) was a part of the world of dance halls, dancers, cafes and bars.  Go see it for something fresh and new!

Degas: Drawings and Sketchbooks through January 23, 2011

At left:  Edgar Degas (1834–1917), Emilie Bécat at the Café des Ambassadeurs, 1877–85, pastel over lithograph. Thaw Collection. 

Edgar Degas (1834–1917), founding member of the Impressionist group who was distinguished by his Realist tendencies, is renowned for his vigorous images of dancers, performers, and theater scenes in paintings, sculptures, and works on paper. Throughout his career, he used drawing in dynamic and varied ways to explore these recurring subjects.

The exhibition features some twenty exceptional drawings by Degas, along with two of his sketchbooks, demonstrating the iconic artist's characteristic daring and inventiveness. The show includes works depicting quintessential Degas subjects—from his earliest portraits of himself, family members, and friends to his later intensive studies of dancers and performers.

We have posted previously about the Morgan Library about another exhibit - read more about the place here.

The Morgan Library & Museum
225 Madison Avenue at 36th Street
Admission is free on Fridays from 7 pm to 9 pm

SEE THIS SHOW BEFORE IT CLOSES JAN 9! Women Pop Artists at the Brooklyn Museum finally get their own museum show and you don't want to miss it!

DOG STAR is glad this show opened because the big Andy Warhol show just ended this past summer.  Most people think Warhol IS pop art (and he mostly made it famous) but many, many others were doing pop art, too, and many were women who were not getting the same recognition and money as the men did at the time.

Martha Rosler (American, b. 1943). Vacuuming Pop Art, 1967–72. Photomontage, 24 x 20 in. (50.8 x 61 cm). Courtesy of the artist and Mitchell-Innes & Nash, New York

Seductive Subversion: Women Pop Artists, 1958–1968

October 15, 2010–January 9, 2011
This large-scale exhibition examines the impact of women artists on the traditionally male-dominated field of Pop art. It reconsiders the narrow definition of the Pop art movement and reevaluates its critical reception. In recovering important female artists, the show expands the canon to reflect more accurately the women working internationally during this period. The exhibition features more than fifty artworks by Chryssa, Niki de Saint Phalle, Rosalyn Drexler, Marisol, Yayoi Kusama, Jann Haworth, Vija Celmins, Lee Lozano, Marjorie Strider, Idelle Weber, and Joyce Wieland, among others.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Discover The High Line Park (Next Phase to Open in Spring 2011) - Get ready for a big outdoor adventure and it's free!

DOG STAR has posted about The High Line Park, especially this past summer when the weather was nicer and bit warmer.  One of our students visited the High Line as part of his photography workshop at the Art Directors Club and reported that it was one of the most eye-opening experiences he has ever had in New York City.

And we can all look forward to a great big outdoor adventure next Spring when another 20 blocks or so of the elevated railway line opens in a new section north of Chelsea.  Today's New York Times has a big story on the wildly different landscape we can expect from this next phase as well as how the city views change as we move north into this section of the park.

High Line’s Next Phase: Less Glitz, More Intimacy