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Out of the refuse of modern life—torn scraps of outdated magazines, destined for obscurity—Muniz has assembled an ode to one of the first paintings of modern life.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.

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Hip Hop's Love Affair w/ Misogyny Won't Die! (Drake Pretends to be a Club Owner, Waka Flocka Just Pretends to Be Intelligent)

Dog Star Selects "Cakes" by Wayne Thiebaud (1963) - Look up his other work, he's great!

FIVE MUST SEE Photo Exhibits this Winter

Double check to be sure an exhibit has opened before you go - and check the websites for free times and museum hours!
The Loving Story: Photographs by Grey Villet @ ICP (more here)
January 20–May 6, 2012
Forty-five years ago, sixteen states still prohibited interracial marriage. Then, in 1967, the U.S. Supreme Court considered the case of Richard Perry Loving, a white man, and his wife, Mildred Loving, a woman of African American and Native American descent, who had been arrested for miscegenation nine years earlier in Virginia. The Lovings were not active in the Civil Rights movement but their tenacious legal battle to justify their marriage changed history when the Supreme Court unanimously declared Virginia's anti-miscegenation law—and all race-based marriage bans—unconstitutional. Photographer Grey Villet, on assignment for Life magazine, traveled to Virginia, in 1965 to document the Lovings' story. His intimate photographs do not focus on the couple's epic legal battle but instead show the everyday pleasures of two shy and nonpolitical people, their quiet dedication to each other and to their family. The exhibition, organized by Assistant Curator of Collections Erin Barnett, includes some twenty vintage prints loaned by the estate of Grey Villet and by the Loving family.
Weegee: Murder Is My Business @ ICP (more here)
January 20–September 2, 2012
For an intense decade between 1935 and 1946, Weegee (1899–1968) was one of the most relentlessly inventive figures in American photography. His graphically dramatic and often lurid photographs of New York crimes and news events set the standard for what has become known as tabloid journalism. Freelancing for a variety of New York newspapers and photo agencies, and later working as photo editor for the short-lived liberal daily PM (1940–48), Weegee established a way of combining photographs and texts that was distinctly different from that promoted by other picture magazines, such as Life. Utilizing other distribution venues, Weegee also wrote extensively (including his autobiographical Naked City, published in 1946) and organized his own exhibitions at the Photo League.
Police Work: Photographs by Leonard Freed, 1972-1979 @ Museum of the City of NY (more here)
Dec 20 through Mar 18
Police Work: Photographs by Leonard Freed, 1972-1979 features a selection of vintage prints by the Brooklyn-born photographer who documented "life on the beat" with NYPD officers during the tumultuous 1970s. During a time when New York City faced near bankruptcy and was internationally notorious for its high crime rates and social disorder, Freed's photographs reveal the complexity, the harshness, and the camaraderie of the city's public safety servants and the people they protected. Highlighting a recent gift to the Museum of the City of New York by his widow Bridgette Freed, the exhibition is a gritty, realistic portrait of ordinary people doing a "sometimes boring, sometimes corrupting, sometimes dangerous and ugly and unhealthy job."
The Radical Camera: New York's Photo League, 1936-1951 @ The Jewish Museum (more here)
November 04, 2011 - March 25, 2012
In 1936 a group of young, idealistic photographers, most of them Jewish, first-generation Americans, formed an organization in Manhattan called the Photo League. Their solidarity centered on a belief in the expressive power of the documentary photograph and on a progressive alliance in the 1930s of socialist ideas and art. The Radical Camera presents the contested path of the documentary photograph during a tumultuous period that spanned the New Deal reforms of the Depression, World War II, and the Cold War.
Cindy Sherman @ Museum of Modern Art - MoMA (more here)
February 26–June 11, 2012
Cindy Sherman (American, b. 1954) is widely recognized as one of the most important and influential artists in contemporary art. Throughout her career, she has presented a sustained, eloquent, and provocative exploration of the construction of contemporary identity and the nature of representation, drawn from the unlimited supply of images from movies, TV, magazines, the Internet, and art history. Working as her own model for more than 30 years, Sherman has captured herself in a range of guises and personas which are at turns amusing and disturbing, distasteful and affecting. To create her photographs, she assumes multiple roles of photographer, model, makeup artist, hairdresser, stylist, and wardrobe mistress. With an arsenal of wigs, costumes, makeup, prosthetics, and props, Sherman has deftly altered her physique and surroundings to create a myriad of intriguing tableaus and characters, from screen siren to clown to aging socialite.

Words to Live By - On Leap Year Day!

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

The City of Samba

Dog Star has no idea how they make these kinds of videos - called tilt-shift photography - but it's a combination of thousands of still photos with moving images. The City of Samba is a wild tour of Rio at Carnival time with a view of the Sambadrome - an enormous stadium for the annual parade of all the samba schools. Watch for the helicopter rescuing swimmers and the parade float with human/car transformers!

The City of Samba from Jarbas Agnelli on Vimeo.

FREE! After-school Program @ Whitney Museum - Apply now!

Dog Star says here's another program for teens!  We think the deadline for the Spring term has passed but they also offer a Summer program and you can always applyf ro the Fall program.  Whitney Museum's Youth Insights (more here) currently offers two free, semester-long after-school programs each spring and fall for 10th through 12th grade New York City high school students:
YI ARTISTS - The YI Artists program brings teens together with contemporary artists, providing opportunities to work collaboratively, discuss art critically, think creatively, and make art inspired by this exchange. Youth Insights Artists meet on Wednesday afternoons from 4 to 6:30 pm.
YI WRITERS - In the YI Writers program, teens work closely with contemporary artists to explore art and the connections between art and text through critical and creative writing. Youth Insights Writers meet on Tuesday afternoons from 4 to 6:30 pm.

Go See YINKA SHONABARE @ James Cohan Gallery in Chelsea - Always Free & Bring Your Friends!

Dog Star is excited to see this exhibition of new works by British-born Nigerian artist Yinka Shonibare MBE running through March 24th.  In this multi-part exhibition of new sculptures, photoworks and the premiere of a new film, Shonibare (pronounced show-na bar-ree) explores the concept of destiny as it relates to themes of desire, yearning, love, power and sexual repression.  If this artist is new for you then you'll discover he pokes fun at European colonial styles of dress and behavior and how he makes connections between the past and the present in the ways people seek out status and public approval.  This exhibition also has some pretty outrageous sexually explicit content that you can read about in the press release on the gallery website (here).  We think he should do a collabo with Nicki Minaj because he investigates the sexual tension between people and she teases and provokes people with sexual tension.  The MBE following his name stands for "Master of the British Empire" which is a title awarded to honor achievement by a British citizen.  The highest honor is a knighthood so there are many titles in between Master and Knight.  Shonibare includes it as part of his name because he finds it amusing that as a person born in a former British colony he is awarded an honor that includes British empire in its title.  As the Sherlock Holmes author, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle once wrote:  "Life is infinitely stranger than anything the mind could invent."  James Cohan Gallery is EASY TO REACH at 533 West 26th Street / Tel 212.714.9500 / Hours Tuesday - Saturday, 10am - 6pm.  On view until March 24 only!

Go See Todd James @ Gering & Lopez Gallery

Dog Star saw Todd James in a show curated (organized) by KAWS at Paul Kasmin Gallery last Summer.  We like his color schemes, flat figures and provocative compositions - many look like guerilla fighters taking a break from the insurgency.  We wonder:  Are these intended to be guerilla fighters?  Are they purposefully "looking cool"?  Go decide for yourself!  Gering & Lopez Gallery is at 730 Fifth Avenue Between 56th and 57th Streets, Tel: 646 336 7183, Gallery hours:  Tuesday - Saturday 10am - 6pm. On view from March 1 to April 21.  Gallery visits are ALWAYS FREE!

Imaginary Dog Star Landscapes

The Kardashian Syndrome

Favorite Foods FAIL

Monday, February 27, 2012

BRILLIANT! "Stay Schemin'" Parody Pokes Fun at Rick Ross & Crew (It's funnier if you know the song!)

The Myth of Judeo-Christian American Origins and America Today

Dog Star watches the Republican candidates for president and wonders:  Have we really sunk so low as a nation that the dominant demand of every citizen is to diminish ourselves with hatred, intolerance, bigotry and fraud?  The answer is YES!  We are living in deeply corrosive times for young people:  inadequate and out-dated education systems, phoney job and career paths, the triumph of materialism over the common good (stealing the iPhone of an 81 year-old man and shoving him onto the subway tracks is the latest evidence - go here), offensive disrespect and rudeness as a rule rather than the exception to social behavior.  And we come to the Republican candidates who rely on old-fashion religious bigotry and "flexible" versions of history to justify their positions, for example:  We live in a country founded on Jewish-Christian traditions as part o our common law (Thomas Jefferson flatly wrote this is NOT true.)  And our nation's religious freedom - a freedom afforded everyone whether or not you choose to exercise it has been twisted into "which candidate is the MOST Christian and therefore MOST deserving of being President of the United States (see Santorum and others calling Obama Muslim, Romney accused of not being a "real Christian" because he is a Mormon...and it goes on an on.)  Sadly, the anti-intellectualism (calling educated people "elites" and not among common folk who understand their needs) reinforces stereotypes and bigotry of all kinds.  It's just NOT COOL to be a critical thinker who questiosn what she hears and reads and sees on Fox news.  So DOG STAR READERS GO MAKE IT COOL!  Speak up when others in your group say bigoted, misogynistic, anti-gay, anti-religious things and definitely speak up when you see someone DO THE WRONG THING instead of the right thing.  We really are in this together.  Two items on Thomas Jefferson below:

"Well aware that Almighty God hath created the mind free; that all attempts to influence it by temporal punishments or burdens, or by civil incapacitations, tend only to beget habits of hypocrisy and meanness, and are a departure from the plan of the Holy Author of our religion, who being Lord both of body and mind, yet chose not to propagate it by coercions on either, as was in his Almighty power to do." - Thomas Jefferson (The Virginia Act For Establishing Religious Freedom)

Go See "Question Bridge: Black Males" Smash Stereotypes @ Brooklyn Museum - Bring your friends! Tell your teachers!

Dog Star thinks this innovative video project will smash stereotypes about black males!  The video below is just a very tiny excerpt from the project.  There is much, much more to the project on view at the museum!  Question Bridge: Black Males (project website here), a video installation created by artists Hank Willis Thomas and Chris Johnson in collaboration with Bayeté Ross Smith and Kamal Sinclair, features dialogue among 150 Black men recruited from eleven American cities and towns. The exhibition at the Brooklyn Museum (more here) includes five video screens, placed in an arc, playing videos of the men responding to questions. The videos were edited so that it appears as if the men are having a conversation. For the past four years the four collaborators have traveled throughout the United States to locations including New York, Chicago, Oakland, San Francisco, Birmingham, Atlanta, New Orleans, and Philadelphia, creating 1,500 video exchanges in which the subjects serve as both interviewers and interviewees, posing and answering one another’s questions. Their words are woven together to simulate a stream-of-consciousness dialogue, through which important themes and issues emerge. The subjects addressed include family, love, interracial relationships, community, education, violence, and the past, present, and future of Black men in American society. The men represent a range of American geographic, economic, generational, educational, and social strata. The artists hope that the Question Bridge project will be a catalyst for constructive dialogue among Black men and others in the nation that will help deconstruct stereotypes about Black male identity in our collective consciousness. “In the end, the objective is to create something that resonates as essentially genuine to viewer and subjects, and provides audiences with an intimate window into the complex and often unspoken dialogue between African American men,” they note in their Artists’ Statement. “In this light, ‘Blackness’ ceases to be a simple, monochromatic concept. A major ambition is to transform our audiences’ appreciation of any demographic and provide new opportunities for healing and understanding. The Question Bridge videos are a part of a larger project that also includes a user-generated website and a curriculum currently being offered to high schools and universities throughout the United States. The Brooklyn Museum will present a wide range of public programs in conjunction with the project. Question Bridge will be the theme of the February edition of Target First Saturdays, the Brooklyn Museum’s monthly free evening of art and entertainment. There will also be a roundtable discussion with invited community leaders and youth inspired by a moment in the video when a young Black man asks members of the civil rights generation, “Why didn’t you leave us the blueprint?” On view at the Brooklyn Museum until June 3, 2012.  EASY TO REACH - Take the 2/3 train to Eastern Parkway and the museum is right upstairs from the subway station.  Hand the cashier just $1 at the admissions desk with the words, "One please."

Question Bridge: Black Males - Project Trailer from Question Bridge on Vimeo.

Dog Star Selects Brian Dettmer's "Paper Back" - Look closely!

Dog Star says you will see old books in fresh ways! In his new series, Paper Back, Brian Dettmer continues to question the past, present and future of the book by exploring and expanding the possibilities of the book's form and content. After a book or series of books is sealed into a solid form, he cuts into the surface, reading with his knife one page or layer at a time. Fragmented images, words and ideas emerge to expose and ...create new relationships within the book's internal elements. In recent work, Dettmer has shifted the focus to text and transcribed the visual poetry that emerges from the sculptures onto the printed page, highlighting a new light on the chance text while illustrating the clouds of ideas within a piece. For his Paper Back series, horizontal rows of multiple paperback books in specific genres are compressed and sanded into solid linear forms. The investigation into language, its possibilities and limitations continue as suggestive clichés are carved into the surface of the fictitious narratives. Hundreds of words and phrases are excavated within each letter, creating links and clusters of ideas. Words are torn from their original meaning and float to latch onto new possibilities. 

Cut from the Same Cloth

Sunday, February 26, 2012

CLOSES NEXT SUNDAY! Take Your Friends & Family to the Muppets Exhibition @ Museum of the Moving Image

Jim Henson's Fantastic World until March 4
Jim Henson's Fantastic World celebrates the internationally known creative genius Jim Henson, whose work encompassed film, television, and puppetry. The exhibition features over 120 artifacts, including drawings, storyboards, and props, all of which illustrate Henson’s boundless creativity and innumerable accomplishments.  Fifteen iconic puppets, including Miss Piggy, Kermit the Frog, Rowlf, and Bert and Ernie, are on view, along with photographs of Henson and his collaborators at work and excerpts from his early projects and experimental films. The exhibition spans Henson’s entire career, with drawings, cartoons, and posters produced during his college years in the late 1950s and objects related to the inspired imaginary world of his popular 1982 fantasy film, The Dark Crystal. The exhibition features artifacts from Henson’s best-known projects, The Muppet Show, The Muppet Movie and its sequels, Fraggle Rock, and Sesame Street, in addition to materials from Sam and Friends, an early show he created in the 1950s, and his pioneering television commercial work in the 1960s. 
Museum of the Moving Image is EASY TO REACH in Astoria, Queens!

Poetry Slam @ BAM Next Week! (Just $10 for 15 and over!) - Go with your friends!

Poetry 2012: Grand Slam!
BAM Harvey Theater
Part of the 2012 Winter/Spring Season
Fri, Mar 9 at 7:30pm
In this special one-night-only performance, BAM welcomes some of the best poets, beatboxers, and hip-hop artists in the industry. Poetry 2012: Grand Slam! showcases the world of spoken word in a dynamic cross-generational, multicultural, and interdisciplinary program. Hosted by two of hip-hop’s best-known artists—international emcee Baba Israel, who has been featured on MTV, BET, and VH1, and DJ Reborn, who has spun live for artists such as The Roots, Common, India Arie, Will Power, and John Legend—the show’s theme is Grand Slam!  Go here for full line-up and link to tickets.

Black at Stuyvesant High School

Dog Star re-posts from The New York Times (go here for the full article):

LIKE a city unto itself, Stuyvesant High School, in Lower Manhattan, is broken into neighborhoods, official and otherwise. The math department is on the 4th of its 10 floors; biology is on the 7th. Seniors congregate by the curved mint wall off the second-floor atrium, next to lockers that are such prime real estate that students trade them for $100 or more. Sophomores are relegated to the sixth floor.

In Stuyvesant slang, the hangouts are known as “bars.” Some years ago, the black students took over the radiators outside the fifth-floor cafeteria, and the place soon came to be known as the “chocolate bar,” lending it an air of legitimacy in the school’s labyrinth of cliques and turfs.

It did not last long. This year, Asian freshmen displaced the black students in a strength-in-numbers coup in which whispers of indignation were the sole expression of resistance. There was no point arguing, said Rudi-Ann Miller, a 17-year-old senior who came to New York from Jamaica and likes to style her hair in a bun, slick and straight, like the ballerina she once dreamed of becoming.

“The Asian kids, they’re just everywhere,” she said.

When the bell rings and the school’s 3,295 students spill out of classrooms into the maze of hallways, escalators and stairs like ants in a farm, blacks stand out because they are so rare. Rudi was one of 64 black students four years ago when she entered Stuyvesant, long considered New York City’s flagship public school. She is now one of 40.

Being Chinese & Male in America

Dog Star says now we understand how schizophrenic it is to be Chinese in America. Especially for males. Two Chinese males in the news lately - Danny Chen (in pic at right, bullied, suicide - go here for more) and Jeremy Lin (Jordan-like worship) show the extremes of how people are willing to view Chinese males - these are some pretty extraordinary role models for young people: either be a victim and commit suicide or be the 8th wonder of the Western world. Not much room in between to be a normal AMERICAN guy.  Sadly, the stereotypes of Asians/Chinese don't seem to be going anywhere - Ben & Jerry's ice cream actually put "fortune cookie" on their container (go here for story).  For a positive story on Jeremy Lin see this New York Times article "The Evolution of a Point Guard" (go here).

OPENS THIS WEEK! Go See The Steins Collect @ The Met - Bring your friends!

Dog Star is excited about the giant art exhibition - it will feature many works of art brought together to show how the Steins lived and collected during their lifetime.  The Metropolitan Museum (more here) is always free for high school students - walk up to the admissions desk, show your school I.D. and say, "One please."  In very tiny print the website states:  The Museum participates in several programs that include free admission for students. All New York City public school students...may visit the Museum for free.  Make a date with friends - the museum is open until 9pm on Friday and Saturday nights!  In this exhibition you will see paintings and sculpture by Matisse, Picasso and all their friends!  Go this weekend!  It's going to be very crowded - not Alexander McQueen crowded but still packed!

Happy Birthday Johnny Cash

Dog Star grew up in the country and was a loyal Johnny Cash fan.  Once we saw him perform with our parents at the famous Proctor's Theater.  Today would have been his 80th birthday.  He is a truly influential American icon - discover his musical career (not just famous country songs) but also his later career with Def Jam co-founder Rick Rubin who produced some great records.  Time Magazine has a great slide show of Johnny Cash here.  Look for more on his biography here.  The top video is Cash's famous "Walk the Line" performed when he was just 23 years old.  Bottom video is Cash's cover of Trent Reznor's "Hurt" (Nine Inch Nails).  Joaquin Phoenix played Johnny Cash in a biopic (go here) - which isn't terrible.

Michael Jordan Sues Chinese Company

Michael Jordan, arguably one of the most recognizable names on the entire planet, is suing Chinese apparel company Qiaodan Sports for misrepresenting his name and brand. The lawsuit centers on the Chinese brand using the “well-known” Chinese translation of his name, Qiaodan, to build their brand without his permission. In 2010, Qiaodan generated more than $450 million worth of revenue.  Of course he should sue - it's illegal trademark infringment.

Abandoned Hollywood Theater Hiding in Plain Sight - NYC Changing All the Time!

Dog Star remembers this bodega on Avenue A in the East Village.  Now that it has closed (January 31) and questions arise about the historical building’s fate, we want to share pics by a photographer who has captured a hidden gem located on the floor above the shop: an abandoned theater, which was in operation between 1926 and 1959. The photos, by Kevin Shea Adams, show what has become of Avenue A Theater above East Village Farm. The exterior, which is a blank wall of windowless brick, gives little clues as to what may be inside, but neighborhood residents who remembered the old theater longed to get a glimpse of what might remain. Adams’ photos reveal that the theater has been in use as a functional store room for the bodega. Ornate details like ceiling tins and relief carvings contrast with pallets covered in cardboard boxes. Without attention and restoration, the theater has inevitably fallen into disrepair. Sadly, as the bodega closes, the owners of the building reportedly plan to demolish the whole structure to make way for new development. Another person who got to see the inside told an East Village blogger, “I’m not sure the building is worth saving—the cool parts of it seem really run down and unusable—but the ornate period works need to be preserved as best as they can. I would love to have a theater there, but I suspect it’s headed for new housing.”  In the first photo below is how the bodega looked along Avenue A.  Second photo shows original Hollywood Theater exterior.  The rest of the photos show the current interior.

Go See Crushed Car Parts as Sculpture @ the Guggenheim (John Chamberlain's "Heavy Metal" Show Now Open! - Bring your friends!)

Dog Star says this is a fun show and definitely for devoted teen readers and fans of modern sculpture.  These colorful metal sculptures will be fun to see in the Guggenheim Museum's (more here) stark white walls along the ramps -with great views across the rotunda to sculptures on lower floors.  The artist, John Chamberlain, died last December while preparing for this giant exhibition.  John Chamberlain’s (more here) tireless pursuit of discovery and his intuitive process distinguish him as one of the most important American sculptors of our time. "John Chamberlain: Choices" comprises nearly 100 works, from his earliest monochromatic welded iron-rod sculptures to the large-scale foil creations of recent years. This presentation encompasses Chamberlain’s shifts in scale, materials, and methods, informed by the assemblage aesthetic that has been central to his artistic practice.  Dog Star defines a word: "assemblage aesthetic" means the artistic point of view that the artist had while creating the artwork and the choices he made while selecting and placing together the metal pieces of his sculptures.  The term "aesthetic" (pronounced uh-stetic) means "concerned with beauty or the appreciation of beauty" (adjective) and "a set of principles underlying and guiding the work of a particular artist or artistic movement" (noun).  Assemblage (pronounced - ass-om-blodge) means a collection of things - in this case to make a sculpture.  Guggenheim Museum is EASY TO REACH at 89th Street & 5th Avenue.  Go on Saturdays starting at 5:45 and pay just $1!  John Chamberlain on view until May 13, 2012.

Drake Acknowledges SIMULATED Life is Preferred Life Many Teens (Click pic to embiggen!)

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Santorum: Obama "A Snob" For Wanting Everyone To Go To College

Dog Star strongly urges teens to follow the presidential campaigns.  Rick Santorum is a popular Republican candidate and his twisted thinking means he says things like calling Obama a snob for wanting people to go to college.  Huh?  Keep up with the election bids in the media!

KLM's New Meet & Seat (Social Networking Gets New Uses! Yeah!)

Dog Star wonders why it took so long to do this kind of thing. The promo seems to show these guys are hooking up - a hint at their marketing? - AND the "inspirational journey" is possible, for now, on NYC to Amsterdam flights.  We  think there are some "inspirational journey" possibilities in Amsterdam that def do not require Fakebook or SinkedIn. It's kinda dumb - but we'll be seeing more "connectedness" like this on a surface level until they figure out really good uses like how a supermarket can prep a grocery cart filled with you regular purchases prior to stepping inside the store.

Racist NY Post Cartoon Labels ALL Muslims as Terrorists (So sick!)

From Gothamist (here):  After New York Post cartoonist Sean Delonas depicted President Obama as a crazed chimpanzee deserving to be shot in 2009, News Corp agreed to form a "diversity council" with civil rights groups that would meet twice a year to presumably make the company think twice before printing racist cartoons. But the cartoon above suggests that the panel was pointless, and that the New York Post is content with portraying innocent Muslims as deceitful, gun-toting, bomb-making terrorists.  Nevermind the dubious constitutionality of the NYPD's surveillance of entire communities across county and state lines: the department's spying didn't turn up any illegal activity, especially not the blatant terrorism implied in Delonas' cartoon. These people, many of whom are United States citizens, were subjected to surveillance solely because of their religion and nationality, not because they were breaking laws. No one would object to the NYPD pursuing legitimate leads, but a conviction against a man who made threats against the South Park creators doesn't justify a massive violation of civil rights.  For Delonas' cartoon to make sense, he has to depict people who practice Islam (and even others who don't, including Persian Jews on Long Island) as sinister-looking Muslim stereotypes and place them in scenarios that have no basis in fact.

Know My City: Discover great subway art (Béatrice Coron’s Bronx Literature and All Around Town)

This is an occasional post on Dog Star featuring major works of art in the NYC subway system.
Re-posted from the New York Observer (here):  Any self-respecting art lover in New York is sure to visit the Met, but may overlook the M.T.A. “There are many people throughout the world who would be amazed; curators who take the subway are blown away,” said Sandra Bloodworth, who has directed the Metropolitan Transit Authority’s Arts for Transit program since 1996, adding murals and mosaics by Museum of Modern Art stalwarts like Roy Lichtenstein, Elizabeth Murray and Sol LeWitt to subterranean walls. “You can see all of this work [by artists] in these museums-on the way to those museums.”  Since the Arts for Transit program began 25 years ago, it has installed more than 200 permanent pieces of artwork in subway stations all over the city (A complete guide is available here). Beyond the works by famous names, they include murals by public-school children and works by emerging artists who later became better known. Where does the money come from? In 1982, New York passed the “Percent for Art” law which requires that 1 percent of the budget for eligible city-funded construction projects be spent on artwork for city facilities.  The art is carefully selected to match the station. Ms. Bloodworth said, “It’s about what will resonate with the riders.” So here’s a look at some of what’s available for the cost of a MetroCard.
Béatrice Coron’s Bronx Literature and All Around Town
Burke Avenue Station: 2 and 5 trains
In Bronx Literature, Béatrice Coron depicts the lives and works of four authors, using vivid stained glass. The large windows focus on Sholom Aleichem, James Baldwin, Nicholasa Mohr and Edgar Allan Poe, all of whom lived in or wrote about the Bronx. (The Poe panels include ravens, a full moon and a windblown landscape where pages fly from books.) En route to Bronx Literature, passengers may be able to see one of the more recent works commissioned for the M.T.A.: All Around Town. The cut-paper poster hanging in subway cars, depicting a silhouetted city, was made by Ms. Coron in 2009.

QUOTE OF THE DAY merely the refuge which the ingenious have invented, when they were supplied with food and women, to escape the tediousness of life.- W. Somerset Maugham (1874-1965)

Friday, February 24, 2012

Yasiin Bey (Mos Def) – Niggas in Poorest

Dog Star says this is BRILLIANT!  NIGGAS IN POOREST takes all the party outta the original that's for sure - but I think a lot of kids need this one more.  Mos Def (Yasiin Bey) is not playin' around!  It's not even a parody but a dead-ass comment on "luxury rappers."  More of a boss than Ross will ever be.  I mean, look at just this verse and the REALITY it represents:  the blurred lines between materialism and hip-hop (underscored by ‘Niggas in Paris’). Although they’re in the mall, gangsters show their true colors with sagging pants and criminal - not consumerist - motivations.  These lyrics remind us of kids getting robbed of new Jordans after waiting on line for hours to buy them.

These young bloods is looking scary at the mall
They wearing pants, you can still see they drawers
They rob a nigga in the bathroom stall
They took his life cause he ain't want to take it off

[Verse 1]
Poor so hard, my clean clothes look grimy, pretty women don't mind me
So what's fifty grand to a young nigga like me? More than my annual salary
Poor so hard, this shit crazy, walk outside the whole world hate me
Nervous stares hit the third affairs, surveillance cameras, police tracing
Poor so hard, this shit weird, we be home and still be scared
There's grief here, there's peace here, easy and hard to be here
Psycho, liable to turn Michael, take your pick, Myers, Myers, Myers, same shit
Poor so hard, got holey socks, dope block on my stove top
Jumbotrons for astronauts, high in orbit off planet rock, say
Poor so hard, this chopper too, we starving Marvin, you hot food
There's birds of prey, no escape, open-air prison, local zoo
Poor so hard, who getting faded? Little Maurice in the sixth grade
No mama, no father, role model the dope game, say
Poor so hard, bitch behave, standing behind the deuce-deuce-trey
Ice-cold, heat blow, closed casket, cold case

[Verse 2]
These young bloods is looking scary at the mall
They wearing pants, you can still see they drawers
They rob a nigga in the bathroom stall
They took his life cause he ain't want to take it off
Poor so hard, that shit cray, ain't it, Bey? Diabetics, fish filet
Poor so hard, your house so cold, nigga, it ain't spring
Every winter landlord fuckin' with my heat again
Bougie girl, grab your hand, show you how to do this ghetto dance
Fuck your French, we ain't in France, I'm just saying
Prince Williams ain't do it right, if you ask me
If I was him, I'd put some black up in my family
Fake Gucci, my nigga, fake Louis, my killa
Real drugs, my dealer, who the fuck is Margiela?
Doctors say I'm the illest, I ain't got no insurance
It's them niggas in poorest, be them rebel guerillas, huh

[Interlude: Malcolm X]
I don't worry, I tell you
I am a man who believed that I died 20 years ago
And I live like a man who is dead already
I have no fear whatsoever of anybody or anything

[Verse 3]
To the kings and queens and everyone in every place, yo
Don't get caught up in no throne, don't get caught up in no throne
Don't get caught up in no throne
Towers of Babylon rise up and so they shall fall
As it was written before, amen, so it goes on
Don't get caught up in no throne, don't get caught up in no throne
Don't get caught up in no throne
These devils out here lying, acting like the people ain't dying
They silver and they gold, ain't never saved a soul
Don't get caught up in no throne, don't get caught up in no throne
Don't get caught up in no throne
Signs through the earth and through the heavens, lunar, solar eclipses
We seeking for forgiveness and safety for our children
Don't get caught up in no throne, don't get caught up in no throne
Don't get caught up in no throne, Allah is in control

Dog Star Selects Sebastian Errazuriz’s Opera Fireplace (Made in Brooklyn!)

Dog Star is NOT an opera fan but we do like this fireplace a whole lot!  Conceptual artist Sebastian Errazuriz presented his new concept of an Opera Fireplace. The limited edition fireplace was carved out of 600 pounds of Italian marble, evoking a small scale opera stage. All the details – hanging curtains, side stairs or the actual stage – were created to not only look artistic, but also be fully functional. This opera fireplace can be installed in any residence provided that the clients have an eye for detail and an open mind. A scaffolding structure and figurine, hand-carved from maple, complete the artistic interior space of the fireplace. The artist needed to work on paper before the concept took shape in real life, so numerous sketches created the path that led to the construction of the Opera Fireplace. Detailed work on the marble was undertaken by the artist and two marble craftsmen in Brooklyn, not to mention the wooden structures that took over two weeks each to finish. How would you feel if you had one of these in your home?

Go See the "Radical Camera" @ The Jewish Museum - Bring your friends!

Dog Star knows there is so much to learn about the history of photography in New York City.  Happily for devoted teen readers and others, many photography shows this season help us discover more of the story and how NYC artists made art out of their urban experience.  One of these shows is called The Radical Camera: New York's Photo League, 1936-1951 at The Jewish Museum (more here) on view from November 04, 2011 - March 25, 2012.  We look forward to seeing this show because it will provide images of "old New York" - the way it used to be before the world changed so much.  We especially like this image (shown at the right in this post) called "Butterfly Boy," taken by
Jerome Liebling in 1949 on the streets of Harlem.  The boy looks nervous and confident at the same time and has assumed a kind of superhero pose for the photographer with his caped jacket.  Here's what the museum says about the show:  In 1936 a group of young, idealistic photographers, most of them Jewish, first-generation Americans, formed an organization in Manhattan called the Photo League. Their solidarity centered on a belief in the expressive power of the documentary photograph and on a progressive alliance in the 1930s of socialist ideas and art. The Radical Camera presents the contested path of the documentary photograph during a tumultuous period that spanned the New Deal reforms of the Depression, World War II, and the Cold War.  The Jewish Museum is EASY TO REACH - you don't have to be Jewish to go there! - at 5th Avenue & 92nd Street.  Go on Saturdays @ 11am when it's FREE for everybody!

Thursday, February 23, 2012

THIS SATURDAY! Join other teens at FREE Manga Workshop @ The Met Museum

Do you love manga? Think Japanese culture is cool? Imagine becoming an illustrator?

Join guest speaker Misako Rocks! to learn about her experiences as an author and illustrator, the tradition of storytelling in Japanese art, and how to draw your very own manga characters.

Bring your friends and enjoy refreshments, discover the graphic novel collection in the Nolen Library, and explore the Museum until it closes at 9:00 p.m.!

Following the events, parents are welcome to join their teens for a free screening of Howl's Moving Castle from 3:45 p.m. - 5:45 p.m. in the Bonnie J. Sacerdote Lecture Hall.

This event is FREE, but registration is required. Please visit to register. Direct any questions to

Art of the Graphic Novel: Manga! will be held at the Met's Uris Center for Education, ground floor.