Photographed at Rootstein Display Mannequins on West 19th Street, NYC.
Today, November 11th, 2013 marks the release of Lady Gaga’s latest CD, ArtPop. The disc is most notable not so much for its musical ear-worm dancefloor-friendly shenanigans as it is for the artwork that graces the cover: a sculpture of a nude Gaga with a Gazing Ball between her legs, which was designed by Jeff Koons, one of the wealthiest and most successful contemporary artists in America. Confession: the fact that Lady Gaga managed to collaborate with Jeff Koons is the only reason I am paying any attention to this album.
To celebrate the CD’s please, Gaga’s well-oiled Hype Machine have opened a Pop Up Store in New York’s Meat Packing District (and another one in LA) which is open today, tomorrow and Wednesday from Noon to 9 PM each day. Since today is a holiday, I was free to check out the scene on West 14th Street and take some photos so you can see what you’re missing out on. Or not.
The place was totally mobbed within 30 minutes of opening its doors and one of the guys there selling T-Shirts said it had already been “a long day.” HA! In addition to merchandise for sale, which includes a variety of Gaga T Shirts, Canvas Tote Bags, Magazines with her face on them and, of course, the ArtPop CD, the space features a few props from the ArtPop photo shoot and a selection of Gaga’s outfits, which are always fun to see.
For Fans looking for a more personalized experience, there are “interactive” kiosks, where you can virtually insert yourself yourself into one of Gaga’s videos, get your photo taken in front of some Gaga Props and a tiny room where people are leaving written homages to Gaga on its paper walls.
This is the Binary Chair from the ArtPop photo shoot. Pretty cool!
Here you can see Jeff Koons styling and photographing Gaga for the cover sculpture.
This is probably from the CD booklet, but will give you an idea of what Koons’ Gazing Ball exhibit at the David Zwirner gallery looked like.
Here are some masks Gaga wears on stage.
They had lots of T-Shirts for sale!
Sadly, these Gazing Balls, which are props left over from the MTV Music Awards are not for sale.
I enjoyed my visit!
ARTPOP POP UP: A LADY GAGA GALLERY is a special three day event that will take place only in New York and Los Angeles from November 11 to 13th, 2013.
The Gallery will be open from 12:00 Noon – 9:00 PM at the following locations:
In NYC: 417 West 14th Street
In LA: 1538 N. Cahuenga Blvd
Come celebrate and experience the release of Gaga’s latest CD, ARTPOP with Music, Interactive Experiences, actual Gaga props and outfits, and much more! ARTPOP is available everywhere 11/11/13.
I’ll be “popping” by the gallery space on West 14th Street on Monday November 11th and will post pics of all the hot action right here upon my return.
I’m going to go ahead and own the fact that on weeknights when I am at home, and also coherent, I’ll turn on TMZ and watch their low rent “news” on celebrity has-beens and wannabes that I’ve either never heard of before, or wish I hadn’t. I’m probably the least Star Struck blogger on the planet, but I consider TMZ to be my primary source of worthless celebrity pandering so that I can stay in the loop about what is “popular” – you know, for the kids. TMZ is also completely hilarious and boasts the least self-aware staff of any celebrity news program, so in that way it seems very down to earth and makes you feel like you’re hearing these crazy stories from people you know pretty well. That’s probably why the show is so popular.
Fans of the show will be excited to find out that TMZ, in association with On Location Tours, now has a daily, two-hour bus tour you can sign up for that will take you all around the city from midtown to the tip of the island and back again, and point out dozens of places where celebrities hangout, pass out, get wasted, film their shows, actually live, used to live, got beat up, or were deeply embarrassed about something or other. It’s pretty fun!
You’ll board your luxury, air conditioned coach at the corner of 51st St. and Broadway, across the street from this diner:
Our awesome tour guide was Matt Chadwick, an extremely friendly and equally hilarious and knowledgeable young man who cracked jokes incessantly but also revealed fascinating information such as:
- Jim Carrey has an art Studio on Perry Street
- Ed Burns is married to Christie Turlington
- Macy’s not only has the oldest working escalators in the country (I’ve seen them!) but also the largest collection of shoes under one roof
- Chris Brown beat up Drake at some club near the Holland Tunnel that I already forgot the name of, because I could care less about those two. Seriously who cares?
- Columbus Circle is the spot from which all distances to NYC are measured
What I enjoyed most about the tour was getting to see neighborhoods in Manhattan that I honestly never go to and driving down streets that I’ve never seen before in my life. And I’ve lived in Manhattan over 20 years! But, while I was on the TMZ Tour, I felt like I was visiting a foreign land, and it made me want to go to these neighborhoods on my own, and explore.
The entire time that the bus is cruising around and your tour guide, who will be Matt if you’re very lucky, is pointing out places where Lady Gaga used to do burlesque, the loft where Beyoncé and Jay Z live, the apartment above the now closed Daffy’s (RIP) where Heath Ledger overdosed, and most recently, the park on lower 6th Ave. where Jonah Hill was recently spotted taking a photograph of a placenta (don’t ask), you will be entertained by hilarious and clever TMZ-produced video clips, that will further the action with additional graphics, interviews and explanations of what you’re seeing. It seems like the whole TMZ staff gets involved, so you will get to see all of your favorites, including Harvey.
During our tour, Matt hosted few rounds of fun trivia guessing games such as “Celebrity or Homeless Person?” and “The Finger or a Wave?” where the correct answer was awarded with a rare TMZ T-Shirt. So, Free Stuff! Matt really kept things rolling, and our driver was exceptionally skilled at taking very tight corners, and not killing anyone – because you know that pedestrians in New York City don’t stop crossing the street for anyone! The TMZ Tour is a fun way to spend two hours for locals who just want to get out of the house and also a good thing to take your out-of-town friends to. Despite the fact that we saw no celebrities, I had a great time!
Where: 51st St & Broadway (exact location given upon purchase)
When: Weekdays & Sundays at 10:00 AM & 1:00 PM, Saturdays at 1:00 PM & 4:00 PM.
Cost: $49 + $3 ticket fee (Adult), $39 + $3 ticket fee (Children 11 & under)
Duration: Approximately 2 hours
Advance Ticket Purchase is Required so buy tickets at This Link!
It’s been a decade since the art of Jeff Koons – one of the contemporary art world’s wealthiest, most celebrated and undeniably wildly polarizing figures – has been the focus of a solo exhibit here in Manhattan. This week, he has two: a series of new works at David Zwirner and a retrospective (opening this evening) at the Gagosian Gallery.
The David Zwirner Gallery-hosted Gazing Ball opened last night and, even though the doors opened exactly one hour behind schedule, it was well worth waiting for.
For Gazing Ball, Koons has filled two conjoined spaces of the Gallery (located at adjacent addresses) with more than a dozen Las Vegas-style reproductions of ancient Roman statuary, each adorned with a strategically placed, royal blue stainless steel sphere flaunting the mirror-finish surface that has become so identifiable with Koons’ sculptures.
In each piece, the juxtaposition between the classic and the kitsch, to me, is conceptually fantastic and very visually appealing. But of course there are fans and then there are people live to talk smack about Jeff Koons, which I find puzzling.
It’s been said in other reviews, and I tend to agree, that people who dump on Jeff Koons’ art must be suffering from some kind of misplaced envy or inferiority complex. If you don’t like Jeff Koons, and no one says you must, you are free to stay away from his art shows, but don’t come to a Koons’ exhibit and talk loudly about how much the art sucks, because it just makes you look pathetic and desperate to seem cool.
Jeff Koons’ Gazing Ball will be on exhibit through June 29th, 2013 at David Zwirner, Located at 525 West 19th Street, In the Chelsea Gallery District. Hours are Tuesday to Saturday, 11 AM – 6:00 PM.
From Ultimate Classic Rock:
Pop singer Katy Perry and Twilight star Kristen Stewart are reportedly fighting over a plum role in an upcoming movie about the life of flamboyant Queen front man Freddie Mercury. According to a recent article, the pair are both vying against Lady Gaga for the role of Mary Austin, Mercury’s lifelong best friend and confidante with whom he had a romantic relationship in the ’70s.
Mercury lived with Austin in the early ’70s before beginning a relationship with a male record company executive, and even after that, the pair were best friends for the rest of his life. He was the godfather to her oldest son, and when he died in 1991, he left his London home to Austin instead of his partner, Jim Hutton.
“Lady Gaga, Katy Perry and Kristen Stewart are on the short list for Mary, who played a huge role in Freddie’s life,” a source reportedly told Star magazine (quote via Popcrush). “They all desperately want the part, and it’s getting ugly!”
Sacha Baron Cohen is slated to play Mercury in the biopic, and he reportedly has the final say in choosing his leading lady. The women apparently aren’t doing themselves any favors with their catty behavior. “With the girls fighting like this, it’s just hurting their chances of getting the part,” the source adds. “It’s unprofessional, and Sacha is tired of the back-and-forth — he wants to choose one of them and be done with it.”
Screenwriter Peter Morgan says he has had to tread carefully in dealing with the three surviving members of Queen for the film, which has no title or projected release date as yet. ‘Queen are sensitive because it will show rancour and disagreements in the collaborative process,” he tells Time Out. “In a way, the film, for me, reflects my own experience of film making as a collaborative process. Just as a film is never the result of one person, so the band doesn’t like the idea of Queen being ‘a band by Freddie Mercury’ – and they’re right. It won’t just be about Freddie Mercury.”
Fine Dining in Manhattan isn’t always all about molecular gastronomy and tiny portions served on over-sized plates. While “Fine Dining Bargain” is not a phrase you are likely to hear at any time other than during restaurant week, there are upscale restaurants in town where you can get an exceptional value for your hard earned cash while also indulging your inner Foodie. One such destination is Philippe on East 60th Street, which has become a favorite of celebrity clientele from Lady Gaga to President Obama, and we think we know why: the location is discreet and food is off the hook.
Mango Ice Tea Cocktail: Potent & Refreshing (Photos By Anne Raso)
The creation of Chinese-born owner and executive chef Philippe Chow, Philippe takes traditional Chinese dishes that you might find on any storefront take out menu – from Shrimp Toast to Sweet & Sour Pork to Prawns in Black Bean Sauce – and elevates each to the realm of the gourmet. The dishes are uncomplicated; often featuring just few key ingredients, but prepared in a flavorful and creative manner that indicate you are in for some seriously exquisite food. Likewise, the tastefully minimalist interior decor allows diners to lend all of their sensory attention to the food. And while the prices may seem steep at first glance, be aware that all dishes are portioned for two, so you can easily compare an entree priced at $40 to two entrees at $20. Add a couple of appetizers and you will leave satisfied and smiling, without emptying your wallet.
Pork Dumplings: Super Yummy
Philippe’s menu is extensive and exciting. Perhaps being a bit overwhelmed with so many choices is what prompted us to just go with familiar favorites with our appetizer selection, with mixed results. The Wok Fried Pork Dumplings ($12) were delicious and put their take-out kin to shame, but the Scallion Pancake ($12) was a bit doughy/undercooked and lacking in distinct scallion flavor. Better options would have been to go with Philippe’s acclaimed appetizer selections, such as the Chicken Satay ($18) – whose reddish color hinted at it having been cooked in a Tandoori oven – or the Chicken Lettuce Wraps ($18) – a very popular choice, served in what looked like main dish-sized portion, which was enjoyed by diners at tables on either side of us. “Next Time,” as they say!
Chicken Lettuce Wraps: Recommended
For our entrees we were delighted with the tender Beijing Chicken with candied walnuts in a sweet brown sauce ($44/2), but we would recommend that meat lovers bypass the Crispy Beef ($56/2) which, though a house favorite, and admittedly lovely to look at, tasted predominately of its white flour coating and thus was very disappointing.
Crispy Beef: Looks Great, Yes. Tastes Great, Not So Much.
Instead, red meat fans should head directly for the melt-in-your mouth House Mignon ($75/2). Craving a green vegetable, we spotted this dish at a neighboring table and added a side order of Sauteed String Beans in a light Black Bean Sauce ($10), which were the best I’ve ever tasted.
String Beans: Delish
We were also distracted by an unidentified, deep fried prawn dish which the couple seated adjacent to us confessed is the pivotal reason they visit Philippe regularly. “We order it ever time we eat here, and we love it!” they exclaimed. (I just wish I could recall the name of the dish!). Another specialty of Philippe is the whole Peking Duck served table side (allow 45 minute for this dish) which has been rated “Best Peking Duck in the City” by The NY Observer, New York Magazine and several other notable food critics. Prices for this special, crispy-skinned treat range from $55 to $75 depending on the weight of the duck.
Service at Philippe is top notch. Our waiter was very friendly, super attentive and offered suggestions as well as happily answering any questions we had about the ingredients of specific dishes. The food also arrived at our table with remarkable swiftness, yet you could tell each dish was made fresh to order. Between each course we were presented with steaming hot, lemongrass-scented hand towels, which added a touch of pampered luxury to the dining experience. Philippe’s polished attentiveness with regard to every facet of customer care allows the staff to turn over tables multiple times during dinner service, though we never felt rushed.
Molten Chocolate Cake with Vanilla Ice Cream. Moo.
After rounding out the meal with coffees and a couple of decadent dessert selections, we were beyond full but couldn’t stop babbling about all of the delicious dishes we wished we could have tasted. Philippe is definitely a place where stage whispers of “I want what they’re having” are overheard a lot. But one can only eat so much in one sitting, which is why repeat visits are in order.
Philippe By Philippe Chow is located at 33 East 60th Street, between Park and Madison Avenues in New York City. Phone 212-644-8885 for Reservations.
A Selection of Craig Gleason’s “Gaga Dollars” (Image Source)
Artist Craig Gleason likes to draw Lady Gaga on the dollar bill, which he then sells as individual works of original art. Genius. Sometimes Craig frames and sells these altered pieces of still-negotiable currency in sets of three or six bills all grouped together. You can kind of see how these things would lend themselves well to having mass appeal – because Gaga is everywhere – as well as a high collectability-factor. Read about and see more Gaga Dollars at Gleason’s Website (NSFW, trust me). The bills pictured above are from 2010, but he might still be doing this project. I’m not sure because the header graphic of his blog is so disturbing I had a hard time keeping the browser open.
If you’re passionate about music and appreciate a photograph’s ability to tell a story beyond words, you will have a field day checking out the archives of rock photography on sale at Rock Paper Photo. Whether you dig modern pop stars like Lady Gaga and Justin Bieber or go for the classic rockers like Led Zeppelin, The Stones, Bowie and The Beatles, you’ll find a vast cache of both black & white and color shots, representing most genres of music, from a variety of famous photographers, in all sizes and within a price range to fit the casual fan to the avid collector. Rock Paper Photo was co-founded by Guy Oseary (Madonna’s Manager) and LiveNation, the world’s leading live entertainment and eCommerce company, so between those two entities you know the site has access to any image you could covet. I recommend you cruise on over there and waste some time right now! And have your credit card handy!