Zuccotti Park in the Financial District is perhaps most famous for being ground zero for the Occupy Wall Street movement, but it’s also home to several pieces of monumental public art. For example, behold this bright red, 70-foot-high painted steel installation by sculptor Mark di Suvero, entitled Joie de Vivre (Joy of Life), which went up at the corner of Broadway and Cedar Street in June 2006. The sculpture is comprised of “open-ended tetrahedrons” as described by di Suvero, and was formerly located at the Holland Tunnel rotary.
Living the Covid Life in its Manhattan epicenter is hardcore. New Yorkers are survivors though, and we still love our city. Queen Andrea wants to make sure we don’t forget how hard NYC rocks. She completed this beautiful mural on Avenue A between 3rd and 4th Streets on May 14th, 2020, which is why it still looks fresh!
This week I went on an adventure! I had to make a trip down to Wall Street for the first time since our work-from-home directive went down in mid-March, because I had dermatologist appointment. Wee! After braving my masked-up, socially distanced subway ride, I had about 30 minutes to kill before my appointment time, and I enjoyed walking about in the financial district in relative solitude. It was awesome. And what a fun surprise to see artist Arturo Di Modica’s now-iconic bronze statue, Fearless Girl, rocking a face mask to reflect the Covid Life we live in. Inspiring! If you happen to be in that area, you can find her on Broad Street standing across from the NYSE.
Hello and welcome to week four of My
Covid East Village Life! This week we are checking in with the act of Social Distancing, Masking-up, and related Covid Memes! Fun! Let’s get to isolating!
First off, if you’re not wearing a fucking mask every time you leave your house, I have ZERO sympathy for you if you get the virus.
A Trader Joe’s market opened in my immediate neighborhood earlier this year and shopping there for delicious food has allowed me to keep my shit together. Like most stores, TJ‘s began requiring customers to wear face masks a week or so into lockdown; which I have no problem complying with, because I am not a selfish cunt. Even Beary, the store’s mascot, is masked-up, as we all should be.
This mask with Red Rringe — worn by my very fashionable neighbor, Delphine — is definitely the fanciest face-covering I’ve seen.
Tiny dog, which I was told is a Miniature Pinscher, in a mask, spotted in the East River Park. He is saying: “Mask-up, Bitches!”
Mask graffiti on the LES.
Flyer seen in my neighborhood. Zero sympathy for the Chads and Karens as well.
Rules like this make me feel safer. Thank you, NYC, for giving a shit!
There is literally no excuse for not knowing the rules.
This Post Is Observing Social Distancing! More Photos After the Jump!
Villainess, accord to their Instagram Page, is a “Secondhand designer black clothing store and events destination located in the East Village.” The exact address is 181 Avenue B, and they appear be temporarily shuttered due to the Covid Life. It seems appropriate then, that their glorious Pink Neon Sign glows on, behind bars, so to speak.
In the Covid Life, I’m fortunate to be able to work from home, be in good health, have enough food, cable TV, and everything needed to make the lock-down more comfortable. I really can’t complain. I can get by for a few months without going shopping, eating in my favorite restaurant, or seeing a movie in the theater. The one thing I do get a bit wistful about is not being able to fully enjoy the beauty of Spring.
In an email I received from them this morning, the Museum of Modern Art was quick to remind me that, “Five hundred tulips are blooming in the Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Sculpture Garden right now, and no one is there to enjoy them.” Thanks for the reminder! Spring, the season of renewal, is happening all around us while we are being advised to stay inside. It kills me. In a normal year, I would have at the very least attended Sakura Matsuri, the Cherry Blossom Festival hosted by the Brooklyn Botanic Garden — which is such a terrific way to usher in the season. Even the NYBG’s Orchid Show closed prematurely. Beauty is still out there, so I preserve it on my walks. If you’re struggling with Cabin Fever, please enjoy a little bit of spring in this week’s edition of my East Village Life.
Tompkins Square Park is the closest park to my home; being located between Avenues A and B, and between East 7th and East 9th Streets. There have been a few outstanding flowering cherry trees there this spring. Check them out!
As much as I wish we could have trees that look like this year-round, they surely would not be appreciated if their beauty was not so ephemeral.
Here’s a closer look at that same tree. When I checked the Instagram accounts of my neighbors on this particular afternoon, everyone was posting their own photos of . . . that same tree. It was just too perfect.
Different tree, same park.
These were across the street from my apartment, on 14th Street outside Stuyvesant Town. I love the side-by-side contrast of the trees against the blue sky, and then the red brick building.
I took this photo very late in the afternoon, which is apparent by the light, or lack thereof. This tree enjoys its life inside one of the East Village’s community gardens that add so much value to this neighborhood.
When I posted this photo on Instagram it got twice the usual number of likes. I think that has something to do with the visual appeal of the white flowering tree next to the white building. This is First Avenue just south of 14th Street.
A cool thing about Cherry Blossoms is that you don’t have to get the entire tree to capture a great photo; in fact, a small cluster of flowers, or even a single bloom, can convey so much more about the beauty of spring. This photo was taken on the High Line in early March, one week before lock-down.
Also, the pink color is like a magnet, attracting me to the tree.
Post Continues, With More Photos and Stories, After The Jump! Continue reading
This pink spray paint rendering of what I interpret to be the Head of a Mayan Warrior is tagged on a brick wall on East 10th Street between Avenues B and C. I was originally going to include it in this past Tuesday’s post on My East Village Covid Experience, but thought better of that, because I needed a Pink Thing for this week. Any port in a storm.
If you haven’t noticed that CBD and CBD-infused products have flooded pop culture consciousness as far-reaching wellness solutions, then you have been living under the proverbial rock. As someone who needs to manage chronic pain, I’ve spent considerable time investigating CBD wellness products that could help alleviate my discomfort, and perhaps also promote a night of restful sleep. The thing is, I didn’t know who to trust when it came to making a purchase. Last summer while vacationing in the Berkshires, my trusted pothead friends took me with them to their local dispensary. With guidance from a knowledgeable employee, I purchased a CDB tincture (oil) containing only trace amounts of THC, which means there’s no high involved. I’m happy to say that this product has worked well for me with no harmful side effects! What a relief.
Just as I was getting low on the product purchased in Massachusetts, and not sure where to find a trusted local source that could sell me an equivalent-quality replacement, I received a pitch to review the CBD wellness products of a company called Vitagenne. Timing: perfect.
Let’s get real: staying sane during the Covid-19 lockdown is a serious challenge. Just trying to work from home, keep my apartment appropriately sanitized, feed myself and cope with the news can make the day-to-day routine overwhelming. I know I’m not alone in experiencing an increased need to manage anxiety and stress, and having added pain doesn’t help, so this is really the perfect opportunity to introduce you to Vitagenne. While Vitagenne makes a full line of hemp-derived CBD products, they sent me their Pure Wellness Hemp CBD Oil Supplement, so that is what I will review here, based on my experience.
The primary difference between the supplement I had been using, and the Vitagenne CBD oil, is that while the dispensary product contained a trace amount of THC (producing no ‘high’), Vitagenne contains no THC, which makes it legal to travel with anywhere in the US, even states where pot is not yet legal or decriminalized. The lack of THC also means that this product has virtually no taste or odor. This is a big plus for anyone who has an aversion to the smell or taste of supplements. Vitagenne is 99% Pure CBD Isolate combined with 1% Coconut MCT Oil, offered in three strengths; 500 mg, 1500 mg, and 3000 mg. CBD oil is intended to be consumed sublingually — applied under the tongue and held for 60 seconds — but since it is unflavored you can also enjoy it mixed with any of your favorite beverages. I am using 1500mg strength, and find it very effect and fast-acting to alleviate my moderate, chronic joint pain. Taken at bedtime, it also helps me drift off to a sound sleep, which is so necessary in these times.
Post Continues After The Jump!
Hello and welcome to week two of my ass-kicking East Village Life. In this week’s edition, we will walk through a virtual gallery of assorted street art and public art pieces that I’ve passed by on my weather-permitting daily walks in and around my neighborhood. Enjoy!
Hektad is a name that you’re going see a few times in this post, as his optimism-infused artworks are all over the East Village, especially in the First Street Green Art Park, located on First Street at First Avenue. Since this photo was taken, I believe the park has temporarily closed due to the Covid as it was attracting crowds. And we can’t have that.
Here are a couple of additional Hektad pieces on 11th Street just East of First Avenue. These are side by side, adjacent to this monumental piece by Kobra.
It does not get much more NYC than this mural of King Kong by French graffiti artist Moi One (@moi.one). Find it next to David’s Cafe on St. Mark’s Place near Tompkin’s Square Park.
This colorful tile mosaic by Jim Power, known locally as the Mosaic Man, marks the intersection of Avenue A and St Mark’s Place. Jim composes all of his intricate pieces from up-cycled china, glass, pottery and found objects to create unique, site specific works of art. His mosaics are all over the neighborhood.
More Art, After The Jump!
While Covid Life keeps us physically apart, The Museum of Art and Photography (MAP) in India is working to bring us together — digitally. MAP Founder Abhishek Poddar requests your participation in a collaborative digital art project to create the world’s largest digital flower Bouquet of Hope.
Here’s a bit of backstory on the inspiration for this engaging project. In honor of his parents 25th Wedding Anniversary back in 1989, Abhishek surprised them with an art installation made up of 25 flowers. Well-known artists from India created a single flower, one for each year of his parents married life together, in the artist’s own unique style; each image reminding them of a fond moment. “At times like these, we hold on to precious memories – of family times, of challenges we managed to overcome, of personal journeys we ventured on” said Abhishek. Flowers are a celebration of hope, love, and courage – something the world needs now more than ever!
Right now, anyone and everyone is invited to join MAP in creating this Bouquet of Hope. Paint, draw or sketch a flower, snap a picture from your garden or balcony, or even create a flower motif from objects or textiles in your home (food, toilet paper, shoes, pillows). The possibilities are endless.
Images can be submitted to, and viewed at www.bouquetofhope.in. I’ve already contributed a few images of Orchids that I took while visiting the NYBG Orchid Show in February. Remember to use #BouquetofHope and tag @MAPBangalore when posting on social media channels. Enjoy!