Category Archives: museums

What a long strange trip it’s been…

… from Haight Ashbury to the New York Historical Society. Who would have thought that such a conservative venue would one day house the archives of the Grateful Dead. I guess if you live long enough.

And I did hear yesterday that someone who sits on the board of the NYHS donated a considerable amount of memorabilia to the archives with the caveat that he would be able to house a show here in NY.

If you are a casual Grateful Dead fan I would say this exhibit is probably not for you. It is rather small and unless you have the cult-like knowledge this tribe breeds you might find it a bit boring. Even for the hardcores there may be some level of disappointment at the size of the show.

The exhibit really needed audio headsets, like the Rock Hall uses. The Lennon Show at the now closed NY venue did a great job with this. Having to read each little sign was tedious and the type was way too small on a purple background (oh, sorry, graphic designers can be that way). A kick ass sound system playing live shows would have also been a nice touch. There was some music playing but it was sporadic and the sound kind of sucked.

However, there were some real jewels in the items on display so I will list my faves here , in no particular order (except for maybe number 1 because it is so ridiculous).

1. Boogie ’till you barf bag. (featured above) No, I did not disrespect the rules of the Society by photographing inside the exhibit. But the blogger that did will forgive me for not giving him photo credit and swiping his shot. Since he took the shot sort of illegally I don’t feel compelled to give credit. How’s that for rationalizing.

2. Steal Your Face Yarmulke nothing like a little kosher Jerry.

3. Original Warner Brothers recording contract Typewritten and looking a little bit like a term paper it was cool to see this document.

4. Original handwritten notes and sketches for the Wall of Sound For those who are unfamiliar, this is considered one of the largest sound systems of all time, built exclusively for the Dead and used on tour from 1974-1976.

5. Copies of 4 different Grateful Dead Comic Books Never heard of these and thought they were really cool.

6. Hand painted stage backdrop For the campies reading, this was reminiscent of a color war banner but bigger. It was quite cool, but I was a bit aggravated by the way it was displayed with part of the exhibit blocking the ability to see the entire piece in full view.

Oh and this was a big fave:

7. Dicks Picks binder Dick Latvala was the famous GD tape archivist. Fans were known for tape trading and Dick was the guru of all live show recordings, later releasing a CD series called Dick’s Picks, which was continued even after his death.

Dick kept meticulous notes for each show including set lists and commentary. If you know me, you know I LOVE a good binder. If you visit the NYHS site and click on photo #6 you can see the page for the May 8,1977, Barton Hall, Cornell show. Dr. Jimmy was there and tells me that this is arguably the greatest Dead show of all times.

Sorry to say I saw them at Cornell the following year – which I would like to say was the best show ever – but all I can remember about that show was the rather ‘interesting’ trip I took in the middle of the night to stand on line for tickets, something about albino deer on the side of the road and the rest is a blur.

And that last little anecdote seems as good a place as any to end a post about the Grateful Dead.

Haven’t had enough of me yet? You can also read me at 50-Something Moms Blog. For photo enthusiasts, visit Leaving the zip code, photos from outside the comfort zone.

add to del.icio.usAdd to Blinkslistadd to furlDigg itadd to ma.gnoliaStumble It!add to simpyseed the vineTailRankpost to facebook

3 Comments

Filed under art, current events, museums, music, New York, New York City, places of interest, rock 'n roll

Amy’s Pre-Grammy Day

In celebration of the Grammy’s, or perhaps because it was the last day of the exhibit and my sweet sister-in-law made sure that I would not miss something so wonderful before it was over, we went to the Brooklyn Musuem’s “Who Shot Rock & Roll” this afternoon.

I will tell you all that I am sorry the show closed today because anyone who is a true fan should be sorry that they missed this gem. (Dr. Jimmy, we missed you!) Along with some of the most memorable images of the past 50 years in rock and roll, the exhibit was peppered with treats such as a full wall of a lenticular Jimi Hendrix (this is the process like the old wink buttons where the image changes when you move around it) , Jerry Garcia and Mountain Girl, and a mosh pit shot that defied reality. Also, not to give Jimi too much weight, but there was a series of him burning his guitar at Monterey Pop that I really wanted to slip in my bag on the way out. Amongst the iconic shots like Bob Gruen’s John Lennon  in the NY T-shirt and images from rock photography greats like Danny Clinch and one of the world’s greatest photography talents, Richard Avedon, the show was more about the not so famous photographers. The men and women who never achieved great fame but shot those who did. I found their stories the most interesting.

As if this pre-Grammy day was not perfect enough, I drove home in time to hear Bob Dylan’s Theme Radio Show on XM and tonight’s theme was New York. Although I did not get to hear the whole show I did hear this: Duke Ellingtons, Take the A Train into Funky Broadway, not by Wilson Picket but Dyke & the Blazers, into a wonderful reading by Bob of Emma Lazurus’ The New Colossus (you know: Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses, yadayadyada) into Lou Reed’s Dirty Blvd that parody’s that work. (Give me your hungry, your tired your poor I’ll piss on ’em
that’s what the Statue of Bigotry says. Your poor huddled masses, let’s club ’em to death and get it over with and just dump ’em on the boulevard.)
Not gonna lie, had that one cranked up to window rattling levels. Always been a sucker for Lou Reed.

All in all, I go to bed tonight a happy camper. Sometimes the week beats the crap out of us. If we can rejuice with what we love on the weekend we wake up Monday with a better attitude and the skill set to try again.

Haven’t had enough of me yet? You can also read me at 50-Something Moms Blog. For photo enthusiasts, visit Leaving the zip code, photos from outside the comfort zone.

add to del.icio.usAdd to Blinkslistadd to furlDigg itadd to ma.gnoliaStumble It!add to simpyseed the vineTailRankpost to facebook

4 Comments

Filed under art, carry a camera, museums, music, photography

Time to Cry Tuesday-Nunley’s Ferris Wheel

nunley's-ferris-wheel

Ever stumble upon a piece of your childhood and feel like your breath had been stolen? The sight of this old relic caused both Gary and I to stop in our tracks. Believe it or not, we grew up in the same town. Being way older than I – not really, but I like to say that – and having moved in his early teens, our paths did not cross until later on.

Both of us stood in front of this broken down blast from the past and realized that our very first experiences on a ferris wheel had been on this very ride. I remember exactly where it was positioned to the left of the doorway, just outside the main building that housed the carousel. And the little boats where right behind it. The thought of what was breeding in that water would make a modern day mama cringe.

Damn, that thing looked so big back then. And new(ish) for I am sure it had been around for awhile by the time I road it. 

nunley's-signNunley’s was a sweet little amusement park on Long Island that seemed like a Six Flags to me when I was a kid. If you lived anywhere on the south shore in Nassau County, you knew Nunley’s. A promise to visit this magical place made everyone happy.

It was on its carousel that I first learned about trying to catch the brass ring. When you caught one your day was complete.

I suppose many are still out there trying to catch it again. 

Me? I was just happy to visit with an old friend. And share that memory with my husband. Who says you can’t go home again?

(FYI, this old baby now resides in front of Jordan’s Lobster Farms, another great south shore landmark. You might also like to know that the carousel has been restored and you can take a ride on it at Museum Row in Garden City)

Haven’t had enough of me yet? You can also read me at 50-Something Moms Blog. For photo enthusiasts, visit Leaving the zip code, photos from outside the comfort zone

add to del.icio.us : Add to Blinkslist : add to furl : Digg it : add to ma.gnolia : Stumble It! : add to simpy : seed the vine :  :  : TailRank : post to facebook

10 Comments

Filed under carry a camera, communities, family, museums, places of interest, signage

Too much food and the Chapel of Sacred Mirrors

cosm

Tonight was our big fat Italian Christmas, except there was no one fat and not all that many Italians come to think of it. In fact most of us were Jews. Except our hostess whose holiday dinners have become the most coveted invite in the zip code. Every one of the guests was scheming how to secure a place at the table for next year. Except for us, of course, we are a lock AND we can bring the dog. 

After dinner some of us got into a philosophical discussion about our expectations for the coming year that included much spiritual conversation. One friend brought up the Chapel of Sacred Mirrors, an art exhibit in Chelsea. My first reaction was, oh no, an exhibit that will not only reveal inner secrets, but back fat as well. Not sure I need to go there.

Seriously, it does sound kind of cool. Here is a quick description from the website:

The Sacred Mirrors series is a totally unique work of contemporary sacred art created by Alex Grey. This installation of 21 framed images, consisting of 19 paintings and two etched mirrors, examines the anatomy of body, mind and spirit in rich detail. Each painting presents a life-sized figure facing viewers and inviting them to mirror the images, creating a sense of seeing into oneself.

Ok, so maybe I can lose the narcissistic fear of back fat and I will check this out. This is the line that got me:

The Sacred Mirrors dramatically reveal the miracle of life’s evolutionary complexity, the unity of human experience across all racial, class and gender divides, and the astonishing vistas of possibility inherent in human consciousness. 

Pretty tall order to ignore. For those interested, the show closes on New Year’s Eve. Surely let me know if you visit.

Oh, and the lasagna was to die for!

Haven’t had enough of me yet? You can also read me at Mid-Century Modern Moms and at 50-Something Moms Blog.

For photo enthusiasts, visit Leaving the zip code, photos from outside the comfort zone.

add to del.icio.us : Add to Blinkslist : add to furl : Digg it : add to ma.gnolia : Stumble It! : add to simpy : seed the vine :  :  : TailRank : post to facebook

2 Comments

Filed under art, holidays, museums, New York City, places of interest

Not so hard to be a saint in the city

saint-elizabeth

You can drive down a street 100 times and never see  something and then one day… BAM, there is the most extraordinary finding.

Down by Battery Park hangs this sign. Shrine of the Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton, first American born saint. Quite a gig, huh? She was pretty cool, check out her Wikipedia page

So, what exactly, is my point? To get you all to take a look around and notice your world. I bet there are some amazing things that you pass everyday but you are too busy worrying about ‘what’s next’ to see ‘what’s here’.

Hmmm… Philosophical Thursday? Nah, has a weird ring to it.

Haven’t had enough of me yet? You can also read me at Mid-Century Modern Moms and at 50-Something Moms Blog.

For photo enthusiasts, visit Leaving the zip code, photos from outside the comfort zone.

add to del.icio.us : Add to Blinkslist : add to furl : Digg it : add to ma.gnolia : Stumble It! : add to simpy : seed the vine :  :  : TailRank : post to facebook

4 Comments

Filed under carry a camera, museums, New York City, signage

Uggs and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

rock-hall-nyc1

Tonight was a wonderful adventure in leaving the zip code. At the last minute we decided to venture into Soho to check out the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’s NYC Annex. It has only been open for a couple of weeks and apparently is one of New York’s best kept secrets.

We pulled up on Mercer Street and parked the car. There was a line halfway down the block, but not for the Museum. Oh no, my friends, this was an orderly line in front of the Uggs store, waiting to get in. This was no Walmart situation, but simply a calm crowd of shoppers waiting to drop a $100 or so for a pair of boots. And the Museum… not a soul on the street or in the lobby for that matter. 

The entry to the museum is timed to allow for crowd control, kind of joke tonight as the max amount of people we saw in any section was perhaps 20.

The Annex is a real gem. I have been to the Rock Hall in Cleveland. We went there for Gary’s 50th and it was fabulous. But the old girl is a bit tired looking and could use a sprucing up. The curators of this Annex did an amazing job. The first room had walls covered with brushed aluminum plates with the names of every inductee etched into them. The artists’ names would light up around the room as their music was played. Very cool.

The graphics were perfect and all the materials enhanced the exhibits. There were translucent digital photographic banners stretched between brushed aluminum curved poles throughout, screen printed photos on plexi panels, suspended plasma screens, a 3-d frosted plexi model of NY with touch screens allowing you to explore each NY rock and roll landmark… all of it simply amazing. The space was a combo of exposed brick and pipes with high tech lighting and materials that struck a perfect balance. 

Similar to the Cleveland Museum there is a rotating featured exhibit. This first one was The Clash and it was great. Joe Strummer at his finest. 

Some highlights:

1. Gary dancing in the video room during a sequence when they featured us, the audience, in the rock videos shown on the screen

2. Elvis’ bible with handwritten notations in the margin

3. David Byrne’s big suit in a display that featured the video of him on tour, then the video faded out to reveal the actual suit

4. Handwritten letters from Simon and Garfunkel to eachother when they were at sleepaway camp.

5. John Lennon’s wire framed glasses

6. Bruce Springsteen’s Belair 

7. The urinal from CBGB’s behind glass (in case anyone thought of peeing in it)

Ok, I will stop here at Lucky 7. If you are in NY stop by and enjoy every minute.

Hmmm, for some reason I feel an undying need to buy a pair of Uggs online…

(btw, those who are wondering, yes it is snowing on my page. just another cool little WordPress 2.7 trick, gotta love it)

Haven’t had enough of me yet? You can also read me at Mid-Century Modern Moms and at 50-Something Moms Blog.

For photo enthusiasts, visit Leaving the zip code, photos from outside the comfort zone.

add to del.icio.us : Add to Blinkslist : add to furl : Digg it : add to ma.gnolia : Stumble It! : add to simpy : seed the vine :  :  : TailRank : post to facebook

3 Comments

Filed under art, museums, music, New York City, rock 'n roll

Spam Spam Spam, Wonderful Spam

Last week I wrote about Spam. I had a wonderful time learning all about the resurgence of this mother of all loaves. I found out that there was a Spam Museum, visited its website and Gary and I fell in love with the place. Especially the tagline, Better Than an Art Museum.

To my delight, one of my readers informed me that she and her husband had actually visited the place. Again proof that I have very giving blog friends.

I was out of my mind when she was so kind to send me the following photos. Thank you Casey Leigh for making my day and sharing your trip with us. (if you think I am not going to this place you are crazy).

Here is Casey on a statue called “Off to Slaughter” – what a lovely family place. casey_statue

Next, we have her hubby, Carl, with Spammy. Oh Carl, you are such a good sport. We could surely hang out with you. Wait, is this a statue or is there someone inside that Spammy suit?

sammy-and-husband1

Gary, when we go there can I play the ham and eggs computer game. Please, please, please!

ham-and-egg-computer-game

Family, please note the countertop around the placemat, if the background was pink that would be Nana’s kitchen counter. I LOVE when she channels!

Haven’t had enough of me yet? You can also read me at Mid-Century Modern Moms and at 50-Something Moms Blog.

For photo enthusiasts, visit Leaving the zip code, photos from outside the comfort zone.

 : Add to Blinkslist : add to furl : Digg it : add to ma.gnolia : Stumble It! : add to simpy : seed the vine :  :  : TailRank : post to facebook

 


4 Comments

Filed under absurdities, humor, humor, museums, travel