Top 10 List: Reopening Trends You Need To Know About

Top 10 List: Reopening Trends You Need To Know About
Tracking the reopening has turned into a full-time gig for me

It’s 9/11 today and just as I never quit the city in the months after the World Trade Center attack, I simply can’t imagine leaving the city at this time.

  • This week was also supposed to be the start of my cross-country road trip but I am staying put because it’s far more exciting to be here to witness my city getting back on its feet.
  • The people of New York are getting their mojo back and in the process, transforming the city into a better, more creative, more welcoming metropolis. And it’s happening DESPITE all the impediments our bozo mayor puts in our way.
  • All my nomadic plans have been put on hiatus until next August when (fingers crossed) I will be departing on my next NatGeo trip.
  • In the meantime, I’m staying in the city to support New York in general and local businesses in particular, especially restaurants.
  • But I also know that just by being here I’m broadening my horizons. The last six months have been stressful AF but also empowering in a strange way, filled with new and unfamiliar experiences. I’ve met amazing people and become much closer to my longtime friends.
  • I also got out and about as soon as it was viable to do so. Being locked up at home is definitely not my thing.

As one of my favorite astrologers wrote this week:

Strive to make even the most trivial encounter a positive learning experience. The same function can be served by doing things that are different from your normal routine. This is not the time to retreat to your home.  Recognize that you are still eager for new understanding and satisfy this need by breaking out of your everyday mold and getting out into the broader world.

Which brings me to This week’s Top 10 List

A big emphasis this week on art and entertainment. The artworld reopening warms the cockles of my heart. I am also thrilled to report that Brad (for those of you who know him) is in a major show of Contemporary Native Artists at the Heard Museum in Phoenix. It opened on September 4th and runs through January 3, 2021. If you’re heading to Phoenix or Scottsdale, check it out.

Scroll down for more on what made it onto this week’s Top 10 List.
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Shutterstock’s 2020 Creative Trends Report Is Here And It Is Excellent!

Shutterstock’s 2020 Creative Trends Report Is Here And It Is Excellent!

Shutterstock outdid themselves with this year’s superb 2020 Creative Trends Report. HIGHLY RECOMMEND. I’ve been tracking their visual trends since 2015 and every year has been spot on. This year, however, they’ve taken it to another level.

This data-led report predicts image, video and music styles that will dominate marketing campaigns, advertising creative and video projects throughout the year

Shutterstock hosts over 300 million images, and 16 million video clips, which are utilized in a range of ways across the web by marketers, artists, advertisers and more. ​

And big thanks to Social Media Today for getting this on my radar. And I agree with them 100% when they say:

Given Shutterstock’s popularity, you’d be hard-pressed to find a more indicative measure of coming visual shifts”.

Scroll down for a recap
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10 Best US Art Shows Of The Decade

10 Best US Art Shows Of The Decade

IMPORTANT: My trusty laptop is being taken in for battery repair today. I’ll be offline for about a week. In the meantime, Happy New Year, Happy New Decade. I’ll be back in your inbox in 2020!

I’ve traveled far and wide over the last decade and seen some phenomenal art. I’ve whittled down my favorite exhibitions to these ten. Each has had a major impact on me, from giving me the spiritual chills to total freak-out awesomeness.

There was also a seminal development in 2010 that has changed the art world forever. Can you guess what it was?

Scroll down to find out.
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Check Out Virgil Abloh’s New 2054 Pop-Up Residency In Soho

Check Out Virgil Abloh’s New 2054 Pop-Up Residency In Soho

Virgil Abloh, artistic director of Louis Vuitton’s men’s wear collection, clearly loves a good colorful pop-up. He did a fabulous one on the Lower East Side for his FW19 Collection and has now taken it to the next level with this futuristic “residency” for his 2054 capsule collection.

If Abloh’s got it right, LVMH’s future is shiny, bright and iridescent.

This 14–piece capsule collection has been designed to illustrate how we will be dressing in 2054, i.e., 200 years after Louis Vuitton was first launched in 1854.

The line is built around military-inspired performance wear pieces, including parkas and sneakers. Everything is multi-purpose, e.g., cargo pants with multiple removable pockets. Abloh also pays homage to Vuitton’s travel history with signature pieces, including cross-body bags and duffles that roll out to become sleeping bags.

The pop-up is located at 122 Greene Street (corner of Prince). It soft-opened a week ago but the “official” opening is December 6. When I was there yesterday morning (November 21), it was totally chill, no insane lines.

Bottom Line.

It’s worth checking out anything Abloh does. He has become a major figure in the design/retail world. His artistic vision is single-handedly altering how we perceive luxury and streetwear – especially for men. And he’s done wonders for Vuitton’s image. The brand is attracting younger shoppers and has become increasingly relevant and aspirational during his short stint at the creative helm.

Ultimately, it will be about the bottom line. Only time will tell.

The stress seems to be taking a bit of a toll on Abloh. In September he announced that on doctor’s orders he was taking a three-month medical leave and working from home.

Scroll down for more including photos from Vuitton’s summer pop-up on Rivington.
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I Love Big Rig Trucks But This Is Next-Level

I Love Big Rig Trucks But This Is Next-Level

I saw my first blinged-out big rigs at a Truck and Tractor Parade in Wisconsin years ago. Since then, I’ve gotten turned on to car mod culture (and “Pimp My Ride” way back in the day) but I’ve never seen anything like these Japanese Dekotora Trucks.

“Some of the strangest, most creative, and fascinating cultures in car/truck modification are found in Japan.”
Dekotora culture is not new.

Dekotoras began in the ’60s in poor Japanese fishing villages. Salty water turned already decrepit trucks, used to deliver fish, into colanders. To keep those delivery trucks running, the fishermen patched up their vehicles using whatever materials they could get their hands on.

As time went by, the embellishments got a little fancier and patched-up trucks became cool. Everyone started covering surfaces to the max with as many patterns and murals and light fixtures as possible.

Check out this link for more info on the true origins of this subculture.

Dekotoras really took off in the ’70s

In 1975, Toei, a Japanese film company released ten comedies called Torakku Yarō (Truck Guys) which featured a trucker driving a decorated truck all over Japan. The movies were a hit and soon dekotoras were showing up in video games and as toys.

In the late 1990s, interest in dekotora got a second wind as the art of Gundam (Giant Robots TV series) influenced the art and design of a new generation of trucks.

While there used to be thousands of dekotora trucks, today there are only about 500-600 left. I’m not sure exactly what happened but the Japanese police have been cracking down on dekotoras for any and all deviations from the standard. Also, perhaps it’s money. These trucks often cost the equivalent of $100,000 to deck out.

What I find interesting is the cross-over between the tuner crowd and the dekotoras. Many of the best posts on Instagram are from Supra fanatics who appreciate the grand scale of the modifications made by the truckers. I’ve also noticed that bloggers often refer to dekotoras as “tuner trucks.”

scroll down for pics of some of the coolest trucks.
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Rural Economies Get Big Boost From The Arts

Rural Economies Get Big Boost From The Arts
Wormfarm Institute’s Farm/Art DTour – a self-guided tour through more than 50 miles of Sauk County – features art installations highlighting the region’s farmland and creativity, including these corn cribs

I just watched a great segment on PBS about the Rural Arts and Culture Summit held last month in Grand Rapids, Minnesota. Totally “got it” since many of my coolest trips have been to rural towns with amazing art scenes, e.g., Donald Judd’s Chinati Foundation in Marfa or Bombay Beach by the Salton Sea in California.

Rural counties that are home to performing arts organizations experienced population growth three times higher than rural counties that lack performing arts institutions.

National Governors Association
My curiosity led me to a report issued by the National Governors Association

It is chock-full of information on how governors are using their states’ arts and cultural assets to strengthen economic opportunities in rural communities:

  • In 2015, arts and cultural production contributed $67.5 billion to the economies of states in which 30% or more of the population lives in rural areas.
  • North Carolina and Tennessee are the two largest rural arts economies.
  • Rural counties that house performing arts organizations provide residents with higher incomes (up to $6,000 higher) than those without.
  • Two out of three rural businesses report that arts and entertainment are important for attracting and retaining workers.
  • Historic preservation and reclamation of abandoned spaces for the creative sector improve the quality of life.
Scroll down for 9 of my all-time favorite rural arts destinations
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Look For Kusama’s Balloon Masterpiece In The Thanksgiving Day Parade

Look For Kusama’s Balloon Masterpiece In The Thanksgiving Day Parade

Who’s joining me this year at the Balloon Inflation event on Manhattan’s UWS on Wednesday, November 27th from 4-7pm?

As many of you know this is one of my favorite “insidery” things to do in NYC. I’m there every year, rain or shine.

and This year will be major!

Yayoi Kusama, one of my favorite artists, has created a special balloon for the 2019 Thanksgiving Day Parade.

Other artists who have participated over the years include Jeff Koons with Rabbit in 2007, Takashi Murakami with KaiKai and KiKi in 2010, and KAWS with Companion in 2012.

I saw the KAWS art balloon in 2012 but had not been aware it was part of the Macy’s Blue Sky Gallery Series (founded in 2005 to highlight contemporary artists). The Kusama balloon will be the eighth in the series and the first by a female artist.

Kusama’s participation in this year’s Thanksgiving Day Parade kicks off a massive year for the 90-year-old artist.

She has a show of new work opening at David Zwirner Gallery in Chelsea on November 9. Expect lines around the block to see the debut of her new Infinity Mirrored Room. They’re anticipating over 100,000 people will be standing in line at some point to see it. Instagram will be blowing up. The show at Zwirner will be followed by a major installation at the Bronx Botanical Garden called Cosmic Nature. It is scheduled to run from May 9 – Nov 1, 2020. Pretty sure it will be breaking all attendance records for the Botanical Garden.

Scroll down for highlights from Balloon Inflation over the last several years.
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Donald Judd Interviews: Blunt, Scathing And Brilliant!

Donald Judd Interviews: Blunt, Scathing And  Brilliant!

This was the first Marathon Reading Program I’ve ever attended. It was fantastic. Seven interviews spanning four decades and a diverse range of critical voices. When Fran Lebowitz came to the mike to do the seventh (and last) reading, I was shocked to realize three hours had flown by.

Donald Judd has been one of my favorite artists for years. I’ve made the pilgrimage to Marfa to his Chinati Foundation (mindblowing) and have also taken the Judd Foundation tour of his former home and studio in Soho (a must-see if in NYC, book online).

I also discovered, belatedly, that there is a documentary film that was shown Friday night in conjunction with the reading. I believe it was The Artist’s Studio: Donald Judd by Michael Blackwood Productions which is available on Amazon, Roku, and Apple TV. It’s about 30 minutes long and an absolute must-see if Judd is of interest to you. Trailer below.

Scroll down for more on the reading and the participants. PLUS trailer for the Judd documentary.
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