FAB Minute – Erosion A Fable by The Loom Ensemble!

FABnyc had the pleasure of sitting down with Director Tomi Tsunoda in the FAB Cafe to discuss the world premiere of Erosion: A Fable by the Loom Ensemble.

Tomi beautifully describes the work and process of the Loom Ensemble in developing Erosion: A Fable. The production involves music, dance, traditional storytelling, and live instrumentation onstage (we’ve even seen some of the unique instruments they’re working with)! Learn more by watching the the FAB Minute below…

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And find out even more about the performance by watching the trailer:

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Erosion: A Fable runs 2/17 – 2/26 at La MaMa (The Club).

Synopsis Via La MaMa….

Loom is a 10 person ensemble that weaves together full-body movement, dense vocal harmonies, and text-based storytelling to make lush, vibrant ensemble performances. At its core, our mission is to use equal parts dance, music and theatre to nourish a sense of basic delight in our selves and our audiences.

In Erosion: a Fable, we see the familiar world of corporate desk jobs through a surprising aesthetic lens. A homeless woman and a mid-level office exec begin selling dirt on the street and calling it Love. In this LaMama 50th Anniversary Season Premeire, Loom uses their signature palette of athletic dances, intricate vocal compositions, and traditional storytelling techniques to stage a story of corporate competition, environmental catastrophe and personal transformation.”

Guest Blog: ArtUp on East 4th

ArtUp Scaffolding Bridge Installation by Harumi Ori

You’re walking down East 4th Street between 2nd Avenue and Bowery, and something catches your eye that breaks your New Yorker stride, an impressive feat considering we’re the fastest walkers in the country.

Maybe you see one of East 4th Street’s several theaters and recall that you’re in Manhattan’s only official cultural district. Maybe you notice that you’re in a neighborhood in transition – East 4th Street between 2nd Avenue and Bowery is no stranger to construction and development. Or maybe, if you happen to be on the north side of 4th Street, you’ll look up and see one of FABnyc’s ArtUp sites, a scaffolding bridge at 70 East 4th Street Cultural Center.

The scaffolding bridge has hosted a variety of engaging, attention grabbing, and temporary public art exhibitions. The building, which is the future home of Downtown Art and Alpha Omega Theatrical Dance Company, has been under construction for the last 7 years. The project was started based on community feedback regarding the changing appearance of the block and was launched in an effort to improve visual access to a currently vacant space. ArtUp continues to involve community members by including them in the installation process and by exhibiting art outside of the confines of a gallery space. It is essential to carefully consider how artwork will function on a scaffolding bridge where viewing is easily disrupted by the changing environment. A site located approximately 14 feet above ground and best viewed in passing, the scaffolding bridge poses a curatorial challenge, but FABnyc rises to the occasion by carefully selecting exhibitions by terrific, talented, and typically New York-based artists.

Kick-line by Ryan Cronin - Another Scaffolding Bridge Installation

Although East 4th Street received its official title of Cultural District in 2001, new artistic endeavors have continued to arise quite regularly on the block. Its ongoing transition into an increasingly more cultural street impacts the kind of people who walk past the scaffolding bridge. Creative types are some of the most frequent passersby, and I was surprised to randomly encounter so many people walking or standing on the street who were directly involved with ArtUp in some capacity.

FABnyc does wonders for the social networks of those involved in ArtUp projects by bringing people together who may not otherwise interact and creating a truly collaborative exhibition process. Especially at night, there are a lot of crowds on the block due to the many performances and the vast array of nightlife in the area. By exhibiting in public, FABnyc attracts an already present audience made up of members of the neighborhood and general public. FABnyc does a service to locals and tourists alike by beautifying the neighborhood and utilizing an otherwise vacant space to provide opportunities for up-and-coming artists. FABnyc’s transformation of the scaffolding bridge at 70 East 4thStreet into a platform for art exhibitions is a definite asset to the community and is clearly valued by those who live or work close by.

- Written by Jessica Scherlag

Jessica Scherlag is a graduate student at NYU and will be receiving her Master’s degree in Visual Arts Administration in May 2012. Jessica is inspired by great public art and building social capital in communities. A resident of the East Village, her interest in FABnyc was ignited by frequent strolls past FABnyc’s exciting public art exhibitions.

FAB Minute with Steel Neal – Artmerica Starts in the East Village

Steel Neal, Fourth Arts Block‘s favorite Local 40 Union Ironworker / Artist, sat down with us for a FAB Minute to chat about the Kickstarter campaign for his TV series, Artmerica!

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If you haven’t checked out the series trailer, you’re in for a treat! Read more about the series below, and show your love for art in America by supporting the project:

“Artmerica with Steel Neal aims to discover and uncover the unique individuals and original thinkers that are making the world a better place by creating the world around them [. . .] Steel Neal is a charismatic New Yorker who has achieved notoriety from his artistic endeavors and is on a quest to find more like minded makers of art and bring their stories to a broader audience. His passion for inspiration will take us to the far reaches of the creative mind where the unknown possibilities of the human experience are just a dream away.”


Beer Sessions Radio!

Beer lovers know that the craft of beer is an art in and of itself. Tomorrow, you can learn more by tuning into Beer Sessions Radio!

“Every Tuesday at 5:00 PM, New York City publican Jimmy Carbone plays host to an audio ale salon celebrating the world of craft beer. Through discussions with beer industry insiders and knowledgeable beer fans from across the country, Jimmy and his friends explore every aspect of the brewer’s craft from grains to pint glass and tasting to toasting [Read more].” Stop by Jimmy’s No. 43 to try artfully crafted beers first hand!

FABnyc gives a BIG thanks to Jimmy’s No. 43 for generously hosting FABnyc’s volunteer party on February 11th!

And speaking of events, Jimmy’s always has a lot going on, so be sure to check out their website for upcoming happenings you can enjoy…

Experience AFRAZZ at Nuyorican Poets Cafe

Multi/percussionist and producer, Ronnie Roc brings together an eclectic array of skilled musicianship to present the music of AFRAZZ at Nuyorican Poets Cafe. Bridging the musically rich tradition of West African & Afro-Caribbean rhythms to jazz standards and originals, AFRAZZ delivers traditional jazz melody and improvisation with the spice of polyrhythmic flavor. Tickets are $10

Figuratively Speaking at Wow Cafe Theater

Which East Village show has got nerve and verve? Which East Village show won Best Box Office at the San Francisco Fringe Festival of 2011?


In this striking solo performance, the audience is privy to the protagonist, a fine art model, posing for the artists who sketch her. But the muse is quickly reframed as the creator as she offers personal accounts of her life and work, and her influence in the Figurative Art sphere.
Come and see this colorful memoir at the Wow Café Theater at 59-61 E. 4th St. between Bowery and 2nd Ave.

The show is playing February 24-25 at 8:00 P.M. and February 26th at 2:00 P.M.

Written by Molly Kirschner

2012 EMERGENYC Program Accepting Applicants


Are you an artivist?
The Hemispheric Institute for Performance and Politics at NYU is calling applicants for the 2012 EMERGENYC program. This yearly workshop trains young artists who believe in activist performance as a catalyst for social change, within the eclectic and vibrant New York City culture. The program will consist of classes with artists and scholars, and will culminate in a public performance and a talk-back. Apply by 5pm on Monday, February 20, 2012 to join the fourth annual political theatre workshop, and exercise both your talent and your freedom of expression!

Cooper Square Committee Meeting and Potluck!

Cooper Square Committee is having their next membership meeting and potluck dinner on Wednesday, Feb. 15th! The meeting will take place at 6:30 pm at 59-61 E. 4th Street, 4th floor loft. New members are welcome, so put it on your calendar and join in. Discussions about new initiatives (greening, developing affordable housing), and the looming threat of budget cuts. Help Cooper Square Committee remain a progressive force in our community.

All community members are welcome. Join the meeting and become a CSC member for just $1!

Chef Danny checks out a map of the Fourth Arts Block while waiting for Culture Nosh to Commence

Culture Nosh – A Recap of Festivities and Flavors

Last Thursday at 7pm, FABnyc had the pleasure of co-hosting East Village Eats: Culture Nosh, a fusion of local flavors hosted by the Whole Foods Market’s Bowery Culinary Center.

Chef Danny checks out a map of the Fourth Arts Block while waiting for Culture Nosh to commence.

Culture Nosh chefs pre-gaming for an evening of eating.

This special Chef Demonstration and Tasting served as a benefit for FABnyc, and we couldn’t be more thrilled to participate in the culinary experience provided by the likes of Tom Birchard, owner of Veselka; Danny Mena, Chef-Owner of Hecho en Dumbo; and Scott Morris, Executive Chef of Mama’s Food Shop. (See the links to read our special features on each of the restaurants!) Culinary Center Director Min Liao, Culinary Center Educator Wai Chu, and FABnyc’s Executive Director Tamara Greenfield kicked off the evening by presenting the fabulous chefs and giving the crowd a taste of what lay in store…

Tom Birchard, Chef Michael Sullivan, and Manager Anthony Rotella, from the new Veselka Bowery, took the stage first, starting us off with homemade pirogis and potato latkes.

Attendees of the event were gifted with instructions on how to make latkes, and one lucky winner even went home with a much coveted Veselka Cookbook!

While Chef Michael cooked up a storm, Tom shared some of his personal history and experience in the East Village, describing how he came to the neighborhood and worked in Veselka as a young man.

Tom articulated how the East Village community, and Veselka itself, transformed over the course of multiple decades and told of how he became the owner of Veselka through his father-in-law, Veselka founder Wolodymyr Darmochwal.

(Visit Veselka’s website to read more of restaurants fascinating history!)

Veselka's Origional Founder

Though pirogis and potato latkes were filling, we were still hungry for more. Luckily, Chef Danny Mena of Hecho en Dumbo was up next to cook us tantalizing Mexican antojitos. 

Seafood Ceviche on a Whole Foods compostable tasting plate - Props for sustainability!

Danny started off by preparing some Mexican blood sausage. He described to us the consistency of this dish, for which he then pressed traditional handmade corn tortillas and added fresh salsa. Mmm! The smell of cooking tortillas filled the room, as we waited for their chance to try this delectable, savory treat.

Danny also elaborated on the methods for preparing ceviche with lime juice, topping off this demonstration by serving some beautiful Tostada Gaonera with seafood ceviche and spicy lime-clamato juice.The presentation was impeccable!

Chef Scott Morris of Mama’s Food Shop finished out the evening with some tasty home-cooking: bacon-wrapped meatloaf, and fennel, celery, and apple salad. As we munched on our healthy and hearty samples, Mama’s Food Shop owner, Jeremiah Clancy spoke about how he came to own Mama’s.

Folks from Mama's Food Shop: Chef Scott and Owner Jeremiah chat with noshers...

The original “Mama,” he confided, was, in fact, a robust Italian gentleman, and Jeremiah (a former photography student at NYU Tisch) took over the business from “Mama” after working in the restaurant during college.

Min passes out delicious bites!

As the festivities drew to a close and Culture Noshers finished off their final round of samples, Tamara Greenfield gave all chefs, participants, and Whole Foods’ feast facilitators, Min and Wai, a big thank you for putting this culinary experience together.



We from FABnyc are so thankful for everyone who came out to experience these unique flavors from the East Village, and we look forward to bringing New York City even more East Village Eats!