Monday, December 30, 2013

Quote Of The Week

"The solitary and thoughtful stroller finds a singular intoxication in this universal communion. The man who loves to lose himself in a crowd enjoys feverish delights that the egoist locked up in himself as in a box, and the slothful man like a mollusk in his shell, will be eternally deprived of. He adopts as his own all the occupations, all the joys and all the sorrows that chance offers."

Monday, December 23, 2013

Quote Of The Week

"But since death is inevitable we don’t have to deal with it (it’ll deal with us when it decides to). What we do have to deal with is the psychic, physical, and fusion diseases wrought during our so-called lives as byproducts of the elemental clash. In other words we’re all terminally psychotic and no doctor, hospital, pill, needle, book or guru holds the cure. Because the disease is called life and there is no cure for that but death and death’s just part of the set-up designed to keep you terrified and thus in bondage from the cradle to the crypt so ha ha the joke’s on you except there’s no punchline and the comedian forgot you ever existed as even a comma."

Monday, December 16, 2013

Quote Of The Week

"Above all, avoid lies, all lies, especially the lie to yourself. Keep watch on your own lie and examine it every hour, every minute. And avoid contempt, both of others and of yourself: what seems bad to you in yourself is purified by the very fact that you have noticed it in yourself. And avoid fear, though fear is simply the consequence of every lie. Never be frightened at your own faintheartedness in attaining love, and meanwhile do not even be very frightened by your own bad acts."

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Life Itself Is An Exile


Colin Wilson
Rest In Peace

"“The exploration of oneself is usually also an exploration of the
world at large, of other writers, a process of comparison with
oneself with others, discoveries of kinships, gradual
illumination of one's own potentialities."

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Occupy The World


"History says, Don't hope
On this side of the grave,
But then, once in a lifetime
The longed-for tidal wave
Of justice can rise up,
And hope and history rhyme."

From The Cure At Troy, 1991

Monday, December 9, 2013

Quote Of The Week

"The truth is always an abyss. One must — as in a swimming pool — dare to dive from the quivering springboard of trivial everyday experience and sink into the depths, in order to later rise again — laughing and fighting for breath — to the now doubly illuminated surface of things."

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Goodnight Madiba


Nelson Mandela
Rest In Peace

"Death is something inevitable. When a man has done what he considers to be his duty to his people and his country, he can rest in peace. I believe I have made that effort and that is, therefore, why I will sleep for the eternity."

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Quote Of The Week

"Find meaning. Distinguish melancholy from sadness. Go out for a walk. It doesn’t have to be a romantic walk in the park, spring at its most spectacular moment, flowers and smells and outstanding poetical imagery smoothly transferring you into another world. It doesn’t have to be a walk during which you’ll have multiple life epiphanies and discover meanings no other brain ever managed to encounter. Do not be afraid of spending quality time by yourself. Find meaning or don’t find meaning but 'steal' some time and give it freely and exclusively to your own self. Opt for privacy and solitude. That doesn’t make you antisocial or cause you to reject the rest of the world. But you need to breathe. And you need to be."

Monday, December 2, 2013

L'argent Et Les Mots


André Schiffrin
Rest In Peace

Fare thee well to the great André Schiffrin, who published and championed the likes of Günter Grass, Jean-Paul Sartre, Simone de Beauvoir, Studs Terkel, Michel Foucault and Art Spiegelman, among countless others via Pantheon Books which he ran until 1990, after which he co-founded nonprofit publishing house The New Press. He was also one of the founders of The Student League For Industrial Democracy (later known as the Students For A Democratic Society), and while studying at Clare College Cambridge served as editor of GrantaSchiffrin died in Paris on Sunday; he was 78.

Sunday, December 1, 2013

The Pursuit Of Happiness


“They're events you remember all your life, like your first real orgasm. And the whole purpose of the absurd, mechanically persistent involvement with recorded music is the pursuit of that priceless moment. So it's not exactly that records might unhinge the mind, but rather that if anything is going to drive you up the wall it might as well be a record.”

Monday, November 25, 2013

Quote Of The Week

"If one would give me six lines written by the hand of the most honest man, I would find something in them to have him hanged... Too many wrongly characterize the debate as 'security versus privacy.' The real choice is liberty versus control."

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Buffed


"Without art, the crudeness of reality would
make the world unbearable."

Art by Kenji Takabayashi

Monday, November 18, 2013

Quote Of The Week

"As in the political sphere, the child is taught that he is free, a democrat, with a free will and a free mind, lives in a free country, makes his own decisions. At the same time he is a prisoner of the assumptions and dogmas of his time, which he does not question, because he has never been told they exist. By the time a young person has reached the age when he has to choose (we still take it for granted that a choice is inevitable) between the arts and the sciences, he often chooses the arts because he feels that here is humanity, freedom, choice. He does not know that he is already moulded by a system: he does not know that the choice itself is the result of a false dichotomy rooted in the heart of our culture. Those who do sense this, and who don't wish to subject themselves to further moulding, tend to leave, in a half-unconscious, instinctive attempt to find work where they won't be divided against themselves. With all our institutions, from the police force to academia, from medicine to politics, we give little attention to the people who leave—that process of elimination that goes on all the time and which excludes, very early, those likely to be original and reforming, leaving those attracted to a thing because that is what they are already like. A young policeman leaves the Force saying he doesn't like what he has to do. A young teacher leaves teaching, here idealism snubbed. This social mechanism goes almost unnoticed—yet it is as powerful as any in keeping our institutions rigid and oppressive."

Sunday, November 17, 2013

The Grass is Singing


Doris Lessing
Rest In Peace

"Very few people really care about freedom, about liberty, about the truth, very few. Very few people have guts, the kind of guts on which a real democracy has to depend. Without people with that sort of guts a free society dies or cannot be born."

Photograph by Roger Mayne

Monday, November 11, 2013

The Warrior Never Sleeps


"I am young, I am twenty years old; yet I know nothing of life but despair, death, fear, and fatuous superficiality cast over an abyss of sorrow. I see how peoples are set against one another, and in silence, unknowingly, foolishly, obediently, innocently slay one another."

Photograph by Lee Greenfeld © 2013
Text from All Quiet On The Western Front, 1929

Friday, November 8, 2013

Bright Light, Big City




Everybody Street illuminates the lives and work of New York's iconic street photographers and the incomparable city that has inspired them for decades. The documentary pays tribute to the spirit of street photography through a cinematic exploration of New York City, and captures the visceral rush, singular perseverance and at times immediate danger customary to these artists.

Dig: Everybody Street (official website)

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

45 Revolutions: The Statics


"Sold My Soul (To The Rolling Stones)" is a raw blast of garage-y, punk-rock'n'roll; a real gem from the '90s "budget-rock" scene, best exemplified by the Rip Off Records label for whom the Statics also recorded. The other two songs are pretty snazzy as well... The Statics were from Seattle and released a clutch of 45s and two LPs, though for our money this is them at their peak.

Download: Sold My Soul EP (Deadbeat Records, 1998)

Monday, November 4, 2013

Quote Of The Week

"Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow. The important thing is not to stop questioning."

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Ain't No Use In Highhattin' Me


Alan Block
Rest In Peace

"Allan Block, a leather craftsman and fiddler who made sandals and music in his Greenwich Village shop — which became a bubbling hub of folk music during the 1950s and '60s; a showcase for talented pickers and singers like Ramblin' Jack Elliott, Doc Watson and Maria Muldaur; and a destination for aspiring musicians like John Sebastian and Bob Dylan — died on Oct. 23rd at his home in Francestown, NH He was 90." ... Story continues here: Allan Block, Whose Sandal Shop Was Folk Music Hub, Dies At 90 (NY Times)

Monday, October 28, 2013

Quote Of The Week

"The mark of the immature man is that he wants to die nobly for a cause, while the mark of the mature man is that he wants to live humbly for one."

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Hospitals Not Condos


"People are talking about a healthcare revolution, but do they mean purposefully destroying hospitals to allow multi-billion dollar Monopoly players from Somewhere Else to build condominiums for the richest of the rich, from Somewhere Else? ... The cost of the condos will consist of the usual costs plus the additional costs of the deaths of infants, children, and adults of all ages who will die as a result of closing Long Island College Hospital and its emergency room. The 60,000 patients that are treated at the Cobble Hill facility’s emergency room each year will go to the other hospitals and those emergency rooms will be overwhelmed, resulting in more death and poor care." -Jon Berall, The Brooklyn Paper

Photograph by Lee Greenfeld © 2013

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Free To Be You And Me


"He was free, free in every way, free to behave like a fool or a machine, free to accept, free to refuse, free to equivocate; to marry, to give up the game, to drag this death weight about with him for years to come. He could do what he liked, no one had the right to advise him, there would be for him no Good or Evil unless he thought them into being."
From The Age Of Reason, 1945

Monday, October 21, 2013

Quote Of The Week

"Once social change begins, it cannot be reversed. You cannot uneducate the person who has learned to read. You cannot humiliate the person who feels pride. You cannot oppress the people who are not afraid anymore. We have seen the future, and the future is ours."

Monday, October 14, 2013

Quote Of The Week

“There’s no remaking reality... Just take it as it comes. Hold your ground and take it as it comes. There’s no other way.”

Friday, October 11, 2013

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

I'm A Man You Don't Meet Everyday


Phillip Chevron
Rest In Peace

Philip Chevron, who played guitar for the Pogues, has died at the age of 56. He had been treated for head and neck cancer in 2007 and was given a clean bill of health in April 2012. A new tumour appeared in August 2012, however, and was deemed inoperable." ... Story continues here: Pogues Guitarist Philip Chevron Dies (The Guardian)

Monday, October 7, 2013

Quote Of The Week

"...nobody should shrink from the accusation of blasphemy. It is a term of moral blackmail, used by the dogmatic to put an end to discussion."

Monday, September 30, 2013

Quote Of The Week

"The fundamental cause of the trouble is that in the modern world the stupid are cocksure while the intelligent are full of doubt."

Monday, September 23, 2013

Quote Of The Week

"It is necessary for the welfare of society that genius should be privileged to utter sedition, to blaspheme, to outrage good taste, to corrupt the youthful mind, and generally to scandalize one's uncles."

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

The Defiant One


Shalom Yoran
Rest In Peace

"If there is a lesson to be gleaned, it is that no person should succumb to brutality without putting up a resistance. Individually it can save one’s life; en masse it can change the course of history."

Monday, September 16, 2013

Quote Of The Week

"The man who believes that the secrets of the world are forever hidden lives in mystery and fear. Superstition will drag him down. The rain will erode the deeds of his life. But that man who sets himself the task of singling out the thread of order from the tapestry will by the decision alone have taken charge of the world and it is only by such taking charge that he will effect a way to dictate the terms of his own fate."

Thursday, September 12, 2013

From Protest to Resistance


Saul Landau
Rest In Peace

"Saul Landau, a determinedly leftist documentary filmmaker and writer whose passion for asking what he called “the most intrusive questions” yielded penetrating cinematic profiles of leaders like Fidel Castro and Salvador Allende, died on Monday at his home in Alameda, Calif. He was 77. Mr. Landau aspired to marshal art and literature to illuminate social and political problems, and his point of view was almost always apparent." Story continues here: Saul Landau, Maker Of Films With Leftist Edge, Dies At 77 (NY Times)

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Memories By The Score


Into this neutral air
Where blind skyscrapers use
Their full height to proclaim
The strength of Collective Man,
Each language pours its vain
Competitive excuse…

Text by W.H. Auden © 1940
Photograph by Lee Greenfeld © 2013

Saturday, September 7, 2013

1212 Lowlands Avenue

He was thinking that none of it was real; it was all elsewhere, floating slowly just out of reach. Then she whispered in his ear, "you change the way I see colors," and the sky opened up like an epic Greek poem; a numerical vision bounced around his skull. He turned on the stereo and played that song again — they were all symbolic at that point, but this one resonated and brought forth joy which lacked the bitter-sweet taste he had become accustomed to. He still had questions, but the answers held not the depth they once had mere moments earlier. It mattered not where he was going anymore, but where he'd been: dancing like a loon, laughing, drinking, smelling, tasting. Living.

He too saw colors differently then.
Words by Lee Greenfeld © 2013 

Monday, September 2, 2013

Quote Of The Week

"It is only through labor and painful effort, by grim energy and resolute courage, that we move on to better things."

Friday, August 30, 2013

The End Of Art Is Peace


Seamus Heaney
Rest In Peace

"Seamus Heaney, the Irish poet whose lyrical beauty and ethical depth won him the Nobel Prize in 1995 and gave him a prominence far beyond literary circles, died in Dublin on Friday." ... Story continues here: Seamus Heaney, Irish Poet Of Soil And Strife (NY Times)

Monday, August 26, 2013

Quote Of The Week

"A weird time in which we are alive. We can travel anywhere we want, even to other planets. And for what? To sit day after day, declining in morale and hope."

Sunday, August 25, 2013

This Very Moment


"I have crossed the seas, I have left cities behind me, and I have followed the source of rivers towards their source or plunged into forests, always making for other cities. I have had women, I have fought with men; and I could never turn back any more than a record can spin in reverse. And all that was leading me where?"

Text by Jean-Paul Sartre
Photograph by Lee Greenfeld © 2013

Monday, August 19, 2013

Quote Of The Week

“Life has but one true charm: the charm of the game. But what if we’re indifferent to whether we win or lose?”

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Coney Island's Last Wild Ride




A film about greed, politics, land use and public policy, Zipper tells the story behind the battle over an American cultural icon. Small-time ride operator, Eddie Miranda, proudly runs a 38-year-old carnival contraption called the Zipper in the heart of Coney Island’s gritty amusement district. When his rented lot is snatched up by an opportunistic real estate mogul, Eddie and his ride become casualties of a power struggle between the developer and the City of New York over the future of the "People's Playground." Be it an affront to history or just the path of progress, the spirit of Coney Island is at stake. In a market-driven world where growth often trumps preservation, the Zipper may be only the beginning of what is lost.


Film poster by Steve Powers

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Freedom In Anonymity


"Masquerades disclose the reality of souls. As long as no one sees who we are, we can tell the most intimate details of our life. I sometimes muse over this sketch of a story about a man afflicted by one of those personal tragedies born of extreme shyness who one day, while wearing a mask I don’t know where, told another mask all the most personal, most secret, most unthinkable things that could be told about his tragic and serene life. And since no outward detail would give him away, he having disguised even his voice, and since he didn’t take careful note of whoever had listened to him, he could enjoy the ample sensation of knowing that somewhere in the world there was someone who knew him as not even his closest and finest friend did. When he walked down the street he would ask himself if this person, or that one, or that person over there might not be the one to whom he’d once, wearing a mask, told his most private life. Thus would be born in him a new interest in each person, since each person might be his only, unknown confidant. And his crowning glory would be if the whole of that sorrowful life he’d told were, from start to finish, absolutely false."

Text by Fernando Pessoa
Photograph by Lee Greenfeld © 2013

Monday, August 12, 2013

Quote Of The Week

"Thoroughly unprepared, we take the step into the afternoon of life. Worse still, we take this step with the false presupposition that our truths and our ideals will serve us as hitherto. But we cannot live the afternoon of life according to the program of life’s morning, for what was great in the morning will be little at evening and what in the morning was true, at evening will have become a lie."

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Within And Without


"For the perfect flaneur, for the passionate spectator, it is an immense joy to set up house in the heart of the multitude, amid the ebb and flow of movement, in the midst of the fugitive and the infinite. To be away from home and yet to feel oneself everywhere at home; to see the world, to be at the centre of the world, and yet to remain hidden from the world — impartial natures which the tongue can but clumsily define. The spectator is a prince who everywhere rejoices in his incognito."

Text by Charles Baudelaire
Photograph by Lee Greenfeld © 2013

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Apparitions


"For the past several years I have been photographing life on the streets of New York City, almost daily. At first I just wanted to capture the oddities and outrageous sights I encountered in my daily routines, but as my dedication increased I began going out specifically to find and photograph the unlikely moments, memorable faces, and unexpected phenomenon that make life here so special to me. At this point, shooting the streets is the central focus of my life, an obsession like no other..." -Reuben Radding

Dig: Reuben's flickr account
Dig: Video slideshow of Reuben's work
Support: Apparitions (indiegogo campain)

Photograph by Reuben Radding © 2013

Monday, August 5, 2013

Quote Of The Week

"A man who has not passed through the inferno of his passions has never overcome them. As far as we can discern, the sole purpose of human existence is to kindle a light in the darkness of mere being. Everything that irritates us about others can lead us to an understanding of ourselves."

Saturday, August 3, 2013

Monday, July 29, 2013

Quote Of The Week

"The faithful of Shiva or Dionysus seek contact with those forces which lead to a refusal of the politics, ambitions and limitations of ordinary social life. This does not involve simply a recognition of world harmony, but also an active participation in an experience which surpasses and upsets the order of material life."

Friday, July 26, 2013

Eyes Filled With Dead Men’s Dirt


Willie Louis
Rest In Peace

"Willie Louis, the man who heard Emmett Till’s ear-piercing screams and the beatings the night he was murdered in Mississippi in 1955 is dead in suburban Chicago." ... Story continues here: Emmett Till Murder Witness Willie Louis Is Dead At 76 (Rolling Out)

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Art As Savoir


"In this sense the Dionysian man resembles Hamlet: both have once looked truly into the essence of things, they have gained knowledge, and nausea inhibits action; for their action could not change anything in the eternal nature of things; they feel it to be ridiculous or humiliating that they should be asked to set right a world that is out of joint. Knowledge kills action; action requires the veils of illusion: that is the doctrine of Hamlet, not that cheap wisdom of Jack the Dreamer who reflects too much and, as it were, from an excess of possibilities does not get around to action. Not reflection, no—true knowledge, an insight into the horrible truth, outweighs any motive for action, both in Hamlet and in the Dionysian man.

Now no comfort avails any more; longing transcends a world after death, even the gods; existence is negated along with its glittering reflection in the gods or in an immortal beyond. Conscious of the truth he has once seen, man now sees everywhere only the horror or absurdity of existence; now he understands what is symbolic in Ophelia's fate; now he understands the wisdom of the sylvan god, Silenus: he is nauseated.

Here, when the danger to his will is greatest, art approaches as a saving sorceress, expert at healing. She alone knows how to turn these nauseous thoughts about the horror or absurdity of existence into notions with which one can live: these are the sublime as the artistic taming of the horrible, and the comic as the artistic discharge of the nausea of absurdity. The satyr chorus of the dithyramb is the saving deed of Greek art; faced with the intermediary world of these Dionysian companions, the feelings described here exhausted themselves."

From The Birth Of Tragedy, 1872

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Take The A-Train


Keron Thomas
Rest In Peace

"Twenty years ago, as a 16-year-old boy, Keron Thomas made headlines when he commandeered an A train heading to Queens and took passengers on a 85-stop joyride, nobody the wiser that a kid was driving the train." ... Story continues here: Brooklyn Man famous For His A-Train Joyride As Teenager In 1993 Dies At 37 (PIX 11)

Monday, July 22, 2013

Quote Of The Week

"True debauchery is liberating because it creates no obligations. In it you possess only yourself, hence it remains the favorite pastime of the great lovers of their own person."

Friday, July 12, 2013

One Becomes What One Is

"My formula for greatness in a human being is amor fati: that one wants nothing to be different, not forward, not backward, not in all eternity. Not merely bear what is necessary, still less conceal it — all idealism is mendacity in the face of what is necessary — but love it."

From Ecce Homo, 1888

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Circles & Seasons


Toshi-Aline Ohta Seeger
Rest In Peace

"Toshi Seeger, wife of folk music icon Pete Seeger, passed away overnight on July 9th. She was a mother, an organizer, an activist and filmmaker, and an essential part of all of her husband’s work. She was 91." ... Story continues here: Toshi Seeger Passes (Sing Out)

Monday, July 8, 2013

Quote Of The Week

"The truth is always an abyss. One must — as in a swimming pool — dare to dive from the quivering springboard of trivial everyday experience and sink into the depths, in order to later rise again — laughing and fighting for breath — to the now doubly illuminated surface of things."

Monday, July 1, 2013

Quote Of The Week

"There may be times when we are powerless to prevent injustice, but there must never be a time when we fail to protest."

Monday, June 24, 2013

Quote Of The Week

"The illusion of freedom will continue as long as it's profitable to continue the illusion. At the point where the illusion becomes too expensive to maintain, they will just take down the scenery, they will pull back the curtains, they will move the tables and chairs out of the way and you will see the brick wall at the back of the theater."

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Farther Down The Road


Bobby "Blue" Bland
Rest In Peace

"Bobby (Blue) Bland, the debonair balladeer whose sophisticated, emotionally fraught performances helped modernize the blues, died on Sunday in Memphis." ... Story continues here: Bobby (Blue) Bland, Soul And Blues Balladeer, Dies At 83 (NY Times)

Monday, June 17, 2013

Quote Of The Week

"A friend is a person with whom I may be sincere. Before him I may think aloud. I am arrived at last in the presence of a man so real and equal, that I may drop even those undermost garments of dissimulation, courtesy, and second thought, which men never put off, and may deal with him with the simplicity and wholeness with which one chemical atom meets another."