The baby boomers had their revolution—civil rights, women’s rights, anti-war, anti-poverty—and now their children are having their own: the craft beer revolution. Thank God, because for a while there, everybody was worried that kids born after 1975 were becoming permanent slackers.
Archives for March 2012
by Jonathan W. Walton
In the dimming light, sprawled out before us on a big communal table at the Brooklyn Oenology tasting room, were several half empty bottles of New York wine, surrounded by ten or so mounds of Brooklyn-made chocolate. Chocolate and wine makers together, we dove in one by one, systematically comparing over 80 combos without realizing that the smorgasbord had grown to overflowing. Between testing a riesling with smoked chocolate, and gearing up for the black-truffle-chocolate pairings, I took a step back and tried to fathom the decadence before us on this chill winter night. With a deep breath, I washed down the riesling and got back to work.
by Sarah Schmerler
Chances are you have never met an iconoclast like Alexander Melamid. A conceptual artist turned self-proclaimed “art healer,” he’s had a pretty impressive (if the word can even apply to iconoclasts) career. Back in the 1990s, he was known as part of the duo Komar and Melamid, when their art was spotlighted in such august, fame-dispensing institutions as the Venice Biennale, Documenta, and the Guggenheim. Among other things, the two polled the American public and came up with “The Most-Wanted Painting in America”—a cheesy, bucolic landscape complete with George Washington, a deer, and other treacly fare. (It’s a project they did in 16 other countries as well, with equally queasy-making results.) Melamid split from Komar in 2004. At 66 years old, his work leans so far to the edge of irony that it makes Duchamp look conservative. These days, Melamid is concerned with reaching a greater public beyond the walls of museums, using masterpieces—or perhaps, the public’s sheeplike “faith” in fine art—as a method of healing ills of all sorts: insomnia, impotence, depression. Tongue planted firmly in cheek, he has declared himself an art healer, an art prophet, and even, yes, a deity. He’s given out art-healing communion (absinthe) on the streets of London; opened a functioning art-healing clinic in Soho (where you could strip and have masterworks like Van Goghs and Renoirs projected onto your body); and is currently serving as a bonafide healer, making rounds at Queens Hospital. Yes, he showed me his security badge, it’s real. I met Melamid at a donut shop and found him to be a charming character of the A-1 variety; an artist who wants what every artist you’ve ever met wants: to save the world. Warning: before you read our conversation, know that Melamid is serious. He embodies what he is/does/says. Play along, or play…alone. P.S. He healed me.
SS—Mr. Melamid… AM—That’s not my name. I just want you to know, you can’t call me that.