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WHAT’S NEW
This week we’re highlighting local gallery shows to check out, sharing a new small business to support, and introducing you to a cool new friend: Sophie Parker.

CULTURE CORNER 

LOOK
One thing we’ve missed the most during the pandemic is getting to gallery hop on Sunday afternoons. We’re happy that some have safely opened their doors again for small viewings, and that others have brought works to our homes through virtual exhibitions. Here are three shows to check out online or IRL this weekend:

Tchotchke Gallery

The online exhibition Bull in a China Shop, opened last week and features work around the central theme of chaos. Check out the online gallery here.

Maison Kitsune

A new exhibition recently opened at the West Village café’s gallery space: Perry Street Archives. The artist, Mahaneela will launch her book, Through My Lens, along with an exhibit of work that explores the themes of diasporic history, music and culture, with a focus on the black experience and emphasis on depicting black and brown people in modes of joy and happiness. Read more about the exhibit here.

David Zwirner 

Famed 69th street gallery, David Zwirner, is showing a selection of seldom-seen Ruth Asawa works, mostly small sculptures. The show is on view now.

WATCH
We’re super excited to welcome back Elissa Suh of MOVIEPUDDING as a guest contributor. Check out Elissa’s virtual screening picks to check out this weekend →

Virtual screenings:

- Ghost Dog with live commentary from RZA.

- Phantom Thread followed by a chat between co-star Vicky Krieps and critic Adam Nayman for Metrograph.

- XXY an LGBTQ debut feature curated and introduced by Nan Goldin for Metrograph.

- The Donut King an immigrant tale of love and donuts, via the Angelika theater.

SUPPORT
It’s a very difficult time to start a small business in NYC – or anywhere for that matter. This past weekend, however, we stumbled into one of the coolest (and only) new places in the last however long it’s been: Sweet Pickle Books. The little store, nestled among one of the quieter stretches of Orchard St, has a fantastic selection of used books, new pickles, and other treasures. Give them a visit at 47 Orchard St or online at sweetpicklebooks.com 

COOL FRIENDS: Sophie Parker (AKA Wife NYC)

Meet Sophie, a Brooklyn-based botanical artist who caught our eye when we first saw her work in Mociun last year. Her colorful hand-painted palms and flowers ‘merge the handmade with the organic’ to make something beautiful.

How did your career as a botanical designer begin?

Before I was painting on plants I was making paintings of plants. One day I painted on a huge monstera leaf and had one of those classic ah-ha moments. I think what I was always searching for in the paintings finally felt as immersive and magical as I imagined. I didn’t ever anticipate that the botanical works would have any market or interest - I just started bringing these pieces to life and posting them to my instagram as a record of what I had created. It has been so incredible to see people connect with this work and to engage with its playful magic. Each piece has a certain lifespan, an ephemerality, so I believe the act of sharing it with the world adds to its temporary vividness.

What's your favorite part about the New York creative community?

The New York Flower Market on 28th between 6th and 7th is the heart of the botanical art scene. Before the pandemic, we all used to cross bunny trails as we browsed from store to store looking for the perfect plant. There was a beautiful sense of community that bloomed from our early morning market foraging and I hope our sweet market can weather this storm.

What's inspiring you right now?

Right now, like as of a few days ago, I'm incredibly inspired by blurring the line between collage and floral arranging. I’ve been making large cutout collages and I realized there is something very similar in the thought process at play - the meditated composition of elements to create an arrangement of sorts. I’m excited to see where this idea leads and how the two modes of making can be united.

Follow along:

www.wifenyc.com
@wifenyc on Instagram

PALETTE
Coffee Break at IXV in Boerum Hill, BK

Read more Best Of articles, Cool Freinds interviews, past Newsletter editions on our website: www.coolstuff.nyc 


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