Friday, October 19, 2007

Adventures in the Blogosphere: Annie Leibowitz & Patti Smith (& Me) at the Brooklyn Museum

It was just a year ago that I attended a member's opening at the Brooklyn Museum and caught Patti Smith and band perform live. It was so cool, bringing so much art and excitement together, that I had to do something with it, which led me to write about the evening. I had become familiar with Only the Blog Knows Brooklyn and on a whim, sent the report there. Fortunately for me, Louise Crawford of Only the Blog Knows Brooklyn. com immediately responded to my story and posted it. I was hooked. Blogging has the immediacy of electronic journalism but, since it is essentially a literary, or at least largely word-based medium, it demands some reflection. All of that works for me. I wrote a number of posts for OTBKB, and had stuff picked up by other blogs as well, which is a unique experience to see your stuff out there and wonder how it got picked up. People have many reasons to blog. I see that some folks bring a strong current of interest in neighborhoods and commerce, with a particular focus on real estate and development issues and the like. Others focus on aspects of their world, however minute, and manage to impart meaning. Blogging seems like an open book, and the bottom line is whatever works for you.

My interest has always been literary and creative, so I see Deep in the Heart of Brooklyn, which I began in summer 2007, as a place on which to to peg my occasional writings, creative obsessions, and musings about Brooklyn now and then. I try to write honestly and creatively. If anything I have written has sparked your interest, all the better.

Anyway, here is my original blog post from last year:

Thanks, LC, you are a pal. Now Speak, Memory:

Friday, October 20 2006

ANNIE LEIBOVITZ & PATTI SMITH AT THE BROOKLYN MUSEUM

Look what I missed? Brooklyn Beat sent me this report about the Annie Leibovitz opening at the Brooklyn Museum. I was up at 3 a.m. when HC's cell phone rang with a wrong number and read it. I was at the museum earlier in the day. But I really missed something here. I CAN'T BELIEVE PATTI SMITH PERFORMED FOR THE CROWD. NOW THAT'S SOMETHING I WISH I'D SEEN. DANG.

Brooklyn Beat's report:
I got home from the Office, left my better half at home with a cold, she was all cuddled up with our 11 year old twin daughters, and Guinevere the Corgi, watching Dogs and Cats (or was it Cats and Dogs) and I lit out to the Brooklyn Museum to see the Annie Liebovitz members opening exhibition.

Unusual for me to be out solo in the evening, but here I was in the BM parking lot, strolling to the entrance. The AL show was part mega media event, seeing these remarkable photos that have graced books and magazines, only blown up, printed exquisitely. Plus the enormous collection of her work, snapshots really, works in progress, under glass. Some that have made their way into the major show, others that reflect the artist and her process at work..huge photos of Venice and Vesuvius were likewise fascinating.

I thought, I must come back to see this again for a leisurely perusal since the opening was very crowded.. at the exit, we all crowded into the 5th floor space (where the Rodins were previously on display..)

After a few minutes, the crowd roared with appearance of Annie Leibovitz and family. They moved backstage, but then reappeared, with Ms Leibovitz casually sitting on the floor, leaning against the wall with a daughter on her lap and family and friends nearby..
A second roar and Patti Smith appeared with her band (including Lenny Kaye (guitar) and Jay Dee Daugherty (drums) (both members of the original ensemble that played on Horses, her seminal 1975 album), Tony Shanahan (bass, keyboards) and they proceeded to enthrall the audience with 5 songs..concluding with Because the Night, the Bruce Springsteen tune that Patti Smith made famous, it was an unexpectedly lovely, soulful and energizing set.. Ms Leibovitz dancing, and Patti Smith introducing Because the Night as the song that the late Susan Sontag liked to dance to.

I understand that the Brooklyn Museum is going through institutional changes (ain't we all?), and maybe it was an evening that was too pop for some tastes and sensibilities, but this was an exciting evening that made me glad to belong to the Brooklyn Museum and, once again, glad to live in Brooklyn. Peace Out.

P.S. - I brought Chinese soup home for the sniffling troops and later read Twin 2's essay on the day we brought Gwen the Corgi home.

--Brooklyn Beat

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Current Reading

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  • The God Delusion - Richard Dawkins
  • Pale King - David Foster Wallce
  • David Bowie: Starman bio - Paul Trynka
  • Tobacco Stained Mountain Goat - Andrez Bergen
  • The Future of Nostalgia -Svetlana Boym
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  • How to Survive a Robot Uprising - Daniel Wilson
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  • Charles Addams: An Evilution
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  • Luba - a graphic novel by Gilbert Hernandez
  • Life in Ancient Egypt
  • Great Apes - Will Self - riveting and disturbing
  • Lost Honor of Katherina Blum - Heinrich Boll - could not put it down
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  • Ubik - Philip K. Dick
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  • Hitler's Empire - Mark Mazower
  • Nazi Culture - various authors
  • Master Plan: Himmler 's Scholars and the Holocaust - Heather Pringle
  • Eichmann in Jerusalem - Hannah Arendt
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  • Traveling with Herodotus -R. Kapuszynsky
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  • ALEX COX - Alex Cox
  • FIASCO by Thomas Ricks
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  • Best of 20th century alternative history fiction
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  • Coast of Utopia - Tom Stoppard
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  • Howl - Allen Ginsberg
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  • The Palace Thief - Ethan Canin
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  • Dream -Re-Imagining Progressive Politics in an Age of Fantasy - Stephen Duncombe
  • Love & Theft - Eric Lott
  • Exit Ghost - Philip Roth
  • Studio A - The Bob Dylan Reader

Current Listening

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  • Wilco The Album
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  • Commander Cody& His Lost Planet Airmen Live at Armadillo