Today in Chelsea: Saturday, May 4, 2019

Image courtesy of the Whitney

TOMORROW (Sun. May 5) IN CHELSEA | Pier Groups: A Conversation with Jonathan Weinberg at the Whitney Museum of American Art | Following the Stonewall riots, the Hudson River piers and surrounding Meatpacking District became a site of exploration and experimentation for queer artists.

Timed to correspond with the publication of Pier Groups, author Jonathan Weinberg will be in conversation with artists Andreas Sterzing and Sasha Wortzel, as they examine art, sexuality, and the New York Waterfront from the 1970s to the present—noting how the piers have changed since the 1970s, and highlighting their own personal recollections of the piers and New York City over the past 50 years. Weinberg’s Pier Groups weaves together interviews, documentary photographs, literary texts, artworks, and film stills to show how avant-garde practices competed and mingled with queer identities along the Manhattan waterfront. Part memoir, part art history, the book is a document of the artistic and sexual expression that characterized, and ultimately transformed, the neighborhood where the Whitney now stands.

This conversation is part of the Whitney Museum of American Art’s year-round community programming that reinforces the Museum’s commitment to serve a wide variety of audiences in celebration of the complexity and diversity of art and culture, as well as supporting artists themselves.

Sunday, May 5, 3-4pm at the Whitney Museum of American Art: 99 Gansevoort St. btw. Washington & West Sts. (in the Laurie M. Tisch Education Center, 3rd floor). Tickets are required and include museum admission ($10 for adults, $8 for members, students, seniors, and visitors with a disability). Tickets can be purchased here.

From the 2018 Jane’s Walk: “The Minettas–The Heart of Little Africa” walking tour. | This year’s event has tours of local interest, presented in conjunction with Save Chelsea. | Photo courtesy of MAS, Vlad Weinstein

Free Walking Tours from Save Chelsea and Jane’s Walk | Through outreach and advocacy, the community-based organization Save Chelsea is “concerned with preserving the integrity of Chelsea’s Historic Districts and buildings and maintaining a diverse mix of economic, social, and generational populations.” That mission articulates itself not just through interactions with electeds and city officials, but also via its ongoing Walking Tour series—where Chelsea history comes to life, and is put in proper contemporary context.

On Fri., May 3 at 6pm, their two-hour tour (presented in conjunction with the citywide, May 3-5 “Jane’s Walk” event considered “The Chelsea Historic District and The Need to Expand It.” Today,  Sat., May 4 at 4pm, Save Chelsea and Jane’s Walk offer another two-hour tour, this one considering “LGBT Historic Sites in Chelsea on the 50th Anniversary of the Stonewall Riots. “Chelsea is a neighborhood that was strongly associated with gay life in the 1990’s,” they note, “but was actually quite ‘gay’ for many, many years before that. Such important pioneering pre-Stonewall gay rights groups as The Mattachine Society, The Daughters Of Bilitis, and the West Side Discussion Group were located in Chelsea in the decade before Stonewall. In the aftermath of Stonewall, the radical Gay Liberation Front had its first meetings in Chelsea and the neighborhood was home to such pioneering lesbian organizations as Lesbian Feminist Liberation, the Lesbian Herstory Archives, and the Lesbian Switchboard—which were all housed at the Women’s Liberation Center on W. 20th St.”

Laurence Frommer and Save Chelsea board members are your guides. To register for this free event, click here. For more information on Save Chelsea, visit www.savechelseany.org. On Facebook: www.facebook.com/Save-Chelsea-NY-885560138225483/. Twitter: @SaveChelseaNY.

Accompanied by neighborhood Labs Benny and Jansey, volunteer gardner Maria LaMacchia, on W. 22 St., helps with the annual tree pit clean-up. | Photo by Allen Oster

Tree Pit Clean-Up | Spring cleaning moves out of the house and into the side streets, as the West 400 Block Association (21st/22nd/23rd Sts.) invites you to join them for their annual Tree Pit Clean-Up event. Meet at Clement Clarke Moore Park (corner of W. 22nd St. & 10th Ave.) at 10am on Sat., May 4. From there, groups will disperse to rid area tree pits of trash, and add compost to the beds. Tools and gloves will be provided, if needed. For more info email aoster@earthlink.net.

Trav S.D.’s review of the competitive eating documentary “The Good, The Bad, The Hungry” finds plenty of meat on the bone. | Photo via Tribecafilm.com

Final Days of The Tribeca Film Festival | A reliable source of compelling documentaries, world premiere feature films, virtual reality experiences and special events, this festival, which began as way to bolster its namesake neighborhood after the events of 9/11, always has a strong presence in Chelsea. This year, the SVA Theatre (333 W. 23rd St. btw. 8th & 9th Aves.) hosts a number of notable screenings—and you only have until Sun., May 5, to access all the fest has to offer (TFF began on April 24).

Chelsea Community News recently spoke with one of TFF’s programmers, who talked about the ongoing mission to feature emerging voices, offer interactive opportunities to festivalgoers, and champion filmmakers who choose to showcase their work online. To read that interview, click here.

Click on the following, to read our reviews of Tribeca Film Festival selections. Can’t make it to a screening? Has the final screening of that film passed? Don’t lose hope. Many films in the fest will get theatrical releases, become available On Demand, or find themselves on other platforms.

“The Good, The Bad, The Hungry”

Reviews by Puma Perl: “Luce” and “Pearl”

“A Woman’s Work: The NFL’s Cheerleader Problem”

“Flawless”

“Gay Chorus Deep South”

“Luce” Review by Winnie McCroy

“Charlie Says”

“Blow the Man Down”

“Initials S.G.”

The Tribeca Film Festival happens through Sun., May 5. For more information, and to order tickets, visit tribecafilm.com or call 866-941-3378. Matinee screenings are $12, evening and weekend screenings are $24, Tribeca Talks and Tribeca Immersive tickets are $40, and Tribeca Cinema360 tickets are $15. Discounted packages are available. Free Film Friday (free film screenings) is May 3. Twitter: twitter.com/tribeca. Facebook: facebook.com/tribeca. Instagram: instagram.com/tribeca. Hashtag: #Tribeca2019.

Trav S.D. | Photo by Bill Scurry

Trav S.D. Takes You to the Worlds Fairs | April 2019 marks the 80th Anniversary of the groundbreaking 1939 New York World’s Fair. To mark the occasion, Chelsea Community News contributor Trav S.D. has booked two talks at two related locations: one in Brooklyn, one in Queens. April 28, 3pm at Queens Theatre, Trav talked about the 1939 New York World’s Fair, famously held at Flushing Meadows-Corona Park. Sat., May 4, 5pm, Trav considers Coney Island and the World’s Fairs. As part of Coney Island USA’s Congress of Curious Peoples, he will give an illustrated talk on how “all the major World’s Fairs impacted Coney Island’s amusement district, as indeed nearly every one of them did, sometimes for the better, sometimes for the worse. So many of innovations we associate with Coney actually began at the World’s Fairs. The Ferris wheel? The parachute jump? That’s just the tip of the iceberg.  Strap your safety belt on for a talk as colorful and entertaining as its topic,” Trav promises. Included with Coney Island Museum Admission, $5 for adults, $3 for seniors, kids (under 12), and residents of zip code 11224. Free for members of Coney Island USA! Purchase tickets at the door. More details here. For more details about our Mr. S.D., visit Travalanche at travsd.wordpress.com.

May 11/12 at Film Forum, it’s “Bugs, Daffy, and Friends, ” a collection of shorts featuring your favorite Warner Bros. characters. | Image courtesy of Film Forum

Film Forum Jr. Spring Season | This series of classic films fit for kids and their families runs each Saturday and Sunday at 11am, through June 30. May gets off to a rousing start, with King Kong vs. Godzilla, Ishirō Honda’s action-packed battle between the cinema’s two greatest monster super-stars (May 4/5). May 11/12, it’s Bugs, Daffy, and Friends, a collection of shorts featuring your favorite Warner Bros. characters, including Porky Pig, Wile E. Coyote & Road Runner, Tweety & Sylvester. Tim Burton’s Edward Scissorhands, May 18/19, stars Johnny Depp and Winona Ryder; and Penny Marshall’s A League of Their Own, May 25/26, has Geena Davis and Tom Hanks as part of its all-star cast, in this film based on the real-life All-American Girls Professional Baseball League during WWII.

All tickets to Film Forum Jr. screenings are $9 (children and adults). Film Forum is located at 209 W. Houston St. (w. of 6th Ave.). For the full schedule, visit www.filmforum.org.

–By Scott Stiffler

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