Critical 5 things to do in NYC: march into fun, March 1-3
March has arrived, which means we’re that much closer to milder weather and fuller foliage (hopefully). This weekend, brighten your mood with these unique events that cater to the curious and creative.
First films inspire the thrill of discovery for the filmmakers and the audience alike. The First Time Fest celebrates this spark, offering four full days of screenings by new and established filmmakers, plus panel discussions, parties, and intimate conversations. An all-encompassing event, the fest is divided into five parts: a screening of eclectic films competing for theatrical distribution (to be judged by both industry experts and the audience); a series of debut films by established directors like Wes Anderson and Sofia Coppola; a special 60th anniversary screening of the first independent New York film, The Little Fugitive; panel discussions with industry insiders; and various in-depth conversations with performers and filmmakers. The screenings take place at the Loews Village 7 for $15 each, and the Players Club in Gramercy hosts the panels and parties for a separate fee.
The night loosely revolves around works informed by El Anatsui and his monumental pieces. A new month, a new free event that puts the “art” in “party.” Head over to Brooklyn Museum for its First Saturday line-up filled with live music performances, artist talks, a film screening, and an interactive workshop loosely revolving around works informed by strong>El Anatsui and his monumental pieces.The evening includes performances by Ghanaian-Burkinabe singer-songwriter Ria Boss and The Sway Machinery, a band that blends Jewish cantorial melodies with the sounds of northwest Africa. If discussions are more your thing, stick around for the curator’s talk about the El Anatsui exhibition or a pop-up gallery talk about women artists throughout the galleries. Catch a screening of An African Election, an insider look at the political complexities behind Ghana’s struggle for legitimate democracy, or stick around from 8-10pm as visitors are invited to collaborate on photo mosaics, tai chi, and more.
Head to Brooklyn Bowl this Sunday for crates on crates on crates of the handpicked vinyl around, featuring the best record collectors from New York and out of state offering the finest and rarest records around. Scavenge through the stacks of wax running the gamut of genres from jazz and blues to new wave and funk, and get lucky with a rare import or out-of-print copy. The Bowl’s largest and most successful show, Collect-i-bowl has over 40 dealer tables with a wide variety and price range. Pick up some great finds or at least bowl your heart out to DJ Uncle Mike’s perusal playlist from 11-5pm. Best part is, there’s free admission.
A cartoon’s power stems from its ability to communicate an idea with economy of form. This Saturday at 6pm the Rubin Museum of Art is hosting three New Yorker cartoonists (David Sipress, Zach Kanin, and Paul Noth) who will explain and dissect the creative process and attempt to answer which comes first: the words or image? Joining them is neurologist Richard Restak, who uses New Yorker cartoons to evaluate patients’ mental health based on how they do or do not understand the content. In this interactive program, Dr. Restak will call on the audience to undergo a similar evaluation and to create humorous cartoons themselves based on supplied prompts. Find out if you’re crazy or creative, and enjoy a pre-program gallery tour at 5:15 to get the most bang for your buck.
A sign of the fast approaching spring, this weekend The New York Botanical Garden explodes into a floral feast for the eyes with its annual orchid show. Now in its 11th year, the exhibition celebrates the flower in its thousands of forms and colors and even offers demonstrations on orchid care, Q&As with experts, and musical entertainment. The largest curated show of its kind in the United States, the Orchid Show transforms the Enid A. Haupt Conservatory into a theater of color with kaleidoscopic displays artfully designed by staffer Francisca P. Coelho, who even incorporates trees felled by Hurricane Sandy in her work. Once you’ve taken in all the intricate petal formations you can handle, stop by the Shop in the Garden to take home your own orchid.