The Smart Set is a weekly feature, compiled by Lauren Cerand, that usually appears Mondays at 12:30pm and highlights the best of the week to come. Special favor is given to New YorkÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s independent booksellers and venues, and low-cost and free events. Please send details to lauren [at] maudnewton.com by the Thursday prior to publication, with the eventÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s date in the subject line.
TUESDAY, 1.23: At the 92nd Street Y, “Two popular writers from The New Yorker tell us what they loveÃ¢â‚¬â€and hateÃ¢â‚¬â€about living in New York. Adam Gopnik writes “New York Journal,” a column about culture and daily life. He is the author of a new essay collection, At Home in New York. Patricia Marx has written for Saturday Night Live and Rugrats and for The New York Times, Vogue and The Atlantic. She was the first woman on the Harvard Lampoon. Her first novel, Him Her Him Again the End of Him, was published recently.” Recommended. 8:15pm, $25. Downtown, Dean & Britta perform new material as a warm-up for their spring tour, at Mo Pitkin’s. 7:00pm, $15.
WEDNESDAY, 1.24: From the fantastically dedicated women who produce Sunday Salon comes the Girls Write Now 2nd Annual Winter Pair Reading & Raffle, “showcasing New York City’s best teen writers and the mentors who help them learn their craft.” Highly recommended, no… essential! 7:00pm, $5 suggested. And per the invitation of the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council, “please join us for the final salon for LMCC’s pilot Writers Residency. Six writers and three songwriters will present work produced during their two months in a vacant office space on Astor Place.” Including the charming and talented Liz Brown. At Redhead Gallery, 125 Maiden Lane, 2nd Floor. Recommended. 6:00pm, FREE. Plus, at jen bekman [where, full disclosure as always, I am the gallery’s PR director], the best of the best of emerging photography is unveiled with the opening of the Hey, Hot Shot! ne plus ultra 2007 annual. 6 – 8pm, FREE.
THURSDAY, 1.25: “On December 26th, 2006, Bob Powers’ Happy Cruelty Day! was carefully unpacked from shipping crates and placed on retail bookstore shelves, and America’s innocence was hijacked forever…” The book’s publication is celebrated at a very special edition of How To Kick People, featuring Dan Kennedy, Andres du Bouchet, Mike Albo, Chris Regan and Amanda Melson. At Mo Pitkin’s. Highly recommended. 7:30pm, FREE. Also, “Housing Works proudly presents acclaimed poet Anne CarsonÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Ã¢â‚¬Å“Possesive Used As Drink (Me): a lecture on pronouns in the form of fifteen sonnetsÃ¢â‚¬Â This very special performance features Anne Carson reading her poetry, accompanied by choreography and dance by Julie Cunningham, Rashaun Mitchell and Andrea Weber, members of the Merce Cunningham Dance Company.” Also highly recommended. 7:00pm $10.
FRIDAY, 1.26: “CHINA BLUE takes us on a poignant journey inside a blue-jeans factory, where the working conditions Jasmine and her teenage friends must endure are harsh beyond imagination. They are also unlawful by international standards, and tensions in the factory are running high. So when the factory owner strikes a deal with a Western client and demands around-the-clock production to meet the deadline, a confrontation becomes inevitable. Shot clandestinely in China, under difficult conditions, this is a deep-access account of what both China and the international retail companies donÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t want us to see Ã¢â‚¬â€ how the clothes we buy are actually made.” Showing one week only at Anthology Film Archives. Also, just as a side note, pretty much any film that Jim Browne picks up for his distribution company, Argot Pictures (including the one listed above), can be considered essential viewing.
SATURDAY, 1.27: “The Museum of Modern Art and Creative Time, the New YorkÃ¢â‚¬â€œbased public art organization, have jointly commissioned Doug Aitken to create the artist’s first large-scale public artwork in the United States…Inspired by the densely built environment of New York’s midtown, the artist will create a cinematic art experience that directly integrates with the architectural fabric of the city while simultaneously enhancing and challenging viewers’ perceptions of public space.” sleepwalkers features Tilda Swinton, Donald Sutherland, Chan Marshall (Cat Power), Seu Jorge, and Ryan Donowho. Evenings through February 12 from 5:00Ã¢â‚¬â€œ10:00 PM, FREE. Also on Saturday evening, The Books play Webster Hall.
SUNDAY, 1.28: At P.S. 122, Tamar Rogoff Performance Projects presents “Edith and Jenny“… “Interwined through Rogoff’s signature choreography, performers Claire Danes and Ariel Rogoff Flavin explore the intimacy that has marked their life-long friendship.” Sunday’s performance is at 5:00pm, $20. Through February 4.
Soundtrack to this week’s edition: Tegan & Sara, especially their infectious and brilliant “Living Room,” which I’ve had stuck ceaselessly in my head for three days! Do listen, but absolutely at your own risk…