Volume 75, Number 20 | October 05 - 11, 2005

Scoopy’s notebook



Art Coup: After weeks of being on the receiving end of attack e-mails from some disgruntled members of the Federation of East Village Artists, Phil Hartman, founder of the HOWL! Festival and FEVA, on Monday announced he would be taking a three-month e-mail hiatus. And we don’t blame him, because we’ve been delluged with the e-mails too — and how. While some of the FEVA members have been frantically demanding to be added to the listserv just as many others are pleading to be taken off so they can have a break from the vitriol. Hartman’s main critics are Clayton Patterson, David Leslie and Penny Arcade, who are charging that the organization needs to become a “legit” 501-c-3 nonprofit corporation and add diversity to its board and that, in general, there has been “too much Phil.” “The love needs to be spread around,” Patterson says. Hartman, in one of his last e-mails before emphatically signing off for an extended period, said he feared a New York Times article expected any day now that will air the group’s dirty laundry could very well be “organization crippling.” He admits he’s dragged his feet on setting up the 501-c-3. Meanwhile, Leslie, HOWL!’s former artistic director, said of the acerbic e-mails, “It’s our way to be snippy at each other, like a bunch of junkyard dogs. I think it’s unfortunate, but I think it’s also the character of the neighborhood…. We’ll get ourselves legit in the eyes of the funders and community — and it’ll be cool.” In another point of contention, Michael Rosen, who, along with others, donated more than $40,000 for the FEVA Pantheon Banquet at Capitale, was annoyed that Hartman subsequently said he needed more, asking Rosen for a $40,000 loan for the same event. The loan was eventually repaid, but Rosen said he feels a nonprofit needs to be set up for the future good of the organization. In another move that came under scrutiny, Hartman was also criticized for taking a donation from Alex Lokshin, who owns the Avenue A building in which Hartman has his Two Boots Pizza, Den of Cin and Pioneer movie theater, but who also developed the Third St. dormitory that sparked the community’s fury. Finally, some are angry that corporate sponsors, like Coca Cola and McDonald’s, were hooked up for HOWL! — and that politically correct preacher Reverend Billy even had to thank these multinational evildoers when he was emceeing the HOWL! Jr. Festival. Some say HOWL! just got too big for its own britches. “Make it smaller in scope, like an East Village Burning Man and it’ll work,” offered Roland Legiardi-Laura of Nuyorican Poets Café, who is on the festival’s advisory board.

Stone free: Historic Charles Lane is whole again at last. What look like replacement cobblestones have been laid in the long patch of the lane where the original stones were so insensitively ripped out during the construction of the third Richard Meier-designed tower. The Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation’s Andrew Berman said he thinks the construction company did a pretty good job. Under city regulations, the builder was required to put back the original stones or replace them “in kind” with stones closely resembling them.

Tapas action! Rocio Sanz of Community Board 2 is opening a new tapas — no, not topless! — restaurant on W. Fourth St. called Las Ramblas. It will only serve beer and wine, as these are the drinks of tapas, she said. Her daughter, Natalie, a graduate of N.Y.U.’s Gallatin School, will run the place.

Wood’s Way: Chelsea housing advocates and elected officials will gather to honor the renowned housing activist the late Jane Wood at a street-naming ceremony at 2 p.m. on Sun. Oct. 16 at the southeast corner of W. 19th St. and Eighth Ave. The street between Seventh and Eighth Aves. will bear the secondary name “Jane Wood’s Way” in honor of the founder of Chelsea Coalition on Housing, who died at the age of 96 on March 17, 2004. For more than 50 years she resided at 274 W. 19th St. A reception will take place at 4 p.m. after the ceremony at Dance Theatre Workshop, 239 W. 19th St.

Villager photo by Tequila Minsky


McGovern takes New York: Following the Sept. 16 opening-night screening at Quad Cinema of “One Bright Shining Moment” about George McGovern’s career and 1972 grassroots campaign for U.S. president, the former senator and Stephen Vittoria, the filmmaker, dialogued with the audience for an hour and continued on in the lobby of the W. 13th St. movie theater. Straight-speaking and proud-to-be-liberal Democrat McGovern’s unwavering opposition to the Vietnam war ignited his supporters. He ran against Richard Nixon on an “I will withdraw the troops from Vietnam” platform. At age 82 he continues to work against world hunger. One targeted analysis he made from his 18 years of experience as senator from South Dakota: “People vote with their fears, not for their self-interests.”

AAttention shoppers: On his Web site, Reverend Billy of Church of Stop Shopping fame is urging his fans not necessarily to stop shopping, but at least to make sure to buy at independently owned and operated shops when his products are concerned. Although some chain stores carry Billy fare, like the Barnes and Noble on Astor Pl., which has his book, the performance artist preaches on his Web site: “Please boycott Virgin, Amazon, Barnes and Noble. Malls and chain stores are venal sin.” The site notes: “The Reverend Billy CD is banned in all Wal-Marts.”


Deli-cate situation: Two employees at the 2nd Ave. Deli, Tony and Virgil, just may have prevented a serious accident, when two Sundays ago they refused to allow a man with high blood pressure who had fainted at the deli counter to get in his car and drive off. The two watched from the sidewalk to make sure the man got into an ambulance

Monica on the move: Monica Lewinsky has left Greenwich Village to attend the London School of Economics. (Look out, Tony Blair!) She recently made the announcement at a farewell party at the Hotel on Rivington. No word on whether Lewinsky is hanging onto her apartment at The Archive on Greenwich St.

Bike gets the business: Bill DiPaola, founder of Time’s Up!, the East Village-based bicycle group, said that they did a street stencil at the Water St. location in Lower Manhattan where Jen Shao, a 65-year Chinatown resident, was killed while biking a few weeks ago. Someone also put up a white ghost bike memorial, but “the business community took it away,” DiPaola said.

Mom needs wheels: We hear LAII, the Lower East Side graffiti artist who partnered with Keith Haring during Haring’s most productive period, is in need of a wheelchair for his mother, who is seriously ill. But LA2 — who has received close to nothing financially from his artwork since Haring’s death — is broke. Anyone who has an extra wheelchair or knows how to get one, please call Clayton Patterson at the Outlaw Gallery at 212-477-1363.


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