PRINTED MATTER

Ivorypress and Printed Matter welcome Shirin Neshat for her book launch: Dreamers. She will be joined by Phong Bui, artist and publisher of the Brooklyn Rail, in conversation on December 20. “Based on aspects of her own recurring memories and dreams, Neshat explores her identity as an Iranian woman in America, indirectly investigating issues of gender, power, displacement, protest, identity, and the space between the personal and the political.”

“Three stories exploring women’s dreams through emotional and psychological narratives, remaining on the border of dream and reality; madness and sanity; and consciousness and sub-consciousness. In the artist’s own words ‘I have been haunted by the power of dreams, and in how it is only in the state of dreams where the boundaries between reality and fiction are blurred; and where human beings become truly free and naked.’”

EMPIRE BENEATH THE STREETS

“It's right there under your feet, you probably ride it every day, but how much do you know about this city's amazing subway system? Our private tour guide will give us the secret history and inside story of the creation of the original 1904 subway line and how it grew into the most extensive transportation system in the world.”

Tour NYC’s underground network of transportation on December 30, concluding at Grand Central Terminal with a discussion of the station’s iconic architecture.

THE POETRY PROJECT

You won’t want to miss the Poetry Project’s 45th Annual New Year’s Day Marathon Reading, where you can experience the work of over 140 performers and party your way into 2019! The event begins on January 1 at 2:00 p.m. and lasts a solid 12 hours, finishing at 2:00 a.m. on January 2. Find a ticket today via Brown Paper Tickets.

WOMEN’S MARCH ALLIANCE

The third annual Women’s March will be hitting the streets strong in NYC on January 19, with a focus on amplifying the voices of black and brown women across our city and nation. Support your sisters and fight for democracy in 2019!


THE METROPOLITAN MUSEUM OF ART

Also on January 19, the Met presents: In Our Time: A Year of Architecture in a Day, “an international roster of today's most exciting and inspiring architects, artists, photographers, writers, and filmmakers, who will share the best spatial projects of 2018 and beyond.” Admission is free with a museum ticket purchase but attendees must register in advance! View the full schedule of activities at Met.org and book a morning or afternoon session before they’re gone!

LUNAR ECLIPSE

Late in the evening of January 20, the moon will turn red for a single hour. Just a few days before Pratt classes begin again, this is the perfect window to stop, breathe, appreciate the incredible beauty of our surroundings, and (optionally) recharge your energy as a witch.

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Photo by Samuel Herrera

I love going to concerts alone because it heightens my focus on the surroundings, giving me opportunities to eavesdrop on others’ conversations, take in the crowd demographic, and fully study the band’s stage presence. This is exactly what I did on Monday, November 26, at Pinegrove’s Music Hall of Williamsburg show. Because Music Hall of Williamsburg is an intimate venue with a capacity of 550, including the two tiers above the main pit, the crowd demographic consisted mainly of Pinegrove’s most diehard fans. In the days leading up to the show, I familiarized myself with the band by listening to their past two albums Skylight and Cardinal, but I was in no way prepared for the level of devotion and commitment to Pinegrove that the rest of the fans exhibited at the show. As I later learned through research, these fans call themselves ‘Pinenuts’, and share the same tattoo that Pinegrove frontman, lead vocalist and guitarist Evan Stephens Hall sports on his arm, which also appears on Pinegrove album covers. This drawing depicts an outline of two squares overlapping each other and has become the band’s symbol.

As the venue gradually filled up in the hour or two before the show, through eavesdropping on other people’s conversations I picked up on the level of the Pinenuts’ commitment to the band. I listened to the girl in front of me describe to her friend the ins and outs of the type of food served to patients at the hospital where she works. When they reached a lull in their conversation, the friend looked around to check out how many people had filled in. He then whispered to the girl, “I think that’s Evan’s mom over there.” The girl turned, and pursued this by running over to the blond-haired woman and shouting, “Are you Evan’s mom?” The woman, surprisingly enthusiastic, confirmed this to be true and hugged the girl. They then proceeded to have a ten minute long conversation, which was unfortunately out of my earshot. At this point, many questions were running through my mind, the main one being How do these fans recognize band members’ parents?

Earlier, I was standing next to two men— we were about three rows from the front— and one of them, who had been to a Pinegrove show before, commented on how he felt like they didn’t deserve to be that close to the stage since they don’t know all the words to every song. I hoped he was exaggerating, because I, too, did not know the words to the songs, but as soon as Halls began the opening song the Pinenuts around me were shouting every word, grunt, backup vocal or any verbal noise along with Hall and the band. For the most part, I was more impressed than bothered by the singing of the crowd, but there were a few times I moved away from a Pinenut behind or next to me who was shouting the lyrics so loud that it was negatively obstructing my experience.

Pinegrove started playing through their most recent album Starlight, and since the Pinenuts have the track listings of these albums memorized, they would often start singing the song while Hall was still switching guitars in between songs. Before I realized the band was doing a track-by-track, I was confused by how the fans were able to start the intro of each song without Hall. However small a fanbase might be, I was wrong to underestimate the intensity of their devotion to Pinegrove, which was almost matched to that of Bruce Springsteen’s fans. I’d like to further investigate what qualities of certain bands or musicians lead them to have such obsessive fans.

Aside from observing the Pinenuts, experiencing Pinegrove’s music live was highly memorable. With a talent for writing, Hall’s songs are deeply personal and reflective, and seem more like stories or journal entries, with specific memories, anecdotes, and details sprinkled throughout. His conversational vocals combined with his guitar playing are reminiscent of Ryan Adams & The Cardinals’s sound on their 2005 album Cold Roses, and paired with Nick Levine’s smooth lap steel guitar, many of the songs had a country fusion. The band had great chemistry, with the drummer Zack Levine and Nick being brothers. Nick switched between an electric guitar and a lap steel guitar, often within the same song; he was so focused on his instruments that it seemed as though he didn’t even realize he was onstage. His loose and comfortable vibe contrasted the other guitarist Sam Skinner who was too aware of being onstage, as his movements were more stiff and uneasy than those of the Levine brothers and Hall. One of the highlights of the show was when Nandi Rose Plunkett, who left Pinegrove to pursue her own project Half Waif, came onstage to harmonize with Hall for the encore. She tripled the band’s energy by jumping around stage and putting her entire body into every note she sang.

Halfway through the set Hall thanked everyone for coming to the show and described Pinegrove’s goal as spreading the message of “love, empathy, and introspection”, three elements which are expressed through their thoughtful music and clearly resonate with their fans. Seeing them live proved to be one of the more special shows I’ve experienced— the intimacy and intensity was unmatched, an atmosphere created by the venue, the fans, the band members, and, of course, the sound.

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Illustration by Janie Peacock


You want to make the most of attending college, but being creatures of habit we tend to lose out with what makes us comfortable before challenging ourselves. After college, all those habits you’ve formed fall through to mold you into a new person. This was a hard lesson I learned after taking six years off from Pratt. Here is some advice from my new mold:


Citi Bikes instead of Ubers.

The stranger you eye every day instead of Tinder dates.

Brewed coffee over Adderall.

Trust your peers to become your familiar outsiders.

Conversation with the only person in your class before it starts, instead of Instagram.

Explore Bed-Stuy, ignore Williamsburg.

Accountability before hating your syllabus.

Anywhere above 80th street instead of Lower Manhattan.

The two hour wait for Di Fara’s pizza over Speedy Romeo’s.

Get stuck in Red Hook instead of in your own mind.

Take advantage of what you have instead of bitching about what you want.

A show at Trans-Pecos instead of a show at Madison Square Garden.

Self-worth challenging Instagram likes.

Saying “hello” to neighborhood residents instead of pretending they’re not there.

The Monk Parrots of Greenwood Cemetery are better than the pigeons of Brooklyn Bridge Park.

Patience with yourself instead of pressure.

Superchief Gallery instead of The Bushwick Collective.

Ignoring your notifications instead of ignoring your family.

Thinking about tomorrow, rather than next year.

Prioritizing that class you always wanted to take, before you miss your shot.

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Photography by Anonymous

HADAS GALLERY

Celebrate Chanukah right in your own backyard at Hadas! Hosted by Pratt Rabbi Simcha Weinstein and Vesper Stamper Illustration, this will be a night of art, music and festivities you’d be a schmuck to miss. See you there on Monday, December 3 from 8:00 p.m. to midnight at 541 Myrtle Avenue!


PRATT CREATIVE MARKET

Hosted by Program Board, Pratt is holding its first ever Creative Market for students to buy and sell their original work! Come out to the Student Union on Saturday, December 8 from 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. and support your fellow Prattlers!


THE TANK

Anna & Kitty, Inc. and The Tank present “The Russian and The Jew,” a “political fairy tale that explores anti-Semitism and misogyny through a female friendship in the Soviet Union in 1968, underlining the eternal question of fidelity to one’s self, one’s partner, and one’s country.” There will be 15 chances to see a performance between December 4th and 20th, so get your tickets before it’s too late!


THE GRADUATE CENTER, CUNY

“If tomorrow is another day, which and whose?” Join Lost & Found: The CUNY Poetics Document Initiative and The Center for the Humanities in “Radical Writing & Black Futures: Rankine, Martin, Hunt, Hartman,” a public conversation on “visionary writings exemplifying the practice of such a radically self-present revolutionary imaginary.” Head into Manhattan on Thursday, December 6 to catch this talk from 6:30 to 8:00 p.m.—tickets are free but attendees should RSVP.

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Photo by Samuel Herrera



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