nyc things to do

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above photo by Plamen Petkov

If you’re looking for an off-the-beat, unique art experience in NY, the gallery at the Cadillac House is a must-see!  For Instagram addicts, this is THE fantasy selfie station.  With all sorts of wacky backdrops including fish wallpaper, crocodile statues, and spaghetti floors, it’ll have you posing and preening in all the nooks and crannies of its psychedelic space!  We loved it because not only did it spur a fantastical imagination, it was interactive!  What child doesn’t want to touch and feel?  This pop-up apartment envisioned by Ferrari and Cattelan encourages you to explore and more!  Here is Juliet jumping on the bed and playing Cinderella by vacuuming the floors!!

And just like with any other apartment, this one required a lot of household chores.  We started our day getting ready at the vanity, then found dirty laundry sitting on the bathroom floor, a kitchen with dinner uncooked, and hungry pets to feed.

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With so much to do around the house, you might just need to, lounge and call a friend from the comforts of your colorful bed.

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Needless to say, this was SUCH a fun place for her and I to play pretend.  We went after school pick up (around 1:30pm) on a weekday and were the only ones there!  I highly suggest going during the weekday with your kids to fully enjoy the space.  After you’re done, you can treat yourself to a little something at the beautiful cafe that they have and also browse the latest Cadillac models!   IMG_1097 IMG_1098

What a fun mommy and me outing this was!  Click here for more of our fashionable adventures around the city!

The exhibition was made possible through creative media agency Visionaire and Toiletpaper MagazineFerrari and Cattelan are co-creators of the latter. Toiletpaper Paradise runs through April 12 and is free to the public.

The Gallery at Cadillac House
330 Hudson Street
New York City

 

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NYC has so much to offer in terms of arts and culture.  We feel blessed to have so many amazing opportunities to show Juliet a good time that are both fun for all and educational too!  When Symphony Space invited us to view one of their new, family-friendly “Just Kidding” performances, we were thrilled to review their calendar and find that they had dance performances for our tiny dancer to watch!  This 3.5 year old LOVES dance!  She has started ballet at 18months and has this year, added tap classes to her dance routine. Having read that there would be over 100 dancers from National Dance Institute’s “The Celebration Team” on stage we knew this would be a spectacle!

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What we didn’t know and fully appreciate until after seeing the show was the level of professionalism that would be exhibited.  As a fellow dancer myself, (I trained in tap and jazz for 12 years, while also dabbling in ballet, hip hop and other forms of dance) I deeply understood the hours of practice and collaboration a performance like this required.  And to think we expected to see another kid’s recital…

national dance institute, arts for kids, nyc kids

What made this dance performance so awe-inspiring was the choreography.  I was seriously SO impressed.  Dances ranged from African to modern, to jazz and hip hop styles- all mixed in with an innovative dose of poetry.  (yes poetry!)  And I’m not talking about the Dr. Seuss variety but quotes from Walt Whitman and other sophisticated leaders and prime poets from our century!  And the creativity  (oh the creativity!)  It was Broadway / Martha Graham – level!  I couldn’t help but be a tad bit jealous of these kids who got to train under such talented tutelage.  Way to go to all the Producers and developers of this show!ndi_poetry_02medium

The other interesting things about the show was that it featured a healthy mix of boys and girls.  They say it’s hard to find male dancers but you wouldn’t know it from this stage! They made for excellent examples for all the littles to look up to!  And finally, who knew a kids’ dance performance could so powerfully translate themes of diversity, hope, and love.  We appreciated the sophisticated messages that kept the adults thinking and on their toes too!

Tips for Parents:

  • refreshments can be purchased inside the auditorium.  There’s even wine for the adults (woohoo!) and yes, you are allowed to take them back to your seat.
  • Booster seats for the little ones are readily made available so everyone no matter their age enjoyed excellent viewing
  • Indoor stroller valet is free of charge
  • It’s conveniently located across from the 96th street subway stop on Broadway

In this highly digital age, it’s so nice when we can find entertainment away from an ipad that is rich with culture, isn’t it?  Plus what parent can turn down the opportunity to give their kids an art-filled family memory? The Symphony Space’s remarkable calendar of events (there are shows every weekend now through the end of March!) includes everything from music to acrobatics to comedy, to puppetry to theater and of course, dance.  You’re sure to find something that suits your fancy.

Here are a couple of our picks for upcoming shows!


Les Parfaits Inconnus

“goofballs who jugle, rock out, shimmy up poles, and make their audiences squeal with delight.” -The Seattle Times

Saturday, January 7 at 11 am and 2 pm:

Justin Roberts and The Not ready for Naptime Players 

“the Judy Blume of Kiddie rock” -The New York Times)

Sat., December 10 11am and 2pm

Full Disclosure – we were given complimentary tickets to review the show and venue.   All opinions expressed are 100% my own.

 

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When Juliet says, “Mommy I love going on adventures with you!” She is referring to our little mommy and me field trips where I take her to new and exciting NYC spaces offering arts and culture.  Here, we explored an immersive gallery experience at the Tanya Bonakdar Gallery on 521 W 21st st.  The moment you first view this colorful, web like art structure, curiosity takes over and you can’t wait to get close-up to Ernesto Neto’s work.

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Titled, “The Serpent Gave Birth To Humanity”, was made up of finger-knitted weaves that evoked the image of an “infinite serpent.”

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It welcomed touch which was so perfect for a toddler with curious hands.

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As you crawled through openings, and slithered through curvy tunnels, it was hard not to appreciate that you were in a special place.

dsc_3177There was also a round, canopied structure, that created a tent-like fort where Juliet found instruments to play with like a guitar and the drum set below.  She even danced to the music made by others!dsc_3185

It was very apparent that the artist considered the energy, sounds and movements made by the inhabitants part of his ever-moving art.  We had so much fun exploring the space, its textures, and its wonders that we hardly realized that an hour had passed!  It’s a great spot to come with kids, or just to sit, relax and reflect on its padded yellow floors.

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This solo exhibition is on view from October 29 through December 17, 2016 and is free and open to the public.  We hope that you too will be able to experience this vibrant, immersive experience!

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For more video recaps, follow us @fabgabblog on Instagram!

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misaki kawai, cave life

I love art and so does Juliet.  We’ve enrolled her in art classes since age 18months and she has happily and proudly made her own art at various school settings and at home ever since!  She often comes running over to us at school pick-up excitedly telling us, “I made this for YOU!!” And we’ve already collected a mountain of her artwork, turning our fridge and sometimes her playhouse into a virtual art gallery.  One way we’ve encouraged her love of art is to take her to art galleries around the city.  Here are the 3 main reasons galleries are great places to take a toddler. 

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  1. It’s a mommy and me outing that doesn’t SUCK.  There comes a time (usually weekly) where you’ve had enough of the playgrounds and indoor play pits.  Anyone relate to this?  Kids running around, crying and screaming while your mind goes numb and you look into your phone as your only outlet for parental pleasure…  Sometimes you need to mix it up!  Take your kids to a kid-friendly art gallery for some education and culture that feeds both your minds and souls.  How many times can you say you left inspired after leaving the playground?? misaki kawai, cave life
  2. Experience the culture without the overwhelm.  Toddlers (and plenty of adults) have short attention spans.  Instead of trying to cover an entire museum in one day in order to try and get your money’s worth,  (after all you could be forking over $20 admission at a famed NYC museum), you can expect to dedicate anywhere from 10minutes to a half an hour at a gallery for free while feeling the same accomplishment and satisfaction of having completed an artsy, worthwhile experience.  Small doses feel manageable.  Avoid the overwhelm and ensure yourself a happy toddler.misaki kawai, cave life
  3. It encourages curiosity and creativity.  Win mommy of the week award (if there ever was such a thing) by enriching your child’s life with the joy of exploration, curiosity AND creativity.  Juliet actually told me the other day at our last gallery outing, “Mommy, I love going on adventures with you.  this is so exciting!”  You never know what you may find!  In today’s case, we found an all yellow room, with fun painted furniture in the shape of bananas, snakes and bones.  The large-scale paintings, and wall murals seemed straight out of a child’s imagination.  Juliet immediately related and was quick to tell me about her favorite finds.cave life, nyc art, nyc art gallery, 312 bowery, the hole

If you’re interested in checking out this sunny space, go to 312 Bowery to a gallery space named “The Hole” before this “Cave Life” exhibit by Misaki Kawai ends on October 30th.  Note that it is only open Wednesday – Sunday 12pm-7pm and is by the Bleeker Street 6 train and Broadway-Lafayette B, D, F and M trains.

It promises to bring out the kid in all of us.  Juliet and I went home and continued to talk about what we saw and even tried to replicate some of the artwork at home!

misaki kawai, cave life, nyc art gallery, the hole, art for kids

For more of our artsy adventures, check out our posts on  Refinery 29’s NYFW installation, NYC street art, and the Osgemeos gallery exhibit!

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We are so lucky to live in Manhattan and have such easy access to all the amazing art in the city!  Today, after school pick-up, we enjoyed the unseasonably warm 80 degree fall weather with a little artsy adventure.  Lehmann Maupin on W 22nd street showcased a wildly colorful exhibit featuring Brazilian artist duo OSGEMEOS that we just had to see for ourselves.

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Twin brothers Gustavo and Otavio Pandolfo transformed multiple rooms in an immersive installation that combined drawing, painting, collage, mixed media sculpture, and kinetic and audio elements.

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We found the vibrant art to be so much fun to explore with its playful, quirkyiness!  Ever hear of the man in the moon?  Well here’s a toddler too!

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The exhibition offers “a heightened multi-sensory experience that embraces the power of human imagination and the vast possibilities in visually interpreting the subconscious.”  It certainly did feel a little dreamy, that is if you dream in full, technicolor fashion!

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Osgemeos’s signature yellow characters and intriguing patterns felt accessible and understandable to all ages which is why I highly recommend it as a fun outing for moms and kids.  I love that I can instill the appreciation of art and exploration through NYC exhibits like this!

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Check it out, even if it’s just for all the Instagram-able floor-to-ceiling art walls!     silence of the music, nyc art, nyc gallery

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