Notable New York, This Week 1/25 – 1/31


This week in New York Lydia Davis and Richard Howard read, John Wray, Heidi Julavits and Sarah Manguso discuss ebooks at Melville House, Of Montreal and Damon & Naomi perform, Lapham’s Quarterly celebrates the launch of its Religion Issue, artists recreate the filmography of David Foster Wallace’s Infinite Jest character James Incandenza, and Selected Shorts presents actors acting out stories from Best European Fiction 2010.

MONDAY 1/25: Nick Flynn reads from The Ticking is the Bomb. Strand Bookstore. 828 Broadway. 7:00pm.

Richard Howard, Tom Healy and Nicky Beer read at the Triptych Reading. 510 E. 11th. Free. 7:00pm. (via TONY).

TUESDAY 1/26: Of Montreal and James Husband perform at Highline Ballroom. 431 W 16th St. 9:00pm.

WEDNESDAY 1/27: Best European Fiction 2010 with Aleksandar Hemon. The acclaimed Bosnian author of The Lazarus Project hosts a night of performances of stories from the first annual series, Best European Fiction, showcasing the richly diverse literature emerging from Europe today. In the tradition of the celebrated program Selected Shorts, stories will be performed by stars of the stage and screen.  Jack Davidson, Chris Sarandon and Michael Cerveris (In the Next Room or The Vibrator Play) perform stories by Igor Štiks, George Konrád, and Stephan Enter. Symphony Space. 2537 Broadway at 95th St. 7:00pm.

Open City Reading Series presents its January series featuring fiction and poetry from the new issue, Open City #28 (Winter 2010). Ben Nachumi will read poetry, and Sarah Malone and Christopher Sorrentino will read fiction. KGB. 85 E. 4th St. 7:00pm.

Publishing in the Age of Blah Blah Blah: What Do Authors Think About ebooks? – Authors gather at the Melville House bookstore to discuss the future of the book industry. John Wray, Heidi Julavits, Tao Lin, Lev Grossman, Sarah Manguso, Joe Meno and Myla Goldberg will be kicking off this new series by Melville House publisher Dennis Loy Johnson. Melville House Bookstore. 145 Plymouth St. Dumbo. 7:00pm.

THURSDAY 1/28: Lydia Davis. The Lillian Vernon Creative Writers House at NYU presents Lydia Davis, the acclaimed author of five collections of short fiction, including “Varieties of Disturbance” (a 2007 National Book Award finalist) and “The Collected Stories of Lydia Davis,” as well as a novel, “The End of the Story.” Davis is also the translator of many French literary works, including “Swann’s Way” by Marcel Proust. Lillian Vernon Creative Writers House. 58 West 10th Street (bet. 5th and 6th Ave.). 7:00pm.

Lapham’s Quarterly Religion Issue Launch Party. Book Court. 163 Court St. (bet. Pacific & Dean). 7:00pm.

Literary Magazine Salon: The New York Society Library hosts a very special evening of cocktails and readings celebrating the literary magazine. The evening features One Story editor Hannah Tinti introducing Terese Svoboda, jubilat publisher Rob Casper introducing Cathy Park Hong, and A Public Space editor Brigid Hughes introducing John Wray. Open to all members. $10 in advance; $15 at the door. For registration questions, please contact Carolyn Waters at 212-288-6900 x244. 6:30-9:00.

FRIDAY 1/29: Jonathan Lethem in Conversation with Darin Strauss. Jonathan Lethem is the author of seven novels, one novella, two short-story collections, and a volume of essays. Lethem’s newest novel is “Chronic City.” He is currently the Distinguished Writer-in-Residence at the NYU Creative Writing Program. Lillian Vernon Creative Writers House. 58 West 10th Street (bet. 5th and 6th Ave.). 5:00pm.

A FAILED ENTERTAINMENT: Incandenza/Infinite Jest Opening Reception. In 1996 author David Foster Wallace published his novel Infinite Jest, his sprawling and complex novel that chronicles the lives of the characters surrounding James Incandenza- avant-garde filmmaker, mathematician, and visionary tennis instructor. The plot largely revolves around the missing master copy of one of Incandenza’s films, titled Infinite Jest, a film so entertaining to its viewers that they become catatonic, losing all interest in anything other than endless viewings of the film. The LeRoy Neiman Gallery has commissioned artists and filmmakers to re-create seminal works from “Incandenza’s filmography.” 6:00pm. The Gallery at the LeRoy Neiman Center for Print Studies. 310 Dodge Hall. 2960 Broadway (entrance at 116th St.). 6:00-8:00pm.

The Frederick Wiseman retrospective at MOMA continues with Titicut Follies. Wiseman’s 1967 debut film, Titicut Follies, exposes the horrifying conditions at a state prison hospital for the criminally insane in Bridgewater, Massachusetts—conditions that seem to have changed little, even decades later, in similar institutions across the country—and it is still the only film ever to have been censored by a U.S. court for reasons other than national security or obscenity. MOMA. 11 W. 53rd St. 7:00pm.

Evan Dando, singer/songwriter/guitarist of the Lemonheads performs live at Maxwell’s. 1039 Washington St. Hoboken, New Jersey. 10:00pm.

SATURDAY 1/30: Damon & Naomi and Michio Kurihara of Ghost and Sharon van Etten at 92Y Tribeca. This special evening begins with the first-ever theater screening of Naomi films from the Factory 25 DVD release Damon & Naomi: 1001 Nights, a comprehensive video anthology of the duo. The screening is followed by a Q&A moderated by Haden Guest, Director of the Harvard Film Archive, with Damon & Naomi and Michio Kurihara of the legendary Japanese band Ghost, who is featured in the film. After the Q&A, join us in the mainstage for Damon & Naomi in concert with Kurihara. Sharon Van Etten, the ethereal Brooklyn based songbird who is a direct musical descendant of Damon & Naomi, plays an opening set. 92Y Tribeca. 9:30pm.

SUNDAY 1/31: Sunday Night Fiction Reading Series presents Jami Attenburg & Simon Van Booy. KGB. 85 E. 4th St. 7:00pm.

ART: Zhang Huan: Neither Coming Nor Going. (Through January 30). Zhang Huan’s second solo show at Pace Wildenstein features large-scale works on paper based on the 7th century prophecy book Tui Bei Tu. Pace Wildenstein Gallery. 545 W. 22nd.


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Original Notable New York Illustration © André da Loba

Other images in order of appearance: Image from Damon & Naomi’s website; Film still from Frederick Wiseman’s Titicut Follies; Tui Bei Tu No. 71, 2008 (Zhang Huan).

Rozalia Jovanovic is a founding editor of Gigantic, a magazine of short prose and art. She is the Deputy Editor of Flavorpill and has received fellowships from The MacDowell Colony and Columbia University. Her writing has appeared or is forthcoming from Unsaid, The Believer, Everyday Genius, Guernica, elimae, and She blogs at The Astonishing Egg and is The Rumpus New York Editor. More from this author →