Our curated list of events for this week: FPP Harlem reading series, No Longer Empty’s The Dictator Game, Grand Central’s Centennial.
MONDAY, JANUARY 28: FPP Harlem hosts the third reading of its second season for the First Person Plural Reading Series. The event features novelists Stacey D’Erasmo and Michael Thomas, poet and artist Monica Ong, and DJ Lady DM. The writers are invited to read or perform pieces that explore the collective voice and may also read from other recent work. Special guest DJ Lady DM will begin and end the reading with thirty minute sets. 7pm at the Shrine World Music Venue, 2271 Adam Clayton Powell Jr. Boulevard. FREE. Read our interview about FPP Harlem with Margo Jefferson, Pulitzer Prize Winning Cultural Critic.
TUESDAY, JANUARY 29: Sam Roberts, urban affairs correspondent for The New York Times and author of a new book entitled Grand Central: How a Train Station Transformed America (Grand Central Publishing, 2013) will present a lecture about Grand Central-its conception, history, and the far-reaching cultural impact of the station. Co-sponsored by Grand Central Publishing and LANDMARK WEST! 6:30pm at MCNY, 1220 5th Avenue. FREE. Reservations required. RSVP here.
Also on Tuesday: Join PEN America for an evening of readings by PEN Members old and new, with Catherine Chung, J. Robert Lennon, Tea Obreht, and Christopher Sorrentino at The Fiction Addiction Reading Series. Their readings will be projected onto a 50-foot wall across the street from the bar. Come see what all the hype is about and hear about what PEN has been up to lately. With drinks specials. Bar 2A, 25 Avenue A (at 2nd Street). FREE.
WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 30: Madison Square Park Conservancy’s Mad. Sq. Art is thrilled to announce a monumental sculpture by distinguished artist Leo Villareal. Largely inspired by the work of Buckminster Fuller, Villareal’s BUCKYBALL will apply concepts of geometry and mathematical relationships within a towering 30-foot tall, illuminated sculpture. The site-specific work will remain on view daily through February 15, 2013 in Madison Square Park. FREE.
THURSDAY, JANUARY 31: Taken from experimental economics, “The Dictator Game” puts to test our altruism and cooperation based on our awareness of inequality. One participant is given an amount of money and is given the option to either share it to the next person or not. Further scenarios give more power to the second participant, making the exchange relationship more complex as the game progresses. In the Creative Time version of the event, the game was interspersed with Protest Music songs. Part of No Longer Empty’s How Much Do I Owe You? Exhibit. 6:30pm at The Clocktower, 29-27 41st Avenue, Long Island City, Queens. FREE.
FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 1: Celebrate Grand Central’s 100th birthday all day with exhibits, special offers, performances, notable speakers, surprise entertainment, photo opportunities and more! Highlights include: the Grand Central Key Ceremony featuring Cynthia Nixon, Poet Laureate Billy Collins, Caroline Kennedy, the Vanderbilt Family & more (10-11:30am); a replica of the terminal made of LEGOs, 1913 pricing from Grand Central shops and restaurants (think a slice of cheesecake at the Oyster Bar for 19¢), sponsored giveaways (vintage train whistles, luggage tags & more). 9:30am-9:30pm. Check out the full schedule & specials here.
SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 2: From documentaries and promotional films to newsreels and home movies, New York’s 1939–40 World’s Fair produced an array of moving images that captured the innovative spirit of the time. Seen by millions, the documentaries and industrial films sold new products and appliances from companies like Westinghouse and General Motors, but they also offered audiences a novel and prescient vision of middle-class American life. Join us for a viewing of rare and legendary films. Screenings begin at 11:00 am, 1:00 pm, and 3:00 pm, with introductions by curator Donald Albrecht, Andrew W. Mellon Fellow Jessica Lautin, and others. Presented in conjunction with the exhibition Designing Tomorrow: America’s World’s Fairs of the 1930s. 11am-4pm at MCNY, 1220 5th Avenue. FREE with museum admission.
SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 3: Manhattanville, a historic West Harlem neighborhood established in 1806, is in continuous flux. With Columbia University’s controversial campus expansion well under way, many of the area’s distinctive landmarks in its development parcel have been demolished. But Manhattanville is much greater than the sum of the university’s acquired parts, and an intriguing amount of the area’s historic fabric still remains to attest to the 19th-century town “of considerable consequence” that it once was. Out of a struggle between institutional might and community spirit have also come some compelling new features–notably the MAS award-winning West Harlem Piers Park–which make this a neighborhood well worth exploring afresh. Join Manhattanville historian, author and winner of the Municipal Art Society’s 2010 MASterworks Award, Eric K. Washington for an overview of this area’s eventful, yet under-appreciated, past. 1pm. $20 / $15 Members. Location will be revealed after tickets are purchased.