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Nicole Baum, Marketing & Partnerships Manager at Gotham Greens Nicole Baum, Marketing & Partnerships Manager at Gotham Greens.

We’ve often thought that if you love food you should just move to Brooklyn—the way a lover of Thoroughbreds should move to Kentucky or a lover of surf to California. Brooklyn Eats, the annual food and beverage trade show hosted by the Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce, showed on June 27 just how sound that impulse would be by offering the borough’s full range of food possibilities, from serious farming to frivolous (but fabulous) ice cream and cupcakes.

Brooklyn Eats

“We are farmers that live in apartments. We see green fields where others see rooftops,” announces Gotham Greens’ website, baldly appealing to local patriotism—and so they should. Brooklyn’s rooftop farms and greenhouses are becoming one of the wonders of the urban world. Did anyone predict urban agriculture could be profitable before 2010, when the Brooklyn Grange opened its soil farm on the roof of a 43,000-square-foot building in Queens, and Gotham Greens built its commercial-scale greenhouse on the roof of a warehouse in North Brooklyn? Using hydroponic technology—nutrient-rich, reusable water instead of soil—Gotham Greens has since opened a greenhouse on the roof of the Whole Foods in Gowanus, and will soon operate a third in Jamaica, Queens.

“We concentrate on perishable crops,” says Nicole Baum, Marketing & Partnerships Manager at Gotham Greens, especially the lettuces that must be shipped long distances, from Latin America and California, and the herbs that are so treasured by today’s cooks. In place of long-distance transport, they simply carry the products down from the roof, converting “food miles to food footsteps,” says Gotham Greens co-founder Viraj Puri.

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Barcade-Beer-List-Untapped-Cities

We’ve already seen two of the more unusual themed bars: The Slaughtered Lamb in Greenwich Village and The Way Station in Prospect Heights, Brooklyn. Now, let’s look back at those two quirky bars, and we’ll show you two new ones in a roundup of some eccentric places to nerd out with some drinks.

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Brooklyn Artist Kara Walker Looks to History, Tension, Racism & Sex in Domino Exhibit: Tar Babies and a Giant Sphinx

Kara Walker's immense, sugar-coated sphinx measuring 75.5-feet long, 35.5-feet high, and 26 feet wide Kara Walker’s immense, sugar-coated sphinx measuring 75.5-feet long, 35.5-feet high, and 26 feet wide

There are those who think the Empire State Building, in all its Manhattan exuberance soaring towards the sky, is the apt symbol for New York. But a choice that may be truer to the very essence of our city, as it was and as it will be, is the Domino Sugar Refinery on the Brooklyn waterfront.

Sugar helped make New York rich, dominant, and powerful in the mid- to late 19th century, when its production was Brooklyn’s most important and innovative industry, until the 1930s, when, like much in New York, it declined precipitously. In many ways, what happens with the development of the Domino site—prime real estate on the Brooklyn waterfront—will tell us a great deal about our future.  (more…)

Amar Steward Notorious BIG and Tupac paintings NYC Untapped Cities

British artist Amar Stewart is the man behind the amazing paintings of NYC’s most important MC’s in the guise of 17th century Dutch royals and noblemen. Hailing from London, Stewart came to NYC to do a month-long residency at Cotton Candy Machine in Williamsburg. We met up with Stewart in Bushwick to chat about his inspiration, the New York vs. London art scene, and his upcoming show in San Francisco.

Can you tell us about your inspiration, first of all? We’ve obviously read that you’re inspired by Frans Hals’ portraits in the Met, but are there other artists or art forms that inspire you?

Yeah, definitely ‘cause I only discovered Frans Hals about two years ago, and it was my fiancée that introduced me to his work. I’d heard of it, I’d probably seen a little bit of it, but I never really paid much attention to it. I think because for so many years I was trying to figure out what I wanted to do with my art, so I was looking at graffiti artists, illustrators, designers, all sorts of creative people in different genres, which I don’t think was a bad thing. I was looking at them all, and I guess because of that I was inspired by so many people. A lot of the works were different mediums, even, like digital or illustrations to chalk works, to aerosol, murals and whatnot.  (more…)

10 Notable Swimming Pools in NYC

03/18/2014 at 10:00 am

Posted In Architecture, Featured, New York

by spencer cohen">spencer cohen

In honor of the warm weather (hopefully) dawning on the city soon, we thought we’d share a list of New York’s most notable swimming pools–from historically significant ones now in ruins to a floating public pool to ones crowning five star hotels. What follows is a list of notable pools around the city.

1. Woolworth Building Pool

The Woolworth Building‘s Pompeii inspired pool (photo via New-York Historical Society)

In the depths of the the Woolworth Building, one of New York’s most iconic buildings, rests the remnants of a Pompeii inspired pool . Covered extensively in our The New York City That Never Was column, the pool was designed by Woolworth architect Cass Gilbert and used until 1999 as part of the Jack Lalane health club. Today it sits awaiting possible renovation as the Woolworth Building gets partially converted into condos. Note our upcoming tour of the building!

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Rappers Painted as Royalty at Brooklyn’s Cotton Candy Machine

Jay Z-Shawn Carter-Cotton Candy Machine-Williamsburg-NYC-Untapped Cities-Amar StewartJigga with a Feather Hat by Amar Stewart (Instagram photo via Cotton Candy Machine)

Tomorrow night, Cotton Candy Machine, an art boutique in Williamsburg run by Sean Leonard and artist Tara McPherson, hosts an opening of oil paintings by their first artist in residence, Amar Stewart. The Brooklyn-based artist, originally from London, England, has had his work shown before in NYC and in other major cities like LA, Hong Kong and Melbourne.

The theme of his latest collection of oil painting takes inspiration from Dutch Golden Age painter Frans Hal and Hip Hop culture, with most of his paintings featuring legendary NYC MC’s along with ones who have made their mark on the culture over the past few years. (more…)