Peter W. Kaplan, the former editor of the New York Observer, passed away after a battle with cancer Friday. He was 59. As The Observer’s editor-in-chief from 1994 to 2009, Kaplan took a paper with a small circulation and revolutionized the field of journalism, whether people knew it at the time or not. He crafted a voice among his writers that was in turns sophisticated, sarcastic, erudite and honest, a legacy that can be seen nearly everywhere in media today. The writers and editors who came of age under Kaplan represent a veritable checklist of journalistic success stories, including the gossip columnist Frank DiGiacomo; the New York Times editor Alexandra Jacobs; the New Yorker staff writer Nick Paumgarten; Choire Sicha, the founder of The Awl; Candace Bushnell—whose column Sex and the City, which Kaplan named himself, became a pop culture sensation even as the paper that printed it remained relatively obscure; and scores of others. There are few publications in New York City—either extant or extinct—that do not bear at least some of his influence.
The 2013 edition of Art Basel Miami Beach is only moments away. The fair runs this year from Thursday, Dec. 5, through Sunday, Dec. 8, with a preview day on Wednesday, Dec. 4. We’ll be filing from the fair throughout that stretch. Until then, there are previews. This slide show has new works from David Read More
If you flew commercially this Thanksgiving, you probably weren’t expecting an especially comfortable experience. And I bet you didn’t have one.
Amid such lowered expectations, it is interesting to see airlines changing how they communicate with customers.
The mainstream passenger experience is now about opting-out of services to preserve value. Airlines have adapted their messaging to manage these consumer decisions.
Their new pitch is: if you had a lousy flight, the problem is you. Read More
A single piece of fossilized dinosaur poop rests on a shelf in a dilapidated shack in Brooklyn. The poop costs $25, and it’s just one of several odd items for sale at Frank Traynor’s curiosity shop, known as the Perfect Nothing Catalog, which is now situated in the backyard of a gallery in Bushwick and mostly sells handmade objects by artists Mr. Traynor admires. Read More
That was fast. It feels like Art Basel Miami Beach just happened, but in fact almost a full year has elapsed. This year’s edition runs Thursday, Dec. 5, through Sunday, Dec. 8, at the Miami Beach Convention Center, with a preview day on Wednesday, Dec. 4. More than 250 galleries from around the world will be showing work. In the slide show at left, a preview of some of the art on offer. Read More
“Is it choreography or is it movement?” Steven Hoggett has been officially stage-credited as one or the other in shows, so when he was asked that question at point-blank range about the jerky gyrations he is now putting a band of twentysomethings through, he paused a long, hard, thoughtful Hoggett beat and smiled a “touché!”
“Good question,” he conceded. “It’s a mix between the two. I suppose that’s why I’m attracted to projects like this. I like to play with fast movement, then choreograph.” Read More
This month, Michael Imperioli appears in his sixth Spike Lee flick, Oldboy—a psychological thriller adapted from the Korean film of the same name—though it has been nearly 15 years since the two last worked together. “It didn’t feel like a while when we went to work,” said Mr. Imperioli, who acts in the movie alongside Josh Brolin. Like Mr. Lee, the former Sopranos star is an archetypal New Yorker, though he now lives in Santa Barbara. For years, he ran Studio Dante, a theater company in Chelsea, and he owned and operated a bar, Ciel Rouge, in the same neighborhood. The Transom recently caught up with the 47-year-old actor to discuss the new film, what else he has in the works and why New York City ain’t what it used to be. Read More
Mike Tyson with Larry Sloman
(Blue Rider Press, 592 pp., $30)
With the more colorful moments of Mike Tyson’s life now thoroughly documented in the minds of the American public, this is a book that should simply be quoted at length because it is absolutely bonkers. From Mr. Tyson’s epilogue:
“These days I Read More
Garbage never smells good, but you won’t find a landfill anywhere more offensive than Spike Lee’s stupid remake of Oldboy, the 2003 horror flick from South Korea by Park Chan-wook. This one stinks at 10 below zero. Read More
“You each have song books!” instructed two-time Academy Award winner Emma Thompson at a recent lunch celebrating Disney’s Saving Mr. Banks. The film, which premieres next month and stars Tom Hanks as the fiery Walt Disney, is a charming, previously untold tale about the 20-year battle to make Mary Poppins. Read More