Thanksgiving Is Ruined

The Personal is Political. The Political is Personal.

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January 09, 2006
"Ivory Towers -- 1964"

Adam Greenfield is right to point out and praise Herbert Muschamp's new essay about NYC's 2 Columbus Circle. I knew that the piece would be essential reading merely by seeing the paper's teaser for it, before publication. After reading it: Off the top of my (admittedly Swiss cheese-like) head, I cannot think of another piece I've read in the Times that's been as great.

I've previously mentioned my fascination with 2 Columbus Circle. Muschamp has given me and others with the same fascination a raft of associations and information to elevate our concern for its fate.

When will Muschamp publish his memoirs of the 1960s and 70s? His article provides several glimpses of the stories he could tell, both in his suggestions of sharp lines of distinction between certain tribes -- habitues of the Cedar Tavern vs. those of the San Remo Bar? -- and in other cases in what he chooses to group together -- showing equal enthusiasm for Maria Callas and Jayne County, with an intervening triple invocation of Jackie Curtis and Holly Woodlawn (the latter who knocked us all dead at Wigstock a couple years back, I can tell you).

Perhaps best of all (for the purpose of satisfying my own idiosyncratic intellectual itches), the article provides a wealth of new information on Huntington Hartford's gallery, which is of great interest. It has encouraged me to excavate from the bottom of a stack Hartford's 1964 book-length, horrified rant against then-contemporary art, Art of Anarchy? -- which I of course acquired at a library sale for 2 bucks. One of his chapter headings is the subject line of this post. More on the book later, perhaps.