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Art Rx: Thanksgiving Weekend Edition!

by Liza Eliano on November 23, 2011

While the art world in America slows down a bit this weekend to eat turkey, there is still plenty to do to work off all those calories. This week’s Art Rx offers a medley of Thanksgiving weekend events including Diego Rivera’s murals at MoMA, Big Onion’s eating tour of the Lower East Side and, in the true spirit of giving, an Occupy Wall Street Thanksgiving. Some have more to do with eating than with art, but this is the weekend to give your eyes and minds a rest and focus on those taste buds.

Diego Rivera, "Agrarian Leader Zapata" (1931), food-related image on OWS website, Williamsburg Savings Bank (photo via brooklynflea.com courtesy of reallyboring from Flickr)

Viva La Revolución with Diego Rivera at MoMA

When: Until May 4, 2012
Where: The Museum of Modern Art (11 West 53rd Street, Midtown, Manhattan)

MoMA will probably be a clusterfuck this holiday weekend, but its worth fighting off the tourists to see the retrospective on the fascinating husband of Frida Kahlo, Diego Rivera. The famed Mexican muralist is a great choice if you are with visiting family and friends this weekend who might not be as art-obsessed as you. His murals are laden with the struggles of the 99% in both rural Mexico and the newly industrialized city are accessible to art and non-art audiences alike and are always relevant.

Diego Rivera: Murals for the Museum of Modern Art is devoted to the works Rivera created during his six-week residency at the museum in 1931, including designs for his controversial mural for Rockefeller Center that was eventually censored and destroyed. If you visit MoMA this Saturday or Sunday you can also catch a gallery talk and walk-though of the exhibition conducted by museum lecturers.

Tired Of Turkey? Take Big Onion’s Multi-Ethnic Eating Tour!

When: November 25, tours at 11:00am and 2:00pm
Where: The tour meets at the southwest corner of Delancey and Essex Streets, in front of the American Choice Deli/Chase Bank (Lower East Side, Manhattan). To reserve a spot email info[at]bigonion[dot]com.

This Friday, Big Onion Walking Tours makes it totally acceptable to keep stuffing your face after Thanksgiving with their Post-Thanksgiving Multi Ethnic Eating Tour. The tour includes a series of food samplings or “noshings” from local shops and markets in the Lower East Side as a way to explore the cultural history of the area. For just five bucks you get 10 different samplings from Dominican, Jewish, Italian and Chinese communities in the neighborhood. No restaurants are included, so this promises to be an authentic experience, plus history is always more interesting when its edible.

Spend Thanksgiving with Occupy Wall Street

When: November 25, 2 – 6pm
Where: Zuccotti Park (Financial District, Manhattan)

How could the self-sufficient, community-based movement of OWS not go all out for Thanksgiving? Occupy Wall Street’s site announced that this Thursday the movement is celebrating Turkey Day with an open feast at Zuccotti Park. The amount of outreach pouring into this even is something only OWS could pull off. Over three thousand individually wrapped plates will be distributed on Thursday in accordance with New York State Health Code, while several people in the community have opened their home to cook meals. A food drive and speeches by “indigenous voices, religious leader, food justice activists, and leaders from peoples’ movements” are also planned. These are definitely things to be thankful for.

Related News: Adbusters has also issued a call to merge the goals of Occupy Wall Street with the 20th anniversary of Buy Nothing Day, which protests consumerism and the crazed spending promoted on Black Friday. The action is called #OCCUPYXMAS and kicks off November 25 and 26 with “flash mobs, consumer fasts, mall sit-ins, community events, credit card-ups, whirly-marts and jams, jams, jams!”  As always there are some pretty sweet posters to accompany the event that are available here for people to print out and paste in public spaces.

Brooklyn Flea Moves Indoors for the Winter

When: Saturday and Sunday, 10am – 5pm through March 2012
Where: Skylight One Hanson (One Hanson Place, Fort Greene, Brooklyn)

If you must shop this weekend (and let’s be honest, we’ll probably all get the itch to spend as Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa and Festivus  get closer), why not buy local? Throughout the summer and fall, Brooklyn Flea has featured hundreds of top vendors for art, antiques and crafts by local artisans and designers, plus tons of delicious Smorgasburg food vendors. Although the food fair ended last week (facepalm), Brooklyn Flea continues through the winter at their indoor location in the former Williamsburg Savings Bank. The markets move this Saturday and it’s definitely worth a trip if only to check out the gorgeous interior architecture of this Brooklyn landmark.

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