Pop Goes Culture


OJ Simpson was released from federal prison last week. It was 1994 when Nicole Simpson and Ron Goldman were murdered, and the world was captivated by the white Bronco chase and subsequent trial. Of course, a decade later the world would learn of OJ's lawyer's daughter, Kim Kardashian, via her "leaked" sex tape. Looking back (with the help of Time Magazine) that year was an incredible one. Here are some examples in no particular order:

  • Pulp Fiction, Forest Gump & The Lion King were released
  • Friends debuted
  • Curt Cobain committed suicide
  • Nancy Kerrigan was attacked
  • Michael Jackson married Lisa Marie Presley
  • Amazon & Yahoo were founded
  • The Sony Playstation was released.

Holy sh*t, that was a crazy year! It made me reflect on today's issues regarding celebrity, notoriety, depression, and hope. What I realized is our culture changes year to year, and yet some aspects become indelible in our life memories. This week's Loupe on pop culture proves the old adage, "everything old is new again!" 


International Center for Photography
Generation Wealth, works by Lauren Greenfield
250 Bowery, New York, NY 10012

This show hurts. Photographer Lauren Greenfield points her sharp lens at many aspects of modern culture, one more gauche than the next.  This retrospective starts with kids + money, which covers kids brought up with wealth and privilege in Beverly Hills. Amazingly, she captures a young Kim Kardashian before her sex tape and eponymous show. She then moves through subjects including beauty queens (children), China's newly rich, and rap music culture to name a few. What is amazing is how commonplace these images have become in our Instagram dominated world we inhabit. I am curious if my kids would think this show even casts a negative light ... food for thought? 


THNK 1994 Museum
Housewives Pointing Fingers
1436 Atlantic Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11216

This museum/art gallery was inspired by an ESPN 30 for 30 Documentary entitled The Price of Gold about Tanya Harding and Nancy Kerrigan. THNK 1994 Museum Founders (and roommates) Matt Harkins and Viviana Olen are keen observers of pop culture and recognized the importance of the Harding/Kerrigan scandal in popular culture. This story had it all: 24/7 media coverage, Beauty & the Beast, class warfare, and even an evil villain with a cheesy mustache! If you haven't seen the documentary, you should, or wait until the movie I, Tonya, comes out in December. Subsequently, Matt and Viviana successfully launched a Kickstarter Campaign and curated their first show about The Price of Gold in their hallway.  This has become their permanent collection and is currently on display. Now, they have curated a number of shows and are currently showing a series of paintings of Housewives (yes, your favorite gals from Bravo)  by a variety of artists entitled Pointing Fingers. Let Matt and/or Viviana walk you through the exhibit, they are awesome. I already bought a small painting of Bethany's dog Cookie from the series Housepups Pointing Noses!


Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) Classic Edition

The introduction of a computer (Commodore) into my home in the 80's was nice, but home video games was a real game changer. Watching my kid's binge watch Netflix reminds me how I probably used to binge play video games. For me, it all started with the NES. Super Maria Brothers and then all the classic arcade games were brought right into my living room. They began to interfere with my homework, my sports, my family time, and my life. The more things change, the more they stay the same. Were we so different than our children are now? These entertainment systems ushered in the modern era of addiction! Well, Nintendo has now reintroduced the NEC Classic Edition, and they are sold out everywhere! It comes preloaded with 20 games, including Mario Brothers, Zelda, Donkey Kong, and Street Fighter. There is no need to retrofit an old console purchased on eBay, but instead, this new version looks like the old one but has HDMI! I am curious if there is time for Mario Brothers in between Candy Crush and How I Met Your Mother.

So, consider yourself up (for now) on your pop culture and  Nintendo Entertainment System ClassicGeneration Wealth at the ICP, and Housewives Pointing Fingers at THNK 1994 Found!

*** Don't worry, I have your back! I will attempt to protect you from potentially dangerous cultural phenomenon and yourself. Let's bring social media down to a manageable and useful level with The Loupe app. Here you can share only noteworthy things that have utility with a small cadre of like-minded people, your Loupe! If you haven't already downloaded the app you can follow this link. Make sure you register and go through the tutorial.

For those of you who have already downloaded the app, I want to use this section to teach you something you may not already know about the app. Open the Home page and hold down Places which brings up a map of nearby Finds; the Red pins are restaurants and the Blue pins are other places of interest. You can move around the map to discover Finds in different locations, as well as see a list of those Finds on the map by pressing the three lines in the top right corner. Happy finding!