Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Out and about in the East Village

In this weekly feature, East Village-based photographer James Maher provides us with a quick snapshot of someone who lives and/or works in the East Village.

By James Maher

Name: Rembrandt Duran (and Lucy)
Occupation: Clothing Designer
Location: 9th Street and Avenue A (Tompkins Square Park)
Time: 3:58 on Monday, September 10

"I’ve lived in the neighborhood for 21 years. I’m a Mexican-Dutch New York City born designer. I own my own brand; it’s called Adeen. I’ve always been into cartoons and I just fell in love with the way the cartoons were dressed, so I kind of now design things that aren’t costumey but are reminiscent of the cartoons. It’s my favorite cartoon characters from back in the day but in a really fashionable way. So I guess that’s how my whole brand came alive. The motto is, “Bringing that Saturday morning cartoon feel.”

Surprisingly, everybody has been really receptive towards it. It’s been 2 years since I started the brand and I have 23 stores worldwide that carry my stuff: Sydney, China, Taiwan, Korea, Japan, LA, and now New York.

I used to be one of those bad kids in the neighborhood. When I was younger, I had really long curly hair and everybody thought I was a girl so I’d run around the sprinklers naked and people would come up to me and be like ‘you’re not a girl!’

One time I almost got shot. We fucked with the wrong cab driver. It was like, "Up, okay… Gotta go; he has a gun." There were other things we did as well that were funny to us at the time, but wouldn’t have been funny to anyone else.

My whole group of friends are not as bad as they used to be anymore; they all changed their lives around. We’re all doing our own things. Either they’re skating, rollerblading, or they’re all off in college. I guess we all just started hanging out less and started focusing more. Everybody’s prospering and doing really great.

The $2 falafel spot is the best; the one on 2nd Avenue between 7th and 8th. Cheep's. Mamoun's is gross; they don’t even have good hot sauce — it’s too hot! The dollar pizza place is the best. That’s really where I chill around the neighborhood."

James Maher is a fine art and studio photographer based in the East Village. Find his website here.


Kurt said...

Cheeps use to be awesome but something changed. Now it's pretty crap.

Anonymous said...

Disagree dude. Mamoun's is better. Not gross, as you say. You young people with your hyperbole. So binary, everything's gotta be the best thing ever or if not it's "meh". Again Mamoun's is better. Try the chicken kebab.

Goggla said...

Glad to hear from a younger person with an interesting background. Keep up the great interviews!

Anonymous said...

Mamoun's hot sauce is great and not it's not too hot. But I do have a titanium gullet.

James Maher said...

As the photographer here I do not hold the same opinion as Rembrandt regarding Mamouns :) I LOVE Mamouns' hot sauce!

EV Grieve said...

@ James

Ha! I'm glad that you remained objective!