Sunday, January 19, 2020

Week in Grieview


[Photo from last night]

• Trio responsible for the deadly 2nd Avenue gas explosion sentenced to 4 to 12 years in prison (Friday) ... Convicted gas explosion landlord Maria Hrynenko out on bail; hired help remains behind bars (Saturday)

• RIP Matthew Maher, longtime owner of McSorley's (Monday)

• About those detailed East Village drawings at the new Trader Joe's on 14th Street (Wednesday)

• Updated: NYPD investigating report of man shot with a pellet gun on Avenue C (Thursday)

• Performance Space New York introduces the Keith Haring Theatre on 1st Avenue (Thursday)

• Farmwich pops up with speciality sandwiches at Ben's Deli on Avenue B (Monday)

• Police searching for 2 suspects in knifepoint robbery at Anwar Grocery on Avenue B (Wednesday)

• THIS is actually the new home for the Half Gallery on 4th Street and Avenue B (Thursday)

• Police searching for suspect in early morning stabbing in East River Park this past Dec. 24 (Tuesday)

• Latest Post "exclusive" is a story EVG reported on 11 months ago (Wednesday)

• Arepa Factory closes up on Avenue A (Tuesday)

• I Love Panzerotti now open on St. Mark's Place (Thursday)


[A scene on 2nd Avenue via Derek Berg]

• Liquiteria has apparently closed on 4th Avenue (Monday)

• Mobile police lights arrive on St. Mark's Place (Monday)

• Looking at two empty corner storefronts along 7th Street (Friday)

• First sign of the Pineapple Club on 6th Street (Wednesday)

• Watch Baby Yoda come to life outside the 2nd Avenue F stop (Friday)

• Fast-casual bowl alert: Sweetgreen opens on the Bowery (Tuesday)

• Mysteries: Who placed these pink gumball machines along Avenue A? (Friday)

• Lenwich giving University Place a roll (Wednesday)

... and a photo from East Houston Friday night with the Snapseed app's vintage filter...



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Saturday, January 18, 2020

It snowed for awhile today



And it marked the first snowfall of the year, of the decade... it eventually turned to sleet... before then, a few familiar snowy scenes from around the neighborhood...







... and here are two street scenes via Vinny & O...





... and Salim shared this from outside Josie's on Sixth Street...

Convicted gas explosion landlord Maria Hrynenko out on bail; contractor, plumber remain behind bars


[Photo from March 26, 2015 via @mesh_mellow]

After yesterday's sentencing of the three people a jury found responsible for the deadly March 2015 Second Avenue gas explosion, the defendants were handcuffed and taken into custody.

However, per published reports, their lawyers said they planned to appeal and were trying to get their clients out on bail.

According to public records, landlord Maria Hrynenko made bail yesterday as she awaits an appeal of the case ...



The other two who were sentenced, contractor Dilber Kukic and unlicensed plumber Jerry Ioannidis, remain at the Manhattan Detention Center...





Manhattan Supreme Court Judge Michael Obus handed down prison sentences of between four and 12 years each — depending on their behavior behind bars — in state prison. The defendants faced a maximum of 5 to 15 years each.

“What the defendants did, in a matter of speaking, was roll the dice with the lives of many people,” Obus told the courtroom. “The results, as we know, are catastrophic.”

However, Obus said that he was giving the defendants a break on their prison time because they were older and “did not intend to blow up the building,” as the Post reported.

“It’s not enough. It’s a joke,” Nixon Figeuroa, whose son Nicholas died in the explosion along with Moises Locon, told reporters. “What kind of justice did you give us? You didn’t give us no justice. It’s a slap in my son’s face.”

Kukic was the only defendant to speak to the court yesterday, according to CBS 2.

“He said that he would gladly give up his own life for the lives of the people who lost their lives,” Kukic’s lawyer Marc Agnifilo said.

Here is a breakdown of the convictions via the DA's office:

MARIA HRYNENKO, D.O.B. 11/26/1959
Rockland, N.Y.

Convicted:

Manslaughter in the Second Degree, a class C felony, 2 counts
Assault in the Second Degree, a class D felony, 9 counts
Assault in the Third Degree, a class A misdemeanor, 4 counts
Reckless Endangerment in the Second Degree, a class A misdemeanor, 1 count

Sentenced:

4-to-12 years in prison

ATHANASIOS “JERRY” IOANNIDIS, D.O.B. 6/15/1956
Queens

Convicted:

Manslaughter in the Second Degree, a class C felony, 2 counts
Assault in the Second Degree, a class D felony, 9 count
Assault in the Third Degree, a class A misdemeanor, 4 counts
Reckless Endangerment in the Second Degree, a class A misdemeanor, 1 count
Falsifying Business Records in the Second Degree, a class A misdemeanor, 2 counts

Sentenced:

4-to-12 years in prison

DILBER KUKIC, D.O.B. 6/9/1975
Bronx

Convicted:

Manslaughter in the Second Degree, a class C felony, 2 counts
Assault in the Second Degree, a class D felony, 9 count
Assault in the Third Degree, a class A misdemeanor, 4 counts
Reckless Endangerment in the Second Degree, a class A misdemeanor, 1 count

Sentenced:

4-to-12 years in prison

EVG Etc.: Amelia and Christo are building their 2020 nests; New ICP home debuting next week


[Parking fun on 7th Street via Derek Berg]

• In NYC, 404 people considered homeless died between July 2018 and June 2019, which is 39 percent more than the previous time period (Gothamist)

• A suspect slashed his wrists in a Seventh Street apartment yesterday morning before police executed a warrant for his arrest (The Post)

• Approximately half of the luxury-condo units that have come onto the market in Manhattan in the past five years are still unsold (The Atlantic)

• Nest-building time in Tompkins Square Park for red-tailed hawks Amelia and Christo (Laura Goggin Photography)

• The International Center of Photography will officially open its new 40,000-square-foot museum and educational center on the Lower East Side next Saturday, Jan. 25 (The Lo-Down)

• RIP John “Butch” Purcell, known to many in the community as the mayor of Stuyvesant Town (Town & Village)

• How did Gov. Cuomo come up with the L-train repairs coming in $76 million below expected costs? (WNYC)

• "The Naked Fog," a long-lost sexploitation film by Joe Sarno from 1966, screens tonight and tomorrow night at 7:30 at the Anthology Film Archives (I saw it last night!) Read more about it here. It's part of the Anthology's "Beyond Cassavetes" series.



• The Village East on Second Avenue and 12th Street is playing several Oscar-nominated films, including additional screenings of Best Picture nominee "JoJo Rabbit" ... they're also showing the Oscar-snubbed "Uncut Gems" (Official site) ... You could also support Cinema Village on 12th Street between University and Fifth, which is screening "Joker" and "Once Upon a Time ... in Hollywood" (Official site)

• Here's the lineup for the second-annual New Colossus Festival happening in March at several EV and LES venues (Official site)

• Alex recalls a night out with Rush, and RIP Neil Peart (Flaming Pablum)

• If you need help ordering a bagel (Grub Street)

• Opening next week at the Museum of the City of New York: "Collecting New York's Stories: Stuyvesant to Sid Vicious" (Official site)

... and a look at the new high-tech equipment for the EVG HQ, which is not a tree ... photo by Derek Berg...

Friday, January 17, 2020

Cable ready



Melbourne, Australia's Cable Ties have a new record coming out in March on Merge. The video here was released this week for "Sandcastles."

[Updated] Trio responsible for the deadly 2nd Avenue gas explosion sentenced to 4 to 12 years in prison


[Image via CBS 2]

The three people found guilty in the deadly Second Avenue gas explosion will spend between four and 12 years — depending on their behavior behind bars — in state prison, The New York Times reports.

The sentencing was handed down this morning in State Supreme Court.

This past Nov. 15, a jury found landlord Maria Hrynenko, contractor Dilber Kukic and unlicensed plumber Jerry Ioannidis guilty of manslaughter, criminally negligent homicide and related offenses for their role in the March 2015 Second Avenue gas explosion that killed two men.

In addition, they were also found guilty of assault charges for injuries to 13 people in the blast that destroyed the buildings at 119, 121 and 123 Second Ave. between Seventh Street and St. Mark's Place.

Prosecutors said that an illegally installed gas line triggered the explosion.

From the Times:

"What was it that made these three defendants circumvent all the rules they were aware of?" the lead prosecutor, Rachana Pathak, said in her closing remarks. "Money, money, money."

This greed — as the prosecution put it — was responsible for the deaths of Moises Locón, 27 ...



... and Nicholas Figueroa, 23 ...



Updated: 6:30 p.m.

More details from the Post. Manhattan Supreme Court Judge Michael Obus handed down the prison time.

“What the defendants did, in a matter of speaking, was roll the dice with the lives of many people,” Obus told a packed courtroom. “The results, as we know, are catastrophic.”

And...

Still, Obus said he was giving the defendants a break on their prison time because they were older and “did not intend to blow up the building.”

Many people (read the comments) felt as if the sentence was too light, Nixon Figeuroa, Nicholas Figueroa’s father had this to say, via CBS 2:

“It’s not enough. It’s a joke. What kind of justice did you give us? You didn’t give us no justice. It’s a slap in my son’s face.”

Below you'll find a selection of EVG headlines about the explosion from the past five years...

Previously on EV Grieve:
[Updating] Explosion on 2nd Avenue and East 7th Street

How displaced residents are faring after the 2nd Avenue gas explosion

Moving on — and feeling lucky — after the 2nd Avenue explosion

Updated: 2nd Ave. explosion — landlord, 3 others charged with 2nd degree manslaughter; showed 'a blatant and callous disregard for human life'

RIP Nicholas Figueroa

RIP Moises Locón

A family continues to feel the loss on 2nd Avenue

Remembering Nicholas and Moises: the Figueroa family marks the 4-year anniversary of the 2nd Avenue gas explosion

Exclusive: 2nd Avenue explosion sites have a new owner

LPC OKs condoplex for gas explosion site on 2nd Avenue and 7th Street

Dedicating Moises Locón Way and Nicholas Figueroa Way on 2nd Avenue at 7th Street

Report: Probation for plumber indicted in deadly 2nd Avenue gas explosion

Michael Hrynenko, Jr., awaiting trial for his role in the 2nd Avenue gas explosion, dies at 31

And read our interviews with two longtime residents who lost their homes in the explosion — Mildred Guy and Diane McLean.

Looking at two empty corner storefronts along 7th Street

Here's a look at two long-vacant corner storefronts along Seventh Street ... starting with the northeast corner at First Avenue...



118 First Ave. has been vacant since Golden Food Market closed here in the summer of 2017 after 35 years in business. Before their lease wasn't renewed, an LLC with a West 11th Street address bought the building in the spring of 2017 for $5.8 million, per public records.

A tapas-wine bar was in the works for the space in April 2018, but those plans never materialized.

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... and here's the northeast corner at Second Avenue...



118 Second Ave. has been tenant-free since Bar Virage shut down in December 2018. Ravi DeRossi had designs on a vegan-diner concept here, but CB3 denied him a full liquor license even though Bar Virage had that same license. So he decided to look elsewhere.

Both prime corner spots remain on the rental market.

Mysteries: Who placed these pink gumball machines along Avenue A?



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Updated below

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You may have seen these pink gumball machines fastened to light poles along Avenue A... there are at least two — one at 13th Street and one at Seventh Street...



As far as anyone can recall, they showed up some time between Saturday night and Tuesday morning, though no one seems to know for sure.

And the machines accept quarters (thank you Jason Charles for lending me a quarter!) ... and for that price, the machine dispenses one pink gumball (I remember when these were a nickel!) ...


[Gumball or palm not actual size]

Not immediately trusting of mysterious pink gumball machines dispensing pink gumballs, a careful analysis was conducted of the sphere...



Preliminary results show that this is, indeed, a ball of chewing gum in a candied shell.

No word just at the moment who might have placed these here... and, more important, why.

Updated 1/18

Thanks to tbar in the comments... turns this is a promo related to Machinegum, a new side project from Fab Moretti of the Strokes. (It's a good record BTW.)

More from the press release about the machines:

Pink gumball machines have been distributed throughout the city hung on lampposts, the color and multiplicity of which will symbolize the saccharine, lustful quality of commercialism. A single machine is also included in an unceremonious corner of a Sotheby's gallery during an exhibit of old master paintings. The machines dispense either bubblegum or clear capsules carrying pink painted quarters, depending on the luck of the draw. These capsules will also include a QR code that when scanned will direct the user to a security footage webpage that will give them exclusive content from machinegum.

There's also an art opening related to all this on Jan. 28.

Watch Baby Yoda come to life outside the 2nd Avenue F stop


[Photo Sunday by Steven]

As noted back on Monday (well, and Sunday), artist Will Power created this Baby Yoda mural outside the Second Avenue F stop.

And here's a time-lapse video of its creation...


The piece will be up here on Second Avenue at East Houston until Feb. 1.

Thursday, January 16, 2020

Updated: NYPD investigating report of man shot with a pellet gun on Avenue C



There's a report of police activity late this afternoon on Avenue C between 10th Street and 12th Street... EVG regular Jose Garcia shared these photos...



The Citizen app reports that two people were shot with a pellet gun... and that police were searching for a suspect. There isn't much more information at the moment. Will update when more details are available. (An ABC-7 news truck was spotted on the scene.)

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Updated: 7:30 p.m.

The Post reports that one man was shot... and that police arrested one man. And from the article: "Police said the shooter was armed with either a BB gun or a low-caliber pistol."

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According to the MTA, M9 and M14D buses are being rerouted ...


Updated: 9:48 p.m.

Christopher J. Ryan shared these photos from the scene tonight... there was still a large NYPD presence, suggesting that the shooting may have involved more than a pellet gun ...





As for the timeline, the first report of the shooting came in around 3:45 p.m. ... Avenue C between 10th Street and 13th Street was on lockdown, per Ryan, until 9:38 p.m., when the NYPD removed the police tape and allowed traffic to return to the Avenue.

Updated: 1/17

Citizen provided an update... the info about a lack of an arrest contradicts the Post's coverage ...



H/T Steven!

Sentencing expected tomorrow in the 2nd Avenue gas explosion case


[Photo from March 26, 2015 via @NYPDSpecialops]

The three people a jury found guilty in the deadly Second Avenue gas explosion are expected to be sentenced tomorrow (Jan. 17) — one week later than originally reported.

This past Nov. 15, a jury found landlord Maria Hrynenko, contractor Dilber Kukic and unlicensed plumber Jerry Ioannidis guilty of manslaughter, criminally negligent homicide and related offenses for their role in the March 2015 Second Avenue gas explosion that killed two men.

In addition, they were also found guilty of assault charges for injuries to 13 people in the blast that destroyed the buildings at 119, 121 and 123 Second Ave. between Seventh Street and St. Mark's Place.

They each face up to 15 years in prison.

Prosecutors said that an illegally installed gas line triggered the explosion.

The sentencing was originally set for Jan. 10, but was pushed back one week for unspecified reasons.

There are still civil actions making their way through the courts. Hrynenko and her companies have reportedly been hit with a handful of lawsuits.

Previously on EV Grieve:
Details on the guilty verdicts in the 2nd Avenue gas explosion case

Performance Space New York introduces the Keith Haring Theatre on 1st Avenue



Performance Space New York (formerly P.S. 122) is entering its 40th year... and on this occasion, the nonprofit arts organization, housed at 150 First Ave., unveiled a new partnership with the Keith Haring Foundation. Moving forward, their main space will be known as the Keith Haring Theatre.

Performance Space shared the following information yesterday:

In 1980, Keith Haring received a studio residency within P.S. 122’s building (above), where he developed his iconic painting style. He fluidly engaged a variety of disciplines — as seen in his curating of performance, “Acts of Live Art” two blocks from here at Club 57 — and in his street art, exhibitions, and collaborations combined a playful sensibility with trenchant social commentary and, in the late 1980s, HIV/AIDS activism. We share and draw inspiration from Haring’s drive to bring together diverse voices and artistic media to create a body of work that captures the spirit of our time.

In addition to naming the theatre, the grant will also fund an annual, free-to-the-public Keith Haring Lecture Series, as well as the Keith Haring Curatorial Fellowship.

This opportunity considers what’s ahead through those artists who, in our vital past, looked at the alternative futures art and activism could imagine and catalyze. We feel immense gratitude to everyone who has supported us over the last 40 years and made this moment possible.

The rebranded Performance Space New York returned to a refurbished building at the northeast corner of First Avenue and Ninth Street in January 2018 after a few years away at alternative venues.

Photo of Keith Haring in his studio at P.S. 122 from 1980 by John P. Cavanaugh.

I Love Panzerotti now open on St. Mark's Place



I Love Panzerotti debuted last evening at 130 St. Mark's Place between Avenue A and First Avenue.

The growing chainlet specializes in panzerotti, the crescent-shaped turnover hailing from Apulia, a region in southern Italy. The St. Mark's Place location will offer 18 varieties, baked or fried, including vegetarian and vegan options.


[Photo via I Love Panzerotti]

In addition, I Love Panzerotti has several pizzas on the menu, courtesy of the wood-fired brick oven of former tenant Tramonti, who moved away in late November to open a larger location on Fifth Avenue and 28th Street.

And per an I Love Panzerotti rep: A portion of every order is donated to Mary’s Meals, a charity working to end child hunger worldwide.

I Love Panzerotti is open Monday through Saturday from 6 p.m. to midnight. They will also serve beer and wine as soon as the license arrives.

Previously on EV Grieve:
Pizza pocket purveyors I Love Panzerotti coming to St. Mark's Place

THIS is actually the new home for the Half Gallery on 4th Street and Avenue B


[Photo from Tuesday night]

On Tuesday, workers erected plywood around the storefront on the northwest corner of Avenue B and Fourth Street, marking the beginning of the renovations here to make way for the Half Gallery.

In mid-December, ARTnews, who first reported that the gallery was relocating from the Upper East Side to 235 E. Fourth St., at the site of a former restaurant.

I mistakenly reported that they were taking the former Nobody Is Perfect space that was for rent at No. 235...



The gallery is going in next door where Tapanju Turntable (and Kate's Joint until 2012!) was at 58 Avenue B — aka 235 E. Fourth St. Right building, wrong former restaurant! My apologies for that mistake.

Anyway! To recap, the gallery, which has worked with Rene Ricard, Louise Bonnet and Nathaniel Mary Quinn, started on the Lower East Side in 2008 before heading north. Here's more via that ARTnews piece:

Bill Powers, who founded Half Gallery, said that many of the artists the gallery has worked with “have a real connection to [the East Village] and that art scene,” adding that the move is “a little bit of a homecoming.”

With the Swiss Institute, the Brant Foundation, and other art institutions opening in the East Village recently, the neighborhood remains a hotspot for art, Powers said, adding, “We used to get a bigger crowd for openings when we were downtown because I think the gravity of the art world, spiritually, is downtown or in the outer boroughs.”

The space is expected to open next featuring Tanya Merrill's first-ever solo exhibition.

Meanwhile, that other space remains for rent, waiting for what will be the sixth restaurant tenant in the past 11 years. Nobody Is Perfect closed here in the summer of 2018. B4 closed in June 2016 after nearly three years in business ... and previously Piccola Positano, Tonda and E.U. gave the address a go.

Wednesday, January 15, 2020

Wednesday's parting shot



Man on some wire today on Seventh Street ... photo by Derek Berg...

About those detailed East Village drawings at the new Trader Joe's on 14th Street



If you've been to the new East Village Trader Joe's that opened early last week, then you've likely noticed the nearly 200 drawings that adorn the store's interior at 436 E. 14th St. near Avenue A.

East Village-based illustrator Peter Arkle created the drawings, which are an appreciation of street scenes and architectural details that he has spotted throughout the neighborhood... from more celebrated sites such as the Cube on Astor Place to the lesser-known features like the water fountain/wash bowl with the bronze figures (circa 1890s) outside the Immaculate Conception Church on 14th Street.









Arkle, who has lived here since 2002, met EVG contributor Stacie Joy last week to look at the work in the store — as well as a few of their real-life locations. (You can do it too if the mood strikes — there's a map in the store with corresponding locations of all the drawings.)



Arkle also answered a few questions about the project ...

How did the invitation to do the artwork at this location come about?

Jon Basalone, the president of Trader Joe’s, approached me at the end of 2018, saying that a new East Village store was opening and asked me if I would like to draw something for it. He knew my work from reading [my Tumblr] Peter Arkle News, which he subscribed to back in 2003.

Did you have carte blanche on the theme for the illustrations? Did Trader Joe's want something East Village related?

Jon was already very familiar with that side of my illustration work. He said I could do anything I liked as long as it had some kind of East Village theme.

Peter Arkle News contains drawings and descriptions of everyday life — things I come across on the street, the subway, in the Post Office or wherever.

How did you decide on what scenes from the East Village to depict?

I decided to walk along every street in the East Village. I started by drawing a map and as I explored each street I would mark it with a red line. It took me about two months to visit every street — walking slowly, looking carefully and trying not to freeze to death as this was during December 2018 and January 2019.

I took photos and made notes. Very quickly I realized that it would be better if I drew things that were more permanent so I focused on sculptures and other architectural details, weird pipes, parts of electrical sub stations that look like robots, etc. This way, people would be able to go out and find them.

I am very happy to have been able to draw lots of those sculpted heads — gargoyles, kings, gods, goddesses, angels and cherubs — that appear on so many East Village buildings. Many of these are crumbling away or being painted over so many times that they are turning into blobs. They need to be celebrated. Many of them are very high up on buildings and hard to see without a zoom lens — it amazes me that so much detail was added by architects in places where it could hardly be seen. Did people have better eyesight back then?





Then what?

When I’d visited the whole East Village I then sat down to select which things to draw. This was not a very mysterious process — I basically chose, in most cases, the things that I would enjoy drawing the most.

By late spring, I had completed a set of 185 small ink drawings. I then scanned these and enlarged them so they could be turned into vinyl transfers to be stuck on the store walls.




[In Village View]

Are these permanent? Or is this a temporary exhibit in the store?

They are permanent — unless Trader Joe gets bored of them. I actually had a dream the night before the store opened that I went to visit and they had painted over all of my drawings with thick green paint because someone had complained.

Hope that doesn’t happen.