This Artist Takes Something We Associate With Grandmothers And Makes It So Cool

When it comes to crafting, the words “cool” and “crochet” typically exist on different planes. While edginess and crochet hooks are mutually exclusive on most accounts, one NYC-based artist who goes by the name of Olek subverts all of those notions and takes crocheting into the realm of high art.

Drawing inspiration from films, music, and city life, she uses her hook to create immense installations that’ll make you wonder why no one thought of this sooner.

By swapping out off-white yarn for strands of the neon variety, Olek takes the art of sculpture into previously uncharted territory.

For Olek, trying to draw lines in the sand between life and art — and trying to say that one imitates the other — is a fruitless endeavor. If you ask her, life and art are completely inseparable, with one running seamlessly into the other.

“I crochet everything that enters my space — text messages, medical reports, found objects,” she writes. She finds the bulk of her inspiration, however, in films.

“The movies I watch while crocheting influence my work, and my work dictates the films I select.” For Olek, the creative process is cyclical.

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“My work changes from place to place,” she writes. “I study the science of culture.”

Her desire to create in the vacuum of her atmosphere inspired the artist to leave Poland and start a new life in New York City, where she finds endless creative stimulation.

And Olek puts a lot of stock in creating art that’s meant to be viewed in public spaces. Through her work, she wants to create public discourse on the “social and economic realities of the community.”

“I’ve always sought to invite color, life, and the element of surprise into living spaces.” By disrupting familiar spaces with a largely unfamiliar approach to art, she does exactly that.

If you live in New York, be sure to keep an eye out for these unique works of public art. If not, head over to her website for more details. She also posts regular updates on Facebook and Instagram.

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Homeless man removed from de Blasio presser on homeless

Jillian Jorgensen,senior politics editor at the New York Observer, tweets that she was at a press conference hosted by Mayor Bill de Blasio when she observed “what amounted to a minor disturbance”police escorting a homeless man away from the area. The subject of the press conference? Helping the homeless.

Jorgensen caught up with the man, Jerry Foust, who had taken one of the folding chairsthat had been set up for reporters:

I wanted to see the mayor talk about homelessness, because Im homeless, Mr. Foust said in an interview, as he smoked a cigarette on the edge of the park. And I wanted to fuckin help homeless people. If I had the money, honey, no one would be homeless in this country.

Foust wasn’t arrested but was led away from the event before it began, reportedly because he was carrying an open container.

The New York Times in January reported that the city council was consideringa set of bills that “would reduce the style of policing known as broken windows that has for two decades guided the Police Department to see minor disorder as a precursor to major crime.” Among the examples of minor disorders given weremarijuana possession, littering, excessive noise, public urination, andpublic consumption of alcohol.

“The presence of Mr. Foust, who had been drinking, as well as several other homeless men in the park, offers a hint at how difficult it can be to reach people who often say they simply do not want to stay in shelters, or might be struggling with substance abuse or mental health issues,” writes Jorgensen, adding that “Mr. Foust said he simply didnt like the neighborhood of the last shelter he was in.”

It looks like police didn’t care to have a homeless man with an open container inthe neighborhood of the mayor, either.

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PSA: Don’t Anger The Wrong Guys, Or You Might End Up With A Pair Of Cement Shoes

When it comes to vintage crime noir movies, nothing is more iconic than the threat of giving someone a pair of cement shoes.

That is, encasing a person’s feet in concrete and dropping them into a body of water. While Hollywood co-opted this extreme form of mafia justice on the silver screen, it’s unclear exactly how widespread the practice has been throughout history.

But a recent story out of Brooklyn, New York, shows that when it comes to methods of disposal, the mafia says, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.”

Earlier this week, police discovered the body of a 28-year-old career criminal wrapped in black plastic bags on Manhattan Beach in Brooklyn. The man had his arms tied behind his back and his body was weighed down with cement shoes.


New York City Chief of Detectives Robert Boyce told the press that the victim had his feet “submerged in poured concrete,” and that it was “obviously a homicide.”


However, those pouring the concrete allowed a little too much air to get in during the process, which caused the body to float to the surface and wash up on the shore.


Traditionally, cement shoes are made by putting a victim’s feet through the holes of a cinder block and then filling those holes with concrete, but buckets are also used. It’s unclear how exactly this victim’s “shoes” were constructed.


(via DNA Info)

At the time of this writing, police have identified the man who was killed but are withholding his name until family members can be notified. Let this be a lesson to never cross someone who can legitimately threaten you with the possibility of using cement shoes.

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1/29 American Idol Final Auditions: New York And Puerto Rico Zzzzzzzzz…

UPDATE: Alexis Cohen was struck, killed by ‘hit and run’ in NJ. Read the story here.


here are times when you watch television and after you are done you feel guilty. What you watched was a complete waste of time and you could have accomplished more reading a bad novel. Such was this week on Idol.

The show was so poorly presented that even with New York (mixed in with Puerto Rico) wasn’t enough to stimulate us. The show was downright bland. Even the freaks weren’t freaky. And the best of the best on this show were mediocre.

We cannot give you one name from this show that was a stand-out. As far as we are concerned, the show could have skipped this week and no one would notice. Not one person was good enough to be a finalist.

So, what do we say? 26 got through from New York, and we are hoping Idol just skipped showing us the real talent. In Puerto Rico there were cutesy performers, but no American Idols. 9 made the cut. So what are we left with? From what we saw… 35 cut outs. 39 if you count the poor judges that had to suffer though it all.

If you missed this week, you missed nothing. If you didn’t miss this week, you should have.

Alexis Cohen’s American Idol Audition in Season 8, her second time to be seen on Idol.

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