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Best Coast Gives Us a Fitspo Flick in Their New "Feeling Ok" Video

Best Coast, unnamed ambassadors of California, just dropped their music video for "Feeling Ok" earlier today -- and it's quite the fitspo flick. Their latest off of their California Nights LP, it's honestly less of a music video and more of a Stepford Wives-esque chronicle of frontwoman Bethany Cosentino's intense, health-conscious routine.

From watching 80's jazzercise videos to making ginger-laden juice, the Spandex-clad Cosentino proves herself to be incredibly productive, especially as she plays tennis against guitarist Bobb Bruno. Though tbh, I think the only relatable activity is Bobb's catatonic burger binge.

Watch it below.

I Want To Believe: New "X-Files" Promo Footage Has Surfaced

You better believe it, because Fox just dropped the promo for their much-anticipated "201 Days of X-Files" marathon -- and best of all, it includes new footage of Mulder and Scully at the end (bursting through a darkened doorway, of course).
Okay, so this "new footage" is like, two seconds long, but the clip's more than enough to confirm that a) Gillian Anderson has not aged and b) you will be able to bide your time with an episode a day till the January reboot. That's right, the "201 Days" marathon means they're re-airing the entire original series (👏 all 👏 nine 👏 seasons 👏) for the Netflix-less among us. Study up, y'all. 

Watch the promo below:

"If the Festival Is Not On Your Bucket List, You Just Have Not Lived": Scenes from Glastonbury

If you want to understand the Glastonbury music festival, start by thinking of Coachella and then multiply it by 10. Think of Disney’s Magic Kingdom plus Disneyland and then throw in Epcot Center and then add in the Animal Kingdom. The size and scale is something that can’t be explained, because it is simply unbelievable. Conceived by former dairy farmer Michael Eavis, Glastonbury is the mecca of music festivals and also the world's biggest. Where else could you see Kanye in the evening, and the Dalai Lama in the morning, The Who the next night, and then a special appearance by Stephen Hawking, Mark Ronson calling on Mary J. Blige, Grandmaster Flash, and George Clinton to power "Uptown Funk," and Florence Welch DJing her own after party? Glasto. Mix in over 170,000 people from around the world, remove flushing toilets and any sense of a bedtime, and you have 5 days of pure bliss. It's even said that for the stragglers who just can’t get enough, Eavis himself invites them to his house for a cup of tea, and a “it’s time to go, and see you next year” farewell. If Glastonbury is not on your bucket list, you just have not lived.

Florence Welch DJing her after party in a tent

The festivalgrounds

The toilets

The mud

More mud

Florence Welch's after party

Florence Welch's after party

Pam Hogg

Our campsite, 'Camp Kanye'

Play the Grand Budapest Hotel Game

budapest1.jpgBecause all things must pass between media, there is now a game version of Wes Anderson's The Grand Budapest Hotel. NYU's Gaming Center has created a new game called Maquisard, which takes the visual aesthetic of a Wes Anderson film and effectively translates it into an investigation through a hotel looking for a hidden government agent. Here's the trailer, via Dazed.

Maquisard from Team Maquisard on Vimeo.

What's next? A game where you play as Royal Tenenbaum and have to sneak Ari and Uzi out of the house to go to dog fights? An open-world ocean exploration game where the real treasure at the end is enlightenment and the recognition of your own mortality? Maybe a platformer on top of a church roof racing to nowhere? Only time (and extremely precise whip-pans) will tell.

Premiere: Hot Sugar's "Mayday" Video is a Futuro-Kitsch Dream

Screen Shot 2015-07-08 at 10.54.21 AM.png
Cloaked in a fog machine haze and flanked by an army of animatronic toys, Hot Sugar's Nick Koenig is nothing short of an enigma in this puzzling, self-directed music video for "Mayday." 

A detached, cinematic dream that's equal parts Luigi's Mansion and "When Doves Cry"-era Prince, the video is all pastel-drenched futuro-kitsch -- from the video's robotic spiders to  light-up grills to Koenig's dead-eyed child-henchmen dressed in reflective outfits.

The follow-up video to the introspective "Your Nails Look So Pretty" video, the mysterious "Mayday" follows the same "based on a true story" scenario that we're hoping is more fact than fiction. Just let us know where we can find gold chains for our own pet lizards.

Peep a piece of Hot Sugar's weird, cold world in the captivating flick below.

NYC friends: Catch Hot Sugar on July 17th at Webster Hall.

Michael Musto's Etiquette Rules For Facebook, Twitter, and Life

fbetiquette.jpgI hate to come off like one of those old biddies who insist on proper manners at all times, but sorry, nice behavior is actually a valuable way to show respect to someone who deserves it, and it's good karma too, because the lovely doings will come backatcha in spades. With social networking so prevalent, it's more important than ever to emphasize certain rules of behavior so you're not just some tweeting wild animal on the loose. Here are the most crucial regulations:

*Don't post something on someone's Facebook page that has nothing to do with them, unless you've gotten permission from them to do so. It's presumptuous and annoying and makes you the opposite of a friend. After all, I don't put my trash in front of your house. I can't stand it when people post a self promotional thing -- or worse, a totally nonsensical thing -- on my page. It's the kind of action that could get you unfriended pronto.

*Don't put a post on someone's page that does have something to do with them, but is negative. You promptly will get unfriended and/or blocked. It's a rude and obnoxious way to make your point. If you have a beef with someone, you can privately message them -- though that doesn't guarantee you'll avoid unfriending and blocking, I should add. But people have a right to consider their Facebook page their personal garden, which they can fertilize and weed at will. You can't control a lot of things in life, but you can -- and should -- monitor your page.

*Don't endlessly bother someone to post your Kickstarter campaign, unless it's for a life or death matter. Hounding them to promote your proposed documentary about tofu is abhorrent, especially if you've never even really met the person.

*Don't just put hearts or some other cute image on every single post. You will start to come off brain dead!

*Don't start criticizing a Facebook post without first reading the link that was included in it. And then try to say something nice about it before you launch into the criticism or you will get blocked.

*When I post my listicles ("10 sexiest movie stars", or whatever) don't immediately chime in that I "forgot someone." I didn't. I simply compiled my list of my favorites. Feel free to do yours, if you can get someone to pay you for it.

*If someone tags you on Facebook in a nice mention, the least you should do is click "like" on the post. A friendly comment or "thank you" would be even better. But you'd be surprised how many drag queens (and other people) just ignore such things and move on, as if they get so much good press all day.

*Don't just favorite a tweet. It really doesn't help much. Retweet it or just leave it alone.

*If someone emails you, answer them. Only pretend you never got the email if it's someone you truly want nothing to do with. But if you're hoping for any kind of long term professional relationship, it's de rigueur to actually respond.

*If someone uses your name in an email ("Hello, Darleen..."), use their name back ("Thank you, Bev"). Too many publicists write mechanical, inhuman "Got it" or "Confirmed" emails without taking two seconds to include a name.

*Oh, and would it kill you to send that "Got it" or "Confirmed" response when the occasion calls for it?  

*If someone -- let's say a small 'zine that is desperate to interview you -- asks you to do so and you agree to do them a favor and book your time, they shouldn't then beg to reschedule the whole thing because they're just "too busy." Bad business!

*If a restaurant manager/owner spots me sitting at his/her place and comes up to me to start gushing and/or thanking me for a mention, the very least they should do is comp my coffee! Just one--it won't kill you!

OK, thank you for listening, and bye, Bev!

Inside Patrick McMullan's Amazing Photography Collection -- Now Featured In a New Exhibit

The first celebrity Patrick McMullan ever snapped was of future President Richard Nixon at the Walt Whitman Shopping Mall on Long Island in 1966 when the budding photographer was only 11 years old. “The Secret Service people saw me there with a camera and brought me right up to his car. I took his picture and shook his hand, but when I had the film developed, that photo, the last picture in the roll, was clipped off,” remembers the famed nightlife photog. “That was devastating to me.”

McMullan seems to have recovered rather resiliently from that first disappointment. At this stage in his thirty-year career, he's shot pretty much every famous person on Earth outside of the current Pope, the Dali Lama, and the Royal Family. “I think it could be a good excuse to get them all in a room together,” says the photographer from inside Salomon Contemporary in Chelsea, which is hosting a new exhibit titled Pictures from the Patrick McMullan Collection.

The show came about after the gallery’s owner, James Salomon, visited McMullan’s apartment with his son Matias to have their portrait taken. “I went wild over what I saw hanging on the walls,” says Salomon, who’s known McMullan for almost fifteen years. “I thought it could be a rare, insightful glimpse into his world. Such an ensemble we thought would make a great gallery show."

The exhibit, which will run until July 31st, features a sprinkling of Patrick’s own work, but mostly includes over 200 images from other famous photographers and artists, as well as items McMullan has purchased, traded, bartered or found throughout his fabulous life. In fact, McMullan is still adding to the exhibit as we speak. “They kept saying, ‘We have enough stuff!’ but I keep bringing in more,” McMullan says. “I see blank space on a gallery wall and in my mind it’s Manifest Destiny!”

The photographer was gracious enough to spend a recent afternoon walking us through a selection of works from the likes of David LaChapelle, Steven Klein, Harry Benson, Mary Ellen Mark, Bruce Weber, and more. Take a look at photos from the show and read McMullan's recollections, below.

Harry Benson
Kate Moss -Paris -1994
AP 7/35

"I never met a model I didn’t like. I respect models because it’s not so easy to turn it on and off. Kate, she’s never been anything but sweet to me, even when she didn’t need to be. She’s very Marc Jacobs in the sense that she’d break away from Anna Wintour at a party just to come give me a hug. And this image…Harry Benson is my favorite living photographer today."

$6.95 USMC Boy in Briefs
Artist: Unknown

"I bought this in Providence. It’s just this young boy-very Americana. He’s right at that age where he’s becoming a man. It says a lot about America’s view on war and sex. Also, there’s something a little taboo, very intimate, and very powerful and I love the price tag; I had to leave it on."

David LaChapelle
Madonna Summer, 1998

"I remember David LaChapelle from when he was a child, like 16 or 17 at the Palladium or Studio 54. He was always a lot of fun and naturally glamorous. He liked to dress up -- a true participant. He’s fearless and similar to Annie Leibovitz in that he’s more like Scorsese than your average photographer. They’ll both have twenty-five people on a set! It’s crazy.

This was around the period when David did Rise -- that dance film. And Madonna. Here she is again -- the queen of the world. She just is, whatever she is. She’s our Elvis. I want her to play the Bette Davis role in All About Eve. She’d kill as a modern rock 'n' roll version of Margo Channing."

Horace Bristol
Rescue at Rabaul,
PBY Blister Gunner, 1944

"Horace Bristol was a Life Magazine photographer. This gunner jumped into the water to rescue a marine pilot who was shot down. He then climbs back up, sopping wet and hot, and gets right back to his gun. No time for clothes. You know, as a photographer, you have to be in love with the people in the picture a little bit, no matter who they are, even if it’s avuncular. Horace treated this shot will love. This man in the image is a movie star."

Edward Burtynsky
Nickel Tailings #34
Sudbury, Ontario, 1996

"One of my most expensive buys. Burtynsky is a very famous photographer. This is the aftermath of a meltdown in China I believe. The orange river is so beautiful. I love everything he does, so odd. If I had the money I’d buy five more of his pieces."

Jessica Craig Martin
Private Party,
Casa Rosada, Buenos Aires, 1998
C Print

"Jessica Craig Martin is a friend and she such a wonderful eye-so different from my own and she’s great at editing down. I shoot a thousand images and like 900, whereas she’ll only keep twenty. She also really knew how to get that close crop and make it magical. I bought this because it acknowledges that I have a fetish or fascination, I guess you could say, a 'fetish-nation' for chandeliers."

Bruce Weber
Madonna In Love With Herself, 1986

"Interview Magazine once ran a photo of mine of a little baby horse running around. Bruce Weber told me how much he loved that image. I traded him for this photo of Madonna kissing the mirror. This image is so not Bruce Weber to me, which is why I like it. Also, I really idolize Madonna. No, the word idolize is wrong. It’s more like respect. I 'respectalize' Madonna. Here she is in her prime. Perfection.

We were at a party once and I said to her, 'Hey Madonna, I’m a father now.' She said, 'You’re a father? Then I guess I can be a mother.' I said, 'You’ll love it. You’ll fall in love.'"

Steven Klein
Horse Neck II, 1995
Gelatin Silver Print

"I don’t know what’s up with Steven Klein cutting heads off. I guess he’s sick of faces. It’s not even a horse to me; it’s just a fun shape. He’s so talented."

Mary Ellen Mark
Elise Collins with Flags
Union, South Carolina 1992

"Mary Ellen Mark was one of the first photographers I ever met when I did PR back in 1979. I really wanted one of her Mother Teresa pictures. She was so in demand at the time. She would do print runs like, 1 of 150, which is crazy. I do 1 of 5 at most."

Will McBride
Mike wäscht sich mit anderen 1963 Translation: "Mike washes with others"
Schule Schloss Salem
Boarding school in Salem, Baden-Württemberg, Germany

"I absolutely love, love, love Will McBride. He is a hero of mine. This, it’s something sexy, fun and boyish. I saw it on the cover of a book, and fell in love. So when the opportunity came up to by a print, I couldn’t pass it up."

Joel Meyerowitz
Vineyard, Late Afternoon Autumn, 2002

"I collect a lot of what I call quiet, silent, empty, lonely, peaceful photos. I’m not an extrovert, I’m an introvert. I had to work hard to be outgoing. I had a very intimate and quiet relationship with the darkroom. I would spend 14, 15 hours a day in there. I used to use my hands and in 1981 I came down with cancer. I was sleeping above the chemicals. Just like cigarettes, who knew?"

James Salomon and Patrick McMullan

Inside the exhibit

Pornhub Study Says Millennials Love Kim K, Are Hornier and Orgasm Faster

photo by Jean Paul-Goude 

The marketing geniuses at Pornhub are at it again -- this time by publishing a study on porn consumption statistics with a little help from the team at Mic. Can you say happy humpday?

As suspected, millennials are the horniest and fastest to finish. They're also 144% more likely to search for hentai and 44% more apt to search the term "cartoon," which will (probably) be used as quote-unquote proof that "immature, ADD hook-up culture" is a thing. Whatever, mom.

Dumb punchlines aside, there are also some very interesting and informative fap-centric factoids out there -- like the fact that Monday is the site's most popular day and that (as a millennial) you're probably using your phone to consume lesbian porn (or Kim) right before bedtime.

Either way, whether you're a twenty-something titty-lover or a fifty-something fetish fiend, you're obviously visually-inclined -- so check out this nice set of Pornhub infographics and try to refrain from a "Blew Monday" joke, ok?😪



Director Sean Baker On Tangerine, His New Film About Trans Sex Workers Shot On an iPhone

(Mya Taylor and Kiki Rodriguez in a scene from Sean Baker's Tangerine)

Let's get this out of the way right now. Sean Baker is an acclaimed director of low-budget independent films that typically feature a tight focus on characters along society's margins. He is also a cisgender white man. His most recent film is Tangerine, which follows the adventures of two African-American transgender sex workers, who seek revenge on a pimp when they discover he's been cheating on one of them. On Christmas Eve, no less. 

Baker is aware that you might have apprehensions about all of this. But hear him out.

"I was just trying to tell a story about Los Angeles, really," he says, noting that the street corner where the two characters start at the beginning of the film is on "this intersection of Santa Monica and Highlands, about half a mile from where I live. It's an unofficial red light district, so it has a lot of activity out on the corner at night," he says. "It's impossible not to spot when you drive by. It was something I wanted to explore, from just a filmmaker's point of view of it, knowing that we could tell a very cinematic story there."

Baker and his collaborator, screenwriter Chris Bergoch, typically spend "six to eight months" on research and pre-production before they begin writing a script. They went down to the area and introduced themselves to the locals and let them know they wanted to make a film about the intersection. All the while they were on the search for the right collaborator, which they eventually found in Mya Taylor, a young transgender actress whom they discovered at a LGBT community center.

"We approached her and exchanged contact information. I could tell right there and then, there was something about her," Baker says. "She was an aspiring entertainer, not only acting but singing as well, and she said 'I want to do something,' so we started sitting down, meeting on a regular basis and discussing ideas and trying to find something. 

"Chris and I are obviously not in that world... We're cisgender white males, so we didn't go in there imposing any plot or script. We were looking for somebody to help us figure it out."

Taylor brought on her friend Kiki Rodriguez, also a transgender actress, and together the four of them began developing the plot and characters of the film. 

Sitting in the New York office of Magnolia Pictures, the film's distributor, Baker and actor James Ransone, who plays the pimp whose betrayal initiates the plot, seem at ease. They joke back and forth through the interview, but they're also a bit weary of having to answer questions about having the right to tell this type of story when they don't come from this world. 

"I think that we're in a time where everybody loves the sound byte, nobody likes context," says Ransone, who has done several movies with Baker and is perhaps best known for playing Ziggy Sobotka on The Wire."If you look at Sean's entire body of work, it makes perfect sense that he made Tangerine, because it's not about transgender. It's his dumb blind luck that the movie is coming out at a time when the cultural acceptance of it is part of the zeitgeist. It's really that simple. To me, the movie's just an LA story about two friends."

Baker nods at Ransone, and adds "We are not defending this movie. I feel very comfortable with how we made it and to tell you the truth, at the end of the day, the only people I have to actually answer to are Mya and Kiki." 

Independent cinema is glutted with tales of white people with liberal arts degrees who are filled with ennui. Baker has no interest in telling those kinds of stories, he says, and seeks to make movies that provoke conversations and explore worlds not often seen on screen, and that involves carefully and respectively seeking out perspectives other than your own. He's done that with Tangerine, but much to his surprise, he's also made a much funnier movie than he expected. 

"That was very much dictated by Mya. She was the one who made me see the light in a way. It could've been a played-out movie. It could've been very dry, political," Baker says, "Mya said, 'I want you to make a movie that I can be entertained, I can laugh at, and the girls out here at the corner, they can enjoy.'" 

The film was shot with three iPhone 5s, and filmed on real locations, with Baker and his producers convincing local businesses to let them use their space, with the promise that they won't interfere with the daily commerce. (A climactic scene set a donut shop has a few real customers as extras.) This approach not only added verisimilitude, but it helped the film's stars, who had never acted professionally, feel comfortable "because they didn't have a big camera in their face," Baker says.

Though Ransone doesn't show up until a pivotal scene near the end, he manages to turn what could be a loathsome stock character into something more deeply felt, while winning some of the biggest laughs in the process. 

"I think this actually makes me a bad actor. The first thing I'll try to dig out is the humorous beat, and then I'll sort of craft everything around that to try to play that punch line," he says. "I don't know, maybe if someone else approached this, then they'd think like, 'Oh, I've got to play a thug.'"

"There's a slight camp feel to Tangerine, more than my other films," Baker adds, turning to Ransone. "But you didn't go completely camp. You could have." 

"My mom said it's like a John Waters movie with heart," he replies.

Though it has hilarious moments, Tangerine never avoids the realities of sex work or the prejudice transgender people face, and depicts how cruel and exploitive the corner is. The end of the film makes it clear that ultimately, these two characters can only rely on each other. 

"They don't have happy lives out there. There's no way of sugar coating any of that," he says. "They only have each other. That's it. The rest of the world isn't there for them. Their only family on Christmas Eve are themselves."

Tangerine is showing in NYC at Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts and is in theaters nation-wide July 10th. 

10 Young Creatives Shaping Istanbul's Arts and Culture Scene

There's more to Istanbul than whirling dervishes, touristy bazaars, and all the recent scaremongering, ISIS-related pieces on the evening news. The cosmopolitan port city is also home to a thriving modern art scene with international reach. Now host to two major art fairs, over 117 galleries, and one of the most anticipated yearly festivals on the globe, the Istanbul Arts + Culture Festival, Istanbul easily rivals Berlin and Paris as a booming creative capital. The combination of cheap rent, proximity to the Middle East and Europe -- Istanbul is just a quick, and popular, boat ride away from Greece -- and liberal attitudes towards the arts have all made the city the perfect breeding ground for connection and collaboration. In Istanbul for the IST. Festival, we were able to meet some of the city's most interesting creatives, from gallerists and curators, to artists, multimedia sculptors and filmmakers, and have culled a list of some of our favorite innovators making Istanbul the next "New York in the 80s."

Turbo painting courtesy of Turbo.jpg(Image courtesy of Turbo)

1. Turbo, Graffiti Artist
Considered the biggest and most influential graffiti artist in Istanbul, Turbo has been called the "Father of Turkish Graffiti" (despite his relative youth) as well as the "JR of the East" -- though his style is more colorful and contains distinct nods to traditional Turkish wall art and textiles. The first to bring western style, hip-hop influenced, spray-painted murals to the city, he's known for melding local and historical design aesthetics -- like traditional middle eastern scripts and bold outlines -- with a fun pop-art sensibility. Turbo's work can often be seen on walls and alleys throughout Istanbul, and on clothing by local designers, as well as in ad campaigns with brands like ADIDAS and Coca Cola.

Demet's headshot.jpg2. Demet Müftüoğlu, Gallerist and Curator
Founder of the Istanbul Arts + Culture Festival, each year scene-maker Demet Müftüoğlu brings notable figures ranging from Courtney Love to Gore Vidal to Istanbul for her ambitious, 3-day event packed with parties, panels, workshops, and cross-disciplinary discussions. In addition to the festival, she also runs a creative design studio, Istanbul74, a contemporary art gallery of the same name (one of the only institutions to bring buzzy photographers like Alex Praguer and Gail Halaban to Istanbul), a film studio (74Studio) and one of Istanbul's glitziest online and print lifestyle magazines, 74Gazette, which features everything from interviews with milliner Stephen Jones to studio visits with local artists. Demet is also married to Alphan Eseli, co-creator of Istanbul74 and one of the city's most respected filmmakers.

Screen Shot 2015-07-08 at 4.11.07 PM.png(Photo via Twitter)

3. Mehmet Ali Uysal, Fine Artist
One of Turkey's most recognizable artists, Uysal creates large-scale installations that humorously fuse art to the surface of public spaces, transforming the locations into surreal wonderlands and delightfully distorting the viewer's perceptions. In the past, Uysal has used larger-than-life clothespins to make a field look like green, rolling laundry in Skin2, and cut giant slabs of molding out of Gallery Nesrin Esirtgen's walls to create a giant peeling, optical illusion. He's previously had solo exhibitions at the Pearl Lam Gallery in Shanghai, the Stiftungstarke in Berlin, and Pi Artworks, Istanbul, Turkey (among many others), and recently participated in Art Basel Hong Kong. This February Uysal will be opening a solo show in New York at Spar Contemporary.

Sevil Savabci (Primary) source unknown.jpg4. Sevil Savabci, Collector
Descended from one of the wealthiest families in Turkey, Savabci is a strong supporter of the arts, and has encouraged her family to collect and support figures ranging from Ai Wei Wei to NYC-based new media creative Tabor Robak. The Savabcis also founded the Savabci Museum and the Savabci Modern, two of the most important institutions in Istanbul, and, in many ways, financially helped elevate Istanbul into a contemporary global art capital. When Sevil isn't chairing the board of her family's institutions, she also helps out at the Türkan Sabancı School for Sight Disabled, which was established by her mother, Türkan Sabancı, and races horses.

Sinem Yörük, courtesy of Elipsis.jpg(Photo courtesy of Elipsis)

5. Sinem Yoruk, Gallery Director
Born in London, Sinem Yoruk studied Media Arts and Management Studies at the Royal Holloway University there before returning to Istanbul to help nurture the emerging contemporary art scene. In 2004, she co-founded Atelier Elipsis to help bring museum-quality fine art printing to the region and in 2007 established Elipsis Gallery, the first gallery to focus solely on photography in Turkey. Yoruk has also consulted on various exhibitions and events throughout the country, and is a nominator for the prestigious international Prix Pictet Awards for photography and sustainability.

Kutluğ Ataman.jpg6. Kutluğ Ataman, Artist and Filmmaker
Kutluğ Ataman's thought-provoking multimedia work explores the dynamics between humanity and community, and how personal identity is self-created and rewritten ad infinitum. At the 2004 Carnegie International at the Carnegie Museum of Art in Pittsburgh, Ataman won the top award -- and one of America's highest honors in art -- the Carnegie Prize, and that same year was shortlisted for the Turner Prize, the UK's most prestigious visual arts award, organized by the Tate. His most recent work, THE PORTRAIT OF SAKIP SABANCI, opened in April 2014 at the Sakıp Sabancı Museum in Istanbul, and is currently on display as part of the official selection curated by Okwui Enwezor for the 56th Venice Biennale, shown alongside the 136 artists selected for this year's exhibition All the World's Futures. Ataman is so beloved in Turkey he is the subject of a full-length documentary film in 2011, Kutluğ Ataman, directed by Metin Çavuş, charting Ataman's art career.

Volkan Aslan by © Murat Türemis.jpg(Photo by Murat Türemis)

7. Volkan Aslan, Multimedia Artist
At just 28, Aslan has become both an art world leader, bringing a hip, youthful aesthetic to museums and DIY galleries alike. Aslan's art can best be described as "multimedia," and includes a melding of sculpture, light installation, and painting. In the past he has had scores of solo shows, both in Turkey and abroad, and in 2008 formed, with Nancy Atakan and Marcus Graf, "5533," an independent non-profit contemporary art space in the Istanbul Trader's Association shopping center (İMÇ). With 5533, Aslan helped export Istanbul's art culture to film festivals, conferences and workshops worldwide, and became one of the country's most recognizable art world figures. Volkan Aslan's new exhibition titled The Perfect Day will be on display from September 1 - October 31 at Pi Artworks Istanbul, running parallel to the 14th Istanbul Biennial.

Photograph Joana Kohen by Tumay Goktepe.jpg(Photo by Tumay Goktepe)

8. Joana Kohen, Artist, DJ, DIY Space Owner
Artist and founder of the Un-Known Art Initiative, Joana Kohen's deliberately provocative movement known as "scandalism" seeks to combine irony, anarchy and revolution and has caused waves both in Turkey and abroad. Kohen, almost heroic-ly unafraid of potential backlash, first set out to break from the conservative culture from which she was raised, but today has made it her personal mission to alter society's perceptions of women -- especially Muslim women -- via art. Often referred to as "gothic and erotic," her work is an alluring mix of photography, performance art, poetry, and installation and features striking nudes often set against stark and daring color bursts. Often the star of her own works, Kohen brazenly and unapologetically takes aim at a world that would easily overlook her, and has been an inspiration for a generation of new artists using the internet to connect them to a global creative community. Kohen will be taking part in the Contemporary Istanbul art fair this year, and has an exhibition currently in the works that's still under wraps.

BFA_10927_1329863.jpg(Photo by Benjamin Lozovsky/BFA.com)

9. Mihda Koray, Art Magazine Owner and "It Girl" 
At just 32, Koray has an impressively long CV that would put most art-world veterans to shame. After studying in London, Koray made it her personal mission to bring London's interdisciplinary, collaborative culture to Istanbul, andso shenurtures the city's budding art scene through her impressive curatorial talents and vast rolodex. A former gallerist, in 2007 she founded URA!, a venue for performances, video installations, and exhibitions, where she drew legendary artists like Raymond Pettibon and Chris Burden for exhibits and stage shows. She also started a magazine, Near East, a glossy biannual devoted to art, fashion, and free expression that has gained her international attention. Currently, she is working on the Fall/Winter issue of Near East, as well as a show with Martin Creed at the Near East art space in  Dolapdere Istanbul, which she also co-runs.

Lara Ogel.jpeg10. Lara Ogel, Artist, Writer, Curator, Art Space Co-Director
Lara Ögel is an artist, a personal and collective archeologist, a writer, a curator, and a co-director of the Near East art space, named after the arts and culture magazine she runs with Mihda Koray, where she is also editor. Lara's art works with found objects and materials, and she can often be seen in second-hand stores or thrift shops searching for ephemera for her pieces. She recently created a book of "mistranslations and poetry" in English and Turkish, meant to conjure her own unique, bilingual upbringing. In the past Lara has had work shown at the Galeri Tankut Aykut, Bergesen & Bergsen ALAN and 5533, and has plans to exhibit at this year's ArtInternational Istanbul Contemporary Art Fair, held at the beginning of September in Haliç, in which she will be showcasing her video work, works on paper, and created objects. In addition, she is also showing with Öktem & Aykut Gallery, and participating in a group show in Space Debris, a young gallery in Karaköy, curated group show by Yulia Topchiy and Tess Thackara.

There's a Depressing New Tumblr Highlighting Hollywood's Problems with People of Color

We all know that Hollywood is lacking in diversity, but a new Tumblr called Every Single Word aims to visualize how dire the situation actually is.

Run by Hispanic actor/director Dylan Marron, the blog features edits of big name movies that only include moments where people of color speak -- and the results are (un)surprising in their brevity.

An effort to question why the majority of movies are dominated by the narratives of white protagonists, Every Single Word lets no one off the hook, as everyone from big blockbusters to quirky indie comedies are guilty of white-washing their casts. And as Marron noted, all too often Hollywood's default casting is white -- a fact that's exemplified by his edit of The Fault in Our Stars, which only has one POC character despite race never being mentioned in the book it's based on. After all, I think we can all agree that white people aren't the only ones who fall in love and get cancer.

Also particularly poignant is the American Hustle clip, which exemplifies a lot of what is wrong with the portrayal race in Hollywood. Because not only is there a less than a minute of POC dialogue, the entire "Paco Hernandez" plotline is premised on the idea that he can pass as an Saudi shiekh...because all brown people are apparently interchangeable and look alike?

Either way, when you take into consideration the fact that movies are (at least) an hour-and-a-half long, it's extra depressing that some of your favorite movies based on universal themes of love, loss, family, friendship, etc. are only ever told from the perspective of people who don't look like you. Struggles, after all, happen to everyone and happy endings are something people of all shades deserve.

[h/t Buzzfeed]

Gronk and Big Papi Try to "Turn it Up," But Did They Succeed?

gronk1.jpgRob Gronkowski and David Ortiz would like you to turn up for Dunkin Donuts' iced coffee as part of their "Summer Chill" series. See bizarre track below:

Yes, there is a long, storied history of athletes (and in particular football players) making endearing, intentionally terrible music, but "Turn it Up" raises a lot of new and fascinating questions. Were Gronk and Big Papi asleep during the recording? If so, why didn't they drink any iced coffee to wake themselves up? Do they not really like Dunkin Donuts? For the answers to slightly less pressing questions, check out The Washington Post, which has a full run-down of the promotional materials generated by Gronk, Big Papi, and Dunkin Donuts.

Mr. Mickey and Drew's Las Vegas Weekend Diary

Vegas13.jpgOur Las Vegas home away from home

Independence Day is a time for all Americans to reflect on the gifts of freedom that we've been bequeathed by our forefathers and to bask in the glory of our nation's place in the universe as a beacon of freedom to all. It's also a great time to go to Las Vegas to meet one of your all-time favorite entertainers in history. This past weekend Mr. Mickey and Drew did just that by heading to Las Vegas for a rendezvous with the one, the only, Mr. David Copperfield.

Not surprisingly, we're both gigantic fans of Sin City. We fell in love with the town when we did an entire Las Vegas issue in September, 2003. We've made regular returns and lately our hotel of choice is the Cosmoplitan -- Drew stayed there for New Year's Eve when he went to see Lady Gaga and Tony Bennett at the resort and Mickey spent his 48th birthday there while attending the bachelor party of one of his best friends.

What better spot than a penthouse with an eye-popping view of the Strip to be your Las Vegas weekend home-base?

Vegas9.jpgRoom Service!

Vegas6.jpgDrew at Jaleo

Vegas7.jpgA little dish of paella

You can't go to Las Vegas without making some big decisions about what to eat. Really the top chefs of the world are all represented so it's tough to narrow things down. Being vegetarians is also a special twist.
Our first delicious dinner was at Jaleo, which is the tapas restaurant of multiple-James Beard awards-winning chef Jose Andres. We had a vegetarian tasting and Mickey's favorite was the classic tortilla española. Drew loved the watermelon salad. Just when we both hit the wall and couldn't eat another bite we heard pans being banged and people shouting like there was some kind of celebration and two big strong men brought out a gigantic swimming pool-sized pan filled with Paella de Verduras. Yes they really love theater in Las Vegas, even at the dinner table. We couldn't resist and it was the tastiest paella we've ever had.

Dinner number 2 was at STK. We know what you're thinking. Vegetarians at a steakhouse? Well we had some carnivorous friends join us and the chef prepared a parade of vegetarian treats that started with a mind-scrambling sweet corn pudding and ended with some ultra sweet n sticky donuts.  Yum, yum, yum.

In an effort to walk off some of the calories we'd ingested we spent a lot of time walking up and down the strip. Really the wild characters you see there put Times Square to shame. Every few steps is a street performer or someone dressed in costume ready to pose for photos in exchange for tips. In one hour we saw a dozen showgirls, two Roman gladiators, 3 out 4 members of Kiss, two fake Chippendales and Michael Jackson. We also sauntered past a fake Eiffel Tower, the prancing waters of the Bellagio, a Coliseum and the famous original light-up sign of the Flamingo Hotel and Casino.

Vegas4.jpgOur favorite gift shop at the Flamingo

Vegas3.jpgDrew models his Flamingo fanny-pack in the Marie Osmond section of the gift shop

We have to admit that we have a real warm spot for the Flamingo. Sadly Las Vegas doesn't preserve its architectural history but we can imagine gangster Bugsy Siegel and his glamour girl ladyfriend Virginia Hill hanging out at the Flamingo back when Bugsy opened the hotel in 1946.
One of Mickey's favorite shows is Olivia Newton-John who performs in the Donny and Marie Theater when America's favorite brother-sister act are on vacation. Also we have to say the Flamingo has our favorite gift shop on the Strip. Mickey considers himself an expert on gift shops of all kinds and frankly most of them are not great. The big gift shop at the Flamingo is a bonanza of hot pink and sparkly gifts to take back for friends. Tank tops, midriff tops, fanny packs, kids' bathing suits. It's madness. Also they have a separate Donny and Marie section as well as a corner of Olivia Newton-John merchandise. That's what Mickey likes to see! The only gift shop that might be even better is the all-Britney Spears gift shop at Planet Hollywood. Like the Flamingo, whomever is stocking that store has imagination. Drew and Mickey came out of the Flamingo loaded down with goodies for ourselves and our loved ones. What happens in Vegas might stay in Vegas but a good souvenir lasts a lifetime!

VegasView.jpgThe view from our terrace at the Cosmopolitan

Our final night in Vegas ended up with Drewps and Mr. Mickey lounging languidly on the terrace of our suite at the Cosmopolitan looking out over the magical skyline of Sin City. Really there isn't another city where everyone is on the same page: the 'let's have fun' page. That's what makes Las Vegas irresistible and will make us keep coming back for years to come.

Watch the Trailer For MTV's New Documentary Examining White Privilege


White privilege is a term that has recently floated into every comment section of the internet and many conversations IRL. But what exactly is it? Curious to find an answer, Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and filmmaker Jose Antonio Vargas went on a documented journey of probing discussions and uncomfortable forums to understand the entitlements attached to white privilege. What he learned forms the centerpiece of a new documentary on MTV, White People, whose first trailer recently came out. Watch as Vargas conducts conversations with various people, forcing them to acknowledge the way their race automatically braces them with a certain prerogative and to confront uncomfortable truths. The film will premiere July 22 at 8/7c on MTV, and you can see the trailer, above.

Rapper Prince Harvey Recorded His New Album at the Soho Apple Store

There's been buzz surrounding Apple and their revamped music platform, Apple Music, but it seems that even their retail stores are contributing to the recording industry. After losing two laptops from wear-and-tear then theft, New York rapper Prince Harvey brilliantly resorted to laptops available for use at the Apple Store in SoHo to help him continue his music production. After a four-month endeavor of resourcefully transforming the public store into his own recording studio, Prince Harvey completed his record titled Prince Harvey at The Apple Store: SoHo or shorthanded as PHATASS. The record will be available July 26, butthe first two singles "SOMETIMES" and "The New Black" are available on Prince Harvey's Soundcloud now.

Via Billboard.

Don't Worry, America: The Police are all Over Ariana Grande's "Malicious Licking"

Ariana-Grande-2.jpgSomehow, Ariana Grande licking a doughnut has turned into a scandal of O.J. proportions (get it, because breakfast food). In addition to poking the bear of Rob Lowe with her completely reasonable "I hate America" comment in surveillance footage captured at a doughnut store (below), she's now being investigated (or something) by Lake Elsinore police and Riverside County public health officials for an act described with the words "maliciously lick," i.e. putting her icky tongue on a doughnut and then putting the pastry back. So, yeah, that is a little on the gross side, but shouldn't the doughnut shop just sell Ariana Grande-licked doughnuts for a lot more money, or something? People would totally buy them. Also, isn't it good to know that American law enforcement have their priorities straight? At the very least, the combination of surveillance culture, attacks on celebrity, and the inexplicable presence of Rob Lowe in this whole debacle will make for a great way of explaining our particular 21st century dystopia in future history books.

LIsten to Bleachers' Really Likeable Remix of Carly Rae Jepsen's "I Really Like You"


Carly Rae Jepsen's been having quite the critical renaissance as of late, and for good reason, as everything we've heard thusfar from her forthcoming E•MO•TION is pretty much a perfectly-crafted, candy pop gem. So how do you possibly improve the addictive anthem that is "I Really Like You?" You get Bleachers to do a remix, duh.

Exploring a markedly more 80s-influenced, synth-heavy vibe, her stadium-ready single "I Really Like You" gets a monumental marching drum makeover courtesy of Jack Antonoff's side prohect. Known to most as Fun's guitarist/uncrowned King of the Alt-Earworm, Antonoff lends his acerbic, staccato-loving touch to the sweet song -- giving it a bit of an edge while preserving the anthemic spirit of Jepsen's vocals. 

Listen to the remix below...and prepare to not listen to anything else for the rest of today.

Do These GIFS Enhance Your Libido?

globesmall-1-(dragged).gifBy Adriana Minoliti via Dazed Digital

Can technology turn us on? Artist Faith Holland explores the lustful nature of our dear devices in her first solo exhibition "TECHNOPIHILIA," which is currently on view at Brooklyn's Transfer Gallery. Holland writes"I sleep inches away from my phone; it is the last thing I see at night and the first thing I see in the morning, regardless of who or what else is in my bed. I gently massage my laptop's pressure points as I write this text. I caress screens throughout the day. I softly cup a mouse in my right hand as it grazes across my desk. This is the new intimacy." In addition to her series of looped moving images she calls "Visual Orgasms" and large scale collages of cum shots from pornography, the installation will conclude this Sunday with a screening of 40+ "GIFs to Have Sex By"from other invited artists. Take a preview peek at a few above and below and head to the gallery on Sunday for the rest.

Kenyan Electro-Funk Rocker Bill "Blinky" Sellanga On the African Music You Need to Hear

Photo by Paul Munene

Bill "Blinky" Sellanga is a member of Just a Band, a Kenya-based art and music collective that has gigged from Abu Dhabi to New York. The exposure comes from incredible talent but also savvy Internet marketing: their video for "Ha-He" (which looks like it was shot by Taratino on a Kickstarter budget, in the best way possible) was the first Kenyan YouTube video to go viral. Beyond the views, Blinky Bill's been interviewed by the likes of the Wall Street Journal and is a TED Fellow.

But what's equally impressive as his music and web marketing is Blinky Bill's genuine enthusiasm for the sounds coming out of Africa right now -- music we're not likely to hear Stateside. Homegrown or UK-born talent dominates our airwaves and while nearly a quarter of the top 50 Singles on iTunes in late June featured artists born outside of the US, none were born in Africa. Just a Band's popularity echoes this: they have yet to chart here despite being one of the most popular acts in Kenya. 

Of course, digital platforms like Spotify and YouTube are making it easier than ever for artists and listeners to connect. In Blinky Bill's ideal future, Just a Band's song "Huff + Puff," which now has over 250,000 streams on Spotify, will someday cross seven figures, and his African peers will see similar success. I spoke with him about what it's like to be a viral video star in Kenya and the African music he hopes will go viral here in the US.

You're Kenyan, but you're often dubbed an "African artist."

I think in terms of country, no doubt. But there's a lot of exchange in terms of music across Africa. The most dominant influences right now are Nigeria and South Africa. South Africa has had house music for forever, which they infused with traditional sounds to make a unique groove. I've never been to Nigeria, but their music makes it feel like a very party-oriented place. Just a Band's music is Kenyan because we live here and we grew up here, influenced by our Kenyan-ness. Musically, compared to other African countries, guitars and drums are key.

Which other African countries are churning out up-and-comers?

Music from Congo and Mali is incredibly soulful and both countries are on my bucket list of places to party. Angola, Kenya, Ethiopia, Ghana are definitely on the up-and-up. More and more countries surprise me. I was in Namibia earlier this year with the Red Bull Music Academy and the music was insane.

A lot of people in the US know Just a Band from "Ha-He" -- the first viral video from Kenya. What was the reaction back home?

Was madness. We were a band that was being kept alive by our friends and fans who became friends. When the video went viral, we were everywhere. It taught us a lot about how rapidly things can change -- and how much love and spite you get from being popular. 

The world is more connected than ever. How has that changed your audience?

There are literally no musical borders. We have played in venues across the world. It's crazy to think that a band from Nairobi would play in a far-flung place like Corsica, France, and still get an audience. It's one of the greatest things about being a musician today: you can make music in your bedroom without big money funding and get an audience anywhere.

Why does more of the world -- especially the US -- need to listen to more African music?

The US has contributed much to global music culture, but there's a lot of exciting music being made across the globe. When I'm in the States, I rarely hear music from elsewhere, which is in total contrast from what I see in other parts of the world. American music is great but could be greater if it paid attention to what's going on in Africa now. The grooves that African music has are insane and just waiting for innovative producers and musicians to merge both worlds to get people on their feet.

Great producers and artists have done that before though, right?

Yeah! There's a lot of examples of producers who have sampled African music to get funky beats like Missy Elliott and Timabland sampling Fela Kuti for "Whatcha Gonna Do" and J Cole's "Can't Get Enough" sampling "Paulette" by Balla et ses Balladins from Guinea. More of that! There have been a lot of traditional musicians who have had a huge impact on music in the US and elsewhere. And now, there's a new generation of musicians doing their thing -- lots of experimental artists, lots of music that is more pumping.

Who are the traditional musicians you think have had the biggest impact?

Off the top of my head, and there are too many to mention, Hugh Masekela, Manu Dibango -- who was sampled by the King of Pop on "Wanna Be Starting Something" -- Miriam Makeba, Sam Fan Thomas from Cameroon who is a legend -- and Fela Kuti, obviously. I just discovered Solomon Ilori and His Afro-Drum Ensemble. They were signed to Blue Note Records in the '60s. There must be some crazy story there.

And the new generation -- who are the artists we'll be listing off in 40 years?

Wizkid from Nigeria is brilliant. Spoek Mathambo is creatively pushing the boundaries of African music with his new project, Fantasma. I just got hipped to Ethiopian electronic music through Ethiopiyawi. [The movement] draws on Ethiopia's long history of jazz music while paying homage to electronic jazz pioneers like Flying Lotus to come up with a fresh sound. Stromae, who is Belgian-Rwandese. So much dope music being made... so many new artists I probably have no clue about. 

It's summer. Everyone needs new music. Name five or six African songs everyone should hear right now.

"Ojuelegba" by Wizkid is a dope song. "CaraCara" by K.O. featuring Kid X is one of my favorite songs. It's from 2014, but still a fave -- grimy but funky and street. Culoe De Song's "No Contest" is a house track from one of my favorite producers and DJs. Aero Manyelo's "Tshunga" kicked off a DJ set I went to last week and the night rocked. Muthoni DQ's "Feelin' It" is one of the best Kenyan songs in recent history, what it would sound like if Missy Elliott landed in Nairobi.

I love that.

Can I do a special mention? "Ijusi" by Okmalumkoolkat. Progressive and forward-thinking artist and sound. And these new school African musicians from Ghana called FOKN Bois. They're irreverent, smart, shocking and funny.

Great. Back to Just a Band...

Wait, final addition: TemiDollFace, a Nigerian songstress who's soulful and quirky. And listen to "Weka Weka" from Kenyan artist P-Unit. It's one of my favorite tracks of the year.

You have a lot of favorite tracks of the year. What about Just a Band? What will we hear next from you?

We have three albums out now, and we're working on the fourth slated for later this year.

If you had to describe your fourth album in one word, what would you say?


10 Things We Learned About Stephen Colbert From His 'Comedians In Cars Getting Coffee' Episode


In the midst of getting ready to take over The Late Show from David Letterman in September, Stephen Colbert found some time to appear in the season 6 finale of Jerry Seinfeld's "Comedians In Cars Getting Coffee."  Here's what we learned about Colbert from the conversation that filled his and Seinfeld's visit to Bluestone Coffee Co. in Montclair, NJ in a bright blue sports car.

1. He was going to stop The Colbert Report no matter what. 

Screenshot 2015-07-09 14.04.51.png
Turns out he would've ended the show whether or not he had The Late Show lined up afterward. "I was ready to stop," he said, when "the Letterman thing fell in my lap."

2. He was in a FirsTier Bank commercial in the 90s.

This was the one measly gig he got from his days auditioning in Chicago, he lamented. Well, you've got to start somewhere.  

3. That new beard is Sean-Connery-inspired.

Screenshot 2015-07-09 14.08.06.pngHe's coined the look "a mid-career Connery," though Seinfeld prefers to call it "gruesome."

4. His dad ran a hospital and smoked a pipe.

Screenshot 2015-07-09 14.20.01.png
He likened the late James William Colbert, Jr. to George C. Scott in the movie The Hospital, mimicking his pipe-smoking habits with a stirring spoon. When Seinfeld asked whether he or his father was more feminine, Colbert responded, "Well, obviously I am because he actually smoked and I pretend to smoke with a spoon." Good point.

5. He's not too keen on the whole happiness thing.

Screenshot 2015-07-09 14.27.21.png
"How do you feel about happiness? Where do you rank happiness?" Colbert wanted to know, concurring with Seinfeld's declaration that "it's a foolish thing to pursue" and adding that "suffering is actually a pretty good way to get to happiness." Seinfeld got it: "Like I'm suffering right now trying to make you happy." If only every cafe were full of comedians to eavesdrop on.

6. He's an honorary Jew.

Screenshot 2015-07-09 14.39.33.pngWhen he advised a former supervisor that the best way to handle her divorce was to "think of the thing that you least want to do as probably the right thing to do, and you know it, which is why you don't want to do it," she responded, "Are you sure you're not Jewish?" He took it as a compliment.

7. He's a Neutral Milk Hotel fan.

Screenshot 2015-07-09 14.42.26.png
He can recite "In the Aeroplane Over the Sea" by heart, and the line "Can't believe how strange it is to be anything at all" blows his mind (and makes Seinfeld lose it).

8. He wants to die eating artctic frost blueberry Twizzlers, drinking coffee, and listening to Mendelssohn's "Song Without Words." 

Screenshot 2015-07-09 14.47.41.png9. He'd rather be funny than smart.

Screenshot 2015-07-09 14.52.19.png
Which makes him, according to Seinfeld,"a clown, then -- just an idiot in gigantic pants."

10. He doesn't color his hair.

Screenshot 2015-07-09 14.59.13.pngHe just happens to have dark hair and a white beard. Like ya do.