~QUIET/WE LIVE IN PUBLIC UP-DATE !!
spurred on by the success of ONDI TIMONER – who seems to have BILL GATES – aka “the richest man in the world” – as her new BFF !! – beat that – all you losers !! – I recently happened to pass by the old stomping grounds on downtown Broadway – deep in the heart of Tribeca.
this was the site of QUIET – the million dollar+ millennium party – that JOSH HARRIS and PSEUDO.COM threw – to celebrate the turn of the century – and which fueled the core of ONDI TIMONER’S SUNDANCE winning documentary – WE LIVE IN PUBLIC.
The four story warehouse building housed the Japanese style pod or bunker hotel for the 99+ live-in artists, and in the basement – was the ALFREDO MARTINEZ shooting gallery. this building was in constant flux on the other floors – with free-flowing ‘disco’ bars, art installations, and dance floors – not to mention light shows, live sex shows, chess tournaments, interactive games, and even a Toxic room – popping up and going down – just as fast. Josh’s will put it up and Josh’s will took it down. . it was breathtaking to watch the transitions and differing visions. not to mention the competing artistic egos. it was a huge futuristic shock. open to the public 24/7. all wired by omnipresent motion-sensitive cameras for 24/7 surveillance and digitally delivered and projected onto the multi-present screens, also placed everywhere – in real time, and uncensored. you could be eating in the ‘bubble’ dining room and watch Josh, or some pretty uninhibited others – prance fully naked – and wet – in the transparent shower that dominated the last half of the floor-thru pod hotel. you could be in your pod, and according to your temperament elect to catch a close-up of someone else having live sex in their pod – or watch an artist installation take shape a few floors above !! it was sheer creative chaos – with no boundaries – that roamed the absolute !! full specter of human being-ness !! – with blazing futuristic insight and defining predelection. it was at a once perfect insight, blatant imagination meets bankrolled construction – everything was possible – no holds barred – both elegant and raunchy – in sum: the total human experience. circa DEC 1999 – JAN 2000. downtown artworld rebels meet internet geek with a million bucks to blow – who likes to par-tay hearty !! and all take off. it was like the buildings were a self-contained space ship.
the smaller 2 story building to its right – housed the ‘bubble’ communal dining room – for the resident artists and the in-house production crew – complete with an asian 4 star chef – masterminded by OWEN BUSH. serving 3 meals a day. upstairs was the administration, make that Josh’s – offices.
this little storefront schmatta shop – with its many rolls of remnants was what the whole 4 story warehouse building was like – when we first got there, that’s where we got all the fab black fabric, reams of festive red velvet, and everybody’s fave: camo, that draped various stages of the ever-changing and very much put-up on the spot with what ya got – installation . . . that’s where I got the white fleece segments that became the Quiet banners, next to Alfredo’s shooting gallery, and Cal’s Vampire headquarters and video games. not to mention – the ‘interrogation’ room.
the first thing that was done – was a crew painted the walls white, or black !! and then attacked the designated space – with all those fabric rolls – with relish. one of the first areas to go up – the ultra-cheesy live sex shows ‘competition’ – area – 70’s style swanky bordello-era beds – in rolls and rolls of red velvet and M.C. LUVVY – aka JOSH HARRIS – overseeing the action. ONDI’S final version, skewed mightly towards the internet guru aspect – was sooo censored – as to be almost a joke to those who were there for – all the fun and games. there was so much going on at all times – you could pick and choose your niche of comfort – from hauling off in Alfredo’s modernist, make that futurist plexiglas and metal-domed shooting range with real life assault rifles to ALEX ARCADIA’s half-nazi half-meditation temple with its piped-in trance-inducing music to its tiny copper goldfish swimming in a moat on its perimeter. it was violent, it was sweet, it was archival, it was mad max – above all, it was what you could personally stomach.
and there was no rock left unturned. I was supposed to put up a quilting bee – but got run around so much as Josh’s personal right-hand production assistant – that the banners and some make-shift paper lanterns – were the most I had time to devise as my own contribution to this hard-wired time capsule of Americana gone wild.
a field day of red velvet, ‘camo’ and ‘flowery fields’ meet head-on nonstop with the cameras, computers, and plexiglas !!
antique pieced quilts met red velvet live sex shows in the storefront display windows.
yeah the neighbors complained – the live sex in the in display windows – that was the first gig – to get censored.
photographer DONNA FERRATO. she lived, and still does, just around the corner on Leonard St. she heard about the QUIET party – it made huge headlines in all the press, and local mags – except the mainstream art press !! LOL. as if we could be surprised by that. but hey, JEFFREY DEITCH was there almost daily. as was ANTHONY HADEN-GUEST, and ALANA HEISS.
she was in there like a dirty shirt and she’s the one who took most of the hard copy documentary pix !!
PHOTO: DONNA FERRATO/COURTESY: WE LIVE IN PUBLIC
it was DONNA FERRATO who took this photo of me and my kid Theo, back in the early days of QUIET – when JEFF GOMPEERTZ had just finished building the pod hotel. you know there had to be a kid – it was all about the future. you can see the wiring for the ‘reality’ surveillance cameras and the mini-format multi-channel play-back screens. this was before the pod-hotel, devolved into a wild no-holds barred, and some say professionally-stocked – full-on orgy.
computer nerd that he was – Josh was fascinated by animalistic behavior (body) as much as he was fascinated and inspired by the ‘fine’ arts (mind) . . . it was all about skills … and lust !! sometimes Josh walked around as Josh the founder/CEO of Pseudo, overseeing the various stages of construction and deconstruction, handing out his credit card so freely – it was impossible to keep track of – sometimes he M.C.’d as his over-the-top alter ego – LUVVY. but often I think, he also went incognito in a strange kind of hunter’s headpiece – that completely obscured his true identity, esp in the pod hotel’s very raunchy sex free for all ending. just a good guess.
how raunchy did things get, you ask ? DONNA FERRATO’S got the pix !!
and she’s about the only with the goods, too. you go girl.
following 2 images from the pod hotel at QUIET, NYC.
DEC 1999 – JAN 2000 – subject archival photographs by DONNA FERRATO.
and you didn’t see them in WE LIVE IN PUBLIC the film – or at least the version that Ondi put out at SUNDANCE !!
this is performance artist MANGINA, aka PATRICK BUCKLEW, and yes – he really does have a peg leg – though the mangina – LOL – is fabricated. a couple of us got the first over-the-top and very raw – absolutely uncensored version – of WE LIVE IN PUBLIC – as gifts from Josh – -including moi !! maybe one day, I’ll screen it for ya !!
stocked with professionals – I think the consensus would be …
leaving Donna’s Tribeca loft, I make a mental note to get her to show me the pix she has of the NYPD and NYFD / NEW YORK POLICE and NEW YORK FIRE DEPT – finally – shutting the place down – and, can’t help but note the footprint of silkscreen artist to the internet guru – MARK ENGER – aka – EXPLODING SKY – another key creative force in the JOSH HARRIS inner circle – on the exit door. MARK made the custom luvvy-logoed WE LIVE IN PUBLIC – jacket – that Josh is seen proudly sporting in many of the taped media interviews – that followed the big win at SUNDANCE 2009.
a bit further north on Broadway, corner of SPRING St. in Soho – was Josh’s personal 2nd floor-thru luxury loft – where he was to within a year of QUIET – turn the 24/7 motion-sensitive cams on himself and girlfriend TANYA – in the initially first-titled – WE LIVE IN PUBLIC – a project that was live-streamed in an interactive format – that was obviously – way ahead of its time. It inadvertently caught both the loss of his dot com millions, and his girlfriend, or his attempt to make a fake girlfriend look like the real thing (??) – and essentially – the loss of his mind. some said at the time – – that’s what happens when a tech visionary and futuristic guru spends too much time with them wild outlaw artists !! maybe it was just an inevitable end of what is now referred to as – the bubble decade – but whatever it was, no one can deny – what a way to blow-out. no one has bested it yet.
Collector Lio Malca bought the place – was it the summer of 2002 ? Josh retreated full-time to his Apple Orchard up-state – and, where the opening footage in the film – WE LIVE IN PUBLIC – takes place.
PHOTOS: NANCY SMITH – unless otherwise noted.