By Alexis Soloski
By Molly Grogan
By R. C. Baker
By Christian Viveros-Fauné
By Alexis Soloski
By Alexis Soloski
By Lilly Lampe
Here's mud in your eye. Supermud. This Upper West Side pottery studio has offered classes in hand-building and wheel-throwing for nearly 30 years—that's a lot of coil vases and irregular coffee mugs. Should you wish to free your inner ceramicist, Supermud offers classes for adults, teenagers, and children, as well as clay-focused birthday parties. (We assume the refreshments are not themselves mud-based.)
Michelangelo said, "The true work of art is but a shadow of the divine perfection." But whatever your religious beliefs, you might want to create that true work of art in the first place. If you can wangle enough vacation time, Parsons can give you a good start. During the summer, Parsons runs four-week-long intensives in drawing, painting, architecture, and sculpture. • parsons.edu
If you think your city kids have become a bit too citified, you can give your youngsters a rural experience without ever having to take them out of the five boroughs. The Queens Farm Museum offers several summer camp sessions. The working farm, which boasts pigs, sheep, goats, and crops, too, will keep kids occupied in activities concerning "photography, science, nature, cooking, arts/crafts, and farming aspects." • queensfarm.org
Your kiddies may be too young for a Nepalese trek, but you can start preparing them for that eventual Himalayan vacation with workshops at the Rubin Museum of Art. The West's only museum dedicated to the art of the Himalayas, the Rubin includes among its offerings "Yak Packers," a free weekly art program for children ages two to five. Kids will learn a bit about pieces at the Rubin and get to make art of their own, while listening to Nepalese music.
While few responsible parents would want their child to become the next Ricky Martin (those hips are rather terrifying), a musical, multilingual baby would be rather delightful. For 10 years, ¡Música Para Mí! has promised to teach kids both skills. With sessions in Brooklyn, Manhattan, and Queens, these music classes for young children are conducted in immersion-method Spanish. • geocities.com/greenjaybird
"All you need to make a movie is a girl and a gun," proclaims Jean-Luc Godard on the International Film Institute of New York's website. Far be it from us to disagree with Godard, but we can't help but wonder if some instruction in the fundamentals of filmmaking might also prove useful. That's what's offered at IFI via their six-week filmmaking intensive, which covers everything from screenwriting and casting to lighting and lenses to postproduction and marketing. • nyfilmschool.com
Polaroid has recently announced it will stop production of its instant cameras and refill packs, and while many features are still shot on film for the time being, can the movie industry really be so far behind? To prepare for the wave of the future, you might take a few classes at the Digital Film Academy. The Academy offers beginning, advanced, and crash-course instruction in becoming a digital auteur as well as classes in special effects, animation, and making a music video.
Food and Drink
Founded by a Calabrian immigrant in 1948, A&S Pork Store has supplied Brooklynites with all the joy a pig can bring for 60 years. Though originally the shop sold only pork, it has since diversified into prepared foods, beef, poultry, lamb, and extraordinary fresh and smoked mozzarella, It's simple enough—and delightful—to purchase hunks of these cheeses, but A&S also offers, by request, classes in learning the art and science of mozzarella making. • asporkstore.com
In The Godfather, Pete Clemenza is instructed to "Leave the gun. Take the cannoli." Really, it's the right call. First developed in Palermo, these "little tubes" are filled with sweetened ricotta, candied fruit, and, if you ask us, a little touch of heaven. You can learn to make similar Italian desserts and gelato in a mere three sessions at the Italian Culinary Academy.
3rd Ward, a studio space in East Williamsburg, has 20,000 square feet at its disposal, so it's no surprise they have room for wood and metal shops, a recording studio, a dance studio, a photo studio, an art gallery, and a yard—with picnic tables! They also offer a changing roster of classes in their digital-media studio, designed to instruct beginners and more experienced students in the vagaries of Web design, Photoshop, and Flash. • 3rdward.com
While many New Yorkers are animated, few are actually animators. You can join their rare ranks with a couple of classes at the School of Visual Arts. Though they do offer some instruction in old-school techniques such as stop motion and hand drawing, you can also learn the high-tech artistries of Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, Flash, and After Effects.
As the current war staggers along and prejudice against Middle Easterners continues, many New Yorkers have felt it's time to know more about the these countries and their cultures. To aid this, the Network of Arab-American Professionals has founded the Arabic Language Program. These small classes, limited to 18 students, provide a foundation in Modern Standard Arabic. • naaponline.org