Monthly Series ART SEEN Brings Art to Nitehawk Cinema

Monthly Series ART SEEN Brings Art to Nitehawk Cinema

Albert Barnes in The Art of the Steal
Courtesy of Nitehawk Cinema

Williamsburg’s Nitehawk Cinema, known for their dinner and a movie approach to independent cinema, recently debuted a new signature series ART SEEN. This weekend, I saw part of this new series: a brunch showing of a 2009 documentary about the Barnes Foundation called The Art of the Steal.

Before the movie began, Nitehawk’s pre-show aimed to get the audience thinking about art with short clips related to the theme. We saw a scene from Woody Allen’s Play It Again, Sam, The Jam’s music video for “Art School” and a theatrical trailer for John Waters’ Pecker. While we watched, a waitress came to take our order and pass out their specialty cocktail menu, inspired by the film.

My boyfriend and I tried some options from Nitehawk’s brunch menu, “The Breakfast Club.” I had a veggie burger with chipotle sauce and a side of fries, though everything else—including their egg sandwich and French toast—looked tempting too. Our dishes also came with a complimentary drink: mimosa, Bloody Mary, soda, tea or coffee.

Credit: Pedro Feria Pino

Soon after we ordered, the film began. It followed the story of Albert Barnes’ extensive art collection and how it changed hands after his death. Former members of the Barnes Foundation, journalists and others involved in the art world spoke about what they felt should have happened to Barnes’ collection. It was an interesting look into art and business, but the most fascinating part was how dedicated many of those interviewed in the film were to Barnes’ memory.

Upcoming ART SEEN screenings include a double feature of 2013’s Head & Hands and 1962’s La Ricotta and the 2013 faux-documentary Rough Cut. Both showings will include a Q&A: an in-person discussion with Head & Hands director Aïda Ruilova on May 13th and a Skype chat with Rough Cut director Jamie Shovlin on June 5th. Visit for tickets and more information.

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