I have said it before and I will say it again: Everything in life should be well curated. Hence, who better to curate the perfect jaunt to New Orleans than the world-renowned Prospect.3 curators? In case you have been asleep, Prospect.3 is the truly phenomenal New Orleans art triennial that opened in October. Fortunately for you, the show continues through January. It’s the perfect time to take a mid-winter jaunt to the Big Easy! Here are the best restaurants, venues, and activities to take in, according to these discerning tastemakers who know the place inside and out.
FRANKLIN SIRMANS, LOS ANGELES COUNTY MUSEUM OF ART DEPARTMENT HEAD & CURATOR OF CONTEMPORARY ART, ARTISTIC DIRECTOR FOR PROSPECT.3 NEW ORLEANS
Favorite Local Restaurant: Dooky Chase’s, of course!
Activity: HUSTLE Saturday nights at the Hi-Ho Lounge with DJ Soul Sister.
Venue: Since the first two involve eating and drinking, music, and merriment, I’d have to say watching a Saints game basically anywhere in the city. There’s absolutely nothing like it!
BROOKE DAVIS ANDERSON, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, PROSPECT NEW ORLEANS/U.S. BIENNIAL
Favorite Local Restaurant: Carmo—I’m a vegetarian, so this is the perfect restaurant for me! And it’s located in one of the arts districts in town.
Activity: Biking in New Orleans! The city is becoming more and more bike-friendly and it is a great way to get around town.
Venue: I really love Dooky Chase’s Restaurant as a place to be. I have meetings there, lunch there, and I go there to look at art—one of the best collections of African-American art is located here.
YLVA ROUSE, DEPUTY DIRECTOR FOR CURATORIAL AFFAIRS, PROSPECT NEW ORLEANS/U.S. BIENNIAL, INC.
Favorite Local Restaurant: (One of) my favorite high-end restaurants, Lilette, on 3637 Magazine Street, draws from local and seasonal ingredients and often features interesting dishes—and absolutely delicious desserts…reservations recommended.
Activity: City Park, where there is something for everyone—a stroll, coffee and beignets at Morning Call café, a gondola tour through the bayous, pedal boats, botanical garden, amusement park, golf, horseback riding, and, last but not least, a wonderful sculpture by P.3 artist Will Ryman!
Venue: Hard to pick one! I think I would have to say the UNO St. Claude Gallery, with Propeller Group and Christopher Myers, for the connection to New Orleans and their work with local students. The Propeller Group (consisting of two members from Vietnam, Phunam and Tuan Andrew Nguyen, and Matt Lucero from the U.S.), produced a video that looks into the differences and similarities in funeral marches in both Vietnam and New Orleans. It’s a haunting film that is accompanied by Christopher Myers’s beautiful installation of marching-band suites and “impossible” wind instruments, with which he worked with students from Martin Luther King Charter School. But also the Joan Mitchell Center, where P.3 artists mingle with local New Orleans artists.
CAROLINE KERRIGAN, DEPUTY DIRECTOR FOR THE PUBLIC EXPERIENCE, PROSPECT NEW ORLEANS/U.S. BIENNIAL
Activity: Jogging in Audubon Park and riding my bike all over town (speaking of which, P.3 Rides tours are a great way to experience P.3!).
Venue: The setting at Treme Market Branch, with the Gary Simmons project.
CHARLIE TATUM, EDUCATION AND VISITOR SERVICES ASSOCIATE, PROSPECT NEW ORLEANS/U.S. BIENNIAL
Favorite Local Restaurant: I just moved into a new house in the Irish Channel, and I’ve been having a hard time not grabbing a firecracker shrimp po’boy from Parasol’s Bar and Restaurant every day on my way home. Sometimes, if I open my windows, I can smell the fried seafood and hear Kate Bush blasting from their jukebox.
Activity: Walking around the city never gets old, even in the more touristy parts of the French Quarter. I love grabbing a Bloody Mary at the French Market on a weekend afternoon and strolling around, either up to the Moon Walk or over to Crescent Park in the Bywater.
Venue: It’s hard to resist a good night at Hi-Ho Lounge, especially if DJ Soul Sister is spinning (most Saturday nights)! Her parties are fun and impossible not to enjoy, and the space is one that immediately felt familiar the first time I went in. They’ve had great concerts by How to Dress Well and Landlady recently, too.
Prospect.3: Notes for Now