arts 01.4.07

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exhibit… At the Society of Illustrators, 128 E. 63rd [Park/Lex] 212.838.2560, "Letters as Image" is an exhibition showcasing how graphic designers use letters of the alphabet as the message itself. Among the artists is Louise Fili, who has done many of the city's best restaurant logos. The opening is tonight, 5:30pm-8pm. More info.

indie rock… Saturday: Black Dice, Sightings and Excepter bring bombastic noise to Bowery Ballroom. Look out! Saturday: Matt & Kim rock the super-tight and super-happy, toe-tapping jams. Get your grin on at Studio B (with "kid band" Tiny Masters of Today at 8). Just Announced…2/13-2/17: Arcade Fire. 3/31: Sebadoh.

movies/blog… "Essentially Woody," the Woody Allen festival, plays for another week at the Film Forum. We wanted to point you to Next Book, where writer David Rakoff has been blogging about going to see these films again. Rakoff is funny and insightful as always, and even if Allen is in an eclipse as a filmmaker (or because of that), Rakoff takes a fresh look at the good, the bad, and the Everyone Says I Love You.

talk… On the 52nd floor of 7 WTC, architect Rafael Viñoly kicks off the Downtown Alliance's Third Thursdays series for '07. The topic is THINK New York: A Ground Zero Diary. The David Childs building, NYC's first certified green tower, is certainly a fitting place for it. The talk takes place on January 18th at 7pm, the event is free but you have to register. Registration opens at noon on January 9th.

wine… Sam Talbot (the tall, cool drink of water on "Top Chef") may not be in the kitchen at the restaurant Punch any more, but there's another reason to head over to 913 Bway [20th/21st] 212.673.6333: the upstairs has been transformed into a wine bar called Wined-Up. There's a 100-foot wall of wine bottles, 150 selections, 30 by the glass.

out of town… Our pals at Travelzoo have unearthed another great deal this week: Fly to Johannesburg or Cape Town (make it Cape Town) from NY and South African Airways offers a two-for-one deal for departures between January 15th and February 15th. That means each passenger pays roughly $675 roundtrip.

shoppingColiseum Books already broke our heart once, when it was forced out of its 57th Street location. And now the final days at its 42nd Street store are here: the last day of business is this Saturday. Everything in the remaining stock is at least 50% off. Farewell, friend.

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