The same week that KAWS illustrated an inexplicable New York cover story, Manhattan's art world was again brought to its knees by the explosion of Bored Apes across New York. Concrete jungle indeed!

In fairness, what with NFT.NYC going on simultaneously, ApeFest 2022 wasn't even the biggest eyesore in town. It's just that its digital fedora-wearing proponents were inescapable.

Sure, no one who actually lives in New York would've been bombarded by the screaming neon signs hoisted in Time's Square but Bored Ape graffiti and ads peppered the entire city, from borough to borough.

Luckily, the infection was mostly quarantined to the Chelsea Piers from June 20-23 but, even still, I glimpsed no fewer than three different dudes with Ape shirts — one of whom was sporting jaw-dropping Bitcoin-branded sneakers, no less — around town in a single day.

ApeFest, now in its second year, is an annual event for the euphoric individuals who hold Mutant and Bored Ape Yacht Club NFTs. If you don't know them by name, you would certainly recognize them from the bong-smoking chimp drawings in their Twitter profile pictures.

Bored Ape dudes tend to embarrass themselves well enough as is but ApeFest brings 'em all together for a thoroughly unpleasant event, one that you can only enter by holding one of the 10,000 sacred monkey NFTs.

Imagine The Gathering but for folks less cool than Juggalos and you've got ApeFest.

The jokes write themselves — just check Twitter! — but the actual festivities actually aren't much to write home about.

You can buy burgers and coffee with Apes stamped on them or deflate any sexual appeal you might've had by tossing on insider-only monkey merch, broadcasting your secret shame to the world.

But only if you attended ApeFest 2022 IRL — otherwise you'll have to fork over hundreds of fiat dollars to merch scalpers to pretend you attended an invite-only party for people who paid six figures for doodles of chimps.

Famous guests at ApeFest included Timbaland, who plugged some new crypto doohicky, and Amy Schumer, a truly inspired choice from the ApeFest booking agent.

Inexplicably, ApeFest also included performances from Eminem, The Roots, Future, Haim, and Lil Baby, which sounds more like Coachella madlibs than an NFT party flanked by flip-flop-wearing chimp inflatables.

Snoop Dogg also showed but Uncle Snoop has never been shy about taking paid gigs, so whatever.

Perhaps the saddest appearance was from LCD Soundsystem, the influential indie band that was so New York that its 2011 farewell tour culminated in a sold-out Madison Square Garden set.

Over a decade later, a decidedly more defeated James Murphy and co. played "All My Friends" to a crowd of disinterested armchair investors on a murky Monday evening. You're bringing me down, indeed.

 

In other news, Boondocks animator and producer Carl Jones has recently jumped into the realms of NFTs with his Bubblegoose Ballers project. 

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