Holiday Gift Guide 2020

We felt so flattered by a recent feature in Cultured Magazine's A Very Cultured 2020 Gift Guide that we felt prompted us to ask ourselves and a few of our friends, what they'd like to 'gift' to others during this holiday season. Here are some of the go-to gift ideas shared with us by: Anicka, Mari, Remina, Zsela, Shuyi, Beverly, Avena, and Margaret...

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ANICKA

Donate:
StopDiscriminAsian @stopdiscriminasian
For Freedoms @forfreedoms
The Okra Project @theokraproject
Galleries Commit NYC @galleriescommit
Walk The Walk 2020 @walktwalk2020

Read:
Mysogynoir, Cassandra Press @cassandra_press
Adam Pendleton Monograph @pendleton.adam@phaidonsnaps

Eat (Fermented Foods):
Brooklyn based artisanal Kimchi purveyors; White Kimchi from Kimchi Kooks @kimchikooks
Artisanal natto from NYrture, NY Natto @nyrture
Hoja Santa Casa Bosques Chocolates @casabosqueschocolate

Smell:
One of my favorite enduring winter fragrances evoking sticky scented wax trapped in a wooden box lost in a souk for centuries - Ambre Sultan, Serge Lutens. @sergelutens@chris.sheldrake


REMINA
Biological Exuberance - Bruce Bagemihl

‍The bible on queer animal biology! "Two ganders who work together as a mated pair? Two female bears raising their four cubs together? A kangaroo with both a female pouch and male sex organs? Who's been keeping all this a secret?... natural systems are driven as much by abundance and excess as they are by limitation and practicality. Seen in this light, homosexuality and non reproductive heterosexuality are 'expected' occurrences, manifestations of an overall "extravagance" of biological systems that has many other expressions."

M. Archive, Alexis Pauline Gumbs, @alexispauline

Gumbs is a brilliant poet. This book is both deeply moving and educational, a survey of black feminist thinking beyond the human! The 2nd book in her trilogy, with 'Spill' and 'Dub'... "M Archive is told from the perspective of a future researcher who uncovers evidence of the conditions of late capitalism, anti blackness, and environmental crisis while examining possibilities of being that exceed the human. By exploring how Black feminist theory is already after the end of the world, Gumbs reinscribes the possibilities and potentials of scholarship while demonstrating the impossibility of demarcating the lines between art, science, spirit, scholarship, and politics."

@farm.one

Who wouldn't want a weekly farmshare array of microgreens, unusual herbs, and edible flowers? These micro packages allow me to taste new things and support biodiversity. Also! no plastic
waste!

@seed_savers_exchange

I'm just learning about the importance of seed variety. Rare seeds or herb transplants from an heirloom seeds bank would be great for a gardener or plant enthusiast! "We have grown, saved, and shared heirloom seeds and led a movement to protect biodiversity and preserve heirloom varieties. At the heart of our organization is a seed bank that houses a collection of 20,000+ rare, open-pollinated varieties.

@blackandpinkorg

Black and Pink was founded in 2005 and is a national prison abolitionist organization dedicated to abolishing the criminal punishment system and liberating LGBTQIA2S+ people and people living with HIV/AIDS who are affected by that system through advocacy,
support, and organizing.

@mariagefreresofficial

Good for indulgent self care during the second lockdown. Inherited some of their incense from Anicka and it's really nice! I would try their teas.

@roomshop

Discovered this one through Mari! The scrunchies are an affordable, playful, and unique gift. They also have some satin and silk face masks.

@bornfromrock

Help your friend, partner, family member upgrade their Zoom "talking head" game, by adorning it with a single unique earring. I'm a fan of minimal silver, unisex jewelry. These prices are pretty good for designer, pure sterling silver.


MARI

1, Sankyodai \ @sankyodainatto

Japanese Artisan Natto (fermented soybean). It is a superfood and I eat it every day but this one is mind-blowing- soooo good. I'm obsessed and can't eat the store-bought one anymore.


2, Smallhold \ @smallhold

Mushroom home grow kits. I like the idea of "You can name them (like a little mushroom pet)"!


3, Coming Soon \ @comingsoonny

They support small local designers. So do I.


4, Manufactum \ @manufactum

This German store collects the best high-quality, skillfully crafted items from the world.


5, The Brooklyn Cat Cafe \ @catcafebk

For a cat lover friend, the non-profit cat cafe in NYC.


ZSELA

@00racul00 - mesh thong w/ organza silk trim and ribbon bows πŸ₯Ί

@maison_quiquine - Jade Gua Sha πŸ’Ÿ

Nonviolent Communication -πŸ€ͺ

@fotofolio 1 year subscription of curated sets of 10 postcards monthly
for 10$ (can add stamps too) πŸ’Œ

Pomander - If you don’t want to spend any money πŸ€‘ Google how to πŸ’†πŸΎβ™€οΈ

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MARGARET

1. Like many of my friends, I want to remain involved with social justice. Here are a few of the organizations that stand out to me for nourishing grassroots collectivity, but donating to any worthy cause is always a nice gift: @aclu @blklivesmatter @walktwalk2020 @artistrelief @recessart @gyopo.us‍

2. As we head into another phase of quarantine, many of us will test new recipes for future gatherings. A gift certificate from gastronomic emporium @kalustyans enlivens any pantry.

3. Did someone say vaccine? In preparation for the new 'Roaring 20s' I'll be stocking cellars with thoughtfully-crafted beverages. I look forward to raising a glass filled by small batch winemakers who prioritize community and ecology. My favorites include: @MadsonWines @ScholiumWines and @EnlightenmentWines If I'm unsure about a friend's preferences, then a @heritage.wines gift certificate is sure to delight.

4. A subscription to @yogayruparodstryker Sanctuary App. This is the only meditation app that keeps me anchored. For each paid subscription, Sanctuary donates a subscription to a person in need. Everyone should have a sanctuary.

5. Some days, it feels nice to recall time spent outdoors. My quick fix? Sweet Grass tincture by @enfleuragenyc I apply to the inside of my mask while I fantasize about future wanderings.

6. My undivided attention. I am setting an intention to be completely present whenever I choose to meet a friend. I think that a deepened awareness about the value of care - in its most essential forms - was one of the best 'gifts' granted to us by 2020.

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SHUYI

BOOK Emanuele Coccia, The Life of Plants: A Metaphysics of Mixture @unicamens An incredible book on plants, written by a philosopher and plant biologist who has worked extensively on aesthetics and on biology.

β€œAs the very creator of atmosphere, plants occupy the fundamental position from which we should analyze all elements of life. From this standpoint, we can no longer perceive the world as a simple collection of objects or as a universal space containing all things, but as the site of a veritable metaphysical mixture...In contrast to trends of thought that discuss nature and the cosmos in general terms, Coccia’s account brings the infinitely small together with the infinitely big, offering a radical redefinition of the place of humanity within the realm of life.”

FRAGRANCE @apotheke_fragrance Japanese Bamboo Incense Sticks An artisanal, handmade fragrance blended, produced by crafters from
Japan. My favorite incense for relaxing and reading at home. Personal choices: The Quiet Light & White Tea. Oakmoss & Amber would be great for winter.

EDUCATION New York Mycological Society Membership @newyorkmyc is a nonprofit organization of members who share an interest in mycology and mycophagy. The present NYMS was reincarnated some 50 years ago by the composer John Cage and a small group of other mushroom lovers and students.

EFFICIENCY Yoseka Stationery @yoseka.stationery
Founded in Taiwan (1981) and then extended to Greenpoint (2017), Yoseka introduces Asian stationery to the US. Everything I dreamed of
in my childhood. Super cute and nostalgic.

HEALTH A family recipe for medicinal herbal tea 15 Snow chrysanthemum + 2~3 American ginseng slices. I make this tea when I catch a cold or for overall calming. Cooling teas like this boost the immune system, reduce inflammation, soothe the respiratory system and relieve allergies. The flowers brew to a rich, dark golden-red infusion. Blend for your loved ones!


BEVERLY

For reading in bed: Β Hungry snake pillow from @everybody.world

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For quarantine round two:

Tehching Hsieh's @mitpress monograph OR a commemorative poster of his one year performance for your quar partner @printedmatter


For eating pomegranate seeds while reading in bed:

Ceramics from @chozenjihawaii, Zen monastery in Honolulu


For cosmic intervention:

@ignotabooks Β 2021 Diary and Interplanetary Cosmic Shitshow World Tour t-shirt

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AVENA

1. Breakfast in Bed
2. A poem
3. A drawing
4. Beloved hand-me-downs
5. A day of service (to help with something/anything)