Featured Artist: Edwin Vazquez


  • My favorite artists are: Jack Kirby, Leonard Cohen & Gary Panter
  • Right now my work is:Computer Programming for mobile devices
  • I love Queens because: I was born and raised here
  • When I was a kid:
  • I find inspiration in:  Superheroes , Werewolves & Motorcycles
  • Do:  jump in
  • Don’t:  hold back
  • Dream Project:  Develop an ongoing animation series
  • Website : www.edwinvazquezart.com
  • instagram: @aperfectempire

Event Spotlight: October 10th After Party Idlewild Magazine Launch

cover-page-001On Friday October 10th at midnight, the Astoria Art Festival will be hosting the launch of Idlewild Magazine, a print Queens Culture Guide.  The event starts at midnight with music by DJ Dennis Borowsky and happy hour drink specials.   Copies of the magazine will make it’s debut at this event. Come celebrate with your neighborhood!

Mars is located at 34-21 34th Avenue,  Astoria

Featured Artist: Ariel Shallit

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  • My favorite artists are:  Frédéric Chopin, Alexandre Dumas (père), Stanley Kubrick, Pablo Picasso and Maya Angelou.
  • Right now my work is:   All consuming.
  • I love Queens because:    I have more memories and family here than anywhere else.
  • When I was a kid:   I didn’t understand that the world and our lives are what we decide they will be.
  • I find inspiration in :   The idea that we can find beauty in anything if we look hard enough.
  • Do:   Create every day.
  • Don’t:   Hurt anyone or anything.
  • Dream Project:   To fill the rest of my days and nights creating art. 
  • website: www.arielshallit.com  
  • instagram: arielshallit

Venue Spotlight: William Hallet

When George Rallis decided to open a second bar and restaurant in 2011, he envisioned a place that had something for everyone. “A lot of places concentrate on one ethnicity or genre of food,” he says. “I wanted to introduce an American food menu with something taken from every culture – place where you can have a burger or a full dinner and get a late-night bite that isn’t diner food.”

William Hallet is an American bar and bistro serving food until 3:45 a.m. daily. Chickpea fries, a Turducken meatloaf sandwich and PBLT with pork belly are just a few favorites off the inventive food menu, while the bar serves up new takes on classic cocktails.

Rallis, who was born and raised in Queens, was hanging out in Astoria long before he opened his first bar, Hell Gate Social, in 2005. William Hallet’s identity is also inspired by local history, named after the founder of Astoria. “I like to have a connection to the area I’m in,” Rallis says.

A strong supporter of Astoria as a whole, Rallis views new restaurants as a boon to the area, rather than competition. “Over the course of the last five years, more and more places have been opening up, which encourages more people to stay in the area,” he says. “It helps businesses and the community overall.”

His passion for the neighborhood is what brought Rallis to participate in the Astoria Art Festival from the beginning, helping out behind the scenes and hosting Art Fest events at Hell Gate Social before it closed in 2013. “Even from our first spot we were about arts and music, and I just felt that I should continue that with our new spot,” he says. ” The Astoria Art Festival affords me that ability.”

William Hallet
36-10 30th Ave.
(718) 269-3443

Featured Artist: Hannah Lansburgh


  • My favorite artists are: Andy Warhol, Kara Walker, Anselm Kiefer
  • Right now my work is: ready for its close-up.
  • I love Queens because: visitors come here with intention!
  • When I was a kid: I drew lady animals in ball gowns.  Every dress had the pattern of the kitchen’s linoleum floor.
  • I find inspiration in: German supermarket circulars, trash, the tension between the longing for independence and attachment.
  • Do: consider believing in synchronicity.
  • Don’t: take my word for it!  Go ahead, ask Helga!  
  • Dream Project:  Covering rooms in wallpapers of my own design… I can’t say more.
  • website: hlansburgh.carbonmade.com

Featured Artist: Victoria Febrer


My favorite artists are:  always changing and experimenting.

Right now my work is: investigating how our perception of a woman’s place in society can change as ancient and familiar elements are expressed in new contexts and mediums.

I love Queens because: the whole world is here.

When I was a kid:I thought that possibilities were limitless.

I find inspiration in:the sea and the desert.

Do:consider every mark you make on the world.

Don’t: ignore the marks made by others.

Dream Project: 
to see the entire coast of the Mediterranean.


Featured Artist : Allison Ruiz


  • My favorite artists are: Currently? Visual: Charles Bragg. Musical: Mac DeMarco.
  •  Right now my work is: All over the place.
  • I love Queens because: I take comfort in knowing where I am, even if—or especially if—my mind is elsewhere.
  • When I was a kid: Two words: Astoria Park.
  • I find inspiration in: Characters, both the personality and the typeface kind.
  • Do: Your best.
  • Don’t: assume people know what you’re talking about. One of the best pieces of advice I’ve received as a creative person.
  • Dream Project: I’ll tell you about it when I wake up.
  • website www.allisonruiz.com