Tiger Hood - Cover

Tiger Hood

Photo - Patrick Barr AKA Tiger Hood

New York City is full of people, but way back when, it used to have more characters. The true individuals who contributed to the city’s rich cultural tapestry just by being themselves, usually with outsize personalities that could fill a whole borough.

Patrick Q.F. Barr is one of those characters, the definition of a NYC fixture and living urban legend who swung his way into the hearts and minds of city dwellers, tourists, and anyone who’s ever hung out in SoHo. Better known as Tiger Hood, Barr is a photographer who’s known more for what he does to pass the time: hitting folded-up milk cartons into crates with a golf club.

Photos - Jeremy Cohen

The city is his driving range, and the green starts wherever he places his tattered mat with a 100-dollar-bill printed on it. Sure, his game isn’t “golf” in the way most people would define it, but in doing things his own way on his own terms, it’s certainly a sentiment we can get behind.

It would be easy to write off someone like Barr as the “milk carton golf guy,” but he is so much more than his hobby. If you look at his expansive photographic archive, you can see the evolution of New York City from the 1990s to 2000s. In between candid shots of comedians like Dave Chappelle and legendary musician James Brown, there are also profound pictures like a rooster eating from a KFC box, haunting cityscapes of the NYC skyline pre-9/11, and portraits of the so-called “old New York” that so many people claim to miss.

If anyone has a right to miss it—it’s Barr. Not only was he there, but in many ways he’s an embodiment of that rough-around-the-edges charm the city used to have before it was so heavily gentrified.

Barr is the subject of the 12-minute documentary 'Neighborhood Golf Association' by Nicolas Heller—better known as @NewYorkNico. He reached out to us to co-host the official screening last week. Held at Project Farmhouse, the venue is an initiative by GrowNYC, an organization that connects New Yorkers with locally-grown produce and supports programs that promote recycling and urban gardening. The event was a community affair, bringing out a ton of people who support Nico’s work in highlighting these underground stories, and also fans of Tiger Hood. Boxed Water and Brooklyn Brewery provided refreshments, and Blac Rabbit, a band consisting of twin guitarists Amiri and Rahiem Taylor, played some Beatles covers before the doc was shown.

Noah released a collaborative T-shirt with Tiger Hood and Nicolas Heller that night, featuring a graphic by artist Bill Rebholz. It was one of many submissions for the tee, with some of the other ones ending up on editioned milk carton golf balls Tiger Hood made for the show. He also sold several photographic prints from his catalog.

The Noah x Tiger Hood x New York Nico T-shirts retail for $48 each and will be available for sale on March 7th. 15% of the proceeds will be donated to the Henry Street Settlement, an organization that helps Lower East Side residents and New Yorkers through arts, social services, and healthcare programs. The rest will go directly to Tiger Hood.