Editors’ Picks, Holiday Edition: 11 Things Not to Miss in New York’s Art World This Week
From the stately Christmas Tree at Rock Center to a train show in the Bronx, kick off the holiday season with one of these festive events.
Each week, we search New York City for the most exciting and thought-provoking, shows, screenings, and events. See them below.
Though Friday, December 28
1. “Holiday: the Future is Bright” at 10 Hudson Yards
Culture Corps, the art consultancy run by Art Production Fund founders Yvonne Force-Villareal and Doreen Remen, has brought a little holiday cheer to Hudson Yards in the form of a wintry site-specific art installation. Hong Kong-born, Los Angeles-based artist Bovey Lee has elevated the classic paper snowflake by covering the floor-to-ceiling lobby windows with her intricate and lacy Flower Knot Snowflake for Hudson Yards. It’s paired with Snow by Paula Hayes, an artist known for making terrariums, who has for this project created white planters, reminiscent of snowbanks, for a display of live Norfolk Pine trees.
Location: 10 Hudson Yards
Time: 8 a.m.–6 p.m.
Through Tuesday, January 1, 2019
2. “Studio Cadena: Happy” at the Flatiron Plaza
The winner of the fifth-annual Flatiron Holiday Design Competition is Studio Cadena, which is bringing a little sunshine to the doldrums of winter with its bright yellow installation, titled Happy. Each of the work’s 23 transparent yellow vinyl screens, designed to sway gently in the breeze, looks a bit like a smiley face, with a curved bottom and two circular eyes.
Location: The North Flatiron Public Plaza at the intersection of Broadway, Fifth Avenue, and 23rd Street
Through Thursday, January 3, 2019
3. “David Hoey: Bergdorf Goodies” at Bergdorf Goodman
Romping around Fifth Avenue and pressing your nose against the windows of swanky retailers to peer in at the festive worlds of candy canes and couture is a longstanding New York tradition. At Bergdorf’s, resident window dresser David Hoey spent the past year conjuring a “visual feast of fantastical desserts.”
Location: Bergdorf Goodman Store, at Fifth Avenue and 58th Street
Through Friday, January 4, 2019
4. For Freedoms’ Christmas Tree at the New York EDITION
Lauren Chanel Patrick, a member of the For Freedoms art collective, used borax to grow elegant crystal ornaments for the Christmas tree at the EDITION hotel. The three ornament shapes are meant to represent water in its liquid, solid, and gas forms, while the triangular tree topper is based on the alchemical symbol for water, as a reminder of its scarcity in many parts of the world.
Location: The New York EDITION, 35 Madison Avenue
5. “Luminaries” at the Winter Garden at Brookfield Place
This annual tradition from design firm LAB at Rockwell Group turns the ceiling of Brookfield Place’s Winter Garden into a canopy of changing colored lights. There’s also an interactive element, with three touch-activated “wishing stations,” which will transform visitors’ Christmas wishes into a fanciful light display. Brookfield will donate $1, for up to $25,000, to New York City nonprofit Little Essentials, which provides assistance to impoverished children, for every wish sent.
Location: Brookfield Place, Winter Garden, 230 Vesey Street
Time: Light shows, 8 a.m.–10 p.m.; wishing 10 a.m.–8 p.m.
Through Sunday, January 6, 2019
6. “Charles Dickens’s A Christmas Carol” at the Morgan Library & Museum
The Morgan continues its annual tradition of exhibiting Charles Dickens’s original manuscript of A Christmas Carol, which J. Pierpont Morgan acquired all the way back in the 1890s. The page on view for the 2018 holidays features the illustration of a pajama-clad Ebenezer Scrooge reacting to the appearance of ghostly former friend Jacob Marley. Bring along someone you know who either loves—or hates—Christmas, and see if the magic of the season rubs off.
Location: The Morgan Library & Museum, 225 Madison Avenue
Price: $20 for adults; $13 for seniors and students with ID; free for ages 12 and under
Time: Tuesday–Thursday, 10:30 a.m.–5 p.m.; Friday, 10:30 a.m.–9 p.m.; Saturday, 10 a.m.–6 p.m.; Sunday, 11 a.m.–6 p.m.
One of New York’s more underrated holiday traditions, the Met will again present its annual Christmas tree this year. The 20-foot-tall blue spruce, checkered with angel ornaments, stands above an ornate Neapolitan Nativity scene from the 18th century. Also on view at the museum is a rare, 150-year-old silver Hanukkah Menorah from Poland.
Location: Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1000 Fifth Avenue, Gallery 305
Time: Sunday–Thursday, 10 a.m.–5:30 p.m.; Friday and Saturday, 10 a.m.–9 p.m.
Through Monday, January 7, 2019
The city’s most iconic Christmas attraction has some new bling this year in the form of its first architect-designed star, two years in the making from Daniel Libeskind. It’s the first time the Swarovski Star has been redesigned since its 2004 debut. (The original model was designed by German artist Michael Hammers.) The new version weighs 900 pounds and features 70 spikes and a stunning 3 million Swarovski crystals to go with the 75-year-old, 72-foot-tall Norway spruce’s 50,000 LED lights—approximately five mile’s worth. You can also examine a full-size replica up close at a Swarovski pop-up shop at Rockefeller Plaza. As always, 12 wire angels, each bearing a six-foot-long brass trumpet, line the plaza leading up to the tree and the ice rink below. The sculptures were made in 1954 by British artist Valerie Clarebout.
Location: Rockefeller Center, 45 Rockefeller Plaza
Time: 5:30 a.m.–11:30 p.m. daily; all day December 25; January 7, 5:30 a.m.–9 p.m.
9. “A Dickens Christmas” at the New York Public Library
The New York Public Library celebrates the 150th anniversary of the American reading tour of A Christmas Carol with a special installation featuring Dickens’s heavily annotated prompt-copies—which he used in his performances—of numerous holiday books, including The Chimes and The Cricket on the Hearth, together with original photographs, first editions, and ephemera.
Location: The New York Public Library, 476 Fifth Avenue, New York
Time: Sunday 1–5 p.m.; Monday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday 10 a.m.–6 p.m.; Tuesday, Wednesday, 10 a.m.–8 p.m.
10. “The Origami Holiday Tree” at the American Museum of National History
For more than 40 years, the Natural History Museum has decked the halls with a colorful origami Christmas tree, with intricately folded paper sculptures based on the museum’s vast collection of animal specimens and models. It’s 13 feet tall, and typically features between 800 and 1,000 origami pieces. This year’s edition, which comes to the museum with help from OrigamiUSA volunteers, is inspired by the current exhibition “Unseen Oceans” (through August 18, 2019), which reveals the mysterious depths of the ocean, which we are only beginning to learn more about thanks to modern technologies such as robotics and satellite monitoring.
Location: American Museum of Natural History, Central Park West & West 79th Street
Price: Suggested donation $23
Time: 10 a.m.–5:45 p.m.; closed December 25
Through Monday, January 21, 2019
A replica of the Brooklyn Bridge with model trains at the New York Botanical Garden. Image courtesy of the New York Botanical Garden.
11. “Holiday Train Show” at the New York Botanical Garden
More than 175 miniature New York landmarks—all made of leaves, tree bark, and other organic matter—are included in the 27th edition of this crowd-pleasing exhibition, which also includes more than 25 model trains that zip through this tiny city. Peter Busse, the artist behind the imaginary metropolis, has some new tricks to roll out this season, including models of the Woolworth Building, One World Trade, and the Battery Park Control House, all making their debut this year. And for the first time this year, two vintage ferry boats—replicas of ships from the early 1900s—will be featured in the show.
Location: New York Botanical Garden, 2900 Southern Boulevard, Bronx
Price: Between $23 and $30 for adults; between $10 and $12 for children
Time: Tuesday–Saturday and select Mondays, 10 a.m.–6 p.m.; closes 3 p.m. on December 24; closed December 25
Editors’ Picks will take a two-week break for the holidays, returning Monday, January 7, 2019. See you in the new year!
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