Editors’ Picks: 15 Things Not to Miss in New York’s Art World This Week
Here's what's going on in the city this week.
Each week, we search New York City for the most exciting and thought-provoking shows, screenings, and events. See them below.
Wednesday, December 4
1. “Present Bodies: Papermaking at Dieu Donné” at the Gallery at BRIC House
The BRIC gallery is presenting a curated collaboration with Dieu Donné, the Brooklyn-based studio where artists can learn paper-making techniques. The exhibition features the work of eight artists (Swoon, Noel W. Anderson, Lesley Dill, Candy Gonzalez, Lina Puerta, Paul Wong, Saya Woolfalk, and Tricia Wright), each of whom are presenting works based on the theme of paper as a repository of memories.
Location: Gallery at BRIC House, 647 Fulton Street
Time: Opening reception, Wednesday 7 p.m.–9 p.m.; Tuesday–Friday, 11 a.m.–7 p.m.; Saturday & Sunday, 11 a.m.–5 p.m.
Thursday, December 5–Saturday, January 25, 2020
2. “John Dowell: Cotton, Symbol of the Forgotten” at Laurence Miller Gallery
John Dowell’s sobering works reflect on the histories and legacies of race relations in America. This show focuses in particular on the lives of black Americans in New York state, and includes a digital rendering of Seneca Village, a once-vibrant community that was founded in 1825. In Dowell’s work, the hub, which was razed to make space for Central Park, is imagined alongside the apartment buildings that replaced it.
Location: Laurence Miller Gallery, 521 West 26th Street, 5th floor
Time: Tuesday–Saturday, 10 a.m.–6 p.m.
Friday, December 6
3. “The Lives of Artists—An Evening with Calvin Tomkins” at the Metropolitan Museum of Art
The New Yorker’s Calvin Tompins will discuss his latest book box set, The Lives of Artists—a compilation of over 80 of his most important artist profiles from 1962 to 2019—with artist Paul Chan.
Location: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Grace Rainey Rogers Auditorium, 1000 5th Avenue
Price: Free with registration
Time: 6:30 p.m.–7:30 p.m.
Friday, December 6 and Saturday, December 7
4. “Jazz on a High Floor in the Afternoon: Michela Marino Lerman’s Love Movement” at the Whitney Museum of American Art
What better way to spend a frigid winter evening than cozied up in the Whitney listening to jazz? As part of the programming for composer and pianist Jason Moran’s exhibition, Moran and curator Adrienne Edwards have orchestrated live performances alongside Moran’s installations, which riff on iconic jazz venues from around New York.
Location: The Whitney Museum of American Art, 99 Gansevoort Street
Price: $25 general admission; $18 for members and students
Time: Friday, 5 p.m. and 7 p.m.; Saturday, 2 p.m. and 4 p.m.
Saturday, December 7–Sunday, December 8 and Friday, December 13–Sunday, December 15
5. “Peter & the Wolf With Isaac Mizrahi” at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum
Fashion designer Isaac Mizrahi’s version of Sergei Prokofiev’s children’s classic Peter and the Wolf has become an annual holiday tradition at the Guggenheim. In addition to providing the costumes, Mizrahi narrates the 1936 symphony, reimagined here to take place across the street in Central Park.
Location: The Guggenheim Museum, 1071 5th Avenue
Price: General admission $45
Time: Friday, 6:30 p.m.–7 p.m.; Saturday, 1 p.m.–1:30 p.m.; 2:30 p.m.–3 p.m.; 4 p.m.–4:30 p.m.; Sunday, 2:30 p.m.–3 p.m.; 4 p.m.–4:30 p.m.
Saturday, December 7–Saturday, January 25, 2020
6. “By/Buy Me” at Susan Inglett Gallery
In a new group show at Susan Inglett Gallery, curator David Platzker has brought together editioned artworks that have been self-published by artists. The show, which explores themes of commodification and the role of an artist in a commercial art world, includes works by Fiona Banner, Tauba Auerbach, Dan Graham, Hannah Wilke, Richard Prince, and Lynda Benglis, among others.
Location: Susan Inglett Gallery, 522 West 24th Street
Time: Tuesday–Saturday, 10 a.m.–6 p.m.
Through Sunday, December 8
7. “Elias Sime: Tightrope” at Hamilton College’s Ruth and Elmer Wellin Museum of Art
Repurposing electronic waste such as old computer keyboards, motherboards, and electrical wires, Ethiopian artist Elias Sime creates densely detailed, layered colorful sculptures. He imbues these unexpected materials with a sense of beauty, drawing comparisons between the workings of such manmade machinery and the pathways that spring up organically in the natural world.
Location: Hamilton College, Ruth and Elmer Wellin Museum of Art, 198 College Hill Road, Clinton, New York
Time: Tuesday–Sunday, 11 a.m.–5 p.m.
Through Thursday, December 12
8. 63 Up at Film Forum
In 1964, Michael Apted was tapped to work as a researcher on 7 Up, a British documentary that took a peek into the lives of 14 seven-year-old children from around the country, examining the differences across social classes. Every seven years since, Apted has followed up with his subjects, directing one of cinema’s most enduring documentaries. The ninth and latest edition, likely the last—Apted is 78 and in failing health—debuted on the UK’s ITV in June, and you can catch it this month at Film Forum.
Location: Film Forum, 209 West Houston Street, west of 6th Avenue
Price: General admission $15
Time: 12:30 p.m., 3:20 p.m., 6:20 p.m., 9:15 p.m.
Through Saturday, December 14
9. “John Chamberlain & Donald Judd” at Paula Cooper
Paula Cooper pairs the giants of John Chamberlain and Donald Judd in this two-person exhibition that highlights their friendship in the 1960s. The two influenced each other’s work, with Judd experimenting with motorcycle lacquers after encountering them in Chamberlain’s work, and even supplying the raw materials for a series of his friend’s crushed metal sculptures.
Location: Paula Cooper, 524 West 26th Street
Time: Tuesday–Saturday, 10 a.m.–6 p.m.
Through Sunday, December 15
10. “Gilles: Barbier: Laughing at clouds” at the Chimney
A native of the Oceanic island republic of Vanuatu, Gilles Barbier presents his first solo show, channelling Rene Magritte with a surreal installation of floating umbrellas that transform the gallery into an otherworldly landscape. The show was inspired by a photograph of President Donald Trump abandoning his wife Melania to stand in the rain as he engaged with reporters from underneath an umbrella.
Location: The Chimney, 200 Morgan Avenue, Brooklyn
Time: Saturday and Sunday, 2 p.m.–6 p.m.
11. “Tianyi Zhang: 99 Agreements” at Elijah Wheat Showroom
China-born, New York-based Tianyi Zhang’s new gallery exhibition explores gender identity and power dynamics through media-informed role playing. In the titular multichannel video work, Zhang inhabits 99 different “high-femme” personas, all vocalizing the word “yes” in a different situation. Viewers are left to intuit each character’s emotional state and broader narrative based only on minimal visual context and the tone of their respective acquiescence. Together, the 99 simultaneous vignettes nod toward the overwhelming number of women who feel pressured to comply in a whole range of personal and professional scenarios every day—and how much would change if they instead decided to bear the (sometimes significant) risks of refusing.
Location: Elijah Wheat Showroom, 1196 Myrtle Avenue, Brooklyn
Time: Friday–Sunday, 12 p.m.–6 p.m.
12. “Lucien Samaha: A History of Digital Photography” at Pioneer Works
Red Hook-based Pioneer Works is showing three decades worth of works by New York-based photographer Lucien Samaha, whose career coincides with the inception and rise of digital photography. In 1990, Samaha won the inaugural Kodak Professional Photography Division scholarship, which allowed him to use the company’s newfangled digital camera system before anyone else. In the intervening years, Samaha has documented just about every place he’s been, and the fruits of his labors are the focus of this show.
Location: Pioneer Works, 159 Pioneer Street
Time: Wednesday-Sunday, 12 p.m.–7 p.m.
Through Saturday, December 21
13. “Vanessa German: Trampoline, Resilience & Black Body & Soul” at Fort Gansevoort
Vanessa German’s works are like Mickalene Thomas’s photo-tableaux in three dimensions, crossed with Niki de Saint Phalle’s colorful sculptures. In the press release accompanying the exhibition, German says: “I am in love with the deep survival, elastic resilience, and ordinary creative genius of Black people.”
Location: Fort Gansevoort, 5 9th Avenue
Time: Opening reception, 6 p.m.–8 p.m.; Tuesday–Saturday, 10 a.m.–6 p.m.
Through Monday, December 30
14. “Travis Boyer: Amongus” at False Flag
Though Travis Boyer’s work is grounded in performance, the range of his practice is diverse, and includes painting, sculpture, cyanotype, videos, and textiles. Inspired by familiar scenes, such as drinking games and group fitness classes, his performative works meld the private with the public. As the artist himself explains: “it is about the activity being really legible in such a way that you, as a participant, can take it or leave it, project onto it or ignore it.”
Location: False Flag, 11–22 44th Road, Long Island City, Queens
Time: Opening reception, 6 p.m.–8 p.m.; Tuesday–Sunday, 12 p.m.–6 p.m.
Through Sunday, March 1, 2020
15. “Theater of Operations: The Gulf Wars 1991–2011” at MoMA PS1
This ambitious exhibition—which examines the impact on visual culture and art of American-led wars in Iraq over the past 30 years—is not really the kind you can spin through on your lunch hour. Instead, come back two or three times, taking in a floor or two during each visit. The show features more than 30 works by more than 80 artists based in Iraq and its diasporas, as well as artists considering the war—the first to be televised during the rise of 24-hour cable news—from the West. It’s a slow burn that will stay with you for a long time.
Location: MoMA PS1, 22–25 Jackson Avenue, Long Island City, Queens
Price: $25 general admission
Time: Monday–Thursday, 10 a.m.–5:30 p.m.; Friday, 10 a.m.–9 p.m.; Saturday & Sunday, 10 a.m.–5:30 p.m.
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