Editors’ Picks: 16 Things Not to Miss in New York’s Art World This Week
Los Angeles may have Frieze this week, but there's still plenty to see in New York.
Each week, we search New York City for the most exciting, and thought-provoking, shows, screenings, and events. See them below.
Tuesday, February 11
For the first time in more than fifty years, MoMA is launching an exhibition devoted to the photography of Dorthea Lange, whose straight-forward, unflinching documentation of America during the Great Depression actually are deserving of the term iconic for the legacy they engendered. To kick off the opening of the show, Rob Giampietro and curator Sarah Meister discuss how words—written either by Lange herself or by others in response to her photographs—have an impact on the image, sometimes skewing our initial perspective, sometimes reinforcing beliefs.
Location: MoMA, 11 53 Street, second floor, the Paul J. Sachs Galleries
Price: Free for members
Time: 7 p.m.
Tuesday, February 11–April 4
2. “Daniel Buren | Pierre Huyghe” at Nahmad Contemporary
Part art show, part aquarium? Nahmad Contemporary is pairing Pierre Huyghe’s Cambrian Explosion (2013), a fish tank featuring a boulder and live crabs and sea anemone, with red and white striped paintings by Daniel Buren that play on French striped textiles.
Location: Nahmad Contemporary, 980 Madison Avenue, third floor
Time: Monday–Saturday, 10 a.m.–6 p.m.
Tuesday, February 11–Sunday, April 26
The Asia Society has drawn from two major private Japanese art collections for this show exploring the concept of transience and the fleeting nature of all things in the world. The exhibition includes calligraphy, painting, sculpture, ceramics, lacquers, and textiles.
Location: Asia Society, 725 Park Avenue at East 70th Street
Price: $12 general admission
Time: Opening reception, 6 p.m.–8 p.m.; Tuesday–Saturday, 10 a.m.–6 p.m.
Thursday, February 13–Saturday, March 14
Gelah Penn’s work merges drawing and sculpture, incorporating unconventional lightweight materials such as Mylar, lenticular plastic, plastic garbage bags, and mosquito netting. She’s installing a 33-foot-long installation, titled Prologue, along the gallery entry stairway, and a 21-foot-long display of 99 collage works based on exhibition cards from her 2019 show at Odetta Chelsea.
Location: Undercurrent, 70 John Street, Brooklyn
Time: Opening reception, 6 p.m.–9 p.m.; Thursday, Friday, Saturday, 1 p.m.–7 p.m.
Thursday, February 13–Sunday, May 3
5. “Norman Bluhm: Metamorphosis” at the Newark Museum of Art
It’s a rediscovery moment for Post War artist Norman Bluhm (1920–1999), who is getting his first monographic museum survey, featuring 17 large-scale paintings and 25 works on paper. An Abstract Expressionist who was a major figure on the New York and Parisian art scenes during his heyday, Bluhm has nevertheless been largely written out of history—an injustice, according to the Newark Museum, that it is setting out to rectify.
Location: The Newark Museum of Art, 49 Washington Street, Newark, New Jersey
Price: $15 general admission
Time: Thursday, 10 a.m.–7 p.m.; Friday and Saturday, 10 a.m.–6 p.m.; Sunday, 10 a.m.–5 p.m.
Through Friday, February 14
6. “Art in the Age of Artificial Intelligence” at Sapar Contemporary
This group show featuring Cheuk Wing Nam, Tom White, and Ben Snell considers mankind’s age-old fascination with the idea of intelligent machines. Snell has trained an AI system to create sculptures based on analysis of 3-D scans of Renaissance busts, while Wing Nam’s computer has learned to translate spoken numbers into drawings.
Location: Sapar Contemporary, 9 North Moore Street
Time: Tuesday–Friday, 12 p.m.–6 p.m.
Saturday, February 15
7. “100 Years | 100 Women Symposium: Culture in a Changing America” at the Park Avenue Armory
The Park Avenue Armory kicks off its celebration of the 100th anniversary of women’s suffrage with a symposium featuring photographer and curator Deborah Willis, actor and activist Kathleen Turner, artist Renee Cox, and many more. Participating organizations include the Laundromat Project, the Apollo Theater, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and National Sawdust.
Location: Park Avenue Armory, 643 Park Avenue
Price: $15 per session, $45 for all three sessions
Time: Opening reception, 6 p.m.–8 p.m.; Tuesday–Saturday, 10 a.m.–6 p.m.
Saturday, February 15–Monday, February 17
8. “Alexander McQueen: Off the Runway” at the New-York Historical Society
The New-York Historical Society celebrates Alexander McQueen with a three-day pop up presenting 23 rare early works by the celebrated British designer from the collection of his colleague and former studio member Ruti Danan. The show is a preview for an upcoming sale of the material at RR Auction.
Location: The New-York Historical Society, 170 Central Park West at Richard Gilder Way (West 77th Street)
Price: $21 general admission
Time: Saturday–Monday, 10 a.m.–6 p.m.
Through Saturday, February 15
In the most recent iteration of Just’s cinematic series he teamed up with the American Ballet Theater for what sounds like a psychological experiment; dancers from the company are hooked up to electro-therapy devices that intermittently send mild currents to their bare skin timed to a musical score. In the gallery, screens show close-ups of supple bodies contracting, pulsing, and twitching, their graceful movements interrupted by the wires that connect them to machines. Ballet itself is a study of control and physical exertion, and relinquishing control does not come easily.
On the final day of the gallery show, Jesper Just and professor Giuliana Bruno of Harvard University’s graduate school will discuss spectatorship in contemporary art, through the lens of film, photography, performance, and beyond.
Location: Perrotin, 130 Orchard Street
Time: Tuesday–Saturday, 10 a.m.–6 p.m.; talk is at 6 p.m.r[email protected]
10. “Andrea Bowers: Think of Our Future” at Andrew Kreps Gallery
In her new work, Andrea Bowers continues to document the efforts of activists with a video about Tokata Iron Eyes, a young member of the Standing Rock Sioux tribe fighting to block the Dakota Access Pipeline. For the piece, My Name Means Future, Bowers traveled with Iron Eyes to sacred indigenous sites across South Dakota discussing political issues with other young artists and activists. The show also includes new neon works that take the form of tree branches, incorporating quotes from eco-feminists.
Location: Andrew Kreps Gallery, 22 Cortlandt Alley
Time: Tuesday–Saturday, 10 a.m.–6 p.m.
Saturday, February 15–Saturday, March 8
11. “Nancy Brett: Over and Under :: Painting and Weaving” at Parasol Projects
Curated by acclaimed artist McArthur Binion and Lehmann Maupin curatorial director Anna Stothart, Nancy Brett’s new solo exhibition is her first in New York in a decade. The show emphasizes how that most classical of minimalist structures, the grid, underpins both sides of the artist’s practice—on canvas and in textiles. Yet rather than hew to the ascetic ethos of minimalism, Brett also synthesizes fragments of her own life, including childhood comic books and found film strips, into her pieces to enrich their formal and material rigor with personal and cultural history.
Location: Parasol Projects, 213 Bowery
Time: Opening reception, 6 p.m.–8 p.m.;Tuesday–Saturday, 10 a.m.–6 p.m.
Saturday, February 15–Sunday, April 19
12. “The Orchid Show: Jeff Leatham’s Kaleidoscope” at the New York Botanical Garden
The NYBG’s annual spring sensation returns for the 18th year, this time with over-the-top floral arrangements by Jeff Leatham, floral artist to the stars (his clients include Oprah Winfrey, the Kardashians, and the Dalai Lama). It’s the first time that a single artist has been invited to design the entire exhibition, which will fill the garden’s glass-walled Haupt Conservatory with a profusion of boldly colored blooms paired with ribbons, mirrored sculptures, and dramatic lighting.
Location: The New York Botanical Garden, 2900 Southern Boulevard, Bronx
Price: $23 general admission weekdays, $30 general admission weekends and holiday Mondays
Time: Tuesday–Sunday and Monday, February 17 and April 13, 10 a.m.–6 p.m.; orchid evenings, 7 p.m.–10 p.m.
Through Wednesday, February 19
13. “Doc Fortnight 2020: MoMA’s Festival of International Nonfiction Film and Media” at the Museum of Modern Art
The Oscars may be over for another year, but MoMA’s non-fiction film festival is in full swing, with screenings of all manner of documentaries, including one on noted art philanthropist Agnes Gund, the museum’s president emerita.
Location: Museum of Modern Art, 11 West 53rd Street
Price: $12 general admission for screenings
Time: Times vary
Through Tuesday, March 17
14. “Container Garden: Emily Janowick & Sam Cockrell” at International Waters
Two of my favorite artists take over this new, charming Bushwick gallery with a bevy of high-spirited experimentation: Sam Cockrell with virtuoso paintings of U-Haul trucks outfitted with their own cutouts, and Emily Janowick with a 24-foot model of the Washington Monument lying on its side and discreetly filled with video. It’s a show that gets you thinking about containers within containers, and the discrete networks that connect us to larger networks and ecosystems. If you’re looking to be inspired and get that up-and-coming Bushwick buzz, this show does the trick nicely.
Location: Behind Newtown Radio, 262 Meserole Street, Brooklyn
Time: By appointment through March 17
Through Saturday, April 18
15. “Landscapes of the South” at Mendes Wood DM
Bringing together works from the 17th century to 2019, this exhibition progresses from European colonial artists in Brazil to Brazilian modernist masters working to create a national artistic language, to today’s contemporary South American artists. Frans Post, Tarsila do Amaral, and Daniel Correa Mejia are among those featured.
Location: Mendes Wood DM, 60 East 66th Street, 2nd floor
Time: Tuesday–Saturday, 10 a.m.–6 p.m.
Through January 2021
16. “Making Knowing: Craft in Art, 1950–2019” at the Whitney Museum of American Art
This show, recently extended through next January, can hardly be called under the radar—if my Instagram feed is any indication, New Yorkers are showing up for this one in droves. But if you haven’t had the chance to check it out yourself, I urge you get over there: featuring many women artists who have been overlooked or glossed over by art history, this show will likely introduce you to artists you may not have heard of, or remind you of those you thought you knew but it turns out you didn’t all along. The show-stopper central work, Liza Lou’s Kitchen (1991–96)—consisting of a suburban kitchen decked out in tiny beads right down to the Lays potato chips on the counter—is worth the price of admission alone.
Location: Whitney Museum of American Art, 99 Gansevoort Street
Time: 10:30 a.m.–6 p.m. daily except Tuesdays
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