Editors’ Picks: 11 Events for Your Art Calendar This Week, From Asia Week New York to Legacy Russell in Dialogue With Hans Ulrich Obrist

Plus openings at Lyles & King and Ed. Varie.

Lauren Pearce, Jen and Mama Ann (2021). Photo courtesy of ArtLeadHer.

Each week, we search for the most exciting and thought-provoking shows, screenings, and events. In light of the global health crisis, we are currently highlighting events in person and digitally, as well as in-person exhibitions open in the New York area. See our picks from around the world below. (Times are all EST unless otherwise noted.)


Tuesday, March 16–Saturday, April 17

Monica Ikegwu, <em>She's Aware</em> (2021). Photo courtesy of ArtLeadHer.

Monica Ikegwu, She’s Aware (2021). Photo courtesy of ArtLeadHer.

1. “Truth About Me” at Urban Zen, New York

This exhibition of 20 emerging and mid-career female and non-binary artists is the latest collaboration between ArtLeadHer, a nonprofit dedicated to promoting women’s equality in the visual arts, and designer Donna Karan. Curated by ArtLeadHer founder Mashonda Tifrere, the show includes work by Amani Lewis, Shantell Martin, Monica Ikegwu, and Lauren Pearce, among other artists. It’s hosted at Urban Zen, Karan’s store, which was formerly the studio of her late husband, artist Stephan Weiss.

Location: Urban Zen, 705 Greenwich Street, New York
Price: Free
Time: By appointment

—Sarah Cascone


Wednesday, March 17

Legacy Russell. Photo by Mina Alyeshmerni. Image courtesy Verso Books.

Legacy Russell. Photo by Mina Alyeshmerni. Image courtesy Verso Books.

2. “Glitch Feminism: Legacy Russell and Hans Ulrich Obrist in Conversation” on Instagram Live

Author and curator Legacy Russell and the Serpentine’s artistic director Hans Ulrich Obrist will unpack some of the themes in Russell’s book Glitch Feminism: A Manifesto. The book establishes and codifies a new kind of cyberfeminism that centers the queer, trans, and nonbinary. Probing the manifesto’s central question, “can we free ourselves from our bodies?”, they’ll discuss the emancipatory power of the internet, avatars, and glitch.

Location: Instagram
Time: 7 p.m. GMT (2 p.m. ET)

—Naomi Rea

Wednesday, March 17 

Mariam Ghani, Still from Dis-Ease (in progress); archival image originally from the Italian Red Cross- Appeal for Tuberculosis, 1920, Wellcome Collection, London, UK. 

Mariam Ghani, Still from Dis-Ease (in progress); archival image originally from the Italian Red Cross-Appeal for Tuberculosis, 1920, Wellcome Collection, London, UK.

3. “Lessons from Pandemic Histories with Mariam Ghani” at the Smithsonian American Art Museum, Washington, DC

As part of the Smithsonian’s third annual (and first virtual) Women Filmmakers Festival, artist, filmmaker, and writer Mariam Ghani will join Saisha Grayson, time-based media curator at the Smithsonian American Art Museum, and Sabrina Sholts, curator of biological anthropology at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History, for a conversation about the history of pandemics. The conversation will include clips of her film DIS-EASE, which delves into themes of illness and invasion as well as excerpts from her in-progress short The Fire Next Time, which traces the connection between epidemics and social upheaval from the 1800s to the present. Through the end of the week, Ghani’s feature-length documentary What We Left Unfinished (2019), about the history of the Afghan film industry from the late 1970s to the early 1990s, can be watched in its entirety on the Smithsonian’s website. 

Price: Free with registration
Time: 5:30 p.m.

—Katie White

Thursday, March 18 

Taylor Bythewood-Porter, Genevieve Gaignard, Deborah Roberts, and Grace Lynne Haynes. Photo courtesy of the California African American Museum.

Taylor Bythewood-Porter, Genevieve Gaignard, Deborah Roberts, and Grace Lynne Haynes. Photo courtesy of the California African American Museum.

4. “I Am Woman: Promoting Self-Worth in Contemporary Black Art” at the California African American Museum, Los Angeles

Taylor Bythewood-Porter, assistant curator at the California African American Museum speaks with artists Genevieve Gaignard, Deborah Roberts, and Grace Lynne Haynes about the continued dominance of traditional, European-inspired standards of beauty in the media—and subverting those aesthetic ideals in their work through the celebration of Black female identity.

Price: Free with registration
Time: 5 p.m.–6:30 p.m. PST

—Sarah Cascone


Meredith Bergmann with a scale model of the Women’s Rights Pioneers Monument. Photo by Laney Lloyd.

Meredith Bergmann with a scale model of the Women’s Rights Pioneers Monument. Photo by Laney Lloyd.

5. “Sculptor Meredith Bergmann with Brenda Berkman” at the Art Students League of New York

Last August, on the 100th anniversary of the adoption of the 19th amendment granting women’s suffrage in the US, the group known as Monumental Women unveiled the Women’s Rights Pioneers Monument of Sojourner Truth, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, and Susan B. Anthony in Central Park. Sculptor Meredith Bergmann and retired FDNY captain Brenda Berkman, a Monumental Woman board member and printmaker, will talk about the long battle to erect the sculpture in Central Park, which previously had no statues of real-life women, and hadn’t added a new permanent monument in 70 years.

Price: Free with registration
Time: 6 p.m.–7 p.m.

—Sarah Cascone


Thursday, March 18–Sunday, April 18

Farideh Sakhaeifar, You are in the war zone (2016–17). Gelatine Silver Print, 8 x 10 inches.

6. “Farideh Sakhaeifar: You are in the war zone.” at Trotter&Sholer, New York

Social justice non-profit KODA teams up with the gallery Trotter&Sholer to present Farideh Sakhaeifar’s solo show critiquing US military intervention in Africa and the Middle East, and the effects of war and displacement. In her series “You are in a war zone,” the artist overlays silver gelatin prints of life in New York with tracings of images from the Syrian civil war, while “Pending” digitally removes the bodies of Syrian refugees at the Turkish and Iraqi borders from news photographs.

Location: Trotter&Sholer, 168 Suffolk St Grand Floor, New York
Time: Opening Saturday, March 20, 6 p.m.–8 p.m.; Tuesday–Saturday, 12 p.m.–6 p.m.

—Nan Stewert



Courtesy of Moises Salazar and Ed. Varie

7. “Group Sex” at Ed. Varie, New York

Don’t miss “Group Sex,” a group exhibition at Ed. Varie introducing a new space at 49 Monroe Street. The title, not to be taken literally, is a reference to the coming together of these eleven young artists’ works to commemorate this space, and a tongue-in-cheek nod to New York City’s recommendation of gathering in open, ventilated spaces during the pandemic. With exciting works by artists such as Moises Salazar, Esteban Ocampo-Giraldo, and Ivy Campbell (to name just a few), this is a definite must-see for this week.

Location: Ed. Varie, 49 Monroe Street, New York
Time: Opening, Thursday, 6 p.m.–9 p.m.

—Neha Jambhekar


Thursday, March 18Sunday, May 9

Farley Aguilar, <em>Officer, 1941</em> (2021). Courtesy of Lyles & King, New York.

Farley Aguilar, Officer, 1941 (2021). Courtesy of Lyles & King, New York.

8. “Farley Aguilar: Closed Game” at Lyles & King, New York

Lyles & King will open its fourth solo show of Nicaraguan artist Farley Aguilar this Thursday. Working in oil sticks, graphite, and oil paint, Aguilar’s vibrant paintings address various themes including power structures, the oppression of capitalism, colorism, racism, child labor, incarceration, and war. Through the sourcing of found photographs and drawing on his own experience emigrating to the US as a five year old to flee Nicaragua’s Contra War, Aguilar “bridges past, present, and future socio-political realities,” according to the gallery’s exhibition statement.

Location: Lyles & King, 21 Catherine Street, New York
Price: Free
Time: Tuesday–Saturday, 11 a.m.–6 p.m.; Sunday, 12 p.m.–6 p.m.

—Cristina Cruz


Friday, March 19

Jackie Nickerson, <em>Pink Head</em>. Photo courtesy of Jack Shainman Gallery, New York.

Jackie Nickerson, Pink Head (2019). Photo courtesy of Jack Shainman Gallery, New York.

9. “Field Test: Jackie Nickerson in Conversation with Vince Aletti” at Jack Shainman Gallery, New York

Critic and curator Vince Aletti will talk with photographer Jackie Nickerson about her current Jack Shainman show, “Field Test” (through April 3), and how her work explores the ways in which digital isolation is leading to the loss of our individual identities.

Price: Free with registration
Time: 6 p.m.

—Tanner West


Through Tuesday, March 23

Elia Alba, <em>Judy (Study #3)</em>, 2019. Photo courtesy of Sapar Contemporary.

Elia Alba, Judy (Study #3), 2019. Photo courtesy of Sapar Contemporary.

10. “Home Body: Elia Alba, Baseera Khan, Sola Olulode, and Maya Varadaraj” at Sapar Contemporary, New York

Nico Wheadon curated this group show featuring four women of color making works about their bodies and their identities in contemporary US society, particularly with regard to queerness and the legacy of colonialism. After a year of isolation, these deeply personal works are a reminder that we are not alone in our own journeys toward understanding our internal world and its often-complex relationship to our physical bodies.

Location: Sapar Contemporary, 9 North Moore Street, New York
Price: Free
Time: Tuesday–Saturday, 10 a.m.–6 p.m.

—Nan Stewert 


Through Saturday, March 27

"Jayashree Chakravarty – Unfoldings: The Route Map Of Experience." Photo courtesy of Akar Prakar.

“Jayashree Chakravarty – Unfoldings: The Route Map Of Experience.” Photo courtesy of Akar Prakar.

11. “Asia Week New York

Last year’s Asia Week New York was the last gasp of in-person art as the city went into lockdown, opening at Upper East Side galleries on March 12 even as the auction houses postponed their sales. This year’s outing is largely virtual, with online viewing rooms from 29 galleries, which have been extended an extra week. You can, however, also make appointments to visit their exhibitions in person. A wide range of work is on offer, from massive paintings by contemporary Indian artist Jayashree Chakravarty at Kolkata’s Akar Prakar to 18th-century Chinese scholars’ object boxes filled with Shang- and Ming-era treasures from New York’s Zetterquist Galleries.

Location: Various
Time: Times vary, check closing dates for physical locations

—Sarah Cascone

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