NYC Art Calendar
Arts & Entertainment
by James Gaddy, 03/02/2016
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The biggest events in NYC art this spring are two comprehensive looks at the global contemporary gallery scene. The Armory Show—the City's version of Art Basel—hosts 204 galleries from 36 countries in early March; the similarly large-scale Frieze Art Fair sets up on Randall's Island the first weekend in May. During both, the City is flooded with opportunities to see paintings and sculptures from current and past artists. There's also plenty to catch in between: a Star Wars–like exhibition at the Whitney, a Met expansion into the landmark Breuer building, leather jackets that change colors inside the Cooper Hewitt and a knockout show at the Neue Galerie that includes a rare viewing of Edvard Munch's famous painting The Scream. Read on for details and more highlights.
March 18–August 7
Isaac Mizrahi: An Unruly History at the Jewish Museum
The first museum exhibition devoted to Brooklyn-born designer Isaac Mizrahi explores the riotous clothing he's made during a career spanning fashion, television, theater and the performing arts. The show will feature roughly 50 looks from his collections—beginning in 1986, when his clothes debuted at Bergdorf Goodman—plus multiscreen video installations of documentary-style footage and scenes from his appearances on Project Runway.
March 18–September 4
Unfinished: Thoughts Left Visible at The Met Breuer
The first exhibition in the former home of the Whitney Museum aims to answer the question of when an artwork is finished. The array of nearly 200 pieces runs from the Renaissance to the present and shows how such artists as Titian, Rembrandt, Cezanne, Louise Bourgeois and Jackson Pollock have dealt with the idea.
Installation view of "Pia Camil: A Pot for a Latch" (2016), Courtesy, New Museum. Photo: Maris Hutchinson & EPW Studio
Through April 17
Pia Camil: A Pot for a Latch at the New Museum
In the New Museum's Lobby Gallery, Mexico City–born and London-trained artist Pia Camil has installed a sculpture designed to mimic the cheap commercial shelving and fixtures used in retail stores and bring to mind the minimalist repeating patterns from the likes of Sol Lewitt and Agnes Martin. The best part is a take on the traditional potlatch, in which the artist has invited members of the public to exchange their own objects for others in the piece.
"ANARCHIST: Data Feed with Doppler Tracks from a Satellite (Intercepted May 27, 2009)," 2016. Courtesy, Laura Poitras
Through May 1
Laura Poitras: Astro Noise at the Whitney Museum of American Art
A Pulitzer Prize–winning journalist and Academy Award–winning filmmaker finds new ways to tell the story of mass surveillance in the years since the attacks on the World Trade Center in 2001. Included are giant screens of footage after the attacks and a section where you can lie back on a reclining couch in total darkness to look up at videos from outer space. She's arranged classified documents inventively and has produced an illuminating look at the file the FBI has on her.
NYC x Design at various locations
NYC's official citywide design celebration features hundreds of events over the course of two weeks. Shows range from a collection of high-end wares at the Collective Design Fair (May 4–8) to more DIY and interactive design projects at Bklyn Designs (May 6–8), held at the Brooklyn Expo Center. Beginning on May 14, the International Contemporary Furniture Fair gathers the finest furniture makers in the world at the Javits Center; its day for the general public is May 17.
Frieze New York at Randall's Island
Five years ago, this blue-chip London-based art fair landed in New York City. Since then, each iteration has topped the one before. This year the event features mini solo shows from the likes of Simon Fujiwara and N. Dash, projects from Alex Da Corte and Anthea Hamilton and group shows featuring local legends like the late David Wojnarowicz—ahead of his retrospective at the Whitney (scheduled for spring 2018). Lesser-known figures from Latin America, Europe and South Asia will also get the spotlight treatment in tightly curated sections throughout the fair, which displays works from more than 200 galleries.
Through May 8
Jill Baroff: In a Grove at the Bronx Museum of the Arts
Tree trunks collected from upstate New York take center stage in the latest installation from this Japanese-influenced artist. Using a title taken from the famous Rashomon story, the artist has painted the top of each trunk a single color and routed the wood by hand to create grooves that resemble the texture of corrugated paper.
Installation view from "Marcel Broodthaers: A Retrospective.” Photo: Martin Seck
Through May 15
Marcel Broodthaers: A Retrospective at the Museum of Modern Art
The act of writing was integral to the work of Marcel Broodthaers, a Belgian artist who was a force in the era following World War II. Already revered in literary circles during his years as a struggling poet, he embarked on an attempt to bring sculpture, film and the written word together; installations from his most amibitious such undertaking (a kind of faux museum) are on display here, along with some of his books and transitional sculptures. He is also the subject of two concurrent shows at Paul Kasmin and Michael Werner galleries, which provide even more context to this restless polymath.
Through May 15
Vigée Le Brun: Woman Artist in Revolutionary France at the Metropolitan Museum of Art
An influential female artist gets an overdue in-depth exhibition. Le Brun, who fled Paris because of her friendship with Marie Antoinette, was already a famous painter in 18th-century France before spending nearly the rest of her life in exile, painting royal families in Italy, Germany and Russia.
Through May 15
Warhol by the Book at the Morgan Library
A lifelong bibliophile, Andy Warhol was constantly creating books and works on paper. This exhibition includes books he made as a commercial artist early in his life, including Leroy the Mexican Jumping Bean, plus jacket covers of novels by Ronald Firbank. The exhibition also includes a few examples from Warhol's fine-art career. Among them: the playful Horoscopes for the Cocktail Hour and the inventively photographed Andy Warhol's Index.
Through June 5
This Place at the Brooklyn Museum
Between 2009 and 2012, a dozen photographers visited Israel and the West Bank to see the troubled region up close and with their cameras. The themes that these artists settled on revolved around home, family and the environment. The images in this exhibition go beyond divisive political debates to treat each subject with humanity.
Through June 13
Munch and Expressionism at the Neue Galerie
In addition to a rare opportunity to see The Scream (and a handful of other Munch paintings) in person, this exhibition features paintings and prints from Munch's contemporaries in Germany—such as Max Beckmann and Ernst Ludwig Kirchner—and Austria's own haunted genius Egon Schiele. The canvases and prints depict the level of anxiety and urgency at the beginning of the 20th century.
Through August 21
Beauty—Cooper Hewitt Design Triennial at the Cooper Hewitt
As they say, it’s in the eye of the beholder. The many ways that beauty can be interpreted here range from sleek renditions of mundane everyday items likes clocks and humidifiers to elaborate fin-shaped leather jackets, sweaters from Africa and renderings from futuristic architect Sou Fujimoto.
"Mr. and Mrs. Charles Henry Augustus Carter" (1848), by Nicholas Biddle Kittel. Courtesy, Museum of the City of New York
Through October 11
Picturing Prestige: New York Portraits, 1700–1860 at the Museum of the City of New York
Back in the 18th and 19th centuries, a personal portrait was the surest way to signify that you had arrived. This show covers 160 years of portraiture in New York City. Among the subjects: John E. Brooks, founder of clothing firm Brooks Brothers, and founding fathers Alexander Hamilton and George Washington.