nyc art scene

a carefully curated calendar & cumulative catalog of new york city's most interesting art exhibitions and events. hand picked by Arthur Seen & Team

recommended:

NO CITY IS AN ISLAND

The Lodge Gallery, 131 Chrystie St., NYC

considering the works on view span a range of over 35 years, this exhibition feels coherent and contemporary. Lodge Gallery curatorial duo Keith Schweitzer & Jason Patrick Voegele invited former members of legendary NYC artist collective, Colab, to revisit their past methodologies: “Collaborative Projects Inc (Colab), focused on theme-centered exhibitions with a spirit of openness, experimentation, and minimal curatorial interference. Within this context, “No City is an Island” asked former members of Colab to respond to the exhibition’s title as a theme around which to contribute work. [The show] revisits the zeitgeist of a New York City long bygone, compares and contrasts the artists and urban realities of then with now, and honors one of the most influential art organizations in New York City’s history.” - thru May 11

artists: John Ahearn, Charlie Ahearn, Jody Culkin, Jane Dickson, Stefan Eins, Peter Fend, Coleen Fitzgibbon, Bobby G, Mike Glier, Becky Howland, Lisa Kahane, Christof Kohlhofer, Justen Ladda, Joe Lewis, Ann Messner, Richard Miller, Tom Otterness, Cara Perlman, Judy Rifka, Walter Robinson, Christy Rupp, Teri Slotkin, Kiki Smith, Seton Smith

Opening & Book Signing, Tues, July 23, 5:30p:“SWISSTED” Mike Joyce L’Apicio, 13 East 1st St., NYC (bt Bowery & 2nd Ave)The latest project in Fourth Arts Block’s rotating Public Art program, SWISSTED features typographic style posters that recreate vintage punk, hardcore, new wave, and indie rock flyers. As a New York City-based graphic designer, Mike Joyce has designed albums for prominent artists like Iggy Pop, Morphine, Lemonheads, Natalie Merchant, Cursive, New York Dolls and Aretha Franklin, and his work has been featured in more than 75 publications including Rolling Stone, Village Voice, Huffington Post, and New York Magazine.  “Punk has an anti-establishment ethos and Swiss modernism is very structured. But at the same time there’s a common thread between the two—the Swiss modernists purged extraneous decoration to create clear communication, while punk rock took on self-indulgent rock and roll and stripped it to its core. So I thought it would be an interesting study to combine the two and see what happened.” - Mike Joyce in Mental_Floss

Opening & Book Signing, Tues, July 23, 5:30p:

SWISSTED
 Mike Joyce

L’Apicio, 13 East 1st St., NYC (bt Bowery & 2nd Ave)

The latest project in Fourth Arts Block’s rotating Public Art program, SWISSTED features typographic style posters that recreate vintage punk, hardcore, new wave, and indie rock flyers. As a New York City-based graphic designer, Mike Joyce has designed albums for prominent artists like Iggy Pop, Morphine, Lemonheads, Natalie Merchant, Cursive, New York Dolls and Aretha Franklin, and his work has been featured in more than 75 publications including Rolling Stone, Village Voice, Huffington Post, and New York Magazine. 

“Punk has an anti-establishment ethos and Swiss modernism is very structured. But at the same time there’s a common thread between the two—the Swiss modernists purged extraneous decoration to create clear communication, while punk rock took on self-indulgent rock and roll and stripped it to its core. So I thought it would be an interesting study to combine the two and see what happened.” - Mike Joyce in Mental_Floss

Opens Tonight, June 28, 6-9p:

FOR WHICH IT STANDS
 curated by Keith Schweitzer & Jason Patrick Voegele

The Lodge Gallery, 131 Chrystie St., NYC (bt Delancey & Broome)

“What is it about the contemporary American experience that captures the imagination of today’s foreign-born and first generation artists who are living and working in New York? How does the story of American immigration and cultural assimilation influence the work of artists who are born here in America? This summer curators Keith Schweitzer and Jason Patrick Voegele pick up the flag in search of answers through the work of seventeen contemporary artists from around the globe.” - thru July 28

artists: Orlando Arocena, Raul Ayala, Chong Gon Byun, Liset Castillo, Alexis Duque, Alessandra Expósito, Kira Nam Green, Jung S. Kim, Fay Ku, Annu Palakunnathu Matthew, Esperanza Mayobre, Levan Mindiashvili, Sirikul Pattachote, Shahpour M. Pouyan, Saya Woolfalk, Kent Henricksen and Siebren Versteeg

•nyc art scene recommends•Opening Reception Friday, Mar 22, 6-8p: “Die Wunderkammer; Objects of Virtue” curated by Keith Schweitzer & Jason Patrick VoegeleThe Lodge Gallery, 131 Chrystie St., NYC (b/t Broome & Delancey St.)paintings, sculpture, drawings, mixed-media assemblage, woodblock printmaking, multimedia works and interactive participatory installation. The exhibition deconstructs and reimagines the traditional Wunderkammer through works by over a dozen New York based artists. A series of performances, artist salons and additive artwork installations are scheduled throughout the run of the exhibition. Presented by Republic Worldwide. - thru May 1artists: Paul Brainard, Kate Clark, Lori Field, Aaron Johnson, Melora Kuhn, Hayley McCulloch, Dennis McNett, Pop Mortem, Lucia Pedi, Mac Premo, Graham Preston, Christy Rupp, Julia Samuels, Tom Sanford, Sigrid Sarda, Madeline Von Foerster

nyc art scene recommends

Opening Reception Friday, Mar 22, 6-8p:

Die Wunderkammer; Objects of Virtue
 curated by Keith Schweitzer & Jason Patrick Voegele

The Lodge Gallery, 131 Chrystie St., NYC (b/t Broome & Delancey St.)

paintings, sculpture, drawings, mixed-media assemblage, woodblock printmaking, multimedia works and interactive participatory installation. The exhibition deconstructs and reimagines the traditional Wunderkammer through works by over a dozen New York based artists. A series of performances, artist salons and additive artwork installations are scheduled throughout the run of the exhibition. Presented by Republic Worldwide. - thru May 1

artists: Paul Brainard, Kate Clark, Lori Field, Aaron Johnson, Melora Kuhn, Hayley McCulloch, Dennis McNett, Pop Mortem, Lucia Pedi, Mac Premo, Graham Preston, Christy Rupp, Julia Samuels, Tom Sanford, Sigrid Sarda, Madeline Von Foerster

nycARTscene Interview: LNY

LNY’s latest outdoor mural, “The Golden Hour,” is located at 22 East 2nd Street (between Bowery & 2nd Avenue) in Manhattan’s Lower East Side. The new artwork launched the 2013 season of Fourth Art Block's Public Art Program.

nycARTscene’s Hannah Krafcik leads us in conversation with the artist:

HK: Your previous public art features an array of creatures—usually hybrid creatures—that are often constrained or engaging in struggle. Can you describe the dynamic between humanity and nature in your work?

LNY: Struggle is definitely a recurring theme in my work, not only because conflict is part of our everyday, but because I find something incredibly beautiful and empowering about overcoming obstacles as part of the human condition. This tends to generate progress. I often like to complicate the depiction of this conflict through the concept of hybridity—animal and human, or machine and animal—because of the romantic and powerful archetypal connections we naturally have to these symbols. Also, hybridity is a big part of my multicultural background—being both Ecuadorian and American, speaking mixed languages, working inside and outside the law, and living in transit.

HK: How might this come into play in your most recent mural with Fourth Arts Block in the East Village? Can you elaborate on the concept?

LNY: This mural, and most of my recent work, has become the long tail result of research, intuition, and improvisation, which is all driven by location, the people I meet and the inherent conflicts the environment offers. The recent mural was born from reading about a dead sperm whale that washed ashore in the Aegean Sea. The Scientists who examined the whale’s corpse, which was both bloated and emaciated, were surprised to find its stomach full of plastic bags. So I imagined that experience of stumbling upon a gigantic whale’s dead body, and how it must feel to have this mountain of dead flesh in front of you…I wanted to replicate that awe and, at the same time, point to the magnitude of this problem: Humans intervening with natural ecosystems and creating climate change.

The narrative of the mural goes on to include a double headed tricolored heron being invaded by nature and technology, which happens to the whale as well as they both struggle to survive. I eventually titled the mural The Golden Hour after the medical term for the window of time following trauma or injury, during which treatment is most effective.    

HK: How would you like your work to engage or activate the people who see it?

LNY: Well, this is one of the most important questions, but also one with the less defined answer. Of course I would like for communities and viewers to either engage the work as an intervention of color and form in architectural space, or to take something positive away from it. This can affect people by simply making them smile, or by even inspiring someone to create something of their own. But it is very hard for me to gauge that reaction because it usually happens long after I’m gone. So, in this case, I’m just left with good wishes and an invitation to participate.

While making this mural, I brought over my growing collection of plastic bags picked up from the streets. Wanting to somehow use them in the mural, I finally decided to have their materiality speak for itself and, along with other trash from the site, I placed them at the entrance of the whale’s mouth. The fun part is that the bags and trash are only flimsily stapled to the wall. You could technically go to the site, like right now, and clean up this metaphorical ocean I painted. Or, you could actually clean a real ocean, upcycle your trash, take some form of action, or become aware of how we are affecting our environment before whales start swimming down alphabet city for brunch. 

HK: What kinds of environments and geographic locations attract and /or inspire you?

LNY: Like most of us, I grew up in the middle of the urban sprawl, from the small and colonial in South America to the immense and complex geography of New York & Seoul. These environments shaped me and gave rise to the language and processes I use to make art today. But what I find most amazing, and what fills me with joy, is being able to imagine a future beyond our current state. To see the possibilities afforded to us by the same technology that can do such harm to the planet and understand that we can create our own healthy and sustainable environments. To me, making free public art, both legal and otherwise, is part of this effort and inspires me to make more and more. In a way, my quest is to prove to myself and others that this ideal is possible and that art can be an integral part of it. Some days this is way easier said that done, but we move on. 

HK: Where are you planning to paint next? Where would you like to put your work next?

LNY: I have a couple of overarching projects I’m working on right now, specifically another collaboration with the Brooklyn based non-profit Young New Yorkers, a show with Newark based Solo(s) Project House during Fountain Art Fair and residency there—plus other surprises for New York and some upcoming trips. What all these projects have in common is the drive to create and interact with people and public space so they all revolve around that idea, even if paint is not involved. I find this more interesting sometimes, as it involves a different approach, collaboration, and new challenges. The question for me its not where would I want to put up work, but where do I need to put up work. Where does it need to exist, and what makes it necessary to manifest there?

photography: Luna Park http://lunapark.tumblr.com/
location: Ideal Glass http://www.idealglass.org/
LNY: http://lurkstudio.tumblr.com/

Art in the Street:

Phlegm
x Know Hope in East Village, NYC

22 East 2nd St., NYC (bt Bowery & East 2nd)

UK-based street artist Phlegm has just completed his first three murals in the USA. They are all located in Manhattan. One of the walls is a semi-collaboration with Know Hope, where Phlegm has added to a mural that Know Hope painted earlier this year. The wall is part of an ongoing public art project with MaNY and FABnyc in Manhattan’s Cultural District, under curator Keith Schweitzer's direction. -Vandalog

Artist Reception,  Tuesday, June 26, 6pm: “SAINTS OF THE LOWER EAST SIDE”Tom SanfordFABnyc, 75 East 4th St., NYC (bt Bowery & 2nd Ave)An outdoor exhibition of paintings by artist Tom Sanford. This is the latest in a strong series of public artworks in Manhattan’s Cultural District, led by FABnyc’s recently appointed Director of Public Art, Keith Schweitzer (the same curator who brought us last year’s Coney Island Murals and helped to bring us this year’s celebrated “This Side of Paradise” exhibition in the Bronx).“For a few months, seven local cultural heroes (Martin Wong, Joey Ramone, Miguel Piñero, Ellen Stewart, Charlie Parker, WeeGee and Allen Ginsberg) will remind passersby that history was made here and it was awesome. Sandwiched between the Ellen Stewart Theater and the offices of La Mama etc., the spot is rich with local history and I have a feeling these large icon-like panels may just spark people’s interest into delving a little deeper into the history of this once cutting-edge neighborhood.” - Hyperallergic“I have always thought of the LES as a sort of cultural crucible, i guess that is how it is presented in fiction and the movies, so i thought about a way to show reverence for the artistic past of the neighborhood… these artists most epitomize the LES for me. It is the legends of the Lower East Side that inspire me. I could have chosen to paint Johnny Thunder, John Sex, David Wojnarowicz, Ornette Coleman or so many others, but these are the seven that I chose, and seven fit the space.” - artist Tom Sanford-thru Sept 5. photo: Udom Surangsophon

Artist Reception,  Tuesday, June 26, 6pm:

SAINTS OF THE LOWER EAST SIDE
Tom Sanford

FABnyc, 75 East 4th St., NYC (bt Bowery & 2nd Ave)

An outdoor exhibition of paintings by artist Tom Sanford. This is the latest in a strong series of public artworks in Manhattan’s Cultural District, led by FABnyc’s recently appointed Director of Public Art, Keith Schweitzer (the same curator who brought us last year’s Coney Island Murals and helped to bring us this year’s celebrated “This Side of Paradise” exhibition in the Bronx).

“For a few months, seven local cultural heroes (Martin Wong, Joey Ramone, Miguel Piñero, Ellen Stewart, Charlie Parker, WeeGee and Allen Ginsberg) will remind passersby that history was made here and it was awesome. Sandwiched between the Ellen Stewart Theater and the offices of La Mama etc., the spot is rich with local history and I have a feeling these large icon-like panels may just spark people’s interest into delving a little deeper into the history of this once cutting-edge neighborhood.” - Hyperallergic

“I have always thought of the LES as a sort of cultural crucible, i guess that is how it is presented in fiction and the movies, so i thought about a way to show reverence for the artistic past of the neighborhood… these artists most epitomize the LES for me. It is the legends of the Lower East Side that inspire me. I could have chosen to paint Johnny Thunder, John Sex, David Wojnarowicz, Ornette Coleman or so many others, but these are the seven that I chose, and seven fit the space.” - artist Tom Sanford

-thru Sept 5. photo: Udom Surangsophon

(Source: nycartscene)

Opens Tuesday, June 26, 6-8p:

Our Ladies of Infamy and Grandeur
 Graham Preston

East Village Visitors Center, 75 East 4th St., NYC (bt 2nd Ave & Bowery)

The exhibition of five gilded paintings will honor the exploits, undertakings and legends of lost cultural heroines from Manhattan’s historical Five Points neighborhood.

Preston arrived at the concept for this series through numerous conversations with his friend and mentor, Tom Sanford. Additionally, in the artist’s words, “I came up with the initial idea for this series of paintings while reading ‘The Blackest Bird’ by NYC author Joel Rose. I wanted to explore the lore of embellished accounts from Manhattan’s early days […] The implied iconography in these paintings calls our attention to narratives which, in some cases, have managed to live on through time as mere sentiments found within a few sentences in a couple of books […] I wanted to make small paintings which glorify small events by rather insignificant and even infamous individuals within the context of our written histories.”

Presented by Fourth Arts Block. Curated by Keith Schweitzer.- thru Sept 5

Artist Reception, Next Tuesday, June 26, 6pm: “SAINTS OF THE LOWER EAST SIDE” Tom SanfordFABnyc, 75 East 4th St., NYC (bt Bowery & 2nd Ave)An outdoor exhibition of paintings by artist Tom Sanford. This is the latest in a strong series of public artworks in Manhattan’s Cultural District, led by FABnyc’s recently appointed Director of Public Art, Keith Schweitzer (the same curator who brought us last year’s Coney Island Murals and helped to bring us this year’s celebrated “This Side of Paradise" exhibition in the Bronx)."For a few months, seven local cultural heroes (Martin Wong, Joey Ramone, Miguel Piñero, Ellen Stewart, Charlie Parker, WeeGee and Allen Ginsberg) will remind passersby that history was made here and it was awesome. Sandwiched between the Ellen Stewart Theater and the offices of La Mama etc., the spot is rich with local history and I have a feeling these large icon-like panels may just spark people’s interest into delving a little deeper into the history of this once cutting-edge neighborhood.” - Hyperallergic"I have always thought of the LES as a sort of cultural crucible, i guess that is how it is presented in fiction and the movies, so i thought about a way to show reverence for the artistic past of the neighborhood… these artists most epitomize the LES for me. It is the legends of the Lower East Side that inspire me. I could have chosen to paint Johnny Thunder, John Sex, David Wojnarowicz, Ornette Coleman or so many others, but these are the seven that I chose, and seven fit the space." - artist Tom Sanford-thru Sept 5. photo: Udom Surangsophon

Artist Reception, Next Tuesday, June 26, 6pm:

SAINTS OF THE LOWER EAST SIDE
 Tom Sanford

FABnyc, 75 East 4th St., NYC (bt Bowery & 2nd Ave)

An outdoor exhibition of paintings by artist Tom Sanford. This is the latest in a strong series of public artworks in Manhattan’s Cultural District, led by FABnyc’s recently appointed Director of Public Art, Keith Schweitzer (the same curator who brought us last year’s Coney Island Murals and helped to bring us this year’s celebrated “This Side of Paradise" exhibition in the Bronx).

"For a few months, seven local cultural heroes (Martin Wong, Joey Ramone, Miguel Piñero, Ellen Stewart, Charlie Parker, WeeGee and Allen Ginsberg) will remind passersby that history was made here and it was awesome. Sandwiched between the Ellen Stewart Theater and the offices of La Mama etc., the spot is rich with local history and I have a feeling these large icon-like panels may just spark people’s interest into delving a little deeper into the history of this once cutting-edge neighborhood.” - Hyperallergic

"I have always thought of the LES as a sort of cultural crucible, i guess that is how it is presented in fiction and the movies, so i thought about a way to show reverence for the artistic past of the neighborhood… these artists most epitomize the LES for me. It is the legends of the Lower East Side that inspire me. I could have chosen to paint Johnny Thunder, John Sex, David Wojnarowicz, Ornette Coleman or so many others, but these are the seven that I chose, and seven fit the space." - artist Tom Sanford

-thru Sept 5. photo: Udom Surangsophon

Tomorrow, June 2, 4-6p: Panel Discussion: “Beyond Outreach: Museums, Audience and Community”Andrew Freedman Home, 1125 Grand Concourse, BronxSome museums are engaging in particularly creative programming, education and free admission, or re-imagining how a museum is supposed to look and feel. Others are radically re-thinking “outreach” by producing community-based projects or partnering with reality TV shows. This panel discussion brings museum professionals together to discuss how museums help define community and their role in it, with a specific eye on innovation.Panelists include:•    Holly Block of the Bronx Museum of the Arts •    Tom Finkelpearl of the Queens Museum of Art •    Thelma Golden of the Studio Museum in Harlem •    Eugenie Tsai of the Brooklyn Museum This discussion will be moderated by Deborah Fisher, Executive Director of A Blade of Grass, and will allow the audience an inside perspective of the practice of broadening audiences and maintaining lasting community relationships. Presented by No Longer Empty at their exhibition “This Side of Paradise”

Tomorrow, June 2, 4-6p:

Panel Discussion: “Beyond Outreach: Museums, Audience and Community”

Andrew Freedman Home, 1125 Grand Concourse, Bronx

Some museums are engaging in particularly creative programming, education and free admission, or re-imagining how a museum is supposed to look and feel. Others are radically re-thinking “outreach” by producing community-based projects or partnering with reality TV shows.

This panel discussion brings museum professionals together to discuss how museums help define community and their role in it, with a specific eye on innovation.

Panelists include:

•    Holly Block of the Bronx Museum of the Arts
•    Tom Finkelpearl of the Queens Museum of Art
•    Thelma Golden of the Studio Museum in Harlem
•    Eugenie Tsai of the Brooklyn Museum

This discussion will be moderated by Deborah Fisher, Executive Director of A Blade of Grass, and will allow the audience an inside perspective of the practice of broadening audiences and maintaining lasting community relationships. Presented by No Longer Empty at their exhibition “This Side of Paradise