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:

The Real Estate Show, Was Then: 1980

James Fuentes Gallery, 55 Delancey St., NYC

a historical exhibition revisiting Colab’s infamous 1980 “The Real Estate Show” with original archived artworks. “During the late 1970s and early 1980s the art world underwent rapid change. More and more artists found inspiration by engaging the real world while simultaneously discovering the power of banding together either to confront or circumvent the established order… on New Years’ Eve 1980 a group of Colab members and friends started the new decade off with a bang by squatting an empty, city-owned building on Delancey Street and mounting ‘The Real Estate Show,’ an exhibition about greed, gentrification, eviction, and dislocation. Although the police quickly shut down the show, the guerrilla exhibition attracted so much media attention that as a compromise the city offered the artists the use of another abandoned building on nearby Rivington Street.” (Alan Moore and Marc Miller, 98Bowery.com)

opens Apr 17, 6-8p:

Day by Day, Good Day
 Peter Dreher

Koenig & Clinton Gallery, 459 W19th St., NYC

a historical exhibition presenting paintings from 1974-2012. Dreher began his series Tag um Tag Guter Tag (Day by Day, Good Day) after painting his first glass in 1972. Dreher continued rendering a single empty water glass repeatedly, by day and by night, and has continued doing so over the course of several decades. The title of the series is linked to a Zen Buddhist maxim that espouses the equanimity of all things and objective perception of the world. Schooled as a figurative painter, the artist has remained steadfast to this commitment over the years, painting the same glass, within the same surroundings, from the same angle every day. To date, the series includes nearly 5,000 individual paintings. - thru May 24

Opens April 11:

Submerged Motherlands
 Swoon
 
Brooklyn Museum, 200 Eastern Parkway, Brooklyn, NYC

Brooklyn-based artist Swoon creates a site-specific installation in Brooklyn Museum’s rotunda gallery, transforming it into a fantastic landscape centering on a monumental sculptural tree with a constructed environment at its base, including sculpted boats and rafts, figurative prints and drawings, and cut paper foliage. Often inspired by contemporary and historical events, Swoon engages with climate change in the installation as a response to the catastrophic Hurricane Sandy that struck the Atlantic Coast in 2012, and Doggerland, a landmass that once connected Great Britain and Europe and that was destroyed by a tsunami 8,000 years ago.

photos from Swoon’s instagram.com/swoonhq

Opens Tonight, 6-8p:

Are Your Motives Pure? Raymond Pettibon Surfers 1987-2012”
 Raymond Pettibon
 
Venus Over Manhattan Gallery, 980 Madison Ave., NYC

first exhibition ever organized to focus exclusively on Raymond Pettibon’s ‘surfer paintings,’ bringing together forty works spanning a quarter century of the artist’s career. Since the 1970s, Los Angeles-based artist Raymond Pettibon has been metabolizing America - its history, literature, sports, religion, politics, and sexuality - in a barrage of drawings and paintings in a style born of comic books and the “do-it-yourself” aesthetic of Southern California punk rock album-covers, concert flyers, and fanzines. Limning a dizzying array of topics with his distinctive combinations of image and text, Pettibon has created a vocabulary of symbols that reappear consistently if enigmatically across his oeuvre. - thru May 17

Opens Tonight, 6-8p:“The Super Can Man and Other Illustrated Classics” Kristen Morgin Zach Feuer Gallery, 548 W22nd St., NYCThe exhibition is populated with sculptures, composed primarily of unfired clay and paint, of super heroes and heroines found in comic books, fairy tales and popular culture.  Some work is re-created as a single object, such as a Little Golden Book edition of Hansel and Gretel.  Other work, like The Ugly Duckling, is seemingly reimaged from repurposed materials one may have on hand -  the stub of a pencil, a Skippy peanut butter jar top and two painted pieces of wood.

Opens Tonight, 6-8p:

The Super Can Man and Other Illustrated Classics
 Kristen Morgin
 
Zach Feuer Gallery, 548 W22nd St., NYC

The exhibition is populated with sculptures, composed primarily of unfired clay and paint, of super heroes and heroines found in comic books, fairy tales and popular culture.  Some work is re-created as a single object, such as a Little Golden Book edition of Hansel and Gretel.  Other work, like The Ugly Duckling, is seemingly reimaged from repurposed materials one may have on hand -  the stub of a pencil, a Skippy peanut butter jar top and two painted pieces of wood.

Opens Apr 18, 6-9p:“Nude Dudes” René Smith Storefront Ten Eyck Gallery, 324 Ten Eyck St., Brooklyn, NYCRené Smith’s paintings, Nude Dudes, are complicated and radical. Forty years after Playgirl popularized the idea that women could enjoy the male nude, we do not expect to see penises. These are feminist paintings. The subject is important, privileged by its relative absence from our visual culture.  Smith’s work is a sincere ode to longing and the beauty of men’s bodies, but it also addresses the imbalance between the ubiquitous depiction of women’s bare bodies and the dearth of male nakedness.  The paintings depict men’s bodies through a woman’s eyes. The man’s body is presented as a landscape with hills and valleys to roam.  The work also abounds in art historical references, our relationship to photography and formal and painterly ideas about the physical and sensual quality of the pieces themselves.  Friends and professional models posed for Smith’s camera in her studio. She works from these photographs to create her large-scale paintings.

Opens Apr 18, 6-9p:

Nude Dudes
 René Smith
 
Storefront Ten Eyck Gallery, 324 Ten Eyck St., Brooklyn, NYC

René Smith’s paintings, Nude Dudes, are complicated and radical. Forty years after Playgirl popularized the idea that women could enjoy the male nude, we do not expect to see penises. These are feminist paintings. The subject is important, privileged by its relative absence from our visual culture.  Smith’s work is a sincere ode to longing and the beauty of men’s bodies, but it also addresses the imbalance between the ubiquitous depiction of women’s bare bodies and the dearth of male nakedness.  The paintings depict men’s bodies through a woman’s eyes. The man’s body is presented as a landscape with hills and valleys to roam.  The work also abounds in art historical references, our relationship to photography and formal and painterly ideas about the physical and sensual quality of the pieces themselves.  Friends and professional models posed for Smith’s camera in her studio. She works from these photographs to create her large-scale paintings.

opens Tonight, Mar 16, 6-8p:“Everything Under the Sun: Moon and Stars” Summer Wheat Pocket Utopia, 191 Henry St., NYCIn collaboration with Hansel and Gretel Picture Garden

opens Tonight, Mar 16, 6-8p:

Everything Under the Sun: Moon and Stars
 Summer Wheat
 
Pocket Utopia, 191 Henry St., NYC

In collaboration with Hansel and Gretel Picture Garden

Recommended
Opens Sun, Mar 2nd, 6-8p:

Crosseyed and Painless
 Daniel Rios Rodriguez

Sargent’s Daughters, 179 East B’Way, NYC


Daniel Rios Rodriguez’s work combines the intensely personal with the historical in a manner both humorous and dark.  The paintings begin with drawing into a thick layer of oil paint, and can include collage elements of raw canvas, linen and the scraps of old t-shirts onto the canvas. This is a means of recovery and reinstating a fresh surface, exploring the materiality and variety of textures a painting’s surface can have.

The subject matter of the work spans the immediate and classical: skulls, lemons and tall grass along a river are repeated- calling to mind the traditional vanitas pieces. The search is ongoing and the images are abundant.
- thru Mar 30

opens Fri, Mar 7, 7-9p:“Love Never Saved Anything” Logan Hicks PMM Presents, 154 Stanton St., NYCWhile much of Logan’s work deals with the often analytical, highly contemplative view of the urban environment, the paintings in Love Never Saved Anything were born out of the artist’s experiences and personal set backs this past year. The challenges led him to explore underwater photography as inspiration for these paintings. Logan explains, “The drifting, the weightlessness was how I felt internally. It seemed like the perfect way to capture what I was going through - adrift in a sea of uncertainty.” Having lived near the sea all his life, maritime themes have always been a unique influence for him, but are more explicit in this new body of work. Both haunting and elegant, his new paintings incorporate references from nautical superstitions and sailor traditions and showcase the range of perspectives from which the artist sees his environment.

opens Fri, Mar 7, 7-9p:

Love Never Saved Anything
 Logan Hicks
 
PMM Presents, 154 Stanton St., NYC

While much of Logan’s work deals with the often analytical, highly contemplative view of the urban environment, the paintings in Love Never Saved Anything were born out of the artist’s experiences and personal set backs this past year. The challenges led him to explore underwater photography as inspiration for these paintings. Logan explains, “The drifting, the weightlessness was how I felt internally. It seemed like the perfect way to capture what I was going through - adrift in a sea of uncertainty.” Having lived near the sea all his life, maritime themes have always been a unique influence for him, but are more explicit in this new body of work. Both haunting and elegant, his new paintings incorporate references from nautical superstitions and sailor traditions and showcase the range of perspectives from which the artist sees his environment.

opens tomorrow, Thurs, 6-8p:“Big Girl Now” Klara Kristalova Lehmann Maupin Gallery, 201 Chrystie St., NYCWith each sculpture, Kristalova builds an imaginative narrative around common emotions and everyday situations, turning to a diversity of influences that include music, memory and current events,  literature, myths and fairytales.  Her slightly unsettling hand-painted figures—often hybrids of human, animal, insect or plant forms—communicate a tension but also a balance between states of being or transformation. The idea of transformation, particularly the age of adolescence as a time of both physical and psychological change, has been a recurring theme in Kristalova’s work. In Big Girl Now, Kristalova presents a group of portraits of women rooted in a more established period of the life cycle, suggesting that the transformation of youth does not cease once one is “grown up”.
pictured: Sneak peek of Kristalova’s during installation. This image features “Keyhole Woman,” (2013), “Young Girl Growing,” (2013) and “Twins,” (2014). Image by Lehmann Maupin.

opens tomorrow, Thurs, 6-8p:

Big Girl Now
 Klara Kristalova
 
Lehmann Maupin Gallery, 201 Chrystie St., NYC

With each sculpture, Kristalova builds an imaginative narrative around common emotions and everyday situations, turning to a diversity of influences that include music, memory and current events,  literature, myths and fairytales.  Her slightly unsettling hand-painted figures—often hybrids of human, animal, insect or plant forms—communicate a tension but also a balance between states of being or transformation. The idea of transformation, particularly the age of adolescence as a time of both physical and psychological change, has been a recurring theme in Kristalova’s work. In Big Girl Now, Kristalova presents a group of portraits of women rooted in a more established period of the life cycle, suggesting that the transformation of youth does not cease once one is “grown up”.

pictured: Sneak peek of Kristalova’s during installation. This image features “Keyhole Woman,” (2013), “Young Girl Growing,” (2013) and “Twins,” (2014). Image by Lehmann Maupin.