This Week’s Must-See Art Events: Death to Normcore

by Whitney Kimball Corinna Kirsch Andrew Wagner on July 21, 2014 Events

Divine_in_Heaven_T-shirt-466x180This week comes at us with high-energy midsummer events, more group shows, and air-conditioned movie theaters. Start off the week on Monday with artists playing blackjack in shipping containers, then go to a 70 artist group show on Tuesday. On Saturday, end the week with allowing the drag queens of One Last Shag to destroy your normcore getup.

Enjoy some midsummer art, guys!

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308 Bedford Ave

The Villains

If you haven’t yet seen The Villains—a post-Occupy, post-Internet update on Godard’s La Chinoise—then we urge you to get over to Videology tonight. (Disclaimer: Jones was AFC’s Chief Development Officer for over a year.) Read all about the film on Animal’s Artist Notebook Series.

If you watch it online, The Villains changes every time because it pulls from YouTube videos in its insets and backgrounds. If you watch it tonight, the same thing will happen, except the filmmaker will be present for beers and Q&A. He has a lot of theory behind the revolutionary energy on the Internet, in that it’s manifested both in purposeful deconstruction of dictatorships and destination-less mass actions. He compares this to shortsighted start-up logic.


1397 Myrtle Avenue, Unit 4
Brooklyn, New York 11237
7:00 -10:00 PMWebsite

Closing Party for Eye in the Sky Hold ‘em

The number of non-commercial, artist-run spaces in New York are few and far between nowadays. And so when they happen, you’re often bound to miss them. Let’s try to make that happen less often. You can start by saying “hello” to Where, a shipping-container space off Myrtle. Tonight you can send off the narrow cube’s latest exhibition, a month-long poker tournament organized by Melissa Brown. Audience members were allowed to help the artists cheat thanks to a big eye of God, i.e. a webcam, and call-in cheats. (It featured some artists we really, really like—Michael Mahalchick, Irena Jurek, and Siebren Versteeg among them.) Throughout the month, the artist-players have wagered artworks as bets; those’ll be on view tonight, along with clips from the previous matches.

Tonight, though, the artist-players will be holding hard with Blackjack. And gin and tonics.

P.S. The space is actually very, very small. Be prepared.


155 Freeman Street

7:30-10:00 PMWebsite

Public Mixer No. 3

“Community engagement” projects can be both uplifting solidarity exercises and patronizing nightmares. So if you’re trying to talk to your neighbors through your art or activist project, then you might benefit from this “skill building mixer” with DSGN AGNC, #whoOWNSpace, an Occupy Wall Street project, and The Community Mapping + Design Toolkit, “an in-the-field co-mapping and design toolkit.”

Light Industry

155 Freeman Street
7:30 PMWebsite

Mad Love

Karl Freund, the cinematographer for Metropolis, also directed films of his own. One of those is the lesser-known psycho-thriller Mad Love, which Light Industry describes as “arguably his most important” directorial effort—a pretty big endorsement. Mad Love is a lusty thriller about a love affair and a Frankenstein-type hand replacement gone wrong; it’ll be paired with a similar 1999 short film Outer Space, by Peter Tscherkassky.

Formerly Pocket Utopia

191 Henry Street
Lower East Side
6:00 PMWebsite


A huge survey of some of the most active artists in Bushwick’s gallery scene should look like pretty formalist and heavy on geometric abstraction painting. As many galleries start to look westward, it’ll be a good opportunity to take stock of what Bushwick has matured into over the years. But I can’t help but hear Dave Hickey whenever I see a group show with 700 names on it:
“I want some fucking substance, but we can’t do that, because we have to be fair, and, as my grandmother said, fair happens once a year, and usually in the country.”
Does Bushwick, with its communal approach to art-viewing, prove him wrong? We’ll see.


Kristen Lorello

195 Chrystie Street
East Village
6:00 to 8:00 PMWebsite


Kristen Lorello presents a group show of artists who “combine a reference to place with a sense of disorientation or blurring.” We’re excited by the inclusion of Letha Wilson, who, while normally known for her sculptural works that combine photographic prints with cement, will be showing a video piece filmed in New York, Ireland, Niagara Falls, and New Mexico.

Other artists included in the show are Goldschmied & Chiari, Zipora Fried, Nadia Haji Omar, Halsey Hathaway, Kristen Jensen, Malcolm McClain, David Mramor, Ian Pedigo, Peter Rostovsky, and Josh Slater.


Printed Matter

195 Tenth Avenue
New York, NY 10011
6:00 - 8:00 PMWebsite

The Social Life of Artistic Property: Conversation between Michael Mandiberg, Nicholas O’Brien (standing in for William Powhida), Amy Whitaker, and Caroline Woolard in conversation about their self-published volume, The Social Life of Artistic Property

To celebrate the release of The Social Life of Artistic Property, a volume composed of conversations and articles about art and property, the contributors will discuss their research from over the last two years. Caroline Woolard lived in Ganas, Staten Island, the oldest income-sharing community in New York City. Pablo Helguera researched the Sullivan Institute for Research in Psychoanalysis in New York’s Upper West Side, and finds overlap between the anti-capitalist psychoanalysis movement and creative communities. Michael Mandiberg discusses the decades-long collaborative project at 135 Rivington.

Because Printed Matter is anything but a lecture hall, you should RVSP in advance to


Film Forum

209 West Houston Street
Greenwhich Village

The Master Builder

Jonathan Demme (Silence of the Lambs, Philadelphia, The Manchurian Candidate) updates Henrik Ibsen’s “The Master Builder,” about an egomaniacal architect who bullies the women and employees in his life. Wallace Sean is in it. He, Jonathan Demme, and Lisa Joyce (who plays “a sensual, mysterious young visitor”) will be there in person on Friday.


One Last Shag

348 Franklin Ave
11 PM- 4 AMWebsite

How Pretty Can You Get?

“Shed your ironic Under Armour and release your inner glamour!” That’s Baltimore’s finest drag queens, calling for the Death of Normcore! The event comes with makeover stations and a large photo of Divine. We’re guessing that’s our makeover inspo. We are excited.

Hosts Molly Rhinestones, Whitney Biennial, and Ellen Degenerate invite you to bring boring clothes to destroy.



11 W 53rd Street
10:30 AM to 5:00 PMWebsite

Christopher Williams: The Production Line of Happiness

Conceptual photography never looked so good. Christopher Williams adopts the look of high-production advertising imagery to create subtly uncanny photographs that question photography’s role in consumer culture. Given that his work was an important precursor to other contemporary photographers’ usage of advertising and stock imagery, such as Roe Ethridge and Elad Lassry, this feels like a ripe time for a retrospective of his work.

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