This Week’s Must-See Art Events: Patriarchy-Smashing in Full Force

by Michael Anthony Farley on March 7, 2017 Events

Pelenakeke Brown's eerie self-portraits open Wednesday night at ORA Gallery.

Pelenakeke Brown’s eerie self-portraits open Wednesday night at ORA Gallery.

So far, 2017 might be one of the shittiest years in recent decades for the women of America, but New York’s art world is making sure this will be a Women’s History Month to remember. On Thursday, the New Museum is even hosting a talk on Feminist topics we haven’t even heard of: A.K. Burns will be leading a discussion on “Quantum Feminism”. That same night, Van DebEd is hosting Women’s History Month Invitational in Long Island City.

Kick the weekend off playing artist-designed Feminist games at Bushwick’s SOHO20 Gallery Friday night. Saturday, Laurie Simmons and Carroll Dunham will discuss feminist icon Marilyn Minter’s show at the Brooklyn Museum. After a week of edifying female-empowering events, head to Interference Archive’s Sunday afternoon Art+Feminism Wikipedia Edit-a-thon to make sure it all goes down in herstory.

  1. T
  2. W
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AC Institute

16 East 48th Street
New York, NY
6:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.Website

Tra Bouscaren & John Schlesinger: Dear Volunteers

It’s usually a turn-off when artwork claims it “implicates the viewer back into what they have arrived to judge.” Tra Bouscaren and John Schlesinger’s multi-media installation, however, sounds so seductively post-apocalyptic that can be overlooked. The duo use video mapping, laboratory detritus, construction rubble and more to form environments that I’m imagining will look a bit like the surface of “the desert of the real” from The Matrix. Timely.


ORA Gallery

51 7th Ave
New York, NY
6:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.Website

Pelenakeke Brown: Reasoning On Paper; The Myth Of Herself

For this series, Pelenakeke Brown drew daily self portraits as she grew out her hair. They’re a little creepy, as she’s left out any other signifiers of identity (facial features, etc…). As the exercise grew, the series took on new meaning as a meditation on gender and self-representation. Her attention to (and omission) of details makes these memorable and slightly uncanny.


New Museum

235 Bowery
New York, NY
7:00 p.m.Website

The Question of Quantum Feminism

“Quantum Feminism” is a concept that’s so new and/or obscure it doesn’t have it’s own Wikipedia page (take note, those participating in this week’s edit-a-thon!) Confession: I know this because I just had to Google it.

This talk’s organizers describe a discussion about “an understanding of bodies as sensory systems can be a starting point for discussions around ethics and ‘entangled relations of difference’.” I’m sure we’ll all have a better understanding of QF after this roundtable discussion, which includes A.K. Burns, Harry Dodge, Carolyn Lazard, Anicka Yi, and Constantina Zavitsano.

VanDeb Ed

37-18 Northern Blvd.
Long Island City, NY
6:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.Website

Women’s History Month Invitational

For this year’s Women’s History Month Invitational, curators Marjorie Van Dyke and Deborah Freedman have taken an unexpected route: most of the artists here make cheery abstract paintings. That’s nothing new, of course, but it’s refreshingly outside the usual (bizarrely illogical) narrative that abstraction is a man’s game. And importantly, these paintings are good.

Artists: Marina Adams, Nancy Azara, Andea Belag, Joanne Freeman, Claire Seidl and Dee Shapiro


Printed Matter

231 Eleventh Ave.
New York, NY
6:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m. Website

The Schizophrenic Bomb: Richard Tyler and the Uranian Press

Founded in the 1970s, the LES’s Uranian Phalanstery represented a sorta-New-Age-y art collective with its own singular culture. Founded be veteran Richard Tyler, his wife Dorothea Tyler, and some neighbors/friends, the Uranians produced a hell of a lot of printed material.

This includes prints from woodblock to xerox, letters, editioned art books, and so much more. Expect to lose hours digging through one very weird archive.

SOHO20 Gallery

56 Bogart Street
Brooklyn, NY
6:30 p.m. - 9:00 p.m.Website

Game Night #6: Feminist Politics

What exactly is a feminist game night? Probably more fun than most would expect. The night features games designed by Rebecca Goyette, Desiree Des, and Željka Blakšić.

I’m hoping it’s something like the board game “Don’t Wake Daddy!” but more along the lines of “Get Woke! The Patriarchy!”


Brooklyn Museum

Brooklyn Museum
200 Eastern Parkway
2:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.Website

Artist's Eye: Laurie Simmons and Carroll Dunham on Marilyn Minter

We can’t gush enough about Marilyn Minter’s show Pretty/Dirty at the Brooklyn Museum. (Actually, Paddy got to check it out in Denver before the show traveled to NYC.) Now, we get to hear two other greats gush about Marilyn Minter. Laurie Simmons and Carroll Dunham will have a conversation in response to the show. This is definitely one of the week’s highlights.

Smack Mellon

92 Plymouth Street
Brooklyn, NY
5:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.Website

Linda Herritt: Grease Rust Soot Sweat

Linda Herritt’s room-spanning, text-based, mixed-media installations are often the products of researching “lists” of things. Here, she’s turned her attention to Buckminster Fuller’s 1981 “Chronology of Scientific Discoveries and Artifacts.” The publication was a litany of important innovations, spanning centuries of advancements in chemistry and inventions.

Inventions such as steel skyscrapers and the discovery of germ-based medicine will be included alongside guns and hydroelectricity. We’re not sure exactly what this will look like, but we’re told it will “undulate” off the walls of Smack Mellon’s old coal-fired steam furnace.


Interference Archive

131 8th Street
Brooklyn, NY
2:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m.Website

Art+Feminism Wikipedia Edit-a-thon

For whatever reason. only 8.5-16% of Wikipedia editors are women. This means topics related to women’s concerns—from feminist art history to films by female directors—can be overlooked. This Wikipedia Edit-a-thon, happening roughly concurrently with dozens worldwide, hopes to close the gender gap a bit.

Bring a laptop, and even a kid (childcare will be provided, but an RSVP is necessary).

Pioneer Works

159 Pioneer Street
Brooklyn, NY
4:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m. Website

Second Sundays

Conveniently, Red Hook’s Pioneer Works is walking distance from Interference Archive, and their monthly Second Saturdays party is the perfect way to reward yourself after a few hours of performing netizen civic duty. The event features DJs, a performance from Underground System, a CRISPR workshop and more. All for a $10 suggested donation.

Open Studios:

Angel Nevarez/Valerie Tevere
Jes Fan
Pascual Sisto
Evelyn Donnelly
SKOTE (Jill Pangallo & Alex P. White)

This is also a prime opportunity to check out E.S.P TV’s epic installation “WORK”, which has reinstalled Pioneer Works’ offices as a functioning television set.

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