This Week’s Must-See Art Events: Winter is Coming

by Michael Anthony Farley on March 13, 2017 Events

The Whitney Biennial Installation view

The Whitney Biennial Installation view. Photo: Paddy Johnson

The week is of course dominated by two news items: The Whitney Biennial and The Wintery Downfall.

After the blizzard, Wednesday is a great opportunity to get yourself in the snowy mood, art-wise. Enjoy doses of culture from freezing, windswept regions, including Marsden Hartley’s Maine at The Met Breuer (if you’re missing the Whitney’s old digs) and Berlin-based Danish/Norwegian duo Elmgreen & Dragset in conversation with Dan Cameron at The Flag Art Foundation. Later, catch the Icelandic thriller Hevn at Scandinavia House’s New Nordic Cinema screening series.

Other highlights include Fort Gansevoort’s female-perspective sports show March Madness Thursday night and TRANSFER’s four year birthday party, which will feature affordable editions from some of our favorite digital artists.

Oh yeah, and make time to check out the Biennial. I’m told it’s good, but “traumatic”. An appropriately bleak show to match our physical and political climate?

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SVA Theater

333 West 23rd Street
New York, NY
7:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m.Website

Laura Larson and Mark Alice Durant Reading and Book Signing

Art writers Laura Larson and Mark Alice Durant will be reading from their respective books Hidden Mother and 27 Contexts: An Anecdotal History in Photography. Both deal with photography as a form of personal and cultural memory.

I know Mark Durant (who runs the fantastic art blog Saint Lucy) personally, and listening to him talk about art is such a pleasure. This is definitely the one thing worth braving the weather to attend.


The Met Breuer

945 Madison Ave
New York, NY
10:00 a.m. - 5:30 p.m. Website

Marsden Hartley's Maine

This exhibition traces the influence of Marsden Hartley’s native state of Maine on the artist’s practice. This should be good—Hartley is one of America’s most beloved painters—but also unique. No exhibition has ever focused on his hometown roots. Maine both offered the artist a space to experiment and a source of inspiration—from finding his voice as a landscape painter to being the source of personally-informed portraiture.

FLAG Art Foundation

545 West 25th Street
New York, NY
6:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m. Website

Elmgreen & Dragset in Conversation with Dan Cameron

Elmgreen & Dragset remain two of my personal favorite contemporary artists because they always inspire good conversation. By that I mean their art world antics are both polarising and thought-provoking. Many a time, I’ve wished to be a fly on the wall of their studio.

Thankfully, the Berlin-based Scandinavian duo is headed to New York to talk shop with Istandbul Biennial curator Dan Cameron. They’ll discuss their work there, as well as a recent exhibition at the FLAG Art Foundation.

Definitely a can’t-miss.

Note: this event had previously been scheduled for Tuesday, but has been rescheduled thanks to the impending Winter snowstorm.

Scandinavia House: The Nordic Center in America

58 Park Avenue
New York, NY
7:00 p.m.Website

New Nordic Cinema: Revenge /Hevn

Icelandic director Kjersti Steinsbø’s psychological revenge thriller Hevn sounds so good. The protagonist sets out to ruin the life of a man who wronged her sister. Along the way, she sews chaos in a small town.

How does Scandinavia, a region with basically no crime, always produce the best thrillers? Even the trailer gives me chills.


Berry Campbell Gallery

530 W 24th Street
New York, NY
6:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.Website

Perle Fine: Prescience Series (1950s)

Perle Fine’s five-decade-long career was characterized by an impressive commitment to abstraction, which evolved following the arc of art history. Here, curators Martha Campbell and Christine Berry are focusing on Fine’s 1950s “Prescience Series” from the height of Ab-Ex. This is the era of some of her strongest paintings, in which Fine’s understanding of color is the most salient detail—where paint feels at its most liberated from her usual geometric or line-based compositional frameworks. Midcentury art history nerds take note.

Fort Gansevoort

5 Ninth Avenue
New York, NY
6:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m.Website

March Madness

Curators Hank Willis Thomas and Adam Shopkorn have cooked up one of the most singular exhibition concepts of the month: competition and athleticism from the perspective of all-star female artists.

What exactly will a show look like that features Nazi filmmaker Leni Riefenstahl alongside Miranda July? Madness indeed!

Artists: Gina Adams, Emma Amos, Kathryn Andrews, Kristin Baker, Sadie Barnette, Holly Bass, Zoe Buckman, Jordan Casteel, Elizbeth Catlett, Pamela Council, Renee Cox, Rineke Dijkstra, Rosalyn Drexler, Sylvie Fleury, Rin Johnson, Miranda July, Catherine Opie, Howardena Pindell, Cheryl Pope, Leni Riefenstahl, Faith Ringgold, Deborah Roberts, Martha Rosler, Alison Saar, Betye Saar, Collier Schorr, Laurel Shear, Cindy Sherman, Jean Shin, and Ashley Teamer.


Whitney Museum of American Art

99 Gansevoort Street
New York, NY
10:30 a.m. - 6:00 p.m. Website

2017 Whitney Biennial



1030 Metropolitan Ave
Brooklyn, NY
4:00 p.m. - 10:00 p.m. Website


TRANSFER Gallery is one of our favorite spots in the city to see digital art IRL. It’s a niche that’s not known for its ease of salability, which makes the fact that TRANSFER has survived these four years (longer than many galleries who offer more market-friendly wares) even more impressive.

They’re celebrating with an accessible shop chock full of artist-made wares. This includes works ranging from $5-$1000, and multiples from some of our favorite artists such as Lorna Mills and Anthony Antonellis.

At 6 p.m., artists Alma Alloro and Claudia Hart will discuss their project to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the Bauhaus by applying the school’s philosophy to digital art making. Sounds promising!

106 Green

104 Green Street
Brooklyn, NY
6:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m. Website

Lydia McCarthy: Ego Death

At least once a week, we come across an art opening that sounds so weird we have to recommend it out of pure curiosity. Here’s one such project. Lydia McCarthy’s new body of work references “Game Reality”, The Tibetan Book of the Dead, psychedelia and other New-Age-y topics. We’re not sure what the work will actually look like (they’re described as color film photographs that function as “talismans”) but the image above is certainly intriguing.

Here’s a kōan to ponder based on the exhibition statement: what’s the definition of “self care” if you’ve transcended “beyond self”?


252 Java Street
Brooklyn, NY
6:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m. Website

Gina Dawson: Bad Tattoos

I don’t think I have ever personally related to an exhibition statement quite as much as this one:

“Bad tattoos should not be a mark of shame but a badge that a person was impulsive, had questionable judgment or, in place of a better word, was young. Sadly, the contemporary art world is overpopulated with work made by artists who were never young enough to have had a bad tattoo, resulting in a glut of safe, bland art that neither offends nor thrills.”

Gina Dawson’s sculptures mash-up nearly-readymade, easily identifiable materials into often absurd compositions. They’re a bit like inside jokes made manifest. As opposed to the cool irony associated with this genre (The Jogging, et al) Dawson’s work can feel endearingly awkward—much like a bad tattoo—an impulsive idea carried through to fruition.

Curated by Carl Gunhouse


Brooklyn Brush

203 Harrison Pl.
Brooklyn, NY
1:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m. Website

Art Packing and Preparation for Artists Workshop

Are you an artist? Have you ever dropped off work for a show wrapped in newspaper in a plastic shopping bag? If you’ve answered yes to the above, this is the class for you.

Artist/art handler James Isherwood and dealer Jonathan Belli are offering tips about preparing/packing artwork for shipping. Please go to this. Every curator you work with will thank you.

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