It may be the beginning of March, but spring is already in the air, moving artwork from beyond the confines of walls and out for public viewing. Outdoor art installations are popping on The High Line, and in Astor Place, The Garment District, and the Doris C. Freedman Plaza, unveiling larger-than-life sculptures and murals that are both thought-provoking and fun.
In addition to public art works, indoor exhibits include Asia Week, the Armory Show, and Armory Art Week(s). Here are 14 exhibits and installations not to miss this month:
14. Dorothy Iannone’s ‘I Lift My Lamp Beside the Golden Door’ on The High Line
Photo by Timothy Schenck, courtesy The High Line
The very controversial artist, Dorothy Iannone, has something to say, and High Line Art has received her message with the forthcoming debut of her large-scale mural installation coming to 22nd Street. The piece, which pays homage to “freedom promised by immigration to America,” features three colorful Statues of Liberty, with the words “I Life My Lamp Beside the Golden Door” running between them. The excerpt is taken from Emma Lazarus’s poem, “The New Colossus,” engraved on a bronze plaque mounted inside the Statue of Liberty.
13. Public Art Fund Brings Yinka Shonibare MBE: Wind Sculpture (SG) 1 to Doris C. Freedman Plaza
On the heels of Ai Weiwei’s spectacular installations, The Public Art Fund keeps going with Yinka Shonibare MBE: Wind Sculpture (SG) 1, on view at the Doris C. Freedman Plaza this month at Central Park.
The 23-foot tall sculpture, “reminiscent of the untethered sail of a ship billowing in the breeze,” is a hand-painted pattern of turquoise, red and orange that is inspired by Dutch wax batik prints. The colors are also associated with the artist’s childhood on the beaches of Lagos. Wind Sculpture (SG) 1 is a continuation of a series of sculpture installations. The previous installation, entitled Wind Sculpture VII, is a permanent fixture outside the Smithsonian National Museum of African Art in Washington D.C.
Wind Sculpture (SG) 1, by British-Nigerian artist, Yinka Shonibare MBE, will be on view from March 7 to October 14, 2018 at the Doris C. Freedman Plaza, Fifth Avenue at 59th Street. The exhibition is curated by Public Art Fund Director and Chief Curator, Nicholas Baume.
12. The LOOP on The Plaza in The Garment District
The Garment District Alliance has installed retro-futuristic cylinders on The Plaza. LOOP, a series of six cylinder modules — created by artists Olivier Girouard (Ekumen) and Jonathan Villeneuve (concept and execution), Ottoblix (animations), Generique Design (industrial design), Thomas Ouellet Fredericks (electronic design), Adsum Lab (technical support), Jérôme D. Roy (mechanical consultant), and Dominic Thibault (audio programming) — are seven-feet in length, three-feet wide, and nine-feet high. Pedestrians are invited to hop in and pump the movable lever to activate musical films.
“Once the cylinders begin to spin, each will light up and play musical movies that are inspired by 13 fairytales, accompanied by a flickering strobe effect. The speed of the images, frequency of the lights, and tempo of the music are determined by how fast the participants move the lever,” explained by the Garment District Alliance. LOOP is part of Garment District Art on the Plazas, a subpart of the New York City Department of Transportation’s Art Program (DOTArt). LOOP will be on view on the Broadway medium from 37th to 38th Street through March 31, 2018.
11. Gillie and Marc Bring ‘The Last Three,’ The World’s Tallest Rhino to Astor Place
On March 15, we expect to see rhinos looming large at Astor Place. Sydney-based artists, Gillie and Marc, will unveil The Last Three, the world’s tallest rhino sculpture in an attempt to bring awareness to wildlife conservation and to encourage the global community to end rhino horn sales. Gillie and Marc have brought many unique and fun-loving installations to our city, from Paparazzi Dogs in DUMBO and Greenwich Village, to Dogman and Rabbitgirl at the Table of Love — each with a message encouraging conversation.
The Last Three by Gillie and Marc will be on view at Astor Place on March 15, 2018. Read more about the sculpture here.
10. The Armory Show and Armory Art Week(s)
JR’s “Unframed” installation at the Ellis Island‘s immigrant hospital
This year, Armory Art Week(s) began on February 28 with The Art Dealers Association of America (ADAA) at the Park Avenue Armory. The 30th annual edition, benefiting Henry Street Settlement, will exhibit 72 presentations selected from ADAA member galleries across the country.
On March 8, the doors open for the main event: The Armory Show, which will take place on Piers 92 and 94. There, visitors will be greeted by a large-scale installation by artist JR, which will meld archival images from Ellis Island with portraits of Syrian refugees. Entitled So Close, the installation is sort of a sequel to Unframed, and is presented in partnership with Artsy and Jeffrey Deitch. In addition, The Armory Show will feature presentations by over 200 leading international galleries, as well as related public programming from March 8 through March 11.
Extending through Manhattan, Armory Week will invite visitors to Art on Paper at Pier 36, Independent 2018 at 50 Varick Street, Moving Image Art Fair at a six-floor private townhouse at 591 Park Avenue, Spring Break Art Show at 4 Times Square, Scope New York at the Metropolitan Pavilion, Volta NY at Pier 90, and NADA, the New Art Dealers Alliance, at Skylight Clarkson Square.
To see more of JR’s work in person, make sure to join us for our tour of the abandoned hospital complex at Ellis Island:
9. Double Double at The Standard Hotel
Image courtesy The Standard Hotel
The Standard, High Line — the hotel that previously brought us installations like the felt bodega and the phone booth with a direct line to the government — has now partnered with EVERYBODYNEEDSUS for a new art installation, called Double Double. Displayed in the Living Room lobby, the multi-faceted mirror and neon ribbon installation amplifies and plays with the concept of reflections — something our technology-inundated culture is seemingly obsessed with.
The immersive work not only allows viewers to see themselves, but also to see the world reflected back to them at a new, massive scale. As a nod to the theme, visitors are also encouraged to interact with the sculpture by taking selfies and using the hashtag #drinkyourselfpretty on social media, thereby initiating a conversation around self-perception in today’s society.
EVERYBODYNEEDSUS, the creative production team behind the installation, also worked with notable artists along the likes of Frank Ocean, Kanye West, Beyonce, Pharrell and more. As part of the programming for the installation, Double Double will also present DJ sets and more.
8. American Gothic at The Whitney Museum of American Art
American Gothic is one of the country’s most iconic and recognizable works of 20th century art, and from March 2nd to June 10th, 2018, the painting will be on exhibit at The Whitney Museum of American Art. The painting is in the collection of the Art Institute of Chicago, which “almost never lets American Gothic leave their museum,” said Adam D. Weinberg, Alice Pratt Brown Director of the Whitney Museum of American Art at the press preview today.
The portrait of a Midwestern farm couple (a father and daughter, in actuality), with the man holding the pitchfork starting right at the viewer and the woman looking slightly askance, has been appropriated and re-appropriated countless times, often used to define a lost yet quintessential Americana or, as the Whitney Museum writes, “the unresolved tensions of the American experience.”
7. Real People. Real Lives. Women Immigrants of New York
Artist Dru Blumensheid unveiled her latest project, Real People. Real Lives. Women Immigrants of New York, in partnership with New Women New Yorkers, a nonprofit that seeks to empower female immigrants, helping them enter the workforce and pursue higher education. The exhibit spotlights 16 immigrant women through fashion photographs, each taken in prominent locations throughout the city.
Real People. Real Lives. Women Immigrants of New York will be on display at the Queens Museum through March 18. For more information, visit Queensmuseum.org.
6. The Salmagundi Club Celebrating 100 Years
The Salmagundi Club is celebrating 100 years, and to commemorate this milestone, it will pay homage to the building and its membership activities with a visual tribute to the neighborhood. Two exhibits are on view in the Main and Lower Galleries, “Greenwich Village: People, Places and Things,” and “The Salmagundi Show” as part of SCNY 100 Year Celebration.
The Salmagundi Club is one of the oldest art organizations in the United States. The building, purchased by the club in 1917, is a designated Historical Landmark and listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The exhibits will be on view until March 9 at 47 Fifth Avenue between 11th and 12th Streets. The club is free and open seven days a week, from 1-5pm.
5. Like Life: Sculpture, Color, and the Body at MET Breuer
The exhibition, Like Life: Sculpture, Color, and the Body (1300-Now) at MET Breuer, is an examination of seven-hundred years of sculptural practice. Exploring the way artists have sought to replicate the “literal, living presence of the human body,” this exhibition will include approximately 120 works on loan from international museums and collectors. Each sculpture is a representation based on the artists’ personal or cultural experience in color, features, and clothing — some even incorporate human blood, hair, teeth and bones in an attempt to have the viewer “think deeply about our shared humanity.”
Like Life: Sculpture, Color, and the Body (1300-Now) will be on view on the top two floors of MET Breuer from March 21 to July 22, 2018. MET Breuer is located at 945 Madison Avenue at 75th Street.
4. David Bowie at the Brooklyn Museum
Photograph from the album cover shoot for Aladdin Sane, 1973. Photo Duffy © Duffy Archive & The David Bowie Archive
David Bowie Is will open at the Brooklyn Museum on March 2nd. For this exhibition, the museum was given unprecedented access to Bowie’s personal archive to put together a display of approximately 400 objects that include the artist’s original costumes, handwritten lyric sheets from famous songs, original album art, photographs, and videos. Viewers are able to get a glimpse of Bowie’s creative process from his teenage years in England through his last years living in New York City.
David Bowie Is has been touring the world for the past five years. Its last stop will be the Brooklyn Museum from March 2 to July 15, 2018 on the fifth floor. The museum is located at 200 Eastern Parkway in Brooklyn. Check the museum website for related programming beginning with a Member Preview on March 1.
3. Unpacking the Green Book at The Museum of Arts & Design
Image via Wikimedia: public domain
The Museum of Arts and Design has done a deep-dive into the history of The Negro Motorist Green Book, with the exhibit, Derrick Adams: Sanctuary (still on view) and the new exhibition, Unpacking the Green Book: Travel and Segregation in Jim Crow America opening this month. The road-trippers guide for black Americans was published by New York postal worker, Victor Hugo Green. The guide, which was used from 1936 to 1967, listed services where black travelers were welcome in the age of “sundown towns, segregation, and the Civil Rights Movement.”
Using digitized copies of The Green Book, interactive maps that explore travel destinations, and film excerpts from an upcoming documentary project, the exhibition explores not only travel and segregation, but also racial oppression in the U.S. during the 20th and 21st centuries. Unpacking the Green Book: Travel and Segregation in Jim Crow America will be on view from March 1 to April 8, 2018 at the Museum of Arts and Design, 2 Columbus Circle.
2. Asia Week 2018
Asia Week, the annual ten-day celebration of Asian Art, will take place from March 15-24. Exhibitions and installations will be on view at auction houses, museums and institutions from Princeton University Art Museum to Yale University Art Gallery, and The Philadelphia Museum of Art. Locally, celebratory events and exhibitions can been seen at the Asia Society, China Institute, Japan Society, the Korean Cultural Center, Tibet House, Taipei Cultural Center and The Rubin Museum of Art, just to name a few. It is an opportunity to not only learn more about the Asian arts and culture, but also to visit many of New York City’s diverse collection of galleries and institutions.
The week includes a plethora of scheduled exhibits, gallery receptions, panel discussions, lectures and tours. To stay updated, follow Asia Week on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, and check out the Asia Week calendar.
1. Millennium: Lower Manhattan in the 1990s at The Skyscraper Museum
A current exhibit at The Skyscraper Museum, Millennium: Lower Manhattan in the 1990s, takes an in-depth look at Lower Manhattan prior to September 11th. It features displays of architectural drawings and models, archival and contemporary photographs, original posters, maps, sketches, and renderings that capture this particular period of time in New York City history. At a time of reinvention, Millennium, displays projects large and small, built and unbuilt, as architects and planners began to rethink downtown Manhattan and plan for its resurgence. This includes the build-out of Battery Park City’s 92 acres, the reclaimed Hudson River waterfront, East River Development of South Street Seaport and Fulton Fish Market, among other projects.
One of the highlights of the exhibition is Heritage Trails New York, a program of forty site markers and printed maps implemented in the late 1990s intended to encourage tourism. The project is represented through original materials, which are on display, and also through the museum’s digital recreation of the tours as they were in 1997, alongside how they appeared in 2017. Millennium: Lower Manhattan in the 1990s will be on view at The Skyscraper Museum on 39 Battery Place through April 2018.
Several of the Art Installations and Exhibits listed in February are still on view. Get in touch with the author at AFineLyne.