This is the first year in about a decade that I won’t be able to make it to Armory Show or any of the other Armory week art fairs in the city. I’m very excited for my ski vacation in Colorado, but I’m sad to be missing out on all of the art parties and fun back home. To help cure my FOMO I am following these instagram accounts by some of the art-world’s best and most influential players. If you’re not in NYC, you should follow along too!
I went to MoMA last night and partied with Roy Lichtenstein, Henri Matisse, Pablo Picasso, and Willem de Kooning. I hung out with Claude Monet, Salvador Dali, and Jasper Johns. And I sipped Chardonnay with Jackson Pollack, Robert Rauschenberg, and Andy Warhol.
The occasion was MoMA’s Junior Associates event. The museum kept all of its galleries open until 10 o’clock, hired a DJ to spin music, and organized an open bar and passed nibbles for everyone. The best part about it all? Leaving work and spending three blissful hours exploring the museum with a group of strangers who wanted to spend their evening exploring the museum too.
As an art history major, I have spent countless hours at museums, galleries, art fairs, and artists studios. I love being around art and getting excited by it. But now that I’m a busy worker bee, I’m lucky if I can get to a museum or gallery once a month–or even once every few months! Last night was a major treat for me. It reminded me to prioritize doing things that make me happy, and now I hope it will remind you too.
Helmut Lang’s columnar sculptures line the walls of Sperone Westwater in an army of clusters. Lang created the works while reflecting on his career as a fashion designer, taking a medley of old fabrics, zippers, buttons, and other items, stuffing them in casting tubes and molding them in resin and pigment. The result are visceral pillars that are strong and imposing, but at the same time battered and vulnerable. They transform his old working materials while also preserving them in time.
Helmut Lang’s sculptures are on view now through February 21.
Complete your gallery hop by visiing these other shows that opened this week.
Katsura Okada: Apetalous II: New Works of Flowers Having No Petals, at A.I.R. Gallery
Katsura Okada reflects on life in Japan after the Tohoku Earthquake of 2011, depicting flowers in their most abstract and fragile form. Her paintings are on view through February 1. A.I.R. Gallery: 111 Front Street, Brooklyn
Kellyann Burns at McKenzie Fine Art
Kellyann Burns layers pigments on top of each other before scraping them off with with sandpaper and metal spatulas to reveal all new contrasting colors and surface textures. Her hard-edged, abstract paintings are on view through February 8. McKenzie Fine Art: 55 Orchard Street, NYC
Adam Ekberg: Orchestrating the Ordinary, at ClampArt
Adam Ekberg’s staged still life photographs are straddle the line between real life and whimsy. His crisp, vibrant pictures are on view through February 14. ClampArt: 535 West 25th Street, NYC
Abstract expressionist Pat Steir uses gravity as a tool as she experiments with drips of paint and splatters of pigment at Cheim and Reid.
Opening reception from 6-8 p.m.: 547 West 25th Street Pat Steir is on view through March 29.
Kon Trubkovich renders our thoughts and manifests our memory through a series of paintings, video stills, and photographs in Kon Trubkovich: Snow at Marianne Boesky.
Opening reception from 6-8 p.m.: 509 West 24th Street. Kon Trubkovich: Snow will be on view through March 22.
Thanks to Joel Arthur Rosenthal, the passionate jewelry designer behind JAR, the fashion world is a much more dazzling place. For the past 35 years, Rosenthal has diligently studied and collected gemstones, hand crafting fine, one-of-a-kind pieces at his atelier on the Place Vendôme in Paris, and attracting a loyal following of affluent and fashionable clients like Diane von Furstenberg, Elizabeth Taylor, and Jo Carole Lauder.
Now we can all appreciate JAR’s sparkling artistry and zeal by visiting “Jewels by JAR,” the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s magnificent display of more than 400 pieces made by the bling master himself.
JAR’s fascination with flora and fauna shine through the Met’s exhibit, as does his prowess of pavé, and his affinity for mixing precious stones with under-appreciated, natural metals such as titanium, aluminum, and steel. During a press preview for the exhibit earlier this week, curator Jane Adlin touched on the designer’s use of unexpected materials. “JAR mixes fine, perfect gemstones with stones of lesser quality, but the outcome is an extraordinary piece of jewelry.” Each piece is more brilliant than the last.
Arianna Huffington’s daughter, Isabella, is not your typical college student. The Yale senior who majors in art history is also a talented artist with a particular passion for mixed media. Her works are so impressive that high-end fashion house Ports 1961 removed all inventory from its Meatpacking District store to hang a weeklong show of her most recent, large-scale, psychedelic pieces.
The simplest things are often the most difficult to perfect. Henri Matisse once mused, “The effort needed to see things without distortion takes something very like courage; and this courage is essential to the artist, who has to look at everything as though he saw it for the first time…”
The Green-Wood Cemetery in Brooklyn seems a morbid spot for an artist to paint en plein air, but Daniel Heidkamp seems to find life in the subject nonetheless. “Sneeze Buds,” his current solo exhibit at Half Gallery on the Upper East Side, is a vibrant study of the lush greenery and pastel blooms that embellish the graveyard, with no visual references to death. Perhaps the artist’s lively depiction of the cemetery stems from the fact that it is the resting place for creative masters whose legacies will live on forever—among them, American graffiti artist Jean-Michel Basquiat and Charles Lewis Tiffany, jeweler and founder of Tiffany & Co.
Japanese wildlife photographer Takayuki Maekawa has no qualms about chasing black bears in Alaska or stalking gorillas in Uganda, as long as it means capturing the animal kingdom’s most intimate and magnificent moments. Tomorrow is the last day to view his vibrant color photographs at Steven Kasher Gallery.