Gallery Shows

Selections from Australia’s Western Desert From the collection of Steve Martin and Anne Stringfield – The National Arts Club

This fall The National Arts Club is presenting Selections from Australia’s Western Desert From the collection of Steve Martin and Anne Stringfield (September 12 – October 27, 2022), a small but satisfying show in their Grand Gallery space. This group of six abstract large-scale paintings from Indigenous Australian artists Bill Whiskey Tjapaltjarri, Timo Hogan, Carlene West, Warlimpirrnga Tjapaltjarri, and Doreen Reid Nakamarra exhibit a sophisticated balancing act between displaying knowledge from their cultures to a wider world but without losing the private, often sacred, meanings important to themselves. Representing significant land sites or stories establishing identity, deeper meanings may be encoded within the arrangements of shapes and/or the manner of the brushstrokes, but only known to those people who have been fully initiated or belong to a certain group, leaving outsiders a ‘safe’ version of the information they see. In this way, these Indigenous artists are fully in control of their narrative, choosing what to say and how to say it without fear or favor.

The National Arts Club, 15 Gramercy Park South (at 20th Street), Hours: Mon – Sun: 10-5, Admission: Free PLEASE BE ADVISED THAT FACIAL MASKS ARE STRONGLY RECOMMENDED WHILE VISITING THE GALLERIES, REGARDLESS OF VISITOR VACCINATION STATUS.


Queer Maximalism x Machine Dazzle – Museum of Arts and Design

Spectacular may be too mild a description of Queer Maximalism x Machine Dazzle (September 10, 2022 – February 19, 2023), an exhibition that celebrates the multi-faceted designer and performance artist. Known for his design work for drag queens, dancers, and Taylor Mac, whose musical extravaganza, Taylor Mac’s A 24-Decade History of Popular Music (2016), used his costuming to great effect, Machine Dazzle’s creations pull triple duty as stage props, set design, and embracing the kaleidoscope qualities of queer maximalism aesthetic. Along with garments, the exhibit immerses visitors in Machine Dazzle’s cultural influences, designs, ephemera, material samples, performances, photography, and video. The result is a bewildering, stunning whirlwind of high/low culture, colors, shapes, and textures celebrating a glorious variety of bodies, identities, and ideas with joy and love.

Museum of Arts and Design, 2 Columbus Circle, Hours: Tue – Sun: 10-6, Admission: General admission: $18, Seniors (65 years and older): $14, Students (with valid id): $12, Children (18 years and younger): Free, Members: Free. Tickets may be purchased in advance here, walk-ins are welcome. PLEASE BE ADVISED THAT FACIAL MASKS ARE STRONGLY RECOMMENDED WHILE VISITING THE MUSEUM, REGARDLESS OF VISITOR VACCINATION STATUS.


Lorna Simpson 1985-92 – Hauser & Wirth

The conceptual art photography on view in Lorna Simpson 1985-92 (September 7 – October 22, 2022) is a beautifully concise selection of early work from the artist. Displayed on three floors of Hauser & Wirth’s uptown location, large-scale images and accompanying text demonstrate Simpson’s extensive knowledge of art, history, sociology, and contemporary life that references and questions the artificial definitions and standards imposed on people, regardless of gender, personal identity, or race. The closely cropped images may seem at first to remove individuality, but on closer observation the postures, clothing, and words chosen for each photograph declare and challenge the myriad issues that Black bodies and lives encounter daily while inspiring visitors to examine their responses to the work and the larger issues it represents.

Hauser & Wirth, 32 East 69th Street, Hours: Tue – Sat: 10-6, Admission: Free. PLEASE BE ADVISED THAT FACIAL MASKS ARE STRONGLY RECOMMENDED WHILE VISITING THE GALLERY, REGARDLESS OF VISITOR VACCINATION STATUS.


Masaomi Yasunaga: Looking Afar – Lisson Gallery

Masaomi Yasunaga: Looking Afar (September 8 – October 15, 2022) creates work that links to ceramics without engaging in the strict restrictions of form, material, and method associated with its many categories. Instead of clay, his pieces are initially shaped with glaze, a substance composed of silica (industrial sand), aluminum oxide, calcium oxide, and metallic oxide. The combination of these minerals is usually painted onto pottery, to provide an impermeable colored surface, but Yasunaga uses glaze as the core of the object, then layers sand and other material around it before pit-firing the piece. The heat bonds all these together, producing uniquely textured objects of multi-faceted, complex beauty that destroy the historic boundaries of pottery making.

Lisson Gallery, 508 West 24th Street, Tue – Sat: 10-6, Admission: Free

ADVANCE APPOINTMENTS ARE ENCOURAGED BUT NOT REQUIRED, IF THE GALLERY IS AT CAPACITY, VISITORS WILL BE ASKED TO WAIT OUTSIDE UNTIL STAFF PERMITS ENTRY. TO MAKE AN APPOINTMENT, CLICK HERE

PLEASE BE ADVISED THAT FACIAL MASKS ARE REQUIRED TO BE WORN WHILE VISITING THE GALLERY, REGARDLESS OF VISITOR VACCINATION STATUS.


Shoes: Anatomy, Identity, Magic – The Museum at FIT

More than any other wardrobe item, shoes have a mystique and meaning that go beyond their basic function. Think of certain fairy tales, portraits of historical figures, modern celebrities – all of them use the visual power of footwear to advance their agendas and set themselves apart from others. Cinderella’s glass slippers aren’t just custom-made: they act as the equivalent of an AirTag for the prince to find her after the ball, while the embroidered satin shoes of Louis XIV emphasize his status as king by being completely impractical for walking anywhere but the marble corridors of power, Lady Gaga wearing her Pleaser heels/platforms that literally raise her above any crowd of superstars; all prove that one of the best ways to be noticed and remembered is to pay attention to your footwear. Not convinced? Then head on over to The Museum at FIT to see their latest exhibit Shoes: Anatomy, Identity, Magic (September 1 – December 31, 2022), a stunning collection that touches on three concepts where design and storytelling merge to create iconic brands and looks that define eras, individuals, and fashion styles. The context of certain shapes and materials has also changed over time, moving some footwear into mainstream fashion, creating less demand for more traditional shoes while encouraging the desirability, fantasy, or magical imaginings by the consumer. The result is a thought-provoking examination of shoes as object, psychological motivation, and social signifier.

The Museum at FIT, 227 West 27th Street, Hours: Wed – Fri: 12-8, Sat – Sun: 10-5, Admission: Free. PLEASE BE ADVISED THAT FACE MASKS MUST BE WORN IN THE BUILDING AND EXHIBTION SPACES. Proof of vaccination is no longer required for entry.


Lou Reed: Caught Between the Twisted Stars – NYPL for the Performing Arts

The latest offering from the New York Public Library exhibition program is Lou Reed: Caught Between the Twisted Stars (June 9, 2022 – March 4, 2023), based on the extensive collection of the Lou Reed Archive donated in 2017.

This deep dive into the life and career of Reed, a founder of The Velvet Underground as well as the author of the classic rock songs ‘Walk on the Wild Side’ and ‘Perfect Day’, is curated by Don Fleming (archivist for the Lou Reed Archive) and Jason Stern (Technical Director and Archivist for Lou Reed during his lifetime). Their selections of audio and video material, memorabilia, photographs, and writings are fascinating, illustrating his collaborations, friendships, and creative process for both his music and writing.

The imaginative exhibition design from the Performing Arts Museum staff uses the gallery space with flair, and although crammed with material, it never feels too crowded. The Lou Reed Listening Room and content design was done by Raj Patel at Arup, providing visitors with a comprehensive audio selection of Reed’s work and influences. The exhibition site also provides information on a ‘Listen Like Lou’ playlist on Spotify, a reading list, and a link to the Lou Reed Archive.

NYPL for the Performing Arts, 40 Lincoln Center Plaza (face the opera house, then walk to the right, library is located at end of plaza area) or 111 Amsterdam Avenue between 64th and 65th Streets, Hours: Mon – Sat: 10:30-6, Admission: Free. PLEASE BE ADVISED THAT FACIAL MASKS ARE STRONGLY RECOMMENDED WHILE VISITING THE GALLERY, REGARDLESS OF VISITOR VACCINATION STATUS.