29 Art Exhibitions to View in N.Y.C. This Weekend

29 Art Exhibitions to View in N.Y.C. This Weekend


‘SCENES FROM THE COLLECTION’ at the Jewish Museum. After a surgical renovation to its grand pile on Fifth Avenue, the Jewish Museum has reopened its third-floor galleries with a rethought, refreshed display of its permanent collection, which intermingles 4,000 years of Judaica with modern and contemporary art by Jews and gentiles alike — Mark Rothko, Lee Krasner, Nan Goldin, Cindy Sherman and the excellent young Nigerian draftswoman Ruby Onyinyechi Amanze. The works are shown in a nimble, nonchronological suite of galleries, and some of its century-spanning juxtapositions are bracing; others feel reductive, even dilettantish. But always, the Jewish Museum conceives of art and religion as interlocking elements of a story of civilization, commendably open to new influences and new interpretations. (Farago)
212-423-3200, thejewishmuseum.org

‘THE SENSES: DESIGN BEYOND VISION’ at the Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum (through Oct. 28). There’s a serious, timely big idea at this exhibition: As social media, smartphones and virtual reality make us ever more “ocularcentric,” we have taken leave of our nonvisual senses — and need to get back in touch, literally. Thus “The Senses” features multisensory adventures such as a portable-speaker-size contraption that emits odors, with titles like “Surfside” and “Einstein,” in timed combinations; hand-painted scratch-and-sniff wallpaper (think Warhol’s patterned cows but with cherries — cherry-scented, naturally); and a device that projects ultrasonic waves to simulate the touch and feel of virtual objects. The show also presents commissions, videos, products and prototypes from more than 65 designers and teams, some of which address sensory disabilities like blindness and deafness, including Vibeat, which can be worn as a bracelet, brooch or necklace and translates music into vibrations. And if you bring the kids, they will likely bliss out stroking a wavy, fur-lined installation that makes music as you rub it. (Michael Kimmelman)
212-849-8400, cooperhewitt.org

‘CHAIM SOUTINE: FLESH’ at the Jewish Museum (through Sept. 16). The Russian Jewish artist Chaim Soutine (1893-1943), who spent most of his life in Paris, is best known for bloody, ecstatic paintings of beef carcasses. But it wasn’t death that interested him — it was the immaterial life force of the material world. Along with an instructive lineup of naked fowl, silver herring and popeyed sardines, this indispensable tribute to the transcendent but still undervalued painter centers on a stupendous 1925 “Carcass of Beef,” glistening scarlet, streaked with orange fat and straddling a starry sky. (Heinrich)
212-423-3200, thejewishmuseum.org

‘WAYNE THIEBAUD: DRAFTSMAN’ at the Morgan Library & Museum (through Sept. 23). Mr. Thiebaud has won a place in American art history for his densely slathered paintings of cakes, pies, ice cream cones, burgers, fruits and crudités. His drawings have been less celebrated, and this sweet show at the Morgan is the first devoted to his work in pen, charcoal and pastel. Mr. Thiebaud trained in commercial art and came to New York to work as a cartoonist. You can see the influence in his still lifes of the 1960s: The watercolor “Nine Jelly Apples” (1964) depicts the candied fruits to advantage from a high angle, while the pencil drawing “Ice Cream Cone” (1964) places the titular treat front and center, its edges as carefully teased as a model’s coiffure. Mr. Thiebaud is sometimes called a realist, but that’s not precise; his drawings (and paintings, too) rely less on artful imitation of appearances and affects than on a translation of low advertising into high art. (Farago)
212-685-0008, themorgan.org

‘THROUGH A DIFFERENT LENS: STANLEY KUBRICK PHOTOGRAPHS’ at the Museum of the City of New York (through Oct. 28). This exhibition of the great director’s photography is essentially Kubrick before he became Kubrick. Starting in 1945, when he was 17 and living in the Bronx, he worked as a photographer for Look magazine, and the topics that he explored are chestnuts so old that they smell a little moldy: lovers embracing on a park bench as their neighbors gaze ostentatiously elsewhere, patients anxiously awaiting their doctor’s appointments, boxing hopefuls in the ring, celebrities at home, pampered dogs in the city. It probably helped that Kubrick was just a kid, so instead of inducing yawns, these magazine perennials struck him as novelties, and he in turn brought something fresh to them. Photographs that emphasize the mise-en-scène could be movie stills: a shouting circus executive who takes up the right side of the foreground while aerialists rehearse in the middle distance, a boy climbing to a roof with the city tenements surrounding him, a subway car filled with sleeping passengers. Looking at these pictures, you want to know what comes next. (Lubow)
212-534-1672, mcny.org

‘TOWARD A CONCRETE UTOPIA: ARCHITECTURE IN YUGOSLAVIA, 1948-1980’ at the Museum of Modern Art (through Jan. 13, 2019). This nimble, continuously surprising show tells one of the most underappreciated stories of postwar architecture: the rise of avant-garde government buildings, pie-in-the-sky apartment blocks, mod beachfront resorts and even whole new cities in the southeast corner of Europe. Tito’s Yugoslavia rejected both Stalinism and liberal democracy, and its neither-nor political position was reflected in architecture of stunning individuality, even as it embodied collective ambitions that Yugoslavs called the “social standard.” From Slovenia, where elegant office buildings drew on the tradition of Viennese modernism, to Kosovo, whose dome-topped national library appears as a Buckminster Fuller fever dream, these impassioned buildings defy all our Cold War-vintage stereotypes of Eastern Europe. Sure, in places the show dips too far into Socialist chic. But this show is exactly how MoMA should be thinking as it rethinks its old narratives for its new home next year. (Farago)
212-708-9400, moma.org



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