TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 14
Opening: Bjarne Melgaard at Red Bull Arts New York
Just in time for Valentine’s Day, Bjarne Melgaard will debut more of his tastefully distasteful work in a show titled “The Casual Pleasure of Disappearance.” The Norwegian provocateur will be giving away his designer clothes on opening night, in an event called “The Purge”—and yes, that’s right, it’s all for free. The catch: visitors are given 15 minutes to pick through a makeshift department store, filling as many of the artist’s custom-made garbage cans as they can in that time and gradually causing the installation to degrade as chaos presumably ensues. After that, a store populated by genetically enhanced mannequins will become the show, and visitors will be able to see Melgaard’s new clothing line during New York Fashion Week.
Red Bull Arts New York, 220 West 18th Street, 5–8 p.m.
Reading: “Here Is Information. Mobilise.” at Artists Space Books & Talks
Over the course of his relatively short career, Ian White found a way to interrupt systems of convention in a place where decorum reigned: the movie theater. During the middle of screenings, the British artist would get up and start reading his poetry and writings as the film continued to play. One time, White performed as the light from Tony Conrad’s 1966 experimental work The Flicker was cast over his body. With many artists trying to discover effective resistance strategies these days, it’s easy to understand the appeal for a reading group at Artists Space, where some of White’s writings will be read at the book launch for a compendium called Here Is Information. Mobilise.
Artists Space Books & Talks, 55 Walker Street, 7 p.m.
WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 15
Conference: College Art Association Annual Conference at New York Hilton Midtown
This year’s four-day College Art Association Conference will once again bring together a vast group of academics and professionals to discuss a variety of subjects, from historicizing Cuban art and images of Black Lives Matter to Seth Siegelaub’s archive of Conceptual art and decolonizing the basics of art history. Among the events planned for this year’s conference is a semi-unofficial one: On Friday, February 17, curator David A. Ross, along with guests including Brooklyn Museum director Anne Pasternak and artist Tim Rollins, will host a talk show at the Hilton Midtown, where the conference will be held.
New York Hilton Midtown, 1335 6th Avenue, 8:30 a.m.–9 p.m. Ticketing rates vary, consult CAA website for pricing information; admission is pay-what-you-wish for one day
Opening: “Serialities” at Hauser & Wirth
Curated by Olivia Renaud-Clément, this show surveys work by artists whose work involves repetition. August Sander’s black-and-white photography series, often made with strict guidelines for how each image could look and what it would feature, inform the basis of the show. Including everything from conceptual-photography pioneers (Hilla and Bernd Becher, Sherrie Levine) to underrated artists of all kinds (Liz Deschenes, Yuji Agematsu), “Serialities” is a broad group exhibition that—ironically, given its theme—presents a range of styles and techniques.
Hauser & Wirth, 548 West 22nd Street, 6–8 p.m.
Talk: “Intimate Geometries: The Art and Life of Louise Bourgeois” at New York Public Library
Despite what feels like a constant stream of surveys, retrospectives, and solo shows, Louise Bourgeois never gets any less interesting. With a major monograph by Robert Storr published last year, this panel will provide some insight into the artist’s work. Storr, critic Irving Sandler, and artist Deborah Kass will be on hand to discuss the feminist-art pioneer, who died at age 98 in 2010. Christopher Lyon, a critic and columnist for Bookforum, will moderate this panel, which is named after Storr’s book.
New York Public Library, 476 Fifth Avenue, 6:30–8:30 p.m.
THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 16
Talk: “The Fluid Edge: Art Criticism in a Divided Era” at Alexandre Gallery
Taking inspiration from New York City Department of Cultural Affairs Commissioner Tom Finkelpearl’s remark that art criticism is “in crisis,” this panel will ponder what role, if any, the act of writing about artists has in today’s post-truth world. Gregory Sholette, a writer and a member of the activist organization Gulf Labor Coalition will be one of the speakers, as will Nancy Princenthal, the author of a recent Agnes Martin biography. Also on the docket: Fran Ilich, an artist and novelist, and Aaron Levy, the executive director and senior curator of the Slought Foundation.
Alexandre Gallery, 724 5th Avenue, 4th Floor, 5:30–7:30 p.m.
Opening: Pier Paolo Calzolari at Marianne Boesky Gallery
With a Marisa Merz retrospective at the Met Breuer and not-one-but-two Pier Paolo Calzolari shows in New York this week, Arte Povera is having a moment. Calzolari, like other members of the ’60s Italian art movement, is known for combining natural elements and industrial ones, often referencing art history in the process. For a pair of adjacent shows, he will debut two new installations—one that alludes to Japanese Nihonga painting, and another taking the form of a Renaissance church triptych. Felt, wood, and flower stems are among the many elements that will be on view, a sign that nature, in a time where machines take prominence, can be fragile and weak.
Marianne Boesky Gallery, 507 and 509 West 24th Street, 6–8 p.m.
Opening: Kim Guiline at Lehmann Maupin
Kim Guiline, one of the original members of the Dansaekhwa movement in Korea during the ’70s, is having his first solo show in America this week with this survey at Lehmann Maupin. Starting with his monochromatic black and white paintings, the exhibition will trace Guiline’s career, offering a look at how he began with extreme minimalism and then went on to do works with egg-shaped dots lined up in rows. For Guiline, abstraction has poetic meaning—the color black, he has said, can symbolize creation and beginning.
Lehmann Maupin, 536 West 22nd Street, 6–8 p.m.
Colloquium: “The Critical Matter of Performance” at New Museum
From 2017 on, the New Museum, the NYU Center for the Humanities, and the Sense of Performance Project at Yale University will host a colloquium each year. First up is “The Critical Matter of Performance,” a three-day event that looks at the connection between performance, institutions, and systems. Tania Bruguera, Simone Leigh, Wu Tsang, Malik Gaines, Thomas J. Lax, and Tavia Nyong’o are among these scheduled to speak; Robert Longo will deliver the keynote speech. The event continues on Friday, February 17, and also includes a reading program at La MaMa La Galleria on Saturday, February 18.
New Museum, 235 Bowery, 7–9 p.m. Tickets $15 per session
SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 18
Closing: “Trans-subjective Engagements” at Koenig & Clinton
This group show’s concept focuses on the connection between technology, people, and their environments—with an artist list that is quite nice. Among the figures in this show are Anicka Yi, the Hugo Boss Prize–winning sculptor who here presents a “spirited blend of plastic tubes and artisanal soap,” and Leidy Churchman, who offers a painting that places a Socialist Realist sign in a field crops. Tyler Coburn, Jason Loebs, Miljohn Ruperto, Suzanne Treister, and Eric Wysokan also feature.
Koenig & Clinton, 459 West 19th Street, 6–8 p.m.