Art Rx

Spring is in full swing in New York and the doctor wants you to enjoy the weather. Time to rid yourself of the doldrums of our strangely mild winter and reconnect with your inner art fan.

This week, the doctor recommends the cinematic influences of Cindy Sherman, two Bushwick shows in quirky spaces, some heady stuff about objects as commodity, the role of appropriation in music and literature and more.

It’s all mental floss and it’s good for you because an art show a day keeps the doctor away.

Lebbeus Woods, "A-City: Sector 1576N (Aerial)" (1986), Ink on tracing paper on board 35.625 x 36 inches (all images courtesy of Friedman Benda and the artist, photograph by Adam Reich)

 Appropriation in Music and Literature

When: Thursday, April 5, 7pm
Where: New York University, Maison Français (16 Washington Mews, Greenwich Village, Manhattan)

We’re so used to discussing appropriation in the visual arts on Hyperallergic that it’s always refreshing to see how other creative fields are grappling with the topic. This discussion will start with a short excerpt from the archives of the Collège international de philosophie (an excerpt in which Jacques Derrida and Jean-Luc Nancy briefly discuss the notion of responsibility) and go from there. The event will focus on the concept of appropriation, approaching it from a philosophical, literary and musical point of view. Speakers are Peter Szendy (Université de Paris Ouest Nanterre), Eduardo Cadava (Princeton University), Laura Odello (Collège International de Philosophie), Liana Theodoratou (NYU) and Emily Apter (NYU).

 Valerie Hegarty: Altered States

When: Opening today, Thursday, April 5, 6pm–8pm
Where: Marlborough Gallery (545 West 25th Street, Chelsea, Manhattan)

The War of 1812 is rarely regarded with much fanfare, but it is well-known for one particular art-related act of heroism on the part of Dolly Madison, who was said to have saved a portrait of George Washington from certain doom as the White House was torched by the British. Two hundred years later, we need not worry about the redcoats or the Mayan calendar, but rather, our own political implosion as we carry on through 2012. Valerie Hegarty’s new exhibition, Altered States, embodies the climate of this year, as things reach a boiling point amid doomsday prophecies, with works entitled “Headless George Washington,” “Sinking Ship” and “Shipwrecked” provoking our sense of dread. —RC

 Visionary Paper Architecture

When: Closing Friday, April 6
Where: Friedman Benda Gallery (515 West 26th Street, Chelsea, Manhattan)

Tomorrow is the last day to see the early drawings of Lebbeus Woods. This visionary architect continues to inspire innovation in the field but these early works provide a glimpse into his creative heart. Our reviewer had this to say about this show, “Like an elaborate steam punk storyboard the artist mixes classical allusion, technology and humanity with equal measure.”

 Home Sweet Home

When: Friday, April 6, 7pm–10pm
Where: Centotto :: galleria [simposio] salotto (250 Moore Street, Suite 108, Bushwick, Brooklyn)

Theriomorphous Entourage is a group show featuring a solid mix of up and coming Brooklyn artists that promises elements mythology, history and philosophy. Centotto  :: galleria [simposio] salotto is an apartment gallery run by Paul D’Agostino, if you have never been to a Centotto opening, I would say it’s a must-see. —DE

 A Sculptor’s Life

When: Monday, April 9, 6:30pm
Where: Sculpture Center (4419 Purves Street, Long Island City, Queens)

The latest in the Subjective Histories of Sculpture series, Josephine Meckseper discusses art object as commodity, its relationship with the art market and ways to transform that context. Her work often tackles capitalism’s ability to homogenize culture but at the same time she seems to relish its strange allure … complicated!

 Carte Blanche: Cindy Sherman

When: Now until Tuesday, April 10
Where: MoMA (11 W 53rd Street, Midtown, Manhattan)

The MoMA will be screening a variety of films selected by Cindy Sherman for the sake of illuminating her influences. Her photographic work has often been compared to work on the silver screen, so catching a film before or after viewing Sherman’s exhibition might be a perfect way to cleanse or prepare one’s palate for viewing still photography reminiscent of the golden age of cinema. Films include David Lynch’s Inland Empire, the original Texas Chain Saw Massacre and the unforgettable photo-essay French film La Jetée—RC

 This Modern Life

When: Wednesday, April 11, 7pm
Where: Nurture Art (56 Bogart Street, Bushwick, Brooklyn)

Independent curator and critic Karen Wilkin will speak at Nurture Art about her practice as a curator and critic. Among the topics she will discuss is a show she recently curated — and is currently on view until April 29 — at the Neuberger Museum of Art at SUNY Purchase, American Vanguard 1927-1942, which features paintings and sculptures by Stuart Davis, David Smith, John Graham, Willem de Kooning, Jackson Pollock and others. Nurture Art is a nonprofit organization dedicated to the development of emerging artists. —DE

 The Bushwick Mini-Mall

When: Until April 15
Where: Storefront Bushwick (16 Wilson Street, Bushwick, Brooklyn)

Knickerbocker Mini Maw is a curious mini-show curated by English Kills art gallery artist Brent Owens. An outgrowth of his Knickerbocker Maw, an online store-style project, Owens has invited artists to produce sellable objects related to their practice and inspired by Bushwick’s wacky commercial thoroughfare, Knickerbocker Avenue. Think Claes Oldenburg’s Store but with a more global outlook.

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With listings by Robert Cicetti and Don Edler.

Top image via

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