Across New York City, art spaces have been steadily opening back up, presenting both online and in-person exhibitions as more city dwellers cautiously navigate their reemergence from quarantine. Below, we’ve highlighted ten that we’re most looking forward to this month — from the much anticipated Asia Society triennial to Billie Zangewa’s silken canvases and an urgent film series about housing security. As we did for our September guide, we’ve included a mix of virtual and physical presentations, because amid all the uncertainty, it’s important to have options.
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Estamos Bien: La Trienal
When: July 23 – October 15, 2020 (Update: extended through August 2021)
Where: Online via El Museo del Barrio
Expanding upon its former biannual survey of Latinx artists from the New York metropolitan area, El Museo is holding its first triennial, which will showcase work by over 40 Latinx artists working across the nation today. The ongoing online portion of the triennial, which will be followed by an onsite exhibition this Spring, features wide-ranging digital projects by artists Lizania Cruz, Xime Izquierdo Ugaz, Collective Magpie, Michael Menchaca, and Poncilí Creación.
Feliciano Centurión: Abrigo
When: September 30–November 20
Where: Americas Society (by appointment and online) (680 Park Avenue, Upper East Side, Manhattan)
Feliciano Centurión: Abrigo is the queer, Paraguay-born artist’s first solo show in the United States. With an emphasis on colorful, embroidered and painted works on blankets, the exhibition charts Centurión’s artistic evolution, which was tragically cut short when he died from AIDS-related complications in 1996, at just 34 years old.
Betye Saar: Call and Response
When: September 12, 2020–January 31, 2021
Where: the Morgan Library & Museum (225 Madison Ave, Murray Hill, Manhattan)
A traveling exhibition organized by the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Betye Saar: Call and Response is the first to focus on Saar’s sketchbooks. The show, which spans works from the late 1960s to a new sculpture commission, frames Saar’s creative process as a dialogue between found object, sketch, and assemblage.
Home Truths: Films About Housing Rights, Displacement, and the Meaning of Home
When: September 16 – October 31
Where: Online, via Anthology Film Archives
As the pandemic continues to touch every aspect of US life, the issue of housing security looms large for many facing joblessness, newfound chronic illness, and food insecurity. Anthology’s timely series features a number of films that affirm the importance of recognizing housing as a fundamental human right, both during and beyond moments of crisis.
Billie Zangewa, Wings of Change
When: October 1–November 7
Where: Lehmann Maupin (501 West 24th Street, Chelsea, Manhattan)
The solo show presents seven new works by Malawi-born, Johannesburg-based textile artist Billie Zangewa. In her figurative, hand-stitched silk pieces, Zangewa reckons with the ways in which her day-to-day life has changed amid the pandemic, with an emphasis on navigating shifts in domestic life as she raises her young son.
Dawn Williams Boyd: Cloth Paintings
When: September 29–November 7
Where: Online via Fort Gansevoort
Dawn Williams Boyd embarked upon a body of large-scale fabric collages, called Cloth Paintings, in 2001. In a series titled “Sins of Our Fathers”, she explores the historical exploitation of Black Americans in the United States; in “Ladies Night,” she considers the healing camaraderie of Black women. Her most recent series, an inquiry into xenophobia, racism, and classism titled “The Trump Era,” will also be on view.
Leilah Babirye: Ebika Bya ba Kuchu mu Buganda (Kuchu Clans of Buganda)
When: October 11–November 22 (weekends and by appointment)
Where: Gordon Robichaux (22 East 17th Street, Gramercy, Manhattan)
Often working with debris from New York City streets, Babirye’s sculptures utilize techniques such as assemblage, burnishing, weaving, and welding to fashion objects that reference traditional African carving techniques and little-known histories of queerness. This will be her second solo exhibition with the gallery.
Howardena Pindell: Rope/Fire/Water
When: October 16, 2020–April 11, 2021
Where: The Shed (545 West 30th Street, Hudson Yards, Manhattan)
The Shed is reopening with a solo show of work by Howardena Pindell featuring paintings on climate change and white supremacy, abstract paintings, and Pindell’s first video piece in 25 years, a commission that pairs stories about and data on lynchings in the United States with archival photographs. The physical exhibition will be accompanied by an online gallery.
John Edmonds: A Sidelong Glance
When: October 23, 2020–August 8, 2021
Where: Brooklyn Museum
A Sidelong Glance will be Edmonds’s first museum solo show, secured as part of his receipt of the new UOVO Prize for an emerging Brooklyn artist. Photographic portraits show members of the artist’s creative circle engaging with Central and West African sculptures donated to the museum by the late author Ralph Ellison, performing acts of reinvigoration and reactivation.
When: October 23, 2020–July 25, 2021
Where: Asia Society and New-York Historical Society (725 Park Avenue, Upper East Side, and 170 Central Park West, Upper West Side, respectively; both in Manhattan)
As part of the highly anticipated inaugural Asia Society Triennial, We Do Not Dream Alone, the institution will be teaming up with the New-York Historical Society to present a dual-site exhibition. Examining themes of protest, rebellion, identity, borders, and the possibilities of dreaming, the presentation will form one part of the triennial’s larger festival. Overall, the event will include other exhibitions, talks, and performances unfolding in two parts over 2020-2021.
With contributions by Cassie Packard and Dessane Lopez Cassell