This week the doctor celebrates youth and old age, the emerging and the established, with a show of work by MFA students at Columbia University and another one that pays tribute to seniors living in New York. There’s also the #ArtsTech Unconference, which offers new approach to the stuffy daylong conference, and an evening with Carolee Schneemann, who, while the doctor would not call her old, is definitely an icon.

And if you’re still feeling wound up and on edge from the tough last week, the doctor offers a few ways to meditate or unwind: Slow Art Day, an exercise in unhurried art appreciation; public apologies with artist Laurel Nakadate; and Willing Participant, a new series that encourages people to respond poetically to tragedies and hardship. Whatever helps you through.

Karoline Hjorth & Riitta Ikonen, "Bob," part of the "Eyes as Big as Plates" project (© Karoline Hjorth & Riitta Ikonen, via

Karoline Hjorth & Riitta Ikonen, “Bob,” part of the “Eyes as Big as Plates” project (© Karoline Hjorth & Riitta Ikonen, via

 Tribute to Our Elders

When: Closing reception Wednesday, April 24, 6–8 pm
Where: Recess in Red Hook (The Intercourse, 159 Pioneer Street, Red Hook, Brooklyn)

For the past two months, artists Riitta Ikonen and Karoline Hjorth have been collaborating on Eyes as Big as Plates, a project that focuses on a population that often gets overlooked in the constant rush of New York City: seniors. Working with residents at Manhattan’s Hamilton-Madison House – City Hall Senior Center who have strong cultural roots, Iknonen has created personalized costumes for them from scavenged organic materials, while Hjorth has shot transporting, folkloric portrait photos. If you can’t make the closing reception on Wednesday, the show will be up for another two days after.

International Open Studios

When: Opens Friday, April 26, 6–9 pm; continues Saturday and Sunday, April 27 & 28, 1–7 pm
Where: International Studio & Curatorial Program (1040 Metropolitan Avenue, East Williamsburg, Brooklyn)

It’s spring, which means a seasonal wave of open studios events is upon us. The International Studio & Curatorial Program (ISCP) stands out both for its wide reach, with current participating artists from Taiwan, Romania, Mexico, and 17 other countries, and its manageable scale, with only 27 studios total. A good chance to see art that doesn’t turn up in New York too often and talk to the creators.

Biker Clubs & Moths

When: Opens Friday, April 26, 7–9 pm
Where: Pierogi (177 North 9th Street, Williamsburg, Brooklyn)

In his latest exhibition at Pierogi, The Other Kind, artist Tony Fitzpatrick pays homage to two very different categories of things: biker clubs and moths — toughness and fragility. His small collages seem to be inflected by both Pop and pyschedelia, like personal paper shrines to an eclectic array of subjects.

 Slow Art Day

When: Saturday, April 27, 11 am–2 pm
Where: Various venues around New York City

Slow Art Day is exactly what it sounds like: an event that encourages unhurried, meaningful interactions with art. At four participating venues in New York — El Museo del Barrio and the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Garvey | Simon Art Access and 287 Spring galleries — participants look at five works of art for 10 minutes each. Then they meet over lunch and talk about what they saw. The doctor would like to see more New York institutions on that list, but then again, you can make your own Slow Art Day wherever you’re seeing art for the afternoon.

 #ArtsTech Unconference

When: Saturday, April 27, 9 am–6 pm ($30)
Where: AOL Headquarters (770 Broadway, Noho, Manhattan)

With $20 tickets already sold out, this one’s pricier than what the doctor usually orders. But #ArtsTech is hosting its first ever Unconference, a play on and experiment with the idea of the daylong conference — plus the ticket price includes breakfast, lunch, coffee/tea, and snacks! Rather than being structured like a traditional conference, the Unconference invites attendees to decide the day’s topics when they show up in the morning. There are a few featured sessions already planned, but otherwise, the program is open, as long as it relates to the arts and technology. Democracy or anarchy? We shall see.

Work by Daniela Di Donato, on view at the Columbia University MFA thesis exhibition (image via

Work by Daniela Di Donato, on view at the Columbia University MFA thesis exhibition (image via

 Willing Participant

When: Sunday, April 28, 12–4 pm
Where: New Museum Theater (235 Bowery, Lower East Side, Manhattan)

This Sunday Todd Shalom, Niegel Smith, and Ben Weber, three of the driving forces behind experiential art walks organization Elastic City, are launching a new program called Willing Participant, and the timing couldn’t be better. “Willing Participant whips up urgent poetic responses to crazy shit that happens” — and was last week ever a time for crazy shit. The Sunday meeting will be spent figuring out the subject matter and crafting a “poetic performance,” which will then be performed on Saturday, May 4.

More MFA Grads

When: Opens Sunday, April 28, 2–5 pm
Where: Fisher Landau Center for Art (38-27 30th Street, Long Island City, Queens)

Not only are open studios events in season, but MFA thesis shows are also not in short supply. The latest is the MFA thesis exhibition from Columbia’s School of the Arts, which was curated by Fionn Meade, features 26 artists, and will be housed in the cavernous Fisher Laundau Center (which itself is housed in a former parachute harness factory). A look through the work highlighted online is promising.

Public Apologies

When: Sunday, April 28, 4–6 pm
Where: MoMA PS1 (22-25 Jackson Avenue, Long Island City, Queens)

When you’re done at the MFA opening, you can head over to MoMA PS1 and atone for your sins! It is Sunday, after all. Artist Laurel Nakadate will celebrate the publication of her book 365 DAYS: A CATALOGUE OF TEARS by playing priest and accepting confessions and apologies, although be warned: these ones are public.

 An Evening with Carolee Schneemann

When: Monday, April 29, 7 pm ($12)
Where: The Museum of Modern Art (11 West 53rd Street, Midtown, Manhattan)

Sometimes it seems like artist Carolee Schneemann has very few, if any, limits that she won’t test, which makes the title of her piece “Up To and Including Her Limits” quite appropriate. MoMA recently acquired a 1976 version of the work, described as an “extended drawing [that] was enacted as Schneemann was suspended nude in a tree surgeon’s harness for over eight hours.” That, if anything, is the kind of art you want to hear about. On Monday at the museum, Schneemann will discuss a number of her works in various media, presumably accompanied by clips.

Jillian Steinhauer is a former senior editor of Hyperallergic. She writes largely about the intersection of art and politics but has also been known to write at length about cats. She won the 2014 Best...