Mana Fest at Mana Contemporary, Saturday May 4th, 1-7PM

Mana Contemporary is new to the NYC contemporary art scene. A 1.8 million square foot former tobacco warehouse transformed into one of the largest artist-designed and run facilities in the nation, Mana currently houses more than 70 contemporary artist studios, four galleries, a dance studio, a beer garden, several photography studios, workshops, a café and more.

Doors are open to the public on weekdays, and quarterly, on weekends for major events. One of these quarterly openings is this Saturday May 4, from 1 – 7 p.m.

Walking into the Light at London’s Hayward Gallery

LONDON — When God said “let there be light,” he probably didn’t anticipate how much that statement would cost in the 21st century. Regarding the Hayward Gallery’s current exhibition, Light Show, security on hand are quick to note that this is one of the most expensive exhibitions the institution has ever staged, with staff receiving strict instructions to keep viewers’ hands off the artwork, especially Leo Villareal’s “Cylinder II” (2012), an ethereal column of LEDs that reach up into the first gallery’s cavernous space.

Two Beings Collaborate on Art, One a Human, Another a Slime Mold

Slime mold has one of the worst public images of any single-celled organism. For one thing, the Physarum polycephalum, as it’s scientifically called, has a gross nickname evoking a drippy texture and oozing shape, and its highest-profile appearance could arguably be as inspiration for the roving, destructive “The Blob” of B-movie fame. But really, the slime mold is a quite intelligent, fascinating being, and even an able collaborator in art.

Getting an International Glimpse at Open Studios

Upstairs at the International Studio & Curatorial Program, on the third floor, there’s a map tacked to a wall with a series of flags planted in it. The flags document the different countries from which the ISCP has drawn its artist and curator residents, and while it’s easy to notice gaps — large swaths of Africa and South America, for instance — it’s also refreshing to note how many flags there are, and how widespread. With 58 countries and counting, it’s clear that the ISCP is committed to finding art in the far-flung corners of the world; the process just takes time.

Urs Fischer: The Raw and the (Over)Cooked

LOS ANGELES — What do you get when you invite 1,500 people to make clay sculptures of whatever they want? An incredibly weird, crumbling, monotone wonderland. As part of his current retrospective, New York-based artist Urs Fischer organized this freewheeling project at the Geffen Contemporary MoCA in downtown Los Angeles, and titled, appropriately, “YES” (2013).

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