Black Lives Matter Art Show
Opening Tuesday January 31 at The Living Gallery, 12 pm – 10 pm. Reception and performances 7 pm to 10 pm. One day only.
This pop-up art show, on view for one day only, features the work of Carla Cubit, who has created art in conjunction with Black Lives Matter in the form of posters, mixed media assemblages, and photos of BLM protests in the NYC area. The daylong event will also feature musical performances, a jam session, a speaker from “mobile social justice museum” The Museum of Impact, and an artist talk.
Throughout the day, a variety of BLM necklaces, magnets, pins, and other creations will be on sale for only $1, and The Stop Mass Incarceration Network will be offering posters for free. If you’d like to get involved on the creative side of things, there will be materials for folks to make their own posters or Black Lives Matter-inspired artwork. If you’re not artistically inclined, attendees are also encouraged to simply share their thoughts on the BLM movement.
How to Do Nothing with Nobody All Alone by Yourself
Opening Thursday February 2 at Shoot the Lobster NY, 6 pm to 8 pm. On view through February 26.
Moldovan artist Bea Fremderman can’t stop thinking about the apocalypse. The press release for her upcoming solo show, How to Do Nothing with Nobody All Alone by Yourself, is almost solely a 1978 essay from the New Left Review centered on the apocalypse and how it is part of all our “ideological baggage.” It’s a piece of writing from the past that feels eerie nowadays, similar to how Orwell’s dystopian classic 1984 has suddenly sprung into everyone’s mind.
“Previously, it was generally agreed that [the apocalypse] would affect everyone simultaneously and without exception … But as we see it today, doom is no longer a leveler, quite the opposite,” the essay states. “It differs from country to country, from class to class, from place to place. While it is already overtaking some, others can watch it on television.” Swap “television” with “Twitter,” and you’ve got quite the self-fulfilling prophecy.
Fremderman’s conceptual and sculptural work is focused on exploring “the economic impacts of climate change, apocalyptic survival tactics, feelings of global dread and false notions of freedom.” At this rate, it seems we should all be focused on these topics. Perhaps looking at how this artist approaches them could be your first step.
Too Many Mornings
Opening Saturday February 4 at 106 Green, 6 pm to 8 pm. On view through March 5.
If you’re looking to escape the turmoil of the world and allow yourself to melt into something otherworldly and psychedelic, perhaps the paintings of Shawn Powell could be your respite on a dark day. Powell’s colorful creations have been created in conjunction with a screenplay he penned specifically for this exhibition, centering around one character referred to only as “She,” who wakes up on a mysterious deserted island with no memory of how she got there. However, the paintings do not strictly tell this narrative story a la graphic novel or storyboard. Rather, they each function as different ways to express a concept cinematically: an establishing shot to depict the island she is trapped on, a zoomed-in rendering of the protagonist, and so on. Step into this Technicolor world of kaleidoscopic ripples and let yourself be immersed in the unknown.
Opening Saturday February 4 at Postmasters Gallery, 5:30 pm to 8 pm. On view through March 11.
This exhibition marks the first showing of new works by prolific Chinese painter David Diao since his retrospective show in 2015. Diao is no newcomer to Postmasters Gallery, however, as he has been showing work there since its inception in 1985, and HongKong Boyhood marks his staggering twelfth show with the gallery. The show itself seems to be continuing on the trend that Diao has established with his work a decade ago, combining mastery of modernist painting with a deeply autobiographical narrative. This is done so in the literal sense, mixing shapes of vibrant color and abstraction with actual archival imagery, whether they be uncovered from Diao’s own life or supplemented by the internet due to “the lack of a private archive.”
For HongKong Boyhood, Diao has zeroed in on the five-ish years he spent in Hong Kong, before relocating to America and after being made to escape Chengdu on mainland China upon the Communist takeover in 1949. These paintings act as manifestations of memories, creating maps and feelings, effectively constructing an archive of existence during an uncertain and transitory time. Reflecting back on time spent as a refugee seems especially timely now.