Although Frieze week has passed, there is no shortage of good shows and exhibitions opening and on view in the city. Here’s our list of “must sees” that you should be sure to check out.
Jordan Wolfson at David Zwirner
Jordan Wolfson’s latest video project, Riverboat song premiered for the first time in the U.S. this month at David Zwirner. Riverboat song is a surreal film presented on a 16-screen video wall, mixing a variety of elements including video clips, computer-animation, and a monologue by the artist. The project features the Wolfson’s recurring character, a Huckleberry Finn—Alfred E. Neuman cross, who takes the viewer through a series of events, which all point back to the analytical mindset of contemporary digital culture.
Camille Henrot at Metro Pictures
Camille Henrot’s “Born, Never Asked” is a selection of over 50 ink and water color drawings featuring works from the artist’s eponymous series, “Born, Never Asked,” as well as “Tropics of Love,” “Bad Dad,” and “The Narcissist.” Henrot’s work explores the dynamics of power on both social and personal levels, as well as the ways in which our lives are influenced by external forces like religion or politics. Henrot’s drawings often depict ambiguous yet graphic scenes of transformation, inspired by her interest in Manga cartoons and traditional Japanese erotica.
Natalie Frank at Half Gallery
Natalie Frank’s “O” is a new series of erotic drawings of key scenes from the ever-controversial contemporary woman’s fairytale, “Story of O.” Frank’s “O” features a collection of fifteen drawings, presented in front of a selection of wallpapers created by the artist in collaboration with Marion Bantjes and Flavorpaper. The exhibition also has an accompanying book, complete with illustrations and an interview with Frank.
Huang Yong Ping at Gladstone
Now on display at Gladstone is “Bank of Sand, Sand of Bank,” Huang Yong Ping’s fifth exhibition with the gallery. This 20-ton sand and concrete rendering of the HSBC Bank of Shanghai examines the controversy the institution has seen in its lifetime by reimagining it as a weak and vulnerable ruin. Following Huang’s recurring exploration of topics like colonialism and cultural re-appropriation, “Bank of Sand, Sand of Bank” questions the power of ruling institutions while also exploring the effectiveness of ruling powers throughout history.
Nick Cave at Jack Shainman
Nick Cave’s collection of new work, “Weather or Not,” opens to the public this week at Jack Shainman. Cave’s exhibition, a visual manifestation of states of mind, premiers a series of wire “Tondos,” created from the layering of cataclysmic weather patterns with brain scans of black youth suffering from PTSD as a result of gun violence. While individual “Tondos” that make up “Weather or Not” are undoubtedly and brilliantly beautiful, the exhibition works as a whole to convey the gravity of issues rooted in our current social scene.
Cecilia Vicuña at Lehmann Maupin
May 19—July 6
“La India Contaminada,” Cecilia Vicuña’s first exhibition at Lehmann Maupin, debuts this Saturday. “La India Contaminada” will feature a variety of the Chile-born artist’s works (spanning from 1969–2017) including her raw wool sculpture Quipu, a selection of videos and paintings, and a collection of Vicuña’s mixed media sculptures. Cecilia Vicuña’s work can be described as poetic and philosophical, and often creates a narrative discussing the space that lies between life and death, the past and present, and humans and nature.
“Happiness” at 450 West 14th Street
“Happiness” is a group show including work by Curtis Kulig, Cassi Namoda, Grear Patterson, Yves Scherer, and Meryl Smith. Kulig’s contribution to the show is a display of vulnerability and raw, human emotion in the form of large-scale mixed media paintings and an accompanying short video project. The artist’s paintings, which serve as a therapeutic output, are collage-like mixtures of harsh brushstrokes, emotive sketches, and his own photographs. The video, 36 Men, displays thirty-six men demanding love. “Happiness” will conclude with an open panel discussion on May 20.