To celebrate Women’s History Month, The Journal is featuring shows by women artists at museums and galleries around town. Greta Berman’s regular Focus on Art column will return next month.
Isa Genzken: Retrospective
Runs through March 10 at the Museum of Modern Art, 11 W. 53rd St., between Fifth and Sixth Aves. For museum hours and more information, visit moma.org or call (212) 708-9400.
This is the first large-scale retrospective of 40 years’ worth of this German sculptor’s often-jarring, frequently beautiful, nearly always thought-provoking assemblages. The New York Times said the show makes MoMA “feel alive and part of the art world, rather than a tourist destination.” Also at MoMA, through April 21, is Ileana Sonnabend: Ambassador for the New, an exhibition of works collected by this iconic gallerist; and, through September 21, Designing Modern Women 1890-1990, a fascinating mix of decorative and graphic art.
Carrie Mae Weems: Three Decades of Photography and Video
Runs through May 14 at the Guggenheim, 1071 Fifth Avenue, at E. 89th St. For museum hours and more information, visit guggenheim.org or call (212) 423-3500.
Weems’s riveting photos have evolved from early documentary and autobiographical series to more conceptual and complex works over the last 30 years. Together they paint a riveting picture of a troubled society.
A companion exhibit of Weems’s work is on display through June 29 at the Studio Museum of Harlem, 144 West 125th St., between Lenox Ave. and Adam Clayton Powell Blvd.; for hours and information, visit studiomuseum.org or call (212) 864-4500.
2014 Whitney Biennial
Runs March 7 through May 25 at the Whitney Museum of American Art, 945 Madison Ave., at E. 75th St. For museum hours and more information, visit whitney.org or call (212) 570-3600.
One way of looking at this behemoth of a show is to note that so few women artists are represented. But if you can put that fact aside, it’s worth it to see the work of those who are, including textile artist Sheila Hicks, painter Louise Fishman, appropriation artist Sherrie Levine, transwoman performance artist Zachary Drucker, and photo-based artists Sarah Charlesworth and Gretchen Bender. This will be the last Biennial held in the Whitney’s Upper East Side building before the museum’s move to the Meatpacking District next year.
Elizabeth A. Sackler Center for Feminist Art at the Brooklyn Museum
The Brooklyn Museum, 200 Eastern Pkwy., at Washington Ave. For museum hours and more information, visit brooklynmuseum.org or call (718) 638-5000.
The Sackler Center was created in 2007 in part to house Judy Chicago’s iconic, controversial (at least when it was made) 1974 installation The Dinner Party—a table set for 39 world-shaking women of history, which is on permanent display. On view currently at the center is Wangechi Mutu: A Fantastic Journey (through March 9), a celebration of the Brooklyn-based Kenyan artist’s large-scale collages, video works, sketchbook drawings, a site-specific wall drawing, and sculptural installations. And an intriguing little-known side of a beloved writer is explored in Twice Militant: Lorraine Hansberry’s Letters to The Ladder, which was the first subscription-based lesbian publication in the U.S., and which is at the center through March 16. The exhibition includes approximately 27 issues of The Ladder, lists that Hansberry wrote to herself each year on her birthday, typewritten essays on “the homosexual question,” and other intriguing tidbits.
Folk Couture: Fashion and Folk Art
Runs through April 23 at the American Folk Art Museum, 2 Lincoln Sq., at Columbus Ave. and W. 66th St. For museum hours and more information, visit folkartmuseum.org or call (212) 265-1040.
Catherine Malandrino, Adi Gil, Angela Donhauser, Yeohlee Teng, and Jean Yu are among the 13 established and emerging designers featured in this exploration of what the museum calls “the relationship between inspiration and creation.” Their original ensembles, which address the concepts of pattern, narrative, disembodiment, and playfulness, were inspired by artwork in the museum’s collection.
Kiki Smith: Wonder
Runs through March 29 at the Pace Gallery, 510 W. 25th St., between 10th and 11th Aves. For gallery hours and more information, visit pacegallery.com or call (212) 255-4044.
Kiki Smith has made prints, sculptures, and installations and frequently addressed social issues in her work since she began making art nearly four decades ago. This exhibit features some of her recent sculpture and stained-glass work.
Emma Hack: Undercover
Runs through March 12 at Rebecca Hossack Gallery, 262 Mott St., between Houston and Prince Sts. For gallery hours and more information, visit rebeccahossack.com or call (212) 925-3500.
Australian artist Emma Hack, who’s having her first solo exhibition in New York, creates “body camouflage” works in which she covers a photo of a person beneath with geometric patterns, creating beautiful, thought-provoking optical illusions.
Beverly Semmes: FRP
Runs through March 15 at Susan Inglett, 522 W. 24th St., between 10th and 11th Aves. For gallery hours and more information, visit inglettgallery.com or call (212) 647-9111
FRP is short for the Feminist Responsibility Project, and, not surprisingly, this show compels the viewer to think about how we categorize women. Semmes has created almost abstract images by drawing and painting over images of women in porn magazines, leaving visible only the hands or eyes or heels of the subjugated subjects.
Runs March 6-29 at A.I.R. Gallery, 111 Front St., between Washington and Adams Sts., Brooklyn. For gallery hours and more information, visit airgallery.org or call (212) 255-6651.
A.I.R. was founded in 1972 as the first artist-run gallery for women in the U.S. Lucy Li curated this exhibit of “stunningly diverse” 19 American and Israeli artists, according to the gallery’s website, which noted that this show is intended to “initiate conversations on what it means to be a woman artist today.”
—Reported by Joshua Simka