Not all of us want to spend the colder months of the year adventuring through snowbanks and up slippery slopes. Galleries and museums are safe, warm, and dry places to camp out while soaking up some culture. Here is a list of 9 exhibits we've earmarked to see in February.
Installed at the Fields Sculpture Park at Art Omi in January, Christopher Wool's Untitled is a large-scale bronze and copper plated steel sculpture with a quicksilver personality. From one angle, the sculpture—made from ranching wire found on his property in Texas—looks like a tangled nest of telephone cable; from another, a free-form take on a motorcycle in motion. Untitled adds to the profusion of wondrous outdoor sculpture at this year-round art attraction in Ghent. Through December 31.
If Lucian Freud hadn’t been so preoccupied with exposing some flaw in his subjects, he might have painted like Angela Dufrsene (though some of her portraits also take on monstrous qualities). “Just My Type” is a study in the topology of the face, as it transforms and morphs, never standing still long enough to zero in on a fixed “type.” Dufresne’s portraits up-end notions of what portraiture is while also strictly adhering to the form. February 9-July 14.
Featuring works by Wayne Hodge, Darian Longmire, Stacey Robinson, Alisa Sikelianos-Carter, Willie Cole, Renee Cox, Shani Crowe, Krista Franklin, and Farbrice Monteiro, “In Place of Now” examines politically subversive acts of picturing “otherness,” reinventing the past, and reclaiming the future. Co-curators Judie Gilmore and Rone Shavers have focused on artwork that offers new speculations regarding contemporary black identity and explores issues of blackness, which again seems to be in contention. February 12-April 14.
This exhibition highlights Williams College Museum of Art’s recently acquired portfolio of 18 photographs by James Van Der Zee (1886-1983). Born and raised in Lenox, Massachusetts, Van Der Zee established a thriving photography studio in Harlem and served as the foremost chronicler of black life in New York City during the early 20th century. The exhibition examines various moments of Van Der Zee’s expansive and experimental practice in the genres of fine art, commercial, editorial, and documentary photography. Through June 2.
The New Paltz gallerist Mark Gruber has championed Hudson Valley landscape artists for over 40 years, nurturing the careers of Jane Bloodgood Abrams, Christie Scheele, and Eric Angeloch among others. This month, Andrea McFarland’s “The New Paltz Years,” chronicling her last decade documenting the rugged ecosystem of the Shawangunks. Mainly self-taught, McFralnd brings a photographer’s eye to her pastel drawings that capture light and shadow in nature with hyper-acuity. February 2-March 16.
Through charcoal drawings, fresco, sculpture, and painting, Maryna Bilak documents what it means to be a caretaker for someone with Alzheimer’s and delves into the varied roles each person involved plays, including the patient. The exhibition is curated by Emily O’Leary. For the opening reception, on February 2 (5-7pm), pianist and composer Michael S. Jaynes will perform Curvature of the Mind, a piece inspired by his experience caring for his own mother, an Alzheimer’s sufferer. February 2-March 17.
Profoundly strange and wonderful ideas offered by quantum physics, alchemy, and science fiction inform Amanda Lechner’s egg tempera paintings and ink drawings. Her largely improvisational drawing practice provides a counterbalance to the historical and material-driven qualities of her egg-tempera paintings. Lechner’s paintings reflect a simultaneous impulse to react and reflect, mixing the factual and observed with the invented and personal. February 1-March 3.