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3 fantastic apartment shows in New York City

3 fantastic apartment shows in New York City

Maybe it happened to you. You’re walking down a sidewalk in Manhattan and see an intriguing work of art through an apartment window. I try not to be too weird about it. I slow down and investigate discreetly. What’s hanging on the wall there? An early Robert Rauschenberg? An unusual Cindy Sherman? Unfortunately, I can rarely tell. There is a lot of art in this world, and the most beautiful things usually hang in apartments, far away from the eyes of passers-by.

Lately, however, there have been some excellent art exhibitions in New York apartments that function as art spaces, open to the general public, without spying or special invitation. A reminder that all you really need to start a gallery is a clean, well-lit place (that’s the name writer Dave Hickey gave to his legendary Austin gallery in the 1960s, titling it borrowed from Ernest Hemingway’s short story).

Below are three such exhibitions, one each in Queens, Manhattan and Brooklyn. Although they are modest in size, don’t count that against them. Consider that in 1957, art dealer Leo Castelli converted a room in his Upper East Side apartment into an exhibition space. He went on to do some big things.

by Tisch Abelow Nuclear family (2024) in ‘Nuclear Family’ in ‘Shoot for the Stars’ in Swanson Kuball. Photo courtesy of Swanson Kuball.

A family affair in Long Island City

The most heartwarming show in town lately? There must be a strong competitor “Shoot for the Stars,” featuring five artists from one extended family Swanson Kuballowners’ residence in Long Island City Laura Swanson And Greg Kuball.

The clever painter Joshua Abelow– a longtime New York presence who manages an unusual space in his own upstate – delivered four spare, small new canvases, each depicting the silhouette of a man, faceless, apparently on fire, and a few snapshots of the suburbs. His sister Tisch AbelowHis contributions included a pulpy, cartoonish portrait of the two artists as children with their (somewhat exhausted) parents. The Abelows’ late grandmother Paula Brunner below was here too, with vivid images of her husband, her children and herself. The youngest participant was nine years old Lev Lazarus (the son of Joshua’s partner, Katya Kirilloff), who has a winning hand with pencils and markers, conjuring up Minecraft figures and a grinning Joshua.

Kirilloff in turn sketched a vague self-portrait on a shopping bag – a mother enjoying a quiet moment – ​​and painted a gouache of Lazarus that is disarmingly realistic, save for his two tusks. Titled Vampire boy (2023), it registers a dissonant tone, alluding to familial power dynamics that tend to remain unspoken and unseen.

Installation view of ‘Dave Miko: Welcome Weary Wanderer’ at Bill Cournoyer/The Meeting, with And Winter Roses (2024) right. Photo courtesy of the meeting.

Sparkling paintings in the West Village

New York has seen too little of the top painter Dave Miko recently. “Welcome Weary Wanderer,” his current performance Bill Cournoyer‘S West Village apartment space, the Meetingis his first solo exhibition in the city in 10 years (RIP, Real visual art) and his first solo sometime in nine. The 10 works are characteristically seductive, action-packed, slippery, not quite abstractions. Most of it is oil on aluminum plates (roughly square or oddly shaped), the approach Miko is known for, but there are also enameled numbers on panel. Looser and hazier, these could be spectral visions or close-ups of spray-painted graffiti.

A faint melancholy lingers. Arrows swim around the green and copper Next to the map (all works 2024). It’s a strong photo, but the best here is the largest. And Winter Roses. (A nod from Hank Williams?) It stands over six feet tall, a gray field covered in choppy black lines—you can almost hear Miko’s brush or knife sliding or skating across the aluminum—partially obscuring large words. For example, I can distinguish ‘loneliness’. Let’s hope there aren’t too many. Miko, 50 this year, makes art that is both candid and otherworldly, exciting and strange. You have until June 29 to see it.

Another look at Jacob Kassay’s show in Brooklyn Heights.

Mysterious glass in Brooklyn Heights

Until New York 303 Gallery posted on Instagram about artist at the end of last month Jacob KassayAfter the project’s covert construction in a Brooklyn Heights apartment, news of its existence had spread solely by word of mouth, like a rumor. A few days later the exhibition closed by appointment only. Titled ‘Khiropractik’, it was a kind of eerie coda or reprise of Kassay’s solo show of the same name on Gallery Art Concept in Paris earlier this year.

The modest one-bedroom was bathed in red light: at first shocking, then serene, as in the Dream house (1969) van La Monte Young And Marian Zazeela. Ominous glass creatures, centipedes the size of small dogs, were (barely) present – ​​one on a table, three on the walls – lurking, as if temporarily frozen or beaming in from another dimension. Each of their 23 pairs of legs was perfectly and terribly rendered.

A press release for the French show likens the sculptures to “optical instruments, and more metaphorically, cinematographic devices by proxy.” What do they show us? What do they show us? Fragile and ingenious models of a species more than 400 million years old can be taken as memento mori (these things will outlive us), or simply as invitations to look and think about art from unusual angles and against different time frames . It was an enigmatic exhibition with at least one crystal-clear message: beautiful art can thrive in any environment.

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