Fall Preview: NYC Museums 2023

By Peggy Roalf   Friday September 15, 2023

Brooklyn Museum, September 15: María Magdalena Campos-Pons | Behold

Spanning nearly four decades of visually engaging artworks, the exhibition explores Campos-Pons’s prescient and sensorial work—transporting viewers across geographies, mediums, and spiritual practices. In her explorations of migration, diaspora, and memory, Campos-Pons draws on feminism, photoconceptualism, and Yoruba-derived Santería symbolism to weave together personal narratives and global histories.

The first multimedia survey of the artist’s work since 2007, Behold highlights the artist’s dedication to creating new modes of understanding, as well as her engagement with both historical and present-day challenges. These themes are examined through Campos-Pons’s performance-based practice and work with communities in Cuba, Boston, and Nashville, where she currently resides.

Brooklyn Museum, 200 Eastern Parkway, Brooklyn, NY Info



The Drawing Center, November 10: Stéphane Mandelbaum

A precocious and skillful draftsman, Stéphane Mandelbaum used his artistry to probe the depths of his own persona by conjuring some of the darkest visages of the twentieth century in Europe. His drawings are inhabited by figures from his nightmares like the German Nazis Joseph Goebbels and Ernst Röhm, as well as those from his fantasies like Arthur Rimbaud and Pier Paolo Pasolini. The representation of images that most people would prefer to avoid was an act of identity-building for a young, rebellious artist hoping to shock. But it was also an act of ownership of a history that Mandelbaum refused to allow to be buried.

Raised in a Jewish household impacted by the Holocaust, Mandelbaum’s subjects are often Jewish figures, and his pages are filled with words in Yiddish, a language that the artist had taught to himself. The presence of the Hebrew alphabet juxtaposed with images of Nazis and underworld characters give his drawings a patina of menace and even violence, which was tragically borne out by the artist’s assassination by a criminal syndicate in 1986 at age twenty-five. Mandelbaum’s sensational end is a coda to an artistic life lived on the edges of society.

The Drawing Center, 35 Wooster Street, New York, NY Info



Japan Society, October 13: Shigeko Kubota, Yoko Ono, Takako Saito, and Mieko Shlomi | Out of Bounds: Japanese Women Artists in Fluxus

This exhibition will be the first to fully explore the essential role of Japanese women in Fluxus, a movement that helped contemporary artists define new modes of artistic expression. Near the 60th anniversary of the movement’s founding, this exhibition highlights the contributions of four pioneering Japanese artists — Shigeko Kubota (1937–2015), Yoko Ono (1933), Takako Saito (1929–), and Mieko Shiomi (1938–) —and contextualizes their role within Fluxus and the broader artistic movements of the 1960s and beyond.Japan Society, 333 East 47th Street, New York, NY Info Above: Shigeko Kubota performance 1965



The Jewish Museum, November 17: Marta Minujin | Arte! Arte! Arte!

The first survey exhibition in the United States of Marta Minujín, a defining force of Latin American art whose trajectory intersected with the major artistic developments of the postwar period. 

This exhibition of nearly 100 works will chart Minujín’s influential career in Buenos Aires as well as time spent in Paris, New York, and Washington, DC, through a range of pioneering, mattress-based soft sculptures; fluorescent large-scale paintings; psychedelic drawings and performances; and vintage film footage. The artist’s ephemeral works – happenings, participatory installations, and monumental public art – will be presented through rarely-seen photographs, video, and other documentation.

The Jewish Museum, 1109 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY Info 



The Metropolitan Museum of Art, September 18: Manet/Degas: 

This exhibition examines one of the most significant artistic dialogues in modern art history: the close and sometimes tumultuous relationship between Édouard Manet and Edgar Degas. Born only two years apart, Manet (1832–1883) and Degas (1834–1917) were friends, rivals, and, at times, antagonists who worked to define modern painting in France. By examining their careers in parallel and presenting their work side by side, this exhibition investigates how their artistic objectives and approaches both overlapped and diverged.

Through more than 150 paintings and works on paper, Manet / Degas takes a fresh look at the interactions of these two artists in the context of the family relationships, friendships, and intellectual circles that influenced their artistic and professional choices, deepening our understanding of a key moment in nineteenth-century French painting. 


Opening October 13: Vertigo of Color | Matisse, Derain, and the Origins of Fauvism

Over an intense nine weeks in the summer of 1905 in the modest fishing village of Collioure on the French Mediterranean, Henri Matisse and Andre Derain embarked on a partnership that led to a wholly new, radical artistic language later known as Fauvism. Their daring, energetic experiments with color, form, structure, and perspective changed the course of French painting; it marked an introduction to early modernism and introduced Matisse’s first important body of work in his long career. 

This exhibition of 65 works, including paintings, drawings, and watercolors, demonstrates a new direction in painting, in which Matisse and Derain manipulated color in radical ways. Through their inventive explorations, nature took on hues responding to the artists’ sensations rather than reality. At the Salon d’Automne in 1905, when Matisse and Derain unveiled their controversial canvases, a prominent French journalist labeled them “les Fauves,” or wild beasts.

The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1000 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY Info



The Museum of Modern Art, September 17: Emerging Ecologies: Architecture and the Rise of Environmentalism

Emerging Ecologies presents both realized and unrealized projects that address ecological and environmental concerns by architects who practiced in the United States from the 1930s through the 1990s. Featuring over 150 works that reconstruct how the rise of the environmental movement in the US informed architectural practice and thought, it includes models, photographs, diagrams, and sketches arranged in context with archival materials such as posters, flyers, and articles that showcase innovative, fantastical, dystopian, and daring architectural projects.

The exhibition celebrates the path-breaking environmentally conscious work of architects like Emilio Ambasz, Charles and Ray Eames, and Frank Lloyd Wright, while shining a light on many less familiar, historically significant practices. By highlighting projects that both foreshadowed and anticipated the ecological effects of overpopulation, the depletion of natural resources, and rampant industrial pollution, the exhibition looks to the past to suggest solutions for the future.

Also on view: Ed Ruscha/Now Then

Organized in close collaboration with the artist and mirroring his own cross-disciplinary approach, the exhibition features over 200 works, produced from 1958 to the present, in various media—including painting, drawing, printmaking, photography, artist’s books, and installation—displayed according to a loose chronology throughout the Museum’s sixth- floor galleries. Alongside the artist’s most acclaimed works, the exhibition will highlight lesser-known aspects of his practice, offering new perspectives on one of the most influential figures in postwar American art.

Museum of Modern Art, 11 West 53rd Street, New York. NY Info 


MoMA PS1, October 12: Rirkrit Tiravanija: A LOT OF PEOPLE

This  exhibition traces four decades of Tiravanija’s career and features over 100 works, from early experimentations with installation and film, to drawings, works on paper, ephemera, sculpture, and newly produced “demonstrations” of key participatory works.

Gathering rarely seen early works from the late 1980s and 1990s, a period in which the artist was developing a post-studio practice and introducing biographical references to highlight his experiences as an immigrant with a palpable sense of “otherness” in a Western-centric art world, the show includes many original sculptures, installations, and editions, some of which have been subsequently reimagined, cast, and memorialized over the years in new materials from plaster to bronze. 

MoMA PS1, 22-25 Jackson Avenue, Long Island City, Queens, NY Info


The Morgan Library & Museum, October 27: Spirit and Invention: Drawings by Giambattista and Domenico Tiepolo

The Morgan is home to one of the world’s largest and most important collections of drawings by Giambattista Tiepolo (1696–1770) and his eldest son Domenico (1727–1804), with more than 300 representative examples of their lively invention and masterful techniques. 

Combining highlights from the Morgan’s extensive collection with carefully selected loans, this exhibition will provide a comprehensive look at the Tiepolos’ work as draftsmen, focusing on the role of drawing in their creative process and the distinct physical and stylistic properties of their graphic work. 

The exhibition presents for the first time extremely rare pen studies for Tiepolo’s magnum opus, the ceiling fresco above the staircase of the Würzburg Residenz of 1752, and a group of bold sketches newly connected with his ceiling fresco of 1754 at the Venetian church of Santa Maria della Pietà. The exhibition concludes with a wall including striking examples from Domenico’s delightful Punchinello series.

The Morgan Library & Museum, xxx Madison Avenue, New York, NY Info



The Museum of Arts and Design, September 23: Shary Boyle | Outside the Palace of Me

The multisensory solo exhibition of new works by the Canadian visual artist includes exquisitely sculpted ceramics, life-sized automatons, two-way mirrors, a coin-operated sculpture, and an interactive soundtrack. To help realize her creative vision for the exhibition, Boyle enlisted a team of collaborators, including a scenic designer, costume artist, robotics engineer, amusement park innovator, and acrylic nail artist. Each work in the exhibition is a testament to slow, skilled, passionate handcraft.

Adopting the structures of theatre, the exhibition proposes itself as a metaphor for the construction and presentation of self. Within its confines, the audience alternates between the role of observer and observed as they engage with an array of uncanny characters and objects. 

Museum of Arts and Design, 2 Columbus Circle, New York, NY Info



The New Museum, October 12: Judy Chicago | Herstory

Spanning Judy Chicago’s sixty-year career, the exhibition will encompass the full breadth of the artist’s contributions across painting, sculpture, installation, drawing, textiles, photography, stained glass, needlepoint, and printmaking.

Taking over three floors of the Museum, “Herstory” will trace the entirety of Chicago’s practice from her 1960s experiments in Minimalism and her revolutionary feminist art of the 1970s to her narrative series of the 1980s and 1990s in which she expanded her focus to confront environmental disaster, birth and creation, masculinity, and mortality. Contextualizing her feminist methodology within the many art movements in which she has participated—and from whose histories she has frequently been erased—“Herstory” will showcase Chicago’s tremendous impact on American art and highlight her critical role as a cultural historian claiming space for women artists previously omitted from the canon.
The New Museum, 235 Bowery, New York, NY Info 



Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, September '1: Only the Young \ Experimental Art in Korea, 1960s-1970s

This is the first North American museum exhibition dedicated to Korean Experimental art (silheom misul) and its artists, whose radical approach to materials and process resulted in some of the most significant avant-garde practices of the twentieth century.

Created by young artists who came of age in the decades immediately following the Korean War, the artworks reflect and respond to the changing socioeconomic and material conditions that were shaped by a tumultuous political landscape at home and a globalizing world beyond.

Opening October 20: Going Dark | The Contemporary Figure at the Edge of Visibility

Presenting more than 100 works by a group of 28 artists the exhibition presents the theme,\ going dark, by way of formal strategies that may include literal darkening methods like shadowing; rotating the body; novel materials and printing methods; and postproduction tools that blur or brighten. Some of the most recent works that will be on view draw upon digital technology, such as the chroma-key green (or blue) screen. These works move fluidly between figuration and abstraction, and many of the artists inventively manipulate color and light to also obscure optical perception, challenging the very biology of vision. 

Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, 1071 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY Info



Whitney Museum of American Art, September 16: Ruth Asawa Through Line

For Ruth Asawa (1926–2013), drawing served as a center of gravity—the activity she described as her "greatest pleasure and the most difficult." Although now widely recognized for her wire sculptures, Asawa drew daily. Her exploratory approach to materials, line, surface, and space yielded an impressive range of drawings that speaks to her playful curiosity and technical dexterity as well as her interest in the aesthetic possibilities of the everyday.

 Organized thematically and inspired by her inquisitive approach to making art, the presentation comprises more than one hundred works, many of which have never been exhibited. Together, they capture the boundless energy and generous spirit of Asawa, who believed that "art is not a series of techniques, but an approach to learning, to questioning, and to sharing."


Opening October 4: Henry Taylor | B Side

This is the first exhibition to survey the career of leading contemporary artist Henry Taylor (b. 1958). Through painting, drawing, sculpture, and installation, this retrospective, with over 150 works, celebrates an artist widely appreciated for his unique aesthetic, social vision, and freewheeling experimentation. 

Taylor’s figurative work, populated by friends, relatives, strangers on the street, athletes, politicians, and entertainers, showcases an imagination that encompasses multiple worlds. Informed by experience, his work conveys fundamental empathy through close examination and sharp social criticism. 

Whitney Museum of American Art, 99 Gansevoort Street, New York, NY Info