The Lookout: A Weekly Guide to Shows You Won’t Want to Miss

Oleg Tcherny: The General Line, 2011, video, 16 minutes.

Courtesy Miguel Abreu.


With an ever-growing number of galleries scattered around New York, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed. Where to begin? Here at A.i.A., we are always on the hunt for thought-provoking, clever and memorable shows that stand out in a crowded field. Below are eight fall shows our team of editors can’t stop talking about.

This week we check out two new video portraits by Oleg Tcherny at Miguel Abreu, Sara Greenberger Rafferty’s smeary photo manipulations at Rachel Uffner, and marble and rattan sculptures by Yutaka Sone at David Zwirner.

Yutaka Sone at David Zwirner, through Oct. 29
The mood created at David Zwirner by architect-turned-artist Yutaka Sone is a disconcerting mix of tropical and arctic. Low-slung rattan trees with wide, flat leaves dominate the space, but tucked among the vegetation are white marble sculptures that look as if they are encased in a frosty layer of ice. You’ll probably be able to wander among them in peace, as everyone will be crowded around Little Manhattan, Sone’s 2½-ton scale model of the island.

Gabriel Orozco at Marian Goodman, through Oct. 15
Mexican-born Gabriel Orozco continues to experiment with new forms, materials and processes. The procedures range from sitting on a lump of clay to form a piece in a new series of terracotta works, to creating high-tech computer-assisted “Particle Paintings” based on found images and his own photos, which are over-painted using Q-tips and then, in turn, recycled into a series of wall reliefs on paper plates. In addition, several large-scale two-sided paintings on paper mounted in movable frames, “Corplegados,” constitute a kind of travel diary.

Seung Wook Kim at Tenri Cultural Institute, through Oct. 27
At once mind-teasing and creepy, Kim’s elaborate swirled wall constructions of paper, cardboard and endless amounts of hot black glue invite thoughts as dark and intricate as his forms. The young Korean artist, a veteran of New York’s ISCP residency program and holder of two MFAs, has recently shown at London’s Saatchi Gallery and other international venues.

Seher Shah at Scaramouche, through Oct. 30
The black-and-white drawings and prints (plus one floor sculpture) in Pakistani artist Seher Shah’s show insert the geometric forms of Brutalist architecture into urban landscapes. “Hinterland Structures,” Shah’s new series of lightbox photos featuring scenes from the American West (a single-story windowless church, an abandoned-looking barn, etc.), on view in a darkened side room, provide a pleasing contrast to the larger, more graphic works on view in the gallery’s main space.

Sara Greenberger Rafferty at Rachel Uffner, through Oct. 23
Sara Greenberger Rafferty’s blurry, jewel-toned images look like photos of watercolor paintings, and in a way, they are. Rafferty prints a digital image (in the case of most of the works on view here, a photo taken of someone on TV), pours water over it to smear the ink, and then re-photographs the “damaged” print. The resulting photos—framed and hung in a grid or printed on plastic and affixed directly to the wall—make you feel almost claustrophobic.

Oleg Tcherny at Miguel Abreu, through Oct. 16
This week is the last chance to catch the U.S. premiere of two video works by Belarusan filmmaker Oleg Tcherny. There’s a 10-minute video portrait of filmmaker Jean-Marie Straub, and, the showstopper, the 16-minute The General Line, which brings together ideas from Galileo Galilei, film pioneer Sergei Eisenstein and contemporary Italian philosopher Giorgio Agamben into an utterly absorbing piece about Venice.

Andy Warhol at Gagosian, 21st Street, through Oct. 22
“Liz,” a poignant art-world tribute to the late film icon and AIDS activist, also provides an in-depth look at Warhol’s early Pop period. Manipulating well-known news photos and images appropriated from 1950s and ’60s films, Warhol recycles them in a broad range of visual experiments that are still surprising today.

Sarah Crowner at Nicelle Beauchene, through Oct. 23
Sarah Crowner’s meticulously sew-together pieces of canvas and linen cloth give her color-block paintings a tactile, sculptural quality. On one wall hang six puzzlelike paintings in colors such as hot pink, mustard, aqua and army green; opposite is a high pedestal with abstract wooden maquettes: are they 3D models used to work out the geometric shapes in the paintings, or is it the other way around?

“The Lookout” is compiled by A.i.A. Associate Editor Leigh Anne Miller