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Gallerina

At the Art Openings: Decadence, Decay and Dogs

The arts season got off to a rip-roaring start this past week as the city's roughly 600 galleries opened their doors to a stampede of eager viewers. It was cheek-to-jowl in many galleries, especially on Friday at Gagosian, where it was stiletto-to-stiletto for Dan Colen's sprawling show of tipped-over-motorcycles and bubble-gum paintings.

If you can only make it to one of the hundreds of new exhibits in town, be sure to hit Chris Verene's show at Postmasters Gallery on 19th Street. I was bowled over by the photographs of his family, which are disarming for their frank and brutal honesty. Other must-sees include Karl Wirsum's explosive cartoon-style drawings from the '60s at Derek Eller, and the abstract/conceptual group show at Friedrich Petzel — which includes abstract ink jet paintings, floating thought bubbles and Allan McCollum's wall of plaster art casts.

This week, get ready for Round 2: big openings coming up at David Zwirner Gallery on 19th Street and solo shows by Suzan Frecon and Al Taylor. Bonus: An organic ice cream truck has started parking on 18th at the end of the High Line — and their vanilla soft serve is all kinds of yum.

If there's one gallery that consistently delivers when it comes to decadence, it's Gagosian. This weekend opened with a show by Dan Colen that featured a row of tipped-over motorcycles.
If there's one gallery that consistently delivers when it comes to decadence, it's Gagosian. This weekend opened with a show by Dan Colen that featured a row of tipped-over motorcycles. ( Carolina A. Miranda )
Also, just in case you're wondering: Plaid is in.
Also, just in case you're wondering: Plaid is in. ( Carolina A. Miranda )
Another gallery that bucked the recession-art trend: Gavin Brown, which showed Rob Pruitt's over-the-top tire pieces stuffed full of flowers.
Another gallery that bucked the recession-art trend: Gavin Brown, which showed Rob Pruitt's over-the-top tire pieces stuffed full of flowers. ( Carolina A. Miranda )
Some of Pruitt's tires were filled with junk food, including candy cigarettes and cookies. I helped myself to numerous Oreos (in the name of art, of course).
Some of Pruitt's tires were filled with junk food, including candy cigarettes and cookies. I helped myself to numerous Oreos (in the name of art, of course). ( Carolina A. Miranda )
Pruitt's most notorious piece was a 1998 install that featured a 16-foot-long mirror with a giant line of cocaine. These days, he's onto glitter paintings with pandas.
Pruitt's most notorious piece was a 1998 install that featured a 16-foot-long mirror with a giant line of cocaine. These days, he's onto glitter paintings with pandas. ( Carolina A. Miranda )
As is generally the case with these things, not all gallery-goers were amused by the self-indulgent nature of the works.
As is generally the case with these things, not all gallery-goers were amused by the self-indulgent nature of the works. ( Carolina A. Miranda )
One of the more thoughtful shows I saw in Chelsea: 'Used Books' at Edward Winkleman, which paired paintings and books — and provided an easy chair to enjoy both. Above, a work by Brent Birnbaum.
One of the more thoughtful shows I saw in Chelsea: 'Used Books' at Edward Winkleman, which paired paintings and books — and provided an easy chair to enjoy both. Above, a work by Brent Birnbaum. ( Carolina A. Miranda )
Architectural deconstruction remains popular as a theme: A cinder block install by Alejandro Almanza Pereda at Magnan Metz on 26th Street.
Architectural deconstruction remains popular as a theme: A cinder block install by Alejandro Almanza Pereda at Magnan Metz on 26th Street. ( Carolina A. Miranda )
Channeling the urban decay vibe: Rachel Owens' broken glass towers at ZieherSmith.
Channeling the urban decay vibe: Rachel Owens' broken glass towers at ZieherSmith. ( Carolina A. Miranda )
Polly Apfelbaum's piece at D'Amelio Terras on 22nd Street made clever use of simple swaths of sequined fabric. Viewers were then forced to navigate its limits.
Polly Apfelbaum's piece at D'Amelio Terras on 22nd Street made clever use of simple swaths of sequined fabric. Viewers were then forced to navigate its limits. ( Carolina A. Miranda )
Immersive Experience: Sean Raspet's banner maze at The Kitchen, 'As If Written In.'
Immersive Experience: Sean Raspet's banner maze at The Kitchen, 'As If Written In.' ( Carolina A. Miranda )
Friedrich Petzel had a thoughtful show devoted to abstract/conceptual works. Channeling Warhol: Philippe Parreno's 'Speech Bubbles' float over the gallery entrance.
Friedrich Petzel had a thoughtful show devoted to abstract/conceptual works. Channeling Warhol: Philippe Parreno's 'Speech Bubbles' float over the gallery entrance. ( Caroina A. Miranda )
Also at Petzel, Allan McCollum's plaster casts of works of art.
Also at Petzel, Allan McCollum's plaster casts of works of art. ( Carolina A. Miranda )
Eyes on You: On 21st Street, graffiti covers the walls near the experimental arts lab Eyebeam.
Eyes on You: On 21st Street, graffiti covers the walls near the experimental arts lab Eyebeam. ( Carolina A. Miranda )
At Algus Greenspon Gallery, in the West Village, artist Gene Beery got meta.
At Algus Greenspon Gallery, in the West Village, artist Gene Beery got meta. ( Carolina A. Miranda )
Though this cluttered show could have used a little editing, Eric Fertman's Dr. Seussian forms at Susan Inglett were quite enjoyable.
Though this cluttered show could have used a little editing, Eric Fertman's Dr. Seussian forms at Susan Inglett were quite enjoyable. ( Carolina A. Miranda )
Visual Tricks: Fertman's sculptural wood depictions of ordinary light fixtures.
Visual Tricks: Fertman's sculptural wood depictions of ordinary light fixtures. ( Carolina A. Miranda )
Not art, though it could be: This scene went down on Sixth Avenue as I made my way to last week's openings.
Not art, though it could be: This scene went down on Sixth Avenue as I made my way to last week's openings. ( Carolina A. Miranda )
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