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Artfully Yours

Five art shows to check out this week.

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Claes Oldenburg (American, born Sweden 1929). Floor Burger.. 1962. Canvas filled with foam rubber and cardboard boxes, painted with acrylic paint. 52 x 84 x 84” (132.1 x 213.4 x 213.4 cm). Collection Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto. Purchase, 1967. © 1962 Claes Oldenburg. Photo: Sean Weaver  

"Claes Oldenberg: The Street and the Store"
The Museum of Modern Art; 11 W. 53rd St., nr. Sixth Ave.; 212-708-9400
Every single object in this show by the Pop master produces a rush of joy. Handcrafted, distorted shapes of hot potatoes, hats, dresses, pie, and ray guns, all looking like colorful lumpy funky dinosaurs, split the difference between abstraction, Jasper Johns, Robert Rauschenberg, American exuberance, and brute materialism. Go. Fly to the Planet Joy.

Antony: The Cut
Sikkema Jenkins & Co.; 530 W. 22nd St., nr. Tenth Ave.; 212-929-2262
The great artist, singer, songwriter, and mystical being called Antony (of the band Antony and the Johnsons) is unveiling new sculpture, drawings, and collages, all based on his poem “The Cut.” If its first lines—“The cut on her face / The blood from under her skirt …”—are any indication, this is another of his incredible inner journeys.

John Singer Sargent Watercolors
Brooklyn Museum; 200 Eastern Pkwy., at Washington Ave., Prospect Heights; 718-501-6409
The Brooklyn Museum and the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, got together on this one, mining their holdings for an unusually comprehensive survey of these intense, beautiful paintings. Keep them out of storage, guys!

James Turrell
Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum; 1071 Fifth Ave., at 89th St.; 212-423-3587
Turrell works in a single medium: light. He has sliced into walls, designed seamless rooms with holes in the ceiling, and spent four decades building a giant naked-eye observatory in the Arizona desert—all to provide unexpectedly intimate and mysterious views of the sky, the sun, and the stars. For this segment of a three-part show running concurrently in L.A. and Houston, he’s turned the museum’s atrium into a giant light box.

Simon Denny
Petzel Gallery ; 456 W 18th St., nr. Tenth Ave.; 212-680-9467
Titled “All You Need Is Data: The DLD 2012 Conference REDUX Rerun,” this exhibition of ink-jet prints on canvas installed on what looks like a zigzagging queue features advertising and quotes meant to come from movers and shakers in the digital intelligentsia. It’s a wraparound TED talk, but not obnoxious: It electrifies the art mind with ways art might one day look and act. A candidate for the season’s ten best.


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