Around the City this Spring and Summer

Simone Leigh, Loophole of Retreat Exhibition, Courtesy of The Guggenheim

As the international center of art, media, business, and culture, New York City has uniquely positioned itself as the place to be in order to make big things happen. This sprawling metropolis is not only known for producing some of the world’s greatest artists, architects and designers, but it has a way of magnetically drawing masters in these fields from far and wide to its streets for opportunities to network, study, exhibit, or simply explore.

At Pratt’s School of Continuing and Professional Studies, we believe an art and design education is an exceptional resource to have at your disposal, however, learning isn’t limited to just the classroom. There is so much available to explore and experience in New York City. Here’s a roundup of ten must-see exhibitions and events taking place this spring and summer around the city.

1. Simone Leigh: Loophole of Retreat

Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum: April 19 – August 4, 2019

This past Fall, the Guggenheim announced Simone Leigh as the recipient of their 2018 Hugo Boss Prize, whose work will be on display this spring – summer season at the museum. Simone Leigh is an acclaimed African-American female artist whose resume spans the fields of sculpture, video, performance and programming. She is the first artist of African descent to win this award and her exhibition, Loophole of Retreat,  currently featured at the Guggenheim, examines the black female experience as well as the history of black female labor and resistance.

2. Spilling Over: Painting Color in the 1960s

Whitney Museum: March 29 – August 2019

Color is the palate of our existence. From generation to generation painters and artists have been able to use color to redefine the way we experience the world that surrounds us. This summer at the Whitney Museum of American Art, take a journey back to the 1960s with, Spilling Over: Painting Color in the 1960s. This exhibition is a must-see for all types of creatives and will be on display at the Whitney through August.

3. Too Fast to Live, Too Young to Die (Punk Graphics, 1976 – 1986)

Museum of Arts and Design (MAD): April 9, 2019 – August 18, 2019

Imagine taking a journey back to the late 1970’s and early 1980’s, when provocative punk rock designs and art work made their mark on the underground art and music scene in big cities. The Museum of Arts and Design (MAD) takes you on such a journey this summer with their exhibition, To Fast to Live, To Young to Die. Rediscover the artistry of punk  graphics and illustrations and the legacy this era had on contemporary art and design through the vantage point of this exhibition.

The World Between Empires Exhibition, Courtesy of The Met Museum

4. The World Between Empires: Art and Identity In The Ancient Middle East

The Metropolitan Museum of Art: Now – June 23, 2019

Embark on a voyage back in time with The World Between Empires exhibition at The Met this June. This exhibition  features pieces from museums from around the world and draws parallels between the cultural, religious, and historical traditions that influenced the jewelry, sculptures, paintings, and ceramics from the period of the Roman and Parthian Empires.

5. Non-Stick Nostalgia: Y2K Retrofuturism in Contemporary Jewelry

The Museum of Arts and Design (MAD): March 21 – July 21, 2019

This summer visit MAD Museum for an exhibition that examines the complexity of the many realities we experience in the post Y2K era. Non-Stick Nostalgia  is currently on display at MAD Museum through the end of July and features  the work of twenty-six contemporary jewelry artists from around the world. Showcasing  jewelry pieces that explore not only the tension between the virtual and the physical, but how different textures like plastic have informed the way we conceptualize design.

6. Garry Winogrand: Color

Brooklyn Museum: May 3 – December 8, 2019

Come view this collection of rarely seen color photographs shot by acclaimed American photographer, Garry Winogrand at the  Brooklyn Museum this summer. This exhibition, titled Garry Winogrand: Color, explores Winogrand’s expeditions through New York City and beyond from the viewfinder of his camera. Documenting the experiences of Americans during the 1950’s – 60’s and the cultural and social movements that defined those time periods.

7. Phenomenal Nature: Mrinalini Mukherjee

The Met Breur: June 4 – September 29, 2019

On June 4th, The Met Breur will be exhibiting Phenomenal Nature, an exhibition showcasing the work of Indian artist and sculptor, Mrinalini Mukherjee. This exhibition will feature sixty pieces by this exceptional female artist and illuminate how greatly the natural world influenced her work throughout her lifetime.

Photo by Ben Gancsos, Courtesy of The Whitney Museum

8. Whitney Biennial 2019

Whitney Museum of American Art: May 17 – September 22, 2019

It’s that time of year again, when the Whitney Museum brings together a group of highly talented artists to showcase and exhibit their work through the Whitney Biennial 2019. This year’s Biennial will feature a group of over seventy five diverse contemporary artists from around the globe, whose work includes paintings, film and video, photography, installations, performances and much more.

9. CAMP: Notes on Fashion

The Metropolitan Museum of Art: May 9 – September 8, 2019

This past May, The Met Costume Institute presented their spring 2019 fashion exhibition CAMP: Notes on FashionWhich will features the work of contemporary fashion designers and brands, through an exploration of ‘camp’ as a fashion aesthetic. Almost two hundred pieces will be on display, ranging from menswear and womenswear, to painting, drawing and sculptures. This innovative exhibition will be on display through September.

10. Roger Brown: Virtual Still Lifes

Museum of Arts and Design (MAD): May 2 – September 15, 2019

Explore the world through the eyes of Roger Brown this summer at MAD Museum. This exhibition will feature a collection of Brown’s paintings created during the final chapter of his art career. As noted by MAD, “the exhibition lays out Brown’s process through the objects he collected and the spaces he created for and with them.” Painters and Illustrators alike will especially get a kick out of attending this event.

In addition to these amazing events taking place across this city, check out Pratt Institute’s events calendar to see what’s happening this spring and summer at Pratt SCPS and across both Pratt campuses.

Melissa Staiger: In The Fountain

Melissa Staiger, In The Fountain 4

The School of Continuing and Professional Studies (SCPS) Gallery is excited to present, In The Fountainfeaturing the work of exceptional artist, Melissa Staiger. This exhibition will be on display beginning on May 28th and will continue until the end of June. We are honored to work with Melissa to showcase her magnificent work. She is our artist spotlight for the month of June.  Keep reading to learn more about this artist, her techniques and inspirations.

Melissa Staiger’s Artist Statement:

I work with various materials that vary greatly in scale and construction. Consistently you will see bold color, texture, gesture that holds sensitivity and harmony among its parts. Collage and assemblage are key mediums that guide my playful process of seeing the possibilities before making a choice of composition.

Moving paint around is a sensual experience for me. The marks that I make in the form organic shapes and curves are painted to express a constant state of flow. Color is a potent expression and medicine.

Melissa Staiger, Surface Reflection

In 2013, I was nominated to attend the Robert Rauschenberg Artist Residency. The staff graciously took us to the massive metal scrap yard where Rauschenberg would find materials for his works. I started playing with scraps that I hadn’t thought of using before. A green metal piece became a major key player in my understanding on how found objects can give the surface of a painting so much 3D texture. This put me on a path of creating many assemblages with various materials.

All of these experiences I took back to the studio and my work. Combining physical objects with paint adds another dimension to my art. From the most expensive tubes of paint to a broken tile found on the floor, both hold an energy and vibration of color. I carefully arrange objects, shapes, lines, and colors. I pay attention to the relationships, patterns, and shifts of movement. I arrange them in my works and play around with it.

Melissa Staiger, In The Fountain 3

I need time to immerse, experiment, listen, and draw in my sketchbook to push my work further. In this creative process, I control what I produce and can deem myself authentic as the creator. In my creative process, circles, mark making, collage, painting, assemblage, and texturizing are taking me to a path of color, structure, and layering. I love the hard edge, and making marks and using color as the structure in my work opens up a glimpse of understanding that I crave within my inner self. When I am able to use my entire body and make sweeping marks on the floor, I am reaching for a composition to form. Then suddenly, the work feels right and then I have a moment of accomplishment right before I release it into the world.

For more info about Melissa  Staiger and her exceptional work visit her website. This upcoming summer Melissa will be teaching a few courses at  Pratt Institute including Materials And Techniques, a Five – Week Summer Intensive, beginning on June 3rd, that will explore  a variety of different media used in art creation.