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SundayArts News 4/24/2011
Posted: April 25th, 2011
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The Studio Museum in Harlem
At the Studio Museum in Harlem, the exhibit Benjamin Patterson: Born in the State of FLUX/us introduces a revolutionary artist to a new generation. Patterson helped usher in an era of experimental music in the 1960s and 70s by using ordinary gestures to create compositions for both the contra bass and the body. The artist, now in his seventies, recently performed at the Studio Museum. This retrospective is the first time his scores and videos of performances have been assembled in the United States.  The Studio Museum is also committed to serving as a unique resource for the local community by making artworks concrete and personal for each viewer.  The museum’s ongoing series Harlem Postcards invites contemporary artists of diverse backgrounds to reflect on the neighborhood’s historic and evolving identity.  Stephen Burks’ design exhibit, Man made, displays works made with a collective of immigrant West African aristans who have in recent years become a significant part of the Harlem community.  Other current exhibits are giving visitors new perspectives on works from the permanent collection, and making connections between artists based on shared media and conceptual processes.  You can catch any and all of these exhibits at the Studio Museum in Harlem through June 26th.

Wang Qingsong at ICP
Wang Qingsong is one of China’s most highly regarded contemporary artists.  Since turning from painting to photography in the late 1990s the  Beijing-based artist has produced a stream of ambitious works that explore China’s ongoing encounter with global consumer culture.  Visitors to the International Center of Photography can now see a number of Wang’s large-scale color photos in the artist’s first U.S.  solo show.  Wang Qingsong works like a movie director, conceiving elaborate scenarios involving dozens of models that he typically stages on film studio sets. The resulting color photos often contain ironic references to classic Chinese artworks which are reinterpreted with intentional awkwardness.  The results throw fresh light on present-day China, emphasizing its new material wealth, its uninhibited embrace of commercial values, and the social tensions arising from the massive influx of migrant workers to its cities. Wang Qingsong: When Worlds Collide is on view at the International Center of Photography through May 8th.

How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying
After making his Broadway debut in the controversial Equus, Daniel Radcliffe of  Harry Potter fame returns to the Great White Way in something completely different.  Radcliffe takes on the role of the upwardly mobile J. Pierrepont Finch in How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying. Finch doesn’t let the boss — played by John Larroquette – get in his way as he climbs the corporate ladder from window washer to chairman of the board with the aid of his trusty self-help book. But Finch’s unorthodox business practices jeopardize not only his career but also his romance with secretary Rosemary Pilkington.  This production marks the 50th anniversary of this Tony Award- and Pultizer Prize-winning musical comedy.   Packed with memorable songs, the show shines all the more brightly with direction and choreography from Rob Ashford.  A well-drilled ensemble cast keeps the corporate machine humming.

Elizabeth Peyton’s  Wagner
This week The Metropolitan Opera presents the premiere performances of Robert Lepage’s second installment of The Ring cycle. While opera tickets of  Die Walkure may be hard to come by, you can still enjoy Elizabeth Peyton’s  Wagner.  The solo exhibition of this contemporary artist, known for her gemlike paintings of friends and historical figures, includes 30 works inspired by Wagner’s Ring. Peyton listened to Wagner recordings and drew inspiration from photos of ring productions past and present while creating her portraits of the ring cycle’s larger than life characters.  Elizabeth Peyton’s  Wagner will be on display in the Gallery Met and in locations around the opera house through the end of the season.

Art on the Hudson
Art lovers and collectors can also enjoy art along the Hudson next weekend, on the RiverArts 18th annual studio tour.  Head to the Westchester towns of Hastings-on-Hudson, Ardsley, Dobbs Ferry and Irvington, to visit and chat with the artists who live and work on the Hudson.  The free self-guided tour features artists and galleries who have opened their studio doors to the public, or have set up public installations.  To navigate the tour, download the comprehensive map from the RiverArts website.  See original works from over 65 painters, photographers, sculptors and other artists, and take part in a great community event.

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SundayArts is made possible in part by First Republic Bank and by the Rubin Museum of Art. Funding for SundayArts is also made possible by Rosalind P. Walter, The Paul and Irma Milstein Foundation, The Philip & Janice Levin Foundation, Elise Jaffe and Jeffrey Brown, Jody and John Arnhold, and The Lemberg Foundation. This program is supported, in part, by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council. Additional funding provided by members of THIRTEEN.