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Things to do this week in NYC Jul 23-Jul 30: Cultural Arts
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July 23, 2012 - by CG Directory Editor

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Dance, art galleries, museums, lectures -- you name it, there are plenty of things to do in NYC. From the New York City Ballet, to Alvin Ailey, from performances at the Metropolitan Opera, to live music at Madison Square Garden, New York has it all. Here is a selection of what's going on in New York this week.

Revolutionary Ink: The Paintings of Wu Guanzhong - Asia Society and Museum
Through August 05, 2012 - New York

Wu Guanzhong (1919–2010) stands as one of the most important artists of twentieth-century China. Born in Jiangsu Province, Wu studied art at the National Academy of Art in Hangzhou (today's China Academy of Art) and, from 1947, in Paris at the École nationale supérieure des beaux-arts. He returned to China after three years and taught at the Central Academy of Fine Arts in Beijing. His works were condemned before and during the Cultural Revolution because his oil paintings did not comply with the political interests of the time. In spite of this he continued to paint and emerged as a national cultural figure whose works came to be celebrated inside and outside China. He is also well known for his eloquent writings on art and creativity that sometimes led to controversies and spawned heated debates among Chinese artists and intellectuals. Wu Guanzhong created works that embody many of the major shifts and tensions in twentieth-century Chinese art—raising questions around individualism, formalism, and the relationship between modernism and cultural traditions.

With a career spanning over sixty years, the selection of paintings in this exhibition focuses on some of his best works in the medium of ink and spans the decades from the mid-1970s to 2004. It is notable that Wu began to work more extensively in ink in the 1970s in his mid-career—turning to a traditional medium at a time when most artists looked to western art for inspiration. The exhibition traces the development of Wu's work during this period with a thematic focus illuminating the rich historical legacy of ink painting in China, and also representing his radical individual style steeped in his strong belief in formalist principles. Wu pushed the boundaries of our understanding of how a traditional medium of ink can be made new for a new century.

Revolutionary Ink: The Paintings of Wu Guanzhong - Asia Society and Museum
Through August 05, 2012 - New York

Wu Guanzhong (1919–2010) stands as one of the most important artists of twentieth-century China. Born in Jiangsu Province, Wu studied art at the National Academy of Art in Hangzhou (today's China Academy of Art) and, from 1947, in Paris at the École nationale supérieure des beaux-arts. He returned to China after three years and taught at the Central Academy of Fine Arts in Beijing. His works were condemned before and during the Cultural Revolution because his oil paintings did not comply with the political interests of the time. In spite of this he continued to paint and emerged as a national cultural figure whose works came to be celebrated inside and outside China. He is also well known for his eloquent writings on art and creativity that sometimes led to controversies and spawned heated debates among Chinese artists and intellectuals. Wu Guanzhong created works that embody many of the major shifts and tensions in twentieth-century Chinese art—raising questions around individualism, formalism, and the relationship between modernism and cultural traditions.

With a career spanning over sixty years, the selection of paintings in this exhibition focuses on some of his best works in the medium of ink and spans the decades from the mid-1970s to 2004. It is notable that Wu began to work more extensively in ink in the 1970s in his mid-career—turning to a traditional medium at a time when most artists looked to western art for inspiration. The exhibition traces the development of Wu's work during this period with a thematic focus illuminating the rich historical legacy of ink painting in China, and also representing his radical individual style steeped in his strong belief in formalist principles. Wu pushed the boundaries of our understanding of how a traditional medium of ink can be made new for a new century.

Pilobolus - Joyce Theater
Through August 11, 2012 -

A fungus that grew into an international dance phenomenon, Pilobolus performs a season full of "stunning physical feats and visual surprises, a peek or two into the crannies of the heart, and lots of humor, both awful and sublime." (The New York Times). Highlights include premieres created in collaboration with Michael Moschen and Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui, two artists whose work takes the very definition of dance to new frontiers. The collaboration with physicist, juggler, dancer Moschen unites the underlying spirit of Pilobolus's work--support, humanity, connection—with an artist similarly fascinated with the emotional and physical properties governing human interaction. And the collaboration with Cherkaoui, a "bright young star of contemporary European dance," (Los Angeles Times), equally promises to defy the established boundaries of visual and kinetic artistry. Sandwiched in between are audience favorites gleaned from Pilobolus' repertory, a bag of tricks embracing forty-one years of fun.

Lincoln Center Out of Doors - Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts
Through August 12, 2012 -

This NYC summer favorite offers more than 100 free performances across the plazas of Lincoln Center. More than ten premieres and debuts highlight the three weeks, which have a strong streak of soul, funk and R&B running through them, with generous helpings of jazz, gospel, and star turns by giants of their genres and great contemporary dance.

(7/25-8/12): Nile Rodgers & The CHIC Organization (7/25); Polyglot Theatre: Tangle (7/26-29); G.R.U.B.B. (Gypsy Roma Urban Balkan Beats) & The Stooges Brass Band (7/26); Los Irreales de Ondatripica presented by Quantic and Frente Cumbiero featuring: Michi Sarmiento, Alfredito Linares, Pedro Ramay Beltran, Markitos Micolta, & Wilson Viveros; Wil-Dog el Gavachillo featuring Banda Sol de Santa Cruz (7/27); Family Day - Polyglot Theatre: Tangle; Chinese American Arts Council Acrobatic Group: From Chinatown with Love; Bindlestiff Family Cirkus (7/28); Istanbulive presents Selda Bagcan, Ilhan Ersahin's Wonderland featuring Senlendirici, The Secret Trio (7/28); 'OurLand': Celebrating Irish Culture in America!, The Music, The Bards, The Magic, The Auld Triangle, Joe Hurley's All-Star Irish Rock Revue! (7/29); Yemen Blues, Khaira Arby, UkanDanZ (8/1); The Bad Plus: On Sacred Ground, Brandt Brauer Frick Ensemble (8/2); Phil Kline's dreamcitynine (8/3); Chio-Tian Folk Drums and Arts Group (8/3); Kimmo Pohjonen & Helsinki Nelson: Accordion Wrestling (8/3-4); Heidi Latsky Dance: GIMP (8/4); Heritage Sunday - Ayiti Rasanble! featuring Kongo, Peniel Guerrier, La Troupe Makandal, and Raram (8/5); La Caras Linda de Mi Gente Negra-Homenja a Tite Curet Alonso featuring Grupo Esencia and Viento de Agua with special guest Lalo Rodriguez (8/5); Dr. L. Subramaniam-Global Fusion with Kavita Krishnamurthi Subramaniam, Ambi Subramaniam, and Corky Siegel, The Alaev Family (8/8); ! ! !, Lenny Williams (8/9); Cleo Parker Robinson Dance Company (8/10); La Casita (8/11-12); 29th Annual Roots of American Music Festival (8/11-12).

Elsa Schiaparelli and Miuccia Prada's Impossible Conversations at Metropolitan Museum's Costume Institute - Metropolitan Museum of Art
Through August 19, 2012 -

The spring 2012 exhibition organized by The Costume Institute of The Metropolitan Museum of Art is Schiaparelli and Prada: Impossible Conversations. The exhibition, on view from May 10 through August 19, 2012 (preceded on May 7 by The Costume Institute Gala Benefit), explores the striking affinities between these two Italian designers from different eras. Inspired by Miguel Covarrubias's satirical "Impossible Interviews" for Vanity Fair in the 1930s, curators Harold Koda and Andrew Bolton orchestrate conversations between these iconic women to suggest new readings of the designers' most innovative work. In the galleries, iconic ensembles by Schiaparelli and Prada are presented alongside short videos of simulated conversations between the two designers directed by Luhrmann, focusing on how the women explore similar themes in their work through very different approaches.

"Juxtaposing the work of Elsa Schiaparelli and Miuccia Prada allows us to explore how the past enlightens the present and how the present enlivens the past," said Koda.

"The connection of the historic to the modern highlights the affinities as well as the variances between two women who constantly subverted contemporary notions of taste, beauty, and glamour," added Bolton

The Met's website includes special, in-depth features on the exhibition: www.metmuseum.org/impossibleconversations.

Follow us on Facebook.com/MetMuseum and Twitter.com/MetMuseum to join the conversation about the exhibition and gala benefit. Use #ImpossibleConversations and #MetGala on Twitter.


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