Compose Yoself: NYC’s Best Weekend Art Events

America, it’s Thursday, and that means it’s time to levitate yourself off the couch and get to a gallery. This week, we’ve got painting, sculpture, installation and a reading room gallery with plush places to sit, so even the most lethargic among you have no excuse not to get out.

Thursday February 28, 2013

Sebastian + Barquet – “Reading Rooms” – 6-8pm
Kick off the weekend with a literary twist: the opening of Matthew Weinstein’s aptly-titled “Reading Rooms,” a series of living room-like spaces where viewers can hunker down with a book for as long as they like. Weinstein’s curated visual works to adorn the spaces, as well as daily performances, and he invites audiences to enjoy their books and the human carnival on display around them.

Bryce Wolkowitz Gallery –  “Luminous Words” – 6-8pm
Elsewhere in the city, another bookish offering: Airan Kang’s “Luminous Words,” a series that combines detailed paintings of books framed by LED lights with glossy book sculptures illuminated from within. With her work, Kang hopes to illuminate the way that books titles and presentation influence the experience of them.

Paul Kasmin Gallery – Will Ryman “America” – 6-8pm
Speaking of heady subjects, Will Ryman’s tackling “America” in a mixed-media series that takes useful mechanical objects like bike parts and industrial wares, and transforms them into gold-dipped structures. One centerpiece includes a gilded recreation of Abraham Lincoln’s childhood cabin, made from various mechanical scraps. Talk about a metaphor, folks.

Friday March 1, 2013

Mitchell-Innes & Nash – Virginia Overton Opening – 6-8pm
Known for her simple but soothing installations, Overton here creates wood sculptures from trees from a family farm in Tennessee. The work is spare and balanced, leaving viewers free to get a little zen at the end of a long work week.

Marianne Boesky Gallery –  “Trieste” Opening – 6-8pm
In 1960, a group of Italian explorers took a deep sea dive to the lowest point in any ocean in the world aboard a ship named Trieste. Drawing inspiration from this expedition and the city of Trieste as well, lead curator Jay Heikes has assembled works from six artists who work across all media. The exhibition delives into the subject of exploring, and the various, evolving meanings the word “Trieste” can bear.

Simon Preston Gallery – John Gerrard “Exercise” Opening – 6-8pm
A group of trained athletes run in circles, their movement controlled by billows of smoke released from canisters. This and other images, captured on filmed and transformed into site-specific projection installations, populate John Gerrard’s latest exhibition, a retrospective of recent works he has created across the world.

Saturday March 2, 2013

Bowery Gallery – “Recent Work” and “Recent Paintings” Opening – 4-6pm
What? What’s that you say? Two openings at the Bowery Gallery?! That’s right. In any order you please: Christine Hartman’s third show at the Bowery Gallery, “Recent Work” employs both figure and still lives to explore the natural rhythms involved in “picture making.” At the same time, elsewhere in the Bowery, Nicole Maynard-Sahar’s miniature paintings use ceramic detail to evoke pointilist landscapes that hover somewhere between Seurat and robot.

RH Gallery – “A Discourse on Plants” Opening – 6-8pm
Head over to RH Gallery for “A Discourse on Plants,” a series of photographs that incorporate retired forms of film and materials like concrete into an exploration of how human beings ravage the world around them. The various artists, whose work hovers around and includes depictions of nature in various states of decay, tackle subjects ranging from war to the easy, fetishized versions of nature celebrated by the Green movement.