5 Star Art Shows You Must See This Weekend

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Courtesy of John Waters and Marianne Boesky Gallery, New York  © John Waters

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Takashi Murakami at Gagosian Gallery, 555 West 24th Street, NYC
Murakami’s In the Land of the Dead, Stepping on the Tail of a Rainbow, has been open since November (and closing January 17,) but Saturday, January 10 marks the artist’s first #InstaMeet — get there at 12:30 to take an #ArtSelfie with Murakami himself. #InstaGold
takashi
@takashipom on Instagram

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Helmut Lang at Sperone Westwater, 257 Bowery, NYC
Since annihilating his fashion archives 10 years ago, the reclusive designer turned artist has been working on sculptures made up of pulped fragments of collections past. This exhibition of sculptures is Lang’s first solo show in New York. Open through February 21.
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Courtesy of Sperone Westwater

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Henri Matisse at MoMA, 11 West 53rd Street, NYC
Visit MoMA this weekend to see Matisse’s famous cut-outs. The show was extended due to popular demand, so get there before February 10 to avoid closing week crowds.
moma
@themuseumofmodernart on Instagram

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John Waters at Marianne Boesky, 509 West 24th Street, NYC
Running through Valentine’s Day, this third solo show of John Waters at Marianne Boesky is titled, Beverly Hills John. The exhibition includes photoshop facelifts for Justin Bieber, Lassie, and Waters himself. Make sure you see “Kiddie Flamingos,” a G-rated version of the very X-rated “Pink Flamingos”.
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Beverly Hills John, 2012, C-print, Image: 30 x 20 inches  76.2 x 50.8 cm, Framed: 36 1/2 x 26 1/2 inches, 92.7 x 67.3 cm, Edition of 5; Courtesy of the artist and Marianne Boesky Gallery, New York  © John Waters

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Louise Bourgeois at Cheim & Read, 547 West 25th Street, NYC
Hurry up before it closes on January 10 to catch Louise Bourgeois’ Suspension. What secrets is the founder of confessional art telling now?
photograph taken by Brian Buckley for Cheim & Read, New York
Courtesy of Cheim & Read

CULTURE BLAST: Jemima Kirke Can Paint, Prada Marfa Defacer Found, Marina On Shia

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Texas artist admits to defacing the chicest littlest Prada outpost.

Say it isn’t so. Prada Marfa Instagram-takers rejoice, the culprit has allegedly been found. And were giving him exactly what he wanted — publicity!

Student breaks a 19th Century Statue… while taking a selfie. 

Maybe the selfie should reserve mass popularity for the fashion world. When art is involved, you just end up breaking a 19th century Greco-Roman statue.

Polish artist Paweł Althamer creates a blank canvas that’s waiting for your artist touch. 

The last time I was at The New Museum I was scorned upon because I leaned against the wall. Now, come to my surprise, you can draw on the them!

Nymphomaniac star Shia LaBeouf gets reviewed by performance art superstar Marina Abramović

The best of both worlds? In a totally different setting than Disney Channel backlot, Marina weighs in on the “not-famous” actor’s latest antics.

A Look Inside Jemima Kirk’s Art Universe 

Your favorite British rebel on HBO’s “Girls” is an artist of many talents. Not only can Jemima Kirke act like a total fun-drug obsessor on screen, she can also paint. (And it looks like she’s taken some pointers from BFF’s Lena Dunham’s artistic direction — cue the bare breast.)

A Parisian New York family is finally getting back a missing Matisse. 

Looks like fingers are all being pointed at who else, the Nazis.

Gagosian Gallery set to open a pop-up gallery on Delancey Street. 

The Lower East Side just got a little  trendier.

We’re Still Finding Art Stolen During World War II

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Another day, another seizure of $1.3 billion in modernist paintings that some 80-year-old goon in Munich was hiding in a squalid room along with “plates of rotten food and other garbage.” God, Europe, how much art do you even have when someone can leave apparently irreplaceable masterworks moldering in a crawlspace? Did the guy even know they were there? Oh, right, he inherited them from his father, who had “somehow” acquired them from the Nazis who looted them in the first place. They were probably all like, “Here, Hildebrand, these are very important, and secret, but don’t take care of them or anything, because they’re degenerate art. Also, we have no idea what we’re doing.”

One has to wonder if the son, Cornelius Gurlitt, even appreciated the works of which he had become custodian. Maybe when he was chucking out greasy chicken bones and old coffee grounds he would catch a glimpse of Cubist angles or Fauvist color, something that shone out of the grimy chiaroscuro of the room. But the rest of the time he probably just spoke vaguely of his “collection,” and, when asked where said collection resided, told people it was out on loan to a museum on the other side of the planet. Voilà!

It’s deplorable behavior all around, of course, but on the other hand, you can’t say we’ve been hurting for more Picasso and Matisse. At this point, finding more stuff painted by guys like this really just means that art history majors are going to have to make that many more flash cards. Come to think of it, I should definitely get ahold of some Jeff Koons sculptures and store them in a leaky shed in rural New Jersey, just to prevent anyone from having to think about them in a serious way. Right after my political party seizes power, I mean.

Photo via National Geographic

Industry Insiders: Frederick Lesort, Plein & Simple

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Frederick Lesort has been in the restaurant business for 27 years, having risen through New York City’s cutthroat culinary ranks. He now owns three venues, including uptown outposts Opia and Matisse. “I like the creation of it, taking a raw space and building it,” he says. Nothing could be a better platform for creativity than his latest restaurant, Plein Sud, which recently opened in the Thompson Group’s Smyth Hotel.

To be sure, the project was a daunting one – “When I came in, the building hadn’t even been built,” he says – but the romantic Tribeca eatery’s upscale French farmhouse cuisine has proven popular with diners. With no other projects currently in the pipeline, Lesort plans to focus on Plein Sud’s development and success. “I think there’s a path for guys like me,” he says, referring to the eminence of Ian Schrager and Andre Balazs. “I feel very fortunate.”

[image via Emmanuel Faure]