Tomas saraceno

Among the Spiders With Mind-Bending Artist Tomás Saraceno

Welcome to the Art Angle, a podcast from Midnight Publishing Group News that delves into the places where the art world meets the real world, bringing each week’s biggest story down to earth. Join us every week for an in-depth look at what matters most in museums, the art market, and much more, with input from our own writers and editors, as well as artists, curators, and other top experts in the field.


In the studio of Argentine artist Tomás Saraceno, there’s an expected sound—vibrations of a spider working on its web—a sound normally imperceptible to the human ear, but that doesn’t make it any less real.

The recent technological feat of capturing and recording the sound of a spider is just one of the many pursuits undertaken by the Berlin-based artist. Saraceno is known for working with experts from the field of science, engineering, and architecture among others, to create works that exist beyond the traditional bounds of the art world. These research intensive, often groundbreaking installations and projects render visible our interconnectedness with one another and the ecosystems in which we exist. They’ve even earned him some world records.

It’s an ambitious undertaking and it has solidified him as one of the most impactful artists of our generation. For Saraceno’s first major U.K. solo exhibition, which opens on June 1 at the Serpentine Galleries in London, Saraceno and his collaborators are moving beyond the walls of the museum, from the Royal Parks in London all the way to the rural communities of Argentina where people are fighting to stop lithium extraction in their lands, to Cameroon where Spider Diviners challenging our notions about knowledge.

At the Serpentine, “Web(s) of Life” delves into critical and urgent questions about how we as people coexist with other life forms and how technology intersects with the climate emergency itself. As the last of his works were en route to London, Midnight Publishing Group News’s Europe editor Kate Brown joined the artist in his bright and beautiful Berlin studio.

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11 Events for Your Art Calendar This Week, From Julie Mehretu at the Whitney to Alteronce Gumby in Two Boroughs

Each week, we search for the most exciting and thought-provoking shows, screenings, and events. In light of the global health crisis, we are currently highlighting events in person and digitally, as well as in-person exhibitions open in the New York area. See our picks from around the world below. (Times are all EST unless otherwise noted.)


Tuesday, March 23

"Women, Power & Promise: A Convening" at the Newark Museum of Art, featuring the Guerrilla Girls and Bobbi Brown.

“Women, Power & Promise: A Convening” at the Newark Museum of Art, featuring the Guerrilla Girls and Bobbi Brown.

1. “Women, Power, and Promise” at the Newark Museum of Art

The Newark Museum has put together a slate of programs for this Women’s History Month event, with a keynote address by cosmetics mogul Bobbi Brown, an art performance by the Guerrilla Girls, and closing remarks from Lisa Kaplowitz, executive director of the Center for Women in Business at Rutgers Business School.

Price: $50 general admission
Time: 3 p.m.–5 p.m.

—Sarah Cascone


Dawoud Bey, <em>Taylor Falls and Deborah Hackworth</em> from “The Birmingham Project” (2012). Photo courtesy of the artist and Stephen Daiter Gallery.

Dawoud Bey, Taylor Falls and Deborah Hackworth from “The Birmingham Project” (2012). Photo courtesy of the artist and Stephen Daiter Gallery.

2. “Dawoud Bey in Conversation With Gary Carrion-Murayari” at the New Museum, New York

As part of a conversation series held in conjunction with the museum’s new exhibition, “Grief and Grievance: Art and Mourning in America” (through June 6), artist Dawoud Bey will speak with curator Gary Carrion-Murayari. His work in the show, The Birmingham Project (2012), memorializes the six young African Americans killed in the September 15, 1963, 16th Street Baptist Church bombing in Birmingham, Alabama.

Price: Free with registration
Time: 4 p.m.

—Sarah Cascone


Wednesday, March 24

Ronnie Goodman, <em>San Quentin Arts in Corrections Art Studio</em> (2008), detail. Collection of Prison Arts Project, William James Association.

Ronnie Goodman, San Quentin Arts in Corrections Art Studio (2008), detail. Collection of Prison Arts Project, William James Association.

3. “Honoring Ronnie Goodman” at MoMA PS1, Queens

As the museum winds down “Marking Time: Art in the Age of Mass Incarceration” (through April 5), MoMA PS1 pays tribute to Ronnie Goodman, who died last year. A self-taught artist, Goodman rediscovered his talents as a painter through the Arts in Corrections Program at San Quentin State Prison, making work that critiqued mass incarceration even after his release from jail. The virtual program will feature a new short film with rare footage of the artist and a talk by Nicole Fleetwood about his life and career.

Price: Free with RSVP
Time: 6:30 p.m.–8 p.m.

—Sarah Cascone


Wednesday, March 24–Saturday, May 1

Roxanne Jackson, <em>Black Flame</em> 2019). Photo courtesy of Dinner Gallery.

Roxanne Jackson, Black Flame 2019). Photo courtesy of Dinner Gallery.

4. “Magic Touch” at Dinner Gallery, New York

Jen Dwyer, who had an excellent showing of her feminist ceramic sculptures at Spring/Break New York just over a year ago, takes a turn as guest curator for this group show with an exciting line-up of artists including Faith Ringgold, Aminah Robinson, and Sophia Narrett, among others. The exhibition’s title is a reference to the handmade qualities of the works on view, inspired by the tactile experience of pushing and pulling clay in  Dwyer’s own practice, as well as the desire for physical connection after a year of isolation.

Location: Dinner Gallery, 242 West 22nd Street, New York
Price: Free
Time: By appointment

—Sarah Cascone


Thursday, March 25

The passage of a cruise ship in the St. Mark’s Basin in Venice, Italy. (2014). Photo by: Delfino Sisto Legnani/World Monuments Fund Image courtesy Fondazione Venezia 2000

The passage of a cruise ship in the St. Mark’s Basin in Venice, Italy. Photo by: Delfino Sisto Legnani/World Monuments Fund Image courtesy Fondazione Venezia 2000

5. “When Will We Return to Venice and Should We?” Hosted by World Monuments Fund

When the pandemic brought tourism in Venice to a halt last year, it dealt a serious blow to the city’s economy but simultaneously provided a respite from the year-round throng of visitors and tourists. In this virtual discussion, WMF President and CEO Bénédicte de Montlaur will be joined by guest speakers Jane da Mosto (environmental scientist and founding president of We are here Venice) and visual artists Tomás Saraceno and David Landau to discuss these issues and others.

Price: Free with RSVP
Time: 12 p.m.

—Eileen Kinsella


Thursday, March 25–Sunday, August 8

Julie Mehretu,<eM> Conjured Parts (eye). Ferguson, 2016</em>. Photo by Cathy Carver, courtesy of the Broad Art Foundation, Los Angeles, ©Julie Mehretu.

Julie Mehretu, Conjured Parts (eye). Ferguson, 2016. Photo by Cathy Carver, courtesy of the Broad Art Foundation, Los Angeles, ©Julie Mehretu.

6. “Julie Mehretu” at the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York

This mid-career survey of Julie Mehretu originated at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, which co-organized the show with the Whitney. It features some 30 paintings—some mammoth-sized—as well as works of paper, and showcases the artist’s ability to speak to such fraught issues as history, colonialism, capitalism, geopolitics, and war in largely abstract works.

Location: Whitney Museum of American Art, 99 Gansevoort Street
 $25 general admission
Time: Monday, 10:30 a.m.–5 p.m.; Thursday and Friday, 10:30 a.m.–6 p.m.; Saturday and Sunday 11:30 a.m.–6 p.m.

—Sarah Cascone


Through Wednesday, March 31

Suejin Jo, <em>Prayer Rock<em> (2020). Photo courtesy of the New York Society of Women Artists.

Suejin Jo, Prayer Rock (2020). Photo courtesy of the New York Society of Women Artists.

7. “Women on the Edge of of Time” at Taller Boricua Gallery, New York

The New York Society of Women Artists, founded in 1925, is marking Women’s History Month with a virtual exhibition that considers its nearly century-long history, and the ways in which its founding concerns remain at the fore to this day. The 36 participating artists in this show also address pressing social issues such as immigration and LGTBQ rights. See the artworks and read the artist statements on the gallery’s virtual viewing room, and watch YouTube videos from each women about their work on the society’s website.

Price: Free
Time: On view daily at all times

—Nan Stewert


Through Sunday, April 11

Destiny Belgrave, Blooming Sprout, 2021 Courtesy of Deanna Evans Projects

8. “Destiny Belgrave: Birthright” at Deanna Evans Projects, Brooklyn

Deanna Evans Projects presents a solo show by Brooklyn-based artist Destiny Belgrave as its second exhibition. The show consists entirely of works on paper and highlights the importance of matriarchs in the artist’s life through paper cutouts, floral imagery, and poetry. The figures are women in Belgrave’s life, including her mother, sister, and herself and the show is a deeply personal exploration of the themes of youth, birth, and bonding.

Location: Deanna Evans Projects, 1329 Willoughby Avenue, #171 E, Brooklyn
Time: By appointment only

—Neha Jambhekar



Through Sunday, April 25 

Installation view "Somewhere Under the Rainbow / The Sky is Blue and What am I Glass am I" (2021). Courtesy of False Flag.

Installation view “Somewhere Under the Rainbow / The Sky is Blue and What am I Glass am I” (2021). Courtesy of False Flag.

9.”Alteronce Gumby: Somewhere Under the Rainbow/The Sky is Blue and What am I Glass am I” at Charles Moffett and False Flag

Sixteen of Alteronce Gumby’s new color-centric abstractions are currently on view in a two-part exhibition split between Charles Moffett in Manhattan and False Flag in Long Island City. At Charles Moffett, visitors will find a selection of Gumby’s visually dazzling gemstone-filled works on panel—lapis lazuli, ruby, amethyst, rose quartz, lemon quartz, fluorite, black tourmaline, and citrine are integrated into his painted glass panels and sealed with acrylic. The exhibition at False Flag, meanwhile, is anchored by a 24-foot-long, six-panel canvas work that, in various shades of blue, considers our relationship to the sky. While rooted in this history of Abstract Expressionism, Gumby’s abstractions, with their seemingly infinite variations of color, consider how light, physics, and natural materials can be contextualized into conversations about race and spirituality. 

Location:  Charles Moffett, 511 Canal Street #200/Buzzer 3; False Flag, 11-22 44th Road Long Island City
Price: Free
Time: Charles Moffett is open by appointment, Thursday–Sunday; False Flag is open by appointment, Friday–Sunday

—Katie White


Through Wednesday, September 1

Chris Bogia, The Sun, The City, 2021. Courtesy the artist and Mrs. Photo by Marcie Revens.

Chris Bogia, The Sun, The City, 2021. Courtesy the artist and Mrs. Photo by Marcie Revens.

10. “Chris Bogia: The Sun, the City” and “Jade Yumang: Open House Spatter” from Time Equities Inc. and Art-in-Buildings

A new installation in Lower Manhattan provides a safe, socially distanced way to see art… and one that suggests a day when we will no longer have to socially distance, no less. New York artist Chris Bogia’s The Sun, The City (2021) consists of a radiant, 15-foot-wide mandala hanging on the wall of the lobby at 125 Maiden Lane, shining down on a geometric cityscape. The artist describes the work as having “nostalgic references to groovier times,” and the work is visible from the street, if you don’t want to venture indoors. If you do, though, you’ll also get to experience Jade Yumang’s Open House Spatter (2021), in which he investigates queer histories through design metaphors.

Location: 125 Maiden Lane, New York
Time: On view daily at all times

—Brian Boucher


Through Sunday, September 26

Artist: Collective Magpie; Courtesy of El Museo del Barrio

11. “Estamos Bien: La Trienal 20/21” at El Museo del Barrio, New York

Currently in Harlem’s El Museo del Barrio is a survey of more than 40 established and emerging Latinx contemporary artists from across the diaspora of the United States and Puerto Rico. The exhibition includes a diverse range of subject matters and meda media, resonating with the complexities of identity in the Latinx community. Exhibited artists include Francis Almendárez, Luis Flores, Manuela González, xime izquierdo ugaz, Poncili Creación, Yelaine Rodriguez, and Raelis Vasquez, among others.

Location: El Museo del Barrio, 1230 5th Avenue, New York
 Suggested admission $9
Time: Saturday and Sunday, 12 p.m.–5 p.m.

—Cristina Cruz

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