Treat Your Inner Culture Vulture: 12 Best Art Exhibits You Have To Check Out This Fall in NYC

Autumn in New York City rolls out like a welcome carpet, with crisp air, beautiful blue skies, and a foliage view of dazzling fall colors– but nothing is quite as exciting as exploring some cool art exhibits.

That’s right! Summer is fleeting, but the plethora of art shows is just around the corner.

As the weather starts to get chilly, NYC is primed to be awash with exhibits, as galleries and museums shake off their summer doldrums and reveal their top art shows of the season.

This fall, treat your inner culture vulture and check out some of the best gallery, museum, and public art shows that NYC has to offer.

We’ve got the scoop and compiled a list of 12 must-see art exhibits that you won’t want to miss! Read on to discover them.


1. “Deconstruction” - Patrick Eugène (September 8th)

Brooklyn-based Haitian-American painter, Patrick Eugène focuses on social, cultural, and societal issues. Using vibrant colors and raw emotions, his work reflects the harsh reality of our times. We actually had a chance to discuss his work with him; check it out here.

“Deconstruction,” is an exhibition that addresses the cultural deforestation and impact of gentrification in his hometown of East New York, Brooklyn. Opening night will be held this Thursday, September 8th.

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Select pieces from the series will be on display at the Brooklyn Arts Fellowship until the 23rd.

RSVP for the opening reception here.


2. “Awkward Spaces” - Chuck Marcus (September 24th)

Harlem-born photographer and visual artist Chuck Marcus will host the inaugural exhibition of “Awkward Spaces,” a gallery show that features nearly 30 original images of female professional dancers of color, performing in unassuming spaces around NYC.

Marcus has the natural ability to capture beauty in the madness of NYC by focusing on color and the versatility of movement. Many of the varied scenes in these photographs include locations such as a local laundromat, Grant’s Tomb, and a grocery store.

“Awkward Spaces” will run for one day only on Sept 24th.

RSVP for the opening reception here.


3. Dan Flavin - Dia:Beacon

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Gerardo Mendez (@geerawrdoh)

Artist Dan Flavin’s signature fluorescent light works stunningly light up the Dia: Beacon Art Foundation.

Experimenting with light-based artwork as early as the 1960s, many of Flavin’s fluorescent structures explore color, light, and sculptural space. 

Flavin’s work focuses on the idea of using light to draw attention to specific parts of a room– not just in the space taken up by the light itself, but also in the space the light is illuminated. Much of his work also includes a limited range of colors as well as shapes and tubes. 


4. “WHERE WE ARE NOW (WHO ARE WE ANYWAY?), 1976” - Vito Acconci - (until Sep 18th)

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Early works by Vito Acconci can be found at MoMA PS1, including documentary materials, photographs, film, and video footage. Acconci gravitated towards literature and the performing arts.

His solo exhibition traces back to his poetry and stage performances, highlighting his body of work up to the moment that MoMA PS1 was founded. The showing also presents Acconci as he developed his explorations of identity, sexuality, and the human condition.


5. “Arcade Classics” - Museum of The Moving Image (until Sept 18th)


Transport yourself back in time this season with the “Arcade Classics” exhibit. The Museum of the Moving Image is featuring more than 30 video arcade games released between 1971 and 1993.

The best part is that ALL THE GAMES are playable. The games on view range from early sports, fighting, action, puzzles, driving, and space.

Though the era of the video arcade game is long gone, you will be able to enjoy popular games such as Mortal Kombat, Ms. Pac-Man, Space Invaders, Star Wars, and much more!


6. The Keeper: “The Teddy Bear Project- Ydessa Hendeles (until Sept 25th)

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The Keeper, which is being presented at the New Museum, is dedicated to showcasing the passion and inspiration of preserving objects, artworks, and images.

The exhibit offers a reflection of the impulse to save and treasure the most precious and valueless possessions. It also reveals the devotion and different ways in which artists, collectors, and hoarders have created sanctuaries for various items.

One of the centerpieces of this exhibition called the “Teddy Bear Project” by Ydessa Hendeles consists of over 3,000 family-album photographs of people posing with teddy bears and vitrines containing antique teddy bears.

Hendeles’ project establishes the teddy bear as a metaphor for the power of comfort and emphasizes the symbiotic relationship that ties people to their objects of affection.


7. “Arrow of Time” – Tatsuo Miyajima (until October 2nd)

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The light-based installation entitled “Arrow of Time” by Japanese artist Tatsuo Miyajima is now on view at The Met Breuer. Inspired by his study of Buddhist philosophy and modern physics, Miyajima’s work concentrates on the concept of infinity.

“Arrow of Time” describes the irreversibility of time. By utilizing approximately 250 digital light-emitting diode (LED) counters, the artist achieves to display this concept and immerses viewers in a shower of light.

How, you ask? Miyajima programmed each of these devices to count from one to nine repeatedly, go dark momentarily, and then repeat the sequence.

According to Miyajima, the cyclical repetition of numbers, along with the recurring momentum from light to dark, represents the unending “time of human life.”


8. “The Mapping Journey Project” - Bouchra Khalili (until Oct 10th)

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“The Mapping Journey Project” is an exhibit display at the MoMA by Bouchra Khalili. The series consists of videos that details the stories of eight individuals who have been forced by political and economic circumstances to travel illegally.

Artist Khalili encountered her subjects by chance while traveling and invited each person to narrate his or her journey and trace it in thick permanent marker on a geopolitical map of the region. The videos feature the subjects’ voices and their hands sketching their routes across the map, while their faces remain unseen.


9. Let There Be Neon

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Can’t get enough of neon lights? Let There Be Neon is the perfect studio to check out this autumn with some of the best neon installations.

Some of their contemporary pieces include works from Vicki DaSilva, Ivan Navarro, Martin Creed, and Keith Haring.


10. “Public, Private, Secret” - (until Jan 08th)

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Images are now produced and exchanged by millions of people globally to communicate complex ideas, so do we really have any privacy?

The International Center of Photography Museum is exhibiting “Public, Private, Secret,” a showing that explores the idea of privacy in today’s society.

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This thought-provoking exhibition also presents how self-identity is tied to public visibility. Viewers will be able to enjoy historical works by many artists and photographers including Cindy Sherman, Nan Goldin, and Andy Warhol.

Overall, “Public, Private, Secret” creates a physical experience where viewers can examine the role of photography and visual culture, as well as the boundaries of social and personal privacy.


11. Sol LeWitt: Wall Drawing #370 (until Jan 28th)

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Artist, Sol LeWitt is widely regarded as one of the leading exponents of minimalism and conceptual art. Much of his work is primarily known for his deceptively simple geometric structures and architecturally scaled wall drawings.

Wall Drawing #370 by artist Sol LeWitt, presented at the Met Museum, includes a series of ten geometric figures and shapes including a right triangle, cross, and diamond. Viewers are able to sense the feeling of optical illusion when observing his pieces.


12. OLED lamps collection - BlackBody OLED Showroom