This Week in New York Insider's Guide to Arts & Culture in New York City Since 2001


Black Panther

Black Panther is screening for free in Cunningham Park on August 6

The free summer arts & culture season is under way, with dance, theater, music, art, film, and other special outdoor programs all across the city. Every week we will be recommending a handful of events. Keep watching twi-ny for more detailed highlights as well.

Sunday, August 5
Movies Under the Stars: Escape to Witch Mountain (John Hough, 1975), Beach 94th St. off Shorefront Parkway in Rockaway Beach, 8:00

Monday, August 6
Movies Under the Stars: Black Panther (Ryan Coogler, 2018), Cunningham Park, Queens, 8:00

Tuesday, August 7
signs & symbols: artists & allies, group exhibition opening featuring work and discourse, with live performances and discussions continuing every Thursday night through September 7, signs & symbols, 102 Forsyth St., 6:00

Wednesday, August 8
Hip to Hip Free Shakespeare in the Park: All’s Well That Ends Well, directed by Owen Thompson, Flushing Meadows Corona Park at the Unisphere, continues in repertory with King Lear at various parks through August 25, Kids & the Classics workshop at 7:00, show at 7:30

Wild Style will celebrate its thirty-fifth anniversary with special guests on August 9

Wild Style will celebrate its thirty-fifth anniversary with special guests on August 9 in East River Park

Thursday, August 9
SummerStage: Wild Style 35th Anniversary Reunion at the Amphitheater with special guest DJ Funk Flex, with Almighty Kay Gee, Busy Bee, Charlie Ahearn, DJ Grand Wizzard Theodore, DJ Tony Crush, Eclipse, EZ AD, Grand Master Caz, Patti Astor, and Rodney C and preshow hip-hop dance workshop with Fabel, East River Park Amphitheater in John V. Lindsay East River Park, 6:00

Friday, August 10
Lincoln Center Out of Doors: West Side Story Reimagined, with Bobby Sanabria Multiverse Big Band and poetry by La Bruja and Rich Villar, Damrosch Park Bandshell, 7:30

Saturday, August 11, 18, 25
Norte Maar’s Dance at Socrates, with Kristina Hay and Hilary Brown | HB² PROJECTS and Gleich Dances with Sarah Louise Kristiansen on August 11, Movement Migration | Blakeley White-McGuire and Project 44 | Gierre Godley with Janice Rosario & Company on August 18, and Kyle Marshall Choreography and Kathryn Alter and Dancers with Thomas/Ortiz Dance and konverjdans on August 25, Socrates Sculpture Park, 4:00

Sunday, August 12
Blues Brunch with Bill Sims Jr., Bryant Park Southwest Porch, 12 noon


Brooklyn’s Alex Mali will perform as part of Brooklyn Museum’s August First Saturday free programming

Brooklyn’s Alex Mali will perform as part of Brooklyn Museum’s August First Saturday free programming

Brooklyn Museum
200 Eastern Parkway at Washington St.
Saturday, August 4, free, 5:00 - 11:00

The Brooklyn Museum starts preparing for the annual West Indian Day Parade with the August edition of its free First Saturday program. There will be live performances by Brooklyn-born singer-songwriter Alex Mali, the Pan Evolution Steel Orchestra, and the Brooklyn Dance Festival, with Dance Caribbean Collective, the Sabrosura Effect, Project of ContempoCaribe, KaNu Dance Theater, and Bloodline Dance Theatre, followed by a Q&A; a Fiyah Fit movement workshop with choreographer Jessica Phoenix; a caribBEING House mobile art center; a hands-on workshop in which participants can create noisemakers for the West Indian Day Parade, inspired by instruments in “Life, Death, and Transformation in the Americas”; Drink and Draw sketching of live models from mas camps, with sounds by Rodney Hazard; pop-up gallery talks by teen apprentices on Caribbean art and stylistic influences in the museum collection; pop-up poetry with Rico Frederick, Erica Mapp, and Camille Rankine of Cave Canem; and the community talk “Organizing Caribbean Communities in Brooklyn” with Ernest Skinner, Dr. Waldaba Stewart of the Medgar Evers Caribbean Research Center, Ninaj Raoul of Haitian Women for Haitian Refugees, and Albert Saint Jean of the Black Alliance for Just Immigration. In addition, the galleries will be open late so you can check out “William Trost Richards: Experiments in Watercolor,” “Infinite Blue,” “Cecilia Vicuña: Disappeared Quipu,” “A Woman’s Afterlife: Gender Transformation in Ancient Egypt,” and more.


A Hawaiian hale offers a place to gather in center of exhibit (photo by twi-ny/mdr)

A Hawaiian hale offers a place to gather in center of Georgia O’Keeffe exhibit at New York Botanical Garden (photo by twi-ny/mdr)

The New York Botanical Garden
Enid A. Haupt Conservatory, LuEsther T. Mertz Library Art Gallery
2900 Southern Blvd., Bronx
Tuesday – Sunday through October 28, $10-$28
hawai‘i slideshow

In 1939, Georgia O’Keeffe was offered a commission from the Hawaiian Pineapple Company, later known as Dole, to go to Hawai‘i and create artwork for an ad campaign. The fifty-one-year-old famous artist accepted the proposal, taking it as a chance to explore a state she had never visited before. It turned out to be nine weeks that reshaped her art and her views of nature and beauty; the New York Botanical Garden, which has previously celebrated the work of such artists as Claude Monet and Frida Kahlo, is now exhibiting “Georgia O’Keeffe: Visions of Hawai‘i,” a lovely show that details the flora of what would become the fiftieth state in the Union in 1959, as experienced by O’Keeffe. Twenty of the Wisconsin-raised O’Keeffe’s paintings are on view in the garden’s sixth-floor LuEsther T. Mertz Library Art Gallery; they were last seen as a set in 1940 at an American Place, the midtown gallery run by her husband, photographer Alfred Stieglitz. “If my painting is what I have to give back to the world for what the world gives to me, I may say that these paintings are what I have to give at present for what three months in Hawai‘i gave to me,” O’Keeffe wrote in her artist statement for the show. “Maybe the new place enlarges one’s world a little. . . . Maybe one takes one’s own world along and cannot see anything else.” The NYBG display includes “Waterfall — No. 1 — ’Iao Valley — Maui, 1939,” a green mountain range with a narrow stream of water flowing down the center; the gorgeous “Hibiscus with Plumeria,” an extreme close-up of the flowering plant; and, side-by-side, the two works that the Hawaiian Pineapple Company eventually used in their ad campaign, “Heliconia’s Crab’s Claw Ginger” and “Pineapple Bud.” Outside the gallery are large-scale reproductions of photos O’Keeffe took in Hawai‘i, a digital version of her sketchbook, and copies of the ads in magazines.

(photo by twi-ny/mdr)

Two of Georgia O’Keeffe’s Hawai‘i paintings were used in ad campaign (photo by twi-ny/mdr)

Two floors down is the short documentary Off in the Faraway Somewhere: Georgia O’Keeffe’s Letters from Hawai’i, in which Sigourney Weaver narrates excerpts of letters O’Keeffe sent back home to Stieglitz, who is voiced by Zach Grenier. “It was as beautiful as anything I’ve ever seen,” O’Keeffe wrote about the ocean views. Down the hall is “Flora Hawaiiensis: Plants of Hawai‘i,” a history of flora on the Hawaiian Islands, divided into native plants, canoe plants (brought by the first human visitors), and post-contact plants, introduced after Captain James Cook’s 1778 landing there. The walk to the Enid A. Haupt Conservatory along Garden Way is lined with hanging lights by Hawaiian-Chinese sculptor Mark Chai inspired by plants in O’Keeffe’s paintings; in the round pond is “Heliconia Loop,” the large, circular hole in the middle serving as a kind of viewing scope for the surrounding trees. (As a bonus, the work lights up at night.)

(photo by twi-ny/mdr)

The Enid A. Haupt Conservatory celebrates Georgia O’Keeffe’s love of Hawai‘i both inside and out (photo by twi-ny/mdr)

The centerpiece of the exhibition is, of course, the display in the conservatory, where hundreds of plantings have been added to create a Hawaiian-like atmosphere. The colorful plants and trees, both inside and outside, include heliconia, pineapple, kava, breadfruit, lotus, white angel’s trumpet, bird-of-paradise, hibiscus, cup of gold vine, Hawaiian tree fern, flamingo flower, ti plant, coconut palm, ohia lehua, jackfruit, red rosemallow, Arabian coffee, taro, banana, Maui wormwood, screw-pine, frangipani, sacred lotus, sweet-potato, sugar cane, candlenut tree, Indian-mulberry, air-potato, Malaysian-apple, and bottle gourd, among others. Visitors can take a break in a traditional hale, a structure made of wooden poles, natural cords, and a pili-grass thatched roof, all surrounded by plants. In conjunction with the Poetry Society of America, poems on white boards pop up on the path, by Brandy Nālani McDougall (“Māui,” “Red Hibiscus in the Rain,” “Yellow Orchids”), Puanani Burgess (“Awapuhi”), Kahikāhealani Wights (“Koa”), Sage U’ilani Takehiro (“Kou Lei”), Juliet S. Kono (“Silverswords”), and several by former US poet laureate W. S. Merwin (“Islands,” “Remembering Summer”). “I am looking at trees / they may be one of the things I will miss most from the earth / though many of the ones I have seen / already I cannot remember,” Merwin writes in “Trees.” Curated by Theresa Papanikolas, PhD, of the Honolulu Museum of Art, “Georgia O’Keeffe: Visions of Hawai‘i” more than establishes just how unforgettable the state can be.

(photo by twi-ny/mdr)

The heliconia is one of the many plants that inspired Georgia O’Keeffe when she was in Hawai‘i (photo by twi-ny/mdr)

The exhibit is supplemented with special events throughout its run, which ends October 28. On July 28 and 29, Celebrate Hawai‘i Weekend features “The History of Hawaiian Tattooing,” “‘Iolani Palace’s Queen Gowns,” and the NYBG Fashion Walk. “Aloha Nights” ($18-$38) take place on August 4 and 18 and September 1 and 8, with an evening viewing, interactive storytelling hula lessons, lei-making demonstrations, and live music. Hula Kahiko and Hula Auna demonstrations will be held on Saturdays and Sundays through September 30. And artisan demonstrations of coconut kiʻi puppet-making, lei-making, Hawaiian instrument crafting, poi-making, and more are set for Saturday and Sunday afternoons as well. E hauʻoli!


(photo by twi-ny/mdr)

You can relax with a wide range of poetry at eighth annual festival on Governors Island (photo by twi-ny/mdr)

Colonels Row, Governors Island
Saturday, July 28, 11:00 am - 7:00 pm, and Sunday, July 29, 11:00 am - 5:00 pm, free (donations accepted)
new york city poetry festival slideshow

In his 1850 essay “The Poetic Principle,” Edgar Allan Poe wrote, “I would define, in brief, the Poetry of words as the Rhythmical Creation of Beauty.” You can engage with the Rhythmical Creation of Beauty this weekend at the eighth annual New York City Poetry Festival, taking place Saturday and Sunday all around Colonels Row on Governors Island. The free fête features three main stages — the White Horse, the Algonquin, and Chumley’s — in addition to numerous pop-up areas and the Ring of Daisy open mic, with presentations by more than six dozen organizations and collectives and hundreds of professional and amateur poets. Saturday’s headliners are Danielle Pafunda and Ladan Osman, while Sunday’s are Nico Tortorella and Terrance Hayes. The celebration of literature is sponsored by the Poetry Society of New York, partnering with Writopia, Visible Poetry Project, and ThinkOlio. Among the many presenters are Red Lips Woman Productions, the Adroit Journal, Argos Books, Brooklyn Poets, Art Kibbutz, Blaqlist Group, NYRB Poets, St. Rocco’s Readings for the Dispossessed, the Poetry Brothel, the Dysfunctional Theater Company, Antrim House Books, Sarah Lawrence College, Jackie Robinson Poetry Day, La Pluma Y La Tinta, Cave Canem, Pen Pal Poets, the NY Browning Society, Pelekinesis, the Italian American Writers Association, Underground Books, Strange Fangs Song Factory, and the Writer’s Studio. Of course, Poe also wrote, in The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym, “Words have no power to impress the mind with the exquisite horror of their reality.”


come out and play

The free summer arts & culture season is under way, with dance, theater, music, art, film, and other special outdoor programs all across the city. Every week we will be recommending a handful of events. Keep watching twi-ny for more detailed highlights as well.

Sunday, July 15
Harlem Meer Performance Festival: Keith “the Captain” Gamble and the NU Gypsies, Charles A. Dana Discovery Center, Central Park, 2:00

Monday, July 16
Piano in Bryant Park: Daryl Sherman, July 16-20, Bryant Park, 12:30

Tuesday, July 17
High Line Art: Kerry Tribe Artist Talk, panel discussion with Kerry Tribe, moderated by Melanie Kress and Ana Traverso-Krejcarek, about Tribe’s Exquisite Corpse film, the High Line at Fourteenth St., 7:00

Black Mother will be shown in Socrates Sculpture Park on July 19

Black Mother will be shown in Socrates Sculpture Park on July 19

Wednesday, July 18
Outdoor Cinema: Black Mother (Khalik Allah, 2018) and Symphony of a Sad Sea (Carlos Morales Mancilla, 2018), Socrates Sculpture Park, with live performance at 7:00, film at sunset

Thursday, July 19
Shakespeare in the Parking Lot: Hamlet, starring Jane Bradley and directed by Karla Hendrick, Clemente Parking Lot, 114 Norfolk St., July 19-21 & 26-28, 6:30

Piano in Bryant Park continues weekdays at 12:30

Piano in Bryant Park continues weekdays at 12:30

Friday, July 20
BRIC Celebrate Brooklyn! Festival: Anoushka Shankar, Land of Gold, My Brightest Diamond, Prospect Park Bandshell, 7:30

Saturday, July 21
Come Out & Play, Manhattan Bridge Archway Plaza, DUMBO, family-friendly activities 1:00 - 5:00, adult games 7:00 - 10:00

Sunday, July 22
SummerStage: Ginuwine, the Ladies of Pink Diamonds, and DJ Stacks, Corporal Thompson Park, Staten Island, 5:00


Rebecca Manson

Rebecca Manson’s “Closer and the View Gets Wider” will be installed in Tribeca Park on July 9 (photo courtesy Rebecca Manson)

The free summer arts & culture season is under way, with dance, theater, music, art, film, and other special outdoor programs all across the city. Every week we will be recommending a handful of events. Keep watching twi-ny for more detailed highlights as well.

Sunday, July 8
Summergarden: New Music for New York: Juilliard Concert I: New Music for Mixed Ensembles, featuring Tanada II by Shin-ichirō Ikebe, Leonora Pictures by Philip Cashian, and A Sibyl by James Primosch, Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Sculpture Garden, Museum of Modern Art, 8:00

Monday, July 9
Public Art Opening: Rebecca Manson at Tribeca Park, installation of “Closer and the View Gets Wider,” Tribeca Park, 6:00

Tuesday, July 10
Bryant Park Reading Room: Poetry, with Shara McCallum, Jill McDonough, Alessandra Lynch, and Donald Revell, produced in partnership with Alice James Books, Bryant Park, 7:00

Wednesday, July 11
Films on the Green: The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie (Luis Buñuel, 1972), J. Hood Wright Park, 351 Fort Washington Ave., 8:30


Moonstruck will screen for free at Oculus Plaza on July 13

Thursday, July 12
BRIC Celebrate Brooklyn! Festival: Antibalas, Combo Chimbita, DJ Nickodemus, Prospect Park Bandshell, 7:30

Friday, July 13
Tribeca Drive-In Presents Westfield Dinner and a Movie: Moonstruck (Norman Jewison, 1987), Oculus Plaza, 7:30

Saturday, July 14
NYC Audubon: “It’s Your Tern!” Festival, Governors Island, 12 noon - 4:00


(photo by Maggie Heath)

Will Rawls, I make me [sic], TBA Festival, 2017 (photo by Maggie Heath)

Who: Will Rawls
What: High Line Performance Art
Where: On the High Line at Seventeenth St., Sunken Overlook
When: Tuesday, July 10, through Thursday, July 12, free with RSVP, 6:00 - 8:00 pm
Why: Brooklyn-based choreographer, curator, writer, and performer Will Rawls will present the site-specific Will Rawls, Uncle Rebus on the High Line in the Sunken Overlook at Seventeenth St. and Tenth Ave. on July 10-12 from 6:00 to 8:00; admission is free, but advance RSVP is required. Rawls, who has performed with Shen Wei, Marina Abramović, Nicholas Leichter, Maria Hassabi, Tino Sehgal, Jérôme Bel, Noemie LaFrance, and others and is half of the performance art duo Dance Gang (with Kennis Hawkins), reimagines the controversial Uncle Remus narrator and his Brer Rabbit tales, joining Trinity Bobo, Stanley Gambucci, and Jasmine Hearn, in costumes by Eleanor O’Connell, as they use a custom keyboard to tell a rather different story in the form of a choreographed meditation on language, race, tradition, and the human body.