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Along with New York's regularly scheduled gallery and museum openings, there's always a slew of art-related events happening in the city just below the radar. ArtWeLove's weekly events digest helps you navigate the art scene's offerings, on and off the beaten track.
MONDAY: Party Down at MoMA
Have your own "Night at the Museum" experience--only with better art, and without Ben Stiller's facial tics--at MoMA Monday Nights' Pop Rally party. One Monday a month the museum keeps its doors open after hours to offer musical performances, films, access to its exhibitions and permanent collection, all lubricated by a cash bar. Tonight's edition will include music by the Brooklyn-based art band Stars Like Fleas and a screening of Dibakar Banerjee's "Oye Lucky! Lucky Oye," to be introduced by actor Abhay Deol as part of the "New India" film series. Hours: 5:30 p.m. -8:45 p.m. Admission: $20.
TUESDAY: Run a Museum Marathon
For the year's most popular mass museum night, the city will shut down Fifth Avenue between 82nd Street and 105th Street for the annual Museum Mile Festival--offering up free admissions, entertainment, and art activities up and down New York's legendary art esplanade. The nine participating museums include the Met, the Guggenheim, the Neue Gallerie, the Jewish Museum, and El Museo del Barrio, so bring your walking shoes! Hours: 6:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m.
WEDNESDAY: Learn How to Start a Collection
Want to build your own art collection but not sure where to start? Get some tips from the experts at "Creating a Niche Collection," a panel discussion at the Brooklyn Museum led by its decorative arts curator, Barry R. Harwood, and featuring "Antiques Roadshow" appraiser Eric Silver, collector and publisher Michael Valentine, A.I.R. Gallery director Katherine Griefen, and collector Robert Lesser. Hours: 7:00 p.m. - 8:30 p.m. Admission: $20 ($15 for Members). At the Iris and B. Gerald Cantor Gallery, 5th Floor.
THURSDAY: Scope Out Promising Artists
Swing by the Cue Foundation for the opening of a group show featuring the Joan Mitchell Foundation's 2008 MFA Grant Recipients. Previous recipients of the $10,000 grant include Tara Donovan and Saya Woolfalk. Hours: 6 p.m. - 8 p.m.
FRIDAY: Journey to an Art Island
Ever wanted to be part of a real New York art happening? Well here's your chance. This weekend Governors Island is hosting its annual "Figment" art festival, bringing together hundreds of artists to show their work at one of the city's most under-appreciated historical landmarks--for free! Participation in this interactive, audience-engaging event is open to any artist working in any medium, from performance art to installation. Hours: 10 a.m. - 5 p.m., Sat. & Sun. 10 a.m. - 7 p.m.
SATURDAY: See Art That's Not the Same Old Drill
This weekend the Crest Hardware Store in Williamsburg, a favorite supply store for the neighborhood's overflowing artist population, will host its annual show filling the premises with tool-based art made by locals. For the latest edition more than 100 artists have contributed works to the reliably quirky display, and bands will play in the nearby Macri Park amid a throng of food and beverage vendors. All proceeds will benefit the park. Hours: 1 p.m. and onward. At 558 Metropolitan Ave., Williamsburg.
SUNDAY: Learn to Make Art the Old-Fashioned Way
Join the Museum of Art & Design's Studio Sundays program for a hands-on workshop geared to both adults and children that focuses on the physicality of creating art and the tactile qualities of materials, from clay to metal and glass. Hours: 2 p.m. - 4 p.m.
Also, for economically conscious art-lovers, don't forget the following weekly museum freebies: New Museum, free Thursdays from 7 p.m. - 9 p.m.; Bronx Museum, free all day Fridays; MoMA, free Friday nights from 4 p.m. - 8 p.m.; American Folk Art Museum, free Fridays from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.; International Center of Photography, pay-what-you-wish admission Fridays from 5 p.m. - 8 p.m.; Guggenheim, pay-what-you-wish admission Fridays from 5:45 p.m. - 7:45 p.m.; Whitney Museum, pay-what-you-wish admission Fridays from from 6 p.m. - 9 p.m.; Asia Society, free Fridays from 6 p.m. - 9 p.m. (free Fridays suspended July 4 to Labor Day); Rubin Museum of Art. free Fridays from 7 p.m. - 10 p.m.; The Jewish Museum, free on Saturdays from 11 a.m. - 5:45 p.m.; Museum of the City of New York, free Sundays from 10 a.m. - noon; The Frick Collection, pay-what-you-wish admission Sundays from 11 a.m. - 1 p.m.