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Get Out and Do This: Armory, Volta NY and Whitney Biennial Arts Festivals

By Daniel Jumpertz | March 3, 2014 11:07am
 Contemporary art festivals dominate this edition of Get Out And Do This.
Get Out and Do This - Events Mon March 3
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Monday, March 3
The Grolier Club, named after the great French bibliophile Jean Grolier, began in 1884 as a fellowship of men and women devoted to books and the graphic arts. Although the club is private, its exhibitions are open to the public. Currently showing in their Second Floor Gallery is "Pop-Ups From Prague: A Centennial Celebration of the Graphic Artistry of Vojtech Kubašta (1914-1992)." Czech architect and artist Vojtech Kubašta was a pioneer of the pop-up book and a master artist of children's literature. On display is a private collection featuring many examples of his finest work with paper, pencil and scissors. Through March 15, 47 E. 60th St., Upper East Side. Gallery hours Monday to Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Free.

Tuesday, March 4
As the daughter of legendary New York photographer Diane Arbus, Amy Arbus was initially reluctant to become a photographer. She said in an interview with The Guardian newspaper that, "I was holding myself back, afraid to compete with this legend...But I remember the minute the viewfinder came up to my eye, I was like, 'Oh my God, I'm home'". Amy Arbus went on to capture the downtown vibe for the Village Voice as a photographer in the 1980s and “On the Street 1980-1990" displays her edgy portraits which include Madonna and UK punks The Clash. Leica Gallery, 670 Broadway, Greenwich Village. Today from noon - 6 p.m. Free.

Wednesday, March 5
Every year the first Wednesday of March is World Read Aloud Day,  a campaign to motivate children, teens and adults worldwide to celebrate the power of words, especially those that are shared from one person to another. World Read Aloud Day aims to create a community of readers advocating for every child’s right to a safe education and access to books and technology. Interested in participating? Download Litworld's Home, Office or Classroom Activity Kits to get started.

Hear New York Times culture reporter David Itzkoff discuss his latest book "Mad as Hell: the Making of Network and the Angriest Man in Movies," this evening at the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts, 40 Lincoln Center Plaza, Upper West Side. 6 p.m. start, free.

Thursday, March 6
Opening today, New York City's huge annual art exhibition The Armory Show spotlights the best and brightest of living contemporary artists.  View more than 200 international galleries that are showcasing their picks of the current art scene, many showing for the first time in New York. Icons of 20th century art are also represented in Pier 92's Modern section. This year's break-out region is China, with Xu Zhen as the commissioned artist for the event. Until Sunday, Piers 92 & 94, 12th Avenue at W. 55th St., Hell's Kitchen.  If you want to get the jump on the crowds, grab a ticket for MoMA's Armory Party on Wednesday night that includes a sneak preview of the show, as well as performances by Blood Orange and Jamie XX from UK indie band The XX.

Also opening today is Volta NY, an invitational solo project fair for contemporary art, that offers a nice counterpoint to the sprawling Armory show. Check out Installation Magazine's must-see guide here. 82 Mercer St., SoHo. $15, or grab the VOLTA NY + The Armory Show Dual Pass for $50.

Friday, March 7

According to Donna De Salvo, chief curator at the Whitney, “The 2014 Whitney Biennial brings together the findings of three curators with very distinct points of view." This Biennial will be the last to take place in the Whitney’s building at Madison Avenue, before the Museum moves downtown in the spring of 2015. $20. Whitney Museum of American Art, 945 Madison Ave. at 75th Street, Upper East Side.

Wes Anderson's quirky and literate films seem to polarize film buffs. Haters say his films are overly twee and cute, while lovers feel there's a touch of genius in his filmic world view. His latest film, "The Grand Budapest Hotel" stars regulars Edward Norton and Bill Murray alongside Jeff Goldblum and Ralph Fiennes in a tale that recounts the adventures of M. Gustave, a legendary concierge at a famous European hotel between the wars. Previews begin today at AMC Lincoln Square 13, 1998 Broadway on the Upper West Side, and Union Square Stadium 14, 850 Broadway, Union Square.

Saturday, March 8
Flamenco Festival 2014 brings together Spain’s finest dancers and singers in an immersive celebration of authentic flamenco. This evening at the New York City Center catch acclaimed dancer Eva Yerbabuena's new back-to-basics show ¡Ay!. Ticket holders can also enjoy free flamenco lessons from 6:30 p.m. prior to the show and to complete the scene, tapas and Spanish wine will also be available. 131 W. 55th St., Midtown.

Sunday, March 9
Delve into the world of contemporary street art this weekend by taking one or two of Bronx-bred David Meade's Street Art Walks around the Brooklyn neighborhoods of Williamsburg (Saturday) and Bushwick (Sunday). Ex-graffiti artist Meade leads the two-hour walks that display an ever-evolving mix of street art, featuring some of the world's more dynamic underground artists, working in a diverse array of mediums such as paste ups, stencils, murals, stickers, left objects and graffiti. Alt Citizen's Scott Bunze says that "Meade trains you to see the world around you in a completely new and interesting light. For tourists or native New Yorkers, the art walk is enriching and informative."
Williamsburg: Saturday at 2:30 p.m.
Bushwick: Sunday at 2:30 p.m.
$20, book at streetartwalk.com