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2022 Year in Review: Unframed

Every month, Design Milk’s art expert, David Behringer, checked out the best of what’s happening in modern art in New York City galleries. He sought the coolest exhibitions and shows that most of us didn’t even know existed, and shared an up close and personal experience of the artist and their work. If you missed any of his posts or just want a second glance, read on for a visual tour of NYC’s art scene from our Unframed column in 2022.

12.20.22 | By
2022 Year in Review: Unframed

Abraham Palatnik: 7 Decades of Pushing Artistic Possibilities

A retrospective of artworks by the legendary Abraham Palatnik was on view at the Nara Roesler Gallery in New York back in January. Curated by Luis Pérez-Oramas, the exhibition was visually electric and perfectly selected – every single work worth a pause. “Abraham Palatnik: Seismograph of Color” was a must-see for newcomers and long-time fans alike.

Sount Blanket No 14 with viewer

Giant Coats + Abstracted Echos: The Sculpture of Jacqueline Kiyomi Gork

Back in February, artist Jacqueline Kiyomi Gork presented an intriguing interaction of sculpture and sound at Francois Ghebaly gallery in New York City. The exhibit offered layers of unexpected surprises, including a strange swirl of sound that was produced by the footsteps of visitors in real time.

Michael Heizer Installation View at Gagosian Gallery 1

The Monumental Weight of Michael Heizer

Legendary artist Michael Heizer presented five massive sculptures back in March at Gagosian Gallery in New York that balance huge boulders on interlocking steel. It was a visually thrilling experience that you could feel in your gut.

Detail of antique glass lab equipment in "Day VII B"

Artist Ghiora Aharoni Remixes the Origin Story of the Universe

Israeli-born American artist Ghiora Aharoni re-mixes time, science, and multiple religions into dazzlingly complex glass assemblages. Seven of those sculptures from “The Genesis Series” took center stage along with other glass works in an exhibition titled “Inception” on view at Sundaram Tagore Gallery in New York this past April.

Large 'Jamboree' painting with visitor

Dive Into the Surprising “Daydream” of Artist Josh Sperling

Artist Josh Sperling’s exhibition of shaped paintings was on view at Perrotin in New York in May. “Daydream” pushed the possibilities of precision, color, and curiosity through multiple series of joyful works. His canvas paintings combine an obsession for color selection with the precision of a CNC router. Each painting feels too perfect to be human but too human to be a computer.

View 1 of hanging glass and steel "Poudrée"

5 Curious Objects From Jean-Luc Moulène’s “Clearly”

Artist Jean-Luc Moulène ignited curiosity and froze time in sculptural experiments presented in “Clearly” at Miguel Abreu Gallery in New York in June. Utilizing blown glass, carved foam, found objects, and cast bronze, the exhibition was a cross-fertilization of new ideas.

Woman stands in Paola Pivi's sculpture Free Land Scape

4 Surprises in New York Galleries This Summer

Summer is the “off season” for the contemporary art galleries, which means weekend closures, group exhibitions, and surprising gems! We covered 4 exhibitions worth cutting out of work a couple hours early for: Paola Pivi’s “Free Land Scape” at Perrotin New York; “Wave” featuring Jesús Rafael Soto at Marlborough New York; “Universes 5” at The Hole; and Portia Munson & “Made to Be Broken” at P.P.O.W Gallery.

A group poses for cameras in the largest circle of water fountain exhibition

The Summer of Water Sculpture: Jeppe Hein and Cristina Iglesias

New York City hosted two surprising public artworks that use water to reveal and engage the public, surroundings, and history of New York. The loudest of the two sculptures was at Rockefeller Center, where contemporary artist Jeppe Hein tempted visitors to walk into circular fountain enclosures that rose and fell at unpredictable intervals. The second was by Spanish artist Cristina Iglesias who resurrected an ancient stream under Madison Square Park.

2nd view of installation at Pace Gallery NYC

Rafael Lozano-Hemmer Takes Your Pulse

Artist Rafael Lozano-Hemmer presented a dazzling interactive exhibition at Pace Gallery in New York in September that broadcasted and recorded every visitor’s heartbeat across 3,000 suspended light bulbs.

Detail of "Impressionist" by Sheree Hovsepain

Sheree Hovsepian’s Poetic Assemblages at Rachel Uffner Gallery

The captivating work of artist Sheree Hovsepian poetically plays between the curves of the body and a sense of geometry, often blurring the lines between object and image. Her must-see exhibition Leaning In was on view in October at Rachel Uffner Gallery in New York, featuring three series of works that abstract, crop, and echo the human in compositions that are both strange and familiar.

Sculpture "Alana (an offering)" on pedestal

The Honesty of Deborah Butterfield’s Bronze Horses

In November, American sculptor Deborah Butterfield’s exhibition at Marlborough Gallery in New York invited viewers to walk circles around sculptures that hold the most honest aura of horses, and yet delightfully deceive in their material. Though each work appeared to be assembled from various types of wood, they are in fact all bronze.

Caroline Williamson is Editorial Director of Design Milk. She has a BFA in photography from SCAD and can usually be found searching for vintage wares, doing New York Times crossword puzzles in pen, or reworking playlists on Spotify.