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Elle Decor

Courtesy of Tina Kim Gallery

ELLE DECOR editors report from the intersection of art, design, and visual culture.

December feels like a great time to hibernate. You may justifiably have a strong impulse to tell Alexa to stream Beyoncé’s “Cozy” while wrapped in a blanket. But as the holidays approach and mantel decorating and party plans take precedence, the city’s galleries and museums are full of great shows you should really see before you’re too stuffed to function. Here, we’ve rounded up a few of the shows and exhibitions captivating ELLE DECOR editors now.


“House for the Inhabitant Who Refused to Participate,” by Charlap Hyman & Herrero, Tina Kim Gallery

An exquisite exhibition opened last week at New York’s  Tina Kim Gallerycurated by architecture and design firm Charlap Hyman & Herrero. Shadow play was at its center—figuratively and literally—with contrasting felt covering the floor and freezing every object’s shadow in place. “House for the Inhabitant Who Refused to Participate” is an exploration of a single moment, an homage to a project of the same name by the American architect John Hejduk. "In Hejduk's work, he celebrates the single moment instead of the future, encouraging a heightened experience of both all that is good and all that is bad," says Adam Charlap Hyman. A four-poster bed with Sputnik finials by Hejduk anchors the gallery, complemented sweetly by a small ceramic relief by Italian ceramist Pietro Melandri of Leda and the Swan, casting subtle shadows of its own. Elsewhere in the show you can find curious references to suspended time in an Aubusson tapestry designed by celebrated modernist Mathieu Matégot of a Tijuana sunset, and a small painting by Luke O’Halloran of playing cards wafting midair. Louise Bourgeois’s leaning “Labyrinthine Tower” introduces a feeling of precarity, and a pietra dura doorframe by sculptor duo Ficus Interfaithwelcomes you over the threshold to nowhere. "We hope visitors will be overcome by a feeling of soft stillness," says Charlap Hyman. "Maybe they will recline on the bed, observe the show through the tower posts, and consider the way each work has its own way of fixing something that is usually perceived as fleeting." In its entirety, the show is a sensitive consideration of what it means to be present and whether there really is anything other than the current moment. On view through January 21. —C.O.

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