Cinderella by Bobbi Beck - St. Agnes Exhibit

The city’s big museums are always launching ambitious exhibitions that get tons of press. But some smaller neighborhood venues are putting on ambitious shows too, and they’re worth a visit. Here are three that are open right now, or set to open soon.

1. Upper West Side artist Bobbi Beck has an exhibition of her illustrations up at the St. Agnes Library on Amsterdam between 81st and 82nd streets until March 28. The art is in the staircase between the 1st and 2nd floors (there is almost always an intriguing show there).

Here’s a description of the images: “Her artworks have been described as existing somewhere between classic fine art and illustrated storytelling. Each piece is filled with her versions of satirical, mythological and psychological elements that lift off the surface of the paper and enter your mind in a way that may mirror your own life experiences. They are constructed of forms, motifs and symbols that warp, twist and morph into strange, free-form compositions that defy logic, gravity and nature. Viewers have described her completely original works as possessing hints of Dali, Escher, Beardsley and Mucha.” Learn more about Bobbi Beck here.

2. The West Side Arts Coalition has launched a new photography show at its space on the North side of the Broadway median at 96th street. The group show is called Keep Calm With Camera On and features work from 10 artists. It’s open on Wednesdays from 6 to 8, and on weekends from noon to 6. The exhibit closes on March 29 with a reception from 2:30 to 5:30.

3. A new show called The Interface Experience exploring the history of personal computing is opening in Bard Graduate Center’s Focus Gallery on April 3. And you can even tap away at some of the devices: “the five computing devices central to the exhibition—the Commodore 64 (1982), Macintosh Plus (1986), PalmPilot Professional (1997), iPad 2 (2010), and Microsoft Kinect (2010)—are fully functional and are running custom-developed software.”

“The gallery will also provide a depository for visitors to drop off their small electronic devices, such as phones, handheld computers, and other small items, for responsible recycling, in order to call attention to the growing electronic waste stream.”

The gallery is at 18 West 86th Street. More info here.

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