This Week in Art Openings: "Sexy Time," Paul Fusco and Stan Smokler

Mary Logan Barmeyer

Sexy Time: A Group Effort
Let’s talk about sex. These emerging and mid-career artists use humor to get us over the stigma that sex is a taboo topic. Some of the works include Franklin Evans’ video drawings that poke at the homoerotic nature of baseball, Susan Anderson’s photographs of child beauty pageant contestants and Randy Polumbo’s sculptural bouquets of dildos and butt plugs -- beautiful from afar and a bit startling once you get close. It’s OK to release an awkward chuckle -- it’s supposed to be funny.

Morgan Lehman Gallery, 317 Tenth Ave., (212) 268-6699. Opening reception June 5, 6–8 p.m. Through Aug. 1.

Paul Fusco, RFK Funeral Train Rediscovered
This exhibit coincides with the 40th anniversary of Robert Kennedy’s assassination, which shook the country in June 1968. Photographer Paul Fusco, on assignment for LOOK magazine, rode the train with RFK’s body from New York City to Washington D.C. for burial at Arlington and captured with a lens the emotions of everyone he encountered along the way -- the rich, the poor, black, white, somber, reverent, soulful. The photographs were shot using Kodachrome film and have the retro, vibrant colors that were typical of photojournalism of the time.

Danziger Projects, 521 w. 26th St., (212) 629-6778. Jun. 6–July 31.

Stan Smokler, Celestial Mapmaker
Stan Smokler scavenges around town, finding urban relics and discarded stuff that he can transform into looming steel sculptures with a big, divine meaning. This exhibit takes its roots in cartography -- a way, Smokler thinks, to record our place in time and the world. These “maps” of metal have a whimsical air despite their lofty implications of, you know, our existence in the universe, and their funny shapes with contrasting textures and lines make them interesting to look at, too.

Kim Foster Gallery, 529 W. 20th St., (212) 229-0044. Opening reception Jun. 7, 6–8 p.m. Through July 3.

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