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The Museum of Modern Art unveils its new contemporary-art blockbuster this month at its Queens outpost, and early reports are enthusiastic. Dubbed "Drawing Now: Eight Propositions," Oct. 17, 2002-Jan. 6, 2003, the show features approximately 250 drawings by 26 young artists. Former MoMA curator Laura Hoptman (now at the Carnegie Museum) cleaves the drawing universe into eight chunks: "science and art, nature and artifice" (Russell Crotty, Jennifer Pastor, Ugo Rondione), "ornament and crime: toward decoration" (Chris Ofili, Laura Owens, Richard Wright), "drafting and architecture" (Los Carpinteros, Kevin Appel, Toba Khedoori, Julie Mehretu), "drawing happiness" (Paul Noble, Neo Rauch, David Thorpe), "mental maps and metaphysics" (Franz Ackermann, Matthew Ritchie, Mark Manders), "popular culture and national culture" (Kai Althoff, Jockum Nordström, Shahzia Sikander, Kara Walker), "comics and other subcultures" (Barry McGee, Takashi Murakami, Yoshitomo Nara) and "fashion, likeness and allegory" (John Currin, Graham Little, Elizabeth Peyton). Los Carpinteros and Wright have done wall drawings, and McGee, Nara and Manders did specially commissioned installations. This show recalls former MoMA curator Bernice Rose's seminal 1976 "Drawing Now" exhibition, and invariably will draw comparisons to it.

Fans of American Orientalism are in for a treat with the forthcoming exhibition, "Edwin Lord Weeks: Visions of India," Oct. 30-Dec. 12, 2002, mounted by Vance Jordan Fine Art, 958 Madison Avenue in New York. In the late 19th century, Edwin Lord Weeks (1849-1903), who trained in Paris and soon found substantial success with paintings of North Africa and the Middle East, was ranked alongside fellow expatriate artists James McNeill Whistler and John Singer Sargent. The artist took his first voyage to India in 1882, at the height of the British Raj, and produced highly sought-after paintings that mixed detailed observations of Indian culture with more exotic Victorian flights of imagination. The show -- the largest since the artist's death -- features approximately 25 major works, many on loan from the Metropolitan Museum, the Brooklyn Museum, the Dallas Museum and other public collections. The gallery has issued a 112-page color catalogue, priced at $50, with an essay by art historian Ulrich Hiesinger that represents the most substantial scholarship on the artist published to date. For more info email

On view now at the American Visionary Art Museum in Baltimore, Md., is "High on Life: Transcending Addiction," Oct. 5, 2002-Sept. 1, 2003. The exhibition features 300 works by 100 self-taught artists whose works address their struggles with a number of habit-forming substances, ranging from cigarettes and marijuana and Ritalin to Ayahuasca, a mystical hallucinogen from South America. Organized by Raw Vision magazine editor Arthur Tom Patterson, the show looks at the search for enlightenment through drugs as well. "The cornerstone of the exhibition is the belief that human beings are intrinsically flawed, yet endlessly transcendent," said AVAM director Rebecca Hoffberger. Among the works on tap: Self Portrait with Cigarette by Aaron Birnbaum, Opium by Alan Forbes, Ayahuasca Visitation by Alex Grey, Delusional Parasitosis by Alison Elizabeth Taylor, Pill World by Andrew J. Eptstein, Dreammachine by Brion Gysin, Ocean of Whiskey by David Sandlin, Arthur Rimbaud in New York (shooting up) by David Wojnarowicz, The Devil's Vice by Howard Finster, and an entire gallery of embroideries by Ray Materson, whose 2 x 3 in. works were sewn with threads from unraveled socks on a hoop made from a Rubbermaid lid while the artist was in prison.

"After the Beginning and Before the End: Instruction Drawings" opens the fall season at the MIT List Visual Arts Center, Oct. 17- 2002-Jan. 5, 2003. Featuring over 220 preparatory sketches, installation instructions, musical scores, sketches and assorted ephemera by Vito Acconci, Eleanor Antin, Louise Bourgeois, Pablo Picasso, Andrew Goldsworthy, Piet Mondrian and others, the show was organized by Jon Hendricks and Gunnar B. Kvaran for the Bergen (Norway) Kunstmuseum from the vast Fluxus and Conceptual Art collection of Gilbert and Lila Silverman. A panel on instruction drawings as records of creative thought, moderated by Jan van der Marck with Hendricks, Gilbert Silverman, Carolee Schneeman and others, is slated for Oct. 18. The exhibition is accompanied by a 180-page catalogue, which includes a complete list of the collection.

Cognizant of the box-office appeal of Red Dragon, the latest entry in the Hannibal Lecter omnibus, the Brooklyn Museum of Art has put the original version of William Blake's The Great Red Dragon and the Woman Clothed with the Sun on view, Oct. 18-Nov. 10, 2002. The watercolor is featured in the Anthony Hopkins screamer and is also used for the cover of the Thomas Harris novel of the same name. The Brooklyn Museum exhibition is the first time in 13 years the Blake work has been on view in New York.

A massive photography exhibition of 150 pictures all taken in Africa during the same day -- Feb. 28, 2002 -- by 100 top photojournalists, "A Day in the Life of Africa," has its North American tour debut in Vanderbilt Hall at the Grand Central Terminal, Oct. 22-Nov. 4, 2002. Assembled by the nonprofit organization Exhibitions International, the show is part of a book project produced by David Elliot Cohen and Lee Liberman, who previously did A Day in the Life of Israel. Book profits go to A Day in the Life of Africa AIDS Education Fund, administered buy the Tides Foundation in San Francisco in conjunction with the Harvard AIDS Institute, John Hopkins University Center for Communications Programs and the Soul City Foundation in South Africa. The lead sponsor of the book is the pharmaceutical company Pfizer. The exhibition will tour Atlanta, Washington, D.C., Detroit, Chicago and other American cities to be announced.

Finally, the Michelangelo Buonarroti drawing discovered by a visiting art expert browsing through the storage boxes at the Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum is being unveiled for a limited viewing in the museum's Great Hall, Oct. 29-Nov. 3, 2002. The 17 by 10 inch drawing, identified by Sir Timothy Clifford, is believed to have been a design for a seven-branched candelabrum. The discovery makes the Cooper-Hewitt one of only eight museums in the United States to own a Michelangelo. After the New York viewing, the drawing travels to the Art Institute of Chicago, where it will join the exhibition "The Medici, Michelangelo and the Art of Late Renaissance Florence," on view Nov. 9,2002-Feb. 2, 2003.

Opening on Halloween, Oct. 31, 2002 at the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art in North Adams, Mass., is Mark Taylor's "Grave Matters." The 150 black-and-white photographs in the show, done with the help of photographer Dietrich Christian Lammerts, focus on the graves of famous thinkers like Herman Melville, Jackson Pollock, James Joyce and Virginia Woolf. Each photo is accompanied by an especially creepy keepsake -- soil retrieved at the graves.

Jeffrey Deitch's ever-lively Deitch Projects in SoHo is feeling the funky flow this fall as it heads out to Williamsburg, Brooklyn, for "Yes Yes Y'all: The Birth of Hip Hop," Nov. 1-Dec. 1, 2002. The historic show of hip hop photos and flyers celebrates the release of Yes Yes Y'all, the Experience Music Project's history of hip hop by EMP curator Jim Fricke and Charlie Ahearn, director of the seminal hip hop film Wild Style. The 300-page, oral history book contains photos shot by Ahearn in the Bronx. The show opens on Nov. 1 at the Deitch Brooklyn space, 110 North 1st Street, with a party hosted by Grandmaster Caz from The Cold Crush Bros. Afternoon hip hop shows are slated for Sunday afternoons throughout November.

The 47th Corcoran Biennial takes up a theme that is perhaps better suited to inside the Beltway than anyone would admit -- though this year the show reaches well beyond the Washington, D.C., area for its participants. "Fantasy Underfoot," which goes on view at the Corcoran Gallery of Art, Dec. 21, 2002-Mar. 10, 2003, features work by 13 contemporary artists that filters 1960s Conceptual Art through various new 21st-century media. Organized by the Corcoran's influential new curator of contemporary art Jonathan P. Binstock, the biennial features works by Linda Bessemer, Janet Cardiff, George Bures Miller, Nancy Davidson, Marcel Dzama, Jacob El Hanani, Ken Feingold, Kojo Griffin, Tim Hawkinson, Bruce Nauman, Nigel Poor, Susan Smith-Pinelo and Bruce Yonemoto.

Reminding viewers that Man Ray once lived in New Jersey is "Conversion to Modernism: The Early Works of Man Ray," on view Feb. 16-Aug. 3, 2003, at the Montclair (N.J.) Art Museum. The exhibition, organized by Surrealism and Dada scholar Francis M. Naumann and chief curator of the Montclair Art Museum Gail Stavitsky, includes figure studies, landscapes, Cubist still lifes and a series of "imaginary landscapes" based on the artist's memories of a New Jersey camping trip in 1913. Also on view will be a complimentary exhibition organized by Mary Birmingham, titled "Jonathan Santlofer: The Man Ray Series," featuring a group of eight trompe l'oeil drawings of Man Ray and his work.

Tate Britain launches "Days Like These," its second Tate Triennial exhibition of contemporary British art, Feb. 27-May 26, 2003. Called a counterpart to the annual Turner Prize exhibition, the triennial is curated by Ikon Gallery director Jonathan Watkins and Tate head of exhibitions and displays Judith Nesbith. The artists in the show are Kutlug Ataman, Margaret Barron, David Baechler, Nathan Coley, Gillian Carnegie, David Cunningham, Dexter Dalwood, Ian Davenport, Richard Deacon, Peter Doig, Ceal Floyer, Richard Hamilton, Tim Head, Jim Lambie, Sarah Morris, Paul Noble, Cornelia Parker, Nick Relph, Pliver Payne, Susan Philipsz, Mike Marshall, George Shaw, Rachel Whiteread and Shizuka Yokomizo.

Spring in New York heralds the arrival of the largest show ever presented of the sculptor Eli Nadelman. More than 200 sculptures will be on view at the Whitney Museum of Contemporary Art, March 27-July 20, 2003. The comprehensive show, "Eli Nadelman: Sculptor of Modern Life," is organized by Whitney prewar art curator Barbara Haskell. Nadelman's last retrospective, also posthumous, was at the Whitney in 1975.

Paul Ha, the popular former director of the New York alternative space White Columns (and more recently deputy director at Yale University Art Gallery), has been appointed director of the Contemporary Art Museum in St. Louis (which was formerly called the Forum for Contemporary Art and is informally known as the Contemporary). Ha is to oversee the construction of the Contemporary's 27,200-square-foot new facility, designed by Oregon architect Brad Cloepfil and slated to open in September 2003.