The May Calendar: Virtual Events for Each Day This Month

As we adjust to the new normal, the quality of virtual culture is only improving. This month brings a varied array of livestream talks, lectures, and performances. We’re looking forward to everything from effortless mindfulness to Art Deco ocean liners.

Friday, May 1: Track down Robert Cardillo, the former director of the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (a combat support organization), as he shares an insider’s look at the hunt for Osama bin Laden. National September 11 Memorial & Museum.

Saturday, May 2: Celebrate a First Saturday with the Brooklyn Museum, which takes its show virtual this month, bringing together hands-on art, a Cinco de Mayo-inspired happy hour, music, and two curators on putting together new exhibition Out of Place: A Feminist Look at the Collection.

Sunday, May 3: French economist Thomas Piketty gives a presentation in conjunction with a film version of his breakout 2013 book Capital in the Twenty-First Century. (The movie version can be rented from Film Forum starting Friday, May 1st.)

Monday, May 4: Stay informed about the threats to free elections posed by COVID-19 and partisan threats like that which put Wisconsin voters in danger in April. NYU School of Law.

Tuesday, May 5: Belly up to food historian Jane Ziegelman (A Square Meal: A Culinary History of the Great Depression) as she sits down with Tenement Museum Director of Curatorial Affairs Dave Favaloro to look at immigrant cooking and how previous crises impacted American eating habits.

Wednesday, May 6: Look into democracy and the “complex web of institutions, documents, social norms, and belief systems” that support it as we struggle to stave off the forces of authoritarianism. Queensborough Community College.

Thursday, May 7: Join a rabbi, a reverend, and a Jewish feminist professor at a Christian divinity school to look at the Jewishness of Jesus, why that’s been obscured, and why it’s still significant today. Temple Emanu-El.

Friday, May 8: Find artistic inspiration from the Mount Vernon Hotel Museum & Garden and a lunchtime lecture on the 1830s trends of “Greek Revival Architecture & Design.”

Saturday, May 9: Proceed to the annual sustainability celebration Ecological City—Virtual—Art & Climate Solutions Pageant, which will run from 11am to 4pm.

Sunday, May 10: Love your mother—even if the pandemic keeps you apart—at this Town Hall sharing of maternal stories led by the World Mother Storytelling Project.

Monday, May 11: Make an appointment with Dr. Marisa T. Cohen (From First Kiss to Forever: A Scientific Approach to Love) as she talks about human connections in a time of social distancing.

Tuesday, May 12: Let Pulitzer Prize-winning art critic Jerry Saltz paint a pretty picture for you as he teams up with The National Arts Club for a presentation of his new book, How to Be an Artist.

Wednesday, May 13: Go down the trail of the 1964-1965 New York World’s Fair’s Spanish Pavilion, considered the Jewel of the Fair before it embarked on a second life as the lobby of a St. Louis Hilton. Landmark West!

Thursday, May 14: Search for SS veterans in America with Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative reporter Debbie Cenziper as she presents her new book, Citizen 865: The Hunt for Hitler’s Hidden Soldiers in AmericaMuseum of Jewish Heritage.

Friday, May 15: Discover the latest updates as atmospheric scientist Katharine Hayhoe comes virtually to the Simons Foundation to share what’s happening with climate change and why it (urgently) matters.

Saturday, May 16: Pay a visit to Ramallah with Orwell Prize–winning author, who talks about his 2019 book Going Home: A Walk Through Fifty Years of Occupation, chronicling a series of journeys around his home town. McNally Jackson.

Sunday, May 17: Lend an ear to the American Composers Orchestra and its new commission series Connecting ACO Community, which this week features composer Gity Razaz’s new work for violinist Jennifer Koh, followed by a Q&A.

Monday, May 18: Steal a glimpse of the Miami literary scene with the next session of “Zen and the Art of Poetry by Women,” this week featuring writers Juliana Gray and Caroline Cabrera.

Tuesday, May 19: Enter the waiting room with Caveat comedians, historians, and storytellers as they talk about overlooked women in medicine at the next session of Nevertheless She Existed.

Wednesday, May 20: Get an answer to the question of whether we should know Lizzie Borden as an unjustly persecuted daughter or a cold-blooded killer. Cara Robertson, author of the recent book The Trial of Lizzie Borden, explains the narratives that Gilded Age America was seeking.

Thursday, May 21: Appreciate some art as the International Center of Photography (ICP) hosts a lecture and virtual book launch for New York–based photographer Justine Kurland’s new monograph, Justine Kurland: Girl Pictures.

Friday, May 22: Join Metropolitan Museum of Art resident performing artists ETHEL for a virtual string quartet “Balcony Bar From Home” session.

Saturday, May 23: Cruise on over to Paris and a visit to the home of architectural historian, Pascal Yves Laurent, head of the Paris Art Deco Society. He’ll be leading an illustrated talk on French world’s fairs and ocean liners.

Sunday, May 24: Relax into a weekly Binaural Sound Meditation Broadcast, streaming live from The Dojo Upstate.

Monday, May 25: Mark Memorial Day with the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund (VVMF) and a virtual commemoration from Washington, D.C.

Tuesday, May 26: Broaden your mind with Integral Yoga New York president Swami Asokananda, who shares insights into yoga philosophy and psychology inspired by a lifetime’s study of the Bhagavad Gita.

Wednesday, May 27: Ponder the contradiction at the heart of Thomas Jefferson’s life: champion of liberty and owner of slaves. Two of the world’s leading Jefferson scholars, Annette Gordon-Reed and Peter S. Onuf, discuss their book “Most Blessed of the Patriarchs”: Thomas Jefferson and the Empire of the Imagination.

Thursday, May 28: Join Columbia University as it continues its “Care for the Polis” series. A session on Urban Infrastructures of Violence includes mental illness expert Jonathan Metzl, author of Dying of Whiteness: How the Politics of Racial Resentment Is Killing America’s Heartland.

Friday, May 29: Settle in to the kick off of We Are One: A Global Film Festival, which brings together works from dozens of festivals forced to cancel by the coronavirus.

Saturday, May 30: Let the Tibetan Buddhist Shrine Room at the Rubin Museum of Art provide a respite in stressful times with a recording of two hours of meditative chanting, available 24-7. (The room is also available for virtual tours.)

Sunday, May 31: Seek out neuroscience, psychology, and wisdom practices “to support awakening as the next natural stage of human development” in a full-day workshop with psychotherapist and Buddhist teacher Loch Kelly. 92nd Street Y.

For a printable PDF of the May 2020 calendar, click here.

All of smart New York in one weekly email: The Curriculum, free from Thought Gallery.