Most of the art world spends the holidays catching its breath, but it’s a great time for dedicated viewers to catch up. Whether it’s a fall blockbuster like Michelangelo at the Met or Louise Bourgeois at Museum of Modern Art, the Neue Galerie’s show of fabulous objets d’art from the Wiener Werkstätte, the Guggenheim’s small but gorgeous “Josef Albers in Mexico,” or the New Museum’s of-the-moment “Trigger: Gender as a Tool and a Weapon,” the city’s museums are full of soon-to-be last-chance exhibits. But start with Mike Kelley’s provocative, multichannel, high-school flashback fantasia on view at Luhring Augustine in Bushwick through January. WILL HEINRICH
Classical: Mozart, Tchaikovsky, Haydn
Jan. 4, 5, 6, 9; nyphil.org.
In its first run of concerts in the new year, the New York Philharmonic takes a turn toward the Classical era. On Jan. 4, the ebullient Jeffrey Kahane, who recently concluded an invigorating tenure as music director of the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, returns to the Philharmonic’s podium and keyboard to conduct and play Mozart’s buoyant Piano Concerto No. 17. For Tchaikovsky’s graceful, Mozart-infused “Variations on a Rococo Theme,” Kahane and the orchestra will be joined by the outstanding young cellist Alisa Weilerstein, the recipient of a 2011 MacArthur Foundation grant. Rounding out a musically rewarding if conservative program is Haydn’s burnished Symphony No. 98, written for London audiences not long after the composer learned of Mozart’s death. WILLIAM ROBIN