If you arrive early for the Armory Show or you want to come out for air there's a collection of Allen Ginsberg's photo portraits with the captions covering 40 years at Greenberg (41 E 57th, between Madison & Park) and a Pierre Huyghe film at Goodman (24 W 57th). Further north at 980 Madison (76-77th Sts) Gagosian is giving up a lot of wall space to this Malevich kid that rips off Ryman with the white canvases. All open 10-6. I think the least Armory crowds, other than the moment it opens, are at dinner time, as the peer pressure for dining mounts. Two installments over the course of a day, picking out select works the second time. You can sit Indian-style at cubicles if done thougtfully (I said so) but it grates when people get caught up on each others lives for 20 minutes in the middle of a gallery. I make a ritual out of camping by the Daniel Richter if there's one, but then there's the other problem, no Zwirner means no Richter &co., Zwirner defected to the All-American ADAA joining Galerie Lelong and Luhring Augustine which won't be at Armory, then there's the galleries that spit between both, which is ok if you have the time and inclination to see both. 2011 Armory has a Latin America Focus which consists of 18 galleries, to go with a lot of European galleries.
Free shows: The Independent, highly recommended if you're in the area, which has co-founder Elizabeth Dee as well as Kern and Gavin Brown's defecting from Armory, White Columns and Artists' Space ++. 548 West 22nd Street. At 535 W 22nd (PPOW) you can check out the Wojnarowitz videos so promoted by right-wing Catholics and pray for your sins by Francesco Vezzoli's stained glass (below) at Gagosian (522 W 21st). Dee Gallery is two blocks away (545 w20th) with Mariam Cahn paintings. 24th Street has Ellsworth Kelly, Hermann Nitsch blood paintings, Kai Althoff figures "awakening loathsome blood" (pdf), Terrence Koh and a pile of salt, and more paintings.
Nearby is another free recommendation: the Moving Image show at the tunnel at 269 11th Avenue around 28th St, strategically located if you are seeing Los Carpinteros at Sean Kelly at 528 W 29th, for which tank can be filled, essential as hunger from not stuffing one's self leads to early Armory exits, at the Punjabi buffet at 301 10th Avenue between 27th and 28th. Verge Art Brooklyn in DUMBO is free and open til 10.