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Audubon and Beyond

Mondays-Thursdays, 7:30 a.m.-10:30 p.m. Continues through June 15
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Among those of the ornithological persuasion, the St. Louis region is of prime interest because of our natural flyways. The Mississippi River underwrites that status; it's a superhighway for migrating birds. We have another feathered fact to boast about: While the renowned birdman John James Audubon was still alive, the St. Louis Mercantile Library acquired a rare reserved copy of his masterwork, Birds of America, from his family. This is tantamount to owning a Gutenberg Bible. Celebrate it with the exhibit Audubon and Beyond: Collecting Five Centuries of Natural History at the St. Louis Mercantile Library on the University of Missouri-St. Louis campus (1 University Drive at Natural Bridge Road; 314-516-7240 or www.umsl.edu/mercantile). The extensive exhibit incorporates sections relating to not only birds but also reptiles, mammals, fish, insects, humans, astronomy, geology, meteorology and more. Audubon and Beyond is open 7:30 a.m. to 10:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and noon to 8 p.m. Sunday (November 9 through June 2017). Admission is free. free admission

University of Missouri-St. Louis-Mercantile Library (map)
1 University Dr. at Natural Bridge Road
North St. Louis County
phone 314-516-7240
Audubon and Beyond

Imagery of Chess: St. Louis Artists

Wednesdays-Fridays, 10 a.m.-9 p.m., Sundays, 12-5 p.m. and Mondays, Tuesdays, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Continues through Sept. 17

In 1944 Marcel Duchamp, Julien Levy and Max Ernst organized The Imagery of Chess, an exhibition of chess sets reimagined by artists and performers. Their hope was that people's vision of the chess board and pieces would be expanded beyond the then-accepted options of either the classic Staunton design or the "French" set. In 2016, the World Chess Hall of Fame exhibited some of the works from the 1944 show to acknowledge the debt owed to those artists for forever altering the look of chess. Imagery of Chess: St. Louis Artists is the new follow-up exhibit, which invites twenty local artists to have their way with the game pieces. Among those participating are Eugenia Alexander, who cites the Afrofuturism movement as a key influence on her work; fashion designer and Project Runway vet Michael Drummond; and Yuka Suga, a glass and metals artist who also works as a therapist. A second, simultaneous show, Pow! Capturing Superheroes, Chess & Comics, showcases more than 200 chess-themed comic books (you'd be surprised by how many super villains play chess to keep their minds sharp for optimal intricate scheming functionality). There are also superhero-themed chess boards and a comic book reading room. Both exhibitions open a free reception from 6 to 8 p.m. Thursday, March 23, at the World Chess Hall of Fame (4652 Maryland Avenue; www.worldchesshof.org). Imagery of Chess continues through September 14. Pow! remains up through September 17. Admission is a suggested $5 donation. $5 suggested donation

#1 in Civil Rights

Mondays, Wednesdays-Sundays, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. and Tuesdays, 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Continues through April 15, 2018

St. Louis' history as a wellspring of civil rights activism is deep and impressive. Dred and Harriet Scott's legal fight to be free, Mary Meachum's bold actions leading slaves to freedom across the Mississippi River, the Jefferson Bank protesters organizing to get access to better jobs, Percy Green and the daring VP Ball invaders who challenged St. Louis' powerful elite and the exclusionary nature of their private party — all of these people fought the good fight in St. Louis. #1 in Civil Rights, the new exhibition at the Missouri History Museum (Lindell Boulevard and DeBaliviere Avenue; www.mohistory.org) chronicles the history of the civil rights movement in the metro area through artifacts, historical photos, oral histories, art work and actors' performances. Every key moment in the black struggle for equality is covered up to the present day, with artifacts collected by the museum staff following the killing of Michael Brown and the resulting civil unrest in Ferguson playing a major role in the exhibit. #1 in Civil Rights opens on Saturday, March 11, and continues through April 15, 2018. Admission is free. free admission

Missouri History Museum (map)
Lindell Blvd. & DeBaliviere Ave.
St. Louis - Forest Park
phone 314-746-4599
#1 in Civil Rights

Route 66: Main Street Through St. Louis

Mondays, Wednesdays-Sundays, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Continues through July 16

Before the interstate highway system was developed, Route 66 was the safest, fastest way to cross the western half of the country. Starting in Chicago and ending Santa Monica, the "Main Street of America" came right though St. Louis, but not in the mostly straight lines we're accustomed to now. At various points in time, Route 66 traversed Watson Road, Manchester Road, the Martin Luther King Bridge and the Poplar Street Bridge. That shifting route helped spur the growth of cities and businesses along the way, as travelers stopped overnight at the Coral Court Motel or grabbed a bit to eat at the Parkmoor Restaurant. Route 66: Main Street Through St. Louis, the new exhibition at the Missouri History Museum (Lindell Boulevard and DeBaliviere Avenue; 314-746-4599 or www.mohistory.org), tells the story of the byway through roadside signs and gas pumps, historic vehicles, bus tours and photographs. Route 66 opens Saturday, June 25, and remains open through July 16, 2017. Admission is free. free admission

Missouri History Museum (map)
Lindell Blvd. & DeBaliviere Ave.
St. Louis - Forest Park
phone 314-746-4599
Route 66: Main Street Through St. Louis

Disney's The Lion King

Sundays, 1 & 6:30 p.m., Saturdays, 2 & 7:30 p.m. and Tuesdays-Fridays, 7:30 p.m. Continues through May 7

Musical juggernaut Disney's The Lion King is so much a part of American culture that even if you've never seen it, you'll recognize most of the songs. Simba is a young lion who one day will be king, but his uncle Scar arranges the death of King Mufasa and convinces Simba that Mufasa's death is his fault. Simba runs away to live in the jungle with new friends Timon and Pumbaa. But one day he will return to claim his throne, won't he? The Elton John and Tim Rice tunes seem to imply he can do it. Disney's The Lion King is performed at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday through Friday, 2 and 7:30 p.m. Saturday and 1 and 6:30 p.m. Sunday (April 19 to May 7) at the Fox Theatre (527 North Grand Boulevard; www.fabulousfox.com). Tickets are $55 to $199. $55-$199

Buy Tickets
The Fox Theatre (map)
527 N. Grand Blvd.
St. Louis - Grand Center
phone 314-534-1111
Disney's The Lion King

The Hats of Stephen Jones

Fridays, 10 a.m.-9 p.m. and Tuesdays-Thursdays, Saturdays, Sundays, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Continues through Sept. 3
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You may not recognize Stephen Jones by name, but you've most likely seen his work. The English milliner's creations have been worn by trend-setting celebrities for more than 30 years, from Princess Diana to Lady Gaga. A selection of eight of his avant-garde hats are displayed at the Saint Louis Art Museum (1 Fine Arts Drive; www.slam.org) in Hats of Stephen Jones, a complementary exhibition to the ongoing exhibition Degas, Impressionism, and the Paris Millinery Trade. Jones' exhibit will remain up from Friday, April 21 to Sunday, September 3. At 2 p.m. Sunday, April 23, Jones visits the museum to discuss his work and his inspirations with New York milliner Jennifer Ouellette. Admission to the lecture is $20 to $25; exhibition admission is $6 to $15. $6-$15

In the Realm of Trees

Fridays, 10 a.m.-9 p.m. and Tuesdays-Thursdays, Saturdays, Sundays, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Continues through Sept. 3

Classical Chinese artists often used trees as inspirations or the focus of their works. Trees and the natural world are the focus of the new exhibition at the Saint Louis Art Museum (1 Fine Arts Drive; www.slam.org), In the Realm of Trees, which includes photographs, paintings and decorative works that glorify the beauty found in nature. The centerpiece of the show is a set of contemporary photographs called Sacred Tree on Mount Lu, made by Beijing-based photographer Michael Cherney, which was acquired for the museum's permanent collection in 2016 and will be presented for the first time in this exhibit. In the Realm of Trees opens on Friday, March 10, and remains up through Sunday, September 3, in gallery 225. The gallery is open Tuesday through Sunday, and admission is free. free admission

Learning to See: Renaissance and Baroque Masterworks

Fridays, 10 a.m.-9 p.m. and Tuesdays-Thursdays, Saturdays, Sundays, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Continues through July 30

Phoebe Dent Weil created the field of sculpture conservation in the early 1970s right here in St. Louis. As you might imagine, her personal collection of art is deep and full of treasures. Her husband Mark Weil was an art historian, and his collection is also heavy with the hits of the Baroque and Renaissance. They have promised their joint art holding to the Saint Louis Art Museum, where the public will be able to enjoy for years to come the fruits of their very fruitful collecting years. Learning to See: Renaissance Baroque Masterworks from the Phoebe Dent Weil and Mark S. Weil Collection features etchings by Rembrandt van Rijn and Albrecht Dürer and sixteenth-century Italian terracotta sculptures and busts, each work a miracle of craftsmanship and artistic vision. free admission

Jennifer Colten: Higher Ground

Wednesdays-Fridays, 12-5 p.m., Saturdays, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. and Tuesdays, 12-8 p.m. Continues through Aug. 26

Back in the old days, the insanities of racism and segregation kept black people and white people out of the same graveyards. Washington Park Cemetery was for many years the largest final resting place for black St. Louis. Its proximity to Lambert St. Louis International Airport doomed it, however. Highway 70 ran through the middle of the cemetery in the 1950s, and more bodies were moved in the '90s when MetroLink tracks were laid and the airport expanded. Photographer Jennifer Colten documented the current state of the cemetery for the new multimedia exhibition Higher Ground: Honoring Washington Park Cemetery, Its People and Place. Her large-scale, color photographs are supported by historical documentation, video and oral histories (by Denise Ward-Brown) and an art installation by Dail Chambers, all toward the goal of illuminating the racial politics and tangled history behind a black cemetery’s sacrifice in the name of progress. free admission

Buy Tickets
The Sheldon (map)
3648 Washington Blvd.
St. Louis - Grand Center
phone 314-533-9900
Jennifer Colten:  Higher Ground

Juan William Chavez: Sun Hive

Fridays, Saturdays, 10 a.m.-6 p.m., Sundays, 11 a.m.-5 p.m. and Tuesdays-Thursdays, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Continues through May 4

The creation of art has been romanticized as a solitary pursuit, but in truth most artists have a support network of trusted friends and peers who help shape ideas, offer technical advice and inspire new directions. Juan William Chavez’s multimedia installation Sun Hive is a celebration of those other communal artists: the bees. Inspired by the seeming conflict between the bees’ collective lifestyle and the meditative practice of the lone beekeeper, Chavez’ drawings, sculptures and videos explore the symbiotic relationship of the hive dwellers and the humans who harvest their golden produce. free admission

Shimon Attie: Lost in Space (After Huck)

Tuesdays-Thursdays, Saturdays, Sundays, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. and Fridays, 10 a.m.-9 p.m. Continues through June 25

American artist Shimon Attie is interested in making people aware of the historical import of public spaces that appear common. In New York he projected the written memories of long-time residents of Manhattan's Lower East Side onto former tenement buildings. For Portraits of Exile, his exhibition in Copenhagen, he submerged light boxes in a canal so that the portraits of Jewish refugees whom the government shipped to safety during World War II would remind Denmark of its heroic actions to save refugees in need, and underline the current administration's malign ambivalence to refugees. Lost in Space (After Huck), his new installation for the Saint Louis Art Museum, uses sculpture, video and audio to evoke the memories of St. Louis mytho-poetic past. A cast epoxy resin raft is the center of the piece; a corn-cob pipe, an oar and a bindle wait for their absent owners in the menacing glow of a police light. Digitally projected constellations of light appear and then wink out in the darkness surrounding the raft, while streaks of lighting race through the artificial night. free admission

Degas, Impressionism, and the Paris Millinery Trade

Tuesdays-Thursdays, Saturdays, Sundays, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. and Fridays, 10 a.m.-9 p.m. Continues through May 7

Edgar Degas may be best known for his paintings and sculptures of dancers, but he was also fascinated by high-fashion hats and the young women who made them in the fashion capital of the world. This multimedia exhibition includes 60 paintings and pastels that depict high-fashion millinery, some by Degas and others by his contemporaries Manet, Renoir, Cassatt and Toulouse-Lautrec, who were all influenced by Degas’ work. More than 40 period hats will be on display as well, many of them by the acknowledged masters of Belle Epoque millinery, including Madame Georgette and Caroline Reboux. The exhibit is free on Fridays; admission is otherwise $6 to $15. $5-$6, free on Friday

Eugene Onegin

Wed., April 26, 6:30 p.m.
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Eugene Onegin is one of those pre-revolutionary Russian men for whom life is easy, but living is still a tedious chore. When Onegin becomes entangled with two sisters, he enrages his old friend Lensky, who is engaged to one of them — and a duel is arranged between the former friends. Can Onegin apologize for offending his only friend, or will he allow the duel to proceed to its undoubtedly tragic end? Pyotr Tchaikovsky's lyric opera Eugene Onegin isn't a happy story, but it is very Russian. The Metropolitan Opera broadcasts a pre-recorded performance to theaters nationwide at 6:30 p.m. You can see it locally at the AMC Esquire 7 (6706 Clayton Road, Richmond Heights; www.fathomevents). Tickets are $19.95 to $23.89. $19.95-$23.89

Buy Tickets
AMC Esquire 7 (map)
6706 Clayton Road
Richmond Heights
phone 314-781-3806
Eugene Onegin

Twelfth Period, or Not Another Twelfth Night

Wednesdays-Saturdays, 7:30 p.m. and Through May 5, 7:30 p.m. Continues through April 28

Have you ever seen a Shakespeare production and thought, "This is great, but I was hoping for something more like Cruel Intentions?" Have no fear, because Equally Represented Arts, or ERA, takes Shakespeare's Twelfth Night and sets it in a 1990s high school. Twelfth Period, or Not Another Twelfth Night, draws its inspiration from films such as Rushmore and Election, and features a clever young woman who disguises herself as a boy to attend Illyria Preparatory Academy. She falls in love with a boy unaware of her real identity, while he feels a strange attraction to his new friend. ERA presents Twelfth Period at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday to Saturday (April 19 to May 5; no show on April 29) at the Centene Center for Arts and Education (3547 Olive Street; www.eratheatre.org). Tickets are $15 to $20. $15-$20

Medardo Rosso: Experiments in Light and Form

Wednesdays, Saturdays, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. and Thursdays, Fridays, 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Continues through May 13

Italian sculptor Medardo Rosso was ahead of his time. Rather than creating heroic sculptures of figures from myth or doing a lucrative business in the monumental bronzes that were popular in the late nineteenth century, Rosso's sculptures seem to be caught emerging from bronze or wax. These almost-manifesting faces and forms are incredibly responsive to light, giving his work a fluid, ephemeral nature not often associated with sculpture. Medardo Rosso: Experiments in Light and Form, the new exhibition at the Pulitzer Arts Foundation (3716 Washington Boulevard; www.pulitzerarts.org), includes almost 100 examples of the artist's best work, including some of his photographs and drawings. Experiments in Light and Form opens with a free reception from 6 to 9 p.m. Friday, November 11. The show continues through May 13, and the museum is open Wednesday through Saturday. Admission is free. free admission

Pulitzer Arts Foundation (map)
3716 Washington Blvd.
St. Louis - Grand Center
phone 314-754-1850
Medardo Rosso: Experiments in Light and Form
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