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
August Wilson's Seven Guitars is the story of a group of friends and neighbors and their shared connection to the talented Floyd "Schoolboy" Barton, whose life as a blues guitarist is plagued by bad luck, bad decisions and an unexpected jail sentence. He's looking to get his life and career back on track, but his own demons and the worlds prejudice constantly stand in his way. The Black Rep continues its 40th season with the 1940s installment of Wilson's Pittsburgh Cycle, which chronicles African-American life in the Pennsylvania city. Seven Guitars is performed at 7 p.m. Thursday, 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday, and at 3 p.m. Sunday (March 29 to April 23) at the Emerson Performance Center at Harris-Stowe State University (3026 Laclede Avenue; www.theblackrep.org). Tickets are $15 to $40. $15-$40
Jane Martin's Anton in Show Business is both a wry deconstruction of Anton Chekhov's Three Sisters and a razor-sharp exposé on how regional theater actually gets made. Three actresses win parts in a San Antonio production of the classic drama. One is a budding TV starlet who wants to do serious theater to prove she's a real actress. One is an off-off-Broadway specialist who has hundreds of stage credits to her name but rarely earns a paycheck for her work. The final player is a local actor excited to perform with such vaunted professionals. The director is a serious artiste, the producer is over-educated, and with the money running out there may be no way to actually mount the show. These are the perils of American theater in the digital age, and probably every age that follows. Lindenwood University Theater presents Anton in Show Business at 7:30 p.m. Thursday through Saturday (March 30 to April 8) at Lindenwood University's Scheidegger Center for the Arts (2300 West Clay Street; www.lindenwood.edu/center). Tickets are $8 to $10. $8-$10
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
You may think of Mardi Gras as purple, green and gold, but what about blue? The Butterfly House hosts Morpho Mardi Gras: Bugs, Butterflies and Beads. Experience the joy of watching more than 1,000 gorgeous Blue Morpho butterflies flap their wings, and participate in some Mardi Gras-related activities, with one of the most interesting being creating your own masquerade mask. Also on display will be a large Blue Morpho sculpture by Craig Mitchell Smith, best known for his glass art. Morpho Mardi Gras takes place from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday (February 1 through March 31) at the Butterfly House (15193 Olive Boulevard, Chesterfield; www.mobot.org). Admission is $4 to $8. $4-$8
This full-career survey of playwright, novelist and visual artist Rosalyn Drexler offers a rare opportunity to see the breadth of the self-taught artist’s work. Her paintings feature bright colors and figures appropriated from films and print media, which she cropped, enlarged and printed on her canvases and then painted over them. The effect is somewhere between photo-realism, pop art and the visual language of a dream. Chubby Checker depicts a large Chubby mid-twist against squared fields of scarlet and blue and yellow, with couples dancing in 45-sized circles to the left; a smaller Checker echoes the larger one to the right. Love And Violence is far more sharp, a suited man looming over a crumpled blonde woman, grabbing her chin. A triptych of blue windows beneath the tableau show the same man helping to assault a fellow in a trench coat. free admission
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
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
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
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
Award winning local playwright and RAC Artist Fellowship recipient opens new play, Idris Elba is James Bond. A tale of a mother's loss, the media, and stereotypes in the Trump Era. free
Winner of the second season of NBC's "Last Comic Standing", John Heffron captivates audiences with diverse material that ranges from his bar hopping adventures in his twenties to married life in his thirties. He has two half hour "Comedy Central Presents..." specials and has made numerous appearances on E!'s "Chelsea Lately", "The Tonight Show", and the VH1 series "I love the..." $15 - $24https://st-louis-heliumcomedy-com.seatengine.com/events/14859
Make Me Laugh is looking for the funniest amateur comedians across the country. Our goal is encourage comedy and comedians all throughout the nation and support young comic dreams. We offer opportunities nationwide and hope to instill a successful attitude in comedy for a lifetime. Winner joins a X-Country Tour! Come root on your favorite local acts throughout the contest with local celebrity judges, including past winners Andrew Frank, and Spencer Tegtmeyer. 12http://www.laughusa.org
The reception will be Friday, March 17, from 5-9 pm. Featuring “A Taste of Wine Country” Missouri’s spirits, food and art as well as the large watercolors by Patty Strubinger, assemblages by Amy Wilcut, turned pens by Sherry and Jay Phillips, jewelry by Michelle Wells and Lauren Nall and 30 other artists will be available from March 8 thru April 30, 2017. Join us for a Taste of Wine Country at Green Door art galleries March 8-April 30, March 17th is the gallery reception!
At age 19, Nicolas Orzio was given a rare opportunity and a great responsiblility to document the World War II recovery efforts throughout Japan during the United States Occupation. Given a camera, jeep, drivevr, and a pass signed by General Douglas MacArthur, Orzio set out for two years on his mission. The images Orzio captured in 1948 and 1949 describe in incredible detail not only the physical recover and struggle of japanese peole, but also a glimpse into the moods and emotions of men, women, and the children. Sadly, Orzio has passed on February 5, 2016. $5 Adults; $3 Students, Seniors, Military; Under 18 Freehttp://iphf.org/events/nicholas-orzio/
Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.