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Chinese Buddhist Art, 10th-15th Centuries

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

Very rarely does an art exhibition include the actual wall an artist worked on, but the Saint Louis Art Museum does so for Chinese Buddhist Art, 10th-15th Centuries. A six-foot-by-four-foot section of a temple wall that has a painting of the Bodhisattva Akalokiteśvara (Guanyin) on one side is the focal point of the exhibition, and an exceptionally rare object. The show also includes four hanging scrolls, and a never-before-displayed painted, wooden sculpture of a seated arhat, the Buddhist term for a person who has achieved enlightenment. Chinese Buddhist Art, 10th-15th Centuries is open Tuesday through Sunday (March 30 to August 30) in gallery 225 of the Saint Louis Art Museum (1 Fine Arts Drive; www.slam.org). Admission is free. free admission

Sunken Cities: Egypt's Lost World

Tuesdays-Sundays. Continues through Sept. 9

The ancient city of Thonis-Heracleion was Egypt's main Mediterranean port from 664 to 332 BC, or roughly 100 years longer than the country of America has existed. It was a thriving, international metropolis — and then a string of natural disasters wiped it off the map. Archeologist Franck Goddio and his team of underwater archeologists rediscoverd Thonis-Heracleion 1,000 years later, four miles off the coast of present-day Egypt. It was more than 30 feet below the surface of the sea, its colossal statues of gods, pharaohs and ritual animals resting in the ruins of a world long gone. Three of these massive statues comprise the heart of the new exhibition Sunken Cities: Egypt's Lost Worlds, which will be on display at the Saint Louis Art Museum (1 Fine Arts Drive; www.slam.org) Tuesday through Sunday (March 25 to September 9). Alongside the trio of statues are more than 200 ceremonial and commercial artifacts (bronze vessels, coins, jewelry) found both on the sea floor and on loan from museums in Cairo and Alexandria. Admission to the exhibit is $8 to $20, and free on Friday. $8-$20

St. Louis Filmmakers Showcase

Fridays-Sundays. Continues through July 22

Musical duo Rusty and Clark Fairwood are a flashy act on the rise. With their smart suits (complete with bedazzled crosses and American flags) and massive coifs, they're entertainers in the Grand Ole Opry style. When they audition to be hosts on the talk show East Plains: Get Out, the Fairwood boys are faced with a dilemma. The TV station that broadcasts the show pretty much runs the town of East Plains, but the owners are immoral sinners. Will the Fairwood Brothers be stained by filthy lucre, or will they fight for justice? The feature film exploring that question, East Plains: Get Out (directed by Renior Fairwood), screens at 9:15 p.m. Friday, July 13, the opening night of this year's St. Louis Filmmakers Showcase. In addition to twelve different programs of short subject films (including "Lingua Francas," a documentary about fine dining in Springfield, Missouri, which is featured in the RFT's Short Orders section this week), the festival also squeezes in eight feature films. Among them are the documentaries Gateway Sound and The Best of Us: 100 Seasons of Muny Magic. The former is an in-depth look at how a local recording studio has adapted to survive the transformation of the music industry. The Best of Us is an interview-intensive film about a more stable musical industry, the Muny. And then there’s writer/director Catherine Dudley-Rose's film Parallel Chords, which began as a short subject featured in the 2015 edition of the showcase. Dudley-Rose has expanded the story into a full-length film about a young female violinist struggling to maintain her individuality under constant pressure from her father (a pianist) and the industry's expectations for young women with talent. The director is a successful violinist in her own right, which no doubt informs the story. The St. Louis Filmmakers Showcase continues Friday through Sunday for two weeks (July 13 to July 22). All screenings take place at Washington University's Brown Hall (Forsyth Boulevard and Chaplin Drive; www.cinemastlouis.org). Tickets are $10 to $13. $10-$13

Washington University-Brown Hall (map)
Forsyth Blvd & Chaplin Dr
University City
phone 314-935-5000
St. Louis Filmmakers Showcase

Panoramas of the City

Through Aug. 12

In a year in which the Missouri History Museum exhibition team has given us the stories of St. Louis' greatest civil rights freedom fighters and returned us to the glory days of Route 66, it would take something truly spectacular for the museum to outdo itself — and yet somehow it's done just that. The museum's new exhibition, Panoramas of the City, is as close to time travel as you can get without involving Morlocks. The show comprises seven floor-to-ceiling-size images of scenes such as Charles Lindbergh speaking to a crowd of 100,000 people on Art Hill at his "welcome home" party and a 1920 march on Olive Street by the League of Women Voters. These massive photographs are joined by props and interactive media displays that give viewers a better understanding of the historical context of each scene. More than 60 panoramas of various sizes round out the exhibit, which will be on display from September 2 to August 12, 2018, at the Missouri History Museum (Lindell Boulevard and DeBaliviere Avenue; www.mohistory.org). Admission is free. free admission

Missouri History Museum (map)
Lindell Blvd. & DeBaliviere Ave.
St. Louis - Forest Park
phone 314-746-4599
Panoramas of the City

Muny Memories: 100 Years on Stage

Through June 2, 2019

The Muny is just about to open its landmark 100th season, and its neighbor, the Missouri History Museum (Lindell Boulevard and DeBalivere Avenue; www.mohistory.org), celebrates the occasion with an exhibit dedicated to the history of America's largest outdoor theater. Muny Memories: 100 Years on Stage features exhibits that explain the founding of the theater, display favorite memories from stars and staff, and give a look back stage to see how the dedicated technical crew creates and rigs all those sets and lights. You can also take a look at programs from the Muny's long, storied past. Muny Memories opens on Saturday, June 9, and remains on display daily through June 2, 2019. Admission is free. free admission

Missouri History Museum (map)
Lindell Blvd. & DeBaliviere Ave.
St. Louis - Forest Park
phone 314-746-4599
Muny Memories: 100 Years on Stage

Works from the Studios

Mondays-Saturdays, 10 a.m.-6 p.m. and Sundays, 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Continues through Aug. 13

The Craft Alliance Center of Art + Design (6640 Delmar Boulevard, University City; www.craftalliance.org) serves as both a teaching institution and a gallery. Both facets are on display at Works from the Studios, a juried exhibition. The show features works by students and faculty in ceramics, metals, fiber and wood, among other media. Works from the Studios opens with a free reception from 5 to 8 p.m. Friday, July 13. The work remains up through August 13, and the gallery is open daily. free admission

Aisha in Wonderland: Maïmouna Guerresi

Wednesdays-Saturdays, 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Continues through July 28

For more than twenty years Italian-Senegalese artist Maïmouna Guerresi has created art that depicts strong women. For Guerresi's new exhibition, Aisha in Wonderland, she photographs women draped in the rich and vibrant fabrics worn by Muslim women and then sets those figures against backgrounds in shades of gray. Inspired by the changes that Lewis Carroll's Alice experiences as she travels through another world, particularly her expanding and shrinking form, Guerrisi manipulates her images so that our perception of their dimensions change. An impossibly tall woman hidden inside a crimson robe stands on a plank high above a mysteriously closed door; a diminutive figure wearing a patterned robe in hues of green and blue strides past a cluster of plastic jugs and containers, the minarets and domes of an Islamic city hugging the horizon. Aisha in Wonderland: Maïmouna Guerresi opens with a free reception from 5 to 8 p.m. Friday, June 29, at Projects + Gallery (4733 McPherson Avenue; www.projects-gallery.com). The exhibit remains on display through July 28, and the gallery is open 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday. Admission is free. free admission

Projects + Gallery (map)
4733 McPherson Ave
St. Louis - Central West End
phone 314-696-8678
Aisha in Wonderland: Maïmouna Guerresi

Jeremy R. Brooks

Fri., July 20, 5-8 p.m. and Tuesdays-Saturdays, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Continues through Aug. 31

Ceramicist Jeremy R. Brooks is currently based in Carbondale, Illinois, where he's teaching at Southern Illinois University. His own studies include an unusual type of clay with a rubber-like elasticity that sets up quickly. Working quickly, he extrudes paper-like slabs and long coils, which he can then use for knitting, weaving or crocheting. The resulting forms have a plasticity that seems nearly impossible. Knitted vessels made from delicate strands of clay, sinuous loops of loosely bunched clay-yarn, a rainbow skein of fibers wrapped around itself that approximates the whorls and shape of a brain — Brooks' work is both trompe l'oeil and trompe l'clay. A small exhibition of Brooks' ceramics go on display this weekend at the Duane Reed Gallery (4729 McPherson Avenue; www.duanereedgallery.com), along with Brian Smith's abstract paintings. The show opens with a free reception from 5 to 8 p.m. Friday, July 20, and remains on display 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.. Tuesday through Saturday through August 31. free admission

Duane Reed Gallery (map)
4729 McPherson Ave.
St. Louis - Central West End
phone 314-361-4100
Jeremy R. Brooks

Golf the Galleries

Saturdays, 10 a.m.-3 p.m. and Tuesdays-Fridays, 12-8 p.m. Continues through Aug. 12

Miniature golf courses are part sport, part pop-art installation, with an emphasis on big, colorful distractions and obstacles surrounding the final hole. The galleries at the Sheldon (3648 Washington Boulevard; www.thesheldon.org) embrace the art portion of the set-up with their summer exhibition, Golf the Galleries. Local artists and institutions were given the chance to design their own creative hole on a nine-hole course that fills the galleries. B.J. Vogt crafted a volcano-themed hole; sink your ball and it erupts in a cloud of packing peanuts. Justin King's Serengeti Park hole mimics an urban park, but with beautifully detailed, anthropomorphic cardboard animals sitting on the benches and strolling the paths. There's an Alice in Wonderland hole courtesy of Natalie Pinson, and design firm Arcturis used lighting and mirrors to create a simple-looking green that will bedevil duffers with optic distortions and tricky slopes. Golf the Galleries officially opens with a public viewing from 5 to 9 p.m. Friday, June 1, but tee times start at 11 a.m. Sunday, June 3. The course is open noon to 8 p.m. Tuesday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday and 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday through August 12. Greens fees are $6 to $12. $6-$12

Buy Tickets
The Sheldon (map)
3648 Washington Blvd.
St. Louis - Grand Center
phone 314-533-9900
Golf the Galleries

Painted Pieces: Art Chess from Purling London

Mondays, Tuesdays, Saturdays, 10 a.m.-5 p.m., Sundays, 12-5 p.m. and Wednesdays-Fridays, 10 a.m.-9 p.m. Continues through Sept. 16

The standard chess set has been reimagined in multiple formats, using everything from Simpsons characters to loaded shot glasses. The new exhibition at the World Chess Hall of Fame sees regulation Staunton sets done up with a fresh coat of paint, which doesn't sound all that impressive. But when it's artists such as Caio Locke, Sophie Matisse and Thierry Noir wielding the brushes, the results are dazzling. Painted Pieces: Art Chess from Purling London features vibrant, hand-painted chess sets exploding with color and invention. Painted Pieces opens with a free reception from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Thursday, April 12, at the World Chess Hall of Fame (4652 Maryland Avenue; www.worldchesshof.org). The show remains up through September 16. free admission

Mona Hatoum: Terra Infirma

Fridays, 10 a.m.-8 p.m. and Wednesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Continues through Aug. 11

Palestinian-born installation artist Mona Hatoum brings together more than 30 of her works for Terra Infirma, her first exhibition in America in more than two decades. Hatoum's sculptures and installations often evoke domestic settings, but subvert the attendant ideas of comfort and safety into something more menacing. Dormiente takes the shape of a seven-foot-long cot, but one made from an upsized cheese grater. Misbah appears to be the sort of high-end light projector you might install in a nursery so that bears and bunnies dance on the walls at night; instead armed figures stalk each other through the darkness. The vocabulary of her work is minimalism and surrealism, but it's filtered through her feminist perspective, further shaped by her own sense of dislocation in a world that doesn’t recognize her native country. Hatoum discusses her work at the museum at 2 p.m. Saturday, April 7. free admission

Pulitzer Arts Foundation (map)
3716 Washington Blvd.
St. Louis - Grand Center
phone 314-754-1850
Mona Hatoum: Terra Infirma

Art Hill Film Series

Fridays, 6 p.m. Continues through Aug. 3

The Art Hill Film Series has become incredibly popular in just a few short years, and it's easy to understand why. A summer night out on Art Hill in Forest Park (www.slam.org/filmseries) with a favorite movie and your favorite people and it doesn't cost anything to get in? That's a winner. The 2018 series takes its cue from the current exhibition, Sunken Cities: Egypt's Lost Worlds. Dubbed "epic quests," this year's films are all about the search for something and should be familiar to even the most casual movie watcher. The series starts with Raiders of the Lost Ark on Friday, July 13, and continues on successive Fridays in order with Hidden Figures (July 20), Dr. No (July 27) and The NeverEnding Story (August 3). Films start at 9 p.m., but at 6 p.m. food and drink are available from the museum's cafe and the Panorama tent on the lawn. free admission

Messages from Mercury

Through Aug. 31

Strongly influenced by the ideas of semiotics and sacred geometry, artist Benjamin Lowder creates works of deconstructed text that convey ideas about the hidden world that exists all around us. For his new show, Messages from Mercury, Lowder paints street signs, then breaks them apart and reassembles them so the familiar words become glyphs that bear a cautionary tale to our inner voices. Just as Mercury was the messenger from the gods in Roman theology, so Lowder's art carries a warning from the gods that we're on the wrong path. Benjamin Lowder: Messages from Mercury opens with a reception from 6 to 10 p.m. Friday, June 29, at the artist’s brand-new Cherokee Street Gallery (2617 Cherokee Street; www.cherokeestreetgallery.com). It remains up through the end of August. Also on display are new works by Jerald Ieans and Zack Smithey in conversation with one another. Admission is free. free admission

Great Rivers Biennial

Wednesdays, Saturdays, Sundays, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. and Thursdays, Fridays, 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Continues through Aug. 19

As part of its mission to present work by modern artists, the Contemporary Art Museum supports local artists through the Great Rivers Biennial. A team of esteemed jurors from the art world work through more than 150 applications to select three artists who live in the metro area for a high-profile exhibition at the museum. Addoley Dzegede, Sarah Paulsen and Jacob Stanley are the recipients of the eighth installment, and all three should be well-known to gallery habitues. In Ballast, Dzegede uses patterned textiles, sculpture and video to explore the hidden and forgotten history that creates a sense of "unified" identity. Paulsen combines consumer campaigns, immigrant narratives and stop-motion animation in an installation of single-channel videos to create a multi-part story about the invisible framework that supports and reinforces racial oppression. Stanley's sculptures are constructed to explore the nature and passage of time. His piece Accretion is a quarter-inch thick steel sheet; visitors can each place one sheet on top of it. As time passes and the weight increases, the steel will bend. The Great Rivers Biennial opens with a free reception from 7 to 9 p.m. Friday, May 11, at Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis (3750 Washington Boulevard; www.camstl.org). The artists and jurors will hold a panel discussion at 11 a.m. Saturday, May 12. The show continues through Sunday, August 19, and admission is free. free admission

Amy Sherald

Wednesdays, Saturdays, Sundays, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. and Thursdays, Fridays, 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Continues through Aug. 19

If you think you aren't familiar with Amy Sherald's work, you're wrong. Sherald painted Michelle Obama's official portrait, and that image was broadcast around the world and back. Sherald's portraits are of everyday black people (Mrs. Obama excepted, of course) with serene expression standing against featureless monotone backgrounds, and done in the large-size format once reserved for royalty and the wealthy elite. By portraying her subjects realistically and in vibrant color, Sherald liberates the black image from the traditional narrative; there are no sociological clues that hint at the status of her people. They are their own context, their eyes taking in the viewer with majestic calm. Amy Sherald, an exhibition of the artist's paintings, opens with a free reception from 7 to 9 p.m. Friday, May 11, at the Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis (3750 Washington Boulevard); www.camstl.org). The exhibit remains up through August 19, and admission is free. free admission

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