With so much happening on Philadelphia’s arts and culture scene, we want to make Uwishunu, in conjunction with sister site With Art Philadelphia, your one-stop-shop for all that’s happening with local art.
Every month, we gather our top art picks, featuring exhibits and events at smaller, alternative galleries and art spaces, as well as at the city’s major art institutions.
Don’t panic. Summer’s not over yet. There’s still plenty of time to bask in the amazing exhibitions and shows on view around town this season.
Make it last with our top picks for August art happenings.
• Surrealism and the Barnes Collection: A Journey into Imagination: Monday-Tuesday, August 4-5, 10 a.m.-4 p.m., The Barnes Foundation, 2025 Benjamin Franklin Parkway. Part dream interpretation, part code-breaking, this class at the Barnes delves into the symbolism behind the Surrealist movement with a look at the paintings in the galleries. A series of interactive experiences and projects turns the imaginary into the elementary, my dear Watson.
• Year of Sound: Hollywood in the Amazon: Opening August 18, Penn Museum, 3260 South Street. In 1931, a group of explorers from the Penn Museum recorded a film on the Bororo people, a first for a non-western speaking people. This early attempt in the documentary genre will be on display, along with artifacts brought back from the venture.
• Picasso Prints: Myths, Minotaurs, and Muses: Closing August 3, Philadelphia Museum of Art, 2600 Benjamin Franklin Parkway. Who hasn’t been obsessed with Greek myth at some point in their lives? Rife with intrigue, vice, and fantastical creatures, it’s no wonder that the literature and legendary monstrosities provided inspiration to the works of Pablo Picasso. It’s your last chance to catch the exhibition of fifty prints, spanning four decades, at the Philadelphia Museum of Art.
• Jazz Concert: The John Blake Jr. Trio: Saturday, August 2, 4-6 p.m., Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, 118-128 N. Broad Street. In conjunction with the exhibition, Spiritual Strivings: A Celebration of African American Works on Paper, a jazz performance at PAFA features improvisational violinist Diane Monroe and pianist Luke O’Reilly.
• The Garden of Alternate Histories: Closing August 23, Paradigm Gallery & Studio, 803 S. Fourth Street, Philadelphia. Remember when those Choose-Your-Own-Ending Goosebumps books finally gave you a false sense of security? Relive the thrill with an interactive video installation by Sarah Bereza and Fall on Your Sword, in which the viewer controls the piece.
More picks for arts in Philadelphia, below.
• Oblivious: Closing August 31, Muse Gallery, 52 N. Second Street. While hashtags and selfies seem to be the trend for confronting women’s issues, textile artist and painter Carolyn Cohen takes a painstaking, intimate approach. Her work, on display at Muse Gallery, illustrates the faces and facts of victimization in hauntingly erratic detail.
• Heart of Wires: Opening August 1, Arch Enemy Arts, 109 Arch Street, Philadelphia. What happens after the Turing Test? The second future-themed show of the summer at Arch Enemy Arts, Heart of Wires beats out the many paths that a world with artificial intelligence might follow.
• InLiquid @ Commerce Square: Closing August 27, Commerce Square, 2001 Market Street. Spice up your Center City Sips with a display of digital art presented by InLiquid in Commerce Square. Featuring the videos of five artists and collectives, the two-hour compilation is a multimedia mobile of light and color.
• Embark: Opening August 1, Gush Gallery, 5015 Baltimore Avenue. About a year-and-a-half ago, Gush Gallery was little more than an Indiegogo campaign and a dream. Now the founders will be celebrating the grand opening of the new West Philly gallery and community workspace with an exhibition of 12 artists.
• Hominine: Opening August 1, Practice Gallery, 319 N. 11th Street, Second Floor. Practice makes perfect- except when it comes to relationships. Performance artist Andrew Brehm uses live reading and sculpture to reenact the struggles of a Paleolithic couple.
• Breaker: Saturday, August 2, 3 p.m., NAPOLEON, 319 N. 11th Street. A maker’s event and artist talk takes you through the production of food and fabric – How It’s Made style. Along with a heaping of knowledge, free pancakes will be served to all who attend.
• Proverbial Nature: Friday, August 1, 6-9 p.m., East End Salon, 219 Arch Street. Art gets a sharp tongue, and a pair of sharp scissors to boot, with the First Friday opening at East End Salon. Engage your truth, and the wisdom of the ages, with a show based in the proverbial.