ArtFul Living

St. Louis Area Fine Arts, Crafts & Performing Arts

Michelle “Mike” Ochonicky, Arts Editor

Please note: As scheduling can be unexpectedly altered in response to COVID-19 concerns, kindly verify all listed events at the provided websites.

And just how did it get to be OCTOBER already???

It’s a long, hard road since March, when the things screeched to a halt. But, thanks to the arts, we’ve all been able to enjoy concerts, museum tours, arts projects and classes and so much more from the safety of our own homes. So, please, don’t ever tell me that the arts do not have value. The arts provide INCREDIBLE value to society, and gratitude is owed to the creative community for developing ideas to help us all get through “this” messy, awful time in history.

To that end, please consider providing thanks via support to those who work in those creative industries. For most artists, their salaries, commissions and gig-pay have never been what the public perceives that they make. The impact of recent closures and cancellations of shows is long-lasting to those who create beauty for the rest of society. So, I’m reminding you early that, as you purchase gifts for upcoming holidays, send those dollars to the local artists and performers who have done so much for you. Arts organizations are hosting their galas online (so buy a ticket!); art festivals are going virtual (so purchase art online from local artists); purchase the music you’ve (maybe?) been listening to for free.

Look for organizations that display the new Missouri ArtSafe logo on their website or at their venue. It promises you that the artist(s) have undergone Missouri Arts Council’s training in COVID-19 precautions and safety measures and are implementing those measures.

Congrats to JAZZ ST. LOUIS on 25 years of bringing cool to St. Louis! If you’re reading this after October 2, you missed the free virtual celebration (sorry!). Check out www.jazzstl.org to support this great organization, led by Gene Dobbs Bradford, or to find dates for more upcoming concerts (online and in-person).

On October 24, Saint Louis Ballet present THIS IS WHO WE ARE, a deeply personal, all new performance to, according to Jen Ohura, “takes you closer to where the magic is made.” Solo and small ensemble works, set to the music of J.S. Bach, brings an intimate, heartfelt and beautiful evening to your living room. Complimentary tickets are available at: https://www.stlouisballet.org/online-store/This-Is-Who-We-Are-Complimentary-Ticket-Opening-Saturday-October-24-7-30.

The Sheldon announces two special concerts in its virtual schedule. Live-streaming from The Sheldon stage on October 8 is ULYSSES STRING QUARTET and, on October 21, FLAMENCO VIVO. Both 45-minute performances start at 10 a.m., ideal for traditional and home schools. The Quartet blend pop and classical music; the dance performance features Carlota Santana.

The Sheldon’s music education concerts, which introduce over 25,000 students annually to jazz, folk, classical, world music and the American musical, also offer live-streaming performances of their most popular recurring concerts. Virtual performances are free of charge, but registration is required: www.TheSheldon.org.

As the weather cools, it’s great to get outside to experience art. Laumeier Sculpture Park presents a newly commissioned project by local artist Van McElwee, entitled TIME FORK, October 11-May 9. Using topographical drone mapping of Laumeier, McElwee imagined structures “placed” virtually within the landscape. Visitors can use their phone or tablet to navigate the physical space of the park while simultaneously exploring a virtual world via a free mobile app. Welcome to the 21st century! Said Laumeier’s Curator Dana Turkovic, “Time Fork is an online gateway to discovery.” The park is located at 12580 Rott Road in Sunset Hills. On October 24 at 10 a.m., the artist will be present for COFFEE & CONVERSATION. Learn more at www.laumeier.org.

That perennial favorite, BEST OF MISSOURI MARKET, at Missouri Botanical Garden is scaled back just a bit this year, October 2-4. Due to restrictions, fewer exhibitors will be on-site, but you can still connect with all your favorites online via the virtual market at www.mobot.org/market.

Through October 22, Art Saint Louis hosts CREATURES II in its gallery at 1223 Pine. This multi-media exhibition features 62 artworks, chosen from 212 submissions, of animals, critters, pets, beasts, creatures, insects—real or imagined. To enjoy this delightful exhibit, just wear your mask and socially distance within the gallery. More info at www.artstlouis.org.

The Foundry Art Centre in St. Charles presents a virtual and in-gallery exhibition, entitled FOCAL POINT, October 2-November 13. Photography, with some mixed media works, push the camera’s potential. Check it out at www.foundryartcentre.org.

Gretchen Brigham Gallery, 333 N. Union, presents a virtual show, HEALING—WHO IS GOD? October 3-November 30. The opening virtual reception on October 3 starts at 4 p.m.. with the juror, Fr. Terrence Dempsey, speaking at 4:10 p.m. Details at www.union-avenue.org/arts.