ARTful Living

Nancy Grimes

By Michelle “Mike” Ochonicky
Healthy Planet Arts Editor  

Photo Caption: “Orbit” by Nancy Grimes; Maturity & Its Muse exhibition at Art Saint Louis

If there’s anything we’ve learned during covid-19, it’s these two things:

  • It’s important to physical and mental health to GET OUTSIDE.
  • It’s important to mental health to discover new experiences.

And how better to do both but through the ARTS!

While the Pulitzer at 3716 Washington is currently closed through June 3, an outdoor installation opens there on April 17. Wayfinding includes over 30 sculptures by New York-based artist Chloe Bass. The works are organized into four “strands,” each anchored by a billboard. Each poses a question by the artist concerning human emotions (intimacy, desire, anxiety, loss). Included is a site-specific audio, narrated by the artist, accessible by cell phone.

See it through October 31.  www.thepulitzer.org

While you’re there, pop across the street to experience PARK-LIKE. This outdoor space is designed for visitors to experience nature and the outdoors as art. Open sunrise through sunset every day. Enjoy and refresh!

Pandemic restrictions last summer caused the cancellation of Origami in the Garden at Missouri Botanical Garden, but the exhibition is now here! Huge installation sculptures by Santa Fe artists Jennifer and Kevin Box interpret the delicate Japanese folded-paper art in metal works throughout the garden, April 17-October 31.  The crown jewel is “Master Peace,” a 25-ft. sculpture that creates the illusion of 1,000 stainless steel origami peace cranes hovering above the water. Wow! More details at www.mobot.org.

Mark Weber’s colorful works can be seen through April 9 at the St. Louis Community College Gallery on the Meramec campus through April 9 in an exhibition entitled, “Reverie.” Said the artist, “Things are not always what they seem. Fish believe that the entire world is filled with water, where there are certainly many worlds beyond.” Check out details at www.stlcc.edu/MCartgallery.

Art Saint Louis presents Maturity & Its Muse: Celebrating Artistic Excellence 2021 at 1223 Pine, April 17-May 20. This exhibition showcases 53 works by 47 area artists who are 70 years of age or older. The intent of Maturity & Its Muse is “to promote positive, productive aging through the arts.” Definitely a must-see show! Info at www.artstlouis.org

For the past year, The Luminary at 2701 Cherokee has hosted Aaron Fowler in residency. The St. Louisan lived and worked in that space, transforming it with his distinct vision and now presents his first hometown solo exhibition. Experience Aaron Fowler: N2Existence Genesis by making an appointment at www.theluminary.com

Through August 15, the Contemporary Art Museum presents Stories of Resistance at 3750 Washington. Utilizing both indoor and outdoor space at CAM, this exhibition portrays artistic forms of resistance in every medium imaginable. Free timed tickets should be reserved at www.camstl.org.

The performance arts present a great variety of new experiences as well this month.

COCA begins a new tradition with its premiere of the COCAwrites Festival. This showcase of new work was created by a multigenerational team of St. Louis theatre professionals and COCA students, collaborating on works for multigenerational audiences. The virtual version of Suffer the Children is available through April 10. Find out more at www.COCAstl.org

When the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra takes the stage at Powell Hall (don’t we miss being there!),  you can relax in your favorite chair at home for “Heart of the Matter” virtual concert, streaming April 8-May 8. Conducted by Music Director Stephane Deneve, the SLSO musicians perform works by Edward Elgar, Piotr Ilyrich, Tchaikovsky, Giacomo Puccini, and Anna Clyne, filmed in high-definition for a just-like-being-there experience. Get the link for $10 at www.slso.org

The Sheldon serves up lively live-stream entertainment on the evening of April 10 with The Sheldon Gala: Family Reunion. All the excitement of the annual gala, from the comfort of your home! Advance reservations, required for this free party, can be made at www.thesheldon.org/events/2021Gala

But stay right there because on April 24, the free Live from the Sheldon concerts continue with world music superstar Zakir Hussain. Widely considered the father of the contemporary world music movement, and a classical tabla virtuoso, this percussionist will amaze you! (What’s a tabla, you may ask? It’s a pair of twin hand drums from the Indian subcontinent, used in Hindustani classical music). This musician is the co-founder of the legendary fusion band Shakti, and is known for his amazing improvisations.  Details for the 7 p.m. performance at www.thesheldon.org

St. Louis Classical Guitar presents the final concert of its season on April 24 at 7:30 p.m. $10 gets an access ticket to enjoy the virtual concert by Romanian guitarist Dragos Ilie. This young musician has been on international radar since he first began playing as a child. Reserve your online ticket at www.stlouisclassicalguitar.org

Happy April birthday to a very promising young artist named Esther, my 2 year old granddaughter!!