ARTful Living      

By Michelle “Mike” Ochonicky,
Healthy Planet Arts Editor

Art: Landscape Tapestry 4 by Janelle Esparza, on exhibition at MOCRA

Ah, the merry month of May has arrived! Happy Mother’s Day! Happy End-of-School! Happy Memorial Day! (Happy “Big-Birthday” to my husband!). So much to celebrate!

The Botanicals & Blooms IV exhibit opens the month at Green Door Art Gallery, 21 N. Gore, May 1-June 29, featuring works by Nancy Avdoian, Gena Loseto, Karen Romani, Mary Martin and Bee & Bee Studios. Enjoy the opening reception on May 17, 5-8 p.m. Also on view is All About Me, 23 works of wit, wisdom and whimsy by St. Louis’ beloved Mary Englebreit through June 1. www.greendoorartgallery.com

The Green Center, 8025 Blackberry Avenue in University City, presents works by The Children of Pride 8 in a delightful exhibition, My Favorite Animal: Explorations of Animals Through Lights, Sound and Art Media. Opening with a reception on May 1, 4-7 p.m., the show runs through May 28. www.thegreencenter.org

Third Degree Glass Factory, 5200 Delmar, spotlights Jes Kopitske in La Soffietta Exhibition Space. This glass artist makes sculptural and functional pieces, incorporating blowing, flameworking, and kiln forming. Her current work is identified by intricate and subtle sand blasted surface patterns. Meet the artist at a reception, May 17, 6-10 p.m., plus see an exhibition of student works, too. www.thirddegreeglassfactory.com

Eager to get a paintbrush in your hand? Webster Arts, 2 Summit Avenue, hosts Paint Webster, May 11. Artists of all ages, skills and communities are invited to paint outdoors, 8 a.m.-2 p.m., at locations throughout Webster. Noted artist Julie Wiegand gives a plein air painting demo in Webster Groves Sculpture Park at 1:30, followed by her judging of the works, and a 4:30 p.m. reception. It’s fun to just watch this art-in-action, too! www.webster-arts.org

Out in Wentzville on May 5, Crossroads Arts Council unveils Self Portrait at the opening reception, 2-4 p.m. The exhibition shows artworks representing each artist’s self, experience, challenges or gifts. On view through May 28 at 310 W. Pearce Blvd. www.crossroadsartscouncil.org

Through May 19, MOCRA (Museum of Contemporary Religious Art) presents Open Hands: Crafting the Spiritual. Through a multitude of mediums and materials, artists bring forth their backgrounds and personal beliefs in this exhibition centered on spirituality. See it at 3700 W. Pine in the center of St. Louis University’s campus. www.slu.edu/mocra/

It’s busy at The Pulitzer, 3716 Washington. See Delcy Morelo: Interwoven through August 11. Also on view is On Earth, featuring six artists who, through film and video, use moving images to explore the complex relationships between humans and the natural environment. On May 3, singer/songwriter/bassist Tonina brings her soulful sounds to the museum’s outdoor courtyard at 6 p.m. There’s a May 8th film screening: Amore, Mujeres, y Flores (Love, Women, and Flowers) at 8 p.m. and a Wellness: Restorative Journaling Workshop on May 11, at 11 a.m. www.pulitzerarts.org

Dance St. Louis again brings world class performances to the Touhill in the 6th Annual Spring to Dance, May 24-25. Each evening, amazing lobby performances begin at 6 p.m. with main stage performances, by SIX different companies each night, at 7:30 p.m. Best of all, tickets start at just $10!!! www.dancestl.org

Jazz St. Louis keeps every night lively at 3536 Washington. From Jason Marsalis Vibes Quartet (May 1-5) through Latin Dance Night (May 10-11) and Jazz St. Louis Book Club (May 13) to Carlos Henriquez Nonet (May 29-June 2), you need to read the entire list of performers at www.jazzstl.org !!

COCA, 6880 Washington, hosts amazing performances this month. In Triumphant, May 9-11, pre-professional dancers perform twelve works across three unique programs. MOTheR, a new work by Kirven Douthit-Boyd (May 12, 3 p.m.), centers on a family who uses the power of dance to elevate their existence. Harmonious celebrates Allegro Vocal Company’s end of season through various musical genres of the past century. COCA’s Improv Troupe brings improvisation and sketch comedy to the stage on May 19. www.cocastl.org

St. Louis Symphony Orchestra guarantees fun on May 11 at Stifel Theatre in Bugs Bunny at the Symphony featuring Looney Tunes animated shorts while the orchestra performs the original scores live. www.slso.org

The New Jewish Theatre performs We All Fall Down, opening May 30. The play tells the story of one family’s attempt to come together for a Passover dinner with hilarious and heartbreaking results. At 2 Millstone Campus, through June 16. www.newjewishtheatre.org