Arts District

Culture Club: Dan Deacon, Platform Gallery, WTMD

Our monthly round-up of openings, events, and news from the art world.

By Gabriella Souza | February 2, 2017, 1:55 pm

Mickalene Thomas, La leçon d’amour, 2008 -Courtesy of Lehmann Maupin, New York and Hong Kong; and Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York
Arts District

Culture Club: Dan Deacon, Platform Gallery, WTMD

Our monthly round-up of openings, events, and news from the art world.

By Gabriella Souza | February 2, 2017, 1:55 pm

Mickalene Thomas, La leçon d’amour, 2008 -Courtesy of Lehmann Maupin, New York and Hong Kong; and Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York


Feb. 2-5, St. Mark’s Lutheran, 1900 St. Paul St. This unique, interactive theater experience includes five stories paired with five art installations exploring the theme of “the other.” Guests will experience three of five possible one-to-one performances by the likes of Kevin Griffin Moreno and Ashley Minner inside the installations, created by Ada Pinkston and Marie Claire Macader, among others. Between experiences, guests can participate in various activities or simply let what they’ve seen sink in.

Saturday Morning Tunes
Feb. 4, WTMD Studios, 1 Olympic Place, Towson This new monthly, family-friendly concert series is perfect for music lovers of all ages, even the tiniest ones. Latin Grammy award winner 123 Andres is performing this month, but, as in January, the concert is sold out, as has March’s concert, featuring Baby Beats. But you can listen to the concerts live on 89.7 WTMD, and stay tuned—there could be more in the future.

An Evening With Brooks Long
Feb. 21, WTMD Studios, 1 Olympic Place, Towson Long has made a name for himself as one of the best soul and R&B singers in Baltimore known for hits like “Got Soul” (and he was also one of our top singles in 2016). Long and his band are the focus of this intimate live showcase and WTMD fundraiser.

Melanin Records Release Show
Feb. 24, The Motor House, 120 W. North Ave. You might remember Believe in Music, the music education organization behind the song "Believe in Baltimore" who made it to the Meredith Viera Show. Now, those same talented students have created a new record label, Melanin Records, and they want you to come celebrate with them. There will be live performances and a DJ dance party, plus CDs and posters available for purchase.


Wave Particle; Low Noise; Or If There Be Flooding
Feb. 3 – April 15, School 33, 1427 Light St. Three new exhibits are opening at this Federal Hill staple. Wave and Particle is a group show that focuses on sculptural light explorations, Low Noise features the works of Terence Hannum, and Or If There Be Flooding is an installation by Bonnie Crawford Kotula.

Ain’t I A Woman
Feb. 4-25, Platform Gallery, 116 W. Mulberry St. This multi-disciplinary exhibit showcases the works of Shan, an artist and activist who creates work with her local communities in Baltimore. Shan (also known as Shannon Wallace) serves to bring black women to the center stage and eradicate negative stereotypes, by focusing on women who are living their lives, loving their families, working to survive, fighting for their people, and expressing their individuality.

These Are Them
Feb. 4-March 4, Jordan Faye Contemporary, top floor of 218 W. Saratoga St. This exhibition features paintings by eight emerging Baltimore artists, including Ester Yi, Ian Murphy, and Marisa LaGuardia.

The Museum of Trayvon Martin: A Meeting before Labor
Feb. 11-March 4, Terrault, 218 W. Saratoga St., 3rd Floor A Meeting before Labor, presented by Malcolm Peacock, explores different ways of perceiving and handling the realities of projections and inflictions of violence upon Black bodies and lives. Through the presentation of objects that have been gifted to the museum, this exhibition calls for recognition of the diverse and potentially powerful narratives of and born out of Trayvon Martin’s lasting legacy. (Note: if you plan on attending the opening of the show, please refer to the link above.)

The Contemporary presents The Ground
Feb. 18-May 19, Hutzler Brothers Palace Building, 200 N. Howard St. This solo commission from Baltimore’s nomadic modern art museum features the work of New York and Richmond-based artist Michael Jones McKean at the Hutzler Brothers Palace, which was the first department store of its kind in Baltimore. “In the shell of this former emporium, McKean has fabricated a massive, multi-room, two-story structure, an architectonic labyrinth enfolding diverse aesthetic languages and multiple modes of representation. He has created an extended metaphor on “place,” not as a stagnant reality fixed in time, but as an emergent and evolving set of conditions metabolizing past histories into the present.

Muse and tête-à-tête
Through March 12, Meyerhoff Gallery, Maryland Institute College of Art, 1301 W. Mount Royal Ave. These exhibits survey the highly stylized portraits of Mickalene Thomas, an internally known painter and photographer, and also explore the work of artists, like Malick Sidibé and Carrie Mae Weems, who’ve inspired her. Thomas is known for her work that features women posed dramatically in retro-furnished rooms, in a style that draws equally from the 1970s black-is-beautiful images of women and the work of classical masters like Edouard Manet.

Painted Matters: The Art Of Jerrell Gibbs
Feb. 3-March 31, The Gallery at CCBC Dundalk, 7200 Sollers Point Road Jerrell Gibbs creates art to inspire change. In this body of work, he uses Franklin from Charles Schultz’s Peanuts as a tool to paint the picture of the American black male experience and challenge and highlight issues within the African-American community.


Feb. 4, 2640 Space, 2640 St. Paul St. This creators fest celebrates the work of women and non-binary creators of color based in Baltimore and the greater DMV area. It will feature 30 vendors, 10 poets and spoken word artists, workshops, panels and more, including Best of Baltimore winners Balti Gurls and Baltimore youth poet laureate Hannah Sawyerr.

Kahlon: The Cut Up Series presents Proximity to Dead Skin
Feb. 4, EMP Collective, 307 W. Baltimore St. This audio-visual exhibition, which is the second segment of The Cut Up Series, will feature artists who employ colloquial language and materials to respond to social, political, and economic alienation. It examines people whose lives “could be ended due to forces or systems outside of our control.” The exhibition is followed by a party featuring DJ sets by Best of Baltimore winner Abdu Ali.

The Exchange
Feb. 12, Exittheapple Art Space, 2334 Guilford Ave. You might remember Jamyla and Pierre Bennu from our feature on creative couples who work together. Their art space is hosting a seasonal popup marketplace featuring community commerce, music, art, light snacks, and a fun and accessible atmosphere.


-Future Islands has perfect timing. Just when the world seems topsy turvy, to say the least, the Baltimore band gives us a beacon of hope—a new album, The Far Field, which will be released April 7, with a new single, "Ran". It’s just enough to get us pumped for spring and festival season, as Future Islands is appearing at Bonnaroo, Coachella, and Panorama.

-Center Stage has announced that it's changing its name to Baltimore Center Stage. The news comes, along with a new logo (below) and website, in advance of the grand re-opening of its Calvert Street theater later this month following a $28 million renovation. "The name change is a reflection of the theater’s roots in the Baltimore community even as it reaches audiences throughout the state, across the nation and around the world," the theater said in a press release.

-The Contemporary has announced that its director Deana Haggag will be leaving her position effective March 31, 2017 to join United States Artists as their President and CEO. Haggag, who has served as director since 2013, is recognized for re-launching The Contemporary after a period of dormancy and reestablishing its presence locally and nationally. The Board of Trustees will establish a committee to oversee a national search for the museum’s next director.

-Dan Deacon has gotten a lot of attention from the concert hall circuit lately. He’s working on an orchestral arrangement for Icelandic band Sigur Ros for its performances with the Los Angeles Philharmonic in April. And, choreographer Justin Peck used Deacon’s USA suite from his album America for a piece entitled “The Times Are Racing” that is being performed by the New York City Ballet. (See a teaser for the show filmed in a New York City subway station featuring the show's choreographer Justin Peck below.)

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