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Itineraries for Culture Lovers: February 2019

With Desert X, Modernism Week, and Art Palm Springs, a fresh wave of culture lovers will visit Greater Palm Springs in February. The events offer local arts organizations a time to shine with their own programming. Here are some of our staff’s recommendations for a month of enriching arts and entertainment. You can find many more cultural events on our website, cadesertarts.org. Mark your calendar, and we’ll see you around the desert!

Above: L.A.-based painter Andy Moses is included in the group exhibition Absolutely Abstract opening Feb. 2 at the Yucca Valley Visual & Performing Arts Center. Courtesy Andy Moses/Melissa Morgan Fine Art.

 

ARCHITECTURE & DESIGN

MODERNISM WEEK: Literally hundreds of home tours, lectures, parties, and the Modernism Show & Sale fill 11 days of the cultural juggernaut the desert knows as Modernism Week, Feb. 14–24 at various locations. Info

HUGH KAPTUR: Organic Desert Architecture opens this month at the Palm Springs Art Museum Architecture and Design Center. Coinciding with Modernism Week, the exhibition offers a deep dive into the career of an architect with more than 200 built projects in the Coachella Valley. Info

WALKER GUEST HOUSE: Tour a replica of the Paul Rudolph’s Walker Guest House, an icon of Sarasota modernism, in downtown Palm Springs through March 2020. Info

 

HERITAGE

POSTCARDS FROM MECCA: The California Desert Photographs of Susie Keef Smith and Lula Mae Graves continues through May 11 at La Quinta Museum. The exhibition and a new book by Ann Japenga and Warner Graves follows the story of the photographers capturing the 1920s desert outback. Info

ARTISANS AT THE PUEBLO: John Coleman, Gwen Fortner, Servio Naduville, and Desert Weavers present their work Feb. 10, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., at Cabot’s Pueblo Museum in Desert Hot Springs. Info

GREEK FEST: The 23rd Palm Desert Greek Festival unfolds Feb. 16, from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m., at St. George Greek Orthodox Church of the Desert. Go for the food, fashion, and music. Info

COUNTY FAIR & DATE FEST: The Riverside County Fair & National Date Festival unfolds its 73rd year Feb. 15–24 in Indio with concert performances by Randy Houser, Ramon Ayala, Salt-n-Pepa, and Kool & the Gang. Info

 

FILM

EAMES ON FILM: UCR Palm Desert continues its Art Documentary Film series with Eames: The Architect and the Painter on Feb. 21. The film draws on archival material and new interviews with colleagues, experts, and friends. Info

 

MUSIC

SINATRA & MERCER: The International Opera Institute presents “Sinatra & Mercer: Too Marvelous for Words” at 2 p.m. Feb. 10 at the Indian Wells Theater at CSUSB Palm Desert Campus. Info

CHOPIN IN PARIS: Frédéric Chopin wrote some of his most stirring masterpieces after he moved to Paris in 1932, and Keyboard Conversations with Jeffrey Siegel performs them Feb. 11 at the McCallum Theatre. Info

KIND MUSIC FESTIVAL: Tyson Ranch in Desert Hot Springs hosts this new “pop-up micro festival” — a cannabis-friendly event with a variety of fun activities. The one-day party is set for Feb. 23. Info

 

THEATER & STAGE

GUYS & DOLLS: This play about a couple of big-city gamblers and the women who love them continues its run at the Palm Canyon Theatre through Feb. 10. Info

LOOPED: In summer 1965, an inebriated Tallulah Bankhead entered a LA recording studio to loop a few lines of dialog from her final film, Die! Die! My Darling, and begins a battle of wills with film editor Danny Miller, a conservative man who guards his own deep secret. The Desert Rose Playhouse production runs through Feb.10. Info

WHITE: In this modern Frankenstein story, presented by CV Rep through Feb. 17 at The Atrium in Rancho Mirage, a young white artist trying to get into a contemporary art museum hires a black actress to present his work as her own. The play spins out of control and explores issues of race, gender, sexuality, and art. Info

MY SON THE WAITER: If you ever longed for something, if you ever desired it with all our heart, if you were willing to wait tables for 29 years to pursue your dream, then this Jewish tragedy will give meaning to your life. My Son the Waiter runs Feb. 6–March 10 at the Indian Wells Theater at CSUSB Palm Desert Campus. Info

FOR A REASON: Desert Ensemble Theatre resident playwright Tony Padilla’s new drama about how people come into our lives runs Feb. 8-10 & 15–17 at the Pearl McManus Theater at the Palm Springs Woman’s Club. Info

SOME ENCHANTED EVENING: Desert TheaterWorks presents an intimate affair featuring more than 30 tunes created for Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Carousel, The King and I, Oklahoma!, South Pacific, The Sound of Music, Cinderella, and others. The show runs Feb. 8–17 at Indio Performing Arts Center. Info

LIPS TOGETHER, TEETH APART: Coyote Stageworks presents a reading of Terrence McNally’s poignant play about two straight couples in a beach house on Fire Island on the Fourth of July. The free event is set for Feb. 24 in the Camelot Theatre at Palm Springs Cultural Center. Info

 

VISUAL ART

DESERT X: Jenny Holzer, Sterling Ruby, Superflex, and more than 15 others artists from around the world converge on the California desert with site-specific installations from Whitewater Preserve through the Coachella Valley and down to the Salton Sea, from Feb. 9 to April 21. Info

UNSETTLED: This sweeping exhibition (through April 30, 2019) at Palm Springs Art Museum features more than 75 artists living or working in the Greater West, including Ed Ruscha, Gerard Murillo, Sonia Falcone, Ana Teresa Fernández, Edgar Arceneaux, Andrea Zittel, Nicholas Galanin, Georgia O’Keeffe, Agnes Pelton, and Phillip K. Smith III. Info

ART PALM SPRINGS: More than 60 modern and contemporary art galleries from around the United States present their top artists Feb. 15–18 at the Palm Springs Convention Center. Info

149: Contemporary Thoughts on the Lynching of Mexicans in California 1848-1895 revisits a dark time in the state’s history at a critical point in the nation’s history. The two-artist exhibition continues through April at the Coachella Valley Art Center. Info

SAM FRANCIS: From Dusk to Dawn, a 40-year survey exhibition of paintings and works on paper by the acclaimed California artist, is on view at Heather James Fine Art in Palm Desert through April 29, 2019. Info

ABSOLUTELY ABSTRACT: Yucca Valley Visual & Performing Arts Center opens a new exhibition Feb. 2 exploring abstraction’s many forms, from expressionist to minimalist and in a variety of media. The show features Blake Baxter, Jimi Gleason, Andy Moses, Robert Walker, and many others. Info

TODD GRAY: Pluralities of Being features the artist’s collages that mix archival images of Michael Jackson on tour in the United States with lush landscapes from Italy to South Africa, portraying the multiplicity of experience and memory across space and time. The exhibition continues through April 7 at Palm Springs Art Museum. Info

FLIGHT PLAN: The Birds of Sunnylands exhibits 52 photos of the more than 130 species of birds that migrate here every year, all photographed at Sunnylands Center & Gardens in Rancho Mirage over the past two years by wildlife photographer and ornithologist Tim Laman. Info

LINES IN THE SAND: The exhibition at Palm Springs Art Museum explores the history of the desert through for themes: land, light, people, and place. It features highlights from the museum’s collections of indigenous art, depictions of the California desert through painting and photography, and contemporary art inspired by the physical and cultural environment of the state. Info

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