BmoreArt’s Picks: January 9-15

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This Week: Mattilda Bernstein Sycamore at the Pratt, Truce curated by Cierra Lione at Motor House, Chukwudumebi “Chuks” Amadi-Emina in a virtual conversation via the BMA, Make Studio’s BRAWLIN’ opening reception, denim mending with Rosa Chang (장성지) at BMA Lexington Market, MLK celebration at the Walters with Unique Robinson, Teapots X at Baltimore Clayworks, and Dr. King and Maryland’s Year of Civil Rights celebrations at the Lewis — PLUS Arts for Learning Maryland Teaching Artist Academy and more featured opportunities!


BmoreArt’s Picks presents the best weekly art openings, events, and performances happening in Baltimore and surrounding areas. For a more comprehensive perspective, check the BmoreArt Calendar page, which includes ongoing exhibits and performances, and is updated on a daily basis.

To submit your calendar event, email us at [email protected]!


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Mattilda Bernstein Sycamore: “Touching the Art”
Tuesday, January 9 :: 7-8pm
@ Enoch Pratt Central Branch

A mixture of memoir, biography, criticism, and social history, Touching the Art is queer icon and activist Mattilda Bernstein Sycamore’s interrogation of the possibilities of artistic striving, the limits of the middle-class mindset, the legacy of familial abandonment, and what art can and cannot do.

Taking the form of a self-directed research project, Sycamore recounts the legacy of her fraught relationship with her late grandmother, an abstract artist from Baltimore who encouraged Mattilda as a young artist, then disparaged Mattilda’s work as “vulgar” and a “waste of talent” once it became unapologetically queer.

As she sorts through her grandmother Gladys’s paintings and handmade paperworks, Sycamore examines the creative impulse itself. In fragments evoking the movements of memory, she searches for Gladys’s place within the trajectories of midcentury modernism and Abstract Expressionism, Jewish assimilation and white flight, intergenerational trauma and class striving.

Sycamore writes, “Art is never just art, it is a history of feeling, a gap between sensations, a safety valve, an escape hatch, a sudden shift in the body, a clipboard full of flowers, a welcome mat flipped over and back, over and back, welcome.”

Refusing easy answers in search of an embodied truth, Sycamore upends propriety to touch the art and feel everything that comes through.

About the Author: 

Mattilda Bernstein Sycamore is the author of The Freezer Door, a New York Times Editors’ Choice, one of Oprah Magazine’s Best LGBTQ Books of 2020, and a finalist for the PEN/Jean Stein Book Award. She’s the author of three novels and three nonfiction titles, and the editor of six nonfiction anthologies, most recently Between Certain Death and a Possible Future: Queer Writing on Growing Up with the AIDS Crisis.



Truce: The War In The World/The War Within | Opening
Thursday, January 11 :: 6-9pm
@ Motor House

House Of Sedulo Presents Truce, curated by Cierra Lione of House of Sedulo, displays how artists use their creative practices to reflect the war in the world and the war within themselves. This exhibition follows a journey of 9 local artists through visual art, photography, script , sculpture and design. Nina Simone once said “Artists are to reflect the times”. This exhibit aspires to amplify this notion. Those whom attend this exhibit will be able to see directly where we are within the world and within ourselves.

“May this exhibition inspire us all to be deeply honest with our art.” – Cierra Lione, Curator

Wednesday — Friday @ 4 – 6 PM and during events



JJC Talks: Chukwudumebi “Chuks” Amadi-Emina
Thursday, January 11 :: 6:30pm
@ The Baltimore Museum of Art

Join the Joshua Johnson Council’s January 2024 meeting featuring artist Chukwudumebi “Chuks” Amadi-Emina.

This virtual conversation will stream live on the BMA’s Facebook page.

About the Artist:
Chukwudumebi “Chuks” Amadi-Emina is a Nigerian (Igbo & Yoruba) American contemporary photographer, digital & video artist, currently residing in Baltimore. He has a BFA in photography and graphic design and an MFA in photographic and electronic media from the Maryland Institute College of Art. Using photography, collage/montage theory, and digital editing and painting skills and techniques, Chuks tells stories that revolve around the duality of perspectives and experiences of being an individual raised in Africa (Nigeria specifically), as well as being a black individual in America through portraiture.

About the Joshua Johnson Council (JJC):
Joshua Johnson Council (JJC) Members share a passion for African American and African art. Named after an 18th-century African American portrait painter who lived and worked in Maryland, the JJC is one of the oldest African American museum support groups in the U.S. Its mission is to forge meaningful connections between Baltimore’s African American communities and the Baltimore Museum of Art by promoting and highlighting the achievements of African American artists.

JJC Membership offers a wide range of opportunities for active participation within a network of friends and colleagues dedicated to art, education, community, and family. JJC programs and meetings take place on the second Thursday of each month.

Find JJC on Facebook.



BRAWLIN’ | Opening Reception
Friday, January 12 :: 3-5pm
@ Make Studio

Join us in celebratin the glitz and glamour, art and artistry, of women’s wrestling!

BRAWLIN’ is a multi-artist exhibition and experience, featuring work by several Make Studio artists and guests, taking over our gallery to give 2024 a STRONG start.

The exhibition runs from Jan 12 – Feb 10, but we hope you’ll join us for the reception on the 12th, which will include entertainment (aka shenanigans) from Baltimore’s theatrical women’s and nonbinary arm wrestling troupe Gunz of Steel and an appearance from guest star Maryland wrestler, Tara from MCW Pro Wrestling!

While the exhibition highlights artwork dedicated to women wrestlers, there will be a variety of wrestling themed artwork also available for purchase.

You can also view BRAWLIN’ during our open gallery hours and by appointment. Email us at [email protected] with any questions.

(Featured artwork by Jaquline Cousins-Oliva of Project Onward!)



Sustainable Denim-Mending Workshop with Rosa Chang
Saturday, January 13 :: 1-3pm
@ The BMA Lexington Market

Have a pair of denim pants with holes that need a little TLC or a beloved old garment yearning for a makeover? Perhaps you’re simply in the mood for some leisurely hand stitching and a friendly chat? Well, you’re in luck! Join Rosa Chang for a free sustainable denim-mending workshop at BMA Lexington Market where you’ll learn skills to help breathe new life into old clothes.

BMA Lexington Market is located in the Upper Market near the Baltimore Room at 112 N. Eutaw Street. View a map.

Rosa Chang (장성지) is an artist originally from Korea, currently based in Baltimore. Rosa specializes in sustainable visual art, textiles, and storytelling. Her passion lies in cultivating indigo plants (Polygonum tinctorium, also known as Japanese/Asian indigo), conducting natural dye and hand-stitch workshops, and exploring cultural studies to promote sustainable art and community engagement.



MLK Jr. Day Celebration by Unique Robinson
Saturday, January 13 :: 2-4pm
@ The Walters Art Museum

Location: Walters’ Graham Auditorium

Registration required.

Celebrate the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. with special performances emceed and curated by poet and professor Unique Robinson. Robinson will kick off the program with a selection of poetry connected to the issues raised by MLK’s legacy, and then audiences can expect a mix of musical performances and poetry readings from Baltimore locals Esi Abercrombie, Kenneth Something, and Black Assets. Following the program, join the artists in the Cafe for a light reception.

ASL interpretation will be provided for the performances.



Teapots X | Opening Reception
Saturday, January 13 :: 6-8pm | Ongoing through March 23
@ Baltimore Clayworks

Baltimore Clayworks proudly presents our 10th biannual juried exhibition, “Teapots X.” The juror, Mike Jabbur, selected the strictly functional and sculptural teapots created by 64 emerging and established artists from U.S., including Alaska and Hawaii, and Canada.

Teapots X Participating Artists

Jen Allen, Kait Arndt, Anil Asakawa, Posey Bacopoulos, Ian Bassett, Nina Berinstein, Xiaosheng Bi, Andy Bissonnette, Jake Boggs, Birdie Boone, Tony Borchardt, Jav Caniff, Randall Carlson, Jim Connell, Scott Dooley, Ben Eberle, Eileen Egan, Frank James Fisher, Austin Geithner, Seth Green, Brian Grow, Jack Halpern, Mike Helke, Stephen Heywood, Matt Hiller, Steve Hilton, Alec Hoogland, Jeremiah Ibarra, Elizabeth Kendall, Stacy Larson, Huey Lee, Brenda Llewellyn, Josh Manning, Anne Maraviglia, Kate Marotz, Colin Martin, Andrew McIntyre, William McKinney, Taylor Mezo, Polina Miller, Abigail Milner, Eric Ordway, Sarah Pike, Mike Poness, Constance Rankin, Jose Rivers, David Sackett, Jai Sallay-Carrington, Jenna Schmidt, Penny Shearer, Jane Shellenbarger, Steven Sitrin, Amy Song, Jonathan Steele, TR Steiner, Rebecca Stevens, David Swenson, Chance Taylor, Leathia West, Mathew Wheeler, Jordan Winiski, GH Wood, Minsoo Yuh, Caleb Zouhary



Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Celebration 2024
Monday, January 15 :: 11am-8pm
@ Reginald F. Lewis Museum

This event is free and open to the public

Celebrating Dr. King and Maryland’s Year of Civil Rights through music, art, storytelling and virtual reality in connection as we close the exhibition, Vision & Spirit | African American Art: Works from the Bank of America Collection. Enjoy an artist talk with NMAAHC Curator Aaron Bryant on civil rights photojournalists who documented Dr. King and other landmark moments from this era. Reflect on the movement with a choral performance from the Carter Legacy Singers, a community-based ensemble comprised of Dr. Nathan Carter’s alumni singers from Morgan State University. Families can learn more about the Montgomery Bus Boycott through mother-and-son storytellers, “Dr. Mama” Deborah Pierce-Fakunle and Dr. David Fakunle. Participate in an  I Am A Manvirtual reality experience to explore the Memphis Sanitation Workers protests and their aftermath. Hear a panel discussion reflecting on Dr. King and pivotal moments in the passage of the 1964 Civil Rights Act of 1964 by Maryland community civil rights leaders. July 2, 1964 marks the 60th anniversary of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

The day concludes with a screening of the documentaries Disruption: Highway to Nowhere and Eroding History and a panel discussion with the films’ producers and policy makers as they consider the equalizing factor of environmental injustice and its impacts on Black Marylanders in urban and rural settings. Produced by journalist and documentarian Sean Yoes, Disruption: Highway to Nowhere explores Baltimore’s infamous Highway 40 and the damage its construction wrought upon West Baltimore, once considered one of several of America’s most vibrant Black communities that were irreparably disrupted and damaged by 20th century federal highway projects.



< Calls for Entry >

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Mentor Artist-in-Residence Program
deadline January 14
posted by Atlantic Center for the Arts

The Mentor Artist-in-Residence is a three-week, process-based interdisciplinary residency program that provides artists with an opportunity to be mentored by, work and collaborate with some of the world’s most distinguished artists in literary, performing, visual arts, environmental arts and social practice. Since the program began in 1982, we have hosted 191 interdisciplinary residencies, bringing together 600 Mentoring Artists and over 5260+ mentee Associate Artists worldwide. Past Mentor Artists include Sanford Biggers, Nick Cave, Renee Cox, Coco Fusco, Sky Hopinka, William Kentridge, Audre Lorde, Rick Lowe, Kerry James Marshall, Ryan McGuinness, Larry Ossei-Mensah, Catherine Opie, Ed Paschke, Robert Rauschenberg, and Carrie Mae Weems to name just a few.

The essence of the program is to provide a collegial environment for artists of all disciplines where they can engage in meaningful interaction and stimulating discussions, while pursuing individual or group projects. It is an ideal setting for the exchange of ideas, inspiration for new work, and cross-pollination experimentation of disciplines. The program includes shared studio space, group and individual advising, critiques, and voluntary collaborations.

All Mentoring Artists are vetted and nominated; we do not accept unsolicited requests for consideration. Visit the National Council Advisory for more information.

“I cannot praise the architecture and game plan for ACA highly enough. For professional creative artists, this program is a godsend.” – Mentoring Artist, Eric Bogosian | Playwright, Actor



deadline January 15
posted by Library Company of Philadelphia

The Visual Culture Program invites applications for a 2024–25 short-term fellowship. Past fellows have studied topics as varied as the relationship between text and images in American primers for children, the graphic arts in Philadelphia from 1780 to 1880, and the intersection of science, art, and the environment in the production of photographs. The stipend is $2500 for a one-month fellowship, which may be fulfilled between June 1, 2024, and May 31, 2025.



Mt. San Angelo Residency
deadline January 15
posted by Virginia Center for the Creative Arts

Residencies can be transformative to an artist’s process and the effect on an artist’s career profound. A residency at VCCA gives artists the time and space to explore and go deeper into their work. Away from the constraints of “the real world” and in an accepting environment of talented peers, one can dream and create with the feeling that anything is possible.

VCCA’s Mt. San Angelo location in Amherst, Virginia, typically hosts 360 artists each year in residencies of varying lengths (no minimum; up to six weeks) with flexible scheduling. A residency at Mt. San Angelo includes a private bedroom with private en-suite bath, a private individual studio, three prepared meals a day, and access to a community of more than 20 other artists in residence.

Nestled in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains, VCCA is surrounded by natural wonders and hiking trails. Many local sites and additional inspiration can be found in short drives to Lynchburg (20 minutes), Charlottesville (1 hour), Roanoke (1.5 hours), or Richmond (2 hours).




Teaching Artist Academy
deadline January 19
posted by Arts for Learning Maryland

Taking place between February and May 2024, the Teaching Artist Academy is a joyful, high quality, holistic professional development program for artists interested in bringing their creativity to the classroom and supporting student learning. Artists will receive compensation for the training and, upon successful completion of the program, will be given priority consideration for full or part-time positions in Arts for Learning’s summer, after-school, and in-school arts-integrated programs. AND we are hosting a Nibbles and Networking event on the last day of the program where we will invite cultural partners who are seeking teaching artists.

By joining the Teaching Artist Academy, artists will learn to authentically integrate their art form into classroom instruction. They’ll join a community of artists committed to addressing structural racism and will expand their practices in support of teaching and learning to have an impact on the lives of students through abolitionist teaching and equity training.

The application can be found here. The deadline to apply is Friday, January 19. Artists considering joining the Academy are invited to attend a virtual info session on Thursday, December 14  at 1pm or Thursday, January 4 at 5pm.



Open Call for Entries | Social Contracts Festival & Exhibitions
deadline January 20
posted by Invisible Architectures

The term social contract started when philosophers from France to England started to think about the nature of humanity and the tensions that exist between the people who enact power and the people who do not. What are the agreed upon boundaries that exist within our social, family and political structures? How do these boundaries create or negate cognitive distance with what actually happens in any social theater? In the final year of the Co-Lab sponsored project, Invisible Architectures, we are seeking artistic proposals from regional artists to consider for inclusion in an interdisciplinary art festival in the Spring of 2024.

As we approach another election year in the United States, agreements about what is included in an American social contract continue to be up for debate. Artistic interventions have the potential to offer us much needed insights and possibilities for our collective future.  We welcome proposals that engage not only the past that has gotten us to this point but also the present and future directions our social contracts may take.

Submissions will be rated based on the following criteria:

  • artistic quality
  • artistic innovation as it relates to the theme
  • proposal feasibility

All art media will be considered including but not limited to: 2d (paintings, drawings), 3d (sculptures and installation), performance, and video.

We are particularly seeking submissions from students, faculty and staff at Towson University and other University of Maryland schools. However, all applications will be considered.



Request for Proposal: Atrium Mural Opportunity 2024
deadline January 21
posted by Port Discovery Children’s Museum

Port Discovery Children’s Museum invites local artists to submit a proposal to create a large-scale mural that aims to reimagine a highly visible empty wall within the Atrium building of the Museum. The Atrium is a 10,000 square foot, basic multipurpose space that is used for a variety of programming and special event. The mural project aims to provide an engaging and creative backdrop that will enliven the space for the next three to five years 2024 is an especially momentous time for Port Discovery, as the Museum celebrates its 25th Anniversary. The 25th Anniversary Celebration will kick-off on January with a special media event, then be the storyline throughout 2024 with planned activities such as monthly themed educational weekends, public outreach campaigns, special events, and a summer community party. Creation of this mural is one of several signature elements that will highlight the anniversary campaign.



High School Media Class Registration
classes start January 22
posted by Wide Angle Youth Media

Register for high school media classes with Wide Angle Youth Media!

Wide Angle’s offerings include Graphic Design, Video, Photography, Stop Motion Animation, and Actor’s Workshop. All classes are free to participate – they pay you! Earn up to $300/semester while learning.

Classes start January 22 and spots are filling fast. Learn more and register at

Engage your imagination, develop new skills, and connect with young media makers across the city.

Wide Angle offers flexible and fun media making workshops for middle and high school students. Wide Angle’s programs offer opportunities to explore your creative side through various interactive activities led by skilled media instructors. Each workshop is developed to suit the academic and social-emotional needs of specific age groups, and to complement group sessions with independent learning. We offer classes on various days to help you find a time and medium to cultivate your creative passions, regardless of your schedule.

Registration is required to participate.



Invisible Architectures
deadline January 22
posted by Maryland Art Place

Maryland Art Place in collaboration with COFAC CoLab  Directors Dr. Kalima Young and Ada Pinkston, are excited to announce a call for submissions for “Invisible Architectures.” This exhibition explores the impact of geographic, economic, social, and institutional structures on personal relationships. Regional artists are invited to submit proposals for inclusion in a dynamic interdisciplinary art festival scheduled for Spring 2024 to conclude this Co-Lab sponsored project. We welcome proposals that explore the past, present and future directions social contracts may take.

About Invisible Architectures: 

As we approach another election year in the United States, agreements about what is included in an American social contract continue to be up for debate.The term social contract started when philosophers from France to England started to think about the nature of humanity and the tensions that exist between the people who enact power and the people who do not. What are the agreed upon boundaries that exist within our social, family and political structures? How do these boundaries create or negate cognitive distance with what actually happens in any social theater? Artistic interventions have the potential to offer us much needed insights and possibilities for our collective future.

All art media will be considered. Submissions will be rated based on the following criteria: artistic quality, artistic innovation as it relates to the theme, and proposal feasibility. Regional artists will be considered. Students, faculty, and staff of any University of Maryland school are strongly encouraged to apply.

Please Note: All applications will be reviewed and considered for the venues outlined. However, please indicate your preference of venue or any scheduling conflicts in the virtual application or email submission of your application.



header image: Chukwudumebi “Chuks” Amadi-Emina, Photography: Justin Tsucalas

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