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Arts Agenda

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Hush, Becki Banet Lucas, Indianapolis, Indiana, sculptured copper textile, 76 x 24 x 30 inches, photograph by Addison Doty, courtesy The Cradle Project and Firelight Foundation.
>> See Polish crochet artist Olek, known for her handiwork clothing the Wall Street bull, in action as she designs new duds for the Albert Einstein Memorial today from 4:30 to 6 p.m. Olek is one of the artists featured in Smithsonian American Art Museums' exhibition 40 under 40: Craft Futures, opening on Friday at the Renwick Gallery.

>> Beginning today through August 3, is Washington Studio School's installation to raise awareness of the estimated 48 million African orphans affected by AIDS in sub-Saharan Africa. The Cradle Project is a collection of over 500 cradles crafted from all over the world using a variety of art forms, materials and mediums. The selection of 21 cradles on view in this exhibit includes a newly-commissioned cradle by an artist right here in Washington, D.C.

>> The AIDS Memorial Quilt serves as a powerful visual reminder of the AIDS pandemic and consists of more than 48,000 individual 3' x 6' memorial panels sewn by friends and family members of those who have died from the disease. This year marks 25 years of the world's largest community arts project and The Torpedo Factory Art Center has the honor of hosting the memorial for five days. Don't miss the opportunity to experience this highly-emotional reminder and symbol of the AIDS crisis beginning Saturday with a sneak-peak reception Friday from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. ($15 suggested donation), and ending with a closing reception hosted by The Alexandria Commission on HIV/AIDS on Wednesday from 6 to 8 p.m.

>> Wall Mountables, DC Art Center's annual summer show returns this Friday with a reception from 7 to 9 p.m. The non-juried exhibit divides the gallery into 2' x 2' squares which artists choose on a first-come basis and fill with an eclectic variety of work no larger than 526 square inches.

>> The Art League is growing, expanding, consolidating and relocating into larger facilities. This weekend's Legacy x 3: Barron, Reinke & Van Landingham Art Sale, with work starting at just $30, helps to raise the funds needed to support their move. Hours of the sale are Thursday from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m., Friday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., with an opening reception Thursday from 6:30 to 8 p.m.

>> This week's free films at the National Gallery of Art get started early with lunchtime shows on Thursday and Friday with MirĂ³: The Phosphorescent Trails of Snails explores the colors, symbols, and forms which are an integral part of Joan MirĂ³'s work. 12:30 p.m. On Saturday, catch a series of shorts by filmmaker Mark Street beginning with Hidden in Plain Sight at 2 p.m. followed by Hasta Nunca (See You Never) and Buenos Aires Balcony at 4 p.m. Sunday features Broadway by Day, Astor Place and On the Bowery at 4:30 p.m. All films are screened in the Gallery’s air-conditioned East Building Auditorium and seating is on first-come, first-seated basis.

>> Our friends over at LongView Gallery bring back their summer anthology with new work from some of their favorite artists, including Mike Weber, Amy Genser, Marie Ringwald, Ryan McCoy, J Jordan Bruns and Sondra N. Arkin, plus others. Refresh II opens with a reception Thursday from 6:30 to 8 p.m.

>> Saturday kicks off Project 4 Gallery's new exhibition series, Exchange, with guest curator Sheldon Scott's selection of work from six local photographers. Scott, a storyteller, crafts narratives for each photograph, providing a unique perspective on that old adage, "a picture is worth a thousand words." Opening reception from 7 to 9 p.m. with a performance by Scott at 8:30 p.m.

>> Spoken-word poetry often makes the work more relatable by providing a new dimension of understanding through performance. Connect with new ideas at SLAM ALEXANDRIA Friday at the Athenaeum in Old Town. The night starts off with a reggae performance by FeelFree at 7 p.m. followed by the poetry slam at 8 p.m. Have work of your own to perform? Sign up for the open-mic and a chance to win a first prize of $50. Free to enjoy and participate.

>> On Tuesday, Transformer partners with Fathom Creative Gallery for ReMixed Messages, a text-based exhibition with over 30 works reflecting on the impact of HIV/AIDS across generations for the past 30 years, just in time for the 2012 International AIDS Conference in town next week. Hear curator John Chaich discuss his work with his organization Visual AIDS, which uses art to help fight the disease, plus an honoring of Dr. Elly T. Katabira, International Chair and President of the International AIDS Society, at Tuesday's opening reception from 6:30 to 9 p.m.