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What To Do This Weekend: Apr 8–11

by Michelle Konstantinovsky

The past week or so may have given you the early-summer vibes, but the Bay Area is firmly planted in the blooming season of spring. How can you tell? So many of the awesome online and in-person events cropping up from the Peninsula to the North Bay are inspired by the beauty of local blossoms, the joy of cultivating city-friendly crops and the opportunity to bask in the glow of the brightest local artists and creators. 

See innovative works from 10 female artists

Walnut Creek’s Bedford Gallery has officially reopened to the public with the launch of its spring exhibition A Beautiful Mess: Weavers and Knotters of the Vanguard. Featuring all women artists including Windy Chien, Kirsten Hassenfeld, Dana Hemenway and Kira Dominguez Hultgren, the variety of artworks are made from materials like rope, yarn, clay and wire. The exhibit explores personal and political themes and sets out to debunk stereotypes and traditional beliefs around techniques like weaving, knotting and macramé. 

Now through Sunday, June 13

Support indie filmmakers online and in person

The Poppy Jasper International Film Festival is going mostly virtual with more than 180 films from 38 countries that focus on themes of diversity, inclusion, female empowerment, and more. In addition to film screenings, expect panel discussions from industry professionals and some in-person physically distanced events at venues throughout the downtown districts of Morgan Hill and Gilroy.

Now through through April 20

Take in SFFilm’s reimagined festival

SFFilm Festival celebrates 64 years with an all-new format for 2021. Featuring 103 films, the festival will include both online and in-person events and attendees can even opt in for live screenings and performances at the Fort Mason Flix drive-in theater. More virtual elements means more interactive opportunities, so expect plenty of talks, Q&As and online parties. The diverse lineup includes 42 feature films, 56 short films and — a bonus that’s new this year — five mid-length films. 

Friday, April 9 through Sunday, April 18

Hear from five local literary figures

Another San Francisco Public Library event to keep on your radar: Kim Shuck’s Poem Jam, One City One Book Edition. In this virtual event, Natasha Dennerstein, Molly Fisk, Kelly Grace Thomas, Kelliane Parker and Ramona “Mona” Webb will share excerpts from their works. The hour-long event will be streamed and archived on the SFPL YouTube channel.

Thursday, April 8, 6 p.m.

Celebrate spring with blossom-inspired artwork

Through April 30, you can pop into Menlo Park’s Portola Art Gallery to view Welcome to Spring, local artist Yvonne Newhouse‘s exhibition of watercolor paintings. Newhouse’s work is inspired by the blossoms at Filoli Historic House & Garden and other blooms around the Bay Area. She’ll be on-site April14, as well as by appointment. 

Now through April 30

Listen to a science legend chat about her newest book

World-famous scientist, autism spokesperson and New York Times bestselling author, Dr. Temple Grandin joins Kepler’s Literary Foundation in Menlo Park to commemorate the release of The Outdoor Scientist, her latest book for young readers. During the online event, Grandin will discuss her new work, which introduces kids to a variety of scientists working to understand the workings of the natural world.

Friday, April 9, 6 p.m.

Enjoy an evening at home to the sound of strings

Chamber Music San Francisco (CMSF) welcomes Paris-based string quartet Quatour Arod, known for their sharp sound and unique interpretations. The group started out in 2013 and quickly gained international acclaim when they won first prize at Munich’s prestigious ARD International Music Competition in Munich. Quatour Arod is currently the artist-in-residence at the Queen Elisabeth Music Chapel in Brussels with the Artemis Quartet, and the group regularly collaborates with the Ebène Quartet and Diotima Quartet.

Saturday, April 10, 7 p.m.

Sharpen your writing skills in an art-inspired workshop

Award-winning author Laleh Khadivi leads a writer’s workshop centered on the San Jose Museum of Art’s exhibit Barring Freedom, which features the work of 20 U.S.-based artists challenging how we as a society understand our country’s prison industrial complex. Khadivi will discuss the contributions to the exhibit and invites attendees to chime in with their thoughts and feelings through poetry and prose. 

Saturday, April 10, 1 p.m.

Learn to grow your own edible city garden

Looking for a unique way to spend your Saturday that could pay off in the long run? Check out Garden for the Environment’s online class Grow Your Own Food. The workshop focuses exclusively on how to create a thriving garden in San Francisco’s climate, and attendees will learn how to care for seedlings, as well as gardening strategies for raising healthy edible plants. Instructor Carey Craddock is a horticulturalist who has been gardening and teaching others to garden in San Francisco since 1997.

Saturday, April 10, 10 a.m.

Help support SFMOMA while taking in a selection of fun and free virtual events

Don’t miss your chance to participate in San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA)’s signature fundraiser, Art Bash. The four-day experience benefits the museum’s exhibition and education programs, and will include plenty of virtual free events. The schedule includes speakers like Virgil Abloh, artists like Alicia McCarthy, and an all-out concert and dance party to top things off.

April 12 through April 15

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