Briefs: June 7, 2022

Giant outdoor sculpture at Jewish museum

The newly named and reopened Weitzman National Museum of American Jewish History, at 5th and Market streets on Independence Mall, is displaying the OY/YO sculpture on its grounds.

The outdoor installation is by Brooklyn-based artist Deborah Kass and will be on display until at least May 2023.

The bright yellow aluminum statue is creative word play using just two letters, with several meanings. One side says “YO,” referencing the phrase used throughout Philadelphia, while the other side reads “OY,” a popular Yiddish phrase used in Jewish and American culture.

At 8 feet tall, 16 feet wide and 5-feet deep, the statue is intended to become part of Old City’s cultural fabric and a destination for tourists and locals.

The museum is open Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission is free.

Call to Artist info meeting for Vare Rec Center

The City of Philadelphia’s Percent for Art Program and Rebuild announced a $150,000 competition to commission a site-specific, community driven public artwork for the Vare Recreation Center. This is a Rebuild construction project, consisting of a new recreation center building, football field, playground and outdoor plaza.

Interested applicants can RSVP for the Artist Info Meeting on June 10 from 5:30-7:30 p.m.

Questions about the application should be sent by June 17 to Materials from the Artist Info Meeting and all Q&A will be shared online by June 24. Deadline is July 8 at 5 p.m.

The purpose of this Percent for Art opportunity is to create a beautiful and enduring work of public art that is permanent, site-specific, and reflects the culture, values and diversity of the Vare community. This public art project will be an outdoor sculpture located near one of the main entrances to the new recreation center building. Artists will be encouraged to propose sculptural works that reflect the themes and values that are important to the community in meaningful and engaging ways, using materials that are appropriate and durable for exterior use.

Learn more at

Celebrate Flag Day weekend at the Museum of the American Revolution

Join the Museum of the American Revolution during Flag Day Weekend from June 11-14 to learn about Revolutionary-era flags of “all kinds of colours” with flag-themed crafts, pop-up talks, discovery carts and other activities for the whole family. Throughout the weekend, visitors will receive a free handheld version of George Washington’s headquarters flag to take home. Flag Day weekend programming is included with regular museum admission (activities on the outdoor plaza are free). Tickets can be purchased by calling 215-253-6731, at or at the front desk. Save $2 per adult ticket by purchasing online. Tickets are valid for two consecutive days. Children ages 5 and under are always free.

New show opening at 1812 Productions

‘In Search of the Kitchen Gods’ will open on June 8 at 1812 Productions at 2329 S. 3rd St. Philadelphia artist Bi Jean Ngo takes us on a culinary journey through her Vietnamese American identity. Cooking live onstage, Bi welcomes people into her kitchen to hear stories of her family’s past and her present, aided and abetted by the kitchen gods. For ticket info, visit

35th anniversary show for Anne-Marie Mulgrew and Dancers Company

Anne-Marie Mulgrew and Dancers Company returns to the stage to celebrate its 35th Anniversary Concert. “PROJECT 35” reflects back while moving forward, featuring the premiere of Beautiful Chaos. Performances take place June 24 at 7:30 p.m. and June 25 at 3 p.m and 7:30 p.m., at the Chi Movement Arts Center, 1316 S. 9th St. Tickets are $20. Seating is limited. For more information or reservation, contact or 215-462-7720. A Q&A and meet and greet will follow immediately after the performances.

Diane Pieri at No. 5 Butchie Allie

No. 5 Butchie Allie at 1175 S. 13th St. presents Diane Pieri: Once Upon A Time through July 30.

Pieri creates sublime, delicate works on paper that weave meaning, symbol and color in cascading landscape compositions. Each work is a microcosm of multiple intimate compositions that unfold under close inspection. Upon exhaling, they reveal a universe of saturated color and texture as the whole comes into view.

Pieri is unapologetically driven to create radical beauty. She finds power and freedom in embracing every glorious opportunity to be purely decorative. Her newest images incorporate 3D elements that billow unexpectedly from quiet surfaces.

Pieri will host a decorated bookmaking workshop on June 25 from noon to 3 p.m., the family-friendly event is for ages 6 and up. Children must be accompanied by parents, and the workshop is limited to 10 participants. In exchange for the experience, donations to Philabundance will be accepted.

New exhibition at Paradigm 

Paradigm Gallery + Studio at 746 S. 4th St. is presenting a solo exhibition by local artist Alex Eckman-Lawn called “Monolith/Relic.”

The exhibition features three-dimensional collages borne of a hybrid process of digital and hand techniques and is a continuation of Eckman-Lawn’s well-honed mixed media practice that embraces his growing interest in chaos, chance and the relinquishment of control. 

Featuring source imagery from classical sculpture to botanical illustration, the works in Monolith/Relic draw from expansive archives of visual culture to create entirely new imagery and meaning. Fragments of visual material, hand-cut and arranged by the artist in sequentially spaced layers, coalesce into new forms that exemplify the multiplicity and serendipity of the medium. 

The exhibition will run through June 19. For more information, visit

Catholic Charities Appeal Night with the Phillies

The Catholic Charities Appeal is partnering with the Philadelphia Phillies for its ninth annual “CCA Night with the Phillies” at Citizens Bank Park on June 30.

A portion of the proceeds from all tickets sold through a dedicated link will directly benefit CCA beneficiary programs that provide support to those experiencing homelessness, special-needs students, food cupboards, afterschool programs and more.

The Phillies will host the Atlanta Braves that night. Seating will be located in the Outfield (sections 101-107) at $38 per ticket, Pavilion (sections 201-205) at $30 per ticket and Pavilion Deck (section 310) at $20 per ticket.

Those interested in supporting CCA by purchasing tickets for the game can visit

If 500 or more tickets are sold, a student from Our Lady of Confidence School of Special Education, a CCA beneficiary, will throw out the first pitch of the game. In addition, a CCA beneficiary will sing the national anthem.

Flower show tickets available

The Pennsylvania Horticultural Society announced that tickets are on sale for the Philadelphia Flower Show.

The theme is In Full Bloom. The show will take place at Franklin Delano Roosevelt Park, 1500 Pattison Ave., from Saturday, June 11, through Sunday, June 19.

For tickets, go to

South Phila. HS class of ‘68 reunion

The South Philadelphia High School Class of 1968 will hold its 55th reunion on Saturday, Oct. 21, 2023, from noon to 4 p.m. at the Waterfall Room, 2015 S. Water St. Tickets cost $60 and include buffet dinner and open bar. For tickets and more information, call Arleen Liberi [609-922-2419], Maria Leati [856-287-3734] or Stephen Michielli [267-252-2740]. 

Activities at Academy of Natural Sciences

The Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University, 1900 Benjamin Franklin Parkway, is hosting several current and upcoming exhibits.

Extreme Deep: Mission to the Abyss will run through July 24.

Sea Change is running indefinitely.

The River Feeds Back, going through Oct. 30, is an immersive sound installation created by artists Annea Lockwood and Liz Phillips. The exhibit brings visitors into the deep sonic environment of the Schuylkill River watershed through recordings and a layered sound map that captures glimpses of the river system including the life of aquatic insects, eels, fish and swirling currents.

Ocean Bound will run from Aug. 20 to Jan. 15, 2023.

Explore ocean depths

A new exhibition at the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University, 1900 Benjamin Franklin Parkway, reveals the mysteries of the ocean’s greatest depths.

Extreme Deep: Mission to the Abyss invites museum visitors to explore newly discovered life forms, thermal vents, deep-sea research submersibles and shipwrecks including the Titanic.

Museum visitors will observe firsthand the technology that only recently has allowed scientists to travel to the ocean floor and discover the creatures that thrive in total darkness. They can test their skill at manipulating a robotic arm of a replica of the submersible Alvin to pick up lava rocks and clams similar to what scientists do to gather samples of creatures from the ocean floor.

Visitors can also fly a remotely operated vehicle over a model of the Titanic’s deck and, in another display, see how currents created by superheated water erupting from thermal vents carry nutrients that support life forms few ever dreamed existed. 

Extreme Deep: Mission to the Abyss will be on view through July 24.

AARP ending tutoring program

The AARP Foundation will be closing four Experience Corps branches, including the one in Philadelphia.

The volunteer program trains people 50 and older to help students become better readers by the end of third grade by building their fluency, accuracy and comprehension skills.

The tutoring is done one on one or in small groups, twice a week for 30 minutes each session.

Emily Allen, Senior Vice President of Programs at AARP Foundation, said, “To reach more schools and students, we are evolving AARP Foundation Experience Corps to implement our work through community-based organizations, building on an existing model we’ve accomplished with 19 Program Partners in 11 states. After careful evaluation, we’ve determined this is the most effective way to increase our impact for both students and volunteers. In this move, AARP Foundation will close four Experience Corps Branches currently staffed by AARP Foundation employees, including Philadelphia, at the end of this program year. We are working to identify Program Partners in Philadelphia to implement our new business model as soon as possible so we can continue serving students in the city.”

Kimmel schedule

The Kimmel Cultural Campus has returned to live Broadway programming.

Here is the schedule through the summer: To Kill A Mockingbird (July 12-24, Academy of Music); and Dear Evan Hansen (Aug. 16-28, Forrest Theatre).

For more information, call 215-893-1955 or visit

Upcoming cruise

The Bristol Cultural and Historical Foundation is sponsoring a fully escorted Holy Lands & Aegean Majesty cruise that will sail Oct. 6-17, 2023, featuring 10 ports-of-call. Rates, including airfare, range from $4,198 to $7,998 per person, double occupancy. Call 215-788-9408 for information and reservations.