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Fall 2017 Arts Preview: Museums and Galleries

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“Requiem,” a commissioned installation by Summer Mei Ling Lee honoring a charity serving Chinese immigrants in the early 20th century, opens in October at the Chinese Culture Center. (Courtesy photo)
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Museums showcase brilliant works of art spanning cultures and centuries.

OPENING

Jewish Folktales Retold: Artist as Maggid: Sixteen artists interpret Jewish folktales in the show of commissioned work. Acting as modern and visual maggids — traditionally, storytellers — the artists, via painting, sculpture, video and other media, offer personal and contemporary takes on age-old stories. The exhibit also offers listening stations where visitors may hear featured stories read aloud. Sept. 28–Jan. 28. $5-$14. Contemporary Jewish Museum, 736 Mission St., S.F., www.thecjm.org

Question Bridge: Black Males: The nationally regarded project, a returning installation by Chris Johnson and Hank Willis Thomas, contains intimate videos entwined to suggest face-to-face dialog among participants — about 160 black men from nine U.S. cities talking about issues important to their lives: family, love and interracial relationships. Sept. 29–Feb. 25. $6.95-$15.95, Oakland Museum, 1000 Oak St., Oakland, www.museumca.org

Walker Evans: One of the 20th century’s premier photographers, Evans documented everyday life from the 1920s to the 1970s. Containing more than 300 vintage prints, this retrospective explores Evans’ interest in U.S. popular culture, with iconic images of the Great Depression; from Evans’ early visits to Cuba; and street and subway photos shot in New York City. Sept. 30-Feb. 4. $19-$25. San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, 151 Third St., S.F., www.sfmoma.org

Teotihuacan: City of Water, City of Fire: Located near what is now Mexico City, the ancient metropolis of Teotihuacan is among the world’s most significant archeological sites. The exhibition contains more than 200 artifacts and art pieces, including objects discovered at the site’s three largest pyramids. Sept. 30–Feb. 11. $13-$28. de Young Museum, Golden Gate Park, 50 Hagiwara Tea Garden Drive, S.F., www.famsf.org

Klimt & Rodin: An Artistic Encounter: The exhibit, which commemorates a meeting between Austrian painter Gustav Klimt and French sculptor Auguste Rodin in Vienna in 1902, features about 36 works by Klimt, including signature paintings, and about 25 Rodin items from the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco collection. Oct. 14–Jan. 28. $30-$35 (some discounts available). Legion of Honor, Lincoln Park, 100 34th Ave., S.F., www.famsf.org

Repentant Monk: Illusion and Disillusion in the Art of Chen Hongshou: A celebrated artist in 17th-century China, Chen Hongshou remains one of the top-regarded figurative painters in Chinese history and is also known for landscapes and renderings of birds and flowers. This exhibition contains 25 paintings, including several works previously unseen in the U.S. Oct. 25-Jan. 28. $10-$12. UC Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive, 2155 Center St., Berkeley, www.bampfa.org

Requiem
: Coinciding with the 135th anniversary of the Chinese Exclusion Act, the commissioned installation by Summer Mei Ling Lee honors the Tung Wah Group of Hospitals that brought the bones of thousands of Chinese immigrants — considered “permanent aliens” under the 1882 U.S. legislation — home to China. The artwork features darkened galleries, hanging scrolls, ash-painted murals, film footage and a box of ancestral bones. Oct. 26-Dec. 23, free. Chinese Culture Center, 750 Kearny St., third floor (inside Hilton Hotel), S.F., www.cccsf.us

About Face: Intimacy and Abstraction in Photographic Portraits: Ansel Adams, Imogen Cunningham, John Gutmann and Edward Weston are among the artists represented in the show of 13 intimate portraits, dating from the 1920s-1940s; by including areas of abstraction, the artists capture both the physical reality and the mood of their subjects. Nov. 1–March 4. Free. Cantor Arts Center, Palm Drive at Museum Way, Stanford University, Stanford, www.museum.stanford.edu

Couture Korea: The exhibition looks at traditional Korean clothing and considers its continued relevance and international influence. More than 120 items, from meticulous re-creations of attire worn during the Joseon dynasty (1392-1910) to the contemporary designs of Jin Teok and Karl Lagerfeld, are on view. Nov. 3-Feb. 4. $10-$25. Asian Art Museum, 200 Larkin St., S.F., www.asianart.org

STILL ON VIEW

Degas, Impressionism, and the Paris Millinery Trade: Period hats from the 19th century, and paintings and pastels by Edgar Degas, Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Mary Cassatt, Edouard Manet and other impressionist-era artists are on view in this show, which explores the impressionism’s fascination with millinery themes. Through Sept. 24, $10-$28. Legion of Honor, Lincoln Park, 100 34th Ave., S.F., www.famsf.org

Flower Power: The eye-pleasing show contains about 60 pieces, dating from ancient to contemporary times, that explore the role of six flowers — lotus, chrysanthemum and cherry blossom among them — in Asian culture and how flowers have symbolized peace and transcendence through the ages. Through Oct. 1. $10-$25. Asian Art Museum, 200 Larkin St., S.F., www.asianart.org

Munch: Between the Clock and the Bed: Edvard Munch, whose best-known works include his “Madonna” and “Sick Child” pieces and “The Scream,” receives fresh consideration in this 45-painting exhibit, which expresses appreciation for the Norwegian artist’s later work. Through Oct. 9. $25-$33. San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, 151 Third St., S.F., www.sfmoma.org

Revelations: Art from the African American South: Sixty-two works by contemporary African American artists — with themes including race, gender, class and faith — reflect visual traditions rarely seen openly before the civil-rights era. Through April 1. $6-$15. de Young Museum, Golden Gate Park, 50 Hagiwara Tea Garden Drive, S.F., www.famsf.org

IN THE GALLERIES

Patio Music: Bay Area artist Tucker Nichols paints the world uses his subject matter to express powerful emotion. The colorful exhibit contains about 30 pictures of decorative objects — garden statues, flowers bursting from a vase, a mountain of candies in a bowl — that convey conflicting feelings: joy and sadness; buoyancy and soberness; opportunity and limitation. Sept. 8–Oct. 28, free. Gallery 16, 501 Third St., S.F., www.gallery16.com

Judy Chicago: Pussies: Acclaimed feminist artist Judy Chicago hasn’t had a show in San Francisco since 1979, when “The Dinner Party,” her monumental installation of ceramic plates celebrating women’s history and sexuality, drew massive crowds to SFMOMA. Her current show salutes women and cats and explores the connections drawn between the two. Paintings, drawings and plates, created from 1968 to 2004 and featuring female and feline imagery, are on view. Sept. 8–Oct. 28, free. Jessica Silverman Gallery, 488 Ellis St., S.F., www.jessicasilvermangallery.com

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