Love Me Tender: Punny! James Charles, Maximo Gonzales, Barton Lidicé Benes and Mark Wagner, and others use money as both a medium and a symbol to ask questions about value, commodity, and identity. $10.
Zoom: Since the mid-1950s, Aldo and Marirosa Ballo have produced thousands of images and videos of Italian design icons—those slick, shiny, fast things, like Marchio Botta’s armchairs or Ettore Sottsass’s fruit bowl. $10.
Maneki Neko: Japan’s Beckoning Cats—From Talisman to Pop Icon: So. Many. Little. Waving. Kitty. Paws. One hundred and fifty five of them, to be precise, in mediums ranging from stone to papier-mâché. This exhibition traces the Maneki Neko’s evolution from source of luck and protection to something more readily recognized as the door greeter to Japanese restaurants. $10.
Plastics Unwrapped expands upon the prescient sentiment of Mr. McGuire in The Graduate: plastics. Unwrapped acknowledges that this prevalent and troublingly useful substance is thoroughly integrated into every aspect of our lives, and asks us—through works presented in a variety of mediums—to make thoughtful choices. $10.
A promenade of rooms, an outdoor garden, and a café chronicling Dale Chihuly’s series and packages over the years. It’s not the definitive Chihuly experience, despite the sales pitch, but there are highlights, like the café, where the artist reveals himself as a master hoarder, and the Macchia Forest. $19.
Fantasy: Worlds of Myth and Magic: The nerdiest new permanent exhibit in Middle-earth features costumes, props, and original manuscripts from some of our favorite mythical adventures, including The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings, The Wizard of Oz, Harry Potter, and Xena: Warrior Princess. $20.
Horizon: Acclaimed media vivisectionist Paul Pfeiffer is placed side-by-side with cherished paintings from the Founding Collection in order to explore the “philosophical, political, and psychological notions of the horizon.” Free.
The Hudson Flows West: Multiple generations of the Hudson River School are represented in this exploration of the Hudson River as a natural symbol of manifest destiny. Paintings from the museum and loans from private Seattle collections. Free.
Sean Scully: Passages/Impressions/Surfaces: A portfolio of a dozen photographs from the Outer Hebrides of Scotland will be paired with a large-scale oil painting by the artist—who's far better known for his paintings. This time, we'll get to see what he brings to photography. $10 suggested.
Small Change: A new project in the Test Site from MFA student Rebecca Chernow that experiments with "reciprocity, barter, debt, and the emergence of markets and related value systems through the creation and distribution of an invented currency." And cigarette butts too, it seems. $10 suggested.
Out [o] Fashion Photography: Embracing Beauty extends New York scholar Deborah Willis’s journey to the heart of photography. This new exhibition, created in residence at the Henry and especially for the Seattle museum, looks at artistic and ethnographic photography—comparing the images collected by the Henry Art Gallery and the University of Washington Libraries, Special Collections. The result is a surprise bulldozing of the distinctions between high and low, ideal beauty and medical health, sex and sales. $10 suggested.
Premonitions of the Bauharoque: Paul Laffoley makes layered, mandala-like paintings but also throws out big ideas. He attended Brown and Harvard and worked with Andy Warhol and on the World Trade Center. His best-known piece, THE KALI-YUGA: THE END OF THE UNIVERSE AT 424826 A.D. (The Cosmos Falls in the Chaos as the Shakti Orohoros Leads to the Elimination of all Value Systems by Spectrum Analysis), looks like the love child of the board game Sorry and a Pokémon card. This exhibition samples his output from 1965 to today. $10 suggested.
Sanctum: For this installation you don't even need to go indoors. Six surveillance cameras capture you as you walk by the museum. If you get within 12 feet (as you are warned by signs), you'll be profiled—sensors will scan the "landmarks" of your face, as the artists Juan Pampin and James Coupe describe them, and you'll appear on the video screens in the windows. Text taken from volunteers' Facebook posts (anyone can sign up to donate their status updates) will appear as a story on your image. You'll get a story the system thinks represents you demographically, and the voice in the speakers above modulates accordingly, too (male/female, slow/fast for older/younger). Creepy or entertaining? Free.
James Turrell’s “skyspace” Light Reign is the only thing that’s really on always-and-forever display at the Henry. It’s an outdoor room that lives like a barnacle on the side of the museum, with an opening in the ceiling so that you can sit and watch the sky go by. The experience is mind bogglingly more fascinating than you’d think, which is why Turrell has “skyspaces” all over the world. The Henry’s is furniturey, ringed with wooden bench seating. $10 suggested.
The newest museum in the Northwest is a nine-acre campus with a four-story facility housing gleaming displays of cars, trucks, and motorcycles, from a red-and-cream 1906 Cadillac Model M buggy to the leafy, no-door custom sedan used in the 1994 movie The Flintstones. $14.
Mosaic Arts International 2013: Nearly 50 artists working with materials ranging from glass and ceramic to dinosaur bones display their work in this juried exhibition. $12.
Northwest Artists Collect: The culmination of a year-long collaboration between UW-Tacoma students and the Museum, this exhibition showcases the original work of 7 Pacific Northwest glass artists-including Martin Blank, Joseph Gregory Rossano, and Richard Royal-alongside pieces from their personal collections. $12.
Celluloid Seattle: A City at the Movies: MOHAI cracks open its archive to show us our old theaters, including photographs of the chaps in caps and oversize coats who used to watch movies in them. $14.
Scissors for a Brush: Remember the paper snowflakes you made in kindergarten? Karen Bit Vejle’s large-scale pieces are what you dreamed you could make before you confronted the limitations of your attention span and hand-eye coordination, not to mention those dumb safety scissors. The exhibition also features some never-before-seen-in-the-US paper cuts by Hans Christian Andersen. $6.