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Visual Art and Museums

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Arts and Museums

In July 2018, the San Diego History Center in partnership with the Lambda Archives opened the first ever exhibition in Balboa Park focused on San Diego’s LGBTQ+ community, LGBTQ+ San Diego: Stories of Struggles and Triumphs. The exhibition highlights stories of perseverance and achievement, examining how this community has faced, fought – and continues to fight – against persecution and intolerance, with the goal of equality for all LGBTQ+ people. Shedding light on the role of this community in the larger San Diego story, this will be the History Center’s major exhibition of 2018 and will run until Jan. 20, 2020.

Balboa Park’s Mingei International Museum will present its final exhibition, William L. Hawkins – An Imaginative Geography (June 9−Aug. 26, 2018), featuring over 60 of the African American artists’ most iconic paintings, drawings, and sculptures, before closing for a year-long transformation on Sept. 3, 2018. The goal in renovating the museum space, originally built in 1915, aims to increase accessibility for guests, create new outdoor public areas, offer distinct new spaces for community events and educational activities (including a classroom and multi-purpose theater), and provide the opportunity for expanded community engagement in accommodating collaborative meetings and programs.

Opening November 2018, Hidden Gems will give visitors a glimpse of San Diego’s sparkly side at the San Diego Natural History Museum in Balboa Park. The exhibition will showcase more than 100 of the best, brightest and most spectacular selections from a collection of more than 15,000 gems and minerals – many of which have never been on view before – on every floor of the museum. San Diego County is one of the best-known gem-producing regions in the world, and visitors will get to check out some of these local riches—luminous quartz, gleaming topaz, and the signature watermelon-pink tourmalines that have brought fame to San Diego mines. The glittery additions will be vertically aligned on five floors and located right outside the elevators, so each time visitors reach a new floor they’ll experience something new.

Rescheduled to open in late summer of 2018 due to construction delays, The CADO, an immersive pop-up experience devoted to California avocados, will land in San Diego. Conceptualized and owned by San Diego-based creative agency & boom Unlimited, and sponsored by the California Avocado Commission, the 6,700 square-foot photogenic exhibition will delight the senses as it examines the nutrient-dense fruit from seed to skin. Custom-built entirely out of 16 shipping containers to be mobile, The CADO will feature seven imaginative rooms of large-scale interactive art installations. The mobile experience will pop-up at Liberty Station, a historic, waterfront urban village that is home to some of the city’s best retail, restaurants, art and entertainment, for a three-month engagement.

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