Ah, the sweet, hellish sizzle of a Riverside summer. That three-month stretch between Spring and Fall quarter is home to long days, cool nights, sluggish summer school sessions — and enough activity in the Riverside arts scene to put your boredom on the backburner. Whether you’re looking for something on a big screen or a small stage, Riverside has you covered. Here are some of the biggest things to look forward to this season.
At the California Museum of Photography, “Geographies of Detention” (July 1 – Sept. 7) offers an investigative look into the architecture of incarceration, and “Flash!” (June 1 – July 27) showcases work by contemporary artists and photographers. Stop by the Sweeney Art Gallery before Sept. 28 to view selections from “Essential,” which celebrates the gallery’s 50th anniversary (congrats, ARTSblock!). And until mid-September, the Riverside Art Museum will exhibit “Exit/Entry,” painted in all its abstract glory by Elke Zauner, as well as “Pure Imagination,” which features the work of imaginative children’s book illustrators.
Definitely pay a visit to downtown Riverside on the first Thursday of every month at 6 p.m. The ArtsWalk, a monthly celebration of Riverside’s artists and local vendors, consistently draws huge crowds, live music and a heck of a good time.
So many concerts, so little time. Aside from the big festivals happening this summer — including Pitchfork, Lollapalooza and Outside Lands (and the Reading/Leeds Festival, for those of you who happen to be visiting England in August) — Riverside will host a series of concerts and bands from now ‘til September. The Rhythm of Riverside series occurs at Fairmount Park every Wednesday at 6 p.m. through August 14, and features a variety of bands, local vendors, plenty of food and bounce houses. For you jazz aficionados, there will be a free jazz concert at the Citrus State Historic Park on July 12 at 6:30 p.m.
Over at Blood Orange Infoshop, The Body, Subservient Fuck and Moxiebeat are playing a $5 show at 8 p.m on July 7. And check out Back to the Grind’s open mics every Tuesday night at 7 p.m. for some local talent — and a latte!
This summer is huge for movie-lovers. Fans of action flicks and Channing Tatum will appreciate White House Down (June 28). For family-friendly titles, “Despicable Me 2” and “The Lone Ranger” both release July 3, and “Turbo” releases July 17. You can plan on skipping “Grown Ups 2” on July 12, but “Pacific Rim,” director Guillermo del Toro’s big-budget sci-fi/action flick, looks over-the-top in an awesome way. I’m most looking forward to “Kick-Ass 2,” which unites Jim Carrey, Chloe Moretz and Donald Faison on Aug. 16, and “The World’s End,” which stars Martin Freeman, Simon Pegg and Nick Frost in a delightfully apocalyptic, bar-centric comedy on Aug. 23.
Be sure to swing by Main Street downtown for this summer’s “Movies on Main” series, which will screen free films at 6:30 p.m. each Thursday. Titles include “Men in Black 3” and “Megamind.” If you’re looking for something a little more cinematic, the Culver Center’s film screenings continue this summer with titles like “No” and Clint Eastwood’s “High Plains Drifter.”
Jay-Z’s “Magna Carta Holy Grail” will release with a bang on July 4, followed by a host of attention-grabbing releases. On July 16 we’ve got David Lynch’s modernized blues album, “The Big Dream,” and roots-rock band Edward Sharpe & the Magnetic Zeros will release their self-titled album July 23. On Aug. 27, Franz Ferdinand is back with “Right Thoughts, Right Words, Right Action.” King Khan & the Shrines return after a six-year hiatus with “Idle No More” on Sept. 3, and watch out for Arcade Fire’s untitled new release on Sept. 9. Right before class resumes in the fall, Kings of Leon will hopefully not disappoint when they release “Mechanical Bull” on Sept. 24.