Welcome to your week! Over the next few days, there’s some art worth exploring at the Institute for Contemporary Art at VCU and Gallery5, a taste of the Richmond Black Restaurant Experience, and playthings from yesteryear in Chesterfield. Make it a good one!
Take in artist Ibrahim Ahmed’s intriguing multimedia works — photo collage, sculpture, video, textile and large-scale installations — on view for free at the Institute for Contemporary Art at VCU, now through Nov. 7. In his first U.S. exhibition, “Ibrahim Ahmed: It Will Always Come Back to You,” the Kuwait-born, Egypt-based artist leads onlookers through his exploration into what happens when the stories that have guided human migrations throughout time turn out to be myths. He also examines the cultural forces that prevail in the working-class neighborhood of Ard El Lewa in Giza, where he and his family live.
—Susan Morgan, R•Home Managing Editor
For First Friday on Aug. 6, Gallery5 opens for happy hour (5 to 7 p.m.), offering a full-bodied, food-related repast with something tasty to hear, see and drink. The old firehouse galley serves up illustrations, drawings and other work themed around food, alongside the Art Lounge mixing up illustrations of cocktails by Laura Sant, a self-described “food nerd who loves to draw.” Cooking onstage, enjoy a series of delectable offerings from Classical Revolution RVA, the piping-hot jazz of The Sweet Potatoes, and originals and standards whipped up by Ben Butterworth and the Bajas. Mmm-mm. That’s good artin’.
—Harry Kollatz Jr., Senior Writer
Have you ever played with a Jacob’s ladder, quoits, or a cup and ball? If not, now’s your chance to play with these toys of yesteryear during the Chesterfield Historical Society’s “Toys and Games of the Past” event on Aug. 7 at the Chesterfield County Museum. Have fun playing games such as skittles, a bowling-type game where you attempt to knock over nine pins; knucklebones, similar to jacks; and quoits, which is basically ring toss. Plus, make your own whirligig toy (kind of like a pinwheel) to take home. The all-ages event is free to attend and runs from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.
—Nicole Cohen, Special Projects Editor
Typically held each year in early March, Richmond Black Restaurant Experience launched in 2017 as a way to highlight Black-owned restaurants and food businesses throughout the region, and since its inception, Mobile Soul Sunday has been a signature event to look forward to. Lucky for us, RBRE is offering a taste of the annual food festival a little early. On Aug. 8, RBRE will host a 15-strong squad of food trucks — from Jamaican cuisine to vegan fare, sweet treats and comfort food — at Byrd Park from noon to 7 p.m. The event is free, but registration is encouraged.
—Eileen Mellon, Food Editor
- See live performances and visual arts at Rhythm on the River ’21, Aug. 6 at the VMFA.
- Attend a virtual Salute to Service honoring the U.S. Coast Guard via the Virginia War Memorial Aug. 4.
- Virginia Museum of History & Culture celebrates Virginia Craft Beer Month with the BrewHaHa festival Aug. 7.
- Virginia Rep’s “Ella and Her Fella Frank” continues at the November Theatre through Sept. 12.
River City Roundup is Richmond magazine’s weekly compilation of the best things to see, do and experience in the region, compiled by our editors. Get each week’s installment directly in your inbox every Monday by subscribing to our e-newsletter.