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Art Attack!

As summer winds down, a new art season hits the halls and walls of our favorite S.D. museums. From Balboa Park to Escondido, these new exhibits will make a connoisseur out of you yet!

Scripps on Prospect is a rich chronicle of MCASD’s architectural history. From top: 1988 Robert Venturi sketch superimposed over a c1940 photograph of South Moulton Villa; 1907 Irving Gill drawing superimposed over a c1920 photograph of Wisteria Cottage

1. Three new exhibitions, one classic location. The MCASD La Jolla’s triple threat starts September 21st, when they launch their fall standouts. Lost in the Memory Palace is a multi-sensory getaway to another realm: the installations of “imaginary space” make you a participant, a witness and part of the piece…Trippy! If you’re feeling a little more down-to-earth, make Scripps on Prospect your display of the day. MCASD’s collaboration with the La Jolla Historical Society chronicles the historical evolution of their buildings, two true cultural landmarks of yesteryear. Finally, putting the “deep” in “deep sea,” specimens from the watery depths feature in Dana Montlack’s Sea of Cortez, a series based on journals kept by Jon Steinbeck during his travels, wherein S.D. ocean life gets graphic. MCASD, we’re on board. 700 Prospect St, all opening Sept. 21, mcasd.org

2. The Mingei International Museum is getting larger than life. Struck By Modernism honors the work of C. Carl Jennings, a California artist-blacksmith whose extravagant forged works left a distinctive mark on west coast ironwork. Dramatic gates and arching windows are Jennings’ most notable works and tributes to his rugged individualism. Visual simplicity yet confident execution…you’ll want to trade in your white picket fence for a Jennings original. 1439 El Prado, opening Aug. 24, mingei.org

3. Click, click…the perfect shot! They’re hard to come by, but the Museum of Photographic Arts has 240 of them. The Pictures of the Year International competition is the gold standard for photographic excellence, and MOPA is giving you the best of the best of inspiring, heart-breaking and jaw-dropping photos from around the world. Alongside the POYI exhibition is 30x: Three Decades, a celebration of MOPA’s 30-year residency in Balboa Park. One acquisition from every year makes this collection a nostalgic throwback to art through the ages and a multi-decade must-see! 1649 El Prado, POYI through Sept. 22, 30x through Oct. 13, mopa.org

4. When does a gallery become a storybook? When Jim Machacek and Mary Ellen Long are in residence. The La Jolla Athenaeum becomes a walkable paperback this fall, showcasing the real and not-so-real stories of artists and characters alike. Each gallery wall is a chapter in Machacek’s walk-in novel, The Kincade Chronicles, a blending of fact and fiction that leads the viewer from the Revolutionary War to the present through the eyes of the fictional Kincade family. In ROOTS, Long’s story is born of fire and all her own: Her drawings, sculptures and book forms are based on tree roots that were revealed after a fire in the San Juan Mountains nearly devastated her home. Wrapped in handmade paper and dipped in sumi ink, it’s an exhibition that runs deep. 1008 Wall St, opening Sept. 21, ljathenaeum.org

5. California Center for the Arts, the Escondido treasure, is making this a September to remember. The Great Green (or shall we say, El Verde Grande) is bringing internationally renowned Spanish-language films to the outdoor screen every Saturday night next month, which means it’s time to break out the blankets and maybe snuggle up with some subtitles. Starting with Chilean historical drama, No, Cine en el Parque is your chance to catch another glimpse of ever-smoldering The Motorcycle Diaries star, Gael García Bernal. Sí, we’ll be there! 340 N Escondido Blvd, Sept. 7, 14, 21 & 28, artcenter.org