PITCH BLACKNESS American artist Hank Willis Thomas currently has a exhibition on view in the Baltimore Museum of Art's West Wing for Contemporary Art. The new Jersey native is participating in the Artist-in-Residence Program at the Johns Hopkins University Center for Africana Studies during the fall 2009 semester, and this BMA exhibition features 10 of Thomas' recent works. You may recognize Thomas' name and advertising-inspired imagery/vocabulary (pictured) from his live-wire B®ANDED series or his tremendous 2008 monograph Pitch Blackness. Stay tuned for updates about lectures and artists talks planned as part of his 2009 residency.
Also at the BMA: City Paper contributor Daniel Van Allen's Mermaid Slideshow offers photos from the Coney Island Mermaid Parade at the BMA from 9-11 p.m. Aug. 13.
NEW(ISH) GALLERYElise Siegel debuted her Positron Gallery (210 W. Read St.,  697-3790, positrongallery.com) back in June with the System of Sequence group show, and followed it up with Live Wire, a group show that ends Aug. 15. The exhibition features the works of local artists Joanna Barnum, Aaron Craven, Mike Fila, Julia Gumminger, Anne Israel, Paul Maier, Ariella Mohr, and Josh Sylvia; Positron's next group show, Summer Sensual, opens Aug. 29. Gallery hours Saturdays 11 a.m.-7 p.m.
OPENINGS Fiber artist Melissa Webb's In a Material World . . . opens Aug. 14 (with a reception from 7-10 p.m.) at Gallery Imperato, and features the photography of CP contributor Uli Loskot, Lisa Dietrich, and aminibigcircus. Shrunken Treasures: Miniaturization in Books and Art--featuring more than 30 small-scale manuscripts and rare books from the permanent collection--opens Aug. 15 at the Walters Art Museum. The Wiggle Your Little Toe Art Show--featuring collages and paintings by Debbie Manville and Sarah Elek--opens Aug. 15 at the Art Under Ground Studio with a 7 p.m. reception.
CLOSING The Janet and Walter Sondheim Prize Finalists exhibition ends Aug. 16 at the BMA. Sink/Float ends Aug. 16 at Area 405. Works by Gerald Habarth and Preston Poe closes Aug. 15 at the Creative Alliance at the Patterson with a closing reception Aug. 14 from 5:30-7:30 p.m. The group show Everybody Draws ends Aug. 15 at Fleckenstein Gallery and Archival Framing. The wood-fired ceramics by MICA faculty and students exhibition Fire Proof ends Aug. 14 at Meredith Gallery. East Side Stories: Portraits of a Baltimore Neighborhood, Then and Now and Maya Freelon Asante's The Beauty of Now ends Aug. 16 at the Reginald F. Lewis Museum of Maryland African American History and Culture.