Living largesse

Illustration by Priscilla Garcia

There may be no better week than this one to play the part of sophisticated patron of the arts (before, of course, you play the part of drunk patron of Guinness on the 17th).

Kick it off Thursday, March 10, with a free (but definitely) highbrow event that just screams “art salon.” New Yorker art critic Peter Schjeldahl will be on hand at UC Davis to discuss “The Critic as Artist: Updating Oscar Wilde.” The talk is part of the university’s Betty Jean and Wayne Thiebaud Endowed Lecture and starts at 4:30 p.m. in the Art Studio Building (1 Shields Avenue in Davis). RSVP by emailing

Saturday, March 12, with the seventh annual Art of Painting in the 21st Century conference at the John Natsoulas Gallery (521 1st Street in Davis), starting at 10 a.m., the day is filled with programming regarding current trends in the art world and the work of artists Richard Whitten, Mark Van Proyen, Chester Arnold, Melissa Chandon and Richard Hull—all of whom will be in attendance and giving talks. A reception and gala follow at 7 p.m. and admission is free. Find out more at

On the morning of Thursday, March 17, celebrate Bright Underbelly, the much-anticipated 70,000-square-foot tree-canopy mural on the underside of the freeway at W and Sixth streets. Put together by local artists and designers Sofia Lacin and Hennessy Christophel, this is the largest mural in the region and serves as an homage to the city’s native flora and fauna. The ribbon-cutting ceremony is at 9 a.m. Find out more at

Speaking of underbellies, if all of the above is a little too highfalutin for your rock ’n’ roll heart, catch a screening of Punk’s Dead: SLC Punk 2, sequel to the 1999 cult hit SLC Punk, at Tower Theatre (2508 Land Park Drive) on Monday, March 14, at 8:30 p.m. The film portrays drugs, alcohol and punk rock as it functions in super-conservative Salt Lake City. Tickets are $14 and can be purchased at