Art might feed the soul, but belly-wise those fruit-bowl still lifes always seem to lead to gastric blockage and arrest. Feast on creativity and grub, at Art + Soul Food.
Spanning a four-block stretch of Brewerytown's West Girard corridor, this completely free art show-cum-block party delivers on its name, combining works from 16 Philly artists with gratis soul food catered by local institutions, plus comp'd beer and wine to ensure said soul doesn't get parched. Spread throughout four gloriously rehabbed storefronts, the art includes monstrous taxidermy (rabbit w/ duck feet & pigeon wings; herring gull w/ wild turkey claw); photo documentation of the Divine Lorraine Hotel's slide into decrepitude; and a silent video montage of stock news footage from the '50s-'70s documenting satellite launches, improvements in transportation, and the advent of the cell phone age -- i.e., the birth of Mark Paul Gosselaar. Foodwise, Butter's will sling southern eats like fried chicken wings, collards, mac 'n' cheese, and corn bread; Rita's will hand out sweet potato pie-flavored water ice; and Deborah's Kitchen's progressive spread is designed to "broaden the horizons of the layman's concept of soul food" through rice pilaf w/ salmon and a lightly fried, "secretly seasoned" turkey chop, which hopefully doesn't include any herring gull.
Bookending the festival borders, 10 bands split two sidewalk stages, with one lineup hand-picked by Officer Bryant, a part-time musician and full-time cop who walks the West Girard beat, and totally doesn't hold a grudge over you eating a wing of Cezannes.