Things to Do at Penn State: Jan. 28-Feb. 4

January 27, 2021

What's happening at Penn State? Here's a look at some of the cultural events — both in-person and virtual — taking place at the University this weekend and next week:


Mwenso and the ShakesFeb. 3-10, via livestream. Jazz band Mwenso and the Shakes will be featured as part of the Center for Performing Arts Fierce Urgency Festival. Free.


"Artist Share"11:30 a.m., Jan. 28, via webinar. Artists Natalia Arbelaez, Soojin Choi and Dolores Furtado will talk about their work featured in the HUB-Robeson Galleries, "Human Expectations I & II." Free, but registration required.

McCourtney Institute for Democracy virtual event series: Donna Shalala — 4 p.m., Jan. 28, via livestream. Former U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services Donna Shalala will discuss the future of the Democratic Party. Shalala also served in Congress, chancellor of the University of Wisconsin and president of the University of Miami. Free.

Penn State Behrend Smith Creative Writers Reading Series: Alberto Rios  6 p.m., Jan. 28, via Zoom. Alberto Rios, Arizona's first poet laureate, will read from his works of poetry and other writings. Free.

Mary E. Rolling Reading Series: Toby Thompson  7:30 p.m., Jan. 28, via livestream. Toby Thompson, associate professor of English, will read from his published works of nonfiction. Free.

Leslie Odom Jr. 7 p.m., Jan. 29, via livestream. The Penn State Student Programming Association presents a conversation with Tony and Grammy Award-winning artist Leslie Odom Jr., who starred in the Broadway musical "Hamilton." Free, but registration required.

John M. Anderson Endowed Lecture Series: Lewis Hyde11:30 a.m., Feb. 1, via Zoom. Poet, essayist, translator and cultural critic Lewis Hyde will present "The Art of Forgetting." Free, but registration required.

"Toss Your Hat in Ring" 1 p.m. and 7 p.m., Feb. 4, and 7 p.m. Feb. 10, via webinar. Penn State Extension is offering a web-based seminar for anyone who has ever thought of serving on a school board, borough council or township board.

Creating Content in 2021: Corporate Communications6 p.m., Feb. 2, via Zoom. A panel of Bellisario College of Communications alumni share their expertise about creating content, getting ahead and standing out. Free.

Journalism Speakers Forum: Juleyka Lantigua Williams7 p.m., Feb. 2, via Zoom. Juleyka Lantigua Williams, a digital media producer who founded her own company, will discuss her approach to storytelling and participate in a question-and-answer session. Free.

"Artist Share" — 10 a.m., Feb. 3, via webinar. Artists Micaela Amateau, Kris Grey and Lilly Zuckerman will talk about their work featured in the HUB-Robeson Galleries, "Human Expectations I & II." Free, but registration required.

National Girls and Women In Sports Day panel7 p.m., Feb. 3, via livestream. Penn State Harrisburg is hosting a panel of girls and women sharing their stories and experiences. Free, but registration required.

Smith Creative Writers Reading Series: Erin Pringle 6 p.m., Feb. 4, via Zoom. Erin Pringle, author of the novel "Hezada! I Miss You" and two short-story collections, will be featured. Free.

"Weed It or Eat It: The Art of Planting and Foraging" 6 p.m., Feb. 4, via Zoom. The Penn State Student Farm will host a discussion about identifying and using edible and medicinal plants that are often considered weeds. Free, but registration required.


"Anxiety Project" HUB-Robeson Galleries and online through March 14. Works by William Doan, professor of theatre, focused on mental health, are on view. Free.

THON logo exhibition — Online. The THON website is featuring a virtual gallery showcasing logos from previous events, as well as profiles of each student designer. Free.

"Celebrating the ADA: The Legacy and Evolution of Disability Rights and Lived Experience at Penn State" — Online. The University Libraries virtual exhibit explores the first 100 years of national disability rights legislation and the movement's impact on the Penn State community. Free.

"African Brilliance: A Diplomat's Sixty Years of Collecting" Online Catalogue — Online. A digital catalogue of African works collected by retired U.S. ambassador Allen C. Davis, including text entries, high-resolution 360-degree images and contextual videos at the Palmer Museum of Art. Free.

"African Brilliance" Virtual Tour — Online. Explore an interactive tour created with teachers, students and families in mind. The tour includes installation images, pictures of selected works, videos for guided viewing and related art-making activity suggestions. Free.

"Drawing on a Legacy: Highlights from the John Driscoll American Drawings Collection" — Online. High-resolution images, text selections and a photo gallery of works on paper donated by Penn State alumnus John P. Driscoll, including early landscape views and botanical sketches, animal scenes and still lives, and portraits and preparatory figure studies. The works include a number of well-known 19th-century American artists. Free.

"Photography=Abstraction" — Online. The Palmer Museum of Art's virtual pop-up exhibition is an interactive gallery with images, text and informational videos for selected works. Free, Google Chrome browser recommended.

Snowiss Gallery of American Art — Online. Tour the Palmer Museum of Art's first-floor Snowiss Gallery. Free.

"Women in Art: Activism and Resistance" virtual tour  Online. This self-directed, interactive online tour features a selection of objects by female artists in the Palmer Museum of Art's collection. In celebration of the centennial of the 19th Amendment, this tour highlights artists working in a variety of media during the 20th and 21st centuries who have contributed to political, social and cultural change. Free.

"Human Expectations" — Through Jan. 31, Display Cases, HUB-Robeson Galleries, University Park campus. Four artists explore the form of the human head in ceramic, neon and glass. Free.

"Human Expectations II" Through June 20, Display Cases, HUB-Robeson Galleries, University Park campus, and online. The work of five artists embody a search for expression and experience through material. Free.

"Border Exchange" — Through Feb. 15, Display Cases, HUB-Robeson Galleries, University Park campus. The exhibition pairs two of artist Carlos Rosales-Silva's paintings with a site-responsive wall painting. Free.

"When the Bough Breaks"Through April 30, Art Alley, HUB-Robeson Galleries, University Park campus. Nine different artists address the issue of climate change through a unique representation of trees. Free.

"Something Means Something Else" Center for Sexuality and Gender Diversity, HUB-Robeson Center, University Park campus. This three-part mural by artist Tamara Gayer focuses on the intricacies of the current moment in sexual and gender identity. Free.

"Small Planet" — Through January 2022, HUB-Robeson Galleries, University Park campus. The HUB-Robeson Center has commissioned a site-specific wall painting located in the first-floor eateries by artist Katherine Tzu-Lan Mann titled "Small Planet." Free.

Last Updated January 28, 2021