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First Thursday & Friday Preview

The penultimate First Friday of the year rolls into Southtown this week with an assortment of shows (some of which open Thursday) worthy a spot on your social calendar. Unveiled in October, Blue Star Contemporary’s sprawling fall show “Home Bodies” collects works by local, regional and international artists exploring the inherent bonds and conflicts within familial relationships (free, 10am-8pm Thu, 10am-9pm Fri, Blue Star Contemporary, 116, Blue Star, (210) 227-6960, bluestarcontemporary.org). Proving that big things often come in small packages, the University of Texas at Arlington artists’ collective MACHINE’s group show “CUFT” comprises a diverse array of works (encompassing everything from glass and glitter to found objects and photography) that “occupy no more than a cubic foot of space” (free, 6-9pm Thu-Fri, Terminal 136, 136 Blue Star, (210) 458-4391, art.utsa.edu). Uniting a number of longtime local champions of Día de los Muertos (including curator Raul Servin, artist Ramon Vasquez y Sanchez and gallerist Deborah Keller-Rihn), Studio 209’s “Circle of Life and Death” enhances the works on view with live music by Fania (Thursday) and Los Inocentes (Friday) and poetry and calaveras readings by Anthony “The Poet” Flores” (free, 6-9pm Thu-Fri, Studio 209, 1420 S. Alamo St., (210) 800-5441). Developed in response to “an increase in the policing of female bodies and body autonomy that has occurred in both politics and the media in recent years,” the four-woman showcase “Persona” seeks to “normalize discussions of sexuality, mental and reproductive health, and everyday discomfort that women may face” (free, 6-9pm Thu, Corporate Gallery, 116 Blue Star, (210) 219-8640). Over at Haus Collective, local artist Forton Keeeman presents a new series of paintings (free, 7-10pm Thu, Haus Collective, 108 Blue Star, (512) 923-9704, facebook.com/hauscollectivesa). The latest installment of the Presa House Pop Up exhibition series, “La Ciencia Avanza Pero Yo No (Science Advances But I Do Not)” brings Houston-based artist Ángel Lartigue to FL!GHT for a San Antonio debut that’s anchored by the interactive installation Sub Scientist Booth — which invites spectators to donate DNA samples (read saliva) to an artistic experiment that’s part altar, part laboratory — but also includes previous works such as the photographic series “Self Portraits as I Were Muertx” (free, 6-11pm Fri, FL!GHT Gallery, 134 Blue Star, facebook.com/presahouse).

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