Consider that art fairs are little more than overstimulating trade conventions, and you see why many in the nonwealthy art-o-sphere dread them. But Washington’s (e)merge Art Fair, now in its second year, offers something different: art, strictly for sale but reasonably easy to absorb in its entirety. It’s not too different from the satellite fairs that take place in a dozen hotels during Art Basel Miami Beach: At (e)merge, dealers set up shop at the hotel (in this case, the Capitol Skyline), posting their wares in the hotel’s rooms for viewers, who stroll through from all around the mid-Atlantic and beyond. The big difference is the performance art, like that of Holly Bass (shown): (e)merge has a ton of it, and it makes the fair more than a market destination. It’s an event that belongs on any art lover’s calendar. MORE >> (Kriston Capps)

(e)merge Art Fair runs Oct. 4–7 at the Capitol Skyline Hotel, 10 I St. SW. $15 per day. The fair’s opening party with Eric Hilton begins tonight at 7 p.m. $45 in advance, $60 at the door.


Cava Grill opens its fourth location today in Tenleytown. The Greek-inspired fast casual spot (sister restaurant to Cava Mezze) is celebrating by giving customers a free pita, bowl, salad, or minis and a fountain drink from 11 1:30 p.m. today. Honest Tea will be handing out free samples as well. Cava Grill will also be accepting donations for Micro Greens DC, a nonprofit founded by local chef Allison Sosna that teaches underprivileged kids to cook affordable healthy meals. The new 2,400 sq. ft. location includes a deck for outside seating and will also sell beer and and wine once its liquor license transfer is finalized. You can also check out Cava Grill in Bethesda, Tysons Corner, and Columbia Heights. Another location is set to open next month at the Mosaic District development in Merrifield, Va. Cava Grill, 4237 Wisconsin Ave. NW; (202) 695-8115; (Jessica Sidman)


Chinese authorities have prevented artist Ai Weiwei from seeing his first major U.S. retrospective, which opens at the Hirshhorn this weekend. Tonight’s panelists, including Hirshhorn curators Kerry Brougher and Mika Yoshitake, will have to make do with his absence. The discussion, “The Artist in Contemporary China,” starts at 5 p.m. at the Hirshhorn Museum, 7th and Independence Ave. SW. Georgetown University McNeir Auditorium New North, 37th and O streets NW. Free. RSVP here.

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