Weird art is often labeled as experimental — or as something akin to an inside joke between pretentious friends. But weird art isn't always inaccessible art.

What if it can offer a way in?

This month, these three so-called "weird art" events break the snooty art assumptions. Keep an open mind and get out there.

'Cthulhu: The Musical!'

Josh Gross, artistic director of Puppeteers for Fears, loves to add "the musical!" to anything he says, just to see what happens. In a way, that's how his comedic puppet musical horror troupe started. The Oregon-based company launches its first national tour in St. Paul with "Cthulhu: The Musical!", an adaptation of a 1929 short story by horror icon H.P. Lovecraft about an evil octopus-faced god who lives under the sea and drives people crazy by invading their dreams.

"When I was writing the score, I wanted to lean into nautical themes, and so initially the concept was to write surf rock, evil Calypso mixed with psych rock, to try and evoke sounds of being underwater and feelings of unease," Gross said. Run time is two hours with an intermission. Contains R-rated material, so this is no children's show. (8 p.m. June 13. Turf Club, 1601 W. University Av., St. Paul. $25. Tickets via

'The Year of the Chair'

At the Fireweed Community Woodshop, founder Jess Hirsch declared 2024 the year of the chair. "The chair can be more complicated to build than a house because of the angles," Hirsch said. "It's not as straightforward as you would think, and it requires a lot of special tooling." The nonprofit woodworking shop is honoring the chair at a summer solstice event on June 20, leaning hard into the theme. Expect cherry (chair-y, get it?) ice cream, a craft market, musical chairs and chair-making demonstrations. They'll show off tools, as well. "It's a kid-friendly event, so the tools won't be super-reachable," Hirsch added.

Fireweed is focused on empowering women and marginalized genders, as a way to flip the script on who you would expect in a woodshop. (5-7 p.m. June 20, Fireweed Community Woodshop, 14 27th Av. SE., Mpls., Free. More info:

'Weird Stuff Only'

"Weird Stuff Only" is a cabaret of strange, durational art, ranging from puppetry to animation, that isn't linear and takes time to digest. After outgrowing Bryant Lake Bowl's theater, this quirky exploration of performers has found a new home for its monthly madness at the Parkway Theater. To launch this, it will bring in three of its most popular performers. Baki Baki Baki is doing marionette puppetry, Sishir Bommakanti presents experimental animation, and Gabriel Rodreick & Anna Dolde go for it with durational performance art. Audience members are invited to participate in a costume contest — the theme is "All-Stars." There will also be a puppet wrestling match.

Animator Merit Thursday started "Weird Stuff Only" about a year and a half ago because he didn't feel there was a space to show work that wasn't narrative or character-driven, and most animation and film festivals weren't excited about non-narrative work. To make sure it's accessible, he interviews the artists after their sets. "I think experimental art can sometimes be really inaccessible emotionally if it's weird, and if it doesn't have a character, it can be really hard to grab onto it," Thursday said. "But the antidote to that inaccessibility is just talking to the artist — you immediately connect to the piece after you hear from them." (Doors at 6 p.m., show at 7 p.m. June 30, Parkway Theater, 4814 Chicago Av. S., Mpls., $15, 18+ event, masks required. Tickets via 612-822-8080 or