Best of the Bay 2012: BEST NIGHT IN THE MUSEUM

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Afterhours museum parties full of bright young things witnessing cool artistic happenings are anything but a rarity in our forward-thinking area. And really, we wouldn't have it any other way. May we especially highlight the amazing series that is L@TE: Friday Nights at BAM/PFA? This is — probably — the only such affair at which an "electric orchestra of pickle jars accompanied by abstract lighting machines" and the occasional pop-in by Devendra Banhart are a given. The wonderfully heady and innovative social gatherings fill the Berkeley Art Museum with experiential art and music (construct rainbow prisms, listen to Negativland, deconstruct Scritti Politti records, join an avant-cabaret) and light up the Pacific Film Archives with glorious 16mm and 35mm prints of rare and recently restored films. Also: dancing! If you've ever dreamt of meeting a soul mate while watching 3-D animation, participating in interactive dance performances, and peeping the latest emerging local artists, you need to get L@TE.

Occasional Fridays, 5:30-9pm, $7. Berkeley Art Museum, 2626 Bancroft Way, Berk. (510) 642-0808, www.bampfa.berkeley.edu