‘The Incidental Observer’
It’s all too easy to fall into the fast-paced tempo of modern life. While running down the street to catch a bus to work, one might simply not notice the beautiful statue to the left or the unusual texture of the woman’s dress to the right.
In her photography exhibit, "The Incidental Observer," currently showing at Washburn’s gallery360, Natasha D’Schommer invites Southwest residents to take a breath and appreciate the beautiful views we accidentally overlook everyday.
A photographer for over a decade, D’Schommer, a Windom resident, has dedicated her adult life to the study of classical beauty. While she perfected her technique as a professional wedding photographer, D’Schommer is most renown for her photographs of rare books, musical scores and monuments.
She is also intrigued with Midwestern landscapes; one exhibited image captures golden prairie grass under a cloudy blue sky in soft, almost revelatory hues. Yet, this is not a smoothed-over, romantic picture. In fact, it is rough-looking, even pockmarked — "The Incidental Observer" features a montage of photos imprinted on Botticelli marble.
This free exhibit runs through Sept. 10. gallery360 is located at 3011 W. 50th St.; gallery hours are Monday-Wednesday, 10 a.m.-6 p.m.; Thursday, 10 a.m.-8 p.m.; Friday-Saturday, 10 a.m.-6 p.m. and Sundays, noon-5 p.m.
Lit 6 to invade Rag & Bone
A group of local writers are putting the spunk back into literature readings. Calling themselves the "Lit 6 Project," this creative cadre of fiction writers delivers nontraditional readings throughout the city.
"We kind of started as a response to all of the readings which were taking place already; they’re great if you are a writer or a fan of readings, but they’re just terribly boring if you’re not. We just wanted to expand the audience for literary readings. A lot of what we read can be raunchy, bawdy and a little funny. But overall what we’re trying to do is read really good fiction and entertain," Lit 6 writer Sam Osterhout said.
Thursday, Aug. 26, the Lit 6 Project will read/perform at Linden Hill’s Rag & Bone Books, 2812 W. 43rd St. The night’s theme will be "Special Report," and feature short fiction by five of the Lit 6.
"It will be an evening of fiction, satire, malt liquor and hard-hitting journalism," Kenny resident Osterhout sort-of revealed.
The free-of-charge reading begins at 7 p.m. and will last "about an hour." Check out the Lit 6 online at www.lit6project.com.
Is political campaigning making you cringe? If so, perhaps a comedy of Executive proportions would lift your spirits.
CARAG’s Brave New Workshop Theatre’s newest show, "Electile Dysfunction; or Two Johns, a Dick and a Bush," presents a compilation of original songs and comedic sketches targeting the 2004 political candidates and prominent participants.
"If you’re frustrated by politics, politicians or the voting populace at large, then this is the show for you," said Caleb McEwen, director of the show.
The show attains political neutrality by attacking all perspectives, McEwan added, "Everyone is a target — George W. Bush, John Kerry, Michael Moore, even the election itself. It’s all fair game."
Shannon Wexler, one of the show’s stars, is especially enthusiastic about this rehearsed production, that includes one or two improvised scenes. "Political satire is what the Brave New Workshop does best," waxed Wexler.
She predicts that the show-writers’ view will click with the public. "We approach the topic with the basic belief that the system is really screwed up. I think that people get tired of the campaign rhetoric, the promises and the backstabbing. I think that they’ll want to go somewhere where everyone is poked fun at."
However, this is not just cynicism run rampant. Wexler characterizes the show as "uplifting." Noting that while the actors’ main goal is to inspire laughter, she said they also hope the show will catalyze political awareness and involvement.
"I hope the show allows the audience to think about politics without being too stressed out. It’d be great if they can have a laugh, think about political issues and get charged up to vote."
Previews of "Electile Dysfunction" run Thursday-Friday, Sept. 2-3, 8 p.m. and Saturday, Sept. 4, 7 and 10 p.m. Preview tickets are $15.
The show’s official run is Fridays-Saturdays, Sept. 10-Nov. 6; Friday shows are $19 and start at 8 p.m., Saturday shows are at 7 and 10 p.m. and $19 and $22, respectively. The Brave New Workshop Theatre is located at 2605 Hennepin Ave. S. Tickets are available at www.bravenewworkshop
.com or 332-6620.
Dancer, choreographer and Armatage resident Margo Abdo O’Dell combines traditional Middle Eastern instruments, rhythms and dance moves in her new show, "Evolutions."
The performance features performances by eight dancers who have studied Arabic, Persian and Turkish dance styles and traditions. With 30 years of Turkish dance study under her belt, Artemis Mourat will guest star and lead the troop to the sounds of a chumbush, a Turkish instrument that resembles a banjo.
"Evolutions" aims to artistically address globalization; O’Dell diligently studied Middle Eastern instruments and instrumentation to ensure that the musical selections accurately portray different regional instruments and rhythmic patterns.
"Evolutions" shows Thursday-Saturday, Sept. 9-11, 8 p.m. and Sunday, Sept. 12, 7 p.m. at Whittier’s Intermedia Arts, 2822 Lyndale Ave. S. Tickets are $18; $12 for students and seniors. For more information, check out www.margo1.com.
The art of restoration
How exactly do the masterpieces at Whittier’s Minneapolis Institute of Arts fight the aging process? Find out at a new exhibit featuring the restoration of Guercino’s "Erminia and the Shepherds."
Through October, visitors can catch two senior conservators in action, working their magic on Guercino’s masterpiece. Curators have not treated "Erminia and the Shepherds" since 1962 when it arrived at the Institute, and it bares wounds of wear and tear: a coating of filth, several holes and a yellow haze from discolored varnish.
The experts’ main priorities include relining, cleaning, in-painting and revarnishing. Not only will spectators be able to watch the curators work, they’ll be encouraged to approach and interrupt
the specialists to ask questions about
"Erminia and the Shepherds" portrays a stanza from Torquato Tasso’s "Jerusalem Delivered," a 1581 Renaissance epic poem. Many art historians regard "Erminia and the Shepherds" as one of Guercino’s five most prominent paintings that reside in North America.
The exhibit’s curators will be hard at work through Oct. 30, Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. and Thursdays, 10 a.m.-9 p.m. The Institute is located at 2400 3rd Ave. S. and is free of charge.