Archive: December, 2009
Philadelphia needs a platform for artists with work so unique that it can't be classified into any conventional genre. From Avatard, a fantastical dance story with a twisted sci-fi plot, to Neon Gothic, a dark comedy with multiple dancers playing one character, this showcase exposes uncharted territory pioneered by brave local artists. Vince Johnson, Villanova's 2008 class poet, choreographed Factories and Exile, a physical composition based on his own literary interpretations of the existentialist writings of Albert Camus. 'The piece makes use of contemporary notions of movement,' Johnson says, 'ranging from martial arts to ballet to modern dance.' Witness bodies expanding minds ' and artistic boundaries.
Sun., Dec. 13, 7 p.m., $10, Painted Bride Art Center, 230 Vine St., 215-925-9914, paintedbride.org.
Big giveaway today, folks: If you've been on Tatted watch ' either in the print edition of City Paper or on our blogs ' you already know that Grit City Inc./Marianne Bernstein's gorgeous coffee-table photography book, which captures South Street denizens' ink and the meaning behind it, has reached its long-awaited publication date.
|Grit City Inc., 160 pp., $34.|
Just in time for Pure Gold Gallery's Tatted launch party tonight (7-10 p.m., Piazza at Schmidts, 1050 N. Hancock St., suite 57, puregoldgallery.wordpress.com), we've got two signed copies to give away to our readers. But given the awesomeness of this book, we're not going to make it as easy as a simple Wiki-able trivia question.
Here's what you gotta do to win:
Send us an e-mail describing your tattoo ' pictures are welcome ' and tell us why you got it.
Tat-free? Then tell us what you'd ink yourself with if money/permanence/pain/etc. were no object.
Most interesting submissions win; best tat photos will be posted on CritMass. Shoot me an e-mail at email@example.com to enter, and don't forget to hit up Pure Gold tonight for an evening of booze, giveaways and the chance to chat with Marianne and her crew.
Front Porch Productions, which had been promoting Jack Rose's tour before the Philly guitar wiz passed away suddenly this weekend, has announced details for a memorial service.
It is with a heavy heart and the deepest sadness that we mourn the passing of Jack Rose, a dear friend and wonderful musician.
Services to honor Jack will take place in Philadelphia this Saturday, December 12th.' Details below.
Saturday, December 12, 2009
Visitation: 1:00 PM Service: 2:00 PM
Visitation and services taking place at:
Bringhurst Funeral Home
225 Belmont Avenue, Bala Cynwyd
There will be a Memorial Gathering in Philadelphia on the evening of Saturday December 12, 2009, following the services. Details regarding the Memorial Gathering will be announced here when confirmed.
More info here.
See Also: A Jack Rose tribute on WPRB on Friday.
|Bruce contemplates how
much he loves the gays.
In a statement on his Web site, Bruce Springsteen weighed in on an N.J. gay marriage bill that was passed by a Senate committee by one vote on Monday. The Boss sayeth:
Like many of you who live in New Jersey, I've been following the progress of the marriage-equality legislation currently being considered in Trenton. I've long believed in and have always spoken out for the rights of same sex couples and fully agree with Governor Corzine when he writes that, "The marriage-equality issue should be recognized for what it truly is -- a civil rights issue that must be approved to assure that every citizen is treated equally under the law." I couldn't agree more with that statement and urge those who support equal treatment for our gay and lesbian brothers and sisters to let their voices be heard now.
This statement has farther reaching implications than the greatest rock star of all time sounding off on N.J. politics. Jerz Governor-Elect Chris Christie, aka Sir Douchey McChubs-a-lot, has pledged to veto the bill if it comes across is desk (even though most Dems don't think it will pass the Senate). But he's also a huge Bruce fan. From a recent Star-Ledger piece on Christie's inauguration:
The entertainment will be a Bruce Springsteen cover band as a tip of the hat to Christie, an avid fan of The Boss who even took time off his recent campaign schedule to take in some concerts. Christie and his brother, Todd, have been trying to convince Springsteen to make an appearance at the ball, but they have had no luck so far. "We're still holding out hope," said one Christie intimate, who declined to be identified because the event details are not yet public.
OK, listen up Christie and Bruce, I've got an offer you can't refuse: Christie, you use your political clout to get this probably-dead-in-the-water bill through the N.J. legislature and Springsteen will take time out of his busy Kennedy-Center-honors-receiving downtime to play your inauguration.
And just 'cause, here's a video the of "I Wanna Marry You" from night three of four of their last Spectrum stand:
In this column's past, Critical Mass immersed itself in one neighborhood each week and found its most stylish inhabitants. We're switching things up. Now, this will be a space for us to find fashionable folk all across the city. But we're still keeping the hood theme ' kinda, sorta ' by asking our subjects where they're from and trying to glean which trends are specific to which neighborhoods.
One of the greatest skills a Philadelphian can have is know how to stay stylish despite the freezing cold weather. These winter fashion pros knew just how to spice up pea coats with cute accessories and layer it up with amazing vintage finds. Last week we spotted possibly the most stylish girl in Philly. This week we might have found the most stylish dude, 32-year-old Joseph P. How could any girl resist a guy who knows his vintage?
Neighborhood: North Philly
This thrift store fan scored a '50s varsity letterman jacket for only four bucks at Village Thrift in Kensington. 'Now everyone is going to go there and buy up all the good stuff,' he says.
Alyssa F., 21.
Neighborhood: Fairmount/Art Museum
This girl is a winter fashion pro, stocking up on fun tights, knitted gloves and hats. 'Hats are key,' she says.
Meghan F., 22.
Neighborhood: West Philadelphia
This second-hand fan likes to check out thrift stores, flea markets and her sister's closet for fashion finds. 'I inherit a lot of clothes,' she says.
Brittney K., 22.
Neighborhood: East Oak Lane
This chic lady loves Aldo and H&M. She got this outfit inspiration from a preview for Tabitha's Salon Takeover when she saw Tabitha rocking a black turtleneck and skirt combo with a gold belt and thought, 'I'll try that on Wednesday.'
Abigail B., 26.
This fashion and music editor knows how to milk her job's perks by scoring sweet designer goods. 'When I represent an artist they usually do something to thank me,' she says. A Fendi bag sure is a nice thank-you gift.
|Mo'Nique in Precious
Since Philly-born Lee Daniel's Precious premiered at the 2009 Sundance Film Festival and Mo'Nique took home a special acting prize for her portrayal of Precious' mother, she's been tapped as an Oscar nominee for Best Supporting Actress (in his review, Shaun Brady said "Mo'Nique, undoubtedly in line for the Academy Award, is remarkable; she almost makes you pity this woman before exploding into terrifying, withering rage.").
But Oscar, for those who follow it with religious fervor, know that the venerable awards show is politics as usual, and the quality of the performance in question is just as important ' arguably less so ' than the type of performance, station of the actor in Oscar history (i.e. Al Pacino's win for Scent of Woman is largely seen as a gimme for past snubs) and campaign mounted to support that performance. In recent months, Mo'Nique has caused quite the stir because she hasn't gone on the traditional campaign circuit, which usually consist of film festivals and panels, pimping out her own work. It's even been rumored that she's asked for money to make appearances in support of her film and herself.
It may seem counterintuitive for Mo'Nique not give herself the extra push, she's brought up some interesting points in her own rebuttal of the process. Below is a clip from tonight's episode of Mo'Nique's BET show, where she discusses the nomination process with former noms Terrence Howard and Taraji P. Henson:
For those who don't want to watch the entire clip, Terrence and Taraji essentially say its part of the game while Mo'Nique doesn't see the point. And for her, she's right. Precious is one of those once in a lifetime roles for Mo'Nique. Finding another strong role for a strong, overweight black female is going to be near impossible for white-washed Hollywood and Mo'Nique is smart to ask how this will help her. Because it won't. Just look at this part transcribed by awards guru Scott Feinberg (who first reported on the clip):
Mo'Nique: 'Now let me ask y'all this, because I know y'all are gonna school me correctly: What does it mean financially?' '
Henson: 'Y'all are really gonna see how Hollywood works! For me, not really much. I mean, I did see a change, but a very slow change. This one here [Howard] hit ' how many figures come with million? Six? Seven! You hit seven; I ain't seen seven yet. But that's how it is for women in Hollywood. That's just, you know, across the board.'
Howard: No, but it didn't come right away. That didn't happen right away. It's like planting a seed that's being watered ' it's got to grow.'
But Mo'Nique is a different animal. She's not looking to be a legit actress, as far as I can tell and Precious is an anamoly for her. And while Henson and Howard claim it has helped their careers, Henson will still probably be relegated to supporting roles because being a black woman in Hollywood is Sisyphean. Even though Howard's paycheck was upped, his nom didn't stop him from getting kicked off of Iron Man 2 (only to be replaced by the also-nominated, and in my opinion superior, Don Cheadle). Feinberg says this is a turning point for Mo'Nique but I call bullshit and I hope she does too. It'll be a shame if Mo'Nique loses traction because she doesn't want to campaign, and the awards cognoscenti may be up in arms about Mo'Nique's refusal to campaign, I'm with her. Fuck 'em.
I've always thought the campaign push is ridiculous, but I agree it's part of the game. Even Howard says that she has to campaign in order to make herself known to Academy voters but doesn't Mo'Nique's snub send the message that her performance should stand on merit alone? Look, I know I'm living in a fantasy world where Hollywood is a meritocracy, which it most certainly isn't and while Precious has it's fault, Mo'Nique is a powerhouse and she deserves the credit, even if the large majority of people who have to decide have never seen Phat Girlz.What do you think? Is Mo'Nique doing the right thing or is she simply hurting a movie she helped push to greatness?
for more information.
A friendly li'l reminder from us to y'all: City Paper's annual Writing Contest entries ' in both fiction and poetry categories ' are due at 5 p.m., Dec. 11. There's lots more info here, and you can read about our awesome judges here, but for now, some quick details:
Fiction: Stories should be 3,000 words or less and previously unpublished. No more than one submission per entrant.
Poetry: One entry can consist of up to five poems.
Eligibility: Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Delaware residents are invited to participate. Employees and regular freelancers for the City Paper are ineligible, obvs.
Prizes: Winning story and poem will be published in the Dec. 31, 2009, issue of City Paper and featured in a reading. Top two runners-up will be published at citypaper.net. Additional prizes TBA.
Deadline: We must receive your work before 5 p.m. on Fri., Dec. 11. No exceptions.
Please include a processing fee of $5 made payable to City Paper Writing Contest at the address below or via PayPal to firstname.lastname@example.org. Stories should be e-mailed to email@example.com or mailed the old-fashioned way to:
City Paper Writing Contest
123 Chestnut St., Third Floor
Philadelphia, PA 19106.
No phone calls please regarding specific entries. Manuscripts will not be returned.
|St. Martin's, 224 pp.,
$21.99, Oct. 27
It's Wednesday, which means there'll be a brand-new City Paper in the honor boxes tomorrow morning, which means it's the last installment of Book Quarterly Giveaway Week. Don't cry.
We saved Augusten Burroughs' You Better Not Cry: Stories for Christmas for last, and for good reason. Like we told you last week, "It's not surprising that Augusten Burroughs, the uneducated misfit turned raging alcoholic turned brilliant memoirist, has plenty of boozy holiday doozies to share. This compilation ' naked Santa and all ' makes for a grand little stocking stuffer."
An explanation for why Burroughs chose the yuletide for his latest book of essays, straight from the book:
Christmas has always been my favorite holiday. But for me, each Christmas has been worse than the one before. Perhaps this is punishment for getting Jesus and Santa all mixed up in my head as a kid. Or maybe, waking up hungover at the Wadorf Astoria next to a naked, old, fat French Santa just isnt as big a deal as I think. The funny thing is, I still love Christmas. I just sometimes wish there wasn't so much coal dust.
To win a copy, answer the following trivia question:
In a recent Tweet, Burroughs admits to having had emergency surgery on what part of his body?
E-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org for a chance to win. And don't forget to check back with CritMass tomorrow for a chance to win a non-Book Quarterly Giveaway Week-sanctioned copy of Tatted, just in time for the book's opening bash at Pure Gold Gallery.
Weird coincidence: Both the Tatted book party (which Carolyn Huckabay told you about earlier today) and American Mortals' Taking Beauty ' book party are tonight. As many of you know, American Mortals is a fab little hair cuttery in Washington Square (which does beautiful things with unruly curly hair, BTW). Its book features Chris Sembrot's photographs taken inside the salon, highlighting ' just like Tatted ' a very unconventional, distinctly Philadelphian version of beauty. Also, Taking Beauty ' 's release (see above for details on the where and when) will be held in conjunction with the closing reception of Area 919's "13 Months" exhibit.
THE CURATOR: Why museums matter, gunpowder explosion, men's fashion tour, tips for the yuletide season, hottest dudes in Philly
|Courtesy of two.one.five.|
|The cutest dude in all of Philly? You decide!|
Every Tuesday, Critical Mass pokes around the art blog world so you don't have to.
''Philly's Chief Cultural Officer Gary Steuer keeps an Arts, Culture, and Creative Economy blog. Recently he detailed last Friday's talk by NPR's Susan Stamberg at the Philadelphia Museum of Art on 'why museums matter.' With a man like this in the art scene's political pocket, no wonder Philly continues to be on the creative up-and-up.
''Speaking of the importance of museums, Culture Mob reports that instead of putting up a Christmas tree, the PMA will host an exhibit by Cai Guo-Qiang. Titled 'Fallen Blossoms,' the opening on Fri., Dec. 11 will consist of a gunpowder explosion that looks like a blossoming flower when detonated. While it may cause unsuspecting locals to drop to the ground, the intent is instead to 'symbolize the beauty and energy within the iconic building of the museum being offered as a gift to the city.' Happy Holidays!
''Delve deeper into Philly men's fashion, as Rakia Reynolds of gophila.com (by way of McJawn) tours stores like Ubiq and Made to Order. The vid also serves as a great springboard for gift ideas for the hip men in your life.
' 'Used Wigs, Philly's workday distraction,'offers holiday shopping tips for this yuletide season. One of the best ideas may be: 'Gift receipts show a lack of confidence in your purchases. Do not give them out.' Be bold, my gift-giving friend. Be bold.
''With all of the holiday lights and sidewalk Santas, it's obvious that it's that time of year again ' time to vote for the sexiest dudes in Philly, that is! Shmitten Kitten has narrowed down the choices to five nominees, including two.one.five founder Tayyib Smith (pictured) and drummer Chris Ward from Pattern is Movement. From beards to brawn, there's something for every man-loving taste ''so vote now!
- Arts Events
- First Person Fest
- Last Chance
- On the Fringe
- Philly Artists
- The Curator
- Visual Art
- Arts News
- Artist Profile
- Arts Preview
- Street Art
- Been There, Done That
- Big Ups
- LOL With It
- Critical Mass
- Friday Fill-in
- Ice Cubes
- In Memoriam
- Just Do It
- Just Opened
- Art Phag
- Film Fest
- Movie Review
- On set
- 10 Track Mind
- Album Review
- Concert Review
- Local Support
- Now Hear This
- One Track Mind
- Philly Bands
- Somebody Else Was There
- The Showdown
- concert photos
- DJ Nights Blogged
- Night Watch
- Now See This
- Poetic License
- Printed Matter
- What We Heart
- Idol Hands
- Mad Men
- True Blood
- Useless Lost Recaps
- Couch Potato
- Shore Trash
- Turned ONN
- Video Games
- Free Online Game
- PlayStation 2
- The 1-Upper
- Web Junk
- CAGE MATCH
- Free Online Toy
- Weekend Omnibus