WHAT SHOULD I BE DOING INSTEAD OF THIS?
 
 
by Jac Kern 03.28.2014
Posted In: Events at 10:47 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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Your Weekend To Do List: 3/28-3/30

The Cincinnati Art Museum’s monthly Art After Dark series is a really cool way to experience the historic art institution. Each final Friday, the CAM opens its doors after hours for a themed night of gallery tours, live performances and a cash bar with happy hour drinks and appetizers. Friday’s Art After Dark: Rococo Vibrations includes tour of Genius and Grace: François Boucher and the Generation of 1700 (members-only at 5:30 p.m., public tours at 6:30 and 7:30 p.m.) and the Neo-Soul stylings of Tracy Walker from 6-8 p.m. The free event runs 5-9 p.m.; parking is $4. Washington Platform’s Oyster Festival kicks off Friday. This 28th annual food fest features a menu of more than 40 styles of oyster dishes, including Smoked Oyster Salad, Fried Oyster Tacos, Oyster Stuffed Jalapenos, Oysters Mardi Gras and Nantucket Oysters. Guests can enjoy lunch, dinner and happy hour specials and pay to play various games for prizes, with proceeds benefiting the Saint Francis Soup Kitchen in Over-the-Rhine. Washington Platform’s Oyster Festival specials are available 11 a.m.-10 p.m. Friday-Saturday, 4-8 p.m. Sunday and 11 a.m.-9 p.m. Monday- Thursday. Recent Grammy Award winners Roomful of Teeth perform at the Contemporary Arts Center Friday. The vocal group specializes in blending classical singing techniques with diverse World music styles for a completely unique sound — one of their songs is in a made-up language! The concert, which begins at 8 p.m., is just the latest offering from the CAC’s solid performance series. Tickets are $14, $8 for members. Read our story on Roomful of Teeth here. This weekend is your last chance to check out Krohn Conservatory’s spring show, Avant Garden. The show features exotic flowers and shrubs with recycled materials in the landscape. Avant Garden closes Sunday along with the Conservatory’s spring plant sale. The anticipated annual butterfly show — this year it's Pura Vida: The Butterflies of Costa Rica — opens April 12. Opening Day in Cincinnati is not only a city holiday, but a rite of passage for locals. It marks the first game of the Reds’ season (baseball’s first professional team), the unofficial start of spring and the return of one of the best parades of the year, the Findlay Market Opening Day Parade — now in its 95th year! Opening Day may not be until Monday, but Covington gallery BLDG is getting a jump on festivities beginning Friday. 199C: Cincinnati’s Opening Day is an exhibit of baseball-, Cincinnati- and Opening Day-themed art from more than 40 artists from around the neighborhood and world. The exhibit opening starts at 4 p.m. Friday with music from Automagik, food trucks, a live art installation, retro video game competitions and a pop-up Wiffle ball game on Pike Street. Find more info here. Opening Day celebrations run the gamut from sports-related fun to art, bar events and food. Check out a roundup of Monday’s happenings here. Be sure to read this week’s Best of Cincinnati issue for reader and staff picks on the city’s best restaurants, businesses, events and more. For more art openings, theater shows, parties and other stuff to do this weekend, check out our To Do picks and full calendar.
 
 

CAC to Transform into Roomful of Voices

0 Comments · Wednesday, March 26, 2014
You’ve never heard anything like ensemble Roomful of Teeth, who will be making their Cincinnati debut at the Contemporary Arts Center this week. That’s no understatement.  

Foreign Objects

Hauschka brings prepared piano to the CAC for a Friday performance

0 Comments · Wednesday, January 8, 2014
Thanks to the Contemporary Arts Center (CAC), Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra, the University of Cincinnati’s College-Conservatory of Music (CCM), concert:nova and MusicNow, New Music progressivism is alive and well — and building a devoted following — in Cincinnati.  

Artist Diane Landry Makes Waves at the CAC

0 Comments · Wednesday, November 20, 2013
The opening of a new show can be a tense, contentious time for an artist. Doubts arise: “What do the public and critics think? Does this show really work?" But at the Contemporary Arts Center’s recent opening of her show by every wind that blows, Diane Landry was above all that. Literally.   
by Drew Klein 11.13.2013
Posted In: Performance Art at 03:48 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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REVIEW: Performa 13 (Part One)

CAC performance curator Drew Klein reports from arts biennial in NYC

Arriving in New York for a work-related trip always causes my nerves to stand at full attention. I typically overcomplicate my schedule with back-to-back caffeine dates in different neighborhoods, or try and sneak in one more performance than would be wise. At the same time, I know when I'm back here that I'm going to be seeing some of the most forward-thinking live art happening in the world today, and the energy and inspiration I pull from the shows I see and the people I meet will influence my programming for seasons to come. One layover, a two-hour delay and an annoying navigation out of Newark Airport later, I'm in the city and frantically sprinting to my first pow wow of the week with artist Hisham Bharoocha. Hisham is highly regarded for his music, visual art and photography, though I'm talking with him mainly in regard to the former. A founding member of the group Black Dice, his recent experiences have seen him organize the now legendary BOADRUM experiences in which 77 and, later, 88 drummers played the same number of kits on the dates 07/07/07 and 08/08/08, respectively, as well as other projects utilizing the two main parts of his live creative output — voice and percussion. Hisham owns a unique ability to take a live concept and build it into something visceral yet magical, and I was glad to find that I enjoyed him as a human being as well. I hate bad coffee dates. However, the main reason for being in New York this time of year is Performa 13, the performance art biennial hosted at various venues around the city that runs for 24 days in November. Started in 2005 by art historian RoseLee Goldberg (she has written a book on performance art and is now revered as a key figure in that world), Performa presents some of today's most compelling performance art works and, more famously, commissions new work from reputable artists who work across various mediums — artists ranging from Carlos Amorales to Japanther to Ragnar Kjartansson. Earlier performances this month have featured Dean Spunt of No Age, a Contemporary Arts Center performer this past September, and C. Spencer Yeh, the longtime Cincinnati resident and noise art maestro whose visual art exhibition Standard Definition opened at the CAC in October 2009. My experience two years ago at Performa 11 introduced me to a rough working of Jace Clayton's Julius Eastman Memorial Dinner, and that serendipitous event lead to the project being further developed and realized before its world premiere as a production-in-full in our performance program this past April. The first experience I had with Performa 13 will be hard to beat, I imagine. Arriving at the quaint Connelly Theater Ryan McNamara's MEƎM: A Story Ballet About The Internet, the attendants were instructed to check all coats and bags at the entrance before entering what served as a sort of waiting room of art school students, seasoned performance art patrons and those seeking something out of the ordinary. The room resembled a high school cafeteria in look and ambiance, filled with social chatter between friends and colleagues. As I paid little attention to the conversations, I went into the performance completely unaware of what would happen. 
After being lead into an auditorium with standard seating facing an elevated stage, the program began with three male dancers contorting their bodies slowly and precisely to a modern dance Pop soundtrack. Not long into the routine it became clear that “something” was happening directly behind the audience. Too unbothered to turn around and take my attention from the stage, I heard small laughs and continued to feel like the program was turning into something entirely new. As the energy picked up around me, I finally glanced back and for the first time noticed that nearly all of the rows behind me were no longer there, and that two other dancers had set up shop in the back corners of the room and portions of the audience were now seated, in the same chairs, facing those performances. At the same time, two audience members appeared in their chairs moving up the ramps at the sides of the stage, being pulled by two production team members. Before too long, my own chair was lifted up and I was swiftly carted, passing through one room with three leotard-adorned dancers moving to strobe-affected disco before being delivered to a room where two women in matching outfits performed a laconic dance to a playlist of suspenseful film score pieces. This routine continued for an hour, with roughly 10 minutes spent at each location. At the end, after we were all put back in what we thought were our resting positions, there was still time for one final, beautiful, balletic piece. Then our chairs were forcefully reconfigured, and our expectations were once again turned upside down. The music was mostly modern, referencing pop culture, and the dance routines were pulled (stolen) from popular internet videos. The anxiety over being completely unable to control your own attention, while still desperately attempting to, was incredibly effective in highlighting the performance's entire concept of questioning the very possibility of a singular “experience” today. There were roughly 10-12 possible positions, and each person probably experienced no more than six of those. We all wanted to catch more of what was happening all around, but often ignored what was right in front us. In the end, nobody seemed to leave feeling like they didn't get to experience it all.Follow citybeat.com for more Performa 13 updates from Drew Klein.
 
 

Museum Series Engages Art Lovers Who Have Alzheimer's

1 Comment · Wednesday, October 30, 2013
On the first Wednesday of each month, a group of special visitors gathers in one of three participating Cincinnati museums for a tour designed expressly for them. The group includes people whose memories are fragile in the extreme and their guests, the family members or others who accompany them.  
by Jac Kern 09.20.2013
Posted In: Events at 12:15 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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Your Weekend To Do List: 9/20-9/22

Happy PARK[ing] Day! Across the world today, people are converting metered parking spaces into tiny temporary public parks. Look up #parkingday on Instagram to see how artists, activists and everyday citizens are turning parking spots into amazing hangout spots — just for an hour (or as long as their meter lasts). In Cincinnati, PARK[ing] Day is being celebrated on Main Street in Over-the-Rhine and on Eighth Street between Broadway and Sycamore streets until 2 p.m. From 5-7 p.m. Friday, parking spaces on Main Street will be transformed into temporary galleries and performance stages. Find more information here. French street artist JR is in town this week for his exhibition at the Contemporary Arts Center opening Friday — his first solo show in the country. JR takes photographs of people, prints these extremely large-scale portraits and pastes them on buildings, rooftops and trains across the globe. Tonight’s opening at the CAC begins with a members-only artist talk at 7 p.m. The celebration opens to the public at 8 p.m. ($10 for non-members). JR’s Inside Out photo van will be on-site to take free portraits of people that will be printed as 36-by-53-inch posters, ready for pasting. The exhibit, JR, is open at the CAC through Feb. 2, 2014. Read our interview with JR and find more details about the show. Saturday is the last day of summer and the final City Flea in Washington Park before the market goes indoors for the fall and winter. Send off summer with a trip to the flea, open 10 a.m-4 p.m. Find more info and vendors here. Oktoberfest Zinzinnati is the largest ‘fest in the country — more than 500,000 German enthusiasts fill six blocks of downtown for the annual celebration. In addition for brats and beer, Star Trek star/social media superstar George Takei is Grand Marshal this year! The OG Mr. Sulu will lead this year’s World’s Largest Chicken Dance at 4 p.m. Saturday. Oktoberfest runs 5 p.m.-midnight Friday, 11 a.m.-midnight Saturday and 11 a.m.-10 p.m. Sunday. Pick up the official fest guide in this week’s issue or online. The Thompson House in Newport is now under new management they’re hosting an open house for bands and patrons this weekend. The new crew is ready to answer your questions about the bar, bands and any rumors starting at 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday. Go here for more info. For more art openings, parties and other stuff to do this weekend, check out our To Do picks, full calendar and Rick Pender’s Stage Door for weekend theater offerings.
 
 

Street Artist JR Visits the CAC for His First U.S. Show

0 Comments · Wednesday, September 18, 2013
JR has been covering the world with his art — and Cincinnati is next. The 30-year-old French street artist has pasted his monumental photographic-portrait posters in some unusual places (and not always with official permission): on the sides of buses in the African nation of Sierra Leone, on the rooftop of a Palestinian building in the West Bank city of Nablus, along the old and weathered city walls of Havana...  

CAC’S Performance Season Highlights the Experimental

0 Comments · Wednesday, August 7, 2013
In its two years in existence, the Contemporary Arts Center’s performance season — curated by Drew Klein — has grown in importance, if not become equal in interest to the museum’s exhibition season. Now, Klein has announced the third season.  

Back to the Future of Ceramics

0 Comments · Wednesday, July 24, 2013
Ceramics artists Katie Parker and Guy Michael Davis, who teach at the University of Cincinnati and frequently create installations as a duo known as Future Retrieval, are well versed in the traditions upon which their art relies. But in their effort to push the limits of their studio practice, they’ve found ways to incorporate technological innovations and play upon thematic conventions to make their work fresh and relevant.  

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