Arts Calendar, 2/18-2/24

­Film & Stage

Quilombo and Utopia: The Aesthetic of Labor in Brazilian Documentary
The Film Studies Center presents a lecture by Salomé Skvirsky, a postdoctoral student in the University of Chicago’s Department of Cinema and Media Studies. Skvirsky’s lecture will focus of the representation of the maroon settlement in Cinema Novo, a movement in Brazilian films of the 1950s and ‘60s inspired by the French New Wave. Within Cinema Novo, the maroon settlement, an encampment of escaped slaves, came to be a representational space, one in which Brazilian nationality and ideas of a utopia intersected one another. Skvirsky will discuss, in detail, this intersection of ideas through the familiar tropes of Brazilian film. Film Studies Center, third floor, 5811 S. Ellis Ave. February 19. Friday, 5pm. (773)702-8596. Free. (Elly Fishman)

Jump Rhythm Jazz Project
Founded in New York City in 1990 and later relocated to Chicago,the Jump Rhythm Jazz Project (JRJP) has become one of the city’s most innovative dance troupes over the past several years. The company, which runs workshops and classes and performs several times a year, focuses on the dynamic forms of jazz dance. It was started by Billy Siegenfeld and his dancing partner, Jeannie Hill, and has steadily grown since its founding. JRJP holds a series of performances and classes at Columbia College’s Dance Center. This week, they are participating in Columbia’s Family Dance matinée series. The afternoon will begin with an open dance class followed by a performance by JRJP dancers. Dance Center of Columbia College Chicago, 1306 S. Michigan Ave. Performances February 18-20. Thursday-Saturday, 8pm. $24-28. Class, Saturday, 2:15pm. Free. (312) 369-8330. (Elly Fishman)


Smoking Popes
Generation X’s college radio favorites the Smoking Popes continue rocking Chicago with their smart (but not smug) and quirky (but not alienating) songwriting. The three Caterer brothers formed as a standard punk trio, but Josh’s crooning vocals broke the power pop mold and gave them their style. Although the band split in 2005 after his conversion to Christianity, they reformed and have since been delighting their nostalgic fans. On Friday and Saturday, they play two shows to celebrate the release of their new record, “Been a Long Day.” Currently, Chicago recording artist and musician Neil Hennes plays drums with the reunited brothers. Reggie’s Rock Club, 2109 S. State St. February 19 and 20. Friday, 8pm. 21+. Saturday, 7pm. All ages. (312)949-0121. (Brandon Hopkins)

Sum Recent Accuracy
Sum Recent Accuracy is a super-group comprised of Chicago-scene free jazz players. Bassist Josh Abrams has made his name with a slew of locally approved audiences, including Town and Country, the Nicole Mitchell’s Black Earth Ensemble, and Sticks and Stones. Saxophonist David Boykin’s name should be familiar from his hardworking group the David Boykin Expanse. Percussionist Jason Adasiewicz’s Blue Note-style vibe hammering brings Hendrix’s instrumental operatics to a low-key instrument. Frank Rosaly brings the same “damn the torpedoes” mindset to his drumming. Velvet Lounge, 67 E. Cermak Rd. February 20. Saturday, 9:30pm. $15. (312)791-9050. (Brandon Hopkins)

Pictures and Sounds
WHPK 88.5 FM’s annual winter concert pairs the Midwest’s most imaginative musical improvisers with experimental films for an evening of synesthetic delirium. Chicago’s blossoming noise scene will be represented by Catholic Tapes owner Brett Naucke, who will play along to live projection by Nathan Young. Trauma, made up of Chris Riggs and Ben Hall, will join Nate Wooley in an interpretation of Robert Smithson’s “Spiral Jetty.” Dog Lady’s out-of-phrase violin tendrils will provide the atmosphere for Alivia Zilich’s “Cast.” And Mist, featuring Sam Goldberg and John Elliott, of the highly-blogged nu new age trio Emeralds, will spread a censer of synthesized arpeggios in front of works by avant-garde animator Norman McLaren. Film Studies Center, third floor, 5811 S. Ellis Ave. February 20. Saturday, 8pm. Free. (Brandon Hopkins)

Visual Arts

New Paintings: Sergio Gomez and Mark Zlotkowski
Chicago artist and 33 Collective Gallery owner Sergio Gomez will display his own recent paintings alongside those of artist Mark Zlotkowski. Both artists are members of the 33 Collective and their past works have shared a common aesthetic. Zlotkowski’s dense canvases are thick, colored surfaces, covered with obscure forms that give only vague indications of identifiable objects: candles, an egg, a doorway. In Gomez’s paintings, the universal form of the human body is a central theme. The outlines of anonymous figures, filled with patterns of color and light, frequently appear in contorted positions, often in disturbingly familiar contexts: jumping a fence at a state border, or glowing like the neon image from a body heat detector. 33 Collective, Zhou B. Art Center, 1029 W. 35th St. Suite 101. February 19 to March 13. Opening reception Friday, 7-10pm. (708)837-4534. (Harry Backlund)

Wet Paint
One vision of the future of American painting will pass through Bridgeport this month, as the Zhou B. Art Center hosts the traveling exhibition Wet Paint, a collection of works by 52 emerging painters from across the country. All of the artists presenting work are recent participants or current candidates in an MFA painting program. The show is curated by Chicago artist and 33 Collective gallery co-founder Sergio Gomez, and includes pieces by several other Chicago-based painters. Zhou B. Art Center, 1029 W. 35th St. Through February 28. Monday-Friday, 10am-5pm; Saturday, noon-5pm. (773)523-0200. (Harry Backlund)

Desire .10
Logsdon 1909 Gallery presents a multimedia group exhibition featuring works by members of the Queer Caucus, a division of the College Art Association. The show’s title, “Desire .10,” refers to the popular belief that ten percent of the general population is lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transsexual. The collection of paintings, drawings, sculptures, photographs, video, and book art presents a variety of interpretations of the queer side of desire as expressed by artist members of the LGBT community and its supporters. Logsdon 1909 Gallery, 1909 S. Halsted St. Through March 6. Saturday, noon-5pm, or by appointment. (312)666-8966. (Harry Backlund)

Ghost Town
What is so fascinating about old photographs? The latest body of work by Chicago-based painter Andreas Fischer uses early tintype portrait photographs of ordinary people from the Gold Rush era as its inspirational models. Translating between media, the series re-imagines emotional possibilities of the images that are absent from their original documentary form. Fischer gives new dimension to the images of his anonymous subjects, recreating the portraits in bold brushstrokes and vibrant colors to form images as fresh and illuminated as their originals are distant and obscure. Hyde Park Art Center, 5020 S. Cornell Ave. Through April 18. Monday-Thursday, 9am-8pm; Friday-Saturday, 9am-5pm; Sunday, noon-5pm. (773)324-5520. (Harry Backlund)

Aspen Mays: From the Offices of Scientists
“What does knowledge look like?” Artist Aspen Mays’s new exhibition at the Hyde Park Art Center is a visual response to this question, considering the office cubicle as a site for information production and inquiry. Often basing her work in nontraditional uses of traditional media, Mays mixes photography with sculpture to create an installation that challenges the validity of the photograph as both art object and historical artifact. Through humor, pop culture reference, and performative experimentation for the camera, Mays locates the boundaries of both her own personal understanding and of larger human endeavors, all reflected in the limited space of cubicle walls. Hyde Park Art Center, 5020 S. Cornell Ave. Through April 25. Monday-Thursday, 9am-8pm; Friday-Saturday, 9am-5pm; Sunday, noon-5pm. (773)324-5520. (Harry Backlund)

Notes to Nonself
A multimedia installation by Chicago’s Diane Christiansen and Slovenian artist Shoshanna Utchenik draws on traditional Tibetan painting, cartoon animation, board games, and pop-up books to construct a colorful, tongue-in-cheek map of the modern American psyche. Their immersive arrangement of drawings, paintings, sculptures, animation and audio work takes viewers through a series of imagined environments including the Ego Forest, the Relationship Bardo, and the Meditation Refuge, in a playful parody of what the artists call the “constant struggle for balance and meaning within the schizophrenically introspected and extroverted life.” The two artists communicated by Skype and email while planning the project and used the experience of electronic correspondence to reflect on the difficulty of personal connection in modern life, creating “Notes to Nonself” as a temporary refuge from the chaos of modern selfhood. Hyde Park Art Center, 5020 S. Cornell Ave. Through May 2. Monday-Thursday, 9am-8pm; Friday-Saturday, 9am-5pm; Sunday, noon-5pm. (773)324-5520. (Harry Backlund)

Stan Chisholm: ThingsThatNeverReallyHappened
St. Louis artist Stan Chisholm spent the month of January in the Hyde Park Art Center building a life-size diorama based on the theme “everything is up for grabs.” The resulting work, entitled “ThingsThatNeverReallyHappened,” includes a series of imaginary land masses, from small islands to human-sized environments, each populated by a cast of cartoon mascots and put into the contexts of fine art and the quotidian. Intricate compositions lace together American history, pop culture, and the artist’s own memory, creating an unconventional narrative that plays with the accuracy of perception and encourages its viewers to recognize the artful fiction of everyday life. Hyde Park Art Center, 5020 S. Cornell Ave. Through June 6. Monday-Thursday, 9am-8pm; Friday-Saturday, 9am-5pm; Sunday, noon-5pm. (773)324-5520. (Harry Backlund)

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