Welcome to Artcetera. Arts-and-entertainment writers and critics post movie news, concert updates, people items, video, photos and more. Share your views. Check it daily. Remain in the know. Contributors: Mary Abbe, Jon Bream, Tim Campbell, Colin Covert, Laurie Hertzel, Tom Horgen, Neal Justin, Claude Peck, Rohan Preston, Chris Riemenschneider, Graydon Royce, Randy Salas and Kristin Tillotson.
Everyone loves photographer Cindy Sherman it seems, so much so that Walker Art Center is adding hours on the Sherman show's final weekend. (It ends Sunday, February 17).
Here's the deal: The popular show will open to Walker members one hour early, i.e. at 10 a.m., on Saturday and Sunday, February 16 and 17. And it will remain open for everyone two hours longer at the end of those days, i.e. until 7 p.m. General adult admission to the Walker is $12 and includes the Sherman show.
But, wait, there's more! Savvy art shopers know that the Walker is always free on Thursday evenings and that it always stays open 'til 9 p.m. Thursdays. Couple those fab facts with Valentine's Day, which just happens to fall on Thursday this year, and you've got a huge February 14 bonanza for your sweetie.
Other Valentine nite fun stuff:
5 p.m. - 9 p.m. Valentine's Day three-course prix fixe menu at Gather by D'Amico, plus Love Potion cocktails.
6 p.m. - 9 p.m.: Party People Pictures photo booth (dress up in Sherman drag, please)
7 p.m. - 8 p.m.: Social/Brief: The Love Version (share your own Hallmark-style love poems in 20 seconds or less)
8 p.m.: Take a "Love and Heartbreak" tour of Cindy's show.
Holiday decorations at the castle-like American Swedish Institute are always a traditional treat with gaily ornamented trees, sparkling lights and greenery swagging the balustrades and fireplace in the two-story entrance hall. Throughout the mansion, tables are set in styles typical of each of the five Nordic countries -- Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland and Iceland. This year the decorations include traditional and contemporary handicrafts from each nation.
The Swedish dining room, above, features the same table settings as used at the Nobel Dinner, including specially designed linen from Klassbol, crystal from Orrefors, a dinner service designed by Rorstrand and cutlery from Gense. All the firms are Swedish, of course. The alcove at right showcases a traditional holiday costume and a contemporary rug.
The Norwegian display emphasizes rosemaling, a traditional style of flower painting, and acanthus carving, bas relief leaf designs cut into wooden boxes and other containers. Judy Kjenstad, who decorated the exterior of Ingebretsen's Norwegian deli and gift shop on Lake St., did the rosemaling. Norwegian-born Hans Sandom did the acanthus carving.
Danish decorations emphasize Danish Modern designs from the 1930s and '40s including the popular blue Chistmas plates from Bing and Grundal. Iceland's room includes a handicraft display as does the Finnish room where traditional birchbark weaving is contrasted with colorful contemprary fabrics from Marimeko. Local jewelry designer Tia Keoboungphang of Silvercocoon design is showing contemporary earrings, necklaces and other ornaments made of wood, acrylic and felt. Watch for possible architectural influences as her father is famed Minnesota architect David Salmela.
Holiday decorations are on view through Jan. 8. Extended holiday hours: noon - 5 p.m. Sun. - Tues., Thurs, Fri.; noon - 8 p.m. Wednesdays; 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. Sat. Closed Dec. 24, 25 and Jan. 1, 2. Admission $6, adults. American Swedish Institute, 2600 Park Av., Minneapolis. 612-870-3342 or www.americanswedishinst.org)
Looking for a unique Yuletide keepsake? Head over to the Parkway Theater tonight or tomorrow and take part in a filming of the Mystery Science Theater 3000 crew’s newest live shows. Then buy DVD copies for all your friends.
The funniest, most scathing film critics in Twin Cities history will heap burning coals of scorn on the defenseless “War of the Insects” Friday and “Rattlers” Saturday. The ensemble – rechristened Cinematic Titanic -- reunites much of MST3K’s original cast. The pranksters are Joel Hodgson, Trace Beaulieu, J. Elvis Weinstein, Frank Conniff and Mary Jo Pehl. It’s a virtual Manhattan Project of comedic brainpower. Each performance will be filmed for a special 2011 holiday DVD release, so your shout of “Watch out for snakes!” can entertain your loved ones for generations to come.
(MST3K writer/performers Mike Nelson, Kevin Murphy and Bill Corbett work separately, offering their wonderfully warped commentaries through Rifftrax, a library of downloadable MP3 audio files, and occasional live presentations.)
Hodgson and his company, unpretentious types that they are, invite the audience to meet up in the adjoining Pepito’s Restaurant bar, so get those autograph books and fawning compliments ready!
A limited number of tickets (general admission $28, reserved $35) are available at www.brownpapertickets.com or at the door. The Parkway Theater is located at 4814 Chicago Avenue South, Minneapolis. Call (612) 822-3030 or visit www.theparkwaytheater.com
Irish writer Roddy Doyle, author of "The Commitments," has written an original short story for this year's St. Patrick's Day festival in Dublin. "Brilliant!" can be downloaded for free from the festival's website (here), and will be used as the theme of Thursday's parade.
This is in recognition of Dublin being named the fourth Unesco City of Literature, with celebrations all year long.
Can't get there yourself? You can read the Doyle story online and then watch the parade on the webcam of Dublin's main newspaper, the Irish Times.
"While he's out taking care of the world, you're the one girl who he kissed goodbye / He's a beautiful man, and he's so far from home / Children dance and sing wherever he goes."
I wouldn't be surprised if Dan Wilson was wearing a red suit when he wrote that. If you didn't know it was a Christmas song, one might easily mistake "Are You Lonely Tonight, Mrs. Claus?" -- newly recorded and posted online in time for (and in the spirit of) the holiday -- as something of an autobiographical composition. Even the drawings that make up a YouTube version of the tune were done by Wilson himself.
Wilson has been living out in Los Angeles in recent months, where he has worked up quite a reputation as a song craftsman after working with such worldly artists as Weezer, Josh Groban and Adele. I'm seriously waiting to hear of a Slayer/DW hook-up any day now. In the meantime, though, it sure sounds like Dan is pining for home. Maybe he didn't hear that our winter wonderland is a snowy abyss this Christmas. Either way, though, this song will help make you glad to be home this weekend.
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