7 Awesome Free Events This Week

Categories: Dallas Stories

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Dallas Medianale

Recycled Cinema
A college football championship win recently brought a swarm of notoriety to the Ohio State name, but there are other badass things happening at that university, outside the athletics department. Roger Beebe is an Associate Professor in Ohio State University's Art Department and he's found interesting ways to use projectors both in and out of the lecture hall. He's currently on tour presenting many of his well-known projector performances which elucidate the peculiarities of cultural, educational and industrial imagery. His work explores a range of topics: One piece explains why Shaq and other black athletes are famous Irish Americans, another is a poetic scrambling of Genesis (the first book of the Bible, not the Phil Collins band). Head to CentralTrak (800 Exposition Ave.) at 7:30 p.m. Monday to take a look at Recycled Cinema; it includes Beebe's newest endeavor, which sheds light on the forbidden pleasures of male tears. Visit centraltrak.net for more info. - Lucas Buckels


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Sundance: Samuel Klemke's Time Machine Is the Sad Sequel to Boyhood

Categories: Film and TV

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Richard Linklater ended his feel-good Best Picture contender Boyhood on a high. His star, 18-year-old would-be artist Mason, graduated high school and was ready to conquer the world. But what if Linklater had kept filming? And what if Mason wasn't an actor, but a real teenage boy?

Meet Samuel Klemke. He, too, was the creative kid in class. But Sam was even more ambitious and outgoing. In high school in the '70s, Sam got a video camera and began recording everything himself -- no Oscar-nominated director required. Starting in 1977, the year he turned 19, Sam's hobby became a vow: At the end of every year, he'd film a diary entry about the last twelve months. "The purpose of all of this is to stimulate growth and improvement," Sam explained. "It can capture time, time that we'll never see again." He expected to record his triumphs. He had no idea how bad his life would turn out to be.

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Does a Female Writer Need to Get Laid to Understand Art? Loris Gréaud Thinks So.

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Actual Screenshot of my Facebook

Saturday morning I woke up to a lovely, little Facebook message from an artist by the name of Loris Gréaud. The week prior he'd given the media a tour of his exhibition at the Dallas Contemporary. Much of the art he'd shown us that afternoon was destroyed during a performance the following evening at a members-only reception. I didn't much care for the work in the exhibition in the first place, which is what I wrote on this blog Friday. And he didn't much care for my opinions. Which is what he wrote to me Saturday morning. That, and a recipe for my future success, including the recommendation that I get "a boyfriend with at least 400 mg Anadrol a day." That drug he prescribes? It's a testosterone steroid for that boyfriend I so desperately need (note: he tells me this twice).

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100 Dallas Creatives: No. 12 Gallerists Gina & Dustin Orlando, Boundary Pushers

Categories: 100 Creatives

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Mixmaster presents "100 Creatives," in which we feature cultural entrepreneurs of Dallas in random order.
Gina and Dustin Orlando are two cool cats. A few years ago, these two gallerists opened up Circuit 12 Contemporary, which quickly became a go-to space in the Design District, and their programming roster continues to challenge the gallery norm. They've allowed artists to transform the white walls into wonderlands of conceptual art, or paint a mural inside, or even set up a small fashion boutique in the back. They've impressed us so much, we even picked them for 2014's Best Gallery in Dallas. They're keeping art lively and pushing the Dallas scene forward. And they're making it look fun.

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Loris Gréaud and What He Didn't Create for His Art Exhibition

Categories: Visual Art

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Courtesy Dallas Contemporary

Last Friday afternoon, I stepped into the Dallas Contemporary galleries with select members of the press to get an early view of Loris Gréaud's The Unplayed Notes Museum, an exhibition meant to fill the mammoth warehouse space -- roughly 26,000 square feet of emptiness for the artist to play in. And he created what he calls a "new kind of natural history museum," filling much of it with a taste for slick decadence. There were lacquered black paintings and oversized sculptures. In one room a herd of black, mutated sheep were frozen mid-motion, running past globular lights that seemed straight out of the many design boutiques on Dragon Street just a few blocks away.

In another room there was a video of a man and a woman having sex, but filmed with a thermal imaging camera. So, as Gréaud explains it, he hired "sex professionals" and asked them to attempt orgasm so he could film the way heat travels through their bodies. Then, he spins the image in strange ways to make it look artistic. Ah, yes, genius.

And this sort of interest in appearances runs throughout the space. In each room, the only thing binding it all together beyond decorative hollowness are books that line a small portion of the floor in each room, titled Encyclopedia of Irresolution." And in each room of really boring art, I have this urge to topple the statues and tear the art from the walls and throw it across the room, screaming, "ARE YOU EFFING KIDDING ME?"

This is perhaps one of the few things I understand about Gréaud and this exhibition, because he also wanted to destroy it.

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Video Art Is Dialing Your Number. Answer the Call at the McKinney Avenue Contemporary.

Categories: Visual Art

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Dallas Medianale, an experimental film festival programmed by the Video Association of Dallas, has been going on at the McKinney Avenue Contemporary (3120 McKinney Ave.) since January 9. I went to the opening night, which featured screenings and a series of intermedia performances, including an awesome display by a duo called Cracked Ray Tube, who assembled a tower of old TVs and synced audio to a kaleidoscope of images for a mesmerizing, trippy effect. The event was free, like all of the Medianale events, but I was still happily surprised to find the reasonably large black box theater at the MAC packed that night; attendees spilled out of chairs onto the floor.

This past weekend marked the opening of Call and Response, a video art exhibit in one of the MAC galleries that's co-curated by Charles Dee Mitchell and Danielle Avram-Morgan. Mitchell has curated events for the Video Association of Dallas in the past, and he decided to enlist a co-pilot for this Medianale exhibit, which features a number of iconic video artists including Bruce Nauman and Francis Alys. Mitchell knew Avram-Morgan from The Power Station, a non-profit promoting contemporary art projects in Dallas, and he invited her to choose half of the artists to be presented.


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100 Dallas Creatives: No. 13 Will Power, Playwright and Mentor

Categories: 100 Creatives

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Mixmaster presents "100 Creatives," in which we feature cultural entrepreneurs of Dallas in random order.
Since Will Power arrived in Dallas he's been busy. With a background in performance, writing and education, he's not just creating his own work but he's investing in the work of future generations. Originally commissioned to be the Meadows Theatre Artist-in-Residence at Southern Methodist University, he also became the playwright-in-residence at the Dallas Theater Center. Which means that most of his days are filled with teaching, mentoring the young playwrights of Dallas, and writing plays and musicals of his own.

For Dallas Theater Center, he's been working on a new musical, Stagger Lee, which previews January 22 and opens January 30. It's a work that delves into the myths and legends of American folklore like Frankie and Johnny, and its namesake, Stagger Lee, whose story is of a man deep in the seedy underbelly of turn of the 20th century St. Louis. We talked to Power about this new musical, playwriting in Dallas, and where you'll catch him on a day off.

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A Group of Nerdy Adults Went to the Marvel Experience. We Learned It Is For Kids.

Categories: Dallas Stories

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Fighting my aging body there's an ungrown child who still wishes for magic of fairytales and superheroes. Although I've admittedly never been a comic book fan - I fell into the realism camp of childhood fantasies, with the likes of Nancy Drew/Encyclopedia Brown or Choose Your own Adventure books - I can still appreciate the nerdy enthusiasm for Spidey and Captain America. Which is why I found myself leading a motley crew of adult men into the Marvel Experience Wednesday night. There were five of us, so we assigned characters -- as the only girl, I was Black Widow, obviously. And we picked superpowers. My friends were excited on the point of giddy, although admittedly they had no idea what to expect. One of them even asked if this was the same thing as Marvel Universe Live! , which he saw a commercial for on tv. (It is not.)

No, the Marvel Experience is a small, traveling theme park that contains an array of video games, 3-d videos, one virtual shooting game, a laser maze, a climbing wall, and a simulator (a movie during which the chairs move a little bit). There is also a small food court, complete with hotdogs and Bud Lights, for the adults. The Bud Lights are the only things there for adults. Because the Marvel Experience is very much for children.


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18 Awesome Things to Do in Dallas this Weekend, Jan. 22 - 25

Categories: Dallas Stories

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Undermain Theatre
The Flick is one of the many shows worth seeing this weekend.

Sometime this weekend, in between your rush to catch up on the Oscar nominations, we'd like you to take a minute to notice how much live theater is happening in Dallas. And most of it is worth your time and attention.

Stagger Lee, a brand new musical at the Dallas Theater Center, about the eponymous folk legend.

The Flick at the Undermain Theatre is a contemporary tale that captures both the language and the zeitgeist of young America, a generation who lives their lives through movies.

Tru, a one-man show starring Jaston Williams about Truman Capote that theater critic Elaine Liner called a delight.

The Book Club Play at Dallas Theater Center, a comedy about a book club that explores friendships and supposed intellectual values.

The Explorer's Club, a comedy at WaterTower Theatre that revisits 19th century England where a scientific gentleman's society finds itself interrupted by a woman and her discoveries.

Why Things Burn at Margo Jones Theatre, which takes place in the early 20th century when a group of circus "freaks" attempt to start a new life.

Here are Mixmaster's other recommendations for this weekend:

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100 Dallas Creatives: No. 14 Janeil Engelstad, an Artist with Purpose

Categories: 100 Creatives

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Courtesy the artist
Mixmaster presents "100 Creatives," in which we feature cultural entrepreneurs of Dallas in random order.
Janeil Engelstad is an artist. A photographer. A curator. An educator. A producer. A former Fulbright Scholar. A tea drinker. One of the busiest people in town. And she's turned that "busyness" into an asset. Engelstad knows everyone, and knows the people you haven't met yet, and wants you to get to know them.

How? Through her organization Make Art With Purpose (MAP), which was founded in 2010 as a resource center for creative projects that are meant to shape and transform our world in positive ways. The MAP website is an open-source, interactive, virtual resource center that includes how-to plans for people to replicate similar projects in their own communities. MAP partners with artists, NGOs, scientists, and others to produce projects, exhibitions, conferences, and other public programs that are rooted in consciousness and include ideas for positive environmental and social change. While it was founded in 2010, it was not until 2013 that Engelstad organized the first MAP festival, and we were lucky enough to have it in our city. It brought awareness to public art and local artists working with a community mindset; and it also brought national and international artists to Dallas to create original pieces of public art.

It is Engelstad's hope to one day have a festival of this magnitude once every three years in a new city, but for now, we're able to call Dallas the inaugural birthplace of the MAP Festival, and Engelstad one of our own cultural ambassadors.


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