Gilbert and Sullivan meets Tim Burton in McGill Savoy Society's production of Ruddigore; Or the Witch's Curse, a side-splittingly funny and outrageously over-the-top comedic opera in two acts. With impressive costumes, Nightmare Before Christmas-esque set design and several noteworthy student performances, the Savoy Society presents its audience with Gilbert and Sullivan in all their fanciful glory.
This week in the arts: Matt Shane's fantastical landscapes of the mind are showcased in his Locus Amoenus exhibition at Red Bird Studios, Concordia undergrads display their best work at "Combine 2010," and Jennifer Lefort plays "Make-believe" at Parisian Laundry.
Journalist Barbara Ehrenreich doesn't like Breast Cancer Awareness teddy bears, motivational speakers, or desk accessories with slogans like "Go Above and Beyond!" written on them. She doesn't think that leaving post-it notes on your mirror that say "Love yourself" or "What you can dream, you can achieve" actually gets you anywhere, and she also doesn't particularly appreciate being told that she has a bad attitude. Although the instinctive reaction for glass-half-fullers like myself may be to dismiss Ehrenreich as something of a killjoy, her diatribe against positivity in fact delivers a poignantly truthful--and ultimately positive--message.
A motley crew of six saucy American neo-burlesque performers and their rather slight French producer head out on tour through the port cities of France in Tournée, a dark comedy directed by and starring Mathieu Amalric. An unconventional road film with a cast of colorful characters, Tournée premiered at the 2010 Cannes Film Festival to considerable critical acclaim, winning the prestigious FIPRESCI award and earning Amalric Best Director. I chatted with Amalric about his inspirations--notably burlesque, Fellini, and empty hotels--on the red carpet at The Imperial for Tournée's opening at the Festival du Nouveau Cinema last night.
Google Street View vehicles, mounted with nine cameras, roam the earth recording panoramic images of whatever happens to cross its path--from tumbleweeds floating across deserted highways to Justin Bieber's grandparents in the front yard of the pop star's Ontario home (an occurrence which aptly earned it the nickname "Googlerazzi"). The Google cameras act as a detached observer, providing gimpses of landscapes and life captured in a passing and indifferent moment. Curated by Chloe Roubert, Within Which All Things Exist and Move--arguably the highlight of Art Pop--brought together and juxtaposed artist Jon Rafman's Google Street View images with documentary photographer Gabor Szilasi's urban shots from the 1950 to the 1980s.
Px(c): Art, Commerce, and Catastrophe @ Maison Kasini.
A collection of Px(c)'s images, which ponder the interconnectivity and conflict between art and commerce, as well as indicating the power of advertising to shape individual worldviews. The work of Px(c), the "corporate alter-ego" of Montreal artist Ben Depelteau, is punchy, colorful, and heavily influenced by American and British pop art. Since Depelteau began working under the moniker Px(c) in 1999, he has been best known for imitating advertising strategies to sell faulty products and ideas to mass audiences. Depelteau targets car parts, eyes, fingers, tongues, sunglasses, do-it-yourself art, concepts for gallery art, mouse traps, packages and collages and prints. By presenting himself as a sort of corporation, Px(c), Depelteau ultimately makes a strong statement about the force of commercialism in everyday life. ( Image: Px(c), "To Drown.")