TOP TEN OCTOBER
For Nathalie Du Pasquier: An Evening of Poetry and Conversation
Wednesday, November 1 from 6.30 PM to 8:00 PM
Institute of Contemporary Art
If you haven’t already seem Nathalie Du Pasquier’s BIG OBJECTS NOT ALWAYS SILENT exhibition at the ICA here’s your chance to do so. Head to the museum for a lively evening of poetry, music, and conversation inspired by the artist’s work, including a poetry contest! With musician and poet Steve Piccolo; Leonard Koren, author and founder of WET Magazine, and Omar Sosa, founding editor of Apartamento magazine, as well as music by FLOS (Luca Formentini & Stefano Castagna), Sergio Armaroli, Walter Prati, and Gak Sato.
Ta-Nehisi Coates | We Were Eight Years in Power: An American Tradegy
Thursday, November 2nd from 7:30 PM - 9 PM
Free Library of Philadelphia Central Branch
We mentioned last month that the Free Library of Philadelphia has been killing it. They are always bringing in some of the best writers in the world but the stars have aligned this season with Jennifer Egan, Jeffrey Eugenides, Salmon Rushdie, and this month Ta-Nehisi Coates. Along with being one of our favorite contributors to the Atlantic, Coates won the 2015 National Book Award for Between the World and Me, a “searing meditation on what it means to be black in America today” (New York Times). He’ll be reading from We Were Eight Years in Power, a collection of new and previously published essays on the Obama presidency. It seems like a night with a look back to simpler times with an award winning author.
Friday November 3rd from 7:00 PM - 10 PM
Hosted by The Incubation Series at Seraphin Gallery
Check out this exhibition that’s part of the Incubation Series at the University of Pennsylvania, a collaboration between students in the Fine Arts and History of Art graduate programs dedicated to new ways of seeing and experiencing art. The show is curated by Jessica Hough and Isabelle Lynch and features artists Lauren Altman, Erlin Geffrard, Jiayi Liu, and Heryk Tomassini. The press release below is a glimpse into their thought process.
When you run out of thread in the middle of a seam, you can finish with a backstitch, start again with a new thread, or carefully attach a new strand to the one you have. Loose threads, whether frayed or broken, offer the possibility of being unraveled and woven anew. This exhibition brings together the work of four artists who work with various materials and sites that are often considered to be useless in our current economy predicated on utility and consumption. Whether it is clothing we no longer wear, the digital debris that is stored on our hard drives, abandoned experimental housing structures, or the material residue of our culture of excess, the works in the exhibition consider the process of making something new with discarded materials, reminding us of the various ways in which loose ends can be retied.
PAFA Performances: Sonya Clark's Unraveling
Saturday November 4th from 3:00 PM to 5:00 PM
Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts
Full disclosure, this is an event at both of VG’s workplace and alma matter. We feel strongly about not using this platform to promote personal projects, so us sharing this event isn’t based on place but rather the performance’s merit in our minds. The first weekend in November marks the year anniversary of Trump being elected. Rather than endure this horrific moment in American history hiding with a glass of wine and some Tina Fey shaped cake, come out and take part in an active performance responding to the nation's trauma.
In this performance, textile artist Sonya Clark invites visitors to work with her side-by-side in the museum galleries to unravel a Confederate battle flag, slowly deconstructing it thread by thread over the course of an afternoon.
The whole process takes months and many hands. The cloth becomes a metaphor, something investigated and picked apart. In the artist’s words, "Unraveling" encourages “us to think about the complexity of what happened here in this country that gave rise to this flag. It’s not easy for us to undo. It requires community and persistence.”
The Price of Protest: Commonspace Live with Nadya Tolokonnikova
Monday November 6 from 8:00 PM - 10:00 PM
Hosted by Applied Mechanic and First Person Arts at First Unitarian Church
When a press release says it better than you can:
On February 21, 2012, Nadya Tolokonnikova and the other members of the band Pussy Riot went into a cathedral and performed their 'punk rock prayer' that criticized the Russian Orthodox church, and called for the defeat of Vladimir Putin. The price they paid for their protest was two years' imprisonment.
adya had been an activist for years already. Not even the cruel and unusual treatment she suffered at the hands of the Russian government during her incarceration silenced her. Come hear in her own words the importance of standing up, no matter what the consequences.
Before the show, Philadelphia's own Applied Mechanics brings back a 'remix' of their own acclaimed 2014 'punk rock prayer,' We Are Bandits, which was inspired by Pussy Riot.
Closing Reception: For Our Ancestors, Colette Fu
Thursday November 9 from 5:00 PM to 7:00 PM
The Center For Emerging Visual Artists
237 S 18th St, 3A, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19103
Normally I believe record breaking belongs in the Guinness book and not the gallery but Colette Fu’s giant pop-ups is an exception. Come see the photographic larger than life piece, For Our Ancestors, before it closes.
Fu’s most recent work is based on her ongoing exploration of the ethnic minority groups of China. The country has fifty-five ethnic minority groups making up less than 9% of its population, with the Han representing the majority. Fu’s own mother is from the Black Nuosu tribe. Among other works, For Our Ancestors features an extra-large fifteen-foot pop-up accordion book that tells the story of a relatively unknown fishing contest of the Miao people, inspired by the pioneering pop-up books of German illustrator Lothar Meggendorfer.
Great How've You Been Fest
Thursday November 10 to November 12
If you are looking for a weekend of South Philly house shows look no further than VG’s pals project, Great How’ve You Been Fest. As they say it’s 3 Days of DIY joy in beautiful, sunny South Philadelphia
Featuring a sick lineup:
Yeenar, Secret Nudist Friends, Trash Boy, Blushed, Honeytiger, Julia Rainer, Madam West Mavis the Dog, Gender Work, Busy Bee Project, Kelsey Cork & the Swigs, Doggo, Very Bad Vibes, Tarintino, The Thirds, Future Twin, Elaine Rasnake, Too Dogs, Space Cubs, Detach the Islands, Little War, StateSchoolGirl, BlackBerryBrandy
Paper Scissors Media, goodhowareyou, DIY Point Breeze, The Woods, Tralfamadore, and Slime Time Live.
Philly Zine Fest 2017
Sunday November 12 from 12:00 PM to 7:00 PM
The Rotunda: 4014 Walnut Street.
Head West for the annual Philly Zine fest, Philly's oldest self publishing and small press festival. Get psyched for a rotunda full of material and Kung Fu Hoagies outside. If you want even more check out the open mic night the Saturday before at the Rotunda.
Friday November 17 from 7:00 PM to 8:30 PM
Lightbox FIlm Center: 3701 Chestnut Street. Public
The Lightbox Film Center (previously known at International House) is screening Adam Khalil and Zack Khalil’s new film INAATE/SE/. The work is a reimagining of “an ancient Ojibway story, the Seven Fires Prophecy, which both predates and predicts first contact with Europeans. A kaleidoscopic experience blending documentary, narrative, and experimental forms, it transcends linear colonized history to explore how the prophecy resonates through the generations in their indigenous community within Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. With acute geographic specificity, and grand historical scope, the film fixes its lens between the sacred and the profane to pry open the construction of contemporary indigenous identity.”
Stay after the film has finished for a conversation with the directors Adam Khalil and Zack Khalil with Carolyn Lazard
Trans Equity Project: Trans Awareness Week
November 14- 20th
Hosted by Trans Equity Project, a program of Galaei
Location: GALAEI. 149 W. Susquehanna Ave
Trans Equity Project will join other individuals and organizations across the country in participating in Transgender Awareness Week to help raise the visibility of Trans and Gender Non-conforming people, address the issues our communities face and to raise awareness. ALL ARE WELCOME! I’d also suggest checking out this and last month’s interviews with trans artist Armani Dae and scholar Emily Skidmore before you go.