Art Briefs March/April 2014

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beck morning phaseBy Nick Mattos, PQ Monthly
First off: after the last issue of PQ Monthly went to print, Beck released an absurdly excellent new album. Morning Phase sounds like something an insane hippie genius would have made in Laurel Canyon in 1977 while he was secretly dating Joni Mitchell, feuding with Jackson Browne, and commiserating about it with Joan Didion over way too many gin and tonics. This seems like hyperbole, but once you hear the album, you’ll understand — it’s classic Los Angeles in the best way possible. Some critics have said that Morning Phase is basically Sea Change 2.0, which is really fine because 2002’s Sea Change was a complete game-changer of an album itself and we really needed an update anyhow. Moving along — the always-marvelous Newspace Center for Photography presents The Art of Work, running through March 30. Selected by Julia Dolan of the Portland Art Museum and John Jay of Wieden+Kennedy, images in the exhibition were created by seventeen photographers working on assignment. Whether each image was ultimately used by the client or not, all were originally made at another’s behest; the exhibition was designed to give the selected photographers a wider audience and present the work in a different context than its original intent. The effect is stunning, illustrating the ways that commerce and aesthetics intersect in the medium of photography. Don’t miss this show! Newspace Center for Photography, 1632 SE 10th Avenue, Portland. Monday-Thursday 10 AM-10:30 PM, Friday-Sunday 10 AM-6 PM.   Metalheads, listen up — Labryse is bringing their incredibly aggro and delightfully queer sound to The Know on March 26. How intense is their sound, you ask? FUCKIN’ OUT OF CONTROL INTENSE. Also on the bill are Olympia’s own Agatha and the ever-swampy Wizard Hits. HOLY SHIT, MY SKULL JUST EXPLODED. The Know, 2026 NE Alberta, Portland. Show starts at 9 PM, $5 at the door, 21+. The Portland Zine Symposium is one of the coolest things that happens in the city all year, and small-press folks from all over look forward to this year’s installment with baited breath.  Help make sure it occurs — and enjoy some unique musical and vinous offerings — by attending Wine, Words, and Song! A Portland Zine Symposium Fundraiser on March 28. John Dovydenas of Dovydenas Wine and Picnic Food Cart will present his new pinot, sure to thrill word nerds and wine snobs alike. Readers Zarina Zabrisky and Simon Rogghe from San Francisco will team up with locals Ross Robbins and Leah Noble Davidson to get everyone’s heads spinning with brilliance—if the wine doesn’t get them spinning first. Finally, musicians Alicia Viani and Catherine Feeny will create an ambiance of great intrigue and intellectual rigor. All in all, it shall be a D-I-Y-liscious night. The Independent Publishing Resource Center, 1001 SE Division Street, Portland. 7 PM, donation. Also, save the date for the 2014 Portland Zine Symposium, coming up July 12 & 13 at the Ambridge Event Center in Portland. Oh my god: Big Freedia, Magic Mouth, and Thanks are playing at Mississippi Studios on April 1. It’s not as though any of them need introduction, really; reasonably speaking, you’re probably already hyperventilating. The thing that does need to be explained, though, is that this show is presented as part of Red Bull Sound Select and is thus only three dollars. As it’s first come, first served, it’s quite important to go to and RSVP, and then arrive early at the venue — it theoretically starts at 8 PM, so use your discretion as to how long you want to wait out on the street. However long you may wait, it’ll definitely be worth it. Mississippi Studios, 3939 N. Mississippi Avenue, Portland. $8; Tickets $3 by RSVP at Drag ballet!? That’s exactly what you’ll get from Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo, the all-male dance troupe presented by White Bird on April 2. The Trocks, as they are affectionately known, are finally returning after a seven-year absence to perform a wide range of classical and modern ballet. These men dance all the parts, male and female (well, mostly female) and do it all brilliantly. It’s funny, it’s subversive, and most importantly, it’s damn good ballet. Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall, 1037 SW Broadway, Portland. 7:30 PM; tickets $26-$72, available from Are you in the mood for some existential dread and horror? Obviously! Thank the Dark Lord that the H.P. Lovecraft Film Festival & CthuluCon 2014 is coming up from April 11 – 13! This three-day happening has everything — films, author readings, gaming, weird crazy events, terrifying salons, live music, ancient evils, unholy wickedness, and even spaghetti dinners. You know what? Just put down the damn paper right now and head over to to see a full list of offerings at such fantastic venues as the Hollywood Theatre, the Moon & Sixpence, and Tony Starlight’s. Otherwise, the evil forces will overwhelm your control over your body and force you to put the paper down anyway.