Painting is Dead?—In discussions about contemporary art, you occasionally hear mutterings that painting is an old-fashioned medium that's outlived its usefulness. In an age of photographic, cinematic, digital and multimedia creation, who needs quaint ol' paint?
Wednesday, June 7, Out ch'Yonda Performance Space/Omnirootz. (all-ages, 8 p.m); $5: At one point I thought calling music “experimental” was like calling music “alternative;” just a meaningless categorization for the unimaginative. And for awhile I did know a handful of people around Albuquerque who made music out of glitch beats, calling it experimental.
Not all poetry comes to us whole. Paper erodes, tablets are smashed. We will never retrieve much of what was delivered orally. In a recent translation of Sappho, the ancient Greek female poet, the classicist Anne Carson reminds us how flagrantly time steals. "On a papyrus roll the text is written in columns ... To read such a text is hard even when it comes to us in its entirety and most papyri don't. Of the nine books of lyrics that Sappho is said to have composed, one poem has survived complete. All the rest are fragments."
Despite plenty of evidence to the contrary, lots of people still tend to think of our little Albuquerque as a cultural wasteland. No art? No theater? No music? Are you kidding me?
"You know your diagnosis," says one character to another in Charles D'Ambrosio's second story collection. "Fruit of the Loom IV," replies the narrator, sarcastically, "it doesn't matter." In other words, having something wrong with you doesn't mean you're special. "People were hospitalized when their feelings reached an acute phase," the narrator explains, "but if you eavesdropped on all the jabbering, all the lonely, late-night calls, the whole history of pain and madness fused into a single hum-drum story, without much drama. It went flat."