Friday, September 3, 2010

Weekend arts picks: Sept. 4-7

Self-Portrait‭ (‬1889‭)‬,‭ ‬by Vincent van Gogh.

Art:‭ ‬One of the most revelatory,‭ ‬absorbing art shows I’ve ever seen was‭ ‬The Studio of the South,‭ ‬an exhibit exploring the relationship between Vincent van Gogh and Paul Gauguin and the work they created while briefly living together in the French town of Arles in late‭ ‬1888.‭ ‬I caught it at the Art Institute of Chicago in‭ ‬2001,‭ ‬and it was remarkable to see how the influence the two artists had on each other,‭ ‬particularly when it came to color.‭ ‬Tomorrow at the Norton Museum of Art,‭ ‬one of the last self-portraits van Gogh painted before his suicide in July‭ ‬1890‭ ‬will be on display until Feb.‭ ‬8.‭ ‬The Norton is getting the painting in exchange for what is probably the finest painting it has,‭ ‬Gauguin’s‭ ‬Christ in the Garden of Olives‭ (‬1889‭)‬,‭ ‬in which the suffering Christ appears as Gauguin,‭ ‬but with the bright-red hair of van Gogh.‭

Christ in the Garden of Olives‭ (‬1889‭)‬,‭ ‬by Paul Gauguin.

Garden of Olives is going out on loan in a couple weeks to a traveling Gauguin retrospective that will appear at London’s Tate Modern and Washington’s National Gallery,‭ ‬which in return is lending the van Gogh to the Norton.‭ ‬Few artists hold the iconic status of the tragic Dutch painter,‭ ‬and this beautiful portrait will no doubt draw ample crowds to the West Palm museum.‭ ‬For more information,‭ ‬call‭ ‬832-5196‭ ‬or visit‭ ‬‭ – ‬G.‭ ‬Stepanich

George Clooney in The American.

Film:‭ ‬Want proof that the summer is coming to a close‭? ‬Loud,‭ ‬violent action pictures such as‭ ‬The Expendables and‭ ‬Takers are giving way this weekend to‭ ‬The American,‭ ‬as close as we will ever come to an art house hit-man movie.‭ ‬True,‭ ‬it does star George Clooney as a loner professional assassin holed up in a small Italian village trying to avoid some Swedes who want to eradicate him,‭ ‬but any resemblance to a commercial entertainment is strictly coincidental.‭ ‬Directed by Anton Corbijn with a maddeningly methodical‭ ‬--‭ ‬as in‭ “‬slow‭” ‬--‭ ‬pace,‭ ‬the film will grow on you if you let it,‭ ‬as does Clooney’s internal performance,‭ ‬devoid of his usual easy charm.‭ ‬At area theaters.‭ – ‬H.‭ ‬Erstein

Gregg Weiner and Erin Joy Schmidt in‭ ‬50‭ ‬Words.

Theater:‭Coral Gables‭’ ‬GableStage closes out its year-round theater season with one of its best productions in quite a while,‭ ‬an emotional roller-coaster look at the disintegration of a marriage:‭ ‬50‭ ‬Words,‭ ‬by Michael Weller,‭ ‬whose best-known plays‭ ‬--‭ ‬Moonchildren and‭ ‬Loose Ends‭ ‬--‭ ‬premiered decades ago.‭ ‬But he is at the top of his game putting a Brooklyn yuppie couple,‭ ‬Jan‭ (‬Erin Joy Schmidt‭) ‬and Adam‭ (‬Gregg Weiner‭)‬,‭ ‬under the microscope over a single night when they find themselves alone,‭ ‬having sent their overprotected son off to a friend’s sleepover.‭ ‬It should have been a night of romance,‭ ‬but long-festering wounds get picked at,‭ ‬secrets get revealed,‭ ‬claws get bared and even audience members in happy,‭ ‬stable relationships will find themselves identifying with the action on stage.‭ ‬Both Schmidt and Weiner are first-rate in these white-hot roles,‭ ‬under Joe Adler’s usual unflinching direction.‭ ‬Continuing through Sept.‭ ‬12.‭ ‬Call‭ (‬305‭) ‬445-1119‭ ‬for tickets.‭ ‬– H.‭ ‬Erstein

The Jonas Brothers,‭ ‬with Demi Lovato.

Music:‭ ‬More big-name acts are in town at the Cruzan Amphitheatre in the next couple days,‭ ‬beginning with Toby Keith‭ (‬Should’ve Been a Cowboy‭) ‬tomorrow night.‭ ‬Keith’s flag-waving during the runup to the second Iraq War gained the country singer many new fans and plenty of media attention during his dispute with the Dixie Chicks.‭ ‬The former Oklahoma oil hand appears with Trace Adkins on a tour called‭ ‬American Ride.‭

Three days later,‭ ‬it’s tween heaven as the Jonas Brothers bring their brand of squeaky-clean corporate pop to the Cruzan,‭ ‬with Demi Lovato of Disney’s‭ ‬Camp Rock as their opening act.‭ ‬The Jonases have not yet managed to cross over from entertaining the younger set to adult artistic respectability,‭ ‬but they’re serious about what they’re doing,‭ ‬and it may be that one day one or all of the siblings will make that breakthrough.‭ ‬Tickets for Keith and the Jonases are available through Live Nation/Ticketmaster.

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