The Essentials | City Weekly's Entertainment Picks Nov. 6-12 | Arts & Entertainment | Salt Lake City | Salt Lake City Weekly

The Essentials | City Weekly's Entertainment Picks Nov. 6-12 

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nBy Brian Staker
nDuring this election year, citizens have been motivated to think about America: what it means to them and what kind of country they want it to be, subjects about which we might otherwise be complacent or find overly sentimental or even out of our control.

So it’s timely that the Utah Museum of Fine Arts’ Young Benefactors unveil their latest acquisition—WILLIE COLE’s “How Do You Spell America #8” (pictured)—with a lecture by Cole. The group was founded in 2004 by young professionals working to expand the museum’s collection through donations. Cole’s work, drawn on blackboard-like surface, spells out the word “America” as a series of acronyms. The sculptor’s objects are filled with anxiety but also a sense of the spiritual. n

According to Josh Kantor of the Young Benefactors, after considering several possibilities based on the theme “the American landscape,” they found Cole’s piece to be a conceptual take on the subject: “It’s an interesting reflection on the underlying discussion about the landscape of America, where we’ve been and where we’re going.” Cole is an internationally renowned artist, and the piece makes an important addition to the UMFA collection. n

The eighth piece in the series was completed shortly after the first Gulf War, and it’s fascinating to see what has remained current, like “Abandoned Military Equipment Resupplies Insurgent Civilizian Army.” Doubtless this year’s election results will provide Cole much fodder for commentary. n

Willie Cole: “How Do You Spell America #8” unveiling and lecture @ Utah Museum of Fine Art, 410 Campus Center Drive, 581-7332, Nov. 6, 6 p.m. n n

By Scott Renshaw

nIn Salt Lake City author Emily Wing Smith’s quietly moving young-adult novel THE WAY HE LIVED, six small-town Utah teens struggle with their understanding of Joel Espen—a much-liked, good-hearted 16-year-old who recently died while on a hiking trip in the Grand Canyon. But in a sense, the “who was Joel really” mystery is a red herring.

With graceful understanding, Smith lets those affected by Joel’s death—his sisters, his best friend, his next-door neighbor, the girl who had a crush on him and his debate-team partner—wrestle in the ensuing months with their identities as much as with their grief. And while she teases with the promise that the story will answer provocative questions about Joel—Was he gay? Was his death a suicide?—The Way He Lived is ultimately about something bigger. Coming of age in a place that demands a certain outward appearance, these characters fight to reconcile conflicting personas: Who they are to the rest of the world, and who they are inside. As one of the characters thinks with alarm about herself, “truly, deep down, I’m not such a good, sweet girl.” n

Taking the risky step of employing a variety of voices—sometimes a blog, sometimes first-person, sometimes omniscient—Smith creates a story that’s both uniquely Utahn and universal in its understanding of adolescents breaking free of the labels placed on them. Join the author for a book-release and signing event this week. n

Emily Wing Smith: The Way He Lived @ King’s English Bookshop, 1511 S. 1500 East, 484-9100. Monday, Nov. 10, 7 p.m. n

nBy Jamie Gadette
nFormer Poison guitarist C.C. Deville once told Salt Lake City writer/entrepreneur Mike Brown in a phone interview, “There can’t be many people like you in Utah.”

Truer words were never spoken. Brown, an obsessive Utah Jazz fan known around town for his acerbic monthly column in SLUG magazine, is also responsible for Leviathan, an old-school pen-and-ink ’zine featuring material that would not—or could not—appear in SLUG. Yes, it’s that offensive. And that’s why we encourage you to attend the release party for LEVIATHAN No. 10. n

Brown is one of Utah’s funniest, raunchiest, most genuine citizens. He’s not impressed by much, and isn’t afraid to let everyone know exactly what he thinks of fixed-gear bicycles, for example, or dirty groupies. And after reading Leviathan, you’ll no longer wonder, “Does Mike Brown respect Portland, Oregon?” It’s not for the faint of heart, but for those who appreciate irreverent humor laced with profanity and just a touch of soft-core porn, it’s a gift that keeps on giving. n

The issue also ushers in a new day for Brown, who refuses to jump on the podcast bandwagon: Each copy comes with a CD of outtakes from as far back as 2001, including the Deville episode in which the hair-metal semi-legend learns the meaning of several bizarre, um, positions. n

Wednesday’s release party will include performances by Fuck The Informer and Ted Dancin’ (featuring this writer’s boyfriend—disclosure fulfilled), merchandise, bicycle spoke cards and other goodies/surprises. If you need a good chuckle, come down. As Brown told Deville, “I won’t lie—it’s pretty funny.” n

Leviathan No. 10 Release Party @ The Urban Lounge, 241 S. 500 East, Wednesday, Nov. 12, 10 p.m. n n

Here&Now Other New Happenings This Week n

SALT LAKE CITY SCHOOL DISTRICT ART TEACHERS An exhibit of work by local instructors. Utah Arts Alliance Gallery, 127 S. Main, 651-3937, Nov. 4–28. Reception Nov. 7, 6-9 p.m. n

MICHAEL FRIED The influential art critic and historian speaks about the origins of Modernism. BYU Museum of Art, N. Campus Dr., 801-422-8287, Thursday, Nov. 6, 7 p.m. n

STEPHANIE STRICKLAND/REBECCA LINDENBERG A reading of poetry and essays as part of the Salt Lake City Arts Council Guest Writers Series. Art Barn, 54 Finch Lane, 596-5000, Thursday, Nov. 6, 7 p.m. n

MEGAN MCDONALD The creator of the popular Judy Moody children’s books reads from and signs her works. The King’s English Bookshop, 1511 S. 1500 East, 485-9100, Friday, Nov. 7, 4 p.m. n

THE TEMPEST Ballet West presents an interpretation of Shakespeare’s classic play. Capitol Theatre, 50 W. 200 South, 355-ARTS, Nov. 7-15. n

TANNER DANCE Utah’s young dancers perform a family-friendly Ring Around the Rose show. Rose Wagner Center, 138 W. 300 South, 355-ARTS, Saturday, Nov. 8, 11 a.m. n

NAVAJO RUG SHOW AND SALE Fund-raiser for the Adopt a Native Elder program. Deer Valley Resort, Snow Park Lodge, 435-649-0535, Nov. 7 (6-10 p.m.) & Nov. 8-9 (10 a.m.–6 p.m.) n

PAUL ROBERTS The author discusses developments in world food production from his new book The End of Food. Westminster College Gore Auditorium, 1840 S. 1300 East, 832-2682, Monday, Nov. 10, 7:30 p.m. n

EXPOSED READING TOUR The Artys-award winning Plan-B Theatre Company play visits several cities as a free staged reading. The Leonardo, 209 E. 500 South, Tuesday, Nov. 11, 7 p.m. For other locations and dates, n

MICHAEL COLLIER The photographer gives an illustrated reading from his new book Over the Rivers: An Aerial View of Geology. Sam Weller’s Bookstore, 254 S. Main, 328-2586, Tuesday, Nov. 11, 6:30 p.m.

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