July 19, 1987 |
If a text may be illustrated, may a painting be texted? Two recent books by noted artists answer that question in the affirmative but in sharply different ways. But again, if a painting is to be texted, what kind of text should it be? Is this painting (a writer may ask) the visual equivalent of a lyric poem? Or is it an editorial or a short story or a travelogue? Ann Beattie calls her book on 26 paintings by Alex Katz a "reading" of his work.
December 18, 1994 |
Ntozake Shange, a multitalented writer best known for her play, "for colored girls who have considered suicide/when the rainbow is enuf," and the novel, "Sassafrass, Cypress & Indigo," in her third novel offers a daring portrait of a black woman artist re-creating herself out of social and psychological chaos, the fragmentation that haunts our time, our nation. Ourselves. Liliane is undergoing a traditional psychoanalysis.
December 29, 1990 |
Comedian Jett Matthews has a fairly good sense of who he is. "I'm pretty much a pessimistic optimist," Matthews says. "I think there will probably be a nuclear war, but not before Super Bowl Sunday." And, hopefully, not before the comedy show tonight at the Coach House in San Juan Capistrano, where Matthews will appear on a bill with comedians Jimmy McGee, Dick Hardwick and Shang. The four run the gamut of the comedy spectrum.
September 10, 1998 |
On the world's highest plain, in the outer reaches of Tibet, French explorer Michel Peissel was tracing ancient trading routes when he stumbled upon a cluster of curious-looking dome-shaped structures made of mud and brick. Though they were unusual, Peissel, an ethnologist and anthropologist, didn't think much of the igloo-looking huts at first, dismissing them as many have before him as chortens, a type of Buddhist monument.
November 3, 2010 |
Los Angeles theater producer Gary Levingston calls "For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide When the Rainbow Is Enuf" one of the most transcendent works of the American stage. Ntozake Shange's 1970s play about the struggles of several black women is "life-changing and life-saving," said Levingston, who has brought two stagings of the play to life in the last two years. Although Levingston has nothing but praise for Shange, he is notably more reserved about Tyler Perry, Hollywood's most commercially successful and controversial independent black filmmaker.
November 5, 2010 |
"For Colored Girls" is not easy. Its poetry is hot and searing, its story an unbroken current of rage and pain and sex and abuse and solidarity and self and empowerment. Nine women ? in screams, whispers and weeping ? demand that you listen, that you don't look away, that you deal with the discomfort as they did. It is a film destined to polarize. Many will hate it. Hopefully more will love it, or at least allow room for it, for its raw brutality, its extremes, its difficult truths.