Monday, October 31, 2011

November Art Openings!

Villains beware…I Am Logan Square is transforming into a comic book gallery this November! IALS will be exhibiting work that was created for or inspired by the premiere of the original play POWERLESS: Issues 1-3 by Mitch Salm and David M. Brent, presented in Logan Square during the Milwaukee Avenue Arts Festival.  Come out and join us for the opening reception for POWERLESS (A comic book gallery) on Thursday, November 10th from 6-8:30 PM, at the I Am Logan Square Gallery, located at 2644 N. Milwaukee Avenue. Food and drink will be provided by Rewster’s CafĂ© and I Am Logan Square’s official gallery series sponsor, Revolution Brewing.

In a review of the Milwaukee Avenue Arts Festival production, Timeout Chicago remarked about the visual art in POWERLESS, “The stage is framed by a series of white panels upon which gorgeous original comic art is projected…The vivid integration of original comic art and serialized format feels vital and new.” Over 200 original panels were created by comic artists from across the country for the Powerless play. And IALS’s gallery will showcase some of these works including pieces by Tyne Lowe, Daniel Killackey, and Quinn Fenlon. The collection celebrates the iconic cartoon style while showing the artistic potential of comics.

Scene from "Powerless, Issue 1"
photo © Brooke Herbert
POWERLESS (a comic book gallery) will be on display through the end of November. Our gallery is open to the public Tuesday through Saturday, from noon to 6 PM and by appointment.  IALS hosts monthly gallery exhibitions of works by local artists and is currently accepting proposals for the spring 2012! Participating artists and/or curators must either live or work in Logan Square to exhibit their work and priority will be given to group or collaborative shows.

In addition to IALS's November exhibition, be sure to head downtown to the Chicago Photography Collective's gallery in Block 37 to see Structure, the CPC's November photography exhibition. What does this have to do with Logan Square you say? Well, among the works of four photographers in the exhibition are pieces by IALS's Brooke Herbert. Brooke will  be showing a selection of photos from her series on the Logan Theater. Before the Logan began undergoing its renovation (which we are SO excited about), Brooke stopped by and photographed the place and all its character, history and idiosyncrasies. She will also be documenting the whole process of change in the theater and will re-photograph the interior when it has been restored to its original splendor and glory.

So be sure to head on down to Structure, where you will also see the work of Jeff Phillips, Matt Tuteur and Damon Shell.  The opening reception is Thursday, November 3 from 5-8 PM. If you are coming to our workshop that night, you will still have time afterward to head down to CPC's gallery inside Block 37 at 108 N State St. and support some local photographers, and one of our own volunteers! 

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Scary Movie Party 8 @ The Whistler!

ATTN GALS AND GHOULIES: Do you like parties? Do you like scary? And what about movies? Put them all in a shaker and...well I think you see where this lame joke is going. SCARY MOVIE PARTY 8! But what, pray-tell, is a Scary Movie Party, and why is it 8? Glad you asked! In its 8th year, Scary Movie Party is a screening of DIY low(no)-budget films created around the idea of horror. Curated by hyper-active Chicagoans Jessi T Walsh and Patrick Scott, SMP comes around but once a year to celebrate the best holiday of the year (no, not my birthday), Halloween! So what does this have to do with Logan Square, you ask? Well well, one of their screening parties happens to be at Logan Square's own, The Whistler! wha-wha-whaaat? si, correct. For the second year in a row, SMP is teaming up with arts-friendly The Whistler to bring you a gory good time with spine-tingling good drinks, this Sunday, October 30th.

So lets talk more about these scary movies and the party. When asked what started bloody rampage of fun, Jessi Walsh replied, "Back in the day, it was just a great party– an informal, BYOB, potluck-style, DIY horror film showcase done in our friend Jenny's attic around Halloween.  Over time, we've figured out the best way for us to source inventive films is to just curate the festival outright.  We are incredibly excited about how SMP has grown and the awesome creative community we are lucky to be involved in."

As far as selecting the films, it's not just campy, horror-hilarious no-budget gory films. "We bring in artists whose film, performances and music are resonant, questioning and honest.  We don't care how much money, equipment or experience you (don't) have, we just want people to dig in, get their hands dirty and present us with their version of horror.  We want to see the most twisted, dark, hilarious, campy, unsettling, beautiful stuff the untamed world has to offer." Though most of the movies presented are from Chicago locals, SMP has garnered enough attention to draw in submissions from an international community, as well! You can check out some more of the videos on their Vimeo Site.

Tripartite by Casey McGuire from SCARY MOVIE PARTY on Vimeo.

And how exactly did they team up with The Whistler, anyway? Well apparently they had this wild idea to just ask! "Billy [Helmkamp] has booked Patrick's bands over the years and so we already were familiar with how events at the Whistler go. ...We really like their venue model and the way the arts and music are incorporated into their social/bar space." Oh, did i mention the musical acts throughout the night? yes! Scary MUSIC Party. mmmm, i'm going to copyright that. oh! right, Gel Set will be on hand to provide a round of scary synth-y goodness, followed by The Third Wave, spinning "coldwave, post-punk, goth and new wave darkness throughout the evening."

So clear your schedule for Oct. 30th, get your Halloween costume ready, and come out to The Whistler for your chance to mingle with other local gals and ghouls during this Halloween extravaganza! Honestly, you should probably just go as Double-Pants-Man, so when you have your pants scared off you, you wont be ENTIRELY embarrassed. Just dont come as Underwear-Man.

Scary Movie Party 8
Oct. 30th 9pm-close
The Whistler
2421 N. Milwaukee Ave.

-W. Tanner Young

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Musical of the Living Dead

© Jacquelyn Peterman
With Halloween just around the corner, do you find yourself with a hankerin' for BRAINS? I surely do! Aren't we lucky that The Charnel House is proudly presenting “Musical of the Living Dead” for its sophomore year—right here in Logan Square!
If you aren't already familiar with the Charnel House, it's a multi-arts space on Fullerton that actually used to be a funeral home. Both super cool and spooky, right? The lovely building makes the perfect home for our favorite zombie musical!

I had the pleasure of attending opening night last Thursday—and it was a bloody good time! Other than knowing it was a musical about zombies, I had no idea what to expect when I arrived that rainy evening. The first two rows of the audience were wearing ponchos—which made me think immediately, “Splatter zone!” And boy was I right! I recorded over a over a dozen blood squirts and a handful of water splashes making it into the audience. Every time there was an effect,  the audience would roar with laughter. It was fantastic. Within the first five minutes there were literally guffaws coming out of the entire crowd—and not just because it's BYOB!

The storyline often mirrors that of the zombie films' origins, the 1968 blockbuster, Night of the Living Dead. Ten individuals are stuck together in a house during the zombie takeover (said to be caused by Peruvian rat monkeys) and the inevitable happens. How many will die? Well that you'll just have to find out yourself! Musical of the Living Dead even went the extra mile in Romero references, being set in Western Pennsylvania with heavy mention on the Monroeville Mall and several cast wearing Steelers hats. As a zombie-lovin', Pittsburgh native this little attention to detail made the musical even sweeter for me.
© Jacquelyn Peterman

The cast and writing provide the perfect marriage of clever lines and a little wiggle room for improvisation; from what I've heard it's not exactly the same show every night. So expect the quirky one-liners and the the “buckets” of blood to fluctuate and morph as the nights progress. Original songs were sung loud and proud with lyrics that are not child appropriate, but made all adults giggle, like when the girl scout sings, “I'm gonna eat your tongue, so you shut the f*** up”. So if crude humor, horror, pop culture references, and musicals all happen to be your thing—this may have been made for you. Oh, and even the intermission music was spot on, with Michael Jackson's Thriller, Lady Gaga's Bad Romance, and Rob Zombie's Dragula.

Need a little more persuasion, check out IALS contributor, Philip Burg's, promotional video below:

Bring on the blood squirts and creative kills (my favorite was the blender) and remember kids, “The one's who are really dead, are the living ones”.

© Jacquelyn Peterman

Musical of the Living Dead
-Thursday Oct 13 through Saturday Nov 12
-Charnel House: 3421 W Fullerton Ave, Chicago IL 60647
-Tickets $20 in advance, or $25 at the door.
Book & Lyrics by Marc Lewallen and Brad Younts
Music by Mary Spray
Musical Arrangements by Matt Mehawich
Produced by The Cowardly Scarecrow Theatre Company, INC 

 -Alex Palmer

Friday, October 14, 2011

Industry Night: A Professional Arts Networking Series

Design by Hannah Rebernick
We all know that Logan Square has a vibrant arts scene. The I Am Logan Square events calendar is constantly being updated with arts-related events of all kinds. Now we’ve got another type of event for you to add to your calendar! I Am Logan Square is pleased to announce Industry Night: A Professional Arts Networking Series. 

Generously sponsored by D’Noche, IALS Industry Nights are designed to allow emerging and established professionals to rub elbows with esteemed personalities in the local arts industry. Each event will take place on the final Tuesday of every month, and will feature a different aspect of the industry. In addition to the networking benefits, the admission cost will include an open beer and sangria bar as well as passed appetizers.

Music Business is first in line. On Tuesday, October 25th from 6-8pm, D’Noche will host a slew of special guests from the local music industry:

·      John Benetti- [formerly of] House Call Entertainment
·      Shawn Murphy- Columbia College Chicago,, [formerly of] ASCAP
·      Justin Sinkovich- Columbia College Chicago, & File 13 Records
·      Nate Van Allen- Criterion Productions

If you’d like a chance to chat with these fine gentlemen, an RSVP is required as space is limited. Email with your name and phone number. You’ll receive a confirmation email within 48 hours with final details for the event.

The next planned Industry Night will be all about photography on Tuesday, November 28th. Special guests are still being determined, but details will be posted soon. We’ll be taking a break from the series in December for the holidays, but we’ll be back in full force in January. We are open to ideas for this new event series, so please don’t hold back! Email with your questions, comments, suggestions and concerns.

See you there!

WHAT: IALS Presents Industry Night: Music Business
WHEN: Tuesday October 25th
TIME: 6:00 – 8:00 PM
VENUE: D’Noche/Cafe con Leche
ADDRESS: 2710 North Milwaukee Ave

-- Justine Rowland

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Join Curbside Splendor in Celebrating Franki Elliot's Piano Rats!

Join Logan Square based publisher Curbside Splendor on Saturday, October 15th in celebrating the publication of Franki Elliot’s collection of prose poems, Piano Rats, at Hinge Gallery in Ukrainian Village. Reviews have described Elliot’s collection of 44 poems as raw and Elliot as a writer who does not shy away from winning the hearts of her readers through expletives and honest dialogue. Elliot self-published Piano Rats in 2010, and the book sold out so quickly that her underground success didn't go unnoticed. Curbside Splendor picked it up in 2011.

Courtesy of Curbside Splendor
The October 15th release is a wonderful opportunity for people to come together, share a few drinks, and support emerging voices in Chicago’s creative and literary scene. After all, Piano Rats is Elliot’s first book, and Curbside Splendor’s fourth publication. This event will be chock-full of visual and auditory stimuli: featuring the artwork of Shawn Stucky, the visual artist behind Piano Rat’s front cover, a live screen-printing collaboration between Elliot and Stucky, and readings from Elliot’s collection, as well as your chance to listen to some “psychic past life readings.” 

Books will be available for purchase at the release, but those wanting to buy Piano Rats beforehand can pre-order it on the Curbside Splendor site. Also worth  mentioning: Curbside Splendor is a semi-regular fixture at the Logan Square Farmers Market, so next Sunday, be sure to mix some books into your medley of fruits and vegetables. 

WHAT: Curbside Splendor Release Party of Franki Elliot's Piano Rats.

WHEN: Saturday, October 15th, 6PM- 9PM

COST: Free!

VENUE: Hinge Gallery
, 1955 W. Chicago Ave. 

--Julia Pagnamenta