Strange Collages on Display at Nina Freudenheim Gallery

Jane Hammond’s artworks are extremely difficult. Photo collages that are as much about the complicated multi-layer process she uses to create them as the visual information in the photo. Some of the photos seem to have a visual inner logic, but more prominently an inner enigmatic. A score or so of the works are currently on display at the Nina Freudenheim Gallery.

A series of artist’s statements sheds some clarifying light on her purpose and process. “I am interested in creating a body of work that is decentered, variable, changing,” she says. “I am interested in the elasticity of meaning…I am interested in complexity, combining, and context.”

On the process, she says she doesn’t take photographs, but… Continue reading.

Every Dog Has its Day

Bernie Wagner had just been told by her dog trainer that her border collie, Breaker, could not be saved, ascribing three words that she desperately tried to avoid hearing: “Put him down.”

Breaker had a history of severe aggression toward both people and other dogs, yet Wagner remained confident that with the right trainer at the helm, he could be turned into an obedient, lovable pet. She contemplated the few options available to her until… Continue reading.

Book Review: Panic in a Suitcase
by Woody Brown
I have this totally indefensible, embarrassing thing about foreign-sounding proper nouns. I probably should not admit this now, here, but a discussion of this arbitrary disinclination I have will prove germane to the subject of this review, Yelena Akhtiorksaya’s debut novelPanic in a Suitcase (which I’ll say now, just to show my cards, is a masterful work of art). Whenever I see a lot of italicized non-English words that seem unnecessary (e.g. “She said thanks a Dios”) or place names that could have been written in English but weren’t (e.g. “We took a left at the Tour Eiffel”), my eyes glaze over. Something about italicizing text makes it sound different in the reader’s mind. Or maybe I’m just an uncultured jerk. I am not proud of this and my Cuban grandmother wouldn’t be either if she knew about my close-minded weakness. But I’d hazard a guess that a lot of English readers have experienced something like this foreignness-fatigue. The issue is not that… Continue reading. 

Book Review: Panic in a Suitcase

I have this totally indefensible, embarrassing thing about foreign-sounding proper nouns. I probably should not admit this now, here, but a discussion of this arbitrary disinclination I have will prove germane to the subject of this review, Yelena Akhtiorksaya’s debut novelPanic in a Suitcase (which I’ll say now, just to show my cards, is a masterful work of art). Whenever I see a lot of italicized non-English words that seem unnecessary (e.g. “She said thanks a Dios”) or place names that could have been written in English but weren’t (e.g. “We took a left at the Tour Eiffel”), my eyes glaze over. Something about italicizing text makes it sound different in the reader’s mind. Or maybe I’m just an uncultured jerk. I am not proud of this and my Cuban grandmother wouldn’t be either if she knew about my close-minded weakness. But I’d hazard a guess that a lot of English readers have experienced something like this foreignness-fatigue. The issue is not that… Continue reading. 

The Bills Are Staying in Buffalo - So Now What?
by Dave Staba
The battle for the Buffalo Bills ended up as a blowout. Vanquishing Jon Bon Jovi and Donald Trump was the easy part. Turning around what has been the National Football League’s most inept franchise for a decade-and-half presents a much greater challenge for Terry and Kim Pegula.
Turns out nobody ever really needed to worry about Bon Jovi or Trump, after all.
The Pegulas’ bid so impressed the members of the trust selling the Buffalo Bills on behalf of Ralph C. Wilson Jr.’s estate that barely a full day passed from… Continue reading.

The Bills Are Staying in Buffalo - So Now What?

The battle for the Buffalo Bills ended up as a blowout. Vanquishing Jon Bon Jovi and Donald Trump was the easy part. Turning around what has been the National Football League’s most inept franchise for a decade-and-half presents a much greater challenge for Terry and Kim Pegula.

Turns out nobody ever really needed to worry about Bon Jovi or Trump, after all.

The Pegulas’ bid so impressed the members of the trust selling the Buffalo Bills on behalf of Ralph C. Wilson Jr.’s estate that barely a full day passed from… Continue reading.

The Twelfth Annual Music is Art Festival 2014

Listening to MIA founder Robby Takac describe this Saturday’s Music Is Art Festival was one of those “wow!” moments for me. Burmese dancers, a Punk Rock Puppet Show, the Fire Faery, DJs in the woods, the amazing menu of entertainment is endless.

If you’ve never been to a Music Is Art Festival, or haven’t been since it’s early years in Allentown, you’ll be blown away by MIA 2014. From it’s humble block party beginnings in a Franklin St. parking lot with one tiny stage and art work hung on a chain-link fence, the festival has grown into a large and eagerly anticipated end-of-summer cultural celebration, summer’s grand finale. And it’s all free!

Spread across the back steps of the Albright-Knox Art Gallery and extending deep into… Continue reading.

Curtain Up! 2014
by Anthony Chase
33rd annual Curtain Up!, celebrating the opening of Buffalo’s professional theater season will take place on Friday, September 19th. As always, the evening will follow a familiar Three Act format:
Act I—an elegant 1920-themed black-tie dinner on stage at Shea’s catered by Frontier Catering, or dining at any of downtown’s restaurants. This year’s honorary chair is jazz legend Bobby Militello along with the Militello Family. Cocktails at 5:30 and dinner at 6:15.
Act II—after dinner, see a show at any of Buffalo’s 19 participating theaters. Curtains rise at 8pm.
Act III—a free street party in the Theater District featuring… Continue reading.

Curtain Up! 2014

33rd annual Curtain Up!, celebrating the opening of Buffalo’s professional theater season will take place on Friday, September 19th. As always, the evening will follow a familiar Three Act format:

Act I—an elegant 1920-themed black-tie dinner on stage at Shea’s catered by Frontier Catering, or dining at any of downtown’s restaurants. This year’s honorary chair is jazz legend Bobby Militello along with the Militello Family. Cocktails at 5:30 and dinner at 6:15.

Act II—after dinner, see a show at any of Buffalo’s 19 participating theaters. Curtains rise at 8pm.

Act III—a free street party in the Theater District featuring… Continue reading.

With summer almost gone, fall brews take the spotlight
At this time of year “Harvest Ales” begin to appear on shelves. The name suggests styles of beer made with freshly harvested malts and hops, perhaps with a tendency toward pale ales and IPAs. Ales such as these using local ingredients would be expected to start turning up more frequently as the effects of the Governor’s Farm Brewery Act begin to mature. This result will surely be seen more commonly around WNY as farm breweries like Old First Ward and Hamburg Brewing begin to use more local ingredients from NY Craft Malts, Niagara Malt, and from hopyards such as McCollum Orchards and East Prairie Hops. In fact, in May the Buffalo Niagara Brewers Association hosted a Farm to Pint event at which seven local breweries used NYS ingredients to craft six unique brews.
However, the reality is that the moniker, Harvest Ale, is less of a beer style than a collection of styles that come out around this time of year with harvest, or autumnal, themes such as… continue reading.

With summer almost gone, fall brews take the spotlight

At this time of year “Harvest Ales” begin to appear on shelves. The name suggests styles of beer made with freshly harvested malts and hops, perhaps with a tendency toward pale ales and IPAs. Ales such as these using local ingredients would be expected to start turning up more frequently as the effects of the Governor’s Farm Brewery Act begin to mature. This result will surely be seen more commonly around WNY as farm breweries like Old First Ward and Hamburg Brewing begin to use more local ingredients from NY Craft Malts, Niagara Malt, and from hopyards such as McCollum Orchards and East Prairie Hops. In fact, in May the Buffalo Niagara Brewers Association hosted a Farm to Pint event at which seven local breweries used NYS ingredients to craft six unique brews.

However, the reality is that the moniker, Harvest Ale, is less of a beer style than a collection of styles that come out around this time of year with harvest, or autumnal, themes such as… continue reading.

Cosmic NatureCasa de Arte features works by Natalia Porter and Alicia Marván

One artist looks for inspiration to the infinitely expanding cosmos—once thought to be immutable—one to the emphatically mutable and evolving natural world on earth, in the current show of two women artists, both from Mexico, at the Casa de Arte.

Artist Natalia Porter’s more spectacular pieces are collaborations with astronomers and their scientific organizations worldwide and constitute artwork expositions of their labors and discoveries. One piece is a large metal plate with numerous tiny holes marked with identifying numbers. A component of a complex instrument in which light… continue reading.

Tim Wu on the Moreland Commission
Tim Wu is running for Lieutenant Governor of New York State on the Democratic line against hometown favorite Kathy Hochul. Wu, who lives in Manhattan, grew up in Toronto. He is a Harvard Law School graduate and currently a professor at Columbia Law School. He is famous for coining the term “net neutrality”—the concept that all internet traffic should be treated equally, without discriminating against or favoring certain users. The principle is designed to ensure an even playing field for users to communicate and conduct business without interference from a third party.
Running on a shoestring campaign supported by many small donors, Wu’s candidacy was recently backed by the New York Times. The Buffalo News disagreed, arguing that… continue reading.

Tim Wu on the Moreland Commission

Tim Wu is running for Lieutenant Governor of New York State on the Democratic line against hometown favorite Kathy Hochul. Wu, who lives in Manhattan, grew up in Toronto. He is a Harvard Law School graduate and currently a professor at Columbia Law School. He is famous for coining the term “net neutrality”—the concept that all internet traffic should be treated equally, without discriminating against or favoring certain users. The principle is designed to ensure an even playing field for users to communicate and conduct business without interference from a third party.

Running on a shoestring campaign supported by many small donors, Wu’s candidacy was recently backed by the New York Times. The Buffalo News disagreed, arguing that… continue reading.

10 Fall Concerts: AV’s music editor recommends these autumn shows

Music Is Art

The festival, now in its 12th year, returns to Delaware Park for an all day party featuring dozens of local bands and artists on September 13.

Deafheaven

Shoegazing black metal band Deafheaven bring their effortless dissonance to the Tralf Music Hall on September 18.

Jeff Tweedy

Earlier this summer, Wilco frontman Jeff Tweedy announced that he’d be releasing a new record,Sukierae, simply as Tweedy. He was quick to clarify though… continue reading.

Fall literary events at Talking Leaves Bookstore

Take comfort in the cool shade of this season’s Talking Leaves Bookstore events and listen to guest authors speak and sign their recently published books (and any other book of theirs you may have).

Talking Leaves is hosting an ambitious series of authors talking about their novels, plays or poetry. The hardworking staff has assembled a variety of book talks from… continue reading.

The fourth annual echo Art Fair comes to the downtown library
A funny thing happened during the preparation for this year’s echo Art Fair. In order to hoist up the walls of a few dozen specially made booths to the second floor of the Buffalo Public Library, organizers required a crane. But, between the constructions at the medical campus, the renovations at Ralph Wilson Stadium, the construction at Harborcenter, and several other locations, there was no crane to be found. I guess you could say it was a pretty novel predicament for Buffalo.
“We were pulling our hair out for a week trying to figure out… continue reading.

The fourth annual echo Art Fair comes to the downtown library

A funny thing happened during the preparation for this year’s echo Art Fair. In order to hoist up the walls of a few dozen specially made booths to the second floor of the Buffalo Public Library, organizers required a crane. But, between the constructions at the medical campus, the renovations at Ralph Wilson Stadium, the construction at Harborcenter, and several other locations, there was no crane to be found. I guess you could say it was a pretty novel predicament for Buffalo.

“We were pulling our hair out for a week trying to figure out… continue reading.