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Agenda Newsletter - May 21, 2007


Agenda Top Pick Painter reanimates H.P. Lovecraft
Nicolas Rule

After Lovecraft; Dinter Fine Art; Through May 25; More info;
See the work

What a concept: Rule’s spooky but alluring paintings spell out words taken from H.P. Lovecraft stories. Phrases like “untouchable” and “unanswerable” are composed of letters rendered in dripped, blood-red inks and delicate blue watercolor stains. They could be fading tattoos, colonies of yeast, warnings from the spirit world, or indeed, the doodles of some brooding Lovecraft character. This rare, haunting exhibition demonstrates why, after nearly two decades of work, Rule deserves to stay around that much longer.

Populist Miss Americas to sing, possibly act catty
Concert for the Crown
Will old resentments reignite as these former Miss Americas (and male Broadway stars) sing at this annual scholarship benefit? Maybe! Winners Susan Powell (1981) and Kate Shindle (1997) will perform, but so will losers Tiffany Haas (Miss Ohio 2002) and Whitney Kirk (Miss Arkansas 2003). Bethlene Pancoast, New York’s contender for the ’07 tiara, will surely aim to shine—but she’ll have to out-belt triple threat Christina Ellington (Miss New York 2004). See who gets served.

Joe's Pub
7 p.m.

Indieist Cute couple to play sexy music
Handsome Furs
They had us at “side project from the guitarist of beloved indie rockers Wolf Parade,” but it turns out that this precocious new band’s dark, sexy debut album, Plague Park (out tomorrow), makes an excellent case for the duo all on their own. You’ll want to see them live: Dan Boeckner and his fiancée Alexei Perry, who helms the drum machine, might be the cutest couple currently touring together. Behold their chemistry.

May 23
and 24
Mercury Lounge
May 26

Square Guy from Wilco slam-dunks best new song
Either Way
Performing solo at a benefit, Wilco’s Jeff Tweedy recently presented the best track off his band’s new album the way, we now realize, it was meant to be heard. Singing lyrics that are ambivalent even for him (“Maybe you used to love me, maybe you don’t / either you will or you won’t”), Tweedy sounds as if he ’s being coaxed to deliver a dark secret. Mumbling about “arthritis” and the song’s difficulty afterward makes for the perfect coda.

Jeff Tweedy

Aesthete Preview future art stars
ISP Studio Program Exhibition
Julian Schnabel, Andrea Fraser, Jenny Holzer, and even some unfamous people got their start in the Whitney's Independent Study Program, which has been described as a kind of post-MFA "finishing school"—participants get studio space in the city, an impressive reading list, and the chance to hobnob with visiting faculty. Check out the work of this year's graduates at the Soho nonprofit Artists Space, so you can say you saw so-and-so before Gagosian ruined her.

Artists Space
May 27
More info

Kids Cult DVD taking off
Gustafer Yellowgold’s
Wide Wide World
Morgan Taylor, an illustrator and songwriter—who, incidentally, plays music with members of Wilco (see the Tradionalist)—might just be the next SpongeBob SquarePants. Or at least, creator of the next SpongeBob SquarePants. This DVD’s cartoon protagonist, Gustafer Yellowgold, came to Earth from the sun, befriending an eel, dragon, and pterodactyl, and leaving dreamy psychedelic-pop in his wake. Buy the disc at Barnes & Noble, and see Taylor’s multimedia show at a local library starting in June.

Barnes & Noble exclusive
Buy it


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Monday May 21, 2007
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