Agenda Newsletter - May 29, 2007

Euro-metal legends to perform in full command

B.B. King’s; June 1; 8 p.m.; $55–$100; Tickets
The perfect antidote to the typical feel-good summertime music festival comes early this season, and we’re not talking about Ozzfest (darkness for those with night-lights) or whatever it is the emo kids are going to see. Emperor, the Norwegian black-metal legends, are making a rare Stateside appearance. Guitarist Samoth has decreed that “all visas are in order and the band will perform in full command.” Buy tickets now, and expect nothing less than total chaos.

English Patient author raises his game
Divisadero   Ondaatje has his share of haters, literary types upset by the fact that his books—which account for some of today’s most nuanced writing—can be read comfortably at the beach. His latest globe-trotter follows a young woman as she leaves a home fractured by violence. Ondaatje powerfully evokes landscapes from San Francisco to the South of France, but he also delves deeper than ever into the minds of his characters, beautifully evoking their sadness. By Michael Ondaatje
Alfred A. Knopf
May 29
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Garden State writers honor home
New Jersey Night
  Philip Roth rhapsodized about it. Richard Ford set his latest book there. But the land across the river still gets no respect. Jonathan Ames, along with fellow contributors Lauren Grodstein and Kathleen DeMarco, hopes to change that with the new book of only half-mocking essays Living on the Edge of the World: New Jersey Writers Take on the Garden State. “Performance reader” Ames will tell of trying to bed a beauty he met at the shore. Jonathan Ames, Lauren Grodstein, Kathleen DeMarco
7 p.m.
More info »

Mementos link god and gangsterism
The Museum of Crime and the Museum of God
  Take that, Hitchens: Writer Luc Sante’s show of personal ephemera links organized religion to crime. His noir paperback covers, holy pictures, death letters, and other mementos form a kind of “illustrated essay” celebrating Sante’s Catholic upbringing in Belgium and coming-of-age in dangerous seventies Manhattan. “Crime and religion are competing mystery cults, both pointing to doors leading out, to an unknown that might prove to be a void,” he says. Fascinating stuff, even if he’s preaching to the converted. Luc Sante
June 23
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Installation may make you woozy
White Noise
  Stretched across a large rectangular opening in this darkened gallery’s rear wall, shiny, black one-inch-wide ribbons are sent twisting and fluttering by high-powered fans. Stand about twenty feet back and it’s the biggest screen of TV static that you’ve ever seen. Take four steps forward and you start to feel woozy as the strips fill your visual field. Three or four more paces and you’re immersed in the Rothko-esque surge. Kempinas’s achievement is physical, fun, and totally trippy. Zilvinas Kempinas
Spencer Brownstone Gallery
June 23
More info  »      

Book more than a one-liner
Follow the Line Through
the House   Kids are never as simple as they seem—or so we tell ourselves as they stare, gape-mouthed, at the latest Thomas the Tank Engine DVD—and neither is this elegant, mod-themed picture book. Ljungkvist, who lives in Brooklyn, draws all the rooms in a house and the sum of their contents (tulip table, record player, purple pumps) using one unbroken line. Simple text encourages the young ones to count, distinguish colors, and quit asking to watch Thomas. Laura Ljungkvist
Viking Juvenile $16.99
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May 29, 2007

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Agenda Newsletter - May 29, 2007