Monthly Archives: November 2010
Capping up our New Mercury season with a Second Saturday at Jordan Faye Contemporary Gallery, once again, our readers covered a lot of terrain. A lot of that, by strange coincidence, was in Africa. MICA professor Mikita Brottman, reading from her published work on hyenas, explained why the hyena, though overlooked and often denegrated for its looks and (so-called) laughter could become the master of the new sustainable economy. Then arts journalist and music critic Geoff Himes read an unpublished piece recalling how, in September 2001 while the rest of the world was focused on lower Manhattan, he was visiting the cradle of civilization in equatorial Africa. This also included observations on hyenas (and many other animals), and their place in the evolutionary model. After a break, film critic David Sterritt,read from a published piece focusing on the shower scene in Alfred Hitchcock’s Psycho, and some of the obsessive theorizing that it has inspired in the form of freakishly long-winded academic works.
One more reason to show up tomorrow night at 1401 Light Street, Jordan Faye Block Contemporary/Be. Writer and critic David Sterritt didn’t get his start in Baltimore, and he hasn’t been published in City Paper yet, and I’m not sure about the Sun, but right now he lives in the Belvedere. So that makes him a Baltimore film critic. And he’ll be reading, along with Geoff Himes (a music critic, locally and nationally) and author and MICA professor Mikita Brottman (who also lives in the Belvedere) tomorrow at 6. It should be a great night.
David Sterritt is Chairman of the National Society of Film Critics, adjunct professor at Columbia University, and at MICA University, film critic for Tikun, chief book critic for Film Quarterly, and serves on the editorial board of Cinema Journal and Quarterly Review. He is also Professor Emeritus at Long Island University. He is the author of Screening the Beats: Media Culture and the Beat Sensibility, The Films of Jean-Luc Godard, and Mad to Be Saved: The Beats, the ’50s, and Film, and his work has appeared in the New York Times, the Chronicle of Higher Education, Film Comment, and Cineaste.
p.s. Michael Anft, meanwhile, had to cancel, so look for him again next year.
Three Baltimore readers are closing out the year for us on Saturday, November 13, at 6 pm! Come down to Jordan Faye Block Contemporary Gallery at 1401 Light Street on Federal Hill to meet, talk with, and listen to music critic Geoff Himes, journalist (and self-described hack) Michael Anft, and author Mikita Brottman.
Since May, the gallery has been packed with starving freelancers, successful hacks, recently published authors, and people who like to hear other people tell it like it is. The topics covered so far have been pretty impressive in scope:
Graffiti artists (Charles Cohen), Blockbusting (Antero Pietilla), Family Drama (Kevin Brown), House Guests (Laura Wexler), Getting Fired (Lizzie Skurnick), Black Holes (Anne Finkbeiner), Insanity and Ice Skating (Patricia Schulteis), Family Secrets (Steve Luxenberg), Being Gay and Black at the Baltimore Sun (Rashod Ollison), Baltimore Boxing Gyms (Melissa Hale), Miami Swampland (Heather Dewar), Richard Manuel (Raphael Alvarez), Hardboiled Eggs (Henry Hong), Mafia Hitmen (Stacey Patton)
We’ll be back in January, but if you’re a writer and you feel you can add to this list, drop by and give us your card. Or email us (contacts are on the site). We’re also accessible on Facebook.
If you liked his reading last month, tune in Friday at noon or at seven at 88.1 FM as Baltimore writer Dave Belz reads “The Prophet” — from his latest, White Asparagus – on The Signal.
Geoffrey Himes has written about music on a weekly basis in the Washington Post since 1977 and is currently a senior editor at Paste Magazine. He has also written about music for Downbeat Magazine, Jazz Times, Rolling Stone, the Oxford American, the New York Times, National Public Radio, the Chicago Tribune, Baltimore Magazine, the Baltimore City Paper, the Los Angeles Times, the Baltimore Sun and other outlets. He has been honored for Music Feature Writing by the Deems Taylor/ASCAP Awards, by the Abell Foundation Awards and by the Music Journalism Awards. His book on Bruce Springsteen, “Born in the U.S.A.,” was published by Continuum Books in 2005. Himes has contributed entries to the “The Encyclopedia of Country Music” and “The Rolling Stone Jazz & Blues Album Guide.” He is currently working on a book about Emmylou Harris, Rosanne Cash, Rodney Crowell and Ricky Skaggs for the Country Music Hall of Fame. He has lived in Baltimore since 1974. His stage musical, “A Baltimore Christmas Carol,” premiered at Baltimore’s Patterson Theatre in 2004.
Michael Anft doesn’t write books, teach people the so-called craft of writing, or agonize over how active the verbs he uses are. He is a mercenary of language: He writes to pay his bills. He is on staff at Johns Hopkins Magazine (where he’s a senior writer), and otherwise writes regularly for old people (AARP The Magazine), hip young liberals (Urbanite), demographics-spanning do-gooders (the Chronicle of Philanthropy), and ink-stained sports fans (PressBox), among other niched readerships. Tonight, he’ll read a bit from his journal about dropping his daughter off at college.
Mikita Brottman is a British scholar, psychoanalyst, author, and cultural critic known for her psychological readings of the dark and pathological elements of contemporary culture. She has a PhD in English Language and Literature from OxfordUniversity, and she currently teaches at the Maryland Institute College of Art. She is the author of seven books, including titles on the horror film, cannibalism, psychoanalysis, critical theory, and contemporary popular culture. Her most recent book, The Solitary Vice, was selected as one of the Best Books of 2008 by Publishers Weekly.