Maurice Sendak with one of his characters from "Where the WIld Things Are" in January, 2002. Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images.
In 2009, two important cultural figures celebrated their 80th birthdays. One was Mickey Mouse. The other was Maurice Sendak.
To mark the occasion of Mickey's 80th, Edward Summer, the director of the Buffalo International Film Festival, organized a celebration in Shea's Performing Arts Center featuring rare cartoons, prints and a talk by the ever-engaging Mickey expert John Culhane. That tribute, to my mind, was one of the most underrated cultural events of the last several years. (My story about it is here.)
Continue reading "Maurice Sendak on Mickey Mouse" »
Eric Jackson-Forsberg, newly appointed executive director of the Western New York Book Arts Center, in the Darwin D. Martin House in 2009. Photo by Sharon Cantillon / The Buffalo News.
Today, the Western New York Book Arts Center announced its appointment of Eric Jackson-Forsberg as its first official, full-time executive director. He starts his new job on May 7. We chatted earlier this week about his experience as a curator at the Darwin Martin Complex and his plans for the center going forward.
You’ve been at the Martin House for nine years. What prompted you to make this move?
It’s been an incredible opportunity here, spending that much time with Mr. Wright, so to speak. But it just felt like it was time for a change and this opportunity came along. I had been following the organization for a few years since their founding and had done a little printing and had known Rich [Kegler] for a long time.
Continue reading "Eric Jackson-Forsberg takes the reins at WNYBAC" »
Henry Hitchings, the British critic and author of "The Secret Life of Words: How English Became English" and "The Language Wars: A History of Proper English" will give a talk at 7:30 p.m. Friday at the Saturn Club. The event, to be held in the club's second-floor lounge, is sponsored by Buffalo's branch of the international English-Speaking Union and costs $10 per person.
Vincent O’Neill takes part in the celebration of Charles Dickens and his works. Sharon Cantillon/News file photo
On the last international tour he took before his death, Charles Dickens stopped in Buffalo for two popular readings of his work. (His tour manager was terrified, according to his report of the trip, that a "rowdy element" of Western New Yorkers would overtake the affair, though it did not. Dickens himself was "much struck by the absence of female beauty from the readings.")
Since that visit -- researched and re-created by local actor, meteorologist and Dickens enthusiast Mike Randall for his annual performance of "A Christmas Carol" -- Western New York hasn’t let go of its appetite for the popular and prolific chronicler of Victorian society and its seedy underbelly.
This afternoon (March 25) at 2, prompted by the bicentenary of Dickens’ birth in February, a group of local actors will give a reading of Dickens’ works in the Burchfield Penney Art Center (1300 Elmwood Ave.). The roster includes Megan Callahan, Morgan Chard, Wendy Hall, Jimmy Janowski, John Kaczorowski, Patrick Moltane, Vincent O’Neill, Adam Rath, Eric Rawski, Doug Weyand and Katie White. They’ll read excerpts from "The Pickwick Papers," "Oliver Twist," "David Copperfield," "Bleak House" and "Great Expectations."
Admission is free.
-- Colin Dabkowski
The Small Press Book Fair returns to the Karpeles Manuscript Museum. Charles Lewis/News file photo
The presses themselves are small, sure, but the book fair that local artist and print shop manager Christopher Fritton founded to showcase them is anything but. Every year, as the small press movement grows and vendors seek spots for Fritton’s annual Small Press Book Fair, he is surprised at the speed with which the space runs out. And this year, to no one’s surprise, the record has been shattered again for the sixth annual event.
The fair runs from noon to 6 p.m. today (March 24) in the Karpeles Manuscript Library Museum (453 Porter Ave.) and features tables from well over 100 individual artists and presses from across the region. Participants include local outfits like BlazeVOX, the University at Buffalo’s Poetry Collection and Sugar City and farther-flung organizations and artists, including Houston-based Night Owls Poster Shop, Toronto-based Broken Pencil magazine and Philadelphia’s Little Beast Press, among scads of others.
As in past years, the schedule includes a series of workshops on letterpress, screen-printing and other topics today. It’s also complemented by a post-fair party featuring music by Jack Toft, Energy Club, Damian, UVB-76 and others at the Vault (702 Main St.) at 9 tonight.
Admission to the fair is free; find more info at www.buffalosmallpress.org.
-- Colin Dabkowski
March 20, 2012 - 10:43 AM
Give for Greatness Executive Director Megan Callahan speaks in June, 2011 in the Albright-Knox Art Gallery. Photo by Charles Lewis / The Buffalo News.
Give for Greatness, the fundraising and arts advocacy organization launched last year during the Erie County cultural funding crisis, is hosting its first Students for the Arts festival this afternoon in Kleinhans Music Hall.
The event, meant to highlight the organization's incipient mentorship program and to spread the word about its 2012 fundraising campaign, features work by G4G mentors Jennifer Fitzery, Cassondra Argeros, Patrick Moltane, Jill Greenberg, Jim Bush, Sarah Haykel and Marcus Wise and many local students. Representatives from 18 local cultural groups will also be on hand so local sutdents can learn more about the educational opportunities they offer.
Visit G4G's website for more info.
January 4, 2012 - 12:07 PM
Jeff Miers and I are back from vacation and will be ready and willing to chat on camera today at 1 p.m. Right off the top of my head, I can think of a lot of subjects that beckon: our best of 2011 lists, the current brawl between Time Warner Cable and the MSG network and what it means to Sabres viewers, all manner of things.
We'll be happy to hear what you have to say about all of it 1 p.m.
So join us if you want to.
NOTE: The entire video must load before playback, so please be patient.
January 3, 2012 - 2:19 PM
Last week, the Buffalo and Erie County Public Library released its annual list of the top-read books of the year. Here's what Erie County's been reading lately:
Adult Fiction: "The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo" by Stieg Larsson
New Adult Fiction: "The Confession" by John Grisham
New (21-day) Adult Fiction: "Sing You Home" by Jodi Picoult
Graphic Novel: "Grim Hunt (The Amazing Spider-Man)" by Joe Kelly, Fred Van Lente and others
Adult Non-Fiction: Without a Word: "How a Boy’s Unspoken Love Changed Everything" by Jill Kelly
Adult Paperback: Eat This, Not That! 2011: "The No-Diet Weight Loss Solution" by David Zinczenko
Children’s: "Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Ugly Truth" by Jeff Kinney and Princess Bedtime Stories (Disney Princess) (no specific author)
Children’s Non-Fiction: "The Wimpy Kid Movie Diary" by Jeff Kinney
Children’s Paperback: "The Sea of Monsters" by Rick Riordan
Fiction: "The Help" by Kathryn Stockett
Non-Fiction: "Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience and Redemption" by Laura Hillenbrand