Hotseat: Joshua P. Howe, Behind the Curve

Analyzing the environmental movement’s game tape.

Books Joshua P. Howe says he tries to approach the problems of climate change like a football coach. “I think about a guy like Pete Carroll,” says Howe, a professor of environmental studies and hi ... More

Dec 17, 2014 12:01 am by JAMES HELMSWORTH

Book Review: Brian Yaeger, Oregon Breweries

Yaeger’s shot.

Books You can write only so many guidebooks to Stonehenge or Machu Picchu, which have remained unchanged for centuries if not millennia, surviving societal collapse and U.S.-backed military coups. A ... More

Dec 10, 2014 12:01 am by JAMES HELMSWORTH

Peyton Marshall, Goodhouse

He’s a Good, uh, house. Mighty, mighty, just lettin’ it all hang out...

Books At first glance, Portland author Peyton Marshall’s Goodhouse (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 336 pages, $26) might seem a little familiar. Much like the Colbert-boosted California, by Edan Lepucki, ... More

Dec 3, 2014 12:01 am by JAMES HELMSWORTH

Richard Ford, Let Me Be Frank With You

Hell and high wind.

Books Perhaps it’s inevitable that any attempt at the Great American Novel written today would end in ruins. Like John Updike’s Rabbit series, Richard Ford’s four Frank Bascombe books have been on ... More

Nov 26, 2014 12:01 am by MATTHEW KORFHAGE

Charles D’Ambrosio, Loitering

Apocalypse redux.

Books Orphans was orphaned from the start—a prescient name, perhaps. The 2005 essay collection from renowned Portland fiction writer Charles D'Ambrosio was known to few and found by far fewer, a limited ... More

Nov 19, 2014 12:01 am by MATTHEW KORFHAGE

Bob Odenkirk, A Load of Hooey

Toilet-tank lit.

Books Bob Odenkirk’s A Load of Hooey (McSweeney’s, 112 pages, $20) begins with a warning from one of its many satirical characters, a charm-school marm: Don’t read this book while you poop. Wr ... More

Oct 22, 2014 12:01 am by JAMES HELMSWORTH

Faceoff: Girls vs. Portlandia

Another article about Girls. Sorry.

Books We’re going to talk about Girls. It’s not like we want to. But Lena Dunham, creator and star of the HBO series, will be in town Sunday to promote her new book, Not That Kind of Girl (Random Ho ... More

Oct 15, 2014 12:01 am by JAMES HELMSWORTH

Hotseat: John Summers

The Baffler editor says Portlanders should pack their bags.

Books Back in the ’90s, Thomas Frank’s Baffler magazine was a cleansing hatebath lampooning both capitalist doublespeak and squishy liberalism, the rare publication to be both smart and funny amid ... More

Oct 15, 2014 12:01 am by MATTHEW KORFHAGE

Hotseat: Erika T. Wurth

Books Erika T. Wurth is Apache, Chickasaw and Cherokee, but she did not grow up on a reservation. She was raised in a culturally mixed Denver suburb, where she witnessed both the stereotypes and bea ... More

Oct 1, 2014 12:01 am by PENELOPE BASS

John Darnielle, Wolf in White Van

Finish or die trying.

Books When a guy writes a love song that ends, “I hope you die, I hope we both die,” and shoots a music video with blood dripping from a bullet wound in his temple, you know his first novel isn’ ... More

Oct 1, 2014 12:01 am by MATT BUCKINGHAM

Lickety Brit

English comic Matt Kirshen makes himself more than a novelty act.

Comedy and Variety As a Brit living in the U.S., comedian Matt Kirshen knows his accent can be a bit distracting. But sometimes, it slips his mind that he sounds different from everyone else. “It’s like th ... More

Nov 26, 2014 12:01 am by REBECCA JACOBSON

Funniest Five Comics 2014: Number 1, Sean Jordan

Comedy and Variety Sean Jordan is the first to admit he’s somewhat forgettable. A tall, decent-looking white dude, perpetually clad in jeans and a hoodie, he looks like a skater bro who never grew up. Sometimes, ... More

Nov 26, 2014 12:01 am by REBECCA JACOBSON

Funniest Five Comics 2014: Number 2, Curtis Cook

Comedy and Variety Curtis Cook is used to telling jokes to white people. He got his first crack at standup in middle school in Auburn Township, Ohio, a rural exurb east of Cleveland that’s 97 percent white. The se ... More

Nov 26, 2014 12:01 am by JAMES HELMSWORTH

Funniest Five Comics 2014: Number 3, Steven Wilber

Comedy and Variety Three years ago, Steven Wilber was worn down. He was stuck in an uninspiring administrative job at a collection agency and felt short on creative motivation. So he made himself a promise: seven ... More

Nov 26, 2014 12:01 am by RIHANNA WEISS

Funniest Five Comics 2014: Number 4, Christian Ricketts

Comedy and Variety Christian Ricketts’ path to comedy began by getting drunk and sitting in a parked car with a loaded gun. “I thought of joining the Army and suicide,” he says of those days, “two things that ... More

Nov 26, 2014 12:01 am by MATTHEW KORFHAGE

Funniest Five Comics 2014: Number 5, Nariko Ott

Comedy and Variety For Nariko Ott, being funny isn’t a personality trait, it’s a survival instinct. As the second of four children raised by a single mother, he knew from a young age that if he didn’t stand ... More

Nov 26, 2014 12:01 am by MATTHEW SINGER

10 Portland Comedy Showcases Worth Seeing

Comedy and Variety Am I Right, Ladies? Another week, another rape joke, another Twitter firestorm. This monthly showcase, produced by Jen Tam, positions itself as a counterbalance to the misogyny and sexism in the ... More

Nov 26, 2014 12:01 am by WW Staff

Funny On the Internet

Our favorite tweets from Portland comedians.

Comedy and Variety Portland taught me that if you plant a food cart in fertile soil you’ll get a condo building in about a year. —Jason Traeger This guy asked me if I had had sex with a lot of men, and I was like, ... More

Nov 26, 2014 12:01 am by WW Staff

Six Local Podcasts Worth Hearing

Comedy and Variety Levine Large youtube.com/user/levinelargepodcast Sure, Kristine Levine is funny. Everybody knows that. But what you might not know is that her kids are funny, too. In Levine Large, the blue-collar ... More

Nov 26, 2014 12:01 am by WW Staff

No Nonsense

Comedian Kate Berlant on academia, therapy and pope jokes.

Comedy and Variety People trip over themselves trying to describe comedian Kate Berlant. The 27-year-old takes the stage with discursive, high-energy monologues dense with academic jargon. Her digressions about ... More

Oct 15, 2014 12:01 am by REBECCA JACOBSON

Firewall (BodyVox)

A dance company reveals the tricks behind the technology.

Dance If you saw Inception a few years back, chances are you marveled at the film’s spinning, zero-gravity hallway scene. BodyVox didn’t stop at admiration—the 17-year-old dance company decided ... More

Dec 3, 2014 12:01 am by KAITIE TODD

A-Bout (TopShakeDance)

Dancing themselves black and blue.

Dance TopShakeDance is about to hit the dance floor hard. Literally: To explore competition and groupthink, the company’s newest work, A-bout, employs wrestling mats, mixed martial arts-inspired choreog ... More

Nov 12, 2014 12:01 am by KAITIE TODD

Togetherness (Danielle Ross and Stacey Tran)

Uniting the melodramatic and the mundane.

Dance How would you move if you were a Greek god? That’s just one question posed during Togetherness, a new dance piece by choreographer Danielle Ross. In the piece, dancers strike iconic poses of ... More

Nov 5, 2014 12:01 am by KAITIE TODD

All That Glitters

Allie Hankins channels one of the greatest dancers of the 20th Century.

Dance By the time he was 29, legendary Russian ballet dancer Vaslav Nijinsky was calling it quits. Allie Hankins, on the other hand, didn’t start dancing until college. Now 30, the local dancer-ch ... More

Oct 22, 2014 12:01 am by KAITIE TODD

Art in the Dark (A-WOL Dance Collective)

Dangling from the trees and battling the elements.

Dance The wilderness, though beautiful, can also be deadly. Or just annoying. So while an outdoor stage is an alluring prospect for an aerial company accustomed to hanging from ceilings of dusty wareh ... More

Aug 13, 2014 12:01 am by AARON SPENCER

Golden Girl

After 20 years, burlesque legend Tiffany Carter dons the catsuit again.

Dance Back in 1965, a Corvallis native named Teresa Sandford took her first dancing gig. She was underage—only 17—and she’d been booked as a go-go dancer in Anaheim, Calif. She danced twice befo ... More

Jul 16, 2014 12:01 am by AARON SPENCER

The Sprockettes

The glam-punk, all-female minibike troupe turns 10.

Dance Ten years ago, Portland’s bike scene was burgeoning. Zoobombing—speeding down the West Hills on blinged-out minibikes—was a new trend. But a group of lady cyclists felt something was missi ... More

Jun 25, 2014 12:01 am by AARON SPENCER

Puente (Diego Piñón)

Bridging the gap, with shamanism and seaweed.

Dance On an August afternoon in the high desert of central Mexico more than a decade ago, Portland butoh performer Mizu Desierto found herself blindfolded and tied together with 14 other people. Runni ... More

May 7, 2014 12:01 am by AARON SPENCER

The Last Dance

Dance Oregon’s premier ballet company is losing its premier ballerina. Alison Roper, after 18 seasons with Oregon Ballet Theatre, is retiring, performing for the final time this weekend. In this Celebrate ... More

Apr 23, 2014 12:01 am by AARON SPENCER

Dynamic Duet

On and off the dance floor, Portland sisters Kiera Brinkley and Uriah Boyd know when to push one another.

Dance As sisters, Kiera Brinkley and Uriah Boyd know siblings don’t get anywhere by being babied. So even as they look out for each other, they won’t hesitate to make the other do things for herse ... More

Apr 16, 2014 12:01 am by AARON SPENCER

Die Fledermaus (Portland Opera)

Adultery, masked balls and arias soaked in Champagne.

Performance Viennese waltz maestro Johann Strauss II concocted a delightful trifle with Die Fledermaus, his 1874 operetta about a wayward husband and his comeuppance at the hand of a treacherous friend who ... More

Nov 12, 2014 12:01 am by JOHN BEER

Lulu Luscious

A drag queen with hustle, humility and a fierce hair game.

Performance The success of a drag performance set to Britney Spears’ “I’m a Slave 4 U” rests on a few factors. You need a jungle vixen ensemble, a killer lip-synch (just like Britney’s), sexy gyrati ... More

Sep 24, 2014 12:01 am by AARON SPENCER

The Test of Time

Sex and mythical America in week two of the Time-Based Art Festival.

Performance The first week of the Time-Based Art Festival brought mind-boggling sonic manipulation, walrus imitations, doughnut-themed drag queens, aggressive confrontation of gender expectations and lots a ... More

Sep 17, 2014 12:01 am by REBECCA JACOBSON, MATTHEW KORFHAGE, KAITIE TODD

Santa (Liminal Performance Group)

It’s a not-so-wonderful life.

Theater Santa Claus is in rough shape. His suit is smudged with soot. He rings his bell like the world’s most depressed Salvation Army volunteer. Trudging onstage into a stark shaft of light, he wails ... More

Dec 10, 2014 12:01 am by REBECCA JACOBSON

A Cummings Christmas

Liminal Performance Group runs wild with E.E. Cummings’ strange little Yuletide play.

Theater Most of us know E.E. Cummings for his poetry. But in addition to conducting wacky typographical experiments, Cummings was also a playwright. Not a terribly prolific one: He wrote only four pla ... More

Dec 3, 2014 12:01 am by REBECCA JACOBSON

Blithe Spirit

Ghost at the feast.

Theater Death is entirely a laughing matter. At least, that’s the case in Artists Rep’s production of Blithe Spirit, directed by Christopher Liam Moore. Noël Coward’s 1941 comedy finds well-to-do ... More

Dec 3, 2014 12:01 am by JAMES HELMSWORTH

The 3rd Floor’s War on Christmas

Losing battle.

Theater For a few moments after the introductory dance barrage, right when one of Portland’s oldest comedy troupes settles down for a looooong winter’s slapstick, The 3rd Floor’s War on Christmas feel ... More

Nov 26, 2014 12:01 am by JAY HORTON

As You Like It (Post5 Theatre)

A converted church in Sellwood: the perfect home for Shakespeare.

Theater You don’t have to give Macbeth a lightsaber, turn Rosencrantz and Guildenstern into Mafiosos or set Twelfth Night at an office party in Tigard to reimagine Shakespeare. Making the Bard accessi ... More

Nov 19, 2014 12:01 am by JAMES HELMSWORTH

True West

A rugged man is hard to find.

Theater There’s no Wild West anymore. So says Austin (Nick Ferrucci) to his brother Lee (Ben Newman) in True West, the final production in Profile Theatre’s season of Sam Shepard. The pair is cooped ... More

Nov 12, 2014 12:01 am by JAMES HELMSWORTH

Worst. Show. Ever.

The most painful shows in Portland theater history.

Theater There’s something singularly awful about sitting through a bad theater production—the eye contact, the vicarious embarrassment, the creeping sense of physical pain, the certainty that you wi ... More

Nov 5, 2014 12:01 am by WW Staff

The Poe Must Go On

Masque of the Red Death does more than justice to the master of the macabre.

Theater Entering the brightly lit studio space, we’re handed delicate white party masks. Some are decorated with spiky branches, others with snakelike scales. Tinkly music plays. Some people waltz and ... More

Oct 29, 2014 12:01 am by REBECCA JACOBSON

Bob: A Life in Five Acts (Theatre Vertigo)

He’s the king of the White Castle.

Theater Everybody’s waiting for their big break. But not everybody is as honest about it as Bob. Born and abandoned in a restroom stall of a White Castle in Louisville, Ky., Bob (Nathan Crosby) insists ... More

Oct 22, 2014 12:01 am by JAMES HELMSWORTH

The Typographer’s Dream: Theater Review

Labor relations.

Theater You are where you work, we’re told. Lawyers are argumentative assholes, and nurses are either cold or caring. It’s a trope common in fiction since Dickens. In The Typographer’s Dream, writ ... More

Oct 15, 2014 12:01 am by MATTHEW KORFHAGE

Art Review: Francine Fleischer, Swim

Off the beach, into the cenote.

Visual Arts The landscape of Mexico, wrote D.H. Lawrence in The Plumed Serpent, “seems to emit a deep purring sound, too deep for the ear to hear, and yet audible on the blood.” Lawrence’s musings hin ... More

Dec 10, 2014 12:01 am by RICHARD SPEER

Gregory Grenon, Truth Is a Lie and Anger Follows

Lust or critique?

Visual Arts The sexually ambiguous relationship between portraitists and their subjects has generated no small measure of purple prose through the centuries. What was going on between Leonardo da Vinci and ... More

Nov 19, 2014 12:01 am by RICHARD SPEER

Carol Yarrow, One Mahogany Left Standing

Seven years of life in a Mayan village.

Visual Arts From 1995 through 2002, photographer Carol Yarrow spent long stretches of time in Chiapas, Mexico, living among Lacandon Mayan villagers in a town called Nahá. There, deep within mahogany fores ... More

Oct 8, 2014 12:01 am by RICHARD SPEER

Lisa Radon, Infinity Increaser at TBA

In the white room…

Visual Arts Typically we think of poetry as a collection of words—as concrete experience made abstract. But in her installation Infinity Increaser, writer-artist Lisa Radon depicts poetry the opposite way�� ... More

Sep 17, 2014 12:01 am by RICHARD SPEER

Pander Brothers, Fabrication/Corrosion

They call Los Angeles the City of Angels…

Visual Arts When Portland art stars defect to Los Angeles (Miranda July, anyone?), it kinda smarts. Which is one reason it’s so refreshing that brothers Jacob and Arnold Pander still call Stumptown home, ev ... More

Aug 13, 2014 12:01 am by RICHARD SPEER

Jeffrey Butters, The Reactions

Gold on the ceiling...

Visual Arts In centuries past, artists and jewelers were often one and the same. The lapis-inlaid funerary mask of Tutankhamun, dazzling adornments of Native Americans, and the masterpieces of Renaissance g ... More

Jul 16, 2014 12:01 am by RICHARD SPEER

Dream With Your Eyes Open, Gregg Renfrow

A church without pews.

Visual Arts You could build a new religion around Gregg Renfrow’s artwork. His abstract compositions—polymer and pigment poured onto cast-acrylic panels—are so luminous and elemental, they inspire a r ... More

Jun 11, 2014 12:01 am by RICHARD SPEER

Hannes Wingate, The Burnside Nest

A bird about to be flipped.

Visual Arts Hannes Wingate’s The Burnside Nest, Portland’s newest public artwork, looks like a bird’s nest on steroids. The spherical sculpture is built to resemble an oversized bird’s nest. Way ove ... More

May 28, 2014 12:01 am by RICHARD SPEER

Hayley Barker, Apparition Hill

Beautification, all I ever wanted.

Visual Arts In southern Herzegovina, there’s a village called Medjugorje where religious pilgrims flock. Since 1981, people have claimed to see the Virgin Mary there, on top of Mount Podbrdo (“Apparitio ... More

May 7, 2014 12:01 am by RICHARD SPEER

Anonymous Women, Eva Lake

Independent women, part 3.

Visual Arts Don’t you just love it when poetic men insist that women are stand-ins for something other than, well, women? Shakespeare famously compared his lady love to a summer’s day, while Lord Byron ... More

Apr 16, 2014 12:01 am by RICHARD SPEER
 

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