David Guterson[Fiction] Local writer David Guterson made waves last year when his commencement speech at Roosevelt High School failed to paint a sunny view of the future, and instead suggested our lives pass in a “profoundly confused way…and then they end.” See if he’s still spreading tough love when he reads from new work written on the theme “Family Ties.” 3/14. 7:30 p.m. $15–$25 Richard Hugo House, 1634 11th Ave.; 206.322.7030; hugohouse.orgGeorge Saunders
Like the very best rock ’n’ rollers, Seattle musician Ayron Jones seems just slightly unhinged when he performs live—as if at any moment the music might carry him to a place even he didn’t know he was heading. With a voice that swerves between soulful runs and growly shouts, and an ability to seriously wail on the guitar, the 27-year-old has been blowing away local audiences of late, especially since the October release of his debut album, Dream.
Siddhartha’s quest for enlightenment is the inspiration for Songs of the Wanderers, a masterwork by Taiwanese choreographer Lin Hwai-min. Performed by his own Cloud Gate Dance Theatre of Taiwan, this blend of contemporary and traditional dance features a stunning set covered in 3 and a half tons of golden rice. 3/6–3/8. Times and prices vary. Meany Hall, U.W.
[Painting]Born in Astoria, Oregon, and based in northern California, painter Eric Zener is a master of the photorealist style, creating stunningly vibrant images, often of people underwater (pictured above) or in other personal sanctuaries. 5/1–5/30. Times vary. Free. Foster White Gallery, 220 Third Ave. S; 206.622.2833; fosterwhite.com
Ding-dong, spring calling! Time to crawl out of hibernation, take a deep breath and plunge into Seattle’s performance, literary and visual arts. Out of town artists shower us with gifts this season (a giant white head, a dance floor covered with 3 and a half tons of golden rice, a parable of apartheid), and hometown artists work plenty of their own miracles (wood turned to clay, blues-grunge rock from the Central District, a Liz Taylor classic gone local). Brace yourself: it’s full spring ahead!
Kristen Russell; additional research by Talia Gottlieb
In this era of email, ZIP codes may seem passé, gone the way of scented stationery, a postal relic destined for irrelevance (Amazon Sunday delivery notwithstanding). But in neighborhood-loving Seattle, a survey of ZIP codes tells an illuminating story of togetherness. In some city ZIPs, like-minded neighborhoods abut each other like peas in a pod; in others, it’s more like whirled peas, with distinctly disparate nabes blended together more or less peacefully. And so, we wonder, in this data-driven world, are your digits your destiny?
Must Rock OutParty with Local Band TacocatFriday (2/14, 9 p.m.) — Brandishing a riot-grrrls-meet-The-Go-Go’s sound, Tacocat charms fans with funny songs about waiting for the No. 8 Metro bus, fear of toxic shock syndrome and a psychic cat that predicts nursing-home deaths. The band celebrates the release of its second full-length record, NVM (as in “never mind”), at Chop Suey on Friday night.
If you’re heading to Capitol Hill any time of the day or night—maybe to eat at one of the too-many-to-count restaurants in this vibrant neighborhood—you might think twice about driving your car. Parking is famously difficult to find, and it gets pricey fast. The scarcity and expense of parking in the neighborhood were two reasons that Colin Petkus, 24, decided to try the car-free lifestyle. For about a year, the recent college grad commuted from his Capitol Hill apartment to his job at a Redmond social service agency—but not with his car.
Solid Ground and Seattle Food Committee have teamed up with local mom and designer Jennifer Porter for Food Driving Box to help with hunger and food insecurity in the Seattle Area.
February is a historically low month for food donations, says Porter, who has worked to stock 27 Seattle food banks with free cardboard boxes to keep in your trunk to fill with donations. They’re convenient and reusable and since they’re in your trunk, always top of mind.
Owners of Wallingford’s longstanding “poem emporium,” Open Books (openpoetrybooks.com), romantic and business partners J.W. Marshall and Christine Deavel are also acclaimed poets. This month they’ll read together for Seattle Arts & Lectures (3/19, 7:30 p.m.; lectures.org).LOCATION: A Muddy Cup in Wallingford, on a mild January dayDRINKS: John, a latte (and cheese Danish); Christine, tea (and bran muffin)
When I tell people I live in Madison Park, I frequently have the urge to qualify it by saying something like, “I’m doing my best to bring down the demographics.” There’s no doubt about it, I live in a part of town that is white, rich and a shade more conservative than Seattle political norms. This is a neighborhood where George W. Bush bumper stickers remain undefaced and Broadmoor, its gated residential community, is the only precinct in the city that went for Mitt Romney.
Last October, the morning rituals of stay-at-home parents, telecommuters, taxi drivers, students and everyone who regularly relied on KUOW-FM 94.9 to anchor the day were disrupted. The extended caller-driven confabs on gardening and home maintenance were gone. No more long-form, meandering conversations with public officials or winding interviews with poets, authors, artists and historians. No more tangents from 9 to 11 a.m. Instead, two national programs, The Takeaway and Here & Now, started filling the midmorning window with crisp, modular news of the world.
Remembered for his declared intent to “assassinate” established painting methods—and recognized by the playful, primary-colored paintings that resulted—influential Barcelona-born artist Joan Miró believed he could be truly radical by way of sculpture. The Picasso contemporary and compatriot began experimenting with the medium in 1941. “It is in sculpture that I will create a truly phantasmagoric world of living monsters,” he said. Monstrous or mischievous?
Brandishing a riot-grrrls-meet-The-Go-Go’s sound, Tacocat charms fans with funny songs about waiting for the No. 8 Metro bus, fear of toxic shock syndrome and a psychic cat that predicts nursing-home deaths. Band members Emily Nokes, Lelah Maupin, Bree McKenna and Eric Randall—who have described their vibe as “feminist sci-fi” and “equal parts Kurt and Courtney”—have been cranking out clever lyrics and infectious pop punk tunes since 2007. This month (2/25), Tacocat releases its second full-length record, NVM (as in “never mind”), on local label Hardly Art.