Arts & Entertainment

On the Walls

The visual arts scene offers highlights this fall too. EXPANDED FOR THE WEB

By Victor Zorn

Last month, D.L. Groover previewed high points in the performing arts for the fall season [“Some Like Art Hot,” September 2007 OutSmart]. This month, we look to the visual arts. Here are some items of particular queer interest:

The David Whitney Bequest
Through October 28
The Menil Collection

The current Whitney Bequest exhibition at The Menil Collection includes this 1980 Andy Warhol portrait of art scholar and collector David Whitney.

At the heart of this exhibition is the story of a gay couple’s life together. Whitney, who was a curator, writer, art collector, and former trustee of both the Menil and the Centre Pompidou in Paris, was the longtime partner of architect Philip Johnson. Upon his death in 2005, Whitney willed part of his art collection to the Houston museum, which celebrates its 20 th anniversary this year. At the heart of the exhibition are 17 drawings by the great, and gay, American artist Jasper Johns.
The Menil Collection
To 25!
Through October 27
DiverseWorks Art Space

 Given its frequent GLBT-positive offerings and procession of gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender artists (not to mention its staff), DiverseWorks may be the queerest art spot in town. This year, the space just north of downtown turns 25, which makes some of us feel old. To commemorate the event, artists Patricia Hernandez and Sasha Dela curated this show from a quarter-century of archived material.

DiverseWorks Art Space

Movies Houstonians Love
October 29
The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston

Singin’ in the Rain screens at the Museum of Fine Arts.

As part of its Movies Houstonians Love series, the recently retired prima ballerina Lauren Anderson has selected Singin’ in the Rain, perhaps the most enjoyable screen musical. The 1952 Stanley Donen classic stars Gene Kelly, Debbie Reynolds, Donald O’Connor, and Jean Hagen as movie folk making the rocky transition from silents to talkies. Though there is no explicitly gay content, it’s surely one of the gayest movies ever made. And if you aren’t already a lesbian, the awesome sight of Cyd Charisse’s impossibly long, shapely legs just might turn you.
The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston
713/639-7531 (film info)

Mary Heilmann: To Be Someone
November 3-January 6
Contemporary Arts Museum

Heilmann, the New York-based painter who is receiving her first retrospective, is one of the few prominent female abstract artists of her generation. In an intriguing side note, Heilmann is also collaborating with her friend John Waters, the iconoclastic gay filmmaker (Hairspray, Pink Flamingos), on commissioned artwork for the prestigious New York Armory Show in 2008.
Contemporary Arts Museum

Yuletide Candlelight Open House
November 23 and 30, December 7
Bayou Bend Collection and Gardens

The Diana Garden is a feature of Yuletide festivities at Bayou Bend.

This year marks the 50 th anniversary of philanthropist Ima Hogg’s gift of her extraordinary collection of American decorative arts to the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. Every year for Yule, the rooms in her great John Staub house are dressed in period seasonal style, and on select nights both the house and manicured grounds on the banks of Buffalo Bayou are illuminated by candlelight. It’s an enchanting holiday sight and one that’s very, very gay.
Bayou Bend Collection and Gardens

Through the Eye of the Needle: Fabric Art of Esther Nisenthal Krinitz
Through February 10
Holocaust Museum Houston

At age 50, Holocaust survivor Esther Nisenthal Krinitz began creating fabric panels depicting her experiences in Poland during the years of Nazi occupation. After the war, Krinitz, who trained as a dressmaker, immigrated to the United States with her husband and their daughter. She died in 2001 at age 74. Holocaust Museum Houston has a history of support for the GLBT community. On November 17, the museum will once again host the local observances for Transgender Day of Remembrance, organized by the Houston Transgender Unity Committee.
Holocaust Museum Houston


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