Not too many artists can claim multiple degrees from MIT and a career designing integrated circuits, but Jim Campbell isn't just another painter. As one of the leading electronic artists, Campbell has been filling galleries with multimedia spectacles for the past 15 years, even landing in heavyweight venues like the Whitney in New York and SFMOMA. Whether he's collapsing all the frames of Psycho into a single image or arranging hundreds of flashing LEDs into Chuck Close-style portraits, his tech chops allow him to execute visions others could only imagine. The exhibition "Jim Campbell: New Work" includes Library, an LED-based "photogravure" that incorporates moving and still imagery of the New York Public Library, and the stunning Political Protest NY 2004, consisting of prints of digitally superimposed photos from the street scene at the Republican Convention, encased in light boxes, which results in a wild swirl of bodies, protest signs, and buildings, recalling Italian futurism but with much better clarity. You haven't seen anything like it: After all, Campbell wrote the underlying software. "New Work" continues through March 5 at the Hosfelt Gallery, 430 Clementina (at Fifth Street), S.F. Admission is free; call 495-5454 or visit www.hosfeltgallery.com.
-- Michael Leaverton
Mr. and Ms. Hellbent-for-Leather
The Castro Lions are a rebellious bunch of rule-breakers. A group of feisty GLBT men and women have taken over the local chapter of this normally rather conservative fraternal organization, and now use that community to raise money for progressive nonprofits. Hot! This weekend, the Lions want you at the annual Mr. and Ms. Heart Throb event. Wear a snug outfit and you might win one of the club's coveted patches to sew on your vest -- did we mention this is a leather gathering?
Here's how it works: Pay for beer and you get a sticker. Take that sticker and stick it on the person who makes your, uh, heart throb the most. At some point, it becomes clear who the winners are. Beat that, Podunk Lions. The ogling begins at 3 p.m. at the Eagle Tavern, 398 12th St. (at Harrison), S.F. Beer and a sticker is $8; visit www.sfeagle.com.
-- Hiya Swanhuyser
Not So Funny
Resolutely unmushy reading
It's too bad that the synopsis of Dave King's novel The Ha-Ha makes it sound both maudlin and boring. While it's true that the main character, a Vietnam vet who has been unable to speak for more than 30 years because of a head injury, takes in his ex-girlfriend's 9-year-old son while she's in a drug rehab program, the book is not a schmaltz wave. King's spare, lyrical language is unsentimental, his characters flawed and appealing, and his story gripping. He reads from The Ha-Haat 7 p.m. at A Clean Well-Lighted Place for Books, 601 Van Ness (at Golden Gate), S.F. Admission is free; call 441-6670 or visit www.bookstore.com.
-- Joyce Slaton
Lap It Up
Just when we thought we'd heard every idea for celebrating Valentine's Day, along comes the "Couples Lapdancing Class." Here, former exotic dancer Catherine Rose and her partner, Andrew, show students how to slither around like the pros, at 5:30 p.m. at the Center for Healing and Expression, 1739 O'Farrell (at Fillmore), S.F. Admission is $65-70 per person; call (510) 465-7607 or visit www.learneroticdance.com.
-- Hiya Swanhuyser