Trashed

Artists' treasures

ONGOING 7/21-8/20

Fast food-type art really isn't so bad, especially for those of us whose attention spans preclude lengthy sprees around the esoterica of gallery walls. And it's nice to have something outrageous scream out at you. Sculptor David Hevel's It's Official ... Britney's Pregnant! is one of the brash, Baroque pieces in "Beautiful Debris," an exhibition that floridly covers the craft-making theatrics of three different artists. Hevel's piece -- a 6-foot-tall deer squirting plastic milk from multiple breasts and gamboling through a verdant plot of flowers, ribbon, and rhinestones -- combines the kitschy sang-froid of Takashi Murakami's inflatable dolls with the uncultivated aesthetics of a 9-year-old girl.

Cristina Lei Rodriguez's pieces are prettified doodads of liquid plastic, foam, and consumer objects that resemble foliage in sexy poses, while Tara Giannini glams it up with her mixed-media paintings, which suggestively project peacock feathers, glass beads, and voluptuous layers of paint. Call it what you will, but it's definitely a lesson in good old excess and pop fun. The opening reception for "Beautiful Debris" starts at 5:30 p.m. on Thursday (and the exhibit continues through Aug. 20) at the Heather Marx Gallery, 77 Geary (at Grant), Second Floor, S.F. Admission is free; call 627-9111 or visit www.heathermarxgallery.com.
-- Nirmala Nataraj

Dying for Metal?

Don't hate -- or kill -- us for our musical tastes

SAT 7/23

Jonathan Richman, quirky bard beloved by so very many fey and sullen music fans, headlines "West Memphis Three World Awareness Day." It's appropriate that he and fellow dodgy megatalent Mark Kozelek volunteer their services for this worthy cause -- in case you've been under a rock, the WM3 were a trio of Metallica-T-shirt-wearing high-schoolers convicted (wrongly, many feel) of the vicious murders of three young boys.

Lacking evidence, motive, or any such legal claptrap, the prosecution pointed out that the boys could have offed the children in a satanic ritual, offering the aforementioned T-shirts as proof. Sounds crazy, right? But one of the accused is on death row, and doesn't have a lot of hope to get off it. About a million other bands also step up, starting at 7:30 p.m. at the Swedish American Hall, 2174 Market (at Sanchez), S.F. Admission is $12; call 861-5016 or visit www.cafedunord.com.
-- Hiya Swanhuyser

Reynolds Raps

Talk about star power

FRI 7/22

You know that Discovery Channel contest called "The Greatest American"? Well, we can think of plenty of reasons to nominate Debbie Reynolds. Singin' in the Rain alone should get her on the roster, but that was just the first big stop in a career almost too stellar to contemplate.

"The Unsinkable Debbie Reynolds" is a celebration of this great American, and Reynolds is in attendance, interviewed by fellow diva Carol Lynley, with a tribute performance by Connie Champagne and many satisfyingly fabulous clips along with a screening of a new print of The Unsinkable Molly Brown at 8 p.m. at the Castro Theatre, 429 Castro (near Market), S.F. Admission is $35; call 863-0611 or visit www.castrotheatresf.com.
-- Hiya Swanhuyser

Toysploitation

FRI 7/22

The toy-arts revolution (yes, there is one) finally has its rag: Hi Fructose Magazine, co-founded by Annie Owens and Attaboy, is devoted to fantastical artists' toys and assorted culture jammers. Meet the contributors and listen to Kitten on the Keys at the release partystarting at 8 p.m. at Varnish Fine Art, 77 Natoma (at Second Street), S.F. Admission is free; call 222-6131 or visit www.hifructose.com.
-- Michael Leaverton

 
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