When the ancient Polynesians invented surfing, they often used a paddle to help them navigate. Fast-forward a few millennia, and Stand-Up Paddleboarding, or SUP, finds itself trendy again. Part of its increasing popularity is that standing upright allows surfers to spot waves more easily and thus catch more of them, multiplying the fun factor. Paddling back to the wave becomes less of a strain as well. The ability to cruise along on flat inland water, surveying the sights, is another advantage. Finally, its a good core workout. If youre sold on the idea, schedule an intro SUP lesson, free with board and paddle rental, and you may find yourself riding the waves like a Polynesian king.More
Llewelynn Fletcher's immersive sculptures beguile the senses. Sasha Petrenko's site-specific installations and performances strive to capture a dynamic, living planet. Austin Thomas hides heady themes in seemingly austere drawings, photos, and sculptures. She also cobbles together site-specific social spaces which she calls "perches," but which are obviously kick-ass treehouses, minus the trees. These and other artists are contributing super-sized works for "Just Passing Through: Sculptures and Installations" at the University of San Francisco's Rooftop Sculpture Terrace. "Just Passing Through" promises to challenge notions about how we inhabit or pass through space, or at least provide a lovely respite in a busy city.
"Just Passing Through: Sculptures and Installations" is open to the public 9 a.m.-5 p.m. and runs through Dec. 11 at Kalmanovitz Hall, University of San Francisco, 2130 Fulton St., S.F. Free; 422-5178 or usfca.edu. More
Mondays-Fridays, 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Continues through Dec. 11
Weird little marvels are the works of Ron Nagle, the ceramicist whose work has helped prove that a sculptor who works in clay can be a serious presence in the art world. Nagle has been making vessels and intimate-sized sculptures since the 1960s, when he was associated with the norm-busting California ceramics movement and studied with one of its prime forces, fellow abstract-expressionist Peter Voulkos. A species of one, Nagle has continued to create compelling and painstakingly crafted pieces that are elegant yet unsettling. His sculptures contain puckered surfaces, unusual textural juxtapositions, amorphous shapes, and a surreal look. His cups, some of which have been overglazed and repeatedly fired, appear to have come from a tea party on Mars. With diverse influeneces, including ceramicist Ken Price, abstractionist Cy Twombly, still-life painter Giorgio Morandi, and California cool-car culture, Nagle is a distinctive artist and a San Francisco spirit. To learn more, come hear his lecture at the San Francisco Art Institute — his first appearance there since his 1978 Adaline Kent Award exhibition.More
Tonight, Bucky Sinister gets onstage at Roommates from Hell and tells stories about his crappy roommates. Think about that: The punk-rock poet and comedian, who has books called All Blacked Out and Nowhere to Go and Get Up: A 12-Step Guide to Recovery for Misfits, Freaks, and Weirdos, talks about how roomies tortured him, not the other way around. Because we're sure Sinister was the subject of a few house meetings himself; he's probably done things to a chore wheel or a housemate's signed tub of yogurt that you shouldn't repeat, much less think about. Think Iggy Pop with his jar of peanut butter. But here's the good part: Imagine how crazy those roommates must have been, and consequently how great Sinister's stories must be, if Sinister was on the side of the righteous. Same goes with Lynn Breedlove, the founder of the dyke-punk band Tribe 8. In her heyday, she probably cut people a lot of slack; you probably had to do a lot more than leave the house with the shower running to piss her off. We're guessing you had to be completely crazy: If you're a nuisance to punks, you're a drop-dead calamity to regular folk. Also on the bill are Sherilyn Connelly, Attaboy, Beth Lisick, and many others, none of whom have walked the line perfectly over the years. Everyone has crappy-roommate stories, of course, but the best come from those gutsy enough to split rent with crazy people.
Fridays, Saturdays, 8 p.m. Starts: Sept. 17. Continues through Sept. 25, 2010