Weekend arts picks: Feb, 27-March 1

Witness: Art and Civil Rights in the Sixties.” Through May 10. Blanton Museum of Art, 200 E. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. www.blantonmuseum.org

 

“Witness” comes to Austin courtesy of New York’s Brooklyn Museum of Art, where it debuted last year pegged to the 50th anniversary of the Civil Rights Act. The exhibit features a wide range of artists whose aesthetic output addressed or documented the struggle for civil rights, and includes paintings and sculpture as well as conceptual works, documentary photography and video. Expressive, sometimes contradictory, brimming with a swirl of strong sentiments,”Witness” resonates with an urgency that’s unmistakable, even though most everything included is decades old.

 

Philip Guston, 'City Limits,' 1969, “Witness: Art and Civil Rights in the Sixties”
Philip Guston, ‘City Limits,’ 1969, “Witness: Art and Civil Rights in the Sixties”

“The Christians.” 8 p.m. Thursdays-Saturdays through March 28. Hyde Park Theatre, 511 W. 43rd St. $20-$24.  www.hydeparktheatre.org

Staged like a stylized church service, Lucas Hnath’s critically lauded play “The Christians” probes the nature of belief with comedy and intellectual depth in his gospel-laced story of a congregation faced with a divisive revelation. Stars Austin favorites Katherine Catmull, Joey Hood and Ken Webster.

 

“Simple Sundries.”  8 p.m. Thursdays-Saturdays, 6 p.m. Thursdays through March 14. Salvage Vanguard Theater, 2803 Manor Road. $15-$20. www.glasshalffulltheatre.org

Puppeteer and always adventurous theater-maker Caroline Reck presents her newest creation: A nearly wordless piece of theatrical storytelling, “Simple Sundries” finds the natural world and urban realities clashing as an Austin woman attempts to establish an extravagant sundries shop in re-purposed bungalow only to be thwarted by a nesting bird.

 

 

The Return of Draw Egan” film screening with live score   the-return-of-draw-egan6 p.m. Sunday and March 8. $12. The North Door, 502 Brushy St. www.facebook.com/events/1545314332415390

After selling out the North Door in November with “Yakona,” Okkervil River keyboardist Justin Sherburn and his group Montopolis are back again with a new show, “The Return of Draw Egan: An Ennio Morricone Tribute.”The silent western film has been rewritten Mystery Science Theater-style, replacing the old dialogue cards with an updated version that is gut-bustingly hilarious. Sherburn’s rock ‘n’ roll chamber orchestra will accompany the film, playing excerpts from Ennio Morricone’s classic spaghetti western soundtracks.

 

Author: Jeanne Claire van Ryzin

Jeanne Claire van Ryzin is the arts critic for the Austin American-Statesman. She writes about visual art, theater, dance, music, performance, public art, architecture and just about any combination thereof.

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