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Defender Picks



March 28th

Book Reading: Elizabeth Pearce

Garden District Book Shop, 6PM

From her new book "Drink Dat New Orleans: A Guide to the Best Cocktail Bars, Dives, & Speakeasies"


Spring Publishing Camp

Tubby & Coo's Mid-City Book Shop, 7PM

Book publishing workshop


Gabby Douglas

Dillrd University, 7PM

Olympic gymnast talks fame and fitness



The Carver, 7PM

World soul jazz music


Laughter Without Borders

Loyola University, 7PM

Clowns for a cause, to benefit Syrian refugees


Tuesday Night Haircuts

St. Roch Tavern, 8PM

Tonight: beer, haircuts, karaoke


Thinkin' With Lincoln 

Bayou Beer Garden, 8PM

Outdoor trivia


Water Seed

Blue Nile, 9PM

Interstellar future funk


Stanton Moore Trio

Snug Harbor, 10PM

Galactic drummer’s side project - also at 8PM


March 29th

Response: Artists in the Park

Botanical Garden, 10AM

Art exhibit and sale en plein air


Studio Opening Party

Alex Beard Studio, 5PM

Drinks, food, painting to celebrate the artist's studio opening


Sippin' in the Courtyard

Maison Dupuy Hotel, 5PM

Fancy foods, music by jazz great Tim Laughlin, and event raffle


Work Hard, Play Hard

Benachi House & Gardens, 6PM

Southern Rep's fundraising dinner and party 


Lecture: Patrick Smith

New Canal Lighthouse, 6PM

Coastal scientist discusses his work


Pelicans vs. Dallas Mavericks

Smoothie King Center, 7PM

The Birds and the Mavs go head to head


Drag Bingo

Allways Lounge, 7PM

Last game planned in the Allways's popular performance & game night


They Blinded Me With Science: A Bartender Science Fair

2314 Iberville St., 7:30PM

Cocktails for a cause


Brian Wilson 

Saenger Theatre, 8PM

The Beach Boy presents "Pet Sounds" 


Movie Screening: Napoleon Dynamite

Catahoula Hotel, 8PM

Free drinks if you can do his dance. Vote for Pedro!


Blood Jet Poetry Series

BJs in the Bywater, 8PM

Poetry with Clare Welsh and Todd Cirillo


Horror Shorts

Bar Redux, 9PM

NOLA's Horror Films Fest screens shorts


A Boogie Wit Da Hoodie

Howlin Wolf, 10PM

Bronx hip hop comes south



March 30th

Aerials in the Atrium

Bywater Art Lofts, 6PM

Live art in the air


Ogden After Hours

Ogden Museum, 6PM

Feat. Mia Borders


Pete Fountain: A Life Half-Fast

New Orleans Jazz Museum, 6PM

Exhibit opening on the late Pete Fountain


Big Freedia Opening Night Mixer

Mardi Gras Museum of Costumes and Culture, 6PM

Unveiling of Big Freedia's 2018 Krew du Viewux costume


An Edible Evening

Langston Hughes Academy, 7PM

8th annual dinner party in the Dreamkeeper Garden


RAW Artists Present: CUSP

The Republlic, 7PM

Immersive pop-up gallery, boutique, and stage show


Electric Swandive, Hey Thanks, Something More, Chris Schwartz

Euphorbia Kava Bar, 7PM

DIY rock, pop, punk show


The Avett Brothers

Saenger Theatre, 7:30PM

Americana folk-rock


Stand-Up NOLA

Joy Theater, 8PM

Comedy cabaret


Stooges Brass Band

The Carver, 9PM

NOLA brass all-stars


Wolves and Wolves and Wolves and Wolves

Gasa Gasa, 9PM

Feat. Burn Like Fire and I'm Fine in support


Fluffing the Ego

Allways Lounge, 10:30PM

Feat. Creep Cuts and Rory Danger & the Danger Dangers


Fast Times Dance Party

One Eyed Jacks, 10:30PM

80s dance party


30 Americans

Review: CAC Showcases Diverse Works from 30 Black Artists

“30 Americans” opened at the Contemporary Arts Center on February 8th, just one week into Black History Month.  A show organized by the Rubell Family Collection of Miami, “30 Americans” is described as focusing “on issues of racial, sexual, and historical identity in contemporary culture.”


The show is a powerhouse, featuring art greats like David Hammons and Glenn Ligon, Lorna Simpson, Kara Walker and Carrie Mae Weems among the thirty.  While their decades and generations differ, their subject matter and sexual orientation, medium and canvas sizes find little common ground; their shared ancestry is what draws the show together.


I considered myself a big Mickalene Thomas fan before “30 Americans.”  Her depictions of women are glamorous and gorgeous; they wear bright, beautiful clothes, and are often posed within impeccably decorated settings. When I saw “Baby I am Ready Now” and her “Portraits of Quanikah” series – thankfully hung in the CAC’s vivacious Emerge gallery – I was blown away by the volume and luxurious multi-materiality of Mickalene Thomas like never before.  Their glitz added so much to the paintings’ presence.  Thomas works frequently with rhinestones and glitter to accentuate the hair, clothing, cosmetics and jewelry of the women in her paintings.  She also applies them like in “Quanikah” to toy with the idea of costumery and artifice, depicting one woman in wildly varying looks.  Without the context of these touches of pizazz, Thomas’s intent gets lost in translation onto the printed and digital page.  The opportunity to appreciate her work fully and in person is an absolute gift of the exhibition.  Now I am an even bigger fan of Mickalene Thomas.


Somewhat similarly, Hank Willis Thomas’ three solo works in the show take a hard look at materialism and black culture.  Willis Thomas features three solo works in “30 Americans” and two in collaboration with Rashid Johnson.  His iconic black and white photo of a Nike swoosh branded onto a clean-shaven black head, “Branded, Lambda Photographs,” “Basketball and Chain” and the bewildering “Priceless” are all on loan for the exhibit.  Willis Thomas’s imagery is always strong and clean, marked by bold and iconic singular subject matter like one might see in the work of Barbara Kruger or Andy Warhol.  Willis Thomas’ imagery, however, is original.


Other show highlights are Kerry James Marshall’s “Vignette #10,” a large work of acrylic on fiberglass which hangs on the first floor.  Marshall’s work depicts a hazy scene of partially-obscured slick, minimalist architecture as backdrop for a blissful Black boy and girl couple who grasp hands beneath a tree.  An exaggerated sunrise beams up and out from the horizon, the same wide variety of grays to black as the entire rest of the painting.  The only color emerges in the form of several cotton-candy pink, psycho-real hearts that emanate from between the hearts of the ecstatic children.  Even the storybook frame of the flowers and trees that delineate the work maintain the grays.  The 50’s camp, the specific architectural style and the Pleasantville black and white color palette hint at a dreamlike theme. 


Jeff Sonhouse’s four large works deserve their own wall and they fill it well.  His “Yellow is Mellow” features a Caucasian man with white dreadlocks and a huge belt buckle that reads, “MELANIN PROFILE” beneath a trendy purple suit with a long jacket.  His nose, the barrel of a double shotgun, terminates in very round nostrils, a violent response to the archaic practice of genetic stereotyping.  His two works “Graphic by Design” and “Visually Impaired” depict Black skin and hair of their male subjects from burnt matchsticks, the former paper canvas bearing the scorch marks above the head of the portrayed.  Sonhouse’s work takes on heavy subject matter head-on, with blistering directness.


The show bears a warning that some works on the first and second floors may be considered unsuitable for younger viewers, the silhouette work of Kara Walker’s crucial “Camptown Ladies” is surely among these.  Also Barkley L. Hendricks’ “Fast Eddie Jive Niggah” which features full frontal male nudity.  Less clear are Gary Simmons’ “Duck, Duck, Noose” which features KKK hoods surrounding a noose and is a frightening enough specter to give a quadragenarian nightmares, and so possibly a child as well.  However, the show is a rare opportunity to view essential works like Glenn Ligon’s “America,” Carrie Mae Weems’ “You Became a Psychological Profile…,” Lorna Simpson’s “Wigs” and Kalup Linzy’s “Conversations with de Churen V:  As da Art World Might Turn.”


'30 Americans' is on view now at the CAC, through June 15. 

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Evan Z.E. Hammond, Dead Huey, Andrew Smith

Listings Editor


Art Director:

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Alexis Manrodt

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