Featured events in March
Contemporary art comes to the Driehaus Museum for the very first time, when the Gilded Age mansion hosts Shonibare’s sculptures dressed in colorful high-Victorian costumes and two collections of photographs. The British-Nigerian artist's work is spread throughout the house, contrasting the humor and irony of his creations with the beautiful, antiquated spaces in which they reside.
After taking two months off, Art on theMART is back. For five nights each week the 25-story-tall video installation takes over the side of the Merchandise Mart, filling the building's historic facade with vibrant colors and moving images. Harnessing 34 digital projectors, the show features work by a rotating lineup of artists and is best viewed from Wacker Drive or the Riverwalk, between Wells and Orleans Streets. Art on theMART lights up the night Wednesday through Sunday, with projections beginning approximately 15 minutes after sunset.
Best known for her photos of dolls and miniature objects (as well as for being the mother of Girls creator and star Lena Dunham), New York artist Laurie Simmons creates work that views reality through a surreal lense. The MCA's career retrospective, entitled "Big Camera/Little Camera," includes works that explore scale, female gender roles and the artificiality of social media. In addition to photographs, guests can view a collection of the miniature props that Simmons used in her imagery, sculptures that comment on society's obsession with the female body and a trio of short films, including one in which actress Meryl Streep interacts with vintage puppets. In acknowledgement of Simmons' activism in the realm on gender inequality, the MCA will offer $12 tickets (81 percent of the regular $15 admission price) to those affected by the gender pay gap through the duration of the show's run.
Theater in March
Perhaps Remember the Alamo isn’t the most accurate title for Neo-Futurist Nick Hart’s immersive take on the famous battle. Reenact the Alamo in All Its Gory Detail might be a better fit. Directed by fellow Neo Kurt Chiang, this play mashes up American history, personal narratives and a hearty helping of metatheatrical silliness. It’s a very special recipe that only the Neo-Futurists could execute.
Translated by Daniel Brunet, this disturbing, subversive satire from German playwright Wolfram Lotz splices together a Heart of Darkness-esque quest to find a madman in the jungle with a modern-day Somali pirate’s journey through the heart of the European justice system. Directed by Ian Damont Martin, The Ridiculous Darkness promises to be unlike anything else in town.
Big-budget disaster movies like 1972’s The Poseidon Adventure are simultaneously ridiculous and divine. It’s that irreverent reverence for shlock that powers Poseidon! An Upside Down Musical, David Cerda and Scott Lamberty’s 2002 smash-hit parody. Returning for a third go-around, Poseidon! has become a bit of a classic itself.
Despite its simple setup—two men (a father and son) together in a room—this play immediately starts screwing with your head. Call it the Caryl Churchill special. Director Robin Witt directs William Brown and Nate Burger in this dark, British sci-fi thriller. It’s the nature-nurture debate taken to a frightening conclusion.
It’s a classic story: Boy meets girl. Boy meets talking plant. Plant promises to help boy get girl so long as boy feeds plant human blood. Boy and plant go on killing spree. Christopher Kale Jones stars as the lovestruck Seymour in the Mercury Theater’s new rendition of the cult-classic musical. Make alternative plans if you have a fear of dentists and/or murderous plants.