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Cover Story

The Organic Mr. Bacon

by Eric Jackson-Forsberg

“RAW HUMAN EMOTION,” announces the banner for the exhibition Francis Bacon: Paintings from the 1950s, now at the Albright-Knox Art Gallery. Raw is the operative word for this look at Bacon’s formative decade, an aptly visceral adjective that may be applied to the artist’s brutally painterly technique, his slaughterhouse imagery, or his unflinching look at the unprocessed side of human nature.

Free Will Astrology

by Rob Brezsny

TAURUS (April 20-May 20): To get misguided tips about how to invest, check out Henry Blodget’s “The Complete Bad Advice Column” ( For crabby, mean-spirited counsel about how to conduct your personal life, listen to Dr. Laura’s syndicated radio show ( For silly chatter about trivial subjects, read the “most intelligent woman in the world,” Marilyn vos Savant ( But if, on the other hand, you’d like brilliant guidance about where to direct your substantial life energy next, tap into your own intuition. The astrological omens suggest that it’s working better now than it ever has. It’s far more useful to you than any so-called expert’s blatherings.

Letters to Artvoice

Thank you, Mr. Niman, for your article on overpopulation (“Getting a Grip,” Artvoice v6n18). It is satisfying to see someone bring up the idea that there just might be too many people on the planet. It is equally satisfying to know that you have put your mind to the task and have presented a solution to the problem. I want to take issue with a lot of the things you said, but there is one item you ignored and I would like to bring it to your attention, and to the readers of your article.

News of the Weird

by Chuck Shepherd

■ Barney Vincelette, who says his autism renders loud noises sickening to him, has been feuding for several years with neighbors in Houston, Del., over their rock music. At first, he invented his own sound-jammer, according to an April profile in the Wilmington News Journal, but a judge curtailed its use. Subsequently, he recorded super-annoying sounds of his own (including a foghorn) and had them written out as music (“Sonata for Calliope of Truck Horns About to Be Transcribed for Locomotive Horns Opus No. 1”), at which point the judge decided that permitting the neighbors’ Bon Jovi but not Vincelette’s sonata amounted to selective law enforcement, and the feuders settled their differences. (Vincelette, by the way, lives in a house shaped like a flying saucer.)

Five Questions For...

Scott Swiezy

by Matthew Quinn

The symptoms of Stanley Cup Fever are fairly easy to spot. However, they are often quite varied and can range from irritability triggered by questionable calls to euphoria triggered by questionable calls. The degree of irritability or euphoria is often exacerbated by the time left on the clock when the infraction occurs. Other symptoms can include hoarseness (from screaming at the top of your lungs), dry mouth (easily treatable), presentation of facial hair (especially in men), and the irrational need to let everyone around you know which team you support. Various treatments are out there, but one of the most effective for Buffalonians is wearing blue, gold and white. Artvoice talked with silk screen artist Scott Swiezy, whose “Let’s Go Buffalo” T-shirts are popping up all over the city. You may have seen them in several shops around Elmwood Village and Allentown. Here’s how they’re made...

The News, Briefly

15 Putnam Street rises, spins, becomes a house again

Catherine Nugent Panepinto elected to Buffalo Board of Education, Williams and Rumore ask for corrections

Puck Stop

Sabres and Senators At It Again

by Andrew Kulyk & Peter Farrell

Admit it! You wanted this matchup…from the time these two clubs stopped trading blows in a free-for-all brawl here in February, you wanted to see these guys again. The chance to land a real knockout punch on these guys when it really mattered was too tempting to think about.


Prize Fighters

by Tom Waters


by Steven Helmicki

Book Reviews

Wandering Home by Bill McKibben

by Gerry Rising

Here is the perfect book to take on a hike or a trip to the beach. Bill McKibben’s Wandering Home is small, only 160 pages: It can be carried in a pocket. It is about the author’s own 16-day, 100-mile backpacking trip, described in his lengthy subtitle: “A Long Walk Across America’s Most Hopeful Landscape: Vermont’s Champlain Valley and New York’s Adirondacks.” Beginning in Ripton, Vermont, McKibben hikes down the western slope of the Green Mountains, across the Champlain lowlands—by rowboat across the lake itself—and then up into the eastern Adirondacks. I spent a week one summer in the Champlain valley and I agree with McKibben’s message: “The world contains no finer blend of soil and rock and water and forest—a few just as fine, perhaps, but none finer. And no place where the essential human skills—cooperation, husbandry, restraint—offer more possibility for competent and graceful inhabitation.” Along the way he meets both old and new friends, local New Englanders and New Yorkers retaining their country traditions and seeking to protect these beautiful lands against encroachment. This is a hopeful book written by one of this country’s finest environmentalists. McKibben identifies the problems but his message is positive: We can manage these beautiful lands—mostly by leaving them alone.


Shakespeare & Company

by Thomas Dooney

The start of the Stratford Festival in 1953 may have seemed like folly to some. Shakespeare? In a dusty, post-industrial town in the middle of nowhere? But once the decision was made, they did things right from the first step. That first summer year, two productions were staged under an enormous tent. A traditional Richard III and modern-dress All’s Well That Ends Well starred Alec Guinness and Irene Worth under the direction of Tyrone Guthrie and supported by the design of Tanya Moiseiwitsch, an incomparable constellation for a first-year venture.


by Javier

Movie and TV star George Segal (pictured above) just finished the run of the play Heroes, which had its American premiere at the Geffen Playhouse in LA. Translated by Tom Stoppard from the French play Le Vent des Peupliers, Heroes made its debut in London in October 2005, winning the 2006 Olivier Award for best New Comedy. Segal’s last Broadway appearance was in another three-male-character play, Yasmina Reza’s Art.


The World On Screen

by M. Faust

Whether or not truth really is stranger than fiction, documentaries are about the only growth area of the film industry. They’ve been attracting exponentially larger audiences in recent years. Toronto’s Hot Docs, the largest documentary showcase in North America, recently concluded its 14th festival with numbers that must be the envy of Hollywood: Attendance was up an astonishing 33 percent over the previous year.

Film Reviews

Abbatoir of Dreams: Killer of Sheep

by George Sax

Shades of Grey: Black Book

by M. Faust

Film Clips

The Ex

by M. Faust

It’s probably no accident that the Zach Braff vehicle The Ex includes a scene with him having an altercation in a hospital with a bald-headed black doctor (The 40 Year Old Virgin’s Romany Malco). It’s a nod to Scrubs and the chemistry between Braff and Donald Faison that is such a large part of that show’s success. It’s a genially amusing (albeit brief) scene that seems intended to remind viewers what it is they like about Braff in the first place. If that was actually the point, director Jesse Peretz should have put it nearer to the end of the film, the point at which audiences actually will be asking themselves why they paid good money to see this labored comedy. It’s a comedy of humiliation that might have been scripted Ben Stiller, though even he would have had the sense to turn this one down. Having been fired from his current job after a fight with his bullying boss, Braff’s Tom Reilly is forced to leave Manhattan for (gasp!) Ohio in order to support his wife Sofia (Amanda Peet) and their newborn child. The advertising agency job comes through the intercession of Sofia’s father (Charles Grodin, in his first film since 1994). The firm’s new age-y style is anathema enough to him, but Tom’s real tribulation comes when he is assigned a mentor: Chip (Jason Bateman), a bully in a wheelchair who turns everyone’s innate pity to his advantage. Worse, he’s had a crush on Sofia since high school and is determined to get her back. There are endless scenes of Tom either saying something stupid in his eagerness to get along at is new job or being manipulated into looking the fool by Chip, all of which get worse as he tries to lie or otherwise weasel his way out of them. It’s an uncomfortable form of comedy that director Peretz has no talent for. Nor does it help that the film looks to have been substantially edited (it’s been sitting on the shelf for awhile, and what’s left clocks in at 80 minutes plus credits). If Braff isn’t more careful about choosing film roles, his movie career is going to wind up in the same ditch with Ray Romano, a point of comparison he could do without.

See You There

Darfur Awareness Rally

by Geoff Kelly

!!! (Chk Chk Chk)

by Shaun Smith

Tapes 'N Tapes

by Donny Kutzbach

Brennen Leigh

by Caitlin DeRose

Left of the Dial

Arctic Monkeys: Favourite Worst Nightmare

The Hold Steady: Live at Fingerprints EP

Calendar Spotlight


by Caitlin DeRose


by Caitlin DeRose


by Shaun Smith

Steve Burnside

Album Leaf

Beaver Nelson

Luke Doucet

by Caitlin DeRose

Advice Goddess

by Amy Alkon

I have a guy friend, “Bobby,” whose wife has blurted out twice (once at my wedding reception) that Bobby and I dated in college. We actually had a one-night stand—over 10 years ago. Word got around to my husband, who asked me if Bobby and I had indeed dated. I said no, since technically we hadn’t. I finally asked Bobby’s wife to stop talking about it, and she sort of apologized and hasn’t spoken of it since. Still, I’m really nervous when we run into her at social functions, because knowing about Bobby would upset my husband. I can see him getting all jealous, like, “We’ve been hanging out with this guy, and now I find out that you slept with him.” He’d at least be hurt that something was kept from him (even though he specifically stated that he never wanted to be told this stuff). Worse, he might want to have the “numbers” conversation, and let’s just say I’ve lost track, and he believes sex equals love, and the only other person he ever slept with was his ex.