The Michigan Daily Thursday, October 6, 1988
stories can apply anywhere
Art fair lasts all
year up north
BY MARK SWARTZ
C HARACTERS in Elizabeth Tallent's stories inhabit the rich,
dusty landscapes of the American Southwest. They also inhabit worlds
of strained personal relationships, big decisions, and hard-earned
Author of the novel Museum Pieces, as well as a critical study of
John Updike and two collections of short stories, Tallent is a master of
technique and control in her use of language. She weaves rich tapestries
of metaphor and description with economic, lean prose. Her skill comes
from having learned, as she says, "how much you can do with little,
and how little you can do with a lot."
A native of Washington D. C., Tallent attended Illinois State
University and earned a degree in anthropology. Afterwards, she went to
work on a dig in Lubbock, Texas. "You had to keep a journal. I still
think that's a good way to start writing. Write simply and clearly and
factually about real things," she advises. Having developed a fondness
for putting pen to paper, she began writing short stories on her own,
eventually getting her first one published in New Yorker magazine.
Her first book was the essay on Updike, entitled Married Men and
Magic Tricks: John Updike's Erotic Heroes. Her reasons for choosing
the subject were personal as well as academic: "Updike was the first
writer I loved. Writing it was a way of thinking through that love, and
coming to terms with it so I could read other people."
Like her other works, Tallent's latest collection of short stories,
Time With Children, has its roots in the Southwest, but the appeal
stretches beyond the Red River. It offers an alternative to the well-paved
fast track of success with its backroads look at life.
For now, Tallent says, she's concentrating on stories exclusively.
"I have a little boy," she explains. "He's just 14 months old, so the
time I get to work is better for writing shorter pieces." Her recent batch
of fiction includes Ciudad Juarez, about a city on Texas/Mexico border.
ELIZABETH TALLENT will read from her works, including
Ciudad Juarez at 8 p.m. Rackham East Conference Room as part of the
University's Visiting Writers Series.
BY MARGIE HEINLEN
1 figure it's the least we could do.
Just because we know you all
follow the Daily Arts page blindly,
eagerly attending everything we
recommend, we figured we should
make a backup list of activities in
case there just isn't (gasp) anything
terribly exciting and enlightening
going on in Ann Arbor. Or in the
event we simply get lazy or are
accidentally sabotaged by MSA
mistaking our desk for the Opinion
Page desk, and you are faced with
making an artistic, social decision on
your own, keep this in the back of
your culturally inquisitive heads.
There is always something interest-
ing going in Ann Arbor! You should
The Arts page is about art.
Undiscovered art abounds in Ann
Arbor - at the Art School! The
University has at North Campus one
of the most highly acclaimed art
schools in the nation. The students
here are the harbingers of form and
design for the future. And you can
have a preview. For Free. On your
The University's Museum of Art
on State Street isn't the only one at
the U. Besides - you don't want to
look at that old establishment stuff-
those people are dead! The Jean Paul
Slusser Gallery hosts famous current
outside artists and, fundamentally
more important, our own BFA and
MFA candidates. The gallery is in
the Art and Architecture Building
nestled in scenic North Campus. In
the Steiglitz tradition of the 211
gallery, which arguably fostered the
emergence of modern art in America,
the Slusser gallery creates an
informal, educated forum by giving
undiscovered, untried talent an
opportunity. "It's important for stud-
ents to see popular reaction to their
work. We're proud of our work. The
artist tries to relate to people-
designs and ideas need to be focused
- and not just from another artist's
point of view," urges Sally Szuma,
an art school senior.
Renewing its efforts this year,
the Art department, upon the sugges-
tion of MFA candidate Will Rutlege,
is implementing creative art displays
within the art school buildings
themselves. Every two weeks a diff-
erent class or department will display
everything from furniture and jewelry
design to oil painting to photograph-
y,to computer art.
"This is an exciting time to learn
about the art school, there is some-
thing of everything [on display]. It
has a quality of freshness, approach-
ability. We want to discourage space
and formality. Students need to be
made aware of the energy. It's com-
pletely visable," says Ruth Green,
"People have a lot of miscon-
ceptions of what it's like up here.
It's a release from the LSA grind and
"People have a lot of
misconceptions of what
it's like up here. It's a
release from the LSA
grind and pressure... Cre-
ativity is written all over
-Sally Szuma, art si
Re o d 0 0 X 0 0 0 0 0
U.S. Teens are Spoiled Bums
50 Skidillion Watts Records
They Cleaned My Cut Out With
a Wire Brush 7"
I love singles. A beautiful picture
sleeve, a nice small hunk of wax, and
some previously unavailable B-sides:
these are the things that make life
Even if the new Half Japanese
single looked like Grant Hart, it
would still be a mighty fine thing.
There is no need to worry about such
horrible things however, because
both the picture sleeve and graphic
insert of this beauty are gorgeous
pink and yellow David Fair
The A-side of this record contains
two remixes from the classic Music
To Strip By (50 Skidillion Watts)
LP. I can't really say that the new
versions of "U.S. Teens are Spoiled
Bums" and "Silver and Katherine" are
better than those on the album, but
then the band can't really improve on
perfection, can they?
Interested in writin
The B-side contains that rare and
much sought after beast,''previously
unreleased" material. With the omni-
present Kramer producing, Velvet
Monkeys and B.A.L.L. frontman
does the vocals while Jad Fair and a
cast of thousands pound the music
home. I can hardly-begin to describe
the lyrical and musical power of
"Patty Hearst," and "Patti Smith."
Simply stated, these two songs are
staggering and absolutely essential
additions to the monumental Half
While Happy Flowers aren't quite
in the same league as Half Japanese,
they are a mighty fine combo in their
own right. Happy Flowers (the duo
of Mr. Anus and Mr. Horribly
Charred Infant) continue their all out
aural assault with "They Cleaned My
Cut Out With a Wire Brush" from
their I Crush Bozo lp (Homestead)
and two great "previously unreleased"
songs. These Virginian noise-
mongers have hit upon a way of
expressing childlike anger, trauma,
and rage in a manner much more
affecting than I thought possible.
Clad in a radical black, white, and
red cardstock sleeve, this record is
truly a thing to behold. Also included
g about film, theater,
ks or dance?
head during a press conference, this
in the package, besides the record, a EP stands merely to prove that an
nice black and white insert and an stacked '80s supergroup can release a
actual page from some paperback mediocre record.
book. Not half as good as this past
Sonically speaking, the Happy summer's unobtainable "Marmoset"/-
Flower's single is a knockout. On "Hated Chinee" single, Budd seems
the picture sleeve it says "All songs to fall short in the same areas that
recorded LIVE in the studio, no the single really burns. Incessant,
mixing, no dubbing, no synths." It drum-machine-like percussion creates
sounds like it too and that is just balls-out fury on the single, a sound
too, just too cool for words. at which the EP merely hints. Albini
The two unreleased songs here, seems to have lost the stranglehold
"Just Wait Till I'm Bigger Than he had on Big Black's song tempos
You" and "My Mother Is a Fish," are _ the incorporation of a human
twisted, screaming tales of the often drummer flinging to the wind the
nightmarish childhood that anyone drum-machine-brilliance he showed
worth half a shit went through at one in Big Black. It's sometimes almost
time or another. The raw emotion as if he's at the mercy of the other
and horrible noise really coalesces members of the band, which would-
into one hell of a cathartic blast. n't be so bad considering their herit-
Let's face it, from an artistic and age (both Scratch Acid ex's), but
aesthetic standpoint, vinyl and card- Albini churned out such terrific
board is really the only way to go. I music with Dave Riley and Santiago
think that you should buy these Durango (Big Black) that it's sad to
records not only because they are see the change.
visually and aurally pleasing, but The record isn't necessarily bad;
also because, in this age of digital it's just not great. The title song,
compact disc bullshit, they represent "Budd," is okay, but its drone just
that great thing that is American isn't quite powerful enough, and the
independence and iconoclasm. And if hottest cut, "Dutch Courage," cuts
you can't appreciate THAT, you're itself off when it really starts cook-
hopeless.B ing. Without a. second guitar, Rape-
-Brian Berger man is all buildup with very little
release. How unfortunate. Odds are,
Rapeman .however, most all Albini fans will
Budd make a point of picking it up
Touch and Go anyway, so I only have this to say,
Named after the infamous R. Budd "Not as good as the single, cheese,
Dwyer, the embezzling Pennsylvan- so don't get your hopes up.
ian treasurer who shot himself in the -Robert Flaggert
pressure - it's an entirely different
atmosphere. Creativity is written all
over the walls," Szuma comments.
"Sometimes a teacher or student will
put up a huge sheet of paper up.oig
the walls the length of a corridor --
just for drawing, comments, dood4
les,complaints - reaction and
release." So give art a chance - you
never know what you may find.
Starting in November, closer to
home, Rackham Hall hosts semester
end BFA and MFA shows - just
like in your Kindergarten art class,
Take your parents, take yout
friends, take a date, but take a break
and take yourself to discover the
University's Art School.
Gallery Hours are Mon.-Fri.1O a.m.
-5 p.m. with recently added week
end hours are Sat,-Sun.] p.m.-S
p.m. Evening hours are being
planned for the near future.
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