Mexican rock 'n roll, and big statements at the Tacoma Art Musuem Biennial


Mexico in Seattle

Each season, Global Rhythms at Town Hall celebrates a different culture through performance arts. Tonight features two significant artists in the Mexican-American community: San Antonio, Texas' Los Texmaniacs, who play tejano, a style of music that mixes the influence of many Eastern European cultures in South Texas—think Mexican rock and roll—and the Son de Madera ensemble from Veracruz, Mexico, performing traditional song and dance called son jarocho. Although the dance form has been in decline, it's recently been revived through the work of Mexican bands like Son de Madera, who want to preserve their culture's performance art history. And both bands bring guests—Eva Ybarra with Los Texmaniacs, and Rubi Oseguera, who will perform the flamencolike zapateado with Son de Madera. A dance floor will provide the bands and audience much-needed space to cut loose. A talk from local duo Correo Aereo on son jarocho precedes the entertainment. Town Hall, 1119 Eighth Ave., 652-4255, $19–$25. 7:15 p.m. JESSICA RAMIREZ

Visual Art

TAM Biennial

Biennials are always a mixed bag. As with any group show, each artist only presents a sample, which is why the challenge is to make a Big Memorable Statement. The question is who will achieve it? For its eighth annual Northwest Biennial, Tacoma Art Museum showcases recent work by 41 regional artists, over half from Seattle. There'll be a large-scale hemlock sculpture by Cris Bruch, abstract paintings by Denzil Hurley and Mary Ann Peters, pen-and-ink frenzies by Keith Tilford, and a packing-peanuts and saliva installation by the ever-intriguing Alex Schweder. Some critic faves are also among the group: Robert Yoder, Jeffry Mitchell, and Brian Murphy with his fleshy Balzacian self-portrait in watercolor. A highlight will be Claude Zervas' elegantly draped cathode-ray-tube elegy to Napoléon's final years in exile, Elba, a recent standout at Western Bridge. As for the Big Statement, art trio SuttonBeresCuller are the only ones creating work specifically for the show, with a wryly oversized take on a Ship in a Bottle squeezed into the museum's center courtyard space. The mast will likely stick out past the roof. Tacoma Art Museum, 1701 Pacific Ave., Tacoma, 253-272-4258, $10. Opening reception: 6–9 p.m. Museum hours: 10 a.m. –5 p.m. Tues.–Sat. (open until 8 p.m. third Thursday of every month); noon– 5 p.m. Sun. Ends May 6. SUE PETERS

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