Arts & Culture

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Ryan Miller’s "Lights Like Us" show at the Bing draws lots of questions, for good reason

Posted By on Wed, Apr 25, 2018 at 2:54 PM

RYAN MILLER
  • Ryan Miller
Ryan Miller has a show. It’s a show about… something.

To be fair, it’s even hard for Miller to explain. Billed as “an experience,” "Lights Like Us" wasn’t, however, created by the Spokane-based graphic designer to be intentionally mysterious to its intended audience.

“People think I’m being mysterious in not describing what it is, but I’m really not,” Miller says. “It’s just hard to compare it to something.”

The closest comparison that comes to mind for Miller is that of a TEDx presentation, but longer. Local artist Jesse Pierpoint is set to make an appearance during the show to create a live art piece. Another friend of Miller’s is set to perform a song.

Looking back, the show — set for Thursday, May 3 — was a bit of a impulse for Miller.

“So it’s kind of one of those bucket list things,” he says. “I don’t know what made me do it. I just one day was like ‘let’s lounge around at the Bing [Crosby Theater] and tell some people and see what happens.’”

During the show, Miller plans to share his thoughts and views on the world. He envisions two ways of viewing the reality we live in:

“One is that it’s really crappy and everything’s going to hell. And the other way is that it’s already good and we’re just not seeing it,” Miller says. “And I think the second one is a little bit more optimistic and hopeful, inspiring and empowering at the end of the day."

When it comes to giving presentations and public speaking, Miller is no novice. In 2010 he started Branches Church in Mead, and has spoken at many of its events. His goal for "Lights Like Us" is to be able to discuss topics in ways that he couldn’t do otherwise in a church setting. 

“I was in the church world for a long time — every week — and those have to be a certain type of presentation in a certain box with certain language,” Miller says. “So with ["Lights Like Us"], I get to be out of that box.”

Miller has made quite the career for himself in the art and design world. In 2014, he and his wife founded 08Left, a design venture known for its aviation and airport-related art.

Ryan Miller's new show Light Like Us was a a bit of a bucket list item for him. He says it'll be a chance to spend an evening talking about his thoughts on life, along with some live art pieces and songs from his friends. - RYAN MILLER
  • Ryan Miller
  • Ryan Miller's new show Light Like Us was a a bit of a bucket list item for him. He says it'll be a chance to spend an evening talking about his thoughts on life, along with some live art pieces and songs from his friends.

He’s probably, however, more well known for his work on video games. Miller contributed to the story for the computer game that his brothers Robyn and Rand Miller created, Myst, which sold more than 12 million copies.

Miller also plans to incorporate some of his talk from "Lights Like Us" into a presentation that he’ll use to audition for this year’s TEDxSpokane.

For those still confused about what to expect during "Lights Like Us," consider this last thought from Miller: “It's an opportunity to do something different, at a cool place in town, with some cool, other cultural things happening that don’t always happen. Which, I admit, is still pretty kind of vague.”

"Lights Like Us" • Thu, May 3 at 7:30 pm • $20 • Bing Crosby Theater • 901 W. Sprague • bingcrosbytheater.com

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Tuesday, April 24, 2018

From trash to treasure: Spokane couple turns recycled fire hoses into art, business

Posted By on Tue, Apr 24, 2018 at 5:22 PM

Michael Rideout and Kayla Cartelli turn retired fire hoses into various items. Can holders are some of their best-selling products. - TOM CARTELLI
  • Tom Cartelli
  • Michael Rideout and Kayla Cartelli turn retired fire hoses into various items. Can holders are some of their best-selling products.

What some may see as old, worn out or garbage, Spokane couple Michael Rideout and Kayla Cartelli see as opportunity. 

The two use every bit they can salvage from retired fire hoses to turn into handmade products. Generally, fire departments either auction off or throw away old fire hoses no longer fit for service. Rideout and Cartelli have started American Fire Co. with the goal of finding creative ways to recycle that would-be trash into treasure.

The couple's business serves as a great example of finding uses for items that would otherwise end up in a landfill. Other creative recycling tips, ideas and examples can be seen in the Inlander's Green Issue.

Since setting up shop two years ago, more than 3,000 can holders, 84 decorative flags and many other products made from fire hoses have been sold online to people across 49 states and five countries. In other words, business is booming.

“Instead of it [fire hoses] sitting in a dump, we’re giving it new life,” Cartelli says. “It’s a different medium. It’s a form of art. It’s just a different way to make something pretty.”

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Friday, April 20, 2018

'No secret sauce': With her podcast Basic Brainheart, Hannah Camacho demystifies the success of those behind the camera

Posted By on Fri, Apr 20, 2018 at 2:23 PM


Ask Hannah Camacho where she's from and she hesitates a little.

"My dad was a traveling preacher, so technically when I claim a homeland it feels a little hypocritical, cause we would move every week to a new church and he would hold revival meetings," Camacho says.

So before she and her husband moved their family to Spokane a few years ago, she was sorta from Wisconsin and sorta from all over the place.

Camacho says the nomadic lifestyle of growing up in a 40-foot fifth-wheel trailer with her four siblings — "my mother was a saint" — forced her to learn how to make fast friends and dive right into interesting conversations.

"I think it was certainly hard, because we weren’t really able to create a lot of relationships long term," she says. "But I think in many ways it’s made it easier for me to get to know people just because you have a week to make friends."

Hannah Camacho's podcast Basic Brainheart is available on iTunes and Soundcloud.
  • Hannah Camacho's podcast Basic Brainheart is available on iTunes and Soundcloud.
That might explain some of her success in landing long-form interviews with people who've worked on some of the biggest shows and movies in Hollywood for her podcast Basic Brainheart, a passion project she started about a year ago.

She started the podcast in part to push herself to keep learning and improve her own storytelling and art, and in part to look at what makes people successful.

"I think a lot of times there’s this assumption there’s some secret sauce, there’s some magic that people are just born with and they automatically are somehow a great storyteller but nobody knows how or why," she says. "I want to maybe demystify what that process looks like to become a better storyteller, better artist, a better creative."

On top of interviewing animators and artists who've helped create major films and shows, she's also interviewed Oscar-nominated screenwriters and directors.

"You can find a million interviews on the people who are in front of the camera," Camacho says, "but if it wasn’t for the people behind the scenes, there would be no story."

Over the course of each roughly hour-long episode, recorded from her Liberty Lake home, Camacho learns from makers like Inside Out writer Meg LeFauve and Eric Heiserrer, who adapted the screenplay for Arrival, as they explain how they got where they are now. 

Hannah Camacho interviews animators, writers, directors and more for her podcast Basic Brainheart, recorded out of Liberty Lake.
  • Hannah Camacho interviews animators, writers, directors and more for her podcast Basic Brainheart, recorded out of Liberty Lake.
Her biggest takeaway so far is that mostly, creative success comes down to hard work.

"It’s very refreshing to hear that everyone’s story comes back to: It’s just really hard work and learning to hone your craft. It’s really the people that stick to it and learn and are willing to accept feedback that break through," Camacho says. "It’s a relief to hear that there’s no secret sauce, you know what I mean?"

That's especially meaningful to Camacho, who works by day in marketing and communications for Numerica Credit Union and spends most of the rest of her spare time with her husband and three kids, who are 10, 8 and 7.

"It’s encouraging and kind of puts a fire under my tush, in terms of keep learning, keep going and be open to feedback, and eventually you’ll create something that’s great," she says.

She also wants to set a good example for her kids to encourage them to work toward the things they're passionate about.

"As a mom of three, I'm passionate about learning things for myself and want to show and model what it looks like to set a goal and meet it and that really the only thing between you and that goal is hard work," Camacho says.

Her show has also put an emphasis on women in creative fields. Because of her work, Camacho has been signed on as an official partner of Women in Animation, an organization that pushes to get more women into careers in animation and support those who are already doing that work.

Being a wife, a mom and having a career and aspirations of her own, Camacho says it's inspiring to learn how other women make it work.

Largely, she wants to encourage women and girls to get into these creative fields that have a significant cultural impact in setting models for people to follow.

"I think storytelling sets the tone for our culture, and if there’s not representation behind the scenes, that will not translate into stories that matter in terms of setting the tone for our culture," Camacho says. "Right now there’s a lot of males that are crafting those stories they think everyone wants to hear, but they’re ignoring the female voice, or they’re just not bringing that in. So women behind the camera are just as important as women in front of the camera."

Basic Brainheart is available on iTunes and Soundcloud, and you can check out some of Camacho's own illustrations on her Instagram. Here's some of her work that we've shared with permission:

A rare bird sighting. ☺️ #dragon #visdev #castle #visualdevelopment

A post shared by Hannah Camacho (@hannah_camacho) on

#conceptart #visdev #visualdevelopment

A post shared by Hannah Camacho (@hannah_camacho) on

🐉 💎 #dragon #diamond

A post shared by Hannah Camacho (@hannah_camacho) on


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Monday, April 16, 2018

School of Rock, Waitress and return of Disney's The Lion King among 2018-19 Best of Broadway Spokane season

New set of National Geographic Live! shows also on tap

Posted By on Mon, Apr 16, 2018 at 5:30 PM

Disney's The Lion King returns as part of Best of Broadway's 2018-19 season. - JOAN MARCUS
  • Joan Marcus
  • Disney's The Lion King returns as part of Best of Broadway's 2018-19 season.

There's just one show left in the current WestCoast Entertainment STCU Best of Broadway season, but before Dirty Dancing even tries to put Baby in a corner, you can start planning your ticket needs for 2018-19.

The new season was announced Monday, and while it will kick off a little later than usual as the INB Performing Arts Center gets a quick renovation between seasons, there's a lot to love between returning favorites and Spokane premieres, as well as some special one-night engagements and a new series of National Geographic Live!

Here's the lineup:

STCU BEST OF BROADWAY SEASON
Finding Neverland, Nov. 15-18
Waitress, Dec. 12-16
Disney's The Lion King, Jan. 23-Feb. 3, 2019
School of Rock, May 8-12, 2019
Les Miserables, Aug. 6-11, 2019
Season tickets are on sale now, ranging from $238 to $417 for all five shows. A single-ticket on-sale date well be announced mid-summer.

SPECIAL ENGAGEMENTS
A Magical Cirque Christmas, Nov. 20
Legally Blonde The Musical, March 21, 2019
Stomp, April 2-3, 2019

NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC LIVE
Pink Boots and a Machete with primatologist Mireya Mayor, Feb. 20, 2019
Capturing the Impossible with extreme filmmaker Bryan Smith, March 27, 2019
A Rare Look: North Korea to Cuba with photojournalist David Guttenfelder, April 24, 2019

This is the fifth season for National Geographic Live, and you can get a ticket package for all three shows for $81. Single-show ticket sales will be announced this summer.
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Monday, April 9, 2018

Five things to see right now at WSU's new Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art

Posted By on Mon, Apr 9, 2018 at 5:17 PM


On Friday I visited Washington State University in Pullman for the grand opening of the Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art, a remarkable addition to both the campus and Eastern Washington for fans of visual arts of all types.

The so-called "Crimson Cube" is a work of art in itself, its gleaming exterior designed, according to architect Jim Olson in his remarks at the ceremony, to "reflect the world outside" the museum, but most importantly, giving visitors a chance "to see ourselves in the building."

Jordan Schnitzer was on hand as well, and passionately discussed his love of the arts that led him to donate a sizable chunk of change — $5 million — to create the new space, which features seven total gallery spaces and 10,000 more square feet of exhibition space than the old museum. One of the spaces, the Harmon/Wright Gallery, currently features a show of works from Schnitzer's private collection until Aug. 4, and anyone with a taste for contemporary art will want to check it out.

Here's a picture of Schnitzer fighting with WSU President Kirk Schulz and architect Olson over who gets to cut the ribbon to open the galleries to the public:
From left: Jordan Schnitzer, WSU President Kirk Schulz and museum architect Jim Olson see how many guys can hold one pair of scissors. - DAN NAILEN
  • Dan Nailen
  • From left: Jordan Schnitzer, WSU President Kirk Schulz and museum architect Jim Olson see how many guys can hold one pair of scissors.

Okay, they weren't really fighting. The whole vibe was mighty cheery for the hundreds of folks who glutted the new space's pavilion for the opening party.

Here are five works on display right now that you really need to see in person:

1. WITCH from Andy Warhol's Myth series. So colorful, so cool.

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Friday, April 6, 2018

Spokane fashion designers collaborate for "immersive" show and collection release

Posted By on Fri, Apr 6, 2018 at 3:38 PM


28379367_2312897555402566_8141061714938444174_n.jpg
When Casey and Gianna Reynolds first met for coffee, it was to collaborate for a creative project. Although that particular project didn’t land, a relationship between the two ensued.

Fast forward six years, and the married couple have been working together on creative projects ever since. Gianna does the fashion designing, and Casey handles the media.

Their latest project, a fashion show, has been the couple's creative baby they’ve been nurturing for the past year with the help of a myriad friends. The upcoming immersive fashion showcase at House of POp this Sunday, April 8, is a multimedia event that includes accessories by Sam Moore of Dope Kawaii, a cinema piece by Antelabel and dance performance by Mackenzie Fagras. Gianna’s latest fashion collection, dubbed Nooskool, is also featured by the models. Attendees can expect freeze modeling and a few other surprises.

Nooskool is inspired by Gianna’s love of Japanese fashion, the rave scene, cyberpunk and hackers. The collection began with a jacket, and Gianna added pieces later that were centered around that look.

“The entire theme of the show boils down to collaboration and communication. The storyline of the video is even how a team is dysfunctional, but you can still accomplish something by being dysfunctional, and I think that’s the whole vibe of the thing,” says Casey. “It’s perfect chaos.”


With her previously-established fashion company, Kuriio, with the ethos and tagline of “fashion for weird people,” it’s evident that Gianna doesn’t stray from unusual looks or materials. She looks for ways to revive or recycle items, like a rain jacket she made from a shower curtain. Being a self-proclaimed hoarder, she never runs out of things to add or use in her designs. Nothing is duplicated, because she doesn’t make the same piece twice.

“Every single piece she creates has some kind of a backstory or some kind of inspiration. A life of its own,” Casey chimes in.

For Gianna, fashion is like painting or sculpting. It is a purely creative outlet, but she happens to also enjoy the commerce side of it. Detail, love and care goes into everything she makes.

“I feel like something that’s been worn and loved has some sort of energy and care to it and why not take that and move it into something else to continue to be loved?” says Gianna.

Nooskool is a combination of harajuku and street style. It embodies a sassy attitude with weird patterns and bold colors. Although it retains hints of '90s pop culture and nostalgia, it manages to encompass a current and modern energy.

“It’s not a throwback. It’s not oldschool. It’s Nooskool,” says Casey with a smile.

The Antearmy & Kuriio Present: Nooskool • Sun, April 8 at 7 and 9 pm • Free • House of POp • 227 W. Riverside • bit.ly/2FV5aeo

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Monday, April 2, 2018

Festival at Sandpoint announces lineup featuring ZZ Top, Amos Lee, Gavin DeGraw

Also: Sasquatch! Music Festival reveals daily schedule

Posted By on Mon, Apr 2, 2018 at 12:53 PM

Gavin DeGraw (left) and Phillip Phillips, who share a headlining bill on Aug. 11 at the Festival at Sandpoint.
  • Gavin DeGraw (left) and Phillip Phillips, who share a headlining bill on Aug. 11 at the Festival at Sandpoint.

The Festival at Sandpoint announced its star-studded 2018 lineup yesterday (and no, it was not an April Fool's Day stunt), ringing in its 36th year with two weekends of rock, pop, folk and bluegrass at Sandpoint's War Memorial Field in August.

Tickets for the big shows range from $40 to $75, and they're on sale now. Here's what you can look forward to.

Aug. 2 — Big Head Todd & the Monsters
The Colorado-bred alt-rockers have dabbled in blues, jazz and funk since forming in the late '80s and have developed a fervent following in jam-band circles.

Aug. 3 — Amos Lee
A traditionalist whose smooth, Americana-influenced sound recalls the great singer-songwriters of the '70s, with the occasional tip of the hat to classic R&B.

ZZ Top performs Aug. 4.
  • ZZ Top performs Aug. 4.
Aug. 4 — ZZ Top
If you were bummed these bearded southern rock legends canceled their previously scheduled Northern Quest gig, fear not: They'll be taking over Sandpoint with those spinning guitars that made them MTV staples in the '80s.

Aug. 9 — Greensky Bluegrass
This five-piece from Kalamazoo puts a jammy, improv-heavy twist on old-school bluegrass, and the result has brought them some cult adoration.

Aug. 10 — Sublime with Rome
Although they didn't have a hit until after lead singer Bradley Nowell's death, Sublime has since had a long (but bumpy) trajectory, now with frontman Rome Ramirez. They're returning to the area following a Northern Quest gig with the Offspring last July.

Aug. 11 — Phillip Phillips and Gavin DeGraw
A co-headlining show with two adult contemporary favorites: Phillip Phillips is best known for winning the 11th season of American Idol and Gavin DeGraw for early 2000s hits like "I Don't Want to Be" and "Chariot."

Beyond those headliners, there will be a family concert on Aug. 5, which features music from the Festival Community Orchestra alongside carnival-style attractions, and the annual fireworks-finale performance by the Spokane Symphony closes things out on Aug. 12.

And in other regional music news, the Sasquatch! Music Festival just announced its daily schedule, with Bon Iver, Modest Mouse and the National headlining each of the fest's three days. Sasquatch! takes over the Gorge Amphitheatre from May 25 to 27.

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Thursday, March 29, 2018

Terrain looking to hire first executive director in hopes of maintaining a 'healthy and sustainable organization'

Posted By on Thu, Mar 29, 2018 at 9:58 AM

004_copysm.jpg

Ten years after launching as a one-night Spokane-centric art festival and celebration of local talent, what we know of as Terrain has grown into a multipronged beast of creativity and innovation, incorporating everything from a permanent art gallery, pop-up shop, concert and event space, to promotion of events throughout town and throughout the year.

With hopes of not just maintaining its current offerings, but finding ever more ways to support local artists, Terrain's board made the decision to hire a full-time executive director. The position is funded with help from the Inland Northwest Community Foundation and will focus on development (i.e., fundraising) as well as community outreach.

"We've always been powered by the efforts of tons of really incredible volunteers, and that's not going to change," notes Terrain co-founder Luke Baumgarten, via email. "But as the organization matures and we take on more and more programs to support artists and culture creators, our staffing hasn't kept up."

Indeed, Baumgarten notes the Terrain organization only has one full-time employee (program director and co-founder Ginger Ewing), one half-time operations director in Jackie Caro and a half-time manager of the Pop-Up Shop. Finding a full-time executive director capable of raising funds, he says, will help establish a professional structure capable of greater supporting Terrain's creative endeavors.

"We can't hire people without money, and development is one part of the organization that has never been as robust as our programming and other work," Baumgarten says.

Interested parties can find a full job description and apply for the position through the job posting at LinkedIn, Facebook and Express Employment's website. The job will pay between $46,000 and $50,000 annually.

"We're all tremendously hopeful that getting this piece in place is going to make an immediate impact on Terrain, and that, in couple years, we'll all look back and say, 'Damn, that was smart. Why didn't we do that sooner?'" Baumgarten says.

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Monday, March 26, 2018

Spokane models show off thrifted threads in benefit for Global Neighborhood's refugee programs

Posted By on Mon, Mar 26, 2018 at 4:40 PM

GLOBAL NEIGHBORHOOD PHOTO
  • Global Neighborhood Photo

When Jen Landis isn't on stage as a dancer for the band Super Sparkle or jamming out with her band Mama Doll, she's often preoccupied with helping refugees in the area through her employer Global Neighborhood, a local nonprofit that aids in employment of refugees. Part of her job involves coming up with creative ideas to raise more proceeds for Global Neighborhood. Her most recent endeavor is a dance party fashion show on Friday, March 30, at the Bartlett.

If you want to support Global Neighborhood in a tangible way — besides shopping at their thrift shop — buy tickets and show up to dance. Although Landis says there is no apparent theme for the show, everyone can expect a killer playlist. Drinks and snacks will be available at the open bar.

The models strutting are all locals whose style Landis admires for one reason or another. Most fashion shows have a designer whose work is showcased, but here the models have more liberty and autonomy. Their task is to put together an outfit from Global Neighborhood Thrift. Landis will play the role of emcee and host, as she'll be making a commentary about the models' ensembles. The runway portion will run for a half hour and then everyone can groove to the music together.

Landis explains that two-thirds of GN's operating costs are covered through the thrift store and the remaining third comes from fundraising. The money that's raised will go towards keeping the store open, such as paying rent and salaries.

The aim is to also raise awareness of Global Neighborhood and local refugees.

"We want to expand the knowledge of what refugees are going through — that they live in this community, and that they're as much of this community as anyone else," Landis says.

Refugees employed at GN are usually on a six-month employment duration, or a job training program, while they take ESL classes. Most of the employees at GN don't speak English. Having experience at GN prepares them for other jobs by helping them build various skills and understand workplace customs and dynamics. Sudan, Somalia, Ukraine, Syria and Afghanistan are just a sampling of the countries where the refugees at GN come from.

Landis wants to encourage people to imagine life as a refugee by mentally putting oneself in their shoes and trying to fathom what it would feel like to leave one's life and home country behind, especially not of their own volition.

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Wednesday, March 21, 2018

'Canoes Along the River': Spokane author Jack Nisbet to discuss Canadian explorer and indigenous canoes

Posted By on Wed, Mar 21, 2018 at 2:25 PM

Jack Nisbet: "I guess I've always been looking for different ways to reveal the landscape." - YOUNG KWAK
  • Young Kwak
  • Jack Nisbet: "I guess I've always been looking for different ways to reveal the landscape."

Between 1801 and 1812, Northwest explorer David Thompson of Canadian fame established two trade routes across the Rocky Mountains and surveyed the 1,250-mile course of the Columbia River. Using new research, Spokane author and Northwest historian Jack Nisbet explains how Thompson experienced “the full sweep of the human and natural history etched across the Columbia drainage.”

Nisbet will discuss Thompson and the boats of the indigenous peoples used on Lake Pend Oreille and Priest River in the early 1800s for an event titled "Canoes Along the River." The discussion is free and open to the public at Priest River’s Historic Beardmore Building at 6:30 pm on Saturday, March 31.

As fur agent David Thompson traveled the waterways of the Inland Northwest in the early 1800s, he saw several different styles of vessels. Thompson admired the bark and dugout canoes of the Kootenai and Salish people who guided him, learned how to make use of local materials, and eventually constructed a series of cedar plank canoes to move his goods and furs. In this slide presentation, author Jack Nisbet will combine period journals and artwork with replica canoe craft to try and figure out what was floating on the river.

Nisbet wrote a book detailing Thompson’s journeys titled The Mapmaker’s Eye: David Thompson on the Columbia Plateau. Though Nisbet is widely known in Canada, he is relatively unknown in the U.S., despite having informed some of the travels of the Lewis and Clark Expedition.

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