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Arts + Culture

The Week in Local Music News

Outside Lands scales back to two days; the L.A. Times ogles over the festival's endless food options [via L.A. Times Music Blog]

Local shoegazers Weekend shred faces at Rickshaw Stop [via The Bay Bridged]

Hipster Runoff questions the authenticity/meaningfulness of SF's recently launched Craft Bar [via Hipster Runoff]

San Francsico based krautrock-revivalist Tussle and Brooklyn's hyped duo Javelin host a danceathon at Rickshaw Stop [SF Weekly All Shook Down]

Red hot locals Man/Miracle play the Fillmore and release a new video [Via Ears of The Beholder and Spinner]

San Francisco rising folk favorite Emily Jane White gets the Pitchfork stamp of approval [via Pitchfork]

Shawn at Katarokkar announces the return of his comedy/indie-rock hybrid night Snob Theater [via Katarokkar]

Wallpaper get the Yours Truly treatment before their scheduled Independent appearance tonight [via Yours Truly]

Spotted: Chinatown Going to Great Measures to Preserve Banksy's Art

I came upon the Banksy piece that dwells on Commercial Street in Chinatown this past weekend, and boy was it hard to miss. There were bunches of elderly people taking a gander at the thing, taking photos in front of it and discussing it fervently. What I couldn't help noticing was the fact that local residents had drilled a panel of plastic over it along with a cautionary sign to prevent would-be intruders from tagging over it. Way to preserve this work of art for the rest of us, Chinatowners! Now it's shielded from the elements as well as sneaky kids looking for the glory of defacing a Banksy piece.

‘Iron Man 2’ Explores the Lighter Side of Being a Celebrity Superhero

Tony Stark may be self-obsessed and troubled by mortal thoughts – rightly so, considering the mechanical heart that’s keeping him alive is slowly polluting his body with lethal toxins – but he’s no Bruce Wayne. As played by Robert Downey Jr., he combines a sly sense of humor with natural showmanship. He enjoys being a superhero, and soaks up the spotlight with a narcissist’s glee.

It’s refreshing. Stark has a dark side, well-watered with cocktails, but he is hardly morose. He is intoxicated by the adoration of his fans, and tickled by the trappings of fame and obscene wealth. And he’s not afraid to toot his own horn. As he brags to a less-than-smitten Senate committee, “I have successfully privatized world peace.”

Joan Rivers to Close Film Festival Tonight

If you’re expecting Joan Rivers: A Piece of Work to showcase her famously blue stand-up routines – a testament, perhaps, to the undiminished ferocity she still brings to the stage at 76 – you’ve got another think coming.

Culture Clash: Benjamin and Peter Bratt Shine A Light On ‘La Mission’

The SF-bred Benjamin and Peter Bratt’s affection and affinity for the Mission District comes through with crystalline clarity in La Mission. The brotherly team, with Peter writing, directing and producing and Benjamin starring, have much of the vibe down: the way the sun bounces off the concrete; the wildly imaginative and brightly hued murals winding off 24th Street; the bodegas, produce shops and mom-and-pop businesses lining the streets; the kids in black hoodies who slouch on out on front stoops; and some of the district’s funky diversity -- one that encompasses blue-collar Latino families, college-age hipsters, the bikers, and spiritual searches. You feel get a bit of a thrill just seeing those familiar sights -- Balmy Alley, Muni buses, Folsom Street basketball courts.

Exhibits To Catch On First Thursday

May brings rising artists on the move and familiar names back on the scene. Here's a brief look at a few of the Bay's openings and art events, just in time for First Thursday.

Interview: The Freelance Whales' Judah Dadone

The Freelance Whales have managed to craft one of those songs that gets in your ears and won't quit. It's called "Generator^1st Floor", and I'm not just speaking for myself. Other indie forces like the Antlers and Aislyn (a side project of Passion Pit's keyboardist Ian Hultquist) have remixed and recut the song in their own oblique homages to the original's acoustic delicacy and swelling, textural layers of banjos, Micro Korgs, tambourines and vocal harmonies.

Zhang Huan's 26-Foot, Three-Headed, Six-Armed Buddhist Statue Coming to the Civic Center

San Francisco's city center is going to get a temporary facelift on May 12 in the form of a gargantuan three-headed, six-armed Buddhist statue entitled, err, Three Heads Six Arms by the international art phenom Zhang Huan. For the massive work of art's world premiere as an outdoor adornment to the Joseph L. Alioto Performing Arts Piazza (across the street from City Hall), the city and good old Gavin Newsom are rolling out the welcome mat with a public ceremony at 10 a.m.

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