As WFPL's arts and humanities reporter, Erin Keane reports on the issues, trends, people and events that impact Louisville's arts landscape.

Every artist also develops a craft—those deliberate and perfected techniques and methods used to write a novel, shoot a film, create a sculpture or become a character on stage. 

On ArtCraft, you'll find reviews of plays, books and arts experiences, as well as the latest news and commentary on Louisville's arts landscape and a thoughtful exploration of how and why a particular piece of art works (or doesn't). 


Arts and Humanities
8:15 am
Sun November 10, 2013

Humana Festival Lineup: Anne Bogart and SITI Company, Jordan Harrison, Kimber Lee and More

Anne Bogart will direct "Steel Hammer," a play about John Henry created by SITI Company and based on texts by playwrights Kia Corthron, Will Power, Carl Hancock Rux and Regina Taylor in the 38th Humana Festival of New American Plays at Actors Theatre of Louisville.

Actors Theatre of Louisville has announced the lineup for the 38th annual Humana Festival of New American Plays.

The festival, which coincides with the company’s 50th anniversary, features six world premieres from playwrights and ensembles both new and returning to Actors Theatre.

The Humana Festival opens Feb. 26 and runs through April 6.

Notable veterans presenting new work in the festival include long-standing Actors Theatre collaborators Anne Bogart and the SITI Company, who have partnered with four playwrights (Kia Corthron, Will Power, Carl Hancock Rux and Regina Taylor) on “Steel Hammer,” a play with music by Julia Wolfe about American folklore legend John Henry.

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Arts and Humanities
11:32 am
Thu November 7, 2013

Happy Birthday, Verdi! Kentucky Opera Gives His Seldom-Seen 'Simon Boccanegra' a New Look

Design sketch of the Kentucky Opera's new production of "Simon Boccanegra."
Credit Kentucky Opera

Giuseppe Verdi turned 200 last month. To celebrate his bicentennial birthday, the Kentucky Opera is staging a brand-new production of the Italian composer's infrequently-produced "Simon Boccanegra," an opera about the intersection of populist politics and familial intrigue.

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Arts and Humanities
7:00 am
Wed November 6, 2013

This Is Not a Painting: Ephemeral Art Symposium Explores Fleeting Nature of Art and Time

Courtney Kessel's "In Balance With."
Credit Courtesy of Courtney Kessel

If cared for properly, paintings and sculptures remain relatively static over time. Think of the recently-discovered treasure trove of modern art masterpieces uncovered in a German apartment, long thought lost to Nazi looting. After seventy years in a cabinet, a Chagall is basically the same Chagall.

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Arts and Humanities
4:44 pm
Mon November 4, 2013

21C Hosts Lydia Lunch Performance on Violence, Loss

Lydia Lunch performing "Dust and Shadows."
Credit Courtesy of Lydia Lunch

No-Wave pioneer and performance artist Lydia Lunch has collaborated with filmmaker Elise Passavant to create a texturally-rich live performance of what they call a “psycho-ambient soundscape.” The artists will perform “Dust and Shadows” Wednesday at 21C Museum Hotel (7 p.m., free).

“Dust and Shadows” layers Lunch’s lyric poetry and narration over music and Passavant’s images of ghost towns destroyed in the Spanish Civil War – a conflict that has largely faded into an historical and literary footnote for most Americans.

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Arts and Humanities
6:45 am
Mon November 4, 2013

Sculptor Ed Hamilton Among Local Artists to Host Studio Tours

Louisville sculptor Ed Hamilton’s finished works are mostly larger-than-life monuments installed at grand public spaces – the 12-foot-tall sculpture of boxing legend Joe Lewis in Detroit’s Cobo Center, Louisville's Waterfront Park's Abraham Lincoln memorial and the statue of York, a slave who played an integral role in the Lewis and Clark Expedition, overlooking the Ohio River on the Belvedere. 

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Arts and Humanities
10:11 am
Fri November 1, 2013

REVIEW | New Comedy ‘Rx’ Explores Symptoms and Cures for Workplace Depression

Brian Hinds (Phil) and Beth Tantanella (Meena) in The Bard's Town's production of Kate Fodor's "Rx."
Credit Doug Schutte / The Bard's Town

Have you ever felt like you were destined for greater things than the annual pig price report? In Kate Fodor’s deceptively lighthearted romantic comedy “Rx,” a frustrated writer has traded her MFA in poetry for a job as the managing editor of American Cattle and Swine Magazine, a desk from which she creeps daily to the old lady underpants section of a neighboring department store to weep bitter tears of frustration and humiliation.

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Arts and Humanities
3:12 pm
Thu October 31, 2013

Pumpkin Faces in the Night: Wax Fang Covers Misfits' 'Halloween'

Wax Fang
Credit Wax Fang

Here's a treat from local favorites Wax Fang (winners of the inaugural Louisville Music Award Song of the Year for "The Blonde Leading the Blonde") -- a stately baroque cover of the Misfits' spooky anthem "Halloween." 

If anyone sees Scott Carney packing a ton of cat litter through the Kroger parking lot today, send us a pic.

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Arts and Humanities
3:46 pm
Wed October 30, 2013

Monsters, Faces, and Bonnie 'Prince' Billy: A Selection of Friday Trolley Hop Openings

Credit Patrick Jilbert

Skeletons, skulls, monstrous humanoids and just plain old monsters  – Louisville artist Patrick Jilbert's characters might skulk around society's margins, dodging daggers and coffins on motorcycles and skateboards, but they're also practically humming with whimsical humanity. Jilbert opens a solo show of all-new work, "Avoid Everything," Friday at Why Louisville Two (802 E. Market Street). 

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Arts and Humanities
2:15 pm
Wed October 30, 2013

Halloween Special: Theatre [502] Stages Reading of First Half of Serial Magic Play

Scott Anthony and Douglas Scott Sorenson in "The Stranger and Ludlow Quinn."
Credit Theatre [502]

Theatre [502] has slowly rolled out its original serial play about magic and Louisville, "The Stranger and Ludlow Quinn," every first Friday since June, one fifteen-minute episode at a time. Ludlow Quinn is a fictional magician plying his mediocre craft in Louisville in the early 1900s when he meets a mysterious stranger who helps him unlock the secrets of great magic. The play travels back and forth in time between Quinn's life and that of Bonnie Burke, a contemporary teenager who finds a mysterious, powerful book in her great-grandmother's Old Louisville attic.

To catch the audience up, the play's first five episodes will receive a staged reading on Halloween, 7 p.m. at the Baron's Theatre in Whiskey Row Lofts next to the Second Street Bridge.

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