Oct. 29: Joe Sacco, August Wilson, Okkervil River, Bri Pruett, Slenderman & More

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War Cartoonist Joe Sacco on How Portland's Housing Crisis Is Like a Refugee Crisis You might find and unusual comic stuffed in your mailbox or slipped under the door in the coming weeks. Titled "Rent Crisis," it's by the award-winning Portland journalist and artist Joe Sacco. He’s spent his life creating wry black-and-white comics about people who live in war zones like Palestine, Bosnia, and Chechnya, but his latest project focuses on a conflict closer to home. Sacco’s friends with Chloe Eudaly, who owns the independent bookstore Reading Frenzy and is running for a seat on Portland’s city council, and this six-page comic came from a day they spent traveling around Portland interviewing people who are struggling to pay the rent. Physical Education Works Up a Sweat - 6:46 Some issues have to be worked out on the dance floor. Which is one reason four Portland performers — keyon gaskin, Allie Hankins, Lu Yim, and Takahiro Yamamoto — came together to form Physical Education. What began as four friends getting together for a meal evolved into a published reading list, open meetups, workshops, performances, and now a year-long residency at the Pacific Northwest College of Art's Center for Contemporary Art and Culture. Comic Bri Pruett - 14:21 Portland comic Bri Pruett is a tireless performer. She has made a name for herself for taking on everything from her Clackamas childhood to her own body with fearlessness and wit. August Wilson's Widow on Portland Playhouse's Staging of His Autobiography - 22:41 The late August Wilson was hugely influential in shaping the narratives of black life in theaters. His “American Century Cycle” is a series of ten plays about African-American life over the course of the 20th century — one per decade. Portland Playhouse, under the direction of Brian Weaver, is methodically working its way through the Cycle, creating a whole new audience for Wilson in Portland. And this fall, Portland Playhouse is offering another sample of Wilson’s work that few audiences nationwide have seen: his one-man, autobiographical show “How I Learned What I Learned,” through Nov. 6. Think Out Loud spoke with Wilson's widow, Constanza Romero, a Seattle-based, Tony-nominated costume designer, about the life and work of her late husband. Aunt Jemima, Buckwheat, and Don’t Shoot — Painter Arvie Smith on Why None of This Is New - 30:26 When you see Pacific Northwest College of Art Professor Emeritus Arvie Smith’s vivid, explosive paintings at the Portland Art Museum later this month, you might think they were created last week. But to know Smith’s decades-spanning work is to realize that there’s nothing new about what happened in Minneapolis and Baton Rouge this month. He tells us about his art and life, which is book-ended on one end by the Jim Crow South and on the other by smart phone videos capturing the shooting of black Americans by police. Filmmaker Irene Taylor Brodsky Chases Slenderman to the Internet's Darkest Corners - 37:02 In 2014, two Wisconsin girls attacked one of their friends with a knife. They said they did it to please Slenderman, an internet boogeyman often depicted as a tall, faceless villain in a dark suit. Slenderman is a work of fiction — he was invented as part of a web contest to create a new horror figure — but that hasn’t stopped him from capturing the minds of children across the country. The award-winning Portland filmmaker Irene Taylor Brodsky spent 18 months following the trial of the two girls, Morgan Geyser and Anissa Weier. The result is the documentary “Beware the Slenderman.” opbmusic Session: Okkervil River - 42:03 For almost two decades, Okkervil River has been the main artistic outlet for songwriter Will Sheff. The band had some critical success, but Sheff became unhappy with the creative direction of the past few years. Instead of dissolving the band and starting over from scratch, though, he made an unconventional decision. He kept the band name, but made a hard reset.