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PORTRAITS: Photographer Nancy Bruno was chilling on a beach in Italy when she thought up the Beautiful Women Project: “I was covered under an umbrella watching all of these women who were so comfortable in their own skin. They seemed happy with who they were at the present time. I wanted to know the secret to this kind of confidence.” She returned to the Capital Region inspired, and set out to photograph local women who had “developed comfort through their life journeys.” Tomorrow (Friday, Oct. 13), the finished exhibit, featuring 35 women, will open in the pavilion are of the Saratoga Hotel and Conference Center (534 Broadway, Saratoga Springs) from 5 to 8 PM. It will also be open to the public on Saturday and Sunday (Oct. 14-15) from 11 AM to 3 PM; admission is free. The exhibit is timed to coincide with breast-cancer awareness month; proceeds from the sale of an exhibition book will benefit To Life, a breast cancer support group. This fall, the exhibit will travel around the region.

ALBANY IS ART: Credit Historic Albany Foundation for their quick response to the Columbia Development Companies plan for a huge chunk of State Street near the state capitol, including the notorious Wellington Hotel. Columbia’s plan includes the demolition of two buildings, and the “limited” preservation of portions of the most notorious buildings, the Wellington, the Elks Lodge and the Berkshire Hotel. HAF’s proposal, which includes two plans, would see all the buildings preserved and/or adaptively reused to some degree. HAF director Susan Holland said that “our proposal capitalizes on Albany’s history while developing a plan for the future.” According to a HAF press release, their plan, “unlike Columbia’s plan . . . satisfies all local, state and national historic district regulations covering the site and keeps intact the buildings’ unique architectural qualities.” Why are we talking about this in Art Beat? Because the south side of State Street hill has already been marred by two inappropriately designed buildings, the IBM building at the southeast corner of State and Pearl, and the massive, blocky comptroller’s building. Kudos to HAF for trying to keep this huge section of State Street from being permanently destroyed. Architecture is art, folks.

—Shawn Stone

Garbage With Style

PHOTO: Chris Shields

Revolution Hall in Troy was the place to be Saturday night (Oct. 7), when Trashion came to town. The “recycled fashion show and multimedia extravaganza” brought sculptors, performance artists, designers, dancers, musicians and hundreds of spectators together under one roof for an evening of audacious arts and heavy drinking. If you weren’t there, you missed an impressive spectacle. Seriously, where else are you likely to see a 10-foot-tall crow-inspired dress made out of umbrellas modeled by a girl on stilts? Or a dress made entirely out of video and cassette tape? Or adults in their underwear rolling around in a storefront window throwing rice on themselves? DJ Back From Japan closed down the show by making full use of Rev Hall’s impressive sound system and the hardcore dancers took full advantage of the hall’s spacious floor. All the proceeds of the night are earmarked for the Roarke Center and Fulton Street Gallery.

 

 

—Chet Hardin

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