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Objects of Wonder and Delight

“So much depends/upon/a red wheel/barrow/glazed with rain/water/beside the white/chickens.” So wrote master imagist poet William Carlos Williams. The latest exhibition at the Hyde Collection celebrates still life with similar awe and gravity.

Objects of Wonder and Delight, brings together 51 still lifes in a variety of media including oil, watercolor, collage, sculpture, textile, ceramic and glass, on loan from the collection of the Norton Museum of Art in West Palm Beach, Fla.

The works in the exhibition span four centuries, from the Ming dynasty to the current day and study major genres of still-life through some of the preeminent artists in Western history, including Gustave Courbet, Henri Matisse, Pablo Picasso, Georgia O’Keeffe, Robert Mapplethorpe, and Andy Warhol.

According to the Norton Museum, “Still-life works celebrate the significance of even the most mundane aspects of daily existence. They embrace a moment in time and create a memory that combines real life and its representation in art.”

So much depends on vase, pitcher and hosta of Still Life by Charles Sheeler (pictured). So much on fish and a garland of roses.

Objects of Wonder and Delight opens at The Hyde Collection tomorrow (Friday, Jan. 28) with an opening reception from 6:30 PM to 8:30 PM and runs through April 21. Admission to the reception is $15, free for members. For more info, call the Hyde at 792-1761.


Wye Oak

“Hey,” you’re probably wondering, “what are the Americana-rock duo Wye Oak doing these days?”

Well, they’ve just finished an acclaimed stint opening for the Decemberists at the Beacon Theatre on Broadway in New York City, and are revving up for a busy year of touring. Or, as they described it on their website, “we’re gearing up for an absurd amount of touring in 2011.” This includes Sunday’s show in Albany.

They also have a new album set for release on the Merge label in March, titled Civilian. Also per the band themselves, “the title track for the record is floating around the Internet in MP3 form, so go have a listen.”

Wye Oak will perform Sunday (Jan. 7) at 7 PM downstairs at Valentine’s (17 New Scotland Ave., Albany). The opening acts will include Que Caro, We Are Jeneric and If Madrid. Tickets are $10. For more info, call 432-6572.


Almost, Maine

You know when “they” tell you not to worry, because failure isn’t that bad? It’s occasionally true. John Cariani’s atmospheric comedy about life in Maine, which he developed from sketches he’d written for auditions, became an international success only after flopping Off-Broadway.

As The New York Times describes it, Almost, Maine is “almost a dozen two-character vignettes exploring the sudden thunderclap of love and the scorched that sometimes follows . . . [It takes a] whimsical approach to the joys and perils of romance.” And beginning this weekend, the Schenectady Civic Players will present this world-wide crowd pleaser.

Schenectady Civic Players will present Almost, Maine beginning tomorrow (Friday, Jan. 28) at 8 PM and ending Feb. 6 at the Schenectady Civic Theatre (12 S. Church St., Schenectady). Tickets are $15. For more info, call 382-2081.

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