This week, we’re stretching the classic definition of show at least a couple of times, but for good reason as you will see. So here are this week’s picks for Montreal arts shows:

Keep the Beat Launch

This one is more of a campaign rollout than a show, though there will be readings by actors Jacqueline Laurent-Auger and Denis-Martin Chabot. The main reason we’re including it is because Maison Plein Coeur, an organization that helps people living with HIV/AIDS, is fighting to stay open after losing its federal funding.

As today is World AIDS Day, it is an appropriate time as any for them to launch their Keep the Beat campaign. You can find out more at tonight’s event.

The Keep the Beat Launch is Friday, December 1st from 7-9pm at Maison Plein Coeur, 1611 Dorion. The event is free, but please RSVP via EventBrite

Bareoke

While this one is definitely a show, it’s the audience that bring the entertainment. It’s a strip karaoke show brought to you by local raunchy theatrical burlesque troupe Glam Gam Productions and they’ve been doing it the first Saturday of every month for a few years now.

So what exactly does strip karaoke involve? Well, people sign up and go on stage to sing just like in regular karaoke but are free to remove as much or as little clothing as they want. Glam Gam always provides a safe space. More details can be found on the Facebook event page.

Bareoke is Saturday, December 2nd, from 10pm-3am at Café Cléopatra, 1230 boul St-Laurent (2nd floor). $5 at the door

Cryote

This one definitely is a show, an art show. You’ve probably seen some of Cryote’s commissioned street art around town and now you have a chance to see what he can do in the more traditional milieu of painting, and if you want, take some of it home with you.

His style is surrealist and generally features animals and pastel colours.

Cryote’s art show vernissage is Friday, December 1st, from 6pm to midnight and will also be viewable Saturday, December 2nd and Sunday, December 3rd from 11am to 8pm at 87 Mont-Royal Ouest. BYOB and art will be for sale

Is there an event that should be featured in Shows This Week? Maybe something FTB should cover, too? Let us know at arts@forgetthebox.net. We can’t be everywhere and can’t write about everything, but we do our best!

Let it flow from your insides out, let yourself lose sensibility. I missed you for so long, I longed for you entirely. Now you touch me and I feel nothing. Nothing but a tinge of anger and a whole lot of embarrassment.

So please don’t touch me. All I wanted was your touch but that time has passed and I got used to regretting you. I got used to the idea that I am enough. I know that I need no justification to breathe, I need no other human to complete my essence, and I certainly do not need a bear hug from someone who I could still love at the drop of a hat. Someone I still think of with a tear in my eye.

Yes, its too soon. Don’t squeeze me, don’t rob me of my dignity, hold me all night long or don’t touch me at all.

Again there is that feeling that all I want is to be requited. But what does that really mean anyways? I love the excitement of not knowing whats going to happen next.

Sure I want to be touched, sure I want to be adored, of course I need love. But I don’t look for it and certainly don’t expect anything but the bitter after burn of rejection.

I am a different breed. I dance and I feed. I float through the night on a trike with a borrowed light. Lost. Lost and alone, unconcerned, and on fire. I burn for forgiveness, I yearn to be stopped in my tracks. Call out my privilege, I dare you.

I crush on people with the expectation that nothing will come of it. I defeat the pain before it cuts in. I crush the crush while the talons extend. My armor goes up and my guard is on duty.

I sign up for projects when I can’t finish my own thoughts. I can’t trade my talent for money, just the satisfaction of seeing someone satisfied. I love watching dreams bud and blossom by my pen. I have a zillion dreams that are awaiting fruition. I know that I need to take myself into consideration but often forget. I blow off people who I love the most, late for everything.

I also realize that its not easy for anyone. I can’t imagine being someone else. If I think its hard, me, a beautiful privileged white woman, then shit, it must get much worse than this.

Energy and time are precious commodities, when I dedicate myself to the resistance, when I put my life into helping others, I feel gratified, I am no longer hungry or alone.

I need no justification of my talents, just seeing how small deeds can lighten the load for others. My load is superficial, loneliness is temporal.

And then there is someone lurking 10 hours away, I want to surprise you, or I want to be gay. I long to be with a unicorn. Lavandar, pink, baby blue. I want to smell the cheerios and rotten lake water. I want to ride bikes all night until the sun comes up, but I never feel fast enough, always second guessing my abilities. Stunted by my own doubts, afraid of fear, accompanied by demons that have been there forever, before I was born, and will outlive my essence.

Carry on, move forward, keep on keeping on, some nights are better, others cut like rusted knives. A dull hellish gashing metal bit. Manmade monstrosity.

I want to write a song like Hotel California. A bizarre song hated and loved equally, make millions, go down in history. What is history? Can I really change it all?

Sometimes I need to escape reality. I do that by painting, traveling, and going out on the lake with my Dad. His boat is called the Lady Fred, after my grandmother, the sweetest woman in the world. Her photo is on there, and it makes my heart soar. I miss her smile everyday, the sun hasn’t been the same since she died. She is the butterfly that floats on by.

It felt incredible to have the wind run its tendrils through my whispy crispy faded hair (which is finally getting long again). It felt right to get smacked by air. Oxygen and water, bonding time with my pops.

I am lucky that my parents are my best friends. I regret my spoiled brat moments. All they ever wanted was my happiness. They tell me now that I am too radical. Is it radical to love? Is it radical to be kind? Being vegan and helping others is the radical that I yearn for. It is right.

They thought my hair color was a phase too, and the I am wearing the same ripped up shirt and punk skirt that I wore when I was 15. While we may not agree on everything, I still love them.

I was having a late night paint night with a couple of friends, working on a flyer with a girl in a cage and a guy playing piano. We thought The Joy of Painting would kick start creative flow. Boy did it! Bob Ross should have done the play by play for porn, his voice is so calming and inherently sexual.

Perhaps its because painting gets me off. Art is life, it is sensual and personal. Bob Ross is magical, he creates crazy shit in a short amount of time. I would get angry because even if I listened to him it wouldn’t be the same. He taught me that everyone is different and every style is beauty. You look away for a moment and BOOM there it is.

I had no idea that he was ex military, dealing with death and destruction by painting beautiful landscapes and teaching others. I bet a lot of women (and men) watched that show and thought he was hot. I am thinking about doing a dramatic reading of some of his lines.

Sometimes when you are standing too close to it is difficult to see

Just put a little sunshine in there

You can create any illusion that you want in here

In a few years when someone sees this painting they will know that you had a fantastic day when you made this

You have experienced the joy of painting

Gently

There we are

Very gently

Very easy

Very light

Very gentle

There we are

Do you see how it fluffs up?

So fantastic

Sensual

We’ve got a nice little cloud there.

(Awwwwwe Yeaaaa)

I want to be all of the colors simultaneously. When my kindergarten teacher asked me what my favorite color was, I said “Rainbow.” She responded with, “That’s not a color. What’s your real favorite color, Catherine?” I said “GLITTER” with a smile on my face. I knew damn well what I was saying. Glitter and rainbow are colors: they are all of the colors and beautiful intricate sparkling facets of diversity. Who knew I was just a budding color theorist? A tiny little genius really. I didn’t and still don’t give a fuck.

I have always wanted to be a rainbow, wear as many colors as possible and dye my hair the spectrum. I am my art, my art is me – I wear it like a flag with fashion, makeup, and crazy fun hair. Dying my hair fantasy colors has been something I’ve identified with for my whole life. I remember the first time I had pink in my hair, I was exhilarated. It made me feel so beautiful, so punk. My mom hated it, but my best friend was the one who put it on my hair. Pink hair don’t care. I have been a lot of colors since and don’t see myself going natural anytime soon. My roommate is a true unicorn, his hair (even his pits and pubes) are always a different, perfect hue.

The other day I slept past noon, then I woke up all gross and depressed, crusty from being a mope. Heartbroken and lost in my stupidity. I needed to create. That first stroke was like that perfect glass of water when you slept too close to the heat vent and feel dried out. Making art revitalizes me, it puts life in my veins. It is a necessity, NOT a hobby. I went to art school when I was told to be a doctor. I knew at a young age that all I wanted was to be happy for the rest of my life, I never cared about money. Art is my air. Money is evil bullshit that people kill over. I would rather help be the voice of my generation, comment on the world at large, show people the pictures in my head, and express everything. Even making bad art feels good.

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I AM AN ARTIST! In a dismal world you need to find the luminescence. Sex, politics, ugliness, and beauty. I make art like I make love, passionately and with every part of my soul. You know I care about you when I make art about you or for you. I have so many things in my head that I want to make, and if I take the time to do a stupid portrait of you, that’s love. Art is selfish until you share it. Art is therapy, it soothes a weary heart and puts mortar between the bricks of a positive life foundation.

I sacrificed a lot of kisses in the name of art. Scrumptious yummy little droplets of chocolate kisses. I harvested their foil and little kisses flags to glue on to my painting. I use every opportunity to make art. Inspiration is instigation. I enjoy sparking art in others more than anything in the world. To create is to live life to the fullest. There’s no regrets in art, just happy accidents as Bob Ross would say. I will always share my art supplies. I love bringing a box of porn, scissors, glue, and just let people live out their fantasy. Hilarity ensues – instant party slayer.

I remember hanging out with my grandma watching Bob Ross and desperately wanting to paint like him. He created luscious landscapes with a zen-like ease. Some Bob Ross wisdom: “I think there’s an artist hidden at the bottom of every single one of us. You too can paint almighty pictures.” I was always so incredibly obsessed with art. I did watercolor paintings of drag queens. I outgrew my Catholic school’s art cart and the do-it-like-the-example philosophy to art very young and my mom was awesome enough to further my art advancement with outside classes.

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I remember finding Frida Kahlo for the first time. I loved that she didn’t give a fuck about her eyebrow. The hair on her upper lip inspired me. She revolutionized the selfie and didn’t give a flying feminist fuck about what a woman was supposed to do or look like. She was a bisexual communist painter who had an affair with Georgia O’Keefe. My kind of weird, I saw her as a soul sister. Her pain so freely expressed in front of me, teaching me to express my own.

“I used to think I was the strangest person in the world but then I thought there are so many people in the world, there must be someone just like me who feels bizarre and flawed in the same ways I do. I would imagine her, and imagine that she must be out there thinking of me too. Well, I hope that if you are out there and read this and know that, yes, it’s true I’m here, and I’m just as strange as you.”
― Frida Kahlo

I am so happy that I am not alone. I wish I could have met them both, instead their inspiration lives on in my heart and work. I’ve done burlesque as both Bob Ross (aka Boobs Ross) and Frida Kahlo respectively. I have painted canvases with my boobs as the brush on stage in front of shocked fans. That feeling is everything.

I use art to lift me out of horrible holes. It puts the lotion on the skin – and believe me I need lotion, my skin is the worst. It puts the paint on the canvas and the ink on the paper. I look at the world with intention, I search for beautiful intricate details in moments of pure madness. I see possibility in the abject and linger in the strange. I want to change things, even if just within myself. Damn, it feels good to be a painter.