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icepack By A.D. Amorosi
³ PHILLY-BORN comedian Todd Glass may
spend most of his time in Los Angeles now, but he’s forever thinking about his hometown. “I always want to know what you guys are doing,” says Glass. “What are you doing?” It’s what he’s up to that’s important. The 48-year-old comic has just finished the first draft of an autobiography (“that sounds so serious, that word”) that will be published later this year.“My ghostwriter says that we received very few notes from the publisher. That means we’re nearly there.” Equally pressing is the green light that Glass got from Comedy Central this week to go forward with the pilot to The Todd Glass Situation,a sitcom based partially on his real life. Having come out in January 2012, the “situation” of its title alludes to his past as a formerly closeted gay man. “Before I came out, I used to refer to the dating thing as ‘my situation,’” he says with a laugh. “My friends who knew about me found that funny.” The main action of The Todd Glass Situation revolves around his dream job of owning a restaurant/bar. “I’m a pretty meticulous guy, so I always thought I’d be good at it. The biggest part of the show would be my interaction with the restaurant’s clientele. I wouldn’t be a Soup Nazi — far from it — but the show will reflect my feelings that the customer isn’t always right. I’m all about consumer satisfaction, but I wouldn’t be afraid to throw even the most faithful diner out of my place.” Damn, he sounds like a real restaurateur. Though no cast or final script is ready, Glass points to next winter as a possible series start. ³ For everyone who likes to start their drinking early (this means you, Icepack reader), you’ll be pleased to know that this year’s Kensington Kinetic Sculpture Derby passes by Johnny Brenda’s around noon on May 18, and a special outdoor cafe will be set up for enhanced viewing pleasure. More on the KKSD in Agenda on p. 32. ³ There’s been cool news from the Jose Garces Restaurant Group lately. His boutique restaurant at the Kimmel is being fast-tracked. He’s turning his intended planxa bar, at Revel in Atlantic City, into a ramen noodle spot and driving Distrito’s taco truck onto AC’s beach for Memorial Day. Plus, there are rumors that Garces is taking on several restaubar spaces in the Moorestown Mall’s foodie row, and that there’ll be possible cuisine and design changes at Chifa, his Peruvian and Cantonese hybrid on Chestnut Street. Summer’s heating up for the Iron Chef. Find a home for Chifa’s Chinese 5-Spice Pork and I’m happy. ³ Aficioanados of Italian horns, pepperoni on sticks and Connie Francis records, take note: The Italian Market Festival takes place May 18 and 19 along Ninth Street’s ethno-corridor. Abbondanza. ³ Icepack gets illustrated every Thursday at citypaper. net/criticalmass. (firstname.lastname@example.org)
LUMIÈRE SQUARES: Sabrina Gschwandtner makes quilts from old classroom films.
show+tell By Shaun Brady
SALVAGE SELVEDGE FILMSTRIP QUILTS | “Sunshine and Shadow,” May 17-Aug. 18, $3-$5,
Philadelphia Art Alliance, 251 S. 18th St., 215-545-4302, philartalliance.org.
³ FROM A DISTANCE, Sabrina Gschwandtner’s quilts may seem indistinguishable from the wares in the windows of Lancaster’s Amish gift shops. But look closer and the geometry of the folk-art patterns fragments into tiny, incrementally changing images. Gschwandtner creates her quilts in the traditional way, sewing together strips of material to form intricate, multi-hued patterns. But she crafts them from a decidedly nontraditional material: 16 mm strips of film, culled from educational documentaries about textile crafts such as knitting, crocheting and, naturally, quilting. “To me, it feels like I’m making movies, but in a 2-D format,” Gschwandtner says. “I’m thinking of the overall quilt design while sewing, but within each square I’m thinking about making edits, about whether the scenes go together thematically or visually.” The New York City-based artist has been synthesizing film and textiles in her work since 2004. She studied film and semiotics at Brown University and Bard College, which she combined with an interest in knitting to create artwork and installations that explore the feminist traditions of craft-making. Her quilting began in 2009 when she received a stockpile of 16
mm films deaccessioned from the collection of the Fabric Institute of Technology. Some were deteriorating while the rest simply weren’t being used in the classroom, the subjects and the technology both seeming increasingly archaic to teachers. The films were handed over to New York’s Anthology Film Archives, which kept some for their collection and turned the remainder over to artists and filmmakers who work with found footage. “It covered such an interesting range of textile uses from feminist expression to military camouflage to scientific metaphor,” Gschwandtner recalls. “Then one day I pulled some of the film off a reel and held it up to the light, and I realized that this film about textiles really looks like a textile.” A number of Gschwandtner’s quilts will be exhibited at the Philadelphia Art Alliance in the new show “Sunshine and Shadow,” the title of which refers to a popular quilting pattern associated with the Amish. Using the pattern provided a challenge, being somewhat more complex than the basic patterns she had used in the past, and a literal interpretation of the name gave her a thematic starting point for the work. “Visually, I was really drawn to the pattern,” she says, “but it also seemed like there was so much I could do with interpreting the idea of sunshine and shadow.” One of the pieces utilizes footage from a documentary about the Bradford Dyeing Association, a textile mill in Rhode Island
She received a stockpile of deteriorating 16 mm films.
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