Friday 18

The art at the Chicago International Now Art Exposition will run the gamut from Frank Lloyd Wright furniture to a carved cupboard fashioned from old dynamite boxes by an anonymous tramp, with lots in between in the way of 20th-century decorative arts from artists, artisans, and architects around the country. The show runs noon to 8 today through Sunday and noon to 6 Monday at Navy Pier, Grand Avenue and the lake. Admission is $8, $6 for seniors and students; more at 787-6858.

Drop by the Comiskey Park Baseball Memorabilia Show between 4 and 5 today if you want to meet Don Drysdale or between 3 and 4 tomorrow if Del Crandall is your kind of guy. Show hours today are from 4 until the end of the 7 PM game against Seattle; tomorrow the show opens at 10 and continues until the end of the game, which starts at 6, also against Seattle. Admission to each days show is a game ticket of any price; details at 924-1000.

The Associated Artisans of Chicago, who design and make clothing, accessories, jewelry, weavings, ceramics, and more, will sell their work at reduced prices at a rather charming venue–the Southport Lanes Hall, 3325 N. Southport. Hours are 6-9 tonight, noon-6 tomorrow, and noon-5 Sunday. Admission is free, with info at 989-4200.

Saturday 19

The Field Museum of Natural History is having a grand opening celebration for the Webber Resource Center for Native Cultures of the Americas from 10 to 3 today, Roosevelt Road at Lake Shore Drive. The opening ceremony is from 10 to 11; demonstrations of silversmithing and beadwork will be among the variety of activities planned to continue through 3 PM. The celebration is open to the public with museum admission, which is $2. More at 322-8854.

At the behest of the Chicago Art Deco Society, Mayor Washington has graciously proclaimed this to be Rhapsody In Blue Art Deco Weekend. What this means to the average man and women, on the street and elsewhere, is that they will have a gallimaufry of related events to select from. Today, for example, there’s a walking tour of Near North art deco (1 PM from the Lawson YMCA, 30 W. Chicago, to be led by CADS president Lynn Abbie), open houses at various galleries and stores (Skyline, Steve Starr, Neo Deco), and a champagne and chocolate party from 3 to 6 at Studio V, 672 N. Dearborn. Tomorrow’s events include a walking tour in Oak Park and a Rhapsody in Blue Party at the Raccoon Club. The weekend is a package deal: $25 for all events, which covers refreshments. Details on arranging for tix at 383-4348.

Sunday 20

The fourth annual Italian Village Street Fair celebrates the Italian heritage of the Taylor Street neighborhood, 9-7 today in Garibaldi Park, Ashland and Taylor, and streets surrounding it. There’s a pancake breakfast in the park ($5), and there will be plenty of family fun throughout the day, not to mention lots of food–Italian and otherwise. $3 admission, with details and breakfast reservations at 243-3773.

The first annual Ravenswood Artists Walk will be held from noon to 5 this afternoon, allowing strollers to visit the studios of more than 25 Chicago artists. Maps will be available at the Hild Performing and Visual Arts Center, 4544 N. Lincoln, where some of the artists have their studios. A reception will be held from 5 to 7 at the Hild that will feature music, refreshments, and the unveiling of the architects’ plans for renovation of the former Library into an arts center. The studio walk is free; $5 donation for the reception: 878-2258.

Pulitzer Prize winner (for Godel, Becher, Bach) and artificial intelligence researcher Douglas R. Hofstadter will give a talk titled “Analogies and Creativity–A Computer Model” at 2 PM in the auditorium of the Museum of Science and Industry, 57th and Lake Shore Drive. Admission is free; 684-1414 for details.

Monday 21

The Goodman introduces its 1987-88 all-comedy season with a panel discussion titled What’s So Funny: Comedy and the Contemporary World at 7:30 this evening at Second City, 1616 N. Wells; a performance of The Best of Second City will follow the discussion. Panelists include Jeff Steitzer, director of the Goodman’s production of Red Noses (the topic of which is the Black Death–always good for a laugh in sophisticated circles), Second City cofounder Bernie Sahlins, and comedienne Bonnie Hunt. $6 admission, with reservations at 443-4941.

Murray Perahia joins the Vermeer Quartet in playing the Brahms Piano Quintet in F Minor, opus 34, and the Faure Piano Quartet in C Minor at 8 tonight at the Civic Theatre, 20 N. Wacker. This is Perahia’s local chamber music debut and the opening concert of Chamber Music Chicago’s 28th season–one that will emphasize both landmark and contemporary American works. Tickets are $15-$28, with info at 242-6237.

Tuesday 22

The Chicago Architecture Foundation’s exhibit Dialogs With History: Measured Drawings and Scale Models of Monumental Western Architecture opens today from 9 to 4 and runs through December 5 at the ArchiCenter, 330 S. Dearborn. More than 50 drawings and 12 balsa wood scale models of buildings by the likes of Palladio and Le Corbusier are featured. More at 326-1393.

Wednesday 23

Relive some of the worst moments of your lost youth in School In Hell, “Yet Another Mini-Jumbo Compendium of Hellish Cartoons by Former Schoolboy [and current Reader cartoonist] Matt Groening.” Barbara’s Bookstore celebrates its publication with a meet-the-author session at 6 this evening, 2907 N. Broadway. Autographs are free, the book is $5.95, and you can find out more at 477-0411.

Independent filmmaker Ralph Arlyck will present three of his films–Godzilla Meets Mona Idea (1984), An Acquired Taste (1981), and Natural Habitat (1970)–and chat about them and his career at 7 tonight at the Film Center, Columbus at Jackson. $4, $3 for students, with information at 443-3744.

The Oriana Singers, an ensemble of six who specialize in, but are not limited to, early music, will perform at 7:30 this evening at the Sulzer Regional Library, 4455 N. Lincoln. The concert is free; 465-5656.

Celebrate the first day of fall, which starts at 10:45 this morning, with Panthea in their Celebration of the Autumnal Equinox and the Now Moon at 8 PM at 615 W. Wellington. The announcement promises “magic on the balance point–equal day, equal night,” but the more ploddingly precise among us know that even though days and nights are about equal in length, the sun is visible about 12 minutes longer due to the refraction of our atmosphere and the sun’s own width. The celebration is free, with details at 334-7478.

Thursday 24

I like Carol Lems-Dworkin’s idea of a noontime downtown concert–Music for Sleeping, a program of soothing piano selections. It will be performed on the Daley Civic Center Plaza at Washington and Dearborn, and it’s free. Information at 346-3278.

Andre De Shields is directing and choreographing the Victory Gardens production of George C. Wolfe’s The Colored Museum, which opens at 7:30 tonight and continues through November 1, 2257 N. Lincoln. The award-winning play (the Dramatists Guild awarded it the Hell-Warriner prize, annually given for a play of unusual social or political interest) satirizes both super- and subhuman stereotypes of blacks. Tickets are $15-$19, with reservations at 871-3000. Postplay discussions are planned for September 30, October 7, 14, and 21.