The icon Joan Jett Blakk interviewed by Hokey Sapp in 1991, as seen in Hokey Sapp Does SPEW Credit: Mary Patten

It’s the final week to catch the School of the Art Institute of Chicago’s “SAIC Faculty Sabbatical Triennial” exhibition, which features work produced by 38 faculty members who completed a sabbatical or a similar paid leave during the last three academic years. Not only does this show represent the breadth of ideas and creative practices at an influential local arts institution, but it also demonstrates how the COVID-19 pandemic impacted the artistic inquiries of these instructors. There’s some great Chicago history hidden in the show, including documentation of art historian Romi Crawford’s Black Arts Movement School Modality, which “explores the ideological structures that emerged in Chicago from the Black Arts Movement in the 1960s and 1970s.” New media artist Mary Patten debuts the video Hokey Sapp Does SPEW, which features Kate Schechter as the facetious media character Hokey Sapp interviewing people at SPEW: The Homographic Convergence, a zine convention hosted at Randolph Street Gallery in 1991. SPEW is recognized as a crucial connection point for midwestern queer culture in the 90s, including what led to the Homocore punk shows. Patten edited and shaped the piece this year using video footage that she shot with Schechter in 1991. The “SAIC Faculty Sabbatical Triennial” is on view at SAIC Galleries (33 E. Washington); open hours from 11 AM-6 PM today through Saturday 12/3. Saturday also offers a closing program and meet and greet with artist Ruth Margraff and other SAIC faculty from 4-6 PM. (MC)

If you’re a fan of French New Wave cinema—you know, the 60s experimental film movement heavy with jump cuts, mod style, and ennui—then you’ll want to check out Looking for Jean-Luc, an online-only panel discussion of director Jean-Luc Godard. Independent filmmakers Joël Akafou and Thavary Krouch, Chicago International Film Festival programmer Sam Flancher, and University of Chicago Cinema and Media Studies department chair Dan Morgan will gather to discuss the work of the director known for films such as Breathless and Weekend. Join them via Zoom at 6:30 PM. This event is organized by Alliance Française de Chicago. If you are not a student, or a member of Cinema/Chicago, the Gene Siskel Film Center, or Facets, Alliance Française kindly requests a $15 donation to support similar future programming. (MC)

Here are three music options for tonight:

  • Pianist and composer Robert Glasper starts a four night run at City Winery tonight, with two shows scheduled each evening. Unfortunately, all of the 7 PM shows are currently sold out, as is the 10:30 PM Friday show, but waiting list information as well as tickets for the remaining 10:30 PM shows are available at the venue’s website. (Today through Fri 12/2, 7 and 10:30 PM, 1200 W. Randolph, $55-$78, all-ages, tickets here)
  • British singer-songwriter Beabadoobee visits Riviera Theatre for an all-ages show; Lowertown opens. (7:30 PM, 4746 N. Racine, $30-$45, tickets at AXS)
  • A record release show for two improvisational ensembles, the Gilgamanians and Maku Sica (formerly Mako Sica) happens tonight at Elastic. More at Reader contributor Bill Meyer’s concert preview. (8 PM, 3429 W. Diversey, second floor, $15, all-ages, tickets at the door) (SCJ)

Previews begin tonight at 7:30 PM for Manual Cinema’s Christmas Carol at Writers Theatre (325 Tudor Ct., Glencoe). The company originally created the piece as a live Zoom play during the pandemic, and now the story of Aunt Trudy, a grieving widow finding it hard to find holiday cheer, gets a full live production, featuring Manual Cinema’s usual array of puppetry, live music, and projections to give a contemporary twist to the Dickens classic. The show runs through 12/24 and is recommended for 6+; tickets are $35-$90 at writerstheatre.org. (KR)