In today’s newsmagazine we’ve got a diverse line-up of all manner of news, culture, politics, and history. Kevin talks 4.48 Psychosis (warning: sad) (1). Responsibility for fighting stereotypes too often falls on the very minorities being stereotyped. Read the stories of Muslims at Reed and Portland at large (2). The saga of the Zero Project continues, toward the airplane’s fiery end (4). Can’t get enough of Renn Fayre history? Neither can we. Read part two of Brian and Dro’s 39,470 part series (8). Reed’s Special Collections is a portal to another world. Much like C.S. Lewis’s magic closet, behind the library doors lie artifacts and stories strange and mysterious (6). Mount Hood forecast is back (hint. Ski at night) (14). Culture Kasie and Charlie discuss T.L.O.P, The Witch, and the music industry landscape (13). Do you believe in love after Reed? Can long distance relations work? Let Miss Lonely Hearts guide you (11). The Grail’s very own Kevin stars in this week’s DeSastre (12).
Lauren, Jordan & Vikram
News & Features
4.48 Psychosis by Sarah Kane, directed by thesis candidate Jordan Jozwik, opens Thursday, March 3 for a three-night run. The play was the last Kane wrote and the script is unconventional to say the least. There are no specifications about character, setting, stage direction, or even what is and is not dialogue. 4.48 Psychosis repeatedly asks the question, how can one dramatize blank spaces, a series of numbers, or words that tumble down a page?
The “apologizing factor.” This is the term that Azra Ahmed ’19, a Reed freshman, uses to describe the imperative for Muslim Americans to condemn terrorist groups such as ISIS and therefore exonerate themselves from association. This apology is completely unnecessary, Azra explains, because “as a rational person, why would you have to condemn something so horrible? It is a given.” Why would Ahmed, as a Muslim, be expected to denounce ISIS openly while I, a non-Muslim, would simply be assumed to feel that way? Why are the 2015 Paris attacks labeled as Islamic terrorism and not simply terrorism?
Looking back, I’m not sure where I expected Zero Project’s sense of communal mourning to come from, or how a collection of 25,000 photographs, a boxed model plane, and a set of minimalist instructions written by an artist residing halfway around the world would release the sentiments I had so neatly push-pinned into my perception of the exhibit.
Zero Project is about reconstruction, post-WWII communal healing, and grief in Japan. These were the themes under which I labeled the latest undertaking of Reed’s Cooley Gallery before even stepping through the door. What we received as a college from artist Katsushige Nakahashi was a formula, and our goal was to follow it.
The first thing that catches the eye when entering the bibliophile’s paradise that is Special Collections is a massive tome with frayed sheepskin binding lying on the table. Created sometime in the late sixteenth century, the book looks like something out of a Harry Potter movie. The book is an antiphonary, a liturgical book of music used in the singing of a church choir. The antiphonary is so massive in size because it was intended to be set in the front of the church and used by the entire choir at once. This is because of how expensive and labor-intensive such books were to make, rendering it impractical for every member of the choir to have his own. The cover is constructed of leather wrapped wood, with decorative brass decals studding the front. Inside, the pages are made of sheepskin and partially hand-illuminated. The quality of the pages changes depending on the side of the skin they are made from. The pages created from the inside of the sheep are softer and whiter, while the pages created from the outside of the sheep are coarser and more yellow in color. The manuscript is not illuminated in its entirety, which is most likely due to economic conditions of the monastery in which the antiphonary was created.
Renn Fayre is big. Despite the fact that it’s a celebration of our pointy-headed intellectualism and our deviant lifestyles, it’s undeniably big and extravagant, and — dare I say it? — even quintessentially American in its celebration of excess. That bigness dates back to the ’80s, of course, when everything was big and America was booming. In the second decade of Renn Fayre’s existence it expanded in scope, scale and debauchery, attracting new degrees of local notoriety, to the point where RF1990 as captured on film is very recognizable today. It was the ’70s that gave us Renn Fayre, but it was the Eighties that got us to where we are now.
Miss Lonely Hearts
Dear Miss Lonely Hearts,
I’m in a relationship with a guy I really love. He’s a year older than me (he graduated last year) and we’ve been together since my freshman year. I know that might sound like I just have never really been with anyone else, but we’ve been on and off before and we always get back together because we really love one another and we’re committed to working things out.
I’m pretty worried about our future, though. Since he’s been out of school a year he’s gotten a job in Portland that he really likes and a lot of his friends still live in the area, so he feels pretty settled down for the foreseeable future. But I’ve been applying to grad school programs for next year and I haven’t gotten into any yet, so I have no idea where I might be next year. He’s the only reason that I’d be staying in Portland, because I don’t really want to stay here. . .so if I got into grad school in Seattle or New York or something I’d be moving there, and if I didn’t get into any grad schools I kind of want to move back home and reapply next year? I don’t think that it’s fair to ask him to follow me home (on the east coast) and then just keep following me wherever I end up, but I don’t know what else to do. I really don’t want to break up with him, but I can’t think of any way that we can stay together.
Back Away from the Future
Who loves both the destruction of industrialized civilizations and Lisbeth Salander? Kevin James Snyder '16. Kevin’s hobbies range from aromatherapy to lacrosse, perhaps explaining the mesh, and include fictional heroes, the cosmos, and the mimetic nature of camouflage. Kevin takes all of these influences and masterfully weaves the unexpected into a seamless look while combining characters and characterizations. Having been accused of “not dressing queer enough,” Kevin attempts to mitigate gay stereotypes through clothing. Having featured Kevin for this week’s issue of The Grail, we shall now return our ginger fashion icon to their home amongst the soulless and damned.