You've ogled the more than 300 bawdy prints by artist/provocateur Pablo Picasso currently on display at the Bass Museum, and now all you want to do is ... learn how to make prints yourself! Tonight's lecture and demonstration with local artist Charo Oquet will teach you to do that and more. Oquet will not only offer a slide presentation on the history of printmaking, she'll show off a variety of printmaking processes and introduce you to various plates, inks, and papers. Lastly she'll get you up to speed on the latest printmaking lingo and tell you what to look for (and look out for) in order to put together your own print collection. Think ink at 7:30 at the Bass Museum of Art, 2121 Park Ave., Miami Beach. Admission is ten dollars. Call 305-673-7530.
War hysteria, terrorist attacks, and outraged Cubans are all part of Miami-based journalist Harry Caicedo's debut novel, Conflicting Loyalties. Whoa, wait a minute there, Harry, are you sure this is really a novel? Sounds a wee bit close to home to us. Anyhow, the plot involves a Cuban-American reporter for a Miami newspaper who has the pleasure of covering the sinking of a U.S. Coast Guard boat off the coast of Cuba a mere six months after September 11, 2001. Could the Loquacious Bearded One (and we don't mean Osama bin Laden) have been so stupid as to provoke war between Cuba and the U.S.? Hmmm, find out (or not) when Caicedo reads tonight at 8:00 at Books & Books, 265 Aragon Ave., Coral Gables. Admission is free. Call 305-442-4408.
Everybody has a story. But can everybody tell his or her story in a way that's going to make books fly off the shelves? Probably not. That's what workshops are for, silly. Writing Our Way In: An All-Day Writing Workshop promises to help you get your story straight, learn to incorporate the past into your present, and realize how your background influences what you write. The program allows you to attend a morning and afternoon session plus a panel discussion on publishing. Instructors (or "facilitators," as they maddeningly refer to them) include children's book author Joanne Hyppolite, storyteller Liliane Nerette Louis, teacher/writer/editor Lissette Mendez, and writer/Harper Collins assistant editor Jaira Placide. Make friends with your muse from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at Miami Dade College Wolfson Campus, 300 NE Second Ave. Registration fee is $50. Call 305-237-3298.
Granted the ratio of men to women in this country is sad, making it tougher and tougher to get a date, let alone find a mate. And granted people have been engaging in some rather odd behavior lately when it comes to dating. But finding love with an elephant? No, we didn't say with the Elephant Man. With an elephant. You know, like Dumbo, except without the power to fly -- a pachyderm. Sound unbelievable? Well, maybe a little artistic license was used by Aoise Stratford, author of Elephants and Coffee, one of the 21 short plays making up Summer Shorts, City Theatre's festival of works for audiences with gnatlike attention spans. The Shorts crew just wrapped a stint in Miami at the Jerry Herman Ring Theatre. Now they bring their brevity to the Broward Center for the Performing Arts (201 SW Fifth Ave., Fort Lauderdale) through Sunday, July 18. Performances take place at 3:00 and 5:30 p.m. Tickets cost $27; $65 buys you a full weekend package with meals. Call 954-462-0222.
Back in Haiti in 1965 writer, translator, and journalist Jan Mapou began the Sosyete Koukouy (the Society of Fireflies) to promote the language and culture of his native country, then (and now) in turmoil. Some twenty years later, when Mapou arrived in Miami and opened his well-regarded Haitian bookstore/cultural meeting place Libreri Mapou, he founded another chapter of Sosyete. Every once in a while, locals are lucky enough to be treated to a performance (exploring serious subjects with dance and songs in Kreyol) by the troupe. A rare opportunity comes this morning at 10:30, when the Magic City Monday series presents Sosyete Koukouy at the Joseph Caleb Auditorium, 5400 NW 22nd Ave. Admission is three dollars. Call 305-635-2350.
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A mere 40 minutes seems a very short time to document the whirlwind of emotions concerning a four-year-long exodus. But Last Night in Cuba, the 2001 documentary directed by Eugene Pons and Suzette Mayobre and produced by the University of Miami School of Communication, claims to do just that. Exploring the journey of Cubans from their homeland between the years 1960 and 1964, the film is told from a variety of perspectives: that of a young girl on the island and then off, and older Cuban exiles, looking back through the lens of time at what they left behind. Screenings take place at 2:30 p.m. daily through Saturday, July 31, at Casa Bacardi, University of Miami, 1531 Brescia Ave., Coral Gables. Admission is five dollars. Call 305-284-2822.
Showcasing independent films, networking with industry professionals, and learning the ins and outs of the tricky movie business are just some of what will go on when the eighth annual American Black Film Festival touches down on Miami Beach today. Expect a flurry of workshops, panel discussions, parties, and celebrity appearances, plus a trade expo and awards show. Most of all, get ready to attend plenty of screenings, to be held at the Jackie Gleason Theater of the Performing Arts (1700 Washington Ave.); Regal Cinemas South Beach (1120 Lincoln Rd.); and the Lincoln Theater (541 Lincoln Rd.). Admission and showtimes vary. See www.abff.com for details.