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Review: The Jung Motel and Moving Still 

D. Eric Bookhardt on new art at Antenna Gallery and The Front

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Maybe it was the July supermoon, but this month's St. Claude arts district gallery openings were very dreamlike. Those who braved the pervasive somnambulism of the night encountered low-budget vision quests like Susan Gisleson's Jung Hotel installation at Antenna Gallery. Less about New Orleans' long-gone Jung Hotel than Carl Jung's "collective unconscious," the show explores how the percolations of the dreaming mind conflate personal quirks with cultural memory. Here, the walls are lined with books with peep-show portals revealing lurid dream scenes, while on the floor a 1960s jukebox features freakishly unfamiliar song titles such as "I Found a Glass Eye in the Dirt" attributed to familiar names like Del Reeves. An array of hanging medallions that look like souvenir drink coasters encased in plastic reprises iconic Americana in the form of vintage fashions and Native American chiefs, antique road maps and anatomy class skeletons, 1920s weight lifters and soft-porn starlets, all slowly swaying in the gentle breezes of the HVAC vent. It's just another night at the Jung Hotel, where an antique suitcase filled with realistically slimy plastic frogs at the entrance prepares visitors for what lies ahead.

  Within the Santa Fe, New Mexico, art collective Meow Wolf's Moving Still installation at The Front, we are greeted by an Iron Claw machine filled with plastic dinosaurs. The first two galleries are dedicated to a history of the collective, and two rear galleries feature a splendidly encompassing environment like a sculptural recreation of a peyote vision formulated by Werner Herzog and Alejandro Jodorowsky. But a reflexive search for Klaus Kinski mainly yields dry ice fog rising from a display case memorial to a deceased crossdresser, and an intricate, cavernous maze of psychedelically hued lattice constructions (pictured) studded with visionary beasts from the otherworldly labyrinths that appear only to those who journey by the light of the supermoon.

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Spotlight Events

  • Tig Notaro @ Joy Theater
    1200 Canal St.

    • Fri., Oct. 21, 9 p.m.
  • The Toxic Avenger @ The Theatre at St. Claude
    2240 St. Claude Ave.

    • Thursdays-Saturdays, 8 p.m., Sun., Oct. 23, 9:30 p.m., Sun., Oct. 30, 8 p.m. and Mon., Oct. 31, 8 p.m. Continues through Oct. 28
  • 4000 Miles @ Ashe Cultural Arts Center
    1712 Oretha Castle Haley Blvd.

    • Wednesdays-Saturdays, 8 p.m., Sun., Oct. 23, 2 p.m. and Sun., Oct. 30, 2 p.m. Continues through Nov. 5
  • Close Me Out @ Hi-Ho Lounge
    2239 St. Claude Ave.

    • First Saturday of every month
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    2820 St. Claude Ave.

    • Second Saturday of every month
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