With our new national pastimes of waging illegal wars, sending jobs to India, and telling everyone else to screw off, it's easy to think of the American spirit as something to read about in history books. But the exhibit "Salute to America: A Celebration of the American Spirit" is a reminder that not only is our nation's history book still being written but one of the most important chapters is just beginning.
On display at ArtServe's JM Enterprises Family Gallery (1350 E. Sunrise Blvd., Fort Lauderdale), "Salute to America" is a mixed-media collection of works that span the day we broke from overseas tyranny (July 4, 1776) to the day we fell victim to overseas zealotry (September 11, 2001), plus the many cultural artifacts and heroes that fall in between. Judy Lawne's point-blank photograph Ground Zero and Elizabeth Perry's Hieronymus Bosch-inspired painting Nine/Eleven, respectively, portray the realist and religious points of view. Photographer Michael W. Donovan best sums up the American experience in his artist statement for One Nation: "We are a hodgepodge of hatred, love, intolerance, indifference, faith, hope, and blood. But we are one nation."
The exhibit runs through August 25. Call 954-462-9191, or visit www.artserve.org. -- Jason Budjinski
Sex, lies, and motels
Sure, a marriage without sex is like a keg party with O'Doul's. But all the coitus in the world can't make up for the jealousy, infidelity, and flat-out lying that muddied the relationships in the Austrian film Antares, which is shown Friday at Cinema Paradiso (503 SE Sixth St., Fort Lauderdale). The movie chronicles two women who employ innovative methods for dealing with their spousal problems (adultery, a faked pregnancy) as well as a third who can't seem to give her ex-husband the slip. The women live in the same apartment building, and it isn't long before their troubled lives intersect. Written and directed by Götz Spielmann, the film is rife with voyeurism, violence, and v-v-v... (uh, you get the picture). Caution: Antares contains graphic sexual content; be careful when reaching for your buddy's popcorn. The film opens Friday and runs through July 7. Call 954-525-FILM. -- Jason Budjinski
A change of plans
Condo construction in downtown Fort Lauderdale may be on the up-and-up. But if the city's original 1967 master plan had been adopted, the condo boom would have happened a decade ago. That much is evident in the Fort Lauderdale Historical Society's exhibit "Past and Future of Fort Lauderdale and Its Neighborhoods." Curator Todd Bothel culled together an assortment of maps, aerial photographs, and city plans, some of which never came to fruition. "One plan would have placed the bridge at Brickell Avenue, not Andrews," Bothel notes. The exhibit runs through September 30 at the New River Inn (219 SW Second Ave., Fort Lauderdale). Call 954-463-4431. -- Jason Budjinski
Discount! Right Here!
The Fourth is on, and half is off -- the price, that is. As it does every year, Flamingo Gardens (3750 S. Flamingo Rd., Davie) offers a reduced admission of $7.50 for adults and $4 for children. That leaves more cash to spend on photographs, jewelry, paintings, and any of the countless home and garden knickknacks for sale under the shade. Call 954-473-2955. -- Jason Budjinski