- Film Guide
You may not have heard of Wayne White, but chances are you’ve encountered his work at one time or another. His Emmy-winning set design on Pee-wee’s Playhouse* (where he also supplied numerous voices) has ensured that he’s left an indelible mark on an entire generation of kids whose warped sense of humor is partially attributable to him. And that’s without mentioning the amazing work he did on the music videos for Peter Gabriel’s “Big Time” and the Smashing Pumpkins’ “Tonight, Tonight”-- further examples of his consummate artistry permeating the pop culture landscape. His work continues much in the same vein today-- painstakingly beautiful yet steadfastly irreverent-- with his paintings bringing him particular acclaim in recent years.
Beauty Is Embarrassing chronicles this artist’s journey far more thoroughly than my Wikipedia-esque career recap could ever hope to, and even better, captures the spirit behind the man that continues to guide his work to this day. White himself has proclaimed that he would like his work to “bring humor into fine art” and all facets of his life exemplify this thought. The craftsmanship is undeniable no matter what the medium (painting, sculpture, animation, set design, puppetry, music) and the work maintains its humor consistently without sacrificing its ability to remain thought-provoking. And tonight’s screening is particularly special because afterwards, you’ll get the opportunity to meet the man-- as well as director Nick Berkeley-- at Alterra Prospect. This is one of the most exciting guests you’ll see at this year’s festival** and there’s no doubt in my mind you’ll have something to say to him after you watch this embarrassingly beautiful documentary.
BEAUTY IS EMBARRASSING screens today (Sunday), 5 PM at the Oriental Theatre. Advanced tickets are no longer available online, but may be purchased at any film festival box office location. Wayne White and Nick Berkeley are scheduled to appear at today's screening, and for a Q & A immediately afterward.
Following the Q & A, join us immediately after the screening at Alterra Prospect (2211 North Prospect Avenue) to meet Wayne White and Nick Berkeley. This Alterra event is free and open to the public.
*Also Beakman’s World and Shining Time Station, so he’s covering plenty of kid quadrants here
**The ghost of Orson Welles remains the most exciting guest you won’t see, however. But when the light hits the concessions stand at the Oriental just so...
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Tom Fuchs is returning for a third year as our featured festival blogger, telling you all about our daily festival picks. Tom has been on our shorts programming committee for all four years of the Milwaukee Film Festival.