Welcome Mat: November 2019

Your monthly “What to” list


Songs for the Broken Hearted: An exhibition of the photography of Brandon Markin

In the age of social media and influencers, Instagram isn’t so much a window into people’s lives as it is a full-blown immersion. Marriages, births, elation, frustration, high points, low points—we see entire lives unfold from the safe, mitigating distance of the screen. … Which is why it’s so odd to have no idea what Little Rock photographer Brandon Markin’s got planned for his debut solo show. Although it’s safe to make a few assumptions about those 24 images—they’ll be black and white, gritty, shot on film—his insistence on not posting his work beforehand makes for some very refreshing restraint. As he notes in the event’s write-up on Facebook: “I want the material to be fresh, and for the impression you get to be enjoyed in the moment.” And for that, Brandon, we thank you.

Where: Argenta Branch Library

When: Opening Nov. 15: 5 p.m. – 8 p.m.; On view: Nov. 15 – Dec. 13

Details: Search “Songs for the Broken Hearted” on Facebook


23rd Autumn Hot Springs Haiku Conference

Haiku in Hot Springs

A celebration of verse

Don’t you want to go?

They came from Japan

The Seventeenth-century

Challenging but fun

With five, seven, five

Syllables on each small line

A poem is born

Lectures presented

On this timeless tradition

You don’t want to miss

Hark, young grasshopper

Journey to the Spa City

The best part? It’s free.

Where: Arlington Hotel  in Hot Springs

When: Nov. 1-2

Details: Call (501) 767-6096 for more information


72nd Annual Ozark Folk Festival

We can hear it now: the high twang of a mandolin, the jaunty pluck of a banjo, the bright whine of a fiddle. It’s the siren song of the state’s longest continuously running folk festival calling us back to the Ozarks. This month, head up to Eureka Springs for a series of concerts, including a couple of free shows in the city’s Basin Park, headlined by country music legend Marty Stuart. Can’t find your dancing shoes? You won’t need them at the festival’s Barefoot Ball—where freeing your little piggies will save you half off the $10 cover—featuring music from Pierce Edens and performances from finalists in the festival’s singer/songwriter competition. The celebration opens Wednesday, Nov. 6, with the Folk Festival Queen contest and closes Sunday, Nov. 10, with the Folk Festival Parade. After that? That’s all, folk!

Where: Eureka Springs

When: Nov. 6-10

Details: For more information and tickets, visit eurkasprings.org/folk


American Estates

At American Estates’ showroom in downtown Rogers, which held its soft opening on Oct. 29, the bare-bones space has been furnished with their Ozark-hardwood-and-steel-crafted designs. Here’s the thing, though: If you’ve spent any amount of time in Northwest Arkansas, you’ve probably already interacted with their work. Snuggled into a booth at Oven & Tap? Swiveled on the barstools at Bike Rack Brewing? Admired the brass inlays at Onyx Coffee Lab’s new location at The 1907? That’s all AE’s doing, (and a whole lot more). So, yes, make the trip over to their new showroom in time for the grand opening on Nov. 16, but just know that it may be a dangerous trip for your wallet. After all, you’re already sold on their work.

Where: 103 W. Walnut St., Rogers

When: Tuesday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Saturday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.; Closed Sunday and Monday

Details: theamericanestates.com


Martha Redbone

If there’s one driving theme that permeates Martha Redbone’s music, it’s cultural identity. The part-Cherokee, Shawnee, Choctaw and African-American singer has spent her career infusing her songs with the traditions of her heritage, incorporating gospel stylings and Native American percussion and vocalization into the Appalachian folk music from her childhood in the Kentucky hill country. The result is an effortless blend of contemporary indigenous music, soul, blues and Americana. Intrigued? This month, Redbone is visiting Fayetteville, where she’ll host an intimate discussion on all the topics that inspire her work, from racial identity to indigenous rights to cultural preservation, followed the next night by a live concert.

Where: Talk: Fayetteville Public Library; Concert: Faulkner Performing Arts Center

When: Talk: Nov. 14 at 6 p.m.; Concert: Nov. 15 at 7:30 p.m.

Details: faulkner.uark.edu