New Gallery at the Mount Baker Artist Lofts: One of the street-level orgs going into the new Mount Baker Artist Lofts—located on Rainier Avenue right next to Mount Baker's light rail stop—is this mouthful: the Mount Baker Neighborhood Center for the Arts and Casa de Esperanza Gallery. Jointly (from what we can gather), they form "a unique art gallery focusing on artists with disabilities," which is festively opening the weekend of August 22 with a free reception and exhibition and workshops, and a $40 fundraising dinner. Find out everything here. Note!: The featured artist that weekend is Jim Stevens, a man who specializes in the wild art of scrimshaw while also being essentially blind due to having been shot in the head while serving in Vietnam. Whoa. He'll be on hand, and his art will be on display. Plus, his artist bio contains this: "He also teaches the art of scrimshaw for the National Rifle Association’s Gunsmithing School." We have never before seen an artist bio like this one.
Congratulations to Kathy Liao, Condolences to Seattle: The rising painter Kathy Liao is moving away for a steady teaching gig at Missouri Western State University. You do not feel that is a prestigious place? You do not know how hard it is to land steady teaching gigs in the arts. Thankfully, she'll still be represented in Seattle at Prographica.
Omigodomigodomigod: Conan O'Brien will join the Los Angeles Gay Men's Chorus to perform The Simpson's "Monorail Song" live at the Hollywood Bowl.
I See Your Monkey Selfie: And raise you several paintings by an orangutan. (The paintings are the work of a 46-year-old male orangutan named Towan, and "will be raffled off during Woodland Park Zoo's annual Asian Wildlife Conservation Day on Aug. 9, 2014," reports Seattlepi.com.)
Well, This Won't Work: Google and Barnes & Noble are teaming up to compete against Amazon with same-day shipping in certain cities.
GEEK LADY CAMARADERIE: Lucy Knisley's San Diego Comicon sketchbook is goddamned delightful and features several cameos from local comics publisher Fantagraphics, which is publishing an upcoming book by Knisley.
Small-Press Books Are Safe...for Now: We were not fans of Hachette's announced plan to buy small-press distributor Perseus and spin it out to gigantic book distributor Ingram. So today's news is very welcome:
On Thursday afternoon, Perseus Books Group ceo David Steinberger told employees that the deal struck in late June to sell Perseus to HBG, with the Perseus Distribution lines to be immediately sold to Ingram, has fallen apart and been cancelled. "The planned transaction involving our company, Hachette and Ingram is not moving forward," Steinberger wrote. "Despite much effort from all three parties, we could not reach agreement on everything necessary to close the transaction."
We've talked to a lot of small publishers in the last few months who were feeling doomed at the news of Perseus's sale. Hopefully this cancellation isn't just a brief stay of execution for small presses.