Jim Phillips is a cult figure in skateboard art circles all over the world, but the Santa Cruz resident has roots in the East Bay -- he attended Oakland's then-named California College of Arts and Crafts. This was after his drawing of a surfboard-covered Woody station wagon ended up on ubiquitous bumper stickers, before he created the poster for the Doors' first East Coast tour, and long before Phillips and his son, Jimbo, created hundreds of trademark skateboard decks for Santa Cruz Skateboards. You can see some of their creations, alongside four-wheeled works by student artists, at Deckarama at Ohlone College's Louie Art Gallery, this Wednesday through April 11. There will be a reception tonight, with skate demos from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. (holy ollie, Batman, this shit is fine art now), and an artists' panel from 7:30 to 8:45 p.m. The gallery is in the Gary Soren Smith Center, 43600 Mission Blvd., Fremont. Please note that the gallery will be closed for Spring Break, March 15-19. Info: 510-659-6000. -- Stefanie Kalem
Something about Gainesville being the only real college town in the Sunshine State has made for a whole lot of interesting, angsty sounds -- and a whole lot of punks with beards. Check out the whiskers on Against Me! drummer Warren Oakes, f'rinstance. The band isn't afraid to bust up some punk paradigms, either, with loping acoustic numbers on each album. In fact, its 2002 record, Reinventing Axl Rose, has an acoustic guitar track stashed in every song. And it ably continues the tradition of Hot Water Music, with multiple vocalists and literate lyrical acumen (So can your pop sensibilities sing me the end of the world?/Turn gunshots and mortar blasts into a metaphor of how we are all the same). Against Me! plays Berkeley's 924 Gilman Friday with Tennessee's Lucero, fellow Gainesvillians Grabass Charleston, Mike Park, and Love Songs. 8 p.m., all ages, $5. -- Stefanie Kalem
Borders are dissolving all over the world these days, for artists as well as everyone else. Naturally, artists see things differently. Take Ojos Indígenas/Indigenous Eyes , a collective mixed-media art exhibition (painting, photography, sculpture, installation) in honor of International Women's Day at Corazón del Pueblo in Oakland, 4814 International Blvd. Among the mestiza and native women artists -- from Mexico, the Philippines, and the United States -- is Celia Monge Mana, painter of Untitled (Tonantzin) (right). Admission is free. Corazón del Pueblo was founded in 1996. Phone 510-532-6733 for details. -- Kelly Vance
Hawaii and San Francisco don't seem to have a whole lot in common aside from a perpetual influx of tourists. But the Aloha State and Fog City both boast bustling reggae scenes, and this weekend they share the stage at Ashkenaz (1317 San Pablo Ave., Berkeley). Humble Soul and Marty Dread bring the sunshine, while Native Elements represents Frisky Town. 9:30 p.m. $13. 510-981-2800. -- Stefanie Kalem
Divas of Shanghai
Glamorous, steel-willed Asian divas have hijacked this year's San Francisco International Asian American Film Festival, and the only recourse is to lie back with a trayful of takeout sushi and enjoy every day of it. The festival is a must-do for slaves of Zhang Ziyi (Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon). The actress is back with two major films: opening night's Hero, the long-awaited Zhang Yimou-directed martial arts epic shot by Christopher Doyle and also featuring Jet Li, Tony Leung, Maggie Cheung, and Donnie Yen. For fans of director Lou Ye (Suzhou River), Zhang stars in Purple Butterfly as a resistance fighter in 1930s Shanghai. Compare her fight power with that of the young Cheng Peipei in a revival of King Hu's 1965 classic Come Drink with Me.
Also bound for Shanghai is early Hollywood diva Anna May Wong in a four-film retrospective, including the restored British silent Piccadilly, in which she plays a slinky scullery maid, all ambition in ripped stockings. Closing night brings Imelda, a documentary profile of shoe-hoarder and former Philippine first lady Imelda Marcos, damning herself in her own words beamed from another planet -- her explanation of her "Circles of Life" metaphysics complete with wacky smiley-face diagrams is one clue. See Dekada '70 for a corrective view of her times.
As usual, the Pacific Film Archive has chosen some of the more interesting selections for our side of the bay. A Good Lawyer's Wife, starring the astonishingly physical actress Moon So-ri (Oasis), is a riveting domestic melodrama. Kurosawa Kiyoshi's acclaimed Bright Future, only superficially about a young man's devotion to a slippery poison jellyfish, tempers apocalyptic creepiness with human warmth. For more info, visit NAATAnet.org -- Frako Loden
What the Fork - March 24, 10:21 AM
What the Fork - March 14, 2:30 PM
What the Fork - March 14, 11:39 AM
What the Fork - March 6, 11:53 AM
What the Fork - March 2, 5:12 PM