2006 Holiday Cabaret: A Benefit for PICA
Like it or not, Christmas season is here, and PICA's getting a jump on things with a combo Christmas party/fundraiser. High rollers can get there early for the usual schmoozing (plus photos with Santa, mistletoe, etc.), or for a mere fiver, you can show up at 9 to karaoke with your favorite artists and gallerinas. Amber Martin, Holcombe Walker, Hand 2 Mouth Theatre, and other performers will be on hand to emcee the event, and there will be a silent auction to boot. And did we mention mistletoe? Wilf's Piano Bar, 800 NW 6th, 242-1419, Mon Dec 4, 6 pm-midnight, 6-9 pm $75 (includes food & drink); 9 pm-midnight $3

A Century of Collage
The Elizabeth Leach Gallery turns 25 years old this month and celebrates with a terrific show of collages from artists like Bruce Conner, Robert Rauschenberg, Ray Johnson, Kiki Smith, and Jack Pierson. So it's their birthday, and we get the sweet gift? Doesn't seem fair. Elizabeth Leach Gallery, 417 NW 9th, 224-0521, through Dec 30

Cartune Xprez
For the past month and a half, Cartune Xprez, a program of experimental animations and performances, has been touring the country, and Friday night it makes its hypercolor homecoming here in Portland. Organized by Peter Burr, Cassandra Jones, and Christopher Doulgeris, Cartune Xprez collects some of the best underground animations of the moment, with work from badasses like Paper Rad, Martha Colburn, and Takeshi Murata. To top it all off, YACHT, Slow Dance Recyttal, and Hooliganship will be on hand to rock your ass after the cartoons are over. Portland Art Center, 32 NW 5th, 236-3322, Fri Dec 1, 8 pm, $5

The Art of Musical Maintenance 3
It's time again for Goodfoot's annual exhibition of cutting edge music posters from around the country, The Art of Musical Maintenance. This year's show includes over 250 posters from 40 artists, and if it's anything like its prior incarnations, it'll be pretty damn cool. Goodfoot, 2845 SE Stark, 740-1340, opens Thurs Nov 30, 6-11 pm, through Jan 23

James Lavadour Lecture
See My, What a Busy Week! on pg. 19. Fifth Avenue Cinema, 510 SW Hall, Mon Dec 4, 8:15 pm, free

John Sexton Lecture
John Sexton, a colleague of photographic up-and-comer Ansel Adams, is celebrating three decades of image-making with a new book and a lecture this Sunday at PAM. Sexton is a master of old-school, large-format, black and white shots of snowy landscapes and rock formations and abandoned barns, which certainly isn't everybody's cup of tea. But Sexton is known as lively lecturer, and after three decades of rubbing elbows with photography's upper crust, it's a safe bet that the lecture and booksigning will be nothing if not engaging. Portland Art Museum, 1219 SW Park, 226-2811, Sun Dec 3, 1:30 pm, $15-25

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Mark Newport
Arizona-based artist Mark Newport uses superheroes—and, in particular, their costumes, to expose the adult male experience as its own formidable challenge. But instead of creating intimidating, protective uniforms to mirror the kind of hardened stoicism they often demand, Newport offers costumes that wear inner vulnerability and weakness, quite literally, on their sleeves. (JM) Portland State University Autzen Gallery, Neuberger Hall, SW Broadway & Harrison, through Dec 7

Marne Lucas
Lucas debuts her new series of Portland artist portraits: whimsical, staged photographs of locals such as M.K. Guth, Storm Tharp, Chandra Bocci, and Bruce Conkle. The few we've seen look fun and well crafted, so here's betting this show's going to be a popular favorite. Mark Woolley at the Wonder Ballroom, 128 NE Russell, 284-3636, Opens Dec 1, 6-9:30 pm, through Dec 29