When a woman calls her guy a "minute man," it usually spells doom for the relationship -- and his ego. But for artist George Palovich, it's a sizable compliment. Palovich practices gesture drawing, a process in which an artist produces a sketch in 30 to 60 seconds. This method was used by masters including Rembrandt, Rodin, and Picasso; the latter's crayon sketch of a face sold earlier this year for a whopping 40 grand. "It really is part of a natural way of drawing and learning to draw," says Palovich. "There is no time for details. No facial features, no fingers, no toes -- just lines or dashes that suggest their presence." While most of us could barely draw a straight line in one minute, Palovich produces instant, vibrant illustrations that capture the essence of a figure in motion. They'll be on display at the exhibition "Art of the Gesture," opening Friday, November 25, at the West Valley Art Museum, 17420 North Avenue of the Arts in Surprise. Museum curator/director David Tooker says he sees gesture drawing as more than just random scribbling. "It's a kind of calligraphy that can be appreciated as a series of beautiful marks, as well as representations of the figure." The exhibition runs through January 22. Admission is $7. Call 623-972-0635 or visit www.wvam.org. -- Wynter Holden
Art of Noise
Ronnie Wood paints it black
Forget the self-help books. The best inspiration to kick an unhealthy habit might be a portrait of Keith Richards hanging on your wall. Renderings of the weathered medical marvel by the Rolling Stones' "other" guitarist are featured at the "Art of Ronnie Wood" exhibition, open from noon to 5 p.m. Sunday, November 27, at Rock Star Gallery, 16451 North Scottsdale Road in Scottsdale. "Wood has been painting since age 12, and focuses on musicians and wildlife," says gallery co-owner Donna Dunn. Accented by Stones concert footage, the free exhibition is the perfect appetizer for the band's concert that night -- or a substitute if you couldn't score tickets. Call 480-275-4501 or visit www.rockstargallery.net. -- Douglas Towne
"Art of the Gesture"
Your evening's in the bag
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You've gotta wear shades after dark this time of year, what with all the seasonal lighting ceremonies around the Valley. The best, in our opinion, is Las Noches de las Luminarias, the annual candlelight delight at Desert Botanical Garden, 1201 North Galvin Parkway. Las Noches opens with a sneak peek from Friday, November 25, through Sunday, November 27. Call 480-481-8188 or visit www.dbg.org. -- Clay McNear
Central goes south
Visit Amsterdam and Miami -- and see a Vegas show -- all in the same night, when the Amsterdam bar, 716-718 North Central, celebrates the opening of its hyper-hot extension, Club Miami. The additional digs house a beach bar and a spacious dance floor bumping with the best club cuts. And some beachin' booties will be shaking at the grand-opening party on Tuesday, November 29, as DJ Marc E. gets wicky-wicky-wicked with the mixes, and the male revue dance troupe Hot! Hot! Hot! excites the eyes. But the highlight of the evening is a performance by transsexual performer and Las Vegas legend Jahna Steele, who's been awing audiences since the late '80s, when she starred in shows like "Crazy Girls" at the Riviera Hotel and "An Evening at La Cage." The festivities start at 7 p.m. and continue through the night. Admission costs $5. Call 602-258-6122 or visit www.amsterdambar.com. -- Niki D'Andrea