This year’s black-culture celebration explores Afrofuturism, a forward-thinking and funkadelic proposition and aesthetic. The eclectic programming includes the dance project Zayo! (Feb. 7, 8 p.m.; Feb. 8, 4:30 p.m., free), a screening of Sun Ra: A Joyful Noise (Robert Mugge’s excellent 1980 documentary on the interstellar musician; Feb. 17, 4 p.m., free), and a chat with Roxane Gay, the American feminist whose debut novel An Untamed State is a riveting tale of a kidnapping and its lingering trauma (Feb. 7, 4:30 p.m., $18.) Feb 6 to 8. Harbourfront Centre, 235 Queens Quay W., 416-973-4000 or harbourfrontcentre.com.
Basquiat: Now’s the Time
Say it, don’t spray it? Perish the thought. The AGO mounts Canada’s first major retrospective of Jean-Michel Basquiat, the graffiti-tagging iconoclast and onetime “radiant child” of New York. The late artist had a jazzman’s sense of abstract expressionism and often crossed out words, not for concealment but for emphasis. “The fact that they are obscure,” he explained, “makes you want to read them.” Look deep, then. Feb. 7 to May 10. $16.50 to $25. Art Gallery of Ontario, 317 Dundas St. W., 416-979-6648 or ago.net.
Toronto Sportsmen’s Show
You’re not a lumberjack but a hipster in boots, beard and fashionable plaid, and you’re okay. Still, the real thing will appear at this country’s largest woodsy-outdoorsy show, which features axe-throwers and chainsaw maestros exhibiting manly arts. Other attractions include choreographed canines and poses with porcupines. To Feb. 8. $13 to $19 (family pass for four, $45). Direct Energy Centre, Exhibition Place, 100 Princes’ Blvd., torontosportshow.ca.
Jack Nicholson, Naomi Campbell, Clint Eastwood, Steve Jobs, Bill Clinton, Kate Moss and Warren Buffett. They all posed for Albert Watson and they were all rock stars in their chosen field. The Scottish portrait-taker and Vogue magazine specialist also shot Rolling Stones riff maker Keith Richards, destined to become the last rock star standing, as well as the subject of one of 34 silver gelatin prints (handmade on display at the Izzy Gallery. To March 28. Free. 106 Yorkville Ave., 416-922-1666 or izzygallery.com.
Progress Theatre Festival
Don’t talk with your mouth full. In fact, don’t talk with your mouth empty, either. A new international festival boasts ticketed and free productions, the latter of which includes Silent Dinner, an eight-hour affair in which participants (some of whom are deaf) won’t say a word. The piece, with audience members free to come and go (Feb. 7, 1 to 9 p.m.), concerns the complex layers of negotiation and communication. To Feb. 15. Theatre Centre, 1115 Queen St. W., 416-538-0988 or thisisprogress.ca.