Southern Exposure is filled with awesome art right now, with three solo exhibitions on display by Ginger Wolfe-Suarez, Kenneth Lo, and Jaime Cortez. It was Cortez who drew me to the gallery Saturday night for an evening of poetry and performances in conjunction with his Michael-Jackson-themed show Universal Remote. Now before we go any further I will be the first to admit I've never been much of an MJ fan, but to my surprise Cortez himself was also quick to confess his own ambivalence at the beginning of the program. He went on to say it was his realization that Jackson had still managed to touch every decade of his life that led him to create the art in his show, which ranges from his own fairy tale about the origin of Jackson's voice to publicity posters that have been cut apart and woven back together again. That art was a perfect backdrop to the evening's presentations, including everything from the poem Marvin White wrote for his sister after MJ's death to half-sung/half-read poetry by Cedric Brown augmented by some killer dance moves from his nephew (decked out in full-on Thriller-era garb, no less). Ignacio Valero introduced an excerpt of a scholarly essay he is working on that explores the cultural implications of Jackson's death, while Tisa Bryant read a devastating prose piece about growing up in love with Michael. Last but definitely not least Cortez himself narrated a clip from The Fifth Element in his inimitable neo-benshi style, brilliantly reinterpreting Leeloo's reincarnation scene as if Jackson himself was being reborn as a very disoriented Milla Jovovich. You should have been there.