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Posted at 1:49 PM ET, 10/17/2008

Getting Into the Spirit of Halloween

By Stephanie Merry

Some of the colorful monsters from "The Crossing of the Creatures." (By Marta Perez Garcia, courtesy of H&F Fine Arts)

Maybe it's the persistently warm weather, but I can't seem to get myself into a Halloween frame of mind. I've heard similar complaints from people who already have their sexy cop/nurse/cat costumes picked out, yet find that their hearts just aren't in it yet. If you, too, need a little inspiration, then read on for a list of upcoming events to get you in the mood to be terrified.

If art's your bag, then head to Nevin Kelly Gallery for "A History of Dogs and Witches," which opened this week. The exhibition includes a wide array of art by Laurel Hauser, who drew inspiration from the illustrations in Roald Dahl's "The Witches" and (from what I've seen so far) executes with a similarly haunting whimsy. The gallery will also host a fundraiser for the Washington Animal Rescue League Saturday afternoon in conjunction with the show; costumes are encouraged.

Ornate beasts abound at H&F Fine Arts with "The Crossing of the Creatures." The prints and paintings on display by Marta Perez Garcia brim with sharp teeth and wide eyes, which result in a creepy kind of beautiful. For a more classic view of terror, head to St. John's College next week for a selection of Goya's "Los Caprichos." While the aquatint prints aren't quite up to the grotesqueries of "Saturn Devouring His Son," there are still plenty of sinister images.

To take part in the Halloween-themed artistry, Artery 717 hosts Earth Beings on Exhibit on the big night and encourages the use of body as canvas with body painting by Kim Reyes. Girl Loves Distortion will also perform and film a music video during the event.

In the theater world, Joe's Movement Emporium hosts "Haunted," a show inspired by the likes of "The Exorcist," among other horror stories, while Source serves up an evening with the devil in "Temptation," based on the story of Faust. Chesapeake Shakespeare Company makes the plotting Lady MacBeth all the more frightening by staging a version in a park at night among stone ruins.

If you're looking for something more traditionally Halloween-oriented, there are a number of haunted houses and forests, plus movies from classic to noir to straight-up horror.

And if you seek guidance on how to score a prize for your Sarah Palin costume on Halloween night, stay tuned for a blog from Fritz.

-- Stephanie

By Stephanie Merry  | October 17, 2008; 1:49 PM ET
Categories:  Museums, Theater  
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