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The week ahead: Theater, galleries, and museums

Karl Stevens’s “Alex: The Pond.’’

Karl Stevens’s “Alex: The Pond.’’

Get real

KARL STEVENS: FOUR PORTRAITS Stevens offers realist portraits of his girlfriend, his best friend, his studio model, and himself, supplemented with drawings and watercolors that convey something of their lives, and of the artist’s process filtering everyday life into art. Through Dec. 21. Carroll and Sons, 450 Harrison Ave. 617-482-2477, www.carrollandsons.net

CATE MCQUAID

Theater

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WINDOWMEN Steven Barkhimer wrote this gritty, funny look back at his days working in New York’s Fulton Fish Market. Stars Alex Pollock, Will Lyman and new-to-Boston Brandon Whitehead. Through Nov. 24. Boston Playwrights’ Theatre. 866-
811-4111, www.bostonplaywrights.org

JOEL BROWN

THE TURN OF THE SCREW Staged in two Victorian mansions — the Gibson House Museum in the Back Bay and the Taylor House Bed and Breakfast in Jamaica Plain — this haunting production takes terrific advantage of Jeffrey Hatcher’s spare adaptation of Henry James’s tale. Director M. Bevin O’Gara effectively uses every inch of the tight playing space, suggesting eerie possibilities just out of sight. Extended through Nov. 24. Simple Machine. www.simplemachinetheatre.com

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THE NORMAL HEART Nearly 30 years after Larry Kramer’s play became a rallying cry in the fight against AIDS, this production captures both the fury and heartbreak of this powerful drama. Much of the credit for the impact of this production goes to director and designer David J. Miller’s vision, which embraces the play’s polemics and its very personal love story. Ultimately, this production reminds us of the devastating impact of AIDS and the vital importance of speaking up. Through Nov. 23. Zeitgeist Stage Company, Plaza Black Box Theatre, Boston Center for the Arts. 617-933-8600, www.zeitgeiststage.com

THE HOBBIT Matthew T. Lazure’s creative costumes and elegant, two-tiered set stand out as the stars of this charming production. Lazure doesn’t need the film’s elaborate computer-generated animation, because he includes just the right elements to spark the imagination and create the right mood for Bilbo Baggins’s unexpected adventure. Andrew Barbato offers a pitch-perfect performance as Bilbo, allowing us to watch the fussy, nervous homebody grow in self-confidence, while Stephen Benson is a remarkably agile and suggestively slimy Gollum. Through Nov. 24. Wheelock Family Theatre. 617-879-2300, www.wheelockfamilytheatre.org

TERRY BYRNE

Dance

HELICOPTERS: AN EVENING OF LIVE MUSIC WITH DANCE Swiss-Italian choreographer Angelo Dello Iacono and his company ADN Dialect join forces with Boston composer Ben Schwendener for an evening of jazz and modern dance. Performers also include dancers led by Shari Repasz and students from Boston Arts Academy and Boston Conservatory. Nov. 21, 8 p.m. $20, $15 seniors, students. Multicultural Arts Center, Cambridge. 617-577-1400, www.multiculturalartscenter.org

PLUG INTO THE PROCESS This Boston Center for the Arts dance residency presentation showcases a work in progress by Weber Dance that explores the dichotomy between the artificial constraints of daily work life and our natural cycles. The presentation involves ongoing conversation with the audience as the company tries to polish the work. Nov. 22-23, 8 p.m., $15, $12 seniors, students. Calderwood Pavilion, Boston Center for the Arts. 617-933-8600, www.bostontheatrescene.com

INNOVATION THROUGH MOTION SHOWCASE Shadows Dance Art Experience brings together a wide range of performers in dance, music, slam poetry, and comedy. Dance styles range from contemporary and hip-hop to ballet, with guest artists including Impact Dance Company, Endearment Dance Company, and Forty Steps Dance, among others. Nov. 23, 2 p.m. $20, Free for children under 10. Steps Off Broadway, 799 South Main St., Bellingham. 508-983-4836, www.facebook.com/shadowsdanceartexperience

HARVEST CORNUCOPIA Kira Seamon doesn’t just dance, she choreographs her own solos, plays piano, and creates photography that adds another dimension to her presentations. Her new one-woman multimedia production, a free concert in celebration of Thanksgiving, combines dance, poetry, music, and film. Nov. 27, 2 p.m. Free. Traditions of Dedham, 735 Washington St., Dedham. www.kiraseamon.com

KAREN CAMPBELL

Galleries

ELISE ADIBI: METABOLIC PAINTINGS Smell is perhaps our most primal sense. Painter Elise Adibi mixes essential plant oils used in aromatherapy with her oil paint in abstract works that inevitably call us back to our bodies. Through Dec. 20. Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, Harvard University, 8 Garden St., Cambridge. 617-495-8212, www.radcliffe.harvard.edu/event/2013-metabolic-paintings-exhibit

JUDY KENSLEY McKIE From her “Dragon Settee” to her “Gazelle Headboard,” the studio furniture maven presents new work in bronze and wood, sporting stylized critters (don’t miss the sharp arcs of the wings in “Crane Coffee Table”) and vibrant geometric patterns. Through Dec. 14. Gallery NAGA, 67 Newbury St. 617-267-9060, www.gallerynaga.com

JOHN C. GONZALEZ: ODD JOBS Samson presents a pop-up show at a storefront at the edges of the financial district featuring Gonzalez, a multimedia conceptual artist. Relationship and collaboration form the core of his work, which examines transactions with collectors, fellow artists, and laborers. Through Nov. 30, 225 Friend St. 617-357-7177, www.samsonprojects.com

CATE MCQUAID

Museums

JOHN SINGER SARGENT WATERCOLORS More than 90 of Sargent’s beloved watercolors in a show that combines the superb Sargent collections of the Museum of Fine Arts and the Brooklyn Museum of Art. Through Jan. 20. Museum of Fine Arts. 617-267-9300, www.mfa.org

SOPHIE CALLE: LAST SEEN Fourteen works incorporating photography and text by the provocative French artist. The works, made in 1991 and 2012, respond to the 1990 theft from the Gardner of Jan Vermeer’s “The Concert.” Through March 3. Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum. 617-566-1401, www.gardnermuseum.org

2013 DECORDOVA BIENNIAL New England’s contemporary artists are featured in this closely watched survey featuring work in all media. Through April 13. deCordova Sculpture Park and Museum, Lincoln. 781-259-8355, www.decordova.org

SEBASTIAN SMEE

Worcester Art Museum

Detail of Gerrit van Honthorst’s “Smiling Young Man Squeezing Grapes.’’

Old is new again

RE-MASTERED An innovative new hang of the Worcester Art Museum’s superb Old Master holdings, in honor of a great — and sexy— new Veronese acquisition. Includes great paintings by Rembrandt, Caravaggio, El Greco, Poussin, Luca Giordano, Murillo, Ribera, Hals, Steen, Sweerts, and van Mieris. Worcester Art Museum, Worcester. 508-799-4406, www.worcesterart.org

SEBASTIAN SMEE

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