The Slap and Tickle (504 East 18th Street, 816-716-5940) takes its name from a cockney slang expression for foreplay, so it's fitting that the gallery currently contains a risqué exhibit behind its bright-red doors. Erotica, which opens tonight at 6, features burlesque performances from St. Louis' Sturdy Gurlesque, who works fire-breathing and other flame-play into her routines, and Kansas City's Rita Brinkerhoff, who first aroused local interest in vaudevillian dirty dancing five years ago with her Burly-Q Girly Crew. Singer Cheri Woods handles the music, and gallery owner Apryl McAnerney promises that "sexy songs" will be part of the program. (Squeeze's "Slap and Tickle" might be an apt cover, with its cryptically naughty chorus: Never chew a pickle with a little slap and tickle/You have to throw the stone to get the pool to ripple.) Contributing visual artists include McAnerney, Dana Swedo-Bernal, Alan Winkler, Lori Raye Erickson and Jennifer Boe.
Fri., Feb. 1, 6 p.m., 2008