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Pencil This In: Henry Rollins at Book Soup, Art and Ossuaries

Book signing in Glendale tonight for 'The Empire of Death: A Cultural History of Ossuaries and Charnel Houses' (Photo: Paul Koudounaris)
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Just in time for the creepy season, the Brand Library in Glendale hosts art historian and author Paul Koudounaris to discuss his new book The Empire of Death: A Cultural History of Ossuaries and Charnel Houses. The book is an international tour of macabre and devotional architectural masterpieces in nearly 20 countries. Tonight at 7 pm.

Rock legend and human rights activist Henry Rollins is at Book Soup tonight at 7 pm to sign and promote his new book Occupants. Rollins has been photographic areas of conflict around the globe for the past 25 years, and Occupants is his new photo essay book with photos from countries including Afghanistan, Iraq, Cambodia, Iran and Kyrgyzstan. Interspersed throughout are poetic essays by Rollins, too.

The new exhibition Women Hold Up Half the Sky opens today at the Skirball Center, featuring documentary photographs, visual art, innovative sound installations and interactive art that addresses gender equality as the human rights cause of our time. The project was inspired by Inspired by the book Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide by Pulitzer Prize-winning journalists Nicholas D. Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn. While examining issues of sex trafficking, gender-based violence and maternal mortality, the exhibition ultimate shares the stories of perseverance, courage and hope from around the world. Included with museum admission: $5-$10. Through March 12, 2012.

Tonight, the Standard, Hollywood opens This Charming Guest, a site-specific portrait and installation series from renowned fashion photographer Shaniqwa Jarvis with a reception from 7:30-9:30 pm. Inspired by her travels and recent solo exhibition, This Charming Man, Jarvis selected seven subjects to photograph in a room at The Standard, wearing their own clothing and surrounded by their personal belongings, shedding light on their stories. Jarvis’ own life installation will also be on display in the lobby. The exhibition will be on view through Nov. 27.

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Tonight, the Gnomon School of Visual Effects in Hollywood host a panel discussion with digital artists including Cecil Kim (God of War series), James Paick (NC Soft, Wizards of the Coast, Naughty Dog) and illustrator Nathan Ota. The artists will discuss their work and the choices that brought the works to life. Following the discussion, there’s a Halloween and zombie-themed figure drawing workshop hosted by Gallery Girls and Sketch Theatre with guest horror artist Apricot Mantle. Panel: 7-9 pm, workshop: 10:30pm-1 am. Admission is free, but RSVPs are required. Space is limited and attendance is first-come, first-served.

There’s a fundraising benefit for Forte Animal Rescue(FAR), a 100% volunteer-run 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, tonight from 7-10 pm at Little Bar on La Brea. Tickets, which include a drink and appetizers and a chance at raffle prizes, are $15 in advance, and $20 at the door. All proceeds from the event go directly to animal care.

*Pencil pick of the day

Want more events? Follow me on Twitter (@christineziemba). Or follow Lauren Lloyd—who takes care of Pencil on Wednesdays (@LadyyyLloyd).