“I don’t mean to sound cynical, but when I look at the films nominated for Best Picture, I can’t help but feel disappointed that such a glittery, bloated event, which costs roughly $38 million to produce, doesn’t have more substance to justify its self-congratulatory pride.”
Archives for February 28, 2014
“As of 2012, 57 percent of museum directors in the United States are women, according to the American Alliance of Museums. In Washington, about 50 percent of museums and historical sites are now led by women.”
“It’s time to rethink that pesky E word: evidence. Evidence = Observations. The problem is that “evidence” means different things to different people.”
“Happy Birthday” generates an estimated $2 million each year in licensing fees for Warner/Chappell, largely from television and movie producers, and it’s not currently set to lose copyright protection until 2030. Avoiding these fees is why restaurant chains like Red Robin and Joe’s Crab Shack serenade customers with their own unique birthday songs.
“Peer review is failing to ensure the quality of published research, and new research fails to get into the hands of those who need it, ending up behind journal paywalls after a review process that can take more than year.”
“For a long time, we’ve had this preconception that life is here on Earth, but the universe is dead. But maybe we should be thinking of this as a living universe. We may be relative latecomers to the game.”
“NBC said it worked with Olympic officials to stop some 45,000 instances of illegally posted video or pirate streams that surfaced to show competition during the Sochi games.”
“Stories of vandalism, destruction, forgery, and theft fascinate us because they are such tidy allegories of our relationship to art, a relationship that, at least since the time of the Armory Show, has consisted of a bizarre admixture of suspicion, discomfort, and occult reverence. Today, these attitudes are neatly characterized by the large fortunes that art sometimes commands.”
“The cost-cutting move comes after the board of the opera company, with ticket sales faltering, decided that it had reached the limit of its donors’ willingness to cover, year after year, the company’s growing expenses, according to a person familiar with the matter.”
“As the only droit de suite in the US, the California statute has served as a test case. It should also serve as a cautionary tale for politicians considering the new Equity for Visual Artists bill, who would do well to learn from its mistakes.”
“Its rebirth comes as Liverpool City Council plans to cut its culture budget by 50% by 2017, although the council said the Everyman would be protected.”
“Where is the equivalent to Adorno on Stravinsky and Schoenberg? Where the monographs to match those on Cubism, or the modern novel? If the link between the “Demoiselles d’Avignon” and temporality in fiction is worth examining, why not between that same painting and Nijinsky’s Sacre du Printemps?”
“The sleepwalker, now knee-deep in snow, has turned into an attraction akin to a meteorite that lands in a farmer’s field. People are coming from all over to see it. It has been clothed, posed with, and photographed almost constantly. Oddly, given the reaction of some at Wellesley, the general feeling generated by the work (at least while I was present) seems to be one of bemused endearment rather than trepidation.”
Sixteen years after the Philharmonic became one of the last big European orchestras to admit women, they are still an exotic sight onstage. Despite a blind audition policy, in which candidates are not visible when they play, the orchestra currently has just seven female members out of 130 total.
“The Minnesota Orchestra board meets Friday to consider the fates of former Music Director Osmo Vänskä and President and CEO Michael Henson. Hanging in the balance is the return of Vänskä, who resigned in October during the historic, 16-month labor lockout, as well as the question of the board’s confidence in Henson.”
“Museum of Fine Arts director Malcolm Rogers, whose 19-year tenure has been marked by massive growth and a slate of exhibitions both popular and controversial, announced Thursday night he will retire as soon as a successor is hired to run the region’s largest art museum.”
“When it was discovered that one artist painted the more than 60 works peddled as Abstract Expressionist originals by the Long Island dealer Glafira Rosales, the revelation seemed incredible.” Turns out there’s more where those came from.
The playwright and screenwriter (Reckless, Prelude to a Kiss, Longtime Companion, Marry Me a Little, The Light in the Piazza) talks about drinking with his mother, running out of money and work even after he became famous, overcoming addiction, and what Philip Seymour Hoffman literally chased him down to say.
“Threats of a strike at Rome’s Teatro dell’Opera, which would have prevented Thursday’s opening night performance of Puccini’s Manon Lescaut and damaged the company’s account books, were averted at the last minute.” The theater’s finances are so bad that Rome’s Mayor has been saying that a strike could force the company to close its doors.
“In the first of our new guest blogs, Candoco Dance Company’s co-artistic director Pedro Machado explains why, in their new work, Notturnino, his company are making it up on the spot. How will it change the dancers’ relationship with the audience?”
Laura Miller: “So she’s kind of creepy and something of a hypocrite. She may be the most unlikable hero in any children’s book, yet children, by the millions, insist on liking her. What’s [her] appeal?” (Miller includes in passing quite a pithy little takedown of Jonathan Franzen.)
“Victims of state persecution, ambassadors for day-glo knitwear and wank fodder for beardy liberals the world over, the members of Pussy Riot have been filling both prison cells and column inches since 2012. In the process, they’ve also become one of the most famous bands on the planet. But let me ask you this – have you ever actually heard any of their music?”
The online ticket seller London Theatre Direct “has said it hopes the money it saves by using this type of payment can be passed onto customers, resulting in cheaper ticket prices.”
“Our race radar isn’t fixed. People subconsciously identify others more strongly by how they work together than by their skin colour.”
“Last year, when I first heard about One Billion Rising, the day of action Ensler had declared to ‘break the silence’ about violence against women, I did not immediately think (as 999,999,999 other women evidently did), ‘Oh hooray, the famous vagina lady is doing something about violence!’ Instead I thought, ‘They’re going to tell us to dance, aren’t they.'”
Boris Johnson, that’s who. After all, he’s got to do something with London’s Olympics park.
Matthew J.X. Malady did the research so we don’t have to. (Spoiler: One of the runners-up was “Like us on Facebook.”)
McNally’s 1988 play Andre’s Mother is a cry of rage and pain by a man who just buried his lover at his lover’s ever-disapproving mother. His new Broadway outing, Mothers and Sons, “dramatize[s] the head-spinning changes in gay America since that earlier play, affecting not only same-sex couples but also people like [that still-disapproving mother].”
“Four human teeth found buried outside Paul Gauguin’s hut in the Marquesas Islands are almost certainly those of the artist … But the discovery throws into question an almost universally held belief among art historians – that the French painter suffered from syphilis.”