Władysław Kaźmierczak and Ewa Rybska face charges, which they insist are politically motivated, of financial malfeasance from the 2000s, when Kaźmierczak was director of the Baltic Gallery for Contemporary Art in Słupsk. The pair’s work has been critical of the right-wing-nationalist Law and Justice Party, which is currently in power in Poland.
As he once told an interviewer, “I was never on drugs, but everybody thought I was. When they saw The Gong Show, and I would come out, they all thought I was whacked out of my mind. But I never did drugs. I had a public company.”
“Since it was established in 2013, the J. Paul Getty Trust has only recognized six individuals for their extraordinary contributions to the arts. Past recipients of the award include Harold Williams, Nancy Englander, Jacob Rothschild, Frank Gehry, Yo-Yo Ma, and Ellsworth Kelly.”
“[Derek] DelGaudio devises performances that combine sleight-of-hand with more theoretical preoccupations drawn from performance art, conceptual art and what’s known as relational aesthetics … [He] likes to nod to well-known conventions (pick a card, any card), only to slyly deconstruct them, in a manner that either heightens or thwarts their payoffs. His animating goal is not for observers to ask, ‘How did he do that?’ but, ‘Why?'”
Here’s the great irony: the budget of the Los Angeles Philharmonic is now about $120 million a year. The total amount of money we get from the National Endowment for the Arts is about $150,000. So it’s less than one percent of our budget. So we — the New York Philharmonic, the Los Angeles Philharmonic — both of these orchestras will move ahead because that’s about the level that big orchestras receive from the NEA. Who is going to be terribly hurt are the smaller organizations in this city and especially in rural America.
“Dexter, who has died aged 86, claimed that he was no writer, but could revise his ‘bad starts’ into something that worked. The formula was certainly a success for some dozen Morse novels and many original scripts for television, the medium that delivered the doings of the idiosyncratic Morse to an audience across 50 countries.”
“The New York Review, founded in 1963, was born with a mission – to raise the standards of book reviewing and literary discussion in the United States and nurture a hybrid form of politico-cultural essay. Mr. Silvers brought to its pages a self-effacing, almost priestly sense of devotion that ultimately made him indistinguishable from the publication he edited, and it from him.”
The last surviving grandson of oil baron John D. Rockefeller, he rose to the chairmanship of Chase Manhattan Bank. “His stature was greater than any corporate title might convey, however. His influence was felt in Washington and foreign capitals, in the corridors of New York City government, in art museums, in great universities and in public schools.”
“Why did Soviets focus on Hemingway? He first caught their attention in 1935 by writing for the far left American journal New Masses. His article was an angry denunciation of the U.S. establishment for leaving a large group of veterans, at work on government relief, to die in the path of a hurricane that struck the Florida Keys that year. Then, during the Spanish civil war, he came into contact with Comintern agents, Soviet spies, and communist guerrillas. They intrigued and captivated him, all the more so because they were fighting for a cause that had ignited his passion: anti-fascism. “
The problem with most writing about Kristin Stewart post-Twlight is that (especially male) critics want to call her “mysterious” or “withholding.” But “her voice does not modulate wildly because most real voices do not. Her eyebrows do not flail because most eyebrows do not. Stewart does not take something away from her performances in order to tantalize her viewers. Instead, she intentionally fails to reach the pitch of thespian overcookedness audiences are accustomed to.”
“Love or loathe him, none could deny Mr. Breslin’s enduring impact on the craft of narrative nonfiction. He often explained that he merely applied a sportswriter’s visual sensibility to news columns. Avoid the media scrum gathered around the winner, he would advise, and go directly to the loser’s locker.” (You can read some of his writing, older and more recent, at The Daily Beast.)
To put it mildly, Berry was key to rock & roll. “Starting with his first hit, 1955’s ‘Maybellene,’ Berry penned a collection of songs that, in both groove and teen-life mindset, became essential parts of the rock canon: ‘Roll Over, Beethoven,’ ‘Rock & Roll Music,’ and especially ‘Johnny B. Goode’ were witty, zesty odes to the then-new art form — songs so key to the music that they had to be mastered by every fledgling guitarist or band who followed Berry.”
Derek Walcott, whose intricately metaphorical poetry captured the physical beauty of the Caribbean, the harsh legacy of colonialism and the complexities of living and writing in two cultural worlds, bringing him a Nobel Prize in Literature, died early Friday morning at his home near Gros Islet in St. Lucia.
Writer Gabrielle Bellot introduces us to Helen Kane, “Baby” Esther Jones, and the court case over Betty Boop that revealed her origins.
Known by his colleagues as “Mr. Superharp” (“mouth harp” is another name for harmonica), Cotton made his instrument integral to the blues, making landmark recordings with Muddy Waters and Howlin’ Wolf before forming his own band, which influenced an entire generation of blues-rock musicians.
Charles Chu offers excerpts from a letter the playwright/physician/author wrote to his older brother when they were in their mid-20s.
Born on Long Island to a father who had been a leading baritone at La Scala, Dr. Contino founded her first opera company at age 27 and spent five decades as a verismo specialist, conducing and teaching at universities and regional companies across the U.S – including two decades as artistic director of Opera Illinois in Peoria.
“The surprise isn’t that journalists are hard on journalists who fake it: that’s right and just. The surprise is that the punishment is applied so consistently in a field where the practitioners agree on little else about how they do what they do.”
Father Reginald Foster was one of the two chief Latin experts at the Vatican for four decades – and an instructor whose influence has spread through schools and universities all over the U.S. Says one prominent professor who’s a former student, “He is not just the best Latin teacher I’ve ever seen, he’s simply the best teacher I’ve ever seen.” Says another, “I saw him for an hour in Rome in 1985 and that one hour completely changed my life. His approach was completely different from every other Latin teacher out there, and it was totally transformative.”
“[He] was one of the most creative jazz pianists to emerge in the first phase of Europe’s breakaway from American jazz styles in the 1960s … However, he was soon exposing those materials to creative pressures from non-jazz radicals including John Cage and the interdisciplinary experiments being pursued in the US and Europe by futurists, dadaists, and the 1950s Fluxus artists.”
“Mr. Gray did not serve up conventional architectural assessments. Mentions of muntins and mullions were few and far between. Instead, his columns were narratives of creation, abandonment and restoration that lovingly highlighted quirky design and backstairs gossip from decades past.”
“In one form or another, she explained in 2012, since her childhood the United States had been at war —’“the wars were not really limited and were never cold and in many places have not ended — in Latin America, in Africa, in East, South and Southeast Asia.'”
Sledge and her sisters (yes, the group’s name was Sister Sledge) “hailed from Philadelphia and formed the group in the early 70s, inspired by their opera-singing grandmother.” They were thinking about quitting when “We Are Family” started to take over the airwaves (and roller rinks, dance floors, raves and so much more).
Amanda Levete: “There’s only one thing in life that you can’t design … and that’s heritage, but we have a responsibility to breathe new life into it, to be radical as well as sensitive to the past.”
Atwood, in a Reddit Ask Me Anything: “I cannot tell you how strange this feels. I wrote the book hoping to fend it off, and I believe it will be fended off: America is very diverse, a lot of people have been jolted out of political slumber and are paying attention, and the Constitution still stands.”
His brightly colored paintings on wood made him one of Britain’s most popular living artists. While most of them appeared abstract, he insisted for his entire career that he was a figurative painter.
“[He] was celebrated in Latin-jazz circles for more than 40 years, initially as a byproduct of his cultural foundation as a Bronx-born Puerto Rican. But he was wary of being typecast, preferring to describe himself as a ‘world artist,’ and playing … a Peruvian bamboo bass flute, a Romanian pan flute, Bolivian pan pipes, and various other kinds of flute from around the world, typically traveling with more than a dozen varieties.”
The man wrote constantly, and he would do it on anything: notebooks, hotel pads, envelopes, menus, sheet music … Bill Hayes, Sacks’s widower, showed a bunch of his notes to Maria Popova, who transcribed some of the best ones.
Bartolomeo Scappi, who was the personal cook of popes and author of the earliest illustrated cookbook, was the first man known to have scoured different cities for new ingredients and recipes and to have invented new dishes just for the sake of creativity. His banquets were renowned among prelates and nobles all over Europe.
No, he’s not back on TV, but he is talking to New York magazine’s David Marchese about retirement (“I’m lonely, I can’t stop talking. This is like visitors’ day at prison for me.”), late-night TV today (he never watches), and what he’d do if he got The Donald on camera.