Elaine Summers, Co-Founder Of Judson Dance Theater, Dead At 89

SUMMERS

“Throughout her work, Ms. Summers was fascinated by the interplay of form and movement, something, she realized, that dance and film could exploit both singly and in combination. Through film, she was able not only to capture the motion of a dance itself, but also to add contrapuntal movement through camera work and cutting.”

Email this to someoneShare on FacebookTweet about this on Twitter

Architect Buys, Tears Down Ray Bradbury’s House

la-et-jc-ray-bradburys-house-sold-for-176-mill-001

“According to Curbed, Bradbury’s house was purchased by “starchitect” Thom Mayne, of the firm Morphosis, and his wife, Blythe Alison-Mayne. Mayne, who is on the faculty at UCLA, is a winner of the Pritzker Prize. Bradbury, who typed “Fahrenheit 451″ on a pay-as-you-go typewriter at the UCLA library, was presented with the National Medal of Arts in 2004.”

Email this to someoneShare on FacebookTweet about this on Twitter

Mark Rylance Gets Metaphysical

rylance

“We have people we admire, like Einstein, saying mystery is the most beautiful thing a human being can experience. Yet everywhere in our culture everything that is truly mysterious is immediately dismissed. In a way I think science is the modern religion and at times I despise it as much as I despise other religions, because it really will only accept stuff that fits its masculine ability to define the world.”

Email this to someoneShare on FacebookTweet about this on Twitter

Jake Berthot, 75, A Romantic Sort Of Minimalist Painter

BERTHOT

“In many ways, Mr. Berthot spent his career exploring how to supplement and expand on the modernist monochrome without straying too far from it.” After a 1996 move to rural upstate New York, “the natural world became an increasing influence. He turned to depicting trees and hills so close in tone to their backgrounds that they almost seemed carved from them.”

Email this to someoneShare on FacebookTweet about this on Twitter

Robert Stone, 77, Novelist Of Americans At War

robert stone

The author of Dog Soldiers and A Flag for Sunrise “was widely regarded as one of the most significant novelists of his generation,” often compared to Conrad and Hemingway. “[He] took readers into the underworlds of drugs, violence and strife, both cultural and personal. His characters were sometimes strung out, often morally ambiguous and, above all, real.”

Email this to someoneShare on FacebookTweet about this on Twitter

Comedian And Playwright Taylor Negron Dead At 57

taylor-negron

“[He] started doing local stand-up gigs when he was still in high school. As his reputation grew, so did the variety of his roles: Negron played comic and serious characters on TV shows including Hill Street Blues, Seinfeld and Curb Your Enthusiasm. He was a familiar face in film comedies such as Fast Times at Ridgemont High and Easy Money.”

Email this to someoneShare on FacebookTweet about this on Twitter

Filmmaker Francesco Rosi, 92

francesco rosi

“The French critic Michel Ciment once counted Mr. Rosi among ‘the three last giants of Italian cinema,’ the others being Federico Fellini and Michelangelo Antonio. His films won top prizes at the Cannes, Venice and Berlin film festivals. Yet he never acquired the kind of international fame many of his peers knew.”

Email this to someoneShare on FacebookTweet about this on Twitter

Leo Tolstoy’s Diary Obsession

tolstoy

From his student days, the Count tried to use what we now call journaling as a tool for everything from self-improvement to capturing the nature of time, memory, and the innermost self. (It didn’t really work, alas.)

Email this to someoneShare on FacebookTweet about this on Twitter

What Makes ‘Selma’ Director Ava DuVernay Different

AVAHEADSHOT_300-640x427

“Selma could have been a run of the mill biopic—following a tremendous man who made tremendous changes. But DuVernay makes Martin Luther King Jr. more than the myth—she makes him human. … DuVernay looks at Selma as a story of the community and all the people who were integral to making change happen, showing the quiet moments in between the escalating tension.”

Email this to someoneShare on FacebookTweet about this on Twitter

Novelist Robert Stone Was Inspired By War Abroad And At Home

obit-stone-articleLarge

The novelist died at 77 on Saturday. “‘It’s literally true that the world is seen by the superpowers as a grid of specific targets,’ he told The Paris Review in 1985.’“We’re all on military maps. There happens to be no action in those zones at present, but they’re there. And then there are the wars we fight with ourselves in our own cities. It is the simple truth that, wherever you are, there is an armed enemy present, not far away.'”

Email this to someoneShare on FacebookTweet about this on Twitter

Life As A Character Actor, By A Character Actor Who Just Died Too Early

taylor negron

Taylor Negron: “My heyday is coming to an end. Parts for the alternative everyman are increasingly scarce. I have had to let go of my dream of being in a Hobbit movie. This will never happen unless Bilbo Baggins orders a pizza and we all know that when a hobbit orders a pizza in Middle Earth, someone is going down a wet, nasty, dirty hole.”

Email this to someoneShare on FacebookTweet about this on Twitter

Gospel Legend Andraé Crouch Dead At 72

andrae crouch

“A dyslexic who in childhood had a bad stutter, Crouch was known for pioneering a gospel sound with a contemporary feel – sometimes to the dismay of critics who felt his work was too secular. But he and his group the Disciples received multiple Grammys for their efforts. In 2004, Crouch became only the third gospel artist to be awarded a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.”

Email this to someoneShare on FacebookTweet about this on Twitter

Master Forger (Of Dorothy Parker) Lee Israel, 75

LEEISRAEL-obit-articleLarge

“In the early 1990s, with her career at a standstill, she became a literary forger, composing and selling hundreds of letters that she said had been written by Edna Ferber, Dorothy Parker, Noël Coward, Lillian Hellman and others. That work, which ended with Ms. Israel’s guilty plea in federal court in 1993, was the subject of her fourth and last book, the memoir “Can You Ever Forgive Me?,” published by Simon & Schuster in 2008.”

Email this to someoneShare on FacebookTweet about this on Twitter

The Cellist As Performance Artist

31864121-3ca3-4bdf-82f1-17c7c4eff761-620x372

“After failing to establish herself as a soloist, and earning a reputation for lateness that she could only partly counter with her Southern graces, Charlotte Moorman fell in with the avant garde. The rigour and delight with which she embraced the work of composers such as Cage, Paik and La Monte Young was matched only by the awe and indulgence with which she was treated – for a time.”

Email this to someoneShare on FacebookTweet about this on Twitter

“Satan” Of Art? Oh Come Now…

L1006735

“To suggest, as the Times does, that Simchowitz is the author of a form of financial innovation on par with the swashbuckling junk bond market that Michael Milken commanded from LA before his conviction on securities fraud is surely not believable.”

Email this to someoneShare on FacebookTweet about this on Twitter

From Babe The Pig To Chuckie The Rugrat – The Many Voices Of (The Late) Christine Cavanaugh

christine cavanaugh

“If you’re a young adult of a certain age, Christine Cavanaugh’s distinct voice probably plays a role in the pop culture memories from your childhood … Cavanaugh died last month at the age of 51, and in tribute to her work we’ve highlighted some of her best turns as both a voice actor and as a character actor.” (video)

Email this to someoneShare on FacebookTweet about this on Twitter

He Defied The Communists – With Poetry

baranczak-obit-blog427

“A writer who combined broad learning with sly incisiveness, Mr. Baranczak was widely considered a ‘dissident’ poet for his subtly acerbic political poems and his activism. In the 1970s he was banned from publishing in Poland, though he continued to write for underground outlets, and his work became a samizdat pass-around.”

Email this to someoneShare on FacebookTweet about this on Twitter

When You Write A Book Of Personal Essays And Everyone Loves It, What’s Left To Say?

MeghanDec15-1-243x366

“We’re fundamentally attached to the redemption narrative: I was lost but now I’m found, I sinned but now I’m saved, I made lemonade from lemons, and so on. But the question I ask in different ways throughout the book is what happens when or if you don’t come out of a tough situation a better or changed person? What if you’re just the same person? And why is that not actually the best outcome?”

Email this to someoneShare on FacebookTweet about this on Twitter

The Rise And Fall Of Producer Norman Lear

imgres-1

“No species of fame is as fleeting as the sort bestowed by network TV. But Lear fell further, faster, and more fully than most, and it is noteworthy that he has nothing to say about this descent in his newly published autobiography, Even This I Get to Experience,1 in which he is fairly forthcoming about most other aspects of his long and eventful life (he is 92 years old).”

Email this to someoneShare on FacebookTweet about this on Twitter

Museum Contests Value Of Sendak Estate

010114-Maurice-Sendak-600

The value of 800 rare books at the center of a legal dispute between the executors of Maurice Sendak’s will and the Rosenbach of the Free Library of Philadelphia is estimated at $1.65 million, according to a figure offered by the Sendak estate in probate court filings. But the Rosenbach, which is suing Sendak’s estate, puts the value much higher.
Read more at

Email this to someoneShare on FacebookTweet about this on Twitter

What Made Philip Larkin So Great

imgres

If Larkin, who died in 1985, woke up today, he would have good reason to scream. The three decades following his death have savaged his reputation. “I have no enemies,” he once joked, “but my friends don’t like me.” Posterity proved the second part of that statement correct.

Email this to someoneShare on FacebookTweet about this on Twitter