“Do we have to do all of those things to be considered an arts journalist? Old-fashoned newspaper journalists have fought a rearguard action for more than a decade, except now they (we!) are surrounded, overwhelmed and increasingly angry about it.”
“A number of studies have found people feel worse after scrolling Facebook – more envious, lonely, even angry. In one German study, people were particularly unhappy after viewing vacation photos. They were also more envious when browsing Facebook instead of actively using it by posting comments and photos of themselves.”
Governor Jerry Brown’s budget plan calls for “an overall 8.5% spending increase, including major boosts to education, but envisions a $9,000 cut for the state’s arts-grant agency, the California Arts Council — from a projected $5.058 million in the current fiscal year to $5.049 million in the 2014-15 budget year that begins July 1.”
Tearing down New York’s Folk Art Museum: “Mine is not necessarily a view that everyone can accept: to many observers, the Folk Art building seems, like all too many museums these days, to be a grand-scale sculpture that fails to showcase the art it was built to house. But if that is MoMA’s opinion, then it should say so, which could help stimulate a worthwhile public discussion on the aesthetic of architecture.”
Alaa Al-Aswany (The Yacoubian Building) was a strong opponent of the Mubarak regime and champion of the Arab Spring, and he cheered his homeland’s first democratic elections. A year later, he cheered the military’s overthrow of Presdient Morsi and the elected Muslim Brotherhood government – and most of Egypt’s intelligentsia (and a quite a lot of the public) cheered right along with him. What happened?
Since their release, Maria Alyokhina and Nadezhda Tolokonnikova have begun using their new-found fame, connections and energy for the cause of prison reform. Masha Gessen describes the horrific conditions they faced in their penal colonies and explains why this new work could have far more resonance within Russia than singing about Putin in a Moscow cathedral did.
“Michael Price, who has led Goodspeed Musicals in Connecticut since 1968, producing more than 200 shows and sending 19 of them to Broadway” – including Annie, By Jeeves and Shenandoah – “will retire at the end of the year, the theater company’s board of trustees announced on Thursday.”
“We simply do not have the financial resources to continue. We had hoped a large donation from an individual would arrive in time, but regrettably it did not materialize, and in the absence of any other funding, the board had no choice but to cancel the rest of the season and cease operations.”
A Brooklyn theater company is mounting a site-specific production of Albee’s The Death of Bessie Smith – “which by most evidence is based on an apocryphal account of how Smith, the black, early-20th-century blues singer, was denied treatment at a whites-only hospital” – at a struggling community medical center.