“A lot of people are saying this is showing that AI is prejudiced. No. This is showing we’re prejudiced and that AI is learning it.”
“There was a huge amount of publicity. It was a symbolic act. We could explain to journalists that the situation for artists is really poor, that we’ve not done well, that we are outside the system.” The mission of those striking was to raise awareness that “most cultural producers are poor,” and “remain outside the system of pension and health insurance.”
The Catcher in the Rye, which spent thirty weeks on the New York Times’ best-seller list, had generated immeasurable publicity and adulation for Salinger, who wanted none of it. Among his new suitors were such Hollywood bigwigs as Samuel Goldwyn and David O. Selznick, both vying for the screen rights to Catcher. They failed to secure Salinger’s approval, as did many others, in turn—but that didn’t stop Bill Mahan, an unemployed former child star and devoted fan from Los Angeles, from giving it a shot. In the early sixties, he resolved to claim the film rights himself, even if it meant disturbing Salinger at home.
Liesl Schillinger: “Those of a populist mind-set attack so-called elitist art forms as boring; those of an elitist mind-set attack so-called populist art forms as facile and unworthy. But in either case, it’s usually the mind-set, not the work itself, that raises hackles.”
Adam Kirsch: “The truth is, however, that few writers ever make a conscious choice between elitism and populism, difficulty and accessibility. Writers write as their minds and fates compel them to.”
“While U.S. theatres have a long way to go in terms of equity, diversity, and inclusion, they are a multicultural utopia compared to the narrow demographics of those who write about the thea¬tre … That’s why American Theatre is proud this year to help administer an arts journalism track as part of the Rising Leaders of Color Program.”
“[It was] a challenge akin to a top pitching prospect’s deciding to become an outfielder. … She struggled through lean years without much work as she reinvented herself, taking on credit card debt for the first time as she and her husband raised a family in suburban New Jersey.”
“Much of the visual dynamism associated with Fassbinder and Scorsese must be credited also to Ballhaus. There are the complicated but elegant compositions in Fassbinder, for example, where closeups, reaction shots and the simultaneous movement of actors are often incorporated into a single frame without recourse to cutting … There are the accelerated zooms and dolly shots in Scorsese’s films, where the camera rushes toward a face or an object to afford it special emphasis.”
Fanny Mendelssohn died at the age of 41, having written 500 pieces. That’s … a lot. And more keep being discovered: “In only March of this year, it was discovered that her Easter Sonata, once credited to her brother, was actually hers, and it was played live under her name for the very first time this year.”
The company appears to have fixed its problems with the festival: “Up until now, Cannes had snubbed Netflix, saying the company’s online-first approach to film releases bypasses cinemas and should be discouraged. It is notable that both Okja and The Meyerowitz Stories will have theatrical releases.”
Google Books was the company’s first big idea, the first moonshot, the first thing that would change everything. “Two things happened to Google Books on the way from moonshot vision to mundane reality. Soon after launch, it quickly fell from the idealistic ether into a legal bog.” And then? It lost any ambition.
“Much has been written about Miss Saigon, primarily by white writers: about the yellowface controversy, about the actors involved. But very few Vietnamese-Americans have weighed in. We are the sixth-largest immigrant group in America, numbering 1.3 million. And yet popular narratives of the Vietnam War typically exclude us. And as Miss Saigon tours the country next year, the most popular narrative of all will continue to shut us out.”
Herzog says his humor has been buoyed over the past 20 years by his living in Los Angeles, which he turned to after things didn’t work out with San Francisco. “My wife and I found it not the most exciting place in the United States and we said we want to move to the city with the most substance, and it was immediately clear that Los Angeles, that’s the place.”
While Trump recently signed two bills to encourage women to pursue careers in STEM, there are no arts-and-humanities equivalents. And Trump’s budget proposes doing away with the National Endowment for the Arts entirely. Madeleine Johnson, for one, believes “women in the arts are in the shadow of STEM, because it is a field with more power, more sway, and more funding.” Other female artists agree. Has the push toward STEM inadvertently stymied women in the arts and humanities?
“In the infancy of computers, educators quickly figured out that computer games could be a great vessel for both education and entertainment. Problem was, the educators were always better at the teaching part than the game part. Today’s Tedium, in the midst of practicing its home-row keys, ponders why that was. (Includes the story of “the tutor who became a multi-millionaire edutainment innovator because she went to the wrong restaurant”)
Steven Osborne: “The only thing I’ve played in the last 20 years by Chopin is the Cello Sonata. I enjoyed doing it, but it was hard work finding my way into the style: I worked out what gestures were going to work and did my best to make it organic. With the music I love playing I don’t have to think in those terms because the gestures come immediately from the feeling I have about the piece. Some day I might suddenly fall in love with Chopin – but the world doesn’t really need another Chopin pianist.” (He doesn’t have much use for Haydn, either.)
Steve Tobin’s The Trinity Root was made to commemorate a sycamore tree in the churchyard of Trinity’s St. Paul’s Chapel that took the brunt of debris from the Twin Towers (which were across the street) and saved the historic chapel from serious damage. He gave it to Trinity for free in exchange for the promise that the church would keep it in its courtyard permanently. Then, two years ago, a new rector packed the sculpture off to Connecticut.
Hilma af Klint (1862-1944) painted geometric compositions even before Kandinsky and Malevich did. She was also a mystic, and her planned museum south of Stockholm is being planned by a group of “anthroposophists.” But Klint’s family claims that the group is exaggerating her connection to the movement and is refusing to lend any of her art to the project.
When she found success in television commercials in the 1960s (Oxydol, Tide, Ivory Snow, Thomas’s English Muffins, American Express), she said that “I had to learn to act all over again for TV.” So she created a school to teach Sanford Meisner technique adapted for the requirements of the small screen – a school that grew, changed names twice, and is here today.