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Tuesday, April 4


So What? As Long As They're Talking About You... General Motors launches a website where visitors can make their own ads for an SUV. Of course many of the ads ridicule the vehicle. Think GM's mad? Hardly. 'We're engaging consumers in this two-way discussion. It's creating buzz and people are learning about the product.' In just two weeks, more than 21,000 ads have been created. Visitors have emailed them to others 41,000 times. There have been 250,000 unique visitors to the site and over 2.4 million page views." Toronto Star 04/04/06
Posted: 04/04/2006 7:32 am

Think it? Write It "Brain-wave typing could become reality in just a few years. It would open up a world of communication with caregivers and loved ones for people disabled by ALS, cerebral palsy or high-level spinal-cord injuries. With little or no muscle control, communicating clearly, or even at all is difficult, if not impossible. Researchers in the brain-computer interface, or BCI, Group at New York State Public Health Department's Wadsworth Center are enrolling patients in trials of a system that could enable them to send e-mail and communicate using their brain waves." Wired 04/03/06
Posted: 04/03/2006 6:16 pm

Prehistoric - Teenage Boys And Their Graffiti Who drew most of the prehistoric cave paintings that have been discovered? Teen age boys. "The theory contradicts the idea that adult, tribal shaman spiritual leaders and healers produced virtually all cave art. It also explains why many of the images drawn in caves during the Pleistocene, between 10,000 and 35,000 years ago, somewhat mirror today's artwork and graffiti that are produced by adolescent males." Discovery 04/03/06
Posted: 04/03/2006 5:53 pm

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Aesthetic Competition Walker Art: Off Center Blog
Culture Clash Travel + Leisure, April 2006
William Safire And Art That's Good for You Washington Post 3/15/06
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Visual Arts

An Art Market - Can It Continue Its Winning Ways? The art market is humming. But can it continue winning? "In the art world, there’s a clear delineation between those who experienced the last crash, in the early nineties, and those who didn’t. 'This market is fueled by collectors who have never been through a correction,' says art adviser Darlene Lutz, active since the eighties. 'The generations who did are watching this with disbelief. It’s like teenagers who have unprotected sex thinking they’ll never get pregnant. And then, whoops . . . look what happened'!" New York Magazine 03/27/06
Posted: 04/03/2006 7:34 pm

Does MoMA Need To Reinvent? Has the Museum of Modern Art become too safe? Too museum-like? "No one doubts that MoMA remained the preeminent museum of its kind anywhere. But MoMA was traditionally a living idea, not a static monument. It aspired to be the center of an arts community. It considered itself an edgy institution that challenges and instructs." And now? New York Magazine 04/03/06
Posted: 04/03/2006 7:22 pm

Date Set For Denver Museum Opening A date has been set for the opening of the new Daniel-Libeskind-designed Denver Art Museum building. It's October 7. "Planning for the building began in 1999 when Denver voters approved a $62.5 million bond issue. The project also prompted the DAM board to raise more than $50 million in endowment funds, and another $28 million for upgrades in the project." Rocky Mountain News 04/03/06
Posted: 04/03/2006 7:11 pm

That Photo Prejudice... "These days, photo-based painting is as common as rain and just as inevitable, as younger artists such as Nick Mauss, Lucy McKenzie, and Wilhelm Sasnal take up the practice and exploit it. Yet it often complicates the public’s understanding of art and can easily put painters who use photographic aids, including computers and projectors, on the defensive. The question is: why? Why should a painting based on a photograph be considered a less legitimate work of art than one painted from observation or one that is simply abstract?" ARTnews 04/0/6
Posted: 04/03/2006 5:59 pm

Gone Dotty - The Secret To Mona Lisa's Smile A researcher has reported that the secret to Mona Lisa's smile is "millions of invisible dots." The expert "reported that the technique is somewhat similar to pointillism used by the French Neo-Impressionists in the late 19th century. Examples of this micro-division of tones exist since the ancient Romans. Leonardo took an existing techniques, but used it to the extreme, like nobody else." Discovery 04/03/06
Posted: 04/03/2006 5:51 pm

Christie's Retracts Sale Offering After Protests From Spanish Government Christie's has removed five beams from sale from a Cordoba mosque. "The church argued that the beams should not be sold as they have strong grounds to assert that the church retains ownership of the beams,'' it said, adding that the law firm had threatened an injunction against Christie's to prevent the sale." Bloomberg.com 04/03/06
Posted: 04/03/2006 5:45 pm

Greeks Seize Artifacts From Ex-Getty Curator's House "In a surprise search Wednesday, Greek authorities seized 17 unregistered artifacts and a Byzantine icon from the vacation house of Marion True, the former J. Paul Getty Museum antiquities curator on trial in Rome on charges she trafficked in looted art. Among the objects seized, only a Hellenistic marble torso is thought to be archeologically significant." Los Angeles Times 04/03/06
Posted: 04/03/2006 5:43 pm

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Surprise - Zukerman To Return To Orchestra Early Pinchas Zukerman, who abruptly left his national Arts Center Orchestra in Ottawa in mid-season, says he'll return early from his announced break. "No reason for the return was given to subscribers. Christopher Deacon, the orchestra's managing director, said yesterday that Zukerman first broached the idea of ending the sabbatical in a phone call from Europe 10 days ago. Details were firmed up last week." The Globe & Mail (Canada) 04/04/06
Posted: 04/04/2006 8:01 am

Recording Industry Renews Legal Action Against Downloaders "The International Federation of the Phonographic Industry is taking legal action against nearly 2,000 song-swappers in 10 countries. The British music industry says illegal file-sharing has cost it £1.1bn over the last three years. Research firm XTN data said that illegal downloads in the UK have increased by 3% to 28% of music downloads since last September." BBC 04/04/06
Posted: 04/04/2006 6:41 am

Five To Do The Work Of One Conductor So James Levine is out for the season at the metropolitan Opera? What does it take to replace him? Meet the five who will try... New York Magazine 04/03/06
Posted: 04/03/2006 7:25 pm

Forecast: Bleak Summer Pop Concert Season It's shaping up to be a dry summer in the pop concert business. Few of the bigname stars of the 60s and 70s are touring And "steadily rising ticket prices, lack of proper development for promising young artists, stiff competition from other forms of entertainment and even age-old headaches like traffic snarls and limited (overpriced) snack-bar menus, are just a few of the reasons some fans have been staying away in recent years. Yahoo! (Reuters) 04/03/06
Posted: 04/03/2006 6:51 pm

How Classical Could Be Better Online So it turns out that classical music is popular in the download world, and retailers are setting up to serve classical music fans. Does that make classical fans happy? Well... there are a few things on the wish list... The Times (UK) 04/03/06
Posted: 04/03/2006 6:45 pm

Digital No. 1: Reviving Singles With Downloads Digital downloading has revived the singles market. "In the period between the start of the decline in sales of physical formats and the introduction of legal download services, the relevance of the top 40 was called into question. However, that didn't spell an end to the desire for singles by music fans - it just reflected a shift in the way many of us choose to purchase our favourite new tracks." BBC 04/03/06
Posted: 04/03/2006 5:41 pm

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Arts Issues

Arts Funding Wrapped Up With the Hunting And Fishing Crowd Legislators in Minnesota are planning let voters decide "this fall whether to raise the state sales tax by .375 percent. That would bring the tax up to 6.875 percent. The dedicated funding would go to hunting and fishing resources, parks and trails, clean water programs and the arts." Minnesota Public Radio 04/03/06
Posted: 04/03/2006 7:47 pm

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Oscar Treadwell, 79 Cinncinnati jazz radio host Oscar Treadwell was a legend in the business. "He and his passion for music were immortalized by some of jazz's masters. Charlie Parker composed "An Oscar for Treadwell," which he recorded in 1949 with Dizzy Gillespie, Thelonious Monk and Buddy Rich. In 1950, Wardell Gray recorded "Treadin' with Treadwell." And in 1955, Monk sent Mr. Treadwell a copy of his composition "Oska T" for use as a theme song." Cincinnati Enquirer 04/04/06
Posted: 04/04/2006 7:16 am

Merce Over Miami Merce Cunningham is headed to Miami next year to help open the new Miami Performing Arts Center. But he's not just doing dance. "This creative synergy, a hallmark of Cunningham's career, will result in two MOCA exhibitions, an original work of dance and visual art in collaboration with a Miami artist, dance and music performances, classes and lectures." Miami Herlad 04/03/06
Posted: 04/03/2006 6:48 pm

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Ask The Audience - LOTR Surveys The Crowd Producers of the Lord of the Rings musical now playing in Toronto are offering audience members bribes to answer questions about the show. "According to LOTR producer Kevin Wallace, the surveys are principally intended to determine the show's demographic -- who's coming, and where they're coming from -- in order to target media and public relations campaigns more precisely. But it also asks respondents to cite elements they liked and didn't like about the production." The Globe & Mail (Canada) 04/04/06
Posted: 04/04/2006 7:58 am

Julia Roberts A Broadway Box Office Hit The actress's Broadway debut sold out in its first week of previews, earning almost $1 million at the box office. "The eight performances, which began March 28, played to 101 percent of capacity (which includes standing room) at the Bernard B. Jacobs Theatre, the league said. The Richard Greenberg play — Roberts' Broadway debut — opens April 19." Yahoo! (AP) 04/03/06
Posted: 04/03/2006 6:21 pm

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Generation Change At America's "Serious" magazines Four of America's most serious magazines - the Atlantic, The New Republic, The Paris Review, and Harper’s - all have new editors. What do the new chiefs have in common? Well, they're all male, they're all white, and they're young... New York Magazine 04/03/06
Posted: 04/03/2006 6:54 pm

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More TV/Music, More Teen Sex "A new study suggests that youths who are exposed to sexually explicit media when they are 12 to 14 are more likely to have sex before they hit 16." New York Daily News 04/04/06
Posted: 04/04/2006 7:54 am

Overweight Kids? Blame TV "Researchers at the University of Michigan Health System found that a 3-year-old kid exposed to two hours or more of TV a day was nearly three times more likely to be overweight than a child who watched fewer than two hours. That stands to reason: If a kid is watching TV, he's not burning off fat. Once again, however, TV is being blamed for society's ills, rather than society being blamed for its own problems." New York Daily News 04/04/06
Posted: 04/04/2006 7:49 am

TV For 6-Month-Olds? Hmnnn... The creators of Sesame Street are producing a new series of shows for kids as young as six months. This has some child development experts upset. "There is no evidence that screen media is beneficial for babies and growing evidence it may be harmful. 'Sesame Beginnings' will encourage babies' devotion to TV characters that have been licensed to promote hundreds of other products'." San Diego Union-Tribune (AP) 04/04/06
Posted: 04/04/2006 7:42 am

Kong DVD Beats Theatres In First Week The King Kong movie has sold $100m (£57.4m) in its first week out on DVD. That beats what the film did at the movie theatres in its first week in release. "The film, made by Oscar-winning director Peter Jackson, sold 6.5m copies in the format. In its first five days, King Kong took $66m (£37.8m) at the North American box office, falling short of the $75m (£43m) it was expected to make." BBC 04/04/06
Posted: 04/04/2006 7:06 am

Spitzer: FCC Is Undermining Payola Investigation New York Attorney General Eliot Spitzer has been investigating radio companies over illegal payola deals. But Spitzer now says that "the FCC is working against him. 'We have asked them several times to participate and they have not only not done that, but they are now furtively going out there negotiating behind our backs'," propsing mush smaller fines than Spitzer had in mind. CBC 04/03/06
Posted: 04/03/2006 6:03 pm

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Another Sad Tale Of Failed Dance In Southern Cal Ethan Stiefel should have been the guy to make a dance company work in the Los Angeles area. But he was thwarted. Why? "Too bad he had to learn the hard way what the rest of us have understood for a long time: Everybody wants a resident world-class ballet company in the Southland, but nobody wants to pay for it. And rather than repeating [oft chronicled reasons] and clucking sadly yet again, how about considering a radical proposal? How about forbidding anyone to start yet another new local penniless ballet company until we've doubled our dance audience through a host of development strategies?" Los Angeles Times 04/03/06
Posted: 04/03/2006 6:08 pm

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