ArtsJournal: Arts, Culture, Ideas


Why It’s So Difficult To Design Communities Resilient To Climate Change

The recent passage of a $1.2 trillion federal infrastructure bill is a big step toward tackling some of those problems, but as East River Park shows, even when money is at hand, our convoluted systems often make it difficult or impossible to find consensus and work at the speed and scale required. - The New York Times

Why The World’s Best Chess Players Are Too Good To Win

Accurate is the word of the match so far. Inevitably, the string of draws is the main narrative out of Dubai; no one has won a regulation game in the world championship in more than five years. But wins at this rarefied level most often come thanks to an opponent’s mistake. - FiveThirtyEight

Hashing It Out: Is “West Side Story” Worth Doing In 2021, Or Is It An Outdated Basket Of Harmful Caricatures?

As the Steven Spielberg/Tony Kushner film arrives, New York Times critics Jesse Green and Isabelia Herrera, playwright Matthew López, theater historian Misha Berson (author of a history of the show), and writer Carina del Valle Schorske (emphatically not a fan) have at the question. - The New York Times

If Boris Won’t Make British Audience Members Mask Up, Then Venues Will

When performances started up again in the UK over the summer, masks weren't made mandatory (much to the alarm of some visitors from abroad). But with Delta and Omicron coronaviruses continuing to sicken people, venues are starting to insist that patrons wear face coverings. - The New York Times

Ten Best Performances Of 2021 (Yeah, We Know, ’21 Isn’t Done, But…)

The list is utterly subjective and non-comprehensive—no matter how much you watch, there’s somehow much more you’ve missed—but it includes ten people (or groups of people) who burst through the excess of amusements, onscreen or onstage, and did something extraordinary. - The New Yorker

Can You Really Copyright A Recipe?

U.S. copyright law seeks to protect “original works of authorship” by barring unauthorized copying of all kinds of creative material: sheet music, poetry, architectural works, paintings and even computer software. But recipes are much harder to protect. - The New York Times

The $150 Million Arts Initiative That Connected Arts And Communities

ArtPlace leaders announced their venture would prove the arts was an economic engine. Investing in arts and culture, “can be the economic equivalent of bringing a manufacturing plant to a neighborhood.” By decade’s end, ArtPlace’s success had little to do with economics. - Philanthropy

Israel Says It Has Found Archaeological Evidence Of Hanukkah Story

Excavations in the Lachish Forest, about 40 miles southwest of Jerusalem, have uncovered the remains of a Hellenistic fortress — a structure which the Israel Antiquities Authority says was destroyed by the Maccabees' army during the rebellion commemorated by Hanukkah. (Other scholars aren't so sure.) - Yahoo! (The Daily Beast)

How The Salt Lake City Tribune Escaped A Hedgefund, Went Non-Profit, And Stabilized

It’s been quite the turnaround. Utah’s largest newspaper escaped the clutches of the hedge fund Alden Global Capital in 2016 only to see its local owner, Paul Huntsman, lay off a third of staff two years later in the face of plunging ad revenue. - NiemanLab

Why Morocco Is Pouring Money Into Rabat’s Arts Scene

King Mohammed VI's government says it's making art accessible to more ordinary people and promoting Morocco as an island of stability; some artists and critics argue that it's all just attempting to artwash the image of a repressive regime that keeps its censors busy. - Bloomberg CityLab

Study: Year Into Pandemic, Audience Values Arts More

65% of respondents said they preferred in-person to online cultural activities. Only 9% favored online experiences, while a more significant 26% is defined as “digitally agnostic,” either preferring the two about equally or opting to make decisions based on content. - Hyperallergic

Germany’s New Government Appoints A High-Profile Culture Minister

Claudia Roth, one of the Green Party's top leaders and vice president of the federal parliament, started her career as a theater worker and later managed a German rock band. The left-leaning three-party coalition now in charge plans to make culture a high priority. - Deutsche Welle

Toronto’s 127-Year-Old Massey Hall Gets A Massive Update

The goal of restoring a building, preserving its character while also updating it to suit today's needs, was a monumental task done under the scrutiny of heritage departments and building inspectors, and many of Canada's top musicians and music historians. - CBC

Land Acknowledgements Are Exhibitionist Pabulum

"A land acknowledgment is what you give when you have no intention of giving land. It is like a receipt provided by a highway robber, noting all the jewels and gold coins he has stolen. ... It is difficult to exaggerate the superficiality of these statements." - The Atlantic

The Power Of Generating PR

Perhaps the Australian journalist who screwed up his country's only interview with Adele was trying to resist her massive PR team. But the performer (& her team) also convinced Spotify to change its automatic shuffle. In short, power cuts many ways. - The Observer (UK)

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