ArtsJournal: Arts, Culture, Ideas


What Brain-Computer Interfaces Will Do To Our Ideas Of Free Will

You can already see a divide in the literature - positive stories about people with ALS or locked-in syndrome learning to use neural transmitters to control movement; negative stories about the threat of law enforcement "reading" our intentions before we do. It's the same tech, so what's the real story? - Three Quarks Daily

Clint Eastwood Is 91, And He’s Directed 17 Films Just Since He Turned 70

And those 17 movies — which include no less than Mystic River (with Sean Penn and Tim Robbins), Million Dollar Baby (Hilary Swank), and American Sniper (Bradley Cooper) — have earned a billion dollars or so all together, not to mention a few Oscars and plenty more nominations. Maybe not every one of the 39 films he's made over 50 years is a masterpiece, but some certainly are (Unforgiven), and the overall quality has been impressively high. What's more, they aren't just action films, westerns, and war movies: Eastwood, remember, directed The Bridges of Madison County and Jersey Boys. - Variety

How ‘In The Heights’ Became The Post-Pandemic Movie Of The Summer

Lin-Manuel Miranda, whose Hamilton, filmed, made Disney+ a lot of money last year (and ensured musical theatre fans had something to watch over and over and over again while actual theatres were shuttered), says that he really wanted In the Heights to come out as scheduled. "I felt like I was back in my 20s — ‘No, please, let’s put on the show!’ Next summer felt like forever away, and I was, like, ‘But it’s good! And the world needs it!’ But I’m grateful that cooler heads than mine kicked the movie down the field a year." - Yahoo! (Chicago Tribune)

How Atlas Obscura Is Decolonizing — No, Enhancing — Its Content

"The Internet's favorite catalog of weird places" (as the headline fittingly describes it) is going through what it's calling (for lack of a term that's both better and more timely) a "decolonization project" — reviewing its thousands of listings and hundreds of articles to include the roles and viewpoints of Black, indigenous, and and other Americans traditionally overlooked. But, says editorial director Samir S. Patel, "decolonizing" isn't the right word: "Decolonization suggests removal, and that's not what we're doing. Adding this kind of perspective to travel and travel writing makes it less boring." - The New York Times

Mexico Forcibly Halts Illegal Construction Next To Teotihuacán

" sent in 250 National Guard troops and 60 police officers Monday to seize land next to the pre-Hispanic ruins of Teotihuacán where authorities have said bulldozers were destroying outlying parts of the archaeological site. … Officials reported last week that they had been trying since March to halt the private construction project, but work continued on what local media says were plans to build some sort of amusement park." - AP

Long Discreetly Camouflaged, Lesbians In Ballet Are Starting to Find Themselves And Each Other

Gay men aren't as ubiquitous in that world as some civilians think, but they're not rare. Yet gender norms in classical ballet are even more rigid for females than for males, and queer women in the profession have tended to feel very isolated indeed. That, however, is something that the hiatus and the move online caused by the pandemic have started to change. - The New York Times

Why Sarah Lane Quietly Slipped Away From ABT

" Lane and ABT parted ways last summer, although no announcement was made; rather, in September, her name was quietly taken off the roster. … She recently opened up to Pointe about her departure from the company, although for privacy reasons certain details are remaining undisclosed." (Hmm.) - Pointe Magazine

As Travel Resumes, Can Italy Make Tourism Any Less Destructive?

"While the return of tourists is essential, local politicians and leaders in the cultural sector are emphasising the need to rethink how visitors interact with heritage. But how far, during the enforced hiatus in tourism, have they actually rethought their strategies to manage visitors and their experience more effectively?" Venice and Florence have some ideas. - Apollo

Allegations Of Sexual Misconduct, And Even Assault, Rock English Drama Schools

"Former pupils have raised allegations including how tutors have 'grabbed' female students' breasts, made sexual comments about their bodies and pressurised them to remove clothes during rehearsals or performances. … a female student complained that a visiting teacher had sexually assaulted her at home." - The Telegraph (UK)

Louvre Will Get New Department Of Byzantine And Coptic Art, Says New Director

"If that department comes to fruition, it would signify a break with the Louvre's president, Jean-Luc Martinez, who had deemed its formation unnecessary, and a willingness to expand the ways the museum presents religious art." - ARTnews

The 106-Year-Old Dancer Who Hates The Word Old

Eileen Kramer still dances every day. And she also "writes a story a day from her Sydney aged-care facility, publishes books and has entered Australia's most prestigious painting competition. After decades living abroad, Ms Kramer returned to her home city of Sydney aged 99. Since then, she's collaborated with artists to create several videos that showcase her primary talent and lifelong passion: dancing." - BBC

Mary Beard: Ancient Rome Never Disappoints

The Cambridge classics professor (and Twitter, TV, and book star) says that our desire to compare the U.S. to ancient Rome is normal - but not sensible. "Rome, in a way, doesn’t matter at all. It’s a very long time ago; no one’s going to get hurt by them. ... Rome helps us stand outside ourselves. For me, Rome was a brutal and exploitative empire. But the idea of looking at a big, nasty imperial community who saw their origin in migration, in asylum, and that always traded on the incorporation of the foreign — it takes us out of some of our assumptions." - The New York Times

The Prado Is Taking Its Art To The Streets

In replica form, that is. "Exact replicas of masterpieces from the Prado museum, including paintings by Goya, El Greco, and Fra Angelico, have been installed behind tree branches, inside airport security stations, on the sides of buildings, and along wrought-iron fences." - Artnet

The Hollywood Bowl Is On Plan C, Full Reopen

As vaccines spread and COVID-19 numbers drop, "concert and theater venues are scrambling to keep up and figure out when and how to welcome back the crowds they depend on. For the Hollywood Bowl — perhaps the most celebrated outdoor venue in the nation — that has meant making plans, and ripping them up again, as it rides rapidly changing county and state regulations and shifting public attitudes ahead of its planned July 3 opening." - The New York Times

The Science Of Pleasure

It goes way - way - beyond dopamine. "You could say that dopamine is to happiness what petrol is to a car; it’s an integral part of making it work, but if you were to literally fill your car with petrol, to the point where it’s leaking out the windows, that wouldn’t help anyone." - Psyche

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