ArtsJournal: Arts, Culture, Ideas


How Is The San Francisco Symphony Staying Afloat Right Now? [VIDEO]

"We can make music online and everything, but it's not the same as being onstage together." But there are benefits - like practicing in Golden Gate Park, having extra time with kids at home, and filming themselves running in from gardening to perform the William Tell Overture, or performing in a gorilla mask, for an online audience. - KTVU (Oakland)

Reframing Nature Photography

Nature photography means what - Ansel Adams? The National Geographic's contests and covers? Or ... the nature that's around us all of the time in cities, in parking lots, in the area between apartment buildings, the in-between spaces where plants, bugs, birds, rodents, and some humans thrive? "Working within predominantly Black neighborhoods in Brooklyn, Los Angeles and her home city of Oakland, Stone photographs locations like overgrown lots and green spaces at public housing projects, often including herself in the frame." - NPR

Why Having No Blockbusters Contending For The Oscars Is Actually Great For The Movies

The year of no movie theatres meant the year of no blockbusters; most have been pushed off for a year or more, and that's ... just fine? Justin Chang: "If the Oscars should go forward this year — and I think they should — then surely they should reflect that precarious new reality. They should also call for a bold new definition of what constitutes popular filmmaking, one that goes beyond the simplistic criteria of box office domination and franchise recognizability to include those pictures that fulfill the promise of smart, well-crafted, broadly accessible entertainment."- Los Angeles Times

President Biden Reverses The Truly Terrible 45 ‘Classical Architecture’ Order

The executive order, which the former president signed "in December after losing his bid for re-election, was titled 'Promoting Beautiful Federal Civic Architecture,' and it praised Greco-Roman architecture as being 'beautiful” while describing modernist designs as 'ugly and inconsistent.'" - The New York Times

German Study: Concerts, Museums, Performances In Theatres Are Safer Than Other Indoor Activities

The researchers found that if kept at 30% capacity with everyone wearing a mask and following proper precautions, museums, theaters, and operas are safer than any other activity studied. In museums, the R-value stands at 0.5 compared to 0.6 in hair salons and 0.8 in public transportation. - Hyperallergic

How Museums Use Consultants To Hide Behind Their Biggest Problems

“Consultants are hired to tell museums the truth,” says Adrienne Horn, the president of Museum Management Consultants and a former executive board member for the American Association of Museums. But a series of missteps and hollow promises from institutions that have relied on third-party advice are bringing new scrutiny to the influx of for-profit strategies in a nonprofit world. - Artnet

New Director Takes Control Over Pompeii Site

"He was among the first crop of foreigners picked to direct an Italian museum or cultural site as part of what was a contentious drive to revamp the management of the country’s heritage. Not only was he foreign but he was the youngest person in charge of a major site." - The Guardian

What Will Happen If Publishing Giants Merge?

"Perhaps the industry’s biggest concern about the merger, especially among agents and authors, is what it will mean for book deals. An agent representing a promising author or buzzworthy book often hopes to auction it to the highest bidder. If there are fewer buyers, will it be harder for agents to get an auction going for their clients, and ultimately, will it be harder for authors to get an advantageous deal?" - The New York Times

How Memory And The Passage Of Time Fold On Top Of One Another

The COVID-19 pandemic has wrung meaning from time. Each day is so like the former. April disappeared entirely; Thanksgiving feels as close, or faraway, as last June. I no longer can keep track of the dates; time has become a pool of standing water. - Psyche

London School Of Contemporary Dance Overhauls Everything To Become More Diverse

"The drive to create a more diverse dance curriculum and the aim to harness digital capabilities to prepare graduates for a post-Covid world means the way we teach dance needs to radically change, in order to better prepare graduates for the cultural landscape in which contemporary independent dance artists forge their career and which many of them go on to shape," said Clare Connor, the Place’s chief executive. - The Stage

Rajie Cook, Who Designed The Pictograms We See Everywhere, Dead At 90

"In 1974 Cook & Shanosky Associates, a design firm started by Mr. Cook and Don Shanosky a few years earlier, won a contract to develop a set of symbols that could be universally understood, and that would efficiently convey the kinds of information people in a public place might need. … The signage the two came up with, 34 pictographs (with others added later), is still in use today." Later in life, he became an "art activist" making sculptural assemblages. - The New York Times

How Novels Can Help Plan Our Way Through COVID Recovery

As sources for possible future scenarios capable of providing strategic foresight, or producing alternative future plans, novels can also help businesses create dialogue on difficult and even taboo subjects. Novels are, therefore, capable of helping managers become better, providing them with creative insight and wisdom. Science fiction can provide a means to explore morality tales, a warning of possible futures, in an attempt to help us avoid or rectify that future. - The Conversation

The History Of ‘Madama Butterfly’ In Japan

"It was not the 'alien' music that disturbed the Japanese audience" at the Tokyo premiere in 1914 (there had been a Western music school in the city since 1890), "but the threat to traditional hierarchies between men and women. Later, in the 1930s, feminist writers such as Ichiko Kamichika and Akiko Yosano criticised the opera for promoting a 'victim' like Butterfly as something of a Japanese 'paragon'. Somewhat ironically, Butterfly thus proved to be an effective catalyst for the emergence of a new model of womanhood in Japan. Moreover, the Japanese themselves gradually began to find Madama Butterfly exotic and alien." - History Today

A Life Listening To Jazz: W. Royal Stokes

No one could have predicted Stokes’s zigzag jazz life, including him. Born in D.C. in 1930, he was a teen obsessed with boogie-woogie records; then a student turned professor of Greek and Latin languages and literature and ancient history; then a turned-on-tuned-in-dropped-out hippie roadtripper; then a volunteer radio DJ; then a voracious music scribe who published his first jazz review at age 42; thena freelance jazz critic for The Washington Post and, later, an editor at JazzTimes magazine. - Washington Post

The World’s Largest Bach Website, Brought To You By A Computer Engineer In Tel Aviv

The Bach Cantatas Website, founded 20 years ago by Aryeh Oron, includes texts from Bach's sacred works in multiple languages, discographies, history and analysis of each piece, and many other resources. It gets 15,000-20,000 hits a day and is used even by the likes of John Eliot Gardiner and Masaaki Suzuki, two of the world's leading Bach conductors. - Haaretz (Israel)

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