ArtsJournal: Arts, Culture, Ideas


Ruth Carter Gets Her Star, The First Costume Designer To Do So Since Edith Head

The designer of Black Panther, Selma, Dolemite Is my Name, Malcolm X is the first Black costume designer (and second costume designer ever) to get a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Eddie Murphy: "I’ve never had a wardrobe designer whose clothes actually influence how you play your character — how you walk, how you stand. She really is instrumental in bringing your characters to life. There’s no one like her." - Los Angeles Times

Yuval Waldman, Violinist And Conductor Focused On Music Composed During Times Of Oppression, 74

Waldman's parents survived WWII and the Nazi occupation of Ukraine, and "his career in some ways reflected his multinational upbringing and his sense of music as a lifeline in a turbulent world." - The New York Times

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

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

Daughter Of Israel’s Most Famous Author Accuses Him Of ‘Sadistic Abuse’

In the opening lines of her new memoir, the second daughter of Amos Oz, Galia, wrote, "In my childhood, my father beat me, swore and humiliated me. … Not a passing loss of control and not a slap in the face here or there, but a routine of sadistic abuse. My crime was me myself, so the punishment had no end." Galia's siblings and mother say they remember Amos, who died in late 2018, very differently. - The Guardian

Gérard Depardieu Formally Charged With Rape And Sexual Assault

"An actor in her 20s … accuses Depardieu of having raped and assaulted her at his Parisian home on two separate occasions in August 2018. … An initial investigation into the rape accusations against the 72-year old was dropped in 2019 for lack of evidence. It was reopened last summer, leading to criminal charges being filed in December." - Yahoo! (AFP)

Lawrence Ferlinghetti, Backbone Of San Francisco’s Literary Scene, Dead At 101

A poet in his own right as well as proprietor of the bookstore and publishing house City Lights, Ferlinghetti became famous in 1957 when he was arrested, tried, and acquitted of obscenity charges after publishing Allen Ginsberg's "Howl." Ultimately, he became "a fixture at the center of the whirling counterculture, … the bearded guru of San Francisco's art scene, as closely identified with the city as summer fog and the Golden Gate." - The Washington Post

San Diego Cultural Advocate Larry T. Baza, 76, Of COVID

"For more than four decades, Baza used his voice advocating for San Diego’s artistic and cultural community at the local, state and national levels. He served on countless panels, boards and commissions, including the National Endowment for the Arts, California Association of Local Arts Organizations, Chicano Federation of San Diego County, National Association of Latino Arts and Culture, San Diego Community Foundation and Diversionary Theatre." - San Diego Union-Tribune

Charles Hill, Heroic Undercover Art Detective, Dead At 73

"Hill's willingness to take major risks in order to find some of the world's greatest stolen artworks" — most famously, Vermeer's Lady Writing a Letter With Her Maid (in 1993) and Munch's The Scream (in 1996) — "made him one of the most celebrated art detectives in the world." - ARTnews

Douglas Turner Ward, Pioneering Black Theater Artist, Dead At 90

A writer and director as well as an actor, he wrote a 1966 New York Times Op-Ed titled "American Theater: For Whites Only?" that inspired the Ford Foundation to fund the creation of the Negro Ensemble Company, with Ward as artistic director. Both he and the troupe amassed nominations and awards, and the NEC counts some of the world's most admired Black actors as alumni. Ward was also a playwright, and just last year published his magnum opus, a trilogy titled The Haitian Chronicles. - The New York Times

Inside What Makes Tom Stoppard Tick

Anthony Lane: "Many folk, less deserving than Stoppard, and with scarcely a whit of his charm, are greeted with godsends. What marks him out is the unusual thoroughness with which he has probed the mechanism of fate, as if it were his moral duty—shaded, perhaps, with a touch of guilt—to understand why he, of all people, should have got the breaks." - The New Yorker

Arturo Di Modica, Sculptor Of New York’s Charging Bull Sculpture, Has Died At 80

Di Modica was a "Sicilian-born sculptor best known for Charging Bull, 3.5 tons of bronze belligerence that he illegally deposited in Lower Manhattan one night in 1989." But this wasn't the first time he pulled such a stunt. Disappointed by a lack of interest in his first solo show in 1977, "Mr. Di Modica rented three trucks, and he and a group of friends drove eight of his enormous sculptures uptown to Rockefeller Center, where they deposited them in the dead of night. He was ordered to pay a small fine — but he said that he soon sold all eight works." - The New York Times

Peter G. Davis, Classical Music Critic For The New York Times And New York Magazine, 84

Davis "presided over the field during boon years in New York in the 1960s and ’70s, when performances were plentiful and tickets relatively cheap, and when the ups and downs of a performer’s career provided fodder for cocktail parties and after-concert dinners, not to mention the notebooks of writers like Mr. Davis, who often delivered five or more reviews a week." - The New York Times

When Anthony Haden-Guest Met The Christos

It was during the Running Fence project that Christo and Jeanne-Claude took me to meet the Charles Schulz, the late creator of Peanuts, who had a home in the county capital, Santa Rosa. We had coffee in Snoopy mugs and wiped our lips on Charlie Brown and Lucy napkins. This was before the explosion of branding, he was just fond of his creations. He liked the Christos too, indeed had spoken up at one of the hearings to say he was surprised by the local opposition to the project. - White Hot Magazine

Dolly Parton To Tennessee: Please Don’t Put A Statue Of Me In The State Capitol

"I am honored and humbled by their intention but I have asked the leaders of the state legislature to remove the bill from any and all consideration. Given all that is going on in the world, I don't think putting me on a pedestal is appropriate at this time. … Perhaps after I'm gone if you still feel I deserve it." - CBS News

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