The departure of HaeAhn Kwon, this year’s only enrolled MFA student, “a year after an entire class of seven studio art MFA students withdrew from Roski to protest curriculum changes and staff defections, is prompting new questions about USC’s commitment to the fine arts and renewed accusations that the university cares more about buzzy programs.” Carolina Miranda reports.
“The museum was closed [for one month] while staff prepares for a $100 million renovation which will enlarge the building and transform its facade along South Dixie Highway in West Palm Beach. Admission will continue to be free until what’s being called The New Norton is completed in late 2018.”
“On the face of it, the ballet demonstrates the opposite of suspense. It has a prologue and three acts — but, before the Prologue is over, two rival divinities, the vengeful Carabosse and the beneficent Lilac Fairy, have told us what’s going to happen. So guess what? Then it happens. What’s more, it all happens during Acts I and II. Act III has no narrative at all, just the happy couple’s wedding and their fairy tale guests. The whole thing sounds daft,”
“‘Where is the ballet about the lives of Martin Luther King or Malcolm X?’ he asks.”
“For The Legend of Tarzan, … director David Yates wanted his leading man Alexander Skarsgård to be the most authentic and instinctive Tarzan ever seen. Whom did he task with making it happen? Step forward, Royal Ballet choreographer Wayne McGregor. Getting English ballet’s most respected choreographer to train the lord of the apes may not seem an obvious move. But director Yates knew exactly what he was doing.”
“Most of us love perceptual illusions, and … from 4 p.m. EDT on June 29 to 4 p.m. EST on June 30, participants around the world are invited to visit illusionoftheyear.com to check out this year’s top 10 finalists and cast their votes.” (includes video)
“If thought and culture aren’t why some languages pile it on while others take it light, then what is the reason? Part of the answer is unsatisfying but powerful: chance. Time and repetition wear words out, and what wears away is often a nugget of meaning. This happens in some languages more than others.”
“One thing that was really different about word processing is that there were dozens and dozens of word-processing options, dozens and dozens of systems and software and formats, all of them incompatible and comparatively expensive. If you made a bad choice, that would have been a real setback for a writer. So realizing what you needed, and shopping for a computer—that in and of itself was a barrier as much as any big sense of technophobia.”
I’m really a nobody. But I believe that we have arrived in a world where if we want to be relevant, we must “art” as big as we can. We must be overly ambitious, and damn the consequences, because if we aren’t, our souls die for sure, and if we are we may simply fail and hit another mark.
“Recent history and philosophy have taught that violence is the surest outcome of blithely ascribing the quality of evil to another. At best, this process may supplant the thing we brand evil for a time, but the notion that evil can be ‘destroyed’ is an ethical version of a fool’s errand. “
“Phase two of the LORT designers study continues to collect data on gender of designers, and begins to look at directors and artistic directors, partially in relation to designers.”
“People are phubbed, but they are also phubbers. In an environment where people are constantly switching from being the protagonists and recipients of this behavior, our data suggests that phubbing becomes seen as the norm.”
“The algorithm looks at themes, plot, character, setting, and also the frequencies of tiny but significant markers of style. The ‘bestseller-ometer’ then makes predictions, picking out which specific combinations of these features will resonate with readers. The authors claim that it is correct ‘over eighty percent of the time’.” But the only book to score 100% from the algorithm has had only middling sales.
The Allegra Chamber Orchestra, based in Vancouver and open to musicians who identify as women, gave its first performance this week. (includes audio)
“A British colleague observed that American works, highly celebrated in their own time among musicians, contrast in their current obscurity with comparable works by UK composers that are increasingly celebrated in the UK. This got me wondering: have US musicians and presenters unjustly ignored their own symphonists, or have audiences voted against them?”
With strapped school budgets, the school board is looking to close its budget by making families “pay to play”.
Is social media communication, marketing, art, or all three?… The perils of market research when it drives your art… The latest front on artists’ war on cell phone use… How NPR discovered a ton of information about its listeners… How the internet is changing our perceptions of the world.
“Vulture spoke to [Natasha] Braier (The Neon Demon) and two other prominent female DPs, Maryse Alberti (The Wrestler, Creed) and Rachel Morrison (Fruitvale Station, Cake, Dope), about the challenges, opportunities, and absurdity of being a woman in cinematography.”
“Today, the ballet’s website shows 25 dancers: five principals, four soloists, 11 corps dancers, and six apprentices. That makes 18 dancers or 42 percent of this season’s company who will not be on stage at the Academy of Music or Merriam Theater next season.”
Monday Recommendation: Charlie Parker
Charlie Parker, Unheard Bird: The Unissued Takes (Verve) Charlie Parker has never disappeared from the consciousness of serious jazz listeners. This two-CD collection, due out on Friday, could go a long way toward helping new generations discover the stunning purity and power of Parker’s creativity. … read more
AJBlog: RiffTides Published 2016-06-27
Max Beerbohm’s The Happy Hypocrite: A Fairy Tale for Tired Men, written in 1897, is an Oscar Wilde-like fable whose protagonist, Lord George Hell, is a “greedy, destructive, and disobedient” Regency rake whose face bears the marks of his dissolution. … read more
AJBlog: About Last Night Published 2016-06-27
“The chancellor of the exchequer, George Osborne (who warned against Brexit), might not have been popular among the culturati but he did genuinely value the arts and, especially in the latest spending round, went out of his way to protect funding for our national institutions. All those old conversations we used to have about arts funding (“instrumental” versus “intrinsic”) will disappear—quaint reminders of indulgent times past.”
“The truth is, “compelling” stories can be found just about everywhere online; arts groups regularly post feature material on their websites. What are we losing? Something that is becoming increasingly rare in the world of professional journalism — invitations, via criticism, to think seriously and honestly about artistic accomplishment and failure. Let’s not pretend it is a fair trade.”
“All of us shift our readings slightly. Gillian reads Lament, Jackie In my country, Carol Ann Weasel Words: all poems written years ago, but relevant today. There are no overt political statements but the choices are fierce. The people who come to speak to us at the signing tell us that the poetry has helped.”
“That was the whole point. I did not wish that my book were Eat, Pray, Love. As the only journalist to live undercover in North Korea, I had risked imprisonment to tell a story of international importance by the only means possible. By casting my book as personal rather than professional—by marketing me as a woman on a journey of self-discovery, rather than a reporter on a groundbreaking assignment—I was effectively being stripped of my expertise on the subject I knew best. It was a subtle shift, but one familiar to professional women from all walks of life.”
“Long term, we need to see the community build upon those early successes. … We are very grateful to the Cultural Trust, but, ultimately, we want the African-American community to develop most of this programming.”
“Even the biggest and most stable things, like glaciers, mountains—these huge objects, they can change in a few years. We live on a planet that changes, and we try to make rules, to give meaning, but this meaning is completely artificial because nature, basically, doesn’t give a shit.”
Joan Acocella: “What a trick! To get the foremost male ballet dancer of the late twentieth century to portray the foremost male ballet dancer of the early twentieth century. In fact, a drama about Nijinsky’s madness would not require a great classical virtuoso. What it would need is an actor-dancer of extreme subtlety, which is what Baryshnikov, in his late-sixties, had become.”