For most of the two and a half centuries since the Reverend Thomas Bayes first made his pioneering contributions to probability theory, his ideas were side-lined. The high priests of statistical thinking condemned them as dangerously subjective and Bayesian theorists were regarded as little better than cranks. It is only over the past couple of decades that the tide has turned.
As the great illustrator Saul Steinber once put it, “It would be difficult to write about Véra without mentioning Vladimir. But it would impossible to write about Vladimir without mentioning Véra.” Miranda Popkey looks at how and Véra remains so fascinating, despite her strenuous attempts to erase herself.
“On Los Angeles’s Sunset Boulevard, a street bursting with comedy clubs and live acts, lies a small theater devoted to a new kind of entertainment: inclusive comedy. The Ruby is a self-described comedy theater and school ‘openly founded on the ideals of intersectional feminism.'” But is it funny? Rina Raphael pays a visit.
“We are going to hire an economist for the first time at the Arts Council. Although we were started by an economist, John Maynard Keynes, we never employed one. We will have an economist so again we can start to make economic arguments that are very powerful and make them in an economist’s terms.”
Edward Simons apparently became the world’s oldest active conductor when he took up the baton at age 100 to conduct Samuel Barber’s Adagio for Strings on Sept. 10, during the “2017 Annual Concert for Remembrance, 9/11,” at Grace Episcopal Church in Nyack. Guinness World Records currently lists Spain’s Juan Garcés Queralt, who conducted a concert at age 99 and 311 days, as the oldest, but is reviewing an application to recognize Simons’ achievement.
The music video is a true feast for the eyes as beautiful people take over a beautiful place in ways we’ve never seen — because people of color rarely have the opportunity to claim such spaces, a fact that adds to the extraordinariness of the couple’s feat. However, while the Carters’ accomplishment underscores the egregious lack of representation and audiences of people of color in art spaces, it also perpetuates the damaging notion that art is a luxury.
Last year, Hanson Robotics released its first consumer robot, Professor Einstein, a $199, 16-inch animatronic companion for kids that can answer questions, play brain games and discuss science and math. This year the company, which has about 50 employees, plans to release updates for Professor Einstein and to produce about 100 copies of Sophia and other human-sized robots. The androids function as programmable machines that can be used to train doctors, deliver therapies for depression, care for the elderly and interact with customers. Most importantly, Hanson is excited about all the functions people have yet to dream up. Imagine your iPhone without the apps.
That’s obvious for anyone who has ever danced, but the two-year study dove deep on children and teens aged 10-20 from underserved populations in England. “Findings from the final report describe dance as a valuable way of empowering young people who live in deprived urban areas to be proactive in improving their health and well-being.”
One of the artists: “Part of me has always thought of the Met, as an institution that is very traditional, Eurocentric, very much one of the elite/elitist institutions in the city, and it holds up that history. It has for a very long time. I think that is dramatically shifting right now.”
As the philosopher Noam Chomsky has said, “we will always learn more about human life and personality from novels than from scientific psychology” – something the critic and author David Lodge has explored. In his 2004 book Consciousness and the Novel, Lodge argues that “literature is a record of human consciousness, the richest and most comprehensive we have… The novel is arguably man’s most successful effort to describe the experience of individual human beings moving through space and time.”
[The gossip] is the human comedy, that’s what I like. I came into music because nobody was writing about it in a way that interested me. Musicologists were writing arcane and abstruse things which had no relation to who the composer was, where he or she was at that particular time in her life. They weren’t answering the questions of, “Why is this piece meaningful to me, why is this phrase meaningful to me?” In the way that you’d ask in every other human transaction from the restaurant to the bedroom. And so I started asking those questions.
The centre has doubled the number of gallery spaces dedicated to Inuit art to four, and contemporary indigenous art fills a large new gallery of its own. Labels in the McLean Centre are now written in indigenous languages (either the local Anishinaabemowin language or Inuktitut), as well as English and French.
“[Wigtown] is Scotland’s national book town, its Hay-on-Wye. With a dozen used bookstores tucked into its small downtown, it is a literary traveler’s Elysium. Best of all, Wigtown offers a literary experience unlike any other I’m aware of. In town there is a good used bookstore called the Open Book, with an apartment up above, that’s rentable by the week. Once you move in, the shop is yours to run as you see fit.” And, for one day, that’s what Dwight Garner did.
“David Mellor said that while he thought begging the prime minister to buy the Coliseum for the ENO had been ‘a major contribution to the cultural life of the country’, he now thought it was an ‘act of stupidity’. His intervention has been sparked in part by the decision of the ENO management to lease out the Coliseum in London for almost half the year [to producers of commercial musicals].”
“Although representatives of first-rank Israeli companies, such as the Cameri Theatre of Tel Aviv, argue that their organizations do not shy away from controversial work, American artistic directors whose companies have become havens for marginalized Israeli playwrights say otherwise. Groups such as [Boston’s] Israeli Stage and, even more prominently, Mosaic Theater Company in Washington consider themselves outposts for Israeli dramatists who find it increasingly hard to get a hearing in Israel for their most political works.”
“During a career that spanned more than half a century, Ellison wrote some 50 books and more than 1,400 articles, essays, TV scripts and screenplays. Although best-known for his science fiction, which garnered nearly a dozen Nebula and Hugo awards, Ellison’s work covered virtually every type of writing from mysteries to comic books to newspaper columns. He was known as much for his attitude as his writing — he described himself once as ‘bellicose.'”
“Shane Jewell, announced today as the new executive director of Orlando Ballet, says he’ll be sticking around. But he’s keenly aware that after a revolving door of ballet executives in the past few years, there’s no reason for Central Floridians to believe him. … [There have been] years of financial crises and leadership changes at the ballet, which has had six executive directors since 2011. It nearly shut its doors for good in 2015.”
The Oscar- and Tony-winning actor, now 82, returned to the stage two years ago, after a 23-year career in the UK Parliament, playing Lear in a modern-dress production at the Old Vic. Rather than bringing that staging to Broadway, she’ll be performing next spring with an entirely new creative team and cast assembled by lead producer Scott Rudin.
Contrary to reports last week that the landmark building by Charles Rennie Mackintosh remained “structurally solid” following the fire that raged through it earlier this month, “Glasgow City Council officials said that their surveys … have shown that there has been substantial movement in the building, meaning a sudden collapse of certain parts of it was ‘likely’.”
Peter Tate and Anthony Biggs write about how they launched The Playground Theatre in a former depot near the recently-burned Grenfell Tower in London, how they decided to configure and equip the empty building, how they connected with audiences in what may be the most diverse area in the entire UK, and how they raised the money to pay for it all.
“The real estate developer Boris Mints opened the Museum of Russian Impressionism in the former Bolshevik confectionery plant [in Moscow] in 2016. At the end of May, news emerged that Mints and his family had fled to London, reportedly to avoid possible criminal investigation in Russia over bank dealings.”
“The German parliament has approved a 9% increase in federal spending on culture, bringing the total budget to €1.8bn. Additional funding has been earmarked for preserving and protecting heritage buildings, archive materials and memorial sites. Another priority of the budget is to increase arts offerings and education in rural regions, says the German culture minister Monika Grütters.”
What’d I Miss? News Flashes from the Berkshire Museum & Frick Collection
I leave town for a five-day vacation and news breaks out on several important art-museum stories that we’ve been following (not to mention on several much more important national news stories that … read more
AJBlog: CultureGrrl Published 2018-06-28
A Gala and Denmark in the Berkshires
Members of the Royal Danish Ballet Come to Jacob’s Pillow, as it celebrates its 86th anniversary. … read more
AJBlog: Dancebeat Published 2018-06-28
Weekend Extra: The New One By Scenes
Scenes, Destinations (Origin)
Drummer John Bishop, guitarist John Stowell and bassist Jeff Johnson will soon be celebrating two decades together as the trio they call Scenes. … read more
AJBlog: RiffTides Published 2018-06-28
Early consequences of the travel ban have already begun to unfold. As we reported in April, even artists who were born in the countries targeted by the ban, but who are American or European citizens, have faced hurdles travelling to the US for work. Last month, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art launched a comprehensive exhibition of contemporary Iranian art, but many of the artists included in the show could not attend the opening.