It’s a crowded category, but here are fifteen “covers from hell.”
“So what does Marina Abramović taste like? The sweets are a variation on Prussian Blue, a warrior color that is tied to memories of her parents and of the ocean, and they leave a guilty blue stain on your tongue. … One of the treats [which are three to a box] is wrapped in gold leaf. The flavors involved are strong and, much like the artist herself, aren’t for everybody.”
“Les Waters, who has served as artistic director for six seasons, will depart next summer to pursue personal projects, according to a press release sent Wednesday. … Waters has produced 78 plays and directed 18 in Louisville during his six seasons at the helm. His leadership ‘invigorated’ the Humana Festival of New American Plays, according to the release from Actors Theatre, and plays debuted at the festival were seen across the country. “
In reality, this latest New Leonardo Discovery is a warm-up of an old, on-the-record, attribution. In 1988 Jacques Franck, the art historian/painter trained in Old Master techniques (and a current restoration adviser to the Louvre), had closely examined the Joconde nue in the Château of Chantilly along with Amélie Lefébure, former Head curator of the Musée Condé, and Dominique Le Marois, a restorer in the French museums.
“Figures from the University of Sussex suggest the number of schools in England offering music GCSE has dropped from 85% to 79% between 2012 and 2016. The survey, which spoke to 657 state and 48 private schools across England, claimed the amount of 13 and 14-year-olds given compulsory music lessons fell by nearly 25%.”
“Several things dragged the Minister down, some quite unnecessarily. It was a mistake for her to pose as a champion of consumers while waving away a tax that would have cost Netflix subscribers less than a dollar a month. She seemed not to realize that tax fairness is also a potent issue – especially when the lack of it directly penalizes Canadian companies competing with Neflix for audiences. Or, more likely, she was instructed not to let anything divert her from the mission of keeping Neflix tax-free. And why?”
“The average intro is down from 20 seconds in the 1980s to just five seconds today. The fight to get to the crucial 30 seconds of play mark (after which Spotify pays out) means that many have resorted to using the intro to create a sort of potted highlights reel of the song yet to come.”
Despite its importance, there is a lack of consensus over whether people’s tendency to take risks is consistent or whether it varies depending on the type of risk. To find out, Renato Frey at the University of Basel in Switzerland and his colleagues asked 1500 adults to complete 39 tests commonly used to measure risk preference in different scenarios.
A problem arises if culture becomes simply a means to a non-cultural policy end. As Eleonora Belfiore argued, “if the logic of the instrumental view of culture… is taken to its extreme (but intrinsically consequential) conclusions, there would be no point in having a cultural policy at all”. Does an increasing emphasis on non-cultural policy intentions (health, wellbeing, etc) lead to a loss of meaning for cultural policy in its own terms? If so, what are the implications for the arts sector?
“What happens if, despite the sincerest of intentions and tireless efforts to integrate, most organizations rooted in European forms of artistic expression never achieve anything close to proportionate representation of the demographics of their communities? What then?”
Linguist Geoff Nunberg: “Fifty years after the Summer of Love, that’s been the fate of a lot of the language we associate with that era – faded psychedelia, sort of like acid rock and tie-dye, except that nobody ever tries to revive it. … But it’s striking how many words from the hippie era are still with us, from ‘uptight’ to ‘bummer’ to ‘freak show.’ As brief as the moment was, it changed the way we think and talk.” (includes audio)
“The concept, especially the revelation that a modern form slavery will be depicted, spurred a furious backlash on social media and in essays from high-profile writers like Ta-Nehisi Coates and Roxane Gay,” and HBO’s CEO acknowledged that the idea deserved more explanation than a three-paragraph press release. (Oddly, no one seems to be pointing out HBO’s tactical error in initially spotlighting producers D.B. Weiss and David Benioff, who created Game of Thrones and are white, rather than executive producers and lead writers Malcolm Spellman and Nichelle Tramble Spellman, who are African-American.)
The body of Nicholas of Myra, the beloved fourth-century bishop whose figure morphed over the centuries into the jolly old Santa Claus seen everywhere each December, was long thought to have been disinterred in 1087 and taken to the Italian city of Bari, where his shrine was built and remains to this day. But it seems that the Crusader merchants who took the remains away 930 years ago got the wrong guy: a team of archaeologists says they believe they’ve found the tomb of the real St. Nicholas under his old church in Myra, now Demre on Turkey’s southern coast.
The French original of the magazine is (in)famous for its ferocious, often blunt and sometimes offensive satirical cartoons. The American version – a limited-edition (four parts), online-only project – is graphic journalism: a Paris-based American reporter joined one of Charlie‘s cartoonists for a trip along the Northeast Corridor for a look at the American left.
The main museums in San Juan and Ponce report that they suffered minimal damage from the storms. While most but not all are open, their staffs are all back at work, helping with rescue and rebuilding efforts and offering free programming for their suffering communities.
“That a city that has as many wealthy individuals who’ve made a fortune in New York – that they couldn’t show up and support the most important cultural institution in New York, I think is too bad and shameful. New York deserves to have the best concert hall for the Philharmonic. New York should have the best of everything.”
“Through his treatment of celebrities – among them entertainers John Lennon, Yoko Ono and James Earl Jones – Dr. Janov became a celebrity in his own right beginning in the 1970s. In a best-selling book, and in appearances on television programs such as The Dick Cavett Show, he converted curious onlookers to committed followers with an enticingly simple explanation of psychological ailments, and what he billed as a near surefire way of resolving them.”
Lyn Gardner reports on the project by London’s Czech Centre and the interactive company Oneohone to perform updated versions of Havel’s Vaněk Plays, which were originally staged in secret in a Prague apartment after the Czech Communist government banned the playwright.
Peter Eötvös’s The Golden Dragon, “based on a play by Roland Schimmelpfennig [and set in a Chinese restaurant], has a cast of five who perform multiple roles that include ‘Chinese mother’, ‘Chinese aunt’, ‘Old Asian’ and ‘An Asian’.” Music Theatre Wales, generally a respected touring company admired for its unconventional productions, has fielded an all-white cast for the piece and is drawing criticism for it.
BlogBack: Timothy Cahill, Regional Art Writer, on Berkshire Museum’s Decline (& how it should regroup)
Timothy Cahill, a veteran journalist and critic focused on the Berkshire art scene, responds to CultureGrrl Video: My Opinionated Tour of the Embattled Berkshire Museum:
I watched the video of the your visit to the … read more
AJBlog: CultureGrrl Published 2017-10-04
Leaves Fall, Dancers Rise
New York City Ballet presents its annual Fall Gala at Lincoln Center. … read more
AJBlog: Dancebeat Published 2017-10-04
Aida at the ENO: singing the words of one song to the tune of another
Phelim McDermott’s Improbable company has mounted a new production of Verdi’s weirdest opera at the English National Opera … It is not, I fear, Improbable’s finest two hours and 40 minutes.” … read more
AJBlog: Plain English Published 2017-10-04
“The number of people using television in prime time has declined steadily in prime time over the last five years with the emergence of streaming video, especially among viewers under 35 years old. Among 18 to 49 age group, prime time viewing dropped 8% compared to premiere week last year.”
For example, No. 6: “China has all sorts of prohibitions related to superstitions. To Westerners, the gradations might seem ridiculous, but they’re real. They’re really superstitious about ghosts, so you can’t make a ghost movie. A monster is fine, though.”
“One thing you’ll notice: A full 75 percent of this year’s finalists are women – that’s 15 of the 20 final contenders. In fact, in the category for young people’s lit, every single finalist is a woman writer. Winners will be named at a ceremony in New York Nov. 15; it’ll be livestreamed on Facebook.”
The Berggruen Prize for philosophy and culture, inaugurated last year as a sort of Nobel equivalent, goes this year to University of Cambridge professor Onora O’Neill, known for her work in international justice, human rights, and bioethics.