Mr. Fairey has gone from great heights to dramatic lows in the last decade. He’s risen from cult figure to cultural reference point on “The Simpsons” to committing what he now calls his biggest blunder during the course of the A.P. lawsuit when he lied to his lawyers about exactly which A.P. photograph he used as the source of the “Hope” image and deleted files from his computer to cover up the truth.
“For most of history, wild horses were regarded as food, pests or a source of new tame animals. The remaking of the wild horse as an equine noble savage is a story taking in Romanticism, extinction, theatrical melodramas and near-naked ladies. And it begins with a grudge against a man named Mazepa in the 17th-century Polish court, and a disgraced poet.”
“Mike Durkin stands on Kensington Avenue, handing out fliers for a play he wants the neighborhood to help him write. It’s called The Old Man and the Delaware River, an adaptation of the celebrated Ernest Hemingway short novel, The Old Man and the Sea. … In Durkin’s version, the old man is the people of Kensington and the struggle is the opioid crisis.”
“Half a century after Bruce’s death, the social satirist and free-speech champion is a character in a drama unfolding at Brandeis University, where theater and arts faculty decided to postpone the planned fall staging of a script by a distinguished graduate, playwright Michael Weller, after some students and alumni complained the work vilified its black characters and the Black Lives Matter social movement. Weller then withdrew the work, entitled Buyer Beware, to premier the play with professional actors ‘elsewhere,’ according to a Brandeis spokesman.
Eliminating the estate tax could mean fewer gifts of art.
Analyst David Schick of Consumer Edge Research, who tracks Sotheby’s stock, wrote in a pre-call note that “we continue to see evidence of better deal-making” at Sotheby’s—presumably a reference to more restraint with guarantees, which can prove a black eye for a company’s bottom line if unsuccessful.
How do you regulate algorithms? “Digital capitalism badly needs new rules – because the old laws are no longer effective. They were made for an economy that traded in real goods and for which price was an important factor. That could all be taxed, controlled and, if need be, adjusted.”
Good book news for New Jersey and the four or five other places the store will open in the next two years? Maybe. “The chain also continues to roll out a new bookstore concept which it introduced in 2016. The new concept re-positions the chain’s larger locations as ‘cultural department stores’ and places an equal emphasis on the sale of non-book items, as well as books.”
Photographer Laura Aguilar says the project, photographing the working-class Latina butches and femmes who went to the Plush Pony bar, “didn’t get off to the best start. She offered to photograph the women for free and give them pictures in exchange for their time, but everyone reacted suspiciously. “‘They were like, ‘Who is this person who wants to take our picture for free?’’ she recalls. ‘So I said, ‘OK, five bucks.’ And then they said, ‘OK.’'”
Hamilton Fish wrote, “It’s my sense that our office culture has been harmed, and the best way for me to help the organization move past this is by withdrawing. … Women have longstanding and profound concerns with respect to their treatment in the workplace. Many men have a lot to learn in this regard. I know I do.” An investigation is ongoing.
Not that tourism is down a ton – 15% from last year – considering the independence referendum, anti-tourist demonstrations, and a terrorist attack, but still: When the first house Gaudí designed opens in a couple of weeks, it could be big. “Like much of the architect’s work, it is a glorious gallimaufry of styles, combining Japanese, Moorish-revival and original elements into an improbable success.”
Yes, people like their selfies in Infinity Rooms (and that’s fine), but she’s more than that – and not stopping. “Now 88, Ms. Kusama works nonstop and, if you’re wondering, does all the painting herself, save for a ground color applied by assistants. Recently she shifted her workweek from five days to six, saving Sunday for writing, reading, talking on the phone and making smaller paintings.”
So very much past time: “This is an all-pervasive problem. It is about how boys are hailed as geniuses and girls are not. It is about how men get given big-budget blockbusters to direct and women don’t. It is about how men get their plays on Broadway and women don’t. It is about how most of the critics are men. It is about how nearly all the talking heads on TV are men. And it is a vicious circle.” So, here’s a start of a new canon.
In the wake of many, many allegations (including those about Kevin Spacey when he was at the Old Vic), the plan is quite strong. “Royal Court artistic director Vicky Featherstone said her organisation would be adopting the code of behaviour immediately and it represented the ‘beginning’ of an industry-wide conversation about how to bring about lasting change.”
Amanda Gorman, now 19, was inspired a few years ago by hearing a speech by Malala Yousafzai. What’s she doing now, aside from attending Harvard? “Between courses in sociology and her laureate obligations, she continues to lead One Pen One Page, an organization she founded in 2016 that provides platforms ‘for student storytellers to change the world.’ She is also putting the final touches on She the People, an experiential virtual reality project that seeks to empower teenager girls.”
The list of the top 100 most powerful in the art world is put out by ArtReview, whose international editor said, “The way she works, not just her actual work but the way she runs her studio, is an influence and an inspiration to many younger artists. She looks to disrupt power networks that you can probably see run through the Power 100 and run though the art world.”
The journal that Ernestine Smith kept in the mid-1900s, including the WWII years, inspired Rees and her screenwriter, thanks to its many details. “In its hundreds of pages is everything from family photos of their slave ancestors to the names, ranks and medals of relatives who fought in wars, to floorplans of Smith’s childhood homes.”
The man knew how to create a look, a sound, a … well, everything: “With each album he released, Prince transformed his visual identity. The pompadoured rock god of Purple Rain, for example, was followed by the beatific flower child of Around the World in a Day and the louche sensualist of Parade. Each record carefully maintained its own distinctive color scheme, most obviously with Purple Rain, but also with the peach-and-black palette of Sign o’ the Times and the black, white and red of Lovesexy.”
Danzon began a long decline on Cuba after the 1959 Cuban Revolution, but the dance is kept alive, and even revived further, in the public squares of Mexico.
“After so much talking about the risks of ultraintelligent machines, it is time to turn on the light, stop worrying about sci-fi scenarios, and start focusing on AI’s actual challenges, in order to avoid making painful and costly mistakes in the design and use of our smart technologies.”
And that’s not exactly common in opera. So which work is this? The Mother of Us All, Virgil Thomson’s and Gertrude Stein’s fantasia about Susan B. Anthony and the fight for women’s suffrage in the U.S. (The description is Anthony Tommasini’s.)