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Provocation: Was Modernism Intended To Exclude The Masses?

“If more and more working people were reading the classics, if they were closing the cultural gap between themselves and the middle classes, how could intellectuals preserve their elite status as arbiters of taste and custodians of rare knowledge? They had to create a new body of modernist literature which was deliberately made so difficult and obscure that the average reader did not understand it.” – JStor
Tags: Art, Ideas, Audience, SJ, 01.09.19

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie Was Asked, ‘Are You An African Writer?’ Here’s Her Answer.

I have no objection at all to being African, in fact it is all I know how to be and so I cannot possibly be anything else. And so my answer to the question “Are you an African Writer?” was no, and not because I am not proudly African. … I said no because I have increasingly been troubled by the subtle and not-so-subtle constraints that the question implies.” — New Statesman
Tags: Art, Words, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, 01.09.19

Mark Wigglesworth: Why Singing Opera In English Is A Good Idea

“The idea that opera can only work in its original form is a dangerously small step from saying that Italian or German opera can only be done well by Italians or Germans. Operas are enriched by the breadth of styles that perform them and a variety of approaches is beneficial overall. There’s no one way to enjoy opera, and we should celebrate this inherent diversity. Now is not the time to make it narrower. That’s not accessibility, that’s elitism.” – BachTrack
Tags: Art, Music, Mark Wigglesworth, 01.09.19

Five Trends That Will Shape The Visual Art Market In 2019

The rise of Taipei, a realignment in New York, Saudi money… the art world has never been so internationally dispersed… – Artsy
Tags: Art, Taipei, Visual, 01.09.19, New York Saudi

A String Bass That Actually Fits In A Manageable Travel Case

“The TravelBass breaks down into separate components for transport in a custom case, and is assembled for play when double bassists reach their destination. Its makers – out of Parma, Italy – reckon that roving musicians should be able to take it on aircraft as carry on luggage in a custom hard case … designed to survive life in the cargo hold.” — New Atlas
Tags: Art, Music, Parma Italy, 01.09.19

Beauty Isn’t Explained By Science. But Science Needs To Understand Beauty

If there is a universal truth about beauty — some concise and elegant concept that encompasses every variety of charm and grace in existence — we do not yet understand enough about nature to articulate it. – The New York Times
Tags: Art, Ideas, 01.09.19

Internet Protocol Mappers Led Police Back, And Back, And Back To This Random Couple’s House

So you think your phone, or tablet, or computer, was stolen and then landed at an address in South Africa? Er, no. This was all a big mistake. “John and Ann’s house must have just missed MaxMind’s cut-off for remediation. Theirs was the 104th most popular location in the database, with over a million IP addresses mapped to it.” – Gizmodo
Tags: Art, South Africa, John, ANN, Issues, 01.09.19, Random Couple 's House

Mystery Over Why Easter Island’s Giant Heads Are Where They Are Is Solved

The heads are unforgettable, standing watch over Easter Island’s windswept plains. Clearly they served some function, but was it more than ceremonial? The answer, say scientists, is yes. And a practical yes at that… – The Guardian
Tags: Art, Visual, Easter Island, 01.09.19

The Silent Film Era Produced 10,000 Movies. The Vast Majority Have Been Lost Or Destroyed

Because early motion pictures were released on nitrate film, which is dangerously flammable and susceptible to decay—only to become even more flammable as it deteriorates—the majority of these films are no longer with us today. While the exact number of lost films is unknown, a study commissioned by the Library of Congress ballparks the surviving number at a scant 14 percent. – Smithsonian
Tags: Art, Media, Congress, 01.09.19

How Verdi Took Care Of His Friends: A Retirement Home For Opera Singers

Using his own fortune, Verdi built the retirement home for opera singers and musicians, a neo-Gothic structure that opened in 1899. The composer died less than two years later, but he made sure the profits from his music copyrights kept the home running until the early 1960s, when they expired. Today guests pay a portion of their monthly pension to cover basic costs – food and lodging — while the rest comes from donations. – NPR
Tags: Art, Music, Verdi, 01.09.19, Verdi Took

The Market Economy Model Has Crippled All Sorts Of Professions

We are all customers now; we are all supposed to be kings. But what if ‘being a customer’ is the wrong model for healthcare, education, and even highly specialised crafts and trades? – Aeon
Tags: Art, Ideas, 01.09.19

A Year After The Emmett Till-Whitney Biennial Furor, Dana Schutz Is Back At Work

“Now, Ms. Schutz admits that she is ‘guarded’ about the controversy …, saying only that [painting Open Casket] was an attempt to ‘register this monstrous act and this tragic loss.’ But she acknowledged that may have been an ‘impossible’ task.” Even so, she doesn’t regret having painted the piece or the subsequent conflict: “It’s good those voices were heard.'” — The New York Times
Tags: Art, Visual, Dana Schutz, 01.09.19, Ms Schutz

Was Modernist English Literature Deliberately Written To Keep The Riff-Raff Away?

Yes, argues scholar Jonathan Rose. “The intelligentsia was driven to create literary modernism by a profound loathing of ordinary common readers. The intellectuals feared the masses not because they were illiterate but because, by the early twentieth century, they were becoming more literate, thanks to public education, adult education, scholarships, and cheap editions of the great books.” — JSTOR Daily
Tags: Art, Words, Audience, Jonathan Rose, 01.09.19

When J Edgar Hoover’s FBI Declares Writers Enemies Of The State

Reading through dossier after dossier on 16 American writers contained in Writers Under Surveillance: The FBI Files, what strikes you immediately is the terrifying absurdity of Hoover’s obsession with anyone who didn’t follow his patriotic party line and dared to express critical concern about the national psyche in well-written words.  – New Statesman
Tags: Art, Fbi, Words, Hoover, J Edgar Hoover, 01.09.19

When Herbert Hoover’s FBI Declares Writers Enemies Of The State

Reading through dossier after dossier on 16 American writers contained in Writers Under Surveillance: The FBI Files, what strikes you immediately is the terrifying absurdity of Hoover’s obsession with anyone who didn’t follow his patriotic party line and dared to express critical concern about the national psyche in well-written words.  – New Statesman
Tags: Art, Fbi, Words, Hoover, Herbert Hoover, 01.09.19

When J Edgar Hoover’s FBI Declared Writers Enemies Of The State

Reading through dossier after dossier on 16 American writers contained in Writers Under Surveillance: The FBI Files, what strikes you immediately is the terrifying absurdity of Hoover’s obsession with anyone who didn’t follow his patriotic party line and dared to express critical concern about the national psyche in well-written words.  – New Statesman
Tags: Art, Fbi, Words, Hoover, J Edgar Hoover, 01.09.19

Oscars Will Go On Without A Host This Year: Report

“As it stands, no new offers are out, nor are any expected to be made to a single potential host to fill the void left by [the] Kevin Hart [debacle]. … [Instead,] producers will select a crop of A-listers to introduce various segments instead of relying on one marquee name to kick things off in a monologue filled with Trump zingers, said the insiders.” — Variety
Tags: Art, Media, Kevin Hart, Trump, 01.09.19

So Now Detroit’s Cool Again, Who Gets To Call Themselves A Detroit Artist?

“I mean if you are a Cranbrook student or AIR, you are not a Detroit artist. If your studio practice is based in Pontiac, you are not a Detroit artist. If you just moved to Detroit, you are not a Detroit artist. Why is this false narrative being pumped? We all have a place of origin why aren’t you repping that? I got one real question though, Where were you when we were shooting in the gym?” – Hyperallergic
Tags: Art, Detroit, Visual, Pontiac, Cranbrook, 01.09.19

Artists Protest Dublin’s Abbey Theatre: “We’re Being Paid What We Earned 20 Years Ago”

“Actors feel they’re being shoved to the bottom of the food chain again. The Abbey’s success is at our expense. They have managed with this model to reduce our already poor remuneration to pre-millennium levels.” – Irish Times
Tags: Art, Theatre, Dublin, Abbey, 01.09.19

Billion-Dollar Foundation Dedicates Itself To Racial Equity. Founder’s Heirs Protest

Some of the 340 heirs of John Andrus, who’s estate created Minnesota’s Surdna Foundation, back in the 1930s, are protesting the foundation’s funding of progressive causes and its decision to devote itself to racial equity. What would Andrus have wanted? – Chronicle of Philanthropy
Tags: Art, Minnesota, Issues, Andrus, SJ, Surdna Foundation, 01.09.19, John Andrus

Why Did All The Bells On Philly’s Avenue Of The Arts Stop Ringing?

In 1996, when a multimillion-dollar renovation of South Broad Street was completed, sound artist Robert Coburn attached 39 small bronze bells to lampposts along the newly-christened “Avenue of the Arts.” For a year or so, they played melodies fed from an electronic terminal, but they’ve been silent for two decades now. A reporter found out why. — The Philadelphia Inquirer
Tags: Art, Issues, Philly, South Broad Street, 01.09.19, Robert Coburn

Why Did This 11th-Century Woman Have Lapis Lazuli In Her Dental Plaque?

The likely answer not only opens up a new avenue for archaeology, it indicates that a highly-skilled medieval art associated with men (chiefly monks) had female practitioners as well. — The Atlantic
Tags: Art, People, 01.09.19

How Did A Quiet Belgian Director Become ‘The Most Important Auteur On The International Stage Circuit’? Three New York Times Critics Debate Ivo Van Hove

“In this edited conversation, Ben Brantley, co-chief theater critic for The Times, and the critics Elisabeth Vincentelli and Jason Zinoman aim to make sense of Mr. van Hove’s ascent, from Off Broadway to a Tony Award, David Bowie to All About Eve.” — The New York Times
Tags: Art, Theatre, David Bowie, Broadway, The Times, Ivo van Hove, Van Hove, Ben Brantley, Jason Zinoman, Elisabeth Vincentelli, 01.09.19, International Stage Circuit, New York Times Critics Debate

Study: Older People Share More Fake News

Older users skewed the findings: 11 percent of users older than 65 shared a hoax, while just 3 percent of users 18 to 29 did. Facebook users ages 65 and older shared more than twice as many fake news articles than the next-oldest age group of 45 to 65, and nearly seven times as many fake news articles as the youngest age group (18 to 29). –
Tags: Art, Facebook, Media, 01.09.19

Hollywood’s Next Stage Theatre Closes After 30 Years

It was a theatre committed to helping theatre artists work. The theater would allow people to come in with their scripts and put them up with no upfront costs, which is an unusual approach in the L.A. theater scene. In return, the theater would take half of the door proceeds. – LAist
Tags: Art, Hollywood, Theatre, 01.09.19

Did Tony Soprano Die? The Two Guys Who Wrote ‘The Sopranos Sessions’ Hash It Out

Matt Zoller Seitz and Alan Sepinwall, who were the TV critics at Tony’s hometown paper (The Star-Ledger) when the series ran on HBO and who have just released a major book about the show for its 20th anniversary, lay their arguments over this subject on the line. — Vulture
Tags: Art, Hbo, Media, Tony, Matt Zoller Seitz, Alan Sepinwall, 01.09.19, Tony Soprano Die

‘Salvator Mundi’ And The Mueller Probe And Russian Collusion? Really??

The Narativ article about the $450 million Leonardo painting and its possible connections with Special Council Robert Mueller’s investigation has gotten a lot of attention this week. It’s all too much for Artnet national art critic Ben Davis, who weighs in with an attempt at debunking. — Artnet
Tags: Art, Visual, Ben Davis, Artnet, Robert Mueller, Salvator Mundi, 01.09.19

Public TV Network In Oklahoma Cuts Ties With Foundation That Raises Money For It

“Yesterday, in a unanimous vote, the Oklahoma Educational Television Authority (OETA), a PBS affiliate, elected to cut ties with its thirty-year independent charitable fundraising partner, the OETA Foundation. … Their relationship has soured in a public enough fashion that the foundation believed it could take its case to court, suing OETA, its birth parent, over control of the foundation.” — Nonprofit Quarterly
Tags: Art, Media, Pbs, OETA, 01.09.19, Oklahoma Educational Television Authority OETA, OETA Foundation

NYC’s Defunct Gotham Chamber Opera Comes Back From The Dead (Sort Of)

“[GCO’s] founder, Neal Goren, is back in business — thanks to an unusual collaboration between his new company, Catapult Opera, and Peak Performances at Montclair State University, which will present four of Catapult’s productions.” — The New York Times
Tags: Art, Music, NYC, Montclair State University, 01.09.19, Neal Goren, Catapult Opera

Hartford Stage Names New Artistic Director: Melia Bensussen

“Raised in Mexico City, widely traveled, and based in the Boston area since the 1980s, Bensussen is just the sixth artistic director in Hartford Stage’s 55-year history. She is the first woman to hold the position,” in which she succeeds Tony-winning director Darko Trasnjak. — Hartford Courant
Tags: Art, Boston, Theatre, Mexico City, Tony, Hartford, Melia Bensussen, Bensussen, 01.09.19, Darko Trasnjak

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