The Catholic university in Philadelphia, “which has struggled to plug a projected deficit in recent years, plans to sell 46 pieces of art from its prized museum collection to help fund teaching and learning initiatives in its new strategic plan, officials said Tuesday. The sale, which includes masterpieces by Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres, Georges Rouault, and Albert Gleizes, could raise more than $7 million, officials estimate.”
“Janet Malcolm once said that the ‘pose of fair-mindedness, the charade of evenhandedness’ are ‘rhetorical ruses.’ This week, Pankaj Mishra and Leslie Jamison discuss whether writers can ever truly put aside their own prejudices and interpretations.”
Creativity isn’t everything – and it isn’t confined to novels and poetry, says an academic writer. “This mass of unrecognized writing and labor is virtually unrepresented in popular culture, and academics and other workplace writers are not part of the cultural narrative around creativity.”
“World tours, fancy conferences, prestigious bylines and book contracts were bestowed on artists who hewed to political positions favored by the establishment, rather than on the most talented. In 1966, The New York Times confirmed suspicions that the CIA was pumping money into “civil society” organizations: unions, international organizations of students and women, groups of artists and intellectuals. The agency had produced the popular cartoon version of George Orwell’s anticommunist classic Animal Farm in 1954. It flew the Boston Symphony Orchestra on a European tour in 1952, to counter prejudices of the United States as uncultured and unsophisticated. It promoted the work of abstract expressionist painters like Jackson Pollock because their artistic style would have been considered degenerate in both Hitler’s Germany and Stalin’s Soviet Union.”
Carl Swanson: “The combination of his inscrutability – all those words and phrases, scrawled and painted over, and grandiose titles referencing classical mythology – combined with the work’s billionaire home-decor market value to speak to something clubby, cushioned, and aloof which I never quite got, or felt I should get, or maybe that I felt that I needed to get. And it’s not just me.”
Seeing this story, we can finally understand what Reynolds meant when she said that, excepting childbirth, her big number in Singin’ in the Rain was the hardest thing she’d ever done in her life. (includes video)
The term “the artworld” itself seems to date only to 1964, but this timeline goes all the way back to 1793, when the revolutionary regime in France turned a certain royal palace in Paris into a public museum. The history here is selective, to be sure, but half the fun of these things is working up righteous high dudgeon over what’s been in- and excluded.
Remember when early January was basically a post-Christmas lull in the performing arts season? Those days are over: now it’s not uusual for a dancer to perform in three completely different works for different companies within 24 hours. “The reason – or the culprit, some might say – is the phenomenon known as APAP.”
“There was a time, within relatively recent memory, when buyers of new-music albums had a good idea what kind of music they would hear – and not incidentally, what kind they would not hear.” Kozinn surveys the current scene.
Ruth Mackenzie, a Briton who headed the 2012 London Cultural Olympics and currently runs the Holland Festival, will take over the Théâtre du Châtelet from Jean-Luc Choplin, who transformed the venue from a somewhat offbeat opera and dance producer into a Broadway-by-the-Seine (Broadway’s recent An American in Paris originated there).