An Acoustic Appraisal Of Disney

Scott Cantrell writes that while Disney is good, Dallas’ Meyerson Hall still sounds the best of the new American concert halls. “Most of the 19th- and early 20th-century concert halls regularly cited as best for symphonic music – the Musikverein in Vienna, the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, Symphony Hall in Boston and Carnegie Hall in New York – are variations on a shoebox shape. Their acoustics tend to be described as ‘warm’ and ‘rich,’ but with ample clarity. ‘Full-bodied’ and ‘spacious’ weren’t adjectives that came immediately to mind at the opening of Disney Hall. What wasn’t there was the lower-midrange depth and visceral bass that you get in the great old halls.”

Is The White Cube Dead?

Is the “white cube” approach to showing art still viable? “The question is not the death of the white cube, the question is how we work with artists in order to find the right way to make each work of art a glorious experience, and there is no general rule here: some need just a space in the mind; others a web site; some a sumptuous hall of mirrors; some a white cube.”

What Disney Means To Gehry

David Dillon writes that Disney Hall “confirms Mr. Gehry’s standing as the boldest and most inventive architect of his generation. Looking at the hall’s billowing facade – a sail, a kite, a lotus blossom, the visual analogies are endless – it’s easy to forget that Mr. Gehry started out designing shopping malls and spec office buildings for James Rouse and other developers. And when he won the competition for Disney Hall, he was known primarily as the kooky guy who put chain-link fence on his house and asphalt on his kitchen floor – not the sort of architect who should be trusted with a major civic building, thought the culturati. The breakthrough came with CATIA, a computer program used to design the French Mirage fighter.”

Post-Modernist De Keersmaeker Goes Inside

Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker and her company Rosas have long inhabited the post-modernist world of alternative spaces. Buter her new work “Rain”, writes Tobi Tobias, “makes them fit for an opera house—the venue, laden with tradition, on which postmodernism originally turned its back in contempt. Such a development is both ironic and inevitable—the mainstream is a magnet for the work of its rudest antagonists—and De Keersmaeker’s piece is very handsome indeed.”

Proposal: Hard Time For File Traders

A proposed law in the US Congress would punish those who distribute copyrighted movies or music ahead of their release dates with jail time of up to five years. “Unauthorized copies of movies often turn up in flea markets and online ‘peer to peer’ networks, such as Kazaa, shortly after they are released, thanks to audience members who smuggle camcorders into theaters. In other cases, industry insiders post movies and albums online before they are officially released, throwing promotional plans into disarray.”

Kahn – Figuring Out The Mystery

Even though he was one of the 20th Century’s premiere architects, Louis Kahn was a remote presence. “Who was Kahn? A genius? A cad? A man whose accomplishments transcended such judgments? In the end, not even Kahn himself seemed to know. He was found dead in New York’s Penn Station in 1974, his body unclaimed for three days because he’d crossed out his address in his passport. Why?”

Louis Kahn – A Life In Pictures

A new documentary about the life of architect Louis Kahn is one of the best movies of the year, writes Carrie Rickey. “The most penetrating insights into Kahn come not from the mandarins of modern architecture, nor the architect’s fiercely intelligent mistresses Anne Tyng and Harriet Pattison (Nathaniel’s mother), nor his children, but from the janitors in Dhaka who pray in the mosque of the capital building that a Jew built for Muslims. For these men who mistakenly call the architect Louis Farrakhan, the building is a vessel of the spirit.”