It Is What It Is
"If you notice a guard at the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis suddenly balancing on one foot or striking a yoga pose, it’s probably just Todd Balthazor limbering up. “I’m stretching all the time,” he said. “You have to do that, or else you are going to stiffen up. We have some elderly workers, and they just walk like trees.” [...] In the strip, “It Is What It Is,” Mr. Balthazor frequently aims graphic barbs at museum guests, like the “photo bomber,” who poses in front of large paintings without considering the art. “They look at it like, ‘This is going to be a great backdrop for my Facebook profile,’ ” Mr. Balthazor said." [more inside]
posted by xicana63
on Nov 14, 2013 -
What No One Tells You About Losing Lots of Weight. For at least some newly thin people, there’s a meta-dissatisfaction in feeling that significant weight loss has made life anything other than perfect: Any discomfort you may feel with your body is compounded by a sense of shame at not feeling unmitigated pride at a moment you expected to be triumphant. [more inside]
posted by Drinky Die
on Nov 11, 2013 -
"I listen to Ira’s show on and off, because I think they do the best work there is in that form. But This American Life has inspired this proliferation of programs where people tell their stories, and I think it’s gotten—there’s too much of it. I find it annoying, because it’s very uneven. Now it just seems like everybody’s telling a story, and it’s beginning to sound narcissistic, and I’m thinking, Who gives a shit about your story? You’re just another person telling your story. How many do we need?" Joe Frank interviewed by Jonathan Goldstein for The Believer [more inside]
posted by Going To Maine
on Nov 9, 2013 -
László Krasznahorkai's most recently translated book, Seiobo There Below
, whose first chapter can be read online
, is a collection of interconnected stories about art and revelation, stories composed almost entirely of pages-long sentences, "long, sinewy sentences," sentences which might make you think "Krasznahorkai holds the run-on in a suffocating bear hug," as Adam Z. Levy has it
, sentences which other critics call "captivating"
, "apparently endless [...] like diving deep underwater, with no hope of coming up for air, or like releasing the brakes on a bicycle at the top of a steep hill"
, but those sentences, which go on for pages as they shift scenes and perspectives, serve as vehicles for a terrifying aesthetic bliss
or bewilderment [more inside]
posted by RogerB
on Nov 8, 2013 -
Nightwatch: The Haunting Light Painted Nightscapes of Noel Kerns
: Dallas-based photographer Noel Kerns
specializes in capturing haunting night scenes of ghost towns, decommissioned military bases, and industrial abandonments. His creative use of different colored lights combined with moon light helps these old abandoned places come alive as vivid nightscapes. [...]
By very carefully planning out his shot and using flashlights, strobes and colored gels to strategically add light, Kerns captures the final product in-camera during exposures that last, on average, one to three minutes — very little, if any, post-production is done at all
. [more inside]
posted by Room 641-A
on Nov 4, 2013 -
About 1,500 modernist masterpieces – thought to have been looted by the Nazis – have been confiscated from the flat of an 80-year-old man from Munich, in what is being described as the biggest artistic find of the postwar era.
posted by R. Mutt
on Nov 4, 2013 -
. Element: Mud
. Exemplar: The Lion of Belfort
. Element: Water
. Exemplar: Water
. Element: Fire
. Exemplar: The Court of Dragons
. Element: Blood
. Exemplar: Œdipus
. [Certain images NSFW on account of Victorian prurience] [more inside]
posted by Iridic
on Oct 30, 2013 -
Grayson Perry's lectures on art: "Art is very popular but I think many people are still quite insecure around galleries, particularly commercial galleries which are quite intimidating. I want to answer a few of the very basic questions that perhaps people even in the art world think that it’s almost too gauche to ask. They might think they’re irrelevant or even that they’ve all been answered now and everybody knows the answer. I’m starting with this lecture called Democracy Has Bad Taste, because I want to talk about the issue of quality because I think this is one of the most burning issues around – how do we tell if something is good?
Who tells us that it’s good? And of course does it really matter? And I want to talk about what are the criteria by which we judge art made today." [more inside]
posted by DanCall
on Oct 28, 2013 -
is a crowdsourced map for people to share and post reusable materials that they spot left outside. It is a resource for creative hobbyists, artists and people conducting renovation works to find unique, salvageable old wood, windows, doors, metal, glass and furniture. So far I think it's mostly Toronto and Montreal but is expanding to other areas.
posted by dobbs
on Oct 28, 2013 -
It took me nine minutes to notice that the shape of the boy’s ear precisely echoes that of the ruff along the squirrel’s belly—and that Copley was making some kind of connection between the animal and the human body and the sensory capacities of each. It was 21 minutes before I registered the fact that the fingers holding the chain exactly span the diameter of the water glass beneath them. It took a good 45 minutes before I realized that the seemingly random folds and wrinkles in the background curtain are actually perfect copies of the shapes of the boy’s ear and eye, as if Copley had imagined those sensory organs distributing or imprinting themselves on the surface behind him. And so on. What this exercise shows students is that just because you have looked at something doesn’t mean that you have seen it.
posted by shivohum
on Oct 23, 2013 -
Why People Mistake Good Deals for Rip-Offs. In another experiment, the ventral putamen, a region of the brain that processes reward, was more active when people drank Pepsi than when they drank Coke—except when they were told that they were drinking Pepsi. Coke’s brand appeal is so powerful, and our ability to determine the value of cola so fickle, that our brains respond differently as soon as we learn that what we’re drinking isn’t Coke. The physical experience doesn’t change at all, but we’re unable to peg the value of a brown, caffeinated soda until we know where its life began.
posted by crossoverman
on Oct 22, 2013 -
In February 1963
, a new publication
took advantage of the New York City printers strike and launched with a daring editorial
: It does not, however, seek merely to fill the gap created by the printers’ strike in New York City but to take the opportunity which the strike has presented to publish the sort of literary journal which the editors and contributors feel is needed in America.
The New York Review of Books
is now 50
. [more inside]
posted by mattbucher
on Oct 21, 2013 -
Opening Day of The Guggenheim Museum
, 3:34 of color film shot on October 21, 1959 in NYC.
“Buildings & Crowd” captures the their excitement as lines formed down Fifth Avenue. The end of the film highlights the inaugural exhibition within the rotunda. With works by Jean Arp, Constantin Brancusi, Marc Chagall, Stuart David, Max Ernst, Paul Klee, and Vasily Kandinsky.
posted by R. Mutt
on Oct 21, 2013 -
O’Bryan walked me slowly down the steep side of the mesa, to the desert floor, so I could see Star Axis in its entirety. The work’s centrepiece is a 10-storey staircase that lets you walk up through the rock of the mesa, your eyes fixed on a small circular opening that cuts through the top of the pyramid. The first section of the staircase is roofless and open to the sky, but the end of it has a stone overhang that makes it look and feel like a tunnel. This ‘star tunnel’, as Ross calls it, is precisely aligned with Earth’s axis. If you bored a tunnel straight through the Earth’s core, from the South Pole to North Pole, and climbed up it, you’d see the same circle of sky that you do when you walk through Ross’ tunnel. Gazing up through it in the afternoon glare, I saw a patch of blue, the size and shape of a dime held at arm’s length. But if the sun had blinked for a moment, fading the heavens to black, I’d have seen Polaris, glittering at the end of the tunnel, like a solitary diamond in the void.
"Embracing the Void
," Ross Andersen, Aeon
posted by Rustic Etruscan
on Oct 17, 2013 -
is an artist based in Montréal whose photographic series Alone Time
features one person as two different people, of different genders, in the same frame. The latest in the series has just debuted on Buzzfeed
and features Levine's partner as both an expectant mother and an expectant father, as well as an interview with Levine. [more inside]
posted by Athanassiel
on Oct 15, 2013 -