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Caitlin Bruce: Russia co-opts radical shock art

Caitlin Bruce: Russia co-opts radical shock art

By Caitlin Bruce Kremlin and mass media seek to depoliticize Voina through appropriation and integration into the mainstream art world. For the last year Vorotnikov and Nikolaev have been waging a legal battle with Russian authorities for their freedom. While these challenges facing Voina have been welldocumented on Art Threat, Free Voina, and other alternative media sources, another battle is being fought: against state, art world, and dominant media attempts to contain Voina’s message. Much of the coverage of Voina is focused on their … Read entire article »

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Mona Abaza: Art, Subcultures And The Reinvention Of Public Space In Egypt

Mona Abaza: Art, Subcultures And The Reinvention Of Public Space In Egypt

By Mona Abaza Source: Ahram What the authoritarian forces lingering from the former regime cannot abide most, because they can’t control it, is the humor and color of the cultural revolution in Egypt. Doubt is widespread on how long the present transitional phase will last and whether it ought to be still perceived as a transitional phase. Many think that we are just at the beginning of a much longer and complex process, of an incomplete revolution where urban … Read entire article »

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Lucian Freud Dies At 88

Lucian Freud Dies At 88

Sources: Art Info / New Statesman Lucian Freud, Painter of Radical Realism, Dies at 88 By ARTINFO Lucian Freud, one of the most revered and respected contemporary painters, passed away on Wednesday night at his home in London, according to a statement from his dealerWilliam Acquavella. He was 88. “My family and I mourn Lucian Freud not only as one of the great painters of the twentieth century but also as a very dear friend,” the statement reads. … Read entire article »

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Fiachra Gibbons: Jean-Luc Godard – “Film is over. What to do?” Plus His 10 Best!

Fiachra Gibbons: Jean-Luc Godard – “Film is over. What to do?” Plus His 10 Best!

By Fiachra Gibbons Source: The Guardian [Top 10 Godard below...] The auteur is dead, says Jean-Luc Godard. The future is cut-and-paste movie mashups. Fiachra Gibbons meets the great contrarian – and leaves carrying his latest script.   Jean-Luc Godard has a solution to Europe’s financial crisis. It’s as simple and ingenious as one would expect from the man who, with all the young guns of the Nouvelle Vague, freed cinema from its studio straitjacket in the 1960s. “The Greeks gave us logic. We … Read entire article »

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Brad Sanders: Harlem In Vogue – The Poetry And Jazz Of Langston Hughes

Brad Sanders: Harlem In Vogue – The Poetry And Jazz Of Langston Hughes

By Brad Sanders Source: The Quietus By the time the most important writer of New York’s 1920s Harlem Renaissance movement recorded a collection of his poetry set to jazz in 1958, the concept wasn’t new. The Beat Generation had made the fusion of urban black music and heady, syncopated verses fashionable, with everyone from Allen Ginsberg to Jack Kerouac doing their early precursor to rapping over sax-and-drums backbones. Though already in his late 50s at the time that … Read entire article »

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Justin McGuirk: Beauty Is In The Street – The Power Of Protest Posters

Justin McGuirk: Beauty Is In The Street – The Power Of Protest Posters

By Justin McGuirk: A new book reminds us of powerful, unifying posters designed by students during the May 1968 Paris uprising. But where are the design campaigns from the youth of today? Three years ago the media marked the 40th anniversary of the May 1968 Paris uprising with a wave of nostalgic reminiscence. There may have been a nice round number to celebrate, but that was about all there was connecting us to the spirit of ’68. Three … Read entire article »

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Charles Bonenti: Pissarro’s People On Display At Clark

Charles Bonenti: Pissarro’s People On Display At Clark

Charles Bonenti: Of all the Impressionist artists who struggled to get their radical way of painting accepted in France in the 19th century, few had as many rich and complex human relationships as Camille Pissarro. Yet while he painted and drew many of the people who occupied his life, Pissarro is known today mainly for his landscapes. Impressionist scholar Richard Brettell, who teaches at the University of Texas in Dallas and is an authority on Pissarro, thought about … Read entire article »

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John Berger: Bento’s Sketchbook

John Berger: Bento’s Sketchbook

John Berger discusses Spinoza, drawing, Marxism, storytelling and his new book Bento’s Sketchbook —“a book about looking at the actual world in which we live today, which is both horrific in many ways and also at moments incredibly beautiful” — with Gavin Esler for BBC Newsnight. (video) … Read entire article »

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Voina in St. Petersburg: The Dick Of The Matter

Voina in St. Petersburg: The Dick Of The Matter

By Matthew Bown: It took members of Voina (pronounced va-ee-NA) 23 seconds to draw a very large, erect penis on the Liteiny Bridge in St Petersburg. They’d been practicing for weeks in a car park and had it down. The job had to be done quickly, because there was usually only half a minute or so between the stopping of the traffic and the raising of the bridge. A few accomplices — a cyclist, a hysterical woman … Read entire article »

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John Berger: A Life In Writing

John Berger: A Life In Writing

By Nicholas Wroe: ‘I wanted to write about looking at the world, so this book is about helping people to see what is around us, both the marvellous and the terrible’. On Good Friday in 2008 John Berger went to the National Gallery in London to look at, and to draw, Christ Crucified by the early renaissance artist Antonello da Messina, a work he describes as “the most solitary painting of the … Read entire article »

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The “Chomsky Suite”

The “Chomsky Suite”

In pieces commissioned by the Kronos Quartet, composer Tod Machover arranged what he terms “an unusual piece” — the “Chomsky Suite,” featuring Noam Chomsky. The piece explores the relationship Chomsky has with music and the effect it has had on his life. It was performed on April 15 in MIT’s Kresge Auditorium. The clip below is only one selection. Length: 11:59 (video) … Read entire article »

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Plays, Politics, Propensities

Plays, Politics, Propensities

Michael Paller discusses Jean-Paul Sartre’s activities during World War II, which included writing the play No Exit, an expression of Sartre’s existentialist philosophy. Tom Ross talks about the Tennessee Williams playThe Eccentricities of a Nightingale. And Robert Bray comments on Williams’s political views and the playwright’s coming-out on national television in 1970. Source: Against the Grain (4/20/11) … Read entire article »

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Revolution Puppet Show

Revolution Puppet Show

Two children, Silas and Simone, perform a puppet show enactment of the current Arab Revolution… (video) … Read entire article »

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Essential Viewing: Five Tunisian Films from a Postrevolutionary Perspective

Essential Viewing: Five Tunisian Films from a Postrevolutionary Perspective

By Nouri Gana: It is impossible to watch Tunisian film today from an exclusively prerevolutionary perspective. The present historical juncture will stealthily thrust itself to center stage. Besides, the value of film does not reside solely in its appropriateness to its own historical moment of production, but equally in its relevance to other, yet to come, historical moments. It becomes highly productive, not to say inevitable, that we rethink postcolonial Tunisian film through the lenses of … Read entire article »

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“To Free Humanity”

“To Free Humanity”

By Ore Ilani: A government of poets ruled in Bavaria for all of six whole days, from Monday, April 7, 1919, to the following Sunday. Its formation was announced in what had been the bedroom of Bavaria’s queen, several months after she fled with the king. The government was headed by avant-garde poet Ernst Toller, a 25-year-old Jewish student, and a discharged soldier who had served in the German army during World War I, before becoming a … Read entire article »

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US Uncut “Pay Up!” Flashmob at Bank of America

US Uncut “Pay Up!” Flashmob at Bank of America

US Uncut, in collaboration with The Ruckus Society and Brass Liberation Orchestra (BLO), kicked off Tax Day weekend (Friday afternoon 4/15/11) in San Francisco with a flashmob at Bank of America and told them to “PAY UP!” Bank of America is the #1 largest bank and the 5th largest corporation in the U.S., but it pays less in taxes than the average American household! If they and their corporate tax dodger friends paid their fair share … Read entire article »

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