Lord Cultural Resources logo Cultural News Mar 9-15, 2012

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Coming soon, a Rs. 400-cr. facelift for Patna Museum

A. Srivathsan, The Hindu, 12 March 2012


PATNA, INDIA – "At a time, when the Central and State governments are cold-shouldering public interest in history, ignoring their museums and allocating paltry funds for protecting the precious collections in them, Bihar has taken up an ambitious and well thought-out project to rejuvenate and rebuild its crown jewel — the Patna Museum. [text omitted]

The most impressive feature so far is the approach adopted by the Bihar government. Chief Minister Nitish Kumar neither waited for assistance from the Union Ministry of Culture, which is still sleeping on the year-old B.N. Goswamy Committee's report on modernising Indian museums, nor did he look to cultural tsars from Delhi for directions.

Last year, after deciding to build a new museum, the State appointed Lord Cultural Resources, a Canadian museum planning consultant, to advise it. Subsequently, a two-stage international competition was announced, and a seven-member jury, including Martin Roth, Director of the Victoria & Albert Museum in London, was constituted. Of the 26 entries received in the first stage, five renowned design firms were short-listed. These included Snøhetta and Studio Daniel Libeskind, the two design firms involved in rebuilding the World Trade Center in New York.

"We have worked in 50 countries and have been museum consultants for more than three decades. Working in Bihar has been a very positive experience. The State government has pioneered a process that is professional and refreshing," said Batul Raaj Mehta, senior consultant and India head of Lord Cultural Resources. "In Bihar, as master planners, we have advised the government on the conceptualisation of the museum, evolved a business plan, and worked on financial and human resource deployment. This comprehensive planning will lead to a museum of international standards that will be relevant to Bihar," she added."


Brooklyn Museum to Honor 'First' Women

Melena Ryzik, The New York Times, 12 March 2012


BROOKLYN, NY – "On April 18, as part of the fifth anniversary of the Brooklyn Museum's Elizabeth A. Sackler Center for Feminist Art, the museum will present the First Awards, given to 15 women who were first in their fields. Among the honorees are Sandra Day O’Connor; Jessye Norman; Toni Morrison; Connie Chung; the choreographer and director Susan Stroman; Faye Wattleton, a former president of Planned Parenthood; and Chief Wilma Pearl Mankiller, the first female chief of the Cherokee Nation.

The award — a glass sculpture designed by the artist Judy Chicago — will be presented by Ms. Chicago, Gloria Steinem and Elizabeth Sackler, the art collector and philanthropist behind the center."



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'Levitated Mass' by Michael Heizer gets to museum

San Francisco Chronicle, 11 March 2012


LOS ANGELES, CA – "It was 4:35 a.m. Saturday when the block-long transporter carrying a 340-ton, 21-foot-high boulder wrapped in white plastic pulled up in front of the Los Angeles County Museum of Art.

More than 1,000 people, kept on the sidewalk by a squadron of police officers, responded with applause and a burst of camera flashes.

But as the 196-wheel transporter idled there under huge spotlights befitting a city known for its star-gazing, the crowd poured off the sidewalk and moved toward the boulder that will soon be the latest addition to the museum's art collection. They touched the rock, marveled at its size, posed for photographs and congratulated the workers who had overseen the complicated task of transporting a rock-turned-art from a quarry in Riverside 60 miles away."


Planning for Art

Chicago revising cultural and economic development strategy

Christopher Bentley, The Architect's Newspaper, 14 March 2012


CHICAGO, IL – "Mayor Rahm Emanuel, himself a one-time ballet dancer, has long been a vocal supporter of the arts. Now City Hall is coordinating an extensive outreach effort to check Chicago's creative pulse, seeking comment on the city's first new cultural plan in more than 25 years."


Toronto museum wouldn't remount James ossuary display, vice-president says

James Adams, The Globe and Mail, 15 March 2012


TORONTO, ON – "There will not be a 10th-anniversary showing of the James ossuary later this year at Toronto's Royal Ontario Museum.

"We'd need something new to say about [the ossuary]," said Dan Rahimi, the ROM's vice-president of gallery development. "If we have nothing new to say about it, it would just be sensationalism. I don't really think we're in a more advanced position than before so I wouldn't bring it back."

Mr. Rahimi was speaking in the wake of an Israeli judge's ruling, announced Wednesday in Jerusalem, that efforts by Israeli prosecutors to prove, in a five-year trial, that the James ossuary is a forgery had failed."

[See also Judge set to lift lid on 'James ossuary' verdict, By James Adams, The Globe and Mail, 12 March 2012, and After seven years of trial and testimony from dozens of experts, Israeli court clears 2 of faking Jesus-era box, By Daniella Cheslow (Associated Press), Recent News, artdaily.org, 15 March 2012]


Régis Debray entre au conseil d’administration de la Maison de l’histoire de France

Le Journal des Arts, 12 mars 2012


PARIS, FRANCE – "Le ministre de la Culture vient de nommer les six membres du conseil d'administration de la Maison de l'histoire de France, parmi lesquels la figure très engagée de Régis Debray."


Architects for Hong Kong's Xiqu Centre Competition

West Kowloon Cultural District Authority Announces Design Competition for its First Arts Venue

Archinect Jobs, 13 March 2012


HONG KONG – "The West Kowloon Cultural District Authority (WKCDA) launched today a design competition to deliver one of the first landmark buildings for the West Kowloon Cultural District, the Xiqu Centre. The Chinese opera venue will provide a world-class facility for the preservation and development of the art form in Hong Kong and will be designed to host and produce the finest examples of Cantonese and other Chinese opera performances."


Luminato 2012: Festival announces bold lineup from K'NAAN to the War of 1812

Richard Ouzounian, Toronto.com, 14 March 2012


TORONTO, ON – "The 2012 edition of Luminato, Toronto Festival of Arts and Creativity is the first one under its new Artistic Director, Jorn Weisbrodt and it's not coincidental that the program announced Wednesday is probably the boldest and most varied selection of works since the Festival was launched in 2007.

"Arts shapes history, just as history shapes art and it's that combination of Revolution and Transformation we're exploring this year," Weisbrodt told the Star about the sixth edition of the event, which will run from June 8 through 17 at various locations around Toronto."

[See also Luminato salutes Kate McGarrigle, Alice Munro, By Martin Knelman, Toronto Star, 14 March 2012, Toronto's Luminato Announces Initial 2012 Lineup with Philip Glass, K'naan, Kathleen Edwards, Dan Mangan, Deltron 3030, By Alex Hudson, Exclaim.ca, 14 March 2012, Rufus Wainwright, K'naan and Einstein included in Luminato line up, By Bianca Puorto, Post City, 14 March 2012, and Luminato announces lineup: K'naan, Lepage, Glass and more, By Guy Dixon, The Globe and Mail, 14 March 2012]


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Aspen Art Museum Scores Big Gift to Amp Up Its Education Offerings

Kyle Chayka, Artinfo, 15 March 2012


ASPEN, CO – "The Aspen Art Museum (AAM) will soon begin construction on its new Shigeru Ban-designed building in the city's downtown, expanding from 10,000 to 30,000 square feet. As the building's footprint expands, the institution's public presence is expanding as well — the AAM has just scored a $1.5 million gift from Allen and Kelli Questrom to establish the Questrom Education Fund.

The new funding will bolster support for the AAM's existing programs as well as expand the institution's educational offerings, including reaching out to underserved populations, working with local schools, and providing free museum tours for students and educators."


Le rêve artistique peut-il transformer l'Afrique ?

Le Monde, 14 mars 2012


DOUALA, CAMEROON (ENVOYÉE SPECIALE: Le MuMo, musée mobile, à Douala) – "Je suis entrée au paradis!" Les mots ont du mal à sortir, d'autant que la voix est toute timide. Dix ans à peine, un immense sourire sur les lèvres, la frêle Mpemboura, petite Camerounaise, vient de passer quelques minutes dans l'installation d'un immense artiste américain, James Turrell: une bulle où les enfants pénètrent pour se laisser irradier par un arc-en-ciel de lumière. Du bleu polaire au rouge sang, tout le spectre y passe doucement et submerge le corps. Impossible de comprendre d'où vient la lumière, inutile de chercher à saisir du regard les murs. Stupéfiant de beauté."


Un nouveau pôle d'art actuel au centre-ville de Montréal

Une toute première oeuvre d'art performatif occupera les vitrines du 2-22

Isabelle Paré, Le Devoir, 14 mars 2012


MONTRÉAL, QC – "Au cœur du Quartier des spectacles, un nouveau pôle culturel, intitulé Art actuel 2-22, sera inauguré vendredi. Déployé sur deux étages et quelque 4500 pieds carrés, le nouvel antre entièrement consacré à l'art contemporain et aux pratiques émergentes déploiera salles d'exposition, salles de documentation, librairie ainsi que la toute première œuvre d'art performatif publique, intégrée à même la façade du nouvel édifice culturel 2-22."


Who Wants to Donate to a Billionaire's Museum?

Fred A. Bernstein, The New York Times, 14 March 2012


UNITED STATES – "When Eli Broad, the art collector and philanthropist, decided to build a museum in downtown Los Angeles, he named it The Broad. That pretty much ruled out asking anybody else for money, said Barry Munitz, a governor of the Broad Foundation. The museum, about to break ground on a Diller Scofidio & Renfro building, will have an initial $200 million endowment and has no plans to seek outside funding, according to Joanne Heyler, who will be its director.

But there's another Broad museum, this one nearing completion at Michigan State University, in East Lansing. Mr. Broad (pronounced Brode), a Michigan State alumnus, and his wife, Edythe, gave $28 million to that cause — far less than the cost of the museum's new Zaha Hadid building. And that means the museum's director, Michael Rush, has to raise money before the museum opens this year."


Art Museums Giving It the Old College Try

Keith Schneider, The New York Times, 14 March 2012


UNITED STATES – "When it opens this fall, the Eli and Edythe Broad Art Museum at Michigan State University will be the latest in a series of new university art museums that have opened around the country.

But here and at other campuses, striking buildings are just a part of the new profile of university art museums. With the help of departments as varied as nursing, law, meteorology and engineering, the museums’ directors are deploying their extensive collections, and sometimes the artists themselves, to enhance curriculums."


Museums and me: Junction's top tips for engaging young people

Label your exhibits, not your visitors, says the Museum of London's youth panel. Young people want to learn – just not how you expect

Junction and The Museum of London, The Guardian, 13 March 2012


LONDON, UK – "This summer the Museum of London will open Our Londinium 2012, an exciting new look at the museum's Roman collections created by over 100 young Londoners and co-curated by the museum's resident youth panel, Junction. That's us, and here are our top tips for engaging young adults in museums."


Rhino Horn Thefts a Growing Problem in Europe

Kate Katharina Ferguson, Spiegel, 13 March 2012


GERMANY – "Thefts of rhinoceros horns from museums around Europe have increased sharply over the past year. A single horn can fetch 200,000 euros on the black market because it is wrongly seen as a powerful remedy in East Asian traditional medicine, officials in Germany say. Exhibitions are tightening security."


Palm Springs Art Museum in Palm Desert a work of art

Backers raise $5.5 million for facility, which opens Thursday

Blake Herzog, The Desert Sun, 13 March 2012


PALM SPRINGS, CA – "So, how did they do it?

While museums around the country struggle for donations, how did the Palm Springs Art Museum come up with $5.5 million to build a new campus in Palm Desert — opening Thursday — complete with sculpture by Rodin and Picasso?

It only took a million dollars.

Local philanthropist Helene Galen said the charge to raise money for the first physical expansion in the museum's nearly 75-year history was lagging.

"It needed a kick-start," the museum trustee said. "And I was there for it."

Her $1 million donation got the ball rolling — and the Galen name on the building."


Liverpool museums could start charging due to funding cuts

Museums in Liverpool have warned they might have to close displays and start charging in order to save money

BBC News, 13 March 2012


LIVERPOOL, UK – "National Museums Liverpool, which runs eight museums in the city, is looking to save £3m over the next two years as part of funding cuts.

The museum also warned that one in four of its 588 staff could lose their jobs.

Director of National Museums Liverpool Dr David Fleming said the savings would have a "significant impact on our visitors and staff".

He added: "The funding situation is very bad and it's getting worse. We will continue to look at alternatives but job losses are unavoidable.

"We will try to keep our museums open to the public, but it is with immense regret that we are considering closure of display galleries, fewer exhibitions, and admission charges for special exhibitions and events."

The nationally-funded museum group said it was not possible to make the required savings without taking action."


EYE Dutch Film Museum: Nieuwe Filmmuseum Amsterdam

E-Architect, 13 March 2012


AMSTERDAM, NETHERLANDS – "EYE, the new Dutch film museum, opens to the public on 5 April 2012 in its brand-new building designed by the Vienna-based firm Delugan Meissl Associated Architects.

The Amsterdam Metropolitan Area is bursting with activity in 2012. After a multi-year renovation project, the Stedelijk Museum will reopen with an eye-catching new façade. And the redevelopment of Amsterdam Noord on the north side of the IJ waterway continues to take shape with the grand opening of the EYE Film Institute's striking new building."


Albert Abramson, Holocaust Museum Backer, Is Dead at 94

Douglas Martin, The New York Times, 13 March 2012


BETHESDA, MD – "Albert Abramson, who became a principal force in the creation of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington by using the same pragmatic approach that had made him a successful developer of apartments, offices and malls, died last Tuesday at his home in Bethesda, Md. He was 94."


Museum awarded grant for preservation project

Strathroy Age Dispatch, 13 March 2012


STRATHROY, ON – "Museum Strathroy-Caradoc received a financial boost that will assist with the preservation of the R.S. Williams photo negative collection.

The Canadian Museums Association awarded the Museum $1,000 to put toward the purchase of cleaning materials and archival storage for the glass-plate negatives acquired last fall. [text omitted]

The grant is awarded through the CMA's "Preserving Canadian Treasures" program, and was one of nine awarded across Canada."


MGS outlines restructure plans

MGS will transition into national development body to deliver Scotland's museum strategy

Geraldine Kendall, Museums Association News, 12 March 2012


SCOTLAND – "Museums Galleries Scotland (MGS) has released further details of its new organisational structure as it adapts to become the national development body charged with delivering Scotland’s national museum strategy.

The organisation is due to begin a period of transition in April and its new role will be formally established later this year."


Opportunities for new Getty museum leader

Christopher Knight, Los Angeles Times, 12 March 2012


LOS ANGELES, CA – "With the Getty Trust's recent announcement that, after a gap of more than two years, a director has finally been hired to lead its museum, a perennial question arises. The Getty's art collection certainly hasn't languished, with important additions periodically made, but few would say it has lived up to hopes for the hugely wealthy institution. What does new leadership portend for it?"


Cultural Olympiad 2012 reaches the critical masses

The Olympics cultural programme is reaching the point of no return, with its brochure being finalised. Organiser Ruth Mackenzie is sure of success

Mark Brown, The Guardian, 12 March 2012


LONDON, UK – "Borrowing marathon parlance, Ruth Mackenzie, in charge of the Cultural Olympiad and its showpiece London 2012 summer festival, says her efforts have reached a critical moment. "This is the point where we hit the wall," she says. "This is our maddest time." The analogy is a good one but also a risky one, because for some runners "the wall" spells disaster.

With just 100 days to go before the festival opens on 21 June Mackenzie fizzes with confidence and enthusiasm for the cultural events commissioned to mark the Olympics. "Our fundamental criteria has been that they will only happen once in a lifetime," she says."


Ocho formas de transitar el alambre

A. García, F. Bono, M. Molina, & J. L. Estévez, El País, 12 March 2012


MADRID, SPAIN – "Darse una vuelta por el mapa artístico español puede resultar descorazonador. Lo que antes parecía una sinfonía de subvenciones públicas para crear un inédito tejido de arte contemporáneo, ahora más bien parece el paisaje después de una batalla. [text omitted] Lo que sigue es un repaso a las desiguales desdichas de ocho realidades de infraestructuras y programaciones afectadas de una u otra manera por los recortes."

[See also Los museos se vacían de contenido, 12 March 2012]


75 % des habitants d'Helsinki opposés au projet de Musée Guggenheim

Chloé da Fonseca, Le Journal des Arts, 12 mars 2012


HELSINKI, FINLAND – "Trois habitants sur quatre de la capitale finlandaise sont contre la construction du Musée Guggenheim, dont le projet est en cours depuis un an. En cause: la dégradation de la situation économique d'Helsinki.


International art historian to assist in programming contemporary galleries and Transformer Station

Recent News, artdaily.org, 12 March 2012


CLEVELAND, OH – "Reto Thüring, a prominent editor for European contemporary art publications, an accomplished exhibition organizer and a scholar of historical Venetian portraiture, has been appointed Assistant Curator of Contemporary Art for the Cleveland Museum of Art following an international search. Thüring will work closely with Curator of Contemporary Art, Paola Morsiani, in positioning the museum as a leader in contemporary art amongst other comprehensive museums."


Art Fund launches 'unsung heroes' award

Award will recognise individuals' work for museums

Sharon Heal, Museums Journal, 12 March 2012


UNITED KINGDOM – "To celebrate the 10th anniversary of the Art Fund Prize for Museums and Galleries, its organiser the Museum Prize Trust has launched an award to find 10 "unsung museum heroes".

Museum and galleries can nominate the staff and volunteers who have made a significant contribution to their organisation."


Réouverture du Museum of Contemporary Art à Sydney

Jenna Charmasson, Connaissance des Arts, 12 mars 2012


SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA – "Le Museum of Contemporary Art (MCA) de Sydney rouvrira ses portes au public le 29 mars. Confiés à l'architecte Sam Marshall, les travaux de rénovation, débutés en août 2010 et appuyés par des fonds d'investissement publics et privés, ont coûté près de 43 MEUR."


La Catalogne veut rationaliser l’organisation de ses musées

Chloé da Fonseca, Le Journal des Arts, 12 mars 2012


BARCELONA, SPAIN – "Le ministre de la Culture de la Generalitat de Catalogne, Ferran Mascarell, a présenté son plan pour les musées de Catalogne. Visant à consolider le secteur culturel de la région, le projet s'établirait autour des quatre grandes institutions catalanes."


Airborne & Special Operations Museum is among North Carolina's top 30 attractions

Drew Brooks, Fay Observer, 12 March 2012


FAYETTEVILLE, NC – "In drawing nearly 150,000 visitors last year, the Airborne & Special Operations Museum ranked among the top museums or historic attractions in the state, according to a North Carolina publishing company.

The Matthews-based Carolina Publishing Associates included the museum at No. 28 of the state's top 30 such attractions, based on an annual survey of attendance figures."


H.E.H. The Nizam's Museum Inaugurates City Museum Wing

MuseumPublicity.com, 12 March 2012


HYDERABAD, INDIA – "H.E.H. The Nizam's Museum has inaugurated the City Museum wing. The Nizam's Museum is located at Purani Haveli which holds a special place for the Asaf Jahis, the dynasty of the Nizams of Hyderabad."


City Museum depicting Hyderabad's history inaugurated

WSN India, 11 March 2012


HYDERABAD, INDIA – "The historic city of Hyderabad Sunday added another landmark with the formal inauguration of City Museum, said to be the first of its kind in the country.

The Nizam's Jubilee Pavilion Trust chairman, Prince Muffakham Jah launched the museum, which has come up adjacent to Nizam Museum at Purani Haveli in the old city.

The museum depicts the history of the city, its culture and heritage from the times before its inception to the times of the Qutub Shahis and then Asaf Jahis, popularly known as Nizams to the present times."


Damien Hirst gallery to open in 2014

BBC News, 11 March 2012


LONDON, UK – "Damien Hirst's public gallery in south London, which is being developed to display his personal art collection, will open in 2014, the artist has said.

He told the Observer the project, which has been years in the planning, would include six galleries and a cafe.

"It's my Saatchi gallery, basically," he said. Works by Hirst and others, including Banksy and US artist Jeff Koons, will be exhibited."

[See also Damien Hirst annonce l’ouverture d’un musée privé à Londres, By Thomas Bizien, Le Journal des Arts, 13 March 2012]


Future tense, VII: What's a museum?

James Panero, The New Criterion, 10 March 2012


"What's a museum? Lately, it seems, the answer is whatever we want. Today's museums can be tourist attractions, department stores, civic centers, town squares, catalysts of urban renewal, food courts, licensing brands, showcases for contemporary architecture, social clubs, LEED-certified environmentally conscious facilities, and franchise opportunities. [text omitted]

By the numbers, today's museums are thriving enterprises. Billions of dollars have been spent in recent years on expansion projects. In the United States, there were 46 art museums in 1905, 60 in 1910, and 387 in 1938. Today there are 3,500 art museums, more than half of them founded after 1970, and 17,000 museums of all types in total, including science museums, children's museums, and historical houses. Attendance at American art museums is booming, rising from 22 million a year in 1962 to over 100 million in 2000, with 850 million Americans visiting museums of all varieties each year.

Yet if today's museums are successful cultural caterers with wide-ranging menus, no matter where we find them, their fare manages to taste more and more the same."

Mall houses American Indian museum

Louis Casiano, Chron.com, 10 March 2012


HOUSTON, TX – "Expect Native American garb and powwow dancing to become regular sights at Northwest Mall, where retail shops and eateries cover almost every square inch of the facility.

The mall just added as a tenant the Southern Apache Museum, a 3,500-square-foot facility that had its grand opening ceremony Saturday.

The museum's owner, Chance Landry of the Lipan Apache Tribe of Texas, said part of the reason for the museum is to make the public aware of Native American culture in Texas and to counter stereotypes people may have."


Getty Museum Returns Antiquities To Greece

The Huffington Post, 9 March 2012


ATHENS, GREECE – "Three ancient marble fragments from the collections of the J. Paul Getty Museum in Los Angeles have been repatriated to Greece following a deal last year.

A culture ministry statement says two of the 2,400-year-old pieces are parts of the same broken gravestone decorated with relief sculptures, and will be joined onto a third section in a Greek museum."

[See also Le Getty Museum restitue des marbres antiques à la Grèce, By Doriane Lacroix Tsarantanis, Le Journal des Arts, 14 Mars 2012]


Metz, le Bilbao français

Le Monde, 9 mars 2012


METZ, FRANCE – "Le Centre Pompidou-Metz, inauguré en mai 2010, attendait 250 000 visiteurs pour sa première année de fonctionnement. Il en a reçu 800 000. Certains observateurs parlent déjà d'un "effet Bilbao", en référence aux retombées positives massives qu'a connu la métropole du Pays basque espagnol depuis la construction de son musée Guggenheim, en 1997."


National Media Museum's creative director quits outpost project

Resignation blow to planned London gallery

Gareth Harris, Museums Journal, 9 March 2012


LONDON, UK – "National Media Museum's plans to open a new space at the Science Museum in London have suffered a blow with the resignation of the project's creative director, Charlotte Cotton.

The new venture, called Media Space, is scheduled to open early 2013 on the second floor of the Science Museum.

Cotton, who was appointed in 2009, was responsible for the "curatorial vision" of the space, which was backed by the Bradford-based museum.

Museums Journal understands that she will not be replaced, leaving a question mark over the future direction of the project."


Biltmore Again Tops NC Museums and Historic Attractions Annual Survey

MartketWatch (The Wall Street Journal), 8 March 2012


ASHEVILLE, NC – "Asheville's Biltmore once again leads the list of most visited North Carolina museums and historic attractions, and for the sixth consecutive year attracted more than a million visitors.

The largest private home in America drew 1,101,413 guests during 2011."


Can the Smith Center connect the cultural dots?

It's built and paid for. Now, Downtown's performing arts centerpiece opens its doors

Kristen Peterson, Las Vegas Weekly, 8 March 2012


LAS VEGAS, NV – "You can almost hear timpani rumbling and horns ablaze when the Smith Center for the Performing Arts is mentioned in the Valley. Clouds part. Angels sing. People who were lost are found. A new cultural element, nurtured by donors with deep pockets and culturally altruistic hearts, is entering daily conversations.

Not even a multibillion-dollar casino, promising new jobs and more tourists, can elicit such emotion within locals who are pinning community hopes on Downtown's stately limestone centerpiece."


New history museum slated to open in summer in downtown Winston-Salem

Ken Keuffel, Winston-Salem Journal, 8 March 2012


WINSTON-SALEM, NC – "A new museum dedicated to preserving the cultural history of Winston-Salem and Forsyth County will likely open by the middle of July, giving the city its first history museum since 1979.

The New Winston Museum will occupy a temporary space at 713 S. Marshall St. until a permanent facility is built sometime over the next five years, said Kirk Sanders, an attorney who serves as the president of New Winston's board."


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The architect as a citizen-thinker-artist-builder

Miro Rivera discuss their projects addressing both aesthetics and technology

World Architecture News, 12 March 2012


UNITED STATES – "Miró Rivera Architects has emerged as one of the leading new architectural voices in the United States, quietly creating a body of work that exemplifies design excellence and that has been recognized nationally and internationally with over 50 design awards including the 2008 and 2006 AR Emerging Architecture Award in London.

At Miró Rivera, architecture is understood as an endeavor where the realms of ideas, aesthetics and technology intersect. Aware of the role of the architect as a citizen-thinker-artist-builder, MRA aspires to create responsible architecture that responds to its context, addresses basic human needs, is beautifully crafted and has longevity and presence."


La presión demográfica amenaza la utopía racionalista de Brasilia

F. Relea, El País, 12 March 2012


BRASILIA, BRAZIL – "La capital brasileña, construida con un diseño revolucionario hace 51 años en medio de la nada, no alcanza a dar servicio a millones de habitantes de las ciudades satélite. [text omitted] La propiedad de la tierra, la especulación inmobiliaria y el crecimiento desordenado son caras de un mismo problema, que se traduce en una insoportable presión demográfica sobre Brasilia, la capital que nació hace 51 años en medio de la nada, en el corazón del interior profundo de Brasil."


SOM, Haworth Among Honorees at 2012 Accent on Architecture Gala

A number of notable architects and design patrons were recognized at the annual event hosted by the American Architectural Foundation

Architectural Record, 12 March 1


"The American Architectural Foundation (AAF) presented its annual Accent on Architecture awards gala in Washington, D.C., on Friday, March 9. The event, hosted by foundation president and CEO Ronald Bogle and board of regents chair Sandy Diehl, brought nearly 400 people to a dinner at The Andrew W. Mellon Auditorium—a Neoclassical building on the National Mall designed by San Francisco architect Arthur Brown Jr. and completed in 1931. Throughout the evening, people and organizations that promote the virtues of design in urban planning and business ventures were honored for their contributions."


Sur le chantier du Palais de Tokyo

Myriam Boutoulle, Connaissance des Arts, 12 mars 2012


PARIS, FRANCE – "Maintes fois transformé, le Palais de Tokyo, à Paris, connaît une nouvelle révolution. Un chantier jamais vraiment interrompu, qui permettra cette fois d'ouvrir le lieu plus largement aux expositions temporaires. Ouverture au public le 12 avril."


National Museum of Afghanistan Competition / S.E.E. | office for architecture and design

Alison Furuto, Arch Daily, 11 March 2012


AFGHANISTAN – "On behalf of the Afghan Ministry of Information and Culture (MoIC), representing the Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan and supported by the Government of the U.S. and the U.S. Embassy in Kabul, S.E.E. | office for architecture and design is pleased to announce and promote the International Architectural Ideas Competition (IAIC_NMA) for the new National Museum of Afghanistan.

The competition is a one stage ideas competition to generate design proposals, which are due no later than June 6th, for an architectural master plan and detailed building design for the site of the National Museum of Afghanistan."


Sauvée, la halle Freyssinet se cherche un avenir

Le Monde, 10 mars 2012


PARIS, FRANCE – "La halle Freyssinet est sauvée. Ce bâtiment, témoin de l'architecture industrielle du XXe siècle, situé dans le 13e arrondissement de Paris, derrière la gare d'Austerlitz, a été inscrit le 23 février par le préfet de Paris à l'inventaire des monuments historiques."


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History: Interactive Timeline Database and Open-Source Software Project Launches Beta of Version 2.0

Gary D. Price, INFOdocket, 14 March 2012

[GLOBAL] – "Wow! This has the potential to be a very important and very useful tool. A beta version of ChronoZoom 2.0, an interactive timeline resource allowing users to browse  interactive timelines filled with relevant textual and other embedded material (e.g. videos). The software can also downloaded (open source) to create timelines for your own use."

National Libraries and a Museum open up their data using CC0

Jane Park, Creative Commons, 12 March 2012


[GLOBAL] – "CC0 has been getting lots of love in the last couple months in the realm of data, specifically GLAM data (GLAM as in Galleries, Libraries, Archives, Museums). The national libraries of Spain and Germany have released their bibliographic data using the CC0 public domain dedication tool. For those of you who don't know what that means, it means that the libraries have waived all copyrights to the extent possible in their jurisdictions, placing the data effectively into the public domain. What's more, the data is available as linked open data, which means that the data sets are available as RDF (Resource Description Framework) on the web, enabling the data to be linked with other data from different sources."


Google to Announce Venture With Belgian Museum

Eric Pfanner, The New York Times, 12 March 2012


MONS, BELGIUM – "Google, which organizes the world's information digitally, is linking up with a precursor that aimed to do something similar, on paper.

It plans to announce Tuesday that it is forming a partnership with a museum in Mons, Belgium, dedicated to a long-ago venture to compile and index knowledge in a giant, library-style card catalog with millions of entries — an analog-era equivalent of a search engine or Wikipedia.

"The partnership with Google gives us a great opportunity to spread knowledge of this remarkable Belgian project throughout the world," Jean-Paul Deplus, director of the museum, the Mundaneum, said in remarks prepared for a news conference Tuesday.

The partnership is part of a broader campaign by Google to demonstrate that it is a friend of European culture, at a time when its services are being investigated by regulators on a variety of fronts."

[See also Google will form partnership with Belgian 'paper internet' museum, By Adi Robertson, The Verge, 12 March 2012]


Smithsonian Channel Unveils a Great New iPad App

An X, Hyperallergic, 12 March 2012


LOS ANGELES, CA – "New in the Apple Store this month is the Smithsonian Channel's iPad app, which lets you play videos from the Channel's extensive programming. It includes short clips for a quick burst of knowledge during the day, as well as longer documentaries for an extended viewing.

As long as you have access to wifi, you can tap into the broad selection of videos, from short documentaries like a look at how Leonardo Da Vinci used layers to develop the Mona Lisa, to longer works like Tattoo Odyssey, a look at tattoo culture around the world.  The videos play seamlessly in crisp, full-screen resolution."


Pinterest 101 for Arts Organizations [mini-nar]

Rachel Wilkinson, Technology in the Arts, 9 March 2012


[GLOBAL] – "Pinterest is the latest and greatest in social media, we've talked about it before, and it just reached 10 million unique hits in a month, the fastest independent website to ever attain this lofty title. Every blogger with access to a data set out there is looking at the demographics of Pinterest, but what can a visually based social media do for your organization? This Mini-Nar is going to take a look at some of the basic functions of Pinterest, as well as how some arts organizations are maintaining and utilizing their Pinterest accounts."


The Art of the Tablet

Ellen Gamerman, The Wall Street Journal, 8 March 2012


[GLOBAL] – "In London, Museum visitors are dashing through the Tate Modern, taking in works of art—on their smartphones. During the latest Art Basel art fair in Switzerland, a collector agreed to buy a $250,000 painting—while sitting in a hair salon in Los Angeles, looking at the work on her tablet. These days, anyone with an iPad can create their own Damien Hirst painting, thanks to an app from the Gagosian Gallery, which recently showed the artist's work at its 11 global outposts.

Digital tools are changing the way that art is bought, sold and simply looked at."


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Art and Culture


Line up announced for Edinburgh International Festival 2012

European Festivals Association, 15 March 2012


EDINBURGH, SCOTLAND – "Launching the Edinburgh International Festival programme for 2012 (Thursday 9 August to Sunday 2 September), Festival Director Jonathan Mills today said, 'Every year, since 1947 we have set out to create an event to inspire and uplift audiences. In the words of Sir John Falconer, Lord Provost of Edinburgh at the time, the Festival exists to "provide a platform for the flowering of the human spirit." In hard times as well as good the Festival remains one of the world's most important examples of the power of culture and the arts to transform individual ambitions and lives.'"


Le jubilé de la Tefaf

Valérie de Maulmin, La Connaissance des Arts, 15 mars 2012


THE NETHERLANDS – "Née il y a vingt-cinq ans dans un spot quasi inconnu des Pays-Bas, la Tefaf (The European Fine Art Fair) est la plus puissante foire d'art et d'antiquités au monde (mais pas plus belle, apanage de la Biennale des antiquaires), souvent décrite comme un véritable "musée à vendre."


What will the arts centre of the future look like?

As austerity bites, the temples of culture will have to change, says Nicholas Kenyon

Nicholas Kenyon, The Independent, 14 March 2012


UNITED KINGDOM – "In the years after the war it was a utopian vision of what an arts centre could be: theatres, galleries, halls and cinemas, not cut off from life, but placed at the heart of a residential estate.

That estate was a result of an idealistic post-war aspiration for what a civilised life could be, backed by exceptional resources from the City of London Corporation. But by the time the Barbican Centre opened in 1982, 30 years ago this month, its style was out of fashion and it has taken three decades of reassessment, improvement and changing taste for the Barbican now to be declared an icon of its style, a model of architecture that has at its core (like the Bauhaus movement which is the subject of our next big exhibition) the enlightened life and the practice of the arts.

Across the arts, the issue now is how to reflect radically changing taste, and changing behaviour in our many audiences. All arts centres that were built as temples of culture have this challenge: the imposing portico of the Royal Opera House, the massive rotunda of the Royal Albert Hall, the post-war sleekness of the Royal Festival Hall – are they off-putting for audiences who never dare to cross their thresholds?"


Landmark ruling to be challenged

Why a British judge decided that image of a bus on Westminster Bridge infringed copyright

Anny Shaw, The Art Newspaper, 14 March 2012 [From Issue 233, March 2012]


LONDON, ENGLAND – "Lawyers are appealing against a controversial copyright ruling in which a judge said it was unlawful to recreate parts of a composition of an existing photograph, even if the second work is not a copy but a separate photograph taken from a different angle. Art and copyright legal experts have criticised the judgment for moving into the realm of protecting ideas, rather than the expression of ideas. The application to appeal is due to be heard at the end of this month.

The ruling could have serious implications for artists who reproduce parts of other photographs. "If other courts follow this approach, it raises issues for artists who appropriate or closely copy photographs," says Simon Stokes, a lawyer who specialises in art and copyright."

[See also What you can and cannot copyright, Simon Stokes, The Art Newspaper, 14 March 2012 [From Issue 233, March 2012]]


Curtain falling on Vancouver's cultural scene

Marsha Lederman, The Globe and Mail, 14 March 2012


VANCOUVER, BC – "In Vancouver, culture has always taken a back seat to nature's beauty.

But when, within the space of a few days, a venerable theatre company announces it is closing, a historic indie movie house says it will shut down and a public appeal is launched to keep a beloved work of public art from being carted off, there is an uncomfortable question in the coastal air: Is Vancouver becoming a cultural backwater?"

[See also Vancouver Playhouse Theatre company to shut down: Financial problems force 49-year institution to go dark, CBC News, 9 March 2012]


A Douala, la princesse qui veut éveiller les consciences

Le Monde, 14 mars 2012


DOUALA, CAMEROON (ENVOYÉE SPECIALE) – "Pour exposer l'art contemporain en Afrique, il faut savoir être seigneur ou guerrier: se battre chaque jour pour rappeler que ce qui peut paraître "superflu", sur un continent qui a bien d'autres priorités, relève en fait de l'essentiel.

Marilyn Douala Manga Bell est un peu des deux : princesse de sang, la petite-fille du dernier roi de Douala, pendu par l'Empire allemand, est aussi combattante dans l'âme. Elle dirige depuis 1991 l'un des centres d'art contemporain les plus dynamiques du continent: Doual'art (Doualart.org), installé dans un cinéma désaffecté, au coeur de l'ancien quartier colonial de Bonanjo."


Une exposition universelle pour le Grand Paris ?

Thomas Bizien, Le Journal des Arts, 14 mars 2012


PARIS, FRANCE – "Le maire de Neuilly-sur-Seine, Jean-Christophe Fromantin, lance l'idée d'une candidature du Grand Paris pour l'Exposition universelle de 2025. La dernière édition française remonte à 1900."


Marine heritage's troubled waters

The popular assumption is that anything recovered from the sea is 'finders keepers'

Joe Flatman, The Art Newspaper, 14 March 2012 [From Issue 233, March 2012]


[GLOBAL] – "Two recent news stories have reignited public interest in how historic sites are managed in the deep ocean. On the one hand there is the US court ruling that the 594,000 gold and silver coins originally recovered by Odyssey Marine Exploration from the Black Swan/Mercedes site should be handed over to Spain. On the other hand, there is the news that the wreck of HMS Victory (a predecessor of Nelson’s famous flagship) will be investigated by Odyssey after an agreement was struck with the British government.

There are two issues at stake here. First, there is the legal status of wrecks in deep water in terms of individual as well as national claims on any materials recovered from them. Second, there is the broader issue of the ethical frameworks underlying historic site management—whether "marine" or otherwise—and in turn efforts to better manage, protect and understand such heritage."

[See also Cache of sunken coins returned to Spain, Emily Sharpe, The Art Newspaper, 14 March 2012]


La résistance s'organise en Allemagne contre la hausse de la TVA sur les objets d'art

Isabelle Spicer, Le Journal des Arts, 14 mars 2012


BERLIN, GERMANY – "L'injonction de la Commission européenne dictant à l'Allemagne d'harmoniser sa TVA sur les objets d'art et de collection suscite un tollé parmi tous les acteurs concernés. Le taux de TVA sur les transactions commerciales d'œuvres d'art originales, à l'exclusion des photos ou vidéos d'art, est actuellement de 7 %, alors que le taux général est de 19 %."


Have art restorers ruined Leonardo's masterpiece?

A crucial detail in The Last Supper is no longer how the artist wanted it, says expert

Dalya Alberge, The Independent, 14 March 2012


UNITED KINGDOM – "The restorer of Leonardo da Vinci's The Last Supper "blundered" in restoring the central figure of Christ, according to research by a British art expert.

Michael Daley, director of ArtWatch UK, spoke of his astonishment in discovering a draped sleeve had been reshaped so that Christ's right hand now emerges from a muff-like drapery that rests on the table when in both of the near-contemporary copies by Leonardo's own assistants the sleeve is painted falling behind the table."


Record collection may leave Canada

CBC digitizing historic recordings and moving them to central archive in Toronto in bid to save money

Stephen Hume, Vancouver Sun, 13 March 2012


VANCOUVER, BC – "Call it yet another case of self-inflicted cultural dementia.

A group of concerned city residents says Vancouver is on the brink of losing an irreplaceable library of at least 55,000 historic musical recordings, including some cylindrical technology invented by Thomas Edison at the dawn of recorded music.

The CBC collection of vinyl 78s, 45s, LPs and CDs is being dismantled to save costs in the face of severe budget restraints and in preparation for the possibility of even more draconian cuts by the Conservative government in Ottawa, they say."


Comox Valley Regional District asked to acknowledge culture

Scott Stanfield, Comox Valley Record, 13 March 2012


COURTENAY, BC – "The Courtenay and District Museum and Comox Valley Art Gallery are requesting the regional district board to endorse various recommendations in a pair of reports conducted by Jennifer Wilson & Associates.

The reports are intended to assist in the decision-making process to establish a regional recreation/culture facilities service.

In particular, the organizations hope the board will agree to expand a bylaw to recognize culture alongside recreation as a force to develop the region."


Art experts find 'possible' Leonardo Da Vinci fresco

BBC News, 12 March 2012


FLORENCE, ITALY – "Researchers in Italy say they may have found traces of a Leonardo Da Vinci work hidden under a Florentine fresco.

Tiny probes, sent through drilled holes in Giorgio Vasari's The Battle of Marciano in the Palazzo Vecchio, found black pigment also used in the Mona Lisa, project workers claimed.

"These data are very encouraging," said the project's leader Maurizio Seracini.

But historians at a press conference in Florence stressed their research was "not conclusive."

[See also Lost Leonardo Da Vinci mural possibly found, Aljazeera, 13 March 2012, Researchers in Florence may have discovered lost mural by Leonardo da Vinci, By Annalisa Camillia (Associated Press) and Frances D'Emilio (Associated Press), Recent News, artdaily.org, 13 March 2012, and L'OEUVRE AU NOIR – Les traces d'une fresque disparue de Léonard de Vinci déchirent Florence, Le Monde, 12 mars 2012]


Arte que entra por el oído

P. Obelleiro, El País, 12 March 2012


A CORUÑA, SPAIN – "El oído antes que el ojo. El sonido por encima de lo visual. Y convertido en potente elemento artístico. De todo eso va la innovadora exposición inaugurada anoche en la Normal, el espacio de intervención cultural de la Universidade da Coruña: el arte sonoro en sus múltiples y más vanguardistas facetas. Dos meses de actividades, charlas y exposiciones que pretenden primar el sonido sobre la dictadura de la imagen."


Getting the Israel Ballet back on its toes

While she has had relatively little experience in the cultural realm, Lea Lavie, the new general manager of the Israel Ballet, has considerable business expertise and big plans for the company.

Elad Samorzik, Haaretz.com, 12 March 2012


ISRAEL – "Things are beginning to move at the Israel Ballet, just four months after new general manager Lea Lavie assumed her post. Lavie, whose management experience includes working for tycoon Lev Leviev and the Likud party, has replaced Hillel Markman, who directed the company since he and Berta Yampolsky founded it in 1967. The new developments are part of an overall reorganization plan aimed at extracting the troupe from an accumulated deficit of NIS 6.4 million.

Creation and implementation of the new plan, after other such initiatives flopped, was essentially the condition for funding of the Israel Ballet by the Culture and Sports Ministry, within a special framework for failing public institutions."


Les élus EELV de Paris demandent un « festival off » pour la Nuit blanche

Le Journal des Arts, 12 mars 2012


PARIS, FRANCE – "Le groupe des élus écologistes au Conseil de Paris déposera prochainement un vœu demandant la création d'un festival off en parallèle de la Nuit blanche. Selon EELV, celui-ci serait l'occasion de mettre en avant "les initiatives associatives et locales."


Artists group fighting for re-sale rights

Murray Whyte, Toronto Star, 11 March 2012


CANADA – "In 2003, Charles Pachter painted a vibrant, poppy-red double image of a barn, as seen after the springtime thaw had turned the fields near his rural studio into sodden slicks of melted snow. It was called "Red Barn Reflected," a playful nod both to geometric abstraction and the weighty heritage of Canadian landscape painting that many artists of his generation labour beneath ("I called it my Lawren Harris barn," chuckles Pachter, 69, citing the Group of Seven giant).

He sold it for $7,500 that year, he remembers, to a couple in Caledon whose names he can't recall. On Thursday night, it went up for auction with a presale estimate between $25,000 to $30,000.

It didn't sell, but Pachter's wound is only to his pride, not his wallet. Had it sold, he wouldn't have seen a cent of it: resale rights for artists' works sold in Canada are a non-existent sore point on the to-do list of CARFAC, which lobbies for artists' rights here, and they've started to gain traction."


Alan Grieve: Is the future of the arts in his hands? A serial giver owns up

As a new contemporary art gallery opens on the beach at Hastings, Simon Tait asks the man behind The Jerwood Foundation about nepotism, saving theatres, and picking up the tab for British culture

Simon Tait, The Independent, 11 March 2012


UNITED KINGDOM – "The name Jerwood is ubiquitous in the arts, adorning playhouses, dance studios, rehearsal spaces, student bursaries, prizes ranging from drawing to dance, exhibitions and now an art gallery. Jerwood is the great enabler, the crucial partner without which the Royal Court would have closed. And Jerwood is controlled absolutely by a single, 84-year-old retired lawyer, driving it on a path of cultural philanthropy.

Alan Grieve is a 21st-century Dickensian. He was the bright young solicitor who earned the trust of a self-exiled millionaire called John Jerwood (even the names have a Dickensian ring), and with the fortune left on Jerwood's death he created his own empire. In 20 years, Grieve has given £90m to the arts, building theatres, dance houses, libraries and creative facilities, and helping the careers of countless young artists, performers and craftspeople."


Damien Hirst: 'I still believe art is more powerful than money'

Damien Hirst has gone from mouthy YBA to global brand over the past 25 years – and become the world's richest living artist on the way. Here he talks about money, mortality and his first retrospective in Britain

Sean O'Hagan, The Guardian, 11 March 2012


UNITED KINGDOM – "With Damien Hirst, though, it aways seems to come down to three things: art, ambition and money, though not necessarily in that order. For that reason, as curator Ann Gallagher asserts in her catalogue introduction to the Tate Modern show: "Like no other artist of his generation, Damien Hirst has permeated the cultural consciousness of our times." What that says about us – and about Hirst – is a matter of some debate. Writing recently in the New Yorker on the simultaneous exhibition of all Hirst's 1,500 signature spot paintings in all 11 Gagosian galleries dotted around the globe, the American art critic Peter Schjeldahl wrote: "Hirst will go down in history as a particularly cold-blooded pet of millennial excess wealth. That's not Old Master status, but it's immortality of a sort."


Culture talks for geeks begin at inaugural Ignite Culture Toronto

Riva Gold, BlogTO, 11 March 2012


TORONTO, ON – "A TED-talk style networking event for Toronto culture geeks? Don't mind if they do. This past Thursday, "culture enthusiast" Jenn Nelson ran Toronto's first ever Ignite Culture night, inspired by the Seattle-born Ignite movement. Held at the ING Cafe, with its orange, "deconstructed MAC" aesthetic, 12 speakers were invited to speak for five minutes each as their slides advanced automatically every 15 seconds. From mitten collections to the social nuances of DJ culture, here's a rundown of what was covered."


L'hommage unanime du monde de la culture à Moebius

Le Monde, 10 mars 2012


FRANCE – "Après la mort de Jean Giraud, alias Moebius, ce samedi 10 mars, les hommages du monde de la culture se succèdent, en France comme aux Etats-Unis, pour saluer l'œuvre d'un des auteurs les plus créatifs du neuvième art."


Une "liste rouge d'urgence" dresse la typologie d'objets volés en Egypte

Le Monde, 10 mars 2012


EGYPT – "Figurines funéraires (shabtis), statuettes en bronze, portraits en quartz, calcaire ou granit, bols, vases, bijoux, amulettes, flacons utilisés dans les rituels de momification, papyrus illustrés, pièces de monnaie, [etc.]. Au total, une typologie des cinquante pièces les plus pillées, photos à l'appui, et regroupées en dix-sept catégories, compose la "liste rouge d'urgence des biens culturels égyptiens en péril" que vient de dresser le Conseil international des musées (ICOM) en partenariat avec l'Unesco."


"La culture, plus on la consomme, plus on a envie d'en consommer"

Françoise Benhamou, spécialiste de l'économie de la culture, Le Monde, 9 March 2012


FRANCE – "Lors d'une intervention en octobre 2010 à Savigny-sur-Orge (Essonne), Nicolas Sarkozy a dit : "Quand on va au théâtre ou au concert étant jeune, on y va toute sa vie. Quand on créé l'habitude, quand on a créé le désir, on le décline sa vie durant." Est-ce là une remarque qu'un économiste pourrait reprendre à son compte ?

Tout à fait. Quand les économistes ont commencé à réfléchir sur les consommations culturelles, ils ont fait le parallèle avec la drogue. On n'assouvit pas son désir d'héroïne en la consommant. Au contraire, le désir ne fait qu'augmenter à chaque dose. C'est à peu près la même chose avec la culture : plus on la consomme, plus on aime ça, et plus on a envie d'en consommer."


Le musée de Denver et le Rijksmuseum, lauréats du fonds de restauration de la TEFAF

Jenna Charmasson, La Connaissance des Arts, 9 Mars 2012


EUROPE – "A l'occasion de son jubilé d'argent, la TEFAF Maastricht a annoncé, mardi 6 mars, les deux premiers lauréats de son fonds de restauration."


EFA Secretary General discussed role of culture with European Young Leaders

European Festivals Association, 9 March 2012


PARIS, FRANCE – "Key messages from the first "40 under 40: European Young Leaders" seminar (8-9 December) in Paris are: think European but work trans-nationally, re-engage with European citizens yet look beyond Europe's borders. They are contained in a report that coincides with the March 1-2 European Council. Kathrin Deventer, Secretary General of the European Festivals Association, spoke at the seminar about the role of culture in Europe.

The young leaders identified six key priority areas; the need to invest into culture being one: Broadening horizons means re-affirming the role of culture as a fundamental lever and a window onto values that can be shared in Europe and in the wider world. Like education, culture is not a cost but an investment."


The Armory Show 2012: A Foregone Conclusion?

Alissa Guzman, Hyperallergic, 9 March 2012


NEW YORK, NY – "The Armory this year delivers on all fronts: it's predictable in the ways it always is and it's surprising when you don't expect it be. But the Armory is never the place to see what's new and experimental, what's conceptually edgy and raw. It will leave you visually exhausted and yet hungry for something more substantial."


The Top-Selling Living Artist

Last year at auction, German painter Gerhard Richter outsold Monet, Giacometti and Rothko—combined. A case study of an artist's rise. Will it last? .

Kelly Crow, The Wall Street Journal, 8 March 2012


[GLOBAL] – "In the early 1980s, German artist Gerhard Richter painted 24 views of flickering white candles, and not a single one sold. When one of those "Candle" canvases came up at Christie's in London this past fall, it sold for $16.5 million.

Few people can pinpoint the moment when an artist becomes iconic in the way of Pablo Picasso or Andy Warhol, but right now the art world is trying to anoint Mr. Richter. Last year, his works sold at auction for a total of $200 million, according to auction tracker Artnet—more than any other living artist and topping last year's auction totals for Claude Monet, Alberto Giacometti and Mark Rothko combined."


With Cutbacks, Greeks Say Antiquities Are At Risk

Sylvia Poggioli, NPR, 8 March 2012


GREECE – "International creditors have pressured Greece to make severe cuts in its large public sector to help pay back billions of dollars in loans and avoid default. But the recent robbery at the Museum of the Olympic Games added to the sense that these cuts are making the country's vast cultural heritage increasingly vulnerable.

Even before the economic crisis, critics say that Greek governments were never generous in safeguarding antiquities from the cradle of civilization. Less than 1 percent of the budget was earmarked for the country's hundreds of museums, archaeological sites and monuments.

The Culture Ministry says austerity policies have cut that sum in half. Ten percent of the Culture Ministry's archaeologists have been either laid off or forced to retire. And the number of guards has also been cut in half, to fewer than 2,000."


Ellsworth Kelly sculpture to be at Barnes on Parkway

Stephan Salisbury (Inquirer Culture Writer), Philly.com, 8 March 2012


PHILADELPHIA, PA – "After a few brief words of praise, the city Art Commission gave its unanimous blessing Wednesday to a soaring Ellsworth Kelly sculpture proposed by the Barnes Foundation for its new site on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway."


Mona Lisa could have been completed a decade later than thought

A drawing of rocks by Leonardo in the Royal Collection provides evidence that the artist worked on the portrait for much longer than the dates officially given by the Louvre

Martin Bailey, The Art Newspaper, 7 March 2012


PARIS, FRANCE – "Leonardo's Mona Lisa was probably completed a decade later than the date given by the Louvre. This radical redating follows conservation work on the Prado's copy of the Mona Lisa.

The Louvre dates the Mona Lisa to 1503-06. It has now been realised, however, that part of the painted background was based on a drawing of rocks that Leonardo made in 1510-15."


London's newest theatre to open for business

London is about to get a brand new theatre, with a little help from Sir Ian McKellen

Anita Singh, The Telegraph, 6 March 2012


LONDON, ENGLAND – "If these are gloomy times for arts funding, nobody told Jez Bond.

Two years ago, Bond took possession of a nondescript office block in Finsbury Park, north London. His plan was almost ludicrously ambitious: to drum up £2.2m in the middle of an economic downturn and build a theatre from scratch.

By the end of this year, the shiny new Park Theatre will open its doors.

Not only has Bond secured almost all of the funds - although there is a crucial £400,000 left to raise - but he has received the high-profile backing of Sir Ian McKellen and other theatre luminaries."


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Economies, Urban Planning, and Cultural Tourism


Grands Prix du tourisme: 32 nominations dans 15 catégories

Brigitte Trahan, Le Nouvelliste, 14 mars 2012


SHAWINIGAN, QC – "Tourisme Mauricie a dévoilé, hier, le nom des entreprises qui seront en compétition dans diverses catégories dans le cadre du 27e gala des Grands Prix du tourisme de la Mauricie 2012 qui se tiendra le 23 mars, à Espace Shawinigan.

Pas moins de 27 entreprises ont soumis 32 dossiers de candidature dans 15 des 18 catégories du concours."


Les festivals demandent huit millions de plus à Québec

Patrice Bergeron, La Presse Canadienne, 14 mars 2012


QUÉBEC, CANADA – "Les grands festivals prétendent que la culture et le tourisme ont été négligés par les gouvernements au cours des dernières années et demandent donc leur part du gâteau, à quelques jours du dépôt des budgets du Québec et du fédéral.

Ils veulent près de 8 millions $ supplémentaires dans le budget du ministre des Finances, Raymond Bachand, qui sera déposé le 20 mars."


The growth lesson America could take from China

Ezra Klein, The Washington Post, 13 March 2012


UNITED STATES – "The basic driver of remarkable economic growth in China — and India, Vietnam, Thailand, Brazil and pretty much every other developing country — is pretty simple: people migrating from rural areas, where they're not very productive, to dense cities, where they are very productive. This is a tried-and-true strategy for making people and countries richer. But it’s not just for developing nations.

Over the past year, three terrific books have come out on the importance of cities in America's economy. In "Triumph of the City," Harvard economist Ed Glaeser details how cities all over the world have supercharged human development and ingenuity. In "The Gated City," Ryan Avent focuses more narrowly on the role cities play in making Americans better off. And in "The Rent is Too Damn High," Matt Yglesias focuses on, well, why the rent is so damn high. [text omitted]

The three make similar arguments: First, cities make us smarter, richer and more productive. Avent sums up some of the (voluminous) evidence: "Economist Masayuki Morikawa finds that productivity rises between 10 and 20 percent when density doubles. Morris Davis, Jonas Fisher and Toni Whited estimate that a doubling of density may increase productivity by between 17 and 28 percent. Their work suggests that more than 30 percent of real wage growth over the past 35 years is attributable to changes in density."

Cities, Glaeser says, are "our greatest invention." People offer ideas and teach skills to, buy services from and engage in healthy competition with one another. Cities enable closer contact among the population. The results can be remarkable."


Chicago's next great public space? Push to turn dormant elevated line into vibrant path and park shows promise; Emanuel announcing final funds for project's first phase

Blair Kamin, Chicago Tribune, 11 March 2012


CHICAGO, IL – "With the grandiose plan for the 2,000-foot Chicago Spire deader than the Illini's chances of making the NCAA basketball tournament, the most ambitious architectural endeavors in Chicago today are horizontal, not vertical.

One seeks to remake the carnivalesque public spaces of 3,000-foot-long Navy Pier. Expect a winning team, or teams, to be named for that assignment within the week — and lots of media hoopla because the pieris Illinois' biggest tourist attraction.

Another big horizontal project is getting far less attention, probably because it's out in the neighborhoods, far from the glamorous lakefront. And that's too bad because it could be Chicago's next great public space.

This plan would transform a dormant, 2.7-mile stretch of an elevated railroad line on the Northwest Side into a lively multiuse path and park that would run from Ashland Avenue (1600 west) to Ridgeway Avenue (3732 west)."


Public art used to attract visitors

Commission cites other cities using culture to draw tourists

John R. Pulliam, Galesburg.com, 11 March 2012


GALESBURG, IL – "The Galesburg Public Art Commission is working to raise money for a 15-foot statue of Carl Sandburg — and a Nubian goat — in Central Park in the Public Square.

GPAC hopes to bring more public art to the community. The president of the nonprofit organization can see this statue and other public art becoming a tourism attraction. [text omitted]

Other communities, including Pontiac, in east-central Illinois, have found public art an effective way to attract visitors."


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