Category Archives: art

Hamilton musical beyond outstanding

Before seeing “Hamilton” I listened to its soundtrack while reading through most of its lyrics and some of the excellent annotations on the Genius site, stopping before I learned too many of the reveals in Act 2. So I knew … Continue reading

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art: Jhane Barnes inspires

I’ll pull out a Jhane Barnes shirt I haven’t worn in a while and I’m Ricky Fitts in American Beauty: “I need to remember… Sometimes there’s so much beauty in the world, I feel like I can’t take it.” (This … Continue reading

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art: the greatest walks away from her canvas

This is like Morris Louis, Agnes Martin, or Piet Mondrian putting away their brushes. (And Jhane Barnes is way better at geometric abstraction than every capital ‘A’ artist who’s practiced it.) Jhane Barnes’ blog post is frank and clear, in … Continue reading

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a retrospective as Grand Theft Auto V nears

The approach of Grand Theft Auto V makes me reflect on the series. Highest and purest style: GTA: Vice City Ridiculously gargantuan sandbox: GTA: San Andreas[*] Best damn radio patter: GTA: Liberty City Stories (Dan Houser and Lazlow’s finest moments) … Continue reading

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Anthony Lane, funniest writer at The New Yorker (more!)

Irrepressibly droll. On 20-kilometer walk competitors at the Beijing Olympics: They will continue to propel themselves, year in, year out, as if learning to moonwalk too soon after a hip replacement. On Yoda  (Space Case, “Star Wars: Episode III”): Also, … Continue reading

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architecture: fixing SFMOMA

It looks like up-and-coming starchitects Snøhetta have figured out how to fix the bad Mario Botta design with their massive planned expansion. They junk that stupid ugly staircase peering out on the cheap siding lining the dull box of the original atrium.
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movies: recent Woody Allen

Woody Allen’s recent Midnight in Paris is a fun trifle, stroking the audience’s ego with its 1920s Paris fantasy imagined by an intellectually lightweight author. Literally nothing’s at stake in this well-fed easygoing fantasy. It’s an echo of the far … Continue reading

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art: Deborah Butterfield K.O.s AbEx at ART MRKT

It was interesting to go to ART MRKT and see the work that high-end galleries and organizations pay to present. I couldn’t discern any theme to it all. One gallery was hawking Damien Hirst prints, such as a 2-D diamond-dusted … Continue reading

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art and excess: $1M Red Tibetan Mastiff vs. Jeff Koons’ Puppy

A multi-millionaire coal baron in China just bought “Big Splash”, a red Tibetan Mastiff, for $1.5 million because “they have become highly-prized status symbols for China’s new rich.” The dogs are thought to be a pure “Chinese” breed and they … Continue reading

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Mannerism and the end of post-modernism

Maybe this aperçu from Peter Schjeldahl in the New Yorker explains why the noughties of this new millennium have been underwhelming. I want to live in the modern age, even if I have to go retro to do so! … … Continue reading

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