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  • HBO's Coastal Elites

    Playing the Pandemic with Grim Humor

    By: Jack Lyons - Sep 21st, 2020

    HBO’s just released film “Coastal Elites”, navigates the COVID-19 experience in a comedic and satirical way (for a deadly subject matter) with five vignette monologues, by five actors; each breathing life into playwright Paul Rudnick’s spot-on slices of pandemic life during this unprecedented experience, and all deftly directed by Jay Roach.

  • Ruth Bader Ginsberg Loved Opera

    Our Very Own Brunnhilde

    By: Susan Hall - Sep 20th, 2020

    Justice of the Supreme Court Ruth Bader Ginsberg, who died this week while still sitting on the bench, was a hero to American women. She believed above all that women could bring about a better world. She loved Beethoven’s "Fidelio," the story of Leonore, who disguises herself as a man to rescue her husband from prison. She related to the opera's story as a woman and a feminist.

  • Eleanor by Mark St.Germain

    Discussing a Work in Progress

    By: Charles Giuliano - Sep 19th, 2020

    A work in progress, "Eleanor," by Mark St. Germain was commissioned by Florida Studio Theatre in Sarasota. It was given a reading there. Recently it had a reading with another actress, Harriet Harris, for Barrington Stage Company. With two performances in an empty theatre it was viewed by subscription. By phone we discussed the new work and its intriguing character who was superly portrayed by a remarkable actress.

  • Royal Ballet Company

    PBS Great Performances

    By: Jack Lyons - Sep 19th, 2020

    Classical ballet as performed by England’s Royal Ballet Company in this new film version by filmmakers Michael Nunn and William Trevitt, feature two new sublime, glittering, and accomplished principal dancers.

  • Brooklyn Museum Deaccessions 12 Works

    AAMD Sanctions Corona Emergency Measures

    By: Charles Giuliano - Sep 17th, 2020

    While Trump's billionaire golf buddies are begging for a bailout the arts in America are left twisting in the wind. Closed for months museums are depleting reserve funds to survive. That has meant furloughs, pay cuts and staff reductions. As a desparate measure, in a lapse from guidelines for deaccessioning, the Brooklyn Museum is selling twelve works to raise $40 million. It recalls when the Berkshire Museum gutted its collection to raise $50 million. This is never a good idea but we discuss crucial differences.

  • Stepping Back from Your Own Mind

    Becoming Observer and Observed

    By: Cheng Tong - Sep 15th, 2020

    In a moment of upset when we are raging against that “thing” we thought so awful, shouting such hurtful words at the one standing before us, imagine how horrified we would be if we could step back to watch ourselves! Wouldn’t we wish we could find that patience, that wisdom,, to know that awfulness diminishes over time?

  • More on Alex Ross, Wagnerism

    Ross Captures The Meister's Voice

    By: Susan Hall - Sep 14th, 2020

    Alex Ross’s depiction of Wagner in America, in his new work "Wagnerism," is focused at the start on the author Willa Cather. Ross finds Cather and Thomas Mann the most musically educated and sophisticated of the many literary figures who infused their work with the ideas of the Meister. The boundless scope of a work, its inclusion of ancient myth made present, and leitmotifs bound together to organize a story, are key elements of the Wagner style.

  • Former Boston Artist Miroslav Antic

    Conceptual Painting of Roy Rogers and Trigger

    By: Charles Giuliano - Sep 14th, 2020

    When Miroslav Antic moved from Boston to Florida, initially he continued to teach as he had for the Museum School. As sales picked up he was able to live modestly including buying a couple of houses. The kids are grown and he lives alone with all his time in the studio. There have been no sales this past year but he is replenishing inventory, It was great to catch up during a recent call to West Palm Beach. He sent along an image of a recent knockout painting of "Roy Rogers and Trigger." It brought back boyhood memories.

  • Art New England

    Letter from the Publisher

    By: Tim Montgomry - Sep 15th, 2020

    We are planning a return to print with a January/February 2021 issue of Art New England. In the interim, we are working on enhancing ANE’s website and adding a few exciting new features, including a “rolling” Artist Directory (updated every two weeks); and a “rolling” Destination: New England section dedicated to the entire region.

  • The Gifts You Gave to the Dark

    Darren Murphy's Play is Online Through Oct. 31

    By: Aaron Krause - Sep 15th, 2020

    The Gifts You Gave to the Dark focuses on how we react to death and the power of story during dark times. The play is streaming on the Irish Repertory Theatre's YouTube channel through Oct. 31. A trio of actors offers superb performances.

  • Dame Diana Rigg at 82

    From Avengers to Game of Thrones

    By: Aaron Krause - Sep 13th, 2020

    Dame Diana Rigg was a renowned English performer who played roles such as Emma Peel in The Avengers and Olenna Tyrell in Game of Thrones. Rigg was a stage and screen star. The Tony Award-winner last appeared as Mrs. Higgins in a 2018 Broadway revival of My Fair Lady. Rigg also portrayed James Bond's wife in the 1969 film On Her Majesty's Secret Service.

  • How George Seybolt Changed the MFA

    Board President Initiated Business Concepts from 1968 to 1972

    By: Charles Giuliano - Sep 11th, 2020

    George Crossan Seybolt (1915-1993) was president and chairman of the William Underwood Company, best known for its canned Deviled Ham. He was recruited to the board of trustees by the director, Perry T. Rathbone. When be became president of the board there was constant conflict. Seybolt mico managed the museum and ousted Rathbone over the Raphael incident. His personal appointment for director, Merrill Rueppel, proved to be a disaster. He was fired after a Globe exposé. Seybolt went on to be a museum lobbyist and visionary. It's what we discussed in 1977.

  • MFA Reopens on September 23

    The Director Welcomes Us Back

    By: Matthew Teittelbaum - Sep 11th, 2020

    The MFA will open over the next month or so in phases. First, and with great pleasure, we reopen the Art of the Americas Wing, reinvigorated with some new additions and enhanced interpretation. “Women Take the Floor,” on the Wing’s third level, has new works to see, presenting a refreshed narrative worth another look, and “Black Histories, Black Futures,” the groundbreaking display curated by Boston teens, remains on view in the Level 1 Rotunda, Sharf Visitor Center, and Hemicycle.

  • Iris Love

    Unforgettable

    By: Jessica Robinson - Sep 11th, 2020

    The doorbell rang. I was in bed. It was about 9pm and I was a little hung-over from the birthday party I’d hosted the night before. Who could it be? Wearing nothing but a t-shirt and underwear, I opened the door just enough to see who it was. OMG. It was Iris Love, dressed in her full Scottish clan regalia of plaid tartan kilt, white shirt, knee socks, and jacket with kilt pins and clan badges.

  • More on Wagnerism by Alex Ross

    George Eliot Absorbs Wagner

    By: Susan Hall - Sep 10th, 2020

    When Wagner’s music crossed the English Channel, it attracted the attention of novelist and critic, George Eliot, who always took a great interest in music. Early on, she identified Wagner’s achievement as a path to the future, writing, “…anyone who finds deficiencies in opera as it has existed hitherto...” must admit that Wagner “…has pointed out the directions in which lyric drama must develop itself, if it is to be developed at all.”

  • Racial Injustice Themes in Pop Culture

    Arts for Social Justice in America

    By: Nancy Bishop - Sep 08th, 2020

    Historians a century from now may decide that this part of the 21st century was a political horror show. So it only makes sense that the real world of racial injustice and our racist history is bleeding over into pop culture. We can now partake of film, video, books and music where these historical themes are blended with horror and heroic stories.

  • Demi Moore as GI Jane

    An Oldie but Goodie

    By: Jack Lyons - Sep 09th, 2020

    When the 1997 movie “G.I. Jane” was released women in Israel were already hardened combat veterans. In the US. Military, however, women trying to integrate the male dominated ranks of combat soldiers were met with severe resistance from the heads of the armed forces. “Women will become a distraction and a liability in combat. Combat requires physical strength as well as stamina to handle the rigors of war and combat”.

  • I’m Thinking of Ending Things

    Daunting Charlie Kaufman Film on Netflix

    By: Charles Giuliano - Sep 06th, 2020

    Charlie Kaufman's "I'm Thinking of Ending Things" is being touted as one of the best new films of what proves to be a rather thin year. It is available on Netflix. You will need to see it at least twice. The first time to immerse in its convoluted twists and turns. Then, read the reviews, and follow the clues to figure out what the heck it is all about. Trust me, this is a work of genius, and while at times agonizingly, enervating and slow, it's well worth the time and effort.

  • Ross On Wagnerism

    The Intoxification of Baudelaire

    By: Susan Hall - Sep 03rd, 2020

    Alex Ross whose Wagnerism is to be published on September 15th, first heard Wagner on a LP record borrowed from his local library. Listening to Lohengrin, he was neither transformed nor transfixed. The Meister is not a free pass to paradise. Yet many listeners have been instantly seduced by a steady procession of creeping chromaticisms.

  • 'The Madres' Wins Francesca Primus Prize.

    ATCA Annually Administers Award

    By: Aaron Krause - Sep 03rd, 2020

    Stephanie Alison Walker wins ATCA's Francesca Primus Prize. The honor annually recognizes an emerging female playwright. The award's namesake was a playwright, dramaturg, theater critic and ATCA member.

  • Philippe David’s Happy Threads

    Textile Designs Inspired by Nature

    By: Jessica Robinson - Sep 02nd, 2020

    “I showed this fabric at an early stage of its existence to a professional in my industry. When he said, ‘you will never sell a yard of it,’ I knew I had a WINNER!” Textile designer Philippe David is referring to his bestselling creation – ever: “Bal d'Eté" (Summer Prom), a colorful and joyful silk fabric manufactured in India, the land of textile wonders.

  • Permafrost Melts at MASS MoCA

    Blane De St. Croix: How to Move a Landscape.

    By: Charles Giuliano - Sep 02nd, 2020

    The art of Blane De St. Croix comes at the viewer via a multivalent attack on the staggering challenges posed by irreparable climate change. The diversity of this artist’s media and its ecological content — driven by a political mandate — evokes the tradition of Social Sculpture by the postwar German artist Joseph Beuys. The MoCA project How to Move a Landscape draws on dramatically different approaches to convey the rapid erosion and melting of permafrost in the Arctic.

  • Hidden Figures a 2017 Gem

    Streaming This Month on FX

    By: Jack Lyons - Sep 02nd, 2020

    Set in 1961 “Hidden Figures”, centers around the true and factual story of three brilliant African-American female mathematicians who worked at the Langley Research Center in Hampton, Virginia, during America’s odious Jim Crow Law era – from 1887 to 1964. The Civil Rights Act of 1964 finally nullified the repellent second-class distinction Jim Crow law, by recognizing that all citizens of America are to be accorded full and equal protection under the law authorized by the US Constitution.

  • The B-Side: Elsa Dorfman’s Portrait Photography

    A Netflix Documentary

    By: Charles Giuliano - Aug 30th, 2020

    Elsa Dorfman was the limner of the Beat Generation. She made deadpan, large-format Polaroid potraits of her celebrity pals as well as ordinary folks. She passed away a few months ago but is superbly recalled in a Netflix documentary by Errol Morris. It's so like Elsa who is regarded as a major artist but described herself repeatedly as a "nice Jewish girl."

  • Alex Ross on Wagnerism

    Wagnerism: The Superb Story of Culture Over 150 Years

    By: Susan Hall - Aug 28th, 2020

    Alex Ross has written a Wagnerian book about the impact of Richard Wagner on the culture and politics of his times, leading right up to our own. "Wagnerism". the term which serves as the title of the book, was used early on in English by George Eliot, one of the many writers who fell under Wagner's spell. It is used to define Wagner’s methods: his scope which spreads out to the edges of the Universe and beyond, his use of myths, and his tones which are often highly erotic and then some.

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