Religious Art Belongs In Churches, Not Museums, Says Director Of Italy’s Most Famous Museum

“Eike Schmidt, the director of the Uffizi gallery in Florence, told the press [last week] that he thought many religious works of art currently in Italy’s museums and stores should be returned to the churches from which they came. … This idea is part of the Uffizi’s reaction to the coronavirus crisis, in which it is thinking about diversification and the distribution of its works of art in order to create a ‘wider’ [diffuso] museum beyond the immediate premises of the gallery.” – The Art Newspa...
Tags: VISUAL, 06.03.20

How Did Shanghai Become China’s Literary Hotbed?

Believe it or not, writes Dr. Jin Lee, it was a by-product of the First Opium War, after which Shanghai turned from a little river town into a huge, prosperous international port city. – Literary Hub
Tags: Art, Shanghai, Words, Jin Lee, 06.02.20, Shanghai Become China

France’s First Professional Theatre Performance Since The COVID Shutdown (It Wasn’t In A Theatre)

“Last week in [a small] city in eastern France, the residents and staff of a nursing home watched from a safe distance — some from windows and balconies — as five actors appeared in the building’s courtyard in front of a makeshift red curtain” to perform Cabaret sous les balcons (“Cabaret Under the Balconies”). “While most live events in Europe and the United States remain on forced hiatus, the relief of the cast was palpable as they performed.” – The New York Times
Tags: Art, Europe, France, Theatre, United States, 06.04.20

How Those Mosaic Music Videos Are Made

The clap serves the same purpose as the clapperboard used on TV and movie sets. You, too, will be editing the audio and video separately; the clap creates a visual and sonic marker that helps you realign the two later. It also lets you align all the players’ videos with each other.
Tags: Art, Music, 06.03.20

Frank Almond, Beloved Concertmaster Of Milwaukee Symphony, Retires

“Frank Almond, concertmaster of the Milwaukee Symphony for the last 25 years, has stepped down from his role. The violinist originally announced last year that this would be his last season with the orchestra, but, owing to the coronavirus lockdown, he has been forced to leave it incomplete.” – The Strad
Tags: Art, Music, Frank Almond, Milwaukee Symphony, 06.04.20, Milwaukee Symphony Retires

Why Buy The Cow When The Milk Is Free? Performing Arts Companies, Don’t Do What Newspapers Did

“There’s a long-running adage about working for free in the performing arts. ‘The problem with working for exposure,’ it goes, ‘is you can die from exposure’.” With arts companies all over the world pouring free content onto the web as their venues are closed during the pandemic, creative industries scholar Caitlin Vincent issues a warning. – The Conversation
Tags: Art, Issues, Audience, Caitlin Vincent, 06.03.20

Is This The First-Ever Virtual Ballet Competition?

“After weeks of planning, registration is now underway for the UBC Virtual Competition Experience, which will run from June 12–14. The competition is two-fold: Participants will submit videos to be played during the livestream and judged, and they will have the chance to participate in master classes via Zoom, and receive comments and corrections in real time.” – Pointe Magazine
Tags: Art, Dance, UBC, 06.02.20

Report: One In Eight Museums Worldwide Won’t Reopen

According to ICOM, out of the 1,600 international museums that were surveyed, 13 percent reported that they had plans to close permanently, and another 19.2 percent said the future of their museums were uncertain. As for the museums that reported they would open their doors again, 83 percent said that they would reopen with reduced programming. – Travel and Leisure
Tags: Art, Visual, ICOM, 06.01.20

London’s Royal Opera And Royal Ballet Return To Live Performance

It’ll be to an empty house, though; social distancing isn’t over yet. The Live from Covent Garden series, streamed over the Royal Opera House’s YouTube and Facebook pages, begins on June 13 with a program including a brand-new dance by Royal Ballet resident choreographer Wayne McGregor and music by Handel, Britten, Butterworth and Turnage sung by Royal Opera soloists Louise Alder, Toby Spence, and Gerald Finley. – London Evening Standard
Tags: Art, Facebook, Music, London, Dance, Royal Ballet, Royal Opera House, Wayne McGregor, Turnage, Royal Opera, Gerald Finley, 06.03.20, Handel Britten Butterworth, Louise Alder Toby Spence

Cannes Festival Announces The 2020 Roster Of Films It’s Sending To Other Festivals

“Artistic director Thierry Frémaux picked a total of 56 films for the Cannes 2020 selection, many of which had planned to premiere on the Croisette. Instead, they will now screen at different partner festivals around the world. The titles will be gathered together in a single list, not split up into the traditional festival categories of competition, Un Certain Regard, out of competition, Midnight Screenings, and special screenings. There is no competition, no jury and no prizes will be awarded...
Tags: Art, Media, Thierry Fremaux, 06.03.20

Minneapolis’s Walker Art Center Becomes First Major U.S. Museum To Stop Contracting Police For Events

“In an Instagram statement that explicitly mentioned the Black Lives Matter movement and Floyd’s death, the museum wrote, ‘The Walker will no longer contract the services of the Minneapolis Police Department (MPD) for special events until the MPD implements meaningful change by demilitarizing training programs, holding officers accountable for the use of excessive force, and treating communities of color with dignity and respect. Enough is enough.'” – ARTnews
Tags: Art, Minneapolis, Visual, Floyd, Walker, MPD, Minneapolis Police Department MPD, 06.03.20

Pacific Standard Magazine, Now Shuttered, Acquired By Grist

“Grist, a 20-year-old nonprofit online magazine that focuses on climate and environmental coverage, has taking full ownership of all the assets of what’s left of Pacific Standard, an award-winning magazine that closed in 2019.” – Axios
Tags: Art, Words, Pacific, 06.02.20, Pacific Standard Magazine Now

Spike In Sales Of Books About Racism

Amid mass demonstrations against structural racism spurred by George Floyd’s death in police custody in Minneapolis, Minn., activist-created book lists have been widely shared across social media for would-be allies to educate themselves on white privilege, systemic racism and the history of being black in America. Sales of such titles have spiked in recent days, and retailers are trying to meet the demand, with orders for some titles jumping fivefold from a week prior. – CBC
Tags: Art, America, Words, Minneapolis Minn, George Floyd, 06.03.20

Warner Music Group Pledges $100 Million To Support Social Justice Groups

The fund comes amid backlash against entertainment companies that have shared messages of support for the Black Lives Matter movement on social media, without putting actions behind their words. – Los Angeles Times
Tags: Art, Music, Black Lives Matter, Warner Music Group, 06.03.20

Tate Museums Say They Will Reopen In August With Fewer Visitors

French art institutions—including the Louvre, the Centre Pompidou, the Musée d’Orsay, and the Grand Palais—revealed this week that they are planning to welcome visitors again in June and July. Some museums in Germany and Italy, with the Haus der Kunst in Munich and Galleria Borghese in Rome among them, reopened in May. – ARTnews
Tags: Art, Germany, Rome, Munich, Italy, Louvre, Visual, Galleria Borghese, Grand Palais, Musee D'Orsay, 06.03.20

As Big Museums Reopen In Europe, A Benefit: No Big Crowds

Now, at most 450 people at one time are allowed in the Uffizi’s many galleries, chock full of some of the art world’s greatest masterpieces. – Washington Post
Tags: Art, Europe, Audience, Visual

The Worst Of Times Or The Best Of Times To Be An Arts Administrator?

Executives’ job descriptions are changing under their feet, requiring skills in handling not only a global health crisis but also issues of racial equity. – The New York Times
Tags: Art, Issues, 06.03.20

A New Online Dance Work For The Age Of Coronavirus And George Floyd

“Short as it is, [Jamar Roberts’s] video, Cooped, released last week, is one of the most powerful artistic responses yet to the Covid-19 crisis. And as that crisis changes shape, as the anxiety over disease and confinement is compounded by violence and protest, the resonance of the work only expands.” – The New York Times
Tags: Art, Dance, Jamar Roberts, George Floyd, 06.02.20

Can We 3D-Print Coral Reefs To Save Them?

A couple of architects are 3D printing using organic materials – a project to support coral reef restoration via protective clay ‘coral seeding units’, and a prototype cabin built from ceramic and sawdust tiles to help solve California’s affordable housing crisis. – Aeon
Tags: Art, California, Ideas, 05.28.20

The George Floyd Fallout: Art Museums Take a Knee

In a striking departure from their customary reluctance to take strong political stands that would alienate some visitors, art museums around the country, speaking separately but with one voice, responded to the asphyxiation of George Floyd. – Lee Rosenbaum
Tags: Art, Ajblogs, 06.03.20

Elsa Dorfman, Who Took Two-Foot Polaroids With A 200-Pound Camera, Dead At 83

“[She] first became known in Cambridge when she started selling her photos in a pushcart in Harvard Square. When police tried to chase her away, [her husband], a civil rights attorney, successfully argued that photographs are not ordinary merchandise that required a peddler’s license but were an intellectual product protected by the First Amendment. … Far from a pushcart, at the height of her career a 20-by-24 inch Polaroid portrait by Dorfman cost thousands of dollars.” – WBUR (Boston)
Tags: Art, People, Cambridge, Polaroid, Harvard Square, Dorfman, Elsa Dorfman, 05.31.20

What Was The Point Of Blackout Tuesday?

“I don’t understand the point of asking people who were already posting non-stop about George Floyd and Breonna Taylor and protests and racism and police brutality and links to financial and community resources and anti-racist reading guides to pause all of that just to fill their timelines with…black squares. And now our “protest” is the same protest as the San Fran Fucking 49ers’s protest? If the point of the campaign was to do literally the opposite of what it was intended to do, mission acc...
Tags: Art, Issues, Breonna Taylor, George Floyd, 06.03.20

Writers Are Having To Change Their In-Progress Books To Reflect COVID-19 Epidemic

“‘I can’t make my characters exist without interaction,” [one novelist] says. ‘While, for instance, I can edit out cheek kisses because this may no longer seem the norm, my characters need to meet, to row, to fight, to make love – and in a thriller, to murder. There will be insufficiently little exciting plot, in other words, if they can’t interact as they did pre-Covid.'” – The Guardian
Tags: Art, Words, 06.01.20

What Happens To Literary Life In Isolation

The absence of a tactile literary culture—one that happens in real time rather than on a screen—meant an uncomfortable cultural silence. And yet, during early morning walks through an empty city in April, paying attention in a wholly new way, I became acutely aware of being surrounded by literature, of how it manifests on many of Washington’s streets in the places where writers once wrote and lived, their words etched in stone. – VQR
Tags: Art, Washington, Words, Summer 2020

Harry Hoffman, Who Turned Waldenbooks Into A Retail Colossus, Dead At 92

“Hoffman was one of the first book retailers to employ aggressive marketing techniques in the service of creating mass market bookselling. Despite occasional criticism from authors and publishers that Walden emphasized the sales of commercial books over more literary ones, Hoffman never backed down on his belief that more books should be published with mass appeal.” – Publishers Weekly
Tags: Art, People, Walden, Hoffman, 05.29.20, Harry Hoffman

What Art Will Come Out Of These Difficult Times?

What then can we expect of the contemporary artistic community by way of helping us digest this experience of physical confinement and anxiety? Some have already shared their creations during confinement through social media. – The Art Newspaper
Tags: Art, Issues, 06.02.20

How American Theater Pros Are Figuring Out The Logistics Of Safely Reopening

“The COVID-19 Theatre Think-Tank (CTT) deliberately draws from as many of theater-making corners as possible, from stage managers to directors, from the Great White Way to regional theaters. Since March, the group has been in talks with public-health officials, pooling knowledge and letting epidemiology experts steer the conversation about what a post-shutdown theater might look like. [Founder Matt] Ross and one of the first additions to the group, Hadestown director Rachel Chavkin, spoke to [H...
Tags: Art, Theatre, Ross, Matt, Great White Way, Rachel Chavkin, CTT, Helen Shaw, 05.29.20

Face Masks Have Become Banners In America’s Culture Wars

Amanda Hess: “The mask is a public health device, but it has also revealed itself as a mask in the more traditional sense: a tool in a social ritual, a fetish object that signifies a person’s politics, gender expression and relationship to truth itself.” – The New York Times
Tags: Art, America, Issues, Amanda Hess, 06.02.20

AMC Theatres Warns Of $2.4 Billion Loss, ‘Doubt’ About Remaining ‘Going Concern’

The world’s largest movie theater chain revealed that it expects its financial report for the first quarter of 2020, during which the COVID lockdowns began, to show a loss of up to $2.4 billion. The announcement also said publicly that management has “substantial doubt” that AMC can “continue as a going concern for a reasonable period of time.” – The Hollywood Reporter
Tags: Art, Media, Amc, 06.03.20, AMC Theatres Warns Of

A Plan To Insure Media Production In Canada

“Without the availability of insurance policies to cover future COVID-19 risks, most production in Canada will not resume. A government-backstopped insurance program will provide confidence to the marketplace, encouraging insurers to offer COVID-19 coverage, allowing producers to purchase policies, and ultimately allowing Canada’s production sector to re-open, once it is safe to do so.” – Variety
Tags: Art, Media, Canada, 06.02.20