Customize Your Zoom Virtual Background with Free Works of Art

Limitations stimulate creativity. While that phrasing is credited to business-management scholar Henry Mintzberg, the idea itself has a long history. We know we work more fruitfully when we work within boundaries, and we've known ever since our capabilities were limited in ways barely imaginable today. With the ongoing coronavirus pandemic having temporarily redrawn the boundaries of our lives, many of us have already begun to rediscover our own creativity. Some have even done it on Zoom, the t...
Tags: Google, Art, Facebook, Technology, College, Venice, Getty, Seoul, Seinfeld, Van Gogh, Carrie Bradshaw, Facebook Twitter, LA County, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Kanagawa, Colin Marshall

How the coronavirus might change bathroom design

Onion Flats redesigned their bathrooms to save space, but it actually is a healthier design.
Tags: Design, News

Yes, The Bible Museum Had Some Issues

And now it wants to win over its critics by being honest about how many of its artifacts had tainted histories – or were entirely fake. – The New York Times
Tags: Art, Visual, 04.05.20

Another Salzburg Festival Canceled (But Not The Main One, Yet)

Just short of a month after the Salzburg Easter Festival was called off because of the pandemic, the Salzburg Whitsun Festival, directed by mezzo Cecilia Bartoli and scheduled for May 20-June 1, was canceled. The announcement came shortly after Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz banned all public events in the country through the end of June. – Opera News
Tags: Art, Music, Sebastian Kurz, Cecilia Bartoli, 04.06.20

Michael McKinnell, Bold Architect Of Boston’s Democratic City Hall, Has Died At 84

McKinnell was a 26-year-old graduate student and a teaching assistant for architect Gerhard Kallmann when the city hall competition arose. Their “heroically sculptural and democratically open design for Boston City Hall catalyzed the city’s urban revival in the late 1960s and embodied the era’s idealism and civic activism.” – The New York Times
Tags: Art, Boston, People, McKinnell, Boston City Hall, 04.04.20, Michael McKinnell, Democratic City Hall, Gerhard Kallmann

A letter to unknown friends

A few days after my beloved Hilary received her double-lung transplant, I published an open letter in The Wall Street Journal addressed to the family of the anonymous organ donor whose lungs she used to breathe during the last month of her life. – Terry Teachout
Tags: Art, Wall Street Journal, Ajblogs, HILARY, 04.06.20

Margaret Atwood Says We Are All In The ‘Better Than Nothing’ Era Now

The writer prompted the National Arts Center of Canada to launch virtual book tours for authors with new books out during the pandemic shutdown. Authors are “‘really pinched,’ Atwood said in an interview the day before she launched the authors’ series. ‘People are scrambling around, improvising and trying to get the word out there.'” – The New York Times
Tags: Art, Canada, Words, Margaret Atwood, Atwood, National Arts Center, 04.03.20

The Woman Who Wrote A Fantastic Pandemic Novel A Few Years Ago Returns To Take On A Different Issue

Emily St. John Mandel’s Station Eleven was much recommended in the coronavirus’ early days – but even she thought people shouldn’t be reading it right now. Her new novel is about the 2008 crash and a Bernie Madoff-like character. Why? “It’s a period in recent history that I remember so vividly. It was such an unsettling, chaotic time.” – The Guardian (UK)
Tags: Art, Words, Bernie Madoff, Emily St John Mandel, 04.04.20

When Magazines Had Visions Of Changing (And Improving) The World

In 1895 Ladies’ Home Journal began to offer unfrilly, family-friendly architectural plans in its pages. They were mainly colonial, Craftsman, or modern ranch-style houses, and many still stand today. The Cosmopolitan, as it was then known, advertised the Cosmopolitan University, a custom-designed college degree—for free!—by correspondence course. McClure’s magazine, the juggernaut of investigative journalism—home to Ida Tarbell’s landmark investigation of Standard Oil, among many other muckraki...
Tags: Art, World, Standard Oil, Words, McClure, Lapham, Ida Tarbell, 04.20, Cosmopolitan University

Wilhelm Burmann, Teacher Of Ballet’s Best And Brightest, Has Died At 80

Burmann, who died of renal failure after testing positive for COVID-19, was “a revered ballet master and teacher who trained generations of dancers, including Alessandra Ferri, Julio Bocca, Maria Kowroski and Wendy Whelan.” His advanced class drew students from all over the dance world, and he “was a part of ‘so many of our histories — across the world and across disciplines,’ recalled Ms. Whelan, the former New York City Ballet principal who is now the company’s associate artistic director.” ...
Tags: Art, People, New York City Ballet, Wendy Whelan, 04.04.20, Wilhelm Burmann, Burmann, Alessandra Ferri Julio Bocca Maria Kowroski, Ms Whelan

Beloved British Children’s Author Jacqueline Wilson Talks About Her Own Plot Twist

The author is on her 111th novel – she long ago stopped buying her signature chunky silver rings for each book – and this one might be her most personal. “Wilson is the fairy goth-mother of children’s fiction credited with daring to introduce such non-cheery subjects as depression and divorce into her children’s bedrooms.” – The Guardian (UK)
Tags: Art, Words, Jacqueline Wilson, Wilson, 04.04.20

Michael’s Up to 70% Off Easter Decor, Baskets, Eggs, and Fillers – Curb Side Pickup

Hurry, there is a a great Michael’s deal to fill those Easter Baskets. Get Up to 70% Off Easter Decor, Baskets, Eggs, and Fillers Michael’s has Free Curbside Store Pickup too!     Don’t forget Michaels also takes competitors coupons! Learn some awesome tips and trips for shopping at Michaels too! For Even More Awesome Online... Read More Read more about Michael’s Up to 70% Off Easter Decor, Baskets, Eggs, and Fillers – Curb Side Pickup
Tags: Deals, Art, Crafts, Kids, Coupons, Michael, Online Deals, Don, Michaels, Michael's, Michaels Coupons

Why The Limitations Of Our Homebound Lives Work For Online Choreography And Dance

“You’re a pony; you’re a firecracker; you’re a shape-shifter; you’re using your bookshelf as a stabilizer for butt wiggling. Given humanity’s terminal uncertainty now, I feel particularly malleable to existential suggestions. You romp to all corners available to you. There’s no more space after that.” – The Cut
Tags: Art, Dance, 04.03.20

The Art World Pre-COVID Is Dead

Jerry Saltz: “Even an art-lover lifer like me has to admit much of the art world infrastructure feels like it’s already in the balance. Some of it may be gone even now. In three months, or six months, or — God forbid — 12 or 18 (there has never been a vaccine for a coronavirus)? There will be galleries on the other side of this chasm, and museums, and artists making work, of course. But I worry that such a sundering will only exacerbate the inequalities that more and more dominate this universe...
Tags: Art, Visual, Jerry Saltz, 04.02.20

The End Of The Art World (As We Know It)

Via this year’s deeply reimagined Sydney Biennale, now called NIRIN: “The impact of COVID-19 is both a significant challenge and a threshold for new beginnings. An international art world that has called persistently for radical socioeconomic change is now faced with just that in large measure, albeit in ways that it is not in a position to readily absorb.” – Hyperallergic
Tags: Art, Visual, Sydney Biennale, 04.03.20

Tips From Met Opera Performers For Surviving The Shutdown Of Everything

One Met Opera dancer said that his counterparts in other cities should “get to know your rights under the newly passed Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act (known as the CARES Act).” – Los Angeles Times
Tags: Art, Music, 04.06.20

Joy in the afternoon

This is, first of all, an expression of profound gratitude for the innumerable messages of sympathy I have received. I thought you might like to read about Hilary’s last good day. – Terry Teachout
Tags: Art, Ajblogs, HILARY, 04.03.20

Listening To The Sirens’ Call

What a music critic who lives close to a major hospital hears in, and beyond, the now-constant sirens. “Most American ambulances contain an ‘electronic box in each vehicle, which comes preloaded with seven different sounds with names such as ‘Wail,’ ‘Yelp,’ and ‘Piercer.’'” – The New York Times
Tags: Art, Music, 04.05.20

NY Museums, Collectors Worry About Art Security

While overall crime in the city fell in March compared with a year earlier, commercial and residential burglaries rose 26% to 942, according to a New York City Police report. The sometimes elaborate security systems put in place could soon be put to the test. – Bloomberg
Tags: Art, Visual, New York City Police, 04.06.20

Is Spatial Awareness Our Superpower?

In the age of GPS, we tend to take our navigation and spatial abilities for granted, until they – or the technology – let us down. It is easy to forget that they have sustained us for tens of thousands of years. Over the course of our evolution, Homo sapiens developed an appetite for exploration and a wayfinding spirit that set us apart from previous human species. It had a huge effect on our future. One of the most intriguing recent ideas in anthropology is that our ability to navigate was ess...
Tags: Art, Ideas, 04.06.20

James Drury, Star Of Long-Running TV Series ‘The Virginian’, Dead At 85

“He played the laconic rancher with no name on the revolutionary NBC series. Among Westerns, only Gunsmoke and Bonanza lasted longer.” – The Hollywood Reporter
Tags: Art, Nbc, People, Bonanza, 04.06.20, James Drury Star Of Long

This Bavarian Village Has Performed The Passion Play Once Every Decade Since 1633 In Thanks For Being Spared From A Pandemic

But this year, another plague broke the record. “This year’s Passion Play, scheduled to premiere in May and run through the summer, had to be abandoned because of the coronavirus. An epic production, cast with local residents as actors, the play would have brought half a million visitors to the village and 2,500 people, or half of Oberammergau, onto the world’s biggest open air stage.” – The New York Times
Tags: Art, Theatre, Oberammergau, 04.05.20

Ben Brantley And Jesse Green Size Up The Off-Broadway Season (Since It’s Now Over)

Ben : “In many of these productions, time seemed to be torn off its hinges, and the solid floor of what we think of as ‘normal life’ to have cracked open. Who knew how apt a preface such works would provide for the rudderless world we now inhabit?”Jesse: “‘Rudderless’ is exactly how a lot of these terrific plays (and a handful of musicals) wanted us to feel politically, existentially and even spiritually — I mean with actual ghosts.” – The New York Times
Tags: Art, Theatre, Ben, Jesse, Jesse Green, Ben Brantley, 04.06.20

This Indie Movie About Abortion Access Opened Three Days Before Theatres Shut Down

How can a film like Never Rarely Sometimes Always get an audience in the age of social distancing and sheltering in place? Well, contemporary events might actually help. “Given that multiple states have moved to further restrict access to abortions during the pandemic, the timeliness of Never Rarely Sometimes Always is indisputable. … Its rent-on-demand release is a milestone of sorts, providing instant national access to an indie movie that might never have received such attention through a tr...
Tags: Art, Media, 04.04.20

Actor Turned Biographer Patricia Bosworth Has Died At 86

Bosworth, who was part of the Actors Studio with Marlon Brando and Marilyn Monroes, gave up acting to write instead – and write she did, about Diane Arbus, Jane Fonda, Montgomery Clift, Marlon Brando, and herself. – The New York Times
Tags: Art, People, Marlon Brando, Bosworth, 04.03.20, Patricia Bosworth, Marilyn Monroes

A Novel Art Form For The Novel Virus

That’s right, it’s not a portrait: It’s a doortrait. – The Guardian (UK)
Tags: Art, Visual, 04.05.20

This Bavarian Village Has Performed The Passion Play Every Year Since 1633 In Thanks For Being Spared From A Pandemic

But this year, another plague broke the record. “This year’s Passion Play, scheduled to premiere in May and run through the summer, had to be abandoned because of the coronavirus. An epic production, cast with local residents as actors, the play would have brought half a million visitors to the village and 2,500 people, or half of Oberammergau, onto the world’s biggest open air stage.” – The New York Times
Tags: Art, Theatre, Oberammergau, 04.05.20

Why The Hollywood Reporter’s Editorial Director Abruptly Walked Out

“Matthew Belloni resigned as editorial director of The Hollywood Reporter due to intense conflicts with Modi Wiczyk and Asif Satchu, the co-CEOs of the trade’s owners, Valence Media, over their attempts to meddle with the publication’s editorial independence” — in particular, pressure to generate positive coverage and avoid negative coverage of people and projects in which Valence is involved. – Variety
Tags: Art, Hollywood, Media, The Hollywood Reporter, Valence, Matthew Belloni, Modi Wiczyk, Valence Media, Asif Satchu, 04.06.20

If Books Are Proving Too Long For A Pandemic Attention Span, Try Poetry

Why not? It’s National Poetry Month, after all, and poems can refocus the mind, bringing it gently back to focus. You might even try memorizing a poem or two. – The Atlantic
Tags: Art, Words, 04.03.20

The Netherlands Has Had A Rash Of Van Gogh Thefts In Recent Years

The fact that all 28 Van Gogh paintings, from six separate thefts, were eventually recovered should offer hope that The Parsonage Garden at Nuenen in Spring will eventually return to its home in Groningen. – The Art Newspaper
Tags: Art, Netherlands, Van Gogh, Groningen, Visual, Nuenen, Parsonage Garden, 04.04.20