Roundup: Pop Culture & the Arts ...
Movies, Documentaries and Museum Exhibits
This page features links to reviews of movies, documentaries and exhibits with a historical theme. Listings are in reverse chronological order. Descriptions are taken directly from the linked publication. If you have articles you think should be listed on the Pop Culture page, please send them to the editor email@example.com.
SOURCE: Telegraph (UK) (12-11-08)
The first, to which Richter gave an explanatory title, has never been exhibited in public at all.
Curator Paul Moorhouse thought it was a private "working proof" that Richter - widely regarded alongside Lucian Freud as one of the world's greatest living painters - created while forming his ideas for the other two.
He did intend these two for public view, according to Mr Moorhouse.
But these he gave no title, and no clue as to the two figures depicted, leaving it to the viewer to guess who they were.
Mr Moorhouse said of the painting of Mrs Kennedy holding an umbrella: "Who is she? She could be someone standing at a bus stop."
The curator explained why the "elusive...
SOURCE: Telegraph (UK) (12-12-08)
Guided visits for groups of 12 will start on Monday and more than 150 people have already registered to visit.
Gen Pinochet’s widow, Lucia Hiriart, said the inauguration showed that “little by little justice is being done” for her husband.
Gen Pinochet led a military junta that overthrew elected Marxist President Salvador Allende in 1973 and launched a brutal campaign to root out Leftists.
An official report said that 3,197 suspected Leftists were killed for political reasons before he left power in 1990. Many seemingly vanished – believed to have been kidnapped, tortured and killed – leaving relatives no word on their fate.
Attempts in Chile and abroad to prosecute Gen Pinochet for human rights abuses continued until his death two years ago, at 91...
SOURCE: Concerned Women for America website (12-5-08)
Journalist, author, former ambassador and congresswoman Clare Booth Luce is one of the few conservatives to make the cut.
The exhibit is intended to honor women who are or were “significant figures in their chosen fields,” according to curator Ann Shumard. A total of 90 portraits are included in the photographic display.
Honored alongside these women is none other than Margaret Sanger — known racist and eugenicist — the founder of “non-profit” abortion giant Planned Parenthood. Sanger is described on the virtual tour of the exhibit as a “reformer” who faced “stiff opposition” with the “courage of a wounded tiger.”
I guess it does take “courage” to attempt to “...
SOURCE: Irish Times (12-12-08)
The Simon Wiesenthal Centre, which has headquarters in Los Angeles, first raised questions about the provenance of some of the museum's collection in a letter to President Mary McAleese in 2004.
An expert group subsequently set up by the Royal Irish Academy to examine the issue reported that most of the items under suspicion were unlikely to have a "problematic past". A second report by Lynn Nicholas, a world authority on Nazi looted art, concluded there was no proof that the late John and Gertrude Hunt were Nazis, or that they were involved in any kind of espionage or trafficking in looted art.
The Simon Wiesenthal Centre was subsequently criticised by President McAleese for making unproven allegations about the museum, a criticism the centre rejected. A new...
SOURCE: BBC (12-12-08)
Her provocative poses - often in bikinis - made her a cult figure and she was one of the first models to appear in Playboy magazine.
Bettie Page was credited with helping to pave the way for the sexual revolution of the 1960s.
SOURCE: Chicago Tribune (12-12-08)
And the Chicago History Museum has questions.
The curators and archivists at Illinois museums have been excited to find themselves in the middle of history in the making, and they have searched out ways to document the moment for future generations.
SOURCE: NYT (12-11-08)
Smithsonian Institution, Washington
AMERICAN ART MUSEUM, Eighth and F Streets, NW. Through Jan. 18, 2010, “The Honor of Your Company Is Requested: President Lincoln’s Inaugural Ball,” with artifacts including an invitation and menu.
AMERICAN HISTORY MUSEUM, 14th Street and Constitution Avenue, NW. Through Jan. 4, “Gettysburg Address,” a rarely exhibited copy, hand written by Lincoln. Opening Jan. 16, “Abraham Lincoln: An Extraordinary Life,” with 60 items from his life, including a tool he used to cut wood and the top hat he wore on the night of his assassination; and “America’s New Birth of Freedom,” which features documents from the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum in Springfield, Ill., including letters and a signed copy of the Emancipation Proclamation.
NATIONAL PORTRAIT GALLERY, Eighth and F Streets, NW. Through July 5, “One Life: The...
SOURCE: Newsweek (12-6-08)
Rosset's publishing house, Grove Press, was a tiny company operating out of the ground floor of Rosset's brownstone when it published an obscure play called "Waiting for Godot" in 1954. By the time Beckett had won...
SOURCE: Reuters (12-10-08)
The perfumed ointments were found intact at the bottom of a mud-filled swimming pool, alongside hair and make-up objects, the director of the dig conducted by the group Studium Biblicum Franciscanum told the Terrasanta.net religious website.
SOURCE: NYT (12-10-08)
Why should we care? For the same reason film buffs debate if Howard Hawks was the real director behind “The Thing From Another World,” the sci-fi classic from 1951 he produced, rather than Christian Nyby, the credited director, or whether the 1943 thriller “Journey Into Fear,” for which Norman Foster is listed as director, was taken over by Orson Welles, who played a Turkish police detective in it and whose other movies it partly resembles.
We should care because, commerce and the usual scholarly nitpicking aside, the debate is itself an excuse for looking closer, and because piecing together any great artist’s legacy is a bit like...
SOURCE: LAT (blog) (12-10-08)
No, we’re not talking about George W. Bush and his post-Sept. 11 war against Iraq, but Napoleon Bonaparte, the French general whose forces invaded and briefly occupied Egypt nine years after a cataclysmic revolution.
His late 18th century adventures in the land of the Pharaohs are chronicled and dissected at a fascinating and extensive exhibit of paintings, manuscripts and artifacts, "Bonaparte and Egypt" at the gigantic Institut du Monde Arab along the Seine River in Paris.
Napoleon said he wanted to liberate Egyptians from the tyrannical rule of the Mamluk dynasty. But he also wanted to find another route to access to the east and undercut Britain's near-monopoly on trade with...
SOURCE: NYT (12-10-08)
In a brief statement released on Wednesday afternoon, Sotheby’s said the items had been removed from the auction roster “at the request of Mr. Harry Belafonte.” Sotheby’s gave no reason for the withdrawal, and Mr. Belafonte did not return calls left with his agent.
The items scheduled for the auction on Thursday included a three-page handwritten outline of one of Dr. King’s most important speeches, “The Casualties of the War in Vietnam,” delivered in February 1967, and notes for a speech recovered from his suit pocket after he was assassinated in 1968. The third document was a typewritten condolence letter to Coretta Scott King, Dr. King’s widow, from President Lyndon B. Johnson.
After news reports early this week about the auction the King...
SOURCE: WSJ (12-11-08)
Out-of-print collectible copies of Sir Winston's 34-book oeuvre, many of them first editions, line the back shelves of the store, which is tucked into the arcade of Park Avenue Plaza, an office building on East 52nd Street.
"My Early Life," a memoir; the multivolume "Marlborough: His Life & Times," a magisterial biography of Churchill's ancestor; "The World Crisis," a history...
SOURCE: http://www.culturekiosque.com (10-26-08)
As the exhibition catalogue points out, the major conflict zones of his time are strikingly familiar today: the Balkans, Caucasus, Mesopotamia and Judea/Palestine, where he faced (tables turned) Jewish rebellions from AD 116.
Forced to rein back after the imperial over-stretch of his predecessor Trajan , Hadrian initially fought Middle Eastern rebellions, but then turned, despite the risks and doubters, to troop withdrawals, beginning in what is modern-day Iraq.
SOURCE: Press Release--http://www.zoiefilms.com (12-11-08)
"America’s Victoria, Remembering Victoria Woodhull” is a feature length documentary previously featured on PBS television is now available for free. Victoria Woodhull became the first woman to campaign for US President in 1872. “America’s Victoria” is a wonderful chronicle of the life of one of the most important and unrecognized women in US history.
“If you spliced the genes of Hillary Clinton, Madonna, Heidi Fleiss and Margaret Thatcher, you might have someone like Victoria Woodhull,” wrote the Atlanta Journal & Constitution.
Although she was a radical suffragist, Victoria Woodhull refused to restrict her Presidential campaign to the issue of women's suffrage. Instead, she...
SOURCE: WaPo (12-9-08)
Those five shows play into the Lincoln-Obama connections that popped up during the election, and also give the Smithsonian a little jump on the events surrounding next year's bicentennial of Lincoln's birth.
"Part of it is that Lincoln is an enduring personality. Lincoln is in our national DNA, and because of that you can always go back to Lincoln," said Harry R. Rubenstein, the chairman of the division of politics and reform at the National Museum of American History, explaining the exhibit choice."He is always relevant, especially at this point where we are marking historic changes."
Curators at five museums have organized the presidential-themed exhibits tied to the inauguration on Jan. 20.
"Abraham Lincoln: An Extraordinary Life," a new show pulled from the collections at the...
SOURCE: Guardian (UK) (12-11-08)
Its curator, the historian and broadcaster David Starkey, said the exhibition would go beyond most people's perceptions of Henry, which tended to focus on the wives, monasteries and murders.
"In this exhibition," Starkey said, "We don't get so obsessed by the tyranny, the horror, the blood - though don't fear, they're there in spades. We look at the sheer scale of the achievement. Henry is the man who really invents England."
The exhibition next April will include rarely displayed treasures drawn from the British Library's collections, including important documents, maps and books, and loans from other collections including portraits, tapestry, armour and jewellery. The aim is to build a fuller picture...
SOURCE: Telegraph (UK) (12-10-08)
The "George II grained four-room 'baby' house circa 1750" was redecorated by Bronte in 1839 during her time as a governess for the Sidgwicks, a wealthy family based in Skipton, Yorkshire.
Bronte was deeply unhappy working for the family, who lived in an imposing house known as Stonegappe, which is thought to have provided the inspiration for Gateshead Hall, the house where Jane Eyre's story begins.
Bronte's redecoration of the doll's house is mentioned in a letter she wrote to her sister, Emily, in June 1839: "I said in my last letter that Mrs [Sidgwick] did not know me. I now begin to find she does not intend to know me; that she cares nothing...
SOURCE: Tehran Times (12-11-08)
“We are remaking Imam Khomeini’s residence located near Tehran, which even includes a garden with a tree he sat under most of the time,” he said.
He went on to say that amateur extras, who resemble the political figures and officials of those days, will be playing the roles in the TV series.
“We are emphasizing a realistic atmosphere and we have tried our best to make the characters and scenes seem plausible. In some parts of TV series for authenticity, we even used records available to us from archives,” he added.
Produced by the Sima Film Company, the 11-part TV series will be aired on the Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting (IRIB) starting during the next Iranian calendar year, which begins on March 21...
SOURCE: Heather Havrilesky at Salon.com (12-10-08)
In the POV documentary "Inheritance" (premieres 9 p.m. Dec. 10 on PBS), filmmaker James Moll unveils the story of how Hertwig, now in her 60s, discovered the unthinkable horrors of her father's legacy. She never knew her father, who died when she was 1 year old, and she'd never gotten along with her mother, who once told her in anger that she was...