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 firstname.lastname@example.org.
SOURCE: The Philadelphia Inquirer (8-20-09)
The house's dimensions are incorrect, the arc of a bow window is distorted, and the building's now-infamous slave quarters are incorrectly located, the critics assert.
Some historians and members of a committee charged with reviewing the memorial's design and content say they are stunned by the vehemence of the complaints. Beyond that, they argue that the memorial - which it is hoped will open next July Fourth - is less about architectural detail and more about the difficult story of enslavement at the heart of the new nation.
And the architect says the current plan conforms to the house dimensions contained in various 18th-century plans and revealed in a 2007 archaeological excavation that exposed...
SOURCE: NYT (8-16-09)
And with a no-doubt titanic P. T. Barnum revival around the corner, it’s not a bad time to reconsider the man who during his life was perhaps the most famous American on earth, has been hailed as “the architect of the modern culture industry,” coined the term “show business” and never said, “There’s a sucker born every minute,” but didn’t have to.
It was a long time ago. And if you don’t count shows like “Jackass,” the collected works of Sacha Baron Cohen and half of what’s on the Internet, we’re a long way from General Tom Thumb and hoaxes like Barnum’s attempt to con people into believing that a blind, 80-ish slave named Joice Heth, whom he bought and emancipated, was really 160 years old and that she had been a nurse to George Washington.
Still, if he were around to...
SOURCE: Artdaily.org (8-20-09)
Offered through October 4, 2009, Entertaining the President: A Household at Work is a docentled tour of Clayton that highlights behind-the-scenes preparations undertaken by the Frick family’s domestic staff in anticipation of President Roosevelt’s historic 1902 visit.
Henry Clay Frick was part of an executive committee that invited President Roosevelt to come...
SOURCE: Artdaily.org (8-20-09)
Pre-sale estimates ranged from one to 10 million US dollars. The painting shows Michael Jackson wearing a red jacket from his Thriller era.
The portrait, measuring 30 by 26 inches (76.2 by 66 centimeters), was purchased for US$278,500 in May at the Sotheby's auction house.
Janet Lehr, partner at the Vered Gallery, agents for the seller of the Jackson portrait, added: "This Andy Warhol portrait brings together the uncontested King of Pop Art with the uncontested King of Pop. The portrait was painted at the height of their careers and is a celebration of two of the great talents in global cultural history."..
SOURCE: Hollywood Reporter (8-19-09)
SOURCE: LA Times (8-19-09)
But this Qingbai bowl from China's Song Dynasty is actually a drinking cup, used in the late 11th century by working class citizens who enjoyed pu-erh, an aged tea pressed into a cake-like brick.
The Qingbai vessel is one of dozens of Chinese cups, Japanese tea caddies and English teapots on display in the museum's latest exhibition,"Steeped in History: The Art of Tea."
The objets d'art and artworks included in the exhibition are reminders of our centuries-old fascination with tea. Each tells a story about the distinct cultures that have revered the Camellia, the plant that gives us tea.
As the exhibition reveals, behind the luxurious Victorian-era silver tea sets and stoic Colonial American portraiture was a commodity that garnered an...
SOURCE: Google News (8-18-09)
The mysterious blue gem was donated to the National Museum of Natural History more than 50 years ago and the museum is celebrating by having a new setting designed.
Starting in September, the 45.52 carat diamond will be exhibited as a stand-alone gem with no setting...
... "This is a rare and exciting opportunity for people to see the Hope Diamond as it has never been seen before," said museum director Cristian Samper...
SOURCE: Yahoo News (8-18-09)
On his death certificate it was officially recorded that the cause of death was hitziges Frieselfieber, or "heated miliary fever," referring to a rash that looks like millet seeds.
But researchers from the University of Amsterdam in the Netherlands said studies on his death have generally been based on less-than-reliable evidence, like accounts from people who witnessed Mozart's final days, written decades after his death.
Their new study, reported in the Annals of Internal Medicine, was based on information from official death registers for...
SOURCE: newsday.com (8-17-09)
Jeffrey Pipes Guice's Louisiana Film Museum is starting small. When it opens Sept. 1, it will occupy a 300-square-foot room in the existing Southern Food and Beverage Museum at the Riverwalk mall in New Orleans...
... The collection now includes posters from 1951's "A Streetcar Named Desire" starring Marlon Brando and Vivien Leigh, 1958's "King Creole" starring Elvis Presley and 1969's "Easy Rider" starring Peter Fonda, Dennis Hopper and Jack Nicholson.
"Louisiana has contributed tremendously to the history of film," Guice said. "I can't believe somebody hasn't done this sooner."
SOURCE: Guardian (UK) (8-18-09)
The former prime minister's diary goes on display for the first time on Thursday at a new exhibition marking the 70th anniversary of the outbreak of the second world war.
Outbreak 1939, at the Imperial War Museum in London, charts the events surrounding the declaration of war with Nazi Germany, a decision the country knew about at 11.15am when, according to the BBC presenter who introduced him, a "crumpled, despondent and old" Chamberlain made his famous radio broadcast. The exhibition also tells the human stories: of the children who were evacuated, the couples who hastily arranged weddings, and how the conflict became known as "the phoney war".
SOURCE: Artdaily.org (8-18-09)
Online access will not be limited to the law enforcement community but will be open to all interested users who first have to apply for access to the database, which features the latest information on some 34,000 works of art stolen worldwide. Interested parties wishing to access the database will first have to complete an application form in order to obtain an individual password for database access.
With direct access to the database, which will be continuously updated as and when the INTERPOL General Secretariat headquarters in Lyon receives new information on stolen works of art worldwide, authorized users of the database will be provided with real-time access to the latest information recorded in the database. The available information will not...
The programme, The Beatles On Record, will include studio chat from the band as they pieced together the album, which contained their final sessions as a band. It also features what the BBC says is “rare footage”, as well as excerpts from 60 songs.
It will be screened next month during a week-long season as the world prepares for the release of the band’s remastered back catalogue and the much-anticipated Beatles Rock Band computer game.
The Beatles On Record has been directed by Bob Smeaton, who worked on the Beatles Anthology project which traced the story of the band and was screened on TV in 1995 to tie in with a series of albums of the same name...
SOURCE: Artdaily.org (8-18-09)
Matisse as Printmaker loosely follows the chronology of Matisse’s career, from the artist’s earliest print in 1900 to the last in 1951. Examples of every printmaking technique used by Matisse—etchings, monotypes, lithographs, linocuts, aquatints,...
Tomorrow’s Merseysiders, which was made about the Post and its sister paper the Liverpool Echo, was re-discovered, stored in old film tins and covered in dust, two years ago.
It was transferred onto digital format by the experts at the North West Film Archive, at Manchester Metropolitan University.
The footage will be shown as part of a Liverpool On Film 3 evening at FACT tonight...
The book, Lieut Gullivar Jones: His Vacation was so poorly received upon publication in 1905, it was the last book its author wrote before he died.
But years later, after gaining popularity, the tale of romance on a distant planet has earned a reputation as one of the most important works of 20th-century science fiction...
SOURCE: CNSNews.com (8-17-09)
The veteran heavy metal group, Kiss, is joining a growing list of classic acts putting out new music through the world's largest retailer.
"Sonic Boom" is due to be released only at Wal-Mart and Sam's Club on Oct. 6. It will include a CD of the band's first new music in 11 years, re-recorded versions of famous Kiss hits and a live DVD.
SOURCE: Deutsche Welle (8-16-09)
created by American writer Edgar Rice Burroughs a century ago. Now, the
comic book hero is the subject of an exhibition at a new museum in Paris.
Rice Burroughs wrote 24 Tarzan stories and there have been 42 Tarzan films.
Clearly an icon if ever there was, Tarzan is now the star attraction at
Paris's new and rather magnificent ethnological museum, the Quai Branly. The
show brings together comic books, film extracts, stuffed animals and African
artefacts that tell us a bit about Tarzan and a lot about the way westerners
see - or used to see - Africa...
...In the books he gets back to England, attends Oxford University and learns
12 languages including Latin before returning to the jungle. A far cry from
the films where Tarzan is depicted as someone who can barely speak at all,
save for a few varied grunts.
Tarzan was also a...
SOURCE: Guardian (UK) (8-17-09)
Poncher's advertisment on eBay offers prospective corpses the chance to "spend eternity directly above Marilyn Monroe". Bidding opened last week at $500,000 (£300,000) and has already topped $4.5m, with more than seven days left to run.
The plot, at LA's exclusive Westwood Village cemetery, is currently home to the remains of Poncher's late husband Richard, who died in 1986. In accordance with his dying wishes, Poncher was buried face down in his crypt. "He said, 'If I croak, if you don't put me upside down over Marilyn, I'll haunt you for the rest of my life," Poncher explained to the LA Times newspaper...
SOURCE: Guardian (UK) (8-17-09)
The group exhibition at the 798 space, a former electronics factory in the Dashanzi art district, north-east of central Beijing, covered themes including the death of children in schools that collapsed in the quake. The show, the centrepiece of the Beijing 798 Biennale, reopened today but without some of the contentious works.
Zhu Qi, the artistic director of the Biennale, said he told the exhibition's deputy director not to include performance art involving people likely to stir up controversy. They included "Runner Fan", a teacher who became notorious after posting an article on the web saying he fled his school ahead of his pupils during the earthquake; Liu Xiaoyuan, a prominent blogger and lawyer; and the owners of the Chongqing nailhouse who became famous for refusing...
SOURCE: Telegraph (UK) (8-16-09)
She said he went through an "acute homosexual phase" while a student at Hertford College, Oxford, but rather like the character Charles Ryder in his most famous novel, put it behind him.
While it has long been thought that Waugh, who died in 1966, was bisexual, Byrne said he "absolutely, unquestionably did" have homosexual affairs.
Byrne said: "It was all very much perceived as acceptable as long as it was a phase you grew out of when you left Oxford."
He used to tease friends who had not had a homosexual phase that they had "missed out on something," she said.
She named his Oxford lovers in order as Richard Pares, Alistair Graham and Hugh Lygon...