Monthly Archives: November 2010

22 posts

Art Review: Alessi: Ethical and Radical at the Philadelphia Museum of Art

The Tea and Coffee Piazza sets, produced in limited editions of ninety-nine, with three artist’s proofs, were a critical success. The project served to introduce Michael Graves to the Alessi “stable,” while traveling exhibits informed museum patrons on the ways that high art and industrial design could form working partnerships. Mendini’s original conception was vindicated.

Book Review: Apollo’s Angels: A History of Ballet by Jennifer Homans

Homans’ concluding remarks, cogent and powerfully expressed like the rest of Apollo’s Angels, are going to send some powerful shock waves through an arts community content to let ballet companies limp along on the receipts of last year’s Nutcracker performances.

Movie Review: Tangled

Tangled isn’t too cool for school, it’s just really cool, and once the film stops apologizing for being a fairy tale and gets down to the task of just being a fairy tale it reveals itself to be one of the best (non-Pixar) Disney animated films in over a decade. Smart entertainment, sidesplittingly funny and never condescending to the little children making up the target demographic. Tangled is classic Disney.

Theater Review: Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown, Starring Patti LuPone, Sherie Rene Scott

Patti LuPone, however, does not stumble. In her mesmerizing performance of the show’s best song “Invisible” the actress masterfully transforms a farcical kangaroo court scene into a powerful portrayal of a woman confronting true misery. One by one, the spectacular bells and whistles of the production disappear to leave an exposed and raw LuPone standing alone on a bare stage. Her monumental voice soars through the theater as she reveals a hauntingly vulnerable soul on the brink of collapse.

Book Review: Fun Inc.: Why Gaming Will Dominate the Twenty-First Century by Tom Chatfield

One element of the gaming industry that will surprise some readers is the billions of dollars made by “gold farmers,” people who play online games such as World of Warcraft, and then sell the loot acquired in the game for real-world dollars to other gamers. China alone is estimated to have over a million of these gold farmer players working right now.

Movie Review: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1

With the Potter books, J.K. Rowling fashioned one of the most intricately detailed fantasy lands in popular culture: a world adjacent to but concealed from normal British life, a universe in which witches and wizards matriculate at the vast castle that is Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.

The Weekly Listicle: Worlds Of Fancy And Other Wondrous Places

A cleverly rendered fantasy world has the power to make us believe astounding things, and to transport us to places we may never have imagined ourselves. In the history of film there have been countless attempts to take real-world places and performers outside the realm of what has been seen before, and into far-off lands where the amazing, the terrifying, and the marvelous lurk around every corner.

Vandalism in the Name of the Lord: Kathleen Folden and “The Misadventures of Romantic Cannibals”

On October 6, 2010, Kathleen Folden, identified in the media as a 56-year-old truck driver from Kalispell, Montana, smashed her way into a display case at the Loveland Art Museum in Loveland, Colorado with a crowbar. Her purpose was to destroy a work of art, a multi-panel lithograph by Enrique Chagoya entitled “The Misadventures of Romantic Cannibals.”

Movie Review: Unstoppable

The story is just substantial enough to tie all the screeching, sparking train chases together. We get to see large stretches of beautiful Pennsylvania woods as the trains blaze through them. We get a completely over-the-top but satisfying climax which, for once, the film’s trailer did not give away.

Book Review: How to Live: Or A Life of Montaigne in One Question and Twenty Attempts at an Answer by Sarah Bakewell

Born nearly five hundred years ago, Montaigne was one of the last great thinkers of the Renaissance. He can also stake a claim to be the first recognizable writer of modern times. Montaigne’s Essays are stocked with insights of such relevance, inspiration and humanity that they might well have been written yesterday – or tomorrow.