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Essential Arts & Culture: Art and the West, LA's queer Chicano networks, Harry Potter...

It’s the most wonderful time of the week — when the Essential Arts newsletter hits your inbox! I’m Carolina A. Miranda, staff writer for the Los Angeles Times, and I just wanted to take the time to thank everyone for reading throughout the year — and thank you to the writers, performers, painters, designers and dancers who help keep our jobs so interesting. May your holiday be filled with sugar and gluten and artisanal cheese! Here we wrap up some of the week’s (and the year’s) top arts stories to keep you entertained through airport delays: Los Angeles painter Ed Ruscha teamed up with the Nevada Museum of Art in Reno to organize an exhibition that looks at the idea of “west” that includes the U.S. West, Alaska, Patagonia and Australia. “We’re in a very tectonically active region, it’s a very mountainous and arid region, and it all has to do with the Earth and the plates,” the museum’s curatorial director, JoAnne Northrup, tells The Times’ Deborah Vankin. “But it also has to do with cu..

Power Collector Patricia Phelps de Cisneros Donates More Than 200 Latin-American Artworks to Six...

The collections of Latin American art at six museums around the world just got a whole lot richer. Venezuelan collector and philanthropist Patricia Phelps de Cisneros announced on Wednesday that her foundation, the Colección Patricia Phelps de Cisneros (CPPC), will donate more than 200 artworks to a carefully selected group of museums across the US, Latin America, and Europe. The far-reaching gift—which encompasses work by 91 artists from 22 countries—aims to further boost the visibility of Latin American contemporary art and ensure that the region’s contributions are well integrated into the narratives of the 20th and 21st centuries presented by major museums. Jac Leirner’s To and From (MoMA, Oxford) (1991). Photo: Fundación Museo Reina Sofía. Donated by de Patricia Phelps de Cisneros en honor a Susana Steinbruch. The bulk of the gift—90 works—will go to the Museum of Modern Art in New York, where Phelps de Cisneros has been a board member since 1992. It is her second major gift to th..

The historical myth of white supremacy

Bigoted protestors at the pro-confederate rally in Richmond, Va. last September openly espoused support for the concept of white supremacy. They were equally disparaging of Jews. In support of racial and religious equality, fair minded Americans opposed the violence and bigotry of the Richmond protestors. However, there was no assertion that the concept of white supremacy is historically invalid. Many of the early immigrants to America came from Western Europe: areas now known as Switzerland, Germany, France, Belgium and Great Britain. In 100 B.C., the residents of that part of Europe were primitive, warlike tribes. Julius Caesar was sent from Rome as a consul and military general to suppress tribal invasions into Italy and to extend the influence of Rome, his written account of the battles, which ended in 51 B.C., is entitled “The Gallic Wars of Julius Caesar.” Roman society was highly evolved at that time. Romans were great engineers. They built roads which are still serviceable, bri..

Art center program introduces kids to India

Talbot Fisher The Register-Mail TalbotFisher16 GALESBURG — Knox College student Pete Peterson carefully traced designs for young children, who were eagerly stirring their paints, made from sand and glue. The kids swirled glittery purples and silvers onto the papers, filling in the designs. They were creating Rangoli, an Indian artform that typically uses sand to create patterns in courtyards and living rooms. The activity was one of seven available free of charge during the kickoff of Kids’ Month at the Galesburg Civic Art Center, 114 E. Main St. Peterson, an anthropology major who minors in art, recently returned from spending four months studying abroad in India. “I always had France in mind for studying abroad,” she said, “but I decided to go somewhere different. I’d always been interested in Indian culture. It was full immersion, I spent four months with a host family where they spoke Marathi.” She became involved with volunteering for the event though a friend who works at the ..

Meet Talos, the Killer Robot From Ancient Greek Mythology

If you were to go looking for the world's first mechanical humanoid, you'd have to go all the back to ancient Greek mythology. His name? Talos, the man of bronze. Talos, as Joe McCormick and I discuss on this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, emerged from the tales of Jason and his Argonauts – a band of heroes that in some ways stands as a proto-superhero team. When our heroes reached the island of Crete, they encountered a bronze automaton created in the likeness of a man. There, the great protector stalked the shores, hurling rocks at unidentified sea vessels and embracing any enemy brave enough to land in an immolating red-hot bear hug. The origin of Talos varies. Some accounts describe him as the last survivor of an ancient race of bronze men, but the more popular versions attribute his creation to Hephaestus, god of the forge. Later tellings even cast him as the work of Daedalus, the mythic inventor of the Minoan maze and the wings of Icarus. Wherever he came from, his..

Essential Arts & Culture: Art and the West, LA's queer Chicano networks, Harry Potter...

Knight, in the meantime, really enjoyed Julian Bell's critiques of two exhibitions of paintings by Camille Pissarro. "So much art writing now is focused on the image, partly because that is what is most clearly transmitted through the digital ether," writes Knight. "But Bell, no doubt because he's also a painter, never abandons sharp consideration of the painted image as an analog thing, assembled from material stuff, which is what actually carries it. Maybe that's also why the surprising opening graphs of his wonderful piece on Pissarro, Cezanne's less-revered pal, consider why shadows are not merely an absence of light." New York Review of Books Let's block ads! (Why?)

The indigenous people of Oaxaca, Mexico documented in stunning detail

In south-central Mexico, flanked by rugged, rolling mountain ranges, sits Oaxaca, a state with a rich cultural heritage and a diverse gathering of proud, indigenous people who still celebrate their unique historical identities and way of life. Travelling to the region, Mexican photographer Diego Huerta has created a collection of stunning portraits of these people, using Oaxaca as a colourful backdrop for the images that tell their stories. El Torito, “The Bull” at Istmo de Tehuantepec, Oaxaca. Image by Diego HuertaThe project, called Inside Oaxaca, started four years ago, when Diego witnessed Guelaguetza (known locally as Los Lunes del Cerro), a week-long festival the state hosts every July that sees participants from 16 different indigenous groups around the region meeting to play music, sing, dance, and celebrate cultural exchange, all while donning traditional dress. The event dates back hundreds of years, with the festival proving popular with global visitors. The festival sparked..

Cultural Exchange Points to Stronger Relationship Between Liberia-China

Monrovia - China and Liberia will join hand-in-hand to foster their relations as the two nations enter a new era, says Ambassador Zhang Yue of the embassy of the People’s Republic of China in Monrovia. Report by Alpha Daffae Senkpeni, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. The People’s Republic of China, in October 2017 held its 19th Communist Party (CPC) congress with President Xi Jinping emphasizing the world’s most populous nation’s commitment to promoting global peace and win-win cooperation amongst developing nations. At the CPC congress in Beijing, Xi said China was entering a “New Era” with its Socialism with “Chinese characteristics”. And Yue said in Monrovia on January 5 that this has paved the way for a “new era” for bilateral ties between China and Liberia as President-elect George Weah also prepares to usher Liberians into a “new era”. Ambassador Yue said “Liberia’s President-elect is a former soccer star while Chine..

A pastoral lost: the withering of Russia's old Soviet farms and villages

[unable to retrieve full-text content] A pastoral lost: the withering of Russia's old Soviet farms and villages Christian Science MonitorFull coverage

Russian motorcyclist riding round the world stops over in Cuba

HAVANA, December 29. /TASS/. Moscow resident and motorcycle enthusiast Oleg Kharitonov, who is travelling around the world on his motorbike, has arrived in Cuba. Before taking a tour around the island, he met with the Russian Ambassador to the country Mikhail Kamynin and other diplomats. Ernesto Guevara, the youngest son of the legendary revolutionary hero Ernesto "Che" Guevara, who is a motorbike lover and runs a tourist agency, arranging bike tours around Cuba, also attended the meeting. His company is named La Poderosa after the motorbike that Che Guevara rode during his famous trip across South America in the early 1950s. 1,226 days on the roadKharitonov, 46, has already spent 1,226 days on the road, covering nearly 150,000 kilometers. He arrived in Cuba from Jamaica. In the coming weeks, the Russian biker plans to travel around the island, particularly visiting Che Guevara’s tomb in Santa Clara and the grave of Cuban leader Fidel Castro in Santiago de Cuba. In early February, he w..

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