Twentieth Century – Kafkas Diasporasi Tue, 28 Jun 2022 03:02:43 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Twentieth Century – Kafkas Diasporasi 32 32 The Rise, Fall, and Reinvention of the American Mall Mon, 27 Jun 2022 21:43:00 +0000

Shopping malls are dead. At least that was the consensus at the height of the pandemic. The mall was already on shaky ground before the pandemic. A 2017 report by Credit Suisse predicted that, by 2022, between 20% and 25% of all US malls would close. The pandemic has increased the already immense pressure on online stores. In 2020, non-store retailers saw their sales increase by 30% compared to the previous year. After the pandemic, the mall’s future looked bleak.

But don’t write the eulogy right away. Alexandra Lange, a design critic and writer, believes that shopping malls have been given the “bad wrap”, especially from the architecture and design community. In his new book, “Meet Me by the Fountain: An Inside History of the Mall,” Lange details the history of the American mall and how its beginnings shaped American culture, society and design. She believes design has played a major role in the successes and failures of the mall.

“Once you think of something as dead, in our minds, it goes away,” Lange told Marketplace’s Amy Scott. “I want people to see malls as a place where we can do a lot of new and creative things.”

The following is an excerpt from his book.

The American dream – bootstraps, border, white picket fence – crossed paths with malls when they emerged in the post-World War II decades as the United States reinvented itself. In 1954, for the first time in American history, the number of children born passed the four million mark, a level which would be maintained for each of the following ten years. The 1944 GI Bill and federal highway laws approved in 1944 and 1956 subsidized the growth of new residential suburbs to house these burgeoning families, and the roads to reach them: more than a million new homes built by year, and more than forty-two thousand kilometers of highway. What most early post-war developments failed to incorporate, however, was the kind of central space – and centering – that had been part of human civilization from its most remote origins. By subsidizing the house and the road, the government did not subsidize a gathering place. Something essential to human nature had been forgotten: people like to be in public with other people. This momentary joy I felt in seeing happy families is the core of the mall’s strength and the essence of its continued usefulness. In postwar American suburbia, the mall was the only structure designed to meet this need. People, money, controversies and bigger and bigger structures followed. So, in turn, did culture. The United States of the late 20th century is meaningless without the mall.

Portrait of Alexandra Lange.
Alexandra Lange (Courtesy of Lange)

I knew that by embarking on this project, I, born in 1973, was part of the Mall Generation, raised on the smell of these pretzels, able to turn off the Muzak and find my car in a multi-level parking lot . As a design critic, as a child of the 1980s, and as someone committed to the idea that architecture should serve everyone, the mall was my ideal subject. Like children’s design, the subject of my last book, the mall was ubiquitous and under-examined and potentially a bit awkward as an object of serious study. Shopping, like children, was an after-hours topic; and malls, like playgrounds, were places dominated by women and children. Go to Etsy and you’ll find plenty of no-nonsense bumper stickers that read A Woman’s Place is in the mall. What I didn’t know was that I had been in the field creating urban inventions like the festival market at Boston’s Faneuil Hall, and that even in my current neighborhood of Brooklyn, I was doing shopping on a pedestrian street that was one of the city’s responses to the flight of white dollars to the suburbs. Once I started seeing shopping not as a distraction but as a shaper of cities, I saw its traces everywhere. As the history of architecture tended to focus on suburban homes and the history of planning turned to highways, the mall fell into the cracks between the personal and the professional, as if we, as a culture, didn’t want to recognize that we needed a wardrobe, furniture and tools for both.

Excerpt from “Meet Me by the Fountain: An Inside History of the Mall” by Alexandra Lange. Copyright © Alexandra Lange, 2022. Published by Bloomsbury Publishing Inc.

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Clark Art presents “Rodin in the United States” / Sun, 26 Jun 2022 10:02:00 +0000
The Rodin library with a photograph representing ‘Monument à Balzac’ at Clark Art.

The “Monument to Balzac” is exhibited in the hall of the museum.

WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. – One of the largest exhibitions of works by Auguste Rodin seen in the United States in the past 40 years is now on display at the Clark Art Institute.

The exhibition consists of 50 sculptures and 25 drawings from American museums and private collections that collectively bear witness to the history of collectors, agents, art historians and critics who worked to make Rodin known in America.

Although there have been many exhibits of Rodin, less attention has been paid to the French modernist’s legacy in the United States. The Clark exhibit examines Rodin’s influence and reputation on America from 1893 to the present day.

Part of the exhibition is on the first floor as you enter the Clark, to the right of the main hall, where Rodin’s “Monument à Balzac” is on display. Visitors can sit in the “Rodin library” filled with books on the sculptor and where sketchbooks with pencils are available.

The rest of the exhibition is displayed in the museum and divided into three parts: “The collectors”, “The era of museums” and “The revival”.

Each of these sections shows the progression of Rodin’s work and career. Throughout the exhibition, visitors can see the progression of his work through some of his original plaster models and then the completed pieces.

Also on display are sculptures that Rodin did not complete, allowing the viewer to see the artist’s process. Rodin was considered unconventional at the time for many reasons, including how some of his art seemed unfinished to contemporaries and bore traces of his process.

The “The Collectors” section of the exhibition showed Rodin’s first group of art that was shown in the United States beginning with pieces exhibited at the Chicago World’s Fair in 1893.

Born in 1840 into a working-class family in Paris, he studied art and mathematics as a youth — but was rejected by the École des Beaux-Arts — dabbled in the idea of ​​taking religious orders and worked as a craftsman on ornamental designs. and on public orders. He finally opened a studio where he worked with live models in the early 1880s.

He was interested in the expression of human emotion and often reused pieces from previous plays. Initially, he was not very popular in the United States due to the provocative depictions that some of his sculptures showed. These rooms were moved to a private space and were only accessible upon request.

He was known for breaking convention by celebrating classic beauty by portraying the people around him. Some of his best known works are “The Thinker” and “The Kiss”.

With the influence of many collectors, artists and curators, including Rodin’s model Katherine Seney Simpson; American actress, dancer and choreographer Loïe Fuller; philanthropist Alma De Bretteville Spreckels, and more, Rodin’s work slowly began to gain popularity as it entered private and public collections.

The “Museum Age” section of the exhibition follows the reputation of his work after his death in 1917. Rodin left the contents of his studio to the French state on the condition that a museum be founded for his work at the Hotel Biron in Paris.

The museum received instructions from the artist that bronze casts of his sculptures fund museum operations and increase awareness of his work.

American museums and collectors began to expand their Rodin collections from donations or purchases, but many institutions preferred to display the finished narrative subjects. The unfinished works that are rented today were stored until the Second World War.

The final section of the exhibition, “The Revival”, examines his work from 1954 to the present day, when scholars and critics began to recognize the boldness and modernity of his work after the director of the Art Museum modern Alfred Barr requested a bronze casting. of Rodin’s “Monument to Balzac”.

Barr considered the piece “one of the greatest sculptures in the history of Western art”, which helped Rodin’s work become fully established in the United States.

This exhibition demonstrates the progression of his pieces becoming fully established in the United States.

Key words: ClarkArt,

]]> Something’s rotten in the state of everything everywhere – The Brooklyn Rail Thu, 23 Jun 2022 23:57:32 +0000

New York City

Tif Sigfrides
JV Martin: Something rotten in the state of everything everywhere
May 20 – July 9, 2022

In March 1965, a bomb tore through the apartment of JV Martin, painter, provocateur and leader of the Scandinavian section of the Situationist International. In what was rumored to be an attack by the Danish secret service, the bomb injured Martin’s five-year-old son, burned down his entire flat and destroyed most of his work and archives up to that time, including his “Thermonuclear Map” paintings – heavily laden canvases documenting the landscape in the hours following a nuclear Armageddon, their savagery evident in a list of materials that included layers and bits of rotten cheese. The bombing made local headlines at the time, but did little to deter Martin from his role in the increasingly adversarial countercultural movement, which would culminate several years later with the uprisings of 1968. He remained in the IS until its dissolution by Guy Debord in 1972, and claimed to be a situationist until he got drunk to death in 1993. He also continued, in the dark port town of Randers, to paint.

Martin is one of those characters for whom darkness is both a great injustice, and completely understandable. Initially trained as a goldsmith, he was a prolific painter throughout his working years, leaving behind an idiosyncratic body of work that spans three decades, deftly synthesizing the dominant threads of 20th-century Scandinavian painting, from Munch to CoBrA, into something playful, abject and mature (you know, because cheese) with revolutionary potential. On that final note, he was a central figure in the SI, translating the journals of the movement, organizing exhibitions and arguing endlessly with other leaders about what Situationist art – art that could hold a mirror for the Société du Spectacle – could even be. (It actually couldn’t, they reluctantly agreed, settling on the anti-situationist term.) like his apartment. While his work has been included in several collective exhibitions around situationism, it has never been examined solely on this side of the Atlantic. That’s why this first presentation of paintings, skillfully curated by Niels Henriksen, is such a thrill.

Of the six paintings on display in this exhibit — largely an introduction, tucked away on the second floor of a Chinatown mall — the most distinctively Situationist work is a 1979 example of his ongoing “Golden Fleet.” series, which features toy battleships vying for dominance, with Martin claiming the admiral. Both playful and threatening, the painting borrows situationist tropes: the overload of the canvas; moving away from traditional materials to include found or appropriated pop cultural objects; and the inclusion of comic bubbles, in which a wry or cross-cutting commentary can both amplify the meaning of the work or divert it through diversion. Borrowed for the show’s title, Shakespeare revises itself in the era of international consumer culture: “Something is Rotten in the State of Everything, Everywhere.”

This work, as well as the showcase of SI texts in the center of the gallery, should not seal Martin’s practice as a situationist or anti-situationist enterprise. In reality, Martin’s program was much less programmatic. It was shooting from everywhere, distilling a homebrew that was both raw and energetic, angsty and exuberant. Going back through the works of Asger Jorn or Karel Appel, some of the works in the exhibition are dense with straight-out-of-the-tube linework that feels drawn or sculpted as much as it is painted, bits of poetry pulling abandoned romanticism – “the last shitty song!” sings a canvas titled The longest day / The last shitty song (The Last Shitty Song) (1964) – and tachist explosions of pigment and form. Lying with Ensor’s blood-red mouths, a scrawled skull that could easily illustrate Hamsun.

Meanwhile, a series of 1970s paintings riff on the CoBrA tropes of masks and toilet primitivism. These works, in which sperm faces swirl in a madness of crowds, feel the show’s most contemporary, predicting latter-day expressionists: Joanne Greenbaum, Eddie Martinez, Jonathan Meese, Adrienne Rubinstein, Josh Smith. Martin joked that they were diverted CoBrA paints. But diverted in what? Both situationist and anti-situationist. CoBrA and Anti-CoBrA. Cancel the schools, and all that’s left is the paint. This is perhaps why these works vibrate so much. It is a historical work, detached from history. JV Martin reveals a new cord between past and present. Pulling it feels like starting an engine.

designboom joins VITRA for a denim-infused celebration on campus vitra Wed, 22 Jun 2022 08:41:25 +0000


On the occasion of Art Basel 2022, VITRA guest design boom attend the release of by Jean Prouve Kangaroo armchair reissue lounge chair at the Vitra Campus. Unveiled earlier this monththe Swiss furniture company held an exhibition inside Zaha Hadid’s fire station for its release, where it paid tribute to the French architect and designer.

Limited to 150 copies made in collaboration with Catherine Prouvé, the daughter of Jean Prouvé, the Kangaroo armchair chaise longue sold shortly after its release.

all images © designboom unless otherwise stated


One of the most important designers of the 20th century, Jean Prouvé was celebrated by influential contemporaries such as Le Corbusier, Fernand Léger and Alexander Calder. His work encompasses a wide range of objects from lighting to furniture, from facade elements to prefabricated houses and modular building systems, as well as large exhibition structures.

designboom joins VITRA for a denim-infused celebration on campus vitra


VITRA and the history of Jean Prouvé dates back to the 1980s, when Rolf Fehlbaum, President Emeritus of VITRA and avid collector, purchased a vintage Antony chair from the designer from 1954. This purchase initiated one of the largest museum collections in the world. world of furniture and objects by Jean Prouvé, now under the supervision of the Vitra Design Museum.

designboom joins VITRA for a denim-infused celebration on campus vitra
the proven jeans collection at the vitra design museum
image by florian böhm, © VITRA

Working closely with the Prouvé family, VITRA began producing several of the designer’s creations in 2002 with the aim of making these great products once again accessible to a wider audience. The portfolio has expanded to include additional designs and special collaborations with G-Star and Virgil Abloh (see more at designboom here.)

“For me, design has the inherent idea of ​​being a bridge between the past, with an eye to the future”, Virgil Abloh explained it by launching his Prouvé chair. Abloh was also fascinated by the creations of Jean Prouvé and had an interest in exploring the work of the Frenchman from the start of his collaboration with VITRA.

designboom joins VITRA for a denim-infused celebration on campus vitra
antony armchair tribute to jean proven by virgil abloh
image by joshua osborne, © VITRA

For its latest edition, VITRA has referred to a historical version from the collection of the VITRA Design Museum. Like its name, the Kangaroo armchair has a structure that allows the seat to support the weight on the hind legs. The wooden side profiles also reflect this by being widest where the greatest stress is exerted. The latest version combines a natural oak base with metal feet in the Prouvé Bleu Marcoule shade. The cushions are covered with a woven bouclé fabric of the same color.

designboom joins VITRA for a denim-infused celebration on campus vitra

‘It goes without saying that a lounge chair should be comfortable. Beyond comfort, the sculptural wooden uprights of the Kangourou Armchair are among the most expressive elements of Jean Prouvé’s work, and yet are more than a formal exercise. Prouvé has always adhered to the motto “form follows function”: the solid wood frame supports the chair at the point where the greatest stress is exerted by the person seated. The front legs, on the other hand, are made of relatively thin steel tubes because they do not have to support the primary load.

It is important to emphasize that the name of the chair ‘Kangaroo’reveals Prouvé’s sense of humor: with a little imagination, the silhouette of the profile resembles the animal in a seated position.

designboom joins VITRA for a denim-infused celebration on campus vitra

2022 also marks the year that VITRA adds several original Prouvé colors to the palette. Originally designed by the designer himself, the colors drew inspiration from a variety of sources – his Blue Green describes the color of your wheat green, while Gray Vermeer alludes to the gray tones of painter Johannes’ work Vermeer.

designboom joins VITRA for a denim-infused celebration on campus vitra

“Jean Prouvé chose his colors with great care”, said her daughter Catherine Prouvé. “He wasn’t a painter’s son for nothing!

Aston Magna Forte Baroque Concerts – The Millbrook Independent Mon, 20 Jun 2022 21:36:50 +0000
Daniel Stepner

Preview by Kevin T McEneaney

I spoke to virtuoso violinist Daniel Stepner, artistic director of Aston Magna for the past thirty years, about his upcoming series of concerts: The Music of Scarlatti and Stravinsky’s “The Soldier’s Tale” opens the season, which runs from 23 June to July 23 at Brandeis University, Hudson Hall and Mahaiwe in Great Barrington. All concerts are at 7 p.m. Playing on period instruments, Aston Magna is in its 49e year of performance of popular and hitherto unknown Baroque works.

Opening weekend, June 23-25, features a double bill featuring Naples-born Alessandro Scarlatti’s “Humanity and Lucifer” and Igor Stravinsky’s “The Soldier’s Tale.” Stepner says that these two morality stories “mirror each other over two centuries, representing humanity’s struggle against its demons.” (In times of great peril, a Manichean perspective often comes along.) Stepner will give pre-concert talks at 6:15 p.m. in each venue and explain the historical context of each piece. Scarlatti is an important early Baroque transitional voice that maintains 17th-century singing styles, while employing modern-sounding modulation.

Alexandre Scarlatti

Scarlatti’s “Humanity and Lucifer” is an unreleased oratorio that Stepner discovered in Munster, Germany. Out of curiosity, he bought a microfilm copy of the score from the library and transcribed it. He was impressed by the expert orchestration for strings, trumpet and recorder; the score contrasted with the mostly fragmentary and sketchy orchestration of Baroque music, which usually left the orchestration to the improvisation of the performers. The story here is Mary’s opposition to the devil, a popular medieval theme in which the cartoon-like Mary was often depicted as smiting the devil. The execution of this work is likely to be for the first time in the last three hundred years!!!

Igor Stravinsky

Stepner notes that Stravinsky’s 1918 play has resonance for today: war, revolution, pandemic. In fact, the Spanish flu interrupted performances of “The Soldier’s Tale.” Frank Kelley will narrate and direct “The Soldier’s Tale”, performed by two actors, a dancer and a motley “village orchestra” made up of Aston Magna musicians playing on period instruments. For “The Soldier’s Tale” and “The Rite of Spring”, Stravinsky composed for the classical recorder, which brings so much thrilling drama to both works. Stepner has performed “The Soldier’s Tale” many times over the past fifty years since performing it at the Long Warf Theatre. The performance will feature an early 20th century wreath and gut violin strings.

Clara and Robert Schuman

The concerts continue from June 30 to July 2 with a program entitled The chamber music of Robert and Clara Schumann. The performers are David Hyun-su Kim, pianoforte, Daniel Stepner, violin; Marcus Thompson, viola; and Jacques Lee Wood, cello. This parlor music by two of the most famous musically matched lovers will feature unexpected harmonies and unusual cross-rhythms with raised chords, as these two geniuses debate intimately different sexual perspectives on a host of issues.

Andrea LeBlanc

On July 7, 8 and 9, Aston Magna presents The chamber music of JS Bach, including excerpts from “The Musical Offering”, with Andrea LeBlanc, baroque flute; Peter Sykes, harpsichord; Daniel Stepner, baroque violin, and Laura Jeppesen, viola da gamba. You can’t have a Baroque concert series without performing one of Bach’s masterpieces, in this case a dazzling collection of canons and fugues. Many of these famous pieces are puzzles that the performers must improvise to solve, giving these pieces a spontaneous and humorous drama.

Dominique LaBelle

On July 14, 15 and 16, the “All Handel” program offers “Armida abbandonata” and “Gloria” with soprano Dominique Labelle with Daniel Stepner and Julie Leven, baroque violins; Laura Jeppesen, viola da gamba, and Michael Sponseller, harpsichord. Handel’s Cantata, based on Torquato Tasso’s epic poem “Jerusalem Delivered”, depicts a tormented secular desolation, while Handel’s magnificent “Gloria” will provide a positive spiritual uplift that will delight a listener for days to come.

Francois Couperin

Finally, on July 21, 22 and 23, the program Double apotheosis: François Couperin’s tributes to Corelli and Lully » is performed by Daniel Stepner and Edson Scheid, baroque violins; Laura Jeppesen, viola da gamba; Catherine Liddell, theorbo; and Michael Sponseller, harpsichord. Here is a style contest between the Italian and French evolutionary styles (although Lully was born in Italy). Couperin lets the listener decide and does not pass judgment. A few decades later, Jean-Jacques Rousseau received from Denis Diderot the commission to write all the musical articles of the great French Encyclopedia published between 1751 and 1772. Diderot read only the first two articles submitted by Rousseau and found them good, he never read them all. Rousseau’s arguments. Diderot never forgave Rousseau for having defended the Italian musical tradition over the French tradition!

With the exception of the Mahaiwe performance at Great Barrington, which has a range of prices, tickets are $40/advance or $50 at the door. Discounts and subscription rates are available. Buy your tickets at or by phone (888) 492-1283. Tickets for the Mahaiwe show must be purchased at, or (413) 528-0100. Tickets for Hudson Hall are also available at

How studying Karsh, the man and the artist, can make us better portrait painters Sat, 18 Jun 2022 16:01:49 +0000

Yousef Karsh is widely regarded as one of the greatest portrait photographers of the 20th century. In this essay, I discuss five ways in which studying Karsh’s life and photos can impact our own work as portrait painters.

At the peak of his career, Karsh was so famous that being photographed by him was simply “being Karshed“, and he was affectionately referred to as “Karsh of Ottawa”. It was quite an accomplishment for someone from such humble beginnings, who grew up in a war-torn country and emigrated to Canada to escape the Armenian Genocide. But the journey that started as an immigrant with little understanding of the language or customs of his new home to become an iconic figure is full of stories – and photos – that can teach us valuable lessons as photographers. and artists. While there are countless lessons to be learned, here are five that have influenced me and which I hope will inspire you as well.

1. Karsh had specific goals and pursued them vigorously

As a young man, Karsh had the privilege of apprenticed with John Garo, a famous Boston portrait photographer. What was originally supposed to last six months turned into three years, as Garo recognized the talent of his young apprentice, and Karsh recognized that he not only had a lot to learn about photography, but also a lot to absorb in company. de Garo and his esteemed friends, which included many well-known figures in music and art. After the end of daylight (and the ability to create portraits in natural light), Garo’s studio became a speakeasy and unofficial cultural hub, with young Yousef as his bartender. Of those formative years, Karsh recalled, “Even as a young man, I was aware that those glorious afternoons and evenings were my university.”

Early on, and unsurprisingly, Karsh decided he would photograph the greatest figures of his time. When his time with Garo ended, he immediately moved to Ottawa and opened his own photo studio. Karsh said of his audacity, “In Canada’s capital, the hub of global travel, I hoped to have the opportunity to photograph his personalities and many foreign visitors.”

We learn that from the beginning of his career, Karsh had concrete goals as an artist and photographer. Instead of waiting for famous faces to find him, he deliberately and wisely placed himself where he knew he would find growth and opportunities to collaborate with the leading artists, politicians and actors of his time. Karsh knew that no matter how good his art was, no one knew who he was, and his goals forced him to move to fulfill his dream.

2. Karsh learned from his failures

There is a wonderful story about Karsh as a young portrait photographer that can remind us of the importance of failure and how he often teaches us the most valuable lessons. Shortly after moving to Ottawa, Karsh was invited to join the Ottawa Little Theatre, an amateur group that would not only have a profound impact on his understanding of artificial light, but also open an invaluable doorway to his career.

One of the players in this group was the Governor General’s son, and he and Karsh became friends so quickly that the young man convinced his noble parents to sit down for a portrait with Karsh. The shoot was a complete disaster, however, as the young and inexperienced Karsh nervously posed the majestic couple, he “in full military dress with sword and decorations”, and she “elegantly dressed” and “statuesque” in appearance, like Karsh described them. . He was so disturbed by the event that the results were, in his words, “disastrous”.

Yet this profound and potentially crushing failure was turned by Karsh into his first major success. Amazingly, Karsh convinced the lord and lady to sit for him a second time, and the results were so excellent and well received that they were printed in numerous publications across the country.

Although never welcome, the lessons we learn from failure are always far more important than those we learn from success. Consider how Karsh surely replayed every detail of that failed first session in his mind, not only learning many lessons from his mistakes, but effectively ensuring that he would never repeat the same missteps again. Also consider that Karsh didn’t let this rather catastrophic failure cause him to give up, or to consider that he himself, was a failure. He failed, but it wasn’t a failure. In fact, his self-confidence remained so strong that he took the caring (and patient) couple in for a second session, which yielded great results.

3. Karsh was always ready

Karsh’s most famous portrait is the iconic image of Winston Churchill, looking rather disturbed. And although the story of how Karsh created this portrait has achieved legendary status, there are many important details in his account of the event that led to his infamous cigar-taking that we can learn from. a lot about the art of creating a successful portrait. .

In short, Karsh was always ready and left absolutely nothing to chance. He describes the preparation of his portrait of Churchill, saying

I waited in the President’s Chamber where, the night before, I had installed my lights and my camera. But getting the giant to reluctantly walk from his corner to where my lights and camera were set up a short distance away was a feat! I went back to my camera and made sure everything was technically fine.

These lesser-known, but hugely important, parts of history can teach us a lot as photographers. Ask yourself if Karsh hadn’t taken enough time to set up his camera and lights, or if in his haste and nervousness he hadn’t double-checked the settings once Churchill was in place for photography. His preparation and attention to detail ensured that nothing was left to chance. Certainly, his lessons learned from photographing the Governor General were well learned.

Karsh’s work ethic in general also portrays a man who was a perfectionist and did not shy away from the idea of ​​spending countless hours in the studio learning not only how to create portraits with artificial light, but also to use a multitude of printing techniques that he has meticulously developed. through countless hours of experimentation. Karsh was ready.

4. Karsh did his homework on every person he photographed.

Perhaps more than any other portrait photographer of his time, Karsh was able to capture the essence of his subject, allowing the viewer to get a glimpse into his personality and soul. Take for example his image of the cellist Pablo Casals, alone in a large room with his cello, his back to the camera. This image depicts Casal’s dedication to his craft, as well as his legendary dedication to playing his beloved instrument. Or, consider his portrait of Pablo Picasso, where the artist has become part of his work, with a slightly distant expression reminding the viewer of his artistry and greatness as an artist.

Karsh attributes his ability to capture his subjects with such veracity to a process he has called “making [his] homework,” in which he endeavored to learn as much as possible about a person before photographing them. Knowing more about her subject not only provided insight into her unique personality, but also served a practical purpose. Karsh made the act of connecting with his subject much easier, as he arrived armed with information that bridged the gap between photographer and person photographed.

In Karsh’s time, this process involved a little more work than it does for us today. A simple Google search can reveal a lot about a person, and if we as photographers are lucky enough to be placed in a position to photograph someone remarkable, doing our homework is a crucial step towards success. .

5. Karsh didn’t hide his head behind his camera

Perhaps the biggest lesson we can learn from Karsh is how he engaged with his subject right before taking the shot. Based on Jerry Fielder’s book, “Karsh, Beyond the Camera”,

Once the lighting and composition were to his satisfaction, he innocently left the camera with the shutter in hand and engaged his subject, ready to squeeze the bulb, capture a moment of truth and share it with us.

How often, as portrait photographers, do we find ourselves with our faces buried in our cameras, constantly adjusting settings and increasing the barrier between us and our subject. Our focus is on shutter speeds and apertures when a unique human being stands just feet away from us, a one-of-a-kind story waiting to be told. Karsh knew the camera itself was the biggest obstacle between him and his subject, so he removed it as much as he could.

Breaking down the technological barrier is a remarkable goal for all of us, especially when using modern mirrorless cameras, which do an admirable job of tracking a subject’s eye and achieving critical focus without having to need to look through a viewfinder.

Some Final Thoughts

I was inspired to write this article after visiting the library and finding a wonderful book titled, Karsh: a fifty-year retrospective. I picked up this book and several others because at the time I felt quite uninspired and hoped that studying some of the greats would rekindle a creative spark. As well as learning the valuable lessons above, it reminded me of the joy that can be found in a physical book, especially a beautifully printed photo book in which great care has been taken in reproducing the images. .

Finally, I would like to thank Julie Grahame, main representative of the Karsh estate, for allowing me to use the images in this article.

All photos used with permission, © Yousuf Karsh,

Yards repair of York Minster’s ‘last of its kind’ cast iron lamp post will cost £30,000 after it was hit by a wagon Fri, 17 Jun 2022 05:53:00 +0000

The cost of repair is significantly higher than replacement, but council officials believe the price is worth paying to preserve the ‘unique heritage asset’, which is thought to be around 120 years old.

The ornate cast iron lamppost, which is well photographed as the cathedral forms a backdrop, was hit by a train car in March.

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Street lighting officers would normally replace a damaged pole with a tubular steel column, which is less likely to collapse.

The historic lamppost on the ground after being hit by a cart

It would cost £10,000 but senior councilors are being asked to repair the lamppost, which is between High Petergate and Minster Gates, calling in a specialist at a cost of £33,000.

The council said it would seek reimbursement through the driver’s insurance company, but the full cost may not be recoverable and any shortfall would have to be made up by the authority.

According to the council’s report: ‘This is the last column adorned with historic molding of this nature in York city centre, possibly even in the wider York region, certainly at this height and with the type of scrolling parentheses incorporated into the composition of the column.”

Council Conservation Manager Edward Freeman said: ‘The Minster Gates lamppost is an irreplaceable historic asset as the only surviving example of early electric street furniture.

The lamppost before it was damaged

“It contributes to the character and appearance of a site of the highest heritage sensitivity.”

The column will also be moved a few meters and protected by bollards to prevent it from being damaged again.

Read more

Read more

Skeldale House from the BBC’s original All Creatures Great and Small TV series is gearing up…

York City Council’s Executive Committee has been asked to approve the proposal at a meeting on Thursday, June 16.

In April council chiefs said the damage was so severe that ‘repair may not be possible’ and would only be ‘considered if we can guarantee the post will be completely safe in the future’.

Independent Councilor Mark Warters then urged council via email: ‘I don’t think there can be any justification for a cheap, substandard steel column being erected at this town center location. .

“If, as a city, there are still aspirations to achieve World Heritage status, this must be pursued properly.”

York is bidding for the UNESCO World Heritage Site this year, having been rejected in 2011 after a previous bid.

The moulding, which is of late Victorian/Edwardian Art Nouveau influenced design, has a maker’s plate which has not been deciphered due to buildup of paint.

York was home to the distinguished Walker Iron Foundry, founded in 1837.

John Walker was appointed Queen’s Iron Founder in 1847, and much of their high quality work survives in the town, including the gas lamps and balustrades of the facades of the cathedral and St. Leonard’s Square .

John Shaw, president of the Yorkshire Architectural and York Archaeological Society, has researched the history of street lighting in the city.

He identified examples of distinctive iron Art Nouveau lampposts in the city center in images from the early decades of the 20th century, installed after the York Electric Lighting Station opened in the Foss Islands in February 1900.

Nora N. Khan Named Co-Curator of the 2023 Moving Image Biennial – Announcements Wed, 15 Jun 2022 04:14:58 +0000

Nora N. Khan named co-curator of the 2023 Moving Image Biennial

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Writer, editor and curator Nora N. Khan joins Andrea Bellini, director of the Center d’Art Contemporain Genève, as co-curator of the upcoming Biennial of the Moving Image 2023 (BIM’23). Together, they will select the artists and entrust them with the production of a new body of work which will be created in Geneva in November 2023.

Each edition of the Biennale de l’Image en Mouvement enriches the curatorial and conceptual meta-discourse around the moving image, an omnipresent medium in perpetual motion. This new chapter will study and explore how new technologies – and their embedded ideologies – are shaping contemporary artistic production of moving images, often doing so invisibly and unreadably.

The Moving Image Biennale 2023 (BIM’23) will explore how technocratic values ​​can inform our appreciation of creativity and investigate methods of resisting the spectacular nature of digital futures. The past decade has seen a boom in artistic creation dealing with the political and social impacts of machine learning and algorithmic surveillance: images funneled into hardware and then captured into vast extractive and predictive systems of sorting, ranking and identification. As these systems learn, they in turn generate countless invisible images, images created and refined by algorithmic and neural networks, in the process. These images, essential to algorithmic practice, have a life of their own.

We negotiate the space next to and in relation to these images intended only for machines. They are hardly made with us in mind or for us at all. Moreover, when harnessed by machine learning (ML) and artificial intelligence (AI), they actively create our reality. They are moving; they are very much alive; they produce their own context and worlds, hooked and processed by algorithms.

Trying to apprehend these new invisible images with the critical paradigms used in the 20th century – methods of reading traditional forms of cinema and producing moving images – leads to a dead end. These ephemeral images, in perpetual becoming, go beyond representation.

BIM’23 invites viewers to dive deep into the world of invisible, operational moving images that change visual culture and, in turn, look at how they change us. As we lose confidence in evaluating representative images, we become trackers and detectives, searching for clues in visual artifacts for the intentions and contours of the systems just beyond.

The artists gathered in BIM’23 will displace the core narratives of the obvious joys of human-AI collaboration and the inherent ‘good’ of hybridization with machines. They will deploy “tools”, ranging from powerful archives and ML-driven simulation technologies to simple hand-built computers. They will be deeply invested in helping audiences see the impact of this world of invisible, in-process images, and they will suggest new ways of looking at the invisible.

Regardless of the tool, they access the roots of a visual logic that we cannot access on our own. There are future environments and alternate narratives to our current timeline. Whether it’s post-image, post-human or post-AI – the riot that goes beyond, the insurrection, the space between now and the future – is filled with potential. Artists are in a safe position to shape our understanding of this empire of ghost images. They form new critical paradigms for navigating the new world of images, moving and displaced, made by humans and machines.

Participating artists will be announced in September 2022.

Hit the books: In Russia, home is where hearth is Sun, 12 Jun 2022 14:02:17 +0000

Although Russia was the world’s third-largest oil producer and exporter (at least until its invasion of Ukraine), its people have traditionally relied on the country’s vast expanses of exploitable forests for their food needs. cooking fuel. Access to an essentially inexhaustible supply of firewood has profoundly influenced Russian culture, governing how food is prepared, which impacts the form factor that the home’s oven and hearth take, which in turn shapes both the house itself and the domestic dynamics that surround it.

In his latest book, The Kingdom of Rye: A Brief History of Russian Cuisine, prolific author and eminent food scientist, Darra Goldstein turns her gaze to an ingenious people who overcame their climate, repeated famines, hunger and political repression to establish their own culture and cuisine. If you are what you eat, Goldstein exemplifies what it means to be Russian.

CPU Press

Extract of The Kingdom of Rye: A Brief History of Russian Cuisine by Darra Goldstein. Published by University of California Press. Copyright © 2022 by Darra Goldstein. All rights reserved.

Culinary practices

Russia is not a fast food culture. The nature of traditional Russian cooking was largely determined by the design of masonry stoves which had come into use around 1600. These massive structures for cooking and heating could measure up to two hundred cubic feet, occupying a good quarter of the living area. space in one-room peasant cottages. They were built of brick or rubble covered with a thick layer of whitewashed clay. (For heating, wealthy families also had so-called Dutch stoves covered with beautiful tiles – even utilitarian objects provided an opportunity to display their prosperity and aesthetic taste.) their stoves had no chimneys and much smoke lingered in the air, with ill effect. Wealthier peasants lived in “white” cottages in which the smoke was evacuated through a chimney.

Unlike other countries where fuel was scarce, leading to the adoption of quick cooking methods, Russia boasted vast forests and therefore abundant firewood. The thick walls of the stove retain heat very well, and many of the most typical Russian dishes result from it. When the stove was newly lit and very hot, with embers still glowing at the bottom of the hearth, cooks placed breads, pies and even blinis in the oven to bake. It took two to three hours to bring a cold oven up to temperature. Experienced cooks inserted a piece of paper to determine when the oven was ready for cooking, based on how quickly the paper browned and burned. Bread was so central to Russian life that oven temperatures were often described in relation to bread baking: “before bread, after bread, and at full throttle” (vol’nyi dukh). As the heat waned, other dishes followed: cereal porridges cooked to a creamy consistency, followed by soups, stews and slow-cooked vegetables in bulbous wooden pots. terracotta or cast iron. When the oven temperature had dropped to barely lukewarm, it was perfect for growing dairy and drying mushrooms and berries. During the winter, the stove was lit once or twice a day, and in the summer, only when needed for cooking.

At the back of the masonry surrounding the traditional Russian stove, high above the ground, is a ledge. This lezhanka (from the verb “to lie”) was the warmest place in the peasant house. There the elderly or infirm could find solace and children could laze around like the beloved folk figure Emelia the Fool. Most stoves also offer niches for storing food, cooking equipment and wood, as well as niches for drying mitts and herbs. The oven cavity itself is massive, large enough for uses far beyond baking. The stove could become a makeshift banya when planks were fitted along the warm interior walls of the oven, and this cleaning ritual continued well into the 20th century. It usually took place on a bread baking day, when the oven was already heated, and was considered particularly beneficial when the steam from the hot water gave off the aroma of medicinal herbs. Some Russians took a “bread bath”, believed to have healing powers, using diluted kvass instead of water to create the steam. In some regions of Russia, women crawled into the oven to give birth, as it was the most hygienic place in the cottage. Beyond these practical uses, the stove played a highly symbolic role in Russian life, delineating traditional female and male spheres, with the cooking area to the left of the hearth and the “beautiful corner” dominated by the icon to his right. And unsurprisingly, given its importance for sustenance, warmth, and health, the stove was believed to hold magical powers beyond the alchemy of turning dough into bread. Mothers would sometimes place sick infants on bread peels and ritually insert them three times into the oven in hopes of curing them.

The masonry stove prevailed in rich and poor Russian households until the 18th century, when Western-style stoves and the new equipment they required gradually came into use. Many Russian stoves were modified to include stovetop burners in addition to the oven, and in some households a stovetop replaced the stove entirely. Pans and griddles have largely replaced the usual earthenware and cast iron pots, perfect for slow cooking in the Russian stove. Cooktops also affected the way ingredients were prepared. In kitchens that could afford meat, large roasting or braising roasts gave way to butchered cuts like steaks, tenderloins and chops that could be prepared a la minute, often in more elaborate, though less Russian.

The Russian stove released deep, smooth flavors through slow cooking, although its low heat allowed for culture and dehydration, which produce intensified flavors that are also characteristic of Russian cuisine.

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Harry Potter’s 8 Wizarding Schools, Ranked Fri, 10 Jun 2022 22:40:22 +0000

The Harry Potter The series ended after seven beloved books and eight incredibly successful movies, but there’s still plenty to explore in the wizarding world. Hogwarts will always hold a special place in the hearts of Potterheads, but there’s no denying that the idea of ​​attending other schools of magic has a certain appeal.

RELATED: 7 Popular Harry Potter Fan Theories That Have Been Debunked

While eleven wizarding institutions have been confirmed, only eight have been named and given substantial backgrounds which show the diversity of the international magical community.

8 Koldovstoretz students played Quidditch on whole trees instead of brooms

Little is known about the mysterious Koldovstoretz, but it was said to be hidden in Lake Ladoga, Russia. Although it was in Russia, the school of sorcery welcomed applicants from other countries. The daring students of Koldovstoretz played their own version of Quidditch where they rode uprooted trees instead of ordinary brooms.

As Durmstrang did not admit Muggle-born students and Koldovstoretz is located closest to Durmstrang, it is presumed that Muggle-borns were encouraged to attend Koldovstoretz.

seven Uagadou students practiced magic without the need for wands

Located in the Rwenzori Mountains of Uganda, Uagadou was the largest of eleven wizarding schools, housing witches and wizards-in-training from across Africa. As old as Hogwarts, Uagadou was internationally known for his expertise in astronomy, alchemy, and transfiguration, with many of his students successfully transforming into Animagi throughout their careers.

RELATED: 10 Things Harry Potter Wizards Can Do Without Their Wands

Uagadou students were officially admitted to the school by Dream Messages and practiced magic using hand gestures instead of wands. One of the school’s most distinguished graduates, Babajide Akingbade, eventually succeeded Dumbledore as head of the International Confederation of Wizards.

6 Castelobruxo was the Alma Mater of two incredibly influential wizards

South American students attended Castelobruxo, the Brazilian school of magic that was enchanted to appear as pre-Columbian ruins in the middle of the Amazon rainforest. The students wore bright green robes and majored in subjects like herbology and magizoology because their location was rich in magical species.

Besides its popular exchange program for European students, Castelobruxo was known as the alma mater of two famous wizards: Libatius Borage, the author of Advanced Potion-Making (a standard manual at Hogwarts), and João Coelho, the famous captain of Peru. Quidditch team, the Tarapoto Tree-Skimmers.

5 Mahoutokoro was a powerhouse in academia and Quidditch

Atop a Japanese volcanic island stood Mahoutokoro, East Asia’s most important school of sorcery. Despite its prestige as an academic powerhouse, Mahoutokoro had the smallest student body of the Eleven Magical Institutions as it only hosted Japanese students.

Once admitted, Mahoutokoro students were given an enchanted robe that changed color as they progressed through their magical training, eventually turning gold if they had achieved mastery or white if they had turned to the forces of evil. The school was also known for its grueling Quidditch practice, which made the Japanese Quidditch team one of the best in the world.

4 Beauxbatons accepted students from most Western European countries

Located in an elegant chateau somewhere in the Pyrenees, Beauxbatons was mostly staffed by French students, although it also accepted witches from neighboring countries. The students wore blue silk robes which made them look graceful as they walked.

RELATED: 10 Strongest Harry Potter Characters Who Didn’t Attend Hogwarts

Beauxbatons was a third of the schools competing in the Triwizard Tournament, competing against Hogwarts and Durmstrang since the 13th century. Notable alumni include Triwizard Tournament contestant Fleur Delacour; the creator of the philosopher’s stone, Nicolas Flamel; and the guiding half-giant, Olympe Maxime.

3 Durmstrang had the darkest reputation of wizarding schools

Durmstrang had a rather complicated past that involved several forceful takeovers and questionable former students and staff. Along with harboring Grindelwald until his expulsion, Durmstrang was known for her affinity for the dark arts, which was a standard in her curriculum. Durmstrang was also the only school in Europe that did not accept Muggle-born students.

Given its location somewhere in Northern Europe, students wore fur capes over their blood-red uniforms. Despite its dark reputation, Durmstrang has produced incredibly powerful witches and wizards such as Nerida Vulchanova, who also served as headmistress, and Viktor Krum, a prominent Quidditch player.

2 Ilvermorny was considered the most democratic magical institution

Ilvermorny was founded by Isolt Sayre and her muggle husband after leaving Ireland and settling in Massachusetts. The school admitted magical children from North America and, like Hogwarts, divided them into four houses: Horned Serpent, Wampus, Thunderbird, and Pukwudgie.

Known as a more egalitarian school, Ilvermorny taught both Native American and European magic. Students wore blue and blue robes and learned most of the subjects offered at Hogwarts. Tina and Queenie Goldstein and MACUSA President Seraphina Picquery frequented Ilvermorny in the early 20th century.

1 Hogwarts has been producing powerful and famous wizards for over a thousand years

Hogwarts was located somewhere in the Scottish Highlands, hidden from Muggles by a powerful charm that made the castle look like abandoned ruins. For over a thousand years, Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry has produced some of Europe’s most powerful and famous magicians, including Merlin himself.

Hogwarts students were divided into four houses upon arrival – Gryffindor, Ravenclaw, Hufflepuff and Slytherin – and remained at school for most of the year. The students wore black robes, a pointed hat, ties, and lapels in their house colors. The students’ most important exams, the BUSE and NEWT, were taken in their fifth and seventh years, respectively. Hogwarts is the best school of wizardry, proven by its high reputation and successful students.