Tuesday, October 26News That Matters

Tag: Culture (Arts)

Thierry Mugler Returns to Paris With ‘Couturissime’

Thierry Mugler Returns to Paris With ‘Couturissime’

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It’s been 20 years since Thierry Mugler, the enfant terrible of 1980s and ’90s Paris fashion who turned fashion shows into rock events, stepped down from his namesake company. But he didn’t retire.He designed costumes for Cirque du Soleil’s “Zumanity” show in Las Vegas, and for Beyoncé’s 2010 “I Am … World Tour.” He wrote, directed, and designed “The Wyld,” a stage extravaganza that premiered in 2014 at the Friedrichstadt-Palast in Berlin, “based on Nefertiti, the most amazing supermodel ever,” the 72-year-old said from his home in Berlin earlier this month.But it has been pop culture’s recent embrace of Mr. Mugler’s eye-popping fashion — tailor-made for the Instagram age — that has thrust him back into the cultural conversation. For the 2019 Grammys, Mr. Mugler dressed Cardi B in three of...
Curtains Up! How Broadway Is Coming Back From Its Longest Shutdown.

Curtains Up! How Broadway Is Coming Back From Its Longest Shutdown.

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A Positive Test Before Opening NightIt was a half-hour before curtain on the night of Sept. 2, and the company of “Waitress,” led by Sara Bareilles, had gathered onstage at the Ethel Barrymore Theater for one of those kooky theater rituals — an opening night ceremony at which the chorus member with the most Broadway credits runs three circular laps in a quilted robe, inviting other actors to touch it before visiting each dressing room to bestow a blessing.The “Waitress” legacy robe ceremony was even odder than usual. The robe recipient, Anastacia McCleskey, was not present: she had tested positive for the coronavirus, though vaccinated, and was isolating at home.What to do? Theater artists are nothing if not resourceful, so another cast member placed a FaceTime call to McCleskey, and then,...
Adam Pendleton Is Rethinking the Museum

Adam Pendleton Is Rethinking the Museum

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The Marron Atrium of the Museum of Modern Art is a big, awkward space, a hollow that rises from the second to the sixth floor. Since opening amid MoMA’s 2004 expansion, it has hosted many projects — but few as complex as “Who Is Queen?” by Adam Pendleton, which arrives on Sept. 18.Over several months, the artist has built three black scaffold structures 60 feet high, off the walls, like an endoskeleton. Each forms a layered, irregular grid, with internal ladders and landings. The ensemble fires off references — De Stijl, Le Corbusier’s Unités d’Habitation, Manhattan tenements. But the use of lumber — two-by-fours and so on — evokes humble home-building, and the overlaps where planks are bolted together generate a kind of shimmer and rhythm.Pendleton, 37, is best known as a painter of abstr...
Why Art Struggled to Address the Horrors of 9/11

Why Art Struggled to Address the Horrors of 9/11

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Weeks after the towers fell, Jennifer Bartlett started painting. She had watched them collapse from her roof that September, and in her studio in the West Village she began depicting what almost no one wanted to depict, in her style of solid dots daubed into a grid of little squares. Toward the edges the dots are that distinctive cloudless blue, but most squares she overlaid with two dots, or three, the gray of the smoke superimposed on the red or saffron of the fireball. The dots became embers of exploded airplanes, or TV screen pixels (we had no smartphones then); they were papers raining down on the financial district and the Battery. Across two squares Bartlett placed a figure, stylized like in a cave painting, feet over head. A diver.By year’s end Barlett had completed “Goodbye Bill” ...
‘The Opposite of Airlines’: When Larger Audiences Require Fewer Seats

‘The Opposite of Airlines’: When Larger Audiences Require Fewer Seats

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SAN FRANCISCO — Wagner was the worst. Five hours — sometimes more — of squirming in 1932-era seats at the War Memorial Opera House here, sinking into lumpy, dusty cushions, suffering the bulge of the springs and the pinch of the wide armrests, craning for a glimpse of the stage around the head of the tall person one row ahead.“Particularly on a long opera — oh my God,” said Tapan Bhat, a tech executive and a season-ticket holder at the San Francisco Opera since 1996.When the San Francisco Opera opens Saturday, starting its scaled-back 99th season with Puccini’s “Tosca” after a shutdown of more than a year, those punishing seats will be gone. The opera has used its forced sabbatical to complete a long-planned $3.53 million project to replace all 3,128 seats with more comfortable, roomier on...
New York City Mandates Vaccines for Museum Visitors and Staff

New York City Mandates Vaccines for Museum Visitors and Staff

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New York City plans to require visitors and staff members at museums and other cultural institutions to be vaccinated, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced Monday.“Defeating the Delta variant is the best way to support cultural institutions, because it brings us all back,” Mr. de Blasio said at a news conference at which he outlined the new requirements. He said that “we believe, if we take these aggressive measure, this is going to encourage a lot of people — audience members and staff alike — to get vaccinated.”The new vaccine mandate for museums came as the city expanded its “Key to NYC” program, which requires vaccinations in a number of settings, to include “bars, fitness gyms, movie and stage theaters, museums and other indoor venues.” The policy will take effect Tuesday, but enforcement w...
A Shape-Shifting Woman Plays All the Parts

A Shape-Shifting Woman Plays All the Parts

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A cast of goddesses, queens and other powerful women from across history and mythology are landing on 300 bus shelters in New York, Chicago and Boston. Co-opting the space of luxury perfume and fashion ads, 10 colossal photographic representations of feminine idols, conjured by a single name — Cleopatra, Aphrodite, Godiva, Sheba — gracefully bare themselves. What exactly are they selling?Martine Gutierrez, the shape-shifting artist and performer who plays all the parts, is behind “ANTI-ICON,” a Public Art Fund project. “These are all figures known for their beauty as well as their perseverance and ability to overcome obstacles,” Katerina Stathopoulou, the show’s curator, said of the star lineup, which is on view from Aug. 25 to Nov. 21. It also includes the Syrian deity Atargatis, Queen El...
Hiroshi Sugimoto’s Jekyll and Hyde Year

Hiroshi Sugimoto’s Jekyll and Hyde Year

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Hiroshi Sugimoto laughs.He laughs a lot.On a Zoom call from Tokyo, the 73-year-old artist laughs at his first reaction to the avant-garde while living in New York in the 1970s: “It’s a very twisted-mind art, so this kind of twisted mind — it can be applied to myself! I’m the same kind of animal!”On a dime, he turned from working in commercial photography to shooting the “twisted-mind” conceptual photos that went on to make him famous: Dramatic shots of animals in the wild that turn out to show stuffed beasts in museum vitrines; photos of Madame Tussauds waxworks that look alive — but also seem to depict sculptures or other photographs. “My art has a kind of punchline at the end,” says Sugimoto.He laughs at a Japanese identity he says he had to learn during years living in the United States...
A Wedding or an Art Installation? A Little of Both.

A Wedding or an Art Installation? A Little of Both.

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Kristin Banta is a Los Angeles event planner specializing in weddings, but you might not know this from her recent functions.For one wedding, she designed a gigantic banana peel on the reception floor. In another, she worked with vendors to construct 250 feet of golden nautical rope to serve as a centerpiece. She had a flock of 5,000 paper cranes made for a third.The strangest, though, may have been the antlers dipped in automotive paint. Or maybe it was the floating candy cloud reachable via a golden ladder.“Today’s couples want something provocative, memorable, experiential, tactile and reflective of who they are as a couple,” Ms. Banta said.Ms. Banta added that although this artsy trend started before the pandemic, she has noticed an increase in new clients who want to incorporate insta...
As New York Reopens, It Looks for Culture to Lead the Way

As New York Reopens, It Looks for Culture to Lead the Way

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Broadway is planning to start performances of at least three dozen shows before the end of the year, but producers do not know if there will be enough tourists — who typically make up two-thirds of the audience — to support all of them.The Metropolitan Opera is planning a September return, but only if its musicians agree to pay cuts.And New York’s vaunted nightlife scene — the dance clubs and live venues that give the city its reputation for never sleeping — has been stymied by the slow, glitchy rollout of a federal aid program that mistakenly declared some of the city’s best-known nightclub impresarios to be dead.The return of arts and entertainment is crucial to New York’s economy, and not just because it is a major industry that employed some 93,500 people before the pandemic and paid t...