B12 Solipsism

Spreading confusion over the internet since 1994

Archive for the ‘museum’ tag

David Bowie Is…Waiting was uploaded to Flickr

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From the 2014 retrospective at the MCA Chicago

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I took David Bowie Is…Waiting on November 09, 2014 at 07:19AM

and processed it in my digital darkroom on January 11, 2016 at 10:02AM

Written by eggplant

January 11th, 2016 at 11:42 am

La Folie Des Grandeurs (Delusions of Grandeur) – René Magritte was uploaded to Flickr

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Getty Museum, LA.

I can relate.

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I took La Folie Des Grandeurs (Delusions of Grandeur) – René Magritte on February 02, 2013 at 05:19PM

and processed it in my digital darkroom on October 09, 2015 at 04:56AM

Written by eggplant

October 9th, 2015 at 8:40 am

Chicago wins George Lucas museum

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Chicago at Night
Chicago Museum Campus at Night

In case you hadn’t heard…

“Star Wars” creator George Lucas has selected Chicago over Los Angeles and San Francisco as the future home of his collection of art and movie memorabilia, according to a spokeswoman for the museum.

The museum’s board Wednesday is expected to vote on a name change — from the Lucas Cultural Arts Museum to the Lucas Museum of Narrative Art — and destination.

Pending approval by the Chicago Plan Commission, Lucas’ institution would be built on what are now parking lots between Soldier Field and McCormick Place and would open in 2018. Architectural renderings will be presented to city officials in early fall, according to a statement from the museum.

(click here to continue reading Chicago wins George Lucas museum – chicagotribune.com.)

 The clouds in july are mostly in the plain

Soldier Field

Our first question about the proposal has already been answered, will there be lawsuits against this private museum being placed on the lakeshore? Yes:

Still, the museum has drawn opposition from open-space advocates, such as Friends of the Parks.

Among the 14 “basic policies” of the Lakefront Plan of Chicago, adopted by the city council in 1973, is that “in no instance will further private development be permitted east of Lake Shore Drive.” And the Lakefront Protection Ordinance says that the plan commission’s decisions “shall be made in conformity with” those policies.

“We will do what it takes and that very well may be a lawsuit,” Friends of the Parks President Cassandra Francis said. “We are in coalition-building mode, but we are very optimistic, based on discussions, that we will have a broad group of organizations joining us” in opposing the lakefront location for the museum.

Our second question: are there public funds being used for the George Lucas Megalomania Museum? Apparently, no, at least at first:

Under Emanuel’s plan, the two Chicago Park District-owned parking lots would be leased to the museum for $1, which is similar to arrangements other large cultural institutions have with the Park District.

But unlike other museums, the Lucas museum would not receive taxpayer subsidies to cover a portion of its operations, a top mayoral aide has said.

The parking lots would be moved underground at Lucas’ expense, the city has said.

That’s positive news, and different than how the Chicago Children’s Museum fiasco played out. 

I haven’t yet seen the plans, so I still wonder if the proposed museum will shrink the available green space along the lakeshore? If I’m reading the description correctly, the museum will take over 17 acres of asphalt parking, and put a 5 acre museum building and 12 acres of new green space. That sounds ok to me, but then I’m not a Chicago Bears tailgating maniac. Friends of the Park make a good point too: the land may be a parking lot now, but parking lots are easily converted to grassy knolls, much easier than removing a building once it is built.

Cassandra Francis, President of Friends of the Parks says:

Although the proposed site is now used as a parking lot, its future reversion to parkland is possible. Once a building is in place, it is forever precluded from being public open space.

9 great movies
Film History

For the record, I haven’t watched a Star Wars film in 25 years or more, but perhaps there will be other items of narrative film history of interest.

Written by Seth Anderson

June 25th, 2014 at 9:03 am

A Sight For Sore Eyes was uploaded to Flickr

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Marty checks out a hologram, Museum of Holography, Chicago.

The museum is closed, btw.
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I took A Sight For Sore Eyes on September 09, 2011 at 01:32PM

and processed it in my digital darkroom on June 13, 2014 at 03:08PM

Written by eggplant

June 14th, 2014 at 9:38 am

The Elegance of Clattering Machines

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All Work And No Play Makes Jack A Dull Boy
All Work And No Play Makes Jack A Dull Boy

Speaking of nostalgia, will this exhibit trigger a typewriter renaissance like the vinyl record resurgence? I’m ancient enough to have written nearly all of my college papers and other writings  on typewriters; computers were not common tools until my senior year, and I never owned a computer myself until after I moved to Chicago. I took a typing class as a freshman at Travis High School1 so I always felt comfortable with my fingers on a keyboard. As an aside, before Mac OS X, when it was easier to crash your computer by adding system extensions and control panels, I had an INIT that made typing on my Mac sound like the click-clack of a typewriter. At least you knew when you pressed a key…

The labels alone make a racket: Meiselbach, Blickensderfer, Bar-Lock. No wonder the show-namers at the New Britain Museum of American Art call their fabulous little exhibition of antique typewriters “Click! Clack! Ding!”

The nickel-plated Odell No. 2, an 1890s machine made in Chicago, looks like a cross between a meat slicer and a sextant. The Lambert No. 1, a 1902 invention that retains its handsome wooden case, resembles an old-fashioned telephone and is about the same size. Even some of the typewriters featuring keyboards and more familiar designs are not what you would describe as “user-friendly”: Where exactly is the paper supposed to go? Why can’t I see the ribbon?

It turns out that the earliest typewriters were “blindwriters,” like the 1876 Sholes & Glidden No. 1 that is the oldest item in “Click! Clack! Ding!” A large and ornate cousin of the sewing machine, the Sholes & Glidden did not permit the typist to see the surface of the paper, which was imprinted — uppercase only — from below. (The operator could enjoy the golden garlands and rosy blossoms delicately painted on the machine’s black casing, however.) As for the specimens without keyboards, they were the very first portables. Known as “index” typewriters, they work with a pointer-like device that selects a letter and another that presses it into the paper — a perfect machine for the two-finger typist.

These early technologies soon gave way to improvements — uppercase and lowercase in the Smith-Premier No. 1 and the Bar-Lock No. 2; “visible” typing in the Williams No. 4 and the Meiselbach Sholes Visible. “Click! Clack! Ding!” conveys some of the history and significance of the typewriters on view, selected from the nearly 300 owned by a Connecticut collector, Greg Fudacz. There is another Connecticut connection as well: Hartford, the home base for Royal and Underwood, was once called “the typewriter capital of the world.” Other brands came from other towns, including Bridgeport, Derby, Middletown, New Haven and Waterbury.

The 1906 Chicago Model 1 looks less antique than the 1922 Noiseless Portable. And you can’t help wondering what today’s computers would look like if the Odell No. 2, with its circular base and saw-tooth bar of letters, had won out in the turn-of-the-century marketplace for writing machines.

(click here to continue reading A Review of ‘Click! Clack! Ding! The American Typewriter’ at the New Britain Museum of American Art – NYTimes.com.)

Underwood Typewriter
Underwood Typewriter

Dominion Typewriter Co.
Dominion Typewriter Co.

Footnotes:
  1. my only B, possibly preventing me from being valedictorian – I ended up 8th in my class. If I hadn’t gotten that B, perhaps I would have tried a little harder as a Senior. Or not. Being 16 has its own logic. []

Written by Seth Anderson

April 27th, 2014 at 5:40 pm

Posted in Arts,Business

Tagged with , ,

‘Dem Bones was uploaded to Flickr

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Page Museum, aka La Brea Tar Pits


The La Brea Tar Pits (or Rancho La Brea Tar Pits) are a cluster of tar pits around which Hancock Park was formed, in urban Los Angeles. Asphaltum or tar (brea in Spanish) has seeped up from the ground in this area for tens of thousands of years. The tar is often covered with dust, leaves, or water. Over many centuries, animals that were trapped in the tar were preserved as bones. The George C. Page Museum is dedicated to researching the tar pits and displaying specimens from the animals that died there. The La Brea Tar Pits are now a registered National Natural Landmark.

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I took ‘Dem Bones on February 01, 2013 at 11:04AM

and processed it in my digital darkroom on February 28, 2013 at 04:41PM

Written by eggplant

March 13th, 2014 at 12:59 pm

Looking At Lolita (Sue Lyon) was uploaded to Flickr

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My photo doesn’t give this contraption justice – basically a slide show viewer as would be used by Humbert Humbert (James Mason). You could move the magnifier to view different slides.

From the Stanley Kubrick exhibit at LACMA.

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I took Looking At Lolita (Sue Lyon) on February 01, 2013 at 02:49PM

and processed it in my digital darkroom on March 03, 2013 at 05:46PM

Stanley Kubrick Lenses was uploaded to Flickr

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Some of them anyway, at display at LACMA.

www.lacma.org/art/exhibition/stanley-kubrick

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I took Stanley Kubrick Lenses on February 01, 2013 at 02:41PM

Written by eggplant

January 13th, 2014 at 9:39 am

Photographing In Museums Is Not A Crime, Nor Even a Misdemeanor

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Warhol DRM
Warhol DRM at the MCA

About time museums figured this out

Deborah Solomon writes:

Nonetheless, the vogue for digital photography is a constructive development that, for the most part, enhances our experience of art. First, there is the eye factor. A visitor who photographs van Gogh’s “Starry Night” echoes, however wanly or casually, the basic mission of visual art: to celebrate the act of looking. When you gaze through a lens, you are likely to consider the world more deeply. You frame space and take note of composition, the curve of a line, the play of light and shadow. As the photographer Dorothea Lange noted, “The camera is an instrument that teaches people how to see without a camera.”

As an aid to art education, smartphone cameras are preferable to older devices. Consider Acoustiguides, which offer a blizzard of facts in the place of soulful communication and create a buzzing sound in the galleries that can cause you to wonder, “Am I hearing voices?”

Unlike Acoustiguides, photographs go home with you and offer long-term benefits. For art-history students, iPhone photographs are an earnest reference aid, a crystalline substitute for hard-to-decipher notes.

For everyone else, digital photographs work in much the same way as art postcards did in their heyday a half-century ago when museum gift shops devoted more display space to them. On a recent trip to the Museum of Modern Art, I admired a plastic handbag in the gift shop, peeked at the price — $595, an Issey Miyake! — and ached for the humble Picasso postcards of my childhood.

Astoundingly, there are still a handful of museums that prohibit photography altogether.

 

(click here to continue reading Hey ‘Starry Night,’ Say ‘Cheese!’ – NYTimes.com.)

Violence Inherent in the System
Violence Inherent in the System

Flavin tunnel with Marty Spellerberg
Flavin tunnel with Marty Spellerberg at the MCA

Speaking for myself, I like to take photographs of paintings and other museum pieces occasionally, to study the art at my leisure, or otherwise use the photograph as a memory guide. I try to be respectful of other patrons, and of course, not use flash – which some have plausibly asserted will damage an artwork over time. Some museums are simply unfriendly to photographers however, and treat patrons as criminals or vandals in need of a stern lecture.

Ms. Solomon continues:

Museums have lately begun to rethink loan contracts and to encourage lenders to be less possessive with their artwork. “In the past year we have been making strides to loosen our policy,” Maxwell L. Anderson, the director of the Dallas Museum of Art, noted in an e-mail. “We now routinely attempt to negotiate with all of our lenders to allow photography of their works while on display in the galleries. We have included that express permission in our own loan letters and contracts.” The change, he notes, should put an end to confrontations between guards and visitors. “It is far more important for our gallery attendants to focus on the safety of the works of art and our visitors than to have to constantly admonish our visitors, ‘No photographs!’ ”

As subtle as that point may seem, the new loan arrangements represent a sea change. Or rather a see change. We are at the tipping point where art museums are poised to become copying centers whose every single artwork can be reproduced in digital form a million times every day.

I say hooray. When we photograph, e-mail, tweet and Instagram paintings, we capitalize on technological innovation to expand familiarity with an ancient form. So, too, we increase the visual literacy of this country. Much can be gained. Nothing can be lost. A photograph of a painting can no more destroy a masterpiece than it can create one.

 

Max Ernst - Spanish Physician
Max Ernst – Spanish Physician

Madonna of the Splinter - Vatican Museum, 1993
Madonna of the Splinter – Vatican Museum, 1993

Looking At Lolita (Sue Lyon)
Looking At Lolita (Sue Lyon)

Written by Seth Anderson

September 29th, 2013 at 10:46 am

David Bowie art exhibit coming to the MCA

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Hunky Dory
Hunky Dory

Cool, we’ll have to go to this…

David Bowie is the Thin White Duke, Ziggy Stardust, Major Tom, as well-known for his five decades of music as for his slippery personas. David Bowie begat the shape-shifting of Madonna, who begat Lady Gaga. David Bowie, who earlier this year released his first album since 2003, is also likely not touring any time soon.

But “David Bowie is” … coming to Chicago.

“David Bowie is,” the blockbuster retrospective on the life and influence of the iconoclastic artist — which closes Sunday at the Victoria & Albert Museum in London — will open at the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago in September 2014. Right now, the MCA is the only U.S. stop for the exhibit, which travels to Toronto next month and has drawn more than 300,000 visitors to the V&A since it opened there in March.

The show, which features 300 objects culled from the artist’s personal 75,000-piece archive, will include set designs, video installations, music-video storyboards, handwritten lyrics, photos and, of course, decades of his wardrobes — including pieces from designer Alexander McQueen and Bowie’s legendary Ziggy Stardust tour. The show, which unfolds as a kind of biography, aims to place the singer in a larger context, reflecting on Bowie’s own avant garde influences while pointing toward Bowie’s prescient merging of sound and vision.

…Asked if the MCA would try to recruit Bowie — who has lived in New York City for many years, and become increasingly known for his reclusive, elusive, J.D. Salinger-esque existence — to attend the Chicago opening, Darling said: “Of course. Of course. We will do everything we can, but then, I don’t know …”  

(click here to continue reading David Bowie art exhibit coming to the MCA – Chicago Tribune.)

from the MCA website:

David Bowie is presents the first international retrospective of the extraordinary career of David Bowie—one of the most pioneering and influential performers of our time. More than 300 objects, including handwritten lyrics, original costumes, photography, set designs, album artwork, and rare performance material from the past five decades are brought together from the David Bowie Archive for the first time. The exhibition demonstrates how Bowie’s work has both influenced and been influenced by wider movements in art, design, theater, and contemporary culture and focuses on his creative processes, shifting style, and collaborative work with diverse designers in the fields of fashion, sound, graphics, theatre, and film. The exhibition’s multimedia design introduces advanced sound technology, original animations, and video installations to create an immersive journey through the artistic life of one of the most iconic figures of our time, David Bowie. This exhibition was organized by the V&A Museum in London.

(click here to continue reading David Bowie is | Exhibitions | MCA Chicago.)

Written by Seth Anderson

August 7th, 2013 at 7:51 am