You’ve got your cultural passport; now get it stamped by logging your thoughts and critiques after each visit and exhibit. Where you go is up to you!

Oppression To Opera

This opera seems like a very interesting and eye-opening thing to watch. Check it out! Hopefully someone can go see it.

Oppression To Opera: Could A Woman’s Courage Change Pakistan?

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New York’s Smallest Museum

Hey my fellow art enthusiast,

If you are tired of the traditional setting of museums, here is something new that will cause you to reexamine the institutional nature of current museums.

This unique 60 square feet museum called Museum (yes, the name of the museum is Museum) located in an ex-elevator shaft that fits only three people at a time is focused on the sentimentality we have towards objects and their own unique stories. Museum shed light on the significance of framing objects when it comes to art.

One star of Museum is the shoe that was thrown at George W. Bus in 2008! Although the founder’s response to how they obtained the item was “We are not allowed to publicly disclose how we came into possession of the shoe,”

Museum’s name is a mockery of the self-importance of other museums, a criticism on the shift of focus away from art that is happening all over.

However, Museum’s founders emphasized that Museum is not art, and I completely support the idea behind that statement. There are many items that are significant to our culture and society, but they are and should not be labeled art. However, they still have significance in their existence and there should be something that celebrates the back story of every object.

If I recall correctly, we had a discussion earlier this semester about what dictates whether or not an object is considered as art (since that is all a painting (or vase, or any other tangible creation) is, an object, before they are called art). Museum gets to the fundamental core of that discussion, sometimes it is the framing of the object and the history of certain objects that makes it art or even the irrelevance of  setting and back story that constitute  what makes an item art (a relevant movie is the Red Violin, which I strongly recommend).

In this consumerist society of ours, objects an easily be replaced, however, one thing that money can’t buy is the sentimentality that we attach to frivolous objects. Museum focuses exactly on that, the significant role objects play in our lives.

However, Museum is open only on weekends, and because of the founder’s busy schedule with other projects, it is often not open. So for those of you interested in paying a visit, here is their site-

and here is a New York Times article on the museum-



An introspective museum; reflection of society through our everyday objects.

An introspective museum; reflection of society through our everyday objects.

Museum-3-650x482[1] Museum-4-650x432[1] Museum-650x426[1]



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Raising Awareness for AIDS

Raising awareness through fashion and fundraising.
This Global Bridgades Event will donate all the profits raised to the prevention effort.

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Paintings Found In Munich

You never know what might be lurking in your apartment…I heard that these paintings were confiscated by the Nazis!!!

Lost Works by greats Matisse, Chagall finally revealed

Screenshot 2013-11-12 21.48.34

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A Triptych Sells for $142 Million

Here’s a summary of the article (NYTimes):

“A 1969 triptych by Francis Bacon sold Tuesday night at Christie’s for $142.4 million, described as the highest price ever paid for an artwork at auction.

Seven bidders vied for the painting – “Three Studies of Lucian Freud” – that depicts Bacon’s friend and rival, Lucian Freud, sitting on a wooden chair against an orange background. It ended up selling for $142,405,000.”

Here’s a link to the NYC showroom where the artwork was sold, in case any of you have a few million to throw around:

If your reaction is like mine, you’re probably thinking that paying so much for this/an artwork is a) an almost-comical waste of money, and b) undermines the artwork by placing a focus on its “value” or “cost” and distracting from its message.

What I’m wondering is, what could be the justification for paying so much for this artwork (if you think that works of art should even be bought in the first place)?

Imagine yourself in the position of the buyer. What are you thinking?



Irrelevantly, the both the painter and the subject of the artwork share names with famous historical figures (Francis Bacon and Freud).

Also, Francis with an “i,” not an “e.” Thanks, Professor.

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A poem on Freedom

Frances Berenson’s “Understanding Art and Understanding Person” starts with the question that “whether it is possible to understand the art of other


culture.” The following is a translation of a poem by Bengali poet Shamsur Rahman. As suggested by the title, it is on freedom. Let’s see if we can dissect, understand and appreciate it. Consider these question: 1. Why did the poet choose to describe his idea of freedom in this way? 2. What is your definition of freedom and how is it similar to the poet’s? (If you need anymore info on the poet, follow this wikipedia(That’s the best I was able to find on the net) link: The poem also refers to some other important and famous bengali poets. Look them up in the net if you need to.

This is the poem:

Freedom, you’re
Rabi Thakur’s timeless poetry and everlasting lyrics.

Freedom, you’re
Kazi Nazrul, his willowy mane swaying,
rapturous with the joy of creation, a great man.
Freedom, you’re
the radiant gathering at Shahid Minar on the
immortalized February 21.
Freedom, you’re
the flag-draped, slogan-serenaded boisterous
Freedom, you’re
the farmer’s beam amidst his fields.
Freedom, you’re
the lightsome swim of a village lass in a pond in
mid-day sun.
Freedom, you’re
the sinewy muscle on a young laborer’s sun-bronzed,
skilled arms.
Freedom, you’re
the gleam in a freedom-fighter’s eyes, scanning the
horizon draped in darkness.
Freedom, you’re
the crisply-worded, spirited speech of a bright, young
learner in the shade of a banyan tree.
Freedom, you’re
the tumult of chats in tea-shops, parks and fields.
Freedom, you’re
the roaring swoop of kal-boishakhi across the horizon.
Freedom, you’re
the heart of river Meghna, shoreless in Sraban.
Freedom, you’re
the soft stretch of father’s chivalrous prayer-mat.
Freedom, you’re
the ripples on mother’s bright sari spread out on the
Freedom, you’re
the hue of henna on sister’s gentle hands.
Freedom, you’re
the colorful poster, tremulous as starlight in the
hands of a friend.

Freedom, you’re
the homemaker’s raven hair, luxurious and undone,
untamed and wild in the wind.
Freedom, you’re:
the colorful jacket on a lad.
the playful sunlight bouncing off a young girl’s supple
Freedom, you’re:
The home amidst a flower garden; the warble of
The twittering leaves of antediluvian banyan trees.
My notebook of poetry, to pen poems as I please.

Translated by Syed M. Islam. Copyrighted, 2004.




5 Pointz: New York Graffiti Mecca

Earlier last week, 5 Pointz was brought up and I would like to further discuss this issue just because I think it’s interesting. For those who don’t know what 5 Pointz is, here’s a link to some pictures and details about 5 Pointz and the related controversy at the time: Shot 2013-10-31 at 12.35.08 PM

Personally, I’ve grown up seeing 5 Pointz evolve. Anytime I were to travel to the city, my means of transportation was the 7 train. If you are ever on the 7, you can see that as it emerges from the tunnel into Queens, on your left will be 5 Pointz. If it’s a bright day, the building seems set on a canvas with Manhattan its backdrop. It’s a beautiful and mind blowing sight. I feel that it defines New York City for its creativity and art.

Firstly, would 5 Pointz support the idea that anything anywhere has the potential to be considered art? (Referring back to our essays.)

Do you consider 5 Pointz a cultural and historical part of New York City? Do you think the Walkoffs are being reasonable in wanting to sell the building?

Comment and Share your thoughts! I know there have been updates on the issue, so someone can share that too.

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Performance Log

Quick question (open to anyone who knows the answer):

Does the performance log that’s due at the end of the semester have to be handwritten/in a journal-type setting, or are these formal reports of each performance we attend? Help! Thanks! :)

(I just don’t want to end up adding extra fluff in my opinions of certain performances)


Anecdote of the Jar

Here’s the poem I read in class today, by Wallace Stevens; I brought it up in the context of John Cage’s “4:33” — the idea of an empty frame as a work of art. The text of the poem is copied here from

I placed a jar in Tennessee,
And round it was, upon a hill.
It made the slovenly wilderness
Surround that hill.


The wilderness rose up to it,
And sprawled around, no longer wild.
The jar was round upon the ground
And tall and of a port in air.


It took dominion everywhere.
The jar was gray and bare.
It did not give of bird or bush,
Like nothing else in Tennessee.

Wallace Stevens, “Anecdote of the Jar” from Collected Poems. Copyright 1923, 1951, 1954 by Wallace Stevens. Reprinted with the permission of Alfred A. Knopf, a division of Random House, Inc.

Source: Poetry (October 1919).

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review of The Nose in the NYT

The Nose From left, Ying Fang, Barbara Dever, Sergei Skorokhodov, Paulo Szot and Adam Klein at the Metropolitan Opera House." class /> photo credit: Richard Termine for The New York Times The Nose From left, Ying Fang, Barbara Dever, Sergei Skorokhodov, Paulo Szot and Adam Klein at the Metropolitan Opera House.

For those who missed it, there was a review of Shostakovich’s The Nose — the opera we’re going to see — in the New York Times on Monday, written by James R. Oestreich.

From the lede:

William Kentridge’s 2010 staging of Shostakovich’s first opera, “The Nose,” was one of the Metropolitan Opera’s most acclaimed productions of recent seasons, and for a critic just catching up with it when it was revived on Saturday afternoon, it was easy to see why. With unflagging energy and unfettered imagination, it powerfully seconds both the irreverent zaniness of the Gogol story on which the opera is based and the teeming exuberance of Shostakovich’s music.

You can read the full piece here:

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the blog is open!

Did you know? If you want, you can post about any art you see in NYC: just add a new blog post, and check the box for the “Around NYC” category. To add images or sound to your post, click the “Add Media” button above the edit box.

Looking forward to hearing more about your aesthetic adventures!

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Museum Day

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Exhibit opening: Lo Studio dei Nipoti: Four Artists. September 12, 2013 through January 10, 2014

Reblogged from the Calandra Italian American Institute, a CUNY-affiliated intellectual and cultural center located in Manhattan

The Calandra Institute presents an exhibition by Lo Studio dei Nipoti (“The Studio of the Grandchildren”), a nonprofit artist collective for U.S. artists of southern Italian ancestry. The works featured here, by artists Nancy Agati, Cianne Fragione, Rose Michelle Taverniti, and Marisa Tesauro, represent an effort to engage with immigrant culture in the United States through the lens of the Italian-American experience while seeking to evoke realities of Italian-American life in their true range and variety.

Nancy Agati; eastwest; 2010; mica mounted to black paper, stitched, on pedestal; 30 x 44 inches

Cianne Fragione; Monasterace, now cat’s done mewing, bedroom’s touched by white moon; 2012; lithographic crayon, Conte crayon, graphite pastel, collage and oil on paper; 45 x 37 inches

Lo Studio dei Nipoti was founded as an online community in 2009 by Taverniti. In the summer of 2012, Lo Studio established a residency program in Monasterace, Calabria. This exhibition’s artists were among the first participants.

Agati is a sculptor whose structures refer to traditional cultural forms and Italian fine-craft traditions with their emphasis on high skill and careful finish. Fragione, a painter, revels in both the light of the Italian south and its distinctive indigenous forms, visible in decorative designs and church architecture. Taverniti works on drafting film, creating large-scale drawings that study the rich surface textures of centuries-old buildings in rural Calabria. Tesauro constructs sculptures that convey the complex textures of an ancient landscape — human and natural — in continual decay and renewal.

On view: September 12, 2013 – January 10, 2014
Gallery hours: Monday-Friday, 9 am – 5 pm
Exhibition opening: Thursday, September 12, 2013, 6 pm
Artists’ talk: Tuesday, November 19, 2013, 6 pm

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