Marxist theory holds that there are no heroic individuals in the art world. Even the most solitary practitioner depends on the people who manufacture their supplies, the understanding of the people for whom the art is intended, and in the best cases, the critics who write about it. I suppose an artist could, in theory, draw on the beach with a sharp stick, let the tide erase it without anyone else seeing it, and be satisfied, but for the overwhelming majority of us, art is a form of collaboration. This piece is about the difficulty in negotiating that path in conceptual art, of trying to have a work carry a message that is understandable to its intended viewer without becoming either so simplistic that it becomes polemic, or so difficult that the audience refuses to engage with it. The works of this kind I find most interesting incorporate collaboration, either on purpose, or by fortunate accident. Recently a particular piece in Brooklyn, ironically starting out as a statement about a heroic individual, Edward Snowden, has ended up showing how collaboration provides layers of meaning, and so gives greater insight into both the original subject and to our own role as the viewer and ultimate collaborator.
Apr 12 2015
This is your morning Open Thread. Pour your favorite beverage and review the past and comment on the future.
Find the past “On This Day in History” here.
April 12 is the 102nd day of the year (103rd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. There are 263 days remaining until the end of the year.
On this day in 1961, aboard the spacecraft Vostok 1, Soviet cosmonaut Yuri Alekseyevich Gagarin becomes the first human being to travel into space. During the flight, the 27-year-old test pilot and industrial technician also became the first man to orbit the planet, a feat accomplished by his space capsule in 89 minutes. Vostok 1 orbited Earth at a maximum altitude of 187 miles and was guided entirely by an automatic control system. The only statement attributed to Gagarin during his one hour and 48 minutes in space was, “Flight is proceeding normally; I am well.”
After his historic feat was announced, the attractive and unassuming Gagarin became an instant worldwide celebrity. He was awarded the Order of Lenin and given the title of Hero of the Soviet Union. Monuments were raised to him across the Soviet Union and streets renamed in his honor.
The triumph of the Soviet space program in putting the first man into space was a great blow to the United States, which had scheduled its first space flight for May 1961. Moreover, Gagarin had orbited Earth, a feat that eluded the U.S. space program until February 1962, when astronaut John Glenn made three orbits in Friendship 7. By that time, the Soviet Union had already made another leap ahead in the “space race” with the August 1961 flight of cosmonaut Gherman Titov in Vostok 2. Titov made 17 orbits and spent more than 25 hours in space.
Apr 12 2015
“Punting the Pundits” is an Open Thread. It is a selection of editorials and opinions from around the news medium and the internet blogs. The intent is to provide a forum for your reactions and opinions, not just to the opinions presented, but to what ever you find important.
Thanks to ek hornbeck, click on the link and you can access all the past “Punting the Pundits”.
Follow us on Twitter @StarsHollowGzt
The Sunday Talking Heads:
This Week with George Stephanopolis: This Sunday’s guests on “This Week” are: Secretary of State John Kerry; former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee; Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT); and former First Lady Laura Bush.
The roundtable guests are: Democratic strategist Donna Brazile; Weekly Standard editor Bill Kristol, Republican strategist and pollster Kristen Soltis Anderson, and radio and television host Tavis Smiley.
Face the Nation with Bob Schieffer: Mr. Scheiffer’s guests are: Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY); chairman of the Republican National Committee, Reince Priebus; Secretary of State John Kerry; and Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MI).
His panel guests are: Peggy Noonan, The Wall Street Journal; John Heilieman, Bloomberg Politics; David Ignatius, The Washington Post; Susan Page, USA Today; and CBS News Political Director John Dickerson.
Meet the Press with Chuck Todd: This Sunday’s guest are: Bill de Blasio,Mayor of New York City; Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY); and Secretary of State John Kerry.
The panel guests are: David Brooks, The New York Times; Hugh Hewitt, “The Hugh Hewitt Show“; Maria Hinojosa, host of NPR’s “Latino USA“; and Stephanie Rawlings-Blake, Mayor of Baltimore City.
State of the Union: This Sunday’s host is Dana Bash. Her guests are: Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY); former Rhode Island Gov. Lincoln Chafee (D?); Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) and former Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-LA).
OK. You can go out and enjoy the sunshine or just go back to bed.
Apr 12 2015
Obama-Castro summit caps thaw in US-Cuba relations
US President Barack Obama has said his meeting with Cuban President Raul Castro will help both countries “turn the page” after decades of hostility.
He described the meeting on the fringes of the Summit of the Americas in Panama as “candid and fruitful”.
Mr Obama said that the former foes would continue to have differences but could advance mutual interests.
The meeting was the first formal talks between the two countries’ leaders in more than half a century.
Apr 12 2015
So it’s race number 3 and it’s time to see if Mercedes has stopped being McLaren stupid (c’mon guys, leaving Hamilton out there on Hards was a bonehead play). Mediums and Softs, pit lane delta 23 seconds, 1 or 2 seconds a lap on the Softs. Not a lot of other headline news.
As far as the teams go Ferrari has eclipsed Red Bull but that’s really only gratifying to Sebastian Vettel’s ego. Alonso is not fast which I charitably attribute to the sack of crap that is Honda power because I would hate to think that his practice accident has taken someone who used to be able to make a brick look racy and ruined them. Williams is the best of the rest which excites the Brits who commentate except that they are also Ferrari whores.
Apr 12 2015
Welcome to The Breakfast Club! We’re a disorganized group of rebel lefties who hang out and chat if and when
we’re not too hungover we’ve been bailed out we’re not too exhausted from last night’s (CENSORED) the caffeine kicks in. Join us every weekday morning at 9am (ET) and weekend morning at 10:30am (ET) to talk about current news and our boring lives and to make fun of LaEscapee! If we are ever running late, it’s PhilJD’s fault.
Breakfast Tune: Way Over Yonder In The Minor Key – Billy Bragg & Wilco (Banjo Cover)
Today in History
President Franklin Roosevelt dies; The American Civil War begins with the attack on Ft. Sumter; Yuri Gagarin is the first man to fly in space; Space Shuttle Columbia lifts off on its first mission; Late night TV host David Letterman born. (April 12)
Breakfast News & Blogs Below