Category: Museum of Modern Art

Monster Mash: Brian Stokes Mitchell on 'Glee'; a new Liz auction

January 18, 2012 |  8:36 am

Glee family
That explains it:
Tony award-winning actor Brian Stokes Mitchell and film and television's Jeff Goldblum will appear on "Glee" as Rachel's gay dads. (Broadwayworld. com)

Sign of hope: The New York City Opera and its orchestra union have reached a tentative agreement on a contract, a step toward a new season. (New York Times)

Saved: The American Folk Art Museum is declared "reasonably secure," with more than $3.5 million in contributions and pledges since it sold its main building to the Museum of Modern Art last year. (Bloomberg News)

For sale: Elizabeth Taylor's collection of paintings and drawings by British modernist Augustus John will be sold at a Christie's auction in February. (The Telegraph)

Encyclopedia black: Wikipedia and other popular websites will black out their services Wednesday to protest the Stop Online Piracy Act and the Protect IP Act. (Los Angeles Times)

Circling for a space: Big-name architects are taking on the most basic of urban structures: parking garages. (Wall Street Journal)

Asian power: Chinese artist Zhang Daqian surpasses former champion Picasso as top auction earner, with $506.7 million from auctions in 2011 alone. (Huffington Post)

Early music boon: The Juilliard School announces a $20-million gift to endow its graduate-level program in historical performance. (New York Times)

Spy zone: The heart of the former East German police state -- the office of Stasi chief Erich Mielke -- has been restored as a museum, "Haus 1," open now in Berlin. (BBC News)

Generous: "Phantom of the Opera" will celebrate its 10,000th performance on Broadway with a benefit for the Actors Fund on Feb. 11. (Theater Mania)

Tribute: Writer Jake Gorst reflects on contributions from his grandfather, architect Andrew Geller, to mid-century design. (The Architect's Newspaper)

Passing: Gustav Leonhardt, master harpsichordist, dies at 83. (New York Times)

Also in the LA Times: Jori Finkel previews the PST Performance Art Festival; David Ng follows the 'Spider-Man' vs. Julie Taymor scuffle; more casting news for the L.A. staged reading of Dustin Lance Black's Proposition 8 play, "8."

-- Margaret Wappler

Photos, from left: Jeff Goldblum (Credit: AFP/Getty Images); Lea Michele (Adam Rose / Fox); Brian Stokes Mitchell (handout).

Monster Mash: Eisenhower family wants overhaul of Gehry memorial

January 12, 2012 |  7:52 am

he family of Dwight D. Eisenhower wants to overhaul the layout of the former president's planned memorial, which was designed by Frank Gehry

Drama continues: The family of Dwight D. Eisenhower wants to overhaul the layout of the former president's planned memorial, which was designed by Frank Gehry. (Associated Press)

Expanding: The Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation is planning a new museum in Helsinki, Finland. (Agence France-Presse)

Genius: A letter written by Ludwig van Beethoven has surfaced in Germany. (BBC News)

Disruptive: A ringing cellphone halted a recent performance of Mahler's Ninth Symphony by the New York Philharmonic. (Baltimore Sun)

Rumor has it: Broadway's "On a Clear Day You Can See Forever," which received scathing reviews, could close on Feb. 19. (New York Post)

Apply within: Carnegie Hall is launching a new national youth orchestra. (Wall Street Journal)

Coming soon?: Broadway producers of the musical "Leap of Faith" are eyeing a possible spring opening. (New York Times)

Keeping count: Attendance at the Museum of Modern Art in New York dropped 11% last season, while the Metropolitan Museum of Art saw an increase in visitors. (Bloomberg)

Holy look-see: The Vatican Museums saw more than 5 million visitors in 2011. (Catholic News Agency)

Donation: Philanthropist Dame Jillian Sackler is giving $5 million to the Smithsonian's Asian art museum, which bears her late husband's name. The gallery will host Ai Weiwei's "Fragments," a large-scale sculptural work. (Associated Press and Washington Post)

Strange timing: The Charles Dickens Museum in London is defending its decision to close for a revamp during the 200th anniversary year of the author's birth. (BBC News)

Passing: Photographer Jan Groover, who specialized in still lifes, has died at 68. (New York Times)

Also in the L.A Times: The Kodak Theatre in Hollywood could be losing its most famous tenant -- the annual Academy Awards ceremony.

-- David Ng

Photo: Frank Gehry at a 2011 discussion for the Dwight D. Eisenhower Memorial. Credit: Charles Dharapak / Associated Press

Conceptual artist Alighiero Boetti back in the public eye

October 22, 2011 | 10:00 am

This post has been corrected. Please see the note at bottom for details.

The late Italian conceptual artist Alighiero Boetti was ahead of his time. He believed in a global community and the notion of fair trade, years before it was a popular practice. He placed a high value on non-Western cultural traditions.

Boetti is best known for his Mappa, a series of large embroidered maps of the world in which each country features the design of its national flag. He conceived of the concept but recruited and collaborated with embroiderers from Afghanistan to craft the tapestries. He often waited years for a completed piece.

Santa Monica-based photographer Randi Malkin Steinberger, who worked with Boetti in the '80s and '90s, traveled to Peshawar, Pakistan, in 1990 with his blessing to document the process of the artisan embroiderers working in a refugee camp. Nearly 55 of the images she captured that day have been compiled in the book "Boetti by Afghan People: Peshawar, Pakistan, 1990" (Ram Publications).

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Museum leaders and others: What Pacific Standard Time means to me

September 26, 2011 |  1:11 pm


Anyone familiar with the Getty-funded arts extravaganza called Pacific Standard Time, which officially kicks off this weekend, knows that it's not the easiest thing to summarize.

It has many parts, now involving more than 60 museums and cultural venues and 70 commercial galleries from San Diego to Santa Barbara. It has multiple goals -- from changing the course of art history to boosting cultural tourism. And easy comparisons to the Olympics or the 1984 Olympic Arts Festival tend to get dismissed almost as quickly as mentioned.

So in the course of reporting several stories on the $10-million enterprise, including this broad overview, one question asked across the board was: How would you describe Pacific Standard Time for somebody who's never heard of it? Here are some different takes.

The show that Henry Geldzahler did for the Met [in 1970] “New York Painting and Sculpture 1940-70," seemed to consolidate the fact that New York had taken over from Paris as the leading art center. I see Pacific Standard Time as being Los Angeles’ effort to do that. We are now declaring that we have reached the stage where we are a truly significant, international art presence. I’d like to think that this will prove a watermark. People will point and say: New York dominated the art world until 2011.

-- Hugh Davies, director of the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego

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Monster Mash: Russell Crowe joins Hugh Jackman in 'Les Miz' film

September 9, 2011 |  8:15 am

Russell Crowe
Manly musical
: Russell Crowe has signed on to the big-screen adaptation of "Les Miserables," joining Hugh Jackman in the Tom Hooper film. Jackman is to play the hero, Jean Valjean, with Crowe as his nemesis, Inspector Javert. (Entertainment Weekly)

Lights out: A blackout shut down San Diego's cultural life as theaters, music venues and museums went dark. (San Diego Union-Tribune)

Surprise: A giant mural by street artists Risk and Retna for Heal the Bay was unveiled in a residential Santa Monica neighborhood. (Curbed L.A.)

Bigger surprise: The city of Santa Monica levied a $5,000-a-day fine against the mural. (L.A. Taco)

Vote now: Playwrights Neil LaBute and Theresa Rebeck are to write a play -– live -– on a plot picked by readers. (Los Angeles Times)

Big move: The Center Theatre Group's production of "Clybourne Park" at the Mark Taper Forum is looking to move to Broadway in the spring. (New York Times)

New work: The Los Angeles Opera has commissioned "Jonah and the Whale," an opera by composer Alexander Prior and playwright Velina Hasu Houston. (LA Opera)

Please give: The Los Angeles County Museum of Art is planning a gala, featuring Clint Eastwood and John Baldessari, to raise money for the museum's film program. (Los Angeles Times)

And give: In New York, the Museum of Modern Art's film-program fundraiser is to honor Pedro Almodovar, with Penelope Cruz and Antonio Banderas. (Variety)

And give: The UCLA Hammer Museum's Gala in the Garden is to feature Bruno Mars, Neil Patrick Harris and Matt Groening. (Hammer)

Architectural honor: Design Miami awarded its Designer of the Year honors to David Adjaye, who is designing the Smithsonian's National Museum of African American Culture and History on the National Mall.  (Huffington Post)

Tribute: Broadway stars are marking 9/11 by joining tonight to sing Kander & Ebb's "New York, New York." (Broadway League)

Ownership dispute: The Mary Brogan Museum of Art & Science in Florida is caught in the middle of an investigation concerning a painting believed to have been stolen by Nazis. (USA Today)

Whew: Workers canceled strike plans at La Scala, allowing a performance of Beethoven’s "Fidelio" to go on as scheduled. (New York Times)

Crossing the pond?: The National Theatre's "One Man, Two Guvnors,"  directed by Nicholas Hytner, may transfer to Broadway. (New York Post)

Cheaper than a plane ticket: But you can see "One Man, Two Guvnors" in a movie theater near you. (National Theatre)

Singing alter ego: Sorry, but even as an evil dolphin, Neil Patrick Harris is charming. (Us)

And in the Los Angeles Times: Charles McNulty reviews "The Elaborate Entrance of Chad Deity" at the Geffen Playhouse, and David C. Nichols reviews "Milk Like Sugar" at the LaJolla Playhouse.

-- Lisa Fung

Photo: Russell Crowe. Credit: Graham Denholm / Getty Images

Public art on the museum model

June 25, 2011 |  8:00 am

On July 1, the suggested admission at the Metropolitan Museum of Art will go up from $20 to $25. MoMA currently charges (required not suggested) $20 for adults and the Guggenheim charges $18.

Which makes it all the more remarkable that two of the summer’s strongest exhibitions in New York are free, to the public and pigeons alike. "Sol LeWitt: Structures, 1965-2006,” organized by Public Art Fund, takes place at City Hall Park through Dec. 2. “Mark di Suvero,” presented by Storm King Art Center, runs through Sept. 25 on Governors Island.

They appear in this Sunday's Arts & Books feature as examples of the latest wave of public art projects in New York: public art curated on the museum-exhibition model, with a broad range of works borrowed from near and far, complete with educational information like cellphone tours and iPhone apps (look for Public Art Fund and Storm King on It's enough to make other cities' public art efforts look like child's play.

So what does New York have going for it that other cities don’t? For starters, it has decades of know-how in the form of leading public art nonprofits: Public Art Fund and Creative Time.

Then there's what Emi Fontana of West of Rome, one of L.A.'s leading organizers in the public/performance art realm in L.A., calls the Bloomberg factor: "The fact that the administration is incredibly responsive has created a great opportunity for these organization to do their best work."

Or, as Creative Time head Anne Pasternak says: "With Giuliani you usually didn’t ask for permission, you apologized later. A bunch of us who program in New York have reason to be nervous for when Bloomberg is no longer mayor."


Peter Wegner's Art of Innovation at Stanford

Some public art in L.A. doesn't credit artists

Art that makes a public spectacle of itself

-- Jori Finkel, reporting from New York

Photo: A view of the fiberglass "Splotch 15," 2005, and "Three x Four x Three," 1984, in "Sol LeWitt Structures" at City Hall Park, organized by Public Art Fund. Photo by Jori Finkel.

Picasso season wraps up in New York -- and starts up in San Francisco

May 26, 2011 |  9:15 am

Picassoboyleadinghorse You don't have to leave the U.S. to see some of Picasso's greatest paintings, thanks to choice holdings at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Guggenheim and MoMA in New York -- especially MoMA. But this year it's easier than ever to see a range of works by the prolific artist on either coast.

After traveling to the Seattle Art Museum and the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, "Picasso: Masterpieces from the Musée National Picasso" reaches its final U.S. venue next month, opening at the De Young Museum in San Francisco on June 11. The survey spans eight decades and many media, including paintings and works on paper.

French art critics have faulted the Picasso museum in Paris, which is closed for a $60-million renovation, for sending works abroad in order to raise construction funds. California fans might just be glad to see about 150 works closer to home, despite a hefty $25 admission price for adults.

Meanwhile, across town, SFMOMA has borrowed dozens of Picasso paintings and works on paper from private collections as well as museums for a show over a decade in the making: "The Steins Collect: Matisse, Picasso, and the Parisian Avant-Garde." MoMA alone loaned several works, including the  double portrait "Boy Leading a Horse," shown above, from the artist's so-called rose period.

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The Arts on TV: 'The Book of Mormon,' American Ballet Theatre, Thomas Hart Benton

March 10, 2011 |  6:45 am

Et-k2oq46nc-mar10A weekly look at arts and music programming on television:

“The Daily Show With Jon Stewart” 11 p.m., Thursday; 9:30 a.m.; 1 and 7 p.m., Friday, Comedy Central. Trey Parker and Matt Stone, creators of "South Park" and the Broadway show “The Book of Mormon.”
“The View” 10 a.m., Friday, ABC. Director Glenn Lowry of the Museum of Modern Art.  
“Movie: My Fair Lady” (1964) 2 p.m., Sunday, TCM. Audrey Hepburn, Rex Harrison. Oscar-winning adaptation of the Broadway hit about an English professor who teaches a cockney merchant to be a lady.

“Smart Travels: Pacific Rim With Rudy Maxa” 2:30 p.m., Sunday, KCET. San Francisco: Chinatown and the Asian Art Museum.  

“The Artist Toolbox” 9 p.m., Sunday, KLCS. American Ballet Theatre principal dancers Irina Dvorovenko and Maxim Beloserkovsky discuss the rigors of being a professional dancer.

“Ken Burns American Stories” 3 a.m., Sun/Mon, KVCR . Ken Burns looks at the life of artist Thomas Hart Benton, leader of the Regionalist movement of the mid-20th century, which stressed the portrayal of America in works of art.

-- Compiled by Ed Stockly

Photo: Irina Dvorovenko and Maxim Beloserkovsky in "Giselle." Credit: Nancy Ellison / American Ballet Theatre 

Monster Mash: Robert De Niro establishes new art prize, Broadway's 'Book of Mormon' finds lead elders

November 18, 2010 |  8:38 am


Star power: Robert De Niro has established a $25,000 annual prize for a U.S. painter in honor of his late artist father. (Bloomberg)

Clean-cut: Josh Gad and Andrew Rannells have joined the cast of Broadway's "Book of Mormon," opening March 24. (Playbill)

Major acquisition: The Philadelphia Museum of Art is acquiring a trove of photographs by Paul Strand. (Philadelphia Inquirer)

Dissident voice: Chinese artist Wu Yuren is on trial in Beijing after a protest that he led against property developers. (Voice of America)

Mobile app: New York's Museum of Modern Art has just released its first application for the Apple iPad. (New York Times)

Going home: The Netherlands has returned a long-missing work by Jan Brueghel the Younger to Concordia University in Canada. (Agence France-Presse)

Musical summit: The International Conference of Symphony and Opera Musicians said it plans to bring its annual meeting to Detroit in August, in a show of support for the striking musicians of the Detroit Symphony. (Crains Detroit Business)

Politics and art: The Portland Public Art Committee in Maine has voted to relocate a controversial piece of public art titled “Tracing the Fore.” (Portland Press Herald)

And in the L.A. Times: The L.A. Philharmonic lands the premiere of a long-lost Shostakovich opera; artist Jasper Johns and cellist Yo-Yo Ma are to receive the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2011; music critic Mark Swed on the music of George Crumb.

-- David Ng

Photo: Robert De Niro stands next to a painting executed by his father, Robert De Niro Sr. Credit: Dave Allocca / Associated Press

Monster Mash: Long-lost Vivaldi concerto identified; Disney Theatrical Group to shut L.A. office

October 8, 2010 |  8:29 am


Baroque discovery: Researchers say they have identified a long-lost flute concerto by Antonio Vivaldi at the National Archives in Scotland. (BBC News)

Closing shop: The Disney Theatrical Group, which oversees Broadway productions and other live shows, is planning to close its office in Glendale at the end of the month. (Los Angeles Times)

New appointment: New York's Museum of Modern Art has named Laura Hoptman as curator in the department of painting and sculpture. (Art Daily)

Caught by surprise: A Swedish museum has learned of the theft of three of its works of art, including an Edvard Munch painting, only after they were recovered by police during a raid. (Agence France-Presse)

Life is sweet: Filmmaker Mike Leigh is set to develop a new drama for the National Theatre in London. (Playbill)

Naughty, naughty: The ballet company of the Vienna Opera has fired one of its female dancers over a series of risque pictures that appeared in a magazine. (Agence France-Presse)

Box-office boom: Attendance at British museums hit record levels during the most recent summer. (Art Daily)

Fanatical: The woman who admitted to using a crowbar to damage a controversial artwork depicting Jesus Christ at a Colorado museum is free on bond. (The Coloradoan)

Also in the L.A. Times: New York's Public Theater opens its production of "Gatz"; Gustavo Dudamel and the L.A. Philharmonic kick off the 2010-11 season.

-- David Ng

Photo: John Hall from Scottish Opera plays an extract of a lost Vivaldi flute concerto. Credit: Jeff J. Mitchell / Getty Images


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