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Monster Mash: Abbey Road crosswalk designated a protected site; Smithsonian won't remove artist's work; actors say close 'Spider-Man'

December 22, 2010 |  8:58 am

Landmark album, landmark site: The British government has designated the north London crosswalk in which the Beatles strode on the "Abbey Road" album cover as a "site of national importance," alterable only after government review. Culture Monster anticipates disappointed developers decades hence being rebuffed with an official chorus of "why you can't do it in the road." (Reuters)

Can't get out: The Smithsonian's National Portrait Gallery has refused a Canadian artist's request to have his work removed from the gay-themed show from which the museum, under fire, excised David Wjonarowicz's video, "A Fire in My Belly." (CBC)

'Spider-Man' injury is 'human error': Actors' Equity says actor Christopher Tierney's fall Monday while stunt-doubling as the superhero in a sequence of Broadway's "Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark" was due to an unspecified "human error." A safety review was conducted and performances are scheduled to resume Wednesday night. No show had been scheduled Tuesday; one performance, Wednesday's matinee, was canceled. (Playbill)

Not buying it: "Rent" star Adam Pascal and Alice Ripley of "Next to Normal" fume over "Spider-Man" safety woes. (Backstage)

Franco's art phase continues: Actor James Franco, who recently created a performance piece for L.A.'s Museum of Contemporary Art, has booked his first solo gallery show in Berlin, consisting of videos and drawings. (Artinfo)

Veteran Broadway belter dies: Marcia Lewis, 72, debuted opposite Ethel Merman in "Hello, Dolly!" and was known for supporting roles in 1990s revivals of "Grease" and "Chicago." (Playbill)

On the block: Manhattan's financially struggling Cherry Lane Theatre, housed in a former factory built in 1836 and billing itself as "the Birthplace of Off-Broadway," is up for sale. (New York Times)

Mo' Satchmo: The Louis Armstrong House Museum in Queens, New York, the jazz great's home for 28 years until his death in 1971, has plans to add a visitors' center and performance space across the street. (Wall Street Journal).

No comment: Given the thorough airing of MOCA's controversial decision this year to hire its new director, Jeffrey Deitch, out of art-dealer ranks, blogger Tyler Green wonders why the Whitney Museum of American Art's boss is staying mum about its decision to have a dealer co-curate the next Whitney Biennial. (Modern Art Notes)

In the money: 2010 saw record sales for Christie's and a booming stock price for Sotheby's, its chief competitor among art auctioneers. (The Telegraph)

In jeopardy: The leaders of the acclaimed Belarus Free Theater are in hiding because of a government crackdown on protests, threatening a return visit in January to the Under the Radar festival at New York's Public Theater. (New York Times)

Greek semi-tragedy: What was to have been the inaugural Athens World Fine Art Fair in May has been canceled due to the nation's economic woes. (The Art Newspaper)

-- Mike Boehm