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Theater review: A provocative clash of wills in Renegade’s ‘The Meeting’ – Duluth News Tribune

What if two iconic figures in the civil rights movement, Dr. Martin Luther King and Malcolm X had a chance to sit down together to discuss their differing philosophies, beloved families and uncertain futures?

That is the fascinating premise of Renegade Theaters production of Jeff Stetsons one-act play, The Meeting, directed by Daniel Oyinloye. Thought provoking, intelligent and witty, the performance, while decidedly political, also afforded the actors a chance to open a window into the anguished souls of these two visionaries.

In real life, King and Malcolm X met just once. On March 26, 1964, on Capitol Hill, both were attending a Senate debate on the Civil Rights Act. A photographer snapped a now-tragic picture of the two both later victims of assassination who would never meet again. Set in a Harlem hotel room on Valentines Day 1965, the play opens with a discussion between Malcolm X (Julian Williams) and his bodyguard Rashad (Gabriel Mayfield) as they wait for King (Carl Crawford) to arrive.Rashad gives his boss militant arguments on why he shouldnt be meeting with King at all. Though he is only onstage for a brief time, Mayfield effectively provides both comic moments and the angry face of the charged atmosphere of Malcolm Xs by any means necessary movement.When Dr. King arrives, the two men warily greet each other with Still the dreamer and Still the revolutionary. The battle lines are drawn, contrasting Kings peaceful non-violence, the only road to freedom approach to the movement and the racial powder keg that Malcolm X once wrote could erupt in an uncontrollable explosion.For some of the conversation, Williams is a little more low-key than might be expected as the firebrand activist, yet, on the whole, he carries his own, even with the gravitas and understated power that Crawford brings to his role as Dr. King. Though Malcolm X was actually three years older than Dr. King, Williams looks (and is) considerably younger than Crawford. Williams is believable, however, in showing how tired and conflicted Malcolm X was at this time (just a week before he would be assassinated).While giving a few glimpses into the lofty oratory that King was famous for, here he is more of a listener, who still finds the right moments to challenge his philosophical foil. Crawford captures the essence of a man who is ready to die for his beliefs and tragically did not make it to the mountaintop as he predicted. The two mens solid performances breathe life into what could have been hollow portrayals from a history book and instead reveal their shared pain, passion and fatalism.Over 50 years later, the central tragedy brought to the forefront by this play is that the grand future that both men envisioned of a time when all people would be equal has not come to pass.Kings line echoing through the theater as the lights dimmed left the audience with the evenings central message. Just imagine what we could have accomplished if we joined hands in the same direction.If You GoWhat: The Meeting one-act play and post-show discussion (Act II)Where: Zeitgeist TeatroWhen: Oct. 18-20 and 24-26. Evenings at 7:30 and matinee (Oct. 20) at 2 p.m.Tickets: $20 for adults, $16 for students and seniors at 218-336-1412 or zeitgeistarts.com

Sheryl Jensen is a former teacher, magazine editor and director. She reviews theater for the News Tribune.

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Theater review: A provocative clash of wills in Renegade's 'The Meeting' - Duluth News Tribune

Daryl Morey, Hong Kong, and the Limits of Sports Activism – The UCSD Guardian Online

It began as these things often do on Twitter. Houston Rockets General Manager Daryl Morey tweeted a picture Fight for Freedom. Stand with Hong Kong on Oct. 4. What started as a pro-democracy tweet by an executive most NBA fans couldnt pick out of a lineup quickly turned into a firestorm at the intersection of sports and politics. In doing so, the fans have provided the current generation of superstars a battleground for protest in which theres real cash at stake and the ramifications will affect all future political speech coming from the sports world.

Activism is nothing new in sports, but the current generation of superstars have avenues to express themselves that were inaccessible to those before them. But that trend has been coupled with a rapid monetization of players public personas. There is no better example of this than LeBron Jamess recent attempt to trademark Taco Tuesday. Combined with the NBAs rise globally, it was only a matter of time before politics and finance came into conflict.

Which brings us back, of course, to Daryl Morey. Within days, the Rockets joined Winnie the Pooh and Tiananmen Square among the casualties of the Great Firewall of China; China Central Television and Tencent Holdings Limited stopped airing Rockets games, and the Chinese government asked the NBA to fire Morey. When the league refused, every Chinese sponsor terminated their deals, and the TV ban extended to all games. While that ban has now ended, the Rockets remain off the air.

As for the NBA ecosystem, the responses have been mixed. Golden State Warriors head coach Steve Kerr and star player Stephen Curry gave noncommittal statements, despite being on the forefront of the leagues political zeitgeist. Rockets star James Harden even apologized for Moreys comments. But the most inexplicable comments came from the greatest current NBA player, James, who criticized Morey as uneducated on the issue and for being selfish by risking league interests.

It might be too far to call players hypocritical, as some have, for being vehemently anti-Trump James famously called the president U bum in a 2017 tweet and yet remaining silent about China. After all, one can sense players discomfort when asked about a foreign protest movement theyre likely uninformed about. But it delegitimizes future NBA activism most of it being positive if players submit to such a clear attack on the league.

As for James, Fox Newss Laura Ingraham was wrong to say he should just shut up and dribble last February. But that wouldve been preferable to Jamess comments, who condemned Morey, while those in Hong Kong, Xinjiang, and across China face draconian human rights violations daily speak louder than LeBron ever could.

Its futile to ask billion-dollar corporations to worry about anything other than their bottom lines, even the NBA. But the players face a responsibility today that they will often face again, and appeasement can only defer it. Maybe its unfair to make this comparison, but since James was willing to monetize shut up and dribble into a documentary of that name about the history of sports activism, its one hes welcomed. Muhammad Ali gave up the prime of his career to protest the draft. Colin Kaepernick lost his career protesting police brutality. Tommie Smith and John Carlos were expelled from the 1968 Olympics for protesting racial injustice. To James, it seems Space Jam 2 was more important. But to the rest of the league, we can only ask: What are you willing to lose?

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Daryl Morey, Hong Kong, and the Limits of Sports Activism - The UCSD Guardian Online

Joker Is a Thinly Veiled (and Thin) Take on ’80s NYC – Hyperallergic

Joaquin Phoenix in Joker (all images courtesy Warner Bros.)

The vicious circle of duty-bound readers and conversation-chasing editors which has attended the avalanche-like rollout of Todd Phillipss Joker is symptomatic of a culture starved for zeitgeist cinema. The thinkpiece-industrial complex has already descended on this skimpy, mostly just fine movie and picked its bones clean; only for a public so surfeited with superheroes that Christopher Nolan seems like the vanguard of thematic and aesthetic ambition would Joker be received as a challenging, appointment-viewing surfacing of toxic white male misery. I cant believe we signed over a whole season of The Discourse to a filmmaker who still thinks theres something inherently hilarious about little people.

Joker is an origin myth, a grim and pseudo-religious And that little boy grew up to be story like Batman Begins, showing how one of lifes shat-upon becomes a supervillain and a galvanizing figure for a mass movement of antisocial violence. It wants to be and the industry, critics, and fans, in ways alternately breathless and begrudging, have taken it seriously as a reckoning with the extremes of abjection, with the psychic trauma and social rejection that could lead someone to a nihilistic howl of laughter. But its far too derivative, far too wedded to its juvenile mythology, and finally far too tentative to deserve discussion on such terms.

That abjection at least takes an ideal form in Joaquin Phoenix as sad clown Arthur Fleck. Arthur who, like John Wayne Gacy, paints his mouth with sharp north-pointing corners has a medical condition that causes him to break out into uncontrollable laughter when upset. Phoenix lost an unhealthy amount of weight for the role; his ribs all but poke through a loose-skinned torso, which he holds at unnatural angles so that he seems permanently contorted, a full-body rictus. He looks even more down and out than the films circa-1981 Gotham City, where black garbage bags pile up on the sidewalk as a sanitation strike drags on.

Arthur lives with his invalid mother (Frances Conroy), who writes plaintive and unanswered letters to her onetime employer, the condescending kajillionaire Thomas Wayne (Brett Cullen); his fantasy father figure is late-night talk show host Murray Franklin (Robert De Niro, superb as a smugly anodyne monoculture avatar). Arthurs obsession with Murray and the transformative promise of fame shouts out to De Niros own stanning of Jerry Lewis in The King of Comedy, while his diary-of-a-madman journaling (in a childish scrawl: I just hope my death makes more cents than my life) and subsequent vigilantism echo De Niro in Taxi Driver. In these Martin Scorsese films, the pathology of De Niros characters merged with the pathology of New York City, and the world. Joker tries to merge the pathology of Phoenix with the pathology of the earlier films.

Phillips began his career by making a scuzzy G.G. Allin documentary and founding the New York Underground Film Festival before graduating to frat pack comedies. Here he gestures to seriousness with a constant dirgeful cello score by Hildur Gunadttir, but emits major dirtbag vibes when imagining the depravity of Jokers milieu. He utilizes un-PC standup routines at the nightclubs Arthur visits, and invokes frequent trolling music cues (Send in the Clowns for its literalness, Frank Sinatras Thats Life for the triumphant tone, Rock and Roll Part 2 by imprisoned child molester Gary Glitter), which complement the fart-trombone irony of the clown prince of crime himself.

This is all pretty weak tea, but Joker largely entertains moment-to-moment, thanks to a star who captures the characters mesmerizing pulp energy. With his stumbling-in-a-fog voice, Phoenix seems to speak, like he moves, through enormous, invisible resistance. Its disturbing when he catches a gust of verbal eloquence or physical momentum. (Hes also a great physical comedian who can bring himself up short in a snap.) In a cheap suit and clown makeup, dancing erratically down one of the Bronxs step streets, he seems borne along on a swift current of destructive impulses.

Those Bronx step stairs are in Highbridge, just west of Grand Concourse, the boulevard of dreams modeled after the Champs-lyse and the pride of an area that was a prosperous Jewish and Italian suburb in the first half of the 20th century, before every white family save apparently the Flecks fled the citys death spiral. The film makes heavy use of prewar apartment buildings way uptown, abandoned Brooklyn subway stations with their cracked and stained mosaic tile, and rundown Deco exteriors in Newark and Jersey City. Despite the Se7en-esque color grading, Phillilps has a feel for architecture which suggests aspiration, decrepitude, and millions of hidden lives, and harmonizes with Arthurs grand delusions.

But there are elements of the character that are beyond even Phoenixs abilities to sell. During Arthurs climactic appearance on Murray Franklins couch, which is meant to synchronize his torment with the roiling anger of a city left to rot by contemptuous elites, Phoenix resorts to trying on different swishy voices in an effort to inject some organic disturbance into his summing up of the movies thesis. Pre-release, the fear was that Jokers portrait of a pathetic, lonely man who finds his voice in violence might goad copycat lashings-out. In fact, the film channels Arthurs rage toward a series of One-Percenters, like Wayne and Franklin, who are personally mean to him. In Arthurs relationship with his mother if not with his neighbor crush, an incredibly perfunctory role for Zazie Beetz Joker at least attempts to acknowledge that a beta male like Arthur might transfer his self-hatred onto women. At any rate, its closer to being authentically fucked up about gender than it is about race, with which it barely engages.

Gotham is a mirror for received notions about urban America, and Joker, with its graffiti and news reports about super rats overrunning the sidewalks, evokes the lurid high-water mark of the white flight era, when tall tales of wanton lawlessness rebranded New York as Fear City for skittish out-of-towners. Implicit in most coverage of crime in New York in the 70s and 80s was the idea that the urban population was a problem that had to be controlled. Arthurs first kill comes in response to subway harassment, in an obvious echo of Bernard Goetz opening fire on four young black would-be muggers on a 2 train in 1984. Here, though, the menace comes in the form of three slick-haired banker douchebros. Arthur, as an anonymous clown-painted avenger, becomes a figure of notoriety. His rampage, like Goetzs, is splashed across the covers of Gotham tabloids, which are as alarmist and crime-obsessed as New Yorks. He then becomes the totem of a clown-masked Occupy-esque protest movement.

The idea that the random murder of upper-middle-class white men on public transit in 1980s NYC would galvanize a populist movement against white elites is ahistorical and flatly ludicrous. I dont want or need a serious consideration of white grievance from a movie about the clown who fights Batman, but given the position Joker has assumed in our national conversation, its disingenuous and pandering for Phillips to root through a grab bag of resentments and pick out only the least problematic, like hes trying to find the last candy in the bag that isnt licorice. The rebellion Joker inspires appears, behind the clown masks, to skew white and male. This is flammable material, but late in Joker, it takes the form of a subway car packed with rowdy dudes in near-identical pop culture costumes, headed downtown to commit wanton property damage. All I could think was that the entire rusting machinery of mainstream American cinema was churning and churning to get us invested in a movie about SantaCon.

Joker is in theaters now.

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Joker Is a Thinly Veiled (and Thin) Take on '80s NYC - Hyperallergic

Size Matters: A Conversation on Storefront for Art and Architecture’s History with Founder Kyong Park – Archinect

Arlene Schloss reading to a crowd as a part of Performance A-Z, 1982. Image courtesy Storefront for Art and Architecture.

For art and architectural venues, growth is a commonly accepted measure of success. As the story usually goes, an upstart museum or gallery begins life small and then, with enough reputation and investment capital, gets a larger and larger space; with expansion and higher ticket sales comes the ability to support ever-larger shows that reach a broader public. But for New York CitysStorefront for Art and Architecture, however, a small, irregularly-shaped 868-square-foot space provides a physical constraint that has long been a key part of its ability to showcase relevant, vital exhibitions.

In an extended interview with Kyong Park, Storefront founder and director between 1982 and 1998, we take a look at the origins of The Storefront for Art and Architecture.

Located just north of Manhattans Little Italy and Chinatown neighborhoods, Storefront is a small, wedge-shaped exhibition space located across the street from a wedge-shaped park. Since its beginnings, it has always been a storefront with street frontage at ground level. With this key distinction embedded in the name itself, Storefronts mission has been kept consistent and has allowed it to represent an international and local community with a curatorial reach much larger the gallerys modest size. Like retail storefronts in the e-commerce age, which serve both to display products and physically represent the massive behind-the-scenes machinations that power global consumption patterns, Storefront is better seen as a physical manifestation of a much larger dispersed community of architects and artists both in New York and the world more generally. For a scene with no real local place to convene outside of school events and public lectures, Storefront represents an independent living room for the community to come and hang out in real life, in one place. Today when discourse increasingly is carried out online and via decentralized platforms, the existence of such a dedicated exhibition space is even more crucial for concentrated acts of community intervention and response.

The history of Storefront stretches back almost 40 years to 1982, when it was founded by Kyong Park at 51 Prince Street, across the street from where the McNally Jackson bookstore is today. Organized with artists Arlene Schloss and R. L. Seltman, its introduction to the community included 26 consecutive evening performances every day from local artists as part of a show called Performance A-Z. Artist Shirin Neshat joined in 1983 as co-director, contributing to many exhibitions throughout the next ten years (catch her massive exhibition at the Broad in Los Angeles, I Will Greet the Sun Again from October 2019 to February 2020.)

The early years in the 1980s saw many solo exhibitions of then-rising, now-famous architects and artists such as Neil Denari, James Wines SITE, Elizabeth Diller and Ricardo Scofidio, Lebbeus Woods, and Dan Graham. But the exhibits that really gave Storefront its identity were the community-focused exhibitions which addressed problems currently in the zeitgeist, such as anexpos on homelessness, ashow on queer space, apublic housing exhibitthat doubled as a movement to save Adam Purples Garden of Eden on the Lower East Side from demolition.

These early efforts also showcased proposals of Eric Owen Moss, Alison Smithson, Morphosis, Zvi Hecker, Lebbeus Woods, Neil Denari, and Diller + Scofidio. This focus carries through the more recent era. In the wake of Occupy Wall Street, for example, Storefront organized a series of events, including a public call for ideas to meet and discuss how to move forward following the Great Recession of 2008 and the resulting global realization that capitalism is inherently unable to create a better world.

Today theyre often hosting panel discussions, tours, book launches, talks, original exhibitions, events, and more. To see a full schedule of upcoming events, make sure to check theirwebsitefor more information. Since Park's tenure, Storefront has been led by a number of leading architectural curators and thinkers, namely Sarah Herda, Joseph Grima, and most recently Eva Franch i Gilabert. Jos Esparza Chong Cuyis the current direct of Storefront, sinceEva Franch left to lead the AA in 2018.

I first visited Storefront for Art and Architecture for the first time in 2014. At the time, Marc Fornes / THEVERYMANY and Jana Winderen had an installation in the gallery called Situation Room. It was a perfect introduction to what I feel Storefront promotes spatially, because from the outside you could see pink Fornes metaballs poking out of the open facade panels and upon entering it became an experiential exploration of the neon pink form and ambient soundscapes surrounding you. As sensually striking as it was, it lacked the political and contextual discourse that some of the early shows had such as Homelessness at Home in 1985 or Adams House in Paradise in 1984. Despite this, it did demonstrate to me the power of an exhibition space that refuses to be a typical blank white box- something thats been consistent at Storefront even before the current home was renovated by Steven Holl and Vito Acconci in 1993. I wondered if being a foil to the ubiquitous empty white space was how it was conceived from the beginning, and if you could talk about the origins of Storefront and the types of shows you wanted to put on that you felt were absent from the art and architecture discourse at the time.

Well, you know, it was 1982, almost 40 years ago. The world changes a lot in half a century. Performance A-Z was actually organized by my partner, Robert L. Seltman, an artist who I started Storefront with. It was really he who actually conceived of it and organized the performances. I knew some other people in the show myself, but it was his brainchild.

The reason why I want to mention that it was a different time is because I think that may have just as much to do with the making of Storefront as anything that I have done.

New York at that time was really coming out of rock bottom. Almost all American cities underwent economic decline and depopulation. New York was not immune to it. It almost went bankrupt in 1974. Really nobody wanted to be there unless they had to. Its a bit of an exaggeration, but It was also a place where people would escape to from other places, drawing eccentric people that didn't really fit anywhere in the country.

I say country because at that time New York was really national. It didn't draw many people from outside of the US as it does now. It was a reversal of Kurt Russells Escape From New York, where instead of escaping from a maximum security prison, people who needed a fresh start or to leave their home town would move to New York. It was a kind of collection of chaos and anarchy. There were all these vacant storefronts on the lower part of Manhattan that were comparable to loft spaces today because they were large spaces that artists could turn into a studio.

The first Storefront opened at 51 Prince Street. It was about 350 square feet. I paid 250 dollars a month for it back then and by the early to mid-2000s, a while after we had moved to the current spot on Kenmare, it was already up to five or six thousand dollars a month being rented to a Tibetan boutique store. A lot of artists moved into these spaces, obviously living there illegally, and some of them started turning them into shops and self-run galleries here and there; in Little Italy there were several of them.

There was a sense of community there, and so, with some friends like Robert L. Seltman and Arlene Schloss, we decided to introduce the gallery to the city through a series of 26 performances by different artists. Certainly, at that time, neither myself nor the people in this community paid any mind to becoming wealthy and famous as many do today. It was more about making art, being part of our community, having a place to meet. It was a social-cultural space as much as, you know, an aesthetic-cultural space.

After surviving for two years, we became a legitimate 501(c)(3) and then started getting money from New York State Council of the Arts. Soon, people beyond our local area south of 14th Street started to pay attention and it became more serious: with a broader audience, Storefront became more legitimate and started to build a more solid, successful programming history.

It started very naturally from the socioeconomic conditions of New York City at the time and more than anything else I must say that I had no idea about what I would do when I came to New York at the end of the summer of 79. I had no intention to open a gallery. It wasn't something that I had in mind explicitly to do, so I credit the city itself, the community, and the culture as the true founders of Storefront.

What was the architecture scene like this around the time? Rem Koolhaass Delirious New York came out in 1977, describing New York in the '70s as an anarchic, unscripted place without any prescriptive theory. This might have been true to a visitor, but the reality is that people had been there for a long time producing culture, imagining futures, writing about the city, etc.

Well, I didn't really hang out with architects; I hung around with artists. At the beginning of Storefront, architecture in New York was very provincial. Not even national-provincial, just New York City, by itself.

At the time, people basically made theoretical stuff: paper architecture, drawing architecture, imaginary architecture, mainly headed by the New York Five: John Hejduk, Peter Eisenman, Michael Graves, Charles Gwathmey, and Richard Meier. They ran the show and some of them had institutions- Hejduk led Cooper Union, Eisenman at the Institute for Architecture and Urban Studies, and so on. Their work was highly recognized throughout the country and probably beyond, but its prevalence showed that there was not a lot of work for young people, so for those like me, there was more of a drift toward art.

I wanted to hear about your conception of the first shows like the Gowanus Canal and Adams House in Paradise. I was wondering how the early curation direction was conceived and if it was a part of any 10-20 year plan for Storefront.

I have always had a very political radical interest. The shows you mentioned were projects that I initiated from Storefront. I have to give a great deal of credit to Glenn Weiss for Adam's House in Paradise. He was spearheading that project as well as Homeless at Home. Also, he was quite involved in that as well and other projects like DMZ, Project Atlas, Before Whitney, and After Tilted Arc. For these, we set up the concept and then invited people to propose an alternative critical discourse about re-examining status quos or current conditions. We wanted to attack the mainstream.

The solo exhibitions by artists and architects were to promote the cross-disciplinary relationship between art and architecture. We constructed a community where artists found interest in architecture and architects found interested in art. This has always been a reflection of myself, actually. I think that kind of crossover really was the key ingredient to pulling together a community that was unique and very committed.

[Eventually], The solo exhibitions switched from artists to architects, with almost half of them not from New York, or the United States, really. I think that Storefront had an interesting dialogue between something small and something large. We were quite small but we had large ambitions. We recognized that we didn't have to be big in order to do big thingsI remember some newspaper articles saying "Small Storefront Puts Museums to Shame" or something like thatWe challenged that notion of scale, almost ridiculing some of the big institutions for being very small-minded. I like this antagonistic role that I play.

Thats interesting to see that a stance on growth was always integral to how you saw Storefront. As you know, many institutions are built on a model of expansion where you acquire more work, see an increase in foot traffic and subsequently in ticket sales, which in turn then allows larger exhibitions, and so on. Infinite growth.

Thats the modern/American culture. The growth-forever model was criticized in the 70s by the Club of Rome reports which suggested in its place a more sustainable economic model rather than an annual growth in GDP. That idea of growth you speak of is a very modern, American belief where you build, grow, buy assets, and become a multinational conglomerate, continuing to buy more subsidiary companies and so on.

Did you pay attention to the Oslo Architecture Triennale this year?

No, I dont follow architecture very much.

The curation was about degrowth, promoting alternate models that push back against the idea that the continuous growth intrinsic to capitalism is a good thing, and that eternal growth is natural. The curators said the same thing, that GDP is a really poor measure of progress because it only measures a few myopic statistics.

[GDP is] a political tool just as much as an economic indicator. There are a lot of challenges regarding the legitimacy/accuracy of GDP as a statistical measurement, just as much as there are around SAT or the No Child Left Behind policies. Its not surprising to hear that about the Oslo Triennale. Architects have been enjoying one of the greatest building booms in the history of human civilization, nobodys really complaining about it. That may be coming to an end sooner than we think because we simply cant make billionaires anymore. Its not sustainable.

Storefronts existence all this time, to me, represents a challenge to the dogma around growth. It has always been small and has successfully stayed small; I wanted to hear how this was maintained. Did you havea plan for expansion once it moved?

No. I know we didn't have any plans except for the annual goals to go out and to get funding for the next year. During my time, I kept it small. Financially, its now much more substantial than it was during my time. Since I left, it became much more organized with a lot more funding. I dont know what the annual budget now is, but mine was, at its largest, maybe $250,000 a year. There was really no ambition to make it into a museum of any type or to make it larger. I felt that we were doing well enough and within our means. Maybe they could expand today but things are much more expensive now.

Just down the street is the New Museum, which moved to its SANAA building in the mid-2000s and is now slated to have an addition designed by OMA New York. For a while now, it has been oriented towards growth, accepting large donations, and building up an increasing collection. Its workers just unionized to increase previously unlivable wages that had driven up turnover. Since it was founded not too long before Storefront, just down the street on Bowery, it makes me wonder if you ever tracked yourself in relation to its continuous expansion and acquisitions.

Small is good. I didnt really pay much attention to the New Museum. It was already quite big in my time. It was a space in the corner of Broadway and Houston which was not a small space.

Its not just about size, its about the ambition of people in relation to power. The ultimate aim for people with fame is power, thats why people go to New York. Just as much as the growth-forever economic model, people are driven by fame and fortune which makes a nice recipe for bigness.

There was a great article in The Guardian that came out earlier this year by their architecture critic Oliver Wainwright about the state of real estate investment and speculation in NYC embodied in the super-tall pencil skyscrapers.

I mean they gotta put money somewhere right. Cash in the bank doesnt do as well, as Thomas Piketty told us in Capital in the 21st Century. I think they just dont have enough places to put the money. Their price tag is not because of the market or the construction costs or fees. Theyre inflated in order to put money away.

I heard someone say once that the art market is one of the last safe spaces for money laundering.

I would turn and go the opposite direction, it was one of the first money laundering tools and has proven to be a very dependable one historically.

Thats my concern once architecture reaches a certain scale. It is inevitably tied in obligation to foreign investments. And in growth, more generally, comes a concession to those forces that require more capital to reinvest, more financial obligation if you dont want to stay small. You stepped down from directing Storefront in 1997 and went to Detroit. Could you talk about why you decided to leave?

That was a year or so after Giuliani became the mayor and when the city started to become what it is today: gentrified, Americanized. In the early 1990s, things started to change and chain stores moved in. I remember the first one was Bed, Bath, and Beyond. Before this, like I was saying before, New York was a bunch of misfits that didnt belong anywhere else. And then with gentrification you started to get outside Americans coming in to find jobs. Gentrification really used art and culture as an appetizer to convince people to come back to the city, after white flight and suburbanization in the 1950s. I really didnt want to be a part of that. I started Storefront as an independent voice but now the city was beginning to use its presence as part of its political economy; we were only useful to them for the economic and political purposes that attracted outside investment to reterritorialize the inner city. I didnt like it. So in the mid-1990s, I started to go to Detroit because I was doing projects like Detroit is Everywhere and working with Cranbrook Academy of Art. I started meeting very interesting people, totally disconnected from society, extreme urban pioneers. They were off the grid, not just infrastructure, but socially and culturally. They were just on their own. I got very interested in their work and I felt that maybe I could be more useful in Detroit than I would be in New York. Even though I had started Storefront, I had come to realize that as independent as it could be, it could no longer be as experimental as it once was. I saw in Detroit a place to be experimental again.

I think that explains the reason why I started, what I did, and why I left. I think the problem is larger now than I ever imagined. Its the whole world. The way I think about the future is not very optimistic. I think were about to enter a historical moment where our comfort, our expectations, and ideas no longer matter because we are not trying to determine our future anymore. History is the ultimate determinant and we cant do anything about it, its become more of a destiny.

In the face of all this, what do you think the role of small scale art curation would be? Can we only react?

I think we have to start small again, to challenge big agendas, big companies, big institutions, including politicians. We have to find small groups of people that create challenges to authority.

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Size Matters: A Conversation on Storefront for Art and Architecture's History with Founder Kyong Park - Archinect

The Feminist History of Fat Liberation – Ms. Magazine

Susie Orbach said it best back in 1978: Fat is a feminist issue. Fat is also a queer issue, and a racialized issue, and an issue of classbecause fatness is inseparable from all other intersections of identity.

But rarely do we hear conversations about fat liberation, even in todays feminist spaces. Instead, most folks are intent on positioning body positivity as our savior from the diet industrial complexerasing, in the process, the revolutionary power of the long-standing feminist movement to fight fatphobia.

Fat liberations roots are in the 1960s, when the emergent Fat Acceptance Movement aimed to celebrate fat bodies and remove stigma from fatness in a long-term and meaningful way.

It is no coincidence that fat acceptance organizing, second-wave feminist organizing and queer organizing came into the social justice mainstream around the same time, because fatphobia impacts fat people from every identity group. You can be fat and black, fat and heterosexual, fat and differently abled, fat and trans.

In fact, unpacking the work of The Fat Underground makes it clear that fat acceptance came out of queer and feminist organizing.

The National Association to Advance Fat Acceptance, or NAAFA, was founded by Bill Fabrey and Llewelyn Louderback in 1969; both men were tired of their wives being ostracized because of their weight. Louderback had already made strides into fat liberation through the publication of an article in 1968 which encouraged people to take a stand against weight loss, and later continued to make inroads with his 1970 book Fat Power: Whatever You Weigh is Right. Although much of NAAFAs activism was tepid at best, they did hold a Fat -In, or a sit-in meant to combat fatphobia, in which fat people gathered in Central Park, ate ice cream and burned pictures of Twiggy. NAAFA attempted to address fatphobia in schools, places of business and in media.

But by the early 1970s, Judy Freespirit and Sarah Fishman, two of the more political members of NAAFA, grew weary of the mild mannered-ness, especially as they were involved in the more rage-filled activism seen in concurrent feminist and lesbian organizing. Their radical, empowered, intellectual fringe group provided respite, but it had a lofty goal: to upend the medical industry by calling attention to its fatphobia. To do this, the women spoke at conferences and rallies, got involved with local feminist organizations and disseminated information about fatphobia to the public.

Working in tandem with these newly minted ideals, The Fat Underground unequivocally meant business. By pouring through medical journals, the members found statistics and studies which proved the rampant fatphobia in medicine. When singer Cass Elliot died, they took to the stage at the 1974 Los Angeles Womens Day March and pointed a finger at the medical community for essentially murdering Elliot via fatphobia.

Following this incident, The Fat Underground saw an increase in membershipbut soon after, members, both old and new, dropped out for various reasons. By 1983, the organization had disbanded.

Although their organizing efforts were seemingly cut short due to circumstance, The Fat Undergrounds research, organizing and revelatory politics more than paved the way for present day fat liberation activism. An archived video shows viewers the kinds of radical and progressive conversations that were being had by the group, which provided the foundation for todays Health At Every Size movement along with language and ideas to combat fatphobia in the medical industry.

In the 1980s and 1990s, fat liberation slowly became a more relevant part of the academy and the legal world. Lawsuits that made workplace discrimination illegal on the basis of weight were fought and won. In 1994, activist Marilyn Wann published the foundational zine Fat!So? Since then, multiple books, both for academic purposes and for-pleasure, have been published, allowing fat liberation to become part of the cultural zeitgeist and the fabric of academia through the fields of Womens Studies, African American studies, Psychology, Literature, History, Sociology, Queer Studies and American Studies.

Yet today, fat liberation has become entwined with body positivitymostly as a result of lazy organizing, the prioritization of bodies that benefit from thin privilege and individual feminists resistant to challenging their own discomfort. As Evette Dionne suggests, body positivity was initially one factor of fat liberation. But today, it has eclipsed the initial radicality of the movement and erased the very people it is meant to help.

It isnt the body positivity is wrong, or not feministit is radical, after all, to love yourself in a world that benefits from your self-hatred, particularly if youre a woman or femme, and especially if you occupy various other marginalized identities. But much like any other political movement, fat liberation began as a push back against the oppression of a marginalized group. It was a movement that gained traction because of fat people, predominantly women, organizing and mobilizing against fatphobia.

Fat people were at the center of the theory, actions and radicalism of early fat liberation. Today, however, the faces of body positivity, or #bopo, that we see on social media are too often thin, conventionally attractive, white women. By and large, body positivity has lost the edge and radical politicization that fat liberation possesses.

Activist Jes Baker speaks to this when she discusses what she calls Lisa Frank BoPo; a feel good, stay hydrated, thank your body, and do your sun salutations sort of thing. Bakers call for progress urges activists to get more political and angry. Id like to take it even further.

While turning the heat up on our respective politics will be useful for both individuals and the world at large, its Lisa Frank-ly not enough. What we need to actually engage with is fat liberationan intersectional mode of thought which challenges and subverts the various ways fatphobia manifests in both day to day life and big picture oppression.

Fat liberation stems from queer unrest and rebellion. Its message differs from body positivity; it is more radical, more political, maintains fatness at the center of its narrative and goals and focuses on the ways fat people are mistreated by the system.

This does not mean there is no room for those #bopo champions: Engaging in fat liberation is the same as engaging in any political movement; if youre not directly impacted by the oppression youre combatting, you just have to stay in your lane and be keyed in enough to know when its appropriate to step up and when to step back.

Make it your business to be a resource. Educate yourself so you can take on the emotional labor of confronting fatphobia in day to day life. If your politics arent radical, revisit the cornerstones on which they are built. Investigate whether or not they rest on pillars of white supremacy, capitalism, classism, sexism, fatphobia, transphobia, homophobia or ableism.

In honor of The Fat Underground, let this be a call to action for all of us to do better in our fight for every body.

On the next page: Fat Liberation Resource Guide!

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The Feminist History of Fat Liberation - Ms. Magazine

The WFP won. That’s why it could go extinct. – City & State

On a balmy night in September, Maurice Mitchell, the new national director of the Working Families Party, introduced a leading presidential contender to thousands of her delirious supporters. Repeat after me: People power! People power! Mitchell shouted to crowd thronging Washington Square Park. In the past few months, the Working Families Party had a deliberative process that included state chapters, members and supporters. I couldnt be prouder to say this morning we announced our support for (U.S.) Sen. Elizabeth Warren for the Democratic nomination!

Mitchell stepped back from the podium, his lips closed with satisfaction, as the crowd began to roar. For Warren, who entered the race as an underdog to household names like former Vice President Joe Biden and U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders, the rally was an affirmation of her place in the top tier of the presidential field.

For the WFP, it was something like an apotheosis: a once-fledgling political party, launched at a nadir for progressive politics, had arrived on the national stage, backing a lefty candidate who may go all the way. Mitchells blue and white WFP sticker, pasted over his heart, was visible for everyone to see.

But all was not well, because nothing is ever so simple with the most prominent and powerful third party in New Yorks history. The WFPs decision to endorse Warren had enraged backers of Sanders, who was the partys choice in 2016, when the self-described socialist launched an insurgent campaign against Hillary Clinton that captivated millions. Jacobin, a magazine that serves as the house organ for socialists and their preferred candidates, declared the WFP had written itself out of history. Leftists canceled their monthly donations to the party. WFP staffers were harassed online, enduring threats that were racist and sexist in nature.

Anger festered among Sanders supporters as the WFP refused to say how exactly Warren won the internal vote. Half of the votes came from just 56 delegates on the national committee, while the other half were drawn from an estimated 10,000 dues-paying members and progressive activists. Some of the delegates lead large community organizations that belong to the party, like New York Communities for Change. These leaders largely preferred Warren.

The fallout threatened to destabilize coalitions the WFP has forged and maintained over its 21-year existence. For all its boasts of increasing its national power the WFP now organizes in 18 states, including Wisconsin, Colorado and Connecticut, plus Washington, D.C. it is chiefly a New York force.

In the past year and a half, the WFP has played a pivotal role in flipping the New York state Senate to Democratic control and nearly elected a democratic socialist, Tiffany Cabn, as Queens district attorney. The policy victories in Albany have been significant: new voting laws, drivers licenses for undocumented immigrants, stronger rent regulations and a far-reaching plan to combat climate change.

The WFP has effectively moved New York politics to the left and given a real voice to progressives, said Karthik Ganapathy, a progressive consultant who has worked for Sanders and New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio. They gave progressives an alternative vehicle to make their voices heard outside of the traditional Democratic Party machine that runs New York.

Yet the WFP inhabits a precarious moment. Its mortal enemy, Gov. Andrew Cuomo, is alleged to be behind an ongoing effort to end fusion voting in New York, which could severely undercut the party. Many powerful labor unions, once its lucrative backbone, left the party last year under pressure from the governor. And the leftist movements they helped build have arguably overtaken the party. Groups like the Democratic Socialists of America and Justice Democrats with their lodestar, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez represent a new vanguard of the left: more radical, unapologetic and disdainful of the Democratic Party.

Occupy Wall Street and Bernie Sanders dramatically reshaped the landscape of New York and national politics. When Ocasio-Cortez won, you saw the apex of that reconfiguration. Bob Master, a WFP founder

The WFP, in many ways, could become a victim of its own success. Before the lefts ascent over the past few years, they were the uber-progressives. The governor views them as enough of a player to try to end them. If a state commission set up to allow the public financing of political campaigns manages to kill fusion voting, the lifeblood of New Yorks third parties, the WFP would hobble on having already won the war.

Occupy Wall Street and Bernie Sanders dramatically reshaped the landscape of New York and national politics. When Ocasio-Cortez won, you saw the apex of that reconfiguration, said Bob Master, a prominent labor leader and a founder of the WFP. All of a sudden, you have a new set of actors who are independent of institutional foundations. And these actors are doing things that even a couple of years ago seemed unimaginable.

The leftward movement of New York politics represents exactly what the WFP sought to accomplish when it was founded in 1998. At the time, Rudy Giuliani was in his second term as mayor of New York City. George Pataki, another Republican, was the governor of New York, and Republicans had an ironclad grip on the state Senate. Conservative Republicans had taken control of Congress and passed a welfare reform bill that slashed benefits and was signed into law by President Bill Clinton, who had declared the era of big government is over.

The WFP, a brainchild of Dan Cantor, Joel Rogers and labor leaders such as Master, had its origins in something called the New Party, a third party founded in the early 1990s to be a home for progressive Democrats and organized labor frustrated with the Democrats rightward drift. The New Party had national ambitions: to bring fusion voting to every state in America, so left-leaning third parties could cross-endorse Democrats and by threatening to withhold that endorsement drive them left.

Through legal challenges (most states bar fusion voting), the New Party hoped to eventually reach the U.S. Supreme Court and have laws preventing fusion voting ruled unconstitutional, but it lost at the Supreme Court in 1997, effectively killing the party.

In 1998, to gain party status in New York, the WFP needed to secure 50,000 votes in a gubernatorial election. Their only option was to back the Democratic candidate, Peter Vallone Sr., a conservative Democrat who, as speaker of the New York City Council, had worked closely with Giuliani. It would be the first of several seemingly contradictory alliances the WFP would forge to protect its livelihood.

Labor didnt really have as much clout in the Democratic Party at the time as it should have had, said Sal Albanese, a former Democratic member of the City Council who ran unsuccessfully for mayor in 1997, 2013 and 2017. Along with Master, Albanese pushed for the idea of a third party that would center the concerns of private and public sector labor unions, building around an agenda of raising wages for workers and combating government spending cutbacks. The party would also include influential community organizations committed to liberal causes, like ACORN. We put a ground operation together, urging people to vote on the WFP line, Albanese said.

On election night, Vallone lost to Pataki and it appeared the WFP would not garner 50,000 votes. Master stood up to give a concession speech at a Lower East Side pizzeria. In the audience was a young political operative named Bill de Blasio, who would hitch his political fortunes to the WFP in the coming years.

The votes continued to roll in late into the night and the WFP narrowly cleared the threshold, securing its place on the ballot for the first time. As a political party, it would have a ballot line to lend to Democrats and gain the ability to spend much more aggressively on its endorsed candidates.

The victory had even greater symbolic value. For decades, New York had been home to important progressive third parties, fueled largely by organized labor. In the 1930s, the American Labor Party was New York Citys social justice conscience, battling with Tammany Hall to help elect Fiorello La Guardia as mayor. At its peak, the party enjoyed a neighborhood presence to rival the Democrats, with thriving political clubs across the city.

The collapse of the American Labor Party during the anti-Communist 1940s and 1950s gave way to another WFP predecessor: the Liberal Party. Founded by labor leaders to be an anti-Communist alternative for the left, the Liberal Party was influential in the 1960s and 1970s, helping to elect important figures like New York City Mayor John Lindsay. It also controversially contributed to some conservative Republican victories including Ronald Reagan for president and Alfonse DAmato for U.S. Senate in 1980 by endorsing its own candidates for those offices instead of the Democratic nominees.

By the 1990s, the Liberal Party had cemented its move rightward, backing Giuliani for mayor and morphing into a corruption-plagued patronage mill. Its transformation created an opening for the WFP.

You cant have a fight between the left and Democrats with Republicans in control, said Bill Lipton, the WFPs New York state director and one of its longest-tenured staffers. We formed this institution to challenge that.

The party changed New York by electing more Democrats who cared about raising the minimum wage, beefing up tenant protections and creating a fairer criminal justice system. The effort began in earnest in 2001, when the WFP successfully backed a small number of New York City Council members in Democratic primaries, including James Sanders Jr. in Queens. It was not a major player in that years mayoral race billionaire Michael Bloomberg would pull off the upset over Mark Green and de Blasio himself was elected to the City Council. But the groundwork was being laid for a legislative takeover.

Unlike other third parties, the WFP would mostly influence elections by supporting progressive-minded Democrats in primaries. In the general election, winning candidates appeared on the ballot line for a handful of extra votes.

(They say) you cant have a fight between the left and Democrats with Republicans in control. We formed this institution to challenge that. Bill Lipton, WFP state director

Each cycle, more WFP-friendly Democrats joined the City Council. There was the future speaker, Melissa Mark-Viverito, and the future state attorney general, Letitia James, who were elected in the next couple elections. James was unique for the circumstances of her win: one of the rare candidates to triumph exclusively on the WFP line in a one-of-a-kind special election to replace a slain City Council member.

In 2009, the wave crested much higher: the WFP-backed insurgents Jumaane Williams, Jimmy Van Bramer and Daniel Dromm won Democratic primaries and arrived in the City Council, along with Brad Lander, another close ally, and Deborah Rose. De Blasio, a top-priority candidate for the WFP, was the new public advocate. John Liu, another the WFP-endorsed Democrat, was elected city comptroller, becoming New Yorks first Asian American elected citywide.

Beyond the five boroughs, the victories were piling up. In 2004, the WFP threw its full weight behind Democrat David Soares, who unseated the more conservative Albany County district attorney in a primary. Soares ran on reforming New Yorks draconian Rockefeller drug laws, which brought steep, mandatory prison sentences for people convicted of drug crimes. Not long after Soares win, state lawmakersvoted to significantly soften the laws.

The dramatic Soares victory mattered for another reason, one that hangs over the WFP today as the state Public Campaign Financing Commission threatens to tie the end of fusion voting to creating a system of publicly financed campaigns. Until now, the party has been allowed to spend virtually unlimited amounts of cash on favored candidates, in full coordination with the candidates campaigns. A 2006 state Supreme Court case upheld the WFPs lavish spending on behalf of Soares, striking down limitations the state Board of Elections had placed on party expenditures during primaries. The WFPs cash reserves, fed at that time by unions, could be put to full use.

Meanwhile, the WFP would make the sort of alliances it hopes history will forget. Andrea Stewart-Cousins, now the state Senate majority leader, was not a WFP candidate when she first ran for the Senate in 2004, losing by just 18 votes. The WFP endorsed her Republican opponent, Nicholas Spano. Spano was more labor-friendly than the typical Republican; when Stewart-Cousins ran again in 2006, the WFP stayed neutral, rather than back her outright.

Though the WFP would work enthusiastically to retake control of the state Senate in 2008, playing decisive roles in electing Democrats on Long Island and in the North Country, the liberal third party would triangulate too. Labor unions needing favors from the Republican-controlled state Senate would back the GOP over Democrats, and the WFP, loathe to alienate its labor allies, would do the same in certain cases.

They were supportive of Joe Bruno when he was the Republican (state Senate) majority leader for many years, said a labor leader who worked with the WFP at the time and requested anonymity to speak frankly. They refused to support Democratic candidates in marginal districts.

By the 10-year anniversary of its founding, the formula for the WFPs success was quite clear: unite influential labor unions with party activists, undergirding it all with a highly effective canvassing operation. This for-profit operation would have a formal name, Data and Field Services, and endorsed candidates would pay for its services. In 2009, one of City & States predecessor publications, City Hall, published an investigative series about the WFPs relationship with Data and Field Services, prompting federal and local investigations. After the 2009 cycle, Randy Mastro, a Republican attorney, filed a lawsuit alleging the WFP was circumventing campaign finance laws by offering its services to endorsed candidates at illegally reduced rates. The U.S. Attorneys Office for the Southern District of New York launched a probe as well, though no charges were filed.

Enough damage was done. In 2011, the WFP reached a settlement with Mastro, paying $100,000 to cover his legal fees and agreeing to shut down Data and Field Services. Its prized outside canvassing arm was no more.

The WFP, through necessity and savvy, has reinvented itself several times over, morphing internally as its faade has remained largely unchanged from its founding days. In the 2000s, it was the party of organized labor, with a for-profit canvassing arm attached.

In 2010, Andrew Cuomo was elected governor, forever altering the partys trajectory. In New York City politics, all would be well. The 2013 cycle was triumphant: de Blasio was elected mayor, James became public advocate and the City Council chose Mark-Viverito as its speaker.

The City Council, more conservative in the Bloomberg years, went into full progressive bloom. A new law guaranteeing paid sick days to city workers, a long-standing priority for the WFP, was passed within weeks of de Blasio taking office, after Bloomberg and his allies had bottled it up for a decade.

There were wrinkles, however, that hinted at trouble ahead. De Blasios victory in the Democratic mayoral primary was not a product of the WFPs foresight, because the partys labor affiliates could not agree on a candidate to endorse, forcing the party to remain neutral. Those close to Mark-Viverito credited 1199SEIU, the all-powerful health care workers union, with twisting arms on the City Council to elect her, not the WFP.

And then there was Cuomo. The governor, a centrist in the New Democrat mold, called for capping property tax increases, expanding charter schools and accepted bipartisan rule that would keep Republicans in power.

The states heavyweight unions, such as 1199SEIU, warmed to Cuomo or at least learned to properly fear him.

The WFP 2.0. was born in 2014, when progressive activists backed Fordham University law professor Zephyr Teachouts primary campaign against Cuomo. The partys labor union affiliates sided with Cuomo, while the partys grassroots members argued for Teachout. In the end, to guarantee 50,000 votes in the general election, the WFP endorsed Cuomo.

A deal was struck with the help of de Blasio, who enjoyed a closer relationship with Cuomo at the time: The WFP would endorse Cuomo if the governor agreed to back a host of liberal priorities, including raising the minimum wage and campaigning for Democratic state Senate candidates. In the end, Republicans kept control of the Senate that fall, riding a national wave. Cuomo hardly helped the Democrats at all. He resented having to bargain with WFP at all, which he dismissed as a fringe party.

Cuomos office did not return requests for comment about his history with WFP.

I understand their need to be transactional for survivals sake, but that also calls into question the foundation of their validity. state Sen. John Liu, former WFP candidate

The Teachout dilemma, for the first time, would also throw the WFPs transactional nature into the public eye. That fall as part of a deal that ultimately fell apart to reunite state Senate Democrats with a breakaway faction of Democrats, the Independent Democratic Conference the WFPwithdrew its support from two Democrats running against IDC members.

I have been turned off by how transactional they have been not just in my case but in many other instances as well, said Liu, one of the candidates who lost the WFPs backing in 2014 and lost the primary. I understand their need to be transactional for survivals sake, but that also calls into question the foundation of their validity.

In 2018, the WFP finally spurned Cuomo during the Democratic gubernatorial primary and selected Cynthia Nixon as its nominee, even though the WFP eventually switched back to Cuomo after he won the Democratic nomination. Under pressure from Cuomo, labor unions began abandoning the WFP. The unions had been a consistent source of cash and ground troops. Without them, the WFP would have to hunt for new sources of revenue.

What is the WFP? On one hand, thats an easy question to answer: a progressive political party that, these days, only cross-endorses Democrats. But the WFP doesnt organize political clubs, like the old American Labor Party, and doesnt encourage too many of its supporters to register as members of the party, lest they sacrifice clout in Democratic primaries. Some major unions have remained in the party, including the New York State Nurses Association and New York State United Teachers.

Their power today derives from how they serve as a nerve center for the professional left. The WFP itself cant deploy 100 people to knock on doors, but member organizations like Make the Road New York, Citizen Action of New York and New York Communities for Change can.

Activist energy no longer exclusively resides within the WFP. Even though its rank-and-file membership may outnumber the Democratic Socialists of Americas, the more than 5,500 members of the democratic socialist organizations New York City branch are far more willing to volunteer for favored candidates.

Grassroots organizations, including the Indivisible chapters, True Blue NY and No IDC NY, arose to furiously challenge the Republican Partys grip on the state Senate. They set their sights on the eight Independent Democratic Conference members who had formed a power-sharing agreement with the GOP, confronting them at raucous town halls and alerting formerly apolitical neighbors to their existence.

Though the WFP had been a critic of the IDC and Cuomo, it was the new grassroots organizations that initially led the effort to oust the IDC. Activists involved credit the WFP with lending direction to the anti-IDC movement, which was led by people unfamiliar with the labyrinthine nature of New York politics. They would host meetings with various grassroots leaders very early on, said Susan Kang, a founder of No IDC NY. Most of us who jumped in early were new to state politics. We didnt have the institutional knowledge. We didnt know who the key people to speak to were.

The WFP pulled lists of registered Democrats so the freshly formed organizations could start calling voters long before the primary. On behalf of the IDC challengers, the party paid for staff, digital ad campaigns and rebranded the IDC members as Trump Democrats.

The WFP evolved, in essence, into thepro bono political consultant of a movement that could exist independent of the party.

There was one notable missed opportunity: A 28-year-old former Bernie Sanders organizer was running against the Queens Democratic Party boss, Joseph Crowley.

In 2018, the WFP 2.0. hit a new peak. Six out of the eight anti-IDC candidates won their races. Left-wing novice Julia Salazar, aided by the WFP and DSA, unseated Democratic state Sen. Martin Malav Dilan, who was perceived by some as too close to the real estate industry. Though the insurgents they supported for governor and lieutenant governor, Cynthia Nixon and Jumaane Williams, were unsuccessful, their campaigns won plaudits from the grassroots left, the very people the WFP now relied on most, and Williams came surprisingly close to upsetting Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul.

There was, however, one notable missed opportunity for the party: A 28-year-old former Bernie Sanders organizer was running for Congress against the Queens Democratic Party boss, Joseph Crowley. DSA, Our Revolution and Justice Democrats had formed a coalition that was generating buzz. The candidates visage was popping up everywhere from widely distributed campaign literature to national news outlets.

But the WFPs leadership was wary of endorsing Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, whom they hardly knew. Crowley may have been a moderate who supported the Iraq War, but he had close relationships with organized labor and was on track to someday become speaker of the House. In a year of warfare against Cuomo and the IDC, the WFP didnt believe picking a fight with Crowley was worth their time.

Crowley took the WFP endorsement and went down with it. As Ocasio-Cortezs celebrity grew, the WFP was stuck with Crowley on its ballot line, lacking legal options to kick him off.

This year may be remembered as another pivot point for the WFP. Again, they played grizzled political consultant and benefactor to another movement that began without them, endorsing Tiffany Cabn, a young public defender and DSA member, for Queens district attorney. When the campaign was struggling to raise cash, the WFP hired a veteran campaign manager and paid for other field organizers. The major labor unions backed the front-runner, Queens Borough President Melinda Katz. After a monthslong recount and court battle, Katz won by a mere 55 votes.

To the democratic socialists who knocked doors daily for Cabn, the WFP was the trusted elder statesman of the resurgent left. When a new public financing commission, with Cuomos tacit blessing, began to consider whether to ban fusion voting in New York, the DSA which would be entirely unimpacted released a statement in support of keeping fusion voting.

With or without fusion voting, the WFP has left a permanent mark on the political firmament. It has now existed longer than the American Labor Party, its legacy secure. You could see it as a successful extension of the strategies around since the big growth of unions in the 1930s, said Joshua Freeman, a professor of labor history at the CUNY Graduate Center.

If Warren is elected the next president, the WFP would have its first White House ally, which could yield all kinds of clout and spoils. But there are those on the left, dedicated to Sanders democratic socialism, who will long remember the day the WFP broke with them.

Its unclear what the WFP can do for a Warren campaign that has already raised a lot of money and spent heavily on building its field operation in early primary states. Even WFP-friendly activists have quietly questioned the wisdom of wading so early into a contest between two candidates beloved by the left, as well as the partys muddled defense of the decision to endorse Warren in the days after the announcement. Kang, the anti-IDC activist who helped convince the DSA to back Cynthia Nixon for governor a year ago, canceled her monthly donation to the WFP, redirecting it to the Sanders campaign instead.

In 2020, the liberal grassroots organizations of New York are plotting primary challenges to members of the Assembly deemed insufficiently progressive. Whether the WFP wants to partake in that battle, threatening its relationship with the Assembly speaker, remains to be seen.

The WFP 3.0., with its new national renown, may be its strongest iteration yet or the version that loses the zeitgeist altogether.

Correction: This article originally neglected to include Joel Rogers as a WFP co-founder.

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The WFP won. That's why it could go extinct. - City & State

Presenting the winners: Vogue Women Of The Year 2019 – VOGUE India

Now in its third edition, Vogue Women Of The Year awards has become synonymous with glamour, excellence and remarkable success. Weve raised the bar up another notch for 2019, bringing together the most inspiring names from all over the world to tip our hats to their unparalleled talent, and the countless hours they spent perfecting their crafts. From the countrys most successful sportswomen to business leaders, designers, supermodels, Bollywood celebrities and more, meet the winners of Vogue Women Of The Year 2019.

Viral YouTube star Lilly Singh is systematically dismantling the all-white world of suits that anchored late-night television. As the NBC newcomer and first Indian-origin female host on broadcast television in America, she has opened the doors for many others who look like her, and brought some much-needed diversity to our TV screens.

In 2007, Kunal Nayyars big break came when he starred as part of an oddball cast of geeks who charmed viewers in The Big Bang Theorywhich went on to become the longest-running multi-camera series in television history. While Nayyars Raj Koothrappali was a bit of a dorky clown, his intrinsic role in the group and the ability to keep it real set him apart. In 2015, the actor even penned a book titled Yes, My Accent Is Real to talk about how he wasnt just another Apu in America. After 12 years of relentless work and phenomenal success, he announced to the world his plan to take a break from social media.

At just 25 years old, Canadian model Winnie Harlow has already changed the face of fashion. Since she was discovered by Tyra Banks on the 21st series of Americas Next Top Model in 2014competing under her real name, Chantelle Brown-Youngshes been central in the move towards a more diverse and inclusive fashion industry. Harlow may not have won the competition, but she didnt need to. Shes fronted campaigns for the likes of Diesel and MAC Cosmetics, a regular on the catwalk and fashions front rows and appeared on dozens of magazine covers, all the while raising awareness about her skin condition, vitiligo (which causes patches of pigmentation loss).

It wouldnt be an exaggeration to say that Huda Kattan is currently the beauty worlds brightest star. She has close to 40 million Instagram followers, clocked 150 million YouTube views and owns a beauty brand with an estimated value of US$1.2 billion. When Kattan started out as a beauty blogger back in 2010, white influencers were the norm, a few African-American names were in the mix, but brown women were totally missing. Kattan has gone on to popularise her own Arabian style of makeup (which resonates strongly with brown women) all over the worlda near-miraculous phenomenon, as traditionally beauty ideals are passed from West to East, not the other way around.

Our Style Icon of the Year considers style an accessory to life, not the principal driver. A believer in fashion thats believable (but not basic), Anushka Sharmas is a covetable wardrobe youd want to replicate. Shes routinely spotted in a range of athleisure staples and casual wear, and white sneakers are more likely to show up than over-the-knee patent leather boots. Sometimes we push ourselves to wear extremely uncomfortable clothes. There are clothes meant for a specific reasonthey look beautiful on screen but theyre not the most amazing clothes to wear. In my own space I want to be comfortable in what Im wearing and, most importantly, it has to reflect me, she reveals.

As a child, Alia Bhatt would dance for her grandparents every Sunday. Her game of choice with her best friend was actress-actress. Left to play, shed conjure an imaginary audience to dance and act for. At 26, this prodigiously talented actor seems to have achieved everything. Gully Boy is on its way to the Oscars, her father is directing her in Sadak 2, and her upcoming feature, Brahmastra is frantically awaited. No wonder she has been crowned our Performer Of The Year this time around.

With her brand new venture into the world of beauty, Katrina Kaif might have just cracked the code to being an unpredictable enigma and yet coming as close to her fans as a superstar can at the same time. Her makeup brand, Kay by Katrina is an unapologetic, honest ode to beauty, and has been two and a half years in the making to speak Kaifs language. I want it to portray my philosophy. It definitely does not say, Look like me. I want you to have fun with my makeup and let it enhance the favourite parts of you, she says.

Acting was not part of the game plan for Taapsee Pannu. She had an engineering degree and was preparing for the Common Admission Test (CAT) to apply to business schools. So when did she decide to actually become an actor? She says it was after she completed her debut film, a Tamil feature called Aadukalam (2011). Cut to 2019, Pannu is a well-known face in the Hindi film industry, with blockbusters like Pink and Badla to her credit. Her formula for success? Being slow but steady, and accepting your own reality.

Ananya Panday may be just one film old right now, but she has already made a lasting impression in the Hindi film industry. After a prestigious debut in Karan Johars Student Of The Year 2 (the first SOTY launched the careers of the likes of Alia Bhatt, Varun Dhawan and Sidharth Malhotra) earlier this year, the 20-year-old actor is now gearing up for her upcoming feature, Pati Patni Our Woh, where she will share screen space with Kartik Aaryan and Bhumi Pednekar. Panday has been ticking off everything that sums up a stars listshe had signed on as Lakms youngest brand ambassador even before SOTY 2 released, made her runway debut at Lakm Fashion Week winter/festive 2019 for Arpita Mehta and Anushree Reddys show, and has now become a regular on best dressed lists. Today, her bag of endorsements also includes denim brand Only and Gillette Venus.

In Ranveer Singh, we have a leading man who takes his work seriously but not himself. Quixotic, intense, angsty and the class clown all rolled into onehere is a man who makes the movies more fun than they have been in a long time. Over the years, he has combined a hyperbolic goofball public persona with a versatile body of workincluding Zoya Akhtars Gully Boy, Indias official entry to the Oscars this year, and Kabir Khans upcoming 83, which will see him playing the countrys first cricket World Cup-winning captain, Kapil Dev.

Growing up as the son of Mammootty, superstar of the Malayalam film world, Dulquer Salmaan had a vantage point on fame and cinema that few do. But he didnt really want to act. He was always in awe of his father, so he felt that acting was that one thing he couldnt do. My biggest fear was Id be a humongous failure son of my dad, and that I would lose it all, he says. Today, Salmaan has some 30 acting awards to his name, and is a consistent name in listicles for the best-dressed and the influential. Clearly he was wrong.

To call Zoya Akhtar unstoppable would be an understatement. Her latest film, Gully Boy, was recently announced as Indias official entry to the Oscars for 2019, and she also produced her first web series, Made In Heaven, for Prime Video earlier this year. Considering her wide range of as a filmmakerher earlier work includes the likes of Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara (2011) and Dil Dhadakne Do (2015)its not surprising that shes considered as a fine storyteller and observer of subcultures by critics and audiences alike.

Anyone who grew up in the 90s can attest to the all-pervasive message of Benettons ad campaigns: joy, colour, celebration, acceptance, love. Taking the brands ideals of multiculturalism, diversity and inclusivity forward is its new artistic director, Jean-Charles de Castelbajac, who has been designing clothes since 1968. The long-time champion of diversity believes that fashion has a responsibility, and that you can say important things with creativityfashion but with a cause.

She was the Vogue India Fashion Fund winner in 2014, the Woolmark International Prize Winner in 2018, and this year at the Vogue Women Of The Year Awards, shes Designer Of The Year. Ruchika Sachdeva has carved a space for herself in Indias fashion landscape in less than a decade since she founded her label, Bodice, in 2011, dedicated to impeccable construction, menswear tailoring traditions and Indian crafts. Her collections may look deceptively simple, but actually boast of rich, complex textures, a detailed analysis and research of handlooms, and an overarching message of thoughtful design.

An international debut in 2016 at Louis Vuitton catapulted Pooja Mors continental career shift, where part of the perks include being shot by the best photographers in business (Annie Leibovitz, Steven Meisel and the late Peter Lindbergh), a stream of global campaigns and a platform for championing causes. Almost 16 seasons, 68 runways and 76 looks later, Mor has made the worlds runways her stage.

Garima Arora has had quite the year. She became the first female Indian chef to receive a Michelin star for her restaurant Gaa in Bangkok in 2018, and was also awarded Asias Best Female Chef 2019 at the Worlds 50 Best Restaurants awards. Last month in Mumbai, the 33-year-old chef launched Food Forward India (FFI), a culinary initiative that brings together people at the forefront of the Indian food industry to re-examine, re-evaluate and reintroduce Indian cuisine to the world. The cub pharma reporter-turned-chef, who worked with Gordon Ramsay, Ren Redzepi and Gaggan Anand before opening her restaurant, is applying her journalistic curiosity and chefs laurels to be the change she wants to see.

In 2013, Heena Sidhu received a phone call that would change her lifeshe got an opportunity to compete at the World Cup in Munich, Germany. The 30-year-old pistol shooter went on to beat the then world champion with a record score of 203.8, and became the first Indian pistol shooter to win gold at the World Cup. The following year, news emerged that she has made history as the first Indian shooter to hold the World No. 1 title.

Apart from record-breaking firsts on the track, Dutee Chand is also Indias first openly lesbian athlete. The professional sprinter announced that she was in a same-sex relationship earlier this year, and earned high praise from many quarters, including talk show host Ellen DeGeneres. Just over a month ago, Chand clinched the gold medal in 100 metres at the World University Games in Naples, making her the first-ever Indian woman track and field athlete to do so, clocking 11.32 seconds. Next up on her list? My ultimate aim is to bring home the gold medal for India in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, she reveals.

From setting up the 10-acre-large arts village Kaladham in the JSW township in Vijayanagar to starting Art India, the countrys leading magazine for contemporary art, Sangita Jindal is a patron whose engagement with art goes far beyond the act of acquiring. A champion of Indian art for more than a quarter of a century, as the chairperson of JSW Foundation, the non-profit arm of JSW (a colossal steel and energy conglomerate run by husband Sajjan), Sangita proactively promotes heritage as well as contemporary art.

It could be refusing to sit on a segregated bus seat, pledging to donate half of their wealth to charity or skipping school to protest. For social entrepreneur Neera Nundy, it was a coming together of her desire to lead and prove herself. As the co-founder of Dasra (an organisation that catalyses Indias strategic philanthropy movement), she has an ambitious goal to transform a billion lives with dignity and equity. Shes a role model of leadership today, proving that it takes vision, a real understanding of ones skills and a lot of hard work to truly make a difference.

A 30-year-old with an annual turnover of over Rs 300 crores, Foodhall founder Avni Biyani has captured the zeitgeist with a food chain that brings trending, premier foods to our pantries. From a starter team of 70 people, Foodhall has now expanded to over 800 employees in the gourmet food space as Biyani gears to open her 10th store in Delhi. The stock, too, has swelled almost double-fold in the eight years since the brand launched in 2011. From introducing India to 2,000 foreign items, they now boast an international stock of over 7,000 items. Biyani is unstoppable. With an app underway, she plans to kick off her digital expansion soon too.

There were no case studies, no reference points, no guidelines when Falguni Nayar decided to sell something as tactile as makeup and skincare products online. She noticed how her friends in the States were dependent on shopping on Amazon. She noticed the paucity of a good beauty sale experience in India and combined the two to launch Nykaa in 2012. Today, her empire is worth more than 750 million dollars. She could not define the Vogue Business Person Of The Year award betterrevolutionising the beauty industry via technology, product curation and catalogue and influencing a vast majority of the country.

28 unseen celebrity pictures from Vogue Women Of The Year awards 2018

9 biggest moments from Vogue Women Of The Year Awards 2017

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Presenting the winners: Vogue Women Of The Year 2019 - VOGUE India

Pop-up art show opens this week in Duluth – Duluth News Tribune

Embassy 35, according to its event page on Facebook, is a space for off-beat designers, musicians, and visual artists to freely collaborate and dream up a next generation venue that caters to emerging art and technology; a place where we can redefine AWEsome (sic), a place where we can play with the future.

Its a test concept for what could evolve into a larger idea, said Troy Rogers, a science-minded musician who performs as Robot Rickshaw. For now, its a work and play space and also a place where were inviting other creators to come in and do something.

Rogers and Daniel Benoit are behind the concept. The latter has worked in theater in addition to site-specific projections, including one that played across the Blacklist building during Homegrown Music Festival. The music lineup includes The Crunchy Bunch on Friday, Oct. 11, and Zeb or Zeke and the Run Away Screamings on Saturday, Oct. 12.

Embassy 35 is among a handful of local art exhibitions currently showing at local galleries/studios/spaces, ranging from Art In Conflict: An Exhibition by the Museum of Russian Art at the Tweed Museum to Swedish Folk Painting at the Nordic Center.

AICHO

202 W. Second St.

Pat Kruse and Rabbett Before Horses Strickland, both from the Red Cliff Band of Lake Superior Chippewa, are the featured artists in Mniidoos and Wiigwaas, an exhibition that opens at 5:30 p.m. Friday, Oct. 11.

The show has paintings by Strickland. His work, influenced by European Renaissance and Baroque artists, tells the story of Nanabozho. Kruse is an award-winning birchbark and quillwork artist who creates basketry and also teaches. Exhibition runs through October.

"Minnesota Black Fine Art Show" courtesy of the Duluth Art Institute

506 W. Michigan St.

Now showing in the John Steffl Gallery at the art institute: Minnesota Black Fine Art Show, a juried traveling collection of pieces by new and emerging artists of African descent, including local favorites like Carla Hamilton (mixed media), Ivy Vainio (photography) and Terresa Moses (graphic design). This is on display through Jan. 2, 2020. Its Minnesota stops include Austin, Mankato, St. Cloud and Minneapolis.

Meanwhile, the George Morrison Gallery has Jean: The Inspiration Behind the Birkenstein Arts Movement. The works by the teacher-activist range from drawings to portrait work. Claudia Faiths Family, in the Corridor Gallery, has colorful paintings of farm life.

Rachel Hayes and Eric Sall's exhibition "Affinities" is on view at the Joseph Nease Gallery. Image courtesy of Joseph Nease Gallery

23 W. First St.

Its Rachel Hayes work in the window of the Joseph Nease Gallery, a multicolored draped piece that throws stained-glass like shadows on the floor when the sun is just right. Hayes and her husband, Eric Sall, have Affinities, a two-artist show, now at the privately owned gallery at 23 W. First St. Affinities is on display through Nov. 30.

Hayes and Sall live in Tulsa, Okla., with their children. Both are described as nationally-recognized, mid-career artists, and both are big, bold and bright with their work. Salls work is abstract and textured and unpredictable; Hayes is known for her installations, fabrics and layers that create light, shadow and movement.

Chris King's work is part of "Born to Kill" at UWS. Image courtesy of Kruk Gallery

University of Wisconsin-Superior

Holden Fine Arts Center, Belknap and Catlin, Superior

Humor and art are on display during at the University of Wisconsin-Superior, with Born to Kill, an exhibition by John Sebelius and Chris King. The former is a nationally recognized artist whose reach has included Details magazine and The Tonight Show with Jay Leno. He was named Best Artist of 2017 by the people of Lawrence, Kan., and the Kansas City Chiefs made him featured artist for My Cause My Cleats in back-to-back years. King, meanwhile, is a Louisanna-based artist who works in painting, sculpture, performance and video. The artists will host a public workshop geared toward veterans from 2-4 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 10, at the Kruk Gallery. The opening reception is 5-7 p.m. Friday, Oct. 11. There will be a participatory comedy club as part of the installation.

Exhibition runs through Nov. 9.

The Nordic Center has a three-artist show of folk art. Image courtesy of the Nordic Center

23 N. Lake Ave.

Three regional artists known for their Scandinavian aesthetic will show off Swedish folk paintings at an exhibition that has its opening at 5 p.m. Friday, Oct. 11, at the Nordic Center.

Judith Kjenstad, Pieper Fleck Bloomquist and Alison Aune are described as taking traditional Swedish art motifs and using them in contemporary work.

Kjenstad is behind a mural outside Ingebretsens Nordic Marketplace in Minneapolis. Bloomquist and Aune learned the traditional style in Sweden.

Swedish Folk Painting: A Revival is open weekends through Nov. 8.

"Collective Farm Harvest" is among the pieces at the Tweed Museum of Art. Photo courtesy of the Tweed Museum of Art

University of Minnesota Duluth

1201 Ordean Ct.

Art in Conflict is a collection of 34 pieces, on loan from the Museum of Russian Art in Minneapolis, made between Stalins death in 1953 to the end of the Soviet era in 1991. The paintings, sculptures, etc., are a mix of political and social: So much Gorbachev, but also women at work. There is also a hammer and sickle sculpture and a touch of humor. This exhibition opens at 6 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 10, and includes curator talks by Maria Zavialova and Mark Meister, director of the Museum of Russian Art. Runs through Aug. 9, 2020.

Zeitgeist Arts Building

222 E. Superior St.

Moira Villiard, among the most recognizable regional artists, has a show Rights of the Child now showing in the Zeitgeist Atrium. The paintings and posters consider the rights of children right now and the idea of doublethink holding contradictory beliefs about an issue. Villiard is behind a bunch of public art, including the crosswalks project from this past summer and the mural of Chief Buffalo at Gichi-ode' Akiing, the former Lake Place Park.

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Pop-up art show opens this week in Duluth - Duluth News Tribune

How New Musical The Wrong Man Made It to New York With Help From the Hamilton Team – Playbill.com

The year is 2010, and singer-songwriter Ross Golan is playing his one-man acoustic show The Wrong Man in a friends Hollywood Hills living room.

The music, which Golan had been working on sporadically since 2004, tells the story of a man wrongfully accused of murder who is convicted and sentenced to death.

I've always thought it was weird that people tend not to believe someone who says theyre innocent, and I wanted to tell a story from the perspective of somebody who has to convince the listener that hes not the one who did it, Golan tells Playbill.

Long before the Serial podcast and Netflixs Making a Murder brought the conversation around wrongful convictions into the cultural zeitgeist, Golan played the show in his friends living rooms, everywhere from Los Angeles to Sydney, Australia.

Now, 15 years since Golan wrote the shows title track, the underground musical has captured the attention of a much wider audience thanks to first a concept album produced by Grammy-nominated Ricky Reed and now an Off-Broadway staging at MCC Theater. Hamilton alum Tommy Kail came on board to direct the staging, after bumping into a music industry exec in the subway who was familiar with The Wrong Man.

When I heard the music I responded to my instinct, which was to go with the music. You have to listen to those things because they dont happen often, Kail says.

It felt like essential storytelling, and used contemporary music, which I really respond to.

To round out the creative team, Kail called Travis Wall, a two-time Emmy winning choreographer, and fellow Hamilton Tony winner Alex Lacamoire, marking a reunion for the pair.

Tommy had given me a demo of the score, I listened to the whole thing through and I was on board. I loved the way the story unfolded, I couldnt wait to hear the next track, Lacamoire says.

We have such a long history together, we read each other and its a constant faith. If Tommy calls you, you say yes because it's going to be a high quality project no matter what I get to work with one of my greatest friends in the world.

The Wrong Man is a sung-through musical, packed with catchy pop ballads, high energy hip-hop numbers and folksy tracks, a reflection of Golans songwriting rsum, which features chart-topping collaborations with the likes of Ariana Grande, Justin Bieber, Maroon 5, and Selena Gomez.

It is also a dance-heavy show, with the seven ensemble members onstage for most of the 90-minute run time, using movement to communicate pivotal plot points

Wall, of So You Think You Can Dance fame, says he knew he was the right person for the job within five minutes of listening to the score.

This story is heartbreaking and passionate and a lot of it needed to be told through movement to help the audience along the journey, he tells Playbill.

[The music] is new, it's fresh, I haven't heard it before. It's something that I felt like I would have a home in, and not feel like I was coming out to New York and just getting plugged into a musical theatre piece.

Three-time Tony nominee Joshua Henry, most recently seen in Carousel on Broadway, was brought in for a reading in 2018, and has been with the show in the lead role of Duran ever since.

Ryan Vasquez, who also participated in the reading, left the company of Hamilton (he is the first and only actor to portray the roles of Alexander Hamilton, Aaron Burr, George Washington, Hercules Mulligan/James Madison, and Marquis de Lafayette/Thomas Jefferson) to join the project.

I heard the music about a year ago when Josh and I did a reading of it. Afterwards I was so in love with the score I emailed the whole creative team and said, 'Even if there's a way to sing some oohs on this, anything you need I'll be there, Vasquez says.

Then out of the blue I got the call that we were doing it at MCC. It's cool to create something that's your own, and that's uniquely yours.

Henry says he was looking for a new musical sound when he came across The Wrong Man.

I was looking for something new, I didn't want to do another revival, he says.

I remember hearing this music for the first time the melodies are incredible, the emotional journey of the story is so well constructed. It's a very current sound, he continued.

The process of working on this show was so incredible, hopefully there's a next time I mean, [Broadway] is just a couple of streets away.

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How New Musical The Wrong Man Made It to New York With Help From the Hamilton Team - Playbill.com

BFI London Review: ‘White Riot’ is a Thrilling, Incendiary Look at Punk’s Influence on Politics – The Film Stage

BFI London 2019 ReviewIndependent; 80 minutes

Director: Rubika Shah

There was a time when it seemed music might have the power to change the worldor at the very least, move the needle. The knee-jerk reaction to such a statement is to think of the protest songs of the 1960s. While that music certainly impacted the zeitgeist, the real sonic boom was caused by a group of artists, activists, and musicians in mid-1970s England. Their efforts led to the birth of Rock Against Racism (RAR), a cultural movement founded to fight back against the brutal, ugly, violent, and pervasive racism of the neo-Nazi organizations like the National Front.

However, as filmmaker Rubika Shahs thrilling, incendiary documentary White Riot shows, prejudice was not limited to members of the NF. It was ingrained in British society, abetted by law enforcement, and cheerfully brought to TV screens on BBC minstrel shows. Our job, explains RAR founder Red Saunders, was to peel away the Union Jack to reveal the swastika. The methods were more cultural than political think concerts and fanzines and eventually paid off.

The RAR story is well-known to many, and that familiarity will be a negative for those viewers. But for those who may not be steeped in 70s punk history, the effect of seeing this spirit in action is downright inspiring. Making its world premiere at the 2019 BFI London Film Festival and based on her own short film, Shahs White Riot is a stunning film. The archival footage is often terrifying; seeing legitimately large crowds of NF supporters marching through London is shocking. (It is hard not to wonder where all of these folks are today.) The interviews, with the passionate Saunders and other RAR figureheads, are ever-compelling.

And the music, of course, is gloriousshrapnel-filled punk from the Clash, x-Ray Spex, Tom Robinson, and a fascinating, short-lived Asian punk band called Alien Kulture. Shahs film opens with violent footage from a Sham 69 gig, and this air of intense provocation exists all through White Riot. Much of this, of course, was due to the existence of the National Front. Graffiti (ITS OUR COUNTRY LETS WIN IT BACK) was backed by attacks in the street. Even major musicians backed the words of politicians like Enoch Powell; you may never look at Eric Clapton the same way again. It was against this backdrop that Rock Against Racism began. Guerilla-style, hands-on activities were the order of the day, but it was not easy. Saunders and others face death threats as they battled the lingering stench of colonialism.

Those expecting a deep focus on the Clash (based on the films title) may be disappointed; Joe Strummer and company are mainly represented near end of White Riot. An RAR concert featuring the band, dubbed the Carnival Against the Nazis, provides Shahs film with a suitable ending. It began with a thousands-strong march starting at Trafalgar Square, and closed with a concert at Victoria Park. The march, and the cacophony of noise that accompanied it, makes for a joyous conclusion. Its a reminder of the power of positive energy in the face of racial division, and a suitable middle-finger to the politicians and everyday racists who still haunt the land.

Whats most unsettling and provocative about White Riot is how current it feels. Because of this, perhaps White Riots greatest achievement is that it takes something that can cause sneers and eye-rollingcommitted cultural and political actionand make it feel both necessary and triumphant. As Saunders states at films end, one of the messages of Rock Against Racism was its lesson for ordinary people. It showed that we can do things, Saunders says. We can change the world. Its a wondrous thought. And Rubika Shahs White Riot shows that it is, indeed, possible.

White Riot premiered at the BFI London Film Festival.

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BFI London Review: 'White Riot' is a Thrilling, Incendiary Look at Punk's Influence on Politics - The Film Stage

Former Dance Theatre of Harlem star Chyrstyn Fentroy is leaping up the ranks at Boston Ballet – The Boston Globe

She has been tremendous, said Mikko Nissinen, artistic director of Boston Ballet. Shes moving forward like a tornado.

Fentroys interest in dance began with her parents, who were also her teachers. Her father coached a dance team in hip-hop and jazz, and her mother, who performed with regional companies in California and at the Cairo Opera House, trained her in classical ballet. Fentroy can describe the studio where her parents taught, the Peninsula School of Performing Arts in Palos Verdes, Calif., in vivid detail she practically grew up there.

My parents would be teaching, and I would be stuck there, especially Saturdays. Id be there all day, Fentroy recalled. When she wasnt in class, she passed the time by riding her scooter around the parking lot and sneaking into a utility closet to watch movies. I would eventually wander off, but I never went far.

Fentroys parents divorced when she was about 7. Her father remained her teacher for a few years, but the budding dancer was primarily raised by her mother. Ruth Fentroy said she ate, slept, and breathed ballet through Chyrstyns childhood, though she declined several contracts so as not to interfere with her daughters schooling.

But Fentroy wasnt certain dance was her passion until she left home. As the teachers daughter, it was easier for me to slip through the cracks and get away with not pointing my toes, goofing around at the back of the room, she said.

Still, Fentroy was stung by the remarks she overheard in the studio some peers suggested she got desirable parts and solos only because the teachers were her parents.

Leaving California after high school for the Joffrey Ballet School in New York marked a shift for Fentroy: She was beginning to define herself as an artist on her own terms. Her craft, she realized, could be about more than just flashy tricks.

Fentroys time at the Joffrey, while formative, was challenging. She was rattled by insecurities had she fallen behind her peers by goofing off in her mothers classes? I was so angry all the time, she recalled. I had to learn how to love myself through my flaws.

After two years at the Joffrey, Fentroy joined Dance Theatre of Harlem, and a different realization unfolded: She started to recognize herself as an artist of color.

At the time, the Harlem company founded for black dancers during the civil rights movement was rebuilding after an eight-year hiatus. In a 2017 interview with Kinfolk magazine, artistic director Virginia Johnson said the closure had meant there was a generation of little girls who didnt see brown ballerinas.

Fentroy had grown up hearing about the Dance Theatre of Harlem from her mother, who is white. The family owned one of the companys signature shows, Creole Giselle, on VHS. But Ruth Fentroy, who said she doesnt see color, didnt raise her daughter to think of race as a major part of her identity.

In the studio, Ruth Fentroy said, I never felt that there was a problem with that or that she was overlooked for anything.

As a dance student in New York, though, Fentroy had begun to hear a new kind of snide remark: She only got the part because shes the black girl.

Still, she didnt seriously reckon with the lack of diversity in ballet and her own position as a black ballerina until she was at Dance Theatre of Harlem, surrounded by other dancers who werent white.

Its kind of funny, Fentroy said. I didnt focus on being a dancer of color until I joined that company. It didnt become such a big thing in my head until it was the thing. And even then, it felt foreign for a while.

She said she owes much of her personal and artistic growth to her time at the Dance Theatre of Harlem. I started to learn how to put me into dancing instead of just doing exactly what I was told.

A choreographers dancer, in the words of Darrell Grand Moultrie, one of the companys choreographers, Fentroy was one of the most prominent performers at Dance Theatre of Harlem.

She knows how to remove herself from the real world and put herself in the world of choreography, Moultrie said. To watch the dancer get lost in your movement, its the most exciting moment for a choreographer because you know the dancer is free.

Virginia Johnson considered Fentroy an important collaborator in reviving the company. When I was thinking about ballets Id want to bring to the company, Id think, Chyrstyn would be great in that, Johnson recalled.

Fentroy caught the attention of New York Times dance critic Brian Seibert, who praised her as the most consistent performer in Moultries dance, Vessels, in 2015. As the company rushes forward, Seibert wrote, Ms. Fentroy was a reminder of qualities it should not leave behind.

After a few seasons with the Dance Theatre of Harlem, Fentroy began to feel restless. The company didnt usually run the full-length story ballets she dreamed of performing. The touring schedule was onerous, and as a principal dancer at a small company, Fentroy was onstage more than most: I was always doing three or four ballets.

She also felt that her growth had plateaued. Where I was, I was sort of at the top, and I had no one to look up to, she said.

So she and Jorge Villarini a dance partner at the company who had also become her boyfriend started looking elsewhere, auditioning at several companies as a couple. Then Fentroy got an offer from Boston Ballet.

The moment she got this contract, I said, you go there, Villarini said. Ill be right behind you.

For Fentroy, the decision to leave the Dance Theatre of Harlem was fraught. The company had given her so much, and she felt committed to its mission, but she was hungry for something more.

They did not hesitate to express that they didnt want me to go, she said.

It was very difficult to lose my best dancer, Johnson said. And it was difficult to feel like I was building something with someone who was no longer there.

At Boston Ballet, Fentroy would be one of just a few black dancers. The experience could be frustrating, she said, especially during her first year with the company.

In the dressing room, Fentroy recalled, some peers laughed at the way her hair the thing that makes me look most ethnic sprang out when she loosened it from her ballet bun.

That was hurtful for a while, she said, but it allowed me to teach people that its not OK to make comments [even if] they dont mean any harm by it.

Being able to withstand the feeling of isolation makes me stronger, Fentroy said. So far, she said, her colleagues at Boston Ballet have been receptive to teaching moments like those in the dressing room.

I dont think Ive ever encountered a person here who isnt open to hearing what I have to say.

Since she started at Boston Ballet in 2017, Fentroy has performed as the Snow Queen in the Nutcracker and worked with formidable choreographers like William Forsythe. She has wowed audiences, critics, and choreographers with her musicality and precision. Her performance in Forsythes Playlist (EP), a ballet set to contemporary pop music, earned her more praise in the New York Times: Seibert described her as relaxed, charming, infectiously joyful.

Ruth Fentroy is ecstatic beyond words that her daughter is dancing at a prestigious company with a bigger focus on classical ballet. Though she didnt pursue performance in the same way her daughter has, shes thrilled and blessed that [Chyrstyn] has attained the level I always wanted.

Chyrstyn has delivered and delivered and delivered, said Nissinen. The cream rises to the top.

Hours before the Friday evening performance at Jacobs Pillow, Fentroy managed to get some alone time at the Southfield Pub, reading a weathered copy of Wally Lambs I Know This Much Is True, which she picked up in New York years ago.

I find my zen when Im alone, Fentroy said. She was sharing a hotel room with another dancer, and the dressing room at Jacobs Pillow a rustic campus in the Berkshires wasnt especially spacious.

Fentroys one-bedroom apartment in Medford had been crowded lately, too. After a brief hiatus from dance, Villarini was hired at Boston Ballet in July, and moved in with Fentroy. At around the same time, Ruth Fentroy relocated to Massachusetts to be closer to her daughter, and stayed in the apartment with her two cats before moving into her own new home in Swampscott.

With Fentroys dog, Rupert, in the mix, it was like a zoo at my house for two weeks, Fentroy said.

Though Fentroy and Villarini were partners at the Dance Theatre of Harlem, the two are now in different ranks at Boston Ballet: Shes a soloist, and hes a corps member.

She has a lot more on her plate than I do, said Villarini. While he tends to take a patient approach to dance, Fentroy is such a go-getter. He added, She cant leave the studio unless she gets it right.

Does he ever feel competitive with her? Our hopes and aspirations are not the same, Villarini said. We have to give each other room to fulfill that.

Villarini and Fentroy have matching tattoos. (The ink has to be covered for performances, of course.) The design is a line drawing originally sketched by John Lennon a minimalist portrait of himself and Yoko Ono.

Have you heard the music they created together? Its weird, Fentroy said with a laugh. He definitely brought out something for me that I didnt know was there, which is a parallel to them.

At the Friday evening show at Jacobs Pillow, Fentroy performed a playful duet with Desean Taber to Khalids Location an excerpt from Forsythes Playlist (EP). Her movements were crisp and energetic, embodying the digital zeitgeist of the song. She grinned earnestly through the brief performance, and let out a tiny giggle or two.

During an after-show talk, she said she likes to show the audience her joy: I love to make myself laugh.

Ruth Fentroy, who was moving into her new home in Swampscott at the time, wasnt in the Berkshires to watch the Jacobs Pillow performances. But seeing her daughter dance is usually a priority: Even when she lived in California, she frequently flew across the country for shows.

The proud mother often watches from backstage, though she gets a special thrill out of sitting in the audience and hearing strangers react to her daughters dancing.

From the neighboring seats, she can hear them saying, Oh my gosh, that girl, that girl, that girl.

Marella Gayla can be reached at marella.gayla@gmail.com. Follow her on Twitter@marellagayla.

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Former Dance Theatre of Harlem star Chyrstyn Fentroy is leaping up the ranks at Boston Ballet - The Boston Globe

Review: Robyn Doolittle’s new book Had It Coming is an unflinching look at the #MeToo era – The Globe and Mail

Every year new zeitgeist-y words are added to the dictionary recently it was the Bechdel Test but in 2019, I wish we could take some words out, specifically nuance, a word that seems to have lost its meaning from sheer overuse. When used in marketing copy for book promotion, the word nuanced is meant to soothe the average reader and signal that the book is not a polemic. Its no surprise that its overuse is happening during an epidemic of journalistic both-sides-ism, and a time when books about the whirlwind #MeToo era are proliferating.

So when I read it on the jacket copy of Had It Coming: Whats Fair in the Age of #MeToo, the excellent new book by reporter Robyn Doolittle, my heart sank a little. Was it going to suffer from a watering-down of the issues, or build on the groundbreaking work she accomplished with the Unfounded investigative series, one of the most read stories in The Globe and Mails history, which created real administrative change in police departments across Canada? Luckily, the jacket also promises it will be informed and thats exactly what it is how is it that Canada has the most progressive sexual-assault laws on the books, but so few people with power understand it or use it properly?

Doolittle writes in the introduction that it would be cathartic to write a book about why women are feeling such fury in the wake of #MeToo, but its been done. Its true that literary treatises by Rebecca Solnit or Rebecca Traister and others have that ground well covered. And its also true that perhaps readers want fewer confessions or emotions, and more solutions or in-depth explorations. Doolittle explains that she wont shy away from the tough questions and offers us a glimpse of what women really say when theyre talking to their friends.

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Looming over the introduction is the spectre of woke Twitter and cancel-culture, which is a false set-up, given that there are few actual consequences for strangers being momentarily mad at you on social media Ive lived it; its humbling, but hardly the end of the world. The systems of power are still very much the same no matter how uncomfortable you might feel for a social-media misstep. What Doolittles book does do is take a good hard look at the systems we do have and offer us the undisputed facts about them, and, for that, its a valuable addition to the canon of #MeToo texts coming out this year. Thats just not what the introduction sets us up for.

Doolittle is an excellent reporter. She goes to the experts and then uses the expansive nature of a book to go deeper into the factual material they offer her, and then evaluates how things have and havent changed post-Weinstein, with a few, carefully-selected and only-when-necessary personal anecdotes peppered in.

The book begins with an admission one familiar to anyone who was a teenager 15-20 years ago recounting how after hearing about the Kobe Bryant case, she did not believe the complainant. Its sometimes difficult to remember that when we were the age of the young women spearheading consent culture in 2019, many of us, myself included, were making Monica Lewinsky jokes.

She realizes as an adult how misguided she was and also why this was a common way for women to react what did Bryants complainant expect, going to his hotel room? This sections placement at the start of the book is a generational framing that helps us understand where the author comes from, and how her views shifted before and during the writing of the Unfounded report. The rest of the book contains fewer personal anecdotes and relies more on factual accounts, which is where Doolittles natural strengths are as a writer.

She asks the important questions and looks at each essay topic from a variety of angles. Some chapters start off looking a bit controversial, like the one on the Aziz Ansari debacle, a case that seems cleanly split along generational lines; or why the popular Tea and Consent PSA (developed by the Thames Valley Police, it explains the concept of consent using the metaphor of offering others a cup of tea) isnt useful or realistic for teens; and the redemption of Justice Robin "couldnt you keep your knees shut Camp, a federal judge who was removed from the bench for his mishandling of a sexual-assault case. But each section is carefully considered, and offers balanced takes that still use basic feminist principles as their starting point and a given. You may not agree with everything she says, but Id be surprised if any reader will end a chapter feeling as though she didnt consider and take seriously their point of view.

The Camp chapter, for example, is a stand-out, in part because it is a rare example of someone in power who was willing to look at his own biases and shift his point of view, and a reporter who was willing to push him in the right directions to tell those uncomfortable truths. It makes an interesting companion text to books like Sarah Schulmans Conflict is Not Abuse, or Kai-Cheng Thoms I Hope We Choose Love, books that ask us to look beyond systems of punishment for answers to how society should deal with abuse.

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The chapters I appreciated the most were the ones near the end where Doolittle examined the feminist generational divide and interviewed both Germaine Greer and Susan Brownmiller, once iconic feminists whose texts are now considered problematic by many on issues of race, sexuality and gender identity. She goes to great lengths to humanize them, despite disagreeing with them on several key points. Whats missing, though, are interviews with 2019s Greers and Brownmillers. She does interview teenagers, but the absence of interviews with say, Jessica Valenti, Lindy West, Roxane Gay, remains a glaring omission, when giving so much space to two leaders in the second-wave feminist movement.

The chapter on the neurobiology of trauma is particularly strong, dealing with how police often discredit complainants who react in ways that dont seem logical. She examines what critics of the neurobiology of trauma say and comes to her own conclusions. Again and again, she takes thorny, divisive issues and lays them plain on the examining table.

The book is emerging in the middle of what the Guardian calls an unprecedented wave of books on the #MeToo era. Some wont feel relevant in even two years time, but Had It Coming will because its a decisive snapshot of this moment in history that considers where we were, and sets the stage for where we might go, and will no doubt be used to describe this moment long after weve moved on to a new normal.

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Review: Robyn Doolittle's new book Had It Coming is an unflinching look at the #MeToo era - The Globe and Mail

Alan Dershowitz and the wheel of pain – Columbia Journalism Review

Attorney Alan Dershowitz speaks during a news interview outside of Manhattan Federal Court on March 6, 2019, in New York. AP Photo/Frank Franklin II 1: A Man Accused

Alan Dershowitz wont hang up the phone. Hes breathing heavily into the receiver. Its August 10, the morning Jeffrey Epstein was found dead in his jail cell. At first Dershowitz wants to go off the record, and I agree. He doesnt say anything interesting, just the same protestations that hes made on Twitter and television for years. But when I start asking questions, he begins to berate me. Were on the record now, I tell him. You dont get to insult me off the record.

So he begins breathing into the phone. He will not hang up. He does not know what to say.

If you dont want to talk, you can hang up, I say. But I am not going off the record if you are just going to call me fifth rate.

Silence. Breathing. I wont have it written that I hung up on a reporter! Hes shouting. We do this a couple more times. I take notes. Hes livid that I wont go off the record. He threatens to sue me. Tells me I am a nobody. My tape recorder is somewhere at the bottom of my purse.

I am talking to Dershowitz because Michael Sitrick, a crisis PR guy who has worked with Harvey Weinstein and R. Kelly, thought I should. Sitrick is a fixer who has made a name for himself cleaning up the messes of rich and powerful men (and some women, too).

Dershowitz is the high-profile lawyer who worked for Epstein. He has also been accused of having sex with an underage girl at Epsteins mansion. Dershowitz is outraged by that allegation and has been asserting his innocence for more than five years, to anyone who will listen. Two days before Sitrick reached out to me, New York magazine ran a story about Dershowitz, Alan Dershowitz Cannot Stop Talking.

But its worse now, because Sitrick and Dershowitz are convinced that the New Yorker, which published a damning profile of Dershowitz in late July, is targeting him because of his pro-Israel views. He says the reporter on the story, Connie Bruck, is after him.

Mike, am I the lead steer? Id asked Sitrick when he called. The lead steer is Sitricks idea that all it takes to change the direction of a media stampede is for one journalist to take a contrarian view of the story. Its a theory that holds well for ranchers trying to redirect a stampede. And its worked for Sitrick, who has orchestrated positive press for some odious clients.

When I asked Sitrick if I am the lead steer a laugh was his only answer.

ICYMI:The #MeToo story BuzzFeed, NYT and more didnt want to publish

One of the reasons Dershowitz is so scared is that the New Yorker has come to dominate the #MeToo story. Investigations by Ronan Farrow and Jane Mayer about Harvey Weinstein marked a turning point. Jodi Kantor and Megan Twohey at the New York Times were first, technically, but the New Yorker helped catch the zeitgeist. After Weinstein went down, it felt like man after man followed. There were stories about Matt Lauer, Kevin Spacey, and Louis CK, among dozens of others. The New Yorker shared a Pulitzer with the Times for its work.

No walk of life was untouched. There was the Shitty Media Men list, where Moira Donegan codified the whisper network and sparked a lawsuit that continues to drag on. (The lawsuit was filed by Stephen Elliott, someone I used to work with and for at The Rumpus. I tweeted about his horrible treatment of me and I felt like I had shown the whole world the throbbing mangled mess of my insides.)

It was a black hole of pain that sucked us all in. Either we were complicit or we were victims. Either we had been groped by bosses or furtively worried wed done the groping. Or maybe worse, that we had seen it and done nothing. Or maybe we had, as Farrow reported in his piece on Joi Ito at the MIT Media Lab, willfully ignored the facts in pursuit of money. In group text messages and in private groups on Facebook, women shared repressed memories of childhood, college, abusive partners. A media man I dated once told me he and his friends had plans if they were ever #MeTooed.

Why would you need a plan? Just dont harass people, I said.

He shrugged. You never can tell what will happen.

It didnt take long for people to say, Weve gone too far. In fact, I heard the phrase, #MeToo has gone too far from a powerful person in publishing at a party in Washington, DC in October 2017, the same month that the Weinstein stories broke. Thats how long it didnt take. The cry of cancelled men was that they supported #MeToo, its just that the movement got things wrong in their case.

ICYMI:Meet the 26-year-old who has been laid off three times

The first time I talked to Alan Dershowitz was July 29, the day the New Yorker published its piece. The story was damning. It outlined darker points of Dershowitzs career: rhetorically advocating sex with minors, his relationship with and vigorous defense of Epstein against allegations of rape and sex trafficking. The story also noted that Virginia Roberts Giuffre accused Dershowitz of participating in Epsteins sexual cabal. Dershowitz responded by attacking Giuffre in the press. In April, Giuffre had filed a defamation suit against Dershowitz.

Giuffre told the New Yorker, Jeffrey got away with it, basically. And Dershowitz was one of the people who enabled that to happen Dershowitz thinks hes a tyrant and can get away with anything. And I wanted to say, I might be as meek as a mouse, but Im going to hold you accountable.

On that day in July, Dershowitz seems subdued over the phone. He just wants a fair chance. What he really wants is vindication. But he wont get that, he suspects, because hes bold, hes a liberal who supports Donald Trump. He supports Israel. Hes a victim here. The real victim.

He accuses Bruck of using a conspiracy website, Rense.com, as her source for some of the allegations in her piece. (The New Yorker declined to make Bruck available to speak on the record, but the magazine did say she had a more authoritative source than Rense.com.)

Dershowitz then tries to poke holes in Giuffres motivations. He says that she wants money. Dershowitz brings up the fact that he believes he is being targeted by David Boies, a lawyer who himself has been accused in the New Yorker of contracting a private investigative firm called Black Cube in an effort to block the magazines reporting on Weinstein.

Dershowitz lobs a series of details. Did I know that another woman who claims that she was forced to have sex with Dershowitz at Epsteins command, Sarah Ransome, lied and said she had a sex tape with the Clintons?

I did know that, because its in the New Yorker profile. In fact, so are the details about Dershowitz filing a complaint with the New York bar against Boies and the fact that the complaint was dismissed. Its an old tactic, lobbing detail after detail after detail at the media until they are overwhelmed. Sitrick does this, too. He calls it the wheel of pain.

In the world according to Dershowitz, he is a victim. But how can he be a victim when he has the power and the money and the platform. Media outlets cover his every tweet. He has a book which will be out on November 19, proclaiming his innocence and blaming instead the #MeToo movement for his trials. And I am covering this story now because a powerful man called me about his powerful friend. How many stories are made like this? A cycle of media and power, we listen because he yells. He yells because we listen. And whoever gets to shout the loudest is the winner.

You have power and money, I point out to him. You have media coverage, how are you the victim?

If a powerful woman were raped and she had powerful friends, would they say its hard to conceive of you as a victim? I mean, this is an attempt to destroy my life and my career and my family. Of course Im a victim. Of course Im a victim. Im a victim with resources, and thats exactly the kind of victim who should fight back.

Are you comparing yourself to a rape victim?

Im not making that comparison.

You just said that if a powerful woman was raped

Im saying that anybody whos a victim of a crime should be speaking out. Let me tell you, if you havent experienced four and a half years of being falsely accused of the most heinous crimes imaginable, then its very, very hard to be sympathetic, and I understand. But whats happened to me over the past four and a half years, Im not comparing it to rape, Im not comparing it to murder. Im not comparing it to any other crime. Im saying it is an extraordinarily serious crime, and a crime that victims should speak out about.

Dershowitz later threatens to sue me if I use information he insists is off the record. He will have a lawyer email my editor. They will have a phone call.The lawyer will argue that I am a liar. It doesnt workthis time.

In 2011, Michael Sitrick sued Jeffrey Epstein, over an unpaid bill for PR services. In that lawsuit is a detailed outline of services rendered.

Its a plan that shows a comprehensive outline of reporters who were contacted about stories and who reached out for interviews. The idea was this: connect with reporters, offer access, overwhelm them with data, threaten their access if things go sideways, go over their heads. That is how men like Epstein went unchallenged for years. How a journalist can know something, but never be able to say it. On August 22, NPRs David Folkenflick detailed how Epstein allegations went unreported by Vanity Fair. The story alleges that Epstein pressured the magazines editor, Graydon Carter, and that Carter caved.

If #MeToo is a conspiracy, as Dershowitz and so many other cancelled men suggest, the question is, who is conspiring? Carter was once quoted as saying,You think youve arrived I hate to break it to you, but youre only in the first room. Its not nothingdont get me wrongbut its not that great, either. Believe me, there are plenty of people in this townhe means New Yorkwho got to the first room and then didnt get any further.

So who is in the room? In my first call with Dershowitz, he denies knowing Sitrick, even though Sitrick set up the call. I point out that theyd worked on two cases together that I knew of: Sholom Rubashkin, a jailed meat packing executive, and Harvey Weinstein. Later, Dershowitz says in an email that he and Sitrick were work acquaintances, nothing else. When I ask Sitrick about that, he mentions that maybe theyd hung out socially once or twice, but Dershowitz was just a friend.

I find most conspiracies to be intellectually lazy. My father likes to say, when faced with a conspiracy theory, I have a hard time believing all those idiots could agree on something so complicated.

But the more I read about Dershowitz, and talk to him, the more I begin to think about how power is exercised. How would someone feel if they were suddenly kicked out of one of those special rooms, after being inside for so long?

F. Lee Bailey is one of the names that recurs in my research. He and Dershowitz worked together on the O.J. Simpson defense team. Bailey is now disbarred. I call him and ask him what he thinks about Dershowitz. Is there a conspiracy? He doesnt talk long and wont commit to a full-conspiracy theory for either side, but he notes that sexual assault allegations are one of the arrows they shoot at you to bring you down. Who is they?

He has to go and cant answer.

One week after I talk to Bailey, Epstein commits suicide in jail. A whole new host of conspiracy theories emerge. There doesnt seem to be an end.

Fact-checking a story is reporting in reverse. Its the checkers job not only to follow up with sources, but also to help find new ones. Its a crucial step. The New Yorker explains that a lot of reporting happens in the process of checking. That process with Dershowitz was off the record.

At first, Dershowitz says, he will show me emails that prove the fact-checking process on Brucks piece was faulty. None of the documents arrive. But there is more, he tells me, tiny little details that he questions, elements of the story that he says werent given enough time. What about his work for charity? Hes throwing everything at me and, eventually, a call with my editor.

Its all sound and fury. Of course, reporting is not infallible. Trial by media is a chaotic scramble of piecing facts together. All you need is one person influential enough to believe you. One steer.

In our first conversation, I ask Dershowitz why he wants to talk. What is he going to tell me that hasnt already been said before over and over? What is the point? I will keep talking, he says, until I die, and then my children will do it for me!

Thats the point.

Its a Trumpian ethos. A constant cry of victimhood from the highest echelons of power. The never ceasing voice, shouting and shouting. If you listen youll forget the point. If you listen and always react, its hard to hear anything at all.

ICYMI:Why the left cant stand The New York Times

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Alan Dershowitz and the wheel of pain - Columbia Journalism Review

From SNL to Game of Thrones, the most influential TV shows of the decade, ranked – CNET

Game of Thrones will be remembered as a televisual juggernaut.

Whether you loved or hated the final season of Game of Thrones, you sure as hell talked about it. And so did everyone you know. The 2010s have been a banner decade for television, and social media has turned the whole internet into a giant water cooler.

For this list, we're looking back at TV in the 2010s, from Emmy-baiting prestige shows to cheesy sitcoms, both broadcast and streamed. These shows reverberated across our lives, influenced the direction of television, made us happy and made us mad.

Our list puts a premium on the cultural zeitgeist. These are the shows that spurred you to sign angry petitions, buy Delos T-shirts and learn how to mix an Old-Fashioned just right.

We have some ground rules for inclusion. Shows that aired during the 2010s are eligible, even if they started before 2010.

We've got your '80s horror nostalgia, deadly humanoid robots and meth-making antiheroes right here. Our list is admittedly US-centric. Your favorite may be near the top, or it may not have made it at all. Feel free to tell us in the comments (politely, we hope) where we went right and where we went wrong.

NBC's long-running, late-night sketch comedy show Saturday Night Live has ridden the roller coaster from innovative ('75) to cruddy ('80-'81) to revived ('95), but it managed to step firmly back into the national conversation during the late 2010s thanks to hot-button political topics and President Donald Trump's outright hatred of the program. It was comedy gold like when it pit Game of Thrones against Avengers in a mock game of Family Feud.

Sketch comedy got goosed when Keegan-Michael Key and Jordan Peele put their stamp on the genre with Key & Peele on Comedy Central. From Obama's Anger Translator to the East/West College Bowl's buffet of wild names, Key & Peele pulled off both racial satire and inspired absurdity. The show forged ahead where In Living Color, Mad TV and Chappelle's Show left off. Peele then went on to reinvent The Twilight Zone and deliver acclaimed horror films Get Out and Us. How's that for building a legacy?

Teen drama 13 Reasons Why has been scrutinized for the way it depicts teen suicide, and it's also spurred conversations among young people, mental health professionals and families. A study released in 2019 suggested the series may be tied to a rise in suicides among boys 10-17 in the month after the show came out. Netflix has since altered a graphic suicide scene from the first season, and also increased warnings about the subject matter. The show remains divisive after airing its third season, but it made this list due to its prominent role in the cultural conversation around teens and suicide.

Tech culture has become one of the defining characteristics of our age, and Silicon Valley on HBO has become the defining show for a world that gets its kicks from iPhones, social media, apps and gadgets. From goofy startup names to tech buzzwords, Silicon Valley has mined it all and kept the comedy fresh and in step with the changing tech times. It's nerdy enough for insiders and funny enough to satisfy tech outsiders, too. The fifth season of Silicon Valley premiered in 2018 minus T.J. Miller.

ABC's Black-ish explores a classic sitcom setup by delving into the lives of the Johnson family. It's funny, but it's also not shy about discussing key issues of our times through social, cultural and political commentary. Black-ish explores the African-American experience and is on the leading edge of a wave of shows (including Atlanta, Fresh Off the Boat and the One Day at a Time reboot) that take classic TV formats and reinvigorate them with fresh, diverse voices.

HBO's Veep was a regular in the Emmy category for outstanding comedy. Powered by Julia Louis-Dreyfus' turn as US vice president Selina Meyer, the show's political satire rocketed it to relevance during the contentious 2016 US elections. At a time when real-life politics felt like fiction, Veep's sharp-edge satire got our vote.

Superhero shows didn't just come from the Marvel side of things. The MCU may make a big splash at the box office, but DC has ruled broadcast television with an iron fist (sorry not sorry). Sharpshooting superhero Arrow (Stephen Amell) picked up the banner for DC on The CW after Superman show Smallville ended. It kicked off a parade of DC shows on multiple networks, including The Flash, Supergirl, Legends of Tomorrow and Constantine. Soon, we'll be welcoming Ruby Rose as Batwoman to the Arrowverse. DC fans love a good crossover story.

The 2010s was the superhero decade in entertainment. Marvel and DC duked it out in theaters, but Netflix's Daredevil was the first and perhaps best of an influential run of streaming superhero television shows following Marvel heroes Jessica Jones, Luke Cage, Iron Fist and The Punisher. There was a sense of diminishing returns in this ambitious experiment, but we'll always have Daredevil's jaw-dropping hallway fight.

The collaboration with Netflix paved the way for Disney's new streaming service to launch multiple shows based on big franchises. Disney Plus will carry the Marvel TV torch forward with shows like WandaVision and Loki, while Star Wars continues in The Mandalorian and an Obi-Wan Kenobi series.

HBO's one-off miniseries Chernobyl starring Jared Harris dramatized the devastating 1986 nuclear accident in the then Soviet Union. It played out like an incisive journalistic investigation, showing how institutional hubris can feed into tragedy. Most of the world watched the accident unfold from a safe distance back in the '80s. This show made it feel present and relevant, and unveiled the dark mechanisms behind a historic tragedy.

Star Trek spent many years drifting away from its small-screen roots until the CBS All Access streaming service unveiled Star Trek: Discovery. (Disclosure: CBS Corp., which owns CBS All Access, is also the parent of CNET.) Discovery represents a grittier, darker Trek, and paved the way for the imminent return in early 2020 of beloved Captain Picard in Star Trek: Picard and for a new animated show, Star Trek: Lower Decks. Discovery's gritty themes and violent action sequences have been divisive for some fans, but it will stand as the spark that kicked off new adventures among the stars, reinvigorating a television franchise that had been stagnant for over a decade.

The Expanse has been a gravity-defying triumph for smart sci-fi television. While fans are still pouring one out for dearly departed Firefly, at least they can celebrate The Expanse's phoenix-like return from cancellation when it flew from certain doom at the Syfy network into the welcoming arms of the Amazon Prime streaming service. The show's characters, political narratives and realistic physics propel it forward like it's kitted out with an Epstein drive.

Amazon fired its first broadside in the streaming wars with Transparent, a prestigious, funny and dramatic study of a family in which the father, Mort (Jeffrey Tambor), is a trans woman. Tambor left the series under a cloud of sexual harassment allegations, but Transparent will wrap up without him in 2019.

With Transparent, Netflix felt Amazon breathing down its neck; it was no longer the only game in town. This heralded the upcoming streaming battle among Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Hulu, Apple TV Plus and Disney Plus.

Animated sci-fi comedy Rick and Morty follows the adventures of mad-scientist Rick and his grandson Morty. The zany animation style is juxtaposed with audacious and often wildly dark subject matter as it crosses dimensions and planets on the Cartoon Network's Adult Swim. This is Back to the Future gone mad. We can also thank it for the reemergence of McDonald's Szechuan dipping sauce.

Every season of HBO's creepy-weird-compelling True Detective has been very different, but the first may be the most influential of the bunch. It brought movie stars Matthew McConaughey and Woody Harrelson onto the small screen and symbolized a new era of fluidity between the mediums. True Detective made it cool to go from a blockbuster film one month to a prestige cable or streaming show the next. Following seasons couldn't match the buzz around the show's debut, and it's unknown if it'll return for a season 4.

Westerns and sci-fi collided in the sprawling Westworld from HBO. We loved it, even if we couldn't always figure out what the hell was going on. It's still a young show, just heading into its third season, but it's generated plenty of discussion about the nature of reality and what makes us human. Some viewers prefer to focus on intricate plot theories, while others just get lost in the stunning scenery and special effects. Sure, some fans figured out the big season 1 twist, but Westworld showed that challenging and complicated storytelling can still grip an audience.

The horse-headed main character of Bojack Horseman (voiced by Will Arnett) put the genre of animated shows aimed at adults on its back and peeled out of the starting gate in 2014. The Netflix series boldly tackles topics ranging from America's gun crisis to sexual harassment and the #MeToo movement. Those are heavy subjects for an animated show, but Bojack Horseman handles them with grace and humor. It also delivered one of the most cutting comments on modern TV when Princess Carolyn declared, "It's confusing, which means the show is daring and smart."

British anthology series Black Mirror took the basic idea behind The Twilight Zone and updated it as a pointed examination of how technology touches our lives today, for good or bad. Mostly bad. Black Mirror's move to Netflix after starting as a traditional broadcast show in the UK propelled it to international stardom in a world that was ready to see tech portrayed as dark and freaky. The show's cautionary tales are formed from a gripping combination of entertainment and sci-fi honed to a bleak edge that screams out a warning as we race forward into our tech-obsessed future.

What does a family look like today? That's a question at the heart of ABC's long-running documentary-style comedy Modern Family. One of the families is a gay couple with an adopted daughter, and family members come from a range of cultural backgrounds. It finally felt like sitcoms could portray the complex reality of a US society that is struggling to weave itself together.

Modern Family is heading into its 11th and final season. It hasn't always been perfect in its handling of social issues, but it will be remembered for showing that the stereotypical family of yesteryear is not the only way to do things. And it did it on a major network.

Hulu's benchmark drama The Handmaid's Tale took the dystopian premise of Margaret Atwood's 1985 novel and held it up as a heartbreaking and frightening mirror to our current societal and political turmoil. We stared into the shine, gasped and got nightmares. The costumes from the series appeared in political protest situations in the real world and viewers felt the tenuousness of the line between fiction and reality.

Confusion. Elation. Wonder. WTF. Brilliant. David Lynch's return to the world of Twin Peaks sparked a lot of different reactions. The one-off season managed to be way more surreal than the infamous '90s show filled with doughnuts, FBI agents and owls. It was pure, mainline Lynch. Some people loved it. Others shook their heads, but it showed just how daring television could be when you let a creative mind loose with a Showtime budget. And episode 8? One of the most stunning hours of TV ever aired. Don't ask too many questions. Just watch it.

Toto, I don't think we're in Sex and the City anymore. Broad City grabbed the young-women-in-New-York-City motif, shook it up and carried it into the most intimate parts of Ilana and Abbi's lives. Even the bathroom wasn't off-limits to this brazen female-led comedy that showed how a YouTube series could strut onto an actual network and rock the transition.

Broad City called out to millennials, a group grappling with debt, nebulous job prospects and derision from older generations. The show often focused on the trials of scraping by in a bitter world, but it never lost touch with the furiously funny friendship at its heart.

Orange is the New Black helped launch Netflix's reputation for original programming, turning the streaming service into a major contender for recognition, awards and viewers. While the accolades were nice, OITNB was about more than that. It was funny, touching and dramatic. It showcased a diverse cast of women dealing with life behind bars and threw itself deep into issues surrounding race, identity, economics and the privatization of prisons. Was it a drama or a comedy? It was both, but the drama was its beating heart.

Dancing, singing high schoolers once ruled the airwaves back when Fox's Glee was in its heyday. Gay glee club member Kurt Hummel (Chris Colfer) became a breakout star at a time when LGBTQ characters were few and far between on broadcast television. The show spawned a whole genre of mashup music and launched a string of hit cover songs, ranging from Journey's Don't Stop Believin' to Lady Gaga's Poker Face. The show inspired fans to kick up their heels and sing with abandon and managed to make some viewers wish they had another shot at high school.

Netflix's first original television series kicked off a new era for streaming shows. You no longer had to be a cable or broadcast TV network to make award-winning programs with a mass audience tuning in. This show helped make binge-watching a widespread phenomenon. Not only did House of Cards fuel the streaming revolution, it became a touchstone moment in another defining cultural movement: #MeToo. Netflix fired alleged sexual predator Kevin Spacey (Francis Underwood) from the show before the final season. Robin Wright carried the finale with her magnetic performance as Claire Underwood.

Netflix's Stranger Things turned back the clock on horror by reveling in 1980s nostalgia replete with references to Stephen King and Dungeons & Dragons. It could have been a one-trick pony, but instead riffed on the themes of the horror stories that came before while still building a fresh, new and scary world.

Taut storylines, creative supernatural elements and likable young actors made Stranger Things a Netflix smash with tons of product spin-offs to keep fans' pocketbooks engaged. It looks set to continue its run into the next decade.

The Grantham family of Downton Abbey.

Part soap opera, part history lesson, Downton Abbey was the British show that transcended its PBS-audience-pleasing roots and gently rocked the world while genteelly sipping tea. The series followed the triumphs and woes of the aristocratic Grantham family and their house staff through a time of social and political change starting in 1912.

Likable characters, lavish period-piece settings and costumes and Maggie Smith dropping scathing one-liners as the Dowager Countess fueled the Downton Abbey phenomenon. The show is still so beloved that it made an appearance on the big screen in September. Downton Abbey proved you don't need to be gritty and cutting-edge to make an impact. Sometimes stately and classic do the trick.

Sometimes The Walking Dead is a great show. Sometimes it's not. But it's almost always a hot topic of discussion, especially when it unapologetically kills off your favorite character. While the zombies are plenty scary, the most frightening villains are the people who are still sentient.

The show may be infamous for its creative gore, but it also examines what happens when society breaks down and what we will do in the name of protecting ourselves and the ones we love. The Walking Dead wraps all of this up with a big bloody bow on top, and viewers can't seem to look away, even all these years later.

AMC's Mad Men was more than day drinking, dandy hats and Heinz ads. The story of Don Draper's (Jon Hamm) mixed-up journey through life and the advertising industry ranks as one of television's great dramas.

Mad Men spawned a retro fashion movement and pushed Canadian Club whiskey to prominence. It's also been the poster child for the new Golden Age of Television, an epoch of quality programming kicked off by The Sopranos in the late 1990s. Mad Men showed there was room for other networks besides HBO to launch shows that were both prestigious and popular.

A high school teacher dying of cancer becomes a meth-making underworld kingpin in Albuquerque, New Mexico. It's remarkable AMC greenlit the show to begin with, but Breaking Bad turned out to be one of the most tense, dark and artistically triumphant shows in television history.

Walter White's (Bryan Cranston) journey from forlorn chemistry teacher to The One Who Knocks was a masterclass in character development. Breaking Bad also cooked up another critical darling with the still active spin-off show Better Call Saul, also one of the finest series of the 2010s, and forthcoming Netflix movie El Camino, which streams on Oct. 11.

Over 1.7 million people cared enough about Game of Thrones to sign a petition demanding a remake of the final season. But the HBO fantasy hit based on George R.R. Martin's novels will be remembered for more than just a divisive season 8. It will be remembered as a televisual juggernaut, the absolutest of absolute units when it comes to television in the 2010s.

We obsessed over Jon Snow, spouted endless theories, rooted for Arya and lost ourselves for years in a world full of swords, dragons, sex, magic and intrigue. HBO truly went cinematic with Game of Thrones, turning the small screen into a massive canvas of lavish locations and big-bucks special effects.

The sheer number of YouTube parodies alone shows how much Game of Thrones worked its way into popular culture. It turned Northern Ireland into a global vacation hot spot, gave parents a vocabulary full of new baby names, and left every television exec in Hollywood asking, "What's the next Game of Thrones?" We eagerly await that answer as gritty fantasies like Carnival Row and The Witcher arrive, but the truth is there will probably never be another show quite like this one (at least until the prequel comes along).

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From SNL to Game of Thrones, the most influential TV shows of the decade, ranked - CNET

Good Money Week: Will ethical investing ever go mainstream? – The Independent

Next week is Good Money Week, an annual campaign designed to raise awareness of sustainable and ethical options for our finances from bank accounts to pensions.

The movement wants Britons to wake up to the relationship between that benign little bank account or fledgling pension pot and the funding behind fossil fuel exploration and forest destruction, and to take charge of where their money ends up.It can be one of the most effective ways to force big shifts

None of this is a new idea though. Ethical funds, for example, have been available for 30 years. And yet such funds under management still account for only 1.6 per cent of the UK industry total, according to data from Schroders.

From 15p 0.18 $0.18 USD 0.27 a day, more exclusives, analysis and extras.

It would be easy to roll out the same old argument that we worry investing ethically means sacrificing performance. But thats not whats going on any more.

A global research report from BofA Merrill Lynch last week, which called for investors to care more about ethical, social and governance (ESG) criteria, showed that a strategy of buying stocks that rank well on ESG metrics would have outperformed the S&P 500 every year for the last five years, for example.

In fact, the reasons behind the (ironically) glacier-slow uptake so far could be the reasons ethical investing could be about to explode, according to research out this week that challenged some of the UKs wealthiest investors on the stark contrast between their personal and portfolio ethics.

Among those with more than 250,000 in investable assets those who could really put pressure on the worlds biggest businesses to make real and lasting change there is, seemingly, a huge appetite for ethical investing.

More than 80 per cent of the UKsHigh Net Worth Individuals (HNWIs) are interested in investing their money ethically, according to a survey by Rathbone Greenbank Investments.

And yet three-quarters of these investors are knowingly investing in stocks and shares that conflict with their values.

They claim to care most about climate change and plastic waste reduction and yet more than a third continue to invest in fossil fuels and/or mining companies.

Why? Mostly because of a lack of choice, they say. And that is changing fast.

In a short space of time, ethical concerns from the environment to social injustice have gone from the fringe to part of the zeitgeist, says John David, head of Rathbone Greenbank Investments.

It has become normal for people to make conscious decisions about their impact on the planet, with awareness growing every day. The fact that 81 per cent of HNWIs care about their money being invested for good, aligned to their ethical beliefs, suggests we are on the right track. However, there is still work to be done.

Even some of the shrewdest investors still believe the myths about ethical investing, thinking they have no alternative other than stocks and funds that go against their values. The truth is there is a huge choice of ethical stocks and funds offering good diversity to spread risk across a portfolio, even in an uncertain economic environment. And most importantly, this money makes a huge difference to companies attitudes, and the way companies conduct their business.

For Juliet Schooling Latter, research director at FundCalibre, theres little doubt that ethical investing is about to go mainstream.

From David Attenboroughs Blue Planet II to Greta Thunbergs school climate strikes and speech at the UN Climate Action Summit, there is no denying that public awareness of climate change and pollution are increasing, she says. Not only this, but public tolerance of bad corporate practice, maltreatment of employees and communities, and many other environmental, social and governance issues is lower today than it has arguably ever been in the past. As the public and the consumer start to demand more from companies and governments, practice is starting to change.

This isnt driven solely by millennials either. Schroders found Generation X investors typically in their 40s are equally if not more motivated to invest sustainably than their younger counterparts.

A growing body of evidence points to demand across a range of demographics, including those HNWIs.

While 1.6 per cent of all UK funds under management may not seem much, net retail inflows into ethical funds are on the up, says Schooling Latter.

In July, they were 248m a 50 per cent increase on this time last year and beating all other assets, bar fixed income and mixed assets.

Looking more widely at the institutional market, more and more pension funds, in particular, are integrating ESG into their strategies. According to EdenTree, ESG funds under management in the UK now total over 1.2 trillion.

All of these factors mean that more and more fund management companies are offering sustainable investment choices and are starting to incorporate ESG factors into their core investment processes. Professional investors are seeing that good practices generally result in good long-term investments.

Yes, theres the danger of succumbing to the me tooofferings out there, but for investors hunting out returns for their own portfolio, as well as the planet, there is a growing number of real choices.

Schooling Latter points to the ASI UK Ethical Equity fund, which she says operates a no compromisesapproach to ethical screening, and the BMO Responsible Global Equity fund, which invests in growth companies around the world with a focus on sustainability.

Elsewhere, the Pictet Global Environment Opportunities fund invests in companies that actively contribute to solving environmental challenges and that operate within a safe operating spaceacross nine environmental areas, such as ocean acidification, climate change and biodiversity.

Or theres Rathbones Ethical Bond fund, she suggests, which has a high-income target and its ethical rules are very simple: no mining, arms, gambling, pornography, animal testing, nuclear power, alcohol or tobacco. All investments must also have at least one positive environmental, social or corporate governance quality.

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Good Money Week: Will ethical investing ever go mainstream? - The Independent

All Good Things – The Collage Art of Greg Lamarche – whitehotmagazine.com

Greg Lamarche, Life of the Party 2, 2018

By PAUL LASTER, October 2019

A native New Yorker, Greg Lamarche expresses the vitality of urban living in everything he creates. One of the citys legendary graffiti artists, Lamarche is now best known for his cut paper collages, which regularly appear in gallery exhibitions, news editorials and brand campaigns.

Blurring the boundary between fine art and graphic design,his collagesemploy some of the same inventive techniques as his graffiti once did. Through the use of bold color, movement, fragmentation, layering, rhythmic repetition and negative space, he creates crisp, clean artworks that speak to multiple audiences.

Greg Lamarche, Summer in the City, 2014

Born in 1969 to parents who had a serious interest in art, Lamarche started writing graffiti and making collages at age 11. Inspired by the tags he saw on the graf-covered walls behind his elementary school and the flyers his mother made for neighborhood events, he began developing the dual artistic interests that he continues to pursue in different ways today.

One of Lamarches earliest memories of experiencing contemporary art was a viewing of Red Grooms popularRuckus Manhattanexhibition in 1975. A public art project, it recreated such famous landmarks as the Staten Island Ferry, Brooklyn Bridge and the 14thStreet Subway Station with painted and sculpted models that comically captured the daily hustle-and-bustle of the city.

By the time Lamarche started making his own urban art in 1981, his parents were taking him to museums and galleries like Graffiti Above Ground for inspiration and soon carving out a studio space for him to make art at home. Before long he was visiting the East Villages radical Fun Gallery and the edgy SoHo gallery spaces of Tony Shafrazi and Gabrielle Bryers to meet graffiti writers on his own.

Greg Lamarche, Bushwick, 2014

His first graffiti tag was Spankey, which he later reduced to Spy. But he soon settled on Sp.One, which he continuously drew toperfecthis style and started tagging in the subways and streets while attending the High School of Music & Arts. After graduating, he studied fine art and graphic design at Franklin Pierce College in New Hampshire, traveled across the States with spray paint in hand and then moved to Boston in 1992, where he founded the graffiti magazineSkills, which he published for the next three years.

Produced in a completely analog manner,Skillswas a visual montage of contributed snapshots of graffiti-bombed trains, trucks and vans and was peppered with interviews of up-and-coming graf artists of the day. It was the golden age of graffiti art, and while Lamarche was honing his skills on the streetmoving from just bombing his tag to building a brand with the production of complex wall pieceshe was also sharpening his style of cut-and-paste collage, which paralleled the energy and motion of the street.

Some of my earliest letter collages are based on my tag, but then they evolved to collages of related phrases, Lamarche toldJuxtapoz Magazinein 2007. We clearly see the artists tag in the 2005 collageUntitled (Sp.One Series)and can chart an evolution of his phrasing in such cut paper pieces asAh Yes(2005),Develop-Destroy(2005),Old Habits Die Hard(2008) andThe New Hustle(2008), as well as in the wooden letter assemblageW.T.F.I.G.O.(2012).

Greg Lamarche, Untitled (Sp_One series), 2005

Graffiti made me look at letters and think about them in a totally different way. Color, composition, movement, layering and repetition all play huge parts to developing letters and the creative possibilities are endless, Lamarche toldGhettoblaster Magazinein 2011.

Although he had started to show his collages in galleries in Boston, he decided to move back to New York in 1995. Getting a job as an art handler, he found himself looking at fine art as often as he was spending time in the graffiti and developing street art worlds. The collages of the German Dada artist Kurt Schwitters and American Surrealist Joseph Cornell, who spent most of his life making work in Queens, had long been an influence, but Lamarche was also drawn to the minimalist canvases of Ellsworth Kelly and maximalist hybrid paintings of Frank Stella.

Kellys command of color and simple geometric forms can be seen as inspiring Lamarches collages likeCorner Cluster(2005) andCut Corners(2010), while Stellas dynamic mix of bold paint and cut metal shapes in hisExotic Bird Seriescould be pegged as impacting LamarchesUntitled(2013) andSummer in the City(2014) works on paper.

Greg Lamarche, Hot and Heavy, 2011

Further exhibitions of the collages in galleries led to Lamarche getting commercial work. He established his art and design practice in 2000spending part of his time on graphic design work and as many studio hours as possible making letter and colored shape collages. The collages would often get scaled-up to make big paintings and murals, even as he additionally experimented with assemblage and other forms of torn paper collage.

Over the past two decades, he has produced cut paper designs for everything from t-shirts, posters and skateboard decks to book and album covers, wrapping paper and shopping bags for such companies as J. Crew, Shake Shack and Bloomingdales, while creating illustrations for major media outlets likeNew York MagazineandThe New York Times.

Greg Lamarche, Double O Joy 2, 2006

His mural projects have also been in demand. Since painting his iconic Coney Island mural for Creative TimesThe Dreamland Artists Clubin 2004, Lamarche has created colorful murals for Facebook, Nike, IBM and numerous galleries and art fairs. His clever use of the wordsThinkandOutThinkmade for playful wall paintings related to IBMs longstanding Think campaign, while his massive painting for the Mural Arts Philadelphia is a lively attraction in the citys burgeoning Brewerytown neighborhood.

Lamarches torn paper collages, includingHouston Street Station(2006),Hot and Heavy(2011) andCity to City(2013), are inspired by chipped paintand ripped postersin New Yorks decaying subway stations. He photographs and collects the crude chips, which he poetically sees as indicators of the passage of time from when he tagged the trains to his life as an artist now, and then studies them before making new works. Equally rich in art historical precedent, these painterly pieces recall the decollage works of the Nouveau Ralist artists Raymond Hains, Mimmo Rotella and Jacques Villegl.

Greg Lamarche, Develop-Destroy, 2005

Never standing still, Lamarche continues to capture the zeitgeist of New York in new puzzle-like pieces, such asLife of the Party(2018). An accumulation of letters that he hand-cut from colored papers with an X-acto knife, the composition moves across a field of white paper like a diverse crowd of people. Mixing existing fonts with newly invented ones, he uses color and form to encapsulate a sense of moving through the citys subways and streets while catching glimpses of fashions, cell phones and graffiti.

Graffiti is the foundation and I am very much into expanding on it and not trying to be only one-dimensional, Lamarche further shared withGhettoblaster. I know a lot of former graf writers will say, I was young and stupid; I dont do that anymore. I think that one should not deny or make excuses for the past but rather embrace your experience and build off of it. To me it is the spark that set you off and makes life exciting so even though I dont get down like I used to I still get down. WM

Greg Lamarche, Vestige 2, 2012

Greg Lamarche: All Good Things is on view at Trustman Art Gallery, Simmons University, Boston through November 1, 2019

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All Good Things - The Collage Art of Greg Lamarche - whitehotmagazine.com

ANALYSIS | Does the West want out? Not really, but the rallying cry needs to be heard – CBC.ca

There's been no end of headlines about western alienation and separation.

While the sentiment exists across the Prairies, Alberta is ground zero, and it's the Alberta premier who has been chief among those sounding the alarm.

Jason Kenney, who is quick to assure Canadians he's an avowed federalist, often uses the "unity crisis" rallying cry to pivot to partisan politics.

In this Aug.3 video posted to social media, Kenney's core message is clear: "Rather than focusing on Alberta separating from the Canadian federation, I'd like to focus on separating Justin Trudeau from the Prime Minister's Office".

Similar exhortations from Kenney, specifically citing a separatist surge, have dwindled after several months of a steady theme.

In fact, there has been a perceptible shift, with Kenney now talking more about Alberta's nation-building role and the province's integral place within Confederation.

There's no mystery as to why.

There is a danger that whatever frustration and anger is out there could be inflamed further and become politically explosive.

Kenney knows this.

Keep stirring it up and soon an ember is a fire.

However, Alberta-based pollster Janet Brown argues it's his job to reflect a sentiment that is deep and abiding in many Albertans.

"There is really a sense of frustration here," Brown says.

"When people talk about separation, mostly it's just an expression of frustration, rather than a clear desire to separate."

If anyone understands how that frustration can grow and fester, it's the man who turned "The West Wants In" into a movement that challenged political orthodoxy.

Preston Manning, the founding leader of the Reform Party, offers a warning.

"The challenge, I think, is to try to channel that energy and that anger and disillusionment into some constructive change, rather than just tearing things apart. And that's going to be a challenge for the next Parliament, no matter who ends up winning the next election," Manning says.

Brown thinks the winner does matter.

"Western separatism ebbs and flows depending on who is in government, and I think the fact there is a Liberal government federally is one of the things that's sort of driving that frustration," she says.

The Western Canada Concept Party managed to elect Gordon Kesler in a provincial byelection in 1982. It was the first and only electoral win by a separatist outside of Quebec.

Just months later, the party won close to 12 per cent of the vote in the provincial election, but that support didn't translate into seats including Kesler's.

This was the National Energy Program (NEP) era, so anger at Ottawa was visceral and profound in Alberta.

Former Reformand later CPC MP and cabinet minister Monte Solberg wrote about western alienation earlier this year.

He says, despite today's grievances over pipelines and equalization, "nothing, but nothing, approaches the damage done by the NEP."

So a separatist resurgence is possible, but not probable.

In fact, Brown says based on her scanning of the various polls on alienation and separation in recent months, while there is a clear sentiment favouring separation that garners substantial support, it should be viewed with caution.

"When you dive even deeper (into the polls)... those people are saying I'm going to answer this way on the poll because I want somebody to hear me and I want somebody to hear how frustrated I am," Brown says.

Solberg writes that "western separation is not many people's first choice, it's also not very realistic."

But he also argues that years of policies which have stymied Alberta's prime industry means "the only dignified response is righteous anger the West didn't pull away until it was pushed away."

A nascent group dubbed Wexit says its slogan is"The West Wants Out."

We brought together members of a focus group, assembled by Brown as part of a poll commissioned by CBC Calgary, to hear directly from voters about this. They largely echo Solberg's view.

Stephen Carlton spent a career in the resource sector. He says, "I'm not a separatist. I'm a Canadian first and foremost. But, you know, with the continued aspect that we feel powerless here, separation, is that a viable plan B if we can't work this out?"

That's the question being asked by many, including James Vy, who also makes his living in oil and gas.

"You know. I don't think it'd be a good idea. I don't know what it looks like after Alberta does separate," Vy says.

Carla Paradis, an entrepreneur with rural roots, says she wants "to get back on the same page as the rest of Canada."

Kenney's message has evolved from angry and stark warnings about a burgeoning unity crisis a few months ago, to a pitch arguing that the Constitution is on the side of Alberta.

This is directly linked to his stumping for Andrew Scheer and his challenges to the federal carbon tax and Bills C-48 and 69; one a B.C tanker ban, and the other a new assessment process he argues blocks future pipelines.

It's also true that there is an inherent danger in stirring up separatist sentiment.

This week, when asked about the re-election of a Trudeau government, he replied, "Honestly, I think that frustration will go off the charts." But he didn't characterize that frustration in the context of unity or separatist sentiment.

What is also very telling is his response to a question about equalization a formula he's railed against as being profoundly unfair.

When a reporter asked whether he'd raised the subject with any federal leaders and, further, if any of them had made any commitments to changes, the reply was a curt "no and no" and on to the next question.

No question, many Albertans are angry. They're also anxious, fearful, bewildered and, in some cases, feeling defeated.

Brown explains the zeitgeist Kenney is channelling is rooted in a perceived "hypocrisy in the way Alberta is dealt with."

She goes on to explain, "The rest of Canada is happy to take equalization from Alberta. They're happy to benefit from the prosperity that Alberta has. But then at the same time, they're going to turn around and try and block Alberta's key industry."

Of course that conclusion can be rebutted and rejected, but as Manning says, it needs also to be acknowledged. "The populist dimension of western alienation can't be ignored; it has to be addressed."

"I think the challenge for others is to recognize the validity of the concerns and don't dismiss them and don't tell people you've got no right to be angry or mad but to try to provide a constructive alternative," Manning says.

Whether that can be accomplished at the ballot box on Oct.21 is anyone's guess.

West of Centre is an election-focused pop-up bureau based out of CBC Calgary that features election news and analysis with a western voice and perspective.

Originally posted here:

ANALYSIS | Does the West want out? Not really, but the rallying cry needs to be heard - CBC.ca

Brook Andrew: The first artist and Indigenous man to lead the Biennale of Sydney – Sydney Morning Herald

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Brook Andrew stands at the centre of a scrum of curators in the small, elegant vestibule of the Art Gallery of NSW. Its a funny little jewel box of a place, all carved sandstone, mosaic floors, bronzes on marble pedestals.

Among the latter are copies of two allegorical works by 18th-century French sculptor Antoine Coysevox. One, Fame, blows her trumpet on a rearing steed. The other, similarly mounted, is the Roman messenger god Mercury, whose portfolio spanned travellers, boundaries, divination, luck and trickery, in addition to bread-and-butter eloquence and communication.

More pedestals cluster in an alcove across the room, topped with busts this time. The work is Melbourne artist Andrew Hazewinkels 12 Figures after Niccol, part of the temporary multi-venue exhibition of new Australian art, The National, which describes it as antique heads that turn out to be masks failing to conceal underlying collective anxiety.

You couldnt invent a more appropriate chorus than Fame, Mercury or those failing masks as Andrew outlines his plans for something newer and more expansive still to the posse of AGNSW curators: his six-venue, city-wide 22nd Biennale of Sydney, which will run from March to June next year.

Titled NIRIN edge in Wiradjuri, the language of his mothers people it will showcase 98 artists, creatives and collectives from 47 countries. As the title underlines, NIRIN is about putting art from the edge at the centre, or showing how all those edges come together to make a centre, as Andrew puts it. Many of the artists are people of colour, gay, queer or non-binary. Nor are all artists.

Andrew is also charting where art collides with science, ceremony, food, with contributors ranging from environmental researchers Drift Labs to cook Kylie Kwong and South Africas Breaking Bread collective. In other words, its a show about travellers, thresholds and boundaries. Stories and who gets to tell them, how. First and foremost, its about the tenor of our times: anxiety in all its myriad forms. All that underlies it, and how that can be brought to light.

Brook Andrew on shaking up the Biennale: Whats not at stake? Everythings at stake. Things need to shift dramatically. And theyre going to shift anyway.Credit:Tim Bauer

With his impassive face, wide blue eyes and greying curls, Andrew, 49, is a game-changer for Australias oldest and largest biennale, which started in 1973. Not only is he the first Indigenous artistic director, hes also the first to be an artist. And the latter is at least as important as the former. His friend Marcia Langton calls him one of the definitive Aboriginal provocateurs in the Australian art world, known for reinterpreting colonial and modern history and offering alternative perspectives, as the National Gallery of Victoria said of the career survey it held of Andrews work in 2017, The Right to Offend is Sacred.

As the Biennale of Sydney enters adulthood and at an interesting time for big art shows and museology generally Andrew is very consciously positioning his on the faultlines of now, such as gender, sexuality and race, the environment and what art and biennales are and do, where old definitions are breaking down and being reformed. Or inside those faultlines, as he tells Good Weekend, where the real action is taking place and the partys happening. He is doing so, his NIRIN online statement of curatorial intent says, because, the urgent states of our contemporary lives are laden with unresolved past anxieties and hidden layers of the supernatural.

This meeting with the AGNSWs curatorial team eight months out, in mid-July, is to start to nail down how those anxieties and supernatural layers might surface at Sydneys oldest gallery. Andrew has earmarked the vestibule for Lismore artist Karla Dickens. Shes been making these wild cages with artworks in them, he says. I imagine she will be hanging things? one AGNSW curator asks. Are they light? Theyre not massive steel structures, are they? Someone else chimes in: Its a heritage building. We have to work with what we have.

Andrew looks thoughtful. Im going to talk to her about hanging some textiles, he says, surveying the rooms hard surfaces. This is a very special place. It can be a bit cold, the curator says. Well, its about transforming it, Andrew muses. So that it feels more womb-like, a bit like a cuddle. Its about creating new narratives and perspectives.

The old narrative and perspective are, of course, written across the other side of the vestibule wall. Along the left flank of the AGNSWs neoclassical facade, bronze relief panels begin to depict what were seen at the time as the major art periods: Assyrian, Egyptian, Grecian, Roman, Gothic and Renaissance. Two world wars and their associated metal shortages intervened, however, leaving the last two blank. Andrews Biennale will more than compensate.

Ghanaian artist Ibrahim Mahama has been commissioned to wrap the front of the gallery, a choice that underlines how close Andrew is to the art-world pulse. In April, Mahama, who is famous for what one reviewer called his monuments to the anonymous reflecting on trade, migration and globalisation, wrapped Milans historical Porta Venezia tollgates in a loosely sewn camouflage of jute sacks from home, as he had done to the historic watch gates in Kassel, central Germany, for the last Documenta exhibition in 2017.

A month later, his bunker-like, mesh installation of found objects became one of the star turns at Mays Venice Biennale. As Andrew tells the curators: Its about the strength of that facade, which is the sort of statement of colonial strength and legacy you see in cities like this around the world. What I love about Ibrahim is the way he makes things disappear and reappear differently. Its about what comes forward and what falls back and then what you walk into all kinds of thresholds.

From the front, visitors will cop that cuddle from Karla before proceeding to the gallerys central hall, which connects the Grand Courts, designed like the facade by turn-of-last-century government architect, Walter Liberty Vernon, to both the Captain Cook Wing, commissioned to commemorate the explorers bicentenary in 1970, and the 1988 extension opened for the national bicentenary, both by then NSW Government Architect Andrew Andersons.

As that underlines, the entry court is a collision of eras and intents. Entering it, you realise just how rich this territory is for a man like Brook Andrew. A man who in addition to his sprawling Biennale is completing both a PhD at Oxford University on the power of objects to transform inherited histories, and an Australian Research Council project on Australias frontier wars. A man whose CV states his home base as Melbourne, Oxford and Berlin; who has for years now been in perpetual motion, forging the international connections and reputation he is leveraging for this Biennale. A man, too, for whom the reference to layers of the supernatural is anything but casual. I believe in ghosts, because I see them, he tells Good Weekend. I believe in spirits, because I talk to them. It helps me. It just helps guide me through life.

Andrew plans to fill the entry court with screen-printed texts from the work of the man he describes as one of the grandfathers of the land rights movement, the late Pitjantjatjara artist Kunmanara Williams. And glimpsed through his eyes, every inch of this place does indeed become almost radioactive with meaning. Not only are we standing in the seam between eras of the gallery, usually commissioned as statements of statehood, but were doing so in the moment before it all changes again, with work about to begin on the AGNSWs $344 million Sydney Modern expansion, staking its claim in the competitive global game that contemporary art has become since the opening of Londons Tate Modern in 2000.

As AGNSW director Michael Brand tells a group of Biennale donors the next day, the gallery has always reflected the eras of its city, from our links to London in the late 19th century to being the first museum to buy and exhibit Aboriginal works as art and then turning to Asia in the late 70s and 80s. As it will again with NIRIN. Its one of those global moments, Brand says. I dont think anyone else from Australia has made it to some of the places Brook has, so his insertions really make sense when you think of [the AGNSW] as a place that represents a particular society and a particular world view.

"A man like Brook Andrew isnt just a turn of phrase. For the purposes of this Biennale, the man himself matters more than usual. By definition, such shows are about capturing the zeitgeist. But Andrew seems to be capturing a very particular moment of fluidity and flux in his butterfly net. And to many, its a job he was born for.

Everyone on the panel that selected him for the job with whom Good Weekend speaks including Michael Brand, Powerhouse Museum CEO Lisa Havilah, Museum of Contemporary Art director Elizabeth Macgregor and M+ Hong Kong art museum head Suhanya Raffel is clear: Andrew was the only possible choice. That is in part because it was high time for an Indigenous curator. But in larger part its because it was time for Brook Andrew, says Havilah, who met him more than 20 years ago when she was working at Casula Powerhouse in Sydneys west and he was an art student at the University of Western Sydney (now Western Sydney University).

Brook is perfectly placed to push forward this historical model of the Biennale, which has been operating for more than 40 years, she says. He comes out of this incredibly suburban context, but he has this ability to think in multiple dimensions. And to bring forward histories and stories and represent them in very contemporary ways, but at the same time challenge those narratives.

Andrews international reputation not only as an artist but as a curator also shifts the relevance and importance of the Biennale internationally, Havilah says. And as a gay man, of mixed Wiradjuri (on his mothers side) and Scottish (on his fathers) descent, and also the father of an 11-year-old son, he brings various other identities in addition to his Indigeneity, says Raffel.

The faultlines are intensifying and polarising on so many issues around the globe, regardless of which position you take. The world is facing all kinds of big questions: existential questions, environmental questions, sustainability issues, issues of identity and belonging. And Brook captures that complexity. As Macgregor puts it: We wanted a Biennale that projected some critical ideas, a Biennale that investigated what art means in a time of globalisation, refugees, Trump, populism, and that engaged meaningfully with First Nations.

The man of the moment, then. But hardly a household name, despite a distinguished 25-year career. Certainly not a safe choice in a town dedicated to safety, from its lockout laws to its hardly edgy annual light show, Vivid. The panel members may be unanimous the institutions they represent bending over backwards to help Andrew realise his vision, if the AGNSW is any indication but word is there were rumblings in the clouds above their heads, though none of them will be drawn on the subject. Would the international art world come to a Biennale with an Indigenous artistic director? Would Andrew be able to pull it off?

The latter is a live question, given the scale of both Andrews ambitions and the expectations riding on his shoulders. But those who have worked with him for years have no doubt. Hell knock it out of the park, says MCA curator Anne Loxley, who compares his appointment to the announcement in March that the Indonesian collective Ruangrupa would be the first Asian curators of Documenta, the worlds most prestigious contemporary art show, in 2022. Its deeply important, Loxley says. They are going to change the rules and I think that is what Brook is going to do, too.

It comes back to what a biennale is meant to be, Andrew says. For me, its still [redolent of] the great expositions of the 18th and 19th centuryshowing off exotic colonial wealthTo me, this is an opportunity to help redress all thator allow for new things to happen. NIRIN is about shining a light on parts of the world that arent so European or North American. And its the first time the Biennale has had such a high number of people of colour, non-binary and queer artists. I think those stories are so urgent, and to have them all together is just so powerful.

Andrew has been building to NIRIN for years. Even if you just take the tranche of work he has done for the MCA in the past 15 years, from Blakatak, the ground-breaking talk and performance series he curated in 2005, to the exhibition and talks program TABOO seven years later. Then theres Warrang, his installation on the facade of the MCAs 2012 extension. It features a giant LED arrow, filled with the black-and-white zigzag a reworking of traditional Wiradjuri dendroglyph or tree-carving patterns that is a constant motif in his work. The arrow points to the remains of the colonial naval docks below, the heritage purpose for which it was commissioned. But its more than that. Those docks also mark where the First Fleet landed in Sydney Harbour. His arrow is a giant piece of wayfinding to all that has gone before or is just gone.

Andrews career, too, has always combined curation, collaboration and ranged across disciplines and media. His practice is a research practice but its also a printmaking practice, a painting practice, a photography practice, says Havilah. What really drives him is the storytelling and the disruption of history the engagement with ideas from multiple perspectives. Making work is just part of that practice.

TABOO was an interesting lesson for him in how you negotiate your practice as an artist with your practice as a curator, adds Macgregor. Brook wanted it to be like an artistic installation, with colour and shape and painted walls and no labels. He brought his over-arching aesthetic to bear on the material. Fortunately, those artists were happy with that but you could have had artists who disagreed. As Loxley says: Give an artist a curatorial job and hell give you an artwork.

Andrew asks, Whats not at stake? Everythings at stake. Things need to shift dramatically. And theyre going to shift anyway.

Brook Andrew unveils his portrait of Professor Marcia Langton at Canberras National Portrait Gallery in 2010. Credit:Glen McCurtayne

Brook Andrew was 15 when he got his first real inkling of just how much the picture had to change. It was the mid-1980s and his biology teacher at Cambridge Park High School in western Sydney decided to bring the class up to speed on the first Australians. He was hysterical, Andrew remembers. He wore Hawaiian shirts and Stubbies, long socks, often thongs. And he stood out the front and pointed to his thumb and said, Real Aboriginal people have swirls on their thumbs and theres only a few of them left in the Central Desert.

Andrew was flabbergasted. Unmoored, he says, by the image conjured. It took a while for the full implications to sink in. I went home and I remember discussing it with Mum and she was rolling her eyes and having a giggle about it. I didnt really understand the gravitas until days and years went by. It made me think a lot more about the lack of visibility and representation. As if half of my body felt missing.

Andrew was growing up in the years leading up to the bicentenary. In the suburbs, where his father was a truck driver and his mother a homemaker raising four children. While there was a strong sense of his culture at home and in his extended family, for Andrew it had no wider context. I mean, there were about six Aboriginal kids in my year, and a lot of them were big footballers, so there wasnt much racism. But there was also no history of Aboriginal Australia or the frontier wars at school, for instance.

Another corresponding eureka moment came when he was 19. By then Id become very active in arts and Indigenous issues, he says. And one day my Aboriginal grandmother, who I was living with at the time, turned around to me and said, Brook, youre also white, you know. And it hit me like a ton of bricks, because she was very important to me and she was proud of her father, who was Scottish and Irish. She always kept me in balance. Its interesting, because even Aboriginal people say that white person, this white person and I just didnt grow up with that black against white, because all the white people in my family were allies. As my mother always said, We are a salt-and-pepper family.

Brook Andrews Jumping Castle War Memorial was so popular among 2010 Biennale of Sydney visitors, bouncing on it had to be banned.Credit:Brook Andrew

It is one reason humour and fun loom so large in his work, from Warrang to his zigzag-patterned inflatable objects, or the Jumping Castle War Memorial he made for the 2010 Biennale of Sydney, an actual jumping castle that so many adults took to in the first few days that jumping had to be banned for the pieces survival. Black humour is vital when were dealing with conflicted and traumatic histories, he says. Humour and having a lightness and balance is important for healing. Its important for letting a breath out, its important for truth-telling.

In the years that followed his big biology lesson, Andrew began to dig even toying with becoming an archaeologist. The first ethnographic photos I found were at Sydneys Mitchell Library in 1995, he recalls. They were so devoid of our lives. Its weird how somebody else owns the history of your peoples bodies and that representation.

Years later, he would come across the much larger hoard at the Royal Anthropological Institute in London that would inspire his 2007 series Gun-metal Grey, which conjure and conceal by turn their anonymous subjects, like lenticular lenses, a technique he says he laboured mightily to perfect. As he told Marcia Langton in an interview for a 2014 essay: I find it a complete and utter mystery. Because theyre from a time and a place that I myself, and my immediate family dont have any recollection ofitslike disappeared history.

Just a year after finding that first cache of pictures in the Mitchell, Andrew would create the work that made his name, 1996s Sexy and dangerous, a highly coloured rendering of a sepia photograph of a young Aboriginal warrior. The work became as immediately iconic as the lushly ironic Something More series by Tracey Moffatt, an artist Andrew cites as an early influence. And not just in Australia.

Andrews breakthrough work Sexy and dangerous (1996).Credit:

For a while there, it was on every bus stop in Tokyo, Langton says of Sexy and dangerous. If you look up the original, its just one of those horrible ethnographic photos. And in just a few moves, he makes that young man so handsome, so human, and the very colonial intent of dehumanising and turning him into a scientific experiment is almost entirely shed, but not so much that you dont recognise that its there.

Sexy and dangerous nailed all eyes, as if something that had needed to be expressed had finally found form. That message, We are sexy and dangerous and what gaze does not allow us this power, was a message that we needed and we still need, says MCA curator Anne Loxley. So obsessed did the National Gallery of Victoria (NGV) become with the work, says director Tony Ellwood, that it bought two of an original edition of 20 to ensure it could keep it on permanent display.

The speed with which Andrew had arrived was remarkable, particularly as hed taken his time getting started. After finishing school, he had studied marine biology in central Queenslands Rockhampton for a year. His parents, who had always encouraged him to follow his clear artistic bent, thought he was crazy. I needed to get away from the western suburbs, he says. Because even though theyre thriving, Im a gay man and I was growing up in [an area] that was homophobic and where Aboriginal people were football heroes.

Loxley first met Andrew just after this time, when she had her first curatorial job at Sydneys S.H. Ervin Gallery and he was doing a placement prior to studying art at university. He was quite contained and enigmatic, she recalls. But he always had charm. He was a proud Aboriginal man, but it wasnt just his cultural identity. He was interesting. He had a sense of his own intellect. There was something fascinating about him.

Charged with keeping Andrew occupied, Loxley asked him to re-cover the offices shabby chaise longue. It was a very average job, she says. Lets just say there were no signs of the phenomenal talent to come. That changed when she saw a work in his 1993 art graduation show, White Word I, now in the MCA collection. There had been something unreachable about him and then I saw that and I thought, Oh my god, hes not only talented but hes smart and hes brave.

Loxley and fellow curator Felicity Fenner included Andrew in their 1994 show of emerging artists, Fresh Art. That was when I got to know him deeply, she says. He can be as silly as me and so much fun mad fun the most fun. Just two years later, Sexy and dangerous landed. I dont think any of his works have passed into the canon in the same way, Loxley says. It has a communicability about it. You dont have to know much at all to get what is going on there.

As the sheer scope and range of work on show at last years NGV career survey demonstrated, Andrew has roamed across media and moods, from Gun-metal Grey to his neon and inflatable works. He goes from the absolute spectacular to the quite cerebral, miniature, detailed, conceptual, Ellwood says. I find him incredibly intriguing. There is always a slightly dangerous edge to his work. But its cloaked in this beauty. That is something very clever about him and its something I think all great artists do.

That beauty is anything but incidental. As Langton points out, it redeems all that is lost, much as his use of light is resurrectionary. Every bit as political as everything else about his work. And for all the immediacy of that first 1996 image, his subsequent work has been much more nuanced, Loxley says. Thats why hes one of the very top Australian artists for me. I like my art to mean something and to keep giving me stuff. His work always deals with something really important and something I didnt know and it always tells me in a way that is poetic rather than didactic. And the range of media he has mastered and his craftsmanship are out of this world. I like my art beautiful and he makes beautiful things.

Hes just got that artists eye, right? Which doesnt turn off, says Langton. Sometimes we come across people in art who have a special vision, and special talents. Hes just one of those very special people. With an extraordinary vision and awareness and capacity to work hard.

Not that Andrew is without detractors. Over the years, some artists and curators have accused him of being insufficiently respectful of aspects of the history that is his subject matter, which Andrew says is a complicated history to unpack. The fluency and fluidity of his work, its chameleon quality, has also perhaps meant he has not crystallised in the popular consciousness on the scale he may have had, had he stuck to one medium, theme, style.

Sometimes we come across people in art who have a special vision, and special talents. Hes just one of those very special people. With an extraordinary vision and awareness and capacity to work hard.

Hes certainly become ubiquitous, though, even in his variety. As the AGNSWs Brand points out, the first works that greet visitors to Sydneys main art museums are two very different Andrew creations: Warrang at the MCA and, at the AGNSW, the recently acquired AUSTRALIA VI, a large, coppery canvas based on an etching by the 18th-century German artist Gustav Mtzel of a corroboree he never saw.

That may have something to do with the currency of what Brand sees as Andrews overriding characteristic: curiosity. Theres certainly a political element in him, no question. But more than that, Brook is curious. Which is exactly what museums need most now. Curiosity is what you should enter a museum with, Brand says. Not to go see one work you know you like and then leave again, but with a sense of curiosity.

Brook Andrews Warrang arrow (2012) features a pattern derived from markers used by his mothers Wiradjuri ancestors.Credit:Brook Andrew

The zigzag motif that runs across Andrews career isnt confined to his art. A tiny blue-and-black version appears when he calls, where a photo might be. The pattern, ancient and modern, is both his sword and his shield. For a provocateur, Andrew is also fiercely guarded. He is happy to talk about his parents, who now live in Queensland and both of whom, inspired by their sons example, went back to study. His mother, Veronica, took a bachelor of visual arts and his father, Trevor, studied writing, journalism and social sciences. Theyre both dedicated community people, Andrew says. My father helps run the Shed Happens mens mental health group in Deception Bay and my mother belongs to the Yinna Yarnan womens group. I am so lucky to have them.

But his three siblings, like his son, are entirely off-limits because, he says, Im private. It is hardly surprising if you think of Andrews career as a decades-long investigation of what it means to be seen and not seen, forgotten or framed. Of who gets to look, and for what purpose. I refuse to be fixed, he says. No one should be. Theres so much to navigate especially for Aboriginal artists, who have to look a certain way or have certain politics. People are always being fixed by other people. Why do we do it to each other?

To read more from Good Weekend magazine, visit our page at The Sydney Morning Herald, The Age and Brisbane Times.

Read more:

Brook Andrew: The first artist and Indigenous man to lead the Biennale of Sydney - Sydney Morning Herald

The Zeitgeist Movement | Organization for Global Social Change

Calling all Danes, Swedes, Finns, Norwegians, Faroe Islanders, Icelanders, and all who want to assist the TZM chapters in Scandinavia. It is now time to develop a strategy!

The goal is to reunite or get to know new people among the Scandinavian chapters, discuss our weaknesses within chapters, develop a better strategy to make TZM more effective, and to talk about preparations for the coming Zeitgeist European Meet-Up in Sweden next year.

Continued here:

The Zeitgeist Movement | Organization for Global Social Change

The Zeitgeist Movement Australian Chapter

DAY ONE

Zeitgeist Movement supporters started pouring in from chapters all around the world as the doors opened to the very appropriately named New Globe Theatre in Brisbane, Australia, Saturday morning on the last weekend of March.

Organisers scurried excitedly, setting up the various areas, including: the merchandise space; the questions for PJ booth; the vegan food buffet; the bar; the workshop space, scattered with comfy chairs and recommended readings; and of course, the main stage, where presentations would be continuously running over the first two-day Z-Day main event.

Check out this great overview of Z-Day Day One by one of the very talented New Zealand coordinators, Wiri Te Moni.

The volunteer technicians, and chapter coordinators Jason Lord from LA and Michael Kubler from Adelaide, worked tirelessly, making sure we had quality recordings of each presentation for later viewing on the TZMGlobal YouTube Channel. Audience members got comfortably acquainted and seated. (Links to presentation recordings will be added to this post as they are uploaded.)

Photos by Michael Kubler @kublermdk, Renee McKeown, and Jason Lord

As soon as everything was ready to go, Z-Day Global kicked off, starting with my opening presentation, where I spoke about the theme of this years Z-Day: Towards Global Unity and Abundance, as well as advice on creating a sustainable and successful chapter, the amount of work involved in making Z-Day happen, ways to avoid economic bigotry, and concluding with a certain framing of encouraging a unified quest to understand the nature of reality rather than personal ambition to win over your perceived opponents.

Casey Davidson, Australian National Coordinator

This was followed by the very knowledgeable and insightful Franky Mller, National Coordinator of the German chapter. Franky shared TZM Understandings important information about The Zeitgeist Movement, refreshing our minds and filling in important gaps in knowledge for those still learning about the tenets and train-of-thought.

Franky Mller, German National Coordinator

See Frankys presentation here.

After Franky, the second of our presenters, Cameron Reilly entertained the crowd with a tongue-in-cheek questionnaire asking the audience about their own psychopathic tendencies and giving them the opportunity to measure it according to their results. He talked about the specific traits of psychopaths, touching on the idea that people who fit into this personality type are not changeable and will always be born. Additionally, the system we have created actually encourages people with these tendencies to acquire positions of power, hence the title of his presentation, the Psychopath Economy.

Simultaneously, we had set up a workshop space in the adjacent room for Z-Day participants who were more interested in being involved in activities and discussions. The first of these workshops came from Caroline Rentel, author and activist, who shared ideas about a relatively new writing genre, Solarpunk, basically based in a future society beyond scarcity and hierarchy, where humanity, nature and technology are integrated.

Caroline Rentel, Solarpunk author

Caroline and Camerons presentations lead into lunch time, where a selection of delicious vegan foods were provided as part of the Z-Day ticket. Curries, cakes, sushi, burgers and snacks were available for all participants served on eco-friendly plates with serviettes and cutlery. Thanks to the lead food volunteer coordinator, Vicky Syme and everyone else who worked so hard to make food available for everyone. For future Z-Day organisers, I would suggest that having food available at the venue is very important in keeping the audience members together to collaborate and be on time for the presentation straight after lunch.

Vegan chefs Vicki and Margarita

Lunch time!

Our first presentation after lunch came from Rich Penney, who we flew in from Toronto, Canada. Rich has attended several Z-Days as one of the most intruiging and informed presenters within the Movement. This year he shared the very clear Contradictions of Capitalism, in a way that allowed us some insight into Richs life living with disability, as well as intellectual gifts that cant be easily monetised in this society. This is a fantastic introductory presentation to help people understand the core problems of the way we have structured society.

We were next graced with the presence of two of the very talented guys from acclaimed Aussie band, Dead Letter Circus, Kim Benzie and Luke Williams. As I have personally been a long-time fan of DLC with their unique sound, emotionally evoking and incredibly conscious lyrics which fall in line beautifully with the tenets of the Zeitgeist Movement, it was amazingly awe-inspiring to hear Luke and Kim talk about their personal experience and journey as artists against oppression. The uplifting conclusion of their presentation of their song While You Wait, together with lyrics and the comically-titled anti-establishment drum solo moved the audience to a standing ovation.

Luke Williams, Dead Letter Circus Drummer

Kim Benzie, Dead Letter Circus Vocalist, Z-Day 2017

While these presentations were going on, Oliver Koslik from Canada presented interactively in the workshop space on Emotional Suppression: A short course on how to recognise and deal with gas-lighting/ambient abuse.

Oliver Koslik

The fun continued on the main stage as we introduced the next of our international guests, Euvie Ivanova from the Future Thinkers Podcast. As a co-host of the Future Thinkers Podcast, Euvie promotes technology, science and consciousness for social concern.

Here is a quick overview of the premise of the Future Thinkers Podcast.

Euvies presentation was particularly focused on consciousness development, as she spoke pragmatically about ways in which we can explore our consciousness using methods from a variety of doctrines. This was particularly interesting to the audience as something that hasnt been discussed in detail in regards to TZM.

Euvie Ivanova Future Thinkers Z-Day

The other half of the Future Thinkers Podcast, Mike Gilliland, followed Euvies presentation. Mike shared his thoughts on the potential of blockchain technology, beyond the limitations of bitcoin. Topics such as decentralisation, security and developing intelligent management systems were explored.

Mike Gilliland from Future Thinkers at Z-Day 2017

During Euvie and Mikes presentations, the Melbourne chapter coordinators Brad Cini and Sonny Vice sat with an intrigued group in the workshop space as they spoke about their upcoming Zero Waste/Minimalisation project they are in the process of creating, and hopefully recreating in cities outside of Melbourne.

Sonny Vice and Brad Cini from the Melbourne Chapter

Everyone was ready for another break to debrief and snack, before moving into the final presentation of the day from ex-Italian coordinator and futurist author Federico Pistono. Federico presented Ethics of Technology, sharing an alternative look at the worlds state of affairs, suggesting ways in which technology is already shifting humanity forward, and new ethical considerations that need to be taken into account regarding this. He shared some controversial topics for discussion that lead into his concluding statement about exponential empathy.

Federico Pistono at Z-Day 2017 Brisbane Australia

Just before the panel, Gilbert Ismail shared a brief update on the global chapters administration and new website. Mark Enoch shared his method for marketing the RBE message in the workshop space, followed by Matt Peddie and Vera L Te Velte from the CryptoParty who showed audience members ways to make their devices more secure.

After all the presentations, I was fortunate enough to lead the Day One Panel, where audience members had the opportunity to ask the speakers questions from the first days presentations on the main stage. This included a lively discussion where panellists authentically shared their thoughts on activism within TZM, as well as a range of social, economic and environmental concerns and ideas for consideration.

Panel from left:Casey Davidson, Franky Muller, Rich Penney, Luke Williams, Kim Benzie, Euvie Ivanova, Mike Gilliland, Federico Pistono, Gilbert Ismail

Day One Z-Day 2017 Panel At front: Casey Davidson Back from left: Franky Muller, Rich Penny, Luke Williams, Kim Benzie

Z-Day 2017 in Brisbane was the first Global event to have presentations as well as workshops. It was also the first with evening performances. A big thanks to the beautiful Anita Diamond for MCing and organising the evenings performances. Roger Smith shared his spontaneous outbreaks of reason, with his passionate funk/blues/rock sound, bringing urgency to the message of the Zeitgeist Movement. This was followed by other local artists including Aceso and The Duke. The evening was complete with DJ SAMARI, coming in from Auckland, New Zealand who shared his Zeitgeist Anaglyph.

Aceso

DAY TWO

Enthusiastic minds entered the New Globe Theatre for the second and final day of the Z-Day weekend with presentation and Q & A from Zeitgeist Movement founder and Zeitgeist film creator Peter Joseph. For a quick overview of the second day, check out Wiris vlog below.

Californian coordinator Jason Lord, kicked off Day 2 with his presentation, Defining Root Causes a short tour through common surface associations where people fall victim to seeing persistent problems as individual outcomes that need fighting or resisting. Jasons presentation explored how to see these problems as symptoms pointing to a systemic problem and helping people see how the system view can help shape your actions when it comes to activism and discussion with peers.

Jason Lord, California TZM Coordinator

Jason then introduced Peter Joseph, TZM Founder, who started with his concise presentation titled Train of Thought before delving into questions I took from the PJ booth and the audience. Just some of the topics discussed include adapting to natural laws, the victims of our structure particularly our social system, human nature, white imperial self indulgence, biodiversity, how every life support system is in decline, abundance producing mechanism, corporations, techno-capitalist apologists, structural violence, discussion about the Interreflections trailer, managing the Movement and its role in activism, philanthropy and consciousness.

Watch Peters Q & A in the video below.

After Peter, the audience once again enjoyed a delicious vegan lunch, before coming back for the final presentations, which were focused around the fight and the build towards the Zeitgeist Movements ultimate vision of a Resource-Based Economy (RBE). Richard Ostmason of the Money Free Party New Zealand, shared the work he has been doing within the political establishment to engage people into thinking about the potential of actually seeing an RBE in the short-term, particularly in New Zealand.

Richard Ostmason, Money Free Party NZ, presenting at Z-Day 2017

Next, Adelaide coordinator, Michael Kublers presented about the Price of Zero Transition, making a very important point that we cant wait for collapse and then expect to grow the world we want to see out of the ashes (coined the Phoenix Model). Rather, we need to start making systemic changes now in a variety of ways if we truly want to see an RBE.

Michael Kubler presenting at Z-Day 2017

This was followed by Ziggy Tolnay of the Sydney chapter, who shared a concept called the RBE10K project, about creating a physical community in which people could participate in as a transitionary method towards a global RBE.

Ziggy Tolnay presenting at Z-Day 2017

By this stage, the crowd was growing exceedingly weary after two full days of learning and sharing, but were very fortunate to be jolted back to the present with the very talented and insightful Eleanor Goldfield, with her emotionally evoking and painfully accurate spoken word performance about capitalism and activism. This was followed by her presentation, which rounded up the whole two days worth of events as she shared her very honest and authentic thoughts on the importance of the fight and the build that needs to happen as we work towards a post-capitalist society, making clear that capitalism will die, but whether we die with it is up to us.

Eleanor Goldfield performing and presenting at Z-Day 2017 Brisbane Australia

Eleanor Goldfield performing and presenting at Z-Day 2017 Brisbane Australia

Eleanor Goldfield performing and presenting at Z-Day 2017 Brisbane Australia

During the main stage presentations, a generous portion of the audience had made their way into the workshop space to engage with a very interesting and important presentation with one of the most experienced, thoughtful and knowledgeable ethics and systems designers, Richard Mochelle. Richard shared his thoughts on a tangible way to acquire land for a Resource-Based Economy, outside of the current methods of land acquirement, which requires submission to the current economic paradigm. Richard suggested that this land could be acquired through creating an RBE trust, in which baby boomers ultimately give their land to a cause in which promises are made to care for their land and not sell it back to the banks.

Richard Mochelle and Casey Davidson

The audience had another quick break before joining us again for the final panel with Day 2 presenters, including Peter Joseph. A range of topics were once again discussed including UBI, as well as other concerns and questions regarding transition.

Day 2 Panel Z-Day 2017

Id like to put out a big thanks to Vince and JV, who have attended every Z-Day Global since its incarnation, and have worked on the door every year, providing a significant help to coordinators, including myself.

JV and Vince Z-Day 2017 Brisbane Australia

A big thanks also to my wonderful local chapter team who managed the merchandise stand, who helped set up and pack up the venue, who managed the workshop space, and generally made everything run smoothly. Particularly to James Pauly, Karl Hansen and Lara Jordan. Thanks also to the New Globe Theatre for providing the wonderful space.

James Pauly

TZM Merchandise

Thanks also to the lovely vegan activists who spent two full-days at the event sharing their knowledge about the environmental and personal benefits of a direct active change Zeitgeist Movement advocates can make towards ethical consumer choices, including a vegan lifestyle.

Vegan Stall at Z-Day 2017

Thank you also to all of the other people behind the scene who found the power within yourself to volunteer your time and energy and provide assistance without any expectation of personal gain, but purely for the message of TZM. This includes those who lent and donated needed funding, anyone who bought a ticket, anyone who was offered a free ticket due to your circumstances, anyone who asked a question, participated in any way, who offered an idea, a question, who bought merchandise or a drink, who offered their assistance in any way shape or form, or even sat passively as an audience member. Bums on seats count, and matter particularly to organisers, presenters and performers. Thanks also to our global online audience who made a weekend of it by participating in the online streaming from afar.

Paul Doyle from Frequencies TV Life Streaming for ZDay Global Brisbane

Another big thanks to Jason Lord, Michael Kubler and Paul Doyle who made sure the video content including streaming and videos for later viewing would be available to our global audience who couldnt make the big trip to Brisbane. This is a significantly huge job and anyone with technical skills is always encouraged to help in this regard to make sure our content reaches a larger audience and forever into the future.

Jason making sure everything is running smoothly

Michael Kubler, usually behind the camera

Id also like to extend my gratitudeto all of the other people behind the scene who found the power within yourself to volunteer your time and energy and provide assistance without any expectation of personal gain, but purely for the message of TZM.

Z-Day 2017 Group Photo

Z-Day 2017 Setting up for Group Photo

A special mention to Zac Syme for your support as well as opening your home for the presenter social night and providing a home for so many people leading up to, and over the event. Thanks to others who opened their home to travelling guests, including Simon Cole, Caroline and Karl, Ricky, Grant, Anita and Tim, James, Lara and Jack.

Zac Syme, Queensland TZM Coordinator and Federico Pistono, Author, ex-Italian Coordinator Photos by Michael Kubler

Thanks again to Paul Doyle for offering your studio Frequencies TV where we recorded podcasts with coordinators and the Future Thinkers Podcast hosts Mike and Euvie, as well as for the public social night on Friday night before the event. More photos of the Pre-Z-Day Party here.

2017-03-24th Pre ZDay global public event at Frequencies TV, Brisbane Photos by Michael Kubler @kublermdk

Regardless of how far the Movement may or may not have come, we still have significant momentum, and your support however much or little you can give makes a differences to our ability to spread the message. Im eternally grateful for all of the support and truly believe with the mindset of the participants in this years Z-Day we can make the drastic change we need to see to truly create a unified, abundant world.

More photos by Michael Kubler and others here.

Peter Joseph (TZM Founder) and Casey Davidson (TZM Australia Coordinator)Article by Casey Davidson

See original here:

The Zeitgeist Movement Australian Chapter


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