Arts Desk

Arts Roundup: FREEDOM Edition


Non-Modern Art Notes: Next year, the National Gallery of Art will mount a major George Bellows retrospective, reports The Washington Post. In other arts news, why is the Post sending its classical critic to review "Degas's Dancers at the Barre" at the Phillips Collection, and not, like, its art critic? I could see assigning it to the dance critic... (UPDATE: Ah! I get it: Art critic Philip Kennicott reviewed a classical concert, and classical critic Anne Midgette reviewed a museum exhibition. Fun?)

High Art: Craig Wedren, former of D.C. art-punk dudes Shudder to Think, has a new solo album, WAND, and Pitchfork digs it: "While 2005's Lapland was stately and muted in its execution,WAND is falling all over itself with ideas. Wedren's voice commands rising and receding string sections, intricate multi-part harmonies, and subtle electronic textures that bloom into full-on rock arrangements. The album's title is apt; though Wedren is joined by a formidable cast of supporting players, much of the record feels conjured out of thin air."

LIBERTÉ: Les Miserables turns 25 this year, and it has a new staging at the KenCen. In today's Post, Peter Marks calls this version "breathlessly staged" and "almost frantically re-engineered." "It’s not the best 'Les Miz' you’ll ever sit through, though it may be the loudest," Marks writes. "it’s as if the new directors brought in for this 25th anniversary production, Laurence Connor and James Powell, decided that the show should be SHOUTED FROM THE ROOFTOPS of Paris." I don't see how that is different from any other Les Miserables I've experienced.

We Got the Sun: Deleted Scenes' kaleidoscopic new video for "Baltika 9" is a trip and a half.

Today on Arts Desk: D.C. hardcore dudes Void discuss their new reissue.

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  • Gary Arseneau

    October 2, 2011

    The Phillips Collections’ connoisseurship has been undermined.

    This exhibition contains, at least, one irrefutable posthumous forgery.

    Whether it is ignorance or indifference, those who review these exhibitions, give the museums and the professionals who participate in this fraud, a free pass.

    Unfortunately, I wish it was an exception but museums are publishing catalogues touting their forgeries as authentic work of visual art.

    It’s a cottage industry.

    Maybe someday, like Madoff, the cows will come home.

    Caveat Emptor!

    Gary Arseneau
    artist, creator of original lithographs & scholar
    Fernandina Beach, Florida