MusicWeekend

Taylor Swift, Picture-Perfect

by Lucas Fagen on November 22, 2014

Post image for Taylor Swift, Picture-Perfect

Taylor Swift has become a megaplatinum superstar largely through the construction of an artificial but rather appealing character. To call her the girl next door would downplay the dizzy self-involvement and feisty autonomy that made her a star in the first place.

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Melvin Edwards,

Melvin Edwards’ welded relief sculptures conjure up human anguish and human advancement often within the same work. His art delivers the mythmaking spirit of abstract sculpture into the domain of identifiable histories. He has built a long, wide-ranging career around that apparent incongruity.

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Ursula von Rydingsvard, “Bent Lace” (2014)

In a video produced by Art 21, Ursula von Rydingsvard recalls her childhood in refugee camps after World War II, living in barracks made of “raw wooden floors, raw wooden walls, and raw wooden ceilings.” Her current show at Galerie Lelong, Permeated Shield, is the first solo of her long career with a title that alludes at least indirectly to warfare.

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Post image for From Idaho to the Smithsonian, the Journey of James Castle

In 1899, in the remote Idahoan village of Garden Valley, James Castle was born completely deaf. For the rest of his life, he couldn’t hear, speak, read, or write. Our only glimpses into his mind are the drawings and collages he created using scavenged paper and soot mixed with his own spit.

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Post image for Rebooting the Legacy of a Woman Who Made Video Games for Girls

Theresa Duncan made a series of CD-ROM games in the 1990s aimed at young girls, encouraging imagination and adventure through playfully drawn, dreamlike narratives.

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Post image for Creating Community Space Inside a Dumpster

Of all the places to set up an “inflatable classroom” and community event space, a dumpster seems among the most improbable.

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Post image for Great Balls of Ire: Oil Company Rips Off Brooklyn Artist

An advertising campaign for Shell featuring a giant red ball has one Brooklyn artist feeling blue.

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Post image for Darkskinned or Lightskinned? Crowdsourcing Blackness

Artist Nate Hill is always picking at cultural scabs. Whether it is drug addiction, violence, alienation, sexism, or race, he’s poking his finger on wounds that solicit reactions by intentionally provoking his audience with deadpan directness.

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Post image for Uterus Man, Pelvis Chariot, and the Irreverent Video Games of Lu Yang

If there’s any space that both parallels and accommodates Lu Yang’s highly exhilarating and provocative works, it’s a sprawling arcade, a cornucopia of weirdness and inappropriate ideas.

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Post image for Chicago Park Advocates Fight ‘Star Wars’ Museum with the Force (of the Law)

“The Preservationists Strike Back” could be the title for the latest episode in the saga of Star Wars director George Lucas’s planned $300 million Lucas Museum of Narrative Arts on the Lake Michigan waterfront in Chicago.

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