Apparently Egypt is starting to get jealous of Greece and wants to repatriate Cleopatra’s Needle, the trophy of cultural dominance granite stele that’s been festooning Central Park since 1881. Too bad 129 years is totally long enough for finders keepers! Here are five reasons Egypt won’t get their stele back. So there.
On November 30, 1994, choreographer Bill T. Jones’s experimental dance piece “Still/Here” opened at the Brooklyn Academy of Music. The work featured live dancers performing in front of video footage of terminally ill people discussing their sicknesses. Nearly a month later, dance critic Arlene Croce blasted the piece in a now-infamous essay in the New Yorker. Announcing that she had never seen “Still/Here” and had no intention of doing so, Croce wrote, “By working dying people into his act, Jones is putting himself beyond the reach of criticism. I think of him as literally undiscussable.” She went on to classify that category of undiscussability as “those dancers I’m forced to feel sorry for because of the way they present themselves: as dissed blacks, abused women, or disenfranchised homosexuals—as performers, in short, who make out of victimhood victim art.” In many ways, the National Portrait Gallery’s current, controversial, and excellent special exhibition Hide/Seek feels like a resounding rebuttal of Croce’s thesis.
Call it the anti-condo: Dutch artist and architect Joep van Lieshout’s Atelier van Lieshout is offering up their first house for sale, and this inhabitable work of art is not your average villa. Draped with an intestinal blob-tunnel, Lieshout’s one of a kind Utrecht building is available for a cool one million euros, but it’s not for the faint of heart (or eye).
The Metropolitan is really hitting hard with its new media efforts lately, coming out with an interesting project in conjunction with its Lod mosaic exhibition, as well as a new presentation called “Connections,” an online series of photo slideshows with audio featuring museum staff giving short presentations of pieces in the museum collection that fascinate them, based on a particular theme or idea. The videos are fun insights into the personalities of staff and the collection, but they could go deeper into the art objects that they present.