Tag Archives: Reviews

Exhibitions: “Envisioning 2001: Stanley Kubrick’s Space Odyssey” (MOMI NYC)

From a New York Times online review:

“Envisioning 2001” shows Kubrick as a director in command of all aspects of filmmaking, and it suggests that he and Clarke were no small obsessives when it came to understanding their subject matter. One of the first items in the exhibit is a request form from 1964, with Clarke’s name and address, sent to the United States Air Force. He sought information on a sighting — which turned out to be a satellite — that he and Kubrick, then developing the story for the movie, had seen in the sky over New York.

Some of the first visitors to see the exhibition Envisioning 2001 Stanley Kubrick's Space Odyssey. Photo by Thanassi Karageorgiou Nas Karas Studios Jan 16, 2020 at Museum of the Moving Image
Some of the first visitors to see the exhibition Envisioning 2001: Stanley Kubrick’s Space Odyssey. Photo by Thanassi Karageorgiou Nas Karas Studios Jan 16, 2020 at Museum of the Moving Image

As it approaches its 52nd birthday, “2001: A Space Odyssey” remains one of the most inventive and enduring of all movies. But from the vantage point of 2020, it can be difficult to appreciate the sheer breadth of imagination involved in its making.

Enter “Envisioning 2001: Stanley Kubrick’s Space Odyssey,” a new exhibit at the Museum of the Moving Image in Astoria, Queens, that runs through July 19. The show brings together original correspondence, sketches, storyboards, props, video clips and much more to illustrate how Kubrick, the film’s director, and Arthur C. Clarke, the science fiction author who collaborated with him on the screenplay, set about bringing the future to the screen.

Read full article

Profiles: The Minimalist Aesthetic Of London Architect John Pawson

From a The Modern House online article:

“Simplicity in architecture can sometimes only be achieved by the most complex of means.”

John Pawson Anatomy of Minimum PHAIDON Publishing 2019British architectural designer John Pawson has, in a career spanning over three decades, created an inimitable body of work characterized by its distillment of the fundamental ingredients of architecture into their most elemental, elegant expressions.

His design practice, which began primarily with residential commissions, now extends to churches, museums, ballet sets, textiles, kitchenware and furniture. Despite his minimalistArchitect John Pawson approach, Pawson is sensitive to the intimate rituals of daily life and his buildings are far from austere: instead, they elegantly make the case for the clarity and freedom to be found in the act of reduction.

In a new book published by Phaidon, writer Alison Morris explores Pawson’s most recent projects, shedding light on his working process and influences accompanied by stunning photographs, drawings and imagery from his personal journal.

Purchase book

 

Read entire article

Camper Trends: “Beauer X-Van” Telescopes To Larger Size With Push Of A Button

From a New Atlas online article:

French company Beauer has earned a lot of attention over the years for telescoping teardrop caravans that grow double or triple their size at the push of a button. Now the company’s bringing its tech to van life, launching a plug-and-play module that grows to create a large camper at camp and a smaller, nimbler van on the road. The X-Van installs in 10 minutes and extends the length of the van to add comfy sleeping quarters for two, giving a mid-size van the length of a full-size model.

2020-Beauer-X-van-00

After popping the tailgate, the owner merely hits a button on the pillar next to the driver seat and watches as the electrically actuated module sets up within a minute’s time. The only thing left to do is pop the expansion panels on the module’s sides to increase elbow room inside. The 25-mm sandwich construction keeps the temperature comfy inside.

Read more

Performing Arts: “The Letters Of Cole Porter” (New Yorker Review)

From a New Yorker online article review:

The Letters Of Cole Porter Yale University Press November 2019Beneath his smooth, genial, almost inhumanly productive and evasive surface, there were turbulent waters. His very name, for all its air of Ivy League ease, represents a burdened legacy. The Porters were his difficult, scapegrace father’s family; the Coles were his mother’s rich and ambitious Indiana family. He was a Porter by birth but, if his mother had anything to do with it, would be a Cole for life.

Certainly, Porter’s ghost could not ask for better care than he has been given in “The Letters of Cole Porter” (Yale), edited by Cliff Eisen, a professor of music history at King’s College London, and Dominic McHugh, a musicologist at the University of Sheffield (and the editor of Alan Jay Lerner’s letters). Laid out with a meticulous scholarly apparatus, as though this were the correspondence of Grover Cleveland, every turn in the songwriter’s story is deep-dived for exact chronology, and every name casually dropped by Porter gets a worried, explicatory footnote.

Read New Yorker Article

Literature: “Prometheus Unbound” By Percy Bysshe Shelley First Published 200 Years Ago In 1820

Prometheus Unbound Percy Bysshe Shelley 1820Prometheus Unbound is a four-act lyrical drama by Percy Bysshe Shelley, first published in 1820. It is concerned with the torments of the Greek mythological figure Prometheus, who defies the gods and gives fire to humanity, for which he is subjected to eternal punishment and suffering at the hands of Zeus. It is inspired by the classical Prometheia, a trilogy of plays attributed to Aeschylus. Shelley’s play concerns Prometheus’ release from captivity, but unlike Aeschylus’ version, there is no reconciliation between Prometheus and Jupiter (Zeus). Instead, Jupiter is abandoned by his supportive elements and falls from power, which allows Prometheus to be released.

Excerpt:

As you speak, your words
Fill, pause by pause, my own forgotten sleep
With shapes. Methought among these lawns together
We wandered, underneath the young gray dawn,
And multitudes of dense white fleecy clouds
Were wandering in thick flocks along the mountains
Shepherded by the slow, unwilling wind;

prometheus-unbound-percy-bysshe-shelley.jpg

Political – Prometheus, then, is also Shelley’s answer to the mistakes of the French Revolution and its cycle of replacing one tyrant with another. Shelley wished to show how a revolution could be conceived which would avoid doing just that, and in the end of this play, there is no power in charge at all; it is an anarchist’s paradise.

Shelley finishes his “Preface” to the play with an evocation of his intentions as a poet:

My purpose has hitherto been simply to familiarize the highly refined imagination of the more select classes of poetical readers with beautiful idealisms of moral excellence; aware that, until the mind can love, and admire, and trust, and hope, and endure, reasoned principles of moral conduct are seeds cast upon the highway of life which the unconscious passenger tramples into dust, although they would bear the harvest of his happiness.

From Wikipedia

Rock & Roll Biographies: “Conversations With Tom Petty” (February 2020)

Conversations with Tom Petty book February 2020Author Paul Zollo conducted a series of in-depth discussions with Tom about his career, with special focus on his songwriting. The conversations are reprinted here with little or no editorial comment and represent a unique perspective on Tom’s entire career. Originally published in 2005 (also by Omnibus Press), Tom’s wife Dana has fully approved this updated edition, which retains its foreword by Petty, adds additional interview material, an expanded introduction as well as additional photos from Petty’s last ever live performance. This is, perhaps, as close as you can get to an autobiography by the great man.

Tom Petty has long been considered one of the great songwriters of American rock ‘n’ roll, as well as one of the key standard bearers of integrity in the music business. Conversations With Tom Petty is the first authorized book to focus solely on the life and work of the man responsible for some of the most memorable rock anthems of our generation, including: ‘American Girl’, ‘Breakdown’, ‘Refugee’, “The Waiting’, ‘Don’t Come Around Here No More’, ‘I Won’t Back Down’, ‘Free Fallin’, ‘Runnin’ Down a Dream’, ‘You Don’t Know How It Feels’, ‘Mary Jane’s Last Dance’ and many others.

Read more or purchase

 

Camper Trailers: Easy Caravaning’s “TakeOff” Opens In 30 Seconds

From a New Atlas online article:

The TakeOff interior houses two rows of furniture running down the sides of a center aisle. The front dinette includes benches on either side of an adjustable table, converting to an 63 x 81-in (160 x 205-cm) oversized queen bed at night. The versatile, multi-position lounge can be set up in several configurations, including an optional eight-seat dinette and a shortened bed with rear dining nook.

Easy Caravaning X10T 2020

Pop-up tent campers are an age-old way of enjoying a light, aerodynamic tow and roomy base camp. They’re not always as quick or easy to set up as the term “pop-up” suggests, however. The new TakeOff from Dutch startup Easy Caravanning follows through on the pop-up trailer’s implied promise of quickness. A sort of pop-up camper van roof on wheels, the TakeOff rides low and light and sets up in about half a minute, making it perfect for a quick lunch break on the way to camp, as well as a cozy extended camping holiday.