Saturday 23 September 2017

Reading list,

I'm very pleased to see Rowan Simpson release his remastered blog posts on important observations and lessons from working in New Zealand's most successful tech start-up and working with a bunch of other NZ companies. Applicable way beyond the tech world.

Oliver Wainwright writes up the new Zeitz Museum of Contemporary African Art (Mocaa) by Heatherwick Studios.

Rotterdam's Witte de With Center for Contemporary Art is changing its name (which comes from the Dutch naval officer Witte Corneliszoon de With, an agent of both the Dutch West India and the Dutch East India companies in the 17th century) due to its colonial history.

Walker Art Center’s Reckoning With ‘Scaffold’ Isn’t Over Yet - NYT

Saturday 16 September 2017

Reading list, 16 September 2017

I am actually quite surprised there is this much appetite for articles on the Met's management decisions: Town & Country feature an exclusive interview with President (and boss of the to-be-appointed director) Daniel Weiss. Good to compare to the interview with Tom Campbell from last week's reading list.

I can't figure out how to link directly to embedded video in a tweet, but you should watch this video, on lighting black and brown skin for television.

I am rather taken with this tiny UK town, with is starting a museum of miners art. A fascinating history of 20th century working class art.

Speaking of art and class: this article about the academicisation of poetry in 20th century (don't yawn) in the wake of declining patronage from a class that saw its wealth decimated by the First World War and the Depression, is interesting if you want to think about why so many leading NZ artists are tertiary teachers.

This new funding announcement for Indigenous and First Nation artists and curators in Australia should be a model for Aotearoa (as long as the project funding turns into permanent positions / presence / changed ways of working).

A beautiful NYT story about a cultural camp run by David Severns, a Yurok tribal member, where he teaches traditional ways to make ceremonial regalia.

Belated reading on a love/hate topic: Can Real Life Compete With an Instagram Playground?

Saturday 9 September 2017

Reading list, 9 September 2017

From the journalistic world: I loved NYT White House reporter Maggie Haberman's Longform Podcast interview: here she is on The Cut's series 'How I Get It Done'.  And Charlotte Graham's impressive piece for The Spinoff on New Zealand women journalists' experiences of and attitudes towards online abuse (which is less traumatising and more instructive than the headline suggests).

British and American museums are to meet in 2018 to discuss returning looted art from Benin to west Africa in a rotating long-term exhibition (not full repatriation).

Andrew Goldstein's two-part interview with previous Met director Thomas Campbell: Thomas Campbell on Why He Became the Met’s Surprise Champion of New Art and Thomas Campbell on the Price of Modernization at America’s Greatest Museum.

The wonderful writer Jenny Uglow on Grayson Perry.

Another update from MIA on their changing approach to managing their membership programme.

Sunday 3 September 2017

Reading list, 3 September 2017

After the backlash to her essay on Katherine Middleton on her marriage to Prince William, now Hilary Mantel wonderfully takes on the Diana myth.

I'm interested at the moment in the stereotypes that museum reverse-promote about themselves, like this one from the director of the Utah Museum of Fine Arts, which has just re-opened after an upgrade:
Some museum purists may disapprove of the more accessible labels. “The art historians here on campus, they would prefer everything was just a tombstone, because the students come in here and just copy [the] labels down,” Dietrich said. “You can never make everybody happy.”
Grutas Park, a sculpture garden in south-west Lithuania, shows one way of dealing with statues and monuments that have been rejected from public places:
The figures are grouped according to their role in Soviet activity: the Totalitarian Sphere depicts key thinkers and prominent leaders; the Red Sphere features members of the resistance; the Death sphere shows the bloody means by which the regimes were kept in place. Indeed, the park allows the spectre of suffering to loom in the background by recreating gulag blocks, guard towers and barbed-wire fences.
Honestly, just batshit: Famed architect Frank Gehry to design Extreme Model Railroad and Contemporary Architecture Museum.

The NYT profiles Elaine Welteroth, editor of Teen Vogue and tasked with "reinventing the glossy magazine for a hyperempathetic generation".