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Artist Banksy opens theme park at British seaside

Graffiti artist Banksy announced the opening of a dystopian theme park in a British seaside town on Thursday, featuring boats filled with migrants and an anarchist training camp. The “Dismaland” theme park is located in a derelict outdoor swimming pool center in Weston-super-Mare, a coastal town near Bristol in the ...

Postwar art: What's wrong with controversy?

Aug 18, 2015

Postwar art: What's wrong with controversy?

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If you like controversy with your contemporary art “Postwar Art in Close Up” at The Museum of Contemporary Art Tokyo (MOT) may be the wrong exhibition to visit. Though it is tentatively presented as a commemoration of the 70th anniversary of the end of ...

A 'gymnopedist' ahead of his time

Aug 18, 2015

A 'gymnopedist' ahead of his time

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Erik Satie (1866-1925) said and did a lot of memorable things, many remarkably outlandish. Brilliant and bonkers, he composed works that range from cabaret ditties to a “symphonic drama,” from light music for educating children to complex parodies of the masters. And who can ...

The spooky side of Sanyutei Encho

Aug 11, 2015

The spooky side of Sanyutei Encho

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For all sorts of reasons, summer is the season of ghosts in Japan. Accordingly, The University Art Museum in Tokyo is presenting an exhibition of work connected to Meiji Era (1867-1912) storyteller Sanyutei Encho (1839-1900). Encho practised the art of rakugo, a traditional and ...

Dinh Q. Le's art of nuanced criticism

Aug 4, 2015

Dinh Q. Le's art of nuanced criticism

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Dinh Q. Le says he’s not angry about the American war in Vietnam anymore. This makes our interview a lot easier; we are both of Vietnamese descent and there is a chance that talking about the war could polarize us very quickly, even though ...

Art nouveau's jewels in the crown

Aug 4, 2015

Art nouveau's jewels in the crown

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As Parisians of the late 19th century reveled in the heady optimism of economic prosperity and enjoyed the innovations spurred by the ongoing Industrial Revolution, Sarah Bernhardt, the most famous actress and muse of the time, became enamored by two trendsetters: Rene Lalique, then ...

Japan's clean aesthetic hid the ugly mess of war

Jul 28, 2015

Japan's clean aesthetic hid the ugly mess of war

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Why would anybody want to go to war? For some of us it’s incomprehensible. For others, there will be circumstances that make war justifiable — or even desirable. History tells us that the former demographic is usually added to by members of the latter, ...

Things that changed photography

Jul 28, 2015

Things that changed photography

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In the late 1960s, the mono-ha (school of things) movement arose from the Japanese art-school scene, with the Korean-born artist Lee Ufan — who went from the philosophy department at Nihon University to teaching at Tama Art University — as its most renowned proponent. ...

Jul 19, 2015

A-bomb exhibition opens at Hiroshima art museum

An exhibition opened at an art museum in Hiroshima on Saturday tracing the path the city has followed in the past 70 years following the atomic bombing in 1945. Works on display at the exhibition titled “Life=Work” at Hiroshima City Museum of Contemporary Art ...

Kitaoji Rosanjin only served the very best

Jul 14, 2015

Kitaoji Rosanjin only served the very best

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Only a culinary visionary would declare in 1935: “If clothes make the person, dishes make the food.” He went on to explain, “Appropriate care must go into their selection, not only in terms of quality, but also to see that the size, depth, color ...

Pop culture show may be a bit off game

Jul 14, 2015

Pop culture show may be a bit off game

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On paper, “Manga * Anime * Games From Japan,” currently running at The National Art Center, Tokyo, sounds like a great show. The exhibition overview certainly makes a big pitch: “Transcending the boundaries of each individual medium to realize unparalleled artistic expression, Japanese manga, ...

'Motion Science' sways toward kids

Jul 7, 2015

'Motion Science' sways toward kids

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There is a bit of a Renaissance feel to “Motion Science” at 21_21 Design Sight. Consciously compounding science, technology, art and design for the greater good of promoting curiosity and discovery in general, the exhibition is targeted at children and students. Automated devices and ...