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Montreal Museum of Fine Arts busted by Facebook

MMFA tried to foist a degenerate image on an unsuspecting public.  Cynically, the museum curators thought they could just slide in the tawdry full-frontal poster art, Women at Their Toilette, supposedly to promote their exhibition.  Creeper artist Pablo Picasso exposed the same pornography to a shocked world in 1956 and Montreal Museum of Fine Arts tried to drag it out of the cesspool where it should have stayed. Thankfully, Facebook, with its ever-watchful algorithms, was able to identify the abomination before the ad could be posted.  The moral sanctity of the public has been preserved and the integrity of the US election process … oh wait, that’s something else.

Mature content follows.picasso women

What’s PC for ‘chickenshit’?

Hey Poets:  Been sold out by your publisher?  …cutoff at the knees.   … thrown under the bus.  …hung out to dry.   …betrayed.  Hey, it could happen.  It does happen.  The Nation apologized for publishing a poem by Anders Carlson-Wee entitled How To.

I read the poem.  I’m not sure if it’s blackface to attempt to assume a character.  I’m not sure the writer is ableist if the character uses the word cripple.  That’s beside the point.  One hopes, one assumes, that the poet has already taken responsibility for the poem by writing it and submitting it for publication.  Nor is it germane that the poet himself recanted.   No shortage of weak knees in this story.  The poet can wrestle with himself.  What are the responsibilities of the publisher?

Grace Schulman is the author of seven books of poetry and was the poetry editor at The Nation from 1971 – 2006.  She’s having none of it.  She is in a unique position to list what The Nation could have done, should have done and has done in the past.

It would not be proper for me to comment on the aesthetic merits of Mr. Carlson-Wee’s piece. That’s the job of the magazine’s current poetry editors. But going forward, I’d recommend they follow Henry James’s example. Just as he never apologized for his negative review of Whitman, they had zero reason to regret their decision.

How-To     by Anders Carlson-Wee

If you got hiv, say aids. If you a girl,
say you’re pregnant––nobody gonna lower
themselves to listen for the kick. People
passing fast. Splay your legs, cock a knee
funny. It’s the littlest shames they’re likely
to comprehend. Don’t say homeless, they know
you is. What they don’t know is what opens
a wallet, what stops em from counting
what they drop. If you’re young say younger.
Old say older. If you’re crippled don’t
flaunt it. Let em think they’re good enough
Christians to notice. Don’t say you pray,
say you sin. It’s about who they believe
they is. You hardly even there.

anders carlson-wee

Deathmetal lives

My brother shared a youtube with my sister and me; I’ll just characterize it for the moment as a deathmetal music video.  (bleach03)  I scornfully interjected that it was all derivative – nothing new.  My sister mused and wondered if it would be the answer to her most pressing  question of the moment, how to entertain her two young grandchildren who would be over soon.

The discussion did not end there:

Thrashcore (also known as fastcore) is a fast tempo subgenre of hardcore punk that emerged in the early 1980s. Thrashcore is essentially sped-up hardcore, often using blast beats. Songs can be very brief, and thrashcore is in many ways a less dissonant, less metallic forerunner of grindcore.

A propos to music on Event Horizon:  I think I will have to abandon my debut Offworld feature as a failed and distracting experiment.  Especially since I’ve moved to a bi-monthly format, there are too many other fish to fry, with artists concerned about publication.

I’ll handle music and performance from the same perspective as my 2d-graphic-literary submissions:  I am very interested in your work.  Send it in and I’ll consider it for publication in the most flattering and impactful format I can engineer.

deathmetal

Jane Austen Lives

Big news.  Jane Austen’s unfinished novel, Sanditon will be adapted into an eight-episode TV miniseries, filming to start next spring.  That’s pretty ambitious.  The gold standard for such fare – Pride and Prejudice miniseries 1995 – clocked in at six episodes and that was for one of her six completed novels. But wait;  there’s more:  A new Pride and Prejudice adaptation has been announced.

 ITV and Mammoth Screen  …  are teaming up to breathe new life into Jane Austen’s timeless classic. While dates and cast are still a mystery, playwright Nina Raine has already signed on to write the script for the new adaptation, which will be her first written for television.

Heady stuff.  And an opportunity to comment on just how far we’ve come.  It’s best to just take all of these offerings on their own terms (mostly). You will not re-invent Jane Austen whether you put her on a Grecian urn, in a video game or a mini-series.  Hopefully – reasonably – a sympathetic and competent period piece is something you will be predisposed to enjoy .. if you like Jane Austen.

I think  PP 1995 is great.  Jennifer Ehle channels Elizabeth Bennet.  Colin Firth has dialed in Darcy’s brittle-but-vulnerable persona and innovations like the wet shirt emerging  from the lake are chuckle-worthy. I saw PP 2005 with Keira Knightly but I can’t remember it.

Darcy-and-Elizabeth

Sense and Sensibility, also of 1995, was good.  It felt like Sense and Sensibility.  They pulled out all the stops in casting; Emma Thompson, Kate Winslet, Hugh Grant, Alan Rickman, not-quite-a-star-yet Hugh Laurie.  But my petty prejudices have been piqued; Hugh Grant was not well-served by his role because Edward Ferrars is a weeny.  Also, it wasn’t long enough.  Except for Persuasion 2007, if you have any pretentions of being faithful to Jane Austen, it has to be a mini-series.

OK, then, Persuasion 2007. Forget the inevitable comparison to the novel.  P 2007 is a good movie, good music, great cinematography, understated acting, silences you can read. If you like Jane Austen you’ll enjoy P 2007 and find it comfortably similar to Persuasion.

Mansfield Park on film is problematic for me because Mansfield Park is problematic for me.  I don’t like Fanny Price.  She’s timid.  She’s a prig.  She’s docile and easily taken advantage of .. except, of course, when she isn’t.  Jane Austen meant for her to be a sympathetic character so that is a mismatch for me. Otherwise, Mansfield Park (Jane’s) is a brooding masterpiece with a squadron of flawed characters, sailing away on a crowded ship of fools.  My favorite dose of Mansfield Park is actually an audiobook narrated by Flo Gibson.

I saw a 1983 miniseries version of Mansfield Park. It seemed dated and dusty somehow, perhaps appropriately.  Fanny Price in MP 1983 was pretty faithful to Jane Austen’s vision – so that was a problem for me.  Otherwise, it was a creditable rendition.  It seems to have disappeared from Netflix or Amazon.

Take a friend who doesn’t like Jane Austen to see Mansfield Park 1999 with Frances O’Connor.  I like Frances O’Connor.  She does a great job in this light, silly romantic comedy.  MP 1999 has very little to do with Mansfield Park.

As I said, you have to take most of these efforts on their own terms.  Mansfield Park 2007 is a very good movie and a satisfying period piece.  Fanny Price, played by Julia Joyce, is a warm, likable character – so, good for me but not-so-faithful to the book.

I love that janeaustenfilmclub.com lists Clueless 1995 with Alicia Silverstone as one of the four important movie versions of Emma. The other three are 1996 with Kate Beckinsale,  then 1996 (!) with Gwyneth Paltrow, and the mini-series, 2009, with Romola Garai.  Romola’s Emma was delightful, funny and authentic.  Gwyneth and Kate were forgettable – I give them each three Netflix stars and instead I recommend E 2009.  And, of course, Clueless.

clueless

I saw Northanger Abbey, 2007, with Felicity Jones.  Felicity hammed it up perfectly in this ridiculous romp.  Jane Austen would have cracked a smile. Looks like there are also 1986 and 1987 versions.  Haven’t seen them.

But I feel better now.  I’m glad I could get that off my chest.

The International Art World

In an article in Apollo, Caroline A. Jones  asks the question, “Is the international art world too elitist?”  I’m here to tell you that the answer is, not always. I just returned with my wife from Victoria and Vancouver  (in Canada – a foreign country) and we saw lots and lots of art.  Full disclosure here:  Talking about the 10th Berlin Biennale, Caroline goes on to say

The biennial’s highly educated and fluent art-world operators are elites by any measure, particularly in their own countries of origin. An invitation to be on a curatorial team in a country other than your own, or to fulfil a commission from the prestigious Berlin Biennale, would anoint any curator, educator, artist, or art writer as part of a global elite.

I did not receive an invitation to the 10th Berlin Biennale.

I’m still processing our trip and arranging my snapshots.  We rubbed shoulders, so to speak, with many heavyweights whose names are barely heard south of that border.  The redoubtable Emily Carr is enshrined in the Vancouver Art Gallery.  Susan Point (66 y/o), of the Coast Salish tradition, is represented by commissioned monuments at important public facilities, acknowledged in rock-and-brass floor inscriptions, and on full display in multiple national museums. Charles Edenshaw and Bill Reid are champions who kept the Haida tradition alive in spite of at least two extinction-level events: a flu epidemic that reduced Haida numbers to around 600, and egregious government policies designed to eliminate and “absorb” the indigenous cultures. Northwest Coastal art is literally in renaissance since 1970; brilliant contemporary artists are using ancient principles and new technology to enrich our world.

Still musing. More on that later.

susan point VIA

Susan Point, Spindle Whorl, at Vancouver International Airtport

 

The National Gallery Acquires Its First Painting by a Woman Since 1991

I guess this article (title verbatim from Hyperallergic) would be only mildly newsworthy unless you were a hysterical fan of Artemesia Gentileschi.  That would be me.  Artemisia was the wrong gender in 17th-century Florence so there are many who have not heard of this supremely under-rated painting prodigy.  She is fair game for an Event Horizon feature if I find a dearth of 21st century artists to showcase.

artemisia museum  artemisia self

artemisia judith

 

 

Call to artists: Issue 5

calls logo

It’s that time again.  Issue 4 has been published.  This is a call for submissions:

Event Horizon is seeking poetry, fiction, and non-fiction of many varieties.

Event Horizon is calling for graphic arts suitable for a print publication:  illustration of any variety, photography and photography of craft work, and pictures with stories comprising manga, graphic novels, comics and cartoons.

Event Horizon is soliciting cover art.  See the website for specs.

There is no fee for submitting nor is there payment upon acceptance. Event Horizon comes out bi-monthly.  Target date for publication of Issue 5 is September 1, 2018.

The best place to start for any questions is the website. There are four issues available to view.

The website and free pdf downloads can be found at eventhorizonmagazine.com .

All submissions and inquiries should be directed to eventhorizonmagazine@gmail.com .

Contest winners; Issue 4 update

I am pleased to announce the winners of the Event Horizon Pictorial Contest and its $100 prize:  the strip Saint Michaels, written by Gene Turchin and illustrated by Jacob Duchaine.  The strip was featured in Issue 3.  To Gene and Jacob, congratulations and thanks for your participation.

cover for article

Issue 4 is now available as a print copy for purchase.  Go to the Home page.