Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Other Stuff (not mine)

  • Liza Kurwin, who everyone knows as the curator of manuscripts at the Smithsonian Institution Archives of American Art, has a new book out of lists made by famous artists. For Flavorwire she has compiled her top-ten favorite lists, all of which are much cooler than the to-do lists I make on post-its that generally still have older lists still on them. I think my favorite is the list Picasso made for Walt Kuhn of artists to see at the 1912 Armory Show. 

  • In 1963, William Zantzinger killed Hattie Caroll at Baltimore's Emerson Hotel. Zantzinger died in 2009, at the age of 69, and this is his obituary. I'm struck by the fact that Zantzinger is a year older than Bob Dylan who immortalized him as a villain in "The Lonesome Death of Hattie Carroll." Zantzinger, who for some reason was not a fan of being the bad guy in one of the most famous protest songs of the century, had a colorful life after his six-month jail sentence. Zantzinger came from a wealthy tobacco family, used to own a nightclub, belonged to a country club, went into real estate and was a slum lord for a few years.

  • Fritz Lang's Metropolis is being re-released into theaters. This epic film is an incredible achievement and the new version contains 25 minutes of footage discovered two years ago in a basement in South America (really). When the film was originally released it was repeatedly chopped down in order to make it more "marketable," and even the current version is not complete. Even in its butchered form it became one of the most influential films ever made and still has powerful statements to make about class, gender and technology. Much of the philosophical and physical conflict of the rest of the 20th century was explored in Lang's 1927 film, which was ahead of it's time both technically and artistically. The trailer for the restored Metropolis is hypnotizing and shows off the visual effects, which are still impressive. 

  • The Obscure, The Forgotten and the Unloved has polled a bunch of movie bloggers to create a list of the Top 40 films that are critically acclaimed but that few people have seen. Check it out if you want to feel insecure about your film knowledge. (The picture above is taken from a famous movie, anyone recognize it?)

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