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Actors as Liars

I have often wondered whether a trained actor would be able to beat a polygraph test. Is the art about deception or perception? Sure we all put up a front in our lives whether its work or relationships, do actors have a leg up in this respect?

  • I'd like to think actors as more in-tune with human emotion rather than "liars" per-say. And i wonder if the question you raise could be applied to lawyers too, when they defend someone they know to be guilty in their heart. It's hard to say really, but i think at the end of the day and actor isn't any more susceptible to compulsive lying that anyone else really. Heaps of people - whether they are actors and lawyers or not, have the ability and tendency to lie. At least with actors, there ability to pretend is put to good use in the form of cinema. – NoorGillani 2 months ago
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  • Actors are people paid to act in front of an audience. I think the topic should ask how actors are able to lie so easily. – BMartin43 2 months ago
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  • beekay,I would actually suggest expanding this idea and talk about how movies themselves are false. Jean-Luc Godard once said that movies are just, "24 lies per second" (in reference to the frames through the projector), which I would say is correct; nothing that happens in a movie is natural because it is all staged, and even if the director tries to be realistic about it and have the actors improvise, there is still a production going on; there's still lighting equipment and editing involved. With that said, I would also address the fact that most people know that what's happening in a movie is fake, so there really isn't any reason to feel like one has been lied to or cheated. – August Merz 2 months ago
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  • This is an interesting topic to consider and as a actor I wonder whether I could, in character, pass a polygraph test. As to whether the art is about deception or perception, well both aspects come into play. We may well deceive an audience into believing what they are seeing and we certainly do play with an audience's perception, but equally so an audience knows it's being deceived and has willingly suspended disbelief for the duration of the play, film or performance. Yes, I suppose we are more in tune with human emotion, but only so far as we study those aspects of a character in order to create a believable performance, although it has come in quite useful for me when dealing with pompous authority figures in my daily life, knowing how to tune my 'performance' to manipulate his/her perceptions and get what I need from them. How are we able to lie so easily? The short answer is because that's what we've been trained to do. It's a skill like any other and to become proficient it takes a lot of practice. – Amyus 2 months ago
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  • Not that I'm a big fan by any stretch of the imagination. I heard on a broadcast documentary for the actor Sean Connery, that he snagged his first movie role by telling a mouthful of lies about his acting experience at a rehearsal. Makes you wonder. – lofreire 4 days ago
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  • lofreire. LOL good comment. You should hear some of the porkies Michael Gambon tells about his early life. The troubling thing is that he sounds so genuine! – Amyus 4 days ago
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  • There is a underlying current to this topic that just dawned on me. Write about the best deception in a film or by an actor against the worst deception in a film or by an actor. Would that be too far off the mark or more worthwhile? – lofreire 2 days ago
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  • (on NoorGillani) Heaven only knows, actors pay the price for it--Heath Ledger. – lofreire 1 day ago
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When is it "too much" nostalgia?

Nostalgia’s been widely regarded as a good thing, but when does it go too far? When does it become unhealthy for us to stick ourselves to the same ideas, the same properties, solely because we associate good things with them and they make us feel safe? It is necessary for us to be challenged, but how can we do that if we’re constantly being given the same thing because that’s what we like and what we’re used to? With all these reboots, when is enough enough?

  • Interesting topic. Do you have any examples of nostalgia done right versus nostalgia done poorly? – JakeV 3 months ago
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  • Nostalgia and reboots can be considered separate entities. – m-cubed 3 months ago
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  • Too much is when the story hinges on it. It should be sprinkled throughout the story, and could conceivably work without the nostalgia. – AGMacdonald 3 weeks ago
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  • Already saw a page on face book called Clinton Obama, but running the wives in 2020. maybe American politics should be like a shriners convention, no wives allowed, try and find someone or something new instead of making George Lucas as Gore would say, Your Dante found. – Antonius865 6 days ago
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The Rise of the Instagram Artist

Instagram has become a way for artists to cultivate followings and promote themselves in a way that artists in the past have not been able to do before. Poets have become household names and makeup gurus now have their own beauty lines all due to the power of the ‘gram. How does this new medium affect content? Are their negative consequences for using this service? For example, copying others work, authenticity, and quality.

  • Cool idea! I've noticed a few problems with people claiming that people are stealing ideas. I'm thinking specifically of the Harry Potter wand makeup brushes that 2 separate companies tried to market at the same time. I didn't spend too much time researching it, but basically, Buzzfeed featured one company and got a huge response while the other company claimed the idea was theirs initially. I'm not sure what happened with all that, but it would be a good specific case to look into if you're interested! – agmill 7 months ago
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  • Nitpicky but poets were household names before instagram... also I've never heard of any poets becoming famous/known through instagram but maybe I'm just not informed enough on that topic.Anyways, a VERY important aspect to consider for whoever writes this article is the fact that uploading content to instagram automatically grants them, and anyone else, really, to reshare and use the content as they want.This has lead to some controversial cases, one prominent one (worth researching) being this: http://www.cnn.com/2015/05/27/living/richard-prince-instagram-feat/– Lusk22 7 months ago
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  • Instagram is pulling artists into the mainstream. Artists' ideas are being seen by a vast audience, and in many ways, the newness or novelty of the artist becomes copied or replicated. Artists may get name recognition, but are they getting financial compensation? – sarahknight 7 months ago
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  • Instagram is really great for artist exposure. It's a free way to brand themselves and show the world what they offer as their own unique artist. I believe that snapchat might also become a new standard for viewing art. – damaddeo 7 months ago
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  • Instagram certainly poses issue with stealing content, an issue seen between companies like Huda Beauty, Vlada, and Kylie Cosmetics, where marketing materials were arguably stolen. This type of "borrowing" from others content can be seen throughout history in terms of influence between artists and apprenticeships. Artists have always been influenced by their mentors which often resulted in very similar styles but this ultimately leads to progress in style periods. In terms of recognition, it certainly offers new outlets for rising artists as well as well-known artists. It is a wonderful method of reaching new audiences, audiences that otherwise may not have interest in visiting galleries and museums. Artists like Jeff Koons and Kehinde Wiley have an immense following consisting of everyone from celebrities to your average teenager. – BreannaWaldrop 7 months ago
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  • Very cool topic. I'm wondering if you're planning to cover Instagram artists from the same field (i.e. make-up) or whether you wanted to cover artists from a variety of disciplines? – Amanda Dominguez-Chio 5 months ago
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  • While I think it's great to see social media being used as a means of supporting artists of all types, it seems to me that there is the potential for a problem in the fragmentation of content, and the necessity that comes from needing to make your art marketable. The first of these concerns is a problem, I would argue, with social media's effect on culture in general, and as we become more and more accustomed to bite-sized content the more engaging, long form content, as well as the way we consume said content, could suffer as result. I'm thinking specifically of mediums such as books, although there is definitely an argument that platforms like Instagram mostly act to entice people into further exploration of the work in question. Then there is the necessity of self marketing, and the potential of sacrificing the quality and/or genuineness of one's work in order to make it more popular, although this has always been an issue, even before social media. Ultimately I think all social media is a fantastic way to promote art of any kind, so long as one is able to sidestep the potential pitfalls of pandering to the public and becoming overly concerned with exposure rather than the work itself. – woollyb 4 months ago
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  • Instagram's a great platform for making the art world more accessible, which is still a huge problem despite the best outreach efforts of massive museums. I think it's also changed the way artists work in a way that's quite refreshing. We see a lot more works-in-progress and get insight into an artist's influences for example. – bodjaman 4 months ago
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  • I think that it's like a knife with 2 ends, it can go great or otherwise. It's a good thing that through these media channels people can get art closer to them and spread it. – AichaB 3 months ago
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Interracial Representation in Popular American Imagination

Miscegenation in the United States is a social taboo stretching back to early colonial North America. At first, Puritan theology condemned its practice. With the institutionalizing of slavery, the racial-caste system crystalized such divisions segregating specifically black-white sexual union. Subsequently from the religious to pseudo-scientific racism, eugenics further legislated such prohibitions. By the twentieth century, the effects of Jim Crow laws restricted the spirit of artistic license by suppressing interracial imageries. With the arrival of motion pictures, the Hays Code firmly enforced anti-miscegenation guidelines in popular Hollywood film. While a knee-jerk assumption is to summon pervasive binary between black and white miscegenation, the article proposes examples of all diverse mixing of racial and ethnic categories. Meanwhile, it explores a variety of interrelated questions. How are interracial romances treated in recent popular culture across the varying artistic mediums? What elements of interracial relationships are censured? What does such specific excising say about our society? In contemporary United States, what are considered the more acceptable pairing[s] of interracial couples and why?

  • A few grammatical errors here, but not a cause for rejection. – m-cubed 4 months ago
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  • Sounds interesting. There has been a shift in inter-racial portrayals. Good topic. – Munjeera 4 months ago
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  • I love this topic. I do agree with you and understand why this is a topic of interest. – daefray24 4 months ago
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  • I definitely want to read this! Even as recently as this year, the backlash towards film and television that shows interracial relationships proves there is still work to be done. Might be good for someone to hone in on one type of media, whether it be comic book films, music videos, dystopian literature etc. Your discussion points are really interesting and complex, I hope there are some takers. – Zujaja 3 months ago
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The Resurgence of the Vintage Medium

With the current trend of shopping at the local Vinnies or Salvos and old fashion items becoming hot new styles so too has the vintage mediums been resurrected. A largely growing population of "old souls" now turn away from the digital medium in the forms of music and photography and writing and choose to use the older mediums. Vinyl record sales are on the rise, film photography (particularly polaroid) has increased and budding writers punch away on their mechanical typewriters. Why does the heavy "chick, chick, chick" of a typewriter make us more likely to be the next Hemingway? How many of us truly can hear the difference between the "warmer" sound of vinyl and the digital versions? And which hobbiest photographer can see the infinitely better contrast on the film negative compared to the ones on their iPhone 7?

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    How did politics permeate Pop Music of the 60s?

    The 1960s overflowed with social injustices, civil rights, and the Vietnam War. The civil rights movement and the Vietnam War took center stage. Activists exercised democracy in action, demonstrating their rights under the First Amendment. These protests were breeding grounds that forged a path to songs by musicians with a social conscience. Protest songs of the 60s were instrumental in shaping domestic policy. "Times They are a Changin", by Bob Dylan became a theme song of the civil rights movement. "Eve of Destruction" by Barry McGuire influenced legislators to reduce the voting age to 18 with the line, "You’re old enough to kill, but not for votin". Jimi Hendrix’s solo, spell binding guitar rendition of "The Star Spangled Banner" at Woodstock was symbolized to be the most influential protest song of the 60s. What other songs contributed to change in America by utilizing American values?

    • I would recommend looking into Peter, Paul and Mary, Pete Seeger and others who collaborated with them for more on this topic. – LisaM 10 months ago
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    • It doesn't get any more accurate or pointed than Dylan's "Masters of War," or "Only a Pawn in Their Game." Dylan just added another trophy - the Nobel - to his shelf, by the way. Not bad for a guy who couldn't get a band in high school. – Tigey 10 months ago
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    • This topic would make a great regular column. There's so much ground to cover. Practically limitless, really. – albee 10 months ago
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    • Absolutely! I felt this way, but had to put the brakes on. – Lorraine 10 months ago
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    • To quote the seagulls from "Finding Nemo, "Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. Mine." This should be fun. – Tigey 10 months ago
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    • This would be interesting to hear more about. Many American think of Creedence when it comes to Vietnam "era" music. I would like to know about other pieces that impacted the movement and vice-versa. – dekichan 6 months ago
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    • This topic is a very good topic, it could even make a great column. – jhennerss 4 months ago
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    • Very interesting topic. You might need to define pop music a little more specifically. Look into Tom Lehrer, a musician famous for his satirical songs about the Cold War. My favorite is a song about Wernher von Braun. – Jennifer Waldkirch 2 months ago
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    • I think this topic needs to be examined more critically. For instance, singing about social justice in and of itself does not make the world more just. Holding individuals and institutions accountable in legal terms is what can further the cause of social justice. In fact, baby boomers of this generation have been criticized for leaving the world in the greatest states of inequality since the French Revolution. Both the links below extrapolate on the topic of baby boomers and social justice.https://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/mar/07/generation-y-pay-price-baby-boomer-pensionshttp://www.huffingtonpost.ca/john-izzo/baby-boomer-legacy_b_2665590.htmlIt would actually be fair to argue the opposite of the topic which is that the music did not further any social justice cause at all. Social justice is more than singing "Do They Know It's Christmas?" Given that in some countries the majority of people do not celebrate Christmas, there could actually be a topic written on how some "social justice" songs actually reveal an "us and them" ethnocentric attitude by the West.Perhaps the topic could be described in the opposite sense of how music reflected the times rather than the other way around. John Lennon received an enormous amount of criticism for many actions and ideas which are acceptable as normal behaviour today. Also keep in mind that many people who fought the social justice fight gave up their lives and experienced incarceration. It was the people of the time, not necessarily the music, who created change in the world. Were musicians just taking the cues from people who sacrificed much to achieve freedoms we all enjoy in the world today?Did the times influence the music or the other way around?I would be open to hearing any responses on this topic. – Munjeera 2 months ago
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    Abandoning the Arts

    The arts and music are the first programs cut from US public school curricula amidst current vitriolic cultural and policy debates. With STEM focus, charter secondary schools often do not include arts and music. (I’m concerned schools would cut literature, too, if savvy teachers were not able to link it to literacy.) Anecdotal and alarmist rhetoric argues that the result is an apathetic, tech-centered generation, devoid of creativity. With art and music leaving formal schooling, the response seems to be that art and music will be produced out of a well of intrinsic passion and sustained through the same. Museums of all sort in the US are struggling with dropping attendance. The arts and letters in higher education are widely derided as worthless and are also facing cuts and dropping enrollments. What is the role of K-12 education, then, if anything, in exposing young people to, nurturing, and developing aesthetic sensibilities and skills? If we as a culture and society abandon K-12 arts and music education, as we are, what effects can we attribute to that decision (e.g., declining museum patronage)?

    • Utilitarianism at its worst. Why can't we have both??? – Munjeera 2 months ago
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    • This is a really awesome and relevant topic. As someone in music therapy, I see how dangerous cutting back on the arts can be. Art and music is in our human nature. Music is one of the most complex things our brain engages in. It develops the mind faster and encourages discipline. Out of all the disciplines I have studies, music has not only given me a new skill, but has helped me become disciplined and dedicated. I think when music is taught poorly in schools it is just as bad as cutting it. – birdienumnum17 2 months ago
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    Docents at the Broad Museum: Guiding Visitors To Actively View Art

    Comprised of a combination of art students, artists, and educators, the docents at Los Angeles’ Broad museum do not just give visitors the answers to questions. Answering questions by asking questions invites guests to come up with their own ideas about the art they are viewing. This is a refreshing experience that challenges viewers to interact with the art at a higher level of investment thus providing a more personalized experience. By increasing viewers’ understanding of art through more direct engagement, the Broad is creating a more artistically educated society one guest at a time.

    • Interesting form of public service. When I patronized a certain place and ask a question about it, being given an answer certainly lasts only as long as the next piece. By doling out questions, it seems to me that the experience permeates the mind longer. – lofreire 2 months ago
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