The Beatles’ sojourn in India can seem like a bit of a stunt, as much a rock n’ roll cliché as Led Zeppelin’s trashed hotel rooms or Fleetwood Mac’s coke binges. Easily parodied in, for example, Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story, the band’s turn Eastward looks in hindsight like faddish spiritual tourism.[...]
Digital photography has bestowed many gifts, and some few horrors: selfies, naturally, as well as even less dignified self-portraits, of the sort certain politicians send out; mass surveillance, as well as the ability of average citizens to produce important pieces of evidence and to document history; hard times for professional photographers, as[...]
Ay que linda!
Long before the tumultuous marriage to Diego Rivera and the mortifications of the flesh occasioned by a horrific bus accident, and longer still before the avalanche of Frida-centric kitsch and tchotchkes and the Julie Taymor biopic starring Salma Hayek, there was a cherubic little girl named Magdalena Carmen Frieda Kahlo y Calder
Reference photo for Norman Rockwell’s portrait of Robert F. Kennedy, c. 1968. Courtesy of the Norman Rockwell Museum Collections.
Whatever you think of Norman Rockwell’s paintings and illustrations, you can’t deny them the status of enduring Americana.
Historians have debated for centuries how Napoleon Bonaparte managed to turn the same men who once overthrew a king in the name of liberté, égalité and fraternité into a formidable fighting force devoted to an emperor. But that’s precisely what he did.[...]
David Lynch’s break out movie, Eraserhead, is the sort of movie that will seep into your unconscious and stay with you for days or weeks – like a particularly unnerving nightmare. Shot in inky black and white, the film achieves its uncanny power in part because of its setting — a rotting industrial moonscape bereft of nature.[...]
When Stanley Kubrick was a mere high school student in April 1945, just after FDR died, he snapped a picture of a news vendor framed on either side by posters announcing the president’s death. He was so excited by the picture that he skipped school to develop it and then marched right into the office of Look magazine.[...]
Hiroshima Mon Amour, Alain Resnais’s landmark 1960 meditation on war and memory, was Emmanuelle Riva’s first starring role. She plays a married actress (catch a scene here) who, while making a movie in Japan, has an affair with a Japanese architect played by Eiji Okada.[...]
On June 28, 1914, Gavrilo Princip assassinated Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria. Most of us know this — or at least if we don’t know the exact date, we know it happened in 1914, 100 years ago. We also know that the spark of the killing ignited the international geopolitical tinderbox just waiting to flame into the First World War.[...]
In 1960, Jean-Paul Sartre and Simone de Beauvoir ventured to Cuba during, as he wrote, the “honeymoon of the revolution.” Military strongman Fulgencio Batista’s regime had fallen to Fidel Castro’s guerilla army and the whole country was alight with revolutionary zeal.[...]