Archive | July, 2012

Arts History Update for still later July 2012

26 Jul

Arts History Update for still later July 2012 by David Cummins


“To take away this right (of voting) is to reduce a man to slavery, for slavery consists in being subject to the will of another, and he that has not a vote in the election of representatives is in this case.”  Thomas Paine (1737-1809) 


The Texas Primary Runoff Election in the Republican and Democratic Parties is July 31, 2012. Early voting may be accomplished between July 23 – 27.




Mealing stones and glass have been discovered in a Zapotec burial site at Atzompa Mexico in the Central Valley region of the state of Oaxaca in July 2012. Scroll back for pictures of found artifacts that pre-date Hispanic arrival in Mexico. Photos were supplied by the National Institute of Anthropology and History of Mexico. The contemporary town is called Santa Maria Atzompa.


Famous people who hailed from this region of Mexico are two former presidents Benito Juarez in office 1858 -1872 and Porfirio Diaz, the latter from 1876 to 1911 in an iron-fisted manner bringing about the Mexican Revolution 1910 – 1920. The heroes of that revolution were three generals, in the north Pancho Villa and Pascual Orozco and in the south Emilliano Zapata. Diaz was sent into exile in 1911 but the completion of the revolution was lengthy bloody and unstable, destroying many of the physical improvements of the Diaz regime including railways, telegraph lines, oil wells, and many buildings, thrusting the economy into tatters. The PRI political party was born in this revolution and ruled Mexico continuously until PAN [national action party] recently took over, failed through presidents Vicente Fox and Felipe Calderon, and now PRI is back in power.


It was clear following the Tlatelolco Massacre of protesting students on October 2, 1968 that the Mexican national government under PRI could no longer be trusted by the people. To some extent since then there has been a huge chasm between the Mexican national government and the mass of its citizenry. Under Diaz society was much like a feudal state, while under PRI it is much like an economic oligarchy.


Frank McLynn, Villa and Zapata: A History of the Mexican Revolution (Carroll and Graf 2001) Texas Tech Library F1234.M155 (reissue Basic Books 2002) $13.59 paperback $9.99 Kindle at




As part of the “Art on the Llano” project the second installation of sculpture occurred Monday July 23, 2012 by the Texas Department of Transportation with Michelle O’Michael’s Moon River (2007) (steel and polyester) at eastbound South Loop 289 and the flyover for entry into northbound Interstate Highway 27. O’Michael is a Houston Texas artist. Bill Kerns wrote an article in the Lubbock Avalanche-Journal


The third installation will occur on August 2 astride Spur 327 and the westbound frontage road of South Loop 289, sculpted by Brent Baggett The specific piece has not yet been announced.




Nevin Cohen et al., Five Borough Farm: Seeding the Future of Urban Agriculture in New York City (Design Trust for Public Space 2012) is a book intended to support and expand the agricultural use of property in the city. Another book in this vein is Sarah C. Rich, Urban Farms (Abrams 2012) $21.41 at Texas Tech Library S494.5 U72 U53. See also Jennifer Cockrail-King, Food and the City: Urban Agriculture and the New Food Revolution (Prometheus Books 2012) Texas Tech Library S494.5 U72 C63. Small plot intensive farming that produces niche foods, is a new industry in America about which some are unaware.


The Urban Farm is a website designed to turn city gardeners into farmers. Urban Farming is another website that strives to turn unused land in cities into gardens and farms. Urban Farm Magazine can help people get there, $15 for six bi-monthly issues If you think your soil is bad, try a raised bed garden in which you create the soil. Hydroponics is another option, growing plants in a fluid.




A reader of Updates asked “why all the interest in James Joyce” and of course the answer is that European copyright protection on most works is gone as of January 1, 2012. British copyright law for many years was lifetime plus 50 years which would have meant public domain in 1991 fifty years after his January 13, 1941 death. But by 1991 Great Britain was in the European Union Common Market setup and countries were encouraged to make their copyright laws uniform. The German model was lifetime plus 70 years so that was adopted by Great Britain and other nations. That meant that for works published during his lifetime, they fell into the public domain on January 1, 2012 and may be published or otherwise referenced without notification to or permission from his estate. Plans to stage his only play Exiles are afoot at several venues. New issues of his most famous works with substantial editing are now on offer. Robert Gogan has remastered Ulysses for the ordinary reader, with modern user-friendly formatting, repunctuated text, imposing italics on the characters’ internal monologues, and reseting paragraphs. Such a publication is admirable and will gain new fans for Joyce and posterity. Stephen Joyce, James’s grandson, is the author’s executor but he is now powerless with respect to works published during the author’s lifetime. James Joyce, Ulysses (remastered by Robert Gogan, Music Ireland Pub. 2012) paperback $19.71 including s&h through ABE has this new book for $14.91 plus $4.63 s&h from United Kingdom.


Manuscripts first published in 1979 and later are probably not in the public domain, and still unpublished manuscripts are definitely not in the public domain. This is my legal opinion, for whatever that is worth.


The United States Congress, unwisely in my opinion, extended copyright protection for lifetime plus ninety-five years for existing copyrights under the Copyright Term Extension Act of 1998 and when that statute was challenged the U.S. Supreme Court upheld it in Eldred v. Ashcroft 537 U.S. 186 (2003). A list of dates when Joyce’s works become public domain in the future in the United States may be found at the International James Joyce Foundation Accordingly, the British and Irish spate of public domain works and publishing is not in existence in the United States. Here is Justice Breyer’s dissent with which I agree, again for whatever that is worth. I am weary of Congress ignoring the plight of millions of American middle class and lower class citizens while doing yoeman duty for the corporate oligarchy that pays the bill for re-election campaigns. Walt Disney Studios paid handsomely in 1998 and before to gain the 20 year extension on Mickey Mouse, etc. that was due to expire in 2003. Congress granted that extension.






Arts History Update for late July 2012

20 Jul

Arts History Update for late July 2012 by David Cummins


In earlier Updates the Silk Road to Asia from Europe has been mentioned. Yale University Database includes over 11,000 images of Silk Road locations.





A public art project “Art on the Llano” has as its task the placement of outdoor art near major streets and highways and is a joint venture between the Texas Department of Transportation TEXDOT and local people in Lubbock, with funds for transporting the art to its temporary site supplied by Studio West Interior Designs [Melissa Grimes] and LHUCA Louise Hopkins Underwood Center for the Arts . Local people serving on the Committee for “Art on the Llano” are Karen Wylie, Elizabeth Regner, Linda Cullum, Joe Arredondo, Brooke Witcher, Vicki Key, Mark Bass, Louise Underwood, Melissa Grimes, Erin Vaden, Will Cannings, and Frank Phillips. Daniel Horsch, marketing coordinator for Visit Lubbock, the Convention and Visitors Bureau will publicize the new additions of art.


The first piece is a large metal sculpture Texas Landscape (2008) by Eric McGehearty which until recently was sited at Windlands Park in Midland.


The artist agreed to let it be sited at the southeast corner of Quaker Avenue and South Loop 289 for a two year period. Installation occurred on Thursday July 19, 2012. It is best observed by northbound traffic on Quaker Avenue approaching the intersection and even better by those exiting Quaker Avenue to merge into the eastbound frontage road of South Loop 289. TEXDOT Lubbock District serves a 17 county region and is located at 135 Slaton Road, Lubbock TX 79404-5201 public information officer Dianah Ascencio phone 748-4472. Frank Phillips is Director of Transportation Operations for the Lubbock District of TEXDOT.


Texas Landscape (2008) had still earlier been sited at Benini Studio and Sculpture Ranch near Johnson City Texas in the Hill Country.




The Daughter of Dawn is a 1920 silent movie filmed in the Wichita Mountains of southwest Oklahoma on the Comanche – Kiowa Reservation starring a son White Parker and daughter Wanada Parker of famed chief Quanah Parker, that depicts many customs and activities common to those tribes at that time. The film was thought to be lost, but now has been found and the Oklahoma Historical Society is in the process of restoring the film footage and turning it into a DVD and Blu-Ray that can be seen by many people with an interest in those times. All the actors in the movie are Indians and elderly people in the movie would have been alive when the Comanche were free on the Plains before being placed on the reservation. Here is an officer of the Historical Society introducing us to the movie . 80 minutes six reels written and directed by Norbert Myles, the Indians in both tribes supported the project and brought from their homes and businesses some of the props that were used in making the movie including one teepee hide/cloth that is now in the Smithsonian Institution.




One reader of an earlier Update liked the missive about the current interest in James Joyce, the Irish author, represented by yet another biography and two substantial contemporary articles on Joyce. Those readers will very much enjoy an article by John Bayley, Our Founder, London Review of Books, February 19, 1998 at pp. 10-11, reviewing John Stanislaus Joyce: The Voluminous Life and Genius of James Joyce’s Father by John Wyse Jackson and Peter Costello (Fourth Estate 1997) a used book in good condition is available at Alibris for as little as $2.68 plus s&h and a reissue (St. Martin’s Press 1998) for as little as 99 cents plus s&h.*listing*title












Arts History Update for mid July 2012

12 Jul

Arts History Update for mid July 2012 by David Cummins


Las Vegas just grew up and is now adult, in the best sense. In March the Smith Center for the Performing Arts opened and it is culturally and architecturally pleasing and extravagent. It now presents Joshua Bell, classical violinist, while two miles away on the Strip folks get the zanier show-stoppers like Cirque du Soleil, Elton John, Celine Dion and others. Here is the website including Reynolds Hall with 2,050 seats for orchestras, touring Broadway stage shows, etc., Cabaret Jazz with 250 seats for live music for adults, Troesh Studio Theatre for rehearsals and filming, and Symphony Park to capture the outdoor experience in a dry high mountain desert location. Here is the list of design partners including architects, interior design and acoustical design firms


For some years Las Vegas was the largest city in the United States without a performing arts center. No more. Welcome to a grown up major city.


The Chamber of Commerce in Lubbock is studying whether or not the Hub City should construct a performing arts center. The timeliness of this move is impressive since everyone knows that the City of Lubbock entity owns City Bank Auditorium and City Bank Coliseum while Texas Tech University owns the ground on which those buildings rest, and the buildings are aged and too expensive to further renovate or remodel. The City is generally broke anyway and fears that a large bond issue for replacement of those buildings would not pass, especially with other more necessary public infrastructure projects on the horizon. What could come to pass is a new performing arts center to replace the auditorium and coliseum. Both Texas Tech and the Chamber are separately exploring that possibility. If the City would announce its readiness to give up its two buildings in the near future, that would spur the visionaries to get moving “with all deliberate speed”.





War and Peace is a book, for me, started several times but never finished. It is a tome. But there is another and I think better way to access Tolstoy. Leo Tolstoy’s Short Fiction (Norton Critical Edition, ed. Michael R. Katz, W.W. Norton & Co 1991) $16.48 paperback at Texas Tech Library PG3366.A13 K38 (2d ed. W.W. Norton & Co 2008) same price and sources.


Another choice is Great Short Works by Leo Tolstoy (Harper Perennial Modern Classics 2004). Still another is The Devil and other stories by Leo Tolstoy (ed. Richard F. Gustafson, Oxford University Press 2003) Texas Tech Library PG3366.A13 M3


Ulysses by James Joyce is another book I started but never finished. Joyce was impatient with those like myself who balked at his endless depiction of the detritus of reality, saying “If Ulysses isn’t fit to read, life isn’t fit to live”. I chose to read Dubliners instead, various editions from 1914 to the end of the century are at Texas Tech Library PR6019.O9 D9. The Dover Thrift Edition in paperback is only $2 Kindle $1.90 at A current masterful article is Louis Menand, Silence, Exile, Punning: James Joyce’s Chance Encounters, The New Yorker Magazine, July 2, 2012 at p. 71


The James Joyce Centre is Michael Chabon, What To Make of Finnegan’s Wake?, New York Review of Books, July 12, 2012 at p. 45 Gordon Bowker, James Joyce: A New Biography (Farrar Straus & Giroux 2012) hardcover $21.06 Kindle $16.99 at reviewed by Tim Parks in Joyce and Company, London Review of Books, July 5, 2012 at p. 12




Oops. Closely following on the heels of Microsoft competing with its own customers by offering a tablet computer Surface, is the latest phenomena when Google announced that it will do so by offering for sale its seven inch Android operating system tablet computer ereader called Nexus 7. It is manufactured to Google specifications by Asus, a Taiwan based company that is under contract to make improvements to Google specifications.


Google created an Android operating system and made it open source so any manufacturer of computers or smart phones could place the OS in its device. The problem, from Google’s perspective, is that open source meant that adopters could adjust the software code on the OS and redirect users to their own products and away from Google products. adopted the Android OS and adjusted the code to refer users to products when using a Kindle such as top of the line Kindle Fire. Google gulped.


Barnes & Noble adopted the Android OS and adjusted the code to refer users to B&N products when using a Nook tablet ereader device. Google gulped again.


So Google has now created its own tablet computer ereader device Nexus 7 using its own Android 4.1 Jelly Bean OS, and priced it at $199, the same price as the top of the line Kindle Fire and Nook. Nexus 7 is a much better tablet computer ereader device [translate: media communication device] and owners of Kindle Fire and Nook will soon discover that. It’s pre-loaded with Google Chrome web browser and Google Gmail and Google Earth etc. software. The word will hit the street in days and and B&N will sell many fewer devices. Expect those retailers to make improvements as quickly as possible but that’s a catch-up game and Google is likely to be ahead and stay ahead mid-term and possibly long-term. It, like Microsoft, wants to challenge Apple’s third generation iPad that leads the planet in tablets holding 62 % of the market whereas Android based tablets are only 26% of the market. What Google didn’t say in its announcement but everyone knows already, is that it is working on a larger tablet the size of iPad’s 9.7 inch device, and Google will put inside a very powerful new Android OS that can run a host of applications. Everyone knows in advance that Google will select a price point slightly above $500 so as to be competitive with the current iPad. Apple knows this also and you can bet that it is working on a fourth generation iPad that will be smoking hot.


Google is taking pre-orders now for initial delivery of Nexus 7 later in July 2012. For pre-order customers it offers $25 worth of free choices of media downloads at its Play store. Just getting people to explore the Play store website is an enticement because that is where a person would browse and then purchase or rent books, magazines, music and other audio, and video [television and film] with all purchases and rentals stored in the cloud and accessible thereafter on the person’s other devices including his/her linked television set(s) as well as his/her Nexus 7 tablet.


Does it get better than this? Yes, Nexus 7 lacks 4G connectivity so the fastest video streaming on the planet is not now available to a Nexus 7 owner. The gorilla screen on Nexus 7 is excellent but not quite as good as the retina screen on an iPad third generation tablet.




Bauhaus: Art as Life is an exhibit at the Barbican Art Gallery in London from May 2 – August 12, 2012 and is

reviewed by Christopher Turner in Stepping Stone to the New Times, London Review of Books, July 5, 2012 at p. 31




Two music courses in Fall semester that are available for auditing are and if you want more information on them call Professor Christopher Smith director of the Vernacular Music Center at Texas Tech University phone (806) 742-2270 ext 249 email




The Museum of Russian Art is located at 5500 Stevens Avenue, Minneapolis MN. It has six online exhibitions financed by a grant from the U.S. Institute of Museum and Library Services. One of them is photographs of parts of Central Asia acquired by expansionist Russia in the latter 19th century to vie with Great Britain for control over the area, at the same time Russia was selling Alaskan Russia to the United States in 1867, the so-called Seward’s Folly purchase that has proven to be outstanding. This Central Asia area was the 13th century route taken by Marco Polo and his father and uncle to interact with a hoped for trading partner, China 1271 – 1295. The Silk Road has been fascinating to Westerners ever since.–reve Here is a photograph of people on Registan Square in Samarkand a century ago–reve/samarkand The photographer is a Russian educated at university in St Petersburg who is looking at the entrance to a Samarkand university and its attendees. Samarkand is now in the nation Uzbekistan, formerly a Soviet Socialist Republic and before that a colony of Tzar Nicholas II who commissioned the photographer.





Arts History Update for early July 2012

4 Jul

Arts History Update for early July 2012 by David Cummins


Hot days in mid-Summer require a cool down. Italian Gelato and Sorbetto are available at the Cold Corner shop on the first floor of the Texas Tech University Student Union Building. Currently the Gelato flavors are chocolate, vanilla, mint chocolate, cookies & cream, tiramisu and carmel. Sorbetto flavors are strawberry, mango, orange and raspberry. Cold Corner is located in the main east west hallway on the first floor across the hall from Union Bistro, making it possible to grab a light meal and top it off with a cool treat. Open in Summer 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. Monday through Friday. Meander through the building and enjoy the marvelous art, mostly prints, on the walls and a few special sculpture pieces. Here is the story of the Student Union Building over the years


Gelato is not an Italian name for ice cream. Ice cream is 10% or more butterfat [by FDA standards] while Gelato uses more whole milk and less cream so is usually 5-7% fat. Ice cream is churned at a higher speed and contains about 50% air while Gelato is denser and has about 25% air. Ice cream is stored and kept at a freezing temperature and served from a frozen status while Gelato is kept at an above freezing temperature and served at that temperature. Many people think that since Gelato has less fat that it doesn’t coat the mouth in the same way as ice cream, and therefore the Gelato flavor is more intense. A gelateria is a shop that sells Gelato.


A sorbet is a frozen dessert similar to a frappe, usually made with ice and sweetened fruit juice, containing no milk or any dairy product. A sorbet is usually served as a non-fat or low fat alternative to ice cream. Since it is not churned or whipped there is no air content so it is dense and flavorful. A sorbetto is a sorbet Italian style. Some people call them Italian ices.


Distinguishable from a sorbet, a sherbet is a fruity flavored frozen dairy product with a butterfat content not more than 2%. Many people use sherbets as a low fat alternative to ice cream.


COWamongus is a restaurant / store within the Animal & Food Science Building on campus at the corner of Main Street and Indiana Avenue, north of United Spirit Arena and across the street to the west at 1368 Indiana Avenue. It serves fresh ice cream, Gelato, sorbet and sherbet made in the building. Open for breakfast and lunch only 8:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. in Summer.


Caffe Gelato at 5903 82nd Street is now closed and no longer an option.




Justin Wolff, Thomas Hart Benton: A Life (Farrar Straus & Giroux 2012) hardcover $25.32 Kindle $19.99 Texas Tech Library ND237.B47 W65 reviewed by Holland Cotter, America’s Portraitist, The New York Times, June 29, 2012 the regionalist and social realist painter and muralist is described




Wouldn’t it be nice if there were a monthly book discussion about architecture? And if the author of the selected book were to lead the discussion? Yeah right baby ! The AIA [The American Institute of Architects ] chapter in New York City does this and here’s the lineup for 2012:


January 9 David Grahame Shane, Urban Design Since 1945: a Global Perspective (Wiley 2011) Texas Tech Arch Library NA9095.S53


February 9 Charles Bloszies, Old Buildings, New Designs: Architectural Transformations (Princeton Architectural Press 2012) Texas Tech Arch Library NA2500.B575


March 12 Guy Gugliotta, Freedom’s Cap: The United States Capitol and the Coming of the Civil War (Hill and Wang 2012) $24.30 hardcover $16.99 Kindle at


April 4 Alexandra Lange, Writing About Architecture: Mastering the Language About Buildings and Cities (Princeton Architectural Press 2012) $16.33 paperback $10.99 Kindle at


April 30 Kenneth Frampton, Five North American Architects: An Anthology (Lars Muller Pub. 2012) $39.39 paperback at


June 11 Diana Balmori and Joel Sanders, Groundwork: Between Landscape and Architecture (Monacelli Press 2011) Texas Tech Library SB472.B345


July 9 John Hill, Guide to Contemporary New York City Architecture (W.W. Norton & Co 2011) Texas Tech Arch Library NA735.N5 H55


August 13 Joshua David and Robert Hammond, High Line: The Inside Story of New York City’s Park in the Sky (FSG Originals 2011) $19.77 paperback at


September 10 Beyond Zuccotti Park: Freedom of Assembly and the Occupation of Public Space (eds. Ron Shiffman et al., New Village Press 2012) $19.71 paperback at


October 15 David Adjaye, African Metropolitan Architecture (Rizzoli 2011) Texas Tech Arch Library OVERSZ NA1580.A45


Free to architects and students, it’s just $10 per discussion for the public at The Center for Architecture 536 LaGuardia Place in NYC email . Website is


The Texas Tech Arch Library is in the ninth floor of the Architecture Building at 18th Street and Flint Avenue with parking across the street in the Flint Avenue Parking Facility. The public is invited to park on the fifth floor rooftop and pay at the pay station for time used.


AIA Lubbock chapter P.O. Box 93645 Lubbock TX 79493 phone 806-771-5242 Yolanda Gaytan might be a place to start. Gary Ferguson at Parkhill Smith & Cooper is chapter director phone 806-473-2200. The Texas Society of Architects website is fabulous The state annual convention and design expo is October 18 – 20 in Austin. Notice that the College of Architecture at Texas Tech has a guest lecturer series in the Fall semester and again in the Spring semester with three to five speakers each semester. They are free and open to the public. Access the website at and click on Lecture Series.


Texas Society of Architects produces short radio broadcasts The Shape of Texas aired on public radio stations such as KOHM-FM 89.1 that recently changed its call letters to KTTZ-FM 89.1. You may listen over the Internet to archived pod-casts of those broadcasts. For example you might want to listen to a 1 minute 56 second podcast on the cotton warehouse complex east of downtown Lubbock or a 2 minute 3 second podcast on public art on the campus of Texas Tech




The reopened Barnes Foundation museum in downtown Philadelphia continues to attract attention. years after litigation tangled it in knots. Martin Filler, Victory !, The New York Review of Books, July 12, 2012 at p. 14


The Barnes Foundation: Masterworks by Judith Dolkart et al. (Skira/Rizzoli 2012) $26.40 hardcover at is the official guide to the collection. at Texas Tech library in processing


Litigation and reopening have been written about at length.


John Anderson, Art Held Hostage: The Battle Over the Barnes Collection (W.W. Norton & Co 2003) $16.77 at Texas Tech Library N5220.B28 A53


Martha Lucy and John House, Renoir in the Barnes Foundation (Yale University Press 2012) $47.64 hardcover at Texas Tech Library in processing


Tod Williams et al., The Architecture of the Barnes Foundation: Gallery in a Garden, Garden in a Gallery (Skira/Rizzoli 2012) $34.74 hardcover at


David B. Brownlee, The Barnes Foundation: Two Buildings, One Mission (Skira/Rizzoli 2012) $12.95 at Barnes Foundation