Arts History Update for late January 2015

23 Jan

Arts History Update for late January 2015 by David Cummins

Recently I was criticized for including items in the Update that weren’t directly related to art. The fact is that I have more interests than art, am a retired Lieutenant Colonel in the US Army, and am thrilled to write what I wish and readers may skip around and read or not read what they wish.

Beretta USA has been making M9 pistols for the US military for the past 30 years. It recently proposed a modernized M9A3 pistol but the US Army Configuration Control Board refused to consider the proposal in December and the Army will focus instead on a Modular Handgun System MHS state of the art replacement pistol. Beretta USA is free along with other weapons manufacturers to propose a design and compete for an initial contract for 280,000 pistols plus another 7,000 sub-compact versions of the new pistol.

The Army said that its current supply of M9 pistols is costing the Army more to repair and replace than it would cost to purchase a new state of the art pistol. Beretta USA contests that perspective.

This situation recalls to mind recent history when the Army sought a new replacement for the M4 carbine rifle, launched a competition for the new rifle, and ultimately rejected all the proposals and bought an improved M4A1 version that is now used by special forces operations.

The Army occasionally has need of a shotgun and uses the M26 Modular Shotgun System (2012) that is a straight-pull bolt-action shotgun. It weighs 3.5 pounds, has a 7.75 inch barrel and fires 12-gauge shells from a five round magazine. It is designed to be mounted on and under an M4 carbine rifle, the soldier’s primary weapon. The box magazine is a little bulky and cumbersome when mounted. Of course the soldier must carry on his person replacement magazines so it adds to the total load for a soldier. The shotgun is a short range weapon and can help in shooting open a locked door for forced entry operations or disabling an advancing group of people without being lethal. Accordingly it has many uses in counter-insurgency urban situations.

Five rounds is not a lot of shot so current weapons manufacturers are working on shotguns with more capacity before reloading. SRM Arms has a prototype shotgun with a detachable magazine made up of four tubes bonded together that connect beneath the shotgun barrel. SRM Model 1216 tubes hold four rounds so the magazine contains 16 rounds on a 37.5 inch long shotgun. It has semi-automatic and automatic versions. Once one of the tubes is empty, the shooter deftly rotates the magazine to line up the fresh tube of rounds. When the magazine is empty the shooter detaches it and attaches a replacement magazine. In Lubbock LHG Arms at 1961 Texas Avenue is a registered firearms dealer that carries SRM Arms weapons. See also M & R Outfitting at 302 Southeast Loop 289, LSG Tactical Arms at 3009 B 34th Street, and Narwhal Systems at 4606 7th Street. Police Departments purchase many of this type of weapons.


Here is the story of Robert Bruno 1945-2008 architect and builder of the Steel House on the north rim of Ransom Canyon. A piece of steel originally intended to be a part of the Steel House but never included within it, was purchased from the Bruno Estate and on Tuesday January 20 picked up by a crane and placed on a truck trailer assemblage and transported at about 15 miles per hour to 18th Street and Flint Avenue on campus where the crane was waiting to pick it up again and place it down on a pad in front of the College of Architecture building at Texas Tech University. It is now part of the public art on campus.

Another piece of public art was installed on campus that same day by artist Mark Chew at the Creative Movement Sudio, location for the Dance Division of the Theatre Department this photo is of the artist and Emily Wilkinson, public art manager at Facilities Planning and Construction department of Texas Tech University system next to the newly installed piece titled The Fire Inside (2015).


Joe Landolina co-founder of the biotech company Suneris leads a team of researchers developing VetiGel a blood coagulation agent that almost magically stops even severe bleeding in seconds. It clots blood by taking on the properties of tissue with which it comes into contact. It solidifies instantly and thus stops the flow of blood. The first shipment of this compound outside the laboratory was made this month to 100 veterinary clinics in a beta testing to stop bleeding in animals undergoing procedures such as biopsies nad dental extractions. If all goes as hoped, a submission to the FDA will be made for testing on humans.

Joe Landolina is age 21 and his co-founder Isaac Miller is the same age. As freshmen at New York University Polytechnic School of Engineering and NYU Stern School of Business they had this idea and submitted the first iteration for a competition and won a $10,000 prize. From there it went forward and by their senior year they were working full time in the private laboratory in Brooklyn and leaving it to attend their last classes. In 2014 Landolina was named a TED Global Fellow. Catch a rising star.


Arts Practice Research: Scholarship Pedagogy and the Creative Process at Texas Tech University is a conference that will be held on campus and at LHUCA Louise Hopkins Underwood Center for the Arts on October 1-3, 2015 and the keynote speaker is Nick Cave fabric sculptor, dancer and performance artist Cave is known for his Soundsuits Cave’s first Soundsuit was made of twigs. Other typical materials include dyed human hair, sisal, plastic buttons, beads, sequins, and feathers. The finished pieces bear some resemblance to African ceremonial costumes and masks. His suits are presented for public viewing as static sculptures, but also through live performance, video, and photographs.[5] [6] and they have been exhibited in museums on traveling exhibition

2010 – “Soundsuits” – Studio la Città, Verona, Italy
2006 – “Soundsuits”, Chicago Cultural Center, Chicago, Illinois
2005 – “Soundsuits”, Manchester Craftsmen’s Guild, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
2004 – “Soundsuits”, Holter Museum of Art, Helena, Montana

Meet Me at the Center of the Earth is his exhibition at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, San Francisco in 2009, UCLA Fowler Museum of Cultural History, Los Angeles in 2010 , Seattle Art Museum in 2011, and Boise Art Museum in 2012.

Nick Cave is a 55 year old African American artist who possibly never knew there was an art box, or if he did it got crushed and tossed aside early on. He experiments in different media and does wondrous things with the human form both in performance and in situ as a visual static.

Place this event on your calendar and make plans to attend; another offering by that cultural maven The College of Visual and Performing Arts at Texas Tech University, in human form Dean Carol Edwards.

The current offering of the Texas Tech University School of Art is the 2015 Texas Sculpture Symposium January 30 – February 1 with keynote speaker Judy Pfaff on January 30 at School of Art Satellite Gallery / Charles Adams Studio Projects Gallery at 5th Street and Avenue J at 7:00 pm, and keynote speaker Ken Little on February 1 at English and Philosophy Departments Building Lecture Hall 001 at 10:00 am. On Saturday morning January 31 there will be talks by many folks at English LH 001 and in the afternoon there will be iron pour and aluminum pour demonstrations 2:00 – 6:00 pm at the 3D Art Annex Building foundry on Main Street west of Flint Avenue, and a Digital 3D Printing demonstration 2:00 – 3:30 pm at the College of Architecture building.


Whispering grass says that Lubbock Independent School District was unable to raise the matching funds to gain a Talkington Foundation grant to build a performing arts center west of Coronado High School, and has entered into an agreement with LEPAA Lubbock Entertainment & Performing Arts Association to have rental rights in the prospective Buddy Holly Hall of Performing Arts and Sciences, thus insuring access by public school students to state of the art rehearsal and performance venues. It is very pleasing that this private entity is cooperating with the City of Lubbock and Lubbock Independent School District to make a community wide improvement. I hope a similar access can be offered to Cooper, Frenship, Shallowwater and Roosevelt School Districts.

Tim Collins chair of LEPAA will make a public presentation on progress toward the Buddy Holly Hall at The Roundtable Luncheon on Saturday February 7 at 11:15 am – 1:00 pm at Hillcrest Country Club main dining room. The cost is $15 per person for a limited menu lunch with beverage and dessert. No reservation is necessary and the public is invited.


Saturday January 24 at 7:00 pm and Sunday January 25 at 2:00 pm Lubbock Community Theatre stages the first Tumbleweed Ten Minute Play Festival at its 42nd Street and Boston Avenue theatre space. The ticket is $5 per person. Fifty-three entries were culled to six mini-plays or scenes from a prospective play, that were then cast under direction to be performed twice. One of the playwrights is an elementary school student, two are middle school students, one is a high school student, one an adult, and one a senior. This is encouragement of local people to try their hand at playwriting. William Kerns, First 10 Minute Play Festival Debuts This Weekend at LCT, Lubbock Avalanche-Journal Newspaper, January 23, 2015, Section E page 5



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