One of the better albums of 2010 has been the posthumous release of Ali Farka Touré’s album Ali & Tourmani.Ali and Toumani— “an album of duets from two of Africa’s most distinguished musicians, the late guitarist Ali Farka Touré and kora player Toumani Diabaté—was released on February 23, 2010, on World Circuit / Nonesuch Records.” It is the duo’s second album together. Touré was born on the banks of the Niger River; the tenth son of his mother and the only one to survive past infancy. Touré’s music can be described as a mix of blues and traditional African music.
“During the Weimar Republic, Verism and the New Objectivity (Neue Sachlichkeit) were among Germany’s most characteristic art phenomena. These movements no longer responded to the experiences of World War I and the subsequent crisis of society by using the Expressionist utopia of the new man, an ecstasy of the subject and his emotions (“Emotion is a private matter”, Bertold Brecht stated in 1926). Neither did they react with the Constructivism the Bauhaus used for conveying art and life. They rather cast a cool, finely tuned glance to a reality that ran between social misery and the banality of everyday life. Sober, unsentimental and sharp, they rendered figures and things by means of their contours in order to give them sustenance and firmness once again in an attempt to stabilize and make manageable a world that had become unmanageable. Instead of dynamically breaking through boundaries, a static delineation of limits now emerged. Their realism was not a reproduction, but an interpretation of reality that strove to make it secure once again.” Emotion is a Private Matter, which includes the works of Otto Dix, George Grost, and Christian Shad is on view until May 15 2011, at the Kunst Museum in Bonn Germany. www.kunstmuseum-bonn.com/de
Upon deciding to use the pseudonym Alice Springs, photographer June Newton (wife of photographer Helmut Newton), did not anticipate or foresee the confusion caused by searching her name in google images. How could she? In 1970 Helmut Newton caught a bout of influenza and taught his wife June how to use a light meter and his camera so that she could take his place in shooting an advert for the French cigarette brand Gitanes. After the advert Alice Springs is born and the rest is history. Taking her pseudonym from Alice Springs, Australia where she was born, starts her career as an actress, and ultimately falls in love with Helmut Newton. Fate has taken stranger twists. Visit the ‘June room’ at the Helmut Newton Foundation in Berlin or check out her book published by Taschen.
“It is all well and good for children and acid freaks to still believe in Santa Claus — but it is still a profoundly morbid day for us working professionals. It is unsettling to know that one out of every twenty people you meet on Xmas will be dead this time next year… Some people can accept this, and some can’t. That is why God made whiskey, and also why Wild Turkey comes in $300 shaped canisters during most of the Christmas season.”
Michelle duBois traveled through Asia in the 1970s and 80s and took thousands of pictures of herself in various costumes and dress; she also “turned tricks” to survive. But, is Michelle duBois the fiction of artist, photographer Zoe Crosher? Zoe Crosher has been collecting the duBoise archives and exhibiting it’s vast treasure of photographic ephemera internationally; all the while building a myth and legend around the artist and Michelle duBoise. www.zoecrosher.com