Welcome to Artcetera. Arts-and-entertainment writers and critics post movie news, concert updates, people items, video, photos and more. Share your views. Check it daily. Remain in the know. Contributors: Mary Abbe, Aimee Blanchette, Jon Bream, Tim Campbell, Colin Covert, Laurie Hertzel, Tom Horgen, Neal Justin, Claude Peck, Rohan Preston, Chris Riemenschneider, Graydon Royce, Randy Salas and Kristin Tillotson.

Posts about Culture wars

Vote your preference: Rock the Garden or Basilica Block Party?

Posted by: Jon Bream Updated: April 21, 2011 - 3:11 PM

Neko Case, left, and Ray LaMontagne / file photos

The lineups were announced with great fanfare this week. We want you to weigh in.  Which summer music festival sounds more appealing to you and why: Rock the Garden or Basilica Block Party?

To vote, leave your thoughts in the comments section below.

Here are the lineups for these radio-sponsored outdoor fests:

Rock the Garden

89.3 the Current
June 18  grounds of Walker Art Center (one stage)

  • My Morning Jacket
  • Neko Case
  • Booker T
  • Tapes ‘n Tapes

Basilica Block Party

Cities 97
July 8-9 grounds of Basilica of St. Mary (two stages)

  • David Gray
  • Ray LaMontagne
  • Michael Franti & Spearhead
  • Drive-By Truckers
  • Amos Lee
  • Lissie
  • Fitz & the Tantrums
  • G. Love & Special Sauce
  • Gomez
  • 4onthefloor

Stolen? Safe? Egyptian antiquities controversy continues

Posted by: Mary Abbe Updated: March 8, 2011 - 11:27 AM

Veteran arts reporter Lee Rosenbaum, who blogs at Culture Grrl, has been covering the fate of Egyptian antiquities pretty much 24/7 in recent days as rumors of theft and looting have percolated out of Egypt. Her reports have a somewhat overwrought edge lately, but are still the most informed and timely descriptions of a fast-changing political and cultural landscape. Check Rosenbaum's update here.

Scroll down for earlier posts on this topic at this Star Tribune blog.

Iowa's Pollock painting safe for now

Posted by: Mary Abbe Updated: February 22, 2011 - 11:31 AM



Image courtesy thegazette.com

Update: The controversy sparked by Iowa Rep. Scott Raecker's bill to force the University of Iowa's Art Museum to sell a prized Jackson Pollock painting has prompted him to back off for now.

National organization's threatened to cancel the museum's accreditation and refuse to loan art or exhibitions to Iowa institutions if the painting were sold in violation of the donor's wishes. Des Moines philanthropist and art collector John Pappajohn, who had given $40 million to the University, opposed the sale as did Governor Terry Branstad

In light of the uproar, Raecker, (R, Urbandale) told the Des Moines Register that it was more important to pass a state budget than to wrangle over the future of a painting. Today's committee meeting (Feb. 22) to onsider his proposed bill has been canceled.


Could sculpture hide a cell-phone tower?

Posted by: Mary Abbe Updated: February 21, 2011 - 5:49 PM



Typical Franconia Sculpture Park creation

Cell phone coverage in the St. Croix River Valley is spotty at best, so residents cheered the promise of expanded coverage by AT&T. But when it turned out that the 150 ft. tall tower would be visible for three-miles up and down the  river  -- which is a national scenic waterway --  lots of people got really upset.

Even an offer by Franconia Sculpture Park to disguise the offending tower as a sculpture didn't fly. Why? Because it would cost too much said AT&T.

The debate goes on, but before you launch your canoe this spring, read all about it here.



We're Number ... Three?

Posted by: Laurie Hertzel Updated: January 12, 2011 - 1:45 PM



After duking it out for several years with Seattle for the title of America's Most Literate City, Minneapolis seems to have settled comfortably into third place.

St. Paul rose from ninth place in 2005 to third place in 2007 but for the last two years has sat contentedly at No. 7.

No. 1? Washington, DC.

So what do we need to work on? What are we being judged on, without our knowledge? Where do these rankings come from? Central Connecticut State University releases the rankings every year; you can find them here.

Rankings are based on six categories: the number of booksellers per capita (Minneapolis is third; St. Paul is sixth); the number of educated people (they go by high school diplomas, and bachelor's degrees, and Minneapolis is 12th, St. Paul is 22nd, and why in the world is Plano, Texas, No. 2?); newspaper circulation (this can always be improved, people! do your part! Minneapolis is third and St. Paul is seventh); Internet use, including Internet book sales (Minneapolis and St. Paul were tied at 19 for that, perhaps because we like to patronize brick-and-mortar bookstores); libraries and library circulation (Minneapolis is 12th, St. Paul is 19th); and subscriptions to periodicals (Minneapolis is fifth and St. Paul is 24th).

Not taken into consideration: The number of excellent publishers. The number of excellent published writers. The number of dynamic book clubs. The number of literary organizations. But until Central Connecticut State U expands their categories, I think the only thing we can do is keep those bookstores open; keep those newspaper and periodical subscriptions flowing; go to the library; and (note to self) finish that degree.


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