September 20th, 2006

Chris Keeley

Robert Mapplethorpe

Robert Mapplethorpe

Image: Patti Smith, 1979

Patti Smith, 1979

http://www.nationalgalleries.org/mapplethorpe/

Robert Mapplethorpe, Self Portrait, 1980 © Robert Mapplethorpe Foundation

Robert Mapplethorpe (1946-1989) became famous, not to say notorious, in the 1970s and 1980s for his photographs of male and female nudes and for his depictions of gay, sado-masochistic sex. His exploration of hitherto hidden areas of life was very much part of the sexual liberation movements of that time. Now, over 15 years after his death, it is possible to look more dispassionately at the full range of Mapplethorpe’s photographs and see that other subjects, flowers, and in particular, portraits occupy central roles in his practice. The world that he represented in his photographs was focused on New York at a time of tremendous social and artistic ferment. He took iconic photographs of many of the artists, writers, pop and film stars and socialites of the day and even his flowers he termed ‘New York flowers’, because of their showy, spiky and sexy shapes.

Mapplethorpe was a perfectionist, who cared for traditional values of tone and composition. He chose on the whole to photograph beautiful people, in a light which brought out their best features and emphasised balance and symmetry. Increasingly as the AIDS epidemic took its toll particularly on the gay community Mapplethorpe drew attention in his work to the links between beauty, eros and death, drawing on some of the traditional memento mori (‘remember you must die’) symbols of art history. But, ultimately, it was life that interested Mapplethorpe and, even when he was staring death (from AIDS) in the face, he was resolute in his defiance.

This is the first exhibition devoted to Robert Mapplethorpe’s work to be held in Scotland and is the first retrospective to be held in Britain for a decade.
Chris Keeley

We live in a time where acquisition technologies are cherry picking and collating every aspect of ou

anonymous, fully portable Web browser [is] based on Mozilla Firefox. Torpark comes pre-configured, requires no installation, can run off a USB memory stick, and leaves no tracks behind in the browser or computer. Torpark is a highly modified variant of Portable Firefox, that uses the TOR (The Onion Router) network to anonymize the connection between the user and the website that is being visited. 

Torpark is out, offering "anonymous, portable web browsing"

Posted: Wed, 20 Sep 2006 02:53:39 -0500
Xeni Jardin: The computer security wonks and human rights advocates at Hacktivismo today released Torpark, a portable tool to keep web users' identities private. Think of it as anonymity on a stick. A privacy-pop! Snip from launch announcement:

[The] anonymous, fully portable Web browser [is] based on Mozilla Firefox. Torpark comes pre-configured, requires no installation, can run off a USB memory stick, and leaves no tracks behind in the browser or computer. Torpark is a highly modified variant of Portable Firefox, that uses the TOR (The Onion Router) network to anonymize the connection between the user and the website that is being visited.

"We live in a time where acquisition technologies are cherry picking and collating every aspect of our online lives," said Hacktivismo founder Oxblood Ruffin. "Torpark continues Hacktivismo’s commitment to expanding privacy rights on the Internet. And the best thing is, it’s free. No one should have to pay for basic human rights, especially the right of privacy."

Torpark is being released under the GNU General Public License and is dedicated to the Panchen Lama*.

Link to press release, and here's Here's v 1.5.0.7. (thanks, Oxblood Ruffin!


http://www.hacktivismo.com/
Chris Keeley

Already, the tests found that 10 percent of the men and women served recently by a needle-exchange p

Three months into the District's HIV campaign, almost 3 percent of more than 7,000 people tested at community health sites have been found to be positive for the virus -- more than double the national rate.

City Tests Reveal Infection Rate Double the U.S. Average

By Susan Levine
Washington Post Staff Writer
Wednesday, September 20, 2006; B04

 

Three months into the District's HIV campaign, almost 3 percent of more than 7,000 people tested at community health sites have been found to be positive for the virus -- more than double the national rate.

The city has distributed about 20,000 free oral-swab test kits to clinics, nonprofit groups, hospitals and other providers since it kicked off the campaign, which urges screening for all residents 14 to 84 years old. The incidence detected so far -- including in more than one of every 20 inmates at the D.C. jail -- is the first definitive look at the prevalence of HIV infection in the city.

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Chris Keeley

Andy

Andy Warhol, seen here in 1966, is the subject of a new documentary by Ric Burns, to be shown tonight and tomorrow night on PBS. 

 

Andy Warhol on the set of “Chelsea Girls” (1966), with Mario Montez.

The artist’s last name was originally Warhola; a typesetter at a magazine where he was illustrating advertisements omitted the “A,” and Warhol did not bother to correct it. He had his nose reconstructed and his skin sanded when he was in his 20’s. His mother moved in with him in 1952 and stayed with him for 20 years. Because he delivered his early commercial artwork in brown paper bags, his colleagues nicknamed him Raggedy Andy.
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Chris Keeley

Capitol of Punk

DC was the birthplace of such seminal punk bands as Bad Brains, Ignition, Dag Nasty, and, of course, Minor Threat.

http://yellowarrow.net/capitolofpunk/

Washington DC punk walking tour

 Capitolofpunk Images Logo 250 Capitol of Punk is a locative media walking tour about Washington DC's "harDCore" scene of the late 70s and 80s. DC was the birthplace of such seminal punk bands as Bad Brains, Ignition, Dag Nasty, and, of course, Minor Threat. The Yellow Arrow tour includes video podcasts with interviews and music, a PDF map, and text messages tied to key DC hardcore locations around the city.
Link
Chris Keeley

She drank to oblivion and prayed to die. CatPower

Cat Power  -  She pinpointed her nonstop touring in 1998 as the catalyst for her descent into life-altering, chronic substance abuse. 

After climbing out of a dark pit, Chan Marshall is receiving critical praise for her concerts but still needs antidepressants to get by.

9 Lives and Counting: Cat Power Sobers Up


9 Lives and Counting: Cat Power Sobers Up

Another day, another fifth of Scotch.

And that wasn’t all. Chan Marshall said her mornings began with a minibar’s worth of Jack Daniel’s, Glenlivet and Crown Royal. Mini bottles depleted, this indie singer-songwriter, known as Cat Power, would nurse a bottle of Scotch over the course of the day. On nights she performed, she took the antianxiety drug Xanax.

By the time she would weave onstage, beer in one hand, cigarette in the other, Ms. Marshall, 34, was wasted. And it showed. It would seem that every fan has a Cat Power concert story: the time she mooned the audience, cursed out techies, talked to a squirrel (outdoors), played three chords and changed her mind (song after song) or played fragments of a few songs and then told everyone to get out, even encouraging fans to sue her.

That was the old Chan Marshall.

The new Chan Marshall is, by most accounts, significantly improved, as critics have widely noted this year. Reviewing one of Cat Power’s performances at Town Hall in June, Jon Pareles of The New York Times wrote, “To see her so comfortable onstage was no small surprise to her longtime fans,” and Time Out New York called the shows “triumphant, in the classic show-biz sense.”

Of the New York audiences, Ms. Marshall said: “I never noticed they really liked me before. Man, these people stuck with me.”

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Chris Keeley

Reflections of the neighborhood: "Madonna, St. Marks Place, 1983."

FASHION anarchy looks almost quaint in Amy Arbus’s portraits of downtown Manhattan denizens in the 1980’s

 

Annals of Self-Invention

FASHION anarchy looks almost quaint in Amy Arbus’s portraits of downtown Manhattan denizens in the 1980’s. Their style was witty, tilted, nose-thumbing, a result of practical concerns about the cost of clothing and an expressive desire to invent a persona of one’s own. 

http://www.nytimes.com/2006/09/17/arts/design/17geft.html

On the StreetAudio Slide Show

On the Street 

A new book, “On the Street, 1980-1990” (Welcome Books), assembles 70 images from the more than 500 Ms. Arbus made over 10 years for The Village Voice. Her photographs capture the fun — as well as the posturing — in a straightforward documentary style.

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Chris Keeley

Not only did courtiers at Versailles look embalmed behind their masks of white powder and rouge but

Marie Antoinette, the ex-Queen of France, was thirty-seven when she was taken from her cell in the Conciergerie, the fourteenth-century fortress on the Île de la Cité, and paraded in an open oxcart to the scaffold in the Place de la Révolution, a mile away.

Some of the onlookers in the vast crowd lining the route that morning, on October 16, 1793, may have been among those screaming obscenities at her in 1789, when they marched with pikes on Versailles; or axed their way, in 1792, into her apartment in the Tuileries, where they spent their fury on her mirrors and closets; or waved the severed head of her friend and look-alike, the lovely Princesse de Lamballe, on a halberd outside her window. But now they observed an eerie silence.

 

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Chris Keeley

JINSA Report #605 Leaving Israel Out

Again we see an example of the breathtaking dishonesty of the Jewish
Institute for National Security Affairs (JINSA) in Washington.  In
quoting what President Bush said about the Israel-Palestine situation at
the United Nations on 19 September 2006 (see below) they carefully
neglect to include a key sentence that contains one very significant
point:  "The Palestinian people have suffered from decades of corruption
and violence and _the daily humiliation of occupation._"

The entire JINSA message is offensive, but the calculated omission of
that important phrase illustrates once again their continual habit of
corrupting the truth in the interest of underhanded propaganda.

Ray Close
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