Photos by Tatiana Trauslen.
Well! We’re nearly a month and a half into 2017, and about 30 days (and as many scandals) into the Trump regime. 2016 already feels like a distant memory – but lest we forget the good times, let’s take a moment to consider some of the music that made up the soundtrack for that utter dumpster fire of a year.
It’s been a year since the dramatically overhyped Life of Pablo dropped exclusively on Tidal. TLOP was – in my opinion – not good. Sure “30 Hours” is a hype song to get dressed to, “Ultralight Beam” is tight, but is also really just a Chance the Rapper track. “No More Parties in LA” is similarly fun thanks little to Kanye, but mostly just because Kendrick has a Midas touch when it comes to features. Critical realism aside, TLOP was undeniably an important album for 2016. In a year filled with surprise drops (to the extent that the final major album to drop of the year – RTJ3 – took to Portlandia to comment on the nature of ‘drops’), TLOP is a brilliant example of what excessive hype can do to an album. By the time it actually was released, it would have been nearly impossible for it to live up to the expectations.
The Museum of Fine Arts in Boston has revealed their #mfaNOW program, which showcases recent acquisitions to their Linde
Family Wing for Contemporary Art and hosts free all-night parties. The all-night parties will feature food trucks, lawn games, live music, DJ’s, art making, artist demonstrations, and
programming such as star gazing in the MFA’s beautiful courtyard and nighttime jogs through Boston. The next event will be the MFA Overnight: College Edition and will take place
on October 14-15 from 9:00pm to 9:00am. Guests can come and go as they please.
The recent installations, “Political Intent” and “Beyond Limits,” are powerful collections of contemporary art that make statements about today’s society. “Political Intent” explores tensions from slavery, the subject of mosques and Islam, and complex identities such as those in the LGBTQ community. “Beyond Limits” houses many abstract works that
challenge traditional interpretations of line, color and form. Andy Warhol’s Red Disaster (1963, 1985) shows a repeating electric chair on a red background, commenting on the power of media and how we have become accustomed to gruesome images in everyday life.
“UH-OH: Frances Stark 1991-2015” showcases an artist designated by the Los Angeles Times as “the visual poet laureate of the Internet age.” Stark’s imaginative mind examines the world in a way relatable to the college students of today. The exhibition includes such pieces as Cat Videos and Stark’s “chorus girl” in A Torment of Follies (2008), in which a girl’s dress is made up of an optical illusion. One particularly striking piece is a video installation set to a West Coast gangsta rap soundtrack and
features images such Tupac and Renaissance paintings. The piece is called Bobby Jesus’s Alma Mater b/w Reading the Book of David and/or Paying Attention is Free (2013). Even
the name is jumbled and chaotic.
Attendees of the #mfaNOW overnightevents will have a unique opportunity to see Christian Marclay’s The Clock (2010) at
night. The video masterpiece took three years of research and editing to compile and features thousands of bits from television and film history over a 24-hour period. During any time
of day, The Clock displays the accurate time on screen in a section from a show or movie. It becomes an actual timepiece and blurs the line between the screen and reality. Guests have
been known to sit for hours watching The Clock, in an intimate examination of media.
As always, Babson College students can enter the MFA on any day for free by presenting their student ID card, but be sure not to miss the amazing events that will be taking place during
#mfaNOW. A schedule is provided below and more information can be found at: www.mfa.org/programs/mfanow
mfaNOW Overnight: College Edition
9 pm, Friday, October 14, to 9 am, Saturday, October 15, 2016
mfaNOW Overnight: State of the Party
9 pm, Friday, November 4, to 9 am, Saturday, November 5, 2016
mfaNOW Overnight: Last Call
9 pm, Friday, December 9, to 9 am, Saturday, December 10, 2016
Louis Armstrong’s “Hello Dolly” vibrates throughout the room. I am in a state of complete tranquility. My hands are wet with clay. I can feel the soft, grainy texture between my fingertips, almost as if I have regressed back to my childhood, playing in the mud pit, throwing myself about in the clay without a care in the world.
This is the best part of my day: coming into the art room in the evening, spending hours completely engrossed in my own little world.
My apron is chalked with clay dust, my pink Vans have remnants of the clay that splatters around as I put my hands to work. What will I make today? I will let the clay decide.
Most often, I don’t begin throwing with much of a plan in mind. My best work has always come from just letting my hands and the clay move freely in a symbiotic relationship. All I need are my two most important instruments, my left and right hands.
I have created vessels of all types and many awkward shapes that cannot be identified. I love to bask in the relaxation that comes with being in the art room. I love the quiet environment, the freedom that I have to express myself in any way that I want.
The finished product is always the best part of the process. Knowing that I put everything I had into a piece of work really makes my creations important.
I get excited to see it come out of the kiln: fingers crossed that the glaze on the final product looks good! I always peer into the kiln, still hot from the firing, grinning from ear to ear, ready to see what I have created.
For some people, art is intimidating. Some people ask, “We’re at business school, why should I waste my time in the art room?” Consider this: When else do you have an excuse purposefully cover yourself in clay? When else do you have an opportunity to enter a world where there are only two actors: just you and the wheel?
Nothing else matters when you are throwing. For me, wheel throwing and ceramics is an escape. It is a place I can go to get away from all of the stress of college schoolwork, homesickness, and frustration.
Today, I will make a bowl. Today, I will find my escape.
Over Halloween weekend, The Empty Space Theater (TEST) produced Falsettoland, an off-Broadway hit musical about homosexual romance in 1980’s New York. The musical focuses on Marvin, a gay man who has left his wife and son for his ex-lover, Whizzer. Whizzer becomes afflicted with a mysterious illness—which we know today as AIDS, but which was not yet named in 1981—and all seven characters are forced to reevaluate their relationships with each other as they come to understand what “family” really means.
The cast consisted of one Wellesley College student, two Babson College students, a 14-year-old from Sharon Middle School, and three local actors. Together with a renowned director from Chicago, they produced a four-day show.
Anastasia Perreault as Dr. Charlotte
Chandler Cummings as Trina
Jack Price as Jason
Jacob Rosenbaum as Whizzer
Jordan Cohen as Marvin
Nash Hightower as Mendel
Olivia Belitsky as Cordelia
Director: Tom Mullen
Musical director: Sandra Graham
Assistant director: Kai Haskins
Stage Manager: Brandon Kam
Assistant Stage Manager: Sheen Hui