‘Gods, Heroes and Clowns: Performance and Narrative in South and Southeast Asian Art’ opens in Melbourne

For centuries past, the many countries, ethnic groups and religions of South and Southeast Asia have enjoyed rich storytelling traditions, using lavishly illustrated storyteller’s cloths to recite the great Hindu epics and animated puppet shows to portray the exploits of local folk heroes and mythical kings. A new NGV exhibition titled Gods, Heroes and Clowns: Performance and Narrative in South and Southeast Asian Art will explore these stories, their performance, and ongoing role within contemporary society. More than 50 rarely seen works from India, Thailand, Laos, Indonesia and Cambodia will be showcased, including storyteller’s cloths, ceremonial hangings, puppets, sculptures, paintings and masks, which are used in rural villages, royal courts, temples and modern urban settings. Many of the pieces form part of ceremonial and performative traditions which are still thriving today, revealing complex stories of myth, h

French artist whitewashes Los Angeles motel, palms and all

A French artist has completely covered a derelict Los Angeles motel -- palm trees and all -- with a dazzling coat of white paint to create an enormous, ghostly artwork. Called "Projections," the piece by Vincent Lamouroux was publicly unveiled Sunday in LA's trendy Silver Lake neighborhood, and instantly became a local attraction, with fascinated passersby stopping to snap images of the motel. Lamouroux used an environmentally friendly limewash to cover the so-called Bates Motel, including several towering palm trees and the fence around the rundown property. The seedy motel, which has been closed for years, got its name from its proximity to nearby Bates Avenue and its passing resemblance to the hotel in the Alfred Hitchcock masterpiece "Psycho". "The idea behind this project was to cover the entire building and to think about the building as a giant sculpture (on) the scale of the urban landscape ... with this idea we could provoke ... a strong change in order to create some attenti

Museum of London bolsters its art collections, acquiring significant new works by Rut Blees Luxemburg

Today, the Museum of London strengthens its visual art collections, announcing the acquisition of three major new works by leading London-based photographer, Rut Blees Luxemburg. The acquisition was made possible with the assistance of the Art Fund and the Arts Council England/V&A Purchase Grant Fund. The newly acquired photographs, ‘Aplomb – St Paul’s’, 2013, and ‘Walkie-Talkie Melted My Golden Calf’, 2013, hail from Blees Luxemburg’s series, London Dust. The photographs, along with the film, ‘London / Winterreise’, 2013, and other works from Blees Luxemburg’s series, will feature in the new exhibition, London Dust, opening at the Museum of London on 1 May 2015. London Dust responds to the redevelopment of the City of London and the fallout from the 2008 financial crisis. As property prices rise, and the pressure to maximise space increases, London’s financial distric

National Air and Space Museum lowers Bell X-1 to floor level

The Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum has lowered the Bell X-1 to the floor for the first time in the museum’s history. The aircraft will be on view to the public while it is undergoing conservation to prepare it for display in the museum’s renovated central exhibition, the Boeing Milestones of Flight Hall. It is the last major aircraft to be temporarily lowered to the floor in the gallery. For the next few months, three of the Hall’s premier artifacts will be on view at eye level—the “Spirit of St. Louis,” SpaceShipOne and the Bell X-1. On October 14, 1947, the Bell X-1 became the first airplane to fly faster than the speed of sound. Piloted by U.S. Air Force Capt. Charles E. “Chuck” Yeager, the X-1 reached a speed of 1,127 kilometers (700 miles) per hour, Mach 1.06, at an altitude of 13,000 meters (43,000 feet). Yeager named the airplane “Glamorous Glennis” in tri