Music & Arts

Sand sculpture festival brings super-heroes to Belgian beach

A beach in Belgium has been transformed into a giant sandy gallery, featuring larger-than-life super heroes, cartoon characters and Cinderella’s castle, for one of the world’s biggest sand-sculpture festivals. Working with 7,000 tonnes of sand, a team of 32 artists spent five weeks creating the 150 works for the Ostend Sand Sculpture Festival, which opens on Saturday and runs until September, providing rain does not wash away the exhibits. Many of the artists work in other mediums, such as wood or marble carving, and said they found sand sculpting presented ...

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Italy court suspends ruling that ousted museum directors

Italy’s top administrative court on Thursday suspended a ruling that ousted five museum directors who had been hired as part of a bid to modernize and boost revenue from the country’s artistic and archaeological treasures. The ruling will re-instate the managers, who were hired with great fanfare in 2015 as part of a sweeping reform, but removed last month by a lower court that upheld complaints by unsuccessful applicants for the jobs. The decision affects the archaeological museums of Naples, Taranto and Reggio Calabria in southern Italy, and the Ducal ...

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As art flies off the walls at Basel, buyers beware, experts warn

By Brenna Hughes Neghaiwi| BASEL, Switzerland “When did so many people start caring about contemporary art?” wondered Marc Glimcher, head of the Pace gallery empire, as he busily made deals at Art Basel’s VIP preview this week. With 291 galleries from 35 countries presenting 4,000 artists’ works, the world’s most prestigious art fair is as much a place to hobnob as it is to buy and sell an estimated 2.5 billion to 3 billion euros ($ 2.8-3.4 billion) of art. This year’s fair — hard on the heels of a ...

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Architect claims NY's One World Trade Center stole his design

By Jonathan Stempel| NEW YORK A Korean-born architect on Wednesday sued a major architecture firm over the design of Manhattan’s One World Trade Center, claiming that the building bears a “striking similarity” to a tower he designed in 1999 while in graduate school. Jeehoon Park accused Skidmore, Owings & Merrill of falsely claiming design credit for the 104-story One World Trade Center, whose 1,776-foot (541 m) height including the spire makes it the Western Hemisphere’s tallest building. Now president of Qube Architecture LLC in Suwanee, Georgia, Park said in the ...

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The London gallery shining a light on neon art

By Patrick Johnston| LONDON On the flick of a flurry of switches, a studio on a gray industrial estate in East London lights up to reveal hundreds of bright neon artworks. Owned by 43-year-old artist Marcus Bracey, the gallery in Walthamstow, called ‘God’s Own Junkyard’, houses the collection of four generations of his family who have made, bought and displayed neon works. The pieces are accompanied by kitsch memorabilia that Bracey has collected from film sets and car boot sales across Britain, leaving just enough room for a narrow winding ...

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Madame Tussauds-owner Merlin says Manchester, London attacks hit demand

FILE PHOTO: The London Eye, run by Merlin Entertainments, is seen at dawn in central London, Britain October 21, 2013. REUTERS/Toby Melville/File Photo Merlin Entertainments, operator of Madame Tussauds waxworks and other attractions, has seen a fall in demand from domestic tourists following recent attacks in London and Manchester and said on Tuesday foreign visitors could stay away in the coming months. Shares in Merlin, the world’s second-biggest visitor attractions group behind Walt Disney, fell by as much as 4.1 percent to lead fallers on the blue chip FTSE 100 ...

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Rockefeller art collection to be auctioned benefiting charities

FILE PHOTO — David Rockefeller arrives at the funeral service for New York socialite and philanthropist Brooke Astor at St. Thomas Church in New York, August 17, 2007. REUTERS/Jeff Zelevansky/File Photo By Chris Michaud| NEW YORK Works of art, furniture and decorative objects from the collection of the late David Rockefeller, the billionaire banker and philanthropist who was the last surviving grandchild of Standard Oil founder John D. Rockefeller, will be sold at auction next year, Christie’s said on Wednesday. Rockefeller died in March aged 101. Some 2,000 items will ...

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Street artists bring color to Israeli and Jordanian streets

With large murals of black cats and colorful gurning faces, a group of traveling international artists are bringing a splash of colorful street art to towns in Israel and Jordan. The eye-catching works, including large portraits and spying eyes, are produced under the banner of the international POW! WOW! event, a week-long culture festival which aims to “contribute, share culture and beautify communities with art.”. Having produced pieces at the Dead Sea and Petra in Jordan, the small group of artists, from Hawaii, Tel Aviv and Los Angeles, traveled to ...

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British artist Grayson Perry explores a divided country in new exhibition

By David Doyle| LONDON British artist Grayson Perry will launch a new exhibition on Thursday, the day Britain votes in a general election, and unsurprisingly, his works cast a critical eye over the country’s tumultuous political landscape. The exhibition, dubbed “The Most Popular Art Exhibition Ever!” will run at London’s Serpentine gallery until September. Much of the artwork addresses the controversy around Britain’s impending departure from the European Union, known as Brexit, after Britons voted to leave in June 2016. “It was a point when there was a kind of ...

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Marrakech's historic booksellers once again face eviction

Lined up against shopkeepers hawking everything from fresh parsley to colorful socks, Marrakech’s historic booksellers face an uncertain future as authorities plan an urban makeover in one of Morocco’s tourist hubs. In the shadow of the 12th century Al Koutoubia mosque – also known as the Mosque of Booksellers – the bustling shops once specialized in handwritten manuscripts and religious texts. It is a business that has been passed down from generation to generation. Only 26 booksellers remain in Bab Doukkala on the edge of the old city. Their stocks ...

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