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Detroit Institute Of Arts Names Head Of European Art
“The Detroit Institute of Arts (DIA) has named Dr. Yuriko Jackall as the museum’s new Department Head of European Art and the Elizabeth and Allan Shelden Curator of European Paintings. Jackall will begin her position in the fall,” reports artdaily.com. “Dr. Jackall currently serves as the Head of the Curatorial Department and Curator of French Paintings at the Wallace Collection, London… Jackall will collaborate closely with the curators in the European Art Department to manage the DIA’s European collection, including acquisitions, conservation, documentation, and research. The DIA’s holdings of European art—paintings, sculpture, decorative arts, and arms and armor—stands as one of the world’s best. Taking these collections as a point of departure, she will also develop exhibitions of European paintings that introduce new scholarship that demonstrates the immediacy and relevance of centuries-old artworks for today’s audiences in Detroit and beyond.”
A Remembrance Of JoJo Baby
“JoJo Baby made a life as a living doll. After nearly four decades in nightlife, the artist and performer died this spring from a long battle with cancer. They were fifty-one. Before becoming JoJo, they were born Joseph Arguellas—the oldest of four children raised by a Greek father and a Lakota mother,” writes Micco Caporale in an excerpt from “Legends Of Drag” at the Reader. “From the modest comfort of their Logan Square home, JoJo grew up watching their mother transform from what they described as a ‘plain Jane’ to a ‘super vixen,’ using beauty tricks honed from years working as a Bunny at the Playboy Club. That planted the seed for understanding the body and self as a facade that could be altered to elicit a response.”
What Grandiose Concert Halls Have Done For Cities
“Venues for orchestral performance often boast thrilling designs and troubled development processes. Here’s why these spaces can be so difficult—and rewarding—to create,” writes Bloomberg CityLab in “The Costly Allure of the Showstopper Concert Hall.” “In recent decades, superstar architects like Frank Gehry, Jean Nouvel, and Santiago Calatrava have designed ambitious performance spaces for orchestras, blowing past budgets and construction timelines in pursuit of norm-breaking signature structures.”
Who’s Copping Costly NASCAR Ducats?
“So NASCAR. The National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing, roaring around downtown Chicago in less than two weeks. A nightmare I’ve come to think of as ‘Lori’s Revenge,'” opines Neil Steinberg at the Sun-Times. “Nowhere near the epic proportions of Rich Daley’s flush-billions-down-the-toilet-for-the-next-seventy-five-years blunder. But quite a commitment to expensive folly nevertheless… Did you, like me, see that page and think: ‘They CHARGE for this?!?!’ We shut down the heart of Chicago for a month so a bunch of speed freaks can chase each others’ tails and regular Chicagoans are expected to PAY MONEY to watch the proceedings? That’s like your neighbor setting up an enormous inflatable bouncy castle on your front lawn for his kid’s birthday party, then trying to charge your children admission. Not a little money, either. ‘General admission’ ranges from $269 to $353, which covers the two days, in the mad assumption that someone, going downtown, could then conceivably think: ‘Gee, that was fun; I think I’ll go again tomorrow.'”
Alders Query NASCAR
“The 2.2-mile racetrack will go through downtown and could draw an additional 100,000 people over the first weekend of July. But alderpeople are raising concerns they’ve heard from constituents,” reports Axios. “Downtown alderpeople Brendan Reilly and Pat Dowell again slammed former Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s ‘ham-handedness’ and ‘lack of transparency’ in pushing the NASCAR race on residents, especially for constituents who won’t be able to avoid it… NASCAR continues to insist the cash and attention the race will bring to Chicago will outweigh the headaches.”
Designer Thierry Roger Was Sixty
Thierry Roger, a Chicago-based fashion designer known as a “true artist,” was sixty, writes the Tribune. “As a designer, he was infinitely talented and was one of the best in Chicago,” Chicago jewelry designer Ellie Thompson, a longtime collaborator, told the paper. “Roger specialized in custom-designed women’s clothing… He studied fashion and art at a school in Tours, France, and then worked for the women’s clothing firm Guy Laroche. Roger relocated in 1990 from Europe to Chicago, where he began working as a couture designer… Roger founded another brand, Thierry Roger Couturier [and] opened a Roscoe Village boutique with the name of his first line, Collection Privee, in 2003… Roger later shifted to making custom designs out of his home studio.”
Mr. Roger—pronounced Rozhay—also designed costumes for violinist Rachel Barton Pine, reports the Sun-Times. “He worked hard on social media and keeping up his website but never had to advertise. It was more referrals, women saying ‘Where did you get that dress?’ at parties, and he’d get a new client that way. He was very steady,” his husband Steven Martin-Roger said.
Transportation Writer John Greenfield On Path To Recovery
“Chicago transportation writer John Greenfield is on the mend after an April crash downstate left him seriously injured—and he’s more determined than ever to fight for safer streets for cyclists and pedestrians,” reports Block Club. “Greenfield plans to take the CTA and walk around his neighborhood while his vision and concentration improve. He won’t return to cycling until he gets permission from a doctor and feels fully comfortable again… ‘But once that happens, I’m confident cycling will once again feel like an efficient and fun way to get around.'”
DINING & DRINKING
City Varies Zoning For Archie’s Sign
“A zoning change to allow Archie’s Iowa Rockwell tavern to put their iconic Hamm’s sign back up… passed at City Council Zoning Committee,” posts stalwart Twitter account Chicago Bars.
Sideshow Gelato Addresses Social Media
Did someone say something mean? Lincoln Square newcomer Sideshow Gelato has placed a placard on its Instagram page, headlined “OUR SOCIAL MEDIA REVIEW POLICY.” “Reviews on Yelp, Google or other social media sites? We don’t read ’em. We don’t respond to em. Why? Our shop is based on the premise of human interaction and we staff and manage Sideshow Gelato with a genuine interest in open dialogue and conversation. We are also human. If you are unhappy, find something wrong with one of our products, or something that we have done, please talk with us (we are all really nice) and allow us to remedy the problem before stomping off to trash us on Yelp or Google. If you simply don’t like us or what we do, well, there’s no accounting for taste and, as they say, opinions are like… well they’re just opinions. Everyone has them. We also know some people are just miserable and there is no making them happy. So what are ya gonna do. So please, we want you to be happy so just… ya know… talk to us.”
Authors Of “Tango Makes Three” Sue Florida School District
“A group of students and the authors of a children’s book about a penguin family with two fathers sued a Florida school district and the state’s board of education,” reports the New York Times, “saying that restricting access to the book in school libraries was unconstitutional. The suit argues that the book was targeted on ideological grounds, as a result of new legislation that has led to a spike in book removals. The state law, known by its opponents as ‘Don’t Say Gay,’ bars instruction on gender identity and sexual orientation. In an attempt to follow the statute, the school district, Lake County, restricted access to forty titles, the vast majority of them books that deal with L.G.B.T.Q. issues and themes.”
Rick Kogan Salutes A Half-Century Of Mike Flannery
“Mike Flannery walked into the newsroom of the Chicago Sun-Times on June 18, 1973, a fresh-faced, hopelessly curious and wildly energetic twenty-two-year-old and now he is calling it quits, leaving the political scene where he earned the admiration of colleagues, rivals and viewers. Esteemed journalist Carol Marin puts it succinctly: ‘Mike is a walking, talking encyclopedia of politics,'” writes Rick Kogan at the Trib. “He found a still rough-and-tumble business. There were four daily newspapers then and the press rooms at City Hall and police headquarters were filled with cigarette and cigar smoke, liquor bottles in drawers, rough talk and racial invective in the air, and such colorful characters as the Daily News’ Jay McMullen (soon to become Jane Byrne’s husband) and Harry Golden Jr. of the Sun-Times.”
“I met Flannery when I worked for the Daily News and Sun-Times in the late 1970s, when part of my duties included the enviable task of covering the nightclub and tavern scenes. One night out with Flannery, he helped create the name of my alter ego, Dr. Night Life, a weak homage to Royko’s Slats Grobnik. ‘One of my proudest moments in journalism,’ says Flannery, with a laugh.”
Pen Down For Daily Southtown Columnist Ted Slowik After 1,400 Columns
“This is my final column for the Daily Southtown after seven and a half years and more than 1,400 columns,” writes Ted Slowik. “There was never enough time to do everything. Someone who writes four columns per week for a daily newspaper must choose four topics from a seemingly infinite number of possibilities. Also, a daily column must be reported, written and illustrated within the span of a few hours. In the old days, metro columnists had ‘leg men’ to help with research. I did all my own reporting, but I didn’t have the luxury of waiting a few days for someone to get back to me… The columnist role differs from that of, say, an investigative reporter, who may spend weeks collecting information and interviewing people for a single story. I agonized over choices every day. There was so much that needed to be covered, but only so much I was able to do. I did my best to keep the topics fresh, like bread baked daily.”
Gannett Sues Google, Says Megacorporation Cause Of Local News Decline
“The country’s largest newspaper chain said that Google’s power over ad technology has contributed to the decline of local news,” reports The New York Times. Gannett filed a lawsuit against Google, “accusing the tech giant of violating federal antitrust laws by illegally abusing a monopoly over the technology used by publishers to buy and sell online ads.”
A Take On Forty Years Of Smartbar And Joe Shanahan
“For smartbar and Metro founder and owner Joe Shanahan, it was never about being in the live music business. It was about records and having a place to share them with his service industry peers. His relationship with DJing goes as far back as his grammar school days on the South Side of Chicago, where he collected records and played them in the garage for his friends, neighbours and family,” writes RA (Resident Advisor). “The building holds a special, uncanny energy in its walls, the kind forged only by the passage of time. Over the years, smartbar has hosted everyone from Jeff Mills and Thomas Bangalter to Ben UFO and SHERELLE, while upstairs, the 1,100-capacity Metro has been equally important for rock music, welcoming iconic bands like Sonic Youth and The Smashing Pumpkins. Sonic Youth even recorded an early live album inside the original smartbar, which was located on the building’s fourth floor. (It now houses both venues’ administrative offices.)” Much more here.
West Side Rep: Two-Percent Of Music Fests In Parks Should Go To Hosting Communities
“Park District officials said profits from private events benefit the entire parks system. State Representative La Shawn Ford said his proposal would ensure some of those profits go directly to the parks hosting the festivals,” reports Block Club Chicago.
ARTS & CULTURE & ETC.
German Teens Turning Eighteen Get 200-Euro Culture Ticket
“Germany’s eighteen-year-olds have been invited to register on an app called the ‘KulturPass,’ to receive €200 ($216) from the government. The pass can be spent on… cultural activities of their choice, including museum visits, films, theater and concerts,” reports Deutsche Welle. “Holders can also spend the money on physical objects like records and books, and even on musical instruments—although the money must be spent ‘locally,’ excluding non-German streaming and subscription services. The funding, which has cost the German government €100 million, will initially apply to around 750,000 people. Anyone who turns eighteen in 2023 and is a registered resident of Germany is eligible for the program.” The KulturPass is intended “to support the cultural sector, which continues to suffer the effects of the pandemic.”
Touring Wrigley Field’s Gambling Emporium
“The two-level space is designed like a stadium, with a lower level for tables and a bar and an upper level for additional seating and private events. The focal point isn’t a ball diamond, but rather a 2,000-square-foot video wall so large it wraps around the corner of Addison and Sheffield.” NBC 5 tours the gambling premises astride Wrigley Field: “Blake Milburn of Marquee Development described the screen as ‘one-of-a-kind’… It is designed to provide an immersive viewing experience to all guests who come here.”
Teams Tsk-Tsk Players Who Place Bets
“What a strange dance this is. For the athletes, betting on games is just as taboo as it used to be, even as they’re surrounded by the glitz and glamor of betting parlors near their work space. The logic behind the ban on gambling on games is still sound: If a player loses a lot of money, he or she might be susceptible to throwing games for organized crime crews. You don’t want doubt served alongside excitement,” writes Rick Morrissey at the Sun-Times. “Abstaining from gambling on the sport you play isn’t asking a lot from athletes making millions of dollars a year. So let’s not feel sorry for them. But it’s easy to understand how they might get drawn into the world of sports gambling, given that everything around them promotes the enjoyment of placing a bet on a game. What used to be done surreptitiously through an illegal bookmaker is now done legally, especially online. Millions of Americans are doing it. Friends and family of players are doing it. Temptation, anyone?”
Florida Rep Calls For Replacement Of State Constitution
The movement rumbling toward a U. S. Constitutional Convention could be waking: “It’s time for the 1968 constitution to join the original in the archives,” Florida State Representative Spencer Roach posted on Twitter. “We need a complete rewrite of the Florida Constitution.” Roach said “the Republican Legislature would be wise to start a rewrite of the constitution while the party holds historic caucuses in the House and Senate,” reports Florida Politics. “But he notes anything will ultimately have to be approved through a statewide vote. ‘Yes, it will be controversial, but we have a supermajority and we need to act now.'”
Texas Governor Shuts Down Diversity, Equity And Inclusion
“All state-funded colleges and universities in Texas will have to close their diversity, equity and inclusion offices under a measure signed into law by Governor Greg Abbott,” reports NBC News.
Texas Strikes Down Water Breaks For Outdoor Workers In Summer And Any Future Local Regulation
Texas Governor Greg Abbott has “signed House Bill 2127, which will nullify any local city ordinances that require water breaks for employees who work in the heat and prevent any local jurisdiction in the state from passing such laws in the future.” Reports KKCN, the legislation “has been called the ‘Death Star’ law because it prevents any local city or county government in the state from passing laws that contradict anything in Texas state code in areas like agriculture, business and commerce, finance, insurance, labor, local government, natural resources, occupations, and poverty.” (The state had a reported 279 heat deaths in 2022.)
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