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July 1st, 2009 | 0 comments | Posted by Diana

Normally, I scoff when a performer starts spouting bologna like, “What I really want to do is direct.”

But M.I.A. is special, y’know? She’s got vision, identity, real aesthetic. If lady wants to direct, the lady should direct! And she’s done that–the brash singer just unveiled her directorial debut, the music video for Rye Rye’s booty-shakin’, beat-tastic “Bang” (a track that also features M.I.A.’s vocal styling).

The spot is exactly as you might imagine: a glossed lo-fi homage to VHS, heavy with raw energy, physicality and retro neon spirit. It’s a throwback, to be sure, and not just one for the hipsters. Like the lady in the director’s chair, the vid couldn’t be more hot right now.

And so, we dance.

[via Pitchfork]

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They Killed It

March 24th, 2009 | 0 comments | Posted by Diana

If I had known that the two Kill Bill Volumes could be boiled down to exactly one minute, completed in one simple dolly shot, I NEVER would have sat through the achingly long four hours and seven minutes of Tarantino film masturbation homage. Ever.

Not only could such a thing be done, but it was done, recently. Note the achievement of some students from York University:

I want $14.50 and all 136 minutes (the length of Volume 2) of my life back. NOW.

[via I Heart Chaos]

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The Abbey Dawn of a New Sartorial Age

September 15th, 2008 | 0 comments | Posted by Jen

Avril Lavigne debuted her new fashion label, Abbey Dawn, in Tokyo this weekend, ripping off paying homage to every major rock and pop icon of the late 20th century. Everything from punk to pop and glam to grunge was sent down the runway in the singer’s first juniors’ collection for Kohl’s.

There was a nod to Sid Vicious:

And to early Madonna:

To Kurt Cobain:

And even to fictional and truly truly truly outrageous riot grrrl Jem:

Then there was this paean to, um, Avril herself:

Hmm. Did I say that she paid homage to “every major rock and pop icon of the late 20th century”? I guess what I meant was that Avril gave big-ups to “…many major rock and pop icons of the late 20th century, and one marginally-talented, tie-wearing random.”

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Apparently, Art Hates Confrontasian

May 22nd, 2008 | 0 comments | Posted by Diana

I can understand why iconic sculptor Lei Yixin chose this (see above) particular depiction of Martin Luther King, Jr. (based on a famous photograph of the civil rights pioneer in front of a picture of Gandhi, see below) for King’s official monument in D.C. –he looks strong, serious, proud, revolutionary, powerful, stern, and even angry.

These are all qualities my parents and parents’ parents and parents’ parents’ parents sought (or seek) to embody. I can only imagine the same applies to Lei–after all, he looks kinda like a cross between my grandpa and crazy uncle Mon. To break it down, it seems that stern, angry, coolly calm men remind us of our fathers, and we want our leaders to be kinda like our VIP dads. Ergo, I love King, I love the statue.

Sure, one could have chosen a soft-focus, cuddly portrayal of King, but that would hardly have encapsulated the “fierce urgency of now” that drove King to act. A soft-focus, cuddly portrayal might simply render the monument a vision of a complacent urgency of whenever, and that’s hardly an active legacy.

So why is the U.S. Commission of Fine Arts so unhappy? Did they not have a stern dad?

From Washington Post:

The U.S. Commission of Fine Arts thinks “the colossal scale and Social Realist style of the proposed statue recalls a genre of political sculpture that has recently been pulled down in other countries,” commission secretary Thomas Luebke said in a letter in April.


Well that seems like a a reasonable argument.

Or maybe the Fine Arts Commission doesn’t like the image of an angry black man ruining its sculpted documentation of history. Who knows?

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Thanks, Edana!

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Not Quite Thriller

July 20th, 2007 | 0 comments | Posted by Jen

If a zombie who couldn’t dance and who had a spastic shoulder startled you in a dark alley, would you scream?

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