Category Archives: Artists

First Lady Michelle Obama is Now Officially a Fashion Plate

Posted by: Audiegrl

NYT/Eric Wilson~Not that there were any doubts before, mind you. Often called the First Lady of Fashion, Mrs. Obama has a sense of style, as we all know by now, that rivals Jackie Kennedy’s. She has boosted the spirits of the American fashion industry with her unconventional mix of avant-garde newcomers and off-the-rack Talbots, and claimed a Council of Fashion Designers of America style-icon award along the way.

Still, nothing quite says you’ve made it like an actual plate bearing your image. (Mrs. Kennedy had more than her share, not to mention salt shakers and creamers, but those came much later.)

Last week, advertisements began appearing in magazines like Entertainment Weekly offering a $39.99 porcelain commemorative plate from the Bradford Exchange. It shows Mrs. Obama in her Jason Wu white inaugural gown. “Richly edged in platinum and over 100 hand-set faux jewels,” Bradford says in its ads. It is the first in a series of plates featuring Mrs. Obama’s fashion choices that the company plans to issue, said Suzanne Magnuson, a product manager. Next up: the black sequined Peter Soronen gown from the National Governors Association gala!

“It is only partially due to the amazing fashion choices she has made, but also because people find her inspirational and also accessible,” Ms. Magnuson said. “She’s a real person they can admire.”

And even eat off. There will be at least four plates in the series, enough for a small dinner party.

Not to be outdone, the Danbury Mint, a competitor in the collectibles market, is offering a $34.95 plate with a montage of six outfits, including the Wu, the Soronen, an Isabel Toledo and that glittery red and black Narciso Rodriguez from election night. Available May 20, it declares Mrs. Obama to be the First Lady of Elegance.

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Filed under Artists, Fashion, First Lady Michelle Obama

Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar Unveils New Ansel Adams Murals

Posted by: Audiegrl

Written by Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar

Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar

Ken Salazar, Secretary of the Interior

I recently unveiled a series of magnificent murals that highlights the legacy of two of the greatest figures in U.S. Department of the Interior’s history, Secretary Harold Ickes and renowned photographer Ansel Adams. The murals represent 26 of the photos Ickes commissioned Adams to produce as part of the Department’s Mural Project of 1941.

On display in the main hallways of the first and second floors of the main Interior building, these stunning black-and-white photos convey the beauty Adams’ saw in our Department’s diverse mission, and include: a pair of Native American children; the eruption of Old Faithful; and the intricate network of power lines at Boulder Dam.

Ickes and Adams first met in 1936, while attending a conference on the future of national and state parks. Ickes was secretary of the Interior under President Franklin Roosevelt; Adams, a renowned photographer and president of the Sierra Club. The two immediately found a common bond in a deep love for the beauty of our nation’s land and a desire to see it conserve that land for future generations.

At San Ildefonso Pueblo, New Mexico, 1942 (National Archives no. 79-AAP-04 Ansel Adams)

In fact, Adams used his photographic talent to lead a successful campaign to save the Kings River area of the Sierra Nevada and have Congress designate it as Kings Canyon National Park.

Ickes believed that the Interior building, which was completed in 1936, should be symbolic of the Department’s mission to manage and conserve our nation’s vast resources. So in 1941, he hired Adams to create a photographic mural for display in this building that reflected the Department’s mission: the beautiful land, the proper stewardship of our resources, and the people we serve.

The attack on Pearl Harbor and our nation’s entry into World War II brought the project to a halt. The more than 200 photographs that Adams took have been stored in the National Archives, but never printed or hung as murals.

Now, with our installation of the murals, we are able to share with visitors from across the nation Ickes and Adams’ timeless vision for this Department — and how we are in the business of fulfilling that vision today.

Note: Simply click on the photos to enlarge

Kearsage Pinnacles, Kings River Canyon California (National Archives no. 79-AAH-7 Ansel Adams)

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Filed under Art, Artists, Environment, Secretary Kenneth L. Salazar (Sec of Interior)

First Lady Michelle Obama Hosts the White House Governors Ball Talent Preview

Post by: Audiegrl

U.S. first lady Michelle Obama poses for a group photo with music students from Myrtilla Miner elementary school at the White House in Washington February 21, 2010.

U.S. First lady Michelle Obama poses for a group photo with music students from Myrtilla Miner elementary school at the White House in Washington February 21, 2010.

Today the First Lady gave a group of Washington, DC music students a special preview of the 2010 Governors’ Ball performance. Grammy Award Winning artist, Harry Connick Jr. spend time talking to students and closed out the event with a song, joined by a few residents from the New Orleans Musicians’ Village. The Musician’s Village was conceived by New Orleans native Harry Connick, Jr. in the wake of Hurricane Katrina to rebuild homes for many of New Orleans cherished but displaced artists, those who have defined the city’s culture and created the sounds that have shaped the musical vernacular of the world.



Looking for more stories on the First Lady? Check out our brand new section: FLOTUS: All Things Michelle Obama

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Filed under Artists, Change, Children, Culture, Dancing, Education, Entertainment, First Lady Michelle Obama, Governors, Live Stream Video, Media and Entertainment, Music, Musicals, New Orleans, LA, News, Obama Administration, Politics, Pop Culture, Pres. Barack Obama, Students, Teachers, Uncategorized, US, Video/YouTube, Washington, DC, Women's Issues, Young Men, Young Women

82nd Annual Academy Awards ~ Oscars® ~ Animated Feature

Posted by: Audiegrl

Coraline
Coraline(Focus Features), Henry Selick

Click here for complete coverage of Coraline, that includes: nominations, trailers, cast, reviews, production notes, and more…

Fantastic Mr. Fox
Fantastic Mr. Fox(20th Century Fox), Wes Anderson

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The Princess and the Frog
The Princess and the Frog(Walt Disney), John Musker and Ron Clements

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The Secret of Kells
The Secret of Kells(GKIDS), Tomm Moore

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Up
Up(Walt Disney), Pete Docter

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Filed under 82nd Academy Awards, Artists, Best Animated Feature, Children, Culture, Entertainment, Hollywood, Movies, Uncategorized

Academy Award® Nominated ~ Achievement in Art Direction

Ensemble post by: Audiegrl and Geot

Avatar

Click here for complete coverage of Avatar, that includes: nominations, trailers, cast, reviews, production notes, and more…

The Young Victoria

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Sherlock Holmes

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Nine

Click here for complete coverage of Nine, that includes: nominations, trailers, cast, reviews, production notes, and more…

The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus

Click here for complete coverage of The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus, that includes: nominations, trailers, cast, reviews, production notes, and more…

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Filed under 82nd Academy Awards, Art, Artists, Best Art Direction, Culture, Entertainment, Hollywood, Movies, Pop Culture, US, Video/YouTube, World

Academy Award® Nominated ~ Achievement in Makeup

Ensemble post by: Audiegrl and Geot

Star Trek

Click here for complete coverage of Star Trek, that includes: nominations, trailers, cast, reviews, production notes, and more…

The Young Victoria

Click here for complete coverage of The Young Victoria, that includes: nominations, trailers, cast, reviews, production notes, and more…

Il Divo

Click here for complete coverage of Il Divo, that includes: nominations, trailers, cast, reviews, production notes, and more…

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Filed under 82nd Academy Awards, Artists, Best Makeup, Culture, Entertainment, Hollywood, Pop Culture, US, Video/YouTube, World

Little-Known Black History Fact: Lois Mailou Jones

Posted by BuellBoy

Lois Mailou Jones in 1936

Lois Mailou Jones in 1936

Textile artist Lois Mailou Jones was a Harlem Renaissance artist; in fact, she was one of the longest living members of the Harlem Renaissance.

Jones found her inspiration in Martha’s Vineyard as a teen. As her interest grew, she decided to attend the School of the Museum of Fine Arts in 1937, learning textile design.

Though a cultured profession, textile artists of her day were not excluded from racism. Sometimes she was required to clean the studio in order to us it. At one point, Jones saw her textile work hanging in a boutique. After introducing herself as the creator of the design, the owner told her a colored girl could not have possibly made such a beautiful design. After enduring more discrimination, Jones found herself in Paris, where she was accepted. It was there that she worked with Josephine Baker, Albert Smith and Emile Bernard.

Lois Mailou Jones

Lois Mailou Jones

Wishing to find her place in America, Jones entered “whites only” art contests using the face of her white colleague to make a name for herself. She connected with greats like with Mary McCleod Bethune, Arthur Schomburg, Alan Locke, Zora Neale Hurston and Danny Glover.

She took her expertise to an HBCU – the one place she was allowed to teach – and taught at Howard University for 47 years.

Before she died in 1998, Jones presented her work to President Bill and First Lady Clinton. She now lays to rest in Martha’s Vineyard, where it all began.

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Filed under African-Americans, Art, Artists, Black History Month, Civil Rights Movement, Culture, Entertainment, History, Holidays, Presidents, Uncategorized, US, William (Bill) J. Clinton, Women's Issues