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High School Student Wins $250K Prize For His Video Explaining Einstein’s Relativity

November 19, 2015 - 11:21am

“Chester’s film takes on one of the biggest ideas in science, Einstein’s theory of relativity. With cartoonish graphics drawn by hand and props from everyday life, like a bowl of popcorn and a moving minivan, Chester explains what Einstein’s famous theory is all about — and why it means that people traveling close to the speed of light age slowly compared to people on Earth.”

Prime Minister Trudeau Writes To His Culture Minister About The Arts

November 19, 2015 - 11:17am

Among his priorities: Restore and increase funding for CBC/Radio-Canada, following consultation with the broadcaster and the Canadian cultural community. Review the process by which members are appointed to the CBC/Radio-Canada Board of Directors, to ensure merit-based and independent appointments. Double investment in the Canada Council for the Arts. Increase funding for Telefilm Canada and the National Film Board.

Major French Classical Download And Streaming Site Goes Into Bankruptcy

November 19, 2015 - 5:56am

“No back-up plan has been submitted and no investor has expressed concrete interest during the observation period, which made the receivership inevitable.” But since that period ended in September, the company says, there has been “substantial interest in taking over Qobuz in its current form.”

How To Steal A Monastery: When American Robber Barons Brought Medieval Landmarks Over From Europe, Stone By Stone

November 19, 2015 - 5:46am

“American robber barons snuck ancient stones out of the war-torn countryside in the dead of night, Europeans fretted over how their familiar landmarks were rapidly disappearing, and U.S. cities spent decades of the 20th century fighting over what to do with tens of thousands of displaced medieval remnants.”

Paris’s Cultural Institutions Slowly Bounce Back After Attacks

November 19, 2015 - 5:37am

“This week, the places that make Paris one of the world’s great cultural capitals have been slowly coming back to life, and directors are hoping that residents and visitors alike will return. They say that they are more convinced than ever that culture is a form of resistance to terrorism.”

Merce Cunningham Gets A Museum Retrospective

November 19, 2015 - 5:25am

“The Walker Art Center in Minneapolis and the Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago are to hold an extensive two-city exhibition, ‘Merce Cunningham: Common Time,’ opening in February 2017.” There will be Cunningham sets by the likes of Jasper Johns and Robert Rauschenberg, film and video installations by Charles Atlas and Nam June Paik, Cunningham music by John Cage and Morton Feldman – and, of course, dance, performed by both international companies and a group of former dancers with Merce’s own company.

Is Virtual Reality The Next Frontier Of Journalism?

November 19, 2015 - 5:05am

“I reach up and shakily remove the Samsung Gear VR headset. As though emerging from a vivid nightmare, I am abruptly back in Manhattan, blinking against the bright summer light streaming into an airy third-floor apartment, where I’m seated on the edge of a chaise lounge. “

National Book Award Winners 2015: Ta-Nehisi Coates Extends His Winning Streak, Adam Johnson Pulls An Upset

November 19, 2015 - 4:55am

Coates adds the nonfiction award for Between the World and Me to the Kirkus Prize he won last month and the MacArthur “genius” Fellowship he received in September. Johnson’s short story collection Fortune Smiles edged out the presumed frontrunners, Hanya Yanagihara’s A Little Life and Lauren Groff’s Fates and Furies. (includes full list of winners and nominees)

The Talented, Thorny, Hard-Working, Mean-Spirited, Bigoted, Brilliant Patricia Highsmith

November 19, 2015 - 4:45am

The author of Strangers on a Train, The Price of Salt (republished as Carol), The Talented Mr. Ripley, and 19 other novels, “Highsmith is almost impossible to shoehorn into any category – political, literary, or psychological. … “

28 People On The Lesbian-Culture Artifacts That Changed Their Lives

November 19, 2015 - 4:35am

Alison Bechdel, Christine Vachon, Lea DeLaria, Carrie Brownstein, and others name books, movies, songs, paintings, photographs, and underwear ads (yes) that made all the difference.

Verbing Nouns And Nouning Adjectives And Adjectiving Verbs: The English Language’s Fountain Of Awesome Is –

November 19, 2015 - 4:25am

antimeria, “a rhetorical device that repurposes a word as a different part of speech than usual. In exposing that word’s ability to be understood across grammatical categories, antimeria … does more than surprise or joke or streamline (or sow surprise or crack a joke or render prose more streamlined). Antimeria unlocks a word’s essence. Thing is, a lot of people hate antimeria.”

Artificial Intelligence: Can We Figure Out What To Do With It Before It Figures Out What To Do With Us?

November 19, 2015 - 2:59am

“If artificial intelligence can be achieved it would be an event of unparalleled consequence – perhaps even a rupture in the fabric of history. A bit of long-range forethought might be a moral obligation to our own species.”

Making Better Babies: The Dream Of Designing Human Beings, From Plato To Nobel-Laureate Sperm Banks To Gene Editing

November 19, 2015 - 2:52am

“For centuries, human hereditary improvement was a problem in social, not biological, engineering: how to persuade or coerce people into marrying to benefit the population as a whole. The obvious analogy was to agriculture and animal husbandry.”

Top Posts From AJBlogs 11.18.15

November 19, 2015 - 2:48am

Another Rough Night: Sotheby’s Underperforming Sale of Alfred Taubman’s American Art
With a total of $13.04 million (including the buyer’s premium), the auction at Sotheby’s tonight of 31 works from A. Alfred Taubman’s American art collection (eight of which failed to sell) will be of little help in reducing the formidable $95-million gap … read more
AJBlog: CultureGrrl Published 2015-11-18

Lookback: the death of a president
From 2003: I was a small-town second-grader on November 22, 1963. My teacher, Jackie Grant, told the class that the president had been shot and killed, and then we all went home. For me, home was a block away from the classroom door, but my mother still drove to the school to pick me up, … read more
AJBlog: About Last Night Published 2015-11-17

Snapshot: Martha Argerich plays Liszt
Martha Argerich plays Liszt’s Sixth Hungarian Rhapsody on TV in 1966. … read more
AJBlog: About Last Night Published 2015-11-18



November 18, 2015 - 4:27pm

CERF+, the artists’ safety-net, seeks a dynamic director of programs who has the experience and skills to strengthen the impact of CERF+’s work as an “artist responder” and artist advocate, and to expand the visibility of CERF+’s services and, thereby, increase the population of artists CERF+ serves. The position involves directing a team of CERF+ staff, board, and consultants, and collaborative work with other artist-focused organizations, arts agencies and relief providers, both in non-emergency and emergency periods to deliver high caliber programs.

The Role:

CERF+’s Director of Programs will be responsible for delivering and promoting high quality programs to artists and the organizations that serve them. Responsibilities of this position include: planning, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of all of CERF+’s career protection, emergency readiness and relief programs and related outreach and communications. The Director of Programs will lead a team of staff, consultants, board and volunteers to fulfill the program goals and objectives outlined in CERF+’s strategic plan. The Program Director will work in partnership with other CERF+ senior leadership staff and report directly to the Executive Director.
Essential Duties & Responsibilities:

Program Development/Planning

  • Lead the planning and development of programs (including program related budgets) that are responsive to the needs of working artists and that advance CERF+’s mission
  • Oversee development of outreach and communications strategies to promote the visibility of CERF+’s programs
  • Cultivate strategic partnerships and engage in collaborative planning through the National Coalition for the Arts Preparedness and Emergency Response, National Voluntary Agencies Active in Disaster (NVOAD) and other affinity groups and stakeholders
  • Conduct and oversee research related to CERF+’s program development and modifying CERF+’s existing programs
  • Actively participate in staff and board planning

Program Implementation

  • Provide strategic coordination of CERF+’s readiness and relief programs
  • Provide technical assistance and present educational workshops about readiness, career protection, and disaster recovery to artists at all career levels and to businesses, organizations and institutions that serve them
  • Provide counseling/mentorship to arts organizations managing local disaster relief/recovery programs to artists
  • Perform various outreach functions about CERF+’s programs at a variety of venues such as workshops and conferences
  • Oversee and further guide the development of CERF+’s readiness resources, such as the Studio Protector 2.0 and the Business Insurance Guidebook
  • Lead and/or collaborate on advocacy initiatives to increase artists’ access to career support and emergency relief services
  • Oversee and contribute to CERF+’s various communications outlets (print, web and social media) on program related reporting and/or for program outreach.
    Program Monitoring & Evaluation
  • Strengthen CERF+’s processes for evaluating programs to determine adequate usage and effectiveness of resources and services
  • Establish performance goals for program staff to assure that program objectives are met
  • Ensure that program related records are properly administered
  • Monitor program budgets and provide needed information for financial reporting
  • Prepare information for foundation grants, interim and final reports.
  • Make presentations for the CERF+ Board and other key stakeholders about CERF+’s programs


  • Assist in various program-related fundraising functions, such as grant proposal development and reporting as well as presentations to donors/donor prospects, and foundations
  • Participate, as requested by the Executive Director, with annual fund and special gift solicitations.

Qualities Sought
The successful candidate must demonstrate an ability to manage the programs and services of CERF+ and position the organization as a leader in the emerging field of arts emergency management within and outside the arts sector.

Qualities that need to be demonstrated in order to succeed in this position are:

  • An ability to work with staff, board and consultants to effectively design, manage and monitor impactful programs that serve professional artists
  • An ability to be a strong and results oriented educator about readiness, response, and recovery to artists and the organizations that serve them
  • An ability to be a thought leader in writing, editorials, presentations and other outlets on supporting and strengthening artists’ careers
  • An ability to lead in times of crisis
  • An ability to work effectively with a variety of individuals and organizations to connect them to CERF+’s work
  • An ability to understand how cultural policy is made and executed and how organizations such as CERF+ can intervene to influence such policy.

Minimum Qualifications

  • A minimum of 10 years professional experience working in the field of artists’ support services, with at least 5 years at the executive/program manager level
  • MA or similar business experience and/or advanced degree desired.

This position requires a fair amount of travel to attend conferences, present workshops and educational forums, attend CERF+ board meetings and to advance CERF+’s policy and advocacy priorities.

Supervision Exercised
Currently direct supervision will be for two positions: Program Manager and Outreach and Communications Coordinator

Supervision Received
Executive Director

The above statements describe the general nature and level of work being performed. This is not intended to be an exhaustive list of all responsibilities and duties required of this position.

Questions about this search and clarification regarding the qualities sought can be directed to:

How to Apply
To apply for this position, applicants should send a cover letter that details how they meet all or most of the items listed in the “qualities sought” section of the position announcement. In the cover letter, applicants also should address any significant strengths they would bring to enacting CERF+’s mission. Also, please send a writing sample and a detailed, current professional resume. These materials should be sent via email. No paper applications will be accepted. Please send application materials to:

Surprise: TV Industry Posts A Good Quarter Amid The Doom And Gloom

November 18, 2015 - 3:11pm

“Domestic TV ad sales and MVPD video subscriber rates were, generally speaking, better than forecast. More surprisingly, the positive signs in these arenas were driven by companies most considered to be dinosaurs of the digital age: broadcast networks and Big Cable operators.”

A “Project Runway” For Choreographers

November 18, 2015 - 3:07pm

With acclaimed music video choreographer — and “SYTYCD” alum — Brian Friedman as its mentor and Vine star Liza Koshy as its host, the series pits 10 choreographers against each other in themed challenges and hopes to do for that industry what “Project Runway” did for fashion designers.

Balancing Act – Are The National Book Awards Really About The Very Best Books?

November 18, 2015 - 3:05pm

While it presents itself to the general public as being a competition purely about literary merit, every writer, editor and publisher knows that NBA juries also have to consider matters like popularity and accessibility in anointing a tome as the One Book That Ruled Them All.

English National Opera Still On Funding Probation

November 18, 2015 - 3:02pm

The organisation found ENO had made “good progress” in in improving its operation, but has “further work to do” to ensure future sustainability.

Is There Such A Thing As “American” Art Anymore?

November 18, 2015 - 2:25pm

“Many curators of American museums say they’re moving away from traditional definitions: In the past, the label has been more actively used to decide who does and doesn’t belong in the country’s cultural history. But art reflects identity, and the U.S. national identity has only grown more pluralized in recent decades, thanks to immigration and globalization.”