Раздел: Искусство

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Archaeologists Find Ancient Pottery Workshop in Egypt

Archaeologists in Egypt have discovered an ancient pottery manufacturing workshop dating to more than 4,000 years ago.

Thursday’s statement by the Antiquities Ministry says the workshop is situated close to the Nile River in Aswan province in southern Egypt. It says the workshop, the oldest pottery workshop in the Old Kingdom, belongs to the 4th Dynasty, spanning 2,613 to 2,494 B.C.

The Old Kingdom is also known as the age when pyramid-building flourished.

Inside the workshop, archaeologists found an ancient pottery manufacturing wheel made of a limestone turntable and a hollow base.

Mostafa al-Waziri, secretary general of the Supreme Council of Antiquities, says the discovery is “rare” and reveals more about the development of pottery manufacturing and the daily lives of ancient Egyptians during that time in history.

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Archaeologists Find Ancient Pottery Workshop in Egypt

Archaeologists in Egypt have discovered an ancient pottery manufacturing workshop dating to more than 4,000 years ago.

Thursday’s statement by the Antiquities Ministry says the workshop is situated close to the Nile River in Aswan province in southern Egypt. It says the workshop, the oldest pottery workshop in the Old Kingdom, belongs to the 4th Dynasty, spanning 2,613 to 2,494 B.C.

The Old Kingdom is also known as the age when pyramid-building flourished.

Inside the workshop, archaeologists found an ancient pottery manufacturing wheel made of a limestone turntable and a hollow base.

Mostafa al-Waziri, secretary general of the Supreme Council of Antiquities, says the discovery is “rare” and reveals more about the development of pottery manufacturing and the daily lives of ancient Egyptians during that time in history.

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Bruce Springsteen Surprises Audience at Billy Joel Concert

Bruce Springsteen propped himself on top of Billy Joel’s piano to sing a duet with The Piano Man, who was celebrating his 100th concert at Madison Square Garden on Wednesday night.

Joel told the energetic crowd he had a guest coming onstage who has won a Grammy, Oscar and Tony. Springsteen emerged, surprising the feverish and fanatic audience, who loudly cheered “BRUCE.”

“Congratulations, Billy, on your 100th show,” Springsteen yelled.

“Ready, Billy?” he asked, as Joel began to play while sitting at the piano.

Springsteen encouraged the crowd to cheer louder and then sang “Tenth Avenue Freeze-Out.” He jumped onto Joel’s piano — making it on his second try — and sat on it while Joel played and the piano slowly spun. Springsteen then rocked his guitar for “Born to Run.”

Joel, 69, and Springsteen, 68, hugged after their two-song performance, and The Boss kissed Joel on his head as he walked offstage.

A banner celebrating Joel’s 100th performance at MSG rose to the ceiling near the top of the two-hour-plus concert. Joel started performing a monthly residency at the arena in 2014. No artist has performed at the famed venue more than Joel.

“Good evening to you, New York City,” said Joel, whose 2-year-old daughter, Della Rose Joel, sat on his lap. “I want to thank you all for coming to our show.”

Joel was excited throughout his set, going from piano to harmonica to guitar. He put on his sunglasses while he passionately sang “New York State of Mind” and twirled his microphone stand in the air and danced happily after singing “Uptown Girl.”

He said he had to think of a special song to sing to celebrate his new milestone, and then performed “This Is the Time.”

“Maybe it’ll hit me later,” he said of his new feat.

Earlier on Wednesday, Governor Andrew Cuomo proclaimed July 18, 2018, as “Billy Joel Day.” Joel, who was born in the Bronx, first performed at MSG on December 14, 1978. His piano is on display in front of the venue.

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Bruce Springsteen Surprises Audience at Billy Joel Concert

Bruce Springsteen propped himself on top of Billy Joel’s piano to sing a duet with The Piano Man, who was celebrating his 100th concert at Madison Square Garden on Wednesday night.

Joel told the energetic crowd he had a guest coming onstage who has won a Grammy, Oscar and Tony. Springsteen emerged, surprising the feverish and fanatic audience, who loudly cheered “BRUCE.”

“Congratulations, Billy, on your 100th show,” Springsteen yelled.

“Ready, Billy?” he asked, as Joel began to play while sitting at the piano.

Springsteen encouraged the crowd to cheer louder and then sang “Tenth Avenue Freeze-Out.” He jumped onto Joel’s piano — making it on his second try — and sat on it while Joel played and the piano slowly spun. Springsteen then rocked his guitar for “Born to Run.”

Joel, 69, and Springsteen, 68, hugged after their two-song performance, and The Boss kissed Joel on his head as he walked offstage.

A banner celebrating Joel’s 100th performance at MSG rose to the ceiling near the top of the two-hour-plus concert. Joel started performing a monthly residency at the arena in 2014. No artist has performed at the famed venue more than Joel.

“Good evening to you, New York City,” said Joel, whose 2-year-old daughter, Della Rose Joel, sat on his lap. “I want to thank you all for coming to our show.”

Joel was excited throughout his set, going from piano to harmonica to guitar. He put on his sunglasses while he passionately sang “New York State of Mind” and twirled his microphone stand in the air and danced happily after singing “Uptown Girl.”

He said he had to think of a special song to sing to celebrate his new milestone, and then performed “This Is the Time.”

“Maybe it’ll hit me later,” he said of his new feat.

Earlier on Wednesday, Governor Andrew Cuomo proclaimed July 18, 2018, as “Billy Joel Day.” Joel, who was born in the Bronx, first performed at MSG on December 14, 1978. His piano is on display in front of the venue.

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‘McQueen’ Examines Career of Brilliant, Troubled Designer

The London fashion world didn’t know quite what hit it when Alexander McQueen’s disheveled models staggered down the runway at his 1995 “Highland Rape” show, their Scottish-inspired clothing ripped to expose breasts and nether regions. 

It was exactly the reaction that McQueen, then in his 20s and subsisting on fast food and unemployment checks, was seeking. “I don’t want a show where you come out feeling like you’ve just had Sunday lunch,” he said at the time. “I want you to come out either feeling repulsed or exhilarated.”

McQueen would go on to provoke, repulse, inspire and exhilarate — often simultaneously — until he was 40, when he tragically took his life.

How did a taxi driver’s son from working-class London make the unlikely journey to the top of the fashion world, and what made him end it all at the height of his powers?

For filmmakers Ian Bonhote and Peter Ettedgui, the two questions proved irresistible. Their resulting documentary, McQueen, opens this week.

Fashion is a compelling subject for documentaries; few subjects are so enticingly visual. But the challenge is always to peel away the well-polished, and well-guarded, facade.

“The fashion world is a bubble,” said Ettedgui, who wrote and co-directed the film. “They don’t necessarily take kindly to outsiders coming in and revealing their secrets.”

Candid interviews

The filmmakers approached close to 200 sources, Bonhote said. Finding footage was painstaking work, but they were fortunate to secure key parts of McQueen’s most dramatic runway shows, along with some strikingly candid interviews with the designer — a rarity at fashion shows. 

They also found some valuable archival footage, including some private footage that McQueen and his associates captured for fun, trying out a new camera as they traveled to Paris for the designer’s new, high-profile post at Givenchy in 1996. They looked like grinning kids taking their parents’ car for a spin. 

The filmmakers were also able to convince some key McQueen family members to speak, namely his older sister, Janet, and her son, Gary, a designer himself who worked for his uncle. And they interview some of McQueen’s former colleagues, though not all. Sarah Burton, who succeeded McQueen at his namesake label, doesn’t appear.

At the heart of the film, though, is McQueen’s work and the way his bracing talent reverberated through the fashion establishment. Watching now, one can almost feel the gasps in the audience as the designer places model Shalom Harlow on a revolving platform in a plain tulle dress in his show No. 13, then has two robots spray yellow and black paint on her as she turns and turns. It was a mesmerizing effect that brought McQueen himself to tears.

​Film’s divisions

The film is divided into chapters, each focusing on a particularly influential McQueen show. The first, Jack the Ripper Stalks His Victims in 1992, was originally his final project at Central Saint Martin’s, the well-known London fashion school.

Even getting to the school was unlikely. The young Lee McQueen (he reverted to his middle name, Alexander, later because it sounded posh) was supposed to become “a mechanic or something,” but he was obsessed with drawing clothes. His mother encouraged him to knock on doors on Savile Row for an apprenticeship, and there, he became a superb craftsman.

Isabella Blow, a prominent fashion figure, bought up his entire Jack the Ripper collection and helped him make his way. But it’s clear that, as an associate says: “No one discovered Alexander McQueen. Alexander McQueen discovered himself.”

At first, there was no money. A friend describes how the two went to McDonald’s after a major show, dropped the food on the floor, but had to pick it up and eat it because they couldn’t afford to buy more.

Things changed radically when luxury conglomerate LVMH hired McQueen for Givenchy. But McQueen didn’t just sit back and enjoy his financial windfall — he poured it back into his own label. back home. It was a time of enormous pressure; McQueen says in one interview that he produced an astounding 14 collections in a year.

For a man often called the “bad boy” or “enfant terrible” of fashion, there was much else to learn about McQueen, the filmmakers say. Among the things that surprised them: his sheer technical craftsmanship, and a constantly developing business savvy.

‘Tender at times’

They were also struck by how McQueen’s personality contrasted with the myth. “He had this reputation for being abrasive, punk,” said Ettedgui. “But what we see in the archive is McQueen with friends, with his parents, even his beloved dogs, being very human and very tender at times.”

At the end of his life, two deaths devastated McQueen. Blow took her life in 2007 — we see him at her funeral, looking destroyed. And in early 2010, McQueen’s beloved mother died. Only days later, on the eve of her funeral, the designer killed himself.

The filmmakers can only speculate why McQueen, who struggled with drug addiction, took his life. “Fashion does come with a very unique set of pressures,” said Ettedgui. But, he added, “people we spoke to said, ‘Don’t try to make him a victim, because ultimately the person who put the most pressure on McQueen was McQueen.”

Bonhote also noted the designer’s ambivalence about the world he had chosen, clearly expressed in shows like his famous 2001 Voss, in which he forced the assembled fashion world to literally stare at itself for long minutes into a mirrored cube — which in turn represented an insane asylum.

“To some degree, he was always a misfit in the world he found himself in,” Bonhote said.

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Grandson Shares Mandela’s Life Lessons in New Book

An entire generation has been born since Nelson Mandela’s 1990 release from a South African prison, where he spent almost three decades for his anti-apartheid activism.

Ndaba Mandela wants to make sure those young people understand his grandfather’s role – and his values – in fighting for racial equality and later in trying to heal divisions as South Africa’s first black president.

“That is the very reason why I wrote this book,” Ndaba Mandela says of “Going to the Mountain” (Hachette). His goal with the memoir – released last month, in time for Wednesday’s 100th anniversary of the late leader’s birth – is to show the elder Mandela “not as this huge, great icon” but as a supportive grandfather figure they might relate to.

The 35-year-old shared views of his grandfather – who died in late 2013 at age 95 – both in the book and in a recent visit to VOA headquarters here. Ndaba describes him as “courageous” and “fearless” in his quest to end South Africa’s white minority rule, but says that commitment came at great personal cost.

“That is a man who went against the system, who sacrificed his family, sacrificed his own life for the greater good of his people,” Ndaba tells VOA, alluding to his grandfather’s 27 years in detention.

It’s a complicated, extended family, given Mandela’s three marriages and five children. Ndaba’s father was Makgatho Mandela, “the Old Man’s second son by his first wife, Evelyn Ntoko Mase,” he writes, using a term of affection.  

Mandela was imprisoned while that son grew up and became a street hustler in Soweto. Ndaba says his own childhood was chaotic and impoverished, with his parents caught up in alcohol and sometimes fighting bitterly.

“A lot of the time, I would eat at my neighbors’ house, you know, when my parents couldn’t afford to get dinner for me,” he says. “… By any standard, I grew up in a broken home.”

In 1989, 7-year-old Ndaba met his grandfather at Victor Verster Prison, from which the leader was freed several months later. The boy was 11 when he moved in with Mandela and his staff in a house in Johannesburg’s Houghton suburb. He would spend much of the next two decades there – being cared about, and then caring for, the Old Man.

Subtitled “Life Lessons From My Grandfather,” the book explores the older man’s motivations and approaches.

Among those lessons:

“Nonviolence is a strategy,” Ndaba writes, quoting the Old Man. His grandfather subscribed to Gandhi’s strategy “of noncooperation and peaceful but unstoppable resistance. … He was a judicious leader who understood the power of doing the right thing until it overwhelms the wrong thing.”

Education is essential. Nelson Mandela “valued education because it was something that was stripped away” from blacks, says Ndaba, who admits he himself at one point “didn’t perform well at school” and had “a rocky adolescence.” Like his grandfather, he went on to earn a college degree.

Weeks after becoming president in 1994, Mandela established what became the Nelson Mandela Children’s Fund, donating about a third of his presidential salary every year, his grandson writes. As the elder man had told parliament, “The emancipation of people from poverty and deprivation is most centrally linked” to quality education.

Respect your heritage. The phrase “going to the mountain” refers to ceremonial circumcision – a monthlong rite of passage for young men in the Xhosa ethnic group. Ndaba was almost 21 when he underwent cutting and related psychological and spiritual testing. It was a turning point in his relationship with his grandfather, who then “expected critical thinking and welcomed civilized disagreements,” he writes. “… From the time I was a kid, I knew I could depend on him. This is when he knew he could depend on me.”

Don’t expect change all at once. When Ndaba eventually realized that his grandfather had orchestrated his parents’ separation and also kept them away from him, he writes, “I struggled to forgive him.”

Ndaba’s mother, Zondi, was already gravely ill when he learned that she had HIV/AIDS. She died of its complications in 2003, though a family press release attributed her death to pneumonia.

Ndaba writes that Mandela tried to address the country’s AIDS epidemic in 1991 by promoting safe-sex education, but backed off when accusations that he was “encouraging promiscuity” threatened his political prospects. When Ndaba’s father succumbed to the same disease in early 2005, Mandela called a press conference “to announce that my son has died of AIDS.”

“It’s impossible to overstate what this meant to the millions of people who live in fear of seeking help or disclosing their HIV status and to the millions more people who loved them,” writes Ndaba Mandela, now an ambassador for UNAIDS, the United Nations effort to curb the disease.   

Show leadership through service. Mandela was a man of “integrity, humility,” one who “dived into public service,” his grandson says. “A leader is not someone who says, ‘Look at me, I’m the best’ – a leader is there to serve.”

For Ndaba, service comes through Africa Rising, a nonprofit that he and cousin Kweku Mandela formed in 2009 to improve the continent’s socioeconomics. “We need to empower young Africans,” he says, “to give them a heightened sense of pride and confidence in being African.”

This report originated in VOA’s English to Africa Service.

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The Go-Go’s on Their Legacy and Advice for Other Rockers

Go-Go’s guitarist Jane Wiedlin has five simple words of advice for female rock bands — “Write. Write. Write. Write. Write,” she said.

 

“I think the world needs a lot more women that are really taking charge of their whole career and image, instead of women being picked by men and then songs get written for them and players played for them,” Wiedlin said. “I just would like to see a little bit more wholly, self-realized female artists. I know there’s some out there. But I want more.”

 

Wiedlin joined other members of her pioneering all-female band on a Broadway stage last week to welcome “Head Over Heels,” the musical based on the band’s infectious hits. They treated the audience to a two-song set at curtain call.

 

“Head Over Heels” weaves the Go-Go’s tunes — “We Got the Beat,” “Our Lips Are Sealed,” and other hits with deep cuts and lead singer Belinda Carlisle’s subsequent singles — to tell an updated take on Sir Philip Sidney’s “Arcadia.” It’s an Elizabethan tale about a royal family trying to escape an oracle’s prophecy of doom, using Shakespearean conventions and reveals and mistaken identities.

“The fact that we actually made it to Broadway feels like it’s kind of a miracle. And also, super unlikely for a band that started 40 years ago as a punk rock band. So, it’s pretty thrilling,” Wiedlin said.

 

The Grammy-nominated Go-Go’s helped pave the way for future female artists and notably sang and played their own songs, but Carlisle stops short of feeling like a role model.

 

“I don’t like that term. I don’t think we’ve ever thought of ourselves as role models. We just did the work and got on with it,” she said. “It’s weird that there aren’t more Go-Go’s that have come along. I don’t know why, but for whatever reason.”

 

The Go-Go’s have no plans to tour, but Wiedlin claims it’s not the end of the band.

 

“In 2016, we did a no-more-touring tour, and basically, we announced we were not going to be touring anymore, which for some reason most people thought that meant we were breaking up. But we’re not broken up,” Wiedlin said.

 

She said the band will continue to work together, and separately, as well as perform in situations she deems, “exciting.” And having time can lead to cool projects, like the Broadway show.

 

“We were all to the point where touring is just a bit too much, so we are very happy to be focused on the musical ‘Head Over Heels’ right now,” she said. “There’s plenty of stuff in the future for us, both together and apart.”

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