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Tuesday, November 05, 2013

Media-Whore D'Oeuvres



"As Xi prepares his 10-year plan, China has reached the end of the economic supercycle set in motion by Deng. Public criticism of officials and thus of the Party is rampant, and China's military appears much more capable than it actually is, putting China is a potentially dangerous situation. Once again the United States is looking at China as a power perhaps to contain or at least constrain. China's neighbors seem eager for Washington's assistance to counterbalance Beijing's influence, and long-dormant Japan is awakening once again. Xi may not have to rebuild a fractured Party or state as Deng did, but in some ways he faces the same fundamental challenge: redirecting and redefining China. China can no longer follow the path it has in previous decades. Deng emerged as China's paramount leader out of the struggles and chaos of the Gang of Four era and the Cultural Revolution. He redefined what China was and where China was going, not out of a desire to try something different or an infatuation with "Western" economic models but out of a fundamental need to change course. Whether Xi wants it to be or not, China is at another crossroads. He has little choice but to make consequential decisions, lest he leave China scrambling from one quick fix to another at the expense of long-term opportunities." (STRATFOR)


"Last night was the annual Library Lions dinner at the Stephen A. Schwarzman Building of the New York Public Library at 42nd Street and Fifth Avenue. This is always a beautiful evening, black tie, and honoring distinguished, often literary members of the community or international community. This year’s honorees were Mayor Michael Bloomberg, authors; Katherine Boo, Junot Diaz, Marilynne Robinson and the very literate and witty Stephen Sondheim, who also has a couple of books out ...This now traditional annual fundraiser for the Library is one of the most 'important' events on the autumn social calendar ...The Library is a very prestigious philanthropy in New York, as it is in many other major metropolitan cities, and it attracts a distinctive and at times distinguished crowd. Brooke Astor, you might remember, gave many millions to the Library before she died. Bill Blass left them at least ten million. Mr. Schwarzman provided a $100 million contribution to what Anthony Marx referred to (as have many others) as “the greatest library in the world.” (NYSocialDiary)



"When a huge balloon version of KAWS' celebrated figure 'COMPANION' floated down Fifth Avenue in the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade last year, it seemed that surely that was as big as the artist and toy maker could get. Previously, his 'COMPANION (PASSING THROUGH),' a massive fiberglass sculpture, had toured from Hong Kong to Europe to the Standard Hotel in New York. But now KAWS has two major museum shows running -- at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts in Philadelphia and the Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art in Kansas -- and this month he'll have a pair of solo exhibitions opening in New York: one at French maverick dealer Emmanuel Perrotin's new fancy uptown gallery, and the other at legendary power-player Mary Boone's Chelsea gallery. And if you were one of the 10 million people who tuned into August's MTV Video Music Awards, you saw Kaws take over the stage of the Barclays Center with his giant version of the MTV moon man, in what was one of the grandest co-branding opportunities afforded any visual artist. This is undeniably the year of Kaws. But if his work is omnipresent, from the bastions of high art to the hipster nooks and crannies where his apparel and toys are collected and coveted at dizzying prices, KAWS, the man, is far less visible." (Papermag)

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