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Archive for the ‘Reviews’ Category

Theater Review: Under Bacchae’s spell- a MUST SEE production at the Getty Villa

Under Bacchae’s Spell By Leticia Marie Sanchez The first few moments of Euripides’ Bacchae at the Getty Villa set the tone for the entire evening. Screaming Jay Hawkins’ raw, electrifying 1956 blues hit “I Put a Spell on You” plays in the outdoor theater, jolting the audience as the spartanly dressed Bacchanalian chorus emerges from classical columns. Their fearless leader Dionysus, the god of theater, wine, and divine ecstasy, is played with hypnotic magnetism by Ellen Lauren, who struts onto the stage in red leather pants like Mick Jagger on fire. Through the direction of Anne Bogart from the New York-based SITI Company, one cannot help but be gripped. Euripides’ Bacchae is heavy material, but Bogart skillfully unearths comedic gems, Bacchanalian beats, and horrific depths so that within 90 minutes, the audience is at turns highly entertained and terrified. Bogart’s

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Verdi: A bold request

Verdi: A bold request by Leticia Marie Sanchez The following correspondence in the form of abridged letters between Giuseppe Verdi and one very unusual opera-goer, Prospero Bertani: Much Honoured Signor Verdi,       Reggio, May 7, 1872 On the second of this month, attracted by the sensation which your opera Aida was making, I went to Parma. Half an hour before the performance began I was already in my seat, No.120. I admired the scenery, listened with great pleasure to the excellent singers, and took pains to let nothing escape me. After the performance was over, I asked myself whether I was satisfied.  The answer was “No.” I returned to Reggio, and on the way back in the railroad carriage, I listened to the verdicts of my fellow travelers. Nearly all of them agreed that Aida was a work

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A FOR ART- Icons of Style- A Century of Fashion Photography- A MUST SEE at the Getty Center

A for Art ICONS OF STYLE: A CENTURY OF FASHION PHOTOGRAPHY- A MUST SEE AT THE GETTY CENTER By Leticia Marie Sanchez June 26–October 21, 2018 Icons of Style at the Getty is NOT-TO-BE MISSED for a myriad of reasons. Firstly, the presentation itself is visually compelling. Iconographic fashion photography surround dynamic costumes ranging from Coco Chanel, Christian Dior, Madeleine Vionnet, Madame Grès, Issey Miyake, and Alexander McQueen. Secondly, and more importantly, this exhibit is the first of its kind. Photo Left: Sarah Moon, 1941, Sveta for Hussein Chalayan, 2000; Carbon print; 2011.52; 57.2 × 43.4 cm (22 1/2 × 17 1/16 in.) Copyright:© Sarah Moon Historically, museums have not actively collected fashion photography because the medium has been viewed as undeserving of the capital letter A for Art bestowed upon portraiture, landscape, and abstraction. Even within the genre of photography itself, fashion photography has often

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Review: Gustav Klimt at l’Atelier des Lumières- PARIS- a MUST SEE

Gustav Klimt at L’ Atelier des Lumières - A MUST SEE in Paris a dazzling immersion of lights in the City of Lights By Leticia Marie Sanchez All Photography and text © 2018 Leticia Marie Sanchez This month’s Cultural Cocktail recipe includes 2 Oz of Gustav Klimt, A Dash of Beethoven, A Sprinkle of Wagner, and a Splash of Visual Splendor- Enjoy! The perfect Cultural Cocktail involves a blend of music and visual arts and the Gustav Klimt exhibit at Atelier des Lumières is a mesmerizing, intoxicating blend of artistic immersion, NOT to be missed. Atelier des Lumières means “Studio Of Lights.” The site itself is unorthodox and compelling. The once dark, drab, former iron factory transforms into a feast for the senses, producing an artistic high. 140 laser video projectors illuminate the 16,000 square foot exhibit hall of the former iron factory with golden, gilded images as classical music soars through the

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Monet’s Water Lillies at L’Orangerie- Paris

  At Monet’s opening at L’Orangerie Art critic Louis Gillet declared,  “An Astonishing painting, without pattern, without borders… there is no sky no horizon hardly any perspective or stable points of reference enabling the viewer to orient himself, just completely arbitrary boundaries between actual space and pictorial space.”   MUSÉE DE L’ORANGERIE Jardin des Tuileries Place de la Concorde 75001 PARIS

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Azulant Akora: Paris Haute Couture Fashion Week Fall Winter 2018 Highlight!

 by Leticia Marie Sanchez Greetings from Paris! At Paris Haute Couture Fashion Week  Fall Winter 2018, the uplifting strains of Ralph Vaughan Williams’s “Lark Ascending” played during the presentation of the ethereal designs by Azulant Akora.     The stirring music was befitting of a collection that proved inspirational, ethereal, and exquisite. Akron’s presentation was filled with showstoppers including a intricate floral-imbued gown and a royal green dress that was regal and perfectly showcased in the golden, classically gilded room at La Maison Champs Elysées. What was even more impressive about Akora’s collection was that her creations managed to be both dreamy and functional at the same time. One can envision one of Akora’s stunning creations at a gala, red carpet, wedding, or other special occasion. The level of detail on each gown elevated it to its own stratosphere. The fabrics, colors,

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New Installations at the Getty Villa- *A Must See!*

by Leticia Marie Sanchez Cultural Cocktail Hour had the pleasure of visiting the new installations at the Getty Villa. Prior to seeing it firsthand, I honestly wondered how this oasis in Malibu, remodeled after the home of Julius Caesar’s father-in-law, could in any way be improved. After seeing the results of this massive undertaking, I am a believer. What now comes to the forefront is art history, the progression of stylistic history that becomes clear on a visceral level. The stylish progression from the very formalized, stiff and archaic works to the explosion of naturalism and expressionism becomes apparent as one walks through the galleries at the Getty Villa.  There’s a logic to the stylistic evolution, and one need not be a connoisseur of art to appreciate the stylistic changes that unfold. In fact, one striking takeaway is that an artistic neophyte could learn more from

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Cultural Cocktail Hour’s Interview with Timothy Potts, Director of the J. Paul Getty Museum

  Photo Credit- Courtesy of the J. Paul Getty Trust. Cultural Cocktail Hour interviewed Timothy Potts, Director of the J. Paul Getty Museum, in advance of two openings at the Getty Villa on April 18th: The Reinstallation of the Antiquities Collection at the Getty Villa Plato in LA: Contemporary Artists’ Visions   INTERVIEW Cultural Cocktail Hour: Plato in LA explores the influence of the classical world on the Contemporary World. What do you think are the most profound influences of antiquity on contemporary art and society today? Timothy Potts, Director of the J Paul Getty Museum: “It depends on what you mean by contemporary art and what is contemporary to us today. You only have to go back to the late 18th and 19th century when the height of fashion all over Europe was classical styles in sculpture and architecture and

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Plato in LA- A Must See Exhibit- at the Getty Villa

 Plato in L.A. Contemporary Artists’ Visions  April 18–September 3, 2018 By Leticia Marie Sanchez Plato would have had a field day with Los Angeles at this point in time. Even the term Virtual Reality has Platonic connotations. After all, Platonic Realism espouses the notion that the material world is only a poor copy of the real one. In his allegory of the caves, Plato described shadows which people assume are real, but are, in fact, mere imitations of the real world. What would Plato have thought of social media, with all its filters used to create a hyper-perfect reality? What is real, and what is a façade? Even the entertainment world in Los Angeles, and the dark underbelly that was exposed this year. Beyond the glossy images on the silver screen, the hair and makeup, the movie sets, sexual assaults

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Artistic highlight of the year- The Peggy and David Rockefeller Collection on view at Christie’s

 By Leticia Marie Sanchez On View at Christie’s Los Angeles Until April 12th 336 N Camden Drive Beverly Hills Art-loving Angelenos: If there is only ONE artistic experience in which you engage this week, run, don’t walk (Uber- whatever you need to do to GET there!) to Christie’s Beverly Hills. To say the viewing is a high-octane experience is an understatement. The first clue that you are in the room with works from the highest stratosphere is when you see the plethora of Men In Black with secret-service earpieces guarding the masterpieces. All of these works hail from the collection of Peggy and David Rockefeller and will be heading to New York to the Rockefeller Center (naturally!) for what may be the greatest art auction of all time- the work is valued at 500 million. What is even more extraordinary

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