Ravenna is a beautiful old city in the region of Emilia-Romagna near the Eastern coast of Italy. It is famous for its many churches, many of which hold the most breathtaking Byzantine mosaics. There are eight UNESCO world heritage sites in Ravenna.
Contemporary art has always been terrifying to me. I pictured abstract installations making social commentary that went right over my head, so I thought it was safer to stick with the popular classics that I knew and loved. Popular media shows the art world as super rich and super white, which is partly true, but there are also a massive number of contemporary artists today whose work is relevant to the lives of people who don’t go into galleries and casually purchase a painting for thousands of dollars.
It’s finally spring in D.C! The cherry blossoms are blooming and so are our hearts. Daffodils, hyacinths, pear trees, periwinkles, and magnolias are popping up everywhere and reminding us why we love this city in the first place. However, did you know that many of these flowers have hidden meanings? Floriology is a term describing the language of flowers. Throughout history, different cultures have used flowers as subtle symbols in art and even used them to convey secret messages. Greeks, Romans, Egyptians, Chinese, Europeans, and many more all have developed their own language of flowers.
Reality TV-- it’s commonly thought of as a “guilty pleasure.” Keeping Up With the Kardashians, Love Island, Marriage or Mortgage, Love is Blind, RuPaul’s Drag Race, are all supposed to be embarrassing to admit that you watch. For me, though, reality TV is an escape from reality itself.
A lot of people have heard of Laika, the famous Soviet space dog whose death has sparked the telling and retelling of her story as a tragic example of using animals in scientific endeavors. When telling her story, however, there tends to be a lot of other dogs left out of the story, both before and after her mission in Sputnik II. I work at the National Air and Space Museum, and here is my telling of the Soviet space dogs’ stories.
Phoebe Bridgers and Carmen Maria Machado: humble pairings from Punisher and Her Body and Other PartiesTalia Marshall | Apr. 6
Phoebe Bridgers is a Grammy-nominated singer-songwriter known for her albums Punisher and Stranger in The Alps as well as her collaborations boygenius and Better Oblivion Community Center. Carmen Maria Machado is a writer (and AU Alumna :P) known for her memoir In The Dream House and her anthology of speculative short fiction, Her Body and Other Parties. Bridgers often cites Her Body and Other Parties as a favorite book and inspiration for Punisher. As a fan of both Bridgers and Machado, I felt it was my obligation to do my best to pair stories from Her Body and Other Parties with songs from Punisher.
JoJo Siwa came out as a member of the LGBTQIA+ community two months ago, and her sexuality is a great representation for her young audience.
This year, The Bachelor has taken one blow after another in the wake of racist incidents from a contestant, just as the Black Lives Matter movement gained momentum this past summer. The show has received a lot of backlash, but this isn’t the first time racist incidents and remarks have happened in The Bachelor franchise. In fact, they’re common, and happen implicitly every season.
Ginny and Georgia is a comedy-drama series that was released by Netflix on Feb. 24. It’s about the life of young free-spirited mother Georgia and her two children Ginny and Austin who move to Wellsbury, Massachusetts, for a fresh start. The ten-episode series is worth the binge-watch because of all the different topic areas explored such as new love, home, friends, and lies.
Taylor Swift’s dispute over the ownership of her first six albums is finally coming to a close, with the announcement of her re-recording of Fearless being released on April 9th. In the meantime, fans are preparing to be hit with the nostalgia that songs like “You Belong with Me” and “The Way I Loved You” brings back.
With the arrival of winter break and COVID-19 continuing to put a stop to our social lives, now is the perfect time to either dust off the books gathering dust on the shelf or buy yourself one that is stiff and new. The hunt for a good book can sometimes be a challenge with so many amazing options out there (so many books, so little time!), but fear not, for astrology solves all problems.
You may have heard of The Florida Project through TikTok. If you did, you probably saw teenage girls pose effortlessly in front of the famous South Floridian purple motel in technicolor edited videos on the app. The popular sound to the videos combines an indie track with the sarcastic free-spirited voice of Halley, the young mother in the film.
Good sapphic representation seems few and far between in media. Despite a steady increase in the number of sapphic characters we’ve seen on TV or in movies in recent years, much of the representation that is given is short-lived, just plain bad, or repetitive. Sapphic characters are often heavily sexualized, underdeveloped, or part of a period piece. Some networks have attempted to create characters that actually feel human in recent years and some of those attempts ended in great results. People were seeing themselves in characters perhaps for the first time ever. Take Netflix for example, they’ve created a variety of shows in recent years that feature strong sapphic leads and have made audiences very excited. Here’s the thing though, most of that progress ends up losing meaning. Because although Netflix can produce a show with good sapphic representation, they can’t seem to renew any of them. Most of the shows that Netflix has created in recent years that feature sapphic characters have been canceled. Netflix draws in queer audiences with the promise of representation, then betrays them. It’s time we talk about that.
Thanksgiving is over so that means the Christmas season has officially begun. And now, finally, we can once again binge watch the Rankin-Bass Holiday specials on Freeform. What are the Rankin-Bass Holidays specials, you ask? I think you know. They’re the incredibly weird, claymation movies that come around every holiday season only to be hidden away the minute your last Christmas present has been unwrapped. Some of my favorites include: Santa Claus is Coming to Town, A Year Without a Santa Claus, Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer, and much more. So here’s a list of all of those incredibly odd Christmas specials (only the important ones, of course) rated.
Sometimes art can be forgotten and left to fall into ruin over time without the admiration of onlookers. I love to find that forgotten art. I am interested in urban exploration, which is the act of exploring manmade structures such as abandoned buildings. Most of these places are illegal to explore because they’re either property of the government or they’re privately owned. Urban exploration is very popular in photography and film and I have seen these types of places used as settings especially in the horror genre. From an artist’s perspective, I love to see how creative people have made their mark in these places. Sometimes artists leave their names or pictures on the crumbling stones but whatever they put there has a story to it.
The first time I walked down the ambiguously hidden staircase of Dupont Underground (DU) I discovered a creative world safely tucked away in Dupont Circle’s abandoned trolley station tunnels. Walking down the staircase I did not imagine such a beautiful space to lie right beneath D.C’s iconic Dupont circle. But I guess that’s why it’s iconic. Dupont underground is a representation for D.C. as a whole. Underneath all the political drama, busy people, and suits, lies a world of creatives reflecting and expressing their emotions through beautiful photographs, paintings and designs.