Culture Canvas

BY Annie Strother  March 29, 2012 at 3:16 PM EDT

A weekly roundup of arts and culture headlines.


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Lauded feminist poet Adrienne Rich died Tuesday at the age of 82. The author of more than two dozen works of poetry as well as several influential essays, Rich used colloquial language and an acute sense of justice to write poems that focused on the inter-sectional experiences of women as much as they explored techniques and voice. She scrutinized the domestic confines of traditional marriage and celebrated erotic love between women in the collection Twenty-One Love Poems.

Consistent with her politics, she famously declined the National Medal for the Arts in 1997, saying the she could not accept such an award “while the people at large are so dishonored” by racial and economic injustice. She won the National Book Award for poetry in 1974 for Diving Into the Wreck and a MacArthur “genius” grant in 1994. Above, Rich sits in an office at W. W. Norton Publishers in 1987. Photo by Neal Boenzi/New York Times Co./Getty Images.

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Earl Scruggs, a member of the Foggy Mountain Boys and influential bluegrass musician, died Wednesday at the age of 88.

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The Art Newspaper released its international survey of the year’s most well-attended museum shows.

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The Bronx Museum began offering admission for free Thursday and will continue to do so indefinitely, via ARTINFO. The museum is also developing a new educational programs for the borough’s public schools.

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The mysterious Mona Lisa is holding in one secret less: Leonard da Vinci painted her a decade earlier than previously thought, via ARTINFO.

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A painting on display in the Netherlands has been identified as the work of Vincent Van Gogh, via The Los Angeles Times.

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Metro-Goldman-Meyer bought back United Artists with 100 percent interest. Charlie Chaplin and Mary Pickford were two of the founders of United Artists, established in 1919. MGM acquired it in 1981, via The Los Angeles Times.

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A previously unpublished novella by Kurt Vonnegut will be released exclusively through Amazon, via The New York Times.

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With its season drawing to a close, the Charleston Ballet Theatre faces significant setbacks after the resignations of seven of its directors, via The Post and Courier.

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Brazil’s Social Service of Commerce, a private organization supported by the government and funded through a payroll tax, has seen its budget explode as the country’s economy expands, via The New York Times.

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Three decades after the genocidal rule of the Khmer Rouge, Cambodia is experiencing a cultural resurgence, via The Guardian.

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Anita Steckel, who broke grounds with feminist, erotic paintings, died this week at the age of 82. Uproar over her work led her to establish the Fight Censorship Group, an organization of women artists.

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Hilton Kramer, an art and culture critic at The New York Times and The New Criterion, died this week at the age of 84. Kramer argued for high art and the tenants of modernism as new ideas rose to prominence in the 1980s, but he also delighted in promoting under-appreciated artists.

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Tonino Guerra, an Italian screenwriter who worked with Federico Fellini and Michelangelo Antonioni, died this week at the age of 92. He wrote Antonioni’s breakout feature, “L’Avventura,” which examined the alienation of the upper-class. Their discontent is refracted through the disappearance of a young woman, whose friend and fiancee subsequently become entangled and leave her case unsolved.