Category Archives: Art and design

Danny Fields' best photograph: the Ramones prowl round the US supreme court

‘Hey, it’s Washington! Let’s run around!’

I became the Ramones’ manager after seeing them at CBGB in New York. From the opening downstroke of the guitar, I loved them. When I met them afterwards, they asked if I would write about them. I said: “More than that, I want to manage you.” I started taking photos of them when they were making their first album. If the manager has done a good job there’s nothing to do once the band gets to the studio except let her bang, so I took a camera along, thinking I could record moments that might be considered candid. They realised that even if I took pictures of them drooling, I wasn’t going to use them – as their manager, I wasn’t going to do anything to damage their career.

What made them good to photograph was the same thing that made them good on stage: presentation. They were intuitive. The first time I saw them live, the presentation was perfect – the clothes, the hair, the architecture of the set. They knew how to do it and they’d figured it out themselves. They weren’t puppets. When rock’n’roll wants to come out, it comes out of every pore, and they had that.

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Stella McCartney: ‘Only 1% of clothing is recycled. What are we doing?’

The designer’s ethical stance made her a style outsider – but now the industry is finally catching up. Ahead of a new V&A show, she talks about reclaiming her name, the joy of nature and the trouble with fast fashion

Stella McCartney is a designer, a businesswoman and an environmental activist, but of the three, she says, fashion will always come first. “It has to, you see. Because the only way for me to start the conversation I want to start is by making a product that you want to buy and that you are going to spend your hard-earned money on. If the product is rubbish, then there is no conversation to be had. If I don’t have a successful business, then I’m an environmentalist who happens to be Paul McCartney’s daughter, and that is a conversation which lasts about three seconds. No one is going to come back for more of that chat.”

Early years

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The last town in Sovietland – in pictures

Up above the Arctic Circle, 40 hours by train from Moscow, sits the Russian city of Vorkuta. It was built by gulag inmates but was given purpose by the coal industry that used to be the region’s lifeblood. Now mining has disappeared, leaving many of its outposts abandoned. Tomeu Coll’s 2009 photo essay Nevermind Sovietland hauntingly records the lives of those who still live there

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Fourth plinth: how a winged bull made of date syrup cans is defying Isis

Michael Rakowitz used 6,000 tin cans to rescue a treasure destroyed by Isis. The Iraqi-American, who once made a work out of Saddam Hussein’s dinner plates, explains why he likes causing trouble

In February 2015, Isis militants videoed themselves drilling the face off one of the commanding stone statues that had guarded the gates of the ancient city of Nineveh for more than a thousand years. The lamassu – winged bulls with serene human faces – were among the most monumental casualties of a spree of destruction that over just a few days reduced many of Iraq’s most precious artefacts to pebbles.

On 28 March, the life-sized “ghost” of one of these fabulous creatures will be unveiled atop the fourth plinth in London’s Trafalgar Square, where it will stand with its back to the National Gallery, gazing south-east past the Foreign Office and the Houses of Parliament towards its spiritual home in the Middle East.

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Bust a groove: the best – and worst – rock star statues

The world’s first David Bowie sculpture is being unveiled in Aylesbury – but well-meaning effigies to the stars of modern music have often been hit and miss with fans

The world’s first David Bowie statue is to be unveiled on Sunday in the unlikely location of Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire, where the singer debuted Hunky Dory. Only time will tell whether sculptor Andrew Sinclair’s Earthly Messenger statue will prove a Ziggy smash or Tin Machine dud, although historically, such well-meaning effigies have been rather hit and miss with fans. With this in mind, we look at some of the best – and worst – rock star memorials of all time.

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Henry Moore rubbished Barbara Hepworth sculpture, diaries say

Revered artist said to have slated rival sculptor’s work when Tate board was considering buying it

He is revered as one of the masters of 20th-century British sculpture, but Henry Moore belittled rival artists while promoting himself within the Tate gallery, according to previously unpublished diaries.

In 1945, the Tate’s board was considering whether to purchase a wooden sculpture by Barbara Hepworth. Moore, then a gallery trustee, interjected with the damning words: “If sculpture [was] nothing more than that, it would be a poor affair.” The ploy worked. The Hepworth was rejected by the board, while every one of seven sculptures the Tate bought that year was by none other than Henry Moore. The incident is recorded in the diaries of John Rothenstein, who headed the Tate for 26 years from 1938.

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The big picture: Romany children in Slovakia

Åke Ericson captures an exuberant moment amid growing intolerance in an image from his book Non Grata

Any documentary photographer who chooses the Roma as a subject must inevitably work in the shadow of the great Josef Koudelka, whose 1975 book Gypsies is now recognised as one of the great photo essays of the 20th century. Time has imbued Koudelka’s often intimate images with an even more poetic quality, and the decade in which he made them is now viewed as a relatively benign period in their long history by the Roma themselves. Much has changed since.

This photograph was taken by the Swedish photographer Åke Ericson in the Luník IX settlement in Košice, Slovakia, in 2013, and shows a young Romany boy, Juraj Mizigor, performing a backflip for his friends beneath a rundown tower block. It is a study in resilience and resourcefulness as well as exuberance. The fact that it is in black and white, unintentionally or otherwise, links it to older images of the Roma from decades past, suggesting their long history of persecution and displacement.

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Moran contemporary photographic prize 2018: snapshots of Australian life – in pictures

From a portrait of Yassmin Abdel-Magied to a professional kangaroo shooter posing with his catch, the works of the 116 semi-finalists in this year’s Moran contemporary photographic prize capture the spirit of Australian life. The judge, Cheryl Newman, says the images encapsulate ‘the political and the poetic, the intimate and the everyday’. The winner of the award will be announced on 8 May, with a prize of $50,000

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Source: gad