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“Death of a Salesman”–Trapped by the American Dream

Last week we had the unforgettable experience of attending “Death of a Salesman” at the historic Ethel Barrymore Theater in New York City.   One of my absolutely favorite plays has been revived five times on Broadway, broadcast in several television productions and produced twice for the silver screen.   Starring some of the most highly regarded actors in the US, “Death of a Salesman” still electrifies 63 years after its debut in 1949. This Arthur Miller tragedy is as timely as the Occupy Wall Street movement. Sixty-three-year old Willy Loman (the magnetic Philip Seymour...

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“The Net”–Captured in Each Other’s Minds

I always let my blog followers know about my recent art and fiction publications.  Just two days ago my short story, “The Net”, was published in an online literary journal (www.orionheadless.com). The Buddhist metaphor of the net underpins not only this short story but also my writing, art and philosophy of life. Read the short story in tandem with this post for a fuller back-story to the Buddhist values implied in “The Net”. The Buddhist concept of perception was front and center in an art class on Color Fundamentals. I learned that human vision is limited in terms of...

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Netflix–Give Me What I Want to Watch!!

We are all familiar with recommendations that are “pushed” towards us on e-commerce sites–think Amazon.com, Netflix, Pandora, and even Facebook (who suggests “friends”).  We never seem to receive Netflix recommendations that we like without suffering through a lot of misfires.  For every movie we really love, there are at least 20 duds.  And I have rated over 2580 movies on Netflix. So they should know what I like by now. In a recent article in USA Today (April 9th) I learned that Netflix is trying desperately to improve its recommendation system, especially for...

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“The Hunger Games”–Our “Harry Potter”?

“The Hunger Games” is  part “Harry Potter” meets the “Truman Show” with a dash of “American Idol” and “Lord of the Flies.” The blockbuster trilogy by Suzanne Collins is set to be an equally sensational trilogy on the silver screen.  Like the Harry Potter series, Collins’ trilogy is targeted to a young adult audience. “The Hunger Games” is a dystopian tale about a country called Panem (from the Latin meaning–“bread and circuses”,  loosely referring to the government’s providing food and recreation...

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Paper, Scissors, Print–Jennifer D. Anderson Workshop

From complex paper cutting, origami, paper sculpture, to book making, this is an ever-expanding area of design that is gaining in popularity and evolving in new directions.  These intricate paper designs are exhibited in  museums  throughout the world and have become another exciting medium of expression for many designers who wish to combine the digital with more conventional methods of art. Jennifer D Anderson is an artist and educator who has an innovative style of combining printmaking with paper art techniques including a lacy cutting-style reminiscent of ancient Chinese paper cuts and...

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“A Separation”–Between Truth and Lies

I haven’t seen a film from Iran that I have loved as much as “A Separation” since I enjoyed “Children of Heaven”  (1997).  “A Separation”, winner of this year’s Academy Award for Best Foreign Film, is an Iranian “Rashomon”.  This masterpiece of cinema lays out multiple stories unfolding from six principal characters.  Stripped of any vestige of a moral absolute, in spite of the low dramatic temperature of the filming, viewers will hang on every scene and every word.  The vast middle ground of truth and falsehood leaves you spellbound. The storyline...

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