CULTURE MONSTER

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Roundup: Possible discord at Jeff Koons' studio, Luis Barragán becomes a diamond, Dede Wilsey leaves Bay Area museums

A prominent board member departs the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco. Allegations of labor tumult in the studio of Jeff Koons. An artist has transformed architect Luis Barragán into a precious stone — literally. Plus: Museum expansionism in the age of uncertainty, the Hammer Museum’s digital M&Ms and more troubles for London’s Garden Bridge.

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Bob Law drawings find poignancy in simplicity
At 'Ken Price: Drawings,' life's little details in broad strokes
Readers react: Do we need a Glendale Freeway that improves traffic or the environment?

Christopher Hawthorne’s idea of replacing the Glendale Freeway stub [“A Colorful Revamp of 2 Fwy. Spur,” July 11] may seem like fantasy to some, but improving urban spaces by taking down obsolete freeways has worked in many places. Here in the western San Gabriel Valley is an example even closer to reality: replacing the 710 stub north of the 10 with a great street.

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Puccini extreme: Dudamel's gloriously pessimistic 'Tosca' an indictment on the appeal of fascism

“Tosca” is Puccini extreme, the composer’s most political opera.

At its center is his most fiery heroine, Tosca, the diva who attempts to live for art under tyranny in Rome during Napoleonic times.  Cavaradossi, the painter and revolutionary, is his most heroic tenor role. The lecherous tyrant Scarpia exhibits zero redeeming qualities.

But “Tosca” needs to be about something more.

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Essential Arts & Culture: Convention architecture, art of the border, 'Cabaret' turns 50

It’s been a hot and steamy week — politically, artistically and climatologically. Which means there has been no shortage of hot culture writing to go with it. I’m Carolina A. Miranda, staff writer for the Los Angeles Times, and this is your guide to the week’s top culture stories:

The architecture of the G.O.P.

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