Copyright laws in England ... green roofs in France ... destroyed pyramids in Peru ... Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera in Detroit ... the spiritual aspect of TED Talks .... grappling with zoning issues in Houston and Los Angeles. Here’s what we’ve got in the Roundup:
— Britain is passing some heinously retrograde copyright laws that would make copyright infringement a criminal, not a civil, infraction. Eileen Kinsella from Artnet has the scoop.
— Finding that lost pre-Columbian city in the Honduran jungle was the easy part. The hard part, writes Los Angeles Review of Books founder Tom Lutz, will be figuring out what to do next. What seems inevitable: The site will be looted.
— Peru’s Ministry of Culture has lodged a criminal complaint against a pair of companies that tore down a 20-foot pre-Inca pyramid outside of Lima. The Peruvian daily El Comercio has images of the damage (and it’s not pretty).
— A key painting made by Frida Kahlo in Detroit will not be part of an exhibition of the artist’s work at the Detroit Institute of Arts (DIA) because the collector (that’d be Madonna) did not make it available for loan. C’mon Madge, you’re from Detroit. Help out a hometown museum. (Artnet)
— More from the Detroit Institute of Arts exhibition: The show, which features work done by Kahlo and muralist Diego Rivera during their time in the city, offers some interesting parallels to what’s going on economically and politically in Detroit now. As Ben Davis writes, it was a Rivera mural commissioned by the museum that helped persuade the city to fund the Detroit Institute of Arts in the early 1930s. (All of this, by the way, represents a good time to resurrect my own Kahlo piece, on looking beyond her status as popular saint.)
— And because we’re on the subject of the Detroit Institute of Arts, the legal pad doodle made by a judge that outlined the city’s bankruptcy bargain will be entering the museum’s permanent collection. (Weisslink)
— This story about the rapper Drake teaming up with Sotheby’s to move merch is one of those earnestly written pieces that inspires wonder and snort-laughs: “Unlike some of his fellow rapper royalty, particularly Jay Z and Kanye West, Drake is not known as an art collector. But, according to a Drake spokeswoman, he 'draws a lot of inspiration from visual artists.'" Um, OK.
— Photography critic Jörg Colberg has an interesting essay on what he dubs “Capitalist Realism,” a style of art (mainly photography) that shows the triumph of money above all else.
— A photographic collection at Cal State Northridge tracks the history of black Los Angeles.
— This looks highly intriguing: an exhibition about African modernist architecture at the Vitra Design Museum Gallery in Germany.
— And since we're on the subject of architecture: France passes a mandatory green roof law.
— Houston, a city renowned for its lack of zoning, is on the verge of adopting a general plan.
— There are plans afoot to give 7th Street in downtown Los Angeles a more pedestrian-friendly, cycle-friendly makeover. Yes!
— Speaking of which, my colleague Christopher Hawthorne has an interesting piece about reconsidering the ways in which Los Angeles develops its public space. Basically, it's not a one-size-fits-all solution.
— Plus, L.A.'s Board of Cultural Heritage has voted unanimously to extend cultural monument status to Norms, the iconic Googie coffee shop on La Cienega. Now the case moves on to the City Council for approval.
— And because every Monday needs a bit of sci-fi: Schematics for a very speculative museum of science fiction. If George Lucas wanted to do something cool, this is what he would be building.
— Monday also needs fashion: A fascinating piece (with pictures!) about a recently uncovered stash of exquisite gowns by turn-of-the-20th-century design stars, the Callot sisters of Paris.
— A plug-in for the Google Chrome browser that shows where your congressperson’s money is coming from. I’ve been using this for a few weeks. It’s very handy. When some congressman is railing against the ravages of Obamacare, you can then see how much dough he’s pulling in from the healthcare industry.
— And last but not least, your moment of screaming painter. Because Monday.
Find me on the Twitters @cmonstah.