Category Archives: General – Art & Culture

Spotlight: The Chrysler Building – voted favorite New York City Building

Chrysler1 Chrysler2 Chrysler3

The Chrysler Building is an Art Deco style skyscraper in New York City, located on the east side of Manhattan in the Turtle Bay area.  At 1,046 feet (319 m), the structure was the world’s tallest building for 11 months before it was surpassed by the Empire State Building in 1931. It is still the tallest brick building in the world, albeit with an internal steel skeleton. In addition, The New York Times Building, which opened in 2007, is exactly level with the Chrysler Building in height. Both buildings were then pushed into 4th position, when the under construction One World Trade Center surpassed their height.

The Chrysler Building is a classic example of Art Deco architecture and considered by many contemporary architects to be one of the finest buildings in New York City. In 2007, it was ranked ninth on the List of America’s Favorite Architecture by the American Institute of Architects. It was the headquarters of the Chrysler Corporation from 1930 until the mid-1950s. Although the building was built and designed specifically for the car manufacturer, the corporation did not pay for the construction of it and never owned it, as Walter P. Chrysler decided to pay for it himself, so that his children could inherit it.

The Chrysler Building was designed by architect William Van Alen for a project of Walter P. Chrysler. When the ground breaking occurred on September 19, 1928, there was an intense competition in New York City to build the world’s tallest skyscraper. Despite a frantic pace (the building was built at an average rate of four floors per week), no workers died during the construction of this skyscraper.

CONSTRUCTION:

Construction commenced on September 19, 1928. In total, almost 400,000 rivets were used and approximately 3,826,000 bricks were manually laid, to create the non-load bearing walls of the skyscraper. Contractors, builders and engineers were joined by other building-services experts to coordinate construction.

Prior to its completion, the building stood about even with a rival project at 40 Wall Street, designed by H. Craig Severance. Severance increased the height of his project and then publicly claimed the title of the world’s tallest building (This distinction excluded structures that were not fully habitable, such as theEiffel Tower).  In response, Van Alen obtained permission for a 38-meter (125 ft) long spire and had it secretly constructed inside the frame of the building. The spire was delivered to the site in four different sections. On October 23, 1929, the bottom section of the spire was hoisted onto the top of the building’s dome and lowered into the 66th floor of the building. The other remaining sections of the spire were hoisted and riveted to the first one in sequential order in just 90 minutes.

Upon completion, May 20, 1930, the added height of the spire allowed the Chrysler Building to surpass 40 Wall Street as the tallest building in the world and the Eiffel Tower as the tallest structure. It was the first man-made structure to stand taller than 1,000 feet (305 m). Van Alen’s satisfaction in these accomplishments was likely muted by Walter Chrysler’s later refusal to pay the balance of his architectural fee.

DESIGN:

The Chrysler Building is considered a leading example of Art Deco architecture. The corners of the 61st floor are graced with eagles; on the 31st floor, the corner ornamentation are replicas of the 1929 Chrysler radiator caps. The building is constructed of masonry, with a steel frame, and metal cladding. In total, the building currently contains 3,862 windows on its facade and 4 banks of 8 elevators designed by the Otis Elevator Corporation. The building was declared a National Historic Landmark in 1976.

The Chrysler Building is also renowned and recognized for its terraced crown. Composed of seven radiating terraced arches, Van Alen’s design of the crown is a cruciform groin vault constructed into seven concentric members with transitioning setbacks, mounted up one behind another. The stainless-steel cladding is ribbed and riveted in a radiating sunburst pattern with many triangular vaulted windows, transitioning into smaller segments of the seven narrow setbacks of the facade of the terraced crown. The entire crown is clad with silvery “Enduro KA-2” metal, an austenitic stainless steel developed in Germany by Krupp and marketed under the trade name “Nirosta” (a German acronym for nichtrostender Stahl, meaning “non-rusting steel”).

When the building first opened, it contained a public viewing gallery on the 71st floor, which was closed to the public in 1945. This floor is now the highest occupied floor of the Chrysler Building, it was occupied by an office space management firm in 1986. The private Cloud Club occupied a three-floor high space from the 66th–68th floors, but closed in the late 1970s. Above the 71st floor, the stories of the building are designed mostly for exterior appearance, functioning mainly as landings for the stairway to the spire. These top stories are very narrow with low, sloped ceilings, and are useful only for holding radio-broadcasting and other mechanical and electrical equipment. Television station WCBS-TV (Channel 2) originally transmitted from the top of the Chrysler in the 1940s and early 1950s, before moving to the Empire State Building. For many years, WPAT-FM and WTFM (now WKTU) also used the Chrysler Building as a transmission site, but they also moved to the Empire State Building by the 1970s. There are currently no commercial broadcast stations located at the Chrysler Building.

PROMINENCE:

The Chrysler Building has been shown in several movies that take place in New York. In the summer of 2005, New York’s own Skyscraper Museum asked one hundred architects, builders, critics, engineers, historians, and scholars, among others, to choose their 10 favorites among 25 New York towers. The Chrysler Building came in first place as 90% of them placed the building in their top-10 favorite buildings.[

The Chrysler Building’s distinctive profile has inspired similar skyscrapers worldwide, including One Liberty Place in Philadelphia.

Thanks for following – the eventsfy team

*http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chrysler_Building

Spotlight: Ernest Hemingway’s ‘The Sun Also Rises’ (1926 AD) – a quick look at this American Masterpiece

Hemingway's 1926 Classic - The Sun Also Rises

Hemingway’s 1926 Classic – The Sun Also Rises

The Sun Also Rises – a 1926 novel written by American author Ernest Hemingway – is about a group of American and British expatriates who travel from Paris to the Festival of San Fermín in Pamplona to watch the running of the bulls and the bullfights. An early and enduring modernist novel, it received mixed reviews upon publication. Hemingway biographer Jeffrey Meyers writes that it is “recognized as Hemingway’s greatest work”, and Hemingway scholar Linda Wagner-Martin calls it his most important novel.

Background:

In the 1920s Hemingway lived in Paris, was foreign correspondent for the Toronto Star, and traveled to places such as Smyrna to report about the Greco–Turkish War. He wanted to use his journalism experience to write fiction, believing that a story could be based on real events when a writer distilled his own experiences in such a way that, according to biographer Jeffrey Meyers, “what he made up was truer than what he remembered”

The basis for the novel was Hemingway’s 1925 trip to Spain. The setting was unique and memorable, showing seedy café life in Paris, and the excitement of the Pamplona festival, with a middle section devoted to descriptions of a fishing trip in the Pyrenees. Hemingway’s sparse writing style, combined with his restrained use of description to convey characterizations and action, became known as demonstrating the Iceberg Theory.

The novel is a roman à clef; the characters are based on real people of Hemingway’s circle, and the action is based on real events. In the novel, Hemingway presents his notion that the “Lost Generation”, considered to have been decadent, dissolute and irretrievably damaged by World War I, was resilient and strong. Additionally, Hemingway investigates the themes of love, death, renewal in nature, and the nature of masculinity.

Writing Style:

The novel is well known for its style, which is variously described as modern, hard-boiled, or understated. As a novice writer and journalist in Paris, Hemingway turned to Ezra Pound—who had a reputation as “an unofficial minister of culture who acted as mid-wife for new literary talent”—to mark and blue-ink his short stories. From Pound, Hemingway learned to write in the modernist style: he used understatement, pared away sentimentalism, and presented images and scenes without explanations of meaning, most notably at the book’s conclusion, in which multiple future possibilities are left for Brett and Jake. The scholar Anders Hallengren writes that because Hemingway learned from Pound to “distrust adjectives,” he created a style “in accordance with the aesthetics and ethics of raising the emotional temperature towards the level of universal truth by shutting the door on sentiment, on the subjective.”

F. Scott Fitzgerald told Hemingway to “let the book’s action play itself out among its characters.” Hemingway scholar Linda Wagner-Martin writes that, in taking Fitzgerald’s advice, Hemingway produced a novel without a central narrator: “Hemingway’s book was a step ahead; it was the modernist novel.” When Fitzgerald advised Hemingway to trim at least 2500 words from the opening sequence, which was 30 pages long, Hemingway wired the publishers telling them to cut the opening 30 pages altogether. The result was a novel without a focused starting point, which was seen as a modern perspective and critically well received.

Plot Summary:

On the surface the novel is a love story between the protagonist Jake Barnes—a man whose war wound has made him impotent—and the promiscuous divorcée Lady Brett Ashley. Brett’s affair with Robert Cohn causes Jake to be upset and break off his friendship with Cohn; her seduction of the 19-year-old matador Romero causes Jake to lose his good reputation among the Spaniards in Pamplona.

Barnes is an expatriate American journalist living in Paris. He is in love with Lady Brett Ashley, a twice-divorced Englishwoman. Brett, with her bobbed hair and numerous love affairs, embodies the new sexual freedom of the 1920s.

Book One is set in the café society of young American expatriates in Paris. In the opening scenes, Jake plays tennis with his college friend Robert Cohn, picks up a prostitute (Georgette), and runs into Brett and Count Mippipopolous in a nightclub. Later, Brett tells Jake she loves him, but they both know that they have no chance at a stable relationship.

In Book Two, Jake is joined by Bill Gorton, recently arrived from New York, and Brett’s fiancé Mike Campbell, who arrives from Scotland. Jake and Bill travel south and meet Robert Cohn at Bayonne for a fishing trip in the hills northeast of Pamplona. Instead of fishing, Cohn stays in Pamplona to wait for the overdue Brett and Mike. Cohn had an affair with Brett a few weeks earlier and still feels possessive of her despite her engagement to Mike. After Jake and Bill enjoy five days of fishing the streams near Burguete, they rejoin the group in Pamplona.

All begin to drink heavily. Cohn is resented by the others, who taunt him with anti-semitic remarks. During the fiesta the characters drink, eat, watch the running of the bulls, attend bullfights, and bicker with each other. Jake introduces Brett to the 19-year-old matador Romero at the Hotel Montoya; she is smitten with him and seduces him. The jealous tension among the men builds—Jake, Campbell, Cohn, and Romero each want Brett. Cohn, who had been a champion boxer in college, has fistfights with Jake, Mike, and Romero, whom he beats up. Despite his injuries, Romero continues to perform brilliantly in the bullring.

Book Three shows the characters in the aftermath of the fiesta. Sober again, they leave Pamplona; Bill returns to Paris, Mike stays in Bayonne, and Jake goes toSan Sebastián in northeastern Spain. As Jake is about to return to Paris, he receives a telegram from Brett asking for help; she had gone to Madrid with Romero. He finds her there in a cheap hotel, without money, and without Romero. She announces she has decided to go back to Mike. The novel ends with Jake and Brett in a taxi speaking of the things that might have been.

Reception:

Hemingway’s first novel was arguably his best and most important and came to be seen as an iconic modernist novel. In the book, his characters epitomized the post-war expatriate generation for future generations. He had received good reviews for his volume of short stories, In Our Time, of which Edmund Wilson wrote, “Hemingway’s prose was of the first distinction.” Wilson’s comments were enough to bring attention to the young writer.

Good reviews came in from many major publications. Conrad Aiken wrote in the New York Herald Tribune, “If there is a better dialogue to be written today I do not know where to find it”; and Bruce Barton wrote in The Atlantic that Hemingway “writes as if he had never read anybody’s writing, as if he had fashioned the art of writing himself,” and that the characters “are amazingly real and alive.” Many reviewers, among them H.L. Mencken, praised Hemingway’s style, use of understatement, and tight writing.

Other critics, however, disliked the novel. The Nation‘s critic believed Hemingway’s hard-boiled style was better suited to the short stories published in In Our Time than his novel. Writing in the New Masses, Hemingway’s friend John Dos Passos asked: “What’s the matter with American writing these days? …. The few unsad young men of this lost generation will have to look for another way of finding themselves than the one indicated here.” Privately he wrote Hemingway an apology for the review.

Hemingway’s family hated it. His mother, Grace Hemingway, distressed that she could not face the criticism at her local book study class—where it was said that her son was “prostituting a great ability …. to the lowest uses”—expressed her displeasure in a letter to him:

Reynolds believes The Sun Also Rises could only have been written in 1925: it perfectly captured the period between World War I and the Great Depression, and immortalized a group of characters. In the years since its publication, the novel has been criticized for its anti-Semitism, as expressed in the characterization of Robert Cohn. Reynolds explains that although the publishers complained to Hemingway about his description of bulls, they allowed his use of Jewish epithets, which showed the degree to which anti-Semitism was accepted in the US after World War I. Cohn represented the Jewish establishment and contemporary readers would have understood this from his description. Critics of the 1970s and 1980s considered Hemingway to be misogynistic and homophobic; by the 1990s his work, including The Sun Also Rises, began to receive critical reconsideration by female scholars.

Legacy and Adaption:

Hemingway’s work continued to be popular in the latter half of the century and after his suicide in 1961. During the 1970s, The Sun Also Rises appealed to what Beegel calls the lost generation of the Vietnam era. Aldridge writes that The Sun Also Rises has kept its appeal because the novel is about being young. The characters live in the most beautiful city in the world, spend their days traveling, fishing, drinking, making love, and generally reveling in their youth. He believes the expatriate writers of the 1920s appeal for this reason, but that Hemingway was the most successful in capturing the time and the place in The Sun Also Rises.

The novel made Hemingway famous, inspired young women across America to wear short hair and sweater sets like the heroine’s—and to act like her too—and changed writing style in ways that could be seen in any American magazine published in the next twenty years. In many ways, the novel’s stripped-down prose became a model for 20th-century American writing. Nagel writes that “The Sun Also Rises was a dramatic literary event and its effects have not diminished over the years.”

The success of The Sun Also Rises guaranteed interest from Broadway and Hollywood. In 1956 the novel was adapted to a film of the same name. It was again adapted into a film in 1984. It was adapted into a one-act opera in 2000.

Thanks for following – the eventsfy team

*http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Sun_Also_Rises

2013 NW Folklife Festival – if at first you don’t succeed, try, try, try again…

WATCH VIDEO HERE>>>  http://youtu.be/vBHnkYGwuHw

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Eventsfy’s 1st Festival: Folklife 2013 – Seattle, WA

Since this is our first year participating in music festivals to spread the word of eventsfy, we missed the deadlines for applying to the many festivals in the Northwest—deadlines typically were six months or more prior to the festival (seems quite excessive)…

Determined to participate at this year’s Folklife festival in Seattle with or without a reserved-and-designated booth for our company—eventsfy—we drove the eventsfy bus (aka ‘Shrek’) to the Folklife festival on opening day Friday, May 24th, eventually finding a parking space around the perimeter of the festival grounds next to an “information booth.”  After parking ‘Shrek,’ I confidently (without any reason) approached the information booth to ask for a parking pass.  The information-booth attendant lady—perplexed and quizzically looking at me—asked if we paid for a parking pass.  I politely stated that we didn’t but we NEED one.  She quickly informed me that all parking has been sold out.  Undeterred, I asked her to contact her supervisor and she radioed her (the supervisor).

A few minutes later, the supervisor lady came to speak with me and to inform me that there wasn’t anymore room at the inn…(biblical reference)…there wasn’t anymore room at the festival.  However, this supervisor lady was in communication with another person over her radio stating there wasn’t any room at the festival…so, naturally (or maybe unnaturally), I asked the supervisor lady, who is ACTUALLY saying NO to me and can I speak with them personally.  The supervisor lady reluctantly asked over the radio if her supervisor would like to come speak with me…after a relatively long pause, the voice over the radio said he would come.

Ten minutes went by and still no 2nd level supervisor arrived.  I asked the 1st supervisor if I was wasting my time—thinking this 2nd level supervisor was brushing us off.  Just when I felt defeated and about to leave, three gentlemen—led by Chandler—approached me by ‘Shrek.’  I explained to Chandler and Co. the eventsfy story and they all seemed intrigue and eager to help us find a parking spot not only around the festival perimeter but also inside the festival to participate as a sponsor.  Chandler told me he would have the Development Director contact me about potentially setting us up with a location.

Later on Friday, May 24th the Development Director, Phil O’Sullivan contacted me and he couldn’t have been more helpful with finding us a location to promote eventsfy.  On Saturday, Phil and the Folklife team placed ‘Shrek’ and our team right smack in front of Key Arena.  We had a wonderful experience talking with so many festival goers about eventsy—piquing much interest.  Realizing that foot traffic was a little light in front of Key Arena, we asked if we could move to a more trafficked area…Again, Phil and the team were so professional and efficient with providing us another location within the festival grounds that had much more foot traffic.  Thank you guys so very much for making our experience at the 2013 NW Folklife so wonderful—we felt a great camaraderie and so welcomed with the whole team!

On Sunday and Monday we worked hard spreading the word to the masses—persevering through the many “not interested” remarks… One of the highlights of our experience happened when my previous MBA professor, Bill Weis, along with his singing quartet group—KlapaDooWapella—stopped by the eventsfy location to perform several songs to the festival goers.  All-in-all, we couldn’t have asked for a better first-time festival experience.

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eventsfy.com

Spotlight: Venus de milo (140 BC) simply beautiful…

Venus de Milo

Created around 140 B.C., the Venus de Milo statue’s great fame came from not only its beauty but also the major propaganda effort by the French Authorities to enhance this treasure.  It currently is on permanent display at the Louvre Museum in Paris.

This statue is from ancient Greek and one of the most famous works of ancient Greek sculpture.  It is a marble sculpture, slightly larger than life size at 203 cm (6 ft 8 in) high. The arms and original plinth were lost following its discovery. From an inscription that was on its plinth, it is thought to be the work of Alexandros of Antioch.

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eventsfy.com

*http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Venus_de_milo

Closer Look – how art shaped us: Painting

Paintings (last supper painting)

According to Nigel Spivey, “we humans are alone in developing the capacity for symbolic imagery (art).”  Art, therefore, separates humans from animals, because animals don’t create observations or perspectives of life.   To build upon BBC’s How Art Made the World, a five-part documentary series looking at the influence of art on today’s life, we will explore further the many disciplines of art.  Let’s first discuss how painting has shaped and influenced our lives.

Painting is the practice of applying paint, pigment, color, or other medium to a surface.  Paintings are  creative expressions or observations of moral dilemmas, religion, politics, emotions, humor, life experiences, awareness, and beauty.  The history of painting dates back to pre-historic humans from artifacts found and spans all cultures—therefore, it’s universal to us humans.

The oldest known paintings are cave paintings from Grotte Chauvet in France ca. 32,000 B.C. depicting images of large mammals from the area—horses, rhinoceros, buffalo, and mammoths that were often hunted.  Interesting, these same types of cave paintings have been found all over the world—India, Spain, China, Australia, etc.  These were probably observations of daily life as hunter and gatherers with appreciation of these great creatures.

From the conception of painting over 30,000 years ago until the early 20th century, it’s doubtful any other form of communication had a greater impact on a society’s thinking and ideas than painting.  Before the 20th century, much of the world was illiterate.  Paintings, however, could be interpreted regardless of one’s illiteracy.  People of power quickly understood this and, therefore, many used and exploited paintings for their benefit—propagating power, fear, glory, duty, justice, protection or love to the public.  As the art of painting evolved over time, more-and-more complex messages could be conveyed to the public through paintings.

Images (paintings) dominate our lives. They tell us how to behave, even how to feel. They mold and define us. But why do these images, the pictures, symbols and the art we see around us every day, have such a powerful hold on us? The answer lies not here in our time but thousands of years ago. Because when our ancient ancestors first created the images that made sense of their world, they produced a visual legacy which has helped to shape our own.

–Nigel Spivey

Perhaps no other organization used paintings more effectively than the Catholic Church.  Even with a mostly illiterate population over thousands of years, the Catholic Church was able to communicate what the bible stated with countless paintings of stories from the bible, culminating with the ceiling paintings of the Sistine Chapel in Vatican City by Michelangelo—telling the story of the creation of Adam, the exodus from Egypt, and the crucifixion of Jesus Christ.  The Catholic Church’s expertise and brilliance with its art paintings surely has contributed to the success of Christianity…so we can say, paintings have surely greatly influenced our lives and the world we live in.

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Eventsfy Team / eventsfy.com / facebook.com/eventsfy / twitter.com/eventsfy

Improving our users’ experience!

For those who haven’t ever been involved with creating a premium website, let us just say that much is involved.  Creating a website from scratch—you first must understand what value you want to provide the user, and then how best to provide this value.  First is the strategy, which for us has taken many years to evolve; and second is the execution, which is laying down the correct technological foundation and adding the appropriate features so that the website achieves—as closely as possible—the intended value to all the users.  The intricacies involved are infinite.

Many of the changes that we have been making lately on our website have been enhancing our website to run more smoothly so that errors and any problems navigating our website decrease—we want the best possible experience for our users to easily find Live Arts Events that are relevant for them.

As stated before, please stay tuned for increased performance, intuitiveness, and appearance.  Also, this year we will be rolling out our first mobile app!