It would be too much to expect that Paris Hilton, the hotel heiress and recently (re)incarcerated drunk driver, would inspire a great work of art. And Daniel Edwards’s Paris Hilton Autopsy, recently on display at Capla Kesting Fine Art, is certainly not great. But even a bad work of art can have something interesting to say. A life-size bronze, the Autopsy depicts Hilton in the wake of a fatal car crash, her body exposed for forensic examination. While the subject matter is grisly, the execution is lighthearted: Hilton is shown in beatific slumber while her pet chihuahua, wearing a party hat, capers friskily around her head. Moreover, the position of Hilton’s legs, spread wide for the purposes of medical examination, suggests an entirely different kind of readiness.
Posts For: June 13, 2007
I couldn’t attend—because I wasn’t invited—but this past Monday the New York Times held another session in its “Diversity Awareness Series,” which is a forum for its “employees and leaders to learn about the many facets of”—you guessed it—”diversity.”
This particular session featured Christine Quinn, the speaker of the New York City Council, “the first woman to hold this post,” reads the invitation, “and the first lesbian in conversation with Sewell Chan, the bureau chief of the Metro desk’s City Room.”
Since the awarding of the Olympics to China in July 2001, no major world city has changed more than Beijing, with its massive new construction of roads, bridges, terminals, hotels, and other facilities promised for the Games. According to official estimates, the Chinese government will spend $37 billion to get ready for next August. That is almost four times what Athens disbursed for its summer Olympics, which was by far the most expensive ever staged. Yet the 2008 Games may end up costing China over $100 billion, after taking into account the relentless building and “beautification” campaigns currently demolishing “illegal urban villages.”
Last week, the Geneva-based Centre on Housing Rights and Evictions issued a report claiming that 1.25 million Chinese citizens have been displaced from their homes in advance of the 2008 Olympics. Another quarter million or so will be forcibly moved between now and the opening ceremony. All told, an estimated 512,100 households and 1,483,300 people in Beijing will be affected. Some have received no notice of eviction and others no compensation.
China has denied the accusations. “The report is sheer groundless [sic],” said Jiang Yu, a foreign ministry spokeswoman. According to her, every relocated person received compensation and no one was forced to leave Beijing. The government maintains that only 6,037 households have been resettled since 2002.