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Sotheby’s launches a new prize for cutting-edge curators

SMALL museums that struggle to find the funding their curators need to research and develop innovative, ideas-based exhibitions are to get a boost from Sotheby’s, a commercial auction house, which on September 28th announced the inaugural winners of its $250,000 annual Sotheby’s Prize. The 2018 Sotheby’s Prize will be shared …

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The American embassy building in London is a modernist classic

THE State Department is in the process of moving the American embassy in London from glamorous Mayfair to a 450-acre industrial site on the south bank of the River Thames. The new owners of the old Grosvenor Square plot are Qatari Diar, the development wing of the Qatari government, who …

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The transformation of Britain’s “City of Culture”

SELDOM has Hull’s Ferens gallery been the scene of such frenetic activity. It is playing host to the Turner Prize, Britain’s most prestigious—and often controversial—visual arts award; the four short-listed artists’ works have to be ready for public display by September 26th. Since its beginnings at the Tate Britain in …

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A colourful way of bringing attention to South Side Chicago

EARLIER this year Amanda Williams was asked to be a creative consultant on the Obama Presidential Library. This was an surprising honour for an artist who had earned a public profile in her hometown of Chicago only two years before, thanks to a single project as declamatory as it was …

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The liberal order of the past 70 years is under threat

The Internationalists: How a Radical Plan to Outlaw War Remade the World. By Oona Hathaway and Scott Shapiro. Simon & Schuster; 608 pages; $30. Allen Lane; £30. THE rules-based international order that emerged from the wreckage of the second world war was a huge improvement on any preceding era. It …

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A 400-year story of progress

Americana: A 400-Year History of American Capitalism. By Bhu Srinivasan. Penguin Press; 576 pages; $30. BHU SRINIVASAN’S new book, “Americana”, is a delightful tour through the businesses and industries that turned America into the biggest economy in the world. Not only is the book written in a light and informative …

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Pacific Standard Time LA/LA: 1,100 artists from 45 countries

Higgledy-piggledy home IT IS night and you are barefoot, stumbling across cold desert sand. A ragbag of humans almost crashes into you. They are so close you can see that the child who has lost a shoe is curling her little toes inward to avoid the thorns. A man drags …

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The power of the comma

A LAW in Maine excluded from overtime pay “the canning, processing, preserving, freezing, drying, marketing, storing, packing for shipment or distribution of” certain products. But is the end of that list—“packing for shipment or distribution”—one activity? Or are they distinct things, (1) packing for shipment and (2) distribution? The company …

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Tadeusz Kosciuszko, Poland’s all-American hero

THIS summer, when the battle over honouring Confederate leaders was at its most fierce, the Polish embassy in Washington had an arresting solution. Echoing a local conservative radio host, it suggested renaming a Virginian highway—celebrating Jefferson Davis, president of the Confederacy—after Tadeusz Kosciuszko, a Polish general and statesman. He remains …

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Why fans are riveted by Giancarlo Stanton’s race for seventh place

THE story of the 2017 Major League Baseball (MLB) season has been the home run. Just three years after a lull in run-scoring sometimes called the “little deadball era”, when offence hit its lowest mark since 1981, equilibrium has been restored almost exclusively on the back of the long ball. …

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