Puerto Rican Flag

When Esmeralda Santiago arrived in New York City in the early 1960s, she was completely terrified.

“I always think of the trip from Puerto Rico to the United States as probably the most traumatic thing that ever happened to me,” Santiago says. “I was a rural girl. We lived out in the country. I had never seen television. We had no electricity or running water.”

The alienation Santiago felt informed her writing. That turmoil, and her love for the history of Puerto Rico and the voices of characters she heard in her dreams, became Santiago’s novel Conquistadora.

Winslow Homer / The Metropolitan Museum of Art

The first two major American military conflicts produced some of the most important art of the 18th and 19th centuries. John Trumbull’s portraits of the signing of the Declaration of Independence and Alexander Hamilton were later immortalized on the back of U.S. currency, and Thomas Birch documented the major navel battles of the War of 1812.

But there’s a void in cultural output when it comes to the Civil War. Princeton University art historian John Wilmerding argues there are three reasons: a high point of American literature, the rise of photography, and the American landscape as the definition of national identity.

Entertaining The Hours of Your Week: Artistic Adventures

Oct 17, 2013
Ashley Campbell

Art comes in all shapes, sizes and forms and artistic event opportunities fill this weekend's OneSix8. If you are a natural artists, or just someone trying to learn a new skill, this weekend has an event for your creative side.

Joshua Landis provides an update on Syria after anti-government activists accused President Bashar al-Assad's regime of carrying out a toxic gas attack, and the panel discusses the renewed focus on U.S. gun culture after the murder of an Australian student in Oklahoma.

The departing director of the University of Oklahoma’s Fred Jones Jr. Museum of Art says 21st Century art will be shaped by music, video, and other mixed media to visually express ideas in new and exciting ways. Ghislain d’Humières takes over as the CEO of the Speed Art Museum in Louisville Sept. 3.

Konstantinos Koukopoulos / Flickr Creative Commons

The departing director of the University of Oklahoma’s Fred Jones Jr. Museum of Art says 21st Century art will be shaped by music, video, and other mixed media to visually express ideas in new and exciting ways.

Ghislain d’Humières spoke with World Views host and OU College of International Studies Dean Suzette Grillot shortly before he takes over as the CEO of the Speed Art Museum in Louisville.

“It’s an exciting trend. There is absolutely no border on the canvas. Anything could be the canvas,” d’Humières says. “One could argue that every period had a very cutting-edge, contemporary time, but I think the period we’re living in right now has been seeing a huge amount of new technology and new ways to express art.”

Suzette Grillot reports from Antalya, Turkey, where she speaks with Middle East expert Joshua Landis about Turkey’s booming economy and domestic anxieties.

Desmond Shawe-Taylor and Anna Somers Cocks join the program to discuss art appreciation in the 21st century. Shawe-Taylor is the Surveyor of The Queen’s Pictures, overseeing nearly 7,000 oil paintings and 3,000 miniatures from the British Royal Collection. Somers Cocks is the founding editor and CEO of The Art Newspaper.

A picture may be worth a thousand words, but as Ansel Adams once stated, “When images become inadequate, I shall be content with silence.” Fortunately, this week’s OneSix8 highlights two art events worth talking (and of course, writing) about. 

Sir Anthony van Dyck / Royal Collection © Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II

Technology is changing the way we experience art. High-resolution imaging not only allows museum curators to catalog and preserve their collections, it also changes the structure and function of the museums themselves.

“If you look at almost any great museum, it starts either with the collections of private individuals, or else with the heads of state,” says Anna Somers Cocks, founding editor of The Art Newspaper. “If you go around the Met in New York, it's like a kind of series of chapels devoted to various donors – galleries that have not just been financed, but have actually been filled with works of art collected.”

World Views: May 24, 2013

May 24, 2013

Suzette Grillot reports from Istanbul, where she speaks with University of Oklahoma economist Firat Demir about the international response to Monday's deadly tornado in Moore, Okla., and political problems facing Turkey.

University of Oregon political scientist Richard Kraus joins the program for a conversation about how art and culture become a testing ground between the United States and China. He's the author of author of Pianos and Politics in China: Middle-Class Ambitions and the Struggle over Western Music.

Harry Wad / Wikimedia Commons

Art, culture, and politics are closely linked in China, and until the mid-1960s Cultural Revolution government officials viewed Western classical music as an unwelcome outsider.

“For a while the piano was regarded as the ultimate expression of the bourgeoisie,” says Richard Kraus, a University of Oregon political scientist and the author of Pianos and Politics in China: Middle-Class Ambitions and the Struggle over Western Music. “[Then] Mao's wife decided she liked the piano, and there was then sort of the idea that you need to adapt Western technology and art to serve Chinese political purposes. So after about 1968 the piano was alright.”