art Archive



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img April 10, 20168:01 pmimg 0 Comments

Low in all its glory

Low in all its glory

Nobody puts baby in a corner, sure, but what about putting a campus in a box? Myles Zhang, CC ’19, has done just that with one of his latest projects, which features a miniature Columbia inside a vintage cigar box. Myles has a blog and a YouTube page where he displays his photography, ink drawings, watercolors, and even sculptures. Now that his first year at Columbia is coming to an end, Daily Editor Lila Etter sat down with Myles to discuss his work, his inspirations, and what makes Columbia, Columbia.

Bwog: So, Myles, tell us a little more about this project.

MZ: The project was to create a small model of Columbia out of the small, little cigar box I found around the house. I had some time during summer break, so I decided to kind of conceptualize this idea and try to imagine how much of Columbia’s campus I could physically fold into the box, given the model. So I thought about it for two or three nights, trying to conceptualize where the structures should be located, where the courtyards should be located, such that the top of the box would fold down to the bottom half, and all the structures would fit snuggly together. All in all it wasn’t too difficult a project, because most of the conceptualizing was done beforehand, and the actual execution only took four or five days.

Bwog: What’s equally incredible are your ink drawings, sketches, and watercolors of campus. Which came first?

MZ: Actually, well, some of the sketches and watercolors came beforehand, then came the miniature model immediately before school started. And then over winter break I did that large watercolor of Columbia, the one with all those details.

But why a 3D model?



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img April 01, 201612:51 pmimg 0 Comments

Looks cool, right

Tickets for the 122nd Annual Varsity Show go on sale today! Get yours here.

The show is on April 29th and 30th at 8 PM. There will also be a matinee on May 1st at 2 PM along with a night show at 8 PM. Whether or not you went to the West End Preview in February (and especially if you didn’t), you’ll want to be there.

Read up on the show’s history before you go!

Image via Facebook



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img March 25, 20168:33 pmimg 0 Comments

Second Lecture in the Focus Aleppo Series

Second Lecture in the Focus Aleppo Series

“City And Landscape in the Ottoman Aleppo: Experiencing Architecture, Narrating Space,” was the next lecture in the Department of Art History and Archaeology’s “‘Islamic Art:’ Disrupting Unity and Discerning Ruptures series,” presented by Heghnar Watenpaugh, professor of Art History at the University of California, Davis. We sent staff writer Romane Thomas to check it out last night.

“The art of Islam is not unified as many of us were taught,” Watenpaugh began.

Watenpaugh is an expert on architectural history in Islamic societies. Her book, The Image of an Ottoman City: Imperial Architecture and Urban Experience in Aleppo in the Sixteenth and Seventeenth Centuries received the Spiro Kostof Book Award from the Society of Architectural Historians in 2006. A polyglot, Watenpaugh attended Rice University and MIT before moving to the University of California. She agreed to visit the East Coast (#Beast Coast) to tell us about her research in Aleppo, Syria.

Avinoam Shalem, Professor of Islamic Art at Columbia and creator of the Focus Aleppo series, introduced Watenpaugh. He pointed out that “The Art of Islam is not unified as many of us were taught” and explained that, accordingly, Watenpaugh’s lecture would address the architectural innovations resulting from the Ottoman rule in Aleppo. Before starting her speech, she mentioned that the Syrian War has had a devastating effect on Aleppo architecture. According to her, “the destruction of Aleppo’s patrimony stands for the destruction of her varied social fabric.” Referencing the wreckage of the Minaret of the Great Mosque, Watenpaugh pointed out that as “products of the historical moment that we are in,” we need to reflect on the effect of our actions on centuries of history. The photographs that she was able to show the audience were taken by aerial view or by guerrilla fighters in the area.

She gave a short architectural history of Aleppo. Under Ottoman rule, Aleppo was a thriving hub of commercial exchange. Silk and spices from the East were exchanged within Aleppo’s walls in one of the world’s largest covered Bazaars (now destroyed). The Ottoman Empire had a huge impact on the architecture of the city, of which remains only a few Ottoman-style mosques. The nostalgia in Watenpaugh’s voice was palpable and gave her lecture a story-like character as she described how a foreign traveler would experience coming upon the sight of the great city.

More about the lecture next.



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img March 04, 20162:01 pmimg 0 Comments

Coming soon to Broadway... we hope!

How well do you understand disabilities, seen or unseen? Bwog sent staffer Jessa Nootbaar to V-Day’s performance of student narratives about disability, and her response is loud and clear: whether you are familiar or unfamiliar with disabilities (especially the later, perhaps), you should attend V-Day’s Respectability tonight or tomorrow.

The moment the 17-person cast stood together and looked out onto the audience, seeming to make eye contact with every person in the filled theater, I got chills. And for the next two hours, I would continue to be absolutely captivated as these 17 remarkably talented individuals presented the narratives of Columbia students with disabilities.

The costuming and scenery were minimal, and I found the show to be more like a collection of spoken word performances than a play. Emcees Krish Bhatt and Christine Aucoin (both BC ’18), guided the audience from one story to the next, providing background information and trigger/content warnings along the way. While this stylistic choice made the show slightly choppy, Bhatt and Aucoin filled a necessary role, and at times provided some much needed comic relief.

What were the pieces like?



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img February 11, 20169:08 amimg 0 Comments

One of the Degas paintings Copeland emulates

One of the Degas paintings Copeland emulates

New York-based ballerina Misty Copeland (Principal with American Ballet Theatre), graces the March pages of Harper’s Bazaar with recreations of famous Degas dancer works of art. (Harper’s Bazaar)

A few blocks south, old phone booths were replaced with newer, soon-to-be WiFi-equipped phone booths that still look old. Seems fake but ok. (NY Times)

If you pay attention in astronomy class, or keep up-to-date with Facebook news, you may be aware that at a press conference tomorrow, scientists may announce the observation of gravitational waves–i.e. ripples in space-time. A Wrinkle in Time irl? (Reuter’s)

#ImNotKiddingMaddi became a meme after “Maddi” screenshotted an aggressive email she received from the Hillary Clinton campaign. We still love you though, Hill. (Epoch Times)

Hot ballerina via Edgar Degas [Public Doman], Wikimedia Commons



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img September 13, 20154:45 pmimg 2 Comments

Moodiness is on the menu.

Moodiness is on the menu.

You’ve seen the tattered blue banner, but have you ever ventured to Schermerhorn’s own Wallach Art Gallery? Fresh off the success of last year’s Romare Bearden exhibition, the gallery now plays host to an impressive selection of etchings and engravings by Dutch master Rembrandt van Rinj. Amsterdam Bureau Chief Henry Litwhiler investigates.

Few media lend themselves to analysis of the meandering path an artist takes to arrive at a mystical “finished product.” Where can we find the abortive beard of a clean-shaven sculpture? What becomes of an empty field after its painter decides to dot it with sheep? Even the sketches that give birth to works are more blueprint than unfinished building; they can reveal intention, but the genealogical leap between plan and product can be fuzzy.

Etching and engraving, however, allow an artist to create unlimited prints from a single plate, and even to create prints at various times during the plate’s life. This process can provide a window into the evolution of a single plate and, in turn, of an artist’s vision.

In the case of an artist as famous and well-regarded as Rembrandt van Rijn, such series of progressive prints from the same copperplate have a tendency to be scattered to far-flung museums and private collections. Curators and collectors alike rightly regard individual prints as worthwhile even without their siblings. But there is no denying the aesthetic power of seeing a work alongside what might be called its once and future selves.

Columbia Art History PhD Candidate Robert Fucci evidently agrees. As curator of Rembrandt’s Changing Impressions at The Wallach Art Gallery, Fucci has brought together 52 prints from 18 series in a grand chronology spanning 26 years of Rembrandt’s career. To do so, he coordinated with a plethora of cultural organizations, non-profits, and galleries from Dartmouth to Harvard to the Library of Congress.

And the result?



img January 30, 20153:30 pmimg 0 Comments


Botanical Ballet photographed by Hans-Jurgen Burkart

The Harriman Institute of Columbia hosted the exhibition opening of The Dreamer from the Northern Lights by Andrey Bartenev on Thursday evening. The exhibition featured photographs depicting Bartenev’s performance artwork and was curated by Natasha Sharymova and Alexander Khromov. Correspondent and art aficionado Caroline Montgomery was there, taking it all in, and bringing the best back to you.   

Andrey Bartenev (named the Freak of the Year in 2007, by Russian GQ) is a performance artist and a sculptor, not a fashion designer although he is often mistaken as one. In 1969, he was born in Norilsk, Russia and is now working and living in Moscow. In an interview with Huf Magazine, Andrey Bartenev describes his work as an exploration of people and space and the beauty and power of nature to create positive emotion. His work has been featured at many world renowned venues, such as Moscow Museum of Modern Art, Art Basel-Miami Beach International Art Fair, the Vita Design Museum in Boisbuchet, France, the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam, among a great deal of others.

In stark contrast with the media that is being reported from Russia at the moment, Bartenev’s work is incredibly warm and colorful. Upon entering the studio space at the Harriman Institute, a woman in one of  Bartenev’s bright orange “Bubbles of Hope” suits greats you. “Bubbles of Hope,” which was a performance art piece featuring people in colorful bubbles suits romping through urban settings, premiered at the Dumbo Art Festival in 2013. Bartenev stands next to the photographs of his art work (in a morphsuit with cats on it and a hat that appears to the the head of a Chinese dragon) grinning. Within the first few moments of being in the room, it is exceedingly clear Bartenev fully believes in what his art stands for, something he describes as, “a collective meditative act, which can strengthen our own abilities to dream, to hope and to fulfill our own personal goals” (Unicycleproductions). Circulating the tightly packed room, the breath of Bartenev’s shines. As futurism collage is his favorite genre of art to employ, he, like many other artists, has surely broken the boundaries that Umberto Boccioni set in 1909 as one of the initial key player of the movement. The appropriately oversaturated photographs show Bartenev’s interpretation of synesthesia and kinesthesia: the experience of simultaneity, temporality, and bodily movement. Some of the works included in the exhibition are, “Black Caviar Road” and “Eight-legged Dog for High-Speed Transportation.”

The Dreamer from the Northern Lights will be on exhibition until March 13th.  If you find yourself needing a cultural pick-me-up, head over to the 12th floor at 420 118th street to experience Russian futurism at its finest.

The Harriman Institute of Columbia University will also be hosting a talk with Andrey Bartenev on Monday February 2, at 6:30 pm in the Marshall D. Shulman Seminar Room . The talk is titled, “Performance Art–The Testing Ground for Emotional Revitalization.”

Botanical Garden and opening night images via Facebook 

Bubbles of Hope via Unicycle production 



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img May 07, 20145:04 pmimg 4 Comments

photo 1

This morning, a small crowd came out to observe the unveiling of the Diana Center’s new mural, the brainchild of SGA arts and culture representative Adrienne Nel, BC ’16, in order to bring more public art to campus. Attendees included Debora Spar (although Bwog cannot confirm any of her dance/zumba moves) and the Columbia Clefhangers, who performed.

Check out the mural for yourself, it’s on the third floor.



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img April 21, 201411:24 amimg 0 Comments

Illustration by Angel Jiang, CC '15

Illustration by Angel Jiang, CC ’15

Each issue of The Blue and White has three short pieces that depict some interesting tidbit of campus or New York life, in 300 words or less. This issue, Senior Editor Luca Marzorati, CC ’15, brings you the story of pirate radio in the city, contributor Nia Brown, CC ’17, presents the history of the Croton Reservoir Aqueduct, and contributor Alex Warrick, BC ’17, unwraps the mystery of the controversial “STUPID PEOPLE SHOULN’T BREED” bench on Barnard’s quad. The issue is on campus now, pick up a copy!

Who owns the air? This philosophical question is painfully real for some, including DJ Fresh Kid (AKA Sean Bruce, age 40) who was arrested last July in Brooklyn for operating a pirate radio station. The Fresh Kid was a regular DJ on the Fire Station (104.7 FM), which broadcasted Caribbean music in the outer regions of Brooklyn without a license. Because of a change in New York state law that designated unlicensing broadcasting as a class A misdemeanor, both the Fresh Kid and Solomon Malka, a Fire Station employee, could face jail time.

Fire Station’s collapse marked a shift in the decades-long battle between pirate radio and its legal competitors. Supporters of “big radio” and the Federal Communications Commission claim that unlicensed stations interfere with broadcasts, while pirate radio backers counter that they provide an essential service in underserved communities: only 51 percent of New Yorkers speak English at home, yet 86 percent of FM stations are in English. And besides, they argue, the air should be free. But the threat of jail time has forced many pirate radio operators into hiding, or online streaming.

A Freedom of Information Act request revealed that WKCR, Columbia’s radio station at 89.9 FM, is not spared from the interference of pirate operators. In the northern reaches of Manhattan and pockets of Brooklyn, some hopeful WKCR listeners instead hear “Quisqueya FM”—a station aimed at Dominican listeners broadcasting from the Bronx at 89.7 FM—or “Love Gospel Radio”—a Caribbean gospel station run by Grace Assembly Deliverance Temple on Boston Road. Attempts to contact these operators were unsuccessful; perhaps many fear becoming the next DJ Fresh Kid.

Nonetheless, pirate radio remains a presence on the New York soundscape. Turn the dial just past the static, and a world of eclectic music awaits. Walking around New York with a portable radio reveals the depth of unlicensed transmissions: the drone of Hebrew prayers in outer Brooklyn; the mellifluent tone of a French Creole talk show in upper Manhattan; the sticky urgency of patois on the streets of the Bronx. In a city of a hundred tongues, the pirate beat goes on.

– Luca Marzorati

What about that Croton Reservoir Aquaduct?



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img April 06, 20148:46 pmimg 5 Comments

Illustration by Zane Bhansali, CC '17

Illustration by Zane Bhansali, CC ’17

Ever honoring our amorous affair with our mother magazine, The Blue and White, we hereby present this month’s ATSL, in which Senior Editor Hallie Nell Swanson, CC ’16, and staff writer Virginia Fu, CC ’17, take on the issue of whether or not Lerner is, in fact, art. Look for the magazine to be on campus sometime soon.

Affirmative by Hallie Nell Swanson

Of course Lerner is art: I took Art Hum. And some more Art History after that. It’s art because it’s useless. If it weren’t art, it would have to be design like how a really arty Swedish toaster is “design”—in the sense of having a function or a purpose. I spend a lot of time here—sketching, contemplating existence. I’ve come to know it. I’m an observer here. I’ve observed that beyond certain stylistic and formal elements, there’s very little of the toaster at play. This building is truly, I want to say, ideologically useless. Form over function. Art for art’s sake.

Freshman year I came here to get my mail for the first time. As I was sent around the building’s irrelevant periphery, I gazed, perplexed, at its useless empty core. What was it all for? I ascended the ramps, disorientated by the random, purposeless changes in gradient. Across the room, I thought I glimpsed stairs, rising from the void like a mirage I could never reach. Finally, I found my mailbox. Empty.

It was an artistic moment, a conceptual moment. All my hopes of finding a purpose to my journey were subverted, the exchange rendered devoid of utility. I gazed at the other mailboxes—all identical, all presumably empty. In that moment, I saw mail services for the farce it truly is. The mailboxes appeared stacked before me as visions of student existence—lined up in institutionalized order, identified by a meaningless number. We only have them for four years. And then it hit me. Aren’t we all just trying to fit into the same identical box? And aren’t we all empty inside?

Shit, I thought. This is some arty shit.



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img March 31, 20143:31 pmimg 0 Comments

We look to the core of understanding to find the answers to life and something about dialectic

We look to the core of understanding to find the answers to life and shit

Have you been feeling reflective about the Core? Feel like some work of humanities has inspired you so deeply that you’re willing to submit a piece of work for the chance at $200? Were you really busy recently but aren’t anymore? Then you should be partying like it’s 1999 because the deadline for Core Reflections just got pushed back. The deadline is now April 8. Rejoice, people!

Find out more about the Core Scholars program.

Core issues via Shutterstock



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img October 04, 201312:13 amimg 6 Comments

Observant art-watcher Alexandra Martinez, CC’14, found what looks suspiciously like a Banksy piece right at our very own Ding Dong Lounge.  Check out the picture, join us in excited speculation, and let us know if this is new or not:

or are we just getting banksy-trigger-happy here?

Could it be…?



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img April 06, 20133:15 pmimg 4 Comments

Clio Maudlin, connoisseur of fine arts and supporter of using 4 in place of “for,” has an announcement to make about a good cause, so listen(read?) up!

Art 4 Art’s Sake

This month, Postcrypt will be hosting a public event at St. Anthony’s Hall that will not only be an exciting opportunity for art creators and enthusiasts, but will also be making a positive change for visiting children at St. Luke’s Hospital.

Organized by Clémence White, Gabby Barsocchini, Mausi Goess, and Marianne Barthélemy (representatives from Postcrypt and St. A’s) and in collaboration with RxArt, “Arts for Art’s Sake,” presents an exciting and social art experience. The event will be an auction of not just student work, but also pieces made by alumni and working artists who have generously donated their art to be auctioned off to whomever bids at the event. Not only will students be able to feature their own creations and have them seen by other members of the artist community, but many generally unaffordable pieces will be available for auction at college-student-budget costs.  The proceeds will go to help fund an interactive art installation by Rob Pruitt in the children’s wing at St. Luke’s hospital, which will allow kids to entertain themselves by drawing on the wall rather than anxiously waiting around.

For those of us who want our work shown outside of our dorm room walls, this is a great opportunity to present and network your skills to other passionate artists. Or, if you aren’t a creator and are more of a collector (or even just want something to put on your walls besides some cute party pics), this is a fantastic chance to get your hands on some fabulous art at an affordable price. Not to mention all the proceeds are going to help Pruitt’s large scale dry erase board be installed at St. Luke’s, which can really help make the St. Luke’s environment (which let’s be honest, is nothing to look forward to) a little bit better.

The event is being held at St. Anthony’s Hall on April 19th from 7 pm – 10 pm and tickets are currently on sale ($10 for students, $20 for non-students). Until April 8th Postcrypt is still looking for submissions! So if you have some awesome artwork you want to be seen/sold, and would also like to get into the event for ~*~*free*~*~, e-mail And for those of us just looking for a Friday night activity, come enjoy some art, perhaps pick up a couple pieces for yourself, dip into some finger food and mingle with on and off campus artists. But if that isn’t enough to convince you to attend, there will also be a raffle on the most prominent piece AND live music!  (band is TBD). The event in sponsored by Veev, as well as Skate’s Art Market Research, which has generously donated books to be sold at the auction.

Tickets can be bought at

Submit your work to

For more information/announcements check out the event Facebook page at



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img April 15, 20124:27 pmimg 41 Comments

Earlier today, Bwog sat down with Pat Blute. Blute, of BwogWeather and HardCore fame, has been of late consumed by the production of his new rock-opera, SPEARS: The Gospel According to Britney. Tickets go on sale at 5 pm today, and will sell out fast. Blute, director and creator, is pretty excited. Bwog sat down with him on the Steps to hash it out.

Blute: This is the interview for SPEARS: The Gospel According to Britney, the story of Jesus Christ, told to the music of Britney Spears, “The Greatest Story Ever Told, the Greatest Music Ever Written.”

Bwog: That’s such a great tagline. How did it come to you?

Blute: It’s an extremely self-explanatory tagline that tells you exactly what you are going to see. No surprises, no gimmicks, beyond that. There’s no dialogue and none of the lyrics are changed.

Bwog: That does sound wonderful. So how did you come up with the idea?

Blute: That’s a great question. So, I don’t remember how I really came up with the idea, but I can share some of its iterations. High school Spanish class, we did modismos, we had to come up with two things which contrasted, but which were similar. So I did Britney Spears and Jesus, and it worked out, and everyone gave a laugh. That was 12th grade. It then just became this running party joke, where I would tell people certain select scenes, and always get a laugh, or a “That works.”

Bwog: So when did it become serious?

Blute: It became serious when I talked to some people with certain connections, and they said, “You have to try this.” It was originally going to be a staged reading, but I didn’t like the idea of outside dialogue, so it literally is the Gospel according to Britney, and Britney alone. Her discography allows her to play both friend and foe, villain and hero, and in many ways it captures the motifs of the gospels.

Tactfulness, the concept, and the project, after the jump.



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img March 23, 20125:00 pmimg 0 Comments

That's some artistic intensity

The Arts Initiative is sponsoring a free five hour (!!!) Drawathon tonight in 501 Dodge from 6 to 11 pm featuring various snacks included but not limited to: cookies, chips, pretzels, cheese, and dips. Prepare for artistic adventure as seven student figure models pose for your drawing pleasure. There will be art supplies there, so don’t worry about appearing unarmed! The event will also feature musical performances from the Columbia Classical Performers, Bluegrass Band, and more. Admission with a valid CUID.


Venus in Heels via Wikimedia Commons

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