Pop Culture

An Abandoned Sports Authority Transforms into a Disneyland-Lover’s Dream Exhibit

I was listening to a radio interview with Death Cab for Cutie frontman Ben Gibbard the other day about the rapid changes he’s observed in Seattle’s Capitol Hill neighborhood, his home for the past twenty years. Gibbard noted that his sadness over the morphing urban landscape isn’t directly due to buildings being demolished or shops closing down. Rather, he feels that his memories are connected to physical places and grieves as these familiar haunts—and with them, his memories—begin to disappear.

I couldn’t help but think of Gibbard’s analogy about “plugging your hard drive into physical places” when I first heard of “That’s From Disneyland!” a super-sized exhibit of Disneyland memorabilia owned by music agent Richard Kraft. When Kraft’s brother Dave passed away, he rediscovered their shared childhood moments at The Happiest Place on Earth. Rather than contenting himself with a set of mouse ears or a snow globe of Cinderella’s castle, Kraft began to collect vintage souvenirs and rare artifacts from Disney Parks, eventually amassing more than 750 items over the next two decades.

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Pop Culture

Is It OK to Hate Taylor Swift? A Reflection, in List Form

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Let me start off by saying I don’t actually know Taylor Swift on a personal level. Granted, by sheer luck (or misfortune, depending on how you look at it), I have found myself within one or two degrees of separation from her by a) living in the Nashville metro area for four years, and b) inadvertently befriending several folks who do know her. Well, knew her I suppose, back when she was more #solo and less #squad. Thus, I’ve heard, maybe more than most, a somewhat absurd number of reasons why I should hate her.

“She’s stuck up.”

“She’s so fake.”

“She hardly writes any of her songs.”

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Pop Culture

Brooklyn Renaissance at the Brooklyn Museum

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A few weeks ago, I had the opportunity to attend “Brooklyn Renaissance,” a talk at the Brooklyn Museum about the role storytelling plays in the visual arts. The panel featured three of my favorite artists working today: portrait painter Kehinde Wiley, a superstar in the art world; Tatyana Fazlalizadeh, a young multimedia artist whose name you might be unfamiliar with but whose work you have probably seen; and filmmaker Spike Lee, who really needs no further introduction. Now seeing as I am a total pop culture nerd, it took me until just yesterday to get over my starstruck-ness and really digest the points brought up during the event.

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