Two decades ago, Martin Lang paid £100,000 for what he thought was a painting by Marc Chagall—a reclining nude, dated 1909-10. Recently, at his son’s behest, Lang submitted the painting to the producers of the BBC art program "Fake or Fortune?" Unfortunately for Lang, "Fake or Fortune"'s analysis came up fake: it showed that the painting's blues and greens used pigments only developed in the 1930s.
Upon this discovery, Lang was issued a writ by the Chagall Committee—based in Paris and headed by Chagall's two granddaughters—which is the only body with the authority to declare the authenticity of a Chagall. Now that Lang's painting has been shown to [...]
"Facebook’s debut is not just a market event. For the millions of Americans who have no intention of ever buying or selling a share of Facebook (although the mutual funds in their 401(k) may have other thoughts), the trading on Friday is the the [sic] equivalent of a must-see Super Bowl Sunday showdown for people who don’t ordinarily watch a football game," opines the New York Times. It's "a pop culture spectacle"! I sure wish they'd said "spectacular." So basically, the Facebook IPO is "The Hills" but with more money. It's so important that we watch the manipulation of a market and a company's share price! Meanwhile, everyone's [...]
Time's recent declaration of the obscure and notoriously media-shy writer Jonathan Franzen as our "Great American Novelist" was met, at first anyway, with shocking equanimity, it seems to me. Sure, he has a new book, Freedom, coming out. Sure, Sam Tanenhaus declared said novel a "masterpiece of American fiction" in the New York Times, though he did so nearly a month before regular readers would be able to challenge that view. Sure, such is the confidence of Farrar, Strauss, and Giroux in this book that it is pre-selling as an ebook at the unusually-high price of $14.99. Me, I read The Corrections, enjoyed it, and promptly [...]