Robots have been given the gift of human creativity.
Artist Agnieszka Pilat is currently out West at the headquarters of Agility Robotics, where she has made a new friend with the humanoid robot DIGIT, and started a series of paintings with him that will be included in her upcoming show, ROBOTa.
“This is the era of the new, intelligent machine,” says Agnieszka.“The works created by DIGIT are full of mistakes. This innocence in mark-making gives them a sense of spontaneity, like children playing with crayons.”
Agnieszka is no stranger to painting with robots. She has worked closely with Boston Dynamics‘ SPOT, selling one piece created by the robot canine for $40,000 during a fundraiser to benefit Ukrainian refugees. The pieces with DIGIT and SPOT will be featured in Agnieszka‘s upcoming fall show at the gallery Modernism in San Francisco.
Agnieszka’s Talking Points:
This is the era of the new, intelligent machine. This is not a printer – an enhancement of a human hand, or a camera lens – an amplified human eye. The new machine is close to man’s nature – interested in the sublime, the essence of what it means to be human. It’s slow and curious and playful. Unlike clean, perfect classical machine esthetics, new machine esthetics are fraud with errors and imperfections.
If a human is the ideal – then robots strive to imitate their human creators. We are the parents to the machine – and intelligent machines like proper children believe in their naivete, that they can someday surpass their creators.
The new machine is close to man’s nature – interested in the sublime, the essence of what it means to be human. It’s slow and curious and playful. Unlike clean, perfect classical machine esthetics, new machine esthetics are fraud with errors and imperfections.
Agnieszka Pilat Bio:
Polish born artist, Agnieszka Pilat studied painting and illustration at the Academy of Art University in San Francisco, CA. She is an award-winning artist and her works can be found in public and private collections in the United States, Poland, and Canada. Pilat currently lives and maintains a full time studio in San Francisco and is represented by numerous galleries throughout the United States and has exhibited at the Carnegie Museum of Art.
As we surpass the midway point of 2022, it’s safe to say this year has been nothing short of earth-shaking. From the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn the landmark ruling in Roe v. Wade, to the devastating number of mass shootings that have struck the United States, 2022 has been full of alarming headlines. Let’s take a look at some of the most prominent stories for the month of July.
Heatwaves in Europe
Recently, many countries in Europe, such as Britain, Italy, France, Spain, Germany have experienced unusually high temperatures, with local highs reaching 104 degrees Fahrenheit (40 degrees Celsius), which caused numerous wildfires.
Forest fires also broke out in many parts of Italy. One of the fires threatened to cut power and water to parts of the northeastern city of Trieste.
Meanwhile, the homes in Winnington, England were also damaged by the local fire. Some residents say they lost everything in the fire.
Scientists warn that extreme heat is exacerbated by climate change, making heat waves more intense and frequent and that the dry weather is likely to fuel wildfires.
Shinzo Abe dies from two gunshots
On July 8th, former Japanese prime minister Shinzo Abe suffered a terrorist attack while giving a speech in Nara city. Although Shinzo Abe had been hospitalized soon after being shot, the local fire department reported that he stopped cardiopulmonary function immediately after falling to the ground.
The incident occurred at around 11:30 a.m. local time as Abe made a speech in front of about 30 people near a subway station in Nara city, where he was campaigning for a liberal Democratic Party candidate in the upper house election. An unidentified man shot Abe from his back around 3 meters away. The Nara fire department said Abe lost consciousness, breath, and heartbeat after falling to the ground. Sixty-seven years old Abe was taken by helicopter to a hospital for emergency treatment and declared dead at 5:03 p.m. local time. The Japan Fire and Disaster Management Agency later confirmed that Abe was shot in the left chest and the right side of the neck.
The suspect was arrested at the scene. According to Japanese media reports, the suspect is a man called Tetsuya Yamagami, 41 years old, a resident of Nara. He confessed to killing Abe with his homemade weapon and holding a grudge against a specific religious group. According to Tetsuya Yanagami, he attacked Abe in the end because his original target, one of the leaders of that group, was not there, and Abe was tied to that religious group.
At the end of June, US President Joe Biden signed a gun safety bill, almost one month following the catastrophic Uvalde elementary school massing shooting. The bill entails granting “groups [the ability] to petition courts to remove weapons from people deemed a threat to themselves or others.”
Other details of the bill include halting individuals that have been convicted of domestic abuse to own a gun, as well as increasing background checks on individuals from the ages of 18-to-21-years-old pursuing to purchase a gun.
Jayland Walker murdered in police shooting
25-year-old Jayland Walker was shot dead in a car/foot pursuit after he was stopped by police officers for traffic and equipment violations in Akron, Ohio. Recent video footage from the bodycams of officers involved in the pursuit and on the scene have just been released, and protests have undergone seeking justice surrounding the confrontation.
The chase began when Walker left the scene of a traffic stop on June 27. In the video footage release to the public, narration speaks that “a sound consistent with a gunshot can be heard,” with officers thinking that the noise came from Walker’s car.
After officers continued to pursue Walker, he stopped his car and began to run, while tasers were used to attempt to halt him. Akron Police Chief Stephen Mylett stated that after this, Walker “stopped and quickly turned towards the pursuing officers.” Walker was shot then, pronounced dead at the scene, unarmed.
While the shooting is under investigation, it has been revealed that a medical examiner found that Walker endured around 60 gunshot injuries from officers. Protests have undergone since Walker was killed, continuing to raise more awareness to the scarce gun control in the United States.
9 dead amongst weekend of Chicago shootings
Amidst the holiday weekend of the 4th of July, an array of shootings took place in Chicago, Illinois. A fatal shootout took place on the evening of July 1, and more shootings continued throughout the weekend. The devastating array of shootings left 9 dead and around 57 people suffering gunshot injuries.
Highland Park Fourth of July parade shooting leaves at least 6 dead
A gunman disrupted the Highland Park Fourth of July parade in Illinois this Independence Day. The shooting left an estimated 6 people dead with other two dozen suffering injuries from the catastrophe. The suspected gunman is allegedly a white man between the age of 18- to 20-years-old, and has not been identified yet.
Ukraine news : the latest Russian invasion update
Russia claims to have destroyed a mercenary deployment point in Mykolaiv. Russian Defense Ministry spokesman, Igor Konashenkov, said in his morning war report that the Russian Aerospace Forces attacked this place with high-precision weapons.
Player Brittney Griner’s desperate letter of help to Joe Biden
The WNBA player has been detained in Russia since February and she is accused of carrying cartridges with hashish oil when she was going to take a plane and could face a sentence of 10 years in prison. Brittney wrote to the president of the United States, Joe Biden, and asked for his help to get out of the Russian prison and return to her home as soon as possible.
Kourtney Kardashian and Travis Barker break the silence on the recent hospitalization of the drummer of Blink 182
The couple wanted to post their opinions about Barker‘s recent hospitalization on their verified social media accounts. “I went in for an endoscopy Monday feeling great,” Barker posted in a note posted on her Instagram stories. “But after dinner, I developed excruciating pain and have been hospitalized ever since.”
Travis explained that during his endoscopy, he had “a very small polyp removed right in a very sensitive area, usually handled by specialists, which unfortunately damaged a critical pancreatic drainage tube.” “This resulted in severe pancreatitis that was life-threatening,” he added. “I am very, very grateful that with the intensive treatment I am now much better.”
Copenhagen: At least 3 dead and several injured in a mass shooting in a shopping mall that occurred this Sunday in Denmark
Prime Minister, Mette Frederiksen, assured that the authorities continue to investigate what happened. “Denmark was hit by a cruel attack on Sunday night. Several were killed. Even more were injured,” she said.
What is known about the attacker? A 22-year-old man was arrested in connection with the attack. On the morning of this Monday (July 4th), the Danish capital’s police chief, Soeren Thomassen, declared that his department does not believe that the attack was a terrorist event and assured that the suspect has a history of mental health problems.
Egypt: closes its beaches in the Red Sea due to a series of shark attacks
The Egyptian authorities closed several beaches on the Red Sea coast due to the death of two tourists due to different shark attacks. The regional governor said one of the victims was a 68-year-old Austrian woman whose arm was ripped off by a shark while she was swimming near the city of Hurghada.
It is rare for sharks to attack people in the Red Sea, but this year, there have been several incidents involving tourists.
British Airways cancels more than 1,000 summer flights from Gatwick and Heathrow
BA will cancel more than 1,000 additional flights this summer from Gatwick and Heathrow as staff shortages continue to affect its operations. More than 100,000 travelers planning to visit popular holiday destinations such as Spain or Portugal will be affected, although British Airways will mainly reduce routes with multiple daily departures.
Puerto Rican singer Ricky Martin breaks his silence after being denounced for domestic violence
Through a statement shared on Twitter, Ricky Martin assures that the accusations are “completely false” and that he will face the process responsibly. As it is a case under the Law for the Prevention of Domestic Violence, the Puerto Rico police have not revealed the name of the complainant.
As it is a case under the Law for the Prevention of Domestic Violence, the Puerto Rico police have not revealed the name of the complainant. In this way, his identity has been the subject of numerous speculations. As stated by the Puerto Rican newspaper El Vocero, the order indicates that Ricky Martin and the person who has denounced him were together for seven months and separated two years ago.
The measure aims to “address the current situation with extraordinary means and powers, with relief interventions and assistance to the affected population and restore the functionality of public and strategic services and strategic network infrastructures”, the Italian Government has revealed in a statement picked up by the transalpine press.
Australia’s largest city, Sydney, is affected by flooding
The floods in Sydney affect more than 30,000 inhabitants. Besides, mountainous seas and wild weather along the New South Wales coast thwarted plans to salvage a wrecked cargo ship with 21 crew members. Emergency crews carried out 100 rescues overnight Tuesday of people trapped in cars on flooded roads or in flooded houses in the Sydney area, State Emergency Service manager Ashley Sullivan said.
According to the local authorities, the incident happened shortly after midnight when a group of men armed with rifles and 9-millimeter pistols entered the bar. They shooted at the customers, causing 12 people dead at the scene and 2 more were cleared dead after being sent to the hospital. Police said that the suspects are still on the run.
Days of torrential rain have caused waterways to overflow and dams to overflow, producing a fourth flood emergency in 16 months in parts of the city of 5 million people.
We are facing one of the biggest events of the summer, and many fanatics of the Marvel Cinematic Universe are eager to know how many surprises they will discover within it. Who knows! Perhaps there is not room for so many, at least if we look at the supposed length of the film that would have been leaked by some of the American theater chains, and that would leave us with the shortest Marvel movie since 2018. Are you ready to watch it? Coming soon in cinemas.
UK government crisis
The mismanagement of the scandals of the celebrations in the Coronavirus pandemic and in the ranks of his party knocked down the prime minister. On Wednesday, Boris Johnson continued to fight to stay in power as prime minister, in turn sacking cabinet minister Michael Gove after his government was rocked by a wave of ministerial resignations.
In a statement to Parliament on Wednesday, Sajid Javid, a British Conservative Party politician, said after his resignation that “the problem starts from the top and that is not going to change.”
10-year-old rape victim travels across state lines to undergo abortion
One of the most shocking and prominent stories that broke the internet amidst the US Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade involves a 10-year-old rape victim. The young girl was refused the ability to have an abortion in her home state of Ohio. While she was six weeks and three days pregnant, this exceeded the ban in Ohio to perform an abortion at six weeks.
In Ohio, a child abuse doctor referred the victim to an obstetrician-gynecologist in Indiana to perform the procedure. She then traveled to undergo the practice, where the abortion ban had not been implemented. The Supreme Court’s decision shifted the rules on abortions in Ohio, where previously abortions were not banned until later in a pregnancy.
James Caan dies at the age of 82
James Caan, the actor who played Sonny Corleone in The Godfather has died. The American actor died on the night of July 6, as reported by his relatives on Twitter. “The family appreciates the love and condolences and asks that their privacy continue to be respected at this difficult time.”
Brittney Griner pleads guilty to drug charges in Russia
WNBA Phoenix Mercury star Brittney Griner has been stuck in Russia since February of 2022. Griner was at the Sheremetyevo International Airport when officials found small units of hashish oil in her belongings. Once discovered, she was taken into custody immediately, facing up to 10 years in prison in Russia for “large-scale transportation of drugs,” though her cartridge contained less than one gram of the marijuana concentrate.
Amongst the travesty, Griner appeared in trial this month with images of her handcuffed being posted all over social media. She has pleaded guilty to her charges, seemingly in hopes of returning to the US quicker. Griner sent a handwritten letter to the President of the US Joe Biden expressing her concern and fear for her freedom. Segments of the heart wrenching letter were released to the media by Griner’s representatives.
“As I sit here in a Russian prison, alone with my thoughts and without the protection of my wife, family, friends, Olympic jersey, or any accomplishments, I’m terrified I might be here forever,” Griner expressed.
She continued to the president, stating, “I realize you are dealing with so much, but please don’t forget about me and the other American Detainees. Please do all you can to bring us home. I voted for the first time in 2020 and I voted for you. I believe in you. I still have so much good to do with my freedom that you can help restore. I miss my wife! I miss my family! I miss my teammates! It kills me to know they are suffering so much right now. I am grateful for whatever you can do at this moment to get me home.”
With no way to measure how long Griner could be held in Russia, her teammates and supporters have taken a stand to urge for her release. As a Black, LGBTQ WNBA player, many have questioned the treatment of Griner. Her coach presented this point, stating, “If it was LeBron, he’d be home, right? […] It’s a statement about the value of women. It’s a statement about the value of a Black person. It’s a statement about the value of a gay person.”
The chain (Vkusno i Tochka) that replaces McDonald’s in Russia runs out of fries due to the sanctions for the war in Ukraine
Vkusno i Tochka (Delicious and Point), the fast food chain that took over McDonald’s restaurants in Russia in June is now facing a growing shortage of French fries due to Western sanctions against the Russian capital, according to RBK TV reported.
Balenciaga showcases celebrity models at Paris Fashion Week
Kim Kardashian, Dua Lipa, Naomi Campbell, Nicole Kidman become the stars of the Balenciaga fashion show.
Balenciaga’s Fall 2022 Couture Collection fashion show transformed celebrities into the best ambassadors of the firm. Paris has become the center of fashion in recent days, because of Haute Couture Week. The great opportunity has brought together the most recognized faces in the sector, and amazing everyone with one of the most surprising Balenciaga fashion shows to date.
Kim Kardashian, the brand’s muse, melted into a striking black dress. She showed off the same color Naomi wore, but with a more voluminous design. Dua Lipa dazzled in a yellow one-shoulder dress, while Nicole triumphed in a mopped, long, metallic design.
The stars were able to parade through the impressive Balenciaga salons wearing the latest haute couture collection from the house, becoming the protagonists of the event and fashion week in the Parisian city. In this new Balenciaga collection, a common thread between the technological future and the past was seen, where a tribute was made to the work of the founder of the house. “It starts in the future and then sinks into the past, in the Infanta dresses that later became the origin of the house,” said Balenciaga designer and creative director Demna Gvasalia.
These uncovered faces, some of them world-famous, contrasted with the mannequins whose faces the creative director of the ‘Maison’ wanted to cover with black enameled polyurethane helmets, made by the Mercedes design team that made it impossible to identify those who they paraded
During these days, we have also been able to enjoy the designs of other major brands such as Chanel, Giorgio Armani, or Christian Dior. Although without hesitation, Balenciaga has overseen shaking up the ‘fashion’ universe at fashion week in Paris.
Oprah Winfrey’s father, Vernon Winfrey, passes away
At 89 years-old, Vernon Winfrey passed away after battling cancer. His daughter, Oprah Winfrey, released a statement via Instagram, where she stated, “Yesterday with family surrounding his bedside I had the sacred honor of witnessing the man responsible for my life, take his last breath, […] We could feel Peace enter the room at his passing.”
Big Brother 24 premieres
The 24th season of CBS’ Big Brother premiered on July 6 with an all-new cast. 16 contestants entered the Big Brother house, where they’re in for a summer full of game play, strategy, and challenges, all while making life-transforming memories. Who will conquer the competition and take home the $750,000 prize? We can’t wait to see!
Ukraine: 15 killed and 24 trapped by Russian missile
On July 10, a Russian missile hit eastern Ukraine and destroyed part of an apartment building, killing at least 15 people and making 24 buried beneath the debris.
“The search and rescue operation continues,” according to Pavlo Kyrylenko, the governor of Donetsk Oblast, “We have more proof of Russia’s crimes, that they shell residential areas of any community, whether it’s close to the front lines or not.”
Ukraine has accused Russia of launching a bunch of missiles to its cities in recent weeks, targeting civilians. Even though Russia denied the accusation, the army kept attacking population centers like Mariupol, Kharkiv and Severodonetsk.
South Africa: Mass shooting kills at least 15 at a bar
According to the local authorities, the incident happened shortly after midnight when a group of men armed with rifles and 9-millimeter pistols entered the bar. They shooted at the customers, causing 12 people dead at the scene and 2 more were cleared dead after being sent to the hospital. Police said that the suspects are still on the run.
France will deport any foreigner who has committed a serious crime
Under current French regulations, anyone who arrived in France before the age of 13 cannot be expelled. Although, the French government is studying the possibility of facilitating the expulsion from the country of “any foreigner who has committed serious acts”, lifting the age restrictions in this regard, according to Gérald Darmanin, the Minister of the Interior.
The Euro against the Dollar
The European currency reaches its lowest level in 20 years against the dollar. The euro and the dollar, both currencies, have been less than a cent from reaching exactly the same value, when the euro hovered around $1,007 last Monday, down almost 15% since the start of the year. This has been caused by different serious reasons. While the fear in the markets of an economic recession in Europe increases, in a context of growing uncertainty about the continuity in the supply of Russian gas and high inflation.
Brad Pitt’s Bullet Train to premiere in August
August 3 marks the date for the release of all-new film Bullet Train. Directed by David Leitch, Brad Pitt stars as Ladybug, an unlucky assassin determined to do his job peacefully after one too many gigs gone off the rails. Fate, however, may have other plans, as Ladybug’s latest mission puts him on a collision course with lethal adversaries from around the globe—all with connected, yet conflicting, objectives—on the world’s fastest train.
The Bachelorette 19 premieres with two leads
ABC’s The Bachelorette promised to be another one of the “most shocking seasons ever” when they named two women as the lead(s) of the popular reality dating series. After making it to the final three of Season 26 of The Bachelor, Gabby Windey and Rachel Recchia went through a shocking double breakup.
The pair was named the first set of double bachelorettes at the season finale of their original show. Season 19 of the show will now follow their journey to find love. Navigating how to date 30+ men side by side, the season premiered on July 11. Both Gabby and Rachel will travel the world dating a pool of men, hoping to leave engaged and in love!
US President Biden visits Israel and Saudi Arabia
US President Joe Biden made his tenth visit to Israel this summer. Many believe that at the forefront of Biden’s agenda was to tackle negotiations regarding oil production in Saudi Arabia. Others sincerely hoped Biden will tackle the issue of Iran gaining more nuclear weapons.
Uvalde elementary school shooting footage shows law enforcement lacking action
Footage from one of the deadliest mass shootings that the US has endured this year was released. Original video clips from the Robb Elementary School mass shooting that left 21 dead are lightly edited to eliminate identity and sounds of children screaming. The footage was published by the Austin American-Statesmen newspaper just days before family victims were scheduled to watch the footage.
The video shows the gunman crashing a car before shooting at two individuals who responded to the accident. Continuing, footage shows the gunman entering the school carrying his weapon. After he enters the school, a child comes around the corner where he watches the gunman enter another classroom and open fire, to which he runs away in horror.
The most outraging element of the leaked footage reveals officers lack of response to the incident, though they arrived at the scene 77 minutes before shooting the gunman dead. The lack of action from the officers has enraged the community and nation on a widespread scale. Uvalde County Commissioner Ronald Garza stated, “They just didn’t act. They just didn’t move, […] I just don’t know what was going through those policemen’s minds that tragic day, but … there was just no action on their part.”
POLAND: The ashes of more than 7,000 victims of a Nazi extermination camp have been located
The Polish country lost 17% of its population during World War II. An excavation carried out at the site of the former Nazi extermination camp in Soldau, near the city of Dzialdowo, has uncovered 17 tons of ashes which, according to researchers, indicate that at least 7,000 people were cremated there.
The number of victims has been calculated according to the weight of the ashes, Karol Nawrocki, president of the Institute of Historical Memory, has expressed, since a human corpse corresponds to around two kilos of ashes.
Ivana Trump dies at 73
Ivana Trump dies at the age of 73, the first wife of Donald Trump and the former US president has announced it on his social network (Truth Social). The businesswoman was the mother of three of the former president’s children and she was crucial in building his real estate empire. They divorced in 1992, long before Donald Trump entered politics.
Ivana Trump passed away at her Manhattan apartment on July 14. This has been announced by Trump himself on the Truth Social network and who has not indicated the causes of her death.
Greenwood Park Mall shooting leaves four dead
A shooting broke out at the Greenwood Park Mall, in which a gunman killed three and injured two. The unidentified gunman was, too, shot dead by an armed 22-year-old man. Greenwood Police Chief Jim Ison released a statement about the catastrophic event, stating that, “This has shaken us to our core. This isn’t something that we have seen here in Greenwood before. It is absolutely horrendous and our thoughts and prayers are with those loved ones hurting tonight.”
UK undergoes record heatwave
As wildfires spread around Europe, the UK endured scorching, record-breaking temperatures. The UK’s previous leading temperature of 101.7 degrees in July 2019 was estimated to be exceeded on July 18 with predictions of 105 degrees. The heatwave sent the UK into a “Level 4” heat warning which can be defined as a “national emergency.”
FRANCE: Shooting on a terrace of a bar in Paris
One person dead and four injured in a shooting with a Kalashnikov against the terrace of a bar in Paris. The events occurred around 21:30 pm on Popincourt Street. According to the Europe 1 channel, a “Kalashnikov-type” long weapon has been found. “Two individuals got out of a vehicle and shot two individuals sitting on the terrace of a bar,” specified the Paris police headquarters. The main hypothesis of the investigation is a reckoning.
Jennifer Lopez and Ben Affleck marry in Las Vegas
Actor Ben Affleck and singer Jennifer Lopez got married this Saturday (July 16) in a small family ceremony in which the two children of the singer and her mother have been present. Jennifer Lopez has confirmed the news with a statement. “We did it. Love is beautiful. Love is kind. And it turns out that love is patient. 20-year patience.”
“Exactly what we wanted. Last night we flew to Las Vegas, queued for a license with four other couples, all making the same trip to the wedding capital of the world,” added the singer.
Japan: At Least 30 Endangered Green Sea Turtles Found With ‘Bleeding’ Neck Wounds
At least 30 endangered green sea turtles were found Thursday (July 19) with neck injuries near the remote island of Kumejima in southern Japan’s Okinawa prefecture. Police began investigating the case last Friday after the sea turtles were found at low tide. Some of these were barely breathing and others were bleeding. They had wounds around their necks caused by what appeared to be a blade.
US House passes bill that defends gay marriage rights
After the Supreme Court overturned the landmark decisioning in Roe v. Wade, Justice Clarence Thomas suggested that other milestone rulings needed to be looked at again, like Obergefell v. Hodges, the ruling that established gay marriage rights. In response to this, the US House of Representatives passed a bill that would ensure protection of equal marriage rights.
The bill passed by a vote of 267-157, and would ensure “federal protections for gay marriage and prohibits anyone from denying the validity of a marriage based on the race or sex of the couple.” Now, the bill will be reviewed and voted on by the Senate.
World Health Organization warns that global cases of COVID-19 have doubled in the last six weeks
Infections have reached their maximum peak in the first week of July. So the impact of omicron increased and created the seventh wave of the disease: From about three million weekly cases to six million currently, warned this Wednesday (July 2) the director general of the World Health Organization (WHO), Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus.
“An increase in cases means that there may be more hospitalizations and deaths in the coming weeks,” Tedros Adhanom mentioned at a press conference, noting that most of the current infections seem to belong to the omicron variant, “for now the most contagious known,” he added.
US President Biden tests positive for COVID-19
For the first time since the beginning of the pandemic, US President Joe Biden tested positive for COVID-19 on Thursday July 21. It was reported that he took Paxlovid for his symptoms which included a cough, runny nose and overall exhaustion.
Flight cancellations and delays in Germany due to Lufthansa strike
As the airline warned on its website this Monday (July 25) there will be delays and cancellations of flights in Germany due to the Lufthansa strikes this Wednesday (July 27). The warning strike will start at 3.45am and end at 6am this Thursday (July 28), the German Verdi union said in a statement. The German union orders a 9.5% salary increase for Lufthansa ground staff, with a minimum of 350 euros per month for one year.
Police officers in Mexico City seize 1.5 tons of cocaine bound for the West Coast of the US.
Mexican police seized 1.5 tons of cocaine headed for the west coast of the United States, Omar Garcia Harfuch, Secretary of Citizen Security, published on Tuesday (July 26), describing it as “the largest seizure of cocaine in the capital.” During a press conference, Omar commented that the cocaine has a value of up to US$20 million and added that after reaching its final destination it would be worth “almost twice as much, in Los Angeles.”
Red Hot Chilli Peppers announce new album: “Return of the dream canteen”
Selena Gomez chose a Versace design with which she looked like a real princess on her 30th birthday
The actress welcomed her 30th birthday last Friday, July 22. She held a party for her birthday surrounded by family and friends. For this important occasion, the protagonist of her outfit was the elegant dress that she wore from the luxury brand Versace.
The dress is made in a pale peach tone with short sleeves and a delicate tulle that covered Selena’s bodice and neckline. Added to this are the transparent details from the height of the thigh to the end that dragged a few centimeters. To give her dress more prominence, the actress added some hoop earrings and tied her hair up in a high ponytail. There is no doubt that Selena Gomez chose an elegant ‘look’ to welcome her 30 years.
The Latin Grammy 2022 will be held on November 17 in Las Vegas
Another Nicaraguan opposition leader sentenced to 10 years in prison
In Masaya (Nicaragua), an opposition leader from the department of Masaya, Yubrank Suazo, was sentenced this Wednesday (July 27) to 10 years in prison for a crime committed in spreading false news and national integrity, the Nicaraguan Center reported on its social platforms. of Human Rights (Cenidh).
Nicki Minaj advances the release of her new song “Freaky Girl“
The musical return of the rapper after her motherhood is being as successful as we remembered. Nicki was for years the artist who released the most video clips and songs in a calendar year and this year she has returned to her origins by introducing what will be the fifth song of 2022. Its release will be on August 12 under the title of “Freaky Girl.”
Beyoncé releases new album RENAISSANCE
REINAISSANCE was released as Beyoncé’s latest studio album on Friday July 29. The album platforms the reignited dance genre infused with elements of disco, house, and pop music. The icon released the album’s first single “BREAK MY SOUL” earlier in the year, taking the industry by storm.
The 94th Oscar nominations have been announced, and with the awards happening on March 27. 360 was able to speak with the director of one of the nominated films, Tadeusz Lysiak. “The Dress” is hoping to garner best short film at the event. Topics include the director’s start with film making, the film itself, and his plans for the future.
1. How did you get into filmmaking?
It all happened after I watched Inglourious Basterds by Quentin Tarantino. I was probably 16 years old back then and I remember going out of the theater and having coffee with my family and telling them: I’m gonna be a filmmaker one day. They said that was a great idea and they gave me a lot of advice: they suggested that it’d probably be better if I wouldn’t go to film school just after finishing high school. They reasoned that, “if you’d like to tell stories about life, you’d have to experience life a little at first.” So that’s why I decided to study Cultural Studies at the University of Warsaw. And only after finishing… [was when I] applied to Warsaw Film School. And it was the best choice of my life, they taught me everything I know. Warsaw Film School is such a cool place!
2. A lot of your work covers sensitive topics. Why is that?
In WFS they always teach us to ask ourselves what bothers us with the world, what there is to change or repair, and to never tell stories that are not important to us personally. So that’s what I’m doing. I’m deeply interested in sensitive, social, or psychological topics, and that’s why my films are focused on them.
3. Why did you decide to create a film about disability and intimacy?
Because it is something that is not often talked about! I find it deeply disturbing that there are still some prejudices in that territory, and some really bad things are still happening to women with disabilities all around the world. University of Michigan says that 40% of women with any sort of disability are being sexually or physically assaulted during their lifetime. This is absolutely terrifying.
4. How did you feel when you found out you received an Oscar nomination?
This is such a surreal feeling, especially because “The Dress” is a student project made just to pass an exam in Warsaw Film School. We were all hoping to get a good grade and that’s it. And now we are nominated for an Oscar. This is a story for yet another movie.
5. How long did the filming process take?
I think you can sum all of it up in roughly one year. At first, it was a couple of months of research and writing the script, then further development, preproduction, and finally 6 days of shooting and three months of postproduction. It was a hard time since we didn’t have a big budget and too many resources.
6. What was your best moment on set?
I must say that the best moment was the last shot. It was 5 AM, we were all so tired and exhausted and I remember that as soon as we finished rolling I started crying, and we all cried so much, and then we hug[ged] each other and drank champagne and it was such a great moment of accomplishment and relief!
7. Who were your favorite people to work with on set?
I just loved everybody. Since it was a student project, most of the crew were my close friends. We were having a lot of fun, but also we worked so hard, driven by our passion to tell this story. I have to thank Konrad Bloch, my cinematographer, who is such a sensitive guy and a true artist. I think of him as an absolute co-author, …as well as Anna Dzieduszycka. It was a huge group effort.
Ultimately, I would like to make films in the US, in English— for the simple reason that I want as many people as possible to watch them. I feel like I need to tell different stories and share them with others. This is a hunger that I cannot satisfy. My focus is now on working on my feature-length debut, which will be a psychological thriller.
10. What should we expect from you in the future?
My full-length debut is at a fairly advanced stage of development, we are working on the script. The working title is “Obsession.” I have not yet decided whether I will want to do it in Poland or in the States. It’s a universal story, it would work anywhere. The film will tell the story of a young couple whose daughter one day disappears without a trace and both of them begin to fall into madness because of it.
11. Describe “The Dress” in one word.
12. What do you want people to take away from “The Dress?”
I would like them to see that there is still a lot of evil in the world. That we still have a lot to fix. And that we should treat eachother with respect and dignity. This is especially important nowadays.
The short film, “The Dress,” which was directed by Tadeusz Lysiak, a student of the Warsaw Film School, has been nominated for the 94th Academy Awards® in the Best Live Action Short Film category. “The Dress” is a poignant story about the desire for love and intimacy, whose short-statured protagonist Anna struggles with social rejection because of her appearance. This is the second Oscar® nomination for its producer, the Warsaw Film School, an educational institution located in the heart of Europe.
Tadeusz Lysiak stated, “This is so surreal, I can’t believe this! I am so grateful to the entire film crew, my producers—Warsaw Film School and all the coproducers and good people that supported us. This is just out of this world. This film is a huge team effort, and it was made with student passion and [a] mission to change the world for the better. Thank you all for supporting us!”
Anna Dzieduszycka (lead actress) stated, “I want to say that I am very proud of us. I never imagined something like this, but now I know that nothing is impossible and it’s a wonderful feeling! Believe in yourself, respect and love each other.”
Working at a roadside motel, Julia doesn’t want to suppress her desire, sexuality, and longing for physical intimacy any longer. When a handsome truck driver comes into her life, her unrealized fantasies begin to come true. But “The Dress” is not just the story of a woman meeting a man. Julia, physically different from the society around her, experiences rejection and bullying. “The Dress” is a universal story about longing that affects everyone, regardless of the barriers and differences that divide us.
The movie was written and directed by Tadeusz Łysiak, a student at the Warsaw Film School. The production has screened at nearly 40 film festivals around the world and has won 18 awards. Awarded at the prestigious Atlanta Film Festival allowed “The Dress” to compete for an Academy Award® nomination.
The main actress Anna Dzieduszycka hopes that her role will be one step towards changing the perception of individuals like her on-screen: “I wish people stop using the word “otherness”, become more open-minded, and embrace diversity of viewpoints. […] Looks don’t matter. We all have magic inside us.” said Dzieduszycka. Her acting has been recognized at many festivals in Poland and abroad. Anna’s awards include the Grand Prize for Best Actress at Flicker’s Rhode Island International Film Festival.
The Oscar-nominated title was created by a team composed mainly of students and graduates of the Warsaw Film School. The director, Tadeusz Łysiak, participated in the prestigious program FUTURE FRAMES—Generation NEXT of European Cinema within Eastern Promises at the Karlovy Vary International Film Festival. He is also a winner of the “Discovery Eye” award for Young, Talented Filmmaker at the Polish Film Festival in Chicago. Tadeusz Łysiak’s previous award-winning film “Techno” has had over a million views on YouTube.
The film is produced by the co-founder and Chancellor of the Warsaw Film School, director and screenwriter Maciej Ślesicki. He is the producer of many student films, including “Our Curse,” which was nominated for an Academy Award® for Best Documentary (Short Subject) in 2015. “The Dress” was also co-produced by DOBRO, MIŁO, and GŁOŚNO. The project was co-financed by the Polish Film Institute. “The Dress” is the only production this year from Poland that is up in the running for an Academy Award®.
The 94th Academy Awards® ceremony will take place on March 27th at the Dolby Theatre.
With Crookes credited as an executive producer on the album, alongside the formidable Blue May (Blood Orange), Skin is a hugely personal, game-changing body of work from one of the UK’s boldest and brightest young talents. A collection of songs built and honed throughout her adolescence and into her early twenties, and finished last year within the most turbulent of circumstances, Skin touches on topics such as mental health, relationships, and politics all with grace and sensitivity. Crookes has created a truly special body of work that is both perfectly of the moment, and entirely timeless. Skin’s album artwork is shot by Carlota Guerrero, who has previously worked with Arca, Chloe x Halle, and Solange for all of her imagery for A Seat At The Table.
Already, the album has garnered Crookes a massive amount of acclaim worldwide. British Voguehas dubbed her, “undoubtedly one of the most exciting artists to emerge in the music scene this year,” while The Guardian has praised her “effortlessly nuanced and individual melodic sensibility.” I-D has praised her music as “powerful” while Complex has noted her “soul-stirring vocals,” and Billboard has similarly highlighted her “unfaltering vocal performance.” The New York Times in a recent profile may have summed up Skin best: “Crookes offers listeners a nuanced and candid exploration of her multiracial identity. At a time when many conversations about race in the arts and calls for change have only recently begun, Crookes’ commitment to vulnerability in her storytelling has helped her connect with a growing—and loyal—fan base.”
Up next, Joy Crookes will tour the UK later this year in celebration of the new album; the run kicks off in November in Brighton and extends into next year when she will take the tour to Europe. Full list of dates below.
Bruno Schulz (1892-1942) created a rich symbolic world in his small body of literary work and in his graphic art that left a huge legacy in Polish literature and in Jewish literature outside Poland. His stories contained mainly in two collections, Cinnamon Shops (1934) and The Hourglass Sanatorium (1938), along with a few other stories published separately, critical works, and letters, are a testament to the fecund cultural environment of the East European region of Galicia between the wars. Schulz is a secular Jewish writer whose stories, which we know from the recent discovery of an early work entitled, Undula (1922) seem to come out of the themes in his artwork, but were forged into their mature form as letters to the Yiddish modernist poet Debora Vogel. He wrote them in Polish, was celebrated in Polish avantgarde circles, and the most extensive body of Schulz scholarship is in Polish. His work reflects the influence of German writer Thomas Mann, as well as Franz Kafka and Leopold von Sacher-Masoch (author of Venus in Furs), who were German-language writers of non-German cities of the Austro-Hungarian empire like Schulz Prague and Lemberg (Lviv) respectively. Postwar Jewish writers in a variety of languages such as Philip Roth, Cynthia Ozick, Danilo Ki¡, David Grossman, Jonathan Safran Foer, and Nicole Krauss, have created characters on the model of Schulz’s biography. In the confluence of cultures brought about by modernization and aggressive industrial forces in the Drohobycz-BorysŽaw oil producing region, Schulz’s idea of the writer sifting through the trash tandeta to find and reassemble mutilated fragments of cast-off mythologies or systems of meaning would become a model for generations of writers following the upheaval of the Second World War, post-Communism, and even post-Colonialism.
In this episode of “Encounters with Polish Literature,” we are focusing on Karen Underhill’s research into Schulz in the Jewish modernist context of his own day, rather than his post-Holocaust legacy among the international community of Jewish writers, or strictly in the Polish-language modernist context of writers like StanisŽaw Ignacy Witkiewicz (“Witkacy”) and Witold Gombrowicz or Polish writers influenced by or responding to Schulz in their work like Tadeusz Kantor, Agata Tuszyska, Stefan Chwin, and Olga Tokarczuk.
Finally, Prof. Underhill says a few words about the extensive interdisciplinary offerings in Polish studies at The University of Illinos Chicago.
Learn more about this episode, and see the biography of the guest on the Polish Cultural Institute New York’s website. The linked page includes a bibliography of works in English by and about Schulz: Episode 5.
Youth entries from 25 countries across the world including Guatemala, Thailand, Poland and Egypt raise Creative Storytelling to a new high.
And the winner is Cate Cole, age 11 from Marblehead, Massachusetts in the United States, who won 1st Prize for her powerful short story, As Flames Rise.
The Book Creator global competition, Write a Story in One Page, targeted youth aged 11-18. Book Creator, in association with Planet Classroom Network, came up with a challenge that would work easily for young people across the world, in any language. Youth were asked to create a 1-page story book (with a cover illustration) which they had to read aloud.
“The results were amazing,” says C.M. Rubin, Co-founder of the Planet Classroom Network. Clearly, great tech along with great teachers as mentors are enabling kids to be more creative and imaginative than ever. Over 480 stories by young people were received during the pandemic from 25 countries including Guatemala, Thailand, Poland, and Egypt.”
“Thank you to Planet Classroom for working with us to help create a global audience for these young authors. We were blown away with the quality (and quantity!) of the entries to our competition. We are thrilled to be able to showcase such diverse talent from around the world. Thank you to everyone who entered!”
Cate Cole’s winning entry, As Flames Rise, is an edge of your seat short story about how a crisis can change our lives in a second. Told from the POV of her story’s main character, a lone wolf, animals surrounded by a ferocious forest fire work together to overcome their fear and survive.
Book Creator launched September 2011. From day one, teachers started using it in their classrooms, praising its simplicity and suggesting ways it could be improved. Since then the company hasn’t looked back. Book Creator has reached no.1 on the iTunes App Store in 90+ countries. Over 100 million ebooks have been created with our app worldwide. It’s one of the essential apps for schools using iPads. In 2017 the app expanded further, launching out in the Chrome browser and finding a new audience among Chromebook schools and those not using iPads. The web version of Book Creator continues to grow and push the boundaries of creativity in technology.
About The Planet Classroom Network
The Planet Classroom Network, organized by CMRubinWorld, brings together musicians, dancers, video game creators, filmmakers, learning innovators and emerging technologists from all over the world to entertain, educate and engage youth, and to provide a rich cultural experience at a time when art and learning institutions everywhere are not accessible. Curators and content contributors include Global Nomads, Global Oneness, the Martha Graham Dance Company, Commffest, KIDS FIRST!, Dream a Dream Foundation, OddWorld Inhabitants, Psyon Games, Challenge 59, LXL Ideas, Alliance for Young Artists & Writers/Scholastic Art & Writing Awards, Creative Visions Foundation, Battery Dance, SIMA Classroom, Young Voices for the Planet, Bard Conservatory, Taking It Global, Materials for the Arts, Book Creator, Addition and Art, XTalks, NFFTY, Young People’s Chorus of New York City, The International Forum for the Literature and Culture of Peace, Ryan Wong Classroom, The Global Search for Education, Voice America, Rocketium and Brandartica. Young people from around the world played a significant role in conceptualizing, creating, and producing the network’s vision and programming.
Will there be a shock winner at the 2021 Eurovision Song Contest?
The Eurovision Song Contest is one of the most popular annual events that takes place across Europe. Over 180 million people tuned into the 2019 contest, which was won by the Netherlands. The final of the 2021 Eurovision Song Contest final takes place on 22nd May in Rotterdam, where thirty-nine countries will take part in the live-streamed musical event.
The current favorites to win in 2021
There are a few acts that will be confident of winning the final, with the Eurovision song contest odds placing Malta as 4/1 favorite to win, who will be represented by their act, Destiny. They have never won the contest before but have finished in 2nd place on two occasions. Despite being the favorites, Malta will have to navigate a semi-final before they reach the main stage.
The second favorites to win are France, who are at 5/1 odds. Unlike the predicted winners, France has won the contest on five occasions, however, they haven’t won it since 1977. Switzerland, Italy, and Bulgaria will also perhaps all fancy their chances of winning this year as well.
Will 2021 see a shock winner?
The United Kingdom hasn’t seen a Eurovision winner since 1997 – on that occasion, Katrina and the Waves won with the song “Love, Shine a Light.” The UK’s representation in 2021 will be James Newman, a singer-songwriter who has had a successful career in the industry – though many bookmakers believe that he is unlikely to win.
Ireland is also seen as huge outsiders to win, but they are actually the most successful country in Eurovision’s history. They have won the competition on seven occasions, with the last success coming in 1996.
A previous shock winner
The 2011 edition was won by Azerbaijan, and it was seen as a huge shock at the time. This was their first success in the competition, having only entered for the first time four years previously.
How many times has the host nation won Eurovision?
The host nation of the final has won Eurovision on seven occasions. The last time this occurred was in 1994 when the competition was won by Ireland. Looking back towards the upcoming contest, the Netherlands are, however, seen as huge outsiders to win.
A further brief history of Eurovision winners
The first edition of the contest was held in 1956. On that occasion, it was won by Switzerland. In 1969, four countries won the contest, which was the first and only time in which there were joint winners, all garnering the same score from international judges and the public vote. The United Kingdom, Spain, the Netherlands, and France all came in first place that year.
A few years later, in 1974, ABBA won their contest, and the Swedish pop group would go on to become music icons. Their winning song “Waterloo” is still popular all over the world.
There are several other countries that are yet to taste success in Eurovision. This list includes Iceland, Lithuania, Belarus, Poland, the Czech Republic, and Slovakia. Will the 2021 Eurovision Song Contest see a first-time winner?
10 Foreign Films with the Most Unforgettable Love Stories
By Roberta Seret, PhD
I have two loves – literature and film. The most powerful love stories jump off the pages or off the screen, narrating different types of love turmoil, journeying through danger and obstacles to find love. The best love stories occur when love triumphs over evil.
In the past twenty years, I have taught film through my NGO at the United Nations and at New York University. It is a love story that captures my students the most. Their 10 favorite love stories in foreign films deceit different ways of loving, but they all try to overcome these obstacles to find it. Although they may not always get their happy ending, it’s always worth the risk:
1. JOJO RABBIT – (New Zealand) 2019, director Taika Waititi. During World War ll, ten-year-old Jojo is being brainwashed as a Hitler Youth. Strangely, his mother allows this, for it is her only way to protect him. We see how deeply a mother loves her son as she prepares him to be independent. Simultaneously, the director expresses his love for the future of children to do what’s right.
2. HONEYLAND– (Republic of Northern Macedonia) 2019, directors Tamara Kotevska and Ljubomir Stefanov. Nominated for an Oscar for Best Documentary and Best Feature Film, this story recreates a Paradise Lost and its destruction by a greedy man. Love for beauty and nature, and the desire to recapture it, is represented by honey – becoming extinct – and man’s inhumanity to lose it.
3. NEVER LOOK AWAY – (Germany) 2018, director Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck. Based on the life of the famous painter, Gerhard Richter, the director recreates the artist’s search for Truth. It is only through love for Art that the artist can find peace. It is this tumultuous search that pushes him/her to create.
4. CAPERNAUM – (Lebanon) 2018, director Nadine Labaki. Lost children, abandoned, hungry, and forced to go against their conscience, are victims of war-torn Lebanon and Syria. The director opens her heart by using her hand-held camera to capture how children suffer in their struggle to survive. It is through her love for these children that we understand and want to help.
5. FACES PLACES – (France) 2017, directors Agnes Varda and JR. At 89-years-old and one year before her death, famed filmmaker, Agnes Varda embarks on a road trip to show her appreciation to the people of France. As a token of her deep love, she offers them a new type of art – photos of themselves – while she is making a film of their acceptance. Photography mixes with cinematography, the moving image fuses with still art, to show the director’s love for people and give them Art.
6. LION – (India/ Australia) 2016, director Garth Davis. The true story of 5-year-old Saroo, who gets lost on a train in India and cannot communicate in a different dialect to return home. He is placed in an orphanage and adopted by a couple from Tasmania, Australia. Twenty-five years later, his obsession to find his biological mother is proof of his filial love.
7. TONI ERDMANN – (Germany / Romania) 2016, director Maren Ade. A father loves his ambitious, modern daughter and wants to help her understand what happiness and love are. But the generational gap proves to be stronger than his quest. Despite his struggles and sacrifices, she answers when she sings Whitney Houston’s song, “Learning to love yourself is the greatest love of all.”
8. PHOENIX – (Germany) 2014, director Christian Petzold. Nelly survives World War II because she is obsessed at Auschwitz to be loved again by the man she loves. She does return to him but disfigured, and he does not recognize her. Deceitfully, he schemes to help her survive the traumas of her past. But as she learns the truth, will her love forgive him?
9. IDA– (Poland) 2013, director Pawel Pawlikowski. Ida embarks on a spiritual journey to choose between a life of love and family, or God and religion. As she voyages toward the answer, she learns about her history and what the material world can offer. But she keeps repeating, “And then?” She realizes it is love for God and the spirit that can offer her the truest love.
10. CASABLANCA– (USA/ Morocco) 1942, director Michael Curtiz. This is the best love story of all. For those who will see this film for the first time, I am jealous. This is an American movie made in Morocco with an anti-Hollywood ending. It shows and answers what is true love? What we see on the screen is a love that hurts – for all of us. And yet, love must be experienced, and this film must be seen!
Roberta Seret, Ph.D., is the director of Advanced English and Film at the United Nations for the Hospitality Committee and Founder of the NGO at the United Nations, International Cinema Education. She is the author of the Transylvanian Trilogy, with Love Odyssey releasing March 23, 2021. Visit her website for more information.
KO Média is excited to reveal the April issue of ELLE Canada featuring Haitian-born, Montreal-raised DJ and producer Kaytranada. The Grammy-nominated artist talks about the overlooked Black and queer contribution to techno music, his latest dance-music album, and how Covid put his collaboration plans with Janet Jackson on hold. He also opens up about a recent breakup and what it’s really like playing virtual shows. “It’s the only time [during the pandemic] when I felt alive, when I felt like I was doing something real,” he revealed about a show streamed live from the Satosphère projection room at Montreal’s Société des arts technologiques.
Kaytranada isn’t the only local artist on the rise. We highlight 10 other Canadian musicians to check out now, plus two Canadian women-led companies selling clean beauty via vegan perfume oils, and one Toronto-born designer whose ethically made shoes and accessories have been worn by the likes of Zendaya and Meghan Markle.
This edition also focuses on freedom fighters of all kinds. A feature interview with author Judy Batalion reveals the long-lost stories of women in Poland’s underground Jewish resistance during the Second World War, while writer Caitlin Stall-Paquet gets real about period shame, period pain, and the rights of all women, trans, and non-binary menstruators in her article Go With the Flow.
Plus, what do Ancient Greece, Madonna and Boss pantsuits have in common? We look back at the history of the bra before flashing forward to this spring and summer for the beauty and fashion runway trends you’ll need to know (think cherry-red lips and haute denim).
The April issue of ELLE Canada will hit stands on Monday, March 15th.
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