How Museums Tidy Up
Deaccessioning old works can be a complicated and fraught process. But even museums have to spring-clean now and then.
21 Savage and “Deported Americans”
Rapper 21 Savage’s deportation battle highlights an important aspect of contemporary immigration policy that is often overlooked.
Nelson Mandela’s Lasting Image
Since his death in 2013, Nelson Mandela has achieved icon status. Why is his image so ubiquitous, reproduced everywhere from tourist kitsch to high art?
Ai Weiwei’s Readymade: Politics
Chinese artist Ai Weiwei has been making political waves for decades, but his current shows are especially relevant to the United States.
The Colonialist Gaze of Matisse’s Odalisques
Henri Matisse's odalisques, or reclining nude females, were inspired by trips to exotic French colonies. But what was the story outside the frame?
What Does Archaeology Have to Do with Nationalism?
Many nations have adopted origin stories in order to link themselves more closely to heroic, historical figures.
Did A Star is Born Make Judy Garland a Gay Icon?
One scholar argues that Judy Garland's role in A Star is Born was so pivotal because it involved both gender impersonation and “racial drag."
How High School Reunions Connect Us With the Past
High school reunions have become an important part of managing and presenting identity, as these scholars and poets consider.
When Dole Sent Georgia O’Keeffe to Hawaii
In 1939, Dole Pineapple Company sent Georgia O’Keeffe to Hawaii for three months in order to produce works that could be used in their advertisements.
What Smoke Signals Means 20 Years Later
This groundbreaking film was the first movie to be written, directed, co-produced, and acted by Native Americans.