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I Am Not Karl Lagerfeld

I Am Not Karl Lagerfeld

A man who designed things died this week, but what ended was his central, lifelong design: himself. I design things every day, but I am completely clueless about my own design. Death imposes reflection on us, whether we like it or not. So when I see a person pass away who was virtually a cartoon of […]

The Life of a Hermit TV Star: Sister Wendy Beckett

The Life of a Hermit TV Star: Sister Wendy Beckett

Saint Stephen’s Day 2018 was marked by the passing of the art historian, TV presenter, and author, Sister Wendy Beckett. I surprised myself when a few unexpected tears leaked out on hearing the news. It wasn’t from her untimely death; she was 88 after all. No, the tears, the more I thought about it, were […]

<i>El Huracán:</i> Facing our Fragility

El Huracán: Facing our Fragility

This reflection comes to us from Kyle Holton. A few months ago in a suburban movie theater, I wept uncontrollably. I was watching Incredibles 2 with my family. The tears came on me like gale force winds. My body silently shook while a storm surge of emotion flooded my senses. It was a category-4-Hurricane type […]

Stan Lee, Generational Alienation, and Spider-man: An Aspiring Novelist Becomes a Comics Legend

Stan Lee, Generational Alienation, and Spider-man: An Aspiring Novelist Becomes a Comics Legend

Grateful to share this reflection by Wenatchee the Hatchet: Just as the world (in Marvel comics) may know Spider-man yet not know Peter Parker, the world may likewise know that Stanley Lieber was Stan Lee, whether or not the world ever knew who Stanley Lieber was. The man Stan Lee, who died this week, became world-famous […]

The Canon That Crushed Richard Meier

The Canon That Crushed Richard Meier

Architect Richard Meier recently resigned as the leader of the business he created 50 years ago. He created stark white and glass High Modernist Masterpieces for all those years. He was the very model of a Modernist “Starchitect.” He was compelled to leave because he had been accused of disgusting behavior with women. Not unusual […]

New Religions, Fresh Heretics, and the Beyoncé-KISS Continuum

New Religions, Fresh Heretics, and the Beyoncé-KISS Continuum

The big 4-0 passed us by with hardly a whimper. It was just a couple weeks ago, but no one made a fuss, not even the band, who seldom pass up a chance at a cash grab. Perhaps it’s not all that surprising; on the list of Pop Culture Disasters, this one ranks pretty low–somewhere […]

Bringing You The Gospel, pt 46

Did We Even See the Same Movie?: How Art Works, and Why It Matters – Alissa Wilkinson

Grateful for this wonderful talk from special guest NYC Conference speaker Alissa Wilkinson, film critic for Vox and co-author of How to Survive the Apocalypse: Zombies, Cylons, Faith, and Politics at the End of the World.

Did We Even See the Same Movie?: How Art Works, and Why It Matters – Alissa Wilkinson from Mockingbird on Vimeo

Abstract Doubt

Abstract Doubt

Even when procrastinating on YouTube, I still exhibit the embarrassingly obscure interests of a unadulterated nerd. A week ago, a friend caught we wasting time while mesmerized by a clip of English change-ringing—a intricate method of chiming church bells of various tones to produce an eerie, ordered clamor. Sometimes I also watch lectures on theology […]

The Role of Art (Or, the Limitations of Self-Help) in Life and Work

The Role of Art (Or, the Limitations of Self-Help) in Life and Work

This one comes to us from Mark Casper. Recently I came across an article in The New Yorker that nearly bowled me over. It’s called Improving Ourselves to Death by Alexandra Schwartz, and it thoroughly outlines the negative consequences of living in a “self-improvement culture.” You may remember the post that appeared on Mockingbird earlier this year about […]

…Mistakes Were Made…

…Mistakes Were Made…

Some of us are so scared of being outed as human that we go to extreme measures to avoid any indication that we make mistakes. Architects, like me, are especially loath to admit error. You could say architects are conditioned to have ‘ego on steroids’ since the job is to manifest complete confidence in the […]

This Table Set For Us: <i>Babette’s Feast</i>

This Table Set For Us: Babette’s Feast

This review was written by David B. Witwer. We shuffle up the scarlet steps to find the stage already set for us. There is no curtain; sitting down we are transported from the city into a kitchen—marked by a long, simple table and wooden beams standing sentry. Bits of glass dangle overhead, awaiting the light. […]