September 5, 2012 |
CHARLOTTE - Enveloped by red, white, and blue, thousands of black and brown faces will stand out this week at the Democratic National Convention, mirroring an increasingly diverse America and contrasting with scenes from the Republican convention that just ended. Led by a president with a black father and a white mother, Democrats will tout diversity and sell themselves as inclusionary, sensitive to the most marginalized, and hip to the nation's changing demographics. Of their delegates, one study found, 26 percent are black.
September 1, 2012 |
Private-equity behemoth Carlyle Group stepped into the Philadelphia region again Thursday by agreeing to pay $4.9 billion for the automotive and industrial paint division of DuPont Co., which is based in Wilmington. DuPont Performance Coatings makes or sells paints in 70 countries and has 11,000 employees worldwide, including about 600 in the Delaware, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey region. It was unclear Thursday how many might lose their jobs when the unit shifts to Carlyle after the deal closes in early 2013 - or how many remaining with DuPont might be laid off in the future because of the divestiture.
July 19, 2012 |
IRWIN, Pa. - A fiery Mitt Romney on Tuesday accused President Obama of believing the government is more vital to a thriving economy than the nation's workers and dreamers, scrambling to get back on message by declaring of Obama, "I'm convinced he wants Americans to be ashamed of success. " The new Romney approach came as Democrats pressed for the release of more of Romney's tax returns and hounded the Republican candidate over discrepancies in his returns when he left his private equity firm.
July 16, 2012 |
From the pastoral serenity of "Visions of Arcadia" at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, we turn this week to its antithesis, the paintings, drawings, and photographs by Eric Fischl at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts. As with the Arcadians, nudes and semi-nudes predominate in Fischl's work, but there the resemblance ends. Instead of idyllic harmony, Fischl gives us tension, ambiguity, mild — and sometimes explicit — eroticism and the unsettling sense of not being able to figure out what's going on. Fischl has been making such visual provocations since the 1980s, when he became known for suggesting on canvas that suburbia was something less than a white-bread paradise.
July 14, 2012 |
Once one of the most highly regarded college presidents in the nation, Graham B. Spanier emerged in Thursday's investigative report on Pennsylvania State University as a main villain in what experts said could best be summed up as a complete failure in university leadership. Spanier knew about allegations of inappropriate behavior by former assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky in 1998 and 2001 but failed to inform the university's board of trustees, according to the exhaustive report prepared by former FBI Director Louis Freeh and his team.
July 12, 2012 |
Checking the skittish world economy, it's tough to read the signs when major producers can't agree: DuPont Co. scrambled Tuesday to dispute an Australia-based rival's claim that factories have stopped buying titanium dioxide, a basic industrial chemical that whitens paints, plastics, and papers. Demand for pigments made from titanium ore "has in essence gone from full steam ahead to full stop in a little over eight weeks," warned David Robb, managing director at Iluka Resources Ltd., on Monday.
July 7, 2012 |
For a region that faced the threat of having the heart ripped out of its oil industry with the closure of two Delaware River refineries, it was good to hear that Sunoco Inc.'s Philadelphia refinery will keep pumping. Beyond saving 850 jobs at the refinery, the new operator — the Washington-based private-equity firm Carlyle Group — hopes to add another 200 jobs as it modernizes and expands the sprawling facility in South Philadelphia. At the same time, workers continued returning to the former ConocoPhillips refinery in Delaware County, where they will retool the refinery to produce jet fuel for a subsidiary of Delta Air Lines.
June 29, 2012 |
Summer's here and so is Harrisburg's 45th edition of the "Art of the State: Pennsylvania," showcasing work by commonwealth artists all summer in the museum next door to the State Capitol. Featured are 129 works in all media by 115 artists, culled from 1,800 submissions. The news this year is that artists in south-central Pennsylvania's 717 area code came out in force and represent more than a third of exhibitors. Thus Cumberland County's 17 participants put it ahead of Philadelphia with 16, while Montgomery takes third place with 12. So turf rivalry this year is between five-county Southeastern Pennsylvania with 38 artists versus 50 from the 717-area counties, led numerically by Cumberland, Lancaster, and York.
June 24, 2012 |
Things have changed since 1961, when Jasper Johns made his Painting Bitten by a Man, an encaustic painting out of which he actually took a chomp, thereby embedding it with a vague eroticism (that Johns, a quiet gay man, kept the painting in his personal collection for many years before giving it to MoMA only added to its mystique). Now, a few decades down the road, another "Painting Bitten by a Man" — this time an exhibition at Vox Populi titled after the Johns painting — brings together the efforts of two artists, Brian Kokoska and Jonathan VanDyke, who seem happy to let their queer sensibilities permeate every aspect of their art. I did not see VanDyke's presentation of his three-hour performance, Cordoned Area, on opening night, but have since walked around the large piece of canvas on Vox Populi's floor on which two male dancers cavorted with each other and paint, covering their clothing and the canvas (and part of the wall behind)