1. ”Alien Artist H.R. Giger Dies.” The Swiss surrealist artist has died at the age of 74 following a fall.
“Swiss artist H.R. Giger, who designed the creature in Ridley Scott’s sci-fi horror classic Alien, has died at age 74 from injuries suffered in a fall, his museum said Tuesday. Sandra Mivelaz, administrator of the H.R. Giger museum in Gruyeres, western Switzerland, told The Associated Press that Giger died in a hospital on Monday. Giger’s works, often showing macabre scenes of humans and machines fused into hellish hybrids, influenced a generation of movie directors and inspired an enduring fashion for ’biomechanical’ tattoos. ’My paintings seem to make the strongest impression on people who are, well, who are crazy,’ Giger said in a 1979 interview with Starlog magazine. ’If they like my work they are creative…or they are crazy.’”
2. “Club Kid killer relives bloody crime.” Michael Alig on the murder of Angel Melendez.
“It was just after we had heaved the cardboard box containing Angel’s remains into the Hudson that we heard the deafening sound of helicopters. Police searchlights blinded us as we cowered by the roadside, raising our hands above our heads. In truth, there was no 4 a.m. swoop on that dark, chilly morning in March 1996. It was a figment of our drug-addled imaginations. Our day of reckoning on the West Side Highway was a paranoid hallucination caused by panic, fear and the mountain of heroin we’d consumed. Yet the dismembered corpse that Freez and I threw into the river and the sickening crime we had committed were all too real. Eighteen years on, looking back at the person I was at that time, I feel nothing but shame and disgust. I was a selfish junkie who killed another human being. But that’s not the Michael Alig I am today or the Michael Alig I was before I became an addict—the misfit from the Midwest who came to New York City in search of acceptance, opportunity and a whole lot of fun.”
3. “What Tonight’s Louie Gets Right (And Wrong) About Weight and Women.” Danielle Henderson on the speech that capped the third episode of Louie’s current season.
“I think that’s what Louie was getting at here, this gendered difference in how we treat fatness. He does so in his typically clever tone, flipping the script by being the pursued instead of the pursuer, making sure Vanessa is unapologetic about her desire, and emphasizing the absurdity of how he treats his body by going out for a Bang Bang (two huge meals back-to-back at two different restaurants) with his brother Robbie right after they make a pact to go back to the gym tomorrow. (An idea that, of course, fails spectacularly after the second meal.) Jim Norton says ’yuck’ when Vanessa walks by him in the club, and Louie demures and declines dates with her even though she routinely makes him blush and laugh. Vanessa is clever, charming, and beautiful, but because of her size she becomes undateable, a non-entity. I was on board with the trajectory of the episode until the last five minutes, when Vanessa gives a speech about how much it sucks to be fat.”
4. “Recently Spotted 103-Year-Old Orca Is Bad News for SeaWorld.” Jenny Kutner at TheDodo.com explains why.
“SeaWorld could be in trouble because of ’Granny,’ the world’s oldest known living orca. The 103-year-old whale (also known as J2) was recently spotted off Canada’s western coast with her pod—her children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren. But while the Granny sighting is thrilling for us, it’s problematic for SeaWorld. First of all, SeaWorld has claimed that ’no one knows for sure how long killer whales live,’ when simple figures or even living and thriving examples—like Granny—can give us a pretty good idea. The Whale and Dolphin Conservation project estimates that whales born in captivity only live to 4.5 years old, on average; many of SeaWorld’s orcas die before they reach their 20s. Perhaps because of their reduced lifespans, the whales are forced to breed continuously and at perilously young ages, which could also diminish their overall health.”
5. “The Paradox of Art As Work.” A.O. Scott on the fraught relationship between art and money.
“The question of who profits and who gets paid has become a contentious one. The cultural economy has always been mixed—a volatile blend of bazaar, bureaucracy and medieval court. Some parts of it appear, at least at first glance, to function by the rules of the free market. In reality, of course, this activity—represented by quaint, in some cases obsolescent institutions like the bookshop, the record store and the movie theater—has been governed by a complex web of middlemen and corporate players: agents, producers, movie studios, publishing houses, record companies and so on.”
Video of the Day: The trailer for Asia Argento’s Incompresa:
Links for the Day: A collection of links to items that we hope will spark discussion. We encourage our readers to submit candidates for consideration to firstname.lastname@example.org and to converse in the comments section.