Bits: 07.10.09

Alberto Burri, Grande Cretto, 1980

• SanSuzie at C-Monster tours the gigantic land-art work Grande Cretto in western Sicily. A dozen years after an earthquake destroyed Gibellina in 1968, artist Alberto Burri covered the hillside streets and ruins of old Gibellina (residents relocated the town 18 km away) with five feet of white concrete.

• Artist Damon Rich's "bird's-eye view of foreclosure misery."

• A controversial NYC Calvin Klein billboard showing what some call an "orgy" prompted idsgn's Josh Smith to take a look back at the history of sex in advertising.

• A comedic inversion of the story of Christians spotting Christ's likeness in unlikely places, and a remarkable portfolio of megachurches by Christoph Morlinghaus.

GOOD highlights Zebra bicycle lane dividers: high-visibility, often recycled, plastic humps that keep cars out of bike lanes.

Snarkmarket and Liberator Press are offering their new book New Liberal Arts, which aims to explore "twenty-first century ways of doing the liberal arts," as a free pdf.

• French architect Jean Nouvel has been tapped to transform the old Renault plant on Paris' Île Seguin in the Seine into an art center. Local angle: Nouvel designed Minneapolis' Guthrie Theater, and former Walker chief curator Philippe Vergne (now at Dia), was originally hired to direct an arts facility on the island in the Seine -- back when Francois Pinault had a center, aborted in 2005, in mind for there.

• Nouvel has long championed preservation of the Renault plant as an important site of France's labor history. Years ago he set up an "association for the transformation of the île Seguin" to save as many buildings there as possible; he, largely, lost that battle. But his new facility will use green technology, including solar, to create an "island for the arts" that will both "pay tribute to the memory of the island" and "awaken Ile Seguin from its torpor."

• London Exhibition: Democracy 2.0 by Steve Price at NO:ID, through July 12.

• Via Pink Tentacle, vintage Japanese action films starring dolls -- in 8 mm.

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