Issue 6
Spring 2017

What we know from art is this: the times mark you whether or not you desire it, and dreams of withdrawal are as foolish from the president’s foes as from his make-it-great-again nostalgists. Artist or autocrat, you cannot take a pause from history.
Editor's letter Issue Sold Out

Essays

The Beat of Dissent

by Chloé Buire

No city has a music scene like Luanda, where rappers risk jail to rhyme against the regime. Up all night in the most expensive city on earth

Cinderblocks

by Frederick Deknatel

Reconstruction is war by other means. Even before the horrific bombardment of Syria’s largest city, the battle to control its future had already begun

Their Alabaster Chambers

by Daniel Fairfax

The new film A Quiet Passion is as gemlike as any verse by Emily Dickinson. But like all of Terence Davies’ movies, it owes more to painting than poetry

Negatives

We Never Go Out of Style

Every single American pop star was #WithHer — except Taylor Swift. Did she vote for Trump? Her neo-Nazi fans, happy to fill her blank space with Gothic-lettered hatred, are pretty sure of it
by Zachary Woolfe

Interviews

Matthew Barney

“Out west you have a kind of horizontality and openness, but then you come up against a mountain front, and then you go into the ravines of that mountain system, and you’re held. I think it was on that emotional level that I connected with New York, through its extreme landscape.”

Ma Yansong

Every time I hear people talk about tradition, they fail. All Chinese architects do is keep copying or accepting what they believe to be modern. But the fact is, if you don’t have an origin you will always be stuck.

Negatives

Fortress of Solitude

by Lauretta Charlton

When the National Museum of African-American History and Culture opened last fall, the Obama presidency seemed a kind of apotheosis. In Trump’s Washington, the museum’s mission seems more urgent, and more fragile

An Honest Mistake

by Shivani Radhakrishnan

All politicians lie, but they usually know they’re doing it. The new American president demands a new kind of epistemology, where truth itself has lost its meaning

Don’t Explain

by Michael Kinnucan

Did anyone have a worse election than Ezra Klein? The failure of Hillary Clinton is the failure of Vox — and yet, in this grim age to come, we may come to miss our know-it-all wonkbloggers

The Blazing World

by Tan Copsey

How to breathe in the Trumpocene? With the Paris Agreement in the balance, ecologists have no choice but to give up the conference-center coffee and roll up their sleeves

Portfolio

The art of Ana Vaz: cheetahs and colonists