Recent links of note:
“American donations shore up conservation efforts in France”
Elena Goukassian, The Art Newspaper
Support for the arts and culture may be declining within the United States, but the tradition of American cultural philanthropy survives in certain corners abroad. In France, Paris’s Cathedral of Notre-Dame is restoring its flying buttresses in a project funded in large part by American donors, and, since 2006, the American Friends of Chartres (AFC) have been collecting donations for the conservation of the Chartres Cathedral. “My experience is that Americans really love France,” says Dominique Lallement, the president of the AFC. While the majority of funds for such conservation projects still come from the French Cultural Ministry, Americans aim to conserve these European monuments because of their cultural and historical value—sometimes filtered through their portrayals on Broadway and film. They’re also undoubtedly encouraged by the fact that these sorts of donations are tax-deductible in the United States.
“Mrs. Stoner Speaks: An Interview with Nancy Gardner Williams”
Patricia Reimann, The Paris Review
John Williams (1922–94) became known as the man who wrote “the perfect novel” for Stoner (1965), a quiet, luminous story about a farm boy who becomes an English professor at the University of Missouri. Williams’s other three novels are entirely different in genre, although similar in their clear prose and masterly storytelling and in their reckoning with questions raised by Williams’s experiences in World War II, in which he served as a radio operator. Nothing but the Night (1948) is a psychological noir about a mentally ill young man caught in a death spiral; Butcher’s Crossing (1960) is a literary Western that strips away the Emersonian idealism long attached to the settling of the American West; and the National Book Award–winning Augustus (1972) reimagines the Roman emperor’s rise to power. On the re-release of Nothing but the Night (a book from which Williams later distanced himself) from New York Review Books Classics, Williams’s widow, Nancy Gardner Williams, gives an interview that reveals much about the man who dedicated his life to his slight but brilliant body of work.
“8-14 West Eighth Street: Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney, Auguste Noel, and the Making of a Great New York Building”
Francis Morrone, New York Studio School
Watch Francis Morrone’s fascinating talk about the New York Studio School building, presented in December 2016 and now available on YouTube.
From our pages
“Levenstein’s long exposures”