Arts Roundup: Start of the Semester Edition!

A roundup of some of the arts events on offer around Harvard this semester. By ANDREW LIN Whether you’re an eager-eyed freshman or a long-suffering senior, the start of another academic year at Harvard heralds all manner of academic and personal adventures. Even with the usual beginning-of-semester buzz of concentration requirements and extracurricular meetings, the freedom granted by shopping week and the add/drop period makes this the perfect time to get out into the wonderful world of the arts at Harvard! Your Harvard tuition implicitly offers you access to a wealth of riches in the arts, from long-standing Harvard institutions such …






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HUDS and You: Soups Edition, Part 2!

A review of some more of Harvard’s soupy offerings. Spring notionally should offer a respite from the tyranny of the harsh and uniquely Bostonian cold that normally drives so many Harvard students to the soups on offer from Harvard University Dining Services. Cold shocks, however, have proved a boon to the consumption of the various soups on offer at Harvard, a realm into which we shall plunge further in this week’s considered comments on five more of Harvard’s very own soups. Comparisons abound here in this week’s edition across countries and continents: Harvard in its soups offers an embrace of …






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The Arts Public

A look at some of the arts exhibits hanging around Harvard this week. Art Brut: “The Female Figure: Idols and Shame” at the Mather Three Columns Gallery    The student visual artist at Harvard is amply represented in the hallowed halls of Harvard’s various houses. Public art spaces for students abound within the campus, both in the form of selected works hung permanently within the houses as well as dedicated House galleries. Among the largest of these in-house galleries is Mather’s very own Sandra Naddaff and Leigh Haffrey Three Columns Gallery, a triumph of brutalist public art in the tradition of …






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Chatting about Chicken

A selective review of some of the chicken offerings that HUDS provides.   With the end of spring break comes that inevitable return to Harvard – and with that inevitable return to Harvard comes the inevitable re-acquaintance with Harvard University Dining Services’ love of chicken. Chicken, that greatest of institutional meats by virtue of its low food cost per unit meal, is a staple of an institution which must cope with feeding over 6,000 hungry students. But chicken itself is a meat that often can go badly wrong: when poorly prepared, it can offer a bland, dry, and unfulfilling experience …






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Crackling Cookies 

A look at the doughy discoid treats HUDS has to offer.  Following the resounding success of the Indy’s first inaugural HUDS review, we are proud to present the second iteration – and this time, we’re indulging our sweet tooth with a review of the cookies HUDS has on offer. For those of you unfamiliar with the nature of dining at Harvard (we’re looking at you, Dudley Co-Op people), Harvard’s cookies are almost uniformly offered at lunch and Sunday brunch as the lone dessert option of choice. Consequently, they have attained a uniquely important standing in the hearts and minds of foodie …






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Conan on the Charles

One of Harvard’s many stars comes back on campus.   In case you haven’t already heard, whether via the news or through some envy-inducing Facebook selfies; or simply over the endless, undulating Harvard grapevine, Conan O’Brien was on campus this Friday! For those among our readership who do not follow the shifting world of TV talk shows, (or alternately those unfamiliar with the moving pictures on those new-fangled picture screens they call televisions) Conan O’Brien ’85 is a History and Literature concentrator of Mather House who rocketed to fame as a TV talk show host on network and cable. His …






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Violins and Valentines

A quick sampler of som e of what the late romantic classical pantheon has to offer on Valentine’s Day. So it’s another early spring season, and with the usual return-to-psets-and-readings antics of a spring semester at Harvard comes the inevitable scramble for classes, summer recommendation letters, and Valentine’s Day plans. For all our readers in established or potentially soon-to-be-established relationships, however, we at the Indy want to remind you of one essential facet of any successful Valentine’s Day: appropriate mood music. Of course, there are the usual selections from the last fifty or so years of the modern pop-music tradition …






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The Crow-man Revisited

Thoughts on the Carpenter Center for the Visual Arts. For all his Internationalist fervor, the noted French modernist architect Le Corbusier only ever designed one building in the United States, a country arguably rooted in multicultural assimilation and integration. This historical peccadillo, however, is rather easily explained by Le Corbusier’s political leanings: although he was never consciously opposed to American capitalism per se, Le Corbusier always found more favor with the mass-housing estates espoused by mid-century French big-state socialism (and even brief flirtations with Soviet governmental grandstanding). It is therefore altogether fitting that Le Corbusier’s one great North American building …






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The Lapsed Artist Returns 

One former art student’s Harvard-subsidized return to watercolors.  Beneath the brushed metal, polished wood, and prematurely creaking doors of the renovated Leverett House there lies a quiet and rather out-of-the-way gem for anyone seeking to practice the visual arts in their spare time. The Leverett Art Room, kin to similar art rooms in Dunster and Holworthy (for the freshmen) among others, is buried deep within the subterranean basement complex of McKinlock. At the end (and on the left of) a long tunnel fittingly framed with original paintings from Leverett residents, the Leverett Art Room is open 24/7 to anyone with …






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Browsing the Library: Houghton and Pusey

An exploration of some of the exhibits from the Harvard Library Collections.  For all the talk of soothing shelves of books, cool marble paneling (and vinyl-grain wood veneer if you’re in Lamont), and plush armchairs, libraries at Harvard are more often than not innately stressful places. Whether it be a problem set bearing down on you or an essay whose thesis resolutely refuses to come into focus, the late-night struggles that libraries house evince the fundamentally stressful nature of a modern liberal arts education. If you’re a student who finds the library stressful at times, help is at hand, and …






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Autumnal Arts Awakened

A pre/review of the Harvard Art Museum’s modern art exhibits for the fall. The start of any new semester at Harvard brings with it many well-worn rituals: the usual ‘how-was-your-summer’ inquiries, the inevitable promises to catch up, and the slow babble of lectures and sections (and section kids) all set a soothing rhythm in proffered words for the returning Harvard student. For those desirous of a break from the trials of Harvard student life, however, your tuition does cover one rarely used benefits—free admission to the Harvard Art Museums, the 120-year-old repository of Harvard’s 250,000 art pieces. And what a …






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Subcultures Subverted

BY ANDREW LIN On artistic subcultures versus a catchy T-Swift single. First come the bass tones, heavy and minimalistic, the not-quite-identifiable apex of a musical progression stretching back through to Bach and Gibbons and a whole host of other dead names. Then come the opening lyrics, a barrage of monotone words that rapidly morph into a steady portrait of crazy infatuation slipping deeper and deeper. The chorus then progresses forth, calling forth a mock-grandeur grounded by resounding bass chords and the rolling elegy of the vocals and lyrics. And then more lyrics, sung in the same tune but this time …






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Thanksgiving will be Televised

BY ANDREW LIN An exploration of the portrayal of Thanksgiving in popular culture and art. Within the confines of the great and storied calendar of holidays that make up the American recreational canon, Thanksgiving occupies a unique place. Though certainly not of the same obscure ilk of federally legislated and popularly neglected holidays such as President’s Day and Columbus Day, Thanksgiving nonetheless occupies a somewhat less rarefied place in the American consciousness. Certainly in feasting and consumerist consumption Thanksgiving is not bested; whilst the dueling Thanksgiving turkey and Christmas ham (or the reverse) may hold each other at bay, Thanksgiving’s …






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