This is Akio Takamori’s awesome ceramic sculpture and photograph from 2009. (Click to enlarge.)
  • This is Akio Takamori’s awesome ceramic sculpture and photograph from 2009. (Click to enlarge.)

The King of Ceramics Is Retiring: Akio Takamori, the magnificent ceramic artist and professor who’s drawn at least a couple of generations of art students from all over the country to the University of Washington, taught his last classes this spring, and he’s now retiring. It’s hard to even imagine UW art without him. This comes at a time when the School of Art is also getting a new chair, Jamie Walker, a new gallery director, Scott Lawrimore, and three other longtime profs have retired as well: Patricia Failing (art history), Paul Berger (founder of the UW photo program! and a whole mess of awesome himself), and public artist/sculptor John Young. Takamori is represented by James Harris Gallery, where his most recent solo show was in 2011.

Come Devour the Future with Charles Mudede: Tonight, there will be a conversation about Thomas Pikety's new, very long, and very popular book Capital in the 21st Century at the Vermillion Gallery. Charles Mudede will be hosting this conversation. The book presents a very interesting theory of capitalism (theory in the social science sense and not the scientific one). Piketty argues that the nature of capitalism is to grow at a low rate (1 percent), and under such a condition, those who have financial assets do much better than those whose income is drawn completely from wages. Ultimately, what matters in capitalist societies is not handwork or innovation but inheritance. Piketty actually believes this is a law of capital. He calls it: “r > g” (what this means is that the rate of return on capital tends to be higher than the rate of economic growth). The law comes down to: "The past devours the future."

NFFTY Sells Out (in a Good Way!): For the past seven years, Jesse Harris, the founder of the National Film Festival for Talented Youth, has created custom commercials for major NFFTY sponsor Volvo, to screen during each year's fest. This year, Harris's custom ad got picked up by Volvo for its summer ad campaign. Look for it on TV, or watch a YouTube version here.

Kids Getting Art Dollars: No, not through actual public school education in art, SILLY GOOSE. It’s through the city’s Office of Arts & Culture (bless you, OACA). This year’s funds for Youth Arts and Work Readiness Arts Program, or WRAP, now in its second year, add up to $346,000. It’s all for arts training out of school hours for middle- and high-school age kids. WRAP is a partnership with Seattle Youth Violence Prevention Initiative, and includes programs such as the Hendrix Music Academy and Urban Youth Chess Club’s Anti-Violence Project. WRAP covers how to make art, and how to make a career in arts, too. You can find complete lists of funded programs at Youth Arts and WRAP.

Do Not Question Their Authoritay: Cory Doctorow's novel Little Brother has been pulled from a Florida high school's summer reading program because the book raises "concerns that some parents might object to scenes involving...the idea of questioning authority"

Google Adds Street Art to Its Worldwide Art Map: Check it.

Entertainment, Weakly: This very long history of Entertainment Weekly is excellent, and it highlights everything that's wrong with corporate magazine culture.