Melanie Griffith Goes Bra-less

melanie36A714CB00000578-0-image-m-55_1469683181095When Melanie Griffith did “Chicago” on Broadway, I wrote: “She can’t sing, she can’t dance, she can’t act — I love her!” And I did. I loved her again yesterday. She dared to go braless in a sheer dress at a Hallmark Channel Summer TCA event in Los Angeles. This report gushed about her outfit, but let’s face it: what stuns in this photo is not the dress, it’s the face.

Meet Udne, America’s First Supermodel

udne6df45528ab4d126c770b44776969b78b_1df6cc7b860421ba061ab9faf8abfd1a1599x2000_quality99_o_1amgdahpr1ca71dvm1hn61kut1t0r9rpicabiaresize250x250_c591a9ecb17036d7ce7168efbead91f1_9425d84e65ca6124d17fbf865427c2e71798x1800_quality99_o_1amgd2ja91ii71jfh1od1u2410qa95Who was Udnie? The question plagued scholars of Francis Picabia for years as they searched for the mysterious subject of his 1913 painting “Udnie (Jeune fille américaine; Danse),” the centerpiece of a survey of the artist’s work at the Kunsthaus Zürich (the show heads to the Museum of Modern Art, New York, in November but the catalogue is already published). Thanks to James Bone’s new book, “The Curse of Beauty,” the riddle may at last have been solved.

“20th Century Women” To Debut In NY

women4016“20th Century Women,” the new film from “Beginners” writer/director Mike Mills, will have its world premiere as the centerpiece screening of the 54th New York film festival, it was announced Tuesday. The is the second addition to the event’s lineup, following the reveal of the opening night selection, “The 13th,” Ava DuVernay’s documentary on race and prison. Annette Bening heads the 1970s-set film as a single mother raising her teenage son (newcomer Lucas Jade Zumann) in a sprawling bohemian house in Santa Barbara, shared by a carpenter (Billy Crudup) and a punk artist (Greta Gerwig). Elle Fanning rounds out the cast as her son’s rebellious friend. The festival pegs 20th Century Women as a “texturally and behaviorally rich new comedy.”

Tilda To Play Auntie Mame?

tildaUnknownHow many times do I have to say this? They shouldn’t remake classics, which can rarely be improved. They should remake lousy movies and make them better. The latest offender is “Auntie Mame,” the peerless madcap classic released in 1958 starring Roz Russell and based on a witty book by Patrick Dennis. The new version is being scripted for Tilda Swinton (pictured), a charmingly eccentric actress but no Auntie Mame. But who is? (Besides Cher, of course.)

Ballet Can’t Quit Its Cult Of Thinness

YourBody2-290x300Dance Magazine reports: ‘Dancers interviewed on the condition of anonymity confide that weight gain can get them fired while thinness can help them advance. Even though the field has made progress, and has become more aware of the health risks of dieting, directors having ‘fat chats’ to tell dancers to slim down remains routine.” Says one corps member, “In shape for us is being hungry. Eat nothing and see how far you can go.”’

Artist Sophia Al-Maria Says “People Hate Islam, But They’re Titillated By It, Too”

sophia1080As her first solo show opens in New York, at the Whitney, the Qatari-American artist talks about Gulf pop culture, gross veil fetishes – and why she’s not playing the “native informant.” Pictured is a detail from her video “Black Friday,” which was filmed in an unopened mall in Qatar.

Four Americans Make Booker Long List

longlistFour American authors have made the Man Booker Prize longest of 13 novels, with former double winner JM Coetzee making a re-appearance. Six books are by women and seven by men. Of the titles, the only one I have read, and enjoyed, is “The Sellout,” by Paul Beatty. The winner will be announced on October 25th.