Emptying the A&E notebook

August 6, 2008
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Some thoughts on recent arts encounters that didn't make it into my weekly IBJ A&E review column:

--  With a trio of young, out-of-town sports nuts in tow, I recently paid my first visit in years to the National Art Museum of Sport. Don't worry if the museum isn't on your cultural radar: It's housed unobtrusively in corridors and lobbies of the University Place Conference Center at IUPUI. While you won't find blockbuster exhibitions here, the pieces are varied and interesting--and a walk-through is free. Right now, you can see work focused on the Olympics, including posters designed by fine art legends Robert Rauschenberg, Victor Vasarely, and Alex Katz.

-- Last night I caught a sneak preview at the State Museum's IMAX theater of the new 3-D computer animated film "Fly Me to the Moon." It's a remakable technical achievement with some of the most breathtaking visuals I've seen in this format. Unfortunately, it's also a remarkably bad writing achievement, with a script that even made my 6-year-old cringe. Question: Didn't someone realize how lame the drama, inconsistant the action, and unfunny the jokes are? And, given that the lip movements don't match much of the dialogue anyway, couldn't they have given it one more rewrite and redub before sending it out to theaters? A shame, because the IMAX and the show's sponsors are doing some great tie-ins with the space program, offering free weekend tickets and interactive activities in the lobby.

--I was out of town when the Indianapolis Museum of Arts latest ticketed show, "To Live Forever" opened. A walk through last weekend revealed that the small artifacts were as interesting--if not moreso--than the large pieces. Not as thought-provoking or well-put-together as the recent Roman show, it's nonetheless another feather in the cap for the IMA--even if the show would be just as comfortable in an historical museum.

For more reviews and previews, visit www.ibj.com/arts.

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