Once there was a man who wore the finest silks in Italy, but traded them all for sackcloth. His father was a wealthy cloth merchant, and in his youth he gamboled about Umbria in colorful, dandyish outfits. But when he had his calling he stripped off his fine clothes, pledged his body to God, and spent the rest of his life in a mendicant’s robe. He was Saint Francis of Assisi , and when the archbishop of Buenos Aires was proclaimed pope in 2013, he gave himself a new name, in honor of a man unembroidered. I wonder what both Francises, saint and pontiff, might make of “Heavenly Bodies,” the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s colossal, hotly debated and richly anointed exhibition on the interweaving of fashion and Roman Catholicism. Years in the making, it includes exceptional loans of vestments from the Vatican — some of which have never before left Rome — and more than 150 ensembles of secular clothing from the last century. Here is papal regalia of unsurpassed intricacy, but also … [Read more...] about ‘Heavenly Bodies’ Brings the Fabric of Faith to the Met
Poland Arrests Suspected Russian Spy, Three-Month Pre-Trial Detention
WARSAW, Poland (AP) – Prosecutors in northern Poland said Monday a foreign national suspected of spying for Russia will remain in custody for three months until an investigation is completed. Prosecutors in Gdansk responsible for military matters said the foreigner, whose identity has not been released, admitted to having passed sensitive information to Russian intelligence. The suspect has been in European Union-member Poland since January and has collected information on key infrastructure and security procedures in the country’s north, spokeswoman Grazyna Wawryniuk said. Poland´s gas terminal and key ports are located in the north. A court granted a prosecution request to keep the suspect in custody for three months to assist investigators. The suspect faces up to 10 years in prison if convicted. This is the latest in a number of arrests of individuals suspected of spying for Russia since Moscow’s Feb. 24 2022 invasion of Ukraine. Poland has remained a staunch supporter … [Read more...] about Poland Arrests Suspected Russian Spy, Three-Month Pre-Trial Detention
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. — For a long time, Joe Minter managed to share a yard with his wife, Hilda, their two sons and 100,000 of their neighbors. His scruffy three-bedroom house filled up most of a small city lot, just up the hill from Martin Luther King Jr. Drive. But somehow he made it work. When these souls began to cry out for their own lawn ornaments, however, he realized he would have to find more room. The sloping land to the south and west of Mr. Minter’s dooryard belonged to the two historically black graveyards called Grace Hill and Shadow Lawn. “We are in the presence of about 100,000 African ancestors,” Mr. Minter will tell visitors who drop by on a Sunday morning. These are the emancipated slaves and farmers and steelworkers who made Birmingham: the muscle that built the “Magic City.” The dead weren’t going anywhere, but the rest of the neighborhood was thinning out, Mrs. Minter said. Some homeowners died off; others drove north and never came back. So the Minters began … [Read more...] about Scrap-Iron Elegy
Is It New York Fashion Week? Or Is It Rihanna Inc.?
Is New York Fashion Week, which officially begins Thursday but actually begins Wednesday (thank you, Tom Ford), a dead duck? Is it a sinking ship, in the soup, up the creek? Is it — gasp! — over? Not “over” in the literal sense, of course. There are more than 130 shows on the schedule. But “over” in the substantive sense. Over as a power player in a global system that puts a premium on showcasing clothes that redefine how women present themselves. Over as we know it. Forget whether or not suits are back; this is the existential question underpinning the fashion season. The debate has been raging all summer, ever since Rodarte and Proenza Schouler decamped to Paris for couture in July, and Thom Browne announced he would move to Paris and show during ready-to-wear, and then Joseph Altuzarra said “me too,” and even Lacoste said it was likewise heading back to its city of birth, and then Narciso Rodriguez canceled his show in favor of individual presentations, and Rag & Bone … [Read more...] about Is It New York Fashion Week? Or Is It Rihanna Inc.?