Sunday, September 17, 2006


Spent zero time in the studio today (and not by coincidence that today was full of 'beauty'). Went to a lecture by Barb T as she took down the exhibit of her collection of artist's books at the Contemporary Crafts Gallery, and then went to see 'The Beauty Academy of Kabul', a documentary about a beauty school that was started in Kabul soon after the fall of the Taliban government.

The lecture by Barb was great -- as she took down the books, she talked about them, how she acquired them, and then passed them around for all to see and handle. 'Beauty' isn't the theme here, but many were quite beautiful.

'The Beauty Academy' was an interesting movie, sweet at times but infuriating otherwise. Professional hairdressers with generous hearts and a mission went to Kabul to teach women a profession that they could do at home, and make excellent money with. That was great. What wasn't great was seeing the standard of beauty of the 21st century West pushed on these women. The level of reverence the Western teachers have for beauty also caused quite a bit of laughter at the showing I was at. At graduation, the top prize was named the Anna Wintour Award. And why would anyone in Kabul care who Anna Wintour is? They could've named it after an inspiring Afghan woman, couldn't they?

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