Episode #322

Boxing, Oil Refinery, From Hell

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Saturday, June 01, 2002

We find art on the ropes: host Kurt Andersen and writer Robert Anasi talk about the artistic attraction to boxing. Hollywood captures the "sweet science" and dancers bring Muhammad Ali's life to the stage. And an architecture critic finds the sublime in an oil refinery.

Guests:

Robert Anasi

Commentary: '90s Fashion Artifacts

Kurt remembers the fashion of the '90s.

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Design for the Real World: Oil Refinery

Design critic Philip Nobel finds something transcendent about what most of us would consider an eyesore — the Bayway oil refinery on the edge of the New Jersey Turnpike.

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Writer Robert Anasi on Boxing

Kurt Andersen and writer Robert Anasi look at the spectacle of boxing and the sport’s fascination for choreographers, painters, writers, and filmmakers. Anasi is an amateur boxer and the author of The Gloves: A Boxing Chronicle.

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Brown Butterfly

Muhammad Ali's moves become the inspiration for a new dance by the choreographer of Rent. Marlies Yearby's Brown Butterfly will bring Ali’s life to the stage with a mixture of dance, music, and video.

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George Bellows

The painter George Wesley Bellows painted scenes from boxing matches 100 years ago. His powerful images celebrate the sport and depict another dimension of the boxing spectacle — the savagery of the audience. 

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Cinematic Knockouts

Filmmakers have explored the drama and brutality of boxing since the beginning of film history. Writers Victor Navasky and Jack Newfield talk about boxing at the movies. 

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The Sounds From Hell

The film From Hell is just out on video and DVD. It’s a retelling of the Jack the Ripper story, but its gruesome features are not so much visual as sonic. Steve Boeddeker the sound designer for From Hell demonstrates some of his scary sounds in his California studio.

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