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How Palm Springs Unified helps children overcome the barriers of poverty – Desert Sun09.04.21

Richard R. Clapp| Guest columnist

I have read the book, "White Fragility," as well as several others of the same ilk where the troubles in our society come down to the color of our skin. Having spent a lot of time thinking about this, I have come to a different conclusion.This is not to say that there isnt prejudice out there because of skin color, it is to say that what is going on in our country comes from a bigger problem.I believe the cause is the growing discrepancy between those that have and those that have not.

It is true that there is a much higher percentage of Black people or Hispanic people in poverty than white or Asian people.It is also a fact that poor children dont do as well in school as non poor children.If you look at standardized test scores, the higher the rate of poverty, the lower the test scores.It is not a straight line and there are always outliers; but, the conclusion seems inescapable:If you want to be successful in school, you cant be poor.

Why?A big part of the reason is that children in poverty do not get the same types and quantity of experiences that children not in poverty get just by the lives they live. If you are reading this column, then the chances are you are not in poverty. How many times have your children been to the beach?Compare what your children have experienced to those children in this valley in poverty.

If these opportunities could be provided to all children, would poor children do better in school?There is some evidence they do, and we dont have to look far to see.

If you look at the school districts in Riverside County and rank them in order of percentage of poverty, the Palm Springs Unified School District is always near the bottom.Usually 21st out of 22 with over 88% poverty.Surprised?

Temecula and Menifee are around 25% poverty. This should mean that when these school districts take standardized tests, PSUSD should be near the bottom. However, when the the last test was given (pre-COVID), PSUSD tested 12th and 13th in math and language arts.

While not at the top, this was certainly much better than our children seemingly should be testing. Why?

Outstanding teaching, enlightened administrationand a school board committed to providing opportunities beyond reading, writing and arithmetic.I was one of the five members of that board for 12 years, as well as being a teacher, counselor and administrator in the district for 37 years, and I watched the impact poverty has on students and their families.

What PSUSD did started with a comprehensive arts program from preschool to 12th grade.Every possible type of fine art, practical art, performing art is provided for all children at no cost.

A recess program at all elementary schools teaches all children how to get along, follow rulesand resolve problems without violence. Many pathways and academies provide choices for post high school. PSUSD began feeding all children years ago because children in poverty dont eat as well as others. An extensive parent support program that does far more than teach parents how to help with homework. A foundation that provides support where the school district cant. And on and on.Again, compare the lives you give your children versus the lives children in poverty get.

I do not think the solution our societal problems is to treat people different because of their skin color. I think the solution is our public school system.

We need to do everything possible to see that all children arenottreated the same, butare given over the 13 years they spend in school the opportunities and experiences their environment has denied them. That way,when they graduate, they can all greet the future with the same expectation of success.This can be done if our schools deliberately mitigate the effects of poverty by providing the experiences and opportunities that some children are missing.

Richard R. Clapp of Cathedral City is a former teacher, administrator and school board member. Email him

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Everything You Need to Know About Multani Mitti for Skin Care – Healthline09.04.21

Every morning, I always found a small cup on my grandmothers kitchen counter with a smooth mixture of brownish clay, milk, and turmeric. After the morning hustle and bustle subsided, shed apply it to her face, wait for 10 minutes, and rinse it off.

It was a ritual she followed religiously, claiming it was the secret to her smooth and glowing skin.

I often wondered what the clay was, and it was only much later that I realized that it was Multani mitti.

Also called fullers earth or mud of Multan, this ingredient has been used by homemakers like my grandmother and mother as well as skin experts for decades.

Its also a staple ingredient in herbal formulations, Ayurvedic beauty treatments, and ubtans Ayurvedic treatments to cleanse and detox the body often used before traditional Indian weddings.

Multani mitti is a mineral-rich clay-like substance that gets its name from its city of origin, Multan in modern day Pakistan. With a texture thats much finer than clay and with a higher water content, Multani mitti is known for decolorizing oil and other liquids without harsh adverse reactions.

Its composed of hydrated aluminum silicates and is rich in magnesium chloride and calcium bentonite, a composition similar to bentonite clay. Its found in a large range of natural colors like brown, green, and white.

Multani mitti is known as fullers earth in English for its historic use by textile workers known as fullers.

Fullers earth was popularly mined in the state of Multan and exported to other regions of the Indian subcontinent. Thus, it came to be known as Multani Mitti, says Jatin Gujrati, founder of Ayurvedic lifestyle brand Vedix. Princesses and affluent women in Indian history always had a stash of Multani mitti along with sandalwood paste and gram flour, which they used for beauty treatments.

A prime destination on the silk route, traders brought home Multans clay-like soil, and women used it extensively on their skin and hair at that time.

During World War II, fullers earth was mixed with water and applied to feet to reduce inflammation.

Multani mitti or fullers earth is used as a natural cleanser and astringent, offering a host of benefits for the skin, including:

According to Rinky Kapoor, cosmetic dermatologist and surgeon at The Esthetic Clinic, Multani mitti contains mattifying properties that balance skin oils and remove impurities.

Its especially beneficial for oily skin, as it helps open up clogged pores and absorbs excess sebum from the skin.

According to one study, Multani mitti removes dirt and absorbs excess oil.

According toVaishali Sawant, assistant medical director of Vedicure Healthcare and Wellness, Multani mitti is effective at treating acne. It does this by:

The magnesium chloride in fullers earth is a magic anti-acne worker, says Kapoor.

According to research, Multani mitti increases the cleanliness of the skin by removing dead skin cells from the surface, which results in:

These benefits provide a rejuvenated, glowing look.

Multani mitti helps fight dark circles and sun damage due to its cooling effect on the skin.

It gives you an even skin tone, tackles tanning and pigmentation, and is effective against sunburn, skin rashes, and infections, adds Sawant.

Given that Multani mitti is effective against removing excess oil, impurities, and dead cells, it gives the skin a natural glow.

The ions in Multani mitti lighten the skin and heal the damage done by sun exposure, says Kapoor.

Multani mitti can be used in multiple ways as a beauty treatment, including:

In India, tightening face masks are often referred to as face packs. Multani mitti makes a great face pack and can be combined with other ingredients to suit different skin types.

It has both a cooling and tightening effect, helps reduce lines, wrinkles, and pigmentation while cleansing the skin.

You can try products like Reshma Beauty Fullers Earth Face Mask.

Because of its oil-absorbing properties, Multani mitti makes a great spot treatment.

You can use a bit of a face mask or mix Multani mitti powder with water and dab it on pimples to dry them up and reduce redness.

In India, its popularly mixed with neem when used as a spot treatment.

Multani mitti can be mixed with other ingredients to create a moisturizing and brightening face mask. Common ingredients include:

These ingredients can help add moisture or brightness to the skin.

Multani mitti is very effective in removing dead cells from the surface of the skin.

Use it as a gentle scrub by mixing it with orange peel powder or powdered oats.

Want to give Multani mitti a try? The recipes below have you covered.

For this face pack, you can use your favorite high fat milk if you have combination skin. Rose water works best for dehydrated skin.



Recipe courtesy of Manasi Shirolikar, head dermatologist at Remedico.

This quick and easy spot treatment helps dry up acne fast.



Recipe courtesy Jatin Gujrati of Vedix.

This simple face mask is moisturizing, brightening, and cleansing.



Recipe courtesy Jeeshant Khan, formulations scientist at I am Love.

This exfoliating mask features the skin benefits of antioxidant-rich papaya.



Recipe courtesy Sushant Shetty of Kaya Limited.

For skin types that need extra moisture, mix your Multani mitti with equal parts aloe vera gel. Make sure its food-grade and has no additives.



This simple exfoliant blend can help slough off dead skin cells and brighten with lemon.



Lemon and other citrus fruits may cause skin irritation for some people. You shouldnt use lemon if you know youre going to be out in the sun, as doing so can increase your risk of sunburn and other side effects. Always do a patch test before you use lemon in your skin care routine.

People with highly sensitive or dry skin should avoid using Multani mitti. Because it absorbs oil, Multani mitti can leave your skin feeling thirsty.

If you have sensitive skin, it may lead to redness or irritation.

Always do a patch test to rule out sensitivity and allergy before using any new product.

Multani mitti offers plenty of benefits for the skin, including cleansing, brightening, and toning properties.

To reap the benefits, you can use it in simple DIY recipes, like face masks, exfoliants, and spot treatments.

While its generally considered safe, it may irritate sensitive skin. Make sure you do a patch test before you give it a try.

Rashmi Gopal Rao is a freelance writer from Bangalore. She writes on travel, art, culture, wellness, food, and design. You can read more of her work at Rashmi Notes.

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Final Art Stroll of the season features an auction and a dance performance – Martha’s Vineyard Times09.04.21

The Oak Bluffs Arts District (Dukes County Avenue and environs) is concluding its Art Stroll season this Saturday with additional artists, music, dance, and a special event. From 6 to 7 pm, the Arts District will host an auction of a unique sort. A dozen or so local artists were given the task of creating their own functional art by painting a chair in any manner they might choose. The 12 donated chairs will be auctioned off as a fundraiser for Habitat for Humanity. Also up for bid will be two outdoor showers one designed by local architect Hutker Designs, and one from the home of the late Olga Hirshhorn, as well as an outbuilding by Nantucket Sheds and some garden items from local nurseries.

Writer, poet, humorist, and producer Arnie Reisman will serve as auctioneer, a role he has taken on before for various organizations. Whether or not youre in the market for any of the items, Reismans participation should guarantee a fun time.

The stroll itself will take place between 4 and 7 pm, with the street closed to vehicle traffic, providing for a festival atmosphere. The event will incorporate open houses at all of the Arts District galleries, music by the John Alaimo Trio, and work by a number of independent artists on display on the street. Coordinator Holly Alaimo says, The opportunity is open to all artists. Its a free place to set up and sell their artwork.

Over at the Galaxy Gallery, visitors will have the chance to check out the latest show featuring work by four different artists. The exhibit is titled MultiMediums, and will include photography by Janet Woodcock, encaustics by Scout Austin, drawings by Chip Coblyn, and paintings by Gail Rodney.

Coblyns contribution to the show is a series of large-scale charcoal drawings called Tall Grass. The images depict the physical devastation wrought upon dancer and choreographer Tessa Permar after she was stricken with Lyme disease in 2019. The drawings depict the progression of the disease and the debilitating symptoms that plagued the dancer over the course of a year. Coblyn was inspired to create the series after seeing Permar perform an original dance, also titled Tall Grass, based on her experience with Lyme disease, at the annual Built on Stilts festival two years ago.

Its so pervasive here on the Island, says Coblyn of the tick-borne illness. Almost all of my longtime friends have had it several times. When I saw Tall Grass, it got my creative juices flowing.

The six images in the series are artfully rendered moody depictions of the various stages of Permars illness. In many her face is obscured, or partially obscured, and the focus is an up-close snapshot of parts of the dancers torso or limbs. The first image, titled Invasion, shows Permar squeezing the skin on her stomach. The description reads, She feels as if something is moving under her skin. The others are titled variously Burning, Delirious, Muted, Blinded, and Ascension the last depicting the dancers path to recovery. The thoughtful and dramatic drawings show exceptional talent and sensitivity on the part of the artist, and an honesty and vulnerability on the part of the model.

Coblyn and his wife Pam settled full-time on the Vineyard in 2019. Prior to that Coblyn enjoyed a successful career as an illustrator and graphic and industrial designer based in Bethesda, Md., just outside D.C. Retirement and relocation afforded the artist the opportunity to focus full-time on creating fine art, and he started participating in Tom Maleys life drawing classes while seeking a subject to base a show on. The Built on Stilts performance proved to be the turning point for Coblyn, who describes the series as a release for me as an artist-in-waiting.

In his artists statement Coblyn writes, As a lifelong athlete, my figure drawings tend to focus on the strength and athleticism of the model. As a professional dancer, Ms. Permar was a perfect fit physically, while her personal story provided the compelling element essential to successful art.

As part of the Stroll lineup, Permar will perform Tall Grass at 4:30 pm.

Scout Austin is also making her Vineyard debut as an artist with the Galaxy Gallery show, and, like Coblyn, she made a career change upon moving to the Island in 2014. After earning a B.A. in fine arts from Syracuse University and a master of fine arts degree from the University of Florida, Austin did a 180 when she decided to pursue a career as an attorney. She practiced law for many years both in California and Massachusetts. Retiring from her law career has allowed Austin to return to her early passion for art.

Interested in photography as well as other artforms, Austin spent her first few years on the Island shooting scenes around the Vineyard and immersing herself in the look and feel of the Island. After she and her husband built a studio in their home, she started concentrating on encaustic landscapes inspired by her photographs. The encaustic process involves using heated wax to which colored pigments have been added to build up an image on wood or another sturdy surface. Austins vibrant images come alive with color and texture, imparting almost a storybook feel to the Island landscape. Texture especially plays a large part in Austins work. She loves to focus on trees, rocks, sand grasses, and other Island flora, and the textural encaustic process serves her well in that respect.

In her artists statement, Austin writes, My work is narrative in nature. The stories I tell are both personal and universal. My hope is that those who experience my work come away with a better understanding of themselves and the world we live in.

The other two featured artists in the Galaxy Gallery show will be more familiar to visitors. Gail Rodney is a member of the Marthas Vineyard Art Association who exhibits her work at that groups Old Sculpin Gallery in Edgartown annually. She also shows regularly with the Gallery of Graphic Arts in New York City, and she is a juried member of the Pastel Society of America. Rodney covers a variety of subjects in her work, from NYC and Venice scenes to Vineyard landscapes. The latter is what she is contributing to the show both watercolors and oil paintings.

Janet Woodcock has been participating in the Artisans Festival shows for years, and has shown her work in galleries on the Vineyard and around the country. Working in traditional photography, using film that she develops in her home darkroom, she creates toned silver prints. Woodcock may be best known for her moody, sepia-toned images of barnyard animals and her eerie photos of the carnival side of the Ag Fair, but for the Galaxy Gallery show, she is exhibiting a wonderful series of botanical photographs.

A trip to the Art Stroll will afford an opportunity to visit two nearby artists studios Lucinda Sheldons is right around the corner from Dukes County at 11 Vineyard Ave., and Richard Limbers is on Upper Circuit Avenue (184R). Sheldon creates one-of-a-kind enamel jewelry, while Limber is a contemporary artist whose recent work includes images of civil rights hero John Lewis and Black victims of police violence. Limbers work is very powerful, relevant, and, at times, controversial.

Arts District Stroll and auction for Habitat for Humanity, Saturday, Sept. 4, Dukes County Avenue in Oak Bluffs. Stroll takes place from 4 to 7 pm. Auction of artist-painted chairs, outdoor showers, and more will start at 6 pm. Dance performance by Tessa Permar at 4:30 pm. The Galaxy Gallery show MultiMediums will hang through Sept. 8.

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Houston artist Donkeeboy and his mom turn a park into works of teachable art – Houston Chronicle09.04.21

Alex Donkeeboy Roman and Sylvia Donkeemom Roman have spent the past few weeks waiting for the sun to set over Clark Park in Northline. Around 6 p.m. its usually cool enough for the mother-son artist duo to begin their work, painting a mural over the concrete sidewalk leading from Tidwell Road into revitalized green space.

Four years ago, it would not have been safe for the Romans to be there after dark.

There was a stigma that it was unsafe park, says Jorge Sanchez, program manager of the Memorial Hermann Health Systems Community Benefits Corporation. Because of illegal activity or gunshots, parents would not dare step foot in the park grounds. Instead, they would have to drive 20 minutes to Discovery Green. No one should have to go to those measures when you have a beautiful park in your neighborhood.

Memorial Hermanns interest in Clark Park took hold in 2016, when data pulled from students at Burbank Middle School in HISD revealed an uptick of acanthosis nigricans, a skin condition which typically develops in people who are obese or have diabetes.

Thats what really sparked the conversation, Sanchez says. How could we improve the health of the students?

CBC functions as a subsidiary of Memorial Hermann to create evidence-based programming that improves the communities where Houstonians live, work, learn and play. Most initiatives fall under one of four pillars: access to healthcare, emotional well-being, food as health or exercise is medicine. The idea to activate Clark Park was grouped with the latter.

We started with looking at how we can break the clinic walls, Sanchez explains. When we surveyed the area, focus groups found there was a common line directing attention to how unsafe the (neighborhood) green spaces were, and how they lacked programming for families and students that were going to increase healthy literacy.

His team prioritized a number of mini face-lifts that would have a big impact on exercise and engagement. Repairing Clark Parks sidewalks was at the top of that list.

When the Romans are done, their colorful concrete mural will snake over 1.2 miles of sidewalk. Its a tall order, and one that will be completed in phases.

The first phase is geared around exercise, walking to and from the park, Alex says. The idea is that you can enter through the sidewalk and itll give you basic instructions on different exercises like jumping jacks, sprints, lunges and jogging. Its up to whoever is walking to decide how many.

Sanchez encouraged Alex and Sylvia to flip the script on promoting physical activity with words of affirmation such as Keep going.

Phases two and three will highlight diversity. We had several meetings with some of the people from the neighborhood. A lot of what were planning is their suggestions. They wanted something cultural, something that represented their community. But we havent even touched those phases yet.

As its name suggests, Northline is located in North Houston, east of Acres Homes and south of Aldine.

Because its a Hispanic community, thats something were going to focus on, Alex adds. He and Sylvia write mural script in both English and Spanish. Some of the sidewalk is going to be painted with some ideas from students: What do they want to be when they grow up? And what inspires them?

In the interim, CBC has crossed-off a number of other items on its Clark Park to-do list. The basketball court received a paint job and new hoop nets. Theres also a new junior soccer field, in addition to the launch of programs including Walk with a Doc a nationally recognized program with a physician walking and talking about various health-related topics and StepHealthy Connects, which supports residents who aspire to become professional group fitness instructors.

After we held the first Walk to Clark Park events, roughly 200 students walked the grounds, Sanchez says. For many, it was their first time visiting a park that was less than a mile away from them.

Memorial Hermann reports that following one year of increased police presence and interactive programming, park usage has increased by more than 22-percent.

Alex is proud to have a creative hand in Clark Parks makeover. Weve added some color and hopefully encouraged some people to come outside and take a stroll. There are definitely going to be a lot of future patterns involved.

He and Donkeemom just need the weather to cooperate.

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The T List: Six Things We Recommend This Week – The New York Times09.04.21

Welcome to the T List, a newsletter from the editors of T Magazine. Each week, we share things were eating, wearing, listening to or coveting now. Sign up here to find us in your inbox every Wednesday. And you can always reach us at

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Located in the heart of the city, the new Cheval Blanc Paris has 72 rooms, with balconies or winter gardens looking out either on the Pont Neuf or the picturesque rooftops of the 1st Arrondissement and beyond. The hotel, set in a 1928 Art Deco building designed by Henri Sauvage and reimagined by the architect and designer Peter Marino, feels like a grand but familiar home, with sculptural chandeliers by Philippe Anthonioz, engraved metallic tables by Andr Dubreuil and wood sideboards by Charlotte Perriand. Guests are surrounded by art, including works by Claude Lalanne and Vik Muniz, while the property has no fewer than four restaurants: Limbar, a caf and bar offering light-as-air pastries by Maxime Frdric and a cocktail program by Florian Thireau; Le Tout-Paris, a not-so-classic brasserie; the more formal Plnitude, with the Michelin-starred chef Arnaud Donckele at the helm; and the fourth will be the seafood restaurant Langosterias first outpost outside of Italy. In between meals, guests might sit in the terrace garden or take a dip in the indoor pool, which features an aqua-colored mosaic by the storied Franz Mayer of Munich atelier and, at 30 meters long, is the largest in town.

Interview by Caitie Kelly

For this months installment of the T Lists beauty column, which details the products and treatments that creative people swear by, Jessica Richards speaks about her daily routine.

For my morning shower I use Necessaires Body Exfoliator with the Supracor Stimulite Bath Mitt its a loofah and dry brush in one Christophe Robins Brightening + Clarifying Shampoo (which they are discontinuing, so Im not sure what Ill do!) and Virtues Recovery Conditioner. I have incredibly dry skin, so when I dry off I leave it a bit damp and rub in a bit of Olverums Body Oil and then Augustinus Baders Body Cream. I brush my hair with a Manta hairbrush Shen, my beauty store, debuted it recently; its the best thing on the planet: The more you use it, the less your hair falls out and comb in a tiny bit of Virtues Un-Frizz Cream before putting it in a bun. I dont wash my face in the morning, I just rinse with water. Then I apply Irene Fortes Helichrysum Hyaluronic Toner and the Skin Memory Serum from Ideo, which we just launched. Going into fall, Ill start using Bynachts Nocturnal Signature Anti-Age Cream (yes, even during the day). For makeup, I use Eye Love You Mascara from Westman Atelier and a lipstick from Maarks Lip in Rouge unless Im wearing a mask, then Ill wear Cherry Chapstick. I always go back to Bobbi Browns Long-Wear Gel Eyeliner in black; it goes on easily and doesnt smudge. I like eyeliner underneath my lashes so that it adds a bit of definition. We have a service at Shen called Multeye: tattooing underneath your lash line, a brow wax, tint and a few microblading strokes. I do it every nine months. For fragrance, Im obsessed with Dirty Grass from Heretic and Witchy Woo from Yasmine Sewells new brand Vyrao, which will be available at Shen this month. At night, my number-one priority is to get all the dirt and grime off with a foaming cleanser like Youth to the Peoples Superfood Cleanser or Reflekts Daily Exfoliating Face Wash, and then I apply an oil or balm cleanser. Irene Fortes Almond Cleansing Milk is super-calming, but I also love Joaquina Botanicas Hydrating Essence. For serums, I go super-heavy. I use Ideo at night too if you use it twice a day, you really see the results. After that, I layer on something like the Supernal Cosmic Glow Oil or Pai Carbon Star if I feel like I might be getting a bit of a breakout. I like Dr. Barbara Sturms Eye Cream I have very sensitive eyes, and it doesnt have any added fragrance. Finally, I use MBRs Cream Extraordinary; I need as much hydration as I can get. I layer and coat and go to bed looking like a glazed doughnut.

This interview has been edited and condensed.

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When Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana began self-isolating in Milan at the start of the Covid-19 outbreak last spring, the fashion designers found themselves turning their attention to their immediate surroundings. We kept coming back to the idea of the home as the most important space, say the couple, who spent the time dreaming up Dolce & Gabbana Casa, the brands first dcor range. It was partly inspired by the work of some of their favorite talents, including Paul Evans and Gio Ponti (I collect furniture I love; its my only vice, says Dolce). The end result, though, which was unveiled this past weekend ahead of the brands Alta Moda show in Venice, is entirely their own and is deeply rooted in Italian craftsmanship. Four of the brands iconic motifs appear throughout the line, as with a leopard-print armchair and matching side table, a comfy-looking couch reminiscent of blue-and-white Maiolica and various desk accessories that feature a print depicting a traditional Sicilian horse-drawn cart.

Two or so years ago, when the 39-year-old designers and architects Eleni Petaloti and Leonidas Trampoukis of the cerebral design studio Objects of Common Interest learned of the 20th-century Japanese American artist Isamu Noguchis connection to their native Greece he once described it as his intellectual home they were immediately inspired. The couple, who split their time between New York City and Athens, began researching the digital archives of the Noguchi Museum in Long Island City, Queens, to create an online feature and a forthcoming set of books on Noguchis Greek influences. Now this aesthetic fascination has been brought to life with Hard, Soft and All Lit Up With Nowhere to Go, a new exhibit organized by the Noguchi Museums senior curator Dakin Hart, opening on September 15. By blending OoCIs playful objects (tubular lights and chairs, arcing cobalt formations, massive transparent inflatable sculptures that wobble in the wind) with Noguchis own pieces, the show creates deep connections between eras, places and creatives; between the increasingly blurry fields of art, design and architecture that speak above all to the power of constant cultural exchange. Between Noguchi and ourselves, were both examining concepts like light, weight and volume, Petaloti says, but were answering in different ways.

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The 27-year-old architect Julien Sebban, founder of the French design collective Uchronia, had a postapocalyptic vision when he visited the site of the Paris Museum of Modern Arts future restaurant, Forest, a couple of years ago. A remnant of the 1937 Universal Exhibition, the high-ceilinged concrete space looked to him like a subterranean Brutalist lair. Sebban and his team decided to embrace the atmosphere, creating a bunkerlike agora with surfaces of polished concrete that become rougher the farther one ventures within. The overall effect, however, is one of warmth and comfort, with walls covered in a thicket of vines and mossy boughs and the soft glow of moonlike volcanic-stone sconces. Though Forest might look like the end of the world, Sebban says, its actually a really nice place to be.

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The inspirations behind Luca Nichettos designs for Ginori 1735s first home fragrance collection, La Compagnia di Caterina, are as multilayered as the scents. Though the theme is the court of Catherine de Medici, the infamous queen credited with introducing perfume to the French when she brought her perfumer with her to Paris from Florence, Nichetto was also influenced by lucha libre masks, Baz Luhrmanns Romeo + Juliet and Jean-Paul Goudes portraits of Grace Jones. A lot of my loves are in this project, he says. The result is a boldly designed collection of scented candles, incense burners and room diffusers with fragrances by Jean Niel, the oldest perfume house in France. Each item is cast in the form of one of eight archetypal courtiers, including the Lover and the Scholar, and nearly all can be refilled with the same or different scent, creating what the company calls an afterlife. From $90,

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Bernard Lumpkin on Bringing His Private Art Collection to the Public – Artsy09.04.21

I think its important to consider what youre trying to do with your collection, Lumpkin said. That will naturally lead you to the next piece, or the next artist, or the next chapter you want to tell in the story of your collectionwhatever that story happens to be. , for instance, introduced Lumpkin to the complexity of visual representations of the Black body, which prompted a deeper investigation into the impacts of color and form. This, in turn, led him to artists including and .

Young, Gifted and Black is now poised to open in Chicago after a hiatus during the COVID-19 pandemic. Lumpkin noted that the show initially might have appealed more to members of the art world than to the general public. But that may be different now, in the wake of George Floyds May 2020 killing, and the subsequent protests have resulted in a marked shift in public awareness of race relations. The show, the artists, the works, the accompanying catalog, and the mission of the project as a whole have taken on new meaning. The featured works speak to issues such as diversity and inclusion; and challenging museums and galleries to hire more people of color, promote the works of more diverse artists, and reconsider community engagement and support strategies.

In Lumpkins view, just as artists are activists, patrons and collectors have a duty and a privilege to work toward progress and justice. Building his collection with this in mind has been crucial to representing, collaborating, and advocating for change. Young, Gifted and Black is just the beginning.

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Best New Makeup Products and Beauty Products of September 2021, Shop Now | Olive & June, Rose Inc., Oribe – Allure09.04.21

With new makeup dropping at dizzying rates, we've taken it upon ourselves to make it easier for you to sort through the latest lipsticks, foundations, eye shadows, the hottest (and sometimes unexpected) collaborations, and even the advent of the next, big celebrity-backed brand. We're not exaggerating when we say Allure editors eagerly pore over every single launch to find the standouts each month. Although we're partial to our particular favorites, there's something new and shiny for everyone. It might take a little digging, but the resulting treasure is totally worth it.

If you're like us, your heart rate probably spikes whenever you discover a new makeup category, improved formula on an old classic, or real strides towards sustainability being made. In 2021 alone, we're seeing product categories like skin tints, cream blushes and bronzers, colorful liners, and brow waxes explode in popularity. It's enough to make anyone consider an overhaul of their makeup collection to make room for new goodies or to add a select few to their rotations and jazz up their everyday look. As the world slowly opens back up, don these products for a day in the office or for a night out with friends. After over a year of staying indoors, quite literally anything goes.

Just as we always do with hair and skin care, we're sharing the best new makeup dropping in September that we recommend adding to your cart. As the colder months peek at us from around the corner, it might be time to refresh your beauty routine and experiment with all of the newness that's available at your fingertips. And if you need more makeup inspiration, you can always check out last month's launches that are equally as fresh and exciting.

Be sure to check back weekly for new makeup launches that are dropping this month. (Trust us, you don't want to miss out.)

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Best New Makeup Products and Beauty Products of September 2021, Shop Now | Olive & June, Rose Inc., Oribe - Allure

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Mexican Artists Create Fantastical Masks To Depict The Many Faces Of COVID : Goats and Soda – NPR09.04.21

Blanca Cardenas, professor of ethnology at the National School of Anthropology and History, wears the mask "COVID Tiger," by Nahua artisan Armando Pascualeo from Zitlala, Guerrero, Mexico. Toya Sarno Jordan for NPR hide caption

Blanca Cardenas, professor of ethnology at the National School of Anthropology and History, wears the mask "COVID Tiger," by Nahua artisan Armando Pascualeo from Zitlala, Guerrero, Mexico.

Masks are the emblem of the mystery man hero think Zorro and Batman, the centerpiece of theatrical costume as in Japanese Noh plays and Phantom of the Opera. In their cultural context, masks are powerful ceremonial artifacts that obliterate the wearer's personality and change him or her into another being entirely.

The age of COVID adds yet another layer of meaning. When breath, the embodiment of life, becomes the carrier of death, a mask becomes literally a matter of life and death.

In April 2020, Blanca Crdenas and Carlos Dvila, professors of ethnology at the National School of Anthropology and History (ENAH) in Mexico City, invited indigenous artisans in their country to create masks, drawings and other works of art to portray the agent of the pandemic the coronavirus through the lens of their traditions. The project, as its title suggests, aims at "Putting a Face on the Virus." So far, their collection includes 14 masks of wood and other materials, numerous painted cloth masks, drawings and special cut-out figures made of paper. We spoke to Crdenas and Dvila by Zoom. The interview is edited for length and clarity.

"COVID Skull," Melky Argelles, Naolico, Veracruz, Mxico. Toya Sarno Jordan for NPR hide caption

"COVID Skull," Melky Argelles, Naolico, Veracruz, Mxico.

Tell us about the origin of the project and its purpose.

Carlos Dvila: We wanted to know how indigenous people understand the virus and the pandemic, and the solutions they find not medical solutions but how they live with it and how they picture it.

Carlos Dvila, subdirector of bachelor degrees at the National School of Anthropology and History, poses with the mask "The Devil of Teloloapan," by Fidel Puente from Teloloapan, Guerrero, Mexico. Toya Sarno Jordan for NPR hide caption

Carlos Dvila, subdirector of bachelor degrees at the National School of Anthropology and History, poses with the mask "The Devil of Teloloapan," by Fidel Puente from Teloloapan, Guerrero, Mexico.

How did you recruit these artisans?

Blanca Crdenas: Artists sell their creations in plazas and open-air markets, but because of the pandemic these venues were closed. They had to find another way of selling.

Carlos noticed pictures of them offering their masks on Facebook. He contacted them and would commission a work. Then, when it was safe, he would go to their community to pick it up and interview the artist.

What's the creative process like?

Dvila: The artisans work with different strategies. When we asked one why was he taking so long, he said: "Sorry I haven't been able to dream." This artist had to dream his mask, because that is how he could enter into the supernatural world.

"Evil Jaguar Mask," Mixteco artisan Yonny Calixto, Ahuehuetitla, Puebla, Mexico. Toya Sarno Jordan for NPR hide caption

"Evil Jaguar Mask," Mixteco artisan Yonny Calixto, Ahuehuetitla, Puebla, Mexico.

Explain the importance of the supernatural in how the world is understood by these communities.

Dvila: In many indigenous cultures, time is perceived differently. It's circular, not linear. Many believe the world gets destroyed every now and then, then regenerates. These masks show the other entities around usgods, devils, the dead, animals. For us many things are inanimate. But for these cultures, water, mountains, stars and stones have their own spirit. The dead are more alive than we think. Everybody is going to die someday. But a death caused by human consequences, like the virus, is a bad death. They believe that when someone dies of natural causes, they are transformed into a star. When one dies unnaturally they become infected air. Some think the origin of the virus is the continued aggression to our planet and destruction of nature. They say the earth is crying.

"Cocoliztli," Nahua artisan Juan Hernndez Gonzlez, Atlapexco, Hidalgo, Mexico. Toya Sarno Jordan for NPR hide caption

"Cocoliztli," Nahua artisan Juan Hernndez Gonzlez, Atlapexco, Hidalgo, Mexico.

Crdenas: So the pandemic represents a period of destruction, but we can be sure that the world will regenerate with a new order maybe without humans or with other dramatic changes, but the world will continue.

You indicate there is a historical subtext to these masks?

Dvila: This year marks the 500th anniversary of the Spanish conquest of Mexico. Pandemics erupted in those indigenous communities with the arrival of Europeans. So the idea of pandemics and sickness coming from the outside is ingrained in their culture.

"Mestizo Man," Nahua artisan Zeferino Baltasar Basilio, San Francisco Ozomatln, Guerrero, Mexico. Toya Sarno Jordan for NPR hide caption

"Mestizo Man," Nahua artisan Zeferino Baltasar Basilio, San Francisco Ozomatln, Guerrero, Mexico.

Let's talk about those masks that reflect that perspective of the infectious "outside world." One powerful example is a mask of man with pale skin, a mustache, blue eyes and a half dozen coronaviruses attached to his face.

Dvila: The blue eyes, mustache and pale skin represent mestizo man, an outsider. It's the linking of past and present and the idea that disease is of foreign origin. Many communities were sure the only way to control the virus was to close their borders. There were many months when you couldn't get in.

"COVID Pig," Nahua artisan Zeferino Baltasar Basilio, San Francisco Ozomatln, Guerrero, Mexico. Toya Sarno Jordan for NPR hide caption

"COVID Pig," Nahua artisan Zeferino Baltasar Basilio, San Francisco Ozomatln, Guerrero, Mexico.

The same artist, Zeferino Baltasar Basilio who created mestizo man also made a mask representing a black boar covered with viruses. What's the message there?

Dvila: That is a COVID pig mask. Pork also suggests illness. If you don't cook it in the correct way, you get sick. Indigenous people associate COVID with eating poorly. They say the sickness arrives because we don't eat well; the remedy is to eat vegetables and greens.

Will the masks be used in a ceremonial setting?

Crdenas: Every mask is alive, but to truly become alive, people have to dance with them. Right now, these masks haven't been part of a ritual, but when it's possible, we hope to take the masks to a carnival so they can be used in a ceremonial way.

Where did the funding for the project come from?

Crdenas: Unfortunately, the school didn't have any money, so Carlos paid for them.

We hope they land in a good place, with a museum or collector somewhere the objects can be seen so they can communicate their meanings.

"COVID Bull," Juan Serrano, Zapopan, Jalisco, Mexico. Toya Sarno Jordan for NPR hide caption

What lessons can be learned from these artful expressions of indigenous cultures?

Crdenas: That there are many ways of living the pandemic and of understanding the virus. Their world is one made of other worlds where humans are not the only species that exist. It teaches us that it is essential to rethink our relationship with the world of nature and to appreciate the importance of the supernatural to these cultures.

Cathy Newman is a former editor at large at National Geographic whose work has appeared in The Economist, The Wall Street Journal and Science. Follow her on twitter @wordcat12

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‘Students need to see themselves as they walk into the building’: New mural highlights Des Moines’ diversity – Des Moines Register09.04.21

The mural is a product of Iowa artist Robert Moore, a Harding alum who exploded into the art scene nationally last year with the sale of his first painting and his "Harvesting Humanity" installations projections of Black Americans on rural Iowa silos.

New mural at Harding Middle School welcomes students

Mural celebrating black and brown students finished in time for first day of school at Harding Middle School.

Melody Mercado, Des Moines Register

Four 30-foot metal panels donning children of color resembling characters from the famous American comic strip, "Peanuts," welcomed students back to Harding Middle School for the start of the 2021-2022 school year Wednesday.

The mural, created by local artist Robert Moore, was commissioned by the school as a part of its Turnaround Arts program, which prioritizes arts education as a way to engage students in the classroom.

Moore, a Harding alum, had been seekinga way to engage students at his alma mater and, through the school's community block funds and community sponsorship, was able to bring what school officials say is "a representational piece of art"for students to see as they walk into school every day.

"Students need to see themselves as they walk into the building ... as they prepare their hearts, their souls and their minds for the educational experiences that they're coming into," said Cassie Kendzora, the former arts integration coach for the Turnaround Arts program.

Through a collaborative process with students in the school's Brother to Brother organization, an empowerment program for young boys of color, Moore and his collaborative partner, Dana Harrison, asked students who their inspirations were, both locally and internationally.

Students named famous athletes like LeBron James andKobeBryant, but also local leaders of color like local state Reps. Ako Abdul-Samad andRuth Ann Gaines, both Des Moines Democrats, and Edna Griffin, who was a civil rights pioneer in Des Moines, leading sit-ins and protests of a downtown core's drug store after being refused service there in July 1948because she was African American.

Related: 10 moments that shaped Black civil rights in Iowa

Griffin later sued the store'sowner, and the Iowa Supreme Court backed her claim, leading to a ruling that made it illegal to deny service based on race in Iowa.

From there, Moore used his signature style to morph their inspirations into four charactersall children of color wearing Harding's school colors. Each character is unique, from their clothing and hair styles to their skin tone. Everything is purposeful.

"The hair is important through all those pieceshair is an identity in many Afro-African and Afro-Latino cultures," Moore said. "It's an explosion of connection and understanding to the deep stories behind the textures and the hairstyles, because they aren't just designs ... there's diversity and variety, and so I wanted to do that, too, as well, with the different skin tones."

The mural also has balances a range of interests and passions from academics and sports to the arts, Moore said. The left-most characterhas a fade in his hair, playing basketball in blue and orange shoes a homage to the late Kobe Bryant. It's balancedout by the character on the far right, who's wearing a purple tuxedo.

"It could have been theater, that could have been singing, or it could have been fashion. I was vey neutral intentionally," Moore said. "The whole dress and outfit is a to pay on an acceptance of identity inall forms."

More: To help Black male students succeed, DMPS changed the way schools teach math. Then, COVID complicated things

The inner two panels are adaptations of a similar workby Moore, called "Imagine a World; Brown Like Me"aseries of paintings where Moore reimagined students'favoritecartoons as people of color.

"The part that makes me the most proud is just imagining the buzz, the chatter,the smiles, the joy and the happiness that is broughtfor those students and those children when they can see themselves in those images," Moore said. "They can see themselves on a big scale and they can dream big ... and they can see themselves in a cast that they haven't seen themselves (in) before."

Also this month: Des Moines' Oakridge Neighborhood community celebrates mural's completion with inaugural basketball game

Moore, a self-taught artist who started painting in 2019 as a way to help recover from alcoholism and addiction, exploded into the art scene nationally last year with the sale of his first painting and the exposure of a temporary installation called "Harvesting Humanity,"which went viral for its projections of various Black Americans on silos in rural Iowa.

Although Moore's arthas greatly increased in value, being collected by celebrities globally, he says the mural at Harding is his most meaningful project so far.

Not only did Moore attend Harding as a kid, his grandmother lived right across the street from the school. As his mother struggled with drug addiction, Moore's father stood in as an "amazing single black dad"and, while he worked two jobs, his grandmother helped raise him.

"My grandmother was the most important person in my life, right next to my dad. So just knowing that she was around and she looked at that building every day ... knowing that she would have been able to see, you know ... cartoons that represent us in an era that she probably enjoyed 'Peanuts,' as well ... it's extra special," Moore said.

When asked what he thought his grandmother would say of the mural, Moore said she was a woman of few words, but when she spoke, it was intentional.

"If she said she loved it, that was important," Moore said. "I think that's what she would have said ... 'I love it, Bobby.' "

Harding Middle School continues to be a positive memory for Moore, a space he said was filled with unity and community. He hopes the new mural will help continue to evoke those feelings not only for students of color, but also white students.

"This is my most meaningful work because, for one, it's public art, which gets the the most exposure, and because I think real art should make you feel some kind of wayit should either disrupt you, bring you joy, create some provocative thought or emotion ...whether you like itor not," Moore said.

The mural is now the third Moore has completed, all of which are in Iowa, with one in the Highland Park neighborhood and the other in Iowa City.

Melody Mercado covers the eastern Des Moines metro for the Register. Reach her at mmercado@registermedia.comor Twitter @melodymercadotv.

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For a Late-Summer Gathering, Try This Spin on a Salade Nioise – The New York Times09.04.21

Lettuce is not typically found in a salade nioise its sacrilege, says the writer and art critic Fanny Singer. But Ill sneak lettuce into every meal. Its a fitting act of rebellion for the daughter of the chef and restaurateur Alice Waters, the owner of Berkeleys legendary temple to local produce, Chez Panisse. Meanwhile, Singers father, Stephen Singer, owns a vineyard in Sebastopol, Calif.

Unsurprisingly, then, Singers upbringing revolved around the kitchen, whether she was at home, at the restaurant or in the South of France, where she often spent summer vacation, visiting family friends who schooled her in the arts of antiquing, gardening and inventing rustic dishes out of whatever ingredients were on hand. As an adult, though, she sidestepped the food world, getting her Ph.D. in art history at Cambridge, and, in 2016, co-launching Permanent Collection, her and Mariah Nielsons line of impeccable design objects, from wheel-thrown ceramic candleholders to sculptural gold jewelry to a half-circle cutting board made from salvaged walnut wood, made in collaboration with a coterie of handpicked artisans.

Still, and as some of the brands offerings suggest, food continues to inform Singers sense of self. In March of last year, she released a culinary memoir, Always Home, which is filled with stories that reflect Waterss ideas about living simply and elegantly. Its title turned out to be hilariously and tragically prophetic, says Singer, who moved back to the Bay Area in 2017 and, at the start of the pandemic, spent 10 months living with her mother in her childhood home. And yet at the same time it emphasized the essential idea, she says, which is that even if youre far away, theres a way to arrange your life in a way that makes you feel as though youre close to the people you love. This might include creating a compost pile in a tiny apartment kitchen, a classic Alice Waters move, says Singer, that she attempted during her college years in chilly New Haven, Conn., which led to her guilt-freezing her food scraps for months until she could find a suitable place to dispose of them.

And, though Singer identifies as a casual cook and not a chef, the book also includes a number of recipes shes developed over the years, including ones for green goddess lobster rolls and grilled squid with yuzu salt. Indeed, Singer now considers cooking to be completely continuous with her interests in art, design, culture and criticism. Having recently relocated to Los Angeles (where Waters is opening a restaurant in the Hammer Museum this fall with chef David Tanis), she has been inspired by the citys art scene and, of course, its lush farmers markets.

Its a Thursday afternoon when Singer arrives at the verdant backyard of her godmother, Sue Murphy, whose Silver Lake home she often entertains in, with an overflowing haul from the Santa Monica Farmers Market. (I have a real more is better mentality, she says.) The salad shes making today, a version of which figures in her book, is based on a deconstructed nioise that, in addition to including the aforementioned blasphemous lettuce, features tuna thats grilled instead of canned, and omits green beans, eggs and potatoes. Its a lighter, fresher take thats adaptable to whatevers in the market, she says.

The only cooked elements are the tuna steak and bell peppers, both of which get grilled over hot coals. But before doing anything else, Singer makes an assertively seasoned basil vinaigrette. I like to use a lot of garlic, always a little more than what my mom would suggest, she says as she pulverizes basil, garlic and salt using a Permanent Collection mortar and pestle that, with its ridged interior, is modeled after a Japanese suribachi, or grinding bowl. A mortar and pestle is the tool that, after a good knife, I use the most in the kitchen, Singer says, as she whisks in a bit of Dijon mustard, lemon zest, white wine vinegar and extra-virgin olive oil.

While the peppers char on the grill, Singer marinates the fish (procured from the local fishmongers Mayday Seafood), which is then cooked medium, unlike the barely seared tuna steaks that were oh-so popular in my childhood in the 90s, Singer says with a laugh. From there, the salad is mainly a matter of assembly.

The finishing touch? Nioise olives, preferably pit in a charming land mine for guests, says Singer, and the only definitive concession to what a salade nioise really is scattered across the top. She likes to plate the dish on a vintage platter shaped like a fish, but the vessel is less important than the spirit with which its presented: I always serve salads family-style, Singer says. It should feel casual and communal.

Herby Grilled Tuna Salad

2 large garlic cloves

1 cup basil leaves (plucked from stems)

2 tablespoons Dijon mustard

3 lemons

4 teaspoons white wine or rice vinegar

1 cup (approx.) good extra-virgin olive oil

1 pounds sushi-grade ahi tuna steaks

Black Urfa chili

4 Little Gem lettuces

2-3 red or yellow bell peppers

3 small Persian cucumbers

1 pint cherry tomatoes

cup whole or pitted olives (can be a mix of Kalamata, nioise, picholine, etc.)

Sea salt

Freshly ground black pepper

1. Start by building a wood or charcoal fire, or lighting a barbecue, as youll want to be grilling the fish over very hot coals, not flames.

2. A good salad depends on the vinaigrette, and when youre incorporating grilled elements, youll want an herbaceous, garlicky dressing to stand up to the flavors of the grill. To make the vinaigrette, first pound two garlic cloves and a generous pinch of salt in a mortar until pureed. Chiffonade the basil leaves and add them to the mortar, along with another modest pinch of salt, and pound, with some effort, until the leaves break down to form a pulp. Add 1 tablespoon of Dijon mustard, the zest of 1 lemon, white wine or rice vinegar, and about one cup of olive oil. Whisk together and taste. It should taste very bright but not glaringly acidic. Adjust if necessary.

3. Make a marinade for the tuna with 3 tablespoons of olive oil, 1 tablespoon of Dijon mustard, a big pinch of salt, teaspoon Black Urfa chili, teaspoon of freshly ground black pepper and the juice of half a lemon. Coat the tuna and allow it to sit until the fire is ready for grilling, or up to 30 minutes.

4. Wash and dry the Little Gems, pulling apart the leaves and discarding any that are wilted, tough or bruised.

5. When your fire (or barbecue) is ready, put the peppers on the grill, turning them to blacken the skin completely and soften the flesh entirely, for 10-15 minutes. Remove from heat and place the peppers in a small bowl, covered, allowing them to steam, which will make slipping off the skin easier. When cool enough to handle, remove the skin and seeds from the peppers using a paring knife and cut them into -inch slices on the bias. Season with a pinch of salt and dress lightly with 1-2 tablespoons of olive oil.

6. Cut off the top and bottom ends of the cucumbers and then slice them, first lengthwise and then in slices, on the bias. Halve the tomatoes, being careful to slice neatly through the stem scar.

7. Place the tuna on the grill for 5-7 minutes, or until nicely seared on the outside and still a bit pink in the middle, flipping once. Set aside on a cutting board to rest.

8. Whisk the dressing vigorously to emulsify it. Put the lettuce and cucumbers in a large bowl and toss with a splash of lemon juice and half the dressing. Arrange the dressed lettuce leaves on a shallow platter (which will help show off the beautiful ingredients). Then, in a small bowl, toss the tomatoes in a splash of lemon juice and a pinch of salt and then scatter over the lettuce. Slice the tuna and arrange on top of the salad. Scatter the ribbons of pepper over the top, then drizzle the vinaigrette over the tuna and peppers. Scatter the olives on last and serve it up!

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