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Wednesday, May 22, 2024

Culture Corner

The Art Desk’s weekly picks for music, movies and more


By CORALIE LOON — arts@theaggie.org


Book: “Sea of Tranquility” by Emily St. John Mandel (2022)

This book is a poetic and mind-bending journey through time that slowly questions the reality of the physical world. It follows multiple characters but centers around the investigation of an anomaly, a glitch that could potentially prove reality is a simulation. But framing this book as a time-travel novel completely overlooks its quiet beauty, its philosophical ruminations and its successful attempt at weaving a tapestry of time and space as effortlessly interconnected. Drenched in beautiful prose and imagery, “Sea of Tranquility” is bound to take you on a journey you won’t be able to forget.


Movie: “Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind” dir. by Michel Gondry (2004)

Another philosophical wandering, “Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind” takes place in an altered reality in which a newly split-up couple, played by Jim Carrey and Kate Winslet, decide to participate in a procedure that will erase their memories of one another. The film is a beautiful, bizarre and bittersweet journey through the highs and lows of human relationships, all while these moments are disintegrating. Its combination of dry humor and dream-like sequences won me over the first time I watched it — and don’t worry if you’re confused. It’ll all make sense in the end.


TV Show: “Next in Fashion” (2020-2023)

If you’re anything like me, you’ll love reality TV shows that highlight talent, artistic visions and, most importantly, fashion. While the show’s debut season on Netflix seemed to fall a little harshly into runway fashion stereotypes, the second season felt like a fresh break into uncharted waters, giving love and attention to more maximalist designers such as Megan O’Cain and Nigel Xavier. It’s always fun to see how artists and designers with their own individual personalities take the same competition prompts and twist them into unique visions of wearable art. This colorful and playful show is the perfect thing to watch when looking for a little creative inspiration. 


Song: “PPP” by Beach House (2015)

Somewhere between sleeping and waking, you hear a distant guitar playing. “PPP” by Beach House is more of a journey than a song and feels like a long drive through an orange sunset that makes you think, “it won’t last forever, or maybe it will.” Nothing quite takes the words out of my mouth like a six-minute Beach House masterpiece. Psychedelic, emotional, velvety and breathtaking, it might be best to give it a listen yourself, along with the entirety of their 2015 album “Depression Cherry.”

Written by: Coralie Loon — arts@theaggie.org