weekend links: Ursula K. Le Guin, Mark E. Smith, Swiss rebels

Image courtesy of  artnet

Image courtesy of artnet

Internationally celebrated writer Ursula K. Le Guin passed away this week. The literary world will remember her for her trailblazing accomplishments and her importance to feminist, environmental, and other progressive causes. Margaret Atwood recalls her first meeting with Le Guin and remarks on how important her voice was to women’s movements such as #MeToo and #TimesUp in this moving tribute. [Washington Post]

Mark E. Smith, leader of post-punk band The Fall, also passed away this week after a long-fought illness. In remembrance, The Guardian has compiled interviews and quotes from some of his various collaborators that highlight both Smith’s humor and undeniable musical talent. [The Guardian]

The American Booksellers Association hosted a Winter Institute this week in Memphis, and celebrated author/keynote speaker Junot Díaz had a couple of things to say about faux diversity. He urged booksellers and librarians to take action by decolonizing bookshelves instead of “pretending to be” allies. Here’s to hoping his speech didn’t fall on deaf ears. [Publishers Weekly]

The Amon Carter Museum of American Art in Fort Worth is known for its 19th- and 20th-century work, but it’s gone contemporary with its new exhibit Commanding Space: Women Sculptors of Texas. This exhibit highlights sculptures by five Texan women in a way that is unorthodox for the museum’s usual audience, and consequently, there has been some inevitable backlash. [Arts and Culture TX]

Swiss photographer Karlheinz Weinberger captured Switzerland’s biker boys and Elvis look-alikes over 50 years ago, and because of their near-perfect capture of counterculture movements and resistance via wardrobe, these pictures are still being praised today. Take a moment to explore Weinberger’s life: his beginnings, accomplishments, motivations, and aspirations. [Artsy]

Detroit rapper Nolan the Ninja has undeniable talent for delivering lyric-driven flows over beats reminiscent of the ’90s boom bap era. It may be easy to place him in the category of “boom bap rap,” but the label is unfairly limiting. Here, we learn the entire story of what makes Nolan the Ninja a complex, thought-provoking rapper who’s worth more than mere nostalgia. [DJ Booth]

This year, Body Rock ATX, a monthly “Party/Jam” hosted by Riders Against the Storm (RAS), turns eight. Over those years, the group has managed to get people from all walks of life to come party. Here are eight things you should know before attending a jam session with the guys that once said “Partying is the bastard child of ceremony.” [Austin 360]

Author Verónica Gerber Bicecci and translator Christina MacSweeney are debuting Empty Set, a collaborative novel that makes sense of loss, in early February. Here, MacSweeny and Bicecci talk about the creation of the novel and some of the artistic choices that come with a creation with two heads. [The Rumpus]

The name Michelangelo is famous for two reasons: It is both the namesake of a famous artist and the namesake of one of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art has an exhibition dedicated to one of them named Michelangelo: Divine Draftsman & Designer, and guess who made an appearance to see it? [Huffington Post]

—Nia KB

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