40th reunion: After Laurie Anderson got everyone caught up on what she’s doing now (see “Art Talk”), her Institute of Contemporary Art hosts got down to partying to celebrate the ICA’s 40th anniversary. Director Claudia Gould invited just about every living artist the ICA has ever worked with to the shindig, and several of them showed up for the gala fundraising reception: Polly Apfelbaum, who created the print that patrons received; John Dowell, who did the same for ICA’s 20th anniversary bash; Charles LeDray, David Graham, Virgil Marti, Stuart Netsky and Sarah McEneaney, whose work is currently on display, to name a few. Also spotted at the event were architect Moshe Safdie, Penn Design Dean Gary Hack, Associate Professor of Fine Arts Terry Adkins, Penn Humanities Forum impresarios Wendy Steiner and Peter Stallybrass and New York art critic/dealer Joe Hull. A couple of our neighbors from Drexel also dropped by, College of Media Arts and Design Dean Jonathan Estrin and new faculty member Tim Rollins, a New York artist who turns low-income youth in the South Bronx—and soon, in North and West Philadelphia—into the artists of the future. Even the ghost of Andy Warhol was present—on the dinner menu, which included Campbell’s tomato soup. ICA Overseers Chair Kathy Sacks CW’69 praised the ICA’s progress under Gould, calling it “the R&D of the art world,” and President Judith Rodin CW’66 noted the wisdom of the decision not to create a permanent collection for the museum. The benefit raised $200,000 for ICA’s exhibits and programming.
Let the historians judge: Professor of History Tom Sugrue has been asked to weigh in on a historical controversy sparked by a TV documentary. The History Channel has tapped him, along with LBJ biographer Robert Dallek and Nixon scholar Stanley Cutler, to review a conspiracy theory that was given prominence in its fall 2003 documentary on the Kennedy assassination, “The Guilty Men”—specifically, that Johnson had a hand in the deed. “I bring the perspective of a generalist to the topic,” said Sugrue, whose areas of expertise are 20th-century American politics and the 1960s. The trio met twice to discuss the conspiracies in general and the Johnson theory in particular. As for their findings, all Sugrue would say was, “The historians who are involved are careful, thorough and situate the program and conspiracy theories in their wider historical context.” For more specifics, you will have to tune in when the History Channel airs their work later this month; consult your local cable listings for details.
Crown Jewel: Congrats to Jewel Clark C’04, the Ivy League Player of the Year in women’s basketball. The hard-charging forward led Penn to its second-ever Ivy League women’s hoops title and its first-ever appearance in the NCAA Women’s Basketball Championships, where they faced—and fell to—defending champion Connecticut in the first round. Clark was also a unanimous coaches’ choice for the All-Ivy first team this year.
Originally published on April 1, 2004