- Frankenthaler with George W. and Laura Bush in 2002, when she received a National Endowment for the Arts National Medal of Arts Award. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)
• Kriston Capps writes a very fine remembrance of Helen Frankenthaler, the New York painter he and others credit for accidentally inventing the Washington Color School. Frankenthaler experimented with bare canvases in the early '50s (usually artists cover canvas with gesso or another primer that prevents paint from seeping into the cloth in unexpected directions), and her 1952 painting "Mountain and Sea" was influential to Morris Louis and Kenneth Nolan. Frankenthaler died Tuesday; she was 83. "Her work was profoundly untroubled, lyrical and unapologetically beautiful," Philip Kennicott writes.
• Yesterday, ArtsBook spent a good amount of time reading area rock critics' Twitter feeds and published Part I of his collection of the best concert tweets of 2011. Featured in the debut edition of this feature, which given the dearth of local arts news this week I intend to stretch out as long as I possibly can, were Chris Klimek, David Malitz, and Jonathan L. Fischer.
>>My favorite Malitz tweet came during a June gig by the Toronto band Fucked Up: "When damian wraps himself up with the microphone cord all over his body he looks like my uncle in shul."
• Congratulations to ArtsBook's friend and old coworker Steve Chaggaris on his schmancy new job at Yahoo!
• MORE CONGRATULATIONS: To Dan Snyder, whom Mike Madden writes was responsible for a significant boost to Washington City Paper's Web traffic this year.
>>"From the day the article went online, Nov. 17, 2010, to Feb. 2, 2011, the day Snyder sued, Google Analytics recorded a total of 77,691 clicks on the story. Since then, the story's been viewed a total of 485,703 times (through Dec. 26). By suing us, Snyder helped the story get more than six times the views it had before he filed the suit."
>>Snyder, for those of you joining us late, sued City Paper and staff writer Dave McKenna over a story he found unflattering. He gave up on the lawsuit in September, claiming victory. If only football allowed the same interpretive brio!
• Paschall also collects her favorite moments from her Three Stars column, such as her declaration of best full-time job, which she awards to Jason Hamacher of the band Regents: "I recorded the world's oldest Christian music for the first time and I have a CD coming out with the Smithsonian," he told her in September. "I have a book coming out about the city of Aleppo, Syria and I work for a museum in New York. I've done work on Syria for Yale Divinity. It's like I'm a full time photographer and a full time massage therapist but obviously they don't overlap. I've been going to Syria once or twice a year for the past five years."
• Also in looks back yesterday, Tyler Green revisited last winter's Sally Mann show at the Virginia Museum in Richmond.
• Matt Schudel writes a profile of Jason Moran, the Kennedy Center's new artistic adviser for jazz. Schudel usually writes about the dead; ArtsBook urges people concerned about the future of jazz, especially here in town, not to read too much into the assignment.
• How many times have you read a story about Muslim comics trying to dispel stereotypes with a concert tour? Time for one more!
THINGS TO DO, COMPILED BY KIM CHI HA
Pop: Holiday Heart 2 Heart w/ guest DJ Matt Bailer at Lost Society. Matisyahu at 9:30 Club (SOLD OUT; Emily Wax writes about the singer's kicky new clean-shaven look). Chain & the Gang w/ Heavy Breathing at Black Cat. Samuel Joseph Kim at DC9. DJ Aetgy at Jammin’ Java. The Music of John Denver at Birchmere. The Whale/Future Times Holiday Party at U Hall. Christylez Bacon at the Hamilton.
Classical, jazz: The Greater Mount Calvary Recording Choir at Millennium Stage. Monty Alexander at Blues Alley.
Theater: “The Rough-Faced Girl” closes at Synetic.
What-have-you: “A Very Harold & Kumar 3D Christmas” at Arlington Cinema and Drafthouse. Ralph Harris at DC Improv. Riot Act Benefit Coat Drive Show at Riot Act Comedy Theater. “Pie in the Sky: The Brigid Berlin Story” at National Gallery of Art. Poet-Tree in Bloom at BloomBars.