Antivirals: What is an official portrait for?

The official portraits of the leaders always portray twice.

Oliver Thansan
Oliver Thansan
16 September 2023 Saturday 10:32
5 Reads
Antivirals: What is an official portrait for?

The official portraits of the leaders always portray twice. No one was surprised, for example, that Barack Obama chose Kehinde Wiley for his, a favorite of hip hop celebrities who has always sought to subvert the tradition of the majestic portrait in a racial key. José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero has been the only former president of the Government who opted for a photograph instead of an oil painting and some former Spanish ministers have passionately clung to their right to take portraits of each ministry they passed through. Álvarez Cascos intended to commission the second portrait of him from none other than Antonio López, but his successor in charge of Fomento, Ana Pastor, canceled that very expensive commission. In the United Kingdom, the portrait of former Prime Minister Theresa May, painted by artist Saied Dai, was unveiled a few days ago and created many memes. On X, the old Twitter, someone wrote: “She's living in Weimar Germany, she's having an affair with Virginia Woolf?” The Bloomsbury and mysteriously 1930s air of the portrait was much noted and montages were made using it as the cover of a book from the mythical Virago Classics collection.


The Notabene is an atypical literary award. It was previously known as “the bloggers' award” and its idea is to reward books, written or translated into English, that have been adding readers in an organic way, thanks to word-of-mouth. The list of finalists is made up of “notable readers,” a large community of booksellers, authors and online content creators. This year's winner, who was announced a few days ago, was none other than Irene Solà, whose debut novel Maya Faye Lethen translated as When I sing, Mountains dance. The president of the jury, podcaster Oenone Forbat, highlighted the novel: “It was like reading a book when I was a child and you were amazed, it was like a trip to a different world, a truly magical experience.” Another finalist was I am a fan, by Sheena Patel, who has just published Alpha Decay.


One of the extra incentives for locals to watch The Burning Body, the morbid Netflix series about the crime of the Urban Police (a body that appears as “Barcelona police” in the series), consists of guessing locations. It is fun to point out, now the Andorra Bar, now the Tibidabo Ferris wheel, now the UB Faculty of Medicine converted into a Palace of Justice labeled only in Spanish. But, apart from the logical licenses that an art team takes in a production like this, does the series about Rosa Peral and Albert López pass the Barcelona test? The jury is still out. The Netflix series was filmed in up to 19 locations in Barcelonès, Garraf, Maresme and Baix Llobregat and it shows - the banquet hall in which Rosa and her ex-husband celebrate their wedding and the agents' seafood platter are very believable, which was filmed in the El Portinyol restaurant in Arenys de Mar–, the light and many interiors manage to escape that international neutrality so typical of Netflix that Laura Sarmiento's previous series for the platform suffered from, Intimidad, filmed in a Bilbao that Toronto could be the same as Vancouver. Even so, Rosa Peral's famous Cubelles house is nothing like the original nor is it reminiscent of a typical Garraf chalet. Furthermore, and this no longer has anything to do with the art direction but with the scriptwriters, every time Úrsula Corberó says “I know”, as in a bad translation of “I know”, the verisimilitude slips between the frames. .


Nobody wants to be the Oppenheimer of this Barbie. No one wants, at the moment, to face what it means to release a film on the same weekend as the filmed version of his The Eras Tour, which will premiere on October 13 in the United States and which has already broken the pre-sale box office record. . There was a timid attempt to generate an Exorswift, that is, to coincide the singer's film and The Exorcist: Believer, the umpteenth regurgitation of that franchise, but the distributor of this film has already withdrawn from the battle. The same has been done by those responsible for the romantic comedy by Meg Ryan and David Duchovny, and those responsible for three other films, including a Christian fable titled Ordinary Angels and starring Hilary Swank (not even being an Oscar winner guarantees much). As the Indiwire portal noted regarding this latest withdrawal, “even Jesus Christ is afraid of Taylor Swift.”


There is a quite harmful trend in current music that leads many people with excess free time to act as influence police, dedicated to monitoring hit songs and detecting possible plagiarism. Olivia Rodrigo, the young sensation of retro-nostalgic pop, is spatially susceptible to this persecution. On her previous album, she already had to give posthumous credits to Taylor Swift and Paramore's Hayley Williams after fans pointed out the similarities between her songs and those of her idols, which cost her several million. dollars in royalties. The old people here tend to take things much more philosophically. When the same prosecutors pointed out to Elvis Costello that Rodrigo's song Brutal was similar to his 1978 song Pump it Up, he replied: “Of course, that's how rock'n'roll works. You take the broken pieces of something and turn it into a new toy” and he acknowledged that for that specific song he plundered Bob Dylan and Chuck Berry. Primal Scream's Bobby Gillespie had a similar reaction when he was told that Lorde's Solar Power sounded suspiciously similar to his Higher than the Sun.