AIF Blog - Arts

October 17, 2017
David Rubenstein speaks with Aspen Institute CEO and author Walter Isaacson at the Aspen Ideas Festival. Biographer Walter Isaacson says Leonardo da Vinci, the subject of his latest book, was much more than a famous artist. Sure, da Vinci is best known for the two most famous paintings in history: the Mona Lisa and The Last Supper. But, Isaacson says, da Vinci also thought of himself as a scientist and engineer...
June 23, 2017
 The Aspen Ideas to Go Podcast TAKEOVER is back for its second year! In the spirit of a diverse exchange of ideas, we’ve handed over the mic to a handful of Festival presenters to take over the show! During the week of the Aspen Ideas Festival—going on now through July 1st—six Takeover Hosts—Julie Rovner, Perri Peltz, Michele Norris, Joshua Johnson, Pete Dominick, and Susan Page...
June 22, 2017
Kelly Leonard is the executive director of insights and applied improvisation at Second City Works. He will be speaking at the Caregiving track at the Aspen Ideas Festival. Below, he describes how lessons he learned as he was training in improv at Second City can help one navigate life's challenges. In mid-May, I found myself on stage at Memorial Sloan Kettering in New York City with my Second City colleague Kate...
June 07, 2017
Former Vice President Al Gore stars in the riveting and rousing follow-up to An Inconvenient Truth, Truth to Power. It's part of our flim lineup for the Aspen Ideas Festival.Public tickets for flims go on sale June 16.  SPOTLIGHT HEALTH LINEUP James Beard: America's First Foodie (June 23) Today's American food movement can be traced back to one man: cookbook author, journalist, television celebrity, and teacher...
June 06, 2017
Jane McGonigal, author of Super Better, speaks at the Aspen Ideas Festival in 2016.Thinking about the far-off future isn’t just an exercise in intellectual curiosity. It’s a practical skill that, as new research reveals, has a direct neurological link to greater creativity, empathy, and optimism. In this session from master game designer and acclaimed futurist Jane McGonigal, you’ll learn three...
May 30, 2017
Netflix releases the fifth season of House of Cards today (5/30/17). In this encore episode Katie Couric interviews House of Cards creator Beau Willimon. The interview, from the Aspen Ideas Festival, took place before the show’s third season in 2015. The two have a lively conversation about Willimon’s career (he studied painting in college and later worked on political campaigns), and the turbulent lives...
May 04, 2017
 Amy Whitaker is the author of "Art Thinking" and an assistant professor at New York University Steinhardt School. As part of the Inside Creativity program track, she'll give a workshop at the Festival based on the core tenets of art thinking. You teach and write at the intersection of business, creativity, and everyday life. What made you explore similarities between these seemingly disparate facets? In the early...
August 30, 2016
Is America turning its back on the humanities? The declining enrollment in disciplines including history, literature, language, philosophy and the arts, at colleges and universities across the country, signals a significant cultural shift. In this episode, Leon Wieseltier, contributing editor for The Atlantic, and Harvard President Drew Gilpin Faust unpack why the diminished appeal of the humanities has...
July 29, 2016
Drew Gilpin Faust and Leon Wieseltier at Aspen Ideas, discussing Do We Need to Rescue the Humanities?Earlier this month, the Washington Post journalist Jeff Guo wrote a detailed account of how he’d managed to maximize the efficiency of his cultural consumption. “I have a habit that horrifies most people,” he wrote. “I watch television and films in fast forward … the time savings are enormous. Four episodes of ...
July 01, 2016
(Photo Credit: White Light Exposure)Sam Killermann is a multi-disciplinary artist and director of creativity for Hues, which works toward the goal of global justice. He spoke at the Festival on July 1st on a panel called “How to Talk about Gender.” We caught up with Killermann to learn more about his full exploration of gender from a social justice perspective.How did you end up getting into this hybrid field of...

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