ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ Ryun Yu, who graduated in 1993 as MIT's first theater major, is now appearing in the Huntington Theatre Company's production of The Sisters Matsumoto. The Boston Herald called him "a breath of fresh air with his goofy John Wayne drawl and charming mannerisms." Mr. Yu's professional theater credits include Angels in America in Louisiana, Texas in Los Angeles and Half Lives and Hamlet in Singapore while his television and film credits includeDays of Our Lives and the recently completed Kat and Alice are Having a Bad Week.
ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ Erika Hartwieg, a research affiliate in the Department of Biology, has an exhibition of recent work on view at the Wainwright Bank & Trust Co. in Kendall Square. Ms. Hartwieg says most of the works are etchings from zinc plates and that she often creates a composite print using multiple plates. Sponsored by the Cambridge Art Association, the works will be displayed through April 14.
ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ In the winter of 1997-98, when Michael Rakowitz was a graduate student in the Visual Arts Program, he created a series of inflatable living units for the homeless with the help of a grant from the Council for the Arts at MIT. Now an adjunct lecturer at the State University of New York's Purchase College, he has introduced his custom-built, free temporary shelters to New York City. In Cambridge, his shelters were attached to exterior venting systems on public buildings, with assent from building owners and no problems from the police, he told the New York Times (December 17, 1999).
The Times spoke to a New York Police Department spokesman and the executive director of the Coalition for the Homeless, neither of whom were optimistic about the shelters' chance of success, citing legal issues and the New York crackdown on sleeping on the sidewalks. "I am not an urban planner, and I'm not... a social worker," Mr. Rakowitz told the Times. "I'm an artist, and this is the only way I can act."
ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ MIT fared well in the Boston Globe's annual "Best of 1999" lists (December 19, 1999). Christine Temin's compilation of "Best Art" included Maria Magdalena Campos-Pons' installation Meanwhile the Girls Were Playing at the List Visual Arts Center (number seven on a list of ten). Richard Dyer included Institute Professor John Harbisontwice on his list of "Best Classical Music" -- once under best new or recent works for his new opera, The Great Gatsby, and again as "Musician of the Year," declaring that "John Harbison stands as a model of musical citizenship."
ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ï¿½ In other year-end accolades, the List Visual Arts Center's Corporal Politics scored in the Boston Herald's list of highs for the decade. The controversial 1992 exhibition, which received donations from the rock group Aerosmith and playwright Jon Robin Baitz after the National Endowment for the Arts revoked funding, included images of body parts to represent the fragmentation and alienation of individuals in society.
A version of this article appeared in MIT Tech Talk on January 26, 2000.