Who was the song Umbrella originally intended for? What happens when you retouch classical paintings to meet modern standards of beauty? Would you pay someone to kidnap you for fun?

In case you happened to be wondering about any of the above questions, or even if you weren’t, the internet is here to answer them. Plus, places to go and things to see this weekend. After the break, our cultural round-up.

culture roundup

Check out.

Alpha Beauties.

Full lips, slender noses, flat stomachs… 45 classical artworks are retouched to meet modern day standards of “beauty”. But are they more beautiful? Check out Alpha Beauties.

The new Great Gatsby trailer.

Seeking to meet expectations that his new Great Gatsby film will be relevant thanks to digital visuals and a contemporary pop soundtrack, Baz Luhrmann releases a new trailer backed by the likes of Beyonce and Lana Del Rey. You can check it out at that link, if you haven’t already done so.

11 hit songs originally written for other artists.

Toxic was meant for Kylie Minogue and Umbrella was intended for Britney Spears. In the game of musical chairs that is the music industry, here are 11 hits intended for other artists.

Zoo portraits.

Portraits of animals dressed in human clothing. Because really, who doesn’t want to see a bison dressed in a puffer jacket?


Nasy Gal: Nasty in name only.

How Nasty Gal went from ebay store into giant online retailer: the NY times profiles Sophia Amoruso.

Extreme experiences: paying to be kidnapped.

What is it like to be abducted, held captive, and threatened with torture? GQ finds out. Willingly.

Female power: Margaret Thatcher.

Following the passing away of Margaret Thatcher, reflections on how she used her gender to her advantage.



For Sydneysiders who have never checked out the documentary Valentino: The Last Emperor you can do so this weekend. The Sydney Jewish Museum is hosting a screening of the film on April 14 at 2pm, and it’s free to attend.


David Bowie is kind of everywhere at the moment, having released a new album for the first time in forever. On now until the 11th August, the V&A museum in London has a “retrospective of the extraordinary career of David Bowie” with over 300 Bowie-related objects.


“Couture in Colour: Silk & Prints from the Abraham archives” exhibits couture from the 2nd half of the 20th century, with a particular focus on fabric prints before the days of digital. The exhibit is at MOMU, Antwerp, and runs from March 13th – August 11th 2013.

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