In developed nations, the majority of retail environments are now cashless. Automated systems have made it possible for customers to shop with little or no physical interaction with a checkout.
Items are simply “scanned” as they pass out of the door. The customer is identified by a chip in their card, or with a prepayment transponder obtained from a vending machine outside the store. Transactions are then generated over the Internet. This system greatly saves time, improves security and reduces costs for the retailer by eliminating the need for checkout staff.
Customers can also utilise Augmented Reality, to quickly locate shop items. A list on their mobile phone can direct them to the appropriate aisle and shelf. Users can also make use of glasses with displays built into the lenses.
To those who lived through it, the night of November 9, 1989, seemed to mark a new epoch in human history. The Berlin Wall was suddenly undefended, in a single delirious moment that promised to end the Cold War division of Europe. Two years later, the Soviet Union would be dissolved. Elected leaders would govern Russia for the first time since the country’s brief democratic experiment of 1917. “Europe whole and free” seemed more than a far-off aspiration: it seemed a work in the making.
A quarter century later, Russia under Vladimir Putin is more repressive and more aggressive than the Soviet Union under Mikhail Gorbachev was. It has invaded Ukraine and menaces the Baltic republics. In 2013, Russia spent a higher portion of GDP on defense than the United States for the first time in a decade. As Europe contends with economic depression and internal terrorist violence, Russian money flows to extremist parties in the hope of breaking apart the European Union. One former Warsaw Pact member, Hungary, is backsliding toward authoritarianism. “Europe whole and free” sounds like haunting mockery.
As the relationship between Russia and the West has deteriorated, some have hastened to blame the United States and nato for starting a new Cold War, while others entirely blame Putin himself. There is, however, another way to think, both more plausible and more troubling: the question is not “Has a new Cold War started?” but rather “Did the old Cold War ever end?”
Post–World War II Germany faced its past, discarded its Nazi institutions, and committed itself to reconciliation with its neighbors. Justice was not always done. Some ex-Nazis continued to hold high judicial and bureaucratic offices in Germany into the early 1970s. But the truth was told—and on the basis of truth, society could be renewed and peace secured.
Post-Soviet elites in Russia never acknowledged the truth of what their predecessors had done to their own society—and to the subject peoples they ruled. It Was a Long Time Ago, and It Never Happened Anyway is the expressive title of the best book on the subject. Russian rulers’ refusal to face the past allowed and invited the past to return.
Skarstedt will present the pairing of Fire Paintings by Yves Klein and Oxidation Paintings by Andy Warhol, two major bodies of work by canonical 20th Century artists and fundamental to the history of abstraction, never before exhibited together.
Hi all and Welcome to Dip 9 blog!
My first post is about Warhol’s Assistant, Ronnie Cutrone.
He was Warhol’s assistant at The Factory from 1972 until 1980, Warhol’s most productive years.
During that time, Cutrone worked on the famous ”Piss Paintings”.
Ronnie Cutrone was an American pop artist known for his large-scale paintings of some of America’s favorite cartoon characters, such as Felix the Cat, Pink Panther and Woody Woodpecker.
Mr. Cutrone was equally renowned as someone who had known almost everyone, and tried almost everything, in the New York art world of the 1960s and after, bridging the sea change from Pop to punk.
Felix the Cat