The Secret Lives of Paintings – What’s Hidden Beneath All That Paint? (VIDEO)

Art history is far from set in stone. Engineer Maurizio Seracini spent 30 years searching for Leonardo da Vinci’s lost fresco “The Battle of Anghiari,” and in the process discovered that many paintings have layers of history hidden underneath. Should they be part of the viewing experience too? Maurizio Seracini Diagnostician of Italian Art Maurizio[…]

Has the Library Outlived Its Usefulness in the Age of the Internet? You’d Be Surprised!

Library space is changing. Penn State By Donald A. Barclay Deputy University Librarian University of California, Merced U.S. institutions of higher education and U.S. local governments are under extraordinary pressure to cut costs and eliminate from institutional or governmental ledgers any expenses whose absence would cause little or no pain. In this political climate, academic[…]

The Perfect Cup of Coffee Boils Down to Four Factors

Grind, temperature, time and coffee-to-water ratio – nail these for the best coffee. Andy Ciordia/Flickr By Don Brushett Southern Cross University It’s hard to get a bad coffee these days. Plenty of baristas have fine-tuned the process of making espresso, but really there are only a handful of variables they can control: coarseness of the grind[…]

When You Throw Wool at a Horse, It’s Still a Horse

Image by Steve Rhodes via Flickr / Creative Commons The intellectually vapid exercise of throwing wool at a horse to call it a sheep – or the belief that disbelief is still belief By Matthew A. McIntosh Brewminate Editor-in-Chief In a “flip-the-script” mentality, believers of all sorts have increasingly adopted the notion that atheism is[…]

West-East Bidirectional Influence of Art and Architecture during the Crusades

Maps on the Web By Matthew A. McIntosh Brewminate Editor-in-Chief “A man of eighty,” wrote Lord Byron, “has outlived probably three new schools of painting, two of architecture and poetry and a hundred in dress.”  Byron’s sentiment would certainly ring true for most periods of human history, including the medieval period of the crusades that[…]

Augustus: The Use of Propaganda to Establish and Maintain Legitimacy and Power

Illustrated scene from the Aeneid, a fantastic work of propaganda by Vergil to exalt the Roman Empire and Augustus / Wikimedia Commons By Matthew A. McIntosh Historian Brewminate Editor-in-Chief “The medium,” wrote Marshall McLuhan in 1964 in Understanding Media:  The Extensions of Man, “is the message.”  Thus was laid a new foundation for the study[…]