Caravaggio

Italian artist Michelangelo Merisi Amerighi da Caravaggio sadly died 18 July 1610 at the age of 38, under mysterious circumstances in Porto Ercole, while on his way to Rome to receive a pardon. He was born 29 September 1571 in Milan where his father, Fermo (Fermo Merixio), was a household administrator and architect-decorator to the Marchese of Caravaggio, a town not far from the city of Bergamo.[ His mother, Lucia Aratori (Lutia de Oratoribus), came from a nearby property owning family. In 1576 the family moved to Caravaggio (Caravaggius) to escape a plague that ravaged Milan, of which Caravaggio’s father and grandfather both died in 1577. The artist grew up in Caravaggio, but his family kept up connections with the Sforzas and with the powerful Colonna family, who were allied by marriage with the Sforzas and destined to play a major role later in Caravaggio’s life.

Caravaggio’s mother died in 1584, and following her death he began his four-year apprenticeship to the Milanese painter Simone Peterzano, described in the contract of apprenticeship as a pupil of Titian. Caravaggio stayed in the Milan-Caravaggio area after his apprenticeship ended, and visited Venice where he saw the works of Giorgione, he became familiar with the art treasures of Milan, including Leonardo da Vinci’s Last Supper, and with the regional Lombard art, Which used simplicity and attention to naturalistic detail and was closer to the naturalism of Germany than to the stylised formality and grandeur of Roman Mannerism. Following his initial training under Simone Peterzano, in 1592 Caravaggio left Milan for Rome, in flight after “certain quarrels” and the wounding of a police officer.

In Rome he forged some extremely important friendships, with the painter Prospero Orsi, the architect Onorio Longhi, and the sixteen-year-old Sicilian artist Mario Minniti. Orsi, established in the profession, introduced him to influential collectors; while Longhi, introduced him to the dubious world of Roman street-brawls. A few months later he was painting for the highly successful Giuseppe Cesari, Pope Clement VIII’s favourite artist, “painting flowers and fruit” and developed a considerable name as an artist, In Rome there was demand for paintings to fill the many huge new churches and palazzos being built at the time. It was also a period when the Church was searching for a stylistic alternative to Mannerism in religious art that was tasked to counter the threat of Protestantism. Caravaggio’s innovation was a radical naturalism that combined close physical observation with a dramatic, even theatrical, use of chiaroscuro that came to be known as tenebrism. Minniti served Caravaggio as a model and, years later, would be instrumental in helping him to obtain important commissions in Sicily. Known works from this period include a small Boy Peeling a Fruit (his earliest known painting), a Boy with a Basket of Fruit, and the Young Sick Bacchus, supposedly a self-portrait done during convalescence from a serious illness that ended his employment with Cesari.

Caravaggio led a tumultuous life and was a violent amd easily provoked individual. He was jailed on several occasions, vandalized his own apartment, and ultimately had a death warrant issued for him by the Pope. He was also notorious for brawling, even in a time and place when such behavior was commonplace, and the transcripts of his police records and trial proceedings fill several pages. In 1606, he killed, possibly unintentionally, a young man named Ranuccio Tomassoni from Terni (Umbria). The circumstances of the brawl and the death of Ranuccio Tomassoni remain mysterious. Several contemporary avvisi referred to a quarrel over a gambling debt and a tennis game. Whatever the details, it was a serious matter. Previously his high-placed patrons had protected him from the consequences of his escapades, but this time they could do nothing. Caravaggio, outlawed, fled from Rome to Naples.

In Naples, outside the jurisdiction of the Roman authorities Caravaggio was protected by the Colonna family. Whose connections led to a stream of important church commissions, including the Madonna of the Rosary, and The Seven Works of Mercy, this painting depicts the seven corporal works of mercy as a set of compassionate acts concerning the material needs of others. The painting is still housed in, the church of Pio Monte della Misericordia in Naples. Caravaggio combined all seven works of mercy in one composition which became the church’s altarpiece. Despite his success in Naples, after only a few months in the city Caravaggio left for Malta, the headquarters of the Knights of Malta, presumably hoping that the patronage of Alof de Wignacourt, Grand Master of the Knights, could help him secure a pardon for Tomassoni’s death. De Wignacourt proved so impressed at having the famous artist as official painter to the Order that he inducted him as a knight, and the early biographer Bellori records that the artist was well pleased with his success. Major works from his Malta period include a huge Beheading of Saint John the Baptist (the only painting to which he put his signature) and a Portrait of Alof de Wignacourt and his Page, as well as portraits of other leading knights. In 1608 he was arrested and imprisoned as the result of yet another brawl, during which the door of a house was battered down and a knight seriously wounded. He was imprisoned by the knights and managed to escape. By December he had been expelled from the Order “as a foul and rotten member.”

In 1607 Caravaggio made his way from Naples to Sicily To gain a papal pardon for his sentence. In Sicilly met his old friend Mario Minniti, who was now married and living in Syracuse. Together they set off on what amounted to a triumphal tour from Syracuse to Messina and, maybe, on to the island capital, Palermo. In Syracuse and Messina Caravaggio continued to win prestigious and well-paid commissions. Among other works from this period are Burial of St. Lucy, The Raising of Lazarus, and Adoration of the Shepherds. His style continued to evolve, showing now friezes of figures isolated against vast empty backgrounds. “His great Sicilian altarpieces isolate their shadowy, pitifully poor figures in vast areas of darkness; they suggest the desperate fears and frailty of man, and at the same time convey, with a new yet desolate tenderness, the beauty of humility and of the meek, who shall inherit the earth.”.

In 1609 After only nine months in Sicily, an increasingly paranoid Caravaggio returned to Naples. He was being pursued by enemies while in Sicily and felt it safest to place himself under the protection of the Colonnas until he could secure his pardon from the pope (now Paul V) and return to Rome. In Naples he painted The Denial of Saint Peter, a final John the Baptist (Borghese), and his last picture, The Martyrdom of Saint Ursula. In Naples, an attempt was made on his life, Which seriously disfigured his face. He painted a Salome with the Head of John the Baptist (Madrid), showing his own head on a platter, and sent it to de Wignacourt, he also painted David with the Head of Goliath, which he sent to the art-loving Cardinal Scipione Borghese, nephew of the pope, who had the power to grant or withhold pardons. Throughout his life Caravaggio had displayed bizarre behaviour, and courted controvery. This got worse after Malta and Questions about his mental state arose from his erratic and bizarre behavior. In the summer of 1610 he took a boat northwards to receive the pardon, which seemed imminent thanks to his powerful Roman friends. With him were three last paintings, gifts for Cardinal Scipione.

Sadly though Caravaggio died 28 July 1610 under uncertain circumstances while on his way from Naples to Rome. Reports stated that he died of a fever, but suggestions have been made that he was murdered or that he died of lead poisoning. Recent research suggest that the artist died on that day of a fever in Porto Ercole, near Grosseto in Tuscany. Human remains found in a church in Porto Ercole in 2010 are believed to almost certainly belong to Caravaggio. Some argue that Caravaggio was murdered by the same “enemies” that had been pursuing him since he fled Malta, possibly Wignacourt and/or factions in the Order of St. John.

During his life, Caravaggio’s innovations inspired many Baroque paintings and his influence on the new Baroque style can be seen in the work of Rubens, Jusepe de Ribera, Bernini, Rembrandt and the “Caravaggisti” or “Caravagesques”, as well as Tenebrists or “Tenebrosi” (“shadowists”) who incorporated the drama of chiaroscuro without the psychological realism.

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Jane Austen

English novelist Jane Austen tragically died in 18th July 1817. She was born 16th December 1775 and her works of romantic fiction, set among the landed gentry, earned her a place as one of the most widely read writers in English literature. Her realism and biting social commentary have gained her historical importance among scholars and critics. Austen lived her entire life as part of a close-knit family located on the lower fringes of the English landed gentry. She was educated primarily by her father and older brothers as well as through her own reading.

The steadfast support of her family was critical to her development as a professional writer. Her artistic apprenticeship lasted from her teenage years into her thirties. During this period, she experimented with various literary forms, including the epistolary novel which she then abandoned, and wrote and extensively revised three major novels and began a fourth. From 1811 until 1816, with the release of Sense and Sensibility (1811), Pride and Prejudice (1813), Mansfield Park (1814) and Emma (1816), she achieved success as a published writer. She wrote two additional novels, Northanger Abbey and Persuasion, both published posthumously in 1818, and began a third, which was eventually titled Sanditon, but died before completing it.

Austen’s works critique the novels of sensibility of the second half of the 18th century and are part of the transition to 19th-century realism. Her plots, though fundamentally comic, highlight the dependence of women on marriage to secure social standing and economic security. Her work brought her little personal fame and only a few positive reviews during her lifetime, but the publication in 1869 of her nephew’s A Memoir of Jane Austen introduced her to a wider public, and by the 1940s she had become widely accepted in academia as a great English writer.

The second half of the 20th century saw a proliferation of Austen scholarship and the emergence of a Janeite fan culture. Biographical information concerning Jane Austen is “famously scarce”, according to one biographer. Only some personal and family letters remain (by one estimate only 160 out of Austen’s 3,000 letters are extant), and her sister Cassandra (to whom most of the letters were originally addressed) burned “the greater part” of the ones she kept and censored those she did not destroy. Other letters were destroyed by the heirs of Admiral Francis Austen, Jane’s brother. Most of the biographical material produced for fifty years after Austen’s death was written by her relatives and reflects the family’s biases in favour of “good quiet Aunt Jane”. Scholars have unearthed little information since. Since her death Jane Austen’s novels such as Sense and Sensibility, Pride and Prejudice, Northanger Abbey and Emma, have all remained popular and have given rise to numerous television and film adaptations.

Nelson Mandela

Nelson Mandela International Day (or Mandela Day) it is celebrated annually on 18 July to celebrate the birthday of South African anti-apartheid revolutionary politician, President of South Africa and Nobel Prize laureate Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela who Was Born l8 July 1918. It was officially declared by the United Nations in November 2009, with the first UN Mandela Day held on 18 July 2010. Mandela Day is not meant as a public holiday, but as a day to honour the legacy of Nelson Mandela, South Africa’s former President, and his values, through volunteering and community service. Mandela Day is a global call to action that celebrates the idea that each individual has the power to transform the world and the ability to make an impact. The campaign message for Mandela Day is:”Nelson Mandela fought for social justice for 67 years. We’re asking you to start with 67 minutes and would be honoured if such a day can serve to bring together people around the world to fight poverty and promote peace and reconciliation,”.

A Xhosa born to the Thembu royal family, Mandela attended the Fort Hare Universityand the University of Witwatersrand, where he studied law. Living in Johannesburg, he became involved in anti-colonial politics, joining the ANC and becoming a founding member of its Youth League. After the South African National Party came to power in 1948, he rose to prominence in the ANC’s 1952 Defiance Campaign, was appointed superintendent of the organisation’s Transvaal chapter and presided over the 1955 Congress of the People. Working as a lawyer, he was repeatedly arrested for seditious activities and, with the ANC leadership, was unsuccessfully prosecuted in the Treason Trial from 1956 to 1961. Although initially committed to non-violent protest, he co-founded the militant Umkhonto we Sizwe (MK) in 1961 in association with the South African Communist Party, leading a sabotage campaign against the apartheid government. In 1962 he was arrested, convicted of conspiracy to overthrow the government, and sentenced to life imprisonment in the Rivonia Trial.

Mandela served 27 years in prison, initially on Robben Island, and later in Pollsmoor Prison and Victor Verster Prison. An international campaign lobbied for his release, which was granted in 1990 amid escalating civil strife. Mandela published his autobiography and opened negotiations with President F.W. de Klerk to abolish apartheid and establish multiracial elections in 1994, in which he led the ANC to victory. As South Africa’s first black president Mandela formed a Government of National Unityin an attempt to defuse racial tension. He also promulgated a new constitution and created the Truth and Reconciliation Commission to investigate past human rightsabuses. Continuing the former government’s liberal economic policy, his administration introduced measures to encourage land reform, combat poverty, and expand healthcare services.

Internationally, he acted as mediator between Libya and the United Kingdom in the Pan Am Flight 103 bombing trial, and oversaw military intervention in Lesotho. He declined to run for a second term, and was succeeded by his deputy, Thabo Mbeki. Mandela subsequently became an elder statesman, focusing on charitable work in combating poverty and HIV/AIDS through the Nelson Mandela Foundation.Although Mandela was a controversial figure for much of his life, he became widely popular during the last two decades following his release. Despite a minority of critics who continued to denounce him as a communist and/or terrorist, he gained international acclaim for his activism, having received more than 250 honours, including the 1993 Nobel Peace Prize, the US Presidential Medal of Freedom, the SovietOrder of Lenin and the Bharat Ratna. He is held in deep respect within South Africa, where he is often referred to by his Xhosa clan name, Madiba, or as Tata (“Father”); he is often described as “the father of the nation”. It was officially declared by the United Nations in November 2009, with the first UN Mandela Day held on 18 July 2010. Mandela Day is not meant as a public holiday, but as a day to honour the legacy of Nelson Mandela, South Africa’s former President, and his values, through volunteering and community service. Mandela Day is a global call to action that celebrates the idea that each individual has the power to transform the world and the ability to make an impact. The campaign message for Mandela Day is:”Nelson Mandela fought for social justice for 67 years. We’re asking you to start with 67 minutes and would be honoured if such a day can serve to bring together people around the world to fight poverty and promote peace and reconciliation,”.

Wolfgang Flür

Wolfgang Flür, German drummer with pioneering influential German electro/techno bands Kraftwerk and Dyko Was born 17 July 1947. Kraftwerk , (meaning power plant or power station) are an influential electronic music band from Düsseldorf, Germany. The group was formed by Ralf Hütter and Florian Schneider in 1970, and was fronted by them until Schneider’s departure in 2008. The signature Kraftwerk sound combines driving, repetitive rhythms with catchy melodies, mainly following a Western Classical style of harmony, with a minimalistic and strictly electronic instrumentation.

Kraftwerk Were formed by Florian Schneider (flutes, synthesizers, violin) and Ralf Hütter (organ, synthesizers) who met as students at the Robert Schumann Hochschule in Düsseldorf in the late 1960s, participating in the German experimental music and art scene of the time, which the Melody Maker jokingly dubbed “krautrock”. The duo originally performed together as part of a quintet known as Organisation. This ensemble released one album, Tone Float in 1969, issued on RCA Records in the UK, and split shortly thereafter. Schneider became interested in synthesizers deciding to acquire one in 1970. While visiting an exhibition in their hometown about visual artists Gilbert and George, they saw “two men wearing suits and ties, claiming to bring art into everyday life. The same year, Hütter and Schneider start bringing everyday life into art and form Kraftwerk”. During the 1970’s Hütter and Schneider worked with around a half-dozen other musicians during the preparations for and the recording of three albums and sporadic live appearances, most notably guitarist Michael Rother and drummer Klaus Dinger, who left to form Neu! The only constant figure in these line-ups was Schneider, whose main instrument at the time was the flute; at times he also played the violin and guitar, all processed through a varied array of electronic devices. Hütter, who left the band for eight months, played synthesizer and keyboards (including Farfisa organ and electric piano).

Their first three albums were free-form experimental rock without the pop hooks or the more disciplined song structure of later work. Kraftwerk, released in 1970, and Kraftwerk 2, released in 1972, were mostly exploratory musical improvisations played on a variety of traditional instruments including guitar, bass, drums, organ, flute, and violin. Post-production modifications to these recordings were used to distort the sound of the instruments, particularly audio-tape manipulation and multiple dubbings of one instrument on the same track. Both albums are purely instrumental. Live performances from 1972 to 1973 were made as a duo, using a simple beat-box-type electronic drum machine, with preset rhythms taken from an electric organ. These shows were mainly in Germany, with occasional shows in France. Later in 1973, Wolfgang Flür joined the group for rehearsals, and the unit performed as a trio on the television show Aspekte for German television network ZDF.

With the album Ralf und Florian, released in 1973, Kraftwerk began using synthesizers and drum machines. Although almost entirely instrumental, the album marks Kraftwerk’s first use of the vocoder. Kraftwerk’s futuristic and robotic sound was influenced by the ‘adrenalized insurgency’ of Detroit artists of the late ’60s such as MC5 and the Stooges. The input, expertise, and influence of producer and engineer Konrad “Conny” Plank was highly significant in the early years of Kraftwerk. Plank also worked with members of Can, Neu!, Cluster, and Harmonia. As a result of his work with Kraftwerk, Plank’s studio near Cologne became one of the most sought-after studios in the late 1970s. Plank coproduced the first four Kraftwerk albums

The release of Autobahn in 1974 saw Kraftwerk moving away from the sound of its first three albums. Hütter and Schneider had invested in newer technology such as the Minimoog and the EMS Synthi AKS, helping give Kraftwerk a newer, “disciplined” sound. Autobahn was a huge success in the US, where it peaked at number 5 in the Billboard top 200, Hütter and Schneider updated their studio, thus lessening their reliance on outside producers. The painter and graphic artist Emil Schult also became a regular collaborator, designing artwork, cowriting lyrics, and accompanying the group on tour.

in 1975 Kraftwerk embarked on a multi-date tour to promote the Autobahn album, a tour which took them to the US, Canada and the UK for the first time. The tour also saw a new, stable, live line-up in the form of a quartet. Hütter and Schneider continued playing keyboard synthesizers such as the Minimoog and ARP Odyssey, with Schneider’s use of flute diminishing. The pair also started singing live for the first time, Schneider processing his voice with a vocoder live. Wolfgang Flür and new recruit Karl Bartos performed on self-built electronic percussion instruments. Bartos also used a Deagan vibraphone on stage. The Hütter-Schneider-Bartos-Flür formation is now regarded as the classic live line-up of Kraftwerk. Emil Schult generally fulfilled the role of tour manager.

Following the 1975 Autobahn tour, Kraftwerk began work on the follow-up album, Radio-Activity (German title: Radio-Aktivität). After further investment in new equipment, the Kling Klang Studio became a fully working recording studio. With Emil Schult working on artwork and lyrics, Kraftwerk began to compose music for the new record. Radio Active Saw Kraftwerk become even more popular in Europe, earning them a gold disc in France. Kraftwerk made videos and performed several European live dates to promote the album. With the release of Autobahn and Radio-Activity, Kraftwerk left behind avant-garde experimentation and moved towards the electronic pop tunes for which they are best known.

In 1976, Kraftwerk toured in support of the Radio-Activity album. David Bowie was among the fans of the record and invited the band to support him on his Station to Station tour. Despite some innovations in touring, Kraftwerk took a break from live performances after the Radio-Activity tour of 1976 and began recording Trans-Europe Express (German: Trans-Europa Express) at the Kling Klang Studio. Hütter and Schneider also met David Bowie at the Kling Klang Studio. A collaboration was mentioned in an interview (Brian Eno) with Hütter, but it never materialised. The release of Trans-Europe Express in March 1977 was marked with an extravagant train journey used as a press conference by EMI France. The album won a disco award in New York later that year.In May 1978 Kraftwerk released The Man-Machine (German: Die Mensch-Maschine), recorded at the Kling Klang Studio and was the first Kraftwerk album where Karl Bartos was cocredited as a songwriter. The cover, produced in black, white and red, was inspired by Russian artist El Lissitzky and the Suprematism movement. Gunther Frohling photographed the group for the cover, a now-iconic image which featured the quartet dressed in red shirts and black ties.

In May 1981 Kraftwerk released Computer World (German: Computerwelt) recorded at Kling Klang Studio between 1978 and 1981. Kraftwerk modifiedthe studio to make it portable so the band could take it on tour. Some of the electronic vocals on Computer World were generated using a Texas Instruments language translator. “Computer Love” was released as a single backed with the Man-Machine track “The Model”. The Model reached number one in the UK and the Man-Machine album became hugely successful in the UK in 1982 as a result.The band’s live set encorporated greater use of vocals and the use of sequencing equipment for both percussion and music. In contrast to their cool and controlled image, the group used sequencers interactively, which allowed for live improvisation. Ironically Kraftwerk did not own a computer at the time of recording Computer World.

In 1981 Kraftwerk embarked on the Computer World tour and effectively packed up their entire Kling Klang studio and took it with themThey also made greater use of live visuals including back-projected slides and films synchronized with the music as the technology developed, the use of hand-held miniaturized instruments during the set (for example, during “Pocket Calculator”), and, perhaps most famously, the use of replica mannequins of themselves to perform on stage during the song “The Robots”.

In 1982 Kraftwerk began work on the album Techno Pop. One of the songs from these recording sessions was “Tour de France”, released in 1983. This song was a reflection of the band’s new-found obsession for cycling. After the physically demanding Computer World tour, Ralf Hütter had been looking for forms of exercise that fitted in with the image of Kraftwerk; subsequently he encouraged the group to become vegetarians and take up cycling. ” the song Tour de France” was also released, this included sounds including bicycle chains, gear mechanisms and the breathing of the cyclist. “aTour de France” was also featured in the 1984 film Breakin’. Sadly During the recording of “Tour de France”, Ralf Hütter was involved in a serious cycling accident. He suffered head injuries and remained in a coma for several days. During 1983 Wolfgang Flür was beginning to spend less time in the studio. Since the band began using sequencers his role as a drummer was becoming less frequent. He preferred to spend his time travelling with his girlfriend. Flür was also experiencing artistic difficulties with the band. After his final work on the 1986 album Electric Café (a.k.a. Techno Pop) he hardly returned to the Kling Klang Studio. In 1987 he left the band and was replaced by Fritz Hilpert.

During 1990 Kraftwerk played a few secret shows in Italy. Karl Bartos left the band shortly afterwards. The next proper tour was in 1991, for the album The Mix. Hütter and Schneider wished to continue the synth-pop quartet style of presentation, and recruited Fernando Abrantes as a replacement for Bartos. Abrantes left the band shortly after though, so long-time Kling Klang Studio sound engineer Henning Schmitz was recruited. In 1997 Kraftwerk appeared at the dance festival Tribal Gathering held in England. In 1998, Kraftwerk also toured the US and Japan Brazil and Argentina. In July 1999 the single “Tour de France” was reissued featuring slightly altered artwork. In 1999 Wolfgang Flür published his autobiography in Germany, Ich war ein Roboter. Later English-language editions of the book were titled Kraftwerk: I Was a Robot. The single “Expo 2000” was released in 1999 and was remixed and re-released as “Expo Remix” in 2000.

In 2003 Kraftwerk released the Tour de France Soundtrack, the first album of new material since 1986’s Electric Café and embarked on an extensive Minimum-Maximum world tour, using four customised Sony VAIO laptop computers, effectively leaving the entire Kling Klang studio at home in Germany. The group also obtained a new set of transparent video panels to replace its four large projection screens. This greatly streamlined the running of all of the group’s sequencing, sound-generating, and visual-display software which replaced manual playing With an interactive control of sequencing equipment. Hütter retained the most manual performance, still playing musical lines by hand on a controller keyboard and singing live vocals. Schneider’s live vocoding had been replaced by software-controlled speech-synthesis techniques.

In 2003 the group made a surprising appearance at the MTV European Music Awards in Edinburgh, Scotland, performing “Aerodynamik”. The same year a promotional box set entitled 12345678 (subtitled The Catalogue) was issued, featuring remastered editions of the group’s eight core studio albums, from Autobahn to Tour de France Soundtracks. In June 2005 the band’s first-ever official live album, Minimum-Maximum,was released. compiled during the band’s tour of spring 2004 and containing reworked tracks from existing studio albums, plus a track titled “Planet of Visions” that was a reworking of “Expo 2000”. Kraftwerk also toured Serbia, Bulgaria, Macedonia, Turkey, and Greece. and performed at festivals in Norway, Ireland, the Czech Republic, Spain, Belgium, and Germany. In 2008 the group played three shows in US cities Minneapolis, Milwaukee, and Denver, and were a coheadliner at the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival. They also performed in Ireland, Poland, Ukraine, Australia, New Zealand, Hong Kong and Singapore.The touring quartet consisted of Ralf Hütter, Henning Schmitz, Fritz Hilpert, and video technician Stefan Pfaffe, who became an official member in 2008. Original member Florian Schneider was absent from the lineup. Hütter stated that he was working on other projects.

In 2008 Florian Schneider also left Kraftwerk. In 2009, Kraftwerk performed concerts with special 3D background graphics in Wolfsburg, Germany; Manchester, UK; and Randers, Denmark. Members of the audience were able to watch this multimedia part of the show with 3D glasses, which were given out. During the Manchester concert (part of the 2009 Manchester International Festival) four members of the GB cycling squad (Jason Kenny, Ed Clancy, Jamie Staff and Geraint Thomas) also rode around the Velodrome while the band performed “Tour de France”. The group also played several festival dates, including Bestival 2009 on the Isle of Wight. Kraftwerk finally released The Catalogue box set on containing all eight remastered CDs in cardboard slipcases, as well as LP-sized booklets of photographs and artwork for each individual album. Ralf Hütter suggested that a second boxed set of their first three experimental albums—Kraftwerk, Kraftwerk 2 and Ralf and Florian could be released. Kraftwerk also released an iOS app called Kraftwerk Kling Klang Machine.

In 2011 Kraftwerk hosted a 3-d Exhibition at the The Lenbach House in Munich with Kraftwerk performing three concerts to open the exhibit. In 2012 Kraftwerk played at Ultra Music Festival in Miami and The Museum of Modern Art of New York organized an exhibit titled Kraftwerk – Retrospective 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 where the band performed their studio discography from Autobahn to Tour de France over the course of eight days to sell-out crowds. Kraftwerk performed at the No Nukes 2012 Festival in Tokyo, Japan and the Way Out West in Gothenburg., Kraftwerk Also played their Catalogue, at the Museum of Modern Art in New York, Düsseldorf, Sydney and London’s Tate Modern. Kraftwerk also performed at the 47th Montreux Jazz Festival, plus a 3-D concert on 12 July at T in the Park – in Balado, Kinross, Scotland, at tge Latitude Festival in Suffolk, and the Longitude Festival in Dublin. In 2013 Kraftwerk played four concerts, over two nights, at Evoluon in Eindhoven, Netherlands, a former technology museum of Philips Electronics, now a conference center which was chosen by Ralf Hütter, for its retro-futuristic UFO-like architecture. visuals of the building, with flying saucers descending from space, were displayed during the rendition of Spacelab.

In 2014, Kraftwerk performed a four-night, 3D Catalogue tour at the Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles and NYC’s United Palace Theatre. They also played at the Cirkus in Stockholm, Sweden, at the music festival Summer Sonic in Tokyo, Japan, at the brand new Fondation Louis-Vuitton in Paris, France and the iconic Paradiso concert hall in Amsterdam, Netherlands. After being told that the 2015 Tour de France would be starting that year in Utrecht, Ralf Hütter decided that Kraftwerk would perform during the “Grand Depart”.Kraftwerk also played three concerts in TivoliVredenburg performing “Tour de France Soundtracks” and visited the start of the Tour in-between. In 2017, Kraftwerk announced 3-D The Catalogue, a live album and video documenting perfor mances of all eight albums in The Catalogue that was released 26 May 2017. It is available in multiple formats, the most extensive of which being a 4-disc Blu-ray set with a 236-page hardback book.

Geezer Butler (Black Sabbath)

English musician and songwriter. Terence Michael Joseph “Geezer” Butler was born 17 July 1949. Butler is best known as the bassist and primary lyricist of the heavy metal band Black Sabbath. He has also recorded with Heaven & Hell, GZR, and Ozzy Osbourne. Butler received the nickname “Geezer” because he “used to call everybody Geezer” at school. “It was just a slang term for a man.” Butler was heavily influenced by the writing of Aleister Crowley as a teenager. Butler formed his first band, Rare Breed, in the autumn of 1967, with John “Ozzy” Osbourne soon joining as lead vocalist. Butler dated a girl who lived near Tony Iommi, and Iommi’s earliest memories of Butler involved seeing him walking past his house in Birmingham quite often to visit her.

Later, Iommi and Butler became acquainted when their bands played at a nearby nightclub Separated for a time, Osbourne and Butler reunited in the blues foursome, Polka Tulk, along with guitarist Iommi and drummer Bill Ward. They renamed their band Earth, but after finding a band in the small-time English circuit with the same name, soon adopted Black Sabbath in early 1969.

Inspired by John Lennon, Butler played rhythm guitar in his pre-Sabbath days, including with Rare Breed. When Sabbath was formed, Iommi made it clear that he would not want to play with another guitarist, so Butler moved to bass.[6] Butler lists Jack Bruce of Cream as his biggest influence as a bassist. Iommi described Butler as being “from another planet” in the band’s early days; he took LSD, wore Indian hippie dresses, and was very peaceful. At the time Black Sabbath was formed, Butler was studying to become an accountant, and this training resulted in him managing the band’s finances in the early days.

Butler briefly left Black Sabbath during the recording of their 1980 album Heaven and Hell to deal with personal problems and left again in 1984 after touring in support of their 1983 album, Born Again. In 1988 he joined his former Sabbath bandmate Osbourne to take part in the No Rest for the Wicked World Tour. Butler re-joined Black Sabbath in 1991 for the reunion of the Mob Rules line-up, but again quit the group after the Cross Purposes tour in 1994. In 1995 Butler joined with Osbourne to play on the Ozzmosis album. After recording Ozzmosis, he formed G/Z/R, issuing Plastic Planet in 1995. His next solo album, Black Science, followed in 1997.

Butler returned to Sabbath once more for the 1997 edition of Ozzfest, and has remained with the band since. In 2005 he released Ohmwork, his third solo album. In October 2006 it was announced that Butler, along with Tony Iommi, would be reforming the Dehumanizer-era Black Sabbath line-up with Vinny Appice and Ronnie James Dio, under the name Heaven & Hell to differentiate between the reunited touring band fronted by Osbourne, and the current Sabbath line-up He recorded and toured for the album “13” (2013) and the subsequent tour, reaching an end for the final tour in 2017.

International Firgun Day

International Firgun Day  takes place annually on July 17. Firgun (Hebrew: פירגון) is an informal modern Hebrew term and concept in Israeli culture, which describes genuine, unselfish delight or pride in the accomplishment of the other. Another definition describes Firgun as a generosity of spirit, an unselfish, empathetic joy that something good has happened, or might happen, to another person. The concept does not have a one-word equivalent in English. The infinitive form of the word, “Lefargen”, means to make someone feel good without any ulterior motives. This absence of negativity is an integral part of the concept of firgun.

The word can be traced back to the Yiddish word “farginen” (a cognate of the German word “vergönnen”). A relatively modern addition to Hebrew, the word was initially used in the 1970s, and gained momentum in subsequent decades. According to Tamar Katriel, professor of communications in the University of Haifa, Firgun differs from giving compliments, since is “about an affinity that is authentic and without agenda”. The concept of firgun can be found in Talmudic Hebrew as “ayin tova” or “ayin yafa” – “a good eye”. Those phrases are not commonly used in modern Hebrew.

In 2014, Made in JLM, an Israeli non-profit community group, set out to create “International Firgun Day”, a holiday celebrated yearly on July 17, where people share compliments or express genuine pride in the accomplishment of others on social media.To help promote the holiday, MadeinJLM holds an overnight marketing hackathon at the night before July 17 and an online automatic Firgun-generating tool in several languages, called the “Firgunator”

World Day for International justice

World Day for International Justice, also referred to as Day of International Criminal Justice or International Justice Day is an international day celebrated throughout the world on July 17 as part of an effort to recognize the emerging system of international criminal justice.

Justice is the legal or philosophical theory by which fairness is administered.[2] As with most philosophically-driven disciplines, the concept of justice differs in every culture. An early theory of justice was set out by the Ancient Greek philosopher Plato in his work The Republic. Advocates of divine command theory say that justice issues from God. In the 17th century, theorists like John Locke advocated natural rights as a derivative of justice.[3] Thinkers in the social contract tradition state that justice is derived from the mutual agreement of everyone concerned. In the 19th century, utilitarian thinkers including John Stuart Mill said that justice is what has the best consequences. Theories of distributive justice concern what is distributed, between whom they are to be distributed, and what is the proper distribution. Egalitarians state that justice can only exist within the coordinates of equality. John Rawls used a theory of social contract to show that justice, and especially distributive justice, is a form of fairness. Property rights theorists (like Robert Nozick) take a deontological view of distributive justice and state that property rights-based justice maximizes the overall wealth of an economic system. Theories of retributive justice are concerned with punishment for wrongdoing. Restorative justice (also sometimes called “reparative justice”) is an approach to justice that focuses on restoring what is good, and necessarily focuses on the needs of victims and offenders

July 17 was chosen because it is the anniversary of the adoption of the Rome Statute, the treaty that created the International Criminal Court. On 1 June 2010, at the Review Conference of the Rome Statute held in Kampala (Uganda), the Assembly of State Parties decided to celebrate 17 July as the Day of International Criminal Justice. The Rome Statute was adopted at a diplomatic conference in Rome on 17 July 1998 and it entered into force on 1 July 2002. As of March 2016, 124 states are party to the statute. Among other things, the statute establishes the court’s functions, jurisdiction and structure. The Rome Statute established four core international crimes: genocide, crimes against humanity, war crimes, and the crime of aggression. Those crimes “shall not be subject to any statute of limitations”. Under the Rome Statute, the ICC can only investigate and prosecute the four core international crimes in situations where states are “unable” or “unwilling” to do so themselves. The court has jurisdiction over crimes only if they are committed in the territory of a state party or if they are committed by a national of a state party; an exception to this rule is that the ICC may also have jurisdiction over crimes if its jurisdiction is authorized by the United Nations Security Council.

Each year, people around the world use this day to host events to promote international criminal justice, especially support for the International Criminal Court. The day has been successful enough to attract international news attention, and for groups to use the day to focus attention on particular issues such as genocide in Darfur, Falun Dafa, and serious crimes of violence against women.