Arts and Culture

If you like Argo (which won Best Picture), the movie Chicago (which made a couple of appearances) and jokes about women (which just kept coming), you probably had a substantially better night than the average viewer, who was subjected to Seth MacFarlane's delivery of one of the worst hosting performances in Oscar history.

Tyler Pratt for KUT News

The first-ever international Modern Quilting Convention – QuiltCon – starts right here in Austin today. So what exactly is “Modern Quilting”?

Quilting has moved out of the attic and into the realm of cool. Just ask the millions of people on websites like Pinterest and Etsy.

QuiltCon organizer Heather Grant says the craft started its internet revolution in 2005… when it became easier to share photos online.

This Valentine's Day, if you're feeling lonely, heartbroken, or just a bit jaundiced, we've got some archive treasures for you — tempestuous relationships, cartoon heartbreak, and a few books that may make you feel less alone — plus a bonus playlist from our good friends at NPR Music.

Google Street View Takes A Hike. So?

Jan 31, 2013

A few months back, Google released a few of its engineers into the wild with a camera called the Google Trekker.

Many of us here at NPR have pets or are animal lovers, and recently discovered that National Dress Your Pet Day is in January. We were inspired by this to ask you to show your appreciation for public media by accessorizing your pet.

To have a little fun with it, we want you to snap a picture of your pet listening to your favorite public radio station.

Prices on mail sent through the U.S. Postal Service increased this week — the price of a first-class stamp now costs 46 cents, up a penny. But for small businesses that ship products overseas, like many independent record labels, the costs could be much larger.

Brian Lowit, who has worked at Washington, D.C.'s Dischord Records for 10 years, says that while a postage rate hike is a familiar bump in the road, "I've never seen one this drastic."

Tyler Pratt, KUT News

Local comedians dressed as chickens took to the streets of downtown Austin Tuesday afternoon. They reenacted the famous Abbey Road album cover, talked to locals and garnered attention for Austin’s secnd Annual Moontower Comedy and Oddity Fest.

Jim Ritts, Executive Director of the Austin Theatre Alliance, announced the festival lineup at the Paramount Theater. This year’s headlining stand-up comedians are Dana Carvey, Amy Schumer, Bill Burr, Bill Hader & Jim Gaffigan.

Filipa Rodrigues for KUT News

KUT’s Emily Donahue sat down with the author of a book unlike any other you may have read. It’s a short story collection with stories as short as a page and a half – but an impact that lingers for days. The book is "Tenth of December" and the author is George Saunders, who is widely acclaimed as one of the most important writers of our time.

Filipa Rodrigues for KUT News

The Architects of Air are back in Austin. Sound, color and light are all utilized to the fullest in this immersive experience hosted at the Long Center.

The art installation resembles a giant inflatable castle, occupies half a football field and rises to the height of a 3-story house. This visually overwhelming experience is created by sunlight streaming into the castle, bringing with it all kinds of bright colors and shapes.

We all think we know what happy means. But when you get down to it, how would we actually define it? Raj Raghunathan has tried. He teaches marketing at UT’s McCombs School of Business. He studies, among other things, consumer behavior, decision theory, and happiness. Raghunathan says different people define happiness differently, but a couple of traits are universal. It’s a positive emotion, and we want to experience it. But, he says, pursuing society’s most common markers of happiness won’t actually get us there.

Jonathan Britnell,

With 295,000 views and counting on video site Vimeo, the popularity of the video “2012. 366 days. 366 seconds.” isn’t slowing down.

Made by Austin filmmaker Jonathan Britnell, the video captures moments around Austin and in Britnell’s life. Each day of the 2012 leap year gets one second, making the video 366 seconds long. 

“The main reason I decided to do it was just to try to be more creative, just to try to do something creative everyday,” Britnell says.

Fox has a question for you Austin: Do you think you can dance?

So You Think You Can Dance,” that long-running televised dance competition that airs on Fox during the summer, is holding auditions in Austin today and Saturday at the Long Center for the Performing Arts. Doors for the auditions open at 8 a.m.

Jeff Heimsath for KUT News

It's SXSW season, folks.

The South by Southwest Film Conference and Festival has announced part of the line up of films to premiere at the 20th edition of the festival.

The film festival will open with the world premiere of the Steve Carell comedy, The Incredible Burt Wonderstone. Carell, as Burt Wonderstone, partners with Steve Buscemi, to play superstar Las Vegas magicians whose careers face jeopardy when rival street-magician, Jim Carrey, begins outperforming the duo. Festival goers can catch the film one week before the theatrical release, March 15.

One-fifth of Americans are religiously unaffiliated — higher than at any time in recent U.S. history — and those younger than 30 especially seem to be drifting from organized religion. A third of young Americans say they don't belong to any religion.