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Quick Takes: Questions remain after Amy Winehouse autopsy

August 25, 2011

Toxicology results released to the family of singer Amy Winehouse this week raised almost as many questions as they answered, experts said Wednesday, keeping the cause of the "Rehab" singer's death a mystery.

The Winehouse family issued a statement on Tuesday saying no illegal substances were found in the 27-year-old's system after her death at her London home on July 23.

The absence of banned drugs may come as a relief to her father, Mitch, given Winehouse's history of drug and alcohol addiction and rampant speculation about the role narcotics may have played in her death.

Yet the statement did not specify whether there were any legal drugs found and said "alcohol was present, but it cannot be determined as yet if it played a role in her death."

Adding to the confusion was the fact that the toxicology results were given to the family and not made public in their entirety, allowing them to protect her legacy.

—Reuters

Interim chief gets Chicago job

The Art Institute of Chicago on Wednesday named curator Douglas Druick its president, removing the interim tag on the European art expert who took over for James Cuno in June.

Tom Pritzker, chairman of the Art Institute's board of trustees, said Druick "is one of the leading curators in the world, and his contributions over more than two decades have been immeasurably important to the development and presentations of the collections as well as the exhibitions at the museum."

Druick, 66, who received his graduate degrees from Yale, has chaired two of the museum's 11 curatorial departments during his 26 years at the institution.

Cuno left to head the Getty Trust in Los Angeles after overseeing the opening of the Art Institute's

$300-million Modern Wing in 2009.

—Reuters

Latin museum names CEO

The Museum of Latin American Art said that it has appointed Stuart Ashman as its new president and chief executive. His tenure is set to begin on Sept. 6.

Ashman assumes the Long Beach museum's top post after the abrupt departure of Richard P. Townsend in January. Townsend had served as president of the museum for a little less than two years before announcing his resignation.

Ashman has served as director of the Museum of Fine Arts in New Mexico and also was founding director of the Museum of Spanish Colonial Art in Santa Fe.

—David Ng

Unique portrait exhibit in Berlin

A new exhibition in Berlin of early Italian Renaissance portraits brings together for the first time key works from museums around the world, including Leonardo da Vinci's masterpiece "Lady With an Ermine."

More than 150 pieces of art, including paintings, drawings, sculptures, medallions and busts, are going on display Thursday at Berlin's Bode Museum. The show examines how portraits evolved from early formulaic profiles to works in which the personalities of real people came through.

The show was curated in collaboration with the Metropolitan Museum of Art and will travel to New York after the Berlin exhibit, where it will run from Dec. 19 to March 18.

Museums from around the world have loaned their top Renaissance works to Berlin, among them the Louvre in Paris, the Uffizi in Florence and London's National Gallery with pieces from Botticelli, Donatello, Pisanello, Bellini and Leonardo, among others.

—Associated Press

KCSN adds Latin program

Radio station KCSN-FM (88.5) will continue the expansion of its programming on Sept. 1 with the addition of "The Latin Alternative," billed as "the first nationally syndicated public radio show specializing in Latin rock, funk and electronic music."

The one-hour program will premiere Sept. 1 and will air at 9 p.m. Thursdays. It is hosted by Josh Norek, co-founder of the Latin Alternative Music Conference and member of the Hip Hop Hoodios, and Ernesto Lechner, author of "Rock en Español: The Latin Alternative Rock Explosion." Lechner also has been a contributor to The Times' Calendar section.

The 3-year-old show combines music with artist interviews, and recent guests have included Ozomatli, Jaguares, Diego Garcia, Ana Tijoux and the Pinker Tones. KCSN also has recently started weekly shows hosted by former KCRW-FM DJ and music director Nic Harcourt and former Times pop music critic Robert Hilburn.

—Randy Lewis

Finally

Film fest: London Film Festival organizers say this year's event will open in October with the European premiere of Fernando Meirelles' "360," starring Rachel Weisz, Jude Law and Anthony Hopkins.

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