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Quick Takes: Mo Ostin gives $10 million to UCLA

May 05, 2011

Mo Ostin, a record executive and Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee who sent the likes of Frank Sinatra, Jimi Hendrix, Bonnie Raitt, Neil Young and Paul Simon into the recording studio, now will send students at UCLA's School of the Arts and Architecture into a studio that bears his name.

The university said Wednesday that Ostin has given $10 million for a new two-building facility called the Evelyn and Mo Ostin Music Center, which will include a state-of-the-art recording studio in one building and offices, classrooms, a rehearsal room, a cafe and a place for students to meet and relax in the other.

The gift from Ostin, who as Morris Meyer Ostrofsky earned a 1951 economics diploma from UCLA, will cover half the $20-million cost of the project, with the rest to be raised from other donors.

— Mike Boehm

Before there was 'The Godfather'

Mario Puzo's bestselling Mafia novel "The Godfather" will get a prequel, it was announced Wednesday by publisher Grand Central, which said "The Family Corleone" would come to shelves in June 2012.

"The Family Corleone" will be based on an unproduced screenplay written by Puzo, who died of a heart attack in 1999.

Assigned to bring Puzo's original characters to early life was Ed Falco, a novelist, short-story writer and playwright who runs the creative writing program at Virginia Tech.

The Puzo family previously authorized two sequels to "The Godfather": "The Godfather Returns" in 2004 and "The Godfather's Revenge" in 2006, both written by Mark Winegardner.

— Carolyn Kellogg

Huntington adds to collection

The Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens in San Marino has acquired its first major work by an African American artist and what it calls "a long-desired addition" to its paintings by the anti-academic group of American artists known as the Eight.

A 1937 redwood screen for a pipe organ by Sargent Claude Johnson, an African American, and Ernest Lawson's oil "Harlem Flats (Back Lot Laundry)," circa 1907, were purchased at the 17th Art Collectors' Council meeting last weekend.

"These are extremely important acquisitions that help us tell a more complete story about American art made in the first half of the 20th century," said Jessica Todd Smith, chief curator of American art at the Huntington.

— Karen Wada

$11.3 million paid for a Gauguin

A rare wooden sculpture of a Tahitian girl by Paul Gauguin sold for $11.3 million at auction.

The "Young Tahitian" bust, last seen by the public in 1961, had been estimated to bring $10 million to $15 million, the Sotheby's auction house said.

The 9½-inch sculpture is of a serene-looking Tahitian girl wearing large earrings and a necklace of coral and shells the French artist collected and strung himself. It's the only known fully worked three-dimensional bust he made.

"Femmes lisant (deux personnages)," a 1934 Picasso work, sold for $21.36 million, including commission.

Sotheby's did not identify the buyers at Tuesday night's event.

— Associated Press

'The Voice' is widely heard

With "The Voice," it looks like NBC has finally gotten the hit it desperately needs.

The second week of the singing competition delivered an average of 12.4 million viewers from 9 to 11 p.m. Tuesday, up 5% from last week's impressive premiere, according to the Nielsen Co.

"The Voice" thus becomes the only new series on any of the major networks this season to deliver a bump from the first to second episode, usually a reliable indicator of hit status.

Best of all for long-suffering NBC, "The Voice" is showing its strongest numbers among young adults. It was Tuesday night's top-rated program among viewers ages 18 to 49, the demographic that many advertisers covet.

— Scott Collins

Turner finalists are announced

A dirt sculptor and a video artist are among four finalists for the Turner Prize, Britain's best-known and most provocative art award.

Organizers on Wednesday named the shortlist for the $41,000 prize, awarded annually to a British artist under 50.

They include Scottish installation artist Martin Boyce and Glasgow-based Karla Black, who sculpts with unusual materials including flour, cosmetics, petroleum jelly and soil.

The others are London-based video artist Hilary Lloyd and painter George Shaw.

The winner will be announced Dec. 5.

— Associated Press

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