Monday, November 7, 2011

Today in Pop Culture History: McQueen and MoMa

7 November 1980: Steve McQueen, nicknamed the "King of Cool," died following complications from experimental surgery for terminal cancer in Mexico. McQueen appeared in a number of films everybody's Dad likes, such as The Magnificent Seven, The Great Escape, and Bullitt. The latter features arguably the greatest car chase scene ever filmed. McQueen was an avid car and motorcycle racer himself, owning several classic sports cars, one of which (the Ferrari) practically plays a supporting role in Tower Heist. It's probably no coincidence that the automotive hero of the Cars series is named Lightning McQueen. If he were alive today, he would no doubt be a guest on Top Gear.

Yeah, I agree. He's pretty cool.

7 November 1929: New York City's Museum of Modern Art opened its doors. It was (and is) an influential force for smashing the distinction between high and low art. The museum was one of the first to feature collections of photography and film, and also boasts a rock star nickname of its own: MoMa.

Pictured: The distinction between high and low art being smashed via the MoMa collection.


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