US computer graphics scientist wins Kyoto Prize

Updated 10 November 2012
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US computer graphics scientist wins Kyoto Prize

TOKYO: An American regarded as a father of computer graphics, an Indian literary critic and a Japanese molecular cell biologist have received the Kyoto Prize, Japan’s highest private award for global achievement.
The Inamori Foundation awarded its advanced technology prize yesterday to US computer scientist Ivan Sutherland, who developed the graphic interface program Sketchpad in 1963. Gayatri Chakrovoty Spivak , an Indian literary critic and professor at Columbia University, won the arts and philosophy prize.
Yoshinori Ohsumi, a molecular biologist at the Tokyo Institute of Technology, received the basic sciences prize for his work on autophagy, a cell-recycling system that could be used to help treat neurodegenerative and age-related diseases such as Alzheimer’s and cancer.
The Kyoto-based Inamori Foundation was set up in 1984 by Kyocera Corp.’s founder, Kazuo Inamori.


Pressures and pains that tear a couple apart

A still from the film.
Updated 19 July 2018
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Pressures and pains that tear a couple apart

DENVER: Like a gallery wall-sized enlargement of a microscopic image, “Scenes from a Marriage” is all about size, space and perspective.
Directed by Ingmar Bergman — whose birth centenary was marked this week — at 281 minutes long, its unwieldly length presents an intimidating canvas, yet the claustrophobic intimacy of its gaze is unprecedented: The two leads are alone in nearly every scene, many of which play out for more than a half-hour at a time.
Premiered in 1973, the work is technically a TV mini-series, but such is its legend that theaters continue to program its nearly five-hour arc in its entirety. A three-hour cinematic edit was prepared for US theater consumption a year later (it won the Golden Globe Award for Best Foreign Language Film, but was ruled ineligible for the corresponding Oscar).
Not a lot a happens but, then again, everything does. Shot over four months on a shoestring budget, its six chapters punctuate the period of a decade. The audience are voyeurs, dropped amid the precious and pivotal moments which may not make up a life, but come to define it.
We meet the affluent Swedish couple Marianne and Johan — played by regular screen collaborators Liv Ullmann and Erland Josephson, both of whom clocked at least 10 Bergman credits — gloating about ten years’ happy marriage to a visiting reporter. This opening magazine photoshoot is the only time we see their two children on camera, and inevitably the image projected is as glossy, reflective and disposable as the paper it will be printed on.
The pressures, pains and communication breakdowns which tear this unsuited pair apart are sadly familiar. The series was blamed for a spike in European divorce rates. It may be difficult to survive the piece liking either lead, but impossible not to emerge sharing deep pathos with them both. Sadly, much of the script is said to be drawn from Bergman’s real-life off-screen relationship with Ullmann.
It’s a hideously humane, surgical close-up likely to leave even the happiest couple groping into the ether on their way out of the cinema.