Eric Burns will speak at VMFA Sept. 30, Friday, on the topic of his book The Smoke of Gods: A Social History of Tobacco. After his talk, there will be a book signing and then the movie Coffee and Cigarettes will be shown. This event complements VMFA’s Xu Bing Tobacco Project exhibition.
Mr. Burns was media analyst and host of Fox News Watch for 10 years cited by Vanity Fair magazine as one of only two programs on the network worth watching and he was especially commended for fairness as a moderator. As an NBC News correspondent, Mr. Burns was named by the American Journalism Review as one of the best writers in the history of television news joining such luminaries as Edward R. Murrow and Charles Kuralt.
Mr. Burns other books include The Spirits of America: A Social History of Alcohol and Infamous Scribblers: The Founding Fathers and The Rowdy Beginnings of American Journalism.
Coffee and Cigarettes (2004; b&w; 95 min) by Jim Jarmusch is a comic series of short vignettes with characters in offbeat discussions poetically linked by the sipping of coffee and smoking of cigarettes. They discuss things as diverse as caffeine popsicles, Paris in the '20s, and the use of nicotine as an insecticide. The film views our world from an extraordinary angle showing how absorbing the obsessions, joys and addictions of life can be, if truly observed. Stars Bill Murray, Cate Blanchett, Steve Buscemi, Cinque Lee, Joie Lee, Roberto Benigni, Iggy Pop, Tom Waits, The GZA, RZA, and more.
Friday, September 30, 6:30PM
VMFA Leslie Cheek Theater
$10/ $8 for VMFA members
--Trent Nicholas, Media Programs Coordinator