Robert Hughes dead at 74, was world-renowned art critic

CREDIT: The Australian

Daybreak Daily’s stroll through the art gallery of pop-culture finds a striking portrait now retired, an indignant resignation, other things, and the mystery music video.

ROBERT HUGHES: Just the facts, per the Los Angeles Times, “Robert Hughes, a giant of 20th-century art criticism who first became known in the U.S. through his reviews for Time magazine, has died at age 74. The Australian writer was famous for writing big books on big subjects -- from the early history of Australia ("The Fatal Shore" of 1987) to the pioneers of modern art ("The Shock of the New" of 1981).”

AND THIS: A distinctly profound individual, per the New York Times, “With a Hemingwayesque build and the distinctively rounded vowels of his native Australia, Mr. Hughes became as familiar a presence on television as he was in print, over three decades for Time magazine, where he was chief art critic and often a traditionalist scourge during an era when art movements fractured into unrecognizability.”

AND THIS: Never shy with an opinion, per the Wall Street Journal, “In hosting "The Shock of the New," which was a BBC series, Mr. Hughes was as unpredictable as the modern art he presented. The most recent epoch of Western art, Mr. Hughes narrated, "is finishing its run now, leaving behind it some of the most challenging, intelligent works of art ever made by man, along with a mass of superfluity and rubbish."

JOHNNY PAYCHECK: Ozzy’s wife bails, per the New York Post, “Sharon Osbourne is quitting "America’s Got Talent" after a nasty dispute with NBC involving her son, she told The Post. The long-time TV judge, 59, is fuming over how the network’s new reality TV series "Stars Earn Stripes" cut ties with son Jack, 26, after he was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis.”

LOW-KEY WEDDING: Of course, everything is relative, per People, “The wedding between Natalie Portman and Benjamin Millepied reflected not just the bride's Jewish faith and the groom's French nationality, but also the couple's outlook on the world. Instead of having flowers flown in, the ceremony featured wildflowers indigenous to the Big Sur coast where the ceremony took place, and instead of "fish or steak" the menu was strictly vegan in keeping with the bride's diet.”

Q & A: Bobby on Jerry, per Rolling Stone, “Last week, founding Grateful Dead member Bob Weir paid homage to his late bandmate, Jerry Garcia, to mark what would've been the iconic guitarist's 70th birthday. Weir led a rotating assemblage of nearly 20 musicians through a four-and-a-half hour marathon set that drew exclusively from the Garcia songbook, touching upon Grateful Dead classics and Garcia solo cuts alike.”

MYSTERY NO MORE: So that’s who she is, per Us Weekly, “Now that his Olympics run is over, Michael Phelps is making the most of the time he has left in London-town -- with his new girlfriend, Megan Rossee, by his side. The gold medal-winning athlete, 27, and his model love of five months, walked the red carpet together during a Speedo event in London Monday night.”

POOR GUY: But, you know, hey, per Radar, “Snow White and the Huntsman director Rupert Sanders is desperately trying to save his marriage following revelations he cheated on his wife, Liberty Ross, with Kristen Stewart, is exclusively reporting. Sanders has confessed to friends that he made "the worst mistake of my life" as he fears his wife will refuse to forgive him and file for divorce.”

CAT FIGHT: Elton John is on a mission, per The Hollywood Reporter, “The singer made his opinions about former friend Madonna known in an interview with Australia's Channel 7 program Sunday Night, declaring that her career was "over." “She’s such a nightmare. Her career is over, I can tell you that," John said. "Her tour is a disaster and it couldn't happen to a bigger c---." Madonna, who is in the middle of her MDNA world tour, was booed at a July 26 concert in Paris during which she performed for approximately 45 minutes.”

LOOK AT ME: Well, it’s not really me – only it is, per indieWIRE, “Former New York Post writer and soon-to-be novelist Mandy Stadtmiller (has) outed herself as the inspiration for Nina Howard, the vengeful gossip columnist played by Hope Davis in "The Newsroom," . . . Nina is "an evil version" of her, she writes, one that the show's creator Aaron Sorkin carefully explained was intended to be such the opposite of Stadtmiller that they referred to her as "Bad Mandy" in the writers' room.”

POTUS DIGS CATWOMAN: Or at least the actress, per E!, “Barack Obama played to his audience just purrfectly (Monday night). Talking about The Dark Knight Rises at a campaign fundraiser at producer Harvey Weinstein's Connecticut home, the president said that Anne Hathaway was "spectacular" in the film. "I got a chance to see 'Batman,' and she was the best thing in it," Obama said. "That's just my personal opinion."

AND FINALLY: Today’s mystery music video.

--Skip Wood (Follow me on Twitter @DaybreakSkip)