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Excerpts from the blogs of Inquirer critics.

¡Bienvenidos a Pensilvania!

From Karen Heller's "The Populist"


Welcome to Joey Vento's Highway to Hell.

The Spanish firm Abertis Infraestructuras, based in Barcelona, offered $12.8 billion Monday to lease the Pennsylvania Turnpike for 75 years, pending approval by the state legislature.

Wouldn't it be great if the signs started reading: "¡Bienvenidos a l'Autopista de Peaje de Pensilvania!"

Pennsylvania could become the Costa del Sol of the Mid-Atlantic. There could be tapas at rest stops, manchego cheese and olives and sangria.

And Javier Bardem and Penélope Cruz could do public-service announcements en Español.

Moore sets sail

From "Mirror Image"


Who knew flags from around the world could inspire an entire line of swimwear? Swaths of colors and occasional daring launched the Moore College of Art & Design Spring Fashion Show 2008 Sunday night at the Sheraton Society Hill.

The theme was "Bon Voyage: Decked Out in Navy and White," but the creations from Moore's aspiring designers included nearly 150 pieces that ventured far beyond the seas.

The showcase ranged from cheeky to elegant in a fast-paced parade that included flapper-rooted miniskirts, nature-hued children's wear, hat-inspired menswear, and traditional and embellished evening dresses, long and short . . . .

The night's big winner was Jakia Handy, who took home Best of Show. Her designs, influenced by the abstract paintings of artist and Moore instructor Moe Brooker, provided the most vibrant colors on the runway, one of which paired a fuschia bell-sleeved jacket with a green pencil skirt.

- Donna Hendricks

Winterthur chief to Monticello

From Peter Dobrin's "ArtsWatch"


Leslie Greene Bowman, director of the Winterthur Museum & Country Estate, is stepping down to become president of the Thomas Jefferson Foundation, which owns and operates the Jefferson home, Monticello, in Charlottesville, Va.

Bowman, 51, will succeed Daniel P. Jordan, Monticello's chief executive since 1985. She starts her new post Nov. 1.

Prior to Winterthur, Bowman was director of the National Museum of Wildlife Art in Jackson Hole, Wyo.

David P. Roselle, president emeritus of the University of Delaware and a member of the Winterthur board, will become the museum's interim director starting June 1.

Black is the New Black

From Dan DeLuca's "In the Mix"


Black Mountain, Black Lips, Black Dice. Black Rebel Motorcycle Club and Black Box Recorder. Amy Winehouse's

Back to Black

. Historically speaking, Black Sabbath, Black Flag and the Black Crowes. Not to mention Clint Black, Jack Black, and Frank Black, formerly known as Black Francis. Or, Johnny Cash, the Man in Black.

Black, it seems, is the new black. And two of the best of the new black bands were playing in town Friday night. The first, Black Kids, whose members Reggie and Ali Young are actually black, were at Pure for Making Time. They have an infectious video for "I'm Not Gonna Teach Him How To Dance With You." Likewise "Strange Days," by the blue-rock duo the Black Keys, who played the Electric Factory.