For French photographer Henri Cartier-Bresson (1908 - ), the "only moment of creation is that 1/25th of a second when the shutter clicks." A former Surrealist painter, he was a master of the "decisive moments," when, working unobserved, he turned the ordinary (a gesture, a mundane setting) into art. But Cartier-Bresson's more famous subjects, including Colette, Francis Bacon and Henri Matisse, were aware of his gaze: their intricately-composed portraits were taken "face to face" with the photographer. Billed as the first retrospective of his portrait work, "Tête à Tête" begins its Australian tour at the Art Gallery of Western Australia. Through Dec. 24.
When Philip Astley (1742 - 1814) traced a ring in a roped-off field near London in 1768 - after discovering that he could stand on his horse's back, and keep his balance, if he galloped in a circle-the former sergeant major turned "fancy" rider created the modern circus. (Astley soon engaged a clown and musicians.) Learn more about the "Big Top" and the acrobats, jugglers, animal trainers and clowns who performed in it, at "Circus Magicus". A tiny jacket worn by American "sideshow attraction" Tom Thumb (who grew to be only 1-m tall) and a 12.8-m diameter model of a circus ring are among the highlights of the Victoria, Canada exhibition, showing at the Royal British Columbia Museum. Through March 4.
Strewn with rabbits and flowers, the 15th century tapestry series "The Lady and the Unicorn" is a richly-colored tribute to the five senses. The centerpiece of France's National Museum of the Middle Ages (also known as the Cluny Museum), the tapestries have inspired the recreation of a medieval garden-500 years after the original gardens were planted at the Abbey of Cluny by a Burgandian order of monks. The 5,000 sq-m museum garden, which opened last month, features medicinal, kitchen and "love potion" herbs, a "Unicorn forest" of sycamores and chestnut trees, and a children's play area.
After centuries of neglect and plunder, the jungle-covered remnants of Angkor-the capital of the Khmer kingdom between the 9th and the 15th centuries-was designated a World Heritage Site in Danger by UNESCO in 1992. But that hasn't stopped a Cambodian army general from trying to build an illegal karaoke bar in the temple complex. According to the Cambodian Daily, General Chea Morn doesn't believe the bar will adversely affect the environment, but will give the land back "if the government needs it."