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Nov. 10, 2008 at 6:00 AM
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Critics: Tate hanging Rothkos sideways

LONDON, Nov. 10 (UPI) -- Two famous modern works by American artist Mark Rothko have been displayed incorrectly on their sides for years in a British museum, art historians say.

The pieces from Rothko's Black and Maroon series, like many of his popular and valuable works from the 1950s and 1960s, consist solely of colored stripes. London's Tate Modern museum has hung them vertically, but evidence from the artist -- who committed suicide in 1970 -- suggests they should be hung horizontally, the Sunday Times of London reported.

Rothko's signature on the back of the paintings is thought to reflect his wish they be hung horizontally, an article in The Art Newspaper, a British arts journal, reported.

"Rothko was always prevaricating over how his art should be shown," said Waldemar Januszczak, art critic for the Sunday Times. "To me, the hang of these two paintings in the current exhibition seems right. But if it is clear that Rothko himself wanted them to be horizontal, you would be crazy to go against his wishes."

A Tate Modern spokesman told the newspaper: "We believe it's more appropriate for these two paintings to be hung vertically."

Cops: Dogs drove car through fence

SKURUP, Sweden, Nov. 10 (UPI) -- A miniature Schnauzer and its Chinese Crested friend were fingered as the culprits in a Swedish runaway car incident, police said.

The canines were found curled up in the backseat of a car that had smashed through a fence and ended up in the yard of a home in the southern Swedish town of Skurup Friday, the Swedish news agency TT reported.

The homeowners initially thought the culprit had fled because no one was behind the wheel, but on closer investigation found the dogs on the backseat, uninjured but very frightened.

"The dogs had presumably managed to knock the gear box and put the car into neutral on a downhill slope while their owners were paying a visit to friends," Calle Persson of the Skane police told TT.

Python's meal attracts crowd

CAIRNS, Australia, Nov. 10 (UPI) -- An Australian python that attacked a wallaby on a university campus was filmed trying to swallow the animal -- and then throwing it up.

The videotape was made by Tanja Stark, a student at James Cook University in Cairns. The python attracted a large audience to its meal, reported.

Andrew Krockenberger, an associate professor at James Cook University, said he and his students went out to look.

"While seeing sakes and wallabies isn't unusual, it was very unusual to see a snake trying to eat a wallaby on the side of a road," he said.

Wallabies are kangaroo-like mammals, somewhat smaller than kangaroos.

Krockenberger said the snake eventually realized it had bitten off more than it could chew -- or at least swallow.

"It was a very small python and it gave up after a while. It had a good try but it was a little over ambitious," he said.

He said the python may have been "spooked" by the crowd.

Robber leaves money behind

AURORA, Ind., Nov. 10 (UPI) -- Police say they are looking for a man who held up a Swifty gas station in Aurora, Ind., only to forget to take the money with him.

Police said the man robbed the store early Monday, tied up the female clerk and then ran out the door with a carton of cigarettes. After he realized he forgot the bag of money he tried to go back inside the store but couldn't -- because the door was equipped with an electronic lock, The Cincinnati Enquirer reported.

Police said the robber was "no brain surgeon."

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