October 23, 2010
James Prigoff on Murals and International Aerosol Art
San Francisco recently had a 'art walk' in early October which went hand-in-hand with the opening of the annual Open Studios, a series of art showings in various parts of the city showcasing artists' work in the San Francisco and greater San Francisco area. Below are a few shots of the work of James Prigoff, who is apparently now in his seventies.
Important photographs from his collection appear in the book Spraycan Art published by Thames and Hudson in 1987, which he co-authored with photographer Henry Chalfant.
The book joined the ranks of the films Wild Style and Style Wars and the bookSubway Art in triggering the birth of additional aerosol art movements throughout the world.
He co-authored the books Painting the Towns- Murals of California and Walls of Heritage - Walls of Pride- History of African American Murals with Robin Dunitz. He was pleased to include works by BLADE, NOC, KASE 2, QUIK, A-ONE, VULCAN, SPON, E-ZONE and DIZNEY in this now critically acclaimed book. He has also written the forewords for the books Graffiti LA by Steve Grody AndGraffiti New York by Eric Felisbret (DEAL CIA). Prigoff is still actively documenting public art today.
October 21, 2010
How Does Language Shape Thought?
Is there intrinsic value in human linguistic diversity?
Stanford psychologist Lera Boroditsky has found from field work in China, Greece, Chile, Indonesia, Russia, and Aboriginal Australia that "people who speak different languages do indeed think differently, and even flukes of grammar can profoundly affect how we see the world."
For example, Aborigines in north Australia are deeply oriented to the cardinal directions. "You have to stay oriented at all times," Boroditsky says, or "else you cannot speak properly.
The normal greeting in Kuuk Thaayorre is 'Where are you going?' and the answer should be something like 'Southsoutheast, in the middle distance.' If you don't know which way you're facing, you can't even get past 'Hello.'"
Boroditsky will talk about "How Language Shapes Thought" at the Cowell Theater, Fort Mason, San Francisco, 7 pm, Tuesday, October 26, 2010. Long Now Members can reserve a seat HERE or you can purchase tickets for $10 HERE.
October 20, 2010
Open Studios Takes Over San Francisco in October
Each weekend, they rotate to a different neighborhood. One artist I particularly like is Susan Bostrom Wong, and even own one of her paintings.
Says Susan, "the human form is infinitely interesting to me with it’s moods and complexities.
It enacts the cycles of life-creation, birth, transformation and death."
October 18, 2010
Ai Weiwei Covers London's Tate Modern With 100m Sunflower Seeds
For an art exhibit at the Tate Modern in London, artist Ai Weiwei covered the Turbine Hall with 100 million porcelain sunflower seeds. Each of the seeds were made by 1,600 Chinese artisans.
October 15, 2010
A Rose By Any Other Name
Thank goodness for Shakespeare.
He knew how to coin a phrase which you can use and abuse to your heart’s content. In this instance it’s to make a point that was well expressed at a recent B2B-centric dinner hosted by Sir Paul Judge on behalf of The Marketing Society, in the UK.
‘People respect the techniques (of marketing) and use them. But they don’t call them marketing.’
This sentiment was echoed round the table. Marketing was thought of by senior executives, partners and board directors as ‘brochures and balloons’. The activities which marketers themselves would described as marketing were variously referred to by senior management as ‘revenue generation’, ‘business development’, ‘key account management’, ‘contract management’, ‘growth drivers’, ‘relationship development’ and ‘business networking’.
In common with other marketing discussions, how best to measure ROI was a major theme. What was definitely new in a B2B context was the open acknowledgement of the role of emotion in contributing to the actual purchase decision. Hence perhaps the difficulties in producing a clear ROI, not only because of the recurrent problem with linking broader activities directly to sales, but because they are actually part of the business process, not a separate function.
So B2B marketing is alive and well in large corporates. Just don’t call it marketing.
This post was originally posted on The Marketing Society Blog.
September 22, 2010
Waste Land: The Forgotten People (Catadores)
The film follows the journey of artist Vik Muniz to his native Brazil and the world's largest garbage dump, Jardim Gramacho, located on the outskirts of Rio de Janeiro where he photographs the forgotten people or "catadores" -- self-designated pickers of recyclable materials.
Through his journey, you will discover beauty and hope amidst hardship, the dignity of the human spirit, along with fading boundaries through visionary art and sacrificial giving.
Lucy Walker (Devil's Playground, Blindsight) has great access to the entire process and, in the end, offers stirring evidence of the transformative power of art and the alchemy of the human spirit.
September 10, 2010
Camden International Film Festival Next Month
The Camden International Film Festival returns for its sixth season in October 2010. The festival will shine the spotlight on a number of great artistic works.
All films are selected because of their ability to arouse discussion on documentary film as an art form, a catalyst for change and as an outlet for the independent voice.
Each year, the event takes over multiple venues throughout three coastal towns in Maine.
Nestled against the mighty Atlantic during fall’s explosion of color, the festival becomes a unique setting to experience the very best in international documentary film.
Accompanying the screening of nearly fifty features and shorts are Q&A’s with directors and producers, the Points North Documentary Film Forum, musical concerts, interactive and video art installations, parties, panels and an opportunity to connect with eager audiences and industry leaders in an extremely intimate setting.
The main venues they use are Camden’s Opera House and Bayview St. Cinema and Rockland’s Strand Theatre and Farnsworth Art Museum.
Some of the films you can view this year include:
A ROAD NOT TAKEN Directors Christina Hemauer and Roman Keller | USA | 2010
The story of the solar panels that former US President Jimmy Carter had installed on the roof of the White House. His successor, Ronald Reagan, had the panels removed – accompanied by a radical alienation from Carter’s energy program. Thirty years later two filmmakers tracked down the panels and traced the story of their journey back from Maine to Washington D.C. BUDRUS Director Julia Bacha | Occupied Palestinian Territorries, Israel, USA | 2009 | 82 min A Palestinian leader unites Fatah, Hamas and Israelis in an unarmed movement to save his village from destruction. Success eludes them until his 15-year-old daughter jumps into the fray.
CAPE WIND (Work in Progress) Directors Robbie Gemmel and Daniel Coffin | USA | 2010 | 90 min
Cape Wind Illuminates the divisive controversy of the Cape Wind Project, a proposal to build 130 massive wind towers five miles off the coast of Cape Cod in Nantucket Sound. The film translates the furor which exploded on Cape Cod into a definitive battle which will be replicated hundreds of times over as industrial-scale renewable energy projects are proposed for America’s deserts, ridgelines and waterways.
CIRCO Director Aaron Schock | USA | 2010 | 75 min
New England Premiere Set within a century-old circus, CIRCO is an intimate portrait of a Mexican family struggling to stay together despite mounting debt, dwindling audiences, and a simmering family conflict that threatens this once-vibrant family tradition. This cinematic road movie opens the viewer to the luminous world of a traveling circus while examining the universal themes of family bonds, filial responsibility, and the weight of cultural inheritance.
DAVID WANTS TO FLY Director David Sieveking | Germany | 2010 | 97 min
US Premiere In search of enlightenment, young filmmaker David Sieveking follows his idol David Lynch and uncovers the billion-dollar industry behind Transcendental Meditation.
DO IT AGAIN Directors Geoff Edgers and Robert Patton-Spruill | USA | 2010 | 85 min
It is a quest. Geoff Edgers, a newspaper reporter dreading the approach of his 40th birthday, decides to take a most improbable leap. He sets out to find the still-surviving members of the long dormant British rock band, the Kinks (“You Really Got Me,” “Lola” and “Come Dancing”), to convince them to reunite.
DREAMLAND Director Andri Snær Magnason | Iceland | 2009 | 89 min
US Premiere A film about a nation standing at crossroads. Leading up to the Iceland’s greatest economic crisis, the government started the largest project in the country’s history: to build the biggest dam in Europe to provide the Alcoa company cheap electricity for an aluminum smelter in the rugged east fjords. Today Iceland is left holding a huge dept and an uncertain future.
THE DISAPPERANCE OF MCKINLEY NOLAN Director Henry Corra | USA | 2010 | 77 min
New England Premiere Private McKinley Nolan vanished forty years ago in Vietnam on the Cambodian frontier. Some say he was captured, some say he was a traitor, some even say he was an American operative. The U.S. Army officially claims he was radicalized and “went native,” joined the Viet Cong and was later murdered by the Khmer Rouge. The film follows the Nolan family from the cotton belt of Texas, to the battlegrounds of Vietnam, to the killing fields of Cambodia and unfolds as a mysterious fever dream filled with doubt, longing and the will to believe.
FAMILY AFFAIR Director Chico Colvard | USA | 2010 | 80 min
At 10 years old, Chico Colvard accidentally shot his older sister in the leg. This seemingly random act detonated a chain reaction that exposed unspeakable realities and shattered his family. Thirty years later, Colvard ruptures veils of secrecy and silence again. As he bravely visits his relatives, what unfolds is a personal film that’s as uncompromising, raw, and cathartic as any in the history of the medium.
GENERAL ORDERS No. 9 Director Robert Persons | USA | 2009 | 72 min
Northeast Premiere One last trip down the rabbit hole before it’s paved over. An experimental documentary that contemplates the signs of loss and change in the American South as potent metaphors of personal and collective destiny.
GOODNIGHT NOBODY Director Jacqueline Zünd | Switzerland/Germany | 2010 | 77 min
US Premiere A journey through night, space and time. Four protagonists from four different continents share the same affliction: they can't sleep. With varying tactics, they resign themselves to the fact that they must live around the clock without interruption. A hypnotic journey through the most beautiful of all film settings: the night.
GREETINGS FROM THE WOODS Director Mikel Cee Karlsson | Sweden | 2009 | 75 min
New England Premiere Life follows its peaceful course in a remote little town in the Swedish forest. The unforgettable characters introduced enliven the sometimes absurd little scenes in this immersive exploration of everyday life in a particular place in Sweden.
HEAVEN AND EARTH AND JOE DAVIS (Work In Progress) Director Peter Sasowski | USA | 2010
Thirty years ago, a peg-legged motorcycle mechanic named Joe Davis walked into the Center for Advanced Visual Studies at MIT. They had not returned his calls. The police were summoned. Forty-five minutes later he walked out with an academic appointment. This film documents the life of an artist who is driven to pursue questions that can only be answered in the space where the boundaries between science and art blur.
LA BELLE VISITE (JOURNEY’S END) Director Jean-Francois Caissy | Canada | 2010 | 80 min
Northeast Premiere In the far reaches of the Quebec countryside, between a road and a headland that plunges into the sea, an abandoned motel has been converted into a retirement home. In this former travelers’ retreat, time seems to have ground to a halt. This film is an elegiac exploration of old age, set in a place at once physical and allegorical.
MARWENCOL Director Jeff Malmberg | USA | 2010 | 82 min
After a vicious attack leaves him brain damaged and broke, Mark Hogancamp seeks recovery in Marwencol, a 1/6th –scale World War II-era town he creates in his backyard.
MY PERESTROIKA Director Robin Hessman | USA, Russia | 2010 | 88 min
This film follows five ordinary Russians living in extraordinary times — from their sheltered childhoods, to the collapse of the Soviet Union during their teenage years, to the constantly shifting political landscape of post-Soviet Russia.
ON COAL RIVER Directors Francine Cavanaugh and Adams Wood | USA | 2010 | 81 min
New England Premiere Coal River Valley, West Virginia is a community surrounded by lush mountains and a looming toxic threat. The film follows four longtime residents as they confront a notorious coal company, their local school board, and state government to protect their families and community from the effects of an increasingly mechanized and destructive coal industry.
ON THE OTHER SIDE OF LIFE Directors Stefanie Brockhaus/Andy Wolff | Germany | 2009 | 88 min
To survive in a Cape Town township, brothers Lucky and Bongani learned their lessons early. They move through ever-shifting worlds, cultures, and traditions in a film that transcends a social environment study to become a far-ranging essay about the future of an Africa ground to pieces between tradition and modernity.
PRODIGAL SONS Kimberly Reed | USA | 2008 | 86 min
Returning home to a small town in Montana for her high school reunion, filmmaker Kimberly Reed hopes for reconciliation with her long estranged adopted brother, Marc. But along the way she uncovers stunning revelations, including his blood relationship with Orson Welles and Rita Hayworth, intense sibling rivalries, and unforeseeable twists of plot and gender that force them both to face challenges no one could imagine.
Special Work-in-Progress Screening: Untitled Film About Light Pollution & Disappearing Dark USA
When a filmmaker and amateur astronomer moves into his apartment in New York, he climbs atop his Brooklyn rooftop to survey the night sky. But bathed in its glow of orange streetlights, the City that Never Sleeps only has a dozen stars to see. One disappointing autumn evening becomes a journey to answer a simple question: do we need the dark?
SUMMER PASTURE Directors Lynn True and Nelson Walker | USA | 2010 | 85 min
A film about a young couple living with their infant daughter in the nomadic pastures of eastern Tibet. With rare access to an area seldom visited by outsiders, the film opens a unique window into a highly insular community and offers a sensitive portrait of a family at a time of great transition.
SUN COME UP Director Jennifer Redfearn | USA | 2010 | 38 mins
New England Premiere This film follows the relocation of some of the world’s first environmental refugees, the Carteret Islanders – a community living on a remote island chain in the South Pacific Ocean. When rising seas threaten their survival, the islanders face a painful decision: they must leave their beloved land in search of a new place to call home.
TANKOGRAD Director Boris B. Bertram | Denmark | 2010 | 58 min
US Premiere Chelyabinsk, in Western Siberia, is infamous for its extreme pollution and its vibrant dance community. This film is a lyrical documentary about a world-class modern dance company that examines the hopes and struggles of a group of young Russians trying to find meaning and expression in the dreary and frightening reality of New Russia through the art of dance.
WAR DON DON Director Rebecca Richman Cohen | USA | 2010 | 83 min
In Krio, war don don means “the war is over,” and although today Sierra Leone is at peace, the specter of war remains ever-present. Can the trial of one man uncover the truth of a traumatic past? With unprecedented access to prosecutors, defense attorneys, victims, and – from behind bars – the accused himself, War Don Don puts international justice on trial for the world to see.
WASTELAND Director Lucy Walker | Brazil | 2010 | 89 min
We follow renowned artist Vik Muniz as he journeys from his home base in Brooklyn to his native Brazil and the world's largest garbage dump, Jardim Gramacho, located on the outskirts of Rio de Janeiro. There he photographs an eclectic band of "catadores" – or self-designated pickers of recyclable materials. Muniz’s collaboration with the “catadores” to recreate photographic images of themselves out of garbage reveals both dignity and despair.
August 24, 2010
More Than an MP3......
A bit of horn-tooting for one of Omobono's (former) own, Andy, who has used his digital mastery for an exciting new project of his own, called 3DiCD.
It is a digital experience for online music, providing interactive packaging along with the music files. As they have said: “With a 3DiCD, listeners get the whole packaging experience; engagement and immersion all within the online environment.
Last week, Andy and the 3DiCD team launched with a digital version of Imogen Heap’s Grammy award winning album, Ellipse. You can check it out here.
We wish Andy and the team the best of luck.
August 09, 2010
Ubergizmo's Digital Summer: August 25: #DS2010I'm a fan of Ubergizmo's content and their annual Digital Summer event, now in its second year. Last year, they drew hundreds of people to their August event in San Francisco, where movers-and-shakers in the area of technology, fashion, design and media converged.
Digital Summer's mission is to bring together technology exhibitors and art exhibitors (photographers, artists, fashion designers, designers, music artists) in a unique setting and it works, a refreshing blend in a city largely known for tech only -- all the time.
In fact, both worlds rarely mix and each has a lot to gain by doing so. Promoting promising artists, designers, photographers and emerging technologies is the underlying motivation of producing Digital Summer. Additionally, Digital Summer aims to promote women and their access to technology, both as users and as professionals. Rock on and kudos to producer Eliane Fiolet and her team.
This year, the event will be held on August 25th, 2010. Among the unique features of this one-of-a-kind event is a live runway fashion show showcasing designers Colleen Quen Couture, Jan Warnock, Harputs OWN and Sofie Olgaard. Manika Jewelry will provide the jewelry and attendees will also have a chance to enjoy a professional photo-shoot.
Attendees can register here and for the social media addicts among us, the Twitter hash is #DS2010, so tweet up a storm - it's an event worth tweeting about.
The program will include sponsors like Intel, who will showcase the future of fashion display and Verizon Wireless where you'll get an opportunity to try out their latest 3G smartphones. You can get a hands-on demo of the Droid X by Motorola and the Verizon Wireless MiFi 2200 Intelligent Mobile Hotspot.
Other cool things and a call-to-action, or should I say, "eco-action" -- attendees are encouraged to bring their old phones for recycling through the Verizon Wireless HopeLine Program, where the contributed phones will be refurbished or recycled in an environmentally friendly way. With the funds raised from the sale of the refurbished phones, Verizon Wireless supports non-profit organizations providing vital services to domestic violence survivors.
We Blog the World is a proud media sponsor of this exciting event that promises to surprise and entertain.
RASH Hits NYCHow many solo plays have you seen about a Scottish Jew who falls in love whilst investigating the genocide and human rights abuses in Rwanda? RASH, which began as a vignette of short monologues based on a personal experience of living in countries in crises, is hitting New York next week.
RASH is the story of how Jenni Wolfson ended up working for the UN in Rwanda after the genocide and how that experience changed her life.
Through her experiences, Jenni wanted to give people a taste of what it might be like to live, love and laugh in the midst of horror and tragedy. RASH makes something as huge and incomprehensible as genocide personal.