Archive for May, 2009

Planning Case Study: Pittsburgh

May 25th, 2009 No comments

Pittsburgh Boosters: An example for Northwest Indiana 

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South Side Works, Pittsburgh LTV Property:

What makes this example enticing is the fact that much of the land in need of redevelopment in East Chicago was also owned by LTV steel. Like the South Side Works East Chicago is located with in 20 minutes from a major city center. In the case of East Chicago, it is 20 minutes from downtown Chicago.

RISD’s Next: To Cut Staff & Close Museum for August

May 22nd, 2009 No comments

via [ The New England Journal of Aesthetic Research

Rhode Island School of Design plans to cut staff by 15 to 20 and close its museum for the month of August because of a significant decline in the Providence school’s endowment, according to the school.

RISD reports that the endowment lost a third of its value since its peak of $347 million in December 2007.

What is happening to the Arts the in the Northeast? Are we seeing evidence that Institutions of Art in the Northeast are over exposed to the OLD Economy? We know that Rhode Island was especially hit hard by the recession and we have heard about Brandeis closing the Rose Art Museum.

It looks like we are beginning to see less demand for NEW ARTISTS, or may be less of new artists from the old economy. Are there any artists of the new economy, yet? If so who are they? May be the New Museum will tell us. What economy are they from?

Categories: General Arts

View Outside My Window:

May 20th, 2009 1 comment

Is often obscured

What I am Looking at: Jens Brasch

May 20th, 2009 No comments

[ ]

Caught looking again. [ First Look ]

This past Friday 33 Collective Gallery opened its 5th Annual National Self-Portrait Exhibit to which I contributed two small pieces. 


The show opened to a large crowd – not surprising when your showing close to 50 artists. With so many artists showing there is always the opportunity that something quite new will surface and I think it did with Jens Brasch’s piece “the apparitions of faces in the crowd – the narrative self.”

Jens has a long, long history working with his own identity and self-portraiture. In his new piece he iterates the idea that Art and Identity need to be read. His work is a library series of twenty book covers on five shelves each contributing to the subject matter – himself. There is a lot to be said about this piece. It owes so much to Duchamp, Rembrandt and other artists who articulated individual human identity. Instead of enumerating the obvious and not so obvious I will leave it to others. His recent work is some of the strongest I have seen in today’s contemporary galleries. 

One other point. With the depth that human awareness has achieved and the trajectory of the new, complexity has squeezed out prodigy from contributing to the depth of the new. I think Jen’s work is a great example of how much stuff his contemporary life processes and of course I am very sympathetic to the path he has taken. I find the depth behind his immediacy refreshing after enduring nearly twenty years of graphical one liners in the gallery’s of contemporary art. For the intellectually challenged a one liner became a simulacra for a minimalist moment. 


Categories: What I am Looking at

Seth Godin Talks About Tribes at TED

May 18th, 2009 No comments

Categories: Misc

Hans Rosling’s presentation at the TED-conference in 2006

May 7th, 2009 No comments

[ Gapminder ] Unveiling the beauty of statistics for a fact based world view.


The Activist Cause


I want to look back at Hans Rosling’s now very famous presentation at the 2006 TED-conference for a moment. In this presentation Hans is hocking this “Ah-Ha” moment to the audience. He knows what he is pedaling and he knows its ramifications. Does this moment fit in the history of progressive “Ah-Ha” efforts? I think so.

Many of the great achievements of the “progressive” movement, in America, came from those who answered oppressive conditions supported by neglect, power and wealth with extraordinary discipline of research and evidence. Some examples are found in W.E.B Du Bois’ survey of Philadelphia’s Seventh Ward in his 1899 classic book, The Philadelphia Negro work in Philadelphia, and Jane Jacobs’ book The Death and Life of Great American Cities (1961) writtten during height of “Urban Renewal.”

It appears Hans’ visualization tool sits well within this tradition, his scope however, widens out to the early reaches, and future projections of statical analysis of DATA. What I find interesting about Hans’ work is the certain manner in which he strolls through his subject matter. It reminds me quite a bit like Jane Jacobs approach with the Urban build environment. 

Indianapolis Cuts Funding for the Arts

May 6th, 2009 No comments

That cost-cutting effort was renewed when the board voted Friday to suspend grant payments to all recipients, including $3.2 million combined for the Arts Council of Indianapolis, Indiana Black Expo and cultural tourism projects.

[ ]

[ On the Cusp ] has the story and a response. 

This just a couple weeks after our Culture Matters Rally where the Mayor decided to speak about how important the arts were to the growth of the city and its residents. Flop. Times and the economy are tough. We all understand this…

 – Read more

Categories: General Arts

Modernism > Post-Modernism > Post-Pluralism < Brownfield Redevelopment Initiative

May 5th, 2009 No comments

Warning, below are bits and pieces of change I found on the ground. I can not say I have never seen these coins before, but I don’t know how to count them. So I am going begin to lay them here on the table. 

[ Edward Winkleman ]

Edward Winkleman asks “What does that (Post-pluralistic) mean?” in his post:

Pluralism : Post to Present Again (or the Revolution is Probably Already Here)

From Modernism (the era of the avant-guard, the scout that went beyond) >

      > Post-Modern (beyond Modernism) >

                 > Post-Pluralism (?) >

                            > Post-Post >

                                        < Brownfield Redevelopment

It is too easy, too boring, and frankly too weak to put a “Post” at the beginning of anything. What does it mean and who does it serve to “go beyond the era” that looks to “go beyond the era” of “going beyond?”

Who’s adopting the coinage “Post-Pluralism?”

So as Edward Winkleman prepares for this next era he has a vessel in search of an entity. But he also has some clues. 

And so it may be, I suspect, with art history. The reason we’re not seeing the “Dawn of Post-Pluralism” (or at least not seeing it clearly) may be because this next stage in art history is likely going to be truly revolutionary. And as such, it will not be “apparent at the moment it appears.” Folks focused on big changes will be foiled as small changes spread and incrementally break the old systems forever. 


Though not intending, I think I began to touch upon bits of this discussion in previous Posts.

[ What I am Looking at: Paul Lloyd Sargent

This is a time when Artists and designers are exercising strengths in dialogues they were traditionally excluded from – such as in making decisions and designing the built environment

To a certain degree I want to say Artists are beginning to operate in highly specialized dialogues where they were previously not found.

So much of Post-Modernism has been a preoccupied with Popular-Culture / Propaganda / etc. (so called Low culture). With the success of the Obama campaign Shepard Fairey has been cast as the “Monkeys” of street artists. We’ve seen this before. There is a large market effort to support this heroic emblem of artist as propagandist. But then we had the Post-Campaign – and the battle of appropriation. Enters Lawrence lessig. Lawrence throws his voice in support rewriting the “Artist Statement”, and suddenly we realize here is a performance artist of such particular cause and strength (copyright & good government), that we can not help but draw contrasts.

We have seen Artists collaborating with other artists. We have also seen Artists as Project Managers bringing together in collaboration disparate disciplines of non-artists possessing highly specialized skills. Today we are seeing artists commit to very particular and highly technical skills-sets, going so far to engage statical relevancy. The Artistic hubris has some gaining advance degrees in other disciplines and operating in realms of research, production, and theory. And collaborating with other Artists with highly specialized skill-sets.

I like to refer to what we are in need of and what we are going through culturally as a Brownfield Redevelopment Initiative. This revitalization project isn’t necessarily supplanting the aesthetic practices of production but include an eye to remediation. Much of our territory landscape has been damaged and is or is perceived to be toxic, leaving less little land in productive use. This is requiring us to revisit these damaged landscapes and remediate to various productive levels.

Categories: General Arts