Posts Tagged ‘art

07
Jan
09

The first time I told this story

The Last Time Ever, originally uploaded by neocles.

this is what I said:

“We were getting into our bunks when this strange light seemed to come down from the sky, and there was this rumbling noise and the camper swayed a little. It got really loud, then suddenly–very quiet. And we felt this pressure, and then I blacked out. When I woke up, I was alone.”

28
Nov
08

Flip-book Life

We recently took a trip to Seattle for our dear friend Jen Dixon’s birthday. Jen’s friends from all over the country came for this one, and so we saw a lot of people. We had a wonderful time, and it was actually rejuvenating. It just felt like we reconnected with our friends there in a much more significant way this time. I suppose that because it was a tough year marked by personal loss, and because we saw people we had not seen in years, and because we are all older, there was this pervasive sense that being with people you care for is what matters in life. It sounds corny, but I don’t know how else to describe it.

One of the really nice things we had a chance to do was take a drive up Aurora Ave to see Jen’s public art work installed on the Interurban Trail. I really loved the work. It has a playfulness and a sense of place. Yet the combination of the simple, colorful, unfolding content on a form usually reserved for the concise delivery of important information for travelers creates a semiotic mystery. “What does that sign mean? What is it telling me about what’s ahead?” I love that in a work.

19
Nov
08

Our moment, our time

I am amazed. Politics has been subject matter for street art for as long as they have both been around, I am sure. But in my experience, the political message of this kind of work is almost always critical of the dominant political party, and when it comes to elected officials, nearly always scathing in its portrayals and parodies. I’ve seen plenty of this for all the presidents I have lived through going back to Nixon. Admittedly most of the criticism has been directed at Republicans. No one, however, was sneaking around putting up triumphal representations of Slick Willy or Jimmy, as far as I remember.

I just don’t remember street artists ever busting out to celebrate the election of an American president like I’m seeing happen for Obama. It is almost disorienting to see newstands and telephone poles plastered with stylized images of Barack bearing slogans of support. I think it is another indication of what an enormous cultural and political earthquake this election has turned out to be.

It’s almost as if one needs to be continually reminded of this fact because it is so hard to really grasp. And the artists are doing it. They are reminding me to be amazed.




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