25 February 2010

take this waltz

Now in Vienna there's ten pretty women
There's a shoulder where death comes to cry
There's a lobby with nine hundred windows
There's a tree where the doves go to die
There's a piece that was torn from the morning
And it hangs in the Gallery of Frost

Aye, yye, yye, yye
Take this waltz, take this waltz
Take this waltz with the clamp on its jaws

The Man Who Fell to Earth

The strange thing about television is that it doesn't *tell* you everything. It *shows* you everything about life for nothing, but the true mysteries remain. Perhaps it's in the nature of television. Just waves in space.

The Man Who Fell to Earth is a 1976 British science fiction film directed by Nicolas Roeg, based on the 1963 novel of the same name by Walter Tevis, about an extraterrestrial who crash lands on Earth seeking a way to ship water to his planet, which is suffering from a severe drought. The film maintains a strong cult status for its use of surreal imagery and its performances by David Bowie (in his first starring film role), Candy Clark, and Hollywood veteran Rip Torn. The same novel was later remade as a less-successful 1987 television adaptation.

21 February 2010

Warhol's picture of Muhammad Ali

ANDY WARHOL (1928-1987)
Muhammad Ali, 1978
61.5 x 61.5 cm (24 x 24 in)
Materials: Gouache and silkscreen inks on paper
Markings: Stamped by the Estate of Andy Warhol and numbered A1044.113 verso.

Additional Notes: Looking at Muhammad Ali, one can almost hear the boxer's famous, defiant statement - 'I am the greatest!' Executed in 1977, Warhol's picture of Muhammad Ali shows the boxer at the height of his fame and talents. At that point he was - for the third time - the World Boxing Association Heavyweight Champion. After more than a decade of professional bouts, he remained able to stun his opponents with his agility, winning fight after fight. Warhol has chosen to portray this giant of boxing, this sporting hero, in a combative pose; the raised fists are the tools of his trade, the attributes, his only necessary paraphernalia - they are the raw materials with which the boxer made his name and reputation. Muhammad Ali is presented here as a Pop icon, a god of the modern age, a contemporary hero. Significantly he is presented as a contemporary black hero, marking Warhol's detached yet significant participation in the race politics of his day. This is one of the first major celebrations of a black hero in American art, and as such in part prefigures the paintings of Warhol's protege, Jean Michel Basquiat who would become determined to place black heroes at the centre of art, having noticed to what extent they had been neglected or excluded for centuries prior to that. Even the presence of the African-American in art thanks to George Bellows had been relatively fleeting and had occured over half a century earlier. This is Cassius Clay, named after a famous abolitionist and subsequently adopting the religion of Islam, and becoming a prominent member of the Nation of Islam. This is Muhammad Ali, the friend and colleague of Malcolm X. This is Muhammad Ali who, as Victor Brokis recalled during the photoshoot in the boxing camp in Deerlake, Pennsylvania, lectured Warhol on Islam, race and politics. The boxer's own realisation of the importance of his entry into the Warholian pantheon is reflected by his reaction to learning that Warhol's pictures were usually sold for $25,000 at that time: 'Look at me! White people gonna pay twenty-five thousand dollars for my picture! This little negro from Kentucky couldn't buy a fifteen hundred-dollar motorcycle a few years ago and now they pay twenty-five thousand dollars for my picture!' (Ali, quoted in V. Bokris, 'The Perfect Interview: The Ali-Warhol Tapes', Gadfly, April 1999). Here, Ali's sense of humour and of irony is evident in this glee at becoming the subject for an establishment luxury object, the ultimate example of the worm that turned. It comes as little suprise to find that Warhol was not a sports fan. That said, Muhammad Ali was one sportsman who had long fascinated the artist, partly because of his incredible celebrity status and partly because of the violence of boxing. Warhol's Diaries reveal this latter aspect of his fascination when he records his reactions to the events surrounding a glamorous bout held a few years after the portrait of Muhammad Ali was executed: 'I couldn't watch it,' he claimed, then admitting that he was so affected by the tension that, 'I ate all my fingers on one side' (A.Warhol, 2 October 1980, quoted in ed Pat Hackett, The Andy Warhol diaries, New York, 1989, p.331). On that occasion, Warhol's evening was further punctuated by violence when on his return home, he and his friends passed the scene of a murder, a strange and bitter coda that rammed home a sense of the grittiness underlying the previous entertainment. Warhol himself was shot and had for a while been interested in the tension violence evokes. There is a coolness to the Warholian perspective on violence that finds a strange echo in Ali's own matter of fact words about boxing: 'It's just a job. Grass grows, birds fly, waves pound the sand. I beat people up' (M. Ali, quoted in New York Times, April 6, 1977). By the time Warhol created Muhammad Ali, he was himself enough of a celebrity that, rather than rely on the found images that had been his source material earlier in his career, he was able to photograph the boxer in person. Ali was one of the greatest sportsmen in the world, as is proven by his continued status as a revered elder statesmen of the boxing ring. Warhol himself recognised the status that, in the age of televised sports coverage, these heroes of pitch, field and ring had attained: 'I said that the atheletes were better than movie stars and I don't know what I'm talking about because atheletes are the new movie stars' (A. Warhol, quoted in Andy Warhol: The Athelete Series, exh. cat., London, 2007, p.76). The apothesis of Muhammad Ali into the realm of Warhol's gods and heroes marked a further endorsement, as the sports hero was raised, in the grand old tradition of Stubbs and Munnings, onto a pedestal in the world of art.

Sunshowers by M.I.A.

I bongo with My Lingo
Beat it like a wing yo
From Congo to Colombo
Can't stereotype my thing yo

Is the universe a friendly place?

When asked by a reporter something like :"What, in your opinion is the most important question facing humanity today?" Einstein thought for a bit then replied, "I think the most important question facing humanity is, 'Is the universe a friendly place?' This is the first and most basic question all people must answer for themselves.

"For if we decide that the universe is an unfriendly place, then we will use our technology, our scientific discoveries and our natural resources to achieve safety and power by creating bigger walls to keep out the unfriendliness and bigger weapons to destroy all that which is unfriendly�and I believe that we are getting to a place where technology is powerful enough that we may either completely isolate or destroy ourselves as well in this process.

"If we decide that the universe is neither friendly nor unfriendly and that God is essentially 'playing dice with the universe', then we are simply victims to the random toss of the dice and our lives have no real purpose or meaning.

"But if we decide that the universe is a friendly place, then we will use our technology, our scientific discoveries and our natural resources to create tools and models for understanding that universe. Because power and safety will come through understanding its workings and its motives."

-Albert Einstein

19 February 2010

Leonard Cohen ~ Un canadien errant

"Si tu vois mon pays,
Mon pays malheureux,
Va dire a mes amis
Que je me souviens d'eux.
Va dire a mes amis
Que je me souviens d'eux.

O jours si pleins d'appas,
Vous etes disparus...
Et ma patrie, helas!
Je ne la verrai plus.
Et ma patrie, helas!
Je ne la verrai plus

17 February 2010

Frederick Douglass

"Where justice is denied, where poverty is enforced, where ignorance prevails, and where any one class is made to feel that society is an organized conspiracy to oppress, rob and degrade them, neither persons nor property will be safe."

"Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will."

— Frederick Douglass

16 February 2010


Date: February 19, 2010
Time: 5-11pm
Location: Dash In, on Calhoun Street

Wunderkammer Company (W<) presents "Populous", an exhibition of contemporary Pop Art and experimental performances. "Populous" will take place on Friday, February 19th, from 5-11pm at the Dash In, on Calhoun Street.
"Populous" was organized to examine the significant segment of contemorary art which has its roots based in the art historical Pop Art movement of the 1960's. Wunderkammer Co. has invited Daniel Dienelt, Joshua Witten, John McCormick, Mike Shifflet, Holly Claybaugh, and Bambi Guthrie to exhibited their work, and Sky Thing, Mac's Merry Minstrels, and Mason Dillon to perform covers of recent pop songs in interesting ways.
Wunderkammer Company is an independent, non-profit 501(c)(3) organization based in Fort Wayne, IN, dedicated to the revitalization of communities through contemporary art.

09 February 2010

Tara McPherson

Tara McPherson (born April 7, 1976 in San Francisco, California) is an American artist based out of New York City. She received her BFA from Art Center inPasadena, CA in August 2001 with honors in Illustration and a minor in Fine Art. She interned at Rough Draft Studios, working on Matt Groening's Futurama during college.

Tara exhibits her paintings and serigraphs in fine art galleries all over the world. Named the crown princess of poster art by ELLE Magazine, she has created posters for rock bands such as Beck, Modest Mouse, and Melvins. Her array of art also includes creating toys with companies like Kidrobot, Dark Horse Comics, and Toy2R, painted comics and covers for DC Vertigo, advertising and editorial illustrations for companies such as Wyden+Kennedy and Spin Magazine, and currently teaching a class at Parsons in NYC.

Tara also designs Tattoo's, and is believed that she will be designing a tattoo in collaboration with artist Jon Burgerman


05 February 2010

I fear the monkey in your soul

I got one and you want four
It's so hard to help you
I can't keep up with you no more
And you treat me like it's a sin
But you can't lock me in
You want me here with you right to the end
No thank you my friend
I fear the monkey in your soul

Won't you turn that bebop down
I can't hear my heart beat
Where's that fatback chord I found?
Honey don't you think it was wrong
To interrupt my song?
I'll pack my things and run so far from here
Goodbye dear

I fear the monkey in your soul

occam's razor sketchbook page 22

click on image to enlarge

occam's razor sketchbook page 21

click on image to enlarge

occam's razor sketchbook page 20

click on image to enlarge

02 February 2010

twin peaks


The episodes of Twin Peaks have a distinct structure: following a recap of events relevant to the upcoming narrative, the series begins with the music piece "Falling". This is accompanied by a shot of a varied thrush, and then of the Twin Peaks saw mill. The opening credits generally appear alphabetically. The majority of episodes end with a suspenseful twist or cliffhanger, revealed just seconds before the ending. With rare exception, the credits always rolled over a photograph of Laura Palmer, accompanied by the piano piece "Laura's Theme".