But I couldn’t do my job without the inspiration I get listening to the artists associated with Non Event, who — through their live performances — have reached tens of thousands of Bostonians.
Please consider this appeal:
We are now faced with a funding shortfall that calls for a unique solution. Last year, our funding partner shifted its priorities away from live music, and so we no longer receive any outside support. Despite losing this funding, we have strived to maintain the level of performances you have always been accustomed to, but now we have reached the end of our funding cushion.
From a June 04, 2009 "Non-Event." (Photo: Susanna Bolle/Flickr CC
Susan Bolle, Boston’s premiere experimental music journalist and DJ (she hosts Rare Frequency on WZBC), lists ten albums that left an impression on her in 2009.
She calls them, “unexpected pleasures that drifted in like fog or, in one case, blasted through like mortar fire.”
Here’s one of Bolle’s, which is on my list:
Release Date: August 25 | Label: Finders Keepers
The German pair who brought the world “Dracula’s Music Cabinet” in the late 1960s top themselves – and how – with this collection of space rock silliness. Originally released in 1971, the album contains all manner of crazy alien-and-astronaut-themed songs. While it does contain some ferocious Saturnian monsters, ultimately, space is one groovy place.
The theme at this year’s Burning Man Festival, for artists, is Evolution.
Organizers of this quasi-religious rave party for repressed hipsters claim to be creating culture for a human race that no longer weeds-out its less than ideal candidates for natural selection.
Read the muddleheaded copy, below, from the event’s official website (bonus: includes a kindergarten lesson in natural selection):
The process of trial and error that has made this possible is called Natural Selection. Genetically encoded traits that aid survival tend to spread throughout entire populations. Living entities that bear these genes endure and reproduce, but maladaptive traits are not passed on. This causes species to evolve to better fit the world in which they live. However, this rigorous weeding out of ‘unfit’ individuals has gradually ceased to occur within our species. Medicine and mutual aid assure that nearly anyone is able to survive and reproduce.
Now adrift in our own gene pool, we have encountered a new phase of evolution. We’ve become a conscious breed of culture-bearing animals. Black Rock City is a kind of Petri dish, and Burning Man is an experiment in generating culture. We’ve learned that culture’s a spontaneous phenomenon. It thrives as a result of numberless and unplanned interactions. All that’s really needed is a fitting social vessel to sustain it. This happens best within communities that harbor many different modes of self-expression. We’ve also learned that cultures effloresce when human beings feel free to offer up their gifts.
University of Michigan materials scientists boasted this month that they “fuse art, science, technology and politics.” DARPA and the National Science Foundation (i.e., you and I) helped pay for it. And this nanotech stuff ain’t cheap!
Photo: John Hart, University of Michigan
John Hart, an assistant professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering, made the mini-Barack Obama likenesses with his colleagues to raise awareness of nanotechnology and science.
Each one contains about 150 million carbon nanotubes stacked vertically like trees in a forest. A carbon nanotube is an extraordinarily strong hollow cylinder about 1/50,000th the width of a human hair.
“Developments like this are an excellent way to bring the concepts of nanotechnology to a broader audience,” said Hart, who made the portraits with his colleagues by working late on a Friday evening. “Also, we thought it would be fun.”
Isaac Hayes, the musician who soinhabited the role of The Duke, “A Number One, The Big Man,” in John Carpenter’s dystopian thriller, “Escape from New York,” died today while exercising at his home. (That’s Hayes on the left, with costars Harry Dean Stanton and Adrienne Barbeau.)
Hayes’ musical influence is apparent in Carpenter’s soundtrack for the film, which features soulful, heavy bass lines accompanied by the sounds of steel drums.
Exercise was one of the famed Scientologist’s favorite pastimes. His treadmill was still whirring when a family member found him on the floor beside it.
Kahn’s first major commission was for the Yale University Art Gallery.
“Kahn produced buildings which were as monumental and as spiritually inspiring as the ancient ruins of Greece and Egypt,” according to the Design Museum of London. “Kahn devoted his career to the uncompromising pursuit of formal perfection and emotional expression.”
Image of the day – we make money not art
Was taken last week at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies at La Jolla, California which Kati London and I visited courtesy of Lev Manovich and Jeremy Douglass. The institute was built by architect Louis Kahn as two symmetric concrete buildings with a thin stream of water flowing in the middle of a courtyard that separates the two. Too bad my images dont do justice to this amazing building.
Buggin’: One of the alternate reality headset designs at Holland’s AR+RFID Lab. The goal is to make the devices convenient and attractive enough to allow people to operate in both the real world and AR simultaneously.
IBM and Linden Labs (creators of the alternate reality Second Life) are developing headsets and other “wearable computing” devices to deliver humans into parallel realities, where they can control their experiences.
Linden Labs, for example, is developing a wearable speaker system that Second Lifers can use to communicate semi-privately in AR while continuing to function in the real world, at least at some basic level.
But at the moment, AR eyewear and headphones are typically bulky and expensive, and too distracting for the wearer.
Students at the AR+RFID Lab at the Royal Academy of Art in the Netherlands are shaping new designs for AR headsets (more below), to include cameras and projectors, and tracking devices. Continue reading →