Tag Archives: WORLD

Blacks, Whites, Bullets, and Bullshit: The Race Blog

Greetings beautiful people

I’ve been wanting to write something since the murder of Trayvon Martin, but my thoughts are extremely vast and time hasn’t allowed me to sit down to cement my opinion on the matter until now. Also with many things dealing with race in America, there is a level of complication that accompanies such a discussion. This isn’t just a blog about Trayvon Martin, but rather my acknowledgment of racism.

In the instance of Trayvon, we have what I see as a case of racial profiling, stereotyping, and paranoid vigilantism. I don’t think Zimmerman is a racist. I don’t think he killed Trayvon because he was black. I think he did it because he has a brain poisoned with societal images of young blacks as thugs. Also, I believe he killed Trayvon because he’s nuts. Neither one of the latter reasons justifies what he did. He murdered an innocent teenager plain and simple. He should be jailed and have to stand trial in a court of law for his crime. We all know that didn’t happen and probably won’t.

I seldom, if ever, address any racial or political issues in my art or writing because I’m usually concerned with, what I see as, more important aspects of the human condition. I’m also a member of a culturally diverse crew. I love people regardless of race, religion, class, sexual orientation (yet bad taste in music…I’ve lost some good friends over that) but I can’t deny that I stereotype people as well. My friends and I have our “coffee table racism” that occurs when we are around each other. We all know the stereotypes, and right or wrong, it’s something we can express within our circle with the knowledge that our humor is irreverent and we don’t offend each other.

Every day I go out into the world; I am so aware that I am a black man, and wonder what that will lead to. Maybe because of the path I’ve chosen in life, I find myself in professional situations, with people who never look like me. I work at a nonprofit and I am the only African-American administrator and the only man. I teach college at my Alma mater and aside from my mentor, who is soon to retire; I’m the only African-American who’s taught in the art department in over 30 years. When I disagree with someone at work, I later hear stories from the person I disagreed with, of how upset I was. When in reality I could care less, I just didn’t agree. A sigh is perceived as a scream. Not wanting to do work outside of position is seen as lazy.

These are just a few examples of what I mean when I say I’m constantly forced to evaluate my place in the world as a black man. Some people know what I mean, and some don’t. Yet keep in mind, it’s not just the majority I have to deal with when it comes to these issues. From my own people I’ve been accused of talking white or listening to white people music. How many times have you heard this one? “He/she speaks to so well!” Really?! How am I supposed to speak? So either you end up too black or not black enough. To many blacks I’m preaching to the choir.

Since the Trayvon Martin murder, the already deafening whisper of racism is becoming more public. Sure racism existed years before this incident, but think about the development of social media. All these new social sites developed over the last several years, have help to mainstream the archaic banter, we thought was dying out. It hasn’t died. It’s just needed a new system of communication. Man can weaponize anything…even twitter.

Look at all the racist rants in response to “The Hunger Games”. How about the comments when “Awkward Black Girl, won an award of excellence for being a great web series? Then closer to home, a Livonia Michigan teen named, Andrew Vandenbussche who commented via twitter on the death of Whitney Houston by stating, “Whitney Houston is dead, well one less nigger in this world. #getting closer”. It’s getting to the point where there is something every day! I can’t watch the news; it’s just too much.

Facebook, twitter, myspace etc, are all used to spread the good, the bad, and the ugly.

Black people you aren’t exempt. I hear more negative comments about Barack Obama from blacks than any other race. I’m tired of it! I don’t know how many times I have to tell you he is not black Jesus! He is just a man, and less than that, a politician. I have publicly expressed my disappointment at Barack Obama’s lack of following through on some of his campaign promises, but let it be known…..I’m proud to have a black president.

Just because he won’t grow dreads, rock a dashiki, and join you in your vapid tirade about the system, doesn’t mean he deserves your shit. In the interest of promoting solidarity amongst my people, I say that when the leader of the free world looks like you, damn it, you better support him. After everything blacks have gone through, do you really have the nerve to publicly bad mouth him, and further show just how un-unified we are as a people? You hypocritical, crab in bucket, bastards make me sick! Yet and still for all my vaunted disdain at your actions and thoughts, I love you.

I hope one day you get it. You’re a new revolutionary? Not at all. Barack is the new type of revolutionary we need. Corey Booker is the type of revolutionary we need. Kehinde Wiley is the new type of revolutionary we need. Kara Walker is the new type of revolutionary we need! Every black teacher who inspires a child or young adult is the type of revolutionary we need.

In this new digital mainstream atmosphere of public racism, it’s clear that the enemy isn’t afraid to speak their mind. Yet to be cliché, “Actions speak louder than words!” Be about progress and love. Turn away from the anger and be that something greater, that the enemy can’t touch. Continue to stand up for what you believe in, but make sure you don’t contradict a message of solidarity by tearing your brother or sister down. Just as Trayvon, hoodie and all, has become a symbol for the injustice that continues to be inflicted upon blacks to this day….Barack is equally a symbol of what we can achieve when thoughts are put to purpose.

Till next time

Yo brotha

Ty

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The End of the World as We know it!: Annual Year in Review


Greetings beautiful people

For myself this year has been one of many downs and some ups, but yo brotha has made it through!  I know some of you have moments good and bad, and we all know, that’s the way life goes.  Here we are again for my annual “The End of the World as We know it” blog.

The Occupy Movement:

I would narrow this one down strictly to the Wall St. protest, but that may lead to a large group of people attempting to occupy the courtyard of my apartment complex with vague demands such as…..Ty should be more P.C……….. “When I’m really a Mac b*tches!”

Now mind you, I was excited to see that Americans had finally had it up to Kris Humphries’ balls with the corruption that has infested our political and social economic system.

The movement on Wall St spread through out the land like Erykah Badu’s legs when a hip hop star comes around.  Oakland, Detroit, Canada all stood up and let the government know that they are some douche bags.  Now that I think about it…the Occupy movement didn’t really stand up for anything, but rather sat their asses down!  Ha!

These protestors sat and refused to go.  They turned Wall St, Oakland, Detroit, and Canada into neolithic shanty towns.  The movement spread.  It attracted the likes of Angela Davis and Cornell West (who was jailed twice by the way).

They held mock trials and decided that executives of Freddie Mac were guilty of crimes against humanity.  They screamed.  They sang.  They ran the streets topless, made out, and made rich people pissed!…and for what?  I have no idea!

I mean their demands were not clear.  Did the Occupy movement really want rich people to stop being greedy, corrupt, and be nice people?  Epic fail!

Trust me!  When I become rich and corrupt….. no topless neo hippie living in Cadillac square is going to stop me from getting that paper!  I’d be thinking about pepper spraying yawl “peaceful” yet “annoying” protest.  Yet, that’s if I was rich and corrupt.  For now, I’m poor and good hearted.  I’m part of the 99% I’ve felt the weight of a this broken system on my back and literally fell on one knee crying trying to hold it up.

I hope that rich people get it (but they won’t).  I hope the U.S. becomes the greatest country in the world again (but it won’t).  Instead of the age of reason, I’d say we live in the age of excuses.  We make up excuses for why we do such terrible things to each other.  The mortgage crisis is just one of the main things that disturbed the sleep of Americans since the 1930’s.  I want some peace to occupy this land. I want  some “reality” to occupy this land.  I need some love to occupy this land.

The Royal Wedding:

Ask me how many f*cks I gave about this wedding.  Go ahead, ask.  NONE! Not one!  I mean really?  I live in the United States; a country that was founded on being anti monarchy.  Yet this Spring, the media went ape sh*t over William and Kate (or as I like to call her…the diet version of every pretty James Bond girl!)  She’s aiight!

It was an affair to remember.  The people lined the streets of Britain waiting to see two people get married.  Not two super powered people.  Not two magic people.  It was just a balding dude and a brunette, getting married.

I get it.  People are always trying to create a fairytale.  We want fantasy made reality.  We need to see the majesty.  Yet rather than stay up to 4 in the morning watching the wedding or record it via DVR, I spent my time sleeping, like most living species do.  I’m glad people got married.  It was the first of 3 weddings that happened this year for me.  That almost assured that I will no longer attend anymore weddings!  It’s not that I don’t think people should get married.  I just don’t want to have to get dressed up, buy a gift, and sit through seeing them say long speeches, empty traditions, and the wedding dress…OH GOD!  What a terrible dress!

By the way, I am not anti monarchy.  I love the “idea” of a king and queen.

Japanese Earthquake and Tsunami :

This Spring I witnessed some of the most disturbing images I had ever seen in my life!  The tsunami caused by an earthquake overtaking the land in Japan, looked like something from a Michael Bay movie.  The water and debris that swept across the land and footage of a man on the beach being overtaken by water as beyond tragic.  These people went through a horrific experience.  The chaos.  The aftershocks.  More floods.  Finally after, what seemed like a watery punishment from God himself, there came a fiery one.  The Japanese had to deal with post tsunami nuclear fallout.  The local power plants started to have a melt down!  Epic misery.

As with all things tragic to the human race, the entertainment community in the U.S. took it upon themselves to put on glitter and shine lights to raise money for the cause.  They donated throw away tracks as part of compilation albums to buy rations for the “poor” Japanese people.

Wait! “Poor?”

I thought Japan was one of the richest nations on the planet.  They have so many people; I think collectively they can accomplish anything!

Now I’m not saying they didn’t need help, but in the grand scheme of things, I still think, despite the collateral damage Japan experienced, we here in the U.S. still need all the help we can get!  We need to get our sh*t together!  Stars need to be performing constantly to raise money for the poor and disenfranchised here!

Yet as with all tragedies anywhere else in the world, it seems to me, that Unites States always looks to help others fix their problems, rather than fix the ones we have here.

Death of Lucian Freud, Amy Winehouse, Steve Jobs, David Blair:

Viva la vida!  This was a year of heart break and loss.  The great ones just seem to have had enough with this world and decided to leave, but not without leaving an artistic legacy that will influence generations to come.   Some of them were here long before my birth and some were born during years I can remember.

Lucian Frued

Lucian is one of the greatest artists to ever walk this planet.  He looked at the human figure with the scrutiny of god creating a universe.  Freud carved flesh out of paint, and let us have a view of his melancholy toned world.

Amy Winehouse

Amy Winehouse was the one we saw coming, but wished it wouldn’t have happened.  That little white woman would wail in such a cool idiosyncratic way, Billie Holiday would have given her a nod.  Yet beyond her singing ability was her talent for song writing.  Winehouse was a poet who would interpret heartbreak from the smoke at the end of a cigarette or the bottom of an empty whisky glass.  Lyrically she could rip a concept apart. Maybe that’s why she detached herself from it, when she sang.  She was my emotional hero.  She was someone who saw love the way I see it.  The big difference is, that she handled it in such a destructive way.

Steve Jobs

Me and friends once argued, as to who had more power, Oprah Whinfrey or Steve Jobs?  I went with the latter.
Steve jobs upgraded humanity.  Remember back in the 80’s when we all had this idealistic vision of what the year 2000 would be like?  We thought about flying cars, robots, wireless phones, and communication monitors.  Well jobs took the later part of the 90’s and all of this millennium and started to make that fantasy come true.   When you set standards in technology, you set standards in human evolution.  You’ve heard the statement, “Were not reinventing the wheel.”  Well Jobs did everything in his power to reinvent the wheel.  Will ya give him props?  I-wheel….get it? I-wheel…ha!

David Blair


David Blair isn’t as known as the rest of the celebrites I’ve listed, but he was as great.  He was a man so tragically human that it baffles me as to how he was made without a mold.  Blair was a poet, singer, songwriter , producer, friend, brother, activists, and above all else…an artist.  He travelled the world and shared his idea of love and perspective.  He touched souls everywhere.  His passing during the blazing heat of this Summer, here in Detroit, chilled our very souls.  He came from dirty Jersey, but was cemented here in Detroit!  David Blair is a legend of this city.  He is the word and the melody.  He is the chord and the note.  He is loved and missed.

Birth of  Felix, Marcus, Kendal, Fabrice,  and Xavier:

Now to parallel the former topic, let’s raise of glass to all the cute babies that were born this year!  I am the biggest advocate for aesthetically pleasing people getting together and making even more aesthetically pleasing people.

They say beauty is in the eye of the beholder, well I often think that’s wrong…. unless the beholder is really beautiful.  2011 brought about some of the most beautiful babies in all shapes, sizes, and colors.

Congratulations to one of my best buds, Julius Gadjos and his partner Rachel on the birth of their son, Felix Gadjos!  I call little mixed babies “Tomorrow People”. See (Shameless: Season 1. for reference) .  Judging by who his parents are, he’ll probably be one of the smartest most talented people of his generation.

Congratulations to Dara Brown and her husband Blair on the birth of her 4th child; a beautiful baby girl named Fabrice Brown.   Dara is managing to build an army of cute, intelligent, and artistic children while maintaining her pop star like figure……ladies step ya fitness game up!

Congratulations my Brown Sugar counter parts Kyle and Janica Smith on the birth of their beautiful baby girl Kendall L. Smith.  Thank God someone keeps having little chocolate babies!  Gorgeous!

Congratulations to my cousin Shanelle on the birth of her son Marcus H. Moore Jr..  He is one of the happiest babies I’ve ever seen in my life.  The bi product of his joy just happens to be that he is one of the loudest babies I’ve seen in my life. Lol.  Well the laughter of children can be the sweetest sound!  Praise God!

Finally congratulations to Carmelita and Shibu Samuel on the birth of the son Xavier Samuel!  Once again a “Tomorrow People”!  You guys know to have some good genes!

Jay –Z & Kanye West “Watch the Throne”:


While I don’t believe this is the best work from either one of these artists, I do enjoy this album.  It took me a minute to dig “Otis”, but once I got my swagger back, it was all good.  It became the kind of self indulgent mantra I love to say over and over again when faced with the abominable hoards of stupidity.  Which happens more often than you think.  “N*ggas in Paris” was awesome!  I mean, I didn’t know what it meant, but it was provocative!  It got me moving like a music fan who enjoys the song way too much on an NYC subway. (see viral video reference).

I’ve read mixed reviews about the project and heard some music heads completely dismissing this project, and calling it garbage.  I disagree.  I feel this was a work, that had no real direction save for making a collection of songs for song sake.  It’s obvious that Jay-Z and Kanye both enjoy making music.  You can hear it in every line and see it when they perform.  These songs weren’t meant to be some hip hop changing defining moment.  It’s just two rich ass MC’s spitting   in a Louis Vuitton cypher.  Poof!

Lady Gaga “Born this Way”:

Love this woman!  “Born this Way” is, conceptually, her most consistent album to date.  Just about every song on the project spoke about identity, empowerment, and rebirth.  The soundscape was 80’s power pop, mixed with industrial and rock.  On the song “Born this Way” she sings to the heavens (or hell knowing her) about sexual orientation and equality.  Sonically it reminds me of Madonna, just sung way better and a 1000 times more amp.  “You and I” is an amazing power ballet that is equal parts Billy Joel, Elton John, and Gaga.  “Edge of Glory” and “Marry the Night” are my dance joints.  They make me forget about the horrors of this world for at least 4 minutes.  At least.

Sharon Jones & The Dap Kings “Soul Time!”:

I just coped this earlier this week and what a great late entry into my favorites for this year!  Sharon is a force of nature who doesn’t give a f*ck about these young half a singers.  Sharon Jones and her band the Dap Kings, who provided the music for Amy Winehouse’s Back to Black album, create that good ol get down!  I mean get down!  It’s so vintage and so good, that I believe somehow they are from the 50’s or 60’s and have a time machine that they use to travel to right now to give us good music.  This is the real nostalgia ultra!

The Bad:

Charlie Sheen:

Winning! Charlie Sheen, get yo ass off of my television screen!

Tiger blood, strippers, deals falling through, losing the kids, viral rants, and almost getting a beat down in Detroit for talking sh*t to the wrong city, just was too much.  I get it!  We as the public, love drama and Mr.Sheen gave us all that and then some.  Yet in reality, this is another privileged rich white man, who isn’t in any kind of danger of falling from grace.  We as the public have no reason to care about his drug addiction and sexual innuendoes.  Charlie Sheen has millions of dollars, which he brags about quite often, so ease your minds fellow robots.  He doesn’t need help or medication.  He just needs to black and poor for 3 hours and that’ll fix all that self destructive, abuse of position madness.

Beyonce’:

“4” best sung album of the year. “4” one of the worst albums of the year.

“Girs: We run the world”, really?  Really Beyonce?  Yes the video was bananas, but the song was an epic failure.  Just about every decision concerning this project was a bad one.  I think it’s because she got rid of her father as a manager and makes all these choices herself.  Terrible.  I’m all for independent women doing big things and making it happen.  Yet for some people that might not be the best thing.  Now I’m not saying she should go back to her dad (even though his results when it came to the advancement of her career can’t be disputed) but she needs someone to get her back on track.   The best decision Beyonce has made this year was to get pregnant.  A baby is a great weapon of mass distraction from that horrible album.

Black and Yellow hair:


I won’t say much about this except, if you dyed your hair black and yellow then you should be executed.

Mr.Sawyer’s predictions for 2012:

Adele is going to smash them at the Grammy’s

Lauryn Hill will not release an album

There will some kind of natural disaster during the Spring or early Summer.

Barack will be re elected

Brad Pitt and Angelina will break up

This is the final blog for this year beautiful people.  I hope that you have a happy new year, and only good things come to you.  Be blessed and be easy.  Be beautiful!

Yo brotha

Ty

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Equality

I couldn’t have said it better myself.

Thank you Natasha “Theory” Jackson for posting this on facebook.

Yo brotha

Ty

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The Last Airbender: Legend of Korra (Trailer and info)

Greetings beautiful people

Here is the trailer from the next installment of the Avatar series : The Legend of Korra.  Ignoring the live action movie, that butchered the spirit of the animated series, I’ve been excited to see what the creators of the series were going to do next.  Judging by the trailer, it looks like it’ll be just as amazing, if not better than the original series.

The art direction looks amazing and has contributions from LeSean Thomas, one of the few African Americans working in anime today.  He is helping to story board the project in addition to lending his talents to the key animation.  Click on his name to visit his site and see the many projects this talented brotha has worked on.

Below is information from the new series included taken from wikipedia.

Until next time

Yo brotha

Ty

The Last Airbender: Legend of Korra (originally Avatar: Legend of Korra) is an upcoming American television series set in the Avatar universe as a spin-off of Avatar: The Last Airbender. It was expected to air on Nickelodeon in mid-2012,[1] but no concrete air date has been given. The series is currently under production, and is expected to run for 26 episodes.[1] The co-creators of the original series, Michael Dante DiMartino and Bryan Konietzko, will personally write all of the episodes to allow for a tighter storyline.

The new series will take place 70 years after the end of the Avatar: The Last Airbender story arc, with all-new characters and settings.[1] The protagonist of the new series, Korra, the next Avatar after Aang, is a hot-headed and rebellious young woman from the Southern Water Tribe who is “ready to take on the world”.[2] The series plans to follow Korra as she faces an anti-bender revolt while mastering the art of Airbending from Aang and Katara’s son, Tenzin.

After the conclusion of the War, Aang and Zuko brought people from the four nations together and founded the United Republic, creating Republic City, a large “metropolis powered by steampunk-type technology” such as cars and motorcycles.[3] Aang and Katara had three children, the youngest (and only Airbender) of which is Tenzin. Meanwhile, Toph Bei Fong traveled extensively to teach Metalbending. After Aang’s death, the next Avatar, Korra, was born to the Southern Water Tribe.

At the present time 70 years after the end of the War, Korra is a rebellious 17-year-old girl.[2][1] As the Avatar, she has already mastered Waterbending, Earthbending and Firebending. She will learn Airbending from Aang and Katara‘s son Tenzin.[3][4] Tenzin himself is married; Pema is his wife. Jinora, a “bookworm”, and Ikki, a “motor-mouth”, are his daughters while Meelo, his youngest child, is his son.[5]

The primary and only confirmed setting is Republic City. Anti-benders called “Equalists“, who oppose the art of bending, utilize techniques such as chi-blocking to further their goals of revolution, led by Amon.[3] Korra must fight rampant crime and the anti-bender revolt, assisted by two brothers, Mako, a Firebender, and Bolin, an Earthbender. She is also joined by her animal guide, Naga, and the Metalbending police force of Republic City, who are led by Toph’s daughter.[5]

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Kehinde Wiley World Stage: India, Shri Lanka, and Isreal

Greetings beautiful people

Here are a few images from renowned figurative artist Kehinde Wiley done over the last 2 years, continuing his “World Stage Series”.  Wiley takes us on a visual journey to lands that may seem both exotic and misunderstood to those of us here the Western world, (India, Shri Lanka, and Israel).  In a recent article from Flaunt magazine, Wiley discussed painting the young urban hip hop culture, from other countries.  As usual he uses young men from the area as the subjects of his paintings and re-imagines them in some art historical context.

I love that Kehinde Wiley keeps improving with each series, not only in terms of facility, but over graphic impact of his images.  I’m blown away at how he incorporates the traditional design aesthetic from a geographic location into the composition of the subject. Also his paintings are becoming more colorful, which is always a good thing, in my opinion, for a painter.

Check out the images below and enjoy.

Yo brotha

Ty

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Alexander McQueen: Dress No.13 Spring/Summer 1999

Alexander McQueen (British, 1969–2010) Dress No. 13, spring/summer 1999 White cotton muslin spray-painted black and yellow with underskirt of white synthetic tulle

Greetings beautiful people

So here is the latest bear illustration inspired by the Alexander McQueen exhibition “Savage Beauty” currently on display at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York.

I saw and thoroughly read through the catalouge a few months ago and was amazed.  The late great Alexander McQueen was an artist of the highest caliber. I believe what most impressed me about his creations, was the extent of his imagination.  This illustration based on the dress pictured below, was a plain yet beautifully talored dress by McQueen.  He had the model walk down the runway onto a circular platform in between two robotic arms.  Once the model was in place, the circular platform began to turn, the robotic arms activated and sprayed yellow and black paint all over the dress.  The resulting pattern was a specific work of art created in a most random environment.  Love it!

More illustrations to come

Till next time

Yo brotha

Ty

Original: Alexander McQueen (British, 1969–2010) Dress No. 13, spring/summer 1999 White cotton muslin spray-painted black and yellow with underskirt of white synthetic tulle

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The Kick Ass Art of Fahamu Pecou!!!

Greetings beautiful people

While searching the net for great artist around the world, I came across 35 year old Atlanta artist Fahamu Pecou.  His paintings are primarily self portraits  that make commentary on the sensationalized negative aspects of young African American culture. I’ve included a few images here but please feel free to visit his site.  I’ve included his bio below.

Until next time

Yo brotha

Ty

BIO

Fahamu Pecou (b. 1975) is an American painter based in Atlanta, Georgia whose intention is to comment on contemporary and hip-hop culture while simultaneously subverting it to include his ideas on fine art.

In 2005, along with several of Atlanta’s premier contemporary artists, Pecou created history at Atlanta’s High Museum of Art with the exhibition Arts Beats + Lyrics. Since 2005 Fahamu has been featured in several solo and group exhibitions in the U.S. and abroad. His work has been reviewed and featured in numerous publications including Art In America, Harper’s Magazine, NY Arts Magazine, Mass Appeal Magazine, The Fader Magazine, Atlanta Peach Magazine, NY Arts Magazine and on the cover of Artlies Magazine. In 2007, he was named, “Critic’s Choice for Best Emerging Artist” by Atlanta’s Creative Loafing. He was also awarded a “Best in Show” Award for the 2007 Atlanta Biennial. In 2008 Pecou was awarded a residency at the Caversham Centre in Kwazulu Natal, South Africa, additionally, Pecou’s work was included in “DEFINITION: The Art and Design of Hip Hop”, an anthology chronicling the impact of hip-hop on visual culture, written by famed graffiti artist and designer Cey Adams.

In 2009 Fahamu was featured in two international solo exhibitions; the first in Cape Town, South Africa and a second during Art Basel in Basel Switzerland. Additionally, he was awarded a fellowship and residency at the McColl Center in Charlotte, NC.

Pecou maintains an active exhibition schedule as well as public lectures and speaking engagements at colleges and museums nationwide. Currently his work addresses concerns around representations of black masculinity and how these images come to define black men across generations and geographical boundaries.

Click the link below for his official website:

http://www.fahamupecouart.com/

 

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My Life and a Time with David Blair

I’m a bit disturbed that this is the 3rd blog in a row that has to deal with the death of an artist.  I hate the theory of three’s.

For those of us on the art scene in Detroit, David Blair was kind of a big deal.  The man was an amazing poet, singer/song writer, musician, performer, teacher, friend etc etc.  I’d get tired of typing all the things this man was a master of…lol

To be honest with you, I’m having trouble really excepting the fact that Blair is gone.  Maybe the reason is because, he became integrated into the indie film that is my life.

F.Y.I. This tragedy was not in the script.

Blair was always there on his mark remembering and delivering every line brilliantly!

He was my friend and eventually became my neighbor.  The majority of our conversations weren’t what I’d call actual conversations, but more like mini interviews.  I was always asking the questions.  He was always answering.

As opposed to a Lucian or Amy, David Blair was the admirable artist, that I could touch.  Who I could ask all the challenging questions that I feel all artists want to be asked but seldom gets the opportunity to answer.

We spoke last Monday and conversed about his travels, Siberia, what it’s like to live as a full time artist, and Lady Gaga.  Yes David Blair liked Lady Gaga!  Weird?  I know right?

The conversation concluded with a hug and a “see ya later”.  I never tell people goodbye.  It’s a but too finite for me.  I adopted this ideology from my father and despite my consistency with incomplete departures, I see now, how “goodbye” would have been the appropriate thing to say.

I always saw Blair as an older version of myself.  He was part of a goal made flesh if you will.  He was different.  Different from anyone I know or can think of.  He was thought provoking, strong, sensitive, and at the end of the day a humorist.

My favorite poem by him was the one about Stonewall and the one about Little Richard and the one about Nina Simone and the one about Joe Jackson and, and……you get the picture.  My favorite song by him is “That’s Entertainment”.  It embodies how I see the world and 99% of the people in it.  Told you guys, he was kind of a big deal.

David Blair you are missed.

Yo brotha

Ty

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Lucian Freud 1922-2011″One of the Greatest Figurative Artist of All Time”

Greetings beautiful people

Lucian Frued was one of the many people who influenced my work since I began painting in the late 90’s.  I was privileged to see a retrospective of his work in Britain a few years back and I was/continue  to be stunned ever since.  He lived a great life and left an amazing body of work for generations to admire and learn from.  Here are a few images and his bio from wikipedia.

Lucian Michael Freud, OM, CH (8 December 1922 – 20 July 2011)[1] was a British painter. Known chiefly for his thickly impasted portrait and figure paintings, he was widely considered the pre-eminent British artist of his time.[2] His works are noted for their psychological penetration, and for their often discomfiting examination of the relationship between artist and model

Freud’s early paintings are often associated with surrealism and depict people, plants and animals in unusual juxtapositions. These works were usually created with thin layers of paint.

From the 1950s he began to work in portraiture, often nudes, to the almost complete exclusion of everything else, employing impasto. With this technique, he would often clean his brush after each stroke. The colours in these paintings are typically muted.

Freud’s portraits often depict only the sitter, sometimes sprawled naked on the floor or on a bed or alternatively juxtaposed with something else, as in Girl With a White Dog (1951–52) and Naked Man With Rat (1977–78).[7] The use of animals in his compositions is widespread, and often features pet and owner. Other examples of portraits with both animals and people in Freud’s work include Guy and Speck (1980–81), Eli and David (2005–06) and Double Portrait (1985–86).[8] He had a special passion for horses, having enjoyed riding at school in Dartington, where he sometimes slept in the stables.[9] His portraits solely of horses include Grey Gelding (2003), Skewbald Mare (2004), and Mare Eating Hay (2006).

Freud’s subjects were often the people in his life; friends, family, fellow painters, lovers, children. He said, “The subject matter is autobiographical, it’s all to do with hope and memory and sensuality and involvement, really.[10] In the 1970s Freud spent 4,000 hours on a series of paintings of his mother, about which art historian Lawrence Gowing observed “it is more than 300 years since a painter showed as directly and as visually his relationship with his mother. And that was Rembrandt.”[11]

In art critic Martin Gayford’s 2010 book, Man with a Blue Scarf: On Sitting for a Portrait by Lucian Freud, Gayford chronicled the forty days he spent with Lucian Freud while sitting for his portrait. Gayford surmised that Freud sought to capture his model’s individuality by, as Gayford named it, his “omnivorous” gaze. Gayford also mentions that his final portrait seemed to “reveal secrets—ageing, ugliness, faults—that I imagine…I am hiding from the world…” – suggesting how sharp and penetrating Freud’s gaze is.[12]

“I paint people,” Freud said, “not because of what they are like, not exactly in spite of what they are like, but how they happen to be.” Freud painted fellow artists, including Frank Auerbach and Francis Bacon. He produced a series of portraits of the performance artist Leigh Bowery, and also painted Henrietta Moraes, a muse to many Soho artists. Towards the end of his life he did a nude portrait of model Kate Moss. Freud was one of the best known British artists working in a representational style, and was shortlisted for the Turner Prize in 1989.[13]

After Cézanne, 1999 – 2000, National Gallery of Australia.

His painting After Cézanne, which is notable because of its unusual shape, was bought by the National Gallery of Australia for $7.4 million. The top left section of this painting has been ‘grafted’ on to the main section below, and closer inspection reveals a horizontal line where these two sections were joined.

In 1996, Abbot Hall Art Gallery in Kendal mounted a major exhibition of 27 paintings and thirteen etchings, covering the whole period of Freud’s working life to date. The following year the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art presented “Lucian Freud: Early Works”. The exhibition comprised around 30 drawings and paintings done between 1940 and 1945.[14] This was followed by a large retrospective at Tate Britain in 2002. During a period from May 2000 to December 2001, Freud painted Queen Elizabeth II. There was criticism of this portrayal of the Queen in some sections of the British media. The highest selling tabloid newspaper, The Sun, was particularly condemnatory, describing the portrait as “a travesty”.[15] In 2005 a retrospective of Freud’s work was held at the Museo Correr in Venice scheduled to coincide with the Biennale. In late 2007, a collection of Freud’s etchings titled “Lucian Freud: The Painter’s Etchings” went on display at the Museum of Modern Art.[16]

In May 2008, his 1995 portrait Benefits Supervisor Sleeping was sold at auction by Christie’s in New York City for $33.6 million, setting a world record for sale value of a painting by a living artist.[17]

In November 2008, letters written by Freud were obtained by The Independent under the Freedom of Information Act. They detail his bitter dispute with some of the most powerful figures in the art world after he was asked to represent Britain at the 1954 Venice Biennale, the world’s leading contemporary art exhibition. The publicity-shy portrait painter locked horns with gallery officials after a selection committee rebuffed his suggestions of works to show in Italy. The article includes a copy of the letter written by Freud to the British Council complaining about the selection process.[18]

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Status Symbols Prt 1 of 2: An Examination of Dumb Ass Post and Status Updates on your favorite Social Networking Sites.”

Greetings beautiful people

Social networking sites have become an entertaining worldwide pass time for the tragically hip and techno savvy a like.  The only people I typically see who exclude themselves from the robotic maturation pod of the matrix of likes/dislikes and status updates,  are people who do their best to oppose technological advancements with a zealot like conviction of a Luddite. These people are old, young, male, female, etc but will most certainly have a romanticized idea of society involving “the good ol days”.  Epic fail!

This blog is not about the latter type of person, but rather those who I wish were the latter type of person.  It concerns the idiotic status updates and the wrist slitting uninteresting tweets that a host of individuals choose to pollute the screen of my MacBook with.
It’s a great thing that a large percentage of the population is reading and writing, even if it’s George Orwell’s 1984 “Newspeak”, but it’s happening.  I’m starting to wish a greater number of people didn’t have access to computers and couldn’t read or write.  Then maybe I would be spared the mundane postings of the anti-witty.

If you could think of navigating a social networking site as an art form, then I am afraid that a great deal of people aren’t Picasso’s and never will be.  Examples of bad post are as follows

The what you are doing type of post:

“I’m eating pancakes.”

“I just finished shopping at Wal-Mart.”

“House all cleaned up, now time to read the phone book.”

The above are all examples of that type of boring situation post that I rebuke every time I log into a site.  I would say that no one cares about a person eating tons of carbs, contributing to Walmart’s increasing profit margins, or finally cleaning their home after a year, but the tons of comments and likes attached to the post, would most assuredly disprove my point and leads me to the conclusion that these uninteresting people travel in packs via the internet.  If E = MC2 then the uninteresting find interest in the uninteresting.
The following are example of interesting post that hopefully will assist boring people with avoiding my new digital inquisition

“I just beheaded a dragon on the corner of Woodward and Warren, now I’m off to fight sobriety and Woodbridge Pub.”

“Just woke up and still have my penis attached.  Score another victory for me!”

“Just finished cleaning my house….of evil spirits and demons.  Thank you “DemonAway” on sale at Wal-Mart!”

The how you are feeling emotionally or physically kind of post:

“Not feeling well, I think it was that alien that burst out of my chest earlier”

“I am a scorned woman with scissors, looking for a penis to cut off!”

“Dear Detroit Poetry Community…F*CK YOU!”

I am one of the biggest advocates for freedom of expression and honesty in what one chooses to share with the public.  Yet sometimes it’s best to tell a doctor about your physical ailments rather than those on your friend list.  The out pour of sympathy for your medical condition will never compare to antibiotics and good ol vicodin.

Also let’s face it.  Some people are way too emotionally compromised to post anything.  There is a fine line between being perceived as demonstrative and being perceived as crazy.  If you have no interest in the publics opinion concerning your mental state, then “crazy”  would most likely suite you, along with psychotropic medication.

Examples of acceptable post concerning feelings both emotional and physical are as follows:

“I feel like busting loose!”

“I am a scorned woman, I will put down the scissors,  listen to Lauryn Hill: Unplugged, and realize that someone has it worst off than me.”

“Dear Bad Facebook Post Community…F*CK YOU!”

The too much personal information type of post:

“Today my car window was broken out by my girlfriend, who found out I was cheating on her with Jasmine Sullivan.”

“You look hot as hell in that pic.  Here is my number 555-1234, call me so that we can fornicate after church on Sunday.”

Too much personal information is disseminated via the internet.  An exercise in restraint would do some people good.  Stop putting all your business in your post, unless you are generating revenue.  I’m not saying that people should keep secrets although, I believe they should, but the intimate details of your life should remain just that… Intimate details.

In concluding part 1 of this 2 piece blog, I would like to say that if anyone reading this is guilty of the transgressions mentioned above, then please heed my advice.  Not only will it help you avoid further bastardization of the social network news board, but it’s good for humanity as a whole.  Stop posting terribly uninteresting things, and save an African baby.  You may be having difficulties finding a correlation between this blog and African babies, but it you think long and hard about it, it’ll come to you.

Till next time

Yo brotha

Ty

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