Category Archives: Art & Design
So I finally saw Lars Von Trier’s “Melancholia” the other night. Briefly, the movies tells the story of a two sisters whose constant head butting is suddenly overshadowed by a planet called Melancholia heading straight for Earth. The movie is split into two acts, Part I, entitled Justine (Kristin Dunst’s character), while Part II, Claire, named for Justine’s sister played by Charlotte Gainsborough. The movie overall was good, but took a while to reach its peak and peak my interest. While the first part moved rather slow, it contained one of the most striking parts of the whole movie: the opening sequence, which was quite simply, breathtakingly beautiful; its surrealness captivating and dynamic. The nearly 9 minute prologue (see below) shows the destruction of planet earth as impact with melancholia is realized, the few moments of panic (in the case of Claire) and tranquility (in the case of Justine) just beforehand, and the visualization of Justine’s dark and foreboding dreams. Part I is saved by good acting on the part of Dunst, who often angered me in her wedding day behavior towards her friends, family, and adorable husband (Alexander Skarsgard). We see her deteriorate in a matter of a day, which just happens to be the day of her extravagant wedding hosted by her sister and brother-in-law (Kiefer Sutherland). She becomes depressed, apathetic, and even nihilistic. This worsens over the course of part I and into part II. In Part II we really begin to see the whole picture, the theme of the movie fleshes out with the juxtapositions between Justine and Claire becoming clear. As Melancholia looms closer, predicted to either pass right by or destroy everything in sight, Claire becomes increasingly anxious, as Justine’s depression seems to be less debilitating. Claire is somewhat calmed by the reassurance of her husband that experts agree the planet will spare earth while putting on a beautiful show, but with little real evidence to back it up. Claire’s anxiousness reaches an all-time high, when her optimistic, in denial husband overdoses on her anxiety medication when they realize the planet is getting dangerously close, rather than receding. All the while Justine remains in silent acceptance, or even anticipation for doomsday. As a clinically depressed person, Justine “knows things”. In other words, she is an enlightened individual whose knows that the destruction is eminent and that yes, it will destroy all that we know around us no matter what. But she sees what Claire fails to; that in the destruction of all that is physical and material, the meaningless, therein lies meaning in what cannot be destroyed. And this is what we witness in the final moments of the film, as Claire, Justine, and Leo (Claire’s young son), as they’ve joined hands underneath a fortress of wooden sticks that will protect their spiritual bond from anything.
As I head back to New York City this week for school, I’d thought I post about something I am looking forward to checking out upon my return. Recently, a new art establishment has opened in what used to be an empty lot in the East Village. From their website:
“The BMW Guggenheim Lab is a mobile laboratory traveling to nine major cities worldwide over six years. Led by international, interdisciplinary teams of emerging talents in the areas of urbanism, architecture, art, design, science, technology, education, and sustainability, the Lab addresses issues of contemporary urban life through programs and public discourse. Its goal is the exploration of new ideas, experimentation, and ultimately the creation of forward-thinking solutions for city life.
Over the Lab’s six-year migration, there will be three distinct mobile structures and thematic cycles. Each structure will be designed by a different architect, and each will travel to three cities around the globe. The theme of the Lab’s first two-year cycle is Confronting Comfort—exploring notions of individual and collective comfort and the urgent need for environmental and social responsibility.
After October 16, 2011 the BMW Guggenheim Lab will travel to Berlin and then Mumbai. Cycle 1 concludes with an exhibition presented at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in 2013. Two additional two-year cycles will follow, each with a new mobile structure and theme, concluding in the fall of 2016.
Part urban think tank, part community center and public gathering space, the Lab is conceived to inspire public discourse in cities around the world and through the BMW Guggenheim Lab website and online social communities.”
I can’t wait to see if it lives up to its lofty ambitions!
I mentioned this a/v master in an earlier post, and I couldn’t get enough. By definition, a strange loop is basically when, whether you move up or down (or in any opposing directions) you end up exactly where you started the movement (See MC Escher’s work). Makes sense because every new vision created I see by this guy leaves me going back for more. Strangloop’s stuff is extremely trippy and awesome to fall into. Check out some of my favorites from his work and collabs below. Bow down people, Dr. Strangeloop is here.
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I invite you to take a hit or two or three, play this, and scroll.
In the future people will live in house high up in the trees (above).
The people of the future will hopefully still have Ferrari’s like this concept, but hybrid (I know, that’s a pipe dream).
Consumers of the future (aka currently in Asia) will simply order all their essentials on the way to work via billboards in public places. Take a picture of what you want out of a product line-up with your iPhone, send your order out into the Cloud (lol), and an employee at a local grocery store will pack up your order and send it to your home. Basically, PeaPod on the go. Read the rest of this entry
Liu Bolin has been doing his Hiding in the City series since 2005. It started as a political commentary on the tensions between the Chinese government and their people and the identity an environment gives an individual and vice versa.
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