Yes, I will. No try. I will post every day in 2011!

Contemplating all the next steps for the new year...

Dear Friends and Family,

Surprisingly, writing on my art blog everyday is not a resolution for 2011!

Rather, I’ve decided to form a habit. It’s been said that it takes up to 6 weeks (to form a habit, that is) so here’s my shot at writing, publicly, in 2011! How is this different from a resolution, you ask? It’s different in that I have no idea where this experiment will take me and it’s a habit (very rarely is a ‘resolution’ synonymous with a habit). I’m also up for challenging myself and getting my thoughts out there versus having them become stale rock hard thoughts that weigh me down. The promise is more to myself than anything or anyone else. I WILL write (a sentence, a paragraph, an essay) everyday about one of my passions, the deepest passion, which is Art – EVERYDAY. Yes, I said it, EVERYDAY!

This will not be easy and some days, I may just throw a word on my blog and not care BUT I’m trying to make my voice known and heard in the arts community so I’m starting the habit today!! I will also be making use of TheDailyPost, a community of other bloggers with similar goals.

If you’re a friend or family member reading this blog, I highly encourage you to leave comments and/or questions. I could always use the feedback, support, guidance, and constructive criticism! Cheers to a new year and, hopefully, a lot of new wonderful art projects and writing opportunities!

Hearts and stars and monkey bars,

Dorothy (aka E/IC Art Lover)

Art E(valuation)

"To develop its Neurocapital applications, Acclair implements a fundamental architecture that includes (a) a wearable sensor (consumer brain-computer-interface) communicating with a (b) smartphone (personal application) that send information to a (c) “Data cloud” server (“meaning production” system), which provides the arguments for a (d) progressive reward mechanism used by both individual and institutional entities". ~Photo and text from the Acclair Neurocapital Services Site

As much as I would like to view art as an escape, it’s not. I use my brain (a lot) when I’m looking at art (all types). Of course, I enjoy art yet I’d like to think I glean as much as I can philosophically, psychologically, as well as artistically when attending an opening or a much-anticipated exhibition because it is my hope that a deeper meaning and connection are forged that correlate to my passions. Yet, I’ve wondered, what if my musings and perceptions were to take on some form of currency, would I be hard pressed to return to my day job? Seriously though, even with such a simple act as looking, what if there was some reward? An incentive for looking?

Contemporaneously, art is rather demanding, isn’t it? Even with paintings, drawings, and photographs, there is a higher level of skepticism, processing, and perception that adds to the already multi-layered experience of viewing art. With many genres, cultures, and sub-cultures capturing a myriad of ideas in various forms that already add to our growing lists and categories of things in the world, what if there was a way to evaluate art per the user’s experience? What if there was a way to measure and quantify cognitive processing? What if your brain activity served as an exchange for something you wanted, maybe needed?

With your neural network engaged synapse after synapse regardless of you enjoying or vehemently disliking a work of art, the Acclair Neurocapital Services uses technology to create brain scans of your art experience. Imagine a scientific method that would allow you to see how you process artwork! In turn, helping refine your tastes, allowing you the ability to experience art in a way that is truly interactive, and witnessing the parts of your brain most activated by particular works.

Artist, Luther Thie, partnered with Cognitive Researcher, Eyal Fried, and created the Accalair Neurocapital Services, which involves brain scanning and looks at neurological processes to somehow transform what we see into “biometric currency”. I have yet to put on the brain scanning device but I’m awfully intrigued to see what my scans would say about me, my preferences, or what emotions are triggered. As innovative as the project is, it steps far into the realm of science where beauty and genius become demystified by our collective experiences (i.e., data collection and metrics) and presents a new way of governing ourselves. Yes, I used the word governing because even tastes and preferences can be controlled (Maybe not in the Western world but I’m also thinking historically. Art has been used to govern and/or teach people ideology. I also realize this is a whole other issue so I’ll try to stick to the topic at hand). Imagine if this device were used by people who wanted to see a sampling of individuals intellectual and emotional reactions to some sort of propaganda? I know, crazy thought but just throwing it out there. As much as I admire and see the value in the neurocapital services project, there is a part of me that feels discomfort in seeing my profound love or dislike (for something I may or may not be able to even explain) as a cluster of data. I would, however, love to see the brain scans morphed into a project later on down the line but I’m sure there are other important aspects of the project that have yet to be fleshed out.

Either way, the Acclair project has certainly caught my attention and here’s hoping I get a chance to physically see arts effects on me in the near future.

NORAD Tracks Santa

NORAD Santa Tracker!

Admittedly, I’m not the biggest fan of the holidays. HOWEVER, I can appreciate and get into all the things people do to keep the spirit of Christmas light and exciting. It’s ridiculously endearing to see the creativity and imagination involved in keeping the fantastical, well, fantastical!

I want to know the artist/animator/graphic designer who got a government job and tasked with creating the NORAD Santa Tracker. I mean, really, that’s quite a fun work project, if you ask me. Happy Christmas, Merry Festivus, Feliz Navidad, and Maligayang Pasko (this is Tagalog for Merry Christmas, just in case you didn’t know) to all! 🙂

Click here to track Santa sleigh ride around the world!

Garage Biennale Book – Now Available!

Book cover for Garage Biennale
The first show I attended at the Garage - "I Walked Through Seven Sad Forests"

Art is supposed to be an experience.

Don’t you think? Well, I do.

These days, it’s not enough for me to look at something on a canvas or a neatly stacked collection of combs (okay, so if it’s Sonya Clark, I know the combs are ridiculously magnificent looking and rife with cultural subtext and history. Yes, I love her work but I just digressed, big surprise).

In any case, I said it and I’ll say it again. It’s NOT enough to just look at something for sheer retinal pleasure. As much appreciation and adoration I have for traditional art, there is something incredibly valuable about contemporary art in the conceptual realm. In particular, art pieces that are fleeting and ephemeral involve this excitement and wonder. The temporality of the Garage performances and exhibitions asked only one thing of its patrons – to be present. For those that wonder, “What good would a book about events I never attended and/or will never happen again do for me?” The answer: It’s a part of history. The loss of the moment. The loss of the opportunity. The loss of the time spent watching. The loss of an experience.

“Being temporary is being human, but so is longing for permanence. However, impermanence is our nature, and once we embrace it we can forget about loss and failure. Decisions then come with clarity and alacrity. This is the beauty of temporality: you learn that, sometimes, through loss is the only way.” ~Justin Hoover

Being an avid supporter of alternative art spaces, Justin Hoover‘s book, Garage Biennale serves as a wonderful chronicle of a truly alternative and experimental art space in San Francisco. I remember first learning about the Garage and utterly fascinated how one went about creating a gallery space that was simultaneously public and private. The dichotomy alone intrigued me and I considered myself a patron when I viewed my first show, “I Walked Through Seven Sad Forests”. It was the first art show I ever wrote about, actually. I always wanted to write about art but I never thought that this Garage would have been the impetus for that aspiration.

I owe a lot to the Garage and Mr. Justin Hoover…thank you, my friend!