American Chia | The Chia Obama

Chia Obama

I couldn’t resist. Yes, this post is about the Chia Pet (random, I know). For the holiday season, the company has made a Chia Pet out of the President. Quite frankly I’ve always wanted one just because it’s such a novel way of getting into horticulture. Okay, so that’s not exactly true but the prospect of plant and sculpture all-in-one is pretty neat. A bonsai tree is so much work but that’s the plant I really want!

Anyway, the commercial served as a reminder to relax. I need more funny stuff to break up all the reading and writing. Laughing is good. I was reading this when I heard the all-too-familiar Chia commercial music while watching the morning news. I’m sure you want to hear about information societies, consumption, and production in the morning and NOT my musing on the latest Chia. 😉

Metamodernism

Notes on Metamodernism ~ Source Image: Screenshot of online zine

Notes on metamodernism is a webzine documenting trends and tendencies across aesthetics and culture that can no longer be understood by a postmodern vernacular but require another idiom – one that we have come to call metamodernism. Written by academics and critics from around the globe, Notes on metamodernism features observations on anything from the Berlin art scene to US cinema, from London fashion shows to network cultures.

~ Excerpt from Notes on Metamodernism online zine

I do a lot of exploring in the virtual landscape. My evenings are spent reading, writing, and discovering new artists, writers, and theorists. Sometimes, I run into virtual spaces I’m convinced were created just for me (okay, okay, that’s a bit selfish to say but you know what I mean). Notes on Metamodernism is an online zine for artists, writers, and bloggers who thrive on critical theory and thinking. Definitely worth your time if you’re interested in this type of writing (and reading)!

A Thought about Misinformation

Something that always troubles me – and it has troubled me for as long as I can remember – is this idea of misinformation that causes people to do bad things. We can go back to World War II, we can look at the 1990s and the Balkan Wars. Emotionally, these drive me very much, this idea of how the Balkans split apart. I’m very interested in that time. And then look at America post 9/11 with this whole anti-Muslim movement and this complete misinformation. And it’s not necessarily because somebody thought, “I’m going to be evil and go out and lie.” They really believe what they are saying, and the people listening to them want to believe what they’re hearing. So this idea that the Quran is all about terror and violence makes me go like, “Wait. Look at the Old Testament. Look at Deuteronomy. It says you can stone your wife.” Our religious texts in the Western world are extremely violent, as well.

~ Excerpt from the Substratum Series Interview with Wesley Grubbs, Founder of Pitch Interactive

Take a look at Pitch Interactive data visualization of the Bible and the Quran here.

Face to Facebook ~ Do you know who’s looking at your profile?

Face to Facebook by Paolo Cirio and Alessandro Ludovico ~ Source Image: Artists' Website

What happens when you gather one million stolen Facebook profile photos, filter them through face-recognition software, put them on a dating website, and show the work internationally? You’ve got some thought-provoking art.

If you haven’t seen or heard of this project, I suggest you check out the genius behind Face to Facebook created by Paolo Cirio and Alessandro Ludovico. The project is the third installment of The Hacking Monopolism Trilogy. By the way, if you’re huffy and puffy about art like this, you’re probably the same person that says, “My kid can do that!”, when you look at Modern Art. Or, you’re hyper-vigilant and quick to say, “What about my privacy?”. To remind you, your kid didn’t do it (case closed). About your privacy, change and check your settings and starting educating yourself. Still concerned about your privacy? Keep a slambook, lots of stamps, and hush.

This is art.

Why and how, you ask? Face to Facebook forces the viewer to contemplate the age of social media and how one differentiates from their physical existence. Cirio and Ludovico are providing some hefty culture criticism and, well, I enjoy the philosophical, social, cultural, and economical underpinnings of this work. Again, check it out and feel free to share your comment and thoughts. I’d love to hear them.