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Saturday, December 31, 2011
Thursday, December 29, 2011
Wednesday, December 28, 2011
I probably owe my studio practice to my failed career in the apparel industry. Fortunately, my love of all things fashion remains. I recently saw a movie about Bill Cunningham, the STREET STYLE editor at The New York Times, and was inspired to further cultivate my person as a creative space. I suppose this all makes sense given my penchant for costuming within my performance work... For the record I've included a few my favorite sources of inspiration below (all images are HYPERLINKED).
I loooooove sugar. Perhaps I can beat my addiction...?
For the month of January, we challenge you to eliminate sugar from your life. This means no added sugar, refined sugar or artificial sweeteners. As you all know, changing your eating habits can be a difficult task to tackle alone. That is why we are doing this together!
Our Facebook page will serve as a place where you can go for inspiration and motivation. This challenge will be done on a “good-faith” basis. Meaning, if you cheat, you are only cheating yourself. Do this challenge for you. We will help motivate you and provide support along the way. We want you to participate because you want to, not because you have too. There are no contracts or commitments involved. It is simply a deal you make with yourself.
We promise, it will be worth it!
- No foods that have added sugar of any kind are allowed.
- No added natural sugars (honey, molasses, stevia, etc.).
- No added refined sugars (sugar, corn syrup, brown sugar).
- No added artificial sweeteners (Truvia, Splenda, Nutrasweet).
Basically, if it has added sugar of any kind (natural or otherwise), do not eat it. This includes any and all artificial sweeteners, which are not considered part of a healthy, Skinny Ms. diet.
Note: When we say no sugar, we mean no added sugar. There will be naturally occurring sugars in milk and yogurt as well as in fruit. That’s okay. The idea is to give up ADDED sugars. So when you read a nutrition label, look at the actual list of ingredients. NOT the % of sugar per serving (unless you must do so for medical reasons).
DRINK 1 NUTRIENT-DENSE SMOOTHIE PER DAY
We have 14 fabulous, nutrient-dense smoothie recipes for you to try that will be up soon!
Fruit contains plenty of natural sugars and is also an important part of any healthy eating plan. So this means, you can have 1 small to medium apple/orange/banana/handful of berries/plum/etc., three times each day. The possibilities are only as limited as your local grocery store. However, you must limit yourself to no more than 3 pieces per day. Keep in mind that the fruit from your daily smoothie DOES count towards those 3 pieces of daily fruit. Each fruit ingredient listed in those recipes counts as 1 fruit serving for the day.
The challenge goes for the entire month of January. If you can’t start with us, start when you can. However, those who stick to the challenge for the month will benefit the most.
AFTER THE CHALLENGE
The goal of this challenge is to break sugar addiction. We want to help you get through the first month so you have the motivation to continue on your own. Whether or not you decide to continue living sugar-free after the challenge ends is completely up to you.
So what do you say? Will you join us?
SkinnyMs.com will serve as a source of motivation and support. You can interact directly with us and other participants on our Facebook page: facebook.com/SkinnyMsChallenge.
Beat your sugar addiction now!
Friday, December 23, 2011
I hate performance art. I think it’s a ridiculous waste of time. Most of the work in the genre reads like an excuse to ogle well formed, young (nude) bodies executing thinly veiled operations of sex. Except, when it is not.
Popular culture has taught me that richwhitepeople are on the freaky side, but in ‘real life’, certain individuals have managed to launder their voyeuristic fantasies through sanctioned spaces. In fact, the system is so well designed that many in this group write off their fetishist tendencies through ‘membership fees’ or ‘charitable donations’. But, when the force of the work manages to reveal something beyond the spectacle, the freaky shit doesn’t matter as much.
As an artist working in performance my conservative views make me passionately critical of the medium. As a student, I am compelled to perpetual investigation, and have been introduced to 3 questions with the uncanny ability to multiply. This essay is an attempt to reacquaint myself with those original queries.
1. What is performance art?
I remember the first time I heard that question. Unfortunately, it was not my inner voice. It came from individuals I respect, regular people, if you will, people who ‘practiced’ too. But the message was always from the outside. Here I was attempting describe what I do/did/am doing, but I had never asked myself what I was causing to happen through performance.
Fortunately, we have the benefit of human relationships as a means to educate ourselves. Perhaps that’s what defines performance, a molding of the dialogue space. Manzella and Watkins assert that performance “is not an object but an interaction between artist and viewers”. The completion of a score is dependent upon drawing multiple perspectives together to a focal point. All art has an inherent capability for this. The distinction of performance art, however, allows the artist to participate in this experience as the focus in real time. These are extremely satisfying moments. I’m interested in finding additional ways to discover this experience again (and again…). But as much I involve myself in the process of performance, I do relish the making of things. Objects extend the broadcast of a message in ways that the ephemeral cannot.
2. What is documentation?
I did not document my first performances. Friends (and strangers) armed with cell phones served nicely, and, when those were unavailable, the institution(s) made their records. I had yet to think beyond the performance itself. I believe that ‘the moment’ is where performance work actually exists. As I begrudgingly added more performance to my practice, I became increasingly committed to the present as a natural space for performance. But art is a peculiar kind of history making that relies upon physical evidence to mark its territory beyond the moment. Besides, what about the individuals who might only access performance work through the lens of history? It seems that documentation could be more than a still or moving image. I believe that at its essence, documentation is the extension of the interaction created by the artist and the audience.
3. How can documentation be used as a site for production?
Photographs and video have established themselves as the primary means of performance documentation, so much so that viewers read it as the performance itself. But the record does not supplant the action- it is a distinct entity. What I hope to preserve, in my making of documentation, is that distinction between the performance and the record. This allows an area for interaction/imagination that I also wish to preserve and extend. Voicemail oral histories, living archives, on-shelf artifacts housed in resin tablets, database entries, artist-developed library cataloging systems – these are but a few of the offerings that can inspire the evolution of performance art. This kind of record inherently forces work beyond the white cube, the ivory tower and the private collection, perhaps even towards class transcendence.
I wonder, how do I create experiences that are both exclusive and comprehensive? ‘Doings’ that are both momentary and enduring? I believe the answer is found in the practice- exploring this tension fully so that more questions follow.
While richwhitepeople cannot claim singular ownership of high culture (although they try), I do believe they should assume fiscal responsibility. I am striving to create a level of exchange that acknowledges the idea of stewardship and authors a concept of exclusivity that can actually exist in an age of digital reproduction.
Every conversation is chemistry, an interaction between elements that continues a pattern of change. Culture-makers use this phenomenon as workable material in building points of contact. Although my thoughts about performance art are firmly in the side-eye position, that does not negate the medium’s ability to accomplish this outcome. And, while it’s true that my gregarious social personality provides a certain advantage to presenting my body as art, it is deftly balanced by my own insecurities. It is this tension that propels investigation- one which questions everything about performance and the audience that these actions build.
The Artist Is Present. Dir. Marina Abramovic. Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), New York. 24 May 2010. Performance.
Green, Penelope. "The Serial Sleepover Artist." The New York Times 13 Apr. 2011, Final ed., Home & Garden sec.: D1+. Print.
Jacob, Mary Jane., and Michelle Grabner, eds. The Studio Reader: on the Space of Artists. Chicago: University of Chicago, 2010. Print.
Kenya Eats a Cracker. Dir. Kenya (Robinson). 2010 DUMBO Arts Festival, Brooklyn. 25 Sept. 2010. Performance.
Manzella, Christina, and Alex Watkins. "Performance Anxiety: Performance Art in Twenty-first Century Catalogs and Archives." Art Documentation 30.1 (2011): 28-32. Coming of Age In The Library. Wordpress, 29 Nov. 2011. Web. 12 Dec. 2011.
Rosler, Martha. ""Lookers, Buyers, Dealers, and Makers: Thoughts on Audience"" Ed. Alexander Alberro and Blake Stimson. Institutional Critique: an Anthology of Artists' Writings. Cambridge, MA: MIT, 2009. 206-33. Print.
Friday, December 16, 2011
Listen to independent producer Barrett Golding's report
"I am not tragically colored. There is no great sorrow dammed up in my soul, nor lurking behind my eyes. I do not mind at all. I do not belong to that sobbing school of Negrohood who hold that nature somehow has given them a lowdown dirty deal. Even in the helter-skelter skirmish that is my life, I have seen that the world is to the strong regardless of a little pigmentation more or less. No, I do not weep at the world — I am too busy sharpening my oyster knife." - Zora Neale Hurston
Wednesday, December 14, 2011
The women of Frolific are collecting African-American Barbie dolls for girls in need this Holiday. But organizers say for this project, Barbie's "traditional" hairdo...just won't do.
Monday, December 12, 2011
"The William H. Johnson Foundation for the Arts was established in 2001, the centenary of the birth of William H. Johnson. Recognizing that minority artists often need economic assistance, and inspired by Johnson’s story, the Foundation seeks to encourage artists early in their careers by offering financial grants. Visual artists working in the following media are encouraged to submit applications: painting, photography, sculpture, printmaking, installation and new genre. Grants are awarded at the end of the calendar year. In addition, the Foundation will support projects aimed at broadening awareness of the life and work of William H. Johnson and other African American artists, mainly through exhibitions and publications.
The William H. Johnson Prize is awarded annually to an early career African American artist. For our purposes, "early career" is a flexible term that should be interpreted liberally to include artists who have finished their academic work within twelve years from the year that the prize is awarded. For example, a person who finished their studies in 1999 is eligible to apply in 2011, but not in 2012. Age is not determinative, and artists who have not earned BFAs or MFAs are still eligible so long as they have not been working as an artist for more than twelve years."
This grant never disappoints with regard to its honorees. It's a veritable 'who you should know' of the Contemporary Art World. I'll be faithfully submitting my application every year, until 2024! In either case the 2011 Prize goes to...
...Deborah Grant! According to the Foundation's website "Grant's work appropriates and reconfigures the artwork of famous male artists such as Picasso, Basquiat, Bacon and Traylor. In a style that she calls "Random Select," Grant reworks their images while adding drawing and collage to refer to history, contemporary events and narratives pertinent to her own life experience and identity. In her series By The Skin of Our Teeth, she used Bill Traylor's images to conflate his narrative with slavery, Jim Crow and the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina." I just think she is off the chain! Congratulations to Ms. Grant (go ladies, go ladies...) and the finalists Derrick Adams and Clifford Owens.
Thursday, December 8, 2011
"Conceptual actor Jason Schwartzman goes head to giant head with conceptual artist John Baldessari in this charmingly bizarre short film. Together the two Angelenos take a trip into the weird and dig into the real meaning of art."
"The bottom line is that artists work where and when they can and how they can."
- Robert Storr
Recently, I was challenged to re-examine the purpose of my blog as it relates to my art making. I was strongly encouraged to question the level of disclosure as it relates to community-building. Through this inspired questioning, it is even clearer to me why this space is a necessary expression of my practice. To say that I am a "community-taught artist" is not a flippant affect of branding, it is a reflection of the truth I experience daily. The usual conflicts, triumphs, sympathies and discoveries that I experience with others are the intangible materials that dictate my studio practice. I predict that this will last my whole life through, whether I am in school, working a 9-to-5, or freelancing to make ends meet. There are other essential benefits of sharing in an open forum that are just beginning to reveal themselves. I believe that the insistence on adding a personal voice to written history resonates more fully with the advent of online publishing. While this allows more room for drivel (myself included), perhaps history shouldn't have such a refined taste level; especially since time adds a patina that may reveal deeper levels of meaning from the contemporary mundane. Privacy (along with exclusivity) is a fiction that I hope to challenge through sharing. Thoughts, comments and suggestions- anonymously or otherwise / positive or negative - are always welcome.
On a related note: I'm investigating the methods and means of the Post-Studio Art course developed by John Baldessari at CalArts in the 1970's. Baldessari "is known for his conceptual work that often intersects artistic genres and media. His work has been featured in more than 200 solo exhibitions and in more than 1,000 group exhibitions in the U.S. and Europe."
Wednesday, December 7, 2011
One of the areas in I am struggling with in my performance work is the issue of documentation. Photographs and video are the the usual suspects, but I find that these modes diminish the importance of being there. It is my quest to create documentation that may exist as a remnant of the performance, but also, more viscerally, as an embodiment of action on the part of the viewer. With this in mind, I am considering the object of the white suit and how I can use it as material to create sculpture- in the same vein of how I use it to create performance...
These considerations have lead me to some of questions: What is performance space? Does it have to be physical? Can the tangibility of the performance space shift? How are boundaries created? What do we do with the remnants? How can the similarity of the remnants be challenged? What is the role of the title in documentation? Could these documentation objects be cataloged...?
Speaking of cataloging, I have a vision that marries my investigation of performance/object making with my absolute passion for libraries. I love books, but it's these public houses of media that present themselves as an intriguing spaces for art. I propose a cataloging system that allows documentation objects to share shelf-space with books. Developing...
As a point of inspiration, I've been directed to Andy Warhol's TIME CAPSULES.
As a point of inspiration, I've been directed to Andy Warhol's TIME CAPSULES.
sug·ges·tion (sg-jschn, s-js-)
- The act of suggesting.
- Something suggested: We ordered the shrimp, a suggestion of the waiter.
- The sequential process by which one thought or mental image leads to another.
- a.) A psychological process by which an idea is induced in or adopted by another without argument, command, or coercion. b.) An idea or response so induced.
- A hint or trace: just a suggestion of makeup; the first suggestion of trouble ahead.
Monday, December 5, 2011
Friday, December 2, 2011
"When I'm drivin' in my car / And that man comes on the radio / He's tellin' me more and more / About some useless information / Supposed to fire my imagination / I can't get no, oh no, no, no / Hey hey hey, that's what I say"- (I Can't Get No) Satisfaction by The Rolling Stones
The Rolling Stones have encapsulated my reaction to my first official critique within the graduate school context (see above). Fortunately the experience reiterates that I must seek 'satisfaction' (Note: 'satisfying', 'satisfaction' are choice buzzword in grad school) in my own practice. I think it's worthwhile striving to ask questions of myself that challenge my ways of doing- without the expectation that someone else should do it for me. I might be served more effectively by engaging the flaws of 'critique'- whether the discussion traps us all in the vortex of the coonbox or binds me in feminist panties. So, the hiccup of my crit was the white paint suit I typically employ in my performance work. I've decided, that instead of abandoning it or fabricating some complicated reason for my simple (yet considered) choice of the suit in the first place, I'm going to create a more involved relationship with the object itself.
Me and that white suit? We likethis, son! Stay tuned...