Posts

Showing posts from July, 2011

For all Design-obsessed Peeps -- Day 5/UNCONVENTIONAL GARDENS (Coral Reef)

Image

Visual Treats (forallofmydesign-obsessedpeeps) News Update

Image
Peeps,

As is customary, during the month of August the theatre remains dark.  We will reopen on September 5 with the peepshow entitled:  5 COOL AMERICANS.  Our blog will be featuring weekend visual treats provided by guest writers and a series of remixed vintage treats.  If you not already done so, please sign up for email notifications, so you can enjoy all the additional fun.
Thanks, Shane
PS:  Got a call from Bernice, our editor who has been on vacation in Syracuse.  It seems that I keep missing the typos, as well as forgetting to water her potted plants on the window-sill.  Last evening's visual treat devoted to the Victory Garden had two boo-boos in the narrative, which were:   'also means less of the grocery budget gets to stay at home,' should have read: 'also means more of the grocery budget gets to stay at home.'  Also, 'Not to mention the pickers and pickers who endure something just short of chemical genocide,' should instead read, 'Not to menti…

For all of my Design-Obsessed Peeps -- Day 4/UNCONVENTIONAL GARDENS (Victory Garden)

Image

For all of my Design-obsessed Peeps - Day 3/UNCONVENTIONAL GARDENS(Alnwick Garden)

Image
Peeps,
I am shocked and saddened at the death of Amy Winehouse; it seems quite surreal that all that remains of this particular individual’s life are the images we experienced electronically, shared moments in the attendance of a live performance, or the singular bewitching voice which pierced through our consciousness thereby forcing us to understand her—as well as our-- need to feel, to risk, to love, to live.Brilliantly and mischievously, she made not being good, devilishly good.She will be missed.
She will be simultaneously missed and remembered for both on and off stage performances; there is no denying her incredible talent, yet lately this had been clouded by public incidents of the loss of control attributed to drugs and alcohol, both poisons to which much caution must be attached.It is argued that the substances (or the base materials) in themselves are quite benign, and only in application does any danger arise.I find much merit in this assertion, and apparently so does the Du…

For all my design obsessed Peeps -- Day 2/UNCONVENTIONAL GARDENS (For the Blind)

Image
Peeps,

   Kind and wonderful persons in my life have made me quite aware of the challenges faced by many individuals in our society.  The blind and visually-impaired and the manner in which they negotiate through the maze of obstructions, hazards, challenges, and limitations--as well as biases and prejudices on the part of others-- has always interested me.  Probably the idea of losing my eyesight fills me with some fear, and as an artist and writer I strive try to understand how the lack of information provided by the sense of sight forces optimization of the other senses, which for the simple reason of survival must move quickly to complete a person's individual consciousness vis-a-vis the perceived world outside our body. Vision provides the brain with information of a large object moving towards us, this combined with the sound of a angry car's horn and compounded with the feel of a swoosh near our arm, as does the smell of a car's running engine and burnt tire-rubber m…

For all of my Design-obsessed Peeps -- Day 1/UNCONVENTIONAL GARDENS (Roof-top Garden)

Image

For all of my Design-Obsessed Peeps -- Day 5/TEXT + IMAGE (Reetika Vazarani)

Image

For all of my Design-Obsessed Peeps -- Day 4/TEXT + IMAGE (Gore Vidal)

Image
Peeps,


Day 4 of our peep-show dedicated to TEXT + IMAGE continues with the master essayist of our age, the premier man of letters, and without hesitation, my all-time favorite --Gore Vidal, who wrote:
     Obviously, there is a great deal wrong with our educational system, as President Reagan recently, and rather gratuitously, noted.  After all, an educated electorate would not have elected him president.  It is generally agreed that things started to go wrong with schools after the First World War.  The past was taught less and less, and Latin and Greek ceased to be compulsory.  Languages were either not taught or taught so badly that they might just as well not have been taught at all, while American history books grew more and more mendacious, as Frances FitzGerald so nicely described (America Revised, 1979), and even basic geography is now a nonsubject.  Yet the average "educated" American has been made to believe that, somehow, the United States must lead the world even th…

For all of my Design-Obsessed Peeps -- Day 3/TEXT + IMAGE (Jeanette Winterson)

Image

For all of my Design-Obsessed Peeps -- Day 2/TEXT + IMAGE (Reinaldo Arenas)

Image

For all of my Design-Obsessed Peeps -- Day 1/TEXT + IMAGE (Jacques Barzun)

Image

Friday's Visual Treat - Day 5/ Everyday Objects of Extraordinary Design (the clothes-pin)

Image
Peeps,

This week's peep-show ends today with the clothespin; if you do not recognize this object, it may be for a variety of reasons.  Chances are that you have never shopped at an old-fashioned hardware store(s) (like Cherrydale Hardware in Arlington, VA or Brown's Hardware in Falls Church, or a variety of others where the mom-and-pop business model is real/nurtures community spirit/provides individualized service unmatched by the big-box stores where help is generally non-existent, and the few good employees who show up after the training period is completed, usually crumble from over-exhaustion and excessive responsibility so that at the first chance they leave for greener pastures; yes, in spite of the so-called benefits and retirement plan.  Only a 501 or 601K could have kept them coming back week after week).

Another reason for not recognizing the humble clothespin may be that you are not truly a design-addict like some fashion and interior-designers/architects/DJ's/…

Thursday's Visual Treat - Day 4/ Everyday Objects of Extraordinary Design (the spoon)

Image
Peeps,
The theme of this week's visual treat is 'Everyday Objects of Extraordinary Design,' and the spoon is our featured object today.  It seems that yesterday's posting which was devoted to the mirror (or looking glass) surprised many new visitors to our blog, as well as some veteran peeps who may have been wondered at the quite liberal creative license I took in composing the narrative.  I sincerely believe that acknowledgment and inclusion of our differences ultimately shapes the manner in which one's image in the mirror is initially perceived and then embraced. In addition to being creatures of habit, we communicate and construct our world through our senses, of which vision/sight is critically essential (or we learn to depend on the other senses which for our continued survival must be honed to a finer degree of sensitivity for receiving and transmitting information to the brain).  If we see someone like us, that makes us more comfortable, and if we see more of…

Wednesday's Visual Treat - Day 3/ Everyday Objects of Extraordinary Design (the mirror)

Image
Peeps,
Today's visual treat, of a boy examining his reflection in the mirror, says so much .  For some at 11 or 12, maybe 13 or 14, the person staring back at you from the mirror is not the person you had expected to see, or wanted to be.  The body starts stretching itself, as well as adding bulk to a frame which will gradually evolve into the man or woman whose chances of being smart, pretty/handsome, successful, passionate, disciplined, talented, and so forth are a combination of genes, environment, and pure luck.  Equally possible are the chances of being a slouch/sloth/slut/spud/spade/sod and so forth; however to mitigate and prevent this unwanted personal development which adds very little to the quality of one's life, most concerned parents usually step in and do the wonderful and sometimes thankless job called parenting which they vowed to undertake somewhere between conception and your birth.  Yet some kids regardless of the love and support which ideally has been provi…

Tuesday's Visual Treat - Day 2/ Everyday Objects of Extraordinary Design (the brown-paper bag)

Image

Monday's Visual Treat - Day 1/ Everyday Objects of Extraordinary Design (the lead pencil)

Image
Peeps,

The humble lead pencil can be used in many ways other than to which it was originally intended, such as: chopstick(s), garden stake, sundial, a measuring device, instrument of torture/hypnosis/pleasure/hygiene, a door stop, etc etc, but most importantly it is the primary writing instrument or art medium in the world, and its surprisingly simple construction is a narrow, solid pigment (usually graphite or charcoal or crayon) core inside  a protective casing (usually wood). Invented sometime around 1550 in Cumbria, England.  The design of the lead pencil (called lead, however it is graphite) has remained virtually unchanged, other than the addition of a eraser at the end in 1858 by Hymen Lipman.
As children, we all learned our alphabet by copying, memorizing, recognizing the sounds that corresponded to symbols that when compounded in a string of two, three, or four clumsily drawn markings meant objects that we had already encountered in our limited, cosseted existence; quickly we r…