Thursday, November 22, 2012
Wednesday, November 21, 2012
Anish Kapoor's Gangnam for Freedom
Gangnam for Freedom - Anish Kapoor and Friends
The British sculptor Anish Kapoor and a group of his human rights oriented friends have released a new video in partnership with Amnesty International and PEN International to bring attention to the ongoing persecution of artists and writers across the globe from China to Russia who have been harassed and imprisoned because of their work. Taking up where Ai Wei Wei's recent Gangnam Style video left off, Kapoor's own Gangnam Style romp combines symbols of imprisonment and torture with the names of many who have been persecuted in their artistic strivings for freedom. Please watch, visit the links, and find out what you can do to help shed light on this growing problem of censorship and oppression.
As an emigré from India to the United Kingdom, Anish Kapoor has often been concerned with the ideas of freedom and dislocation in his artwork. I have posted a few examples below that provide a brief glimpse into his artistic practice. For me, Anish Kapoor is one of the most important and visionary artists working today.
Dismemberment Site 1
Mild Steel Tube and Tensioned Fabric 2009
Gibbs Farm, Kaipara Harbour, New Zealand
photos courtesy Gibbs Farm
Stainless Steel 2004-2006
Millenium Park, Chicago, Illinois
Photos by Gregg Chadwick
|Anish Kapoor, Hole, 1988; sculpture; fiberglass and pigment, 84 in. x 84 in. x 102 in. (213.36 cm x 213.36 cm x 259.08 cm); Collection SFMOMA, Gift of Mrs. Milo Gates; © Anish Kapoor|
San Francisco Museum of Modern Art
Tuesday, November 20, 2012
Monday, November 19, 2012
Bruins In the House Sound Like Boom
Running back Johnathan Franklin of the UCLA Bruins scores a touchdown in the fourth quarter against USC
When the Bruins In the House It Sounds Like BOOM!
UCLA 38 - Southern Cal 28!
Monday, November 05, 2012
Bruce Springsteen, Jay Z, and President BarackObama in Columbus, Ohio Watch now!
Columbus is packing the Nationwide Arena to see
Bruce Springsteen, Jay Z, and President BarackObama!
Free live streaming by Ustream
|Bruce Springsteen and President Barack Obama Embrace|
in Madison, Wisconsin on November 5, 2012
Saturday, November 03, 2012
Yes We Will Vote for Obama on November 6, 2012
Watch this Inspiring Spot then Vote on November 6th!
Make Sure That You Have A Plan to Vote:
Are you ready to vote on Tuesday? http://vote.barackobama.com
Friday, November 02, 2012
Springsteen and The E Street Band Close Hurricane Sandy Benefit w/ Land of Hope and Dreams
NBC broadcast a fundraiser tonight to raise money for hurricane relief for the communities hit hardest by Hurricane Sandy. (If you are on the West Coast the event will be re-broadcast across NBC and its affiliated networks including MSNBC starting at 8pm.)
To donate, visit RedCross.org or iTunes.com/redcross; call 1-800-HELPNOW or 1-800-RED-CROSS; or text "REDCROSS" to 90999 to make a $10 donation.
The telethon, Hurricane Sandy: Coming Together, was hosted by newscaster Matt Lauer and included poignant performances by Staten Island's Christina Aguilera, New Jersey's Jon Bon Jovi, and Long Island's Billy Joel, as well as Steven Tyler with members of Aerosmith, and Sting.
Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band closed the event with a powerful rendition of Land and Hope and Dreams from his most recent album Wrecking Ball. Bruce dedicated the song: "We're gonna send this out to the people of NY and NJ, and to all those who put their lives on the line with their service this week. This is Land of Hope and Dreams." Then he and the band tore into a crisp five-and-a-half minute rock n' roll train ride across the desolated Jersey shore. A powerful performance that spoke more of rebuilding and moving on than it did of sadness and reflection.
If you have not read my piece on this song, which I wrote in March upon the album's release, I have re-posted it below:
Central Railroad of New Jersey Steam 4-6-2, Jersey City, New Jersey, February 06, 1954
Curtis Mayfield's People Get Ready was directly inspired by the Civil Rights March on Washington in August 1963 and Martin Luther King Jr.'s I Have A Dream speech which was given from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial at the event.
By using the metaphor of the train of salvation, Mayfield's inspiring song continues a tradition of American folk music that began with African American Spirituals referencing the Gospel Train and the Underground Railroad that was then continued by Woody Guthrie and Johnny Cash. As Juan Williams writes for NPR:
"The train that is coming in the song speaks to a chance for redemption -- the long-sought chance to rise above racism, to stand apart from despair and any desire for retaliation -- an end to the cycle of pain."
The amazing thing that speaks to the depth of Springsteen's inspiration is that we are only 30 seconds into the studio version of Land of Hope and Dreams and this much history has been evoked.
I suggest that you put on a pair of headphones and listen to the song with the music up loud because at this point the musical train thunders in with rumbling guitar, drums, mandolin and swirling keyboards. Every time I listen to this moment in Land of Hope and Dreams, I remember a photo of me as a little kid standing next to my grandpa Desch as he guides a Jersey Central steam engine down the tracks. It was in the 1960's, but the photo is in black and white tones that give the image a timeless quality that hovers somewhere between memory and dream.
Springsteen urges us onboard:
Rain, Steam, and Speed - The Great Western Railway
36"x48" oil on canvas 1844
National Gallery, London
And I'll stand by your side
I also think of my Dad's parents and the time we took a road trip deep into the South during the Civil Rights era. At a road stop somewhere along I95, in Georgia I think, my Grandma Chadwick saw me staring at a crude racist, epithet scrawled on a sign. She put her arm around me and said to me "Don't mind about those words. Those words aren't true. God loves everyone one of us - equally."
It was one of the first, and one of the best lessons about civil rights and equality that I have ever learned.
As Springsteen sings:
|Clarence Clemons and Bruce Springsteen|
from the Born to Run cover shoot
photo by Eric Meola
|Debris In Belmar, New Jersey After Hurrican Sandy Inscribed With Lyric From Bruce Springsteen's Song Sandy|
Photo Courtesy Backstreets Magazine