Tuesday, July 29, 2008



Monday, July 28, 2008

i had never looked it up before

I just always accepted my dad's account. His account is different from the one in the book, though, as reported by the Flint Journal. My dad's story vilified the man, whom he called a pimp. The Journal's story vilifies the women.

I found this by searching their names, and the results came up in a book entitled "Headless Man in Topless Bar".

Sunday, July 13, 2008

think about this phrase: "follow suit"

Makes me think of my racist grandpa (RIP) and his perfectly manicured hands.

I wrote this today:
I spent my first few years as a conscious being in a two bedroom apartment just east of Flint, MI with my baby brother, teenage sister, and single mom. My memories of the cramped apartment are varied, but the most positive all involve music. Our most valuable possession was a modern stereo; a record player, dual cassette tape deck, and radio. Next to it sat my mother's record collection and tape case. Music was one of the few things my mother would allow herself. It was not unusual to fall asleep to music at my house and even less unusual to wake up to it. The sounds that I heard must have thoroughly saturated my subconscious, for much of what my mother and sister were playing is responsible for my interests today.

In 1968 Black Sabbath created a sound so unlike previous rock 'n' roll that an entirely new description had to be coined, and thus heavy metal was born. Their lead was taken up by countless other bands throughout the world and the genre was quickly subdivided. We were listening to it all. My mom stayed true to the grandfathers of the sound, while my sister and her friends were buying the latest speed and thrash metal. The next female in line, I followed suit.

At the age of six, I began developing my musical taste, filtered through the matriarchs of the house. But quickly discovered what I preferred and what I didn’t — metal wasn’t the only music on rotation at our house, but it is what I most gravitate toward. It created my first awareness of culture and later helped shape my political views. My involvement with the sub-culture never waned and I became increasingly interested in the local scenes that were influenced by the music I grew up with. I became a consumer and scholar, which lead me to discover the tremendous influence that Swedish musicians have had on metal. D-beat, which was pioneered and popularized in part by Swedish bands, influenced my sister’s favorite bands. Those bands influenced other acts stateside, particularly in my home state. One of the earliest death metal bands was created in Flint, and they in-turn influenced death metal in Scandinavia. This exchange of ideas and styles continues today.

While studying art history and graphic design at the University of Michigan, I focused any self-guided studies on this sub-culture and found myself pursuing its histories as much as art’s histories. In graduate school at the Cranbrook Academy of Art, my practice has expanded to include assemblage from found materials, which utilize environmentally-sound underpinnings without overt mention. The goal is to change the questions in order to create alternate solutions. In this way, my practice mimics what countless musicians have done, specifically within this genre. We use what is at our disposal, what we are attracted to, and repurpose it for our needs, creating another category of work.

I believe there is a unique perspective within this section of society that is often overlooked. We tend to be loyal consumers, of both traditional and contemporary forms, avid collectors of media and message. There are few passive fans in our midst; most are engaged in the quality of the musicianship, are curious in the history as a means for new discovery, or are active in the recording of provenance. We tend to be very well networked. Maybe most importantly, we tend to question authority, therefore stimulating a true democracy. I see this as fertile territory which deserves more academic recording. I see the path to that scholarly awareness through visual art.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

did you know?

Are there tuition fees at Swedish universities and university colleges?

With rare exceptions, all tuition fees in higher education in Sweden are subsidized by the government. This applies to foreign as well as Swedish students. Higher education is fully financed by the state, a system common to many European countries. You will still have to cover living expenses and pay student union fees, though.

I could learn a lot there.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

you brought some joy inside my tears

The history of the teaching of human female inferiority in Darwinism


The Christian teaching of the equality of the sexes before God (Gal. 3:28), and the lack of support for the female biological inferiority position, is in considerable contrast to the conclusions derived by evolutionary biology in the middle and late 1800s. In my judgment, the history of these teachings is a clear illustration of the negative impact of social Darwinism.

Well Well WEllWELL wWELL well well well wellwellwellwellwellwellwell

you know when you've examined a word for too long and it becomes a very abstract piece? i did that with "saddles" today, too.

a few other quotes,

"Are you aware that you are, perhaps, the most discussed animal in the universe?"

"Making a fortune and bearing thirteen children—no human being could stand it."

"...that five hundred a year stands for the power to contemplate, that lock on the door means the power to think for oneself."

"Life for both sexes—and I looked at them, shouldering their way along the pavement—is arduous, difficult, a perpetual struggle. It calls for gigantic courage and strength. More than anything, perhaps, creatures of illusion as we are, it calls for confidence in oneself."

Monday, July 7, 2008

thinking with type

I just started and finished Ellen Lupton's Thinking with Type (2004). After an afternoon wasted on waiting for the ups man (we pronounced this "ups" like the opposite of "downs" at my house) to deliver my Goldenburg's *ahem* "Chew-ets" peanut chews,
I decided to do something more productive with my evening.

First, we come to understand that the title was influenced by James Craig's Designing with Type, a publication I am fondly familiar with. It was in my spring term at U of M that I was actually taught something at the SoAD, and that text was the main source.

Lupton's book came to me much later in life, last summer for my wedding shower. [My friends understand that this is the type (no pun intented!) of shit I would really appreciate, rather than nighties and lotions]. Tonight, I finally decided to read and think critically about it, than just thumb through. If one can get over the frequent mention of Abbott, all things Baltimore, and MICA, and focus instead on the other useful examples, it proves to be a pretty good skim of topics that I am finally more interested in dealing with.

Aside from the brief mentions of Barthes and Derrida, there isn't too much focus on theory, more on practical applications, which is fine for a beginner. I'm not claiming to be an expert, so brushing up was helpful. And made for a quick read.

There is certainly an agenda being pushed, one of acceptance of a Tschicholdian "programmatic thinking" which is being "revived...as designers today confront large-scale information projects. The need is greater than ever for flexible 'programs' accommodating dynamic bodies of content."

She elaborates further:
Universal design systems can no longer be dismissed as the irrelevant musings of a small, localized design community [Switzerland]. A second modernism has emerged, reinvigorating the utopian search for universal forms that marked the birth of design as a discourse and a discipline nearly a century earlier. Against the opacity and singularity of unique visual expressions—grounded in regional preferences and private obsessions—ideas of commonality, transparency, and openness are being reborn as information seeks to shed its physical body.
This quote come directly after probably the most interesting part of the book, a discussion of the web as a grid in infinite space, "defying edges and dominated by mind rather than body—is a powerful instrument within modernist theory, where it is a form both rational and sublime."

This discussion which seems to be pushing past post-modernism into vast, lush territory, is cut short, and the reader is left hanging out in this expanse of grided subliminality. (No, those aren't real words.) So I am still kind of floating out there. In 2004.

What I got personally from this book are the following:
+ polyglot, esp. with regards to language for the blind and language for the forgotten.
+ Dave Eggers has his hand in just about everything.
+ Richard Eckersley - I couldn't remember his name!
+ "That a speech supposedly alive can lend itself to spacing in its own writing is what relates it to its own death" - JD, 1976

oh yeah, and here is a link to her poster up now at the Wolfsonian