As many of you will already know, outdoor advertising was banned in the city of Sao Paulo, Brazil in 1997. It was a very revolutionary bid to reclaim the visual and mental environment of the city. However, after all the ad's were removed, many people began to complain that it had left the city as a very bland concrete landscape with obvious gaps where the billboards once stood but now the blank canvas is allowing creativity to flourish. And now for the first time, São Paulo has approved a permanent outdoor art exhibition. The project, dubbed RojoOut, is bringing the city to life with colorful installations in 11 locations.
Friday, 2 October 2009
Last April in New York dozens of New York artists and activists battled the clutter of consumerism in a guerrilla-style billboard takeover. Mobilized by Jordan Seiler and the Public Ad Campaign, the 24-hour direct action replaced nearly 19,000 square feet of illegal advertising with original, anti-corporate street art. They were removing/changing billboards and posters that according to Seiler were not properly licensed and were violating bylaws that had been on the City's books since the 1940s. I find this very inspirational as I feel it's very important to regulate the use of advertising by corporations and I think that designers need to take more responsability of what they produce, too many graphic designers are willing to work for sole destroying companies that are lying to the consumers about how great they are.
Thursday, 1 October 2009
'We are a global network of culture jammers and creatives working to change the way information flows, the corporations wield power, and the way meaning is produced in our society.'
The Adbusters are essentially an anti establishment group who's aims are to challenge mainstream media and the information they give us. They produce a magazine every two months, are involved in many other events such as 'Buy Nothing Day' and have produced some great one off pieces of art and design such as the corporate flag. They tackle issues that I want to pursue when considering my independent project and dissertation when regarding the responsibility of advertisers and designers.
I've always been a fan of the Stussy Clothing company and brand, and their new site has given me a reason to blog it on here. The site is a collection of inspirational blogs from all the different stores across the US and Canada. I really like the way that the website is far more devoted to delivering an incite into what ticks over in their heads rather than trying to sell you a product. I think it's a very successful tool in trying to generate greater brand loyalty and awareness.
I was first made aware of Keith Haring when studying for A level art and instantly respected and enjoyed the work he produced. Born in Reading, Pennslyvania and raised in nearby Kutztown he developed an interest in drawing at a young age, learning to draw cartoons from his father and other popular culture that surrounded him. He enrolled in Ivy School of Professional Art in Pittsburgh but dropped out after realizing that becoming a commercial graphic artists was not what he wanted to do. He later moved to New York and enrolled in the School of Visual Arts, in New York he was exposed to a thriving art culture outside gallery space, art that was popping up in downtown streets, subways and spaces in Clubs. Haring instantly got involved in the scene organizing exhibitions at the Club 57 and other venues.
Between 1980-85 Haring produced 100s of drawings on the New York subway and his work became very familiar to commuters and tourists alike. Haring's work was devoted to spreading messages, most notably regarding aids, which he himself was diagnosed in '88 and died from in '90. I find his work very influential for various different reasons, firstly I love the illustrative style he used, bold line and colour. Secondly his dedication to deliver a message and the alternative way he went about doing so.
Monday, 28 September 2009
This iconic London landmark is one of my favourite pieces of arhictecture in the city and I would not like to see it torn down in redevelopment plans the site. It was designed by Giles Gilbert Scott and built between 1929-1935 and has become a grade 2 listed building. It was last used to generate electricity in 1983 and what to do with it next has been questioned for many years. It owes some of it's celebrated status to various cultural appearances such as the album art for Pink Floyds 1977 ablum Animals. Over the summer I worked at an event that was trying to promote the site as a future hub of trade in the south west of London. After hearing many proposed ideas for the site (theme park, giant retail park, flats etc ) their ideas seemed far more comprised in keeping the building as the main focul point and turning it in to the first zero carbon office space in London. It has recently been added to the Buildings at Risk Register by English Heritage so I would love to see something done soon to save it from destruction.
An unconvential storey of romance written by Quentin Tarentino and directed by Tony Scott. It's a fast moving film that takes an alternative route of the american dream. It's billed as a love storey but revolves around drugs and crime. I was very pleasently suprised with a film that I thought would be a far more wishy washy love storey. It's filled with a star studded cast with fantastic performances from Christain Slater and Patricia Arquette. My favourite scene is when Vincent Coccotti (Christopher Walken) is talking to Clarence's father in order to gain information on Clarences where abouts, the father already knows his fate so produces a very memorable performance of his last words. It is thought of as a breakthrough of sorts for Tarentino and was his first screenplay for a major film. It is thought that he wanted to direct the film but sold the script in order to work on Reservoir Dogs.
Saturday, 26 September 2009
After seeing a few posts on others blogs referring to faded advertising I noticed this on Kennington Road, South London and thought I'd share it. Quite interesting to see how much times have changed and whether we may be looking back on add's from this time about certain products that just seem like blatent lies.
Friday, 18 September 2009
This is the first ever book to be produced on Londons subculture of Graffiti. For me it is a sensational book, documenting the works and speaking to some of the graffiti artists that definately inspired me to want to pursue art and design from a young age. I have always been fascinated by graffiti and I'm sure that I always will be. It always brings me a little joy to know that someone has dedicated their time to do something that they have always been told the cannot do. People who tell you that you can't do things are not always write and graffiti is a perfect example of that. Many of the graffiti artists I have met have told me that without it they would have lived a very routine lifestyle and graffiti gives them something to escape it. Many graffiti artists featured in this book are now celebrated artists so it has given them a route into that culture. This book is far more inspirational to me as it shows graffiti from where I have grown up and documents many pieces that I remember being amazed by. Many people will claim it's not art but I think if you where to read this book you may have your head turned. It contains some great photography from Will Robson-Scott, who has produced portraits of many of the featured artists, and 'Elk and Teach' who's personal collection could rival that of any professional. I was quite suprised to see it on sale at the Design Museum.
A great french film released in 1995 and one of my personal favourites. Shot in black and white to bring out the underworld of Paris that is definately not on any tourist maps. For 24 hours It follows three young men, Vinz, Hubert and Said who are trapped in this world of economic, ethnic and social underclass. Their friend Abdel has been hospitalised by injuries sustained from a police officer during riots, during these same riots a policeman lost his gun, the gun happens to find its way to Vinz, who craving some purpose vows that if Abdel dies in hospital then he will shot and kill a policeman to avenge him. They seem to spend their lives going round and round and getting no where. There are various storeys told to them throughout the film which reflect their own situation, something I did not pick up first time I watched the film. This gives something extra as I like being able to rewatch a film and pick up on things that may have not been so clear until you have seen the ending. It was premiered at the 1995 Cannes Film Festival to a sensational response, Matthiue Kassovitz was rewarded with the Best Director prize.
Wednesday, 16 September 2009
Tuesday, 15 September 2009
I've spent a couple of nights in this club in Prague and it is one of the most fascinating buildings I have ever been to. Decorated with scrap metal and other random miscellanious objects including windscreen wipers, table football tables and traffic lights it has created something special out of rubbish. I find this to be inspirational as creating something so incredible out of other peoples leftovers.
Got a copy of this book and find it full of useful inspiration. It reflects upon the elements of design and attention to detail that can shape entire projects. It highlights the importance of getting the finer details to fall in place perfectly, getting these things write can make work come alive, getting them wrong can turn work into a failure. It's the sort of things that we may spend days stressing about until it looks perfect so it's nice to a book focused on these details. It's also full of useful resources that can be influential when considering future briefs.
Recently went to this exhibition at the design museum and was very impressed. I found it very inspiring as it looks at the influences of which contemporary design in london has grown out of. It highlights the designs, people and events that shape our perception of contemporary design in London in a chronological order from 1960-2009. It reflects Londons diversity, tracking the development of the decades exploring the intersections between art, design, architecture and fashion. Some of which I was very intrigued by, things that I would myself not have conceived to be influences in the creative world but when it's presented in this way you can clearly see why it has been included. I find it very interesting to see how social and politcal change has had so much influence in shaping contemporary design across all the different disciplines, this is something I would like to pursue further when studying for my dissertation. It also shows 15 commissions by designers from different diciplines, with the brief being to give something back to London. One of them, I think by Neville Brody, is a very parranoid response to the use of cctv and other surviellence in the city which I found very interesting as I have tried to create work which generates a similar response in the past and I'm a strong believer in the reduction of the voyeurism by the authorities in London and elsewhere.
Wednesday, 9 September 2009
This is a great piece of information design. It reads similar to that of music notation. The 3 samples on the left highlight when they are being used, the dots refer to the movement of the cross fader, and the lines to the way the vinyl has been used.
Tom Wrigglesworth and Matt Robinson, two recent design graduates from Kingston University produced this video called 'HP Invent' for the D&AD awards brief set by Hewlett Packard. 'Present an idea that promotes HP worksations ability to bring to life anything the creative mind can conceive.' Their video earned them 2nd place and a yellow pencil. For some reason 1/3 of it is cut off on the right hand side of this video so double click to watch it in full screen.
Tuesday, 8 September 2009
I walked past this school recently and was intrigued by why this sort of building was there and what was it for as it's located in a residential area so sticks out like sore thumb. When finding out it was a primary school I couldn't help but think why such a design had been chosen. I can see that an exciting looking building will appeal to the children but think that surely this will look dated in a number of years and will be looked at as a waste of money. I actually quite like the new buildings but think it's very impractical. Surely they should have opted for a more classic style of architecture that fits in with it's surroundings and is very unlikely to be thought of as dated in the not so distant future. I get the impression that the architect is trying to make a statement about his or hers style and skill but think that it is the wrong place to do so. In a different setting the building could look very aesthetically pleasing but in this one it looks almost ridiculous.
"Walking In My Mind is an expedition into the mysterious mental processes of creativity; about what goes on inside the artist's head."
The exhibition looks at ten contemporary artist's who have investigated the nature of perception and ways of thinking. They have all produced a 'Mindscape' for themselves. It is very interesting to see how they perceive their own thought process through the work produced which ranges from drawing, painting, video, sculpture and installation. Each of the Mindscape's are very different though there are overlapping themes throughout the exhibition that form conceptual bridges between very dissimilar works. It made me think of how I would try to document and portray my own 'Mindscape' and how I think the creative process occurs for me. How structured or random it may be and how relevant or irrelevant aspects of it may be.
The exhibition was on at the Hayward Gallery, South Bank, London until the 6th Sept.
I have included some images but photography was not allowed so only managed to sneak a few pictures.
Sunday, 6 September 2009
First discovered this stop frame about 18 months ago. What impresses me most is the dedication he has put in to complete this. You can see how many days it has taken as the light constantly changes in the background as well as that it's probably illegal as its just been painted outside on the streets and would have left behind so much white paint!
Friday, 4 September 2009
"Laugh and the world laughs with you. Weep and you weep alone."
Old Boy is a 2003 South Korean film directed by Park Chan-Wook based loosely on a Japenese manga of the same name. The film is all about vengence and it is a interesting depiction of human nature and the depths that we can go to to seek vengence. The dark depths of vengence are something that would not ever really be seen in a western film. This is an interesting incite into the differences of story telling in different cultures across the world. The ending is deliberately ambiguous in order to generate discussion and allow each viewer to interpret in their own way. It has been hailed as one of the greatest asian films of all time. I find it as a source of inspiration as it challenged the way I think about human nature. The fantastic cinematography adds a lot to the film as well. My favourite scene being when Oh Dae-Su eats a live octapus (apparently he had to do this 3 times until the director was happy with the take!) I would strongly recommend this film to anyone who has not seen it.
Thursday, 3 September 2009
Originally created by Vaughan Bode and now continued by his son Mark, the Bode cartoon has generated somewhat of a cult following, I have always been interested in the cartoons and spent a lot of time copying the cartoon and creating my own. It was one inspiration of mine to want to learn to draw cartoons. It has since been used by brands such as Puma, Ecko, A Bathing Ape and many others including artwork for the Beastie Boys.