August 11, 2010

1LOVE: Brooklyn

Not sure why there’s so much Williamsburg because he lives in Fort Greene…

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August 9, 2010

Images

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1280248828-london-office-concrete-1-via-archdaily

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Campbell-Soup-Warhol-Letter

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July 31, 2010

Continued

raf-simons-the-influencer-via-hypebeast

  • Nice interview with Raf Simons (WWD via HB)
  • Lengthy inverview with David Andrew Sitek (BV)
  • Awesome interview with Bill Murray (GQ)
  • Telling interview with Penn & Teller (Telegraph)
  • Decent interview with Ari Marcopoulos (Dossier)
  • Hip interview with Pedro Winter (Busy P of Ed Banger) (OC)
  • Strange interview with Spike Lee (Gothamist)
  • Passable interview with Rafael de Cardenas (S×H)
  • Brief interview with Tara McPherson (PSFK)

China:

20100715_LivingRooms_China-slide-YE61-slide-via-nyt

  • Urban China, ever the work in progress (NYT)
  • China’s Banks: Great Wall Street (The Economist)
  • Bad PR for the nouveau riche in the PRC (WSJ via Gawker)
  • The other oil spill (NYT / Salon)
  • A green movement grows in China (The Economist)
  • The Economist also draws an ophidian metaphor for China’s growth / lack thereof.

Music:

Media & Technology:

terrafugia_fly_away-via-psfk

Food:

Mark-Bittman-101-Grilling-Recipes-the-Minimalist-on-NYT

NYC:

high-line-phase-2-via-curbed

Random:

messi-by-morning-breath-via-turntable-lab

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July 21, 2010

The Fabled Chinese Hipster – Parts 2.1-2.3

See also: Part 1, One Point Five and 2: Reprise.

PBR: three letters that spell the beginning of the End for Eastern Civilization.

pabst-blue-ribbon-landai-beer

However, as with just about every Chinese variant, the adjective ‘bizarro’ prevails: Evan Osnos of the New Yorker applauds Danwei‘s eye for PBR’s PRC rebranding as Blue Ribbon 1844 (蓝带啤酒), a premium craft beer.

That reliably blue-collar Milwaukee lager, later adopted by unbearable hipsters on the coasts, has turned up in China. And P.B.R., best known in the U.S. for being the cheapest beer on the grocery-store shelf, has—like so many expatriates before it—taken the move as an opportunity to change its image. For a beer, that appears to involve an elegant glass bottle and a fantastically ridiculous price tag. One bottle: forty-four dollars.

–Evan Osnos, Pardon Me, Would You Have Any Pabst Blue Ribbon
Letter from China blog on The New Yorker, July 19 2010

Osnos, ever duly diligent, also includes this link to PBR [advertising] through the ages. In fact, the story is so fascinating that he has just posted a follow-up post with a few choice quotes from PBR / BR1844 Brewmaster / Chief Representative – Asia Alan Kornhauser. Short of outright plagiarism, the relevant excerpt is reproduced below:

I formulated a special high-gravity ale called “1844.” It’s all malt, and we use caramel malts from Germany. The initial aging is dry-hopped rather heavily. Then we do a secondary aging in new uncharred American oak whiskey barrels. We bought 750 brand new barrels to the tune of $100,000. This is a very special beer; it’s retailing for about over $40 U.S. for a 720 ml bottle.

–Interview with Alan Kornhauser, All About Beer, July 2010

Indeed, Osnos’ colleague (New Yorker Beer Correspondent) Jesse Rodriguez notes that:

Traditional P.B.R. is light and fizzy with a distinct cloying malt profile, while the B.R. 1884 [sic] has a rounder mouthfeel with a notable hop presence on the front palate and finish. Is it worth the money? Probably not, but it’s definitely not a P.B.R.

–Jesse Rodriguez in Pabst in China, Continued,
Letter from China blog on The New Yorker, July 21 2010

pabst-blue-ribbon-1844-via-danwei

The interview continues with a few more telling tidbits:

There’s an audience there for it?

There’s the nouveau riche, and in China, perception is everything—look at me, I’m rich. Then also, there is another group that may be part of our market, and that’s state banquet dinners. Normally, you’d drink brandy, and this beer kind of has the look of brandy—it’s a reddish-brown color, but it won’t hurt you as much.

The beer combines a new flavor and a Western status symbol. Apart from the prestige, how are you selling these new tastes?

It’s new on the market, so I’m not sure exactly how it’s going—I have very little to do with the sales side. There is a TV commercial that’s quite attractive, that uses old still photos of the early days of Pabst, back when they used wooden barrels there.

What’s Pabst’s story in China?

We were the first foreign brewery in China, since the liberation in 1949—as it’s called there. We’re doing about one and a half million barrels there. Our first brews were, I believe, 1993; I didn’t get there until 1998. At that time, the largest-selling foreign brand in China was Pabst Blue Ribbon.

Read all about it

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Possibly more related than one might think: the hipster fashion cycle.

hipster-fashion-cycle-infographic-via-flavorwire

I would hypothesize that Chinese fashion fundamentally differs from Western trends (to which the infographic applies) at the mainstream and conservative stages, where the former tends to correlate with (said) nouveau riche and the latter is either mainstream in the Western sense or more traditional Chinese. Nostalgia, then, would be informed by Western trickle-down imagery, while the ironic stage is virtually non-existent.

Though there are examples of ironic style on display in China—Mao’s face, red stars, military regalia are today worn with something less than earnestness—there is also more at stake in young people’s fashion choices.

–J. David Goodman, Are There Really No Hipsters in China?, Slate, April 21 2010

Flavorwire via PSFK

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chinese-dorm-via-newsweek

Why the FCH is still a rare breed: Smart, Young and Broke; insert bad pun about higher education not necessarily being hire education. (Thanks Eugene; cf.)

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June 10, 2010

Obligatory World Cup Post

*If you can’t tell, the images are mostly unrelated to the text

Ridiculously amazing photos of WC2010 buildup on Boston.com's Big Pciture

Ridiculously amazing photos of WC2010 buildup on Boston.com's Big Picture

2010-fifa-world-cup-trophy-case-louis-vuitton-via-hypebeast

  • Slate has the scoop on the secret history of American soccer in the first quarter of the last century (i.e.,the Roaring Twenties), featuring the Boston Wonder Workers, the Brooklyn Wanderers, and, of course, the infamous Fall River Marksmen.

arc-rivington-club-x-umbro

I hope I encounter this in real life at some point in the next month...

I hope I encounter this in real life at some point in the next month...

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May 26, 2010

Assorted Links

UPDATED, one last time before midnight.

Os Gemeos & Blu (Works in Progress) in Lisbon

Os Gemeos & Blu (Works in Progress) in Lisbon

Street art’s symbiotic relationship with the Web makes you wonder whether the genre’s broad popularity stems from the fact that its characteristic features—swift execution, quicksilver response to pop culture and politics, the dominance of quotation and commentary, snarky attitude, fragmented statements embedded in the world rather than meant to stand apart from it—actually reflect the way that plugged-in people process information, more so than “traditional” art. There is something particularly contemporary about street art’s whole M.O., in this sense.

–Ben Davis, Is Street Art Over?, Slate, May 26 2010 (Highly recommended)

Fresh Stuff from Ron English in Queens

Fresh Stuff from Ron English in Queens

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Two perspectives on Marina:

She and MoMA have brought some magic back into art—the sort of magic that all of our courses in art history and appreciation had encouraged us to hope for.

–Arthur C. Danto, Sitting with Marina, The Stone blog on NYT, May 23 2010

There are euphoric moments and then intensely sad feelings of heaviness. Whatever you’re feeling becomes intensified. Certain truths about things I need to fix in my life are revealed to me. Marina says that in her own life she’s not so disciplined—that the performance gives her structure.

–Deborah Wing-Sproul, The Performer Made Bare, NYMag, May 23 2010

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prokhorov-bloomberg-jayz-via-espn

[As Prokhorov] explained to “60 Minutes,” “I don’t use a computer. We have too much information and it’s really impossible to filter it.”

You know what? He’s not necessarily wrong. Do we REALLY need all this information? Like, right now—you’re reading this column and hopefully enjoying it, but ultimately, could you have survived the weekend if you missed it? I say yes. Just about everything online fits that mold—you have to sift through loads of bad writing and irrelevant information to find the occasional entertaining/funny/interesting thing, and even then, it’s not something that’s making or breaking your week. Ever been on a vacation and had little-to-no Internet access that week? You survived, right? Maybe the big Russian is on to something.

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Candy-Darling-by-Peter-Hujar-via-huffpo

Candy reminds us of the postmodern notion of self-creation—the way we don social signifiers with the same ease as clothing, constructing our selves bit by bit from cultural cues and images. Rather than the solid frameworks we cast them as, our selves are more like sweaters we put on and take off. When it comes to social identity, we’re all a wee bit in drag.

–Caroline Hagood, New Documentary Tries to Solve the Riddle of Andy Warhol’s Candy Darling,
The Huffington Post, May 21 2010

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Was2651110

The problem of negative externalities [refers to] costs that accrue when the self-interested actions of one person leave bystanders worse off. The biggest example of a negative externality is global warming: When we burn carbon-based fuels, we benefit ourselves while imposing a great cost on billions of other present and future inhabitants of the planet.

–Felix Salmon, The Man Who Could Unsnarl Manhattan Traffic, Wired, May 24 2010

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j-bennett-fitts-land-of-ahs-via-good

GOOD Picture Show has a gallery of J. Bennett Fitts' incredible photos of Middle America

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May 24, 2010

End of an Era

“Let’s go to another commercial.” –PC (1:45)

Apple’s iconic “Get a Mac” ad campaign is no more: Jobs & Co. have pulled the plug on the cheeky TV spots that pitted stuffy-button-down-middle-aged-guy John Hodgman against relatable-young-hip-dude Justin Long (human representations of PC and Mac, respectively).

Here’s a montage of some memorable moments between the two titans of technology:

via Mashable

It’s an easy metaphor for the shift from the PC vs. Mac decade to a full-fledged, multi-platform war between Apple and everyone from Google to Adobe to Amazon—not to mention Microsoft ever-looming in the background—though it’s far to early to tell who will be the next Hodgman.

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May 21, 2010

Nike – "Write the Future"

Amazing:

Full press release at Slam×Hype; metacommentary (re: Facebook) on the TimesMedia Decoder

Nike has also opened two pop-up spaces in NYC, which are just around the corner from each other in Nolita (click on images for more details):

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nike-bowery-stadium-1

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May 3, 2010

Will Oldham × Robot (=Dogfish Head)

“That is an impressive thought pattern for a human.”Sam Calagione Robot

Will Oldham plays a human being opposite a robot brewmaster—more Conchords than Daft Punk—in this chuckle-worthy 11-minute promotional video for Dogfish Head Brewery’s “glee-increasing product.”

Sample interaction:

Robot: Knock knock.
Jonathan Smart: Who’s there?
Robot: A robot… Oh shit.

Robot Brewery Tour, (5:45)

Not-really-a-spoiler-at-all: brewmaster Sam Calagione plays the robot, who nonchalantly skims over profound issues such as whether it is possible for robots to believe in anything (2:09).

The Awl via the Daily Swarm

While the Delaware-based craft brewery doesn’t spend any money on advertising, this marks their first foray into digital/viral territory: as per Burkhard Bilger’s brilliant 10,000-word, borderline-hagiographical 2008 profile of the ever-charismatic Calagione for the New Yorker: “He designs many of Dogfish’s labels and cites Andy Warhol and Coco Chanel as inspirations—’that fusion of commercialism and art.’” Truly fascinating stuff.

Also: Calagione in his own words (Inc., July 2009)

Related: “The more intelligent, who scored high on a vocabulary test, would drink more than the dumb…” –Razib Khan, People of Class Drink Alcohol, Discover Magazine, May 2 2010

Coincidentally, I’m looking forward to enjoying Dogfish Head’s Red & White, which I picked up at Brooklyn Beer & Soda yesterday.

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April 29, 2010

Images: Super Deluxx Edition

Henri Cartier-Bresson's portrait of Sartre is currently on view in his retrospective at MoMA

Henri Cartier-Bresson's portrait of Sartre is currently on view in his retrospective at MoMA

As with his entire body of work, Sartre’s theory of imagination refers to—and, naturally, affirms—his ontology, in which he explores Husserl’s tenet that “all consciousness is consciousness of something” in the context of the ‘detotalized totality’ of being-in-itself / being-for-itself dualism. Sartre postulates an admittedly underdeveloped notion of image consciousness in his early work The Imaginary (1940), though these writings are largely eclipsed by his later political [viz. Marxist] proclivities; nevertheless, his theory of imagination is a sufficient foundation of a phenomenological aesthetics.

Notably, Sartre implies that the imaginary (or ‘irreal’) has the same ontological import as the real: if the real is never beautiful, it is simply because beauty is, by definition, imaginary, where imagination is a permanent possibility of consciousness. A painting, photograph, film, song, performance, etc., necessarily transcends perception—i.e. consciousness of oil on canvas, ink on paper, a projection, an actor, etc.—as an object of image consciousness, which overflows with the meaning of the portrait (etc.): a particular arrangement of brushstrokes or sounds immediately presents itself to consciousness as an image or melody. The abstract, then, is that which escapes us in experience qua perception; colors transcend pigment to conjure mood or geometry.

Hence, Images (in no particular order):

Liu-Bolin-via-artcat

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Faile-Bast-Deluxx-Fluxx-NYC-via-TBWE

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maya-lin-what-is-missing-video-still-via-designboom

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http://kitsunenoir.com/blogimages/mwm-crystals-lasers-1.jpg

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http://theworldsbestever.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2010/04/Whistlers-father.jpg

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shepard-fairey-mural-houston-bowery-deitch-via-arrested-motion

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http://www.archdaily.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/04/1271684823-0032686-488.jpg

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http://www.hypebeast.com/image/2010/04/dqm-2010-spring-lookbook-15.jpg

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