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28 May 15:18

Conrad Jon Godly’s Abstract Mountains Drip from the Canvas

by Christopher Jobson

Conrad Jon Godlys Abstract Mountains Drip from the Canvas painting mountains landscapes abstract
sol H, 2012, 35×35 cm

Conrad Jon Godlys Abstract Mountains Drip from the Canvas painting mountains landscapes abstract
sol H, detail

Conrad Jon Godlys Abstract Mountains Drip from the Canvas painting mountains landscapes abstract
sol 13, 2013, 35×28 cm

Conrad Jon Godlys Abstract Mountains Drip from the Canvas painting mountains landscapes abstract
sol 16, 2013, 75×60 cm

Conrad Jon Godlys Abstract Mountains Drip from the Canvas painting mountains landscapes abstract
sol 43, 2013, 85×70 cm

Conrad Jon Godlys Abstract Mountains Drip from the Canvas painting mountains landscapes abstract
sol 56, 2013, 47×40 cm

Conrad Jon Godlys Abstract Mountains Drip from the Canvas painting mountains landscapes abstract
sol 15, 2013, 67×50 cm

Conrad Jon Godlys Abstract Mountains Drip from the Canvas painting mountains landscapes abstract
tony wuethrich satellite, zürich

When looking at Swiss painter Conrad Jon Godly’s mountainous paintings, it takes a moment to truly appreciate the incredible skill behind what seems to be such an effortless application of paint. Up close the landscapes appear to be a thick, almost random mix of blue, white and black, the result oils mixed with turpentine to create a thick impasto that Godly often leaves dripping from the canvas. Take a few steps back (or just squint your eyes a bit) and miraculously you might as well be looking at a photograph of the Swiss Alps. It’s a visual trick that the artist has perfected in both small and large-scale paintings over the last few years.

Godly studied as a painter at the Basel School of Art from 1982 until 1986, but then worked as a professional photographer for 18 years. He only returned to painting in 2007 and it would seem his photographic work has had a subtle influence on his abstract painting. The artist most recently had exhibitions at Gallery Luciano Fasciati and Tony Wuethrich Gallery in Switzerland, and you can see many more paintings on his website. (via OEN, A Wash of Black)

15 Apr 00:10

WHAT EVEN IS A WALKMAN?

by Hayley Gleeson

Oh the 80s: a decade of E.T. the Extra Terrestrial, scrunchies, Kylie Minogue, and cassette mixtapes.

Of course, you couldn’t be super-cool and listen to your cassette mix without a Walkman, a brick-like tape player first manufactured by electronics brand, Sony, in the late 70s. (To make things more confusing, Sony still markets some of its modern mp3 players as ‘Walkmans’, though there will only ever be one Walkman.)

For anyone born later than 2000 (and for nostalgia’s sake), this is what a Walkman looks like:

walkman

So it makes complete sense, then, that the iPhone-reared kids of today have absolutely no-fucking-clue what on earth they might do with one.

Is it a walkie talkie? Do you speak into it? Is it a boom box?

Watch as this group of youngsters (half of whom don’t even know what a cassette is) are introduced to a Walkman for the very first time.

The post WHAT EVEN IS A WALKMAN? appeared first on BIRDEE.

26 Mar 16:54

Men need to talk to men about violence against women.

by admin
A few weeks ago, I was at the School of Oriental and African Studies, where I was taking part in a panel discussion about what men and boys could do to promote women’s rights in Africa and its diaspora.  I felt privileged to be invited along, yet also somewhat nervous: privileged because I had been invited by a group of people whom I deeply respected, but nervous because, as men and boys, we are not doing nearly enough.   The discussion was very good, and good-humoured until the last – and the most memorable – question of all.  A woman rose to her feet and, perhaps observing that a slight air of self-congratulation seemed to have settled over our all-male panel, she asked us: “Where is your anger?”
She was referring to our apparent lack of fury about violence against women; a phenomenon described by Margaret Chan, the Secretary-General of the World Health Organisation, as “a global health problem of epidemic proportions”. Chan made her remarks upon the launch last June of a United Nations report into this issue, which found that “more than a third of women worldwide are affected by physical or sexual violence, many at the hands of an intimate partner”.
More than a third. This is an overwhelming proportion, and is therefore a statistic that, in my view, cannot be repeated enough. If we are to regard violence against women as a global health problem, then it should be regarded and reported upon with the same urgency as AIDS, malaria or tuberculosis. Nothing less will do.
Because, again: more than a third. The other day, I posted a link on Facebook about a woman who had been physically assaulted by a stranger in the street, and who following this brutal event was now raising many thousands of pounds for a rape crisis centre in Oxford. Over the next few hours, I was horrified to learn just how common an experience this was for my female friends. Other than the grim theme of spurned men responding with force, I noticed something else: that this conversation, along with most others like it over the years, was one that I was conducting almost entirely with women. And there aren’t statistics on this kind of thing, but I think there’s a missing piece in this puzzle, which is that men generally don’t seem to talk to other men about violence against women.
Why is this? Well, maybe because the issue itself is an uncomfortable one. But why is it uncomfortable? I partly suspect this is because it would involve acknowledging that the problem is in our midst: that the abusers may be among our friends, may be within our family. The thought that I may have been close to someone who has used force against a woman is almost too numbing to contemplate.
But such squeamishness is of no use to anyone. Worse than that, it is detrimental. Men who are physically abusive towards women are not magically demarcated from other men. They are among us: proud, jealous, domineering, possessive, they very often are us.
What, then, should we do?  Well, on a formal level, it would be great if we could study feminist theory in schools as carefully as we study the civil rights movement. This would remove feminism from the current intellectual ghetto which seems to suggest that it is only a subject that women should think or care about. That might help to lead to a world where casual sexism attracts as much distaste as casual racism.
Simply, and informally, it would also help if more of us were more willing to intervene wherever we see women being verbally harassed by other men as they go about their daily business. This is easier said than done: after all, the kind of man who is brazen enough to call a woman something filthy in the street is often capable of escalating things very swiftly, physically and dangerously against the fellow male who calls him out. Hell hath no fury like a man scorned.
Less dramatically, we as men can also talk more amongst ourselves about these issues: and, therefore, begin to pull up some of the roots of sexual entitlement that have led to violence on this scale. I believe that, with the aid of these discussions, we will one day find a cure for this epidemic.
11 Mar 18:47

Artist Sipho Mabona Successfully Folds Life-sized Origami Elephant from Single Sheet of Paper

by Christopher Jobson

Artist Sipho Mabona Successfully Folds Life sized Origami Elephant from Single Sheet of Paper sculpture paper origami elephants
Photo by Philipp Schmidli

Artist Sipho Mabona Successfully Folds Life sized Origami Elephant from Single Sheet of Paper sculpture paper origami elephants
Photo by Philipp Schmidli

Artist Sipho Mabona Successfully Folds Life sized Origami Elephant from Single Sheet of Paper sculpture paper origami elephants
Photo by Philipp Schmidli

Artist Sipho Mabona Successfully Folds Life sized Origami Elephant from Single Sheet of Paper sculpture paper origami elephants
Photo by Philipp Schmidli

Following a successful campaign on Indiegogo which raised nearly $26,000, artist Sipho Mabona followed through on his promise to fold a life-sized elephant from a single giant sheet of paper. The piece stands over 10 feet tall (3 meters) and took a team of nearly a dozen people over four weeks to fold. The final sculpture is on view at KKLB in Beromünster, Switzerland. Photos by Philipp Schmidli. (via My Modern Met)

07 Mar 13:21

When bare breasts are a problem

by Thomas WATKINS

femen1.jpg

Yesterday, we posted this picture but decided to censor the nipple to make sure we didn't violate any of Facebook's standards. But as several people commented under the picture, it is a strange paradox that it seems OK to show a photograph of violence against a woman, but not to let people see her chosen means of protest (toplessness.)


femen1.jpg

Photo of a man grabbing a Femen activist around the throat in front of Crimea's parliament, published on Facebook with the woman’s exposed breast masked in order to conform to Facebook’s nudity policy. Uncensored version below. (AFP Photo/Alexander Nemenov)


french-button.jpg Follow @AFPblogs Follow @thomaswatkins

By Thomas Watkins


PARIS, March 7, 2014 --- As one of AFP's community managers, I have to decide which of the 3,000 images the agency distributes daily to post on different social networks. One of the more frequent topics of pictures -- and conversations about whether we should post these on our social networks -- is the feminist activist network Femen, originally from Ukraine.

The group's signature style of direct action is to show up at rallies or places in the news and bare their breasts, which typically are adorned with very direct slogans. Their methods are outrageous by design. For instance, in December five women from the group gathered in front of the Ukrainian embassy in Paris and pretended to urinate on photographs of Ukraine's then-president, Viktor Yanukovych.

(AFP Photo/Thomas Samson)

(AFP Photo/Thomas Samson)

But the images generated from a Femen protest are often compelling and have real news value. And frequently, the photos capture male heavy-handedness as security forces or angry protesters confront the topless women.

A security guard tackles a Femen activist as she tried to stop the car of Tunisian Prime Minister from leaving the EU commission in Brussels. June 25, 2013 (AFP Photo/Georges Gobet)

A security guard tackles a Femen activist as she tried to stop the car of Tunisian Prime Minister from leaving the EU commission in Brussels. June 25, 2013 (AFP Photo/Georges Gobet)

Femen members are arrested in Berlin, June 7, 2013. (AFP Photo/Odd Andersen)

Femen members are arrested in Berlin, June 7, 2013. (AFP Photo/Odd Andersen)

One of our most important social media platforms is Facebook, which has some strict guidelines about what is and isn't appropriate to post. Their community standards include "limitations on the display of nudity." In the case of women's breasts, this basically means you can't show any nipples. Femen has its own Facebook page, but takes care to airbrush over any photographs of nipples.

We've run afoul of the rules once before, when Facebook pulled this image from our French site, presumably because of the nipples -- never mind the news value and strength of the photo itself.

CensureFB_m.jpg

Yesterday, we posted this picture but decided to censor the nipple to make sure we didn't violate any of Facebook's standards. But as several people commented under the picture, it is a strange paradox that it seems OK to show a photograph of violence against a woman, but not to let people see her chosen means of protest (toplessness.)

femen.jpg

The uncensored version.

"So it is OK to show women getting choked and beaten on FB as long as you don't show any nipple. Go figure," wrote one user.

Another blogged that the photo "reveals all that is wrong with Facebook’s nudity policy."

Michelle Gilbert, Facebook's director of communication in France, points out that the sheer volume of content shared on the platform each day makes it impossible to screen each item according to its news context, especially given different values across countries, regions and religions. 

"Facebook is a universal product. It’s a very difficult job and we put a lot of resources behind it to make sure the content is acceptable," she says. "We have to have guidelines and rules."

Fair enough. But it raises the question as to whether news organisations should be given a little more latitude to publish pictures where news value trumps any squeamishness about nudity.

10 Jul 21:33

His Last Piece Was Very Cerebral

by noreply@blogger.com (Terry Border)