Inclusion, authenticity, and representation — what do these words mean to us as creatives, collaborators, and artistic subjects? How can today’s creatives draw on their personal experiences to produce insightful, commercially successful work while remaining true to themselves and their communities?
In a recent panel discussion at the Social Insiders event at Adobe MAX in Los Angeles, we brought a diverse group of creative thought leaders together to share their reactions to these questions. In an honest and unscripted conversation led by Adobe Stock Creative Director Sarah Fix-Casillas, we heard from Emma Chiu, global director of content intelligence for Wunderman Thompson; Natika Soward, content development manager for Adobe Stock Premium; and artists Bethany Mollenkof and Adam G. Perez, who are featured as part of the new exclusive VSCO collection on Adobe Stock.
This year, I had the immense privilege to be part of the whip-smart volunteer team that made the CODAME ART+TECH Festival happen this year. June 4-7, 2018 brought four full days of workshops, performances, talks, screenings and installation art to the Midway in San Francisco.
The 2018 ART+TECH Festival, codenamed #ARTOBOTS, examined the sphere of robotics, automation, and artificial intelligence. Through art, discussion, play and performance, CODAME probes these potentials and examines the ways in which robots have infiltrated so many aspects of our daily lives.
As part of this project, I interviewed and wrote about just a few of the incredible artists bringing their work to the festival, all organized by curator Vanessa Chang. The goal of these articles was to promote the festival, while helping attendees get more out of the experience by engaging more deeply with the artworks, the themes, and the presenting artists.
Professor Laila Shereen Sakr, also known as VJ Um Amel, is fascinated with culture. In conversation, she returns often to the subject of how ideas bubble up from the underground and coalesce, how individuals come together to create community online, and how to preserve and document that process. [Read the article]
In this installment of my ongoing series of feature articles about artists who will appear at the 2018 CODAME ART+TECH Festival in San Francisco, I had the opportunity to interview and study artist Norma Jeane.
When considering multimedia artist Norma Jeane, the first impression that strikes is one of mystery and denial. Norma Jeane is the pseudonym of an Italian artist who does not wish to be identified. Where many discussions of an artist’s body of work might begin with personal biography in an attempt to understand the human experience that led to creating the work, that won’t do in the case of the elusive, cerebral, and multi-talented Norma Jeane.
This is entirely by design. Having chosen one of the most famous women in the world as a namesake (Norma Jeane Mortenson Baker, who you might know better as Marilyn Monroe), the artist Norma Jeane has built a 25-year-long career on the idea of making that which is typically invisible, visible, and vice versa.
This endeavor — to expose the unnoticed while erasing the expected — has been composed of a few different recurring elements. Multiple paths lead to this end, but the name is a helpful starting point. When I met with Norma Jeane this month via video chat, he explained, “What was really interesting and fascinating to me about Marilyn is not Marilyn but Norma Jeane. The fact that she actually split her life in two, had a terrible beginning, very tough and sad, and when she actually found success, she needed to split her personality to do it. [She was] such a complex person, who ultimately represents the most successful pop icon, which is something so simple. I’m also super interested in what’s normal, in everyday life, everyday objects.”
As part of my series with artists and speakers to be featured at the 2018 CODAME ART+TECH Festival in San Francisco, I recently interviewed interdisciplinary artist Yagiz Mungan.
Artist Yagiz Mungan creates work that blends VR/AR, sound/music, interaction, performance, virtual worlds and gaming. He is especially interested in generative strategies of creating visuals and sound, and ways to use technology to push the boundaries of human perception and emotional response. His work often aims to recontextualize familiar experiences, or addresses uncanny technological encounters in modern life.
Mungan holds an MSc in computer engineering and MFA in interactive arts, and has exhibited his work around the world. For the 2018 CODAME ART + TECH Festival, Mungan will be exhibiting a project called Illy, an AI that communicates via sound without language.
As part of an interview series with artists and speakers featured at the CODAME ART+TECH Festival , I recently chatted with 3D artist Mark Klink.
This year’s CODAME ART+TECH Festival, codenamed #ARTOBOTS, examines the increasingly tangible sphere of robotics, automation, and artificial intelligence in the modern world. Through 4 days of installations, workshops, and lectures, this conference will showcase developments from the vanguard of art and technology.
Mark and I discussed everything from his background as a multi-occupation self-taught technologist and longtime multimedia artist, to his reactions to the state of pop culture as it depicts and relates to robots and artificial intelligence, two enduring themes in his work.
Moonrise is a print and web magazine about babes and ritual.
Moonrise is created, edited, and designed by Missy J. Kennedy, who I found and met online while combing the ferociously beautiful vastness of the feminist-artist-writer-internets. I’m so glad I did.
I’ve got a piece of writing in issue number 2. Find it in the deeply nostalgic and personal section called, “Our Grandmas, Ourselves.” Also, the print magazine is gorgeous and well-produced and you should definitely order a copy while they’re available.
Since the early 2000’s, I’ve been fascinated with artist James Turrell. You might even call me a fangirl. While some look at art like his–art that makes use of so much empty space–and see the Emperor’s new clothes and a whole lot of nothing, I get ecstatically stoked about it. I was pretty damn ecstatic recently when I learned that my visit to Boston last month would allow me time to visit “Into The Light” – the current Turrell exhibition at the Mass MoCA.
Since the 1960’s, Turrell has been exploring the realms of the untouchable: light. Enlisting architecture and LEDs, enclosed and open spaces, negative space and the sky itself, Turrell has sought to take intangible natural forces and make them physical. His works vary in medium, size and shape, yet the impact of a Turrell is an identifiable phenomenon that becomes familiar once you’ve been in their presence. That impact is all-consuming, enveloping and awe-inspiring.
In 2017, I worked with FIGMENT Oakland interns and our communications team to brainstorm and produce a series of longform articles featuring outstanding FIGMENT artists. Together, we developed a content strategy and a plan for interviewing participating artists and creating some in-depth content.
The goal? To build excitement for the 2017 FIGMENT event, and raise awareness in the local community about these San Francisco Bay Area artists.
Since I was a child, growing up in the 1980’s, I have admiringly followed the work and career of Rei Kawakubo. When I was too young to know what, precisely, avant-garde fashion was, I sensed that this designer was doing something special, unique, and somehow, important.
From the pages of W and Vogue, I pieced together an education in the adornment and presentation of the female body as idealized and imagined, often by male designers creating for the pleasure of male gazes. Kawakubo was starkly different in every way: female, Japanese, trained in fine art but not in fashion, and wholly original in her rejection of simplistic prettiness and conventional beauty. Her work lit a fire of possibility in my mind.
I haven’t been strictly following the weekly structure, but in my own haphazard and meandering way, this year I’ve been happily working and playing through Julia Cameron’s classic book, The Artist’s Way. By that I mean, I’ve been reading it here and there, writing my Morning Pages when I feel like it and sometimes even when I don’t, and whenever I’m feeling “stuck” or uninspired, I turn to the exercises and ideas contained within. I highly recommend this, whatever type of artist or human you happen to be.