Week 12 Activity: Ethnography

Living without electricity is something I think we all wonder about, but immediately shudder it away to reach back for our precious phones, laptops, and other electronic gadgets. Even when going camping, many of us take some sort of electrical device, to listen to music perhaps. But once in a while, it is good to just step away for a bit.

This weeks art 110 activity is just that. Its hard to do this living in an urban area but I think I found a good spot at home. While its quite bare, it definitely gets the job done. As shown in the picture, this is the roof deck of our house. I simply laid down a mattress and blanket and lay down to take it all.IMG_2479 (1).JPG

At first, I was like what the heck am I doing up here. I was used to listening to music as I fall asleep. I was missing that on going background noise. But then, I realized the other background noise. The  rustling of our neighbors towering palm tree and his Chinese elm tree. It was dark so most birds were asleep, but I still heard a few here and there. There were also a few insects to be heard. But mostly, it was peaceful. If I got up to look around, I would see the steep side of the San Gabriel mountains as a dark silhouette. And although I would see many other buildings and many homes, our street was quiet and I did not see any cars. I could faintly hear them on the main roads, a little farther away. The sky was pretty clear that night, and it actually helped a little that I was three stories up, above most of street lights and what not. When you don’t have your phone to look at, you realize that there actually a few more stars in the sky than you would expect for a Los Angeles night. You realize this especially when you start trying to count them.

Eventually I got tired of trying to count them and my mind would wander. I would think about what I had to do the next day, about my homework, and simply just sorting my life out.This actually I think helped me get better rest because when I fell asleep, many things had been sifted through and organized in m head. It was a very peaceful sleep that’s for sure. I highly recommend it. Now I really want to go camping under the stars.

I would not say this was a “hard” experience but it was definitely unique. Neither would I say that it was frustrating. If anything it was liberating. We look to our phones for liberation from boredom, but then we basically become enslaved by our phones. This experience away from technology was good. It was more harmonious with nature as well. You start taking in the sights (stars) and sounds of nature. We as humans are a part of nature anyways, but we tend to alienate ourselves from nature through technology. Living without electricity can’t be said to be boring. All of a sudden, you realize there is so much more to explore outside what we normally plug into. I am sure people without electricity were very in tune with this world, and they probably led  a more carefree life. Technology is supposed to simplify things, but for some reason in this world, everything is more high strung and everyone seems to suffer from stress.

Ideally for me, I would like to this maybe on a monthly basis if I could. I would go camping maybe on a weekend perhaps, leave my electronics behind, and simply unwind from society for a night or two. The rest of the week though I would carry on as I normally do as far as connectivity goes. There is no way this world can run without it and therefore we must use it. It is all good as long we know we can disconnect for a little bit, and remember there is a world outside of the vast world of the internet. It is only because of that world that the world of the internet exists.

 

Week 12 Artist Convo

This week at the SOA, I think I found my favorite display yet. I said this a few weeks ago about the turtle display, but this display took it away for me. The reason for this I think, is because I could relate to it better.

The brains and hands behind this display were that of Jacob Hogan. Jacob Hogan is a senior with a major crafting, specifically in metal working. He is graduating this semester and hopes to work for a design company. As of right now, he works at a small body shop in Newport that restores unique classic cars. From an early age, Jacob was always taking things apart and putting them back together the way he wanted. This theme has carried on throughout his life and artwork. He sees furniture for example, and he may like the concept, but he thinks he can design it better.

In this picture of a necklace, he takes the concept of a chain necklace, and wonders how he can do something unique to it. He then forges all the pieces as cubes.IMG_2472.JPG

Jake looks at something as simple as a wooden or tile bar top and wonders what it would look like made out of metal. In this masterpiece, he took copper and brass strip and wove them together into this awesome looking bar top.IMG_2471.JPG

Or making a coffee table from a car tire..IMG_2476.JPG

The reason I can relate to the art and the artist, is because we come from similar backgrounds. His father was an architect, as is my mom. A lot of his work involve manual labor, crafting with raw materials and metal working. Growing up as the son of a general contractor, I see these raw materials being turned into all sorts of cool and useful things.

I really like Jake’s style too. He was up and involved, with his display. He was so passionate about describing his work yet super chill.  He said he didn’t want to just sit outside at a table and awkwardly watch people come in and out of his gallery. Also. his display was pure art for the sake of showing craftsmanship. There were no politics involved which inspired the art, as were many displays before. With all due respect to the other artists, I just loved how Jake was all about making stuff with your hands, with raw earth materials, some patience, and a little innovation, just to see how cool his work could get.

He told me this is his senior display, which I was disappointed to hear. I would have totally come checked him out again if he was doing another. But I did get his instagram which I will keep up on and you should too!

IG: Yohogan

Week 11 Classmates Convo

This week we had a three way classmate conversation to change things up a bit. First I had the pleasure of talking to Jeremy Masterson. We both have a mutual friend in Courtney Clyde and we had always said hi in passing. Jeremy, like myself, is a second year student pursuing a degree in business. He is from the Bay Are up in Nor Cal. During the school semesters, he stays in an apartment with a group of guys so as not to pay the expensive full rent or even more expensive dorms of CSULB. His website is itsmywebsiteweb.wordpress.com

My other new friend is Miguel Cabada. Miguel is a freshman here at CSULB at plans to earn his degree in computer technology. My respects to him because I am illiterate when it comes to such technology. I barely can find our Art 110 assignments and then post them. Miguel commutes from Compton, California. He likes to play soccer with his buddies and hang out. He also always finds enjoyment in watching Youtube videos and the like such as Netflix. His webiste is cabadamiguel.wordpress.com

Jeremy here is on the left and Miguel is on the right with me standing in between them. Nice to meet you guys!IMG_2441.JPG

Week 11 Artist Convo

This week at the SOA galleries I talked to artist Sirius Moghim. He is a senior graduating in the fall of 2017 BFA a in Sculpture.

Sirius had a very intriguing display so I decided to talk to him about it. The first piece that caught my attention was called the “Geometry of Grief”. For me, I did not like taking geometry and it was grief but I knew that this was probably not the meaning behind it. Sirius told me that in Islamic culture, geometry and perfect patters are used to try to express higher things, such as God. For him however, making geometrical patterns was his outlet- his way to deal with grief. Hanging near the projection is an embroidery of a woman playing the violin, a piece of art which his diseased mother had made.IMG_2442.JPG

On the other side of the gallery, there was another projection. This was a somewhat blurry projection though, but it seemed to reminisce a sort of paradise. In front of the projection was suspended a crystal clear violin, which actually cast a dark shadow. This whole set up had wonderful and deep meaning which I truly appreciated. The crystal clear violin reminded him of his mother and her embroidery. Yet the shadow which seemed to fall into another world, which was paradise, symbolized the void in Sirius’s life which had been left by her departure from this world.IMG_2443.JPG

I appreciated Sirius’s insight. I would not say the set up was spectacular at first sight, or artfully skillful. But it was tremendously profound.

Week 10 SOA Artists

My favorite display this past week, and indeed maybe one of my favorites of all the exhibitions I’ve seen at the SOA galleries was that of artist Brittany Waters. She appropriately named it #MoreThanASandbox.image2.jpeg

Brittany is a senior with nearly a BA. With her talent. she put out an impressive spread. She essentially created a beach inside the gallery. Along the hallway leading to the beach were photos of baby sea turtles in various stages of hatching out of their eggs. Then you come upon the beach where there is a beach chair under and umbrella next to a mound of sand. Out of the mound of sand are dozens and dozens of baby turtles racing out of their birthplace and towards the beach which is projected against the wall.

image5.jpegBrittany was inspired to create this awesome spread in order to bring attention to the fact that we must be careful with the wildlife around us. She is trying to remind people that there are still wild animals such as turtles who have for centuries made these local beaches their habitats. However, human society has encroached on these habitats and driven these wonderful creatures away and plummeted their numbers. It is a friendly reminder to help keep our beaches clean and safe for us and our little friends frantically scurrying for their lives towards the surf. image3.jpeg

 

Week 9 Activity

Spray painting is always something fun that I have enjoyed. My dad being in the construction business, naturally had paint projects. This there was never a shortage of paint cans in our garage. As a kid, I would try to put stuff together out of wood and paint it with a spray can. Or my dad would give me simple touch up jobs.

Tagging has a different element though and it feels unique because you know this is your work and not just a project. Painting my name was funner than I anticipated and it didn’t take much to look good. I realized then how easy and quick it must be for an experienced artist to do something awesome and quick on the side of a building. I did my four letter name in black and gold. Go Beach! I set it up next to my VW Bug because I think bugs and spray paint have a deep connection made by the hippies lol.IMG_2393.JPG

Week 9 Artist Convo

At the SOA galleries at school, there was quite a display by several artists, There was one however which really caught my attention so I decided to find out the skilled mind and hands behind these art pieces.IMG_2385.JPG

The artist’s name was David DeSantis. David is getting ready to graduate in a few months with a BFA in print making. he plans to go to grad school but not immediately. Working 60-70hrs per week is exhausting so once he is done with school, he wants to take a little bit of a break off of it. In his spare time, he likes to play pool, go snowboarding, listen to dubstep, go to festivals and chill out with friends. He loves motorcycles and anything daring he because he is a self described adrenaline junky.

Davids art is made from plexiglass and he likes to use lithography. He has a badass piece which is a wolf snarling. He gets inspired from his dubstep music and and also from Jackson Pollock. His art pieces are aimed more in a fluid abstract expressionism. As he listens to his music, he tries to let his artwork flow with it as well. He has an IG @rapturefineartIMG_2386.JPG