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Category Archives: culture

http://www.iconeye.com/index.php?view=article&catid=1%3Alatest-news&layout=news&id=3629%3Areview-mesmerization&option=com_content

A “meme” is a cultural idea that behaves a bit like a virus. A host – that could be you or me – picks up the meme, is “infected” by it, and then communicates it to others. Of course, ideas have long spread in this “contagious” or “viral” manner, but “meme” theory has gained currency as a way of describing how this happens online, where ideas propagate with unprecedented rapidity. Bizarre crazes can now boil across the surface of the planet before you can say “LOLcats”.

These memes are the subject of Gee Thomson’s ambitious and unusual book Mesmerization. Thomson’s position is that the proliferation of available information sources and the collapse of faith in authorities such as the traditional media and scientists has left us uniquely suggestible.

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http://www.dear-god.net/

A web site by the people behind THECOOLHUNTER.NET, dedicated to religion.   In a very open, non-denominational way.    I think I like this.

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Dear God,

I’m only 14 and everyday my im stuffed with ideas about god. I go to school. where i have religion class and they talk about how jesus will rise again and then we have ash put on our foreheads and i dont understand it? I walk down the street and people come up to me crying : Jesus is coming!! My best friend is refusing to eat meat for 40 days becos of something jesus did…. I lived in dubai for nine years and everday I was surrounded by cloaked muslims who would rise at 4 am each morning to sing for their god My father is an athiest who says science created everything My mother belives in reincarnation and karma and me? I keep an open mind but its so hard with all these ideas, and out of curiosity I started reading the bible and at the begiinning.. Im sorry.. but it made no sense and your so sexist to woman! : “and she shall be called woman because she is made from a man” and where it said that god flooded the world to kill al animals but how would underwater animals die in a flood? they wouldnt! I dont know what to believe in there are so many ideas about everything the big bang, god, reincarnation and i find it so hard to keep an open mind… Do I believe in you? I dont know I really don’t know. Athina – Australia

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB123785033607519075.html#project%3DSLIDESHOW08%26s%3DSB123784371903417881%257Csection%253DUS%26articleTabs%3Darticle

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“Arakawa and Madeline Gins’s quest to make human beings immortal is at risk of dying. That’s because the couple lost their life savings with Bernard Madoff, the mastermind of a multibillion-dollar fraud. Of all the dreams that were crushed by Mr. Madoff’s crime, perhaps none was more unusual than this duo’s of achieving everlasting life through architecture. Mr. Arakawa (he uses only his last name) and Ms. Gins design structures they say can enable inhabitants to “counteract the usual human destiny of having to die.”

The income from their investments with Mr. Madoff helped fund their research and experimental work. Now, Mr. Arakawa, 72 years old, and Ms. Gins, 67, are strapped for cash. They closed their Manhattan office and laid off five employees. The pair’s work, based loosely on a movement known as “transhumanism,” is premised on the idea that people degenerate and die in part because they live in spaces that are too comfortable. The artists’ solution: construct abodes that leave people disoriented, challenged and feeling anything but comfortable.They build buildings with no doors inside. They place rooms far apart. They put windows near the ceiling or near the floor. Between rooms are sloping, bumpy moonscape-like floors designed to throw occupants off balance.

(cbc) – so if you are an architecture student and you’re having a bad jury or crit just adopt Arakawa’s argument  “I’m making it really ugly and jarring because this approach can make the occupants immortal!”  

On the other hand, the RUSSIAN FORMALISTS (Viktor Schlovsky)  had a dictum “make the object strange” that they used as a definition for art.   The idea being that a displacement from the everyday “sleep” of the conventional world is necessary to have an aesthetic experience.

http://www.salon.com/env/atoms_eden/2009/03/25/alva_noe/

In his new book, “Out of Our Heads: Why You Are Not Your Brain, and Other Lessons From the Biology of Consciousness,” Noë attacks the brave new world of neuroscience and its claims that brain mechanics can explain consciousness. Nobel Prize-winning molecular biologist Francis Crick wrote, “You, your joys and your sorrows, your memories and your ambitions, your sense of personal identity and free will, are in fact no more than the behavior of a vast assembly of nerve cells and their associated molecules.” While Noë credits Crick for drawing popular and scientific attention to the question of consciousness, he thinks Crick’s conclusions are dead wrong and dangerous.

The current example of how THE TWO CULTURES are in disagreement.  (Science vs. Humanities). 

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http://www.tattooartists.org/Img57759_Blake_1_Img57759_Blake_uv_ink_.asp

These tattoos use a special black-light ink and can only be seen under ultraviolet light.   You can be straight during the day and deviant at night.   Has anyone seen one of these in person?

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http://blog.miragestudio7.com/2005/11/apocalypse/

A designer wants to project a hologram of the original temple of Solomon over the Dome of the Rock in Jerusalem.  The believe is that this will trigger the biblical Apocalypse.

The future Temple which we are expecting, is built and perfected and will be revealed and descend from heaven.
– Talmudic scholar Rashi, 11th century

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http://www.ballardian.com/unblinking-clinical-from-ballard-to-cyberpunk

“Without J.G. Ballard, none of this would exist. We’re weak on SF history, but we think it fair to say that Ballard was among the first world-class writers (perhaps along with the Soviets) to realize that SF was no longer merely a pulp genre, but had become the only possible vehicle for a mythos of the modern world, that it had replaced the psychological novel as the central artwork of our culture.”

J.G. Ballard, wrote the book Empire of the Sun, which was made into a film by Steven Spielberg.  The book is based on actual events in Ballard’s life.   He spent part of his childhood in a Japanese prisoner of war camp in China. 

His fiction deals with technology and its visceral effects on the human subject.  

Anonymous, Semiotext(e) SF.

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noose-light-by-ana-maria-pasescu-stewart-squ-noose-installation-1

Ana-Maria Pasescu Stewart has designed a lightfixture incorporating a hangman’s noose.   Perfect for those goth or emo kids out there.

 

http://gadgets.boingboing.net/2009/01/29/the-gadget-tribes-of.html

Hilarious thesis which posits you can tell what kind of “tech tribe” a person belongs to by the gadgets they use.

Categories include:  “Blogger,  Art Kid,  Kawaii”.  

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I new there was a reason I wanted a netbook …..

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On the other hand,  maybe my iPhone IS my netbook …. haha

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I know a couple of people with pink or white VAIOs  …..

http://www.arch.mcgill.ca/prof/sijpkes/arch374/winter2001/b_crilly.html

misterx

Mister X, is a comic book from the 1980s.  It was published by Vortex, a canadian company.  The character was somewhat based on Le Corbusier, he is the designer of a city mean to be a utopia, but which has failed.  The name of the city is amazingly RADIANT CITY.    The artwork is related to WATCHMEN.