A true revelation, it seems to me, will only emerge from stubborn concentration on a solitary problem. I am not in league with inventors or adventurers, nor with travelers to exotic destinations, The surest — also the quickest — way to awake the sense of wonder in ourselves, is to look intently, undeterred, at a single object. Suddenly, miraculously, it will reveal itself as something we have never seen before.
–Cesare Pavese, Dialoghi con Leuco 1947
‘introduction to drawing’ /
‘premessa al disegnare’, 2008
(translation of illustration)
if you want to become an architect, you have to learn
how to draw freehand…
the computer is a useful tool …
you can use it when you finally understood what you
want to do… (this is when the project in itself is concluded).
perhaps something needs to be said regarding the
myths sourrounding the computer you just bought.
as you know, it’s made of two parts -
1° the powerful and misterious ‘HARD’ and
2° the ‘SOFT’ … instructions sold to the oblivious
who think they are able to create form by ignoring the
concrete reasons behind it.
HOWEVER, there is another type of computer
which is a thousands time more efficient…
at no cost, you already have one and it’s still new
as you don’t imagine to own it.
1° the infinitely powerful ‘HARD’.
in fact it’s so powerful that a newborn baby (who still
hasn’t worked out space, sound, it’s own limbs…
in just 1 year will have understood it, and on its own).
HARD turns it into a concious beeing through acts of
interpreting each random movement or sensation.
2° there is no ‘SOFT’. you’ve lost it at age of 6.
at school…… but you can rediscover it …
it’s knowledge that comes from personal practise,
the only possibility of real comprehension.
(this is for my students. I was explaining that technology is just a tool and should not be a substitute for the senses and an ability to generate ideas. without the idea, there is nothing.)
source: design boom
In his 2008 book, The Freedom Paradox, Clive Hamilton argues that within free-market capitalism, corporate interests actively discourage us from acting in accord with the values, preferences and desires we would endorse after careful consideration. Very few of us, he writes, would, upon deep reflection, say that it is our innermost desire in life to work incredibly hard at a job we dislike in order to possess the latest consumer products. Yet this is precisely the life our society encourages. From early childhood onward, advertisers expertly instill within us a set of values, preferences and desires that are not our own, but those that corporations wish us to have. As a result, our true ideals become increasingly neglected and stigmatized. This denial of our moral selves, Hamilton believes, can largely explaining the discontent increasingly prevalent in affluent societies.
Empirical support for these ideas can be found in the world of Martin Seligman, the world renowned psychologist and expert in the study of happiness. After years of research, Seligman has proposed that a major component of happiness is having meaning in our lives, which is achieved by being devoted to something larger than ourselves. This compliments Hamilton’s arguments well. The things we devote ourselves to and derive meaning from will doubtlessly be linked with our inner values. And if devoting ourselves to things we deeply value is an important part of happiness, it seems only obvious that failing to do so–and living in societies that actively discourage us from doing so — would lead to unhappiness.
-Paul Connor, excerpted from Adbusters #91, Volume 18, #5
The next real literary “rebels” in this country might well emerge as some weird bunch of anti-rebels, born oglers who dare somehow to back away from ironic watching, who have the childish gall actually to endorse and instantiate single-entendre principles. Who treat of plain old untrendy human troubles and emotions in US life with reverence and conviction. Who eschew self-consciousness and hip fatigue. The anti-rebels would be outdated of course, before they even started. Dead of the page. Too sincere. Clearly repressed. Backward, quaint, naive, anachonistic. Maybe that’ll be the point. Maybe that’s why they’ll be the next real rebels. Real rebels as far as I can see, risk disapproval. The old postmodern insurgents risked the gasp and squeal: shock, disgust, outrage, censorship, accusations, of socialism, anarchism, nihilism. Today’s risks are different. The new rebels might be artists willing to risk the yawn, the rolled eyes, the cool smile, the nudged ribs, the parody of gifted ironists, the “Oh, how banal.”
–David Foster Wallace
Penguin Books has just recently launched a new online feature called the Penguin community, where people can post comments, discussions, photos, videos, etc, about books. I am really excited about it because they made a page just for my books! It is very cool and I would love it if you would join me in this new space. They even made this very sweet video for Mess,
For the next couple of months, anyone who posts a photo or video of a project from Mess will automatically be entered into a random drawing to win a copy of the boxed set! (I haven’t seen the final product yet, but I am can tell you it’s really great. The box itself has a bunch of prompts on it, some of them involve a quantity of dirt).
I have just returned from a short trip to San francisco, something I can easily do now being on the west coast. It was my first solo trip since my son was born, and the first day I was prone to many teary moments. In the end it was so amazingly good for me to do, and i return feeling recharged. I had a bit of an epiphany while traveling that I thought I might share with you. The simplicity of this will surprise you, but the results of my experiment with it were quite profound. After completing the following exercise for many hours I felt calm, relaxed and totally in the moment. So here it is:
Do one thing at a time.
I realize how much of our day is spent multitasking, checking email, doing dishes, talking on the phone, racing from place to place, doing chores, etc. All at once. But when you make the conscious decision to just do one thing at a time it causes you to pay more attention and be more present in you body and in the world. The experiment was not without it’s challenges. I found myself wanting to read while I ate and check email. Though I really enjoyed consciously crunching my ice while drinking some juice on the plane (I am an avid ice cube cruncher).
I know this will be hard to achieve when i am back into my regular routing, and having a toddler makes it necessary to multitask if you want to get anything done. But I am going to continue the experiment and try to work at it throughout the day. I think it is worth it for the sense of calm that it creates.