Everything is fragile.

Mid-20’s isn’t that old, but I feel like I’ve aged 2 lifetimes in the past 3 years. Maybe aging like that makes you look back a bit more. Just as you can see from my blog, my focuses in life have shifted; I’m not just looking for self-improvement in what I can change per-say, but  more to learn how to have grace in the parts of me that won’t budge, or have grace in things I can’t control right now.

One of the hardest parts of having to adapt to being a much slower, less  interesting and hardly a multi-tasker Smizz due to illness, is being observed 24/7. I used to invite people to watch my performance of trying to make it in the artworld— I’d post lots of things I’d make, constantly advertise myself – I kind of craved the attention— but I had no idea that it was going to open me up to some damaging mindsets. It now makes me feel like I need to be on top of my shit 24 hours a day, and I can’t do that anymore. Mainly because I’m either in bed (mostly), studying (secondly),  drawing, or out trying to live life (making up for 1 & 2).  I’ve been trying to learn the “It’s okay to say no to things sometimes. Because if you can’t say no, you can’t fully say yes”.

I’m no longer  living up to the persona I assigned to myself.  I feel like I’m not only letting everyone down who invested their time into me, but I’ve let it make me believe I’m letting myself down too.

So after feeling like I was going to die, and feeling really sorry for myself. After not having the mental /energy capacity to work on my own work, just enough to work on others (which has been/is amazing, and I needed it to survive- both mentally & financially). After seeing people who I admire and respect because of their vision & dignity, struggle in this world. After months and months and months of wishing I could be part of it,  I returned from this ordeal to resume work and rejoin the artworld, but  my membership had expired. I felt like the Artworld had forgotten about me. And everything I made and saw seemed like trivial bullshit—because quite a bit of it was/is (not all of it). Disingenious money grabs.  all speed was stupid.  Some things was just despicable, because it stole the dignity of everyone involved. We deserve better.

This is harsh criticism, and way super cynical, but it is how I felt at the time. These feelings have eased a lil bit, but I’ve always had a critical view on the Artworld because I’ve always been coming from a disadvantaged point anyways. And I’m a Marxist. However, noticing the bad also makes it easier to see and notice the good. Many of the things I love about the artworld are still here, and doing maybe better than some of the crappy parts of the Artworld.

 

My friends, Lesley Guy & Dale Holmes did this super cool show  at Bloc Projects in Sheffield about Pizza  a few weeks ago. It was so good I went home & ordered a Domineos.

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One of the best artists out there Gregory Sholette is trying to crowd-source this phenomenal project. http://www.indiegogo.com/projects/imaginary-archive-kyiv –  Which is an Imaginary Archive – a collection of fictional and real documents from a past whose future never arrived of Ukraine. It’s such a special and important exhibition, and so necessary at this time, so if you can find the time/$ to support it, that would be amazing!

 

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I really, really, really want to see William Powhida’s phenomenal “overculture” show at the most AMAZING gallery Postmasters NY, that just opened this week. Powhida’s practice is about helping us see how fucked up things are and to inspire us to strive to a world of justice, supporting (art) world which encourages criticality and  risks.  it’s basically the (art)world we all really want, yet too scared to bite the hand that feeds us.  I keep putting (art) like this, because the artworld is just a microscopism of the ‘real’ fucked up world. Every problem within the artworld is a problem within non-art-related society. Mainly because it’s the same shitty force that drives both: greed and value in the banal, and unethical under-valued/under-paid labour in order to make $$. When in actuality, there’s significant power in our dark-matter-ness if we realize it, together.

 

My focus  and definition on “progress” made it easy  for me to forget that you can turn around from traveling in a wrong direction, and return to the place where things last felt right. You can go back. Now I feel like I’m starting from the beginning with my personal art practice, and it felt like a failure. But I’m slowly accepting that sometimes going back is sometimes progress.

A few painful years has taught me 1 of the important lessons about life: you only become bulletproof when you refuse to disguise your injuries. The wounds are a gift: You learn how to accept help, and better yet, how to better give it. This in turn is another reason why I’m studying again, to emulate the best care & understanding I kind of know that the patient needs. Remember: if you need help. Ask for it. We can’t do it all alone. All the time.

Life is now somehow more precious and less. I’m now back to my humble beginnings: To share what you know.

So that’s part of what I’ve been quietly doing/working on with F/O/R/C/E, a collaboration with Paul Harrison and a few others – >  forcelectures.org

Don’t wait for a life disaster to be the thing that spurs you into action. Everything is fragile and you are more resilient than you think.

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DRAWING THE WORLD 1 BUILDING AT A TIME

I’ve found a better way to keep all my crazy street drawings all together. On what the cool kids are using. TUMBLR (i have 4 now!)

keep it locked HERE and FOLLOW ME for some crazy drawings of NYC, London, Sheffield, Boston, your street! Where ever i go! Holla!  (http://streetarchitect.tumblr.com/)

(above, no i haven’t lost my mind, it’s a drawing my mom asked me to do so she could pretend that she’s done it at work for an attempt to win a bottle of wine… some things never fail to amaze me..)

Classroom Rules

Classroom Rules

I read this on frank chimero’s blog (the coolest, most awesome designer person i’ve discovered over the past few months) and it spoke to me – not just as a sylabus of which he intended it – but as a basic guide to life as a creative practitioner. great advise i had to share!

  1. Give it your best. Work hard. Be respectful. Show up on time. Be physically & mentally present. Anything less than your best is a waste of your time, mine, and that of your classmates.
  2. Show the work every day. Tight feedback loops allow for an iterative process. More turns and revisions produce better, more refined work. Missing class, and thus discussion, dramatically decreases the quality of your work. If you are absent, you will be lapped by your peers.
  3. Question everything, propose answers. Everything is an investigation. There are no nevers. Valued phrases: “Maybe if…” and “I’m not sure, but…”
  4. Momentum matters. Creativity is equal parts momentum, insight, and craft. We will move fast to build stamina. Art is long, life is short.
  5. Don’t wait for permission. Go off and try it.
  6. Every classroom is a lab. Investigate. Experiment. Report back to your peers.
  7. Assignments are incomplete until one is competent. If it’s not good enough, change it. If you don’t understand the premise fully, redo it. Failing and moving on isn’t an option because every bit is important.
  8. Grades are a false metric. Numbers assigned to a communicative endeavor like design is only done based on the needs of the university. You should care about your grade only insofar as it helps you maintain momentum in your creative pursuit.
  9. Getting better. The point of all education is to get better. Better designers. Better citizens. Better workers. Better thinkers. Better people. Any other objectives are false and superfluous.
  10. Rules are stupid. Be smart. Be respectful. Work hard. Reflect often. Strive for insight. Work to get better.

 

Smizz’s favourite Wikilinkz

Lists of Worsts

JFK assassination

The Greenhouse Mafia

Representations of People in Popular Culture

Chess Openings Named After Animals

List of Statues by Height

Cultural Depictions of Margaret Thatcher

Brazilian Players That Play For Another National Team

Superlatives

New York related lists

Houses of Dune

Animals Named After Celebrities

Middle-Earth Animals

Child Prodigies

TheInternet

 

SLAM FOR JAPAN with CAKE at BANK STREET ARTS

SLAM FOR JAPAN

SLAM JAM part 5: Thrown Together now seems like an appropriate title.   At CAKE we will be donating some of our money donated from drinks and any spontaneous donations made by you to the RED CROSS Japan Tsunami Appeal.

For every person that attends, the members of CAKE will donate some more money to the appeal. So GET AS MANY FRIENDS AS YOU CAN to attend.  In addition to this, you will be supporting your local art community!

Please help us with this cause and have a super fun night!
THIS WEDNESDAY 16TH MARCH AT BANK STREET ARTS, SHEFFIELD. the night is  STILL FREE.
PLEASE SPREAD THE WORD. share this image on your  facebook wall  or RETWEET this.
PEACE AND LOVE
CAKE

 

SLAM JAM PART 5 (CAKE) AT BANK STREET ARTS, 16TH MARCH 2011

SLAM JAM PT. 5! Sheffield, slam poetry night at BANK STREET ARTS


It’s been a while since our last SLAMJAM. This time we are teaming up Bank Street Arts (directions on the website www.bankstreetarts.com )in Sheffield.

This is YOUR moment to SHINE.

For those who aren’t familiar with the SLAMJAM format.

EMAIL us (cake.artgallery@gmail.com) or message on facebook/twitter! for a place to do your

SLAM/
POETRY (any type)/
PERFORMANCE/
PRESENTATION/
YOUR-THING
or just turn up on the night, and be inspired by the AWESOMENESS of the nights performers & audience, as it is an OPEN-MIC format.

Some selected highlights thus far:
Spencer Hale (NYC);
James Prescott (SHF);
Matt McAteer (CHST);
Along side many other funky people. Be sure to book your space!

And of course, like all good things, there will be
MUSIC, FUN-TIMES, CHEAP-BOOZE
and lots of networking and catch-ups!

NOT TO BE MISSED. And like all great things in life, IT’S A FREE!

Thanks to BANK STREET ARTS for this opportunity.

 

CAKEEVERYONE.COM

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

ART-CRIT – just for you!! BANK STREET ARTS, SHEFFIELD

AN ART CRIT GROUP FOR EVERYONE

want some critical discussion or feedback on art or your practice in general?

You can’t always get what you want,
but sometimes,
you might just find
(get) what
YOU NEED!

Bring friends, your work, or ideas, or debates, or compliments, or love, or exhibitions, or whatever.

Make the it the crit group you want it to be!

WHERE?
BANK STREET ARTS
Bank street
Sheffield, UK
www.bankstreetarts.com

WHEN?
Tuesday, March 8 · 5:30pm – 8:30pm