allaboutgeorge + aesthetics   503

'Blade Runner 2049': Why some science fiction writers are tired of dystopias - CSMonitor.com
“The utility dystopian fiction used to serve was to bring problems to our attention and seek solutions. But the danger is that these stories can become a collective act of despair in response to current events.”
story  fiction  movies  attention  aesthetics  sciencefiction  scifi 
6 weeks ago by allaboutgeorge
On Indian Minimalism | Vestoj
Which begs the question, what are the aesthetics of an emerging post-colonial economy? And when something different from what we expect arises, why don’t we have the interpretative frameworks to understand its nuances?
fashion  minimalism  journalism  aesthetics  economics  beauty  india 
8 weeks ago by allaboutgeorge
On the Political Value of Fashion | JOOJOO AZAD | جوجو آزاد
Refusing to engage with the politics of fashion does not allow you to be any less political—it just makes you silent. At a time we cannot afford to be.

Engage with your clothing. Be intentional and meaningful with what you choose to convey—and how you choose to do it.
fashion  identity  curation  power  politics  aesthetics 
july 2017 by allaboutgeorge
A Conversation With John Flansburgh And Jonathan Coulton | The Awl
k a lot of the performance aspect of what we do is about that sharp shock of just finding out that there are different levels of what’s going on. There’s a communal level, a literary level, a personal level. I feel like this kind of writing and performing at its best gets at something that’s normally found more in prose. Nobody reads a novel, and thinks, “The guy who wrote this must be a serial killer,” although maybe David Mamet has screwed that up. They know that the author is working to push ideas to extremes. We talk a lot about unreliable narrators and trying to push the point of view beyond just first person singular singer-songwriter stuff. It can be done. The popular song is not over. It’s not like all the good songs have been written and we’re just going to write some more because we like songs. There’s a future there. And if you really think about it, you can do some good stuff.
songwriting  music  beauty  rock  aesthetics  story 
august 2011 by allaboutgeorge
Henryk Gorecki, Polish Composer of Hit Symphony, Dies at 76 - NYTimes.com
“I think about my audience, but I am not writing for them. If I were thinking of my audience and one likes this, one likes that, one likes another thing, I would never know what to write. Let every listener choose that which interests him. I have nothing against one person liking Mozart or Shostakovich or Leonard Bernstein, but doesn’t like Gorecki. That’s fine with me. I, too, like certain things.”
attention  identity  creativity  aesthetics  classical  music  classicalmusic 
november 2010 by allaboutgeorge
The Sociology of the Hipster - Essay - NYTimes.com
The attempt to analyze the hipster provokes such universal anxiety because it calls everyone’s bluff. And hipsters aren’t the only ones unnerved. Many of us try to justify our privileges by pretending that our superb tastes and intellect prove we deserve them, reflecting our inner superiority. Those below us economically, the reasoning goes, don’t appreciate what we do; similarly, they couldn’t fill our jobs, handle our wealth or survive our difficulties. Of course this is a terrible lie. And Bourdieu devoted his life to exposing it. Those who read him in effect become responsible to him — forced to admit a failure to examine our own lives, down to the seeming trivialities of clothes and distinction that, as Bourdieu revealed, also structure our world.
status  presence  reputation  sociology  power  nytimes  fashion  aesthetics 
november 2010 by allaboutgeorge
Maximus Clarke talks with William Gibson about his “speculative novels of last Wednesday” : Maud Newton
The surprising thing about it — I almost said the insidious thing, but I’m trying to be anthropological — the surprising thing, to me, is that once we have our gramophone, or iPad, or locomotive, we become that which has the gramophone, the iPad, or the locomotive, and thereby, are instantly incapable of recognizing what just happened to us, as I believe we’re incapable of understanding what broadcast television, or the radio, or telephony did to us.
I strongly suspect that prior to those things we were something else. In that regard, our predecessors are in a sense unknowable. Imagine a world without recorded music: I always come to the conclusion that it’s impossible for me to imagine that, because I have become that which lives with recorded music.
music  writing  technology  futurism  aesthetics  attention  identity  television  ipad  transportation  sciencefiction  novels  fiction 
september 2010 by allaboutgeorge
Wine and food pairing advice from an expert - Inside Bay Area
But for those who want to do their own pairings, Hough suggests you ignore nuances and focus on broader characteristics: "How acidic it is, how sweet, how intense, the tannins, the intensity. Those characteristics tend to be consistent within a varietal."
wine  food  beverages  aesthetics  cooking  parties 
september 2010 by allaboutgeorge
The Vocab - Culture - The Atlantic
It's easy to get caught up in how different the music might have been had she stayed. But it's a fool's errand. Lauryn never asked for the burden we heaped on her shoulders, and there's no guarantee that she would have carried it. History is what is, and I have no real complaints about what has become of hip-hop. To the contrary, I'm grateful for those years when I was in love. They changed my life. But off to The Suburbs now, I guess.
hiphop  culture  aesthetics  music  women 
september 2010 by allaboutgeorge
The new preppy has nothing to do with tennis and Lacoste - latimes.com
Perhaps preppiness is less about demographics and style than it is about living decently in an often indecent world. As stuffy and elitist as its preoccupations can be, preppiness at its core is ultimately about self-respect. It's about pulling your pants up. It's about being able to come up with an acceptable answer when asked what book changed your life. It's about knowing that you don't necessarily need to have money to have class.

And what better time to be reminded of all this than now?
identity  power  class  aesthetics  money  behavior  books 
september 2010 by allaboutgeorge
A New Country Masterpiece | Jamey Johnson's The Guitar Song | By Barry Mazor - WSJ.com
"The traditional country music—or as it's commonly called in my house, 'music'—that's where you learned things," he said. "In the little town I grew up in, that music came in, and it fed the soul and challenged the spirit. It got you thinking about everything, every aspect of life, as songs should—not just the funny times, not just the good ones, but the serious ones, too. There was a language that country-music writers, singers and listeners in general understood. That language is not being passed down these days; not a lot of people can really speak it. But you can still learn it if you try, and that's the fine art of country music."
country  music  songwriting  livemusic  aesthetics  language 
september 2010 by allaboutgeorge
Vijay Iyer's jazz pulls from grab bag of genres and years - latimes.com
"You know, I hope that in doing so people start to accept that there are these other perspectives on [jazz], that one can actually encompass all these things and it's not about this-versus-that, or the past versus the future. That whole dynamic kind of drives me mad, because that's not ever what this music was. It wasn't ever about tradition versus modernity. It was always about one in the other, or one through the other."
jazz  music  livemusic  tradition  creativity  aesthetics 
august 2010 by allaboutgeorge
Sade As Wounded Warrior « liner notes
And this is really what I want to say about the new album: it may be that Sade now goes into the studio simply trying to initiate the purge she believes is expected of her. In that way I believe she’s gradually misconstrued, by small degrees, what her job as a musician is. At the other extreme we have artists that push the boundaries as far as possible with each new album to break out of the shell of what’s expected. I feel the best work happens somewhere in the middle, in a space when original ideas are allowed to flow naturally with little reaction to what’s worked before. And the best songs seem to come when the conscious mind vaguely teases the subconscious out, but it is not always helpful to approach the studio expecting drawn-out martyrdom. I want Sade to have fun writing the music she presents to us.
music  songwriting  sade  aesthetics  writing  art 
june 2010 by allaboutgeorge
'Kapò': portraying the unthinkable in art - latimes.com
There is no exact science to the relationship between ethics and aesthetics. But it is also not that complicated.
aesthetics  ethics 
april 2010 by allaboutgeorge
M.I.A.: Unlike Lady Gaga, I won't be 'blindfolded with naked men feeding me apples' | Pop & Hiss | Los Angeles Times
We’re past the point in culture of really caring if our pop stars are “authentic” or not, and we derive a lot of genuine pleasure from the sounds and imagery of “faking it.” But M.I.A.’s take underscores a more valid criticism – that even if a star is contrived, at least be contrived to fascinating ends. No one really touches Gaga on red carpet photogenic qualities, and she’s got an undeniable instrument in that voice.
identity  music  aesthetics  marketing  attention  culture  business  power  pop 
april 2010 by allaboutgeorge
A Conversation With Hunch Cofounder Caterina Fake
[...] But from our perspective, the social graph is actually less informative and actually gives you less valuable information on you than what we’re calling the taste graph because you may – I may be in contact with my co-workers, who are kind of like male engineer types and, with my mom, I have a very close relationship with. But our tastes are very different, the things that we like, the sushi restaurants or (unintelligible) that we’d be interested in…

Mr. ARRINGTON: Yeah.

Ms. FAKE: Or the clothes that we would wear and so, what we’re – our assumption is that there’s people out there who share similar taste. They have a similar aesthetic to you or they have, say, you’re kind of looking for a blog or a news show, your political position or political stance would inform that choice as well. So, that’s really what…

Mr. ARRINGTON: And this actually works?

Ms. FAKE: And this actually works, yes.
interviews  news  search  video  interview  internet  aesthetics  identity  attention  data 
march 2010 by allaboutgeorge
New York Museums - Post-Minimal to the Max - NYTimes.com
These things should be understood by now: The present is diverse beyond knowing, history is never completely on anyone’s side, and what we ignore today will be excavated later and held against us the way we hold previous oversights against past generations.

Message to curators: Whatever you’re doing right now, do something else next.
museums  history  art  creativity  curation  aesthetics  beauty  research 
february 2010 by allaboutgeorge
For Sade, a Reluctant Return to the Spotlight - NYTimes.com
For Sade, reticence is a matter of both temperament and songwriting strategy. “That’s the trick in a way, like conjuring,” she said. “You’ve got to allow so much to go in there. But it isn’t just your own, because then it’s T.M.I.” — too much information — “and when you listen to the song you’re thinking of the person rather than your own emotions. If it’s too attached to the performer,” she added, “it pushes you away, it’s a bit repulsive. Because that’s theirs — it’s not yours.”
songwriting  music  aesthetics  creativity  writing  identity  attention  relationships 
february 2010 by allaboutgeorge
Sinatra Song Often Strikes Deadly Chord - NYTimes.com
“ ‘I did it my way’ — it’s so arrogant,” Mr. Albarracin said. “The lyrics evoke feelings of pride and arrogance in the singer, as if you’re somebody when you’re really nobody. It covers up your failures. That’s why it leads to fights.”
music  karaoke  philippines  livemusic  art  crime  death  murder  aesthetics  songwriting  men  behavior  reputation 
february 2010 by allaboutgeorge
The Road Movie With Director John Hillcoat - Q&A With The Road Director John Hillcoat - Popular Mechanics
I was nervous about those trees. But I was told how to deal with it: The worst thing to do is run if a tree is falling because you'll lose your bearings. Trees go deceptively so far out that you could cross its line way off in the distance and it'll get you. The experts said if anything happens, the thing to do is just to watch it carefully. You've got seconds. Just watch it, and see where it's going, and then you can sidestep it. I thought I'd pass on that information.
culture  film  geography  movies  cinema  creativity  aesthetics  beauty  neworleans  photography 
december 2009 by allaboutgeorge
SFGate: Mark Morford: Where have you been all my life?
[...] To me, it's all flavors of delightful to ponder these rifts and hiccups, these jumps and thrusts of time. Because the danger is, you can give up. You can become thoroughly stuck in your patterns, your tastes, how you think it's supposed to be. You can attach yourself and your identity early on to various ideas, styles, modes of being, and never budge as the world evolves and dances on, and you just grunt and scowl and wonder what happened to the good ol' days.

But if you remain open, you can circle back around and rediscover yourself in new and fascinating recombinations, as each generation comes forth, bearing startling new gifts. It's a simple truth, recast in a million variations: The delights and epiphanies, the loves and the gods, the deepenings and the awakenings? They find you when you are ready. And of course, vice-versa.

Really, what more could you ask for?
writing  attention  time  aesthetics  aging  music  beauty  art  love  rock 
december 2009 by allaboutgeorge
Jude Rogers | Why is Journey's Don't Stop Believin' back in the charts? | The Guardian Music | The Guardian
I thank the phenomenon of shuffling mp3 players, bouncing us between styles; the diminishing importance, and relevance, of genre boundaries; and the way in which music has become less about coolness, and much more about unbridled enjoyment.

There is nothing strange about having a place in your heart for music that is improving and challenging, and another for huge, rousing sentiments that make you cry in taxi-cabs, long for a lover, or yearn to sing loudly, and proudly, with those you love most. And that's exactly what Don't Stop Believin' does, for the young and the old, and those who believe music reached its apotheosis with the concept of Adult Oriented Rock.
music  uk  aesthetics  rock  dance  television 
november 2009 by allaboutgeorge
The Song Decoders at Pandora - NYTimes.com
It’s the “social” theories of music-liking that get most of the attention these days: systems that connect you with friends with similar tastes, or that rely on “collaborative filtering” strategies that cross-match your music-consumption habits with those of like-minded strangers. These popular approaches marginalize traditional gatekeepers; instead of trusting the talent scout, the radio programmer or the music critic, you trust your friends (actual or virtual), or maybe just “the crowd.”
Pandora’s approach more or less ignores the crowd. It is indifferent to the possibility that any given piece of music in its system might become a hit. The idea is to figure out what you like, not what a market might like. More interesting, the idea is that the taste of your cool friends, your peers, the traditional music critics, big-label talent scouts and the latest influential music blog are all equally irrelevant. That’s all cultural information, not musical information.
media  music  internet  nytimes  pandora  attention  reputation  marketing  business  oakland  technology  listening  aesthetics 
october 2009 by allaboutgeorge
Negro Sunshine « All of the Above (Nov. 14, 2007)
I went to a talk today by prominent self-proclaimed-painter-but-everyone-else-calls-him-a-conceptual-artist Glenn Ligon. He is Black, he is Gay, but beyond those two I think he is a really pretty awesome Artist and Human Being.
art  creativity  race  aesthetics  education 
october 2009 by allaboutgeorge
Post-Gazette.com: Is this young man the 'savior' of the organ?
"I definitely push things, but I argue that they are pushed artistically. I want to re-evaluate what can be played on the organ, everything from Bach to Liszt to Leonard Cohen. If my playing of Liszt's 'Mephisto Waltz' on the organ damages it in your mind, you must not think so much of Liszt to think he wrote something so fragile."
music  religion  spirituality  aesthetics  classical  classicalmusic 
september 2009 by allaboutgeorge
Football As Shakespeare - Ta-Nehisi Coates
The 49ers were always consummate professionals - both on and off the field. On the field, they were efficient, unselfish, and always making the clutch play when needed. Off the field, they always said the right things, dressed the part, and never got into trouble. They were the guys who told you to work hard, study, eat your vegetables, drink your milk, etc., and then maybe you too would become a Super Bowl winning quarterback and marry a model.

The Raiders, on the other hand, were the exact opposite. They were "different." They were tough. They had swagger. They said what they felt like, and didn't care what anyone else thought. They talked the talk and walked the walk. The Raiders from the mid-1960's to the mid-1980's were a team of misfits, malcontents, and non-conformists... and they won games. They were a team composed of individuals, and the implied message was, "it's okay to be different." That is a beautiful thing.
football  sports  bayarea  aesthetics  identity 
september 2009 by allaboutgeorge
Luc Sante on Robert Frank’s The Americans - WSJ.com
The overt influence of the book on the young may be on the wane these days, in large part because of the different possibilities and demands of digital photography. Among art photographers there may be more interest in manipulation, narrative, scale and deliberate control of the image. In documentary photography, on the other hand, its influence is deep-rooted and seemingly permanent. "The Americans" might be said to have brought agnosticism to photography; it forcefully introduced doubt, as expressed by asymmetry, overlaps, tilts, radical cropping, out-of-focus foregrounds and the use of massed shadows and pulsing glare. That quality has come to be synonymous with truth-telling, even if it has been abused over the years. Until someone comes up with a transformative new way of taking pictures that can convince us it has an even stronger mimetic relationship to the way we actually see, it is likely to stand as such.
culture  photography  beauty  usa  race  books  aesthetics  identity  travel  documentary  journalism  art 
september 2009 by allaboutgeorge
California bill would tighten rules on tattoos, piercing - Sacramento Politics - California Politics | Sacramento Bee
About 36 percent of Americans between 18 and 29 are tattooed now, according to estimates by the American Academy of Dermatology.
art  law  california  aesthetics  beauty 
september 2009 by allaboutgeorge
AFTER STAFF - Nader Khouri, Commercial success with an emphasis on food | RESOLVE — the liveBooks photo blog
Many photographers don’t have much text on their websites, and I decided to use text to help put my work into context. Not all clients will look at the text, but I value it when photographers take the time to give some explanation. I believe in the power of images to give a point of view, but I also think that stating a mission helps complement the images. Not only that, but it helps set the stage for the kinds of expectations I have for myself and of the clients I want to work with.
photography  business  marketing  creativity  food  ethics  aesthetics 
august 2009 by allaboutgeorge
Salon.com Arts & Entertainment | The dream life of Don Draper
Don and Pete represent opposite sides of the same coin: Both chafe against the restrictions of adult life, and both have faked their way to the top in different ways. But while Don represents the benefits of extreme denial mixed with occasional sincerity, Pete shows us how it looks when you navigate an unfair world armed only with blind ambition and raging emotions that get the most of you regularly. While Don smoothly lies through his teeth without flinching, Pete stutters, fakes it, breaks down seconds later, and fools no one, not even himself. Don has occasional dark nights of the soul, sure, but Pete is awash in confusion and self-loathing, so much so that he can barely control himself.
television  history  1960s  identity  aesthetics  cable  writing 
august 2009 by allaboutgeorge
Bruce Handy on Mad Men | vanityfair.com
“I’m not avoiding answering the question, but I’m doing something that I do a lot, which is avoiding saying, ‘I don’t know.’ And that’s from my family—it’s really bad to get caught not knowing something. I hope I’ll know when I get there. When I started the show, when I had the inkling of the idea, I thought, What was it like for people to go through this [historical period]? It wasn’t a loss of innocence, but things really did change. There was some shit falling apart, as much as there was in the 1930s. Hopefully we don’t have to experience that again, but to come out on the other side and, you know, What does Don look like when Kent State happens? I would kind of like to know that.”
television  culture  magazines  1960s  aesthetics  1970s  writing  cable 
august 2009 by allaboutgeorge
Salon.com Books | Sex and the (fortysomething) single girl
I've found that characters I've based on real people, if I've disguised them physically, people don't recognize themselves. It's hilarious. They just don't. It never occurs to them that I'm writing about them, because they're not blond. They're not 52. They're not rail-thin or overweight.

So people recognize their physical profile, but not their psychological profile?

Absolutely. And when the two go together, they recognize themselves physically and then they see what I'm saying about them. I've offended a couple of people. But I've never had a person recognize him- or herself whose physical description I've altered. I find that fascinating.
writing  fiction  style  aesthetics  identity  creativity 
july 2009 by allaboutgeorge
James Wolcott on Cultural Snobbery | vanityfair.com
In my bohemian days (the exotic reek of incense haunts me still), I owned a jukebox—a huge honker, a neon-trimmed sarcophagus—which I studiously stocked with 45s to showcase the catholicity of my pop sensibility, from the Supremes’ “Up the Ladder to the Roof” to Elton John and Kiki Dee’s “Don’t Go Breaking My Heart,” to Duran Duran’s “Hungry Like the Wolf,” to the Clash’s “(White Man) In Hammersmith Palais.” I was fond of that machine, despite the mockery it inspired, because it was like having a custom-built twin. “Male record collectors seek mastery over a body of music, almost always as a way of establishing a masculine identity,” Krin Gabbard argues in his psychosocial study “Hipsters and Nerds.” (Oh, so that’s what I was doing.) “The collector makes conscious and unconscious connections to the masculine codes in the music, but he also works at acquiring a commanding knowledge that can be carefully deployed in the right surroundings.”
music  social  business  books  technology  culture  pop  movies  publishing  literature  aesthetics  identity  fashion  gender 
july 2009 by allaboutgeorge
'Freebird' ultimately unforgettable -- chicagotribune.com
"I feel like I could write you a dissertation in defense of it as being one of the most underrated songs in rock history and I could write about its utter banality, and in both papers I would be sincere. To be truthful, it didn't even occur to me there might be irony in 'Freebird' until I moved from my small town to a city."
music  aesthetics  rock 
july 2009 by allaboutgeorge
John Dillinger, Existentialist by Thomas S. Hibbs on National Review Online
But the pace, in the end, is precisely the point. Dillinger is nothing more than what he does. He robs banks, and in this he achieves a kind of freedom, liberation from petty concerns over a job and a family, over what others think of him, over the desire for money and advancement, even over the fear of death, as the scene in the Biograph indicates.

That accounts for both the attraction of Dillinger and his essential emptiness, a combination that Mann’s own film mimics: artistic flair wedded to nihilism.
movies  cinema  film  aesthetics  beauty  philosophy  crime  men  gender  power  identity 
july 2009 by allaboutgeorge
New York - Sound of the City - From the Voice Archives: Robert Christgau on the Mass Culture Spectacle of Michael Jackson in 1984
The Victory Tour's $30 prices aren't as out of line as they ought to be (Marvin Gaye charged $25 at Radio City--though Bruce's top is $16), but they do seem to keep black kids away, and black kids would have made good company at the Garden. After all, they're the ones who've cared about Michael longest and deepest, who feel his success as more than an exotic accident of statistics and modern communication--and they're also the unnamed potential perpetrators who inspired the tour's massive-to-paranoid security outlay. As delighted as I am to see white America recognize a black heir, I'm not going to think the affection in which he's held means a whole lot racially until it gets generalized a little.
music  reviews  nyc  writing  culture  aesthetics  identity  race  rock  concerts  1980s 
july 2009 by allaboutgeorge
The Coolness Index « Music Machinery
It may be too hard to tell whether an artist is cool, but we have all sorts of ways to tell that an artist is definitely not cool. For instance, if lots of listeners really don’t want people to know that they are listening to a particular artist, then that artist is probably not too cool. Luckily, there’s an interesting source for just this kind of data. Recently, the researchers at Last.fm published a list of the ‘most unwanted scrobbles‘. This is a list of tracks that were most frequently deleted by the Last.fm community from their scrobbles in the last month. These are the tracks that Last.fm listeners didn’t want people to know that the listened to. Here’s the first page of the most unwanted scrobbles:
music  information  data  aesthetics  identity  technology  pop  rock  gender  race 
july 2009 by allaboutgeorge
Village Voice - New York Music - Rob Harvila - Janelle Monáe, Space Cowgirl
"I have bulks of white oxford shirts and black pants and saddle-oxfords in black and white. . . . I don't own any colors in my closet," she explains. "I got tired of—colors. I feel more centered when I'm in black and white. I feel more focused. All the colors come out in my work, in my voice, in my movement. And, sometimes, I don't feel centered when I'm onstage. I feel extremely flamboyant. It's a uniform. It works very well for me. I have too many things to focus on—like being an artist, you know?"
fashion  music  nyc  rock  aesthetics  art 
july 2009 by allaboutgeorge
Salon.com Arts & Entertainment | "Public Enemies"
The picture throws off an aura of wistfulness, which may be Mann's acknowledgment that of course he can't re-create the past. The best he can do is to honor the idea of it, storybook-style, and to remind us that before there was gangsta, there were gangsters.
movies  cinema  film  aesthetics  history  crime  reviews 
july 2009 by allaboutgeorge
The Incidental Pleasures of
"[T]he best rejoinder to Public Enemies is Michael Jackson’s Smooth Criminal video, which I watched again after the singer-dancer’s inevitable, untimely death. It’s a tommy-gun gangster fantasia with a touch of Guys and Dolls, and it’s everything Public Enemies isn’t: madly inventive, genre-bending, a passionate tribute to the artist as outlaw/loner. The video reminds you why the gangster has become an existential hero in pop culture: It’s how he seizes the space. On some level Michael Mann knows that, but he’s paralyzed by his pretentions and specious morality. And he can’t dance."
video  pop  movies  cinema  film  acting  aesthetics  identity  dance  beauty 
june 2009 by allaboutgeorge
Pitchfork: Grime / Dubstep
"At the moment I'm into clashing two or more musical clichés but from contrasting styles, for instance playing a classic deep house stab over a jungle sounding pad and putting them on a beat that's got some dancehall in there," he says. "The tunes I'm most proud of are the mongrels bred from lots of different styles. There's bound to be some car crashes along the way but hopefully I'll be able to spot them and stop them being inflicted on people.

"I'm exploring as many influences as possible, trying not to get too comfortable with a particular arrangement style or set of sounds. I was listening almost exclusively to jungle and d'n'b until dubstep came along so I'm new to a lot of the influences that are going in my tunes. I'll binge for a few days on a few artists who I've recently discovered, write a couple of tunes vibing off them and quickly move on."
music  uk  songwriting  dance  aesthetics  design 
june 2009 by allaboutgeorge
Interview with Emily Wells | AfterEllen.com
"How do you feel about the outcome of your live show vs. studio work? Is it as satisfying?" "EW: It’s totally satisfying. In a way you can’t dwell on things. It happened in the moment or it is happening, you know what I’m saying? With studio recordings you can take it with you and play it in all sorts of places. You can nit pick it, so there’s a type of restlessness with that. I love the feeling after playing a live show. There’s no drug that can compare."
songwriting  music  aesthetics  beauty  work  presence 
may 2009 by allaboutgeorge
Ping - Should Design Be Held Back by a Tyranny of Data? - NYTimes.com
“Using data is fundamental to what we do,” Mr. Bowman said. “But we take all that with a grain of salt. Anytime you make design changes, the most vocal people are the ones who dislike what you’ve done. We don’t just throw the numbers in a spreadsheet.”
data  information  web  design  google  twitter  internet  aesthetics 
may 2009 by allaboutgeorge
Afromusicology by Kyraocity
"Blogging my thoughts about ethnomusicology and the African diaspora. I'm Kyra D. Gaunt, an Associate Professor of Cultural Anthropology & Ethnomusicology in NYC."
music  black  race  afrofuturism  aesthetics  identity 
may 2009 by allaboutgeorge
All About Bob: Alt-rock legend Bob Mould talks about his music, his writing and the uncertainty of life: Feature Story at Metro Weekly magazine - News articles from Washington DC newspaper
Rarely can we predict how life is going to go. There are parts of it that are autobiographical, certain lines or stanzas are things that literally happened to me. And then there are things that are completely observational, things that I've overheard at a bar or things that friends have confided. Inside of that, the needle goes back and forth between the two. As I've gotten older, I've realized that in art or in storytelling, there's really not that much difference between fiction and non-fiction. The job is to stand back and let the story unfold. It has to have an emotional connection so that you can tell that story. That's the core of where I'm at as a writer now. That's how life goes. You hope it's going to end better this time, whatever it is. Whether it's something as simple as a conversation, or something as complicated as the passing of a parent or a loved one, you hope the next time you're better equipped for the ending.
songwriting  story  writing  fiction  nonfiction  death  aesthetics  identity  music 
april 2009 by allaboutgeorge
GQ Blog on men.style.com
Arena rock is the closest thing to a show tune in popular music—and I mean that lovingly. It’s epic, it’s sweeping, its themes are big. It gives itself to something theatrical.
music  rock  aesthetics  theater  men 
march 2009 by allaboutgeorge
Zack Snyder, 'Watchmen's' watched man - Los Angeles Times
"Twenty years ago my parents wouldn't know who the X-Men were, and now everybody knows that stuff," Snyder said. "It means that deconstruction of the superhero is something you can do. All those movies have led to a point where we can finally have 'Watchmen' with a Superman character who doesn't want to save the world and a Batman who has trouble in bed. Essentially, I want to kill the superhero movie because now we can."
movies  film  fiction  aesthetics  story  comics  cinema 
march 2009 by allaboutgeorge
Music - M. Ward Is a Four-Track Guy in a Digital World - NYTimes.com
Ward’s job as he sees it is to capture something: less an emotional state or an overarching theme than an instant. “I wrote this song just to remember the endless endless summer in your laugh,” he sings on “Hold Time,” his album’s moody but sweet title track.

“I can trace all my songs to a specific moment,” he said. “Sometimes it’s as insignificant as a friend of yours saying something, a turn of phrase. Other times it’s like an epiphany moment or just something beautiful that you see. Some people are able to take a picture of that and capture it. I don’t have that skill.”
songwriting  creativity  music  rock  beauty  aesthetics  writing  photography 
february 2009 by allaboutgeorge
Powells.com From the Author - Lauren Groff - Rooms
I have a friend who writes outdoors. He likes the fresh air, he says, the light, the thousand shifting changes in the world. Outside, his imagination can go wild, like a pet cat that escapes and imagines itself feral until kibble-time.

This friend is the kind of person who makes you drunk with exuberance, and after I heard about his method, I decided that I, too, would become a plein-air scribbler, sunburnt and prolific. For an afternoon, I sat at the park down the street and waited for inspiration to descend like Glinda the Good Witch and touch me with her twinkly wand.

Instead, the white sky above was too much like a blank page, infinite in possibility, and, terrified, I slunk on home. I do best in small, dark places, and would probably write well in a closet, if it weren't for the indignity of sitting amongst the coats.
writing  fiction  shortstory  story  creativity  space  work  aesthetics  memory 
january 2009 by allaboutgeorge
Salon.com Arts & Entertainment | Springsteen can't save us
The word "dream" appears repeatedly in the Springsteen songbook. "Born to Run" first diagnosed the problem of the "runaway American dream," and Springsteen then planned an escape from "dreams that tear you apart" ("Promised Land"), a "dream where everything goes wrong" ("The Price You Pay"), a world that "slowly grinds your dreams away" ("Blood Brothers"). For Springsteen, dreams of love go unrequited ("One Step Up"), people dream of fields of blood ("Devils and Dust"), dreams are only good for reuniting with the dead ("Mary's Place").
songwriting  writing  creativity  dreams  music  rock  newjersey  aesthetics 
january 2009 by allaboutgeorge
RT: Features : Swarming – the new face of subversion and terrorism
However, the latest advances in communications and information technology has made swarming one of the most attractive combat doctrines of the near future. To use swarming tactics successfully, combat units, like locusts and bees, need a high degree of mutual alertness and a kind of ‘critical mass’ to ensure spontaneous decision-making and instantaneous synchronization of efforts. It is, basically, networking, but of a kind where no time is lost on the forming of the necessary network and on causing it to act.
physics  aesthetics  information  communications  fauna  war  terrorism 
november 2008 by allaboutgeorge
How flags flap | Blowin' in the wind | The Economist
OFTEN it pays not to be leader of the pack—just ask a racing cyclist or a Formula One driver. Conserving energy by following the leader, a trick known as slipstreaming, can give a rider or driver that extra bit of juice to pull ahead at the very last moment. In the natural world, however, bodies are more likely to be flexible, like a fish’s, rather than rigid, like a car’s. In these systems, as a recent paper in Physical Review Letters reports, it is the leader that enjoys a significant dynamic advantage over the followers.
science  sports  fauna  aesthetics  cars  physics 
november 2008 by allaboutgeorge
The egos have landed | Salon Arts & Entertainment
Why is something that ought to hurt the ear so damn listenable? Partly it's because the tunes are so spare in their construction. But it's mostly because there's a unity of form and content. These abrasive digital effects -- noises that make the ear flinch, like the sudden surge of distortion on the vocal early on in "Love Lockdown" -- are motivated by the desire to find new ways to communicate pain. West wants to make his music sound how he feels, which is raw, skinless, unprotected.
music  reviews  hiphop  rock  aesthetics  beauty  creativity 
november 2008 by allaboutgeorge
Movie Review - 'Australia' - Oh, Give Me a Home Where Nicole Kidman, Hugh Jackman and Kangaroos Roam - NYTimes.com
The usual line about kitsch is that it’s an affront, a cheapening of the culture, a danger. “Kitsch causes two tears to flow in quick succession,” Milan Kundera wrote. “The first tear says: How nice to see children running on the grass! The second tear says: How nice to be moved, together with all mankind, by children running on the grass! It is the second tear that makes kitsch kitsch.”
aesthetics  movies  cinema  film  australia  creativity  emotion 
november 2008 by allaboutgeorge
Wesley Morris' "How gay is that?" - The Boston Globe
To get more decent gay comedies or dramas, a filmmaker needs a delicate balance of frivolity and gravity, and reserve and recklessness - fearlessness, not too many speeches, and a respect for an audience that considers itself no different from other paying customers. Talent and a certain moderation are excellent tools to start transforming more movies you wouldn't see into movies you would.
gay  cinema  film  movies  aesthetics  identity  writing  fiction 
november 2008 by allaboutgeorge
Powells.com From the Author - Lin Jensen
"I understand now that the interventions I make into the ecosystem will reverberate throughout the universe. And I know that my actions can be either helpful or damaging. Nature has its own wisdom, an inherent harmony born of natural consequence. If I can act in accord with that harmony, I can shape my actions to the earth's own economy and thereby avoid introducing harmful consequences.

"I try be mindful these days of what I do, and of where and to what consequence I do it. If I'm intent on 'digging a hole' (either an actual hole or understood as an analogue for any other interaction with the body of the earth), I try to notice where the dirt is piling up."
ecology  environment  aesthetics  buddhism  nature  identity  writing 
november 2008 by allaboutgeorge
Sometimes it hits you... - Ta-Nehisi Coates
"And then something like this happens, and after years of feeling ashamed you look up and you see what you represent on your best days, what you hope your fam represents--vision, courage, competition, confidence--is represented at the highest levels of this country. You wake up and realize that your best face, is the face of the country, is the face of the world."
obama  elections  campaigns  politics  identity  black  aesthetics  usa 
november 2008 by allaboutgeorge
Luomo's "Convivial" | Pitchfork
The marvel, and perhaps the necessity of the Luomo project, is bound up in the shock of physical intimacy; pleasurable, overwhelming, and at times a little scary. "Am I really feeling this?" "Is it you who is making me feel this way?" Yes, and yes.
pitchfork  music  reviews  relationships  aesthetics 
november 2008 by allaboutgeorge
Powells.com Interviews - Art Spiegelman
When you look at someone who's already gotten a clue about something, you say, "Yes! That's right! And then you could do this..."

But if one thinks about art-making in terms of its forms, giving form to your thoughts and feelings, it gets you to look for the secret language that's inside all art. Aside from cubism and certain kinds of art like that, you're not looking at the form. You're looking at figures strolling in a park, and only when you've learned to look at a painting do you realize that all these geometric forms are placed in such a way that every space is locked into jigsaw puzzle pieces on a rectangle. It lets you see the bones under the skin.
comics  art  creativity  thinking  aesthetics  language 
october 2008 by allaboutgeorge
Op-Ed Contributor - Margare Atwood - A Matter of Life and Debt - NYTimes.com
We are social creatures who must interact for mutual benefit, and — the negative version — who harbor grudges when we feel we’ve been treated unfairly. Without a sense of fairness and also a level of trust, without a system of reciprocal altruism and tit-for-tat — one good turn deserves another, and so does one bad turn — no one would ever lend anything, as there would be no expectation of being paid back. And people would lie, cheat and steal with abandon, as there would be no punishments for such behavior.
money  work  ethics  writing  essay  aesthetics  relationships  psychology  altruism  happiness  crime  behavior  culture  history  economics  literature  sociology  finance  rhetoric 
october 2008 by allaboutgeorge
The many moods of John Adams. - By Nathan Heller - Slate Magazine
"What classical music is—and what, if anything, that distinction preserves—gets even fuzzier in an age of high-concept rock and avant-garde jazz. What does a classical composer do?"
classical  classicalmusic  music  creativity  rock  jazz  aesthetics  identity 
october 2008 by allaboutgeorge
Mainstream News Outlets Start Linking to Other Sites - NYTimes.com
"It’s a change in mindset. We’re looking at the fragmented local market and saying, ‘We’re going to provide a destination where you can come and search across different segments.’ ”
newspapers  media  journalism  usa  blogging  web  online  news  attention  reputation  local  aesthetics 
october 2008 by allaboutgeorge
Biking on a Brompton: One Reporter’s View - Green Inc. Blog - NYTimes.com
"Once you have the knack, a rider can tuck in the back wheel, fold the midsection, flip down the handlebars and left pedal, and lower the seat – all in about 20 seconds."
travel  bicycling  aesthetics  exercise  cities  urban  nytimes  green  environment  health 
october 2008 by allaboutgeorge
Stephen Fry on the road - Telegraph
"There is one phrase I probably heard more than any other on my travels: 'Only in America!' If you were to hear a Briton say 'Tch! Only in Britain, eh?', it would probably refer to something that was either predictable, miserable, oppressive, dull, bureaucratic, queuey, damp, spoil-sporty or incompetent – or a mixture of all of those. 'Only in America!', on the other hand, always refers to something shocking, amazing, eccentric, wild, weird or unpredictable. Americans are constantly being surprised by their own country. Britons are constantly having their worst fears confirmed about theirs. This seems to be one of the major differences between us."
usa  uk  travel  identity  aesthetics  reputation  politics  culture  humor  books 
september 2008 by allaboutgeorge
Basics - Gut Instinct’s Surprising Role in Math - NYTimes.com
“What’s interesting and surprising in our results is that the same system we spend years trying to acquire in school, and that we use to send a man to the moon, and that has inspired the likes of Plato, Einstein and Stephen Hawking, has something in common with what a rat is doing when it’s out hunting for food. I find that deeply moving.”
mathematics  science  aesthetics  education  biology  fauna  animals  philosophy  attention 
september 2008 by allaboutgeorge
Laura Barton takes a sceptical look at opera | Music | The Guardian
"I am, surely, exactly the sort of person they are trying to tempt. I spend much of my time listening to music and attending gigs. I will happily spend vast sums on festivals. Yet classical music has always seemed a cold and distant land, set far away across a sea of elitism."
classical  classicalmusic  music  uk  aesthetics  culture  opera 
september 2008 by allaboutgeorge
The new Joy of Sex: why you still need help in bed - Times Online
“I think what a lot of the other material out there misses is how powerful sex is; people die for it, literally. One of the ways we've gone wrong in the past is that we haven't recognised this emotional power. Sex isn't a game - it's not pink and black and fluffy. So I think there still is a need for a book that takes sex seriously.”
sex  books  aesthetics  biology  science  reading  1970s  uk  gender  men  women  health 
august 2008 by allaboutgeorge
Perception propels TV's latest chic geek - The Boston Globe
"Every time I do art, I feel like I'm not serving utility in a direct way. Every time I do science, I miss the spark of the creative impulse. But I've come to realize it's the same. In science or art, it's about intro
science  art  aesthetics  creativity  research  television  cable 
august 2008 by allaboutgeorge
Sex and the semicolon - The Boston Globe
"Sexist language aside, though, the semicolon debate is a model of the way we should approach most disagreements about usage issues: as matters of taste, not law. The interesting questions, after all, aren't about using its and it's; they're the ones that have, yes, nuance and complexity."
grammar  language  english  beauty  sex  aesthetics  copyediting  editing  speech  writing 
august 2008 by allaboutgeorge
Ta-Nehisi Coates (August 12, 2008) - Billy Dee Williams says "Step away from the Cotillion, ma'am"
"I try to render the world through an African-American male lens--its the only one I have. But I also try to remember that the world is bigger than that."
race  identity  quotes  ethnicity  writing  aesthetics 
august 2008 by allaboutgeorge
Five First Steps Toward an Exploration of Classical Music | 1000 Recordings to Hear Before You Die
"The great composer Igor Stravinsky once wrote that 'the trouble with music appreciation in general is that people are taught to have too much respect for music. They should be taught to love it instead.' [...]"
music  classical  classicalmusic  beauty  aesthetics  reviews 
august 2008 by allaboutgeorge
Paris Match: Style: vanityfair.com
Carla Bruni-Sarkozy: "Modeling has a reputation for emptiness, but it’s not. It is certainly not German philosophy, but it was very instructive, because it was made up of real life. You travel, you are always alone, and you better be well grounded, because it’s easy to lose yourself."
beauty  women  acting  aesthetics  identity  philosophy  travel 
august 2008 by allaboutgeorge
About Face: How Plastic Surgery Can Give an Older Woman the Face of a Baby -- New York Magazine
"When I tell her that making the face bigger or 'fatter' seems counterintuitive, she says, 'I know, that’s why no one was doing it twenty years ago.' 'How did you figure it out?' I ask. 'Because I was doing lipo and I don’t like to throw anything away.'"
beauty  women  youth  children  nyc  magazine  art  aesthetics  aging  identity  celebrity  medicine  fashion  health  culture  gender  feminism  surgery 
august 2008 by allaboutgeorge
Powells.com Ink Q&A - Nikolai Grozni
"Life is absurd — and so is enlightenment. Life is funny — and so is enlightenment. Life is larger than categories, absolutes, and dogmas. And so is enlightenment."
buddhism  religion  spirituality  travel  india  aesthetics  humor  ritual  memory 
july 2008 by allaboutgeorge
Powell's Books - PowellsBooks.BLOG - Notes on Narrative
"All the same, you may find much of what follows to be nothing more than common sense. But think of it as a pleasant, country-weekend drive right into the center of a fellow writer's professional advice."
story  writing  fiction  creativity  aesthetics  criticism 
july 2008 by allaboutgeorge
globeandmail.com: Overdressers: Beware of suspicious minds
"If you dress at a higher level than you normally do, people will say, 'What's he doing? He's dressing like this for a reason; what is it?' [...]"
fashion  men  women  work  jobs  aesthetics 
july 2008 by allaboutgeorge
On the dopeness of "The Wackness" - Beyond the Multiplex - Salon.com
"All this great music was coming out then. Especially the hip-hop -- that was what I connected to on a visceral, personal level. The music you're listening to really determines a lot about your memories."
hiphop  cinema  film  movies  nyc  music  aesthetics  identity  cities 
july 2008 by allaboutgeorge
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