robertogreco + improvisation   46

Entrevista a Gastón Soublette - Parte I: La Sabiduría Tradicional - YouTube
"Realizada en Limache el 3 de octubre de 2015 en ocasión del Premio Nueva Civilización por su contribución al estudio y valorización de la cultura y la sabiduría popular creativa.
El Galardón será otorgado el Miércoles 25 de Noviembre, a las 18.30 hrs. en el marco del Simposio Internacional 'Desafíos de la Política en un Mundo Complejo', ocasión en que don Gastón Soublette ofrecerá una Conferencia Magistral."

[Parte II: El Arte
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wjn8B-aSFaE

Parte III: La Cultura Mapuche
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N27LAd906yM

Parte IV: El Conocimiento Científico
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DjEj-i0dcUs

Parte V: Filosofía y Educación
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=neci7LTwH_8

Parte VI: Religión y Cultura
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=neyEPrRH_oQ

Parte VII: Una Nueva Civilización
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=930FCVu9_7M ]
gastónsoublette  chile  history  mapuche  science  education  philosophy  culture  religion  civilization  future  art  music  tradition  oraltradition  oral  orality  diegoportales  improvisation  wisdom  mexico  precolumbian  inca  maya  aztec  quechua  literature  epics  araucaria  aesthetics  transcendentalism  myths  myth  arthistory  2015  perú 
7 weeks ago by robertogreco
26 | Black Mountain College — Do Not Touch
"We're going back to school and learning about an arts college in the mountains of Asheville, North Carolina. For 24 years the college attracted famous teachers and produced students who would go on to achieve their own fame. I have two guests speaking to me about Black Mountain - Kate Averett from the Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center and Professor Eva Diaz from Pratt Institute."
bmc  2018  blackmountaincollege  bauhaus  annialbers  johndewey  art  arts  education  highered  highereducation  alternative  experimental  unschooling  deschooling  democracy  horizontality  evadiaz  kateaverett  history  arthistory  pedagogy  lcproject  openstudioproject  form  exploration  liberalarts  roberrauschenberg  willemdekooning  abstractexpressionism  howwework  discipline  self  identity  johncage  mercecunningham  self-directedlearning  self-directed  learning  howwelearn  howweteach  teaching  vision  cognition  expressionism  expression  music  dance  buckminsterfuller  technique  chance  happenings  anarchism  ego  spontaneity  unknown  improvisation  radicalism  transilience  northcarolina  transience  hippies  communes  integration  jacoblawrence  almastonewilliams  outsiders  refugees  inclusion  inclusivity  openness  gender  rayjohnson  elainedekooining  karenkarnes  dorothearockburn  hazellarsenarcher  blackmountaincollegemuseum  susanweil  maryparkswashington  josefalbers  charlesolson  poetry  johnandrewrice 
october 2018 by robertogreco
An Interview with Fred Moten, Part 1 | Literary Hub
"In Praise of Harold Bloom, Collaboration and Book Fetishes"

[See also: "An Interview with Fred Moten, Pt. II | Literary Hub: On Radical Indistinctness and Thought Flavor à la Derrida"
http://lithub.com/an-interview-with-fred-moten-pt-ii/ ]
fredmoten  interviews  2015  adamfitzgerald  jacquesderrida  tored  collaboration  poetry  music  jazz  improvisation 
january 2018 by robertogreco
Books that have shaped our thinking – Nava PBC
"Recommended reads related to civic tech, health, government, behavioral science, design and engineering

At Nava we have a living Google Doc where we link to books that help us understand the systems and architecture we use. The intention of this document is to form a baseline of readings that new employees will need and to share with other employees good resources for being productive.

Below are some of our favorites from that list:

Sorting Things Out: Classification and its Consequences
by Susan Leigh Star and Geoffrey C. Bowker
This covers, in great detail, the astounding ways that the models we make for the world end up influencing how we interact with it. This is incredibly relevant to our work: the data models we define and the way we classify and interpret data have profound and often invisible impacts on large populations. — Sha Hwang, Co-founder and Head of Creative

Decoded
by Jay Z
Decoded is Jay Z’s autobiography and describes his experience as a black man growing up in an impoverished neighborhood in NYC. In particular, there is a passage about poor people’s relationship to the government that changed the way I think about the perception of those government services that I work to improve. This book showed me that the folks we usually want to serve most well in government, are the ones who are most likely to have had profoundly negative experiences with government. It taught me that, when I work on government services, I am rebuilding a relationship, not starting a new one. Context is so important. It’s a fun, fast read and I used to ask that our Apprentices read at least that passage, if not the whole book, before starting with our team at the NYC Mayor’s Office. — Genevieve Gaudet, Designer

Seeing like a State
by James C. Scott
A reminder that the governance of people at scale can have unintended consequences when removed from people’s daily lives and needs. You won’t think of the grid, property lines, and last names the same way again.— Shelly Ni, Designer

Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking
by Susan Cain
Cain uses data and real world examples of how and why introverts are overlooked in American culture and then discusses how both introverts and extroverts can play a role in ensuring introverts get a seat at the table and a word in the conversation. — Aimee Barciauskas, Software Engineer

Capital in the Twenty-First Century
by Thomas Piketty
This book analyzes the long-term fluctuations in wealth inequality across the globe, from the eighteenth century to present. He exposes an incredibly important issue in a compelling way, using references not just to data, but to history and literature to prove his point. — Mari Miyachi, Software Engineer

Master of the Senate: The Years of Lyndon Johnson III
by Robert A. Caro
Our most underhanded president also brought us Medicaid, Medicare, and civil rights. Was Machiavelli so bad after all? — Alex Prokop, Software Engineer

Praying for Sheetrock
by Melissa Fay Greene
A true, close-up story of McIntosh County, Georgia, a place left behind by the greater Civil Rights movement of the 1960s. This is a story about the civil rights movement that shakes up the community in the 1970s, and this is also a story about burnout, and organizing, and intergenerational trauma. — Shelly Ni, Designer

The Healing of America: A Global Quest for Better, Cheaper, and Fairer Health Care
by T. R. Reid
Reid explores different models for healthcare in nations across the globe. He’s searching for an understanding of why America’s system is comparatively so expensive and unsuccessful, leaving so many uninsured and unhealthy. There is a great chapter on Ayurvedic medicine which (spoiler alert) seemed to work for the author when he was suffering from a shoulder injury! — Aimee Barciauskas, Software Engineer

Creativity, Inc: Overcoming the Unseen Forces That Stand in the Way of True Inspiration
by Ed Catmull and Amy Wallace
A very enjoyable and inspirational read about the history of Pixar from founder Ed Catmull himself. It delves into what sets a creative company apart and teaches lessons like “people are more important than ideas” and “simple answers are seductive” without reading like a typical business book.— Lauren Peterson, Product Manager

Thinking, Fast and Slow
by Daniel Kahneman
The magnum opus of Nobel laureate Daniel Kahneman. Kahneman is a psychologist but his Nobel is in Economics, and unlike other winners in this category, his win stands the test of time. You will be a much better decision maker after reading this book and understanding the two modes our brains work in: System 1 intuitive “fast” thinking and System 2 deliberate “slow” thinking. It is a beast of a book, but unlike the vast majority of (pop) psychology books, this book distills decades of groundbreaking research and is the basis for so many other psychology books and research that if you read this book carefully, you won’t have to read those other books. There are so many topics in this book, I’ll just link to the Wikipedia page to give you a flavor.— Alicia Liu, Software Engineer

Nudge
by Richard H. Thaler and Cass R. Sunstein
This covers how sensible “choice architecture” can improve the decisions and behavior of people. Much of what’s covered comes from decades of research in behavioral science and economics, and has a wide range of applications — from design, user research, and policy to business and everyday life. — Sawyer Hollenshead, Designer

The Checklist Manifesto: How to Get Things Right
by Atul Gawande
This book is about how checklists can help even experts avoid mistakes. Experience isn’t enough. I try to apply the lessons of this book to the processes we use to operate our software.—Evan Kroske, Software Engineer

The Soul of a New Machine
by Tracy Kidder
This book details the work of a computer engineering team racing to design a computer. While the pace of work for the team is certainly unsustainable and perhaps even unhealthy at times, the highs and lows they go through as they debug their new minicomputer will be familiar to engineers and members of tight-knit groups of all varieties. The rush to finish their project, which was thought to be a dark horse at the beginning of the book, is enthralling and will keep you engaged with this book late into the night. — Samuel Keller, Software Engineer

Release It!: Design and Deploy Production-Ready Software
by Michael T. Nygard
One of the best, most practical books I’ve ever read about creating resilient software on “modern” web architectures. While it may not be the most relevant with regards to cloud-based infrastructure, the patterns and processes described within are still very applicable. This is one of the few technical books I have read cover-to-cover. — Scott Smith, Software Engineer

Design for Democracy
by Marcia Lausen
From an AIGA project to improve the design of ballots— both paper and electronic— following the “hanging chad” drama of the 2000 election, comes this review of best practices for designers, election officials, and anyone interested in the intersection of design and voting.—Shelly Ni, Designer

The Design of Everyday Things
by Donald A. Norman
This is a classic for learning about design and its sometimes unintended consequences. I read it years ago and I still think about it every time I’m in an elevator. It’s a great introduction to a designer’s responsibility and designing in the real world for actual humans, who can make mistakes and surprising choices about how to use the designs you create. — Genevieve Gaudet, Designer

More recommendations from the team
• The Unexotic Underclass
• Open Government: Collaboration, Transparency, and Participation in Practice
• Everybody Hurts: Content for Kindness
• Poverty Interrupted: Applying Behavioral Science to the Context of Chronic Scarcity [PDF]
• Designing for Social Change: Strategies for Community-Based Graphic Design
• Making Comics: Storytelling Secrets of Comics, Manga, and Graphic Novels
• The New New Journalism: Conversations with America’s Best Nonfiction Writers on their Craft
• The Furious Improvisation: How the WPA and a Cast of Thousands Made High Art out of Desperate Times
• The Effective Engineer: How to Leverage Your Efforts In Software Engineering to Make a Disproportionate and Meaningful Impact
• Effective DevOps: Building a Culture of Collaboration, Affinity, and Tooling at Scale"
nava  books  booklists  design  education  health  healthcare  sawyerhollenshed  jayz  susanleighstar  shahwang  geoffreybowker  decoded  jamescscott  seeinglikeastate  susancain  introverts  quiet  thomaspiketty  economics  melissafaygreene  civilrrights  socialjustice  creativity  edcatmull  amyallace  pixar  teams  readinglists  toread  howwethink  thinking  danielkahneman  government  richardthaler  casssunstein  atulgawande  tracykidder  medicine  checklists  process  michaelnygard  software  ui  ux  democracy  donalnorman  devops  improvisation  collaboration  sfsh  journalism  kindness  socialchange  transparency  participation  participatory  opengovernment  open 
may 2017 by robertogreco
CCA Wattis Institute for Contemporary Arts: David Hammons
"Spirits aren’t something you see or even understand. That’s just not how they work. They are too abstract, too invisible, and move too quickly. They don’t live anywhere, but only run by and pass through, and no matter how old they are, they are always light years ahead. They do what they want, whenever they want. And under specific circumstances, at specific times, in specific places, to specific people, for specific reasons, they make their presence known.

In the Congo Basin in Central Africa, they are called minkisi. They are the hiding place for people’s souls.

David Hammons is a spirit catcher. He walks the streets the way an improviser searches for notes, looking for those places and objects where dormant spirits go to hide, and empowers them again. He knows about the streetlamps and the mailboxes where the winos hide their bottles in shame. Hammons calls it tragic magic—the art of converting pain into poetry.

[David Hammons. "Spade With Chains," 1973.]

Much has been said about the materials Hammons uses in his work. Most are taken from the street and cost very little—greasy paper bags, shovels, ice, cigarettes, rubber tubes, hair, rocks, basketballs, fried food, bikes, torn plastic tarps, Kool-Aid. Some of them are (knowingly) borrowed from the vocabulary of other artists, while others are closely tied to his own life and chosen surroundings in Harlem. Much has also been said about the meaning of his work—its arguments, its politics, what it’s “about.” And while much of what has been said has been useful, it has also been partly beside the point.

Materials are something one can see, and arguments are something one can understand, and that’s just not what Hammons is after. He’s interested in how much those wine bottles still somehow contain the lips that once drank from them. He’s after the pun on spirit—as in the drink, but also as in the presence of something far more abstract.
Black hair is the oldest hair in the world. You’ve got tons of people’s spirits in your hands when you work with that stuff.

[David Hammons. "Wine Leading the Wine," 1969. Courtesy of Hudgins Family Collection, New York. Photo: Tim Nighswander/IMAGING4ART.]

If Hammons is suspicious of all that is visible, it might be because the visible, in America, is all that is white. It’s all those Oscar winners, all those museum trustees, and all those faces on all those dollar bills. Some artists work to denounce, reveal, or illustrate racial injustice, and to make visible those who are not. Hammons, on the other hand, prefers invisibility—or placing the visible out of reach. He doesn’t have a lesson to teach or a point to prove, and his act of protest is simply to abstract, because that’s what will make the visible harder to recognize and the intelligible harder to understand.

If Duchamp was uninterested in what the eye can see, Hammons is oppressed by it—it’s not the same thing.

[David Hammons. "In the Hood," 1993. Courtesy of Tilton Gallery, New York.]
I’m trying to make abstract art out of my experience, just like Thelonius Monk.

For Hammons, musicians have always been both the model and the front line. When George Lewis says that “the truth of improvisation involves survival,” it’s because improv musicians look for a way forward, one note at a time, with no map to guide them and with no rules or languages to follow other than ones they invent and determine themselves. It forces them to analyze where they are and forces them to do something about it, on their own terms. Doesn’t get much more political than that.

Or, as Miles Davis once put it, “I do not play jazz.” He plays something that invents its own vocabulary—a vocabulary that is shared only by those who don’t need to know what to call it or how to contain it. And just as Miles Davis doesn’t play jazz, David Hammons doesn’t make art.

[David Hammons. "Blue Rooms," 2000 (installation view, The Centre for Contemporary Art, Ujazdowkski Castle, Warsaw).]
I’m trying to create a hieroglyphics that was definitely black.

Hammons goes looking for spirits in music, poetry, and dirt. He knows they like to hide inside of sounds, lodge themselves between words or within puns, and linger around the used-up and the seemingly worthless. He knows he’s caught some when he succeeds in rousing the rubble and gets it to make its presence felt. Like Noah Purifoy, he ignores the new and the expensive in favor of the available. Like Federico Fellini, he spends his time in the bowels of culture and makes them sing.

[David Hammons. "(Untitled) Basketball Drawing," 2006.]

There are the materials that make the art—those are the foot soldiers—but there is also the attitude that makes the artist. Hammons has his way of thinking and his way of behaving, which is once again not something one sees or necessarily understands, but is something that makes its presence known, the way spirits make their presence felt. There will be some who won’t recognize it and others who do—and his work is meant only for those who see themselves in it.
Did you ever see Elvis Presley’s resume? Or John Lennon’s resume? Fuck that resume shit.

Ornette was Ornette because of what he could blow, but also because he never gave into other people’s agendas or expectations.

What matters even more than having your own agenda is letting others know that it doesn’t fit theirs. “To keep my rhythm,” as Hammons puts it, “there’s always a fight, with any structure.” The stakes are real because should you let your guard down, “they got rhythms for you,” and you’ll soon be thinking just like they do. And in a white and racist America, in a white and racist art world, Hammons doesn’t want to be thinking just like most people do. His is a recalcitrant politics of presence: where he doesn’t seem to belong, he appears; where he does belong, he vanishes.

In short: don’t play a game whose management you don’t control.

[David Hammons. "Higher Goals," 1987. Photo: Matt Weber.]
That’s the only way you have to treat people with money—you have to let these people know that your agenda is light years beyond their thinking patterns.

The Whitney Biennial? I don’t like the job description. A major museum retrospective? Get back to me with something I can’t understand.

Exhibitions are too clean and make too much sense—plus the very authority of many mainstream museums is premised on values that Hammons doesn’t consider legitimate or at least does not share. He is far more interested in walking and talking with Jr., a man living on the streets of the East Village, who taught him about how the homeless divide up their use of space according to lines marked by the positioning of bricks on a wall. Those lines have teeth. In a museum, art is stripped of all its menace.

[David Hammons. "Bliz-aard Ball Sale," 1983. Photo: Dawoud Bey.]

The painter Jack Whitten once explained of how music became so central to black American life with this allegory:
When my white slave masters discovered that my drum was a subversive instrument they took it from me…. The only instrument available was my body, so I used my skin: I clapped my hands, slapped my thighs, and stomped my feet in dynamic rhythms.

David Hammons began with his skin. He pressed his skin onto paper to make prints. Over the subsequent five decades, he has found his drum.

[David Hammons. "Phat Free," 1995-99 (video still). Courtesy of Zwirner & Wirth, New York.]"
davidhammons  anthonyhuberman  art  jazz  ornettecoleman  milesdavis  theloniousmonk  material  rules  trickster  outsiders  artworld  resumes  elvispresley  johnlennon  insiders  race  racism  us  power  authority  jackwhitten  music  museums  galleries  menace  homeless  nyc  management  structure  presence  belonging  expectations  artists  fellini  noahpurifoy  availability  culture  hieroglyphics  blackness  georgelewis  improvisation  oppression  marcelduchamp  visibility  invisibility  souls  spirits 
february 2017 by robertogreco
Search results | Farm Hack
"We are a worldwide community of farmers that build and modify our own tools. We share our hacks online and at meet ups because we become better farmers when we work together.

Watch our movie. Get started here."

"FarmHack is a community for those who embrace the long-standing farm traditions of tinkering, inventing, fabricating, tweaking, and improving things that break. We are farmers of all ages, but the project has special relevance to young and beginning farmers as a place to learn from their peers' and their elders' successes, mistakes and new ideas. We also seek to bring our non-farmer allies on board: engineers, architects, designers, and the like. Together, with an open-source ethic, we can retool our farms for a sustainable future."

[via: http://engineeringathome.org/ ]
farms  farming  making  adaptations  hacking  agriculture  tools  engineering  architecture  design  tinkering  invention  inventing  fabrication  tweaking  improvisation 
february 2016 by robertogreco
Life in the Garrison | The American Conservative
"To think in this way — to think seriously in this way — is to commit oneself to slow and incremental change, to what W. H. Auden in one of his poems calls “local understanding.” It is also to acknowledge that the order and value you crave will not be handed to you by your environment; rather, you must build it ad hoc, improvising as you go with like-minded people, as you can find them."



"A genuinely conservative — i.e., conserving — counter-culture of any kind, including the Christian kind, will be similarly improvisatory, small-scale, local, fragile. It will always be aware that “to inhabit an ecology of attention that puts one squarely in the world” is a task to be re-engaged, with more or less success, every day. Over its (imaginary) gates it will carve a motto, one taken from a late Auden poem, “The Garrison”:

"Whoever rules, our duty to the City
is loyal opposition, never greening
for the big money, never neighing after
a public image.

Let us leave rebellions to the choleric
who enjoy them: to serve as a paradigm
now of what a plausible Future might be
is what we’re here for."
whauden  poems  poetry  futures  utopia  small  presence  attention  slow  scale  improvisation  local  conservatiism  christianity  alanjacobs  2015  engagement  everyday  canon 
june 2015 by robertogreco
"Girlhood" Film review - Black Girls Talking
"In Sciamma’s film there is a constant battle between the director’s desire to fictionalize and fantasize (which gives us the best scenes) and her desire to document, to be realistic and authentic, which trumps the other impulse and gives us the clichéd, rehashed tropes, images and dialogue. The greatest scenes are those where the director stops controlling the way the characters talk, lets the camera roll and observes the actresses improvising, so that the characters come to life as they interact with each other. These girls who are unable to live their girlhood publicly (because men! because society!) take refuge in a hotel room to drink, sing loudly to Rihanna and talk. The most radical move would have been to stay in that hotel room. I would watch a 3-hour movie that was a succession of static shots showing black girls talking shit, drinking, sleeping, and talking again until exhaustion. There is so much to explore, so much to say and imagine. It would be vertiginous and formally daring.

I do believe that only a black woman can direct this film, because it requires a certain empathy and therefore knowledge, which most people don’t have when it comes to telling stories about black women. Empathy demands patience, a listening ear and attentive eye. Though I was really moved by Sciamma’s desire to center the lives of black girls because she had also observed the violent absence of black female characters in French cinema, Girlhood is not enough."

[via: http://cecileemeke.tumblr.com/post/119623802527/abderrahmane-sissako-in-sciammas-film-there-is

Also noting that Cecile Emeke’s Stolling series and Ackee & Saltfish are very much what is solicited above.]
célinesciamma  film  girlhood  carefreeblackgirls  2014  power  improvisation  cecileemeke  women  gender  blackness  filmmaking  fanta  fantasylla 
may 2015 by robertogreco
“Faking It:” Counterfeits, Copies, and Uncertain Truths in Science, Technology, and Medicine :: Center for Science, Technology, Medicine, & Society
"Symposium Abstract:

We invite colleagues to join us for a two day symposium at the University of California, Berkeley on “faking it”–here construed broadly as fudging, imitating, juking, playing the trickster, pretending, feigning, re-creating, manipulating, falsifying.  Our aim is to bring together a wide variety of scholars whose work, in some way, touches upon this issue.  We invite colleagues to consider any aspect of the practices, epistemologies, ontologies, and politics of faking, copying, counterfeiting, or quackery.  We seek to amplify and incubate a growing attention to the theory and practice of fake truths on Berkeley’s campus and beyond.

Over the past several decades, science studies scholars have explored the ways in which scientific knowledge and practice is socially constructed, debated, contested, and deemed credible by the public.  Others have turned their attention to the politics and poetics of “agnotology,” or the social, political, economic, and cultural circumstances that promulgate and substantiate ignorance.  Both of these takes on the sociology of knowledge have opened up room for examining the creative ways in which actors fake, fudge, and forge. In the contested space between corporations and the broader public, for example, sociologists and historians have explored the tobacco wars, global warming debates, and the regulatory boundaries of “permissible exposure” to industrial toxins.  So too, anthropologists and STS scholars working from below are increasingly turning attention to artisanal knowledge and ingenuity, be it cultures of repair or improvisation in medicine. At each of these registers, there are possibilities for both creativity and catastrophe.

For this symposium, we invite scholars working on issues as diverse as climate change, voting machines, and art forgery, as we probe the validity of data, the fabrication of evidence, and the harmful as well as potentially liberating practices and ramifications of faking it.

Keynote Speaker:

Joseph Masco is Professor of Anthropology at the University of Chicago. He writes and teaches courses on science and technology, U.S. national security culture, political ecology, mass media, and critical theory. He is the author of The Nuclear Borderlands: The Manhattan Project in Post-Cold War New Mexico (Princeton University Press, 2006), which won the 2008 Rachel Carson Prize from the Society for the Social Studies of Science and the 2006 Robert K. Merton Prize from the Section on Science, Knowledge and Technology of the American Sociology Association. His work as been supported by the American Council of Learned Societies, The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, The Wenner-Gren Foundation and the National Endowment for the Humanities. His current work examines the evolution of the national security state in the United States, with a particular focus on the interplay between affect, technology, and threat perception within a national public sphere."
via:javierarbona  faking  fakingit  trickster  events  2015  imitation  fakes  impostors  falsification  manipulation  copying  counterfeiting  quackery  agnotology  ignorance  fraud  science  sociology  knowledge  forgery  anthropology  improvisation  notknowing  medicine  creativity  fabrication  evidence  truth  josephmasco  technology  culture  society  academia  ethics  invisibility  bullshit 
march 2015 by robertogreco
Lagos Wide and Close Online
"An Interactive Journey into an Exploding City"

"Every day, hundreds of people start new lives in Lagos, Nigeria. This megacity is home to an estimated 13 million people who very survival depends on improvisation, networking, and risk-taking.

In 2001, architect Rem Koolhaas and filmmaker Bregtje van der Haak went to Lagos to document one of fastest growing cities in Africa. Based on research by the Harvard Project on the City, this website represents a unique engagement with an exploding city, capturing multiple perspectives of a volatile moment in its evolution.

In this interactive documentary film, the information has been organised according to distance. Loosely based on the trajectory of bus driver Olawole Busayo, it presents intimate encounters with the city and its people on the one hand, and a more removed perspective of Lagos on the other. In the one hour film, viewers join Busayo for his daily journey in the yellow minivan. Switch between a wide and a close view of Lagos and choose between three audio tracks: comments by Rem Koolhaas, conversations with Lagos citizens, or city sounds."



"This interactive documentary is an online adaptation of the DVD Lagos Wide & Close - An Interactive Journey into an Exploding City (2004). As one of the first interactive documentaries ever made, and a rare documentation of Lagos at a volatile moment in its evolution, we decided to make it available on the Internet in 2014.

The interactive film presents a selection of video and audio of Lagos recorded in 2001. It separates the distant – wide — and the intimate – close — views of the city enabling the viewer to switch between these perspectives interactively. Rather than following a dramatic storyline, it aims to bring the viewer close to the reality of what it means to live and work in Lagos, to move alongside bus driver Olawole Busayo and other Lagosians, and to delve into the city’s layered fabric, slowly making sense of the rules, the possibilities, and lifestyles of Lagos.

Increased bandwidth makes it now possible to play the two video channels and three audio channels in parallel online. The Lagos research project by Rem Koolhaas and The Harvard Project on the City, on which this interactive film is based, has not been published yet. With this online adaptation, we hope to provide a permanent and accessible resource for those interested in understanding Lagos and rapid urban growth.

The Explosive Growth of Lagos

Reliable statistics are not available, but based on UN reports and the Lagos city census, it is estimated that every day, hundreds of people start new lives in the African city of Lagos. As the largest port and commercial centre of Nigeria, it is now home to approximately 15 million people. This dangerous, polluted, and in many ways, dysfunctional city, has drainage problems, relentless traffic jams, and shortages of water and electricity, but is somehow working for those who move there to start new lives.

How and why does a city with so many problems continue to grow against all odds? In 2000, architect Rem Koolhaas decided to study Lagos in an attempt to understand the hidden logic that makes a “dysfunctional” city function. His research revealed a population’s unique ability to cope inventively with an urban landscape of disorder and to bring order into it. Lagosians have equipped their expanding metropolis with a finely meshed web of efficient self-organizing networks, challenging the dominant idea that “Lagos doesn’t work.”

Loosely based on the trajectories of bus driver Olawole Busayo, this interactive film provides a wide and a close perspective on an expanding city. In three separate audio tracks, it provides a glimpse of the lives of eight Lagos inhabitants, revealing the creative relationships they develop with their urban environment. In parallel to Busayo’s journey and interviews with Lagosians, Rem Koolhaas voices his reactions, interpretations, and changing attitudes towards Lagos during his five years of research.

Recording in 2001

In 2001, Rem Koolhaas invited filmmaker Bregtje van der Haak to help document his research in Lagos with the Harvard project on the City and photographer Edgar Cleijne. To present Lagos through the eyes of Koolhaas, Van der Haak created the documentary Lagos/Koolhaas that premiered in the International Documentary Festival Amsterdam and the Volksbühne in Berlin in the fall of 2002. As the title suggests, Lagos/Koolhaas is as much a portrait of the architect and his research methods as it is an image of the city of Lagos.

But another, more personal interpretation of the city was embedded in the 55 hours of material she shot with cinematographer Alexander Oey during their three trips to Nigeria — a collection of up-close encounters with the people of Lagos and a tracing of the paths and rhythms of their daily lives. If Koolhaas looked at the patterns of Lagos from afar and then zoomed in on the details, Van der Haak started from within letting personal encounters gradually reveal clues for deciphering the larger picture.

No Event No History

Because filming had long been prohibited in Nigeria, very few images of Lagos existed before 2001. This project involves an extended, chaotic and intimate engagement with a then hardly documented city, capturing multiple perspectives of a unique moment in its evolution, presenting experiences and observations, rather than a linear argument.

As one of the few contemporary records of a city that has been largely ignored by western media – with the exception of ‘news events’ like religious riots and military coups - this project is an invitation to look and listen to Lagos – at a moment in which the energy of change may reveal valuable insights into the uncontrollable forces of urbanization.

Credits

This project has been developed by documentary filmmaker Bregtje van der Haak and designer Silke Wawro in close collaboration with architect Rem Koolhaas, photographer Edgar Cleijne, and the Harvard Project on the City. The concept and scenario for Lagos Wide & Close was developed by Van der Haak and Wawro during a masterclass of the Sandberg Institute and Dutch Cultural Media Fund in 2003 and produced by Submarine. Most of the footage was originally shot in 2001/2002 by Alexander Oey for the linear documentary Lagos/Koolhaas (2002, 55 minutes), directed by Bregtje van der Haak and produced by Pieter van Huystee Film & TV in co-production with VPRO Television. Alexander Oey also edited Lagos Wide & Close. The soundscape was designed by Rik Meier."
lagos  nigeria  via:litheland  cities  interactive  urban  urbanism  storytelling  documentaries  improvisation  risktaking  networking  megacities  remkoolhaas  bregtjevanderhaak  africa  2001  olawolebusayo  soundscapes  2004  2014  edgarcleijne  silkewawro  rikmeier 
march 2015 by robertogreco
Kenneth Goldsmith - Talks | Frieze Projects NY
[Direct link to .mp3: http://friezeprojectsny.org/uploads/files/talks/Kenneth_Goldsmith.mp3 ]

"‘I Look to Theory Only When I Realize That Somebody Has Dedicated Their Entire Life to a Question I Have Only Fleetingly Considered’

A keynote lecture by the poet Kenneth Goldsmith, whose writing has been described as ‘some of the most exhaustive and beautiful collage work yet produced in poetry’ (Publishers Weekly). Goldsmith is the author of eleven books of poetry and founding editor of the online archive UbuWeb. In 2013, he was named as the inaugural Poet Laureate of MoMA."
kennethgoldsmith  copying  uncreativewriting  mercecunningham  writing  internet  web  online  remixing  culture  art  poetry  originality  appropriation  quantity  quality  curiosity  harrypotter  poetics  digital  reproduction  translation  displacement  disjunction  corydoctorow  change  howwewrite  pointing  data  metadata  choice  authorship  versioning  misfiling  language  difference  meaning  ethics  morality  literature  twitter  artworld  marshallmcluhan  christianbök  plagiarism  charleseames  rules  notknowing  archiving  improvisation  text  bricolage  assemblage  cv  painting  technology  photography  readerships  thinkerships  thoughtobjects  reassembly  ubuweb  freeculture  moma  outreach  communityoutreach  nyc  copyright  ip  intellectualproperty  ideas  information  sfpc  vitoacconci  audience  accessibility  situationist  museums  markets  criticism  artcriticism  economics  money  browsers  citation  sampling  jonathanfranzen  internetasliterature  getrudestein  internetasfavoritebook  namjunepaik  johncage  misbehaving  andywarhol  bobdylan  barbarakruger  jkrowling  china  creati 
august 2014 by robertogreco
Sasha Frere-Jones: Brian Eno’s Quiet Influence : The New Yorker
"In January, 1975, the musician Brian Eno and the painter Peter Schmidt released a set of flash cards they called “Oblique Strategies.” Friends since meeting at art school, in the late sixties, they had long shared guidelines that could pry apart an intellectual logjam, providing options when they couldn’t figure out how to move forward. The first edition consisted of a hundred and fifteen cards. They were black on one side with an aphorism or an instruction printed on the reverse. Eno’s first rule was “Honour thy error as a hidden intention.” Others included “Use non-musicians” and “Tape your mouth.” In “Brian Eno: Visual Music,” a monograph of his musical projects and visual art, Eno, who still uses the rules, says, “ ‘Oblique Strategies’ evolved from me being in a number of working situations when the panic of the situation—particularly in studios—tended to make me quickly forget that there were other ways of working and that there were tangential ways of attacking problems that were in many senses more interesting than the direct head-on approach.”

Eno is widely known for coining the term “ambient music,” and he produced a clutch of critically revered albums in the nineteen-seventies and eighties—by the Talking Heads, David Bowie, and U2, among others—but if I had to choose his greatest contribution to popular music it would be the idea that musicians do their best work when they have no idea what they’re doing. As he told Keyboard, in 1981, “Any constraint is part of the skeleton that you build the composition on—including your own incompetence.” The genius of Eno is in removing the idea of genius. His work is rooted in the power of collaboration within systems: instructions, rules, and self-imposed limits. His methods are a rebuke to the assumption that a project can be powered by one person’s intent, or that intent is even worth worrying about. To this end, Eno has come up with words like “scenius,” which describes the power generated by a group of artists who gather in one place at one time. (“Genius is individual, scenius is communal,” Eno told the Guardian, in 2010.) It suggests that the quality of works produced in a certain time and place is more indebted to the friction between the people on hand than to the work of any single artist.

The growing influence of this idea, ironically, makes it difficult to see clearly Eno’s distinct contributions to music—his catalogue of recordings doesn’t completely contain his contribution to the pop canon. When someone lies on the studio floor and sings at a microphone five feet away, Eno is in the air. When a band records three hours of improvisation and then loops a four-second excerpt of the audiotape and scraps the rest, Eno has a hand on the razor blade. When everybody except for the engineer is told to go home, Eno remains. Behind Eno stand John Cage, Marcel Duchamp, and Erik Satie, but those guys didn’t make pop records.

It feels odd to call Eno’s new album, “High Life,” released this week, a collaboration. Credited to Eno and Karl Hyde, of the electronic duo Underworld, “High Life” is indeed the work of several people. But deciding that any one project of Eno’s is a collaboration seems off, because collaboration is Eno’s primary mode. Eno’s first recorded work was the sound of a pen hitting a lamp. Who deserves credit for that—Eno, the pen, or the lamp?"



"What became increasingly clear in the seventies was that Eno’s embrace of possibility and chance wasn’t as free-form as it seemed—it was a specific aesthetic. His name shows up on very few records you would describe as hard or aggressive, and his love of the perverse has never been rooted in hostility. Eno fights against received wisdom and habit, but rarely against the listener.

In fact, as Eno found more ways for technology to carry out his beloved generative rules, his music became less and less like rock music and closer to a soundtrack for meditation. The same year that he released “Another Green World,” he also put out “Discreet Music.” The A side was a thirty-minute piece that was written as much by machines as by Eno. In the liner notes, Eno wrote, “If there is any score for the piece, it must be the operational diagram of the particular apparatus I used for its production. . . . Having set up this apparatus, my degree of participation in what it subsequently did was limited to (a) providing an input (in this case, two simple and mutually compatible melodic lines of different duration stored on a digital recall system) and (b) occasionally altering the timbre of the synthesizer’s output by means of a graphic equalizer.”

The result is an area of sound without borders or time signature. There is no rhythm track, just layers of monody, lines programmed into a synthesizer and playing over each other. It is hypnotic, and fights your attempts to focus on it. In 1978, he started to use the term “ambient music”: the concept stretched back to describe “Discreet Music” and the work of earlier composers, like Satie, who coined the term “furniture music,” for compositions that would be more functional than expressive. In the liner notes of “Ambient 1: Music for Airports” (1978), Eno wrote, “Ambient Music must be able to accommodate many levels of listening attention without enforcing one in particular; it must be as ignorable as it is interesting.”

But “Music for Airports” was not nearly as docile as Eno wanted it to be. Though the music is gentle enough to be background music, it is too vocal in character and too melodic to be forgotten that easily. I can recall entire sequences without much difficulty. As much as Eno wanted his music to recede, and as potent as the idea was, he failed by succeeding: the album is too beautiful to ignore. But, in some ways, history and technology have accomplished what Eno did not. With the disappearance of the central home stereo, and the rise of earbuds, MP3s, and the mobile, around-the-clock work cycle, music is now used, more often than not, as background music. Aggressive music can now be as forgettable as ambient music."



"“I have a trick that I used in my studio, because I have these twenty-eight-hundred-odd pieces of unreleased music, and I have them all stored in iTunes,” Eno said during his talk at Red Bull. “When I’m cleaning up the studio, which I do quite often—and it’s quite a big studio—I just have it playing on random shuffle. And so, suddenly, I hear something and often I can’t even remember doing it. Or I have a very vague memory of it, because a lot of these pieces, they’re just something I started at half past eight one evening and then finished at quarter past ten, gave some kind of funny name to that doesn’t describe anything, and then completely forgot about, and then, years later, on the random shuffle, this thing comes up, and I think, Wow, I didn’t hear it when I was doing it. And I think that often happens—we don’t actually hear what we’re doing. . . . I often find pieces and I think, This is genius. Which me did that? Who was the me that did that?”"
2014  brianeno  sashafrere-jones  music  johncage  marcelduchamp  eriksatie  scenius  collaboration  notknowing  uncertainty  constraints  rules  obliquestrategies  art  process  howwework  happenings  bryanferry  improvisation  generative  possibility  chance  genius 
july 2014 by robertogreco
pechaflickr
"pechaflickr = the sound of random flickring

Can you improv a coherent presentation from images you have never seen?

Enter a tag, and see how well you can communicate sense of 20 random flickr photos, each one on screen for 20 seconds. Advanced options offer different settings.

Curious? I used pechaflickr to talk about pechaflickr. [http://cogdogblog.com/stuff/techtalks13/ ] If you are making use of this, please share with me!"
speaking  improv  improvisation  pechakucha  flickr  random  via:lukeneff  pechaflickr  extemporaneous  presentations  classideas 
april 2014 by robertogreco
Mastering the Art of Sparking Connections
"1. People are the key ingredients.

2. The more varied the group, the more valuable the connections and outcome.

3. To foster a spirit of improvisation, create a comfortable environment.

4. We value discussion over presentation

5. Each camp is a series of small and loosely-joined events.

6. We value intimacy over publicity.

7. Productive discussions happen more easily with thoughtful, informed facilitation.

8. End — don't start — with a trust fall.

9. The better the planning, the smoother and more spontaneous the outcome.

10. We value experimentation and evolution over perfection.



How Spark Camp Will Evolve"
events  sparkcamp  amandamichel  andypergam  mattthompson  amywebb  planning  values  diversity  improvisation  comfort  conferences  discussion  conversation  howto  loosely-joined  intimacy  publicity  facilitation  eventplanning  unconferences  experimentation  perfection  trust  inclusion  conferenceplanning  accessibility  inclusivity  inlcusivity 
december 2013 by robertogreco
Jazz-Inspired Leadership: Change Observer: Design Observer
"Anticipated, Emergent, and Opportunistic Change

To understand why improvisation is important, consider the three types of organizational change.



Create a Learning Environment

A learning environment is a precondition for improvisation. One company I know of sends employees to visit its global locations, so they can learn from each others’ innovations and practices. “Steal with pride,” it tells them. People informally develop ways of working that could have great value if shared. When managers encourage employees to improve practices on their own, rather than mandate a strict flowchart of activities, they can nurture emergent change. And managers have to be on the lookout for emergent outcomes, and learn how and when to leverage them.

If improvisation is to be encouraged, then senior managers also need to allow some flexibility in budgeting and timetables. Again, small-scale experiments can help by reducing upfront commitments and by helping to define the costs and benefits of a larger-scale roll-out. Just as important, employees’ evaluation criteria should accommodate improvisation. Employees should not be penalized for experimenting — and possibly failing. And they should be rewarded for developing innovative emergent practices in the face of this change. When everyone recognizes that conditions are uncertain and the rules of the game are being created in the playing, plans become effective guidelines rather than rigid prescriptions for action.

The lessons in improvisation contained herein are relevant even when there is no internal ‘change project’ per se. eBay’s evolution from a marketplace for Pez dispensers is a perfect example. When Pierre Omidyar founded eBay in 1995, did his business plan map out how he would create a leading global enterprise in a decade? Hardly. Users of eBay have been improvising and leading the development of eBay ever since. The normal way of doing business at eBay is to seek out emergent change and turn it into new opportunities.

That type of improvisation makes an organization more adaptive when marketplaces shift, technologies develop, companies globalize or the landscape changes in other unexpected ways. And an improvisational approach is best facilitated by combining planning with ongoing experimentation and learning. Budgets, timetables and reward criteria should reinforce the ability of individuals to improvise in a way that allows the organization to keep right on playing amidst change, without missing a beat."
leadership  change  administration  jazz  improvisation  planning  adaptation  uncertainty  flexibility  learning  wandaorlikowski  experimentation  prototyping  risk  risktaking 
july 2013 by robertogreco
The Lowest Level: Pickup Soccer in America | The Other 87
"Except in soccer, where one of the commonly given reasons for why the U.S. doesn’t produce as many or as high-quality soccer players as other nations is because our kids practice too much, and too early on, as opposed to just going out and playing. We hear of Zidane learning his close control in the housing projects of Marseille, Ronaldo lying to his mother about going to school, of players in Italy, Argentina, or Ghana who wake up and go play with their friends in the street until dinner, or until they’re scooped up and signed to a local club’s youth team by a sharp-eyed scout passing through town, whichever comes first."



"Pickup’s absence underlines its importance. Nearly every coach now realizes that small-sided games — like those you typically have playing pickup — are important because they maximize touches and time spent with the ball for young players. What’s missing when a player participates in small-sided games in practice with his or her teammates is the mystery, the unknown variables that change a game. Pickup is an incredibly useful teaching tool not just because of its numbers, but because of its informality which means coaches — those who might be the pickup advocates — couldn’t create the ideal pickup scenario even if they wanted to. It has to be organic.[1]

That’s because pickup necessitates flexibility. As the cast of characters in your group rotates, you’re finding your way into a new game each time you play. Without a coach, it’s a constant exercise for your personal tactical acumen as you search for where you can be most effective on the field for this game, and for your skill set as you try to adapt to playing there. Even that changes drastically based on who you’re playing with and where they’ve decided they’re going to be most useful."

[via: http://zunguzungu.wordpress.com/2011/04/10/sunday-reading/ ]
pickup  soccer  futbol  sports  improvisation  collaboration  flexibility  squishynotslick  cv  howwelearn  learningbydoing  adultintervention  intervention  2011  ericbetts  unschooling  deschooling  learning  informality  informal  informallearning  self-directedlearning  football 
june 2013 by robertogreco
Polyphony - Wikipedia
Rather than being fixed works, they indicated ways of improvising polyphony during performance.
thinking  music  improvisation  polyphony  fixed  via:litherland 
february 2013 by robertogreco
Improvisation, Community and Social Practice
"The international Improvisation, Community, and Social Practice research project explores musical improvisation as a model for social change. The project plays a leading role in defining a new field of interdisciplinary research to shape political, cultural, and ethical dialogue and action."

"The project’s core hypothesis is that musical improvisation is a crucial model for political, cultural, and ethical dialogue and action. Taking as a point of departure performance practices that cannot readily be scripted, predicted, or compelled into orthodoxy, we argue that the innovative working models of improvisation developed by creative practitioners have helped to promote a dynamic exchange of cultural forms and to encourage new, socially responsive forms of community building across national, cultural, and artistic boundaries. Improvisation, in short, has much to tell us about the ways in which communities based on such forms are politically and materially pertinent to envisioning and sounding alternative ways of knowing and being in the world. Improvisation demands shared responsibility for participation in community, an ability to negotiate differences, and a willingness to accept the challenges of risk and contingency. Furthermore, in an era when diverse peoples and communities of interest struggle to forge historically new forms of affiliation across cultural divides, the participatory and civic virtues of engagement, dialogue, respect, and community-building inculcated through improvisatory practices take on a particular urgency."
culture  politics  interdisciplinary  socialpractice  networks  canada  research  art  sound  music  socialchange  improvisation  via:litherland 
september 2012 by robertogreco
What Bill Clinton Wrote vs. What Bill Clinton Said - Politics - The Atlantic Wire
"Most experienced public speakers know how to deviate and alter and add flourishes to their prepared remarks on the fly, but few do it as well as Clinton. (Even if you disagree with what he's saying.) As you can see below, from a purely rhetorical standpoint nearly all of his changes enhanced the text in some way and brought added emphasis to arguments."

"Here is copy of the speech as it was written and provided to the media by the Democratic Party. Here's a transcript of what Clinton actually said, (as compiled by The New York Times.) Our version below is based off the written text with Clinton's insertions in italics and his deletions struck out. See what you think of his oratory skills."
oratory  publicspeaking  delivery  writing  improvisation  comparison  speechwriting  speeches  billclinton  dnc  2012  from delicious
september 2012 by robertogreco
Tino Sehgal: The fine art of human interaction | The Economist
"A studio visit with Mr Sehgal consists of meeting the artist on a park bench…"

"As it happens, the artist is not keen on the term “performance” because it suggests a formal separation between artwork and audience. “Situations are much more inclusive. We are in it together,” he explains. His titles often start with the word “this”—which implies a shared moment."

““Photographs are two-dimensional…I work in four dimensions.”

"Mr Sehgal’s rigorous avoidance of documentation extends to a prohibition on written instructions and receipts. When one of his “situations” is sold, the work is described verbally in the presence of lawyers and certain stipulations are made orally…"

"Clearly, Mr Sehgal is not anti-market. Given his resolute refusal to make inanimate objects, however, he does appear to be anti-materialist. Mr Sehgal believes that “it is not so rewarding or efficient or sustainable” to clutter the world with more and more material goods."
situatedart  constructedsituations  improvisation  anti-materialist  materialism  anti-market  2012  docmentation  glvo  performance  happenings  tinosehgal  art  from delicious
august 2012 by robertogreco
Reading L.A.: The once and future Plaza, nature in the city - latimes.com
"Promoting more events like ArroyoFest seems crucial in helping Angelenos define mobility in a new way. And, as Gottlieb points out, the kind of thinking that will be required to reimagine the freeway for 21st century Los Angeles is the same kind of thinking that helped create the city and its infrastructure in the first place. He reminds us in the book that the great Carey McWilliams -- one of the first authors we met in Reading L.A. -- described Los Angeles as "a land of magical improvisation."

Redefining or even repurposing the freeways of Los Angeles -- on a permanent rather than merely temporary basis -- may require the biggest and most creative improvisation of all."
improvisation  density  socal  change  transmobility  personalmobility  mobility  future  urbanism  urban  2012  history  books  cities  losangeles  from delicious
january 2012 by robertogreco
The Infinite Adventure Machine (prototype 01) on Vimeo
"TIAM is a proposal for a computer program which generates fairy-tale plots. 

While fully automatic story generation remains an unsolved problem for computer science, this project explores the links between imagination and computation. Tales and myths; the core narratives of human culture, have been transmitted for generations through various technologies and media. What new forms might they take through digital formats and Artificial Intelligence?

Based on the work of Vladimir Propp, who reduced the structure of russian folk-tales to 31 basic functions, TIAM aims to question the limitations and implications of attempts at programming language and narrative.

Because the program is unable to deliver a finished story, rather only a crude synopsis and illustrations, users have to improvise, filling the gaps with their imagination and making up for the technology's shortcomings."
applications  ios  ipad  storytelling  stories  writingprompts  video  improvisation  from delicious
november 2011 by robertogreco
DesignCrossing: X-School... Reflections on the path
"Last month John Thackara ran his first 'X-School'…to continue a conversation about what a 'school' for a new design paradigm should look like. Myself and a group of design minds got together in the countryside to thrash it out over a weekend of chat and activity.

Whenever we talked about what we thought 'X-School' could be, somewhere in my head I heard 'Fight Club', as in 'the first rule of Fight Club is you do not talk about Fight Club', except of course, we were there to talk about X-school, and... nobody got hurt.  We played some games, we built a flint path, we slept under the stars and swam in the river, we drank real ale and ate pizza and we talked about X-school.  It wasn't like a 'conference', or 'workshop', or even as John put it 'a country house weekend', it was something new.'

…there is enormous value in doing, there is enormous value in not defining your purpose, but most of all there is enormous value in sharing that experience with others."
xskool  johnthackara  unfinished  purpose  community  meaning  doing  improvisation  2011  experience  conversation  sharing  designeducation  education  lcproject  learning  fightclub  conferences  unconferences  workshops  unworkshops  openstudio  openstudioproject  openschools  from delicious
august 2011 by robertogreco
The Creator Of TED Aims To Reinvent Conferences Once Again | Co. Design
"The format may or may not work -- most likely it will depend on the delicate chemistry between the pairing -- but in some ways, Wurman’s “conversation-over-presentation” approach seems in keeping with a current trend toward applying collaborative inquiry and discussion to today’s big issues and challenges. Of late, various types of innovation salons and conversational events have been popping up: Recently, Seth Goldenberg (a Bruce Mau Design alumni) launched the “IDEAS Salon,” initially in Rhode Island in April with a follow-up Silicon Valley event this fall. Instead of giving presentations, the high-level guests joined together to grapple with weighty questions; Goldenberg wanted to get away from what he dubs “the sage on stage” model used at TED and other conferences, in favor of a more conversational format. Similarly, the design firm Method has been hosting a series of salons in New York to explore big ideas in a more open and freewheeling manner."
education  ted  conferences  dialogue  saulwurman  2011  www.www  improvisation  vulnerability  sageonthestage  conversation  collaboration  collaborativeinquiry  discussion  tedtalks  tcsnmy  classideas  dialog  from delicious
august 2011 by robertogreco
TeachPaperless: I Am Not A Great Teacher [This rings so true. Shelly is me with hair!?]
"I am not a great teacher. Many of my former students would probably agree. I'm at times flaky. And I can certainly be absent minded. I tend to ask students to do too much work all at once, probably because that's the way I do things.

I'm a terrible test-prepper. When I do give lectures, I tend to go on tangents. Sometimes I mix up names, dates, events; this happens at family BBQs, too. [Many more examples follow.]…

I am far more interested in being a conduit for ideas. A conduit for conversation. A conduit for debate. For real learning. Connecting. Rethinking. Reframing debates. Debates and discussions. The stuff of humanity…

But I'm willing to not know.

I take a lot of solace in the example of Socrates. Not because I think I'm like Socrates, but because I think deep down Socrates is a lot like all of us. Socrates was a guy who both boastfully and intimately explained that in the end, he really didn't know anything.

And that was enough to change everything."
education  teaching  learning  socrates  shellyblake-pock  cv  howwework  howwelearn  inquiry-basedlearning  conversation  relationships  human  humanism  vulnerability  uncertainty  notknowing  collaboration  professionaldevelopment  pd  honesty  openness  pedagogy  humility  improvisation  preparation  from delicious
july 2011 by robertogreco
pecha flickr
"Can you improv? Enter a tag, and see how well you can make sense of 20 random flickr photos, each one on screen for 20 seconds."
classideas  pechakucha  flickr  mashup  improvisation  fun  from delicious
may 2011 by robertogreco
The Shape of Design, a new book by Frank Chimero
"It’s a field guide for makers, a book for the people who believe that the world is not yet done. It’s a handbook for the emerging skillset: improvisation, storytelling, embracing paradox, honoring craft, and delighting audiences.<br />
<br />
More than anything, it’s a book of suggestions to how we can make things that help us to live better."
theshapeofdesign  books  frankchimero  design  improvisation  storytelling  paradox  craft  delight  kickstarter  from delicious
march 2011 by robertogreco
The Space Hackers are coming! - Dougald's posterous
"a new kind of spatial agent is emerging: improvisational, bottom-up, working w/ materials to hand; perhaps unqualified, or using training in unexpected ways; responding pragmatically to constrictions & precarities of post-crisis living. Btwn jugaad culture of Indian village, temporary structures built by jobless architects, pop-up shops, infrastructure-savvy squatters & open source shelter-makers, Treehouse Galleries & urban barns & Temporary Schools of Thought, just maybe something new is being born.

…the culture of the Space Hacker…new players have more in common w/ geeks, hippies & drop-out-preneurs who gave us open source & internet revolution, than w/ architects, developers or property industries…

Unlike Silicon Valley, though, these hackers have given up on goal of getting rich.…driven instead by desire to make spaces in which they want to spend time—sociable spaces of living, working & playing - as they, & the rest of us, adjust to the likelihood of getting poorer."
dougaldhine  postmaterialism  postconsumerism  spatial  spacehackers  hackers  diy  make  making  favelachic  post-crisisliving  cv  opensource  architecture  squatters  dropouts  counterculture  spacemaking  unschooling  deschooling  alternative  vinaygupta  rayoldenburg  ivanillich  schools  learning  future  sociability  thirdplaces  postindustrialism  postindustrial  capitalism  marxism  hospitals  healthcare  health  society  improvisation  popup  pop-ups  from delicious
february 2011 by robertogreco
Recipe: Malo's Ground Beef and Pickle Taco | At Home | The Public Kitchen | KCET
"Now fast forward to a rainy day in 1982. A young Robert Luna is sitting the kitchen of his East L.A. home, savoring his mom's burger: ground sirloin, cheddar cheese, kosher dill pickles, a spread of sour cream and mayonnaise and serve it on wheat bread. But there's one problem: no bread.

"I was hungry, and being the little angel that I was, started to throw a massive tantrum," he explained. "My mother, being the great chef she is, put everything in a crispy fried taco and it was delicious! And that is how her famous Ground Beef and Pickle Taco was born."

Since 2003 when Luna's restaurant Malo opened in Silver Lake, the taco has become most popular dish. The same already goes in downtown Los Angeles at Mas Malo, which opened earlier this month. Luna shares his recipe below:"
recipes  food  losangeles  tacos  improvisation  from delicious
january 2011 by robertogreco
Recipe: Malo's Ground Beef and Pickle Taco | At Home | The Public Kitchen | KCET
"Now fast forward to a rainy day in 1982. A young Robert Luna is sitting the kitchen of his East L.A. home, savoring his mom's burger: ground sirloin, cheddar cheese, kosher dill pickles, a spread of sour cream and mayonnaise and serve it on wheat bread. But there's one problem: no bread.

"I was hungry, and being the little angel that I was, started to throw a massive tantrum," he explained. "My mother, being the great chef she is, put everything in a crispy fried taco and it was delicious! And that is how her famous Ground Beef and Pickle Taco was born."

Since 2003 when Luna's restaurant Malo opened in Silver Lake, the taco has become most popular dish. The same already goes in downtown Los Angeles at Mas Malo, which opened earlier this month. Luna shares his recipe below:"
recipes  food  losangeles  tacos  improvisation 
january 2011 by robertogreco
Publish. Now. — Satellite — Craig Mod
"This is — now that I think about it — how talks should go. Built on the fly. A sort of performance art erected on genuine experience and knowledge. Improvisation. Or, perhaps not. But, undeniably, because of the rapidly changing nature of publishing, it's almost impossible to repeat the same talk about books with a straight face. I've spoken at several conferences in the last few months and the data in the presentations — by necessity — was updated at the very last minute. Things are moving fast. And it's fun."
craigmod  presentations  speaking  planning  conferences  meaning  change  improvisation  from delicious
december 2010 by robertogreco
running to stand still « Higher Edison
"Sylvia’s session was built around the notion of bricolage—playful experimentation, conversation with materials at hand, hands-on improv, fondness for the found, passion, tinkering with intent, what-have-you with what-you-have—as an alternate lens on knowledge construction. It’s remix culture in full flower, and it stands in direct counterpoint to traditional analytical problem-solving. Given generous amounts of space, time, at-hand materials, and low or no evaluation pressure, learners will figure things out and make meaning.

Is “curriculum” a restrictive construct that inhibits natural passion-based learning, a lockstep model demanding rigid adherence?

Or do the constructed boundaries of a curriculum serve as a guide-path for learning, a constraint [2] that, by focusing attention, sparks a creative response?

In other words, does curriculum keep us on track, or keep us from the constructive, creative process of getting lost?"
sylviamartinez  curriculum  learning  constructivism  shellyblake-pock  education  unschooling  deschooling  leaning  tcsnmy  tinkering  iteration  curiosity  play  experimentation  make  do  passion  knowledge  remixculture  remix  culture  improvisation  remixing 
february 2010 by robertogreco
A Robot Named Shimon Wants To Jam With You : NPR
"What was billed as the first intercontinental musical interaction between humans and robots took place the weekend of Dec. 17. It involved humans in Japan using an application called ZoozBeat on their iPhones and a robot named Shimon in Atlanta.

According to its makers, unlike other robots that can play music, Shimon is perceptual. The robot can listen to what is played, analyze it and then improvise. And it has been taught to improvise like some jazz masters.

Gil Weinberg of Georgia Tech's music technology program recently spoke to NPR's Robert Siegel from Japan, where he witnessed the historic interaction. Weinberg says the result is music meant to inspire people — not an effort to turn our music-making over to robots.

"The whole idea is to use computer algorithms to create music in ways that humans will never create," Weinberg says. "Our motto is, 'Listen like a human, but improvise like a machine.' ""

[see also: http://www.zoozbeat.com/ ]
theloniousmonk  jazz  computing  robots  music  shimon  japan  programming  zoozbeat  improvisation 
december 2009 by robertogreco
Urban L.A.
"This is a city of clearly defined ethnic enclaves where homogeneous groups find comfort and support in their countrymen, where affluent populations encage themselves behind suburban walls, and where politicians struggle to mediate these differences. The result is a fragmented built environment marked by spaces of collision and social difference. The study of the informal, the marginal, the subversive, and the in-between brings into light the potential of the improvised space as a viable and necessary allowance in the city."
losangeles  research  diversity  culture  architecture  cities  segregation  fragmentation  improvisation 
august 2009 by robertogreco
The only plan is to learn as you go - (37signals)
"Ian MacMillan, Wharton professor of innovation and entrepreneurship, and Rita Gunther McGrath, a professor at Columbia Business School, believe “the only plan is to learn as you go.” They say 1) conventional approaches and planning don’t work when you’re trying to get into new spaces, 2) assumptions are what get most companies into trouble, and 3) it’s not failure that companies need to avoid, but rather “failing expensively.”"
tcsnmy  planning  business  failure  organizations  management  administration  leadership  innovation  entrepreneurship  learning  improvisation 
may 2009 by robertogreco
Who’s Afraid of ‘Slumdog’ (and in love with the slums)? - Part II « Javierest
"Sometimes it seems like the better they try to do, looking at informality with a liberal reformist zeal, the more they naturalize it, distancing it from its root causes. Small wonder that architects and planners interested in alleviating informality often treat it with the same lens of biomimicry as green architects looking at nature. Furthermore, it’s no surprise either that Slumdog Millionaire is faulted precisely for resisting the lure to “learn” from the slums."
javierarbona  culture  architecture  urbanism  cities  favelas  slums  poverty  construction  squatters  informal  productionofspace  elementalchile  teddycruz  improvisation 
march 2009 by robertogreco
Who’s Afraid of ‘Slumdog’ (and in love with the slums)? - Part I « Javierest
"What does “informality” do for architects and why do they get so turned on by it? To many architects and planners, when it comes to housing and entrepreneurship, nobody does it better than those who shoulder the worst burdens of poverty. It’s an extreme spectator sport, watching in awe—often just through the web, the Economist, or the movies—as people build out of fridges, scrap metal or whatever comes along. Not to deny the skill of these folks; hey, I wish I could build like that. But once again, what does this fetish really ‘do’ for architects, planners, and even artists? Is it that it challenges our notions (us Westerners, that is) of scale and time?"
javierarbona  culture  architecture  urbanism  cities  favelas  slums  poverty  construction  squatters  informal  productionofspace  improvisation 
march 2009 by robertogreco
Barry Schwartz on our loss of wisdom | Video on TED.com
"Barry Schwartz makes a passionate call for “practical wisdom” as an antidote to a society gone mad with bureaucracy. He argues powerfully that rules often fail us, incentives often backfire, and practical, everyday wisdom will help rebuild our world."
baryschwartz  psychology  education  wisdom  morality  bureaucracy  economics  change  leadership  administration  management  character  motivation  incentives  ethics  philosophy  process  behavior  morals  failure  decisionmaking  exceptions  human  flexibility  inflexibility  commonsense  procedure  simplicity  moreofthesame  rules  rulemaking  tcsnmy  learning  teaching  mediocrity  banking  crisis  2009  improvisation 
february 2009 by robertogreco
Can Executives Learn to Ignore the Script? - New York Times
"Improvisers avoid spinning wheels because they see quickly what isn’t working or what might be successful that didn’t occur to them at first. Improvisers take risks and make mistakes but that’s what leads them in fresh directions."
innovation  learning  business  management  leadership  generalists  risk  experiments  work  creativity  lcproject  teaching  brainstorming  change  alternative  planning  organizations  improvisation 
may 2008 by robertogreco
Conceptual Trends and Current Topics - The Way of Japan vs Any Way in China
"James Fallow...noticed two different approaches to refueling the same small plane.In Japan...Note the uniform, safety outfits, and cushion to protect the plane's wing. In, China, they just do what has to be done, in any way they can."
china  japan  howwework  ingenuity  process  uniformity  perfectionism  detail  attention  improvisation 
november 2007 by robertogreco

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