Monday, June 25, 2012

Faeries Afoot by Thomine Wilson

Annual Midsummer’s Night Dream Faerie Party   is afoot and the fun is set to begin on Saturday 23 June  from 8pm to midnight. It will be held at Fusionglass Co  (8872 La Mesa Boulevard  La Mesa, CA 91942) More info Debb Solan 619.461.4440 

Faeries afoot Saturday night as magic, beauty, and artistry were in full swing once again at Fusionglass Co in La Mesa. Owners Debbie Solan and Paul Fernandes hosted their annual Midsummer Night’s Dream Party complete with a decadent array of tasty nibbles, an outpouring of wine, ‘booty bag’ prizes filled with gorgeous jewelry, and exhibits by a select group of talented guest artists whose art was out of this world.

In true form, this Fusionglass party was a terrific success and the crowd tipped to over 200 people. There was a fascinating and creative selection of faerie flair of all colors and the evening was delightfully enchanting. Faerie costumes were plentiful made from recycled wedding and cocktail dresses spray painted and adorned with fluttering floral designs. Gowns were accessorized with faerie wings, an ethereal crown of flowers, and legendary pointy shoes with bells! Other guests were wrapped in a bounty of colorful hand painted silks that were truly a feast for the eyes. More daring faeries pranced in their frilly lace PJs complete with sequin bedroom slippers and a sprinkling of fairy dust to spread throughout the glorious night air. Included among the guests was a tribe of camouflaged warriors who provided just the right touch of forestry to protect the spirited crowd.

New this year was an appearance by a masked man from Mardi Gras who surprised the crowd and greeted each guest with sparkling beads and baubles from faraway lands. Also featured was a photo booth with a selection of feathered faerie wings to try on and fly if you dared.

Paul Fernandes, a natural behind the microphone, belted out the names of prizewinners every 15 minutes throughout the entire evening while the strumming guitars of Pound Dog played familiars from the 60’s, 70’s, and 80’s.

Guest artists included Julie Arroyo whose watercolor and Chinese calligraphy on wood added a hint of serenity to the fairytale night. Leah ‘Nina’ Carter exhibited an exquisite line of organic and geometric jewelry inspired by nature and made of a mix of copper, brass, and silver. Kira Carrillo Corser’s painted photographs using pastels, inks, and oil pencils were inspirational and contained stunning and fantastic imagery. Peggy Hinaeken’s atmospheric and lyrical etchings and lithographs depicted historical and literary figures that made a lovely addition to the tales of the evening. Finally, Emily Vermillion’s black ink drawings of faerie lore and garden flowers provided a sensation of beauty and renewal among the mystical moments of this magical do.

As the clock struck midnight, there were lots of vixens vying for attention and a very beautiful faerie won the grand jewelry prize. There’s definitely a tale to tell of Fusionglass and all the faeries…but you will have to wait till next Mid Summer’s Night when the clock strikes 8 and there are faeries at your gate. Come ready for entertainment, beautiful art, generous prizes, and a night filled with fun and laughter! Keep your eyes open for more magical happenings at Fusionglass Co.

Thomine Wilson (pronounced Tom-in-e) is a San Diego artist who is working to promote the ‘Employee Art Program’, a training alliance composed of professional educators who help organizations accelerate business performance and foster sustainability through on site arts-based learning, culture change agents, and innovation experts.

Monday, June 18, 2012

New Contemporaries V

New Contemporaries V at Susan Street Fine Art Gallery exhibiting all the nominated emerging artists for the SD Art Prize from June 2 to July 3. Shawnee Barton, Lauren Carrera, Noah Doely, Rob Duarte, Alexander Jarman, Anna Chiaretta Lavatelli, Lee M. Lavy, Ingram Ober, Vincent Robles, Deanne Sabeck, David Leon Smith, Brian Zimmerman  Opening Reception: June 7 from 6 to 9 pm (200 North Cedros Avenue, Solana Beach, 92075) More info: Melissa Stager 858.793.4442

Now in its fifth year, this showcase for emerging artists in San Diego, never fails to entertain and enlighten us. The artists are chosen for the show by the 2011 SD Art Prize recipients and their champions who are art professionals. There is never duplication in the nominators, spreading the circle of influence ever wider with each show. Melissa Sager was the curator of this show for Susan Street Fine Art and she did a masterful job of choosing and setting the works in the gallery to honor each of them. Amazingly, nothing was out of balance and you could start anywhere in the relatively small space and begin your journey of discovery.

On arrival I noticed the collaged installation by Alexander Jarman immediately. It is rich with imagery mostly floral and body parts in fun warm colors. It was designed with a circle motif and then Jarman grew the work expanding and adding drips and even a shadow portrait. At first glance it seems like wall paper gone loony, but it has staying power.   

Shawnee Barton’s small pair of drawings juxtaposing a car crash and an ice cream cone was endearing and scary at the same time. I found it more potent than the very large circular work “honoring” her newborn.  Lee M. Lavygave us a very sellable rendition of some of his works from the Ice Gallery. He presented three canvases in greys that would fit into many architecturally modern homes. David Leon Smith,’s animals imbued with human foibles are strong and funny and make us look twice at his almost cartoon styling. Only one small work by Noah Doely rounded out the two dimensional work in the show.  Doely’s painstaking technique and calls from other galleries meant a less than dynamic showing of his work, but you would do well to look at his website for a further understanding of this faux historical documentations.

Anna Chiaretta Lavatelli,’s homage to Marne and Marilyn intrigued and satisfied. We understand that there is a mounted accident in her personal life reflected in the mixed media installation of horse and human hair, sound recording, photography. Marilyn’s diary pages are created but re-contextualized to highlight and sensitize the fragility of this tragic icon. They are pencil renderings of the diary with only the most potent of phrases included, one or none on a page.

Vincent Robles and Deanne Sabeck were chosen by Arline Fisch and Jeffery Laudenslager who will be mentoring them for the show at the Art SD Contemporary Fair in Balboa Park in Sept and the Athenaeum Art and Music Library in La Jolla next year. Vincent is showing his rough roller coast version of a step ladder and also a banister like circle of highly crafted wood. Ms. Fisch chose him as a fellow maker of things. Laudenslager and Sabeck have collaborated on past projects and might even attempt our first collaborative work for the SD Art Prize. Her 3-d wall works use dichromatic glass and a special light source to bring life to the geometric designs. It is the colored shadows that steal the show. 

Rob Duarte’s sound machine functions as a sculpture as well as speakers. Brian Zimmerman shows an older work of digital word art along with a recently deconstructed and very playful set of chairs. Lauren Carrera was my choice of artist for the show as the four members of the SD Art Prize are also allowed to make nomination. She made a strong installation of mini shelves each hosting a clear bag with fish lures or a miniature scene of tiny humans. This is a variation on her successful current show at the NTC Liberty Station called Museo de Profundo Mundo. Carrera is dealing with issues of over fishing and pollution as she creates a fictitious archeological exploration.  

I was most impressed with Ingram Ober. He gives us multiple variations on his Vantasy series. A photo sets the scene but it is a miniature van photographed to look like a full size one and reflected in the window of the van is the sculpture that resides in the back space of the gallery. This beautiful monolith with it superb finish is the cleaned up equivalent of those Cadillac Ranch graffiti cars in Texas. And the play continues, with the chocolate molded cars covered in shiny colored tin foil. Ober just looks like he is having such a good time and therefore, so do we.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Art meet technology and wins! by Keikichi Honna

If my memory is correct, it was several years after "talking" ATM machines instructing customers with automated voice, complete with crude animation of a female bank teller bowing and saying "thank you for your business" had became ubiquitous, when a camera company started marketing a new product - a talking camera.  I was young and still ignorant of the pain of wearing eyeglasses all the time, so I didn't see the point.  My only thought was why it's always same old automated female voice.  Since they were only a handful of simple instructions, it should've been easy to implement different voices which users could select - male or female celebrities, or deep soothing voice of a veteran anchorman from NHK telling "say cheese" when pressing the shutter would be nice.  (It's still not too late for camera/toy campanies to implement voice of Justin Bieber, or Elmo in cameras.  I think they can sell)

Fast forward to 21st century comes SIRI.  As long as TV ads go, it seems possessing rudimentary conversational skills.  Considering its accessibility to a vast database, it may even pass Turing test sometime soon.  I'm sure right now someone mesmerized by "her" quick wit and intelligence is in love with Siri, and within a few years there will be, though just symbolic, a first ever wedding ceremony between a human and an i-phone.  (married life of a man and i-phone will be strictly Platonic, unless considering some form of phone sex, if it's even possible.  On the other hand relationship between a female and i-phone can be...)

I'm not interested in wasting time with cellphone for now, however when Siri is no longer Siri, but called Emily, Audry, or Tracy,
and implement the voice of impossibly adorable Zooey Deschanel, then, I may switch to a smartphone.  And I may even profess my unconditional affection toward said handheld device.  (Or Siri being Mikey with deep soothing voice of Mike Rowe, and I'll have some philosophical conversation with "him."  Voice of Elmo on Siri would cause sirious violence)

That wont happen.  I can't bear the thought of repeated rejection of my advance, or more precisely constantly denied access.
"Sorry Keikichi, what did you say?"  Or "Sorry, I can't understand."

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Augmented Reality summary

By Patricia Frischer

One of the four projects of the DNA of Creativity project (the Batt App) is going to have an augmented reality (AR) component. I had no idea what that meant this time last year, but bit by bit I am learning about this exciting new area of communication. I hope to give you a brief description of my discoveries and some links so you can see for yourself how exciting this technology really is that combines elements from the physical and the virtual world to create new experiences at home, in business, and by smart phone where ever you are connected to the internet.

Please note in my descriptions below, you must click on the links to really get an idea as no written explanation is adequate to describe these new technologies.  

I went to a presentation in May produced by Commnexus called Augmented Reality: Is It Real? hosted by the law firm Mintz Levin. The first presenter, Mike Gonzales, Creative Director and Brand Digital Manager of Wow Wee USA Inc is producing a line of AR toys under the brand AppGear which will sell for only $9.95. That is an incredible price when you realize that the child (or child at heart) will get a toy that acts as a marker to launch the technology similar to computer games purchases as dvds. The toys will be collectable and the AR component will lengthen the play time from the usual few hours to days and days of interaction.

This is the natural progression when the ipad, computer and smart phone become the playthings of our young people. The company started with a $100 robot which sold 6 million units and will probably come out with a $39.95 robot that will allow you to use your smart phone to see smoke trails when rockets are launched and do virtual repairs. But the first set of apps will include a small toy plane (Foam Fighters)  which attaches to your device and makes that device into a control panel for flying through the digital landscape. It has gaming capacity for multiple players and other games in this line can make your tabletop into a game board. Mike has produced toys in the Far East, but lives and has his head office in Carlsbad.

That brings me to our star local company Qualcomm which is no longer making actual phones but streaming ahead with software. Jay Wright, Senior Director, Business Development, Qualcomm is so confident of the augmented reality technology that the firm is offering free software to develop apps using it called  Vuforia.    Go to this link to see some incredible videos of what this software can do.  This, more than anything, has convinced me that AR is not a flash in the pan, but an alternate reality that will be here to stay. Retailers will use the AR apps and that will generate income and of course, apps will continue to be sold for $.99 in the millions.

Qualcomm sees AR in three distinct areas: 1. gaming and play (like WooWee), 2. Interactive media (like offering more information at point of sale, expanded advertising techniques and added value in use of products) and the last big area is 3. instructional (all those how to use, construct and repair manuals will be interactive). I loved the catsup bottle label that turns into a recipe book.

The goal is to treat your phone as much like your eye as possible. Not many of the applications that I have learned about have actually materialized yet, but they are really coming. They already have 26,000 software designers using the software which recognizes 400 phones and already 800 apps have been developed. There are challenges that the technology faces.  These programs are battery suckers and there is no unified viewer so you have to download each app. The idea of AR glasses or goggles is still in the future.  

We have no idea at this stage what aspects we will be incorporating into our upcoming smart phone application for SDVAN. Will we use it for promotion or will our resources be able to use it to add layers of information to their programs? We are only at the beginning of this research.  

Here are two more links that are already resident on the DNA of Creativity Blog. If you are not yet following this blog, it is great fun to see the variety of art and science collaboration that are out there.

Mar 24, 2012
Augmented Reality Pop Up Books. Augmented Reality Pop Up... NokiaTattoo that vibrates

Jan 08, 2012
In our sample DNA of Creativity application we give a link to Elipse augmented reality. You can use your phone to see added featured on images that are processed to be recognizable by the camera of your smart phone.