Monthly Archives: January 2012
Klara is quite lovely: easy going with a can-do attitude. And do she does -you will witness Klara‘s paste-ups all over town: often without realising it is her handiwork. But there is no missing the quality of her exploits, and this West Australian native‘s quest to make her art happen here in Melbourne. Klara was happy to meet me in the studio last week to interview herself with the aid of some super-maxxed up technology bonuses. Check it out:
Ethereal electro-pop is a fairly loose term being bandied about at the moment. The resurgence of this reincarnation of early 80s synthesiser music has arguably been spear-headed by the Winding Refn film Drive. On this soundtrack, Refn invited Cliff Martinez to revisit the score he produced for the 1989 Steven Soderburgh film Sex, Lies, and Videotape. However, the sound emanating from Martinez‘ work goes back almost another decade: which brings us to All Through The Night. This song was written by Jules Shear -a modest 80s music producer that is also credited with the creation of the MTV Unplugged series. He wrote All Through The Night for The Cars and although they recorded the folk ballad, they did not release it on their Heartbeat City album, nor as a B-side on their Drive single. Shear, however, did his own recording and released the song on his 1983 solo album Watch Dog. The next year, following a failed collaborative effort between Lauper and Shear, Lauper decided she would record an unrevised cover of the song. During the recording sessions at NYC‘s Record Plant the track began to take on a new form and was completed in a style that epitomises the early 80s synth ballads which, as mentioned, seem to be experiencing a revival of late. Have a listen to this live version from 1984:
William Cooper (1861-1941) was a Koorie man of the Yorta Yorta people. He was self-educated and modestly self-effacing in his pursuit of aboriginal representation in the new Federal Parliament; endlessly petitioning King George V for such a motion. Cooper moved to Footscray during his late adult life, where he joined the Australian Workers Union and became further entrenched in indigenous politics. He represented rural Victorian aborigines in fighting for assistance (which was hitherto denied them), during the drought and depression of the 1920s. His most poignant legacy, though, was his repugnance to an event planned in Sydney, 1938 to re-enact the January 26, 1788 arrival of The First Fleet, and raising of the Union Jack at Sydney Cove. All aboriginal associations protested the event and Cooper decried January 26 as a “day of mourning“. This declaration was the foundation for a tradition of aboriginal protest against what is now popular as Australia Day. Cooper currently lays deceased in an unmarked grave near the Barmah Forest; a tragic sarcasm to the cause that he championed.
Brendan Lee is an Australian Photographer and Video Artist from Victoria. His works are mainly centred around Australian identity and the colloquialisms associated with the urban ‘bogan‘. Brendan has recently achieved success in his 2011 show Australian Days at the CCP (Centre of Contemporary Photography), and with the release of his book Bogan Proof Fences. The book is a complement to his next show (of the same title) running from the 1st March until 25th march at The Substation 1 Market St. Newport.
INFX caught up with Brendan in this interview (of sorts) yesterday:
Aeon is one of Europe‘s emerging Street Art talents. His styles range from blockbuster through wildstyle and the abstract. This Belgian-based graffiti artist has joined the ranks of those giving hard evidence to INFX about their exploits and endeavours:
INFX: Quelle est la force de la scène graff en Belgique?
Aeon: She is very diverse, we may as well hold back the [old] school, new school, the organic or wild style. Given its industrial past, Belgium has many abandoned buildings, which allows us to move on surfaces diversified and come to the frescoes of [many] sizes. Many more urban festivals are based on the graffiti which allows us to showcase our style.
INFX: Je suis creuser votre plateau de skate. Y a-t-il un intérêt à travailler avec les marques de skate locales ou grand?
Aeon: Yes, because it could lead to changing the image of the skate by the combination with graffiti; it could breathe new life into the movement. It is also good to work with both: local stores allow us to share in the region while industrial [companies] open more doors. I have a preference for the more industrial, but I do not neglect the local stores.
INFX: Quelle est la chose la plus effrayante qui soit arrivé à vous tandis que la peinture?
Aeon: One night on the subway lines, marking a room in elevation with the aid of a ladder. My hand touched the high voltage line and 1,500 volts went through my body; I think it’s my most frightening. I know I got lucky.
INFX: Où habitez-vous? Avec des amis? Dans la ville? Banlieues?
Aeon: I rent an apartment in the city alone.
INFX: Dans un (ou deux) mot, comment qualifieriez-vous décrit votre art?
Aeon: Aggressive and malleable. I want to make a dedication “13, GAV, AKF, D2K, P50, B80, V2T… and everyone I do not have room to quote because the list is long…
Oui -un grand merci à Aeon et son posse! Voir les vraies affaires. Regarder les photos:
Participatory Economics (Parecon) is a contemporary school of socio-economic thought that seeks to change the way capitalism functions in Western liberal democracies. The movement seeks to reform the current state of the capitalist functionary system and alludes to re-distribution of wealth systems. This notion of reform perhaps addresses what a vast number of people reflect upon nowadays; i.e. Why do the CEOs of large companies earn such ridiculous salries? Why do politicians constitute the failed ambitions of lawyers, business ‘leaders‘, and political hacks? And why do our public institutions suffer for lack of funding and educational resources (eg. underpaid teachers)? And, Is the state of the environment subject to the whim of GDP and profit-margins in private enterprise? Parecon seeks to address these apparent failings of the present state of capitalism. The movement has recently been afforded a boost in the wake of the GFC and current Eurozone crises. Its‘ stated values are:
- Solidarity: people caring about one another and being social in their inclinations
- Diversity: having varied options and outcomes
- Equity: having fair distribution of wealth, income, and also circumstances
- Self-management: people having a say over the decisions that affect them in proportion to the extent they are affected
In all, the Parecon movement seeks to create a more regulatory approach to economic advantage; while enhancing the notion of social inclusion. This matter of ‘social inclusion‘ is currently causing confusion in Canberra but I would assert that it harks back to democratic-socialist policies that have their roots in scandanavian socio-political thought: that is, to foster community development (which may well translate to increased funding). However, it is important to note that Parecon has yet to define itself politically; contrarily, though, that is cause for joy as it invites input and discussion from all walks of life. Perhaps one to look at if you‘re interested in econmonics, society and political thought?
At the back of Communism by M T Walker.
Iepe Rubingh is a Dutch installation and performance artist. He currently lives and works in Berlin and has been a practicing artist for just over a decade. He‘s renowned for his The Joker Performances whereby he has shut down and disrupted traffic at busy intersections around the world. One such production caused traffic gridlock in Tokyo; for which he receieved a jail sentence of 10 days (which he had no choice but to serve). Below is a video from his 2010 Painting Reality series. In this video some 500 Litres of water-based (non-Solvent) paint is splashed over the Rosenthaler Platz in central Berlin. The resulting artwork serves as both a nod to Action Painters such as Jackson Pollock; but also invokes questions about the environment. However, despite its‘ overt political overtones; this artwork is splendid to view:
Gundagai (population 2,000) is located on the M31 Hume Motorway and the Murrumbidgee River, almost half-way between Sydney and Melbourne. Despite its modest size this town continues to recieve notoriety; both as a focal point for Aboriginal political thought, and as inspiration for Australian artists -being the epitome of rural Australiana. The area is home to the Wiradjuri people and has long been a significant place of Aboriginal custom, and throughout the 20th Century as home to indigenous political movements. Of these, the late ‘King Billy‘ and his quest for Aboriginal self-determination is significant. As an Aboriginal Elder, he joined John Noble under his anglicised named Jimmy Clements in the entourage of the Duke and Duchess of York (subsequently King George VI and Queen Elizabeth respectively) to open the new Federal Parliament House, Canberra in 1927.
Below are some images captured of two of the historic bridges that span the Murrumbidgee and its flood plains. They picture the 1867 Prince Alfred Bridge that is sadly falling into a state of dire disrepair, and the Gundagai Rail Bridge over Murrumbidgee River which is a railway bridge dating from 1902.
Photographs by D. Royce Walker & M T Walker.
The monthly Southside Vintage & Handmade Market operates out of St. Kilda and environs, and is held on the 2ⁿᵈ Sunday of the month. Alongside the many retro & vintage fashion stalls; the market exposes you to unique, artisan jewellery and accessories. Created by Fin Ola and Anne Freeman (also of Pigeon English), it is most worthwhile to enjoy a visit browsing. We asked the adorable Fin why the Southside Market is so wonderful:
INFX: You run the Southside Vintage Market -what makes a fashion item vintage?
Fin Ola: Anything as old as …well …old mate Henry VIII, and then to early 90s Will Smith/East 17 era. But just because you don‘t don your early 2000 Gasp or Supre dress anymore, doesn‘t mean you can palm it off as a vintage item.
INFX: 90s Nike blazers can cost up to $150 -what‘s the go there? What kind of price would we expect from Southside?
Fin Ola: Our stall holders are very reasonably priced; clothing and accessories range from $5/$150. You‘ll find a lot of stalls have sale items such as $5/$10 bargain baskets. We also have sweet treats selling for as little as $1!
INFX: So a Nike blazer could be anywhere up to $150, eh? Anyway, was it hard squeezing your way into the vintage and/or market scene? And what makes Southside successful?
Fin Ola: Anne & I both live Southside, where there is a lack of markets. Therefore [we thought] why not create one? We strongly believe in making it a friendly market [and] everyone has huge smiles on their faces; it‘s a little contagious. We also have such a fantastic & wide range of stalls to keep all entertained. We‘ve had a great start and are really lucky.
Lovely, and perhaps our readers can get lucky too! Score a bargain at the next Southside gig (which is a night market):
24ᵗʰ January from 6pm at 29 Apartment, St. Kilda:
Check out the facebook event for more details.
I‘m not hugely into graffiti art, but every once in a while an artist will grab my attention and remind me why spraypaint is so versatile to work with. One such artist is Miles “Mac“ Macgregor, better known by his pseudonym El Mac. Hailing out of Los Angeles, El Mac has become an established name in the street art community and has an incredible repertoire of murals all over the world. His styles and methods are as flexible as his canvas, creating a number of pieces on both brick and paper, using spraypaint and brushwork. Most notable is his distinct style of grooving line patterns through the images to create a “lines in the sand“ effect. The result is nothing short of astonishing, and his latest work for purchase titled The Prayer demonstrates his ability to create a flood of emotion straight from the canvas. Watch out Banksy, there‘s a new kid on the block!
What better way to start off the new year than with a full-length, classic feature film?
Sophia Loren stars in this 1960 cinematic gem by one of Italy‘s most successful and prolific film-makers. Vittorio De Silva (Bicycle Thieves, Generale della Rovere) wrote the screenplay and directed this film during the height of his career. It again visits his common thematics: namely in the tragic framing of love, sex, and courage amidst a setting of adversity. The film was highly contentious at the time of its release as it contained imagery considered highly graphic at the time. Loren recieved a Best Actress Oscar for her role; the first time a foreign film had recieved the honour. The 25 year-old had until this point been a sucessful model, but had acted only in minor roles. The film marked a turing point in her career; as she shot to International stardom after Two Women and its‘ Hollywood acclaim. Enjoy.