Adventures in Art Appreciation: Street Galleries

Culture. A simple word with complex connotations. Like the air we breath, the best parts of our culture is all around to see and hear. We spend alot of our time passing billboards, advertising, and other visual stimuli without even realizing the effects on us. Another thing I’m sure you encounter on your day to day commute is art. Maybe not what you picture in your local gallery but it’s art non the less. Art is everywhere especially in metropolitan areas where creatives congregate.

Would you have seen this?

We spend literally entire days of our lives passing by the beauty our cities offer unknowingly. So absorbed in whatever we may have going on that we forget to look around. From murals to street performers the beauty of your city is all around you. Ever present and ever expressing the emotions that come from living in our society. They express emotions that you may realize you share with these creatives if you take the time to soak it in. It can be therapeutic to roam and experience your cities culture. I know it is for me.

We are all a product of the culture we were raised in and around. It would be a disservice to ourselves to turn a blind eye to all that is around us. It has an effect on us whether we like it or not. Might as well stop for a second and appreciate it.

Creative Expression & The Human Condition

The Creative Contribution 

     As general rule we do our best to try to avoid political issues.  It’s a rule that I think helps us to not alienate any of our readers.  Now I say that not to imply that I’m about to break said rule, but I won’t deny that politics inspired this article.

     Recently I was reading how the National Endowment for the Arts as well as other government subsidized programs like National Endowment for the Humanities could be in jeopardy due to reduced, or cut funding.  So instead of just going into a rant about how fucked up that is, I thought I’d instead speak on how important artistic expression is to the human condition.  Food for thought if you will to convey the importance creative expression has had on civilization, and the potential hazards of losing sight of this.  From your favorite classic rock bands you discovered in high school, to the art in the lobby of the dentists office.  It all has a profound effect on us.

     For me art no matter the medium at a very young age was sort of therapeutic for me.  Early coping mechanisms revolved around creativity.  The inspiration of knowing that others had struggles in life that they expressed through art & music.  The beauty that the struggles of life are not unique to the individual, but the way we express & endure is unique.  Thousands if not millions of unique perspectives could get lost in obscurity.  At a time when honest expression has become an important industry the importance of documenting the human experience is still being downplayed.  More by those concerned with the bottom line than those who are busy living life.  Those who amidst their struggle and pursuits see a beacon of hope in creativity.   In these turbulent times the creatives can bridge the divide, as they have always done.  After all to quote a classic “something bout music when it hits you feel no pain.”  No one wants to feel pain but complicated emotions come out and empathy comes from experiencing perspectives. If there’s something needed in the world more than ever it’s empathy.

     So here we are at this crucial point in time.  A time when creativity is more important than ever, and understanding is craved.  Sometimes the best solutions come from looking within.  Art & the Humanities give us a chance to do that.  A hard look at ourselves is needed so that we can progress.  Good old ingenuity…  The human element will help us if the funding stops.  No matter what kind of machine put in place creativity always finds a way.  The need to express helps us endure.  Our humanity always shoes through.  

Navigating the Labyrinth

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     We as journalist, bloggers, intellectuals….   Or whatever… tend to spend a large amount of time with our faces stuck in tablets, phones, books, & various publications.  I am fortunate to come across alot of motivational content on a day to day basis.  That positivity has a way of recharging me.  So I thought I’d take the time to write a more personal ode to the positive inspiration I see consistently.
     As an individual and an organization it is sometimes hard to stay on path with ones goals & aspirations.  Life’s twists and turns can sometimes stagger progress by way of diverting your attention away from what the intended focus is.  We spend alot of time at ¡Fresh Aesthetic!™ interracting with artist, musicians, and other creatives.  The consensus seems to be that inspite of all that life throws at you stay consistent, and relentless in your pursuits.  Life will not quit and neither should you.  No matter your medium, no matter your persuit be constant.  As animals and plants do in nature, adapt.  As a good friend of mine would say…  “Life don’t quit….”
     The human condition is universal.  The degrees of intensity may vary but the adversity is ever present.  Let that drive you to your goal.  No matter how the road winds and the labyrinth seems daunting.  As an artist, business person, or creative the strife and struggle makes the success that much more rewarding.  Strength and character prove valuable tools for the endurance race.  How will you finish?  How will you be remembered?
Good luck in all your pursuits…

A City Dweller’s Epiphany (time is relative)…

     Usually our articles cover broad range of subject matters from a general perspective.  Today Im going to speak on a more personal note in regard to some reflections I’ve been doing over the past couple of weeks.  So pardon the tangent, but I thought it might be relatable to our audience.
     Its often said that there are two kinds of people, those that get shit done and those who don’t.  Well that may be true in one regard but also not in another.  A big problem we see in music, art, and in general is the over simplification of various issues.  For example…  In every scene there is the general audience and there are the movers and shakers.  Now to most it would appear that the movers and shakers are the group most invested in the scene, but as I said previously its not that cut and dry.  Speaking from personal experience there is alot more to it.  Some movers and shakers are involved in a scene for selfish motives and not just because they love said scene.  While some that appear to be mere fans might be more invested than first thought.  Some people just don’t have the resources, time, or even money to be as involved as they might prefer to be.  As the old adage goes… “Looks can be decieving…”
     I can personally attest to the struggle of juggling your personal life and ones passions.  Often life trumps ones passions.  As it should.  While your average person may lets this discourage them, others do not.  If you’re truely driven you will navigate it all and make time for what you love.  Its true that life is too short, and time is our most valuable ever fleeting resource.  I’ll put it another way.  When your average person gets a pay check they do not have the luxury to just blow the entire thing frivilously.  They rather carefully budget their finances in accordance with expenses, bills, etc.  Why not do this with our most valuable resource.
     I guess this is where the epiphany comes in.  Why settle for the role of an outsider or a fan.  If you love something and want to be more involved in your passion do it.  Why leave the scene you love to those with selfish motives.  Treat your time like that paycheck.  Dispence and budget your time with what you can “afford” to do with it.  Its up to you how you utilize your most precious resource.  I recommend investing it wisely.  The fruits of your investment are well worth it.

– $oCity

The Art of Album Art

     Artists have been collaborating with musicians in various contexts for forever.  Its almost as though they go hand in hand.  I think it’s because artists can express in ways musicians can’t and like wise.  Artist/musicians have always had a more symbiotic relationship.  Its like one sees and tries to interpret the others vision…  Or in the case of cover art.  It’s like the musician sees something in the visual artists work that is symbolic of their own work.  So they commision the artists and/or the artists work to represent the music via the album cover.  Sometimes the artist is sufficiently compensated and sometimes not.
     In a few of our posts we’ve talked about the value of ones creative works.  Not to be redundant but that value is not always fair to the artist.  I have a few examples but the most recent one that comes to mind are the latest album releases by FutureDS2 & Evol were both considered classic albums.  The artist (Sanja Tošić) who made less than $80 from the sale, said that “the lowest of all her sales paid out $0.33 and the most she ever made on one sale was $80.00.”  So basically she sells digital copies, or possible prints via Shutterstock.   Although not too many details have been released I’m sure Shutterstock cleared a larger profit per their “premier package.”  Even though DS2 was taken from a stock image, Evol was not.  They instead used Polish photographer Szymon Świętochowski to create the cover artwork.  Now Im willing to bet that that he made significantly more to produce the artwork for this project than Sanja did but she is still very happy about her collab.  After it does bring attention to her as an artist.
     I spoke on Future first because he’s the most relevant to the subject, but he’s not the only one by far.  I wonder how much Kanye West paid to get George Condo to do the artwork for MBDTF album.  Better still would The Velvet Underground have been able to colab with Andy Warhol had he not been their manager and friend.  The situation may be different.  Just as the reward an artist recieves for their work may be different, but the out come is the same.  The musician creates a body of work accompanied by the artists interpretation of said body of work via the album cover.  Together the two mediums merge to create a lasting impression on modern culture.  Together they complete each other and compliment each other, and this empowers both individuals.  The statement each artist makes merges to create one cohesive message.  And this is the culmination of a great project.

– $oCity

Intellectual property: The Value of Ideas

     I think the saying is “there’s nothing new under the sun.“  The idea that there is nothing man has not atleast thought about at some point in time.  There’s this knack people have to rehash the same ideas and recreate certain styles, or sounds.  That being said there’s this need in the human condition to try to create, and make something “new.”  Its almost ingrained in people to pursue whats percievably new.  I don’t know if its the culture, genetics, or both, but people crave ¡fresh!™ and ground breaking.  Even if its a new take on an old idea it’s held at a high regard or a high value.  Why is this?  What makes one idea more valuable than the other?  Why is one persons take on an idea covetted more than the next?  Im asking these questions to understand the dilemma of value and originality when it comes to intellectual property.
     It’s defined as creations of the mind, such as inventions; literary and artistic works; designs; and symbols, names and images used in commerce.  The dilemma is that at the end of the day it’s a property.  The thing about property is that when its yours you value it more.  Just like product from a specific manufacturer has a certain cost.  What dictates this value?  Some ideas are more valued because of the source.  While others are valued for the content of said idea.  I’ll compare it to realestate.  If your idea (property) is contructed around or near something of reputable status it raises the property value.  Where as if you build or create a certain vision in a baron landscape the value of the idea diminishes.  So the work is double in proving why your idea is just as valuable as the next.
     Anyone who has worked at marketing an idea or invention knows that the industry of your choosing is competitive and cutthroat.  Ideas are stolen, credit isn’t given, and the pay doesn’t always equal the quality.  So why keep pushing through it?  Simple, if its your time the pay off is worth it and at the end of the day creating is ingrained in the human condition.  No matter the risk, no matter the reward creators and innovators will continue to do so.  The value placed on your product might not be equal to others.  You may not get the recognition deserved, but the possibility is still there.  So the value of an idea is really up to you.  Do you accept the value placed on your intellectual property or do you keep pushing it until you get your just due.  I recommend you keep pushing, but ultimately its up to you how hard you push your product. 
God Speed…

– $oCity

Adventures in Art Appreciation

Time is ever constant, ever present, and ever fleeting. In a day only a fraction of my time is free to explore and dedicate to my passion and/or hobby. So there’s a challenge I share with most people. Finding the time to spend with the movers and shakers is limited. Just because you’re busy doesn’t mean you shouldn”t try to get out, get active, and get cultured…
This will hopefully evolve into a series where I document my adventures and outtings to various events abroad and in town, but for now we’ll speak on apreciating your city. The world is big and the art world is bigger. Why not make an effort to explore it. Im not at all an expert on art…. well yet…lol… Just because someone doesn’t submerge themselves in the arts shouldn’t stop you from going out and exploring the world around you. Technology can make anyone a hermit, but I like to use it as a tool. I look up artists, and look up events to add to my itenerary. I suggest you do the same.
Happy hunting…

– $oCity

Camo, Plaid, Paisley, Floral – The patern trend

     Designers recently seem to be getting bored with usual color palette we’re acustom to.  Everyone from the street wear side, to the high fashion side of the spectrum are trying to change things up.  The first real noticeable change up has been the adaptation of camoflauge into every fashion setting.  From dress to casual….  Hell even pajamas are using camo as the primary color palette.  Companies like Bape are even going as far as getting a patent filed on their specific pattern of camo.  In my opinion the change in functionality in the pattern is a necessary and needed trend.  I just hope they don,t play it out.
     The plaid situation is a little different to…  Aside from Burberry no one has really personalized the pattern.  I think plaid is really close to being plaid out.  With flanel making a come back, and the use of plaid damm near everthing its getting close.  The only thing saving it is the diversity of patterns and colors. 
     That is something that all the patterns I’m talking about share and ultimately help them grow in popularity.  Specifically in mens fashion, these patterns add a new dynamic to mens colour options.  I’ve always been a fan of paisley but floral is changing the game if you ask me.  10 Deep and Element are two of the many companies releasing collections featuring exclusively floral patterns.  It’s kind of like pink (keep in mind I hate pink though).  For a long time it was considered something more femanine, until some people pushed the envelope.  Even though I hate pink its a good thing when people push the boundaries.  Making you rethink what is ok to wear. 
Keeping it ¡Fresh!

Things to come….

     Here at Fresh Aesthetic we try to keep our fingers on the pulse of what’s happening..  In that area alone theres so much to cover, and touch on.  Then you have those times when something is so different, and outside the usual spectrum of cool that it gets overlooked.  So we obviously have a very daunting task ahead of us, but we’re up for the challenge.
It’s no secret we love art.  what you may not know is that we have a special affinity for street art.  We’ll be trying to explore in depth that side of the art world.  From established street artist who have moved into galleries to show their work, to established artist who exclusively show in galleries.
This same approach will be taken in how we talk about music, fashion, business, and whatever other vehicles of expression we cover.  From experimental to the traditional we love it all.  So stay tuned.  Cool people, and cool perspectives are abundant.  Let’s go!

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– SoCity