Arts Politics & Society

Ai Weiwei: Art through suffering

You can push a creative man into silence but all this does is fuel his creative output.

China held artist and “dissident” Ai Weiwei in captivity for 81 days. He nearly died.

Weiwei is now turning his jail time experience into a piece of art. For Weiwei, creative expression is more about storytelling than profit.

“Very few people know why art sells so high,” Mr. Ai replied. “I don’t even know.”

Still, his art sells for hundreds of thousands at Sotheby’s in New York.

Weiwei lived in New York for 11 years before heading back to China. The creative freedom he learned in New York shines through WeiWei’s work.

Weiwei teaches us to make something lasting, in good times or bad. As Neil Gaiman said in his commencement speech this week:

“When things get tough, make good art. Make it on the bad days. Make it the good days too.”

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Paris, New York

It’s not surprising that New York can sometimes feel like Paris. Some sites are especially beautiful like Central Park. The simplest scenes can be a reminder.

Paris is as much for art as New York is for commerce and most recently, technology.

We’re experiencing the second coming of art in the tech world today. Instagram and Paper 53 have jumpstarted the new mobile and tablet aesthetic. We’re all artists now.

New York is pushing the art tech wave. The technology grows in San Francisco but it gets cultivated in New York. There’s just too many people, money, and beautiful sites, some ever changing.

New York is symbolic for the rapid innovation happening in tech today. Companies like Foursquare, Etsy, Spotify, and now Facebook and Twitter operate in New York to capture its quick adoption of technology and creativity.

New York, en medias res. Blink for a moment you won’t miss a thing. There’s always something new.

Source: via Wells on Pinterest

Photography Tech

The Conformity Crisis

If everyone has access to the same tools then everyone will become a producer. And all the art will look the same.

Take Instagram for instance. All you need is an iPhone and some cheap Camera+ editing app to clean up your images before you upload them to Instagram. You can also edit images on Instagram itself.

Since we all have the same tools we all produce similar-looking photos. This is why anyone that wants to stand out on Instagram should pick a style, theme.

First, choose an object or location that inspires you. Second, pick a consistent filter like black and white. Three, be different. Set your follower expectations in this step by step process.

One of my favorite Instagrammers takes a picture of a picture, a Polaroid over his object. You see his hand holding out the Polaroid covering the same image he’s capturing. Simple yet genius.

Stand out from the crowd

That’s the only way you’ll keep your identity on Instagram and in a world where creativity has amassed around the ease of tools and sharing.

Creativity Quotes Tech

MLK’s Tech Revolution

“There can be no gainsaying of the fact that a great revolution is taking place in the world today. In a sense it is a triple revolution: that is, a technological revolution, with the impact of automation and cybernation; then there is a revolution in weaponry, with the emergence of atomic and nuclear weapons of warfare; then there is a human rights revolution, with the freedom explosion that is taking place all over the world. Yes, we do live in a period where changes are taking place”.

— Martin Luther King Jr.

Prescient, a man that saw the intersection of freedom and technology.

Imagine the power of his words in 140 characters.