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KShaw

Member
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    195
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About KShaw

  • Rank
    Member

Profile Information

  • Gender
    Male
  • Interests
    Art and religion

Previous Fields

  • Occupation
    Student at University of Washington
  • Favorite movies
    Yi Yi (A One and a Two) Au Hasard Balthasar Rosetta Munyurangabo
  • Favorite music
    The Innocence Mission >> Birds of my Neighborhood Joe Henry >> Tiny Voices Autolux >> Future Perfect Emmanuel Shall Come to Thee >> Noel St. Vincent >> Actor Pernice Brothers >> The World Won't End
  • Favorite creative writing
    Marilynne Robinson, Gilead Kazuo Ishiguro, The Remains of the Day Michael D. O'Brien, Father Elijah Leif Enger, Peace Like a River Ha Jin, War Trash
  • Favorite visual art
    Oldies: Van Gogh Cezanne De la Tour Contemporary: Knippers Cavanaugh
  1. Sam Phillips - The Long Play

    Any possibility that she'll release the full-length as a standalone? For some reason I always assumed this was going to be the case..
  2. Reminds me of the Japanese word 'setsunai,' except that one is more narrowly construed as bittersweet and usually applies to relationships.
  3. I Am Love (2010)

    Well, 'liberation' and 'enlightenment' imply forward progress, and I don't think the characters in this film move linearly. They just kind of go with the flow. The ending in particular is both musical (rest and coda) and emotional (mournful and peaceful) but I can't say it feels all that judgmental. Actually, come to think of it, Emma doesn't seem all that free to me, either, despite what I said about her agency. She does have a choice, but she chooses between two equally coercive options: traditional authority and uncontrollable passion. So maybe that's why the filmmakers don't see her as oppressed in the beginning--because she's no less 'oppressed' by her husband and family than she is by love and change. Both possess her, not the other way around. [sorry if the edits are confusing, I keep revising my thoughts on this one!]
  4. I Am Love (2010)

    The film definitely deals more in terms of stasis and change than good and evil. Applying a moral analysis to its characters' behavior probably won't yield much insight into its meaning, since their actions are inherently irrational. They either hold on to structure (tradition, family) or let themselves be carried off by emotion. In this sense, the film is amoral, and it doesn't care that you think its characters should pursue a more meaningful ideal of love. There isn't much point in disagreeing with the film's morality, because it doesn't have a morality--though you could certainly criticize it for not having a morality. I guess the main difficulty I had with the film is that it definitely feels like an article of consumption--as ambivalently decadent and sensuous as Antonio's prawns. The absence of ethics and the exclusive focus on the rich (and their lovers) pose obstacles to the film's invitation to participate in its emotional welter. It's more than a beautiful showpiece, for sure. Maybe it's a kind of humanistic pean to the power of the heart, but it doesn't really interrogate the weaknesses of that perspective so much as embody them. One reason why the filmmakers don't want us to see Emma as oppressed might be to emphasis her agency and consent. She is oppressed by the family insofar as she allows them control. She made the choice to leave Russia, to leave behind her identity, even if her consent came second to her husband's will. In the end, however, her choices dismantle the whole familial system and leave behind a ruin. Maybe we're meant to presume that she had this power in her all along.
  5. Sufjan Stevens - The Age of Adz

    Yep, the guy in the devil mask. He got some good attention
  6. Sufjan Stevens - The Age of Adz

    Should have expected it, but Sufjan + Halloween are two EXTREMELY COMPLEMENTARY flavors. I loved the drummer in the giraffe head. Also, some of the tracks that felt a bit oppressive on Adz get really lightfooted and groovy live.
  7. Why Beauty Matters

    Has modern art actually put art "in the hands of everyday people"? Is art that just anyone can produce art that just anyone can enjoy? Which is more elitist, a world in which few make art but anyone can appreciate it, or in which anyone can make art but only a few can appreciate it? I did note the irony where they present this new art to 'everyday people' who then tell them they don't want it. But I think this binary is misleading, not least of all because of that fact that artmaking tools have become available to everyone in a way that's historically unprecedented. So anyone CAN make art now, and those opportunities will just grow over time as the technologies to do so get cheaper and cheaper. That's just the world we live in. At the same time, most of our professional artists still come through the academy, avant garde or not. Nowadays, anyone can make art and few make art; both your categories apply. Paint has been around forever, sure, but inventions like the printing press, the camera, the video cam, and the computer have all trickled down to the masses. We've been working with paint all this time because it's what we've had. Now that the boundaries of art have expanded exponentially within a short period of time, we might expect the art being produced to start looking quite different as well.
  8. Why Beauty Matters

    Where does systems art fit into the continuum? It's definitely not your typical representational painting, but neither is it Picasso. Systems artists portray the relationships between objects and their environment, while focusing less on the objects themselves than their interaction. Many installations implicate the viewer and make her part of the system, leading some of these artists to proclaim that they are trying to show how 'everyone is an artist' in the way he influences conditions around him. It speaks to issues of social responsibility and environmental liveability. At the same time, the populist message/approach is belied by the reality that systems art is more or less elitist. It hasn't broken through to the mainstream. Its prominent theorists believe that they are looking at the future of art as a whole, and so they label the traditional arts and the unreceptive public as hopelessly backward and nostalgic. There's an interesting tension in describing primarily 'decorative' art as elitist and more difficult and the 'meaningful' art as easier to appreciate from the public standpoint. Usually with other mediums it's the other way around. Jfrutal's Lady Gaga reference exemplifies this. Terms like 'elitist' and 'populist' aren't absolute; in an area as complex as art, there will always be layers and layers of overlap. Dada, for example, began as a movement against 'bourgeois' art forms towards art that everyone could understand. Some systems artists, as well, try to make art that's not limited by culture, or even scale; they want art that literally anyone can experience and comprehend. (Oh the irony of high concept populism.) Back to the systems art of contemporary times, which can't be accused of being merely decorative, because oftentimes it's not even visible. It wholly embraces the didactic function of art, doing away with the idea of 'art for art's sake.' Not sure how I feel about all that. We might also look at it from the standpoint of art that merely 'distracts' v. art that invites 'contemplation,' or art that is absorbed in the viewer v. art that absorbs the viewer.
  9. Sufjan Stevens - The Age of Adz

    Even disregarding the swears, I don't think it's a great album to play with kids around. Unless you want them to cry, or they have ADD
  10. Sufjan Stevens - The Age of Adz

    I'm playing three iterations of 'I Want to be Well' simultaneously at different points in the song, and it sounds all right! At least, it really sounds like something he could have done, like a lost bit from the album
  11. Sufjan Stevens - The Age of Adz

    Maybe just one line, but he sings it a million times. I like it.
  12. Sufjan Stevens: All Delighted People

    Not that out of character. He did the same thing with 'Sister.' Hmmm
  13. Eat, Pray, Love

    I'd like to see Beat, Prey, Shove: The Bully Memoirs.
  14. I Write Like...

    Kurt Vonnegut
  15. The Last Airbender

    It's awesome that they're playing up the steampunk angle. Not sure if that means a less 'pan-Asian' flavor as the aesthetic moves into a more heavily industrialized look. Judging from the still, though, it looks like the two elements are meshing well. Asian steampunk. Awesome.
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