Archives for category: art

Last week, our family visited Los Angeles for a quick getaway.  Through a recommendation of a friend, we visited the Noah’s Ark exhibit at the Skirball Center.  We had a fantastic time there!

I had never heard of the Skirball, even though it’s just up the street from the Getty Center (which we’ve visited many times).  I’m so glad that we took one afternoon out to visit.

The Noah’s Ark exhibit is an immersive, interactive experience filled with creativity.  After entering the museum and finding our way to the Noah’s Ark exhibit, we waited for a couple of minutes for a quick orientation.

There, we found out that the animals on display throughout the Ark are made from recycled materials.  For example, they fashioned flamingos from spools of thread, fly swatters and combs and alligators from tires and violin cases.

Kids are free to run around, explore hands-on, and create their own animals from recycled art materials.  We used almost our entire two-hour block in the exhibit.  If you have kids, or are a kid at heart, the Noah’s Ark exhibit is a great place to spend the afternoon.

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This summer, somehow, I ended up seeing more films than I have in the past five or six years combined.  Since most of these films were from the summer-blockbuster variety (Star Trek, Wolverine, GI Joe, etc.) I ended up seeing many of the same trailers over and over. I feel like I’ve already seen some of those films, even though they haven’t been released.

However, it might have been before District 9 (which was super-intense, by the way; I’m stressed just remembering it!), I saw this lovely trailer for Spike Jonze’s adaptation of Where the Wild Things Are:

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Just returned from a quick trek out to Long Beach for The Idea Session at WFX hosted by Charles Lee and The Idea Camp.  I can’t say enough about the collaborative, creative ethos Charles and The Idea Camp foster — so much hope & inspiration to go and demonstrate God’s love to a broken world.

Tonight, we heard from Tony Kim of Newsong, Eric Bryant of Mosaic, and Mel McGowan of Visoneering about, “The Ethos of Creativity.”  Great insights all around from everyone and, in Idea Camp style, plenty of interaction from everyone who was there.  You can read my first attempt at a true live blog about The Idea Session here at Scribble Live.

A few of my favorite quotes:

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Let me say up front that I am usually a little bit over my head whenever talking about art.  I have never formally studied art or art history.  I likes what I likes and I read up on things that are interesting to me, whether because of aesthetics, medium or message.

I was intrigued by the inclusion of well-known street artist Banksy‘s Wall and Piece on Rob Bell’s Poets, Prophets & Preachers conference required reading list.  The street art/grafitti world has always intrigued me (and, no, not the “let me doodle my tag on lockers and bathroom stalls” variety) because of its subversive nature.  Along with raising important issues such as who own public space, I love how well-placed street art can reconfigure the ethos of a particular environment.

While doing some back-end work for a recent Ecclesia Collective article, I was introduced to the work of an artist called Specter.  Notice how simply adding a word or two to this awning communicates volumes about this neighborhood:

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The Freeze Project San Diego video is now online!

Today, there are over 27 million people trapped in slavery and human trafficking — more than at any other time in human history.  The US State Department estimates between 600,000-800,000 women, children, and men are trafficked across international borders each year. Approximately 80% are women and girls and up to 50% are minors.

And yet, so many people are unaware of this global nightmare.  Through The Freeze Project, we are raising awareness for those trapped in this terrible injustice.  Join the movement and raise your voice for freedom!

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Special thanks to Shirley Hwang for spearheading The Freeze Project San Diego movement and to Joe Baek for filming and editing the video.

The stories and music of people like Paul Potts and Susan Boyle move us, and rightly so — there’s something so profound about they way their voices confound our preconceived notions about them, based primarily on their outward appearance.

But today, via Eugene Cho, I came across a story and a song that brought me to tears.

At PS22 in New York City, a school where over three quarters of the students are eligible for free lunch, the PS22 Chorus of fifth graders — led by their teacher Mr. B (Gregg Breinberg) — are making some incredible music. A brief description from one article:

As Breinberg plays, he makes eye contact with the kids, coaxing performances from them and letting them enjoy themselves. Later, Davoya, one of the chorus members, explains how he does it. “At first, when I sang, I had no emotion,” she says. “I didn’t move. But Mr. B taught me to sing with feeling. With feeling and heart.”

Feeling and heart (along with an unusual repertoire) is what has made the ps 22 Chorus famous. In the last two years, this small, elementary-school choir has piqued the interest of people all over the world: music lovers and parents but also a random, devoted cross-section of the World Wide Web…

It’s easy to forget, watching the chorus achieve such extraordinary success, that a lot of its members are from disadvantaged backgrounds. Breinberg says that several of the students in the chorus are from special education and English as a Second Language programs. “It’s one of the more rewarding aspects of my profession to see so many of our kids who have difficulties in other areas of academics thrive within the choral environment,” he says. “People often lose sight of how important music is to the education of these kids.”

There something true and beautiful about joy, freedom, expression and soul when they’re cultivated in the midst of adversity.  Music can be so much more than notes on a page, especially in the lives of kids.  As Eugene wrote:

Invest in kids.  Believe in kids.  Love on kids.  Build them up.  I was reminded of a quote from Frederick Douglass: “It is easier to build strong children than it is to repair broken men (grown-ups).”

Below, you can watch the PS22 Chorus perform Viva La Vida by Coldplay and You Raise Me Up by Josh Groban:

… you might still have to wait awhile.

Bringing together the worlds of street art and the Twitterverse [h/t: notcot]: