Sunday, 30 June 2013

The Ego

Human factors….the ego…
There are always the confusion surrounding the concept and use of mental models from the viewpoints of both human factors and psychology. The ways in which the notion is conceived according to the needs and approaches of different specialties and the relationships of mental models to other forms of knowledge representation are complicated.
The world is beginning to understand that single personality is a life force, a power, a consciousness, and a dimension of existence in which all life is interconnected. It is alive within each of us, and also present throughout nature. It is so much a part of our personal lives that we can easily miss it, unless we catch a glimpse in a special moment; grand moments like a concert where everyone sways and moves to the rhythm of shared the planet Earth and simple moments like the blissful peace of a beautiful sunset shared with a loved one. For it is in such moments that we share feelings without regard for status, gender, race, religion, or any of the other illusions of the ego that separate us.
It is not at all surprising that this massive understanding or - awakening process is creating tumultuous times on Earth. As many people are awakening and therefore striving to transcend ego driven behaviours, many more are responding to the changes with fear, anger, denial and bewilderment; all defence mechanisms used by the ego to protect its self against unknown dangers. Yet, to awaken will require facing the truth of what our ego has done; a truth that includes wasting and polluting resources, dangerous diseases, extinguishing whole species, and causing unspeakable pain and suffering to our fellow human beings.
Hilary Hart wrote: “this isn’t a futuristic utopia we’re considering. We might recount some compelling myths, but we’re not talking about a fairy tale. Increased awareness of Oneness doesn’t mean an end to pain or suffering and it’s not an elixir for personal happiness. After all, working with oneness requires us to face the truth of where we’ve been and where we’re going, and take responsibility for our choices that shape the future. But it does bring a lot with it – mystery, meaning, and the hidden powers of unity, and of course cooperation and peace.”

Saturday, 29 June 2013

Beyond money: living without the illusion of independence

Beyond money: living without the illusion of independence 

Money separates us from what we consume and hides us from the impacts of our behaviour. But there is an economic model that could not only bring us closer to each other and to the effects of how we live, it’s also booming, says Mark Boyle


Perching on my compost toilet reading the previous day’s discarded copy of the Financial Times – which was imminently destined for more humble purposes – I was almost convinced by the grim news from the City: the economy was going to humanure, and it would be 2018 before it improves.
But there was an invisible assumption underlying all the journalists’ articles. These modern-day storytellers have been confusing ‘finance’ with ‘economics’ for so long that they can now only recognise one form of economic model – the global monetary economy.
While some alternative economists argue for ‘de-growth’, a more positive approach would be to pursue the growth of another, more tried-and-trusted system, which I call the localised gift economy. If economic analysts could wrench their spellbound gaze from the London Stock Exchange, they would notice that this widely unreported gift economy was absolutely booming.

In response to the global financial crisis, people are preparing themselves for a new economy by participating in ways of providing and accessing the goods and services that we require, without the need for money. Ideas such as the freeshop and the ‘gift circle’ – regular meetings where people offer or request skills, tools, lifts, advice, stuff and time for free – are flourishing, while online communities such as Couchsurfing, Freeconomy and Freecycle now have membership in the millions, and are growing by the second.

In this emerging economic model, richness is a quality utterly unquantifiable, prosperity doesn’t mean the flat-packing of the Earth and the breakdown of authentic community, and the boom doesn’t have an inevitable bust. In contrast, the more it grows, the more resilient and connected communities who participate in it become.
But most of us have lived under the tyranny of the story of money our entire lives. Its introduction into human history is relatively recent, and we are the only species that seems to believe it needs symbolised paper in order to survive. Yet the global monetary economy’s relentless drive to convert our social, ecological, cultural and spiritual commons into cold, impersonal numbers has almost been so complete, that few of us can imagine a way of being human where money doesn’t mediate the relationships through which we meet our needs. Almost.

“In response to the global financial crisis, people are preparing themselves for a new economy by participating in ways of providing and accessing the goods and services that we require, without the need for money”

Since the financial crisis became publicly apparent in 2008, the rapid re-emergence of the gift economy has helped shed light on the simple reality that money – like strikingly similar myths such as Santa Claus – is just one story of how we can meet our needs. While stories constitute the fibres of the yarn that is society and their true purpose should be to serve us, money has long since robbed meaning and connection from our lives, and more besides.
Why? The reasons, unsurprisingly, are complex and many. Money has never merely been a unit of account, medium of exchange and store of value, as contemporary economists insist on believing, despite much evidence to the contrary from anthropologists such as David Graeber.
As the modern numerical manifestation of our notions of credit and debt, money originally performed an exceptional range of functions, usually related to tax, death, marriage, sex and war in a lot of societies. Consistent with all other technologies, however, the law of unintended consequences eventually came into play.

read more:

that is real autonomy in life...
but where the hell he found socket in the forest to plug in his computer...

  nanny state'...children...
for example if autor will broke his leg or some tooth pain...or...whatever - health problem or food shortage - he is sure(!) - NHS and social structures will help him without any problem or delay.

It is very different in...don't want to compare with Africa...or some Eastern countries... - in Russia for example he will be death without money or protection from government structures. So many very poor people there and very cruelty as well.





‘who’s ass should he kiss’...for living like that...


because 90% world population living in the same way...

but they don't chose this way...they just born like that...and there.. 


Heartbreaking ... starving child in Kenya

Friday, 28 June 2013

Natalia Samorukova's Dolls

'No one man can, for any considerable time, wear one face to himself, and another to the multitude, without finally getting bewildered as to which is the true one' - [Nathaniel Hawthorne]

'To be nobody but myself—in a world which is doing its best, night and day, to make me somebody else—means to fight the hardest battle any human can fight, and never stop fighting' [ E.E. Cummings]

'The privilege of a lifetime is to become who you truly are' – [C.G. Jung]


Franco Berardi Bifo:

Cyber-optimists were fashionable in the ’90s, and they were able to interpret the spirit of an alliance between venture capitalists and artists or engineers. But the alliance was broken in the Bush years, when technology was submitted to the laws of war, and financial capitalism provoked a collapse that may still lead to the destruction of modern civilization. Today, cyber-optimism sounds fake, like advertising for a rotten product. In his recent book, You Are Not a Gadget, Jaron Lanier, the same person who engineered the tools of virtual reality, writes:

    'true believers in the hive mind seem to think that no number of layers of abstraction in a financial system can dull the efficacy of the system. According to the new ideology, which is a blending of cyber-cloud and neo–Milton Friedman economics, the market will not only do its best, it will do better the less people understand it. I disagree. The financial crisis brought about by the U.S. mortgage meltdown of 2008 was a case of too many people believing in the cloud too much.'

Looking for Autonomy

As the governance model functions perfectly, in itself, it destroys the social body. Conceptualizing the field of cybernetics, Norbert Wiener argued that a system exhibiting positive feedback, in response to perturbation, increases the magnitude of perturbation. In contrast, a system that responds to a perturbation in a way that reduces its effect is said to exhibit negative feedback.

A logic of positive feedback is installed in the connection between digital technology and financial economy, because this connection tends to induce technological automatisms, and psycho-automatisms too, leading to the advancement of destructive tendencies. Look at the discourse of the European political class (almost without exception): If deregulation produced the systemic collapse with which the global economy is now confronted, we need more deregulation. If lower taxation on high incomes led to a fall in demand, let’s lower high-income taxation. If hyper-exploitation resulted in the overproduction of unsold and useless cars, let’s intensify car production.

Are these people insane? I don’t think so. I think they are incapable of thinking in terms of the future; they are panicking, terrorized by their own impotence; they are scared. The modern bourgeoisie was a strongly territorialized class, linked to material assets; it could not exist without a relationship to territory and community. The financial class that dominates the contemporary scene has no attachment to either territory or material production, because its power and wealth are founded on the perfect abstraction of a digitally multiplied finance.

And this digital-financial hyper-abstraction is liquidating the living body of the planet, and the social body. Only the social force of the general intellect can reset the machine and initiate a paradigm shift, but this presupposes the autonomy of the general intellect, the social solidarity of cognitarians. It presupposes a process of autonomous subjectivation of collective intelligence.

© 2010 e-flux and the author


Sefton Park Troll - 2

Sefton Park Troll (1) = here

The Actual '73 Giving Tree Movie Spoken By Shel Silverstein 



Thursday, 27 June 2013

Leandro Erlich

Optical illusion gives impression visitors are scaling Dalston House


 Beyond Barbican Summer presents Dalston House, an outdoor installation by Argentine artist Leandro Erlich in Ashwin Street, Dalston.  


Conceived by Argentinian artist Leandro Erlich, Dalston House in Ashwin Street forms part of the Beyond Barbican summer events which sees gigs, festivals and performances extend beyond the walls of the multi-arts venue this summer.

 Beyond Barbican Summer presents Dalston House, an outdoor installation by Argentine artist Leandro Erlich in Ashwin Street, Dalston.

A playful new art installation gives the impression visitors are defying gravity, as they hang off the side of a 19th century townhouse.
As they appear to sit on window ledges and scale walls, participants are in fact lying, sitting or standing flat on the floor and the bizarre mirage is created by a mirrored surface positioned overhead at a 45 degree angle.
Curator Alona Pardo believes visitors will embrace the creation and that it will provide “summer fun with a more serious edge”.
“It’s really playful and highly participatory and relies on viewers interacting to make it come to life,” she said.

“It’s clever but so simple once you understand you see that it makes total sense.”
Erlich has created similar projects in Buenos aires, Paris and Tokyo, each one reflecting the architecture of the region.
He designed and decorated the façade – complete with a door, windows, mouldings and other architectural details – to evoke the houses which previously stood on the Dalston block before they were bombed during the Second World War.
“It’s like a phoenix rising from the ashes,” said Ms Pardo.
“Predominantly what he’s looking at is perception and ways of seeing through illusionary tricks, his works are optical illusions,
“He doesn’t hide the manner in which it’s built, he wants to reveal ways of looking at the world and defining our own realities.”
She continued: “What’s bespoke is the mirror structure, it’s not a mirror but it’s a mirror film, called a polymeric film.
“It’s pretty fragile, and it’s usually used in theatre.
“It would just be too heavy if it was a real mirror and the cost would be prohibitive, you couldn’t keep it at 45 degree angle, you’d need such a big rigging system at the back to keep it up.”

Wednesday, 26 June 2013

Carne Griffiths


Carne Griffiths
Working primarily with calligraphy inks, graphite and liquids, such as tea, brandy and vodka Griffiths’ fascination with drawing focuses on the creation and manipulation of the drawn line. Images explore human, geometric and floral forms, in a combination of both literal and abstract translation and in response to images and situations encountered in daily life. Images are recorded in a dreamlike sense onto the page where physical boundaries are unimportant. His work creates a journey of escapism which focuses on scenes of awe and wonder, projecting a sense of abandonment and inviting the viewer to share and explore this inner realm.
Originally from Liverpool, Griffiths graduated from the Kent Institute of Art and Design in Maidstone in 1995. After completing a one-year KIAD fellowship and moving to London he served an apprenticeship at the longest-established gold wire embroidery firm in the world. Here he worked as a gold wire embroidery designer for twelve years, eventually becoming the creative director. Carne produced intricate designs for the military and the film, theatre, fashion and advertising industries. His designs were used for the uniforms in the films Valkyrie, The Last King of Scotland, and in particular his ‘Red Death Coat’ was used in The Phantom of the Opera. Carne’s elaborate floral designs for Asprey were included in their first ever catwalk collection and his work was featured on the embroidered cover of the 80th Royal Variety Performance programme in 2008.
Since establishing his own studio in 2010, Carne has exhibited in the UK at the London Original Print Fair at the Royal Academy, the London Art Fair in both 2011 and 2012, and overseas at Urban in Ibiza in 2011 and Arts After Dark, New Orleans in 2010. Carne also collaborated with the British photographer Rankin for a feature in the 2nd edition of Hunger Magazine early in 2012.

Sunday, 23 June 2013

Marfa, Texas

Marfa, Texas: The Arts Colony Donald Judd Built, In 'No Place Like Here' (VIDEO)

"Every Wednesday night in Marfa, we have craft night," says Rachel Neel, its co-founder, "and it's like our church." The 2,000 citizens of the remote Southwest Texas town have created their own civilization, with its own routines, customs and celebrities. The short documentary below was posted with a longer description on Etsy, and takes us through the quietly thriving arts colony. The town was brought to notability by sculptor Donald Judd in the 1970s and supported by what Neel believes is the local appreciation for isolation and personal projects. The documentary, by Marfa filmmaker Karen Bernstein, introduces us to some of its characters, including Adam Bork, who lives in a geodesic dome, collects vintage TV sets and composed the soundtrack of the video itself.

Prada Marfa

all images from the book “Michael Elmgreen & Ingar Dragset: Prada Marfa”
published by Walther König, Koln (July 1, 2007)
ISBN: 978-3865601957

Illuminated at night, with a range of original shoes and handbags displayed in its windows, this Prada store never opens. Pressing your face to the glass reveals the plush carpet inside to be covered in dead flies. A permanent sculpture installed in 2005 by Scandinavian artists Elmgreen and Dragset, Prada Marfa, about 40 miles north-west of the town it is named after, is a sort of gatepost that marks the edge of a remote yet popular art park that has bloomed over the past two decades in the middle of the Chihuahuan Desert.

The artists describe Prada Marfa as a “pop architectural land art project” and its ironic, minimalist product displays make reference to the work of Marfa’s most famous artist-inhabitant. Donald Judd, a moody Midwesterner with Scottish roots – betrayed in his predilection for kilts, whisky and bagpipe music – arrived in Marfa from New York in the mid-70s. He kept his five-storey cast-iron building in SoHo but, disillusioned with the “glib and harsh” Manhattan art scene and his position in it as a doyen of minimalism (a label he always disavowed), he withdrew to rural Texas for increasingly large parts of the year. In Marfa he created his own utopian mix of elemental art, architecture and furniture and in the process was forced to meditate on the differences between these art forms.

Prada Marfa is a permanently installed sculpture by artists Elmgreen and Dragset, situated 2.3 km (1.4 mi) northwest of Valentine, Texas, just off U.S. Route 90, and about 60 km (37 mi) northwest of the city of Marfa.
 The installation was inaugurated on October 1, 2005. The artists called the work a "pop architectural land art project." The sculpture, realized with the assistance of American architects Ronald Rael and Virginia San Fratello, cost US $80,000 and was intended to never be repaired, so it might slowly degrade back into the natural landscape. This plan was deviated from when, three days after the sculpture was completed, vandals graffitied the exterior, and broke into the building stealing handbags and shoes.

Designed to resemble a Prada store, the building is made of "adobe bricks, plaster, paint, glass pane, aluminum frame, MDF, and carpet."
The installation's door is nonfunctional. On the front of the structure there are two large windows displaying actual Prada wares, shoes and handbags, picked out and provided by Miuccia Prada herself from the fall/winter 2005 collection; Prada allowed Elmgreen and Dragset to use the Prada trademark for this work.
 Prada had already collaborated with Elmgreen and Dragset in 2001 when the artists attached signage to the Tanya Bonakdar Gallery in New York City with the (false) message "Opening soon - PRADA". Prada Marfa is located relatively close to Donald Judd's Chinati Foundation. The minimalism of Prada's usual displays that are mimicked in this work play off the minimalism that Judd is known for as an artist. The sculpture was financed by the Art Production Fund (APF) and Ballroom Marfa, a center of contemporary art and culture.

Along a ledge that runs around the base of the building, hundreds of people have left business cards, weighed down by small rocks. 

A few days after Prada Marfa was officially revealed, the installation was vandalized.
The building was broken into and all of its contents (six handbags and 14 right footed shoes) were stolen, and the word "Dumb" and the phrase "Dum Dum" were spray painted on the sides of the structure. The sculpture was quickly repaired, repainted, and restocked. The new Prada purses do not have bottoms and instead hide parts of a security system that alerts authorities if the bags are moved.

Monday, 17 June 2013


The Strathpeffer Hotel, Strathpeffer
Scottish Highlands! The scenery just takes your breath away and the area is one of the most beautiful I have ever visited. Our driver worked very hard to make this trip an enjoyable four days. We visited Inverness, Isle of Skye, and surrounding areas.
The Strathpeffer hotel is a fine old building set in a picturesque spa village Strathpeffer about 30 minutes from Inverness. I and my husband arrived here for four nights on an organised tour.
Very quirky hotel, the building is old but has some character. Very good trip up and arrival was pleasant.
Mimi got on the bus, gave us the general and charming welcome, lifted everyone’s spirits with her hearty comments and distributed room keys. We went straight to our rooms. You will either love the decor or walk back out the door.

We found the decor very interesting but quite dated; our room was clean, pristine sheets on the bed, bathroom with a decent looks shower,  had poor water pressure and wouldn't sit between scalding hot and very cold.. The heating worked really well the room was very warm inside after five minutes of turning the radiator up.  
Oh dear! Can you imagine - a remote control tied to a bedside cabinet with wool!
Food was as expected – simple and honest.  We paid about £170 each for an all inclusive stay, including our excellent bus and driver.
All the staff worked hard and were first class, all very smiley and eager to please, very attentive and friendly!  This entire village and hotel is tired and worn in places, but that adds to its charm and you couldn't find a friendlier welcome.
We enjoyed a drink in the conservatory and were amused by the decorations.
The exterior of the hotel has quite lost its character due to the garden created in front of it with mesh-mash of styles with the focus on East meets West (!) - garden furniture, dolphins, a stag and any number of hanging baskets and pots full of withered and fresh plants.
The hotel although it was built many years ago, still retains some of the charm of yesteryear. Strathpeffer village is a charming and relaxing place to stay with some wonderful history. Strathpeffer is a Victorian Spa resort where one would have partaken of the waters as prescribed by a doctor in the Victorian Era when this village was in its heyday. The majority of the original buildings are still here including a few hotels, more than you would expect from a small village community. One of the original pump rooms for the spa water has been restored and now serves as the tourist information centre, a very useful place to start exploring Strathpeffer and districts.
The Strathpeffer Hotel is family run by a very hardworking team who if asked will go out of their way to try and help.
The dining room was fine with the tartan curtains and typical highland prints. The style of decor is right out of the 1970s and manages to incorporate every Scottish Highland cliché in the book. To suggest that this has been achieved with a great deal of kitsch would be to imply that this had all been done deliberately. Instead I think it’s just down to years of neglect. Not sure those Chinese fans, Chinese silk tapestries sit comfortably with the stags head trophy, tartan carpet and Robert Louis Stevenson, but it was cute, in a strange sort of way!
The floor did squeak and groan, but it is an old building, and this adds to the charm!
The little garden in front of the ancillary building, where we were housed includes a rotten picnic table was a shabby and neglected but anyway very touching and peaceful. This house and garden, we learned was once a charming B&B. Strathpeffer was a Victorian Spa town - so don't be expecting everything to be all hotels chain-like.
Lyn, Mimi and Peter the barman looked after us very well. This is a family run hotel the way they looked after us. Take no notice of negative comments as some people expect the Ritz for the price they are paying.
Evening entertainment was ok, not ‘top dollar’ but it was good old fashioned sing along stuff. Our ‘national’ driver was great, had good knowledge of the area, and very helpful.
On our optional trip, the local driver Danny was a real fountain of information, he knew everything about the area and really good.
It is a very old fashioned and mysterious place which would be amazing if it was bought over and upgraded/refurbished...but a ton of money would need to be spent that’s for sure.
All in all it was a pleasant stay in a very pretty village.
Mimi was exceptional in her welcome and constantly throughout our trip, even going to the extra effort of coming onto the coach before we set off home to wish us all a safe journey home, which was a nice personal touch, and very much appreciated by all.

Mimi and her hats

pictures from Mimi's website

Mimi's website

Saturday, 1 June 2013


The Clootie Well

At the Clootie Well on the Black Isle, despite being within sight of the road you are immediately in no doubt that you've entered a place that's distinctly 'other'.

In Scotland, clootie means a piece of cloth or strip of rag, it can also mean clothing and cloth for patching.

The village of Munlochy situated in the heart of the Black Isle, the promontory that lies north of Inverness, bounded by the Moray Firth to the south and the Cromarty Firth to the north. The place is treated to the odd spectacle of bits of cloth, human hair and clothing hanging off the trees and bushes. But the trees, bushes and flowing stream are an ancient Celtic healing and pilgrimage place. This holy well later became associated with the Pictish Saint Curidan.

The Clootie Well is a remnant of an ancient tradition commonly found in Scotland and Ireland, of holy wells to which pilgrims would come and make offerings, usually in the hope of having an illness cured. The tradition dates far back into pre-Christian times, to the practice of leaving votive offerings to the local spirits or gods in wells and springs.

The holy well at Munlochy is said to date back to the time of St Boniface or Curitan, who worked as a missionary in Scotland.

Pilgrims would come, perform a ceremony that involved circling the well sunwise three times before splashing some of its water on the ground and making a prayer. They would then tie a piece of cloth or "cloot" that had been in contact with the ill person to a nearby tree.

As the rags hanging on the trees and bushes rot, the disease afflicting the person who wore the piece of clothing fades away and disappears. So the Pagan belief goes. Today's Clootie Well remains an unsettling place.

Many people still obviously believe that leaving an offering will be of benefit to them or to others. One problem is that many choose to leave items made of modern synthetic materials that will never rot away.
It is especially popular during the traditional Celtic festival of Beltane, on 1 May.