Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Nature’s Beauty and Cruelty in the Artwork of Lauren and Caitlin

I hope to remind those who view my artwork that we too are animals, embedded in this fragile world even as we poison it. My work alludes to the boundaries that separate humans from animals both physically and metaphysically, and the way in which these boundaries are warped by science, mythology, and religion alike.
Like the gods of so many myths Humanity has warped the world into our own image, and it is this often frightening image I hope to reflect in my work. In my work I attempt to capture the often volatile human-animal relationship as well as a reflection of my own sorrow over the loss of wild species and wild places.
I am faced with the fact that we live in a planet in decline, where nearly every natural ecosystem in the world is withering to dust. Human kind has created a planet of refugees; animals forced to flee ever farther from the insatiable encroachment of urban development, victims of a war for space which they cannot hope to win.
Caitlin Hackett

Thursday, March 3, 2016

Homer - The Iliad

"Come, Friend, you too must die."
The Iliad
“Let me not then die ingloriously and without a struggle, but let me first do some great thing that shall be told among men hereafter.”
The Iliad

Friday, February 19, 2016

Civilization Lost

Today the empty air no longer mourns, no longer recognizes your clay feet, has forgotten your jugs that filtered the sky when it was slit open by the knives of lightning and the mighty tree was devoured by the fog and cut by the wind.
It held up against a hand that fell suddenly From the heights to the end of time. You are no more, hands of the spider, weak Threads, entangled web: what you were fell away: customs, frayed syllables, masks of dizzying light.
Pablo Neruda

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Income inequality report - A crushing cycle

The researchers, led by Stanford University sociologist Robb Willer, surmised that wealthy people embedded in a milieu where rich and poor live in starkly different circumstances may feel more entitled to their moneyed status, or more threatened by the prospective loss of privilege that would come if resources more evenly distributed. They may feel that the system whereby wealth is apportioned is fairer because they so rarely come into contact with the poor.
The findings, published in Friday's edition of the journal Science, indicate that an urgent need — making rent, getting money for food — tugs at the attention so much that it can reduce the brainpower of anyone who experiences it, regardless of innate intelligence or personality. There's a widespread tendency to assume that poor people don't have money because they are lazy, unmotivated or just not that sharp, said study coauthor Sendhil Mullainathan, a behavioral economist at Harvard University. "That's a broad narrative that's pretty common," Mullainathan said. "Our intuition was quite different: It's not that poor people are any different than rich people, but that being poor in itself has an effect." "Almost like a computer that has some other process running the background, poverty creates this nagging background process and that could itself have an effect on actual cognitive capacity," Mullainathan said.

Sunday, November 8, 2015

He pities the plumage, but forgets the dying bird.

"Not one glance of compassion, not one commiserating reflection that I can find throughout his book, has he bestowed on those who lingered out the most wretched of lives, a life without hope in the most miserable of prisons. It is painful to behold a man employing his talents to corrupt himself. Nature has been kinder to Mr. Burke than he is to her. He is not affected by the reality of distress touching his heart, but by the showy resemblance of it striking his imagination. He pities the plumage, but forgets the dying bird. Accustomed to kiss the aristocratical hand that hath purloined him from himself, he degenerates into a composition of art, and the genuine soul of nature forsakes him. His hero or his heroine must be a tragedy-victim expiring in show, and not the real prisoner of misery, sliding into death in the silence of a dungeon."
Thomas Paine,
Answer to Mr. Burke's Attack on the French Revolution

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

John Gray - the silence of animals notes quotes

Freud – “In the realm of fiction we find the plurality of lives which we need.”
Tertullian – “Credo quia absurdum – I believe because it is absurd. “
Few human beings are as unhappy as those who have a gift that no one wants.
The myth of progress is the chief consolation of modern humankind.
Freud dying…Near the end of his illness, when he could no longer smoke, he described life as “a small island of pain floating in an ocean of indifference.”
“The rest is silence.”
“All philosophy is a critique of language.” Wittgenstein
If human life requires repression, it also needs myth.
Denying reality in order to preserve a view of the world is not a practice confined to cults. Cognitive dissonance is the normal human condition.

Friday, October 16, 2015

David Foster Wallace on Toxic Postmodernism

I have revisited David Foster Wallace and what I appreciate about him is that he critiques the postmodern hyper sarcasm and cynicism...too much of it can be a paralyzing force... it makes me think of the era of the Simpsons, Family Guy, and South Park where nothing is real, genuine, sacred, or meaningful...
“What passes for hip cynical transcendence of sentiment is really some kind of fear of being really human, since to be really human [...] is probably to be unavoidably sentimental and na├»ve and goo-prone and generally pathetic.” ― David Foster Wallace, Infinite Jest
"Postmodern irony and cynicism's become an end in itself, a measure of hip sophistication and literary savvy. Few artists dare to try to talk about ways of working toward redeeming what's wrong, because they'll look sentimental and naive to all the weary ironists. Irony's gone from liberating to enslaving. There's some great essay somewhere that has a line about irony being the song of the prisoner who's come to love his cage… The postmodern founders' patricidal work was great, but patricide produces orphans, and no amount of revelry can make up for the fact that writers my age have been literary orphans throughout our formative years."
“There's good self-consciousness, and then there's toxic, paralyzing, raped-by-psychic-Bedouins self-consciousness.”
David Foster Wallace