Tuesday, June 28, 2011

A new lecture and workshop series promoting Knoxville creatives

I attended Pecha Kucha 2 a couple of months ago at Relix Variety Theater. I didn't know what it was until I got there, but was pleasantly surprised.

In essence, it is an outlet for creative people to talk about what they make. There were about 10ish speakers and each talked for 5 minutes while a slideshow of 20 images was projected behind them. It reminded me of attending the visiting artist lecture series at UT in the Art and Architecture Building, but I like the idea of Pecha Kucha because it gives artists and designers making work in Knoxville a chance to share.

Pecha Kucha 3 happened this past weekend, but I was out of town for it. I know they happen about quarterly, so be on the lookout if you are interested in attending. You can friend them on Facebook for updates.

Attending Pecha Kucha got me thinking that there needs to be more of this type of thing happening in Knoxville. Artists need a place to talk about their work and to teach outside of an academic setting. Art and inspiration for all. So I've decided to see what I can do to help.

I am very pleased to announce that tomorrow will be the first lecture/ workshop in a long series, based on this idea of creative people sharing, brought to you by 17th Street Studios*.

Our first speaker is Katie Ries, founder of the Urban Land Scouts and graduate of the MFA Studio Art program at UT.

photo by Katie Ries

I have gotten to know Katie over the past year or so and have to say she is one of my favorite artists in Knoxville. My first run in with her work was at a show at 1010 where models wore elaborate costumes she had made to better connect them to their surroundings (Costumes to Save Your Life). Later, I knew her as the girl who took people on walks through 4th and Gill to find edible plants in the neighborhood. Her work is exciting, pertinent, and it doesn't hurt that she has a great personality to back it all up. (I only gush when I am sincere, for the record)

photo by Luke Wilkins

These are her words about the what she will be sharing tomorrow night: My work addresses the intersection between modern people and their land. I will be discussing my most recent project, the Urban Land Scouts, and talking about other contemporary artists with similar social and land-based practices. I will lead participants in a round of making seedbombs so that all may take their newfound knowledge to the streets (or fields).

I do hope you can make it, whether you are an artist or one that appreciates art. It should be thought provoking, inspiring, and a great venue for discussion. It may also be a place where one could find a free beer and some snacks.

Here are the details about tomorrow night:
17th Studios Presents
an Artist Lecture and Urban Land Scout Workshop
by Katie Ries
Wednesday, June 29, 2011, 6-7pm
at Redeemer Church
1642 Highland Avenue, Knoxville, TN
on the corner of 17th and Highland

If you can't make it tomorrow but have any ideas for future workshops or lectures, you may email me at beth@bethmeadows.com.

*17th Street Studios is a work space for 11 artists and designers in the Fort Sanders Neighborhood.

Thursday, June 09, 2011

Red Light Cameras Part IV: A New Hope

Saw this story today and felt the need to pass it along.

OK so it's California, they do lots of crazy stuff, but between this and medicinal marijuana they have gotten some stuff almost right.

We need to have a serious conversation about the future of these "traffic control" devices in our city before, or perhaps during, the next election. I plan on asking all of the candidates, the ones who will respond at least, about their philosophical stance on red light/ speed cameras and how they plan on changing policy in the future.

Let me reiterate. These cameras are a sham of law enforcement. They make a company in Arizona millions in revenue by taking from our pockets. The tickets are not really tickets and are not reflected on your driving record and they cite the owner of the vehicle for a moving violation as opposed to the operator as in every other similar conviction. Finally, the whole thing just reeks of rampant big brother-ness and government opportunism to squeeze revenue out of the citizenry by any means possible.

Let's make sure this issue stays at the fore in the upcoming political season as it is a telling sign of how a leader views our small governmental world.

Thursday, June 02, 2011

Is it art? round 6

Walking the dog the other day, I saw this along the greenway. Now of course the "tags" are harder to defend as they are less expression of an idea and more like a dog peeing on a tree, but the pictures...

It takes a talented hand to produce something on that scale. I know I can't do that.

If you want some previous takes on this topic, please see here.

Also, if you want my favorite webcomics take on it, please see here. (if you have never read these and you consider yourself a dork in any way, you are cheating yourself immensely)