Well, now. Google is sponsoring an event they call “DevArt” – as in “Developer Art” – that will lead to one artist being chosen to join a major exhibition at The Barbican in London. One of these days, one of these days….
This happened a few months ago and I have no idea what caused it, but one day my Mac’s Launchpad – you know, the hidden application launcher that makes your Mac look more like an iPhone – freaked out. The result was actually rather pretty. That’s it above, along with a picture below of what’s it’s basically supposed to look like. I consider it an example of found generative art (if there is such a thing.) Now I just have to figure out a way to do this kind of thing on purpose.
It turns out that “Crazy Train” by Ozzy Osbourne is in F# minor. What?! (See Ozzy and his hardworking guitarist Randy Rhoads above). Here it is confirmed on MusicNotes.com. Here’s what Wikipedia has to say about F# minor:
Very few symphonies are written in this key, Haydn’s Farewell Symphony being one famous example. George Frederick Bristow and Dora Pejačević also wrote symphonies in this key.
The few concerti written in this key are usually premiere concerti written for the composer himself to play, including Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No. 1, Scriabin’s Piano Concerto, Wieniawski’s Violin Concerto No. 1, Vieuxtemps’s Violin Concerto No. 2, and Koussevitzky’s Double Bass Concerto.
In addition to the Farewell Symphony, Haydn’s Piano Trio No. 40 (Hob. XV:26) and String Quartet Op. 50, No. 4 are in F-sharp minor.
Mozart’s only composition in this key is the second movement to his Piano Concerto No. 23 in A major.
And, of course, Crazy Train.
Below are two video renditions.
On our way down to California for a few weeks, we stopped in Cedar City, Utah, for the super-fabulous Utah Shakespeare Festival. (It really is fabulous: a few years ago they received the “Tony Award for Outstanding Regional Theatre.” Then, more recently, the founding director, Fred Adams, received the “Burbage Award for lifetime service to the international Shakespearean theatre community” – quite a mouthful.)
While we were there we saw Love’s Labour’s Lost, which was lovely, but their production of Peter and the Starcatcher completely stole the show. It was possibly the funniest show I’ve ever seen, with a standout performance by Quinn Mattfeld as The Black Stache (i.e., He-who-will-later-be-known-as-Captain-Hook; as shown above). Here’s a review of the festival’s production in the Salt Lake Tribune and the official trailer below. If you like in Utah, the production runs until mid-October and absolutely justifies the 250 mile drive to Cedar City. Here the link for tickets.
A few months ago I was excited to see that the NEA had funded several video games as legitimate art projects. As a follow-up to that, I am thrilled to see that the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in New York City has officially added video games to its permanent collection! Here are their initial 14 acquisitions (and you can go to their announcement for more info on each):
Again, I spend about 100x as much time cleaning dishes as I do playing video games but I’m very happy to see this happen.
Woo hoo! The National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) has made it official: Video games are art. Or, perhaps more accurately, video games are a legitimate medium for legitimate art. Just all oil paintings can be art (but certainly not all oil paintings…), so can video games. Here’s a link to a great post on four game projects that were funded in 2012 as part of the NEA’s Arts in Media grants.
Now, I should mention that I never really spent that much time playing video games as a kid or as an adult. For that matter, I don’t really read much fiction, either. (I prefer poetry and nonfiction.) But I’m thrilled by this development nonetheless.
Poet and Nobel Laureate Wisława Szymborska — that’s her, right above — died last week at 88 years old. I have included this poem in my data analysis classes for a few years because: (a) I love poetry; (b) it has statistics; and (c) as a social psychologist, I believe it summarizes human nature wonderfully.
Out of a hundred people…
those who always know better:
doubting every step:
nearly all the rest
glad to lend a hand
if it doesn’t take too long:
as high as forty-nine
because they can’t be otherwise:
four, well maybe five
able to admire without envy:
induced by fleeting youth:
sixty, give or take a few
not to be taken lightly:
forty and four
living in constant fear
of someone or something:
capable of happiness:
harmless singly, savage in crowds:
half at least
when forced by circumstances:
better not to know
even ballpark figures
wise after the fact:
just a couple more
than wise before it
taking only things from life:
(I wish I were wrong)
hunched in pain
no flashlight in the dark:
sooner or later
thirty-five, which is a lot
worthy of compassion:
a hundred out of a hundred.
thus far this figure still remains unchanged.