Saturday, September 26, 2009

Remedios Varo - Mystical Surrealism


Art is a language that helps to blur the differences between human beings from different countries, races and religions. As an esperanto, art breaks the boundaries that otherwise would hold our thoughts and emotions captive. I am an art fanatic and as such I enjoy dance, music, painting, photography, and many other artistic expressions. Very few forms of art however, have the complexity and mysticism that can be found in the paintings of Remedios Varo.

I still remember the first time I came across one of Remedios' paintings. I was still a young child. The magic portrayed in her art amazed me. It was as if a story was being told without having to say a word. There were characters full of emotion, hidden objects, furniture that became alive, animals that could speak. The intricacy of her art is indescribable until captured by one's own eyes.

Remedios was born in Spain in 1908. She always struggled to combine the mythic with the scientific, the sacred with the profane. Her parents were a big influence in her life; they were always teaching her moral aspects and the mechanics of life. Remedios decided to evade the civil war that was going on in Spain and moved  to Paris instead - where the art movements were in vogue.

In Europe she was influenced by the surrealist movement and the study of metaphysics. She was motivated by ancient studies and literature, but also by physics, mathematics, engineering, biology and psychoanalysis. After some years, she decided to move to Mexico with a friend she met while in Europe. In Mexico, her real journey as an artist began as tt was then that Varo decided to go on the most beautiful of travels... the one to her imagination. She has a collection of approximately 140 art pieces, and 110 of these were created in Mexico City.

Her characters are mystical and solitary; most of the time involved in scientific activities. They often have almond-shaped eyes, and androgynous features of Varo's self portraits. Remedios was influenced mainly by her father who encouraged her to develop the ability to draft. She went to one of the most recognized art schools worldwide, the San Fernando Academy in Spain. There she met Salvador Dalí and followed his skills. As an artist, she liked to use symbolism and hidden elements such as animals (mainly cats) in her paintings.

Diverse characters emerge in her painting with unusual attitudes: contemplative, passive, highly symbolic; reflection of the instability which can be overcome or changed. All of them are part of a unique world which involves developed concepts of magic and imagination. Remedios also used vehicles in most of her paintings. These are utopian vehicles of cosmic propulsion traveling through land, air and sea, with gears, sails and transmissions that respond to superior energy sources.

Unfortunately, in the fall of 1963 she died from excessive tension and an addiction to cigarettes. But we cannot consider her dead. Her paintings are still influencing millions of people around the world. Remedios Varo did not die... she just transitioned to a divine place where she is finally able to interact with her own characters and spend evenings chatting with geniuses like herself.


Follow Angel's board Remedios Varo - Mystical Surrealism on Pinterest.


References:

The Art of Remedios Varo, Interactive CD.
Pictures - Museo de Arte Moderno - Mexico City

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Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Vinyl Toys - Art Or Collectibles?

A few months ago, one of my co-workers introduced me to a set of small creatures that live underneath his PC screen at work - he referred to them as "Dunnys". At first glance, Dunnys looked like new millennium toys that a child could pick up and play with. However, it wasn't long before I realized that there is much more to them than that. I always tend to be drawn to any form of art expression and as such these tiny characters quickly became my new craze. This "designer toys" are brought to life by artists all over the world, many of who have gained further popularity by deciding to participate in these projects.

Dunnys are made by the internationally renowned toy and fashion apparel manufacturer Kidrobot. The best part of purchasing a Dunny is that you have no idea of what it will look like until you open the box it comes in. This makes for a novel experience and it promotes online forum participation of Dunny fans as trading parties and special events are often held for collectors. The look and accessories of each Dunny are completely unique from the rest with some of them resembling animals, monsters, and even cultural icons. Many of these toys can become extremely rare and sought after as they are only manufactured in limited quantities as part of a production series.

Dunnys are a wonderful example of how something as simple as a toy can bring people together by capturing the feelings and views of an artist from a completely different part of the world. I consider Dunnys to be art rather than toys due to the intricacy and uniqueness of their designs.

If you are looking for a unique gift or if you would like to start your own collection check out the links below for more information.


A Dunny box unopened 

     
  
My Dunny collection at work!~ 

The newly released 2009 Dunny series

Kidrobot's Official Website

Kidrobot's Official Twitter Account

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Monday, September 14, 2009

Calvin Harris Live - Electro Heaven on Earth?





I don't know if it is because of my Latin-American background but somehow when I listen to good music my body just naturally starts to move to the beat. I enjoy all music genres as I appreciate music's diversity. However, when it comes to my absolute favourite music style I would need to go with electro. For those of you who may not be familiar with this genre of music, I would describe it as a mix of 80's synthesizers with a good selection of drums and dance beats. I find electro to be intense, yet sexy and seductive... and no, I'm not describing a person here :)

My first face-to-face encounter with this type of music was back in 2002 when I went to see GusGus live at Sonar nightclub in Vancouver. I was literally in awe. When I purchased the tickets for their show I was not expecting to listen to electro for the first time, as GusGus' previous material was more dance-like. Needless to say, I fell in love. The crowd was going wild that night as we all rocked our bodies to the Icelandic beats of songs like "David" and "Dance You Down". I had not reacted so strongly to a live performance again until last night when my best friend Karla and I decided to embark on an electro adventure by watching Calvin Harris, My!Gay!Husband!, and Expendable Youth perform live at Venue nightclub. This time around I was prepared for a good time though as I knew the kind of reputation Calvin Harris has in this genre. Nonetheless, I must say my expectations were definitely exceeded.

I had never been to Venue myself as it just opened at the beginning of summer. I really admired the décor, the service, the sound system, and above all the LED light-covered DJ booth and back wall. It was literally like being in a dream where sounds and images merged into one. We listened to three DJ sets last night, and all of them were superb. There are many bands and DJs nowadays but the intensity and seamlessness of last night's mixes was remarkable.

I consider Calvin Harris to be a master of electro and as such both of his CD releases: "I Created Disco" and "Ready For the Weekend" are an absolute must for any electro fan. Songs like "Acceptable In The 80's" "You Used To Hold Me" and "The Girls" have quickly become electro classics and as such they filled the dance floor with hype as they were incorporated into his set last night. It was almost as if Calvin was an orchestra director telling our bodies how to move based on the beats he skillfully produced.

I am extremely thankful for having had this experience in my lifetime and all I can say is that Calvin's love for me for being born in the 80s is definitely more than reciprocated. 











GusGus - Official Myspace

Calvin Harris - Official Myspace

My!Gay!Husband! - Official Myspace

Expendable Youth - Official Myspace

Venue Nightclub Vancouver - Official Website

**Check out "following" section of my twitter page for links these artists' official twitter accounts**

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Thursday, September 10, 2009

Here they are... the reasons why I love Paris Hilton, Onch and Stephen Hampton



I recently decided to change the wallpaper on my computer at work to one of Paris' pictures. At the time, I could have never anticipated the kind of reaction I would get from my co-workers for having done so. Multiple people started asking me (sometimes several times a day) what I liked about Paris Hilton and why I would decide to put a picture of her on my screen at work. I clearly knew the answers to their questions, but their constant interrogation made me reflect on why I love people like Paris Hilton, Onch, and Stephen Hampton - hence this article.

Let's start with Paris - several people would come up to my desk and make statements like - she doesn't work, she is just a socialite, she has no real talent - but having gotten to know Paris better than that through interviews, BFF episodes, and most importantly through her official twitter account, I strongly defended her position. Paris IS a talented woman - not everyone can build an entire marketing empire like she has - she has turned her name into a brand that sells... and it sells A LOT. Most importantly however, Paris not only works to promote her brands and products but she also finds the time to donate her time and money to charity - which is more than I can say for most of the people who claim to work "harder" than her. I believe that one should not judge someone's character based simply on the fact that they were born into a wealthy family. Paris has established her name in the entertainment and fashion industries by working hard and by remaining true to who she is and what she believes in.

Another one of the many reasons why I love and defend Paris from anyone that attacks her in my presence is because I myself have been attacked and made fun of in the past for being different than others and I still know and remember what it felt like. I know that Paris can be misunderstood because of her social status and fame but no one should judge her without at least trying to get to know her.

For those of you who didn't follow Paris' BFF TV series, you should know that Paris Hilton is a warm and accepting individual who embraces people who are different from her without judging them. An example of this is the fact that she became best friends with two wonderful and charismatic gay men - Onch and Stephen - during her show. I also truly admire them both but for different reasons.

Onch is like a ball of creative energy - he is always engaging others in fun and wacky activities that remind us about the importance of not ever losing our innocence and creativity as we grow older. He quickly became a celeb due to his bubbly and loving personality but he is also a very talented jewelry designer, musician and doodler :)

The strong presence of Onch and Stephen in today's media makes the evolution of society's tolerance and acceptance of gay men quite evident. Stephen Hampton - an openly gay Mormon - portrayed a kind and assertive young man during his time in this season of Paris Hilton's new BFF. I admire his strength, his loyalty and his sense of humour.

I obviously don't know Paris, Onch, or Stephen in person BUT I tend to be an excellent judge of character. My intentions for writing this article are not to sway your opinion about any of these people but rather to make it clear that sometimes we are quite quick to judge someone without even taking the time to get to know them. I say don't follow my views - make up your own by following Paris, Onch, and Stephen on Twitter.

Paris Hilton's Official Twitter Page

Stephen Hampton's Official Twitter Page

Onch's Official Twitter Page

That's all for now. Thanks for reading.

**UPDATE**

Paris Hilton proved to me once more that she is an amazing and sweet person by writing this on her official Twitter account. Thanks Paris, this is HUGE and means soooo much to me - Loves it!~

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Tuesday, September 8, 2009

25 Random Things About Me

1. I believe that truly listening to someone can change that person's life for the better.

2. Pink is my favourite colour.  I love to see how people react when I say that.

3. Friendship and family are the single most important things in my life.

4. I truly believe in bi-sexuality. I know some people believe that bisexuals are just people who can't decide to play for one team or another but I believe people fall in love with a soul and not with a gender.

5. I have always loved cats but recently I have been wanting to get a West Highland Terrier "Westie" so I can walk it around on the beach and take it with me.

6. I have cried in several movies, especially in "A Walk to Remember"

7. I love any type of ice cream, but especially chocolate.

8. Music is my drive and my energy. Dancing is my second nature.

9. I am a perfectionist (too the point where it drives people crazy) and I feel that being succesful is something I must achieve before I die.

10. I am sort of lost in my career path at the moment. I am happy where I am but I know I can do better.

11. It annoys me when people at work ask me if Angel is my real name and when they make comments like "isn't that a girl's name??" - deal with it people... didn't u watch Angel the vampire show?

12. My favourite food is sushi and my favourite roll is Negitoro

13. I just started speaking with my dad again after 24 years of not having any sort of contact with him. It is one of the best things I have done in my life.

14. There is nothing I get more satisfaction from than from helping someone who is sad or depressed feel better.

15. I am in love with my BlackBerry and electronic gadgets in general. Sometimes it's scary... hehehe

16. I was teased while growing up for being in touch with my emotions. Now I know that those hurtful comments only helped me to stand strong for what I believe in.

17. I recently lost a long-time friend for not showing up to a party he was planning due to being stuck in a snow storm (gotta love living in Canada). 

18. When I get mad I just won't talk to you until I get over it.

19. I can watch "The Craft" over and over.

20. No matter what everyone thinks I still love Britney Spears, Paris Hilton, and above all Lady Gaga.

21. After years of waiting to see Madonna live i concert I was quite disappointed when the moment actually arrived.

22. I would like to have a daughter with Cassidy at some point but I'd rather use insemination than adoption. I may change my mind on this one - working on it.

23. I love my mom beyond belief and I spend at least one weekend day by her side. All of my friends are also friends with her and sometimes call her for advice. :P

24. I am a total match maker.

25. I like my butt.


**The dog I mention in point 5. I would name him/her Blizzard**

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Monday, September 7, 2009

Time Flies At The Hair Salon

This long weekend sure made me feel like I got to do a lot of things in a very short period of time. My high school BFF Samantha had been looking for a new haircut for a while now and she asked for my advice. We went to a nearby salon and spent several hours in the process of transforming her look. We had multiple discussions about what colour highlights she should get, whether bangs were good for her, what length the new hairstyle should be, etc. Who knew one could have such lengthy debates about ash versus bronze highlights? :)

I don't know about you... but when I am in a hair salon I feel like the time just flies by. For some strange reason I always end up having the best conversations while I wait for my friends' makeovers to happen. I have wondered before whether hair styling was my true calling, but in the end my need for reliability and stability win the battle.

I want to share with you some of the photos I took during Sam's transformation. She is comical by nature - hence the funny pictures. I hope you enjoy them as much as I have.

 
  
  
  
  
I ♥ U Cuki!~

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Saturday, September 5, 2009

Great new electro sounds for 2009

For those of you who don't know me in person... I am the kind of guy who is always looking for new forms of entertainment. Since music is my favourite companion I am always on the hunt for artists and sounds that make my ears happy. Strangely enough, this last month I happened to run across 4 great albums that have exceeded my expectations - that doesn't happen very often :)

I love sharing my finds with those who have similar interests. So... if you like electro or dance music this post is for you. Here are my album suggestions for the Fall of 2009. Enjoy!~

  • Little Boots - Hands 
  • La Roux - La Roux 
  • David Guetta - One Love     
  •  Calvin Harris - Ready For The Weekend 
 

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One Word Survey

ONE. WORD.

You.
Can.
Only.
Type.
One.
Word.

No.
Explanations.

Not as easy as you might think...


1. Yourself: Angel
2. Your boyfriend/girlfriend: Cassidy
3. Your hair? Brown
4. Your mother? Amazing
5. Your Father? Re-united
6. Your Favorite Item: BlackBerry
7. Your dream last night: Unavailable
8. Your Favorite drink: Piña Colada
9. Your Dream Car: Murano
10. The room you are in: Office
11. Your Ex: Genius
12. Your fear: Aids
13. What you want to be in 10 years: Succesful
14. Who you hung out with last night? Husband
15. What you're not? Shy
16. Muffins: Carrot
17: One of Your Wish List Items: Blu-Ray
18: Time: 2:52
19. The Last Thing You Did: Phone
20. What You Are Wearing: Jeans
21. Your Favorite Weather: Beachy
22. Your Favorite Book: Perfume
23. The Last Thing You Ate: Sushi
24. Your Life: Wicked
25. Your Mood: Happy

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Interesting View On Aging

Do you realize that the only time in our lives when we like to get old is when we're kids? If you're less than 10 years old, you're so excited about aging that you think in fractions.

"How old are you?" "I'm four and a half!" You're never thirty-six and a half. You're four and a half, going on five! That's the key.

You get into your teens, now they can't hold you back. You jump to the next number, or even a few ahead.

"How old are you?" "I'm gonna be 16!" You could be 13, but hey, you're gonna be 16! And then the greatest day of your life . . . You become 21. Even the words sound like a ceremony . . YOU BECOME 21. YESSSS!!!

But then you turn 30. Oooohh, what happened there? Makes you sound like bad milk! He TURNED; we had to throw him out. There's no fun now, you're Just a sour-dumpling. What's wrong? What's changed?

You BECOME 21, you TURN 30 , then you're PUSHING 40. W! hoa! Put on the brakes, it's all slipping away. Before you know it, you REACH 50

And your dreams are gone.

But wait!!! You MAKE it to 60. You didn't think you would!

So you BECOME 21, TURN 30, PUSH 40, REACH 50 and MAKE it to 60.

You've built up so much speed that you HIT 70! After that it's a day-by-day thing; you HIT Wednesday!

You get into your 80's and every day is a complete cycle; you HIT lunch; you TURN 4:30; you REACH bedtime. And it doesn't end there. Into the 90's, you start going backwards; "I Was JUST 92."

Then a strange thing happens. If you make it over 100, you become a little kid again. "I'm 100 and a half!"

May you all make it to a healthy 100 and a half!!

HOW TO STAY YOUNG

1. Throw out nonessential numbers. This includes age, weight and height. Let the doctors worry about them. That is why you pay "them!"

2. Keep only cheerful friends. The grouches pull you down.

3. Keep learning. Learn more about the computer, crafts, gardening, whatever. Never let the brain idle. "An idle mind is the devil's workshop." And the devil's name is Alzheimer's.

4. Enjoy the simple things.

5. Laugh often, long and loud. Laugh until you gasp for breath.

6. The tears happen. Endure, grieve, and move on. The only person, who is with us our entire life, is ourselves. Be ALIVE while you are alive.

7. Surround yourself with what you love, whether it's family, pets, keepsakes, music, plants, hobbies, whatever. Your home is your refuge.

8. Cherish your health: If it is good, preserve it. If it is unstable, improve it. If it is beyond what you can improve, get help.

9 Don't take guilt trips. Take a trip to the mall, even to the next county; to a foreign country but NOT to where the guilt is.

10. Tell the people you love that you love them, at every opportunity.

AND ALWAYS REMEMBER:

Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away.

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My Ten Names

1. YOUR REAL NAME
Angel
2.YOUR GANGSTA NAME: (fav ice cream flavor, favorite cookie)
Turtles Kitkat
3. YOUR "FLY Guy/Girl" NAME: (first initial of first name, first three of your last)
A-CLE
4. YOUR DETECTIVE NAME: (fav color and fav animal)
Pink Cat
5. YOUR SOAP OPERA NAME: (middle name, town where you were born):
Fernando Distrito
6. YOUR STAR WARS NAME: (the first 3 letters of your last name, first 2 letters of your first name, first 3 letters of mom's maiden name)
CLEANARD
7. SUPERHERO NAME: (2nd favorite color, favorite drink)
Black Kahlua
8. STRIPPER NAME: (your first pets name and the street you live on)
Shanti Cardero
9.WITNESS PROTECTION NAME: (mother & father's middle names)
Fernando Lucia
10. MARTIAN NAME: (2nd letter of your first name, 3rd letter of your last name, any letter of your middle name, 2nd letter of your moms maiden name, 3rd letter of you dads middle name, 1st letter of a siblings first name, last letter of your moms middle name)
EARRMA

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LIGHTS

http://vids.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=vids....
LOVE HER!! Great new song. I can't wait to hear the full CD.

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