Michael Garfield – How To Live in the Future: February 2012

23 February 2012

MG Joins Re:Evolution Media, A Live Art Opus, & More Awesome News!

"The artist is not a special kind of person; rather each person is a special kind of artist"
– Ananda Coomaraswamy

"It is often said that men are ruled by their imaginations; but it would be truer to say they are governed by the weakness of their imaginations."
– Walter Bagehot

Looking at this bevy of announcements, it occurs to me that life is moving too fast for a biweekly newsletter, anymore.  I'd rather send you something you can actually read in one sitting, so I hope you'll stay with me as I switch to more digestible weekly updates.  But if you'd prefer, you can always follow me on twitter, or at my facebook music and art pages.  Thanks again to everyone for your support!

Michael Garfield Joins Re:Evolution Media

As part of my "Take it to the next level AGAIN!" agenda, I am now on the roster at Re:Evolution Media – the same group that books Alex & Allyson Grey, The Nadis Warriors, Desert Dwellers, Govinda, Birds of Paradise, Kaminanda, & D.V.S*!  These guys throw some of the best events I've ever seen, and after two years of collaborating with them on The Manifestation Celebration and other great shows, I'm honored and excited to join the family as a musician, live painter, and public speaker.

Stay tuned at my facebook music page for more news as things develop – these guys are blowing up all over the country and it's now considerably more likely I'll be back in your town soon to help raise some holy noise!  (It's already getting silly, if you haven't checked my concert calendar recently.)

And speaking of holy noise, here is a clip from my improvised acoustic-electronic "cyberguitar" performance at Ruta Maya in Austin last month:

"Leave Your Face At The Gate"

This is track two on Rainbows At Night, a new and ongoing archive of free live recordings to tide everyone over while I'm working on my next studio album.  I'll be posting a new track for the newsletter every couple weeks.  There are some really juicy ones coming up...enjoy!

And now, to share the most ambitious and time-intensive live painting I have ever accomplished.  Be sure to click the image to view it in full-size, with every rich detail:

Many Worlds
2011 09 01, 02 Burning Man Festival - Fractal Nation Village
(Left Coast, Heyoka, Mimosa, Dov, FreQ Nasty, Ill Gates, An-Ten-Nae)
2011 09 10 Red Rocks Amphitheatre (STS9, Savoy)
2011 10 25 Cervantes' Other Side (Bridging The Music Presents Electronic Tuesdays)
2011 11 12 Om Vibrations Experience (Nadis Warriors, Desert Dwellers, Rara Avis)
2011 12 30 The Parish (Nadis Warriors, Spoonfed Tribe, Hatch)
2012 01 07 Whomp (Polymyth & various other local DJs)
2012 01 30 Ruta Maya, Esoteric Monday Dubstep & Gypsy Bazaar
2012 01 31 Beauty Bar (Seven Circles, El Commode, Borrisokane)
2012 02 02 The Parish (An-Ten-Nae, Gladkill, Psymbionic)
2012 02 07 Club 606, Whompadelic Wednesdays (Polymyth, Soundshaman, DRRTYWULVZ)

original painting, 24"x36" – paint markers on stretched canvas – make a bid
signed and numbered full-size stretched canvas giclée fine art prints
(limited series of 100): $300 each – order
signed 11"x17" poster prints:  $20 + $5 s/h – order

I posted about this painting in its early stages last fall...now this epic beast, carried from Nevada to Colorado to Texas over the course of six months, ripples with the energy of each of those realms – and, appropriately, contains miniature paintings of over a dozen other live pieces.  This is a "God's Eye View" of the multiverse from which I draw my inspiration...inspired, in turn, by the work of all of my fantastic friends in the global visionary art community who urged me to invest more (more, more!) time into a stupefying, gallery-level piece.

Due to the terrific amount of work I put into this one, the original will be held on extended silent auction and I will make a very limited run of full-size fine art canvas prints so a top-quality version will be available to everyone at a reasonable price.  The giclée prints will be made from a scan of the image, signed and numbered, and shipped for free to anywhere in the United States.

Click this image for an up-close walk-through of how I completed this, one improvised step at a time:


...of course, while working on a huge opus monster of a painting, it's good to blow some steam on smaller, less time-intensive works:

Subduction Zone
2012 01 18 Barcelona Austin (B. Lewis & Insightful, Maintain, Applied Pressure Collective)
2012 02 09 Beauty Ballroom (Gaslamp Killer, Bird Peterson, Grommit, Applied Pressure Collective)
original painting, 18"x24" – paint markers on stretched canvas
signed 11"x17" poster prints:  $20 + $5 s/h – order

This piece is a return to the eightfold geometries that captivated me in the fall of 2009...a revisitation of some familiar patterns from a new perspective.  Local beats collective Applied Pressure made it extremely easy for me to enjoy myself while painting; I know I'll be working with them more in the future...

Click for a close-up look at how this came together:


Two New Interview Videos!

The inevitable consequence of making as much mouth noise as I do.

On proposing over Skype, the threat of solar storms to our electrical grid, and full-body thinking...a conversation about intuition in the Age of Information and the ways that technology both connects and divides us, with host Alexis Neely of The Whole Truth Show:

   
Watch on Youtube

On how to sidestep and overcome creative blocks, the inspiration behind "Many Worlds," and why "imagination is our greatest natural resource"...a conversation about seizing the dream of a fulfilling creative lifestyle, with host Jessie Elaban of Austin art and culture blog, Collective Perspectives:

Custom Hats Galore!

Three of my latest designs for happy heads – plenty of hats still for sale in my gallery of available original art, and of course you can always email me with your budget, hat size, and color and style preferences if you'd like me to make you one that's especially yours.





Parting Thoughts

From my article "Godhood Is Boring: Thoughts on Radical Life Extension" – now online at the excellent blog, Spirit Of Spider:

Science is, in the final count, not about the increase of knowledge, but the increase of ignorance – if every question answered means two more questions asked, what we don’t know is growing faster than what we do. And so a mature science, grounded in the same wonder at mystery that impelled natural inquiry in the first place, welcomes this mystery. It is not a program of rapturous domination, or prideful power en route to ultimate mastery of the matter, but the cultivation of wisdom through the exploration of nature as macrocosm and the self as microcosm, of the ego embedded in a world defined by interbeing. 
(Read the article...)

05 February 2012

Feathery Fedoras, Cyberacoustic Jams, & My First Foray Into Graffiti

"I have an abiding interest in the UFO mythos, that sense of longing people have as they watch the skies and hope to see something truly different and startling. We never imagine that aliens will be boring."
– Jon Lebkowsky

"We are part of a symbiotic relationship with something which disguises itself as an extra-terrestrial invasion so as not to alarm us."
– Terence McKenna

Well, we are all now definitely in the thick of it, aren't we?  I've had four conversations in the last 24 hours about the importance of learning to interpret the symbolism of waking life as if we are actually dreaming...clearly something new is emerging through us, as us, and this new reality is making itself known through the now-commonplace occurrence of synchronicities and the instantaneous manifestation of our thoughts and feelings in the world at large.  (If you don't believe me, let's talk about it.)

In related news, I just reviewed my friend's evocative documentary on the evolution of cyberspace, Internet Rising.  The review is up on Reality Sandwich, where you can also stream the entire film:

We may not agree on the nature or potential of cyberspace, but we all recognize its intrinsic value as a medium of (transnational and transpersonal) connection – and maybe that is the first idea that seven billion egoic agendas can get behind.  “What’s good for cyberspace?” might be the question that saves the human species. (Read the whole review.)

Meanwhile, my live art interview series, The Field Guide To Live Artists, picks back up after a long sabbatical with a spotlight on the work of Jon Blake, aka Crazy Redbeard:

"People seem to like what I do. I enjoy making people happy. So if I can increase the joy in the world from pushing some paint around, then it's really a no brainer, I guess." (Read the whole interview.)

Live in Austin, NYE 2011
Watch & Share in HD on Youtube / Vimeo

The climax to one of my favorite improvisations so far.  Thanks to Interstellar Transmissions for letting me set an appropriately trippy tribal tone for their initiatory prayerformance on the eve of this most-anticipated year.  Nine Inch Nails' The Fragile remains one of my favorite albums of all time and this is the closest I've ever come to reproducing that sound on solo acoustic guitar.  Download the entire 10-minute track for free from my Soundcloud page...

Feathery Fedoras!

Positive vibrations, negative space.  Wear these hats above your face.  And if you'd like one for your head, just email me and that doesn't rhyme.  (But if you have time and are inclined, then here's the full line of my designs.)





Adventures In Graffiti

Back in the misty collegiate dawn-age of 2003, my friend and classmate Andrew Giessel wrote an essay called "Graffiti and Public Memetics."  A fan of hip hop culture and DIY, Andrew (now a postdoc neuroscientist at Harvard) introduced me to the rhetoric that graffiti isn't mere "vandalism," but the reclamation of public spaces, a celebration of the commons by stealing it back from the corporate entities that sold it off from under our noses.  Why do we accept without argument the idea that public spaces are not actually public?  Why not beautify our creative commons with common creativity?

Luckily I live in Austin, where there are many places that public wall art is encouraged rather than criminalized.  I couldn't get away with this kind of thing on the walls of the suspiciously owlish Frost Bank, but most of this place still remembers what it's like to have an inclusive culture, and gladly invites people to contribute to their rainforest-esque abundance of bohemian atmosphere.  It's an easy city to step out of your shell and scrawl:

Wall Art @ Spider House Café

I'm not sure what this is, exactly, but I loved making it:  standing on the bench in a booth in the back room, working on it for about half an hour, while everyone around is absorbed in their homework...

Wall Art @ Ruta Maya International Headquarters

This takes up the whole wall over the toilet in the men's rest room, about four feet across.  It's one of the few pieces in a very busy bathroom that hasn't yet evoked any contrary replies.  Who's going to argue with this?  No, really.

"Vandalized" Valentine's Card: "Whooo Loves You?"

This was a Valentine's Day card I picked up at the post office because I am on an owl kick right now...but it needed someone to take it up a notch, so I did.  Maybe this is what the card originally looked like, before the US postal service decided it was too intense to be cute.  I disagree.  Thanks again to Louis Wain for the inspiration...

In the next newsletter, I'll have pictures of the most time-intensive painting I've ever made, as well as more recent live concert footage and plenty of other goodies.  I also have a super huge announcement that will forever reshape the face of my career (!).

Thank you so much for your time and attention!  Feel free to write me any time.  And keep participating...