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

19 July 2012

New Live Recordings, Custom Hats, Impulse Festival Collab

"For the first time in human evolution, the individual life is long enough, and the cultural transformation swift enough, that the individual mind is now a constituent player in the global transformation of human culture."William Irwin Thompson

"I would argue that the presence of human civilization on this planet is the strongest evidence we have that matter and organizational processes are about to make some kind of a leap to a new order of being.  What history is, is the 25,000 year transition zone.  Before you enter the zone, you're an animal.  After you leave the zone, you're a god."
Terence McKenna

This week:  I have not one, but two new live recordings for you, made before I left on this summer's epic tour.  Also, some fresh concert footage; a couple of new painted hats; a cool collaboration from Impulse Festival; and a new essay that goes deeper than ever into last spring's ayahuasca-inspired transpersonal revelations.  Enjoy!

An Aria for ABIA: live at Austin Airport

Austin, Texas:  The one place I have ever been with FOUR live music stages in its airport!  Unless you're arriving or departing there on August 3rd, you'll miss my next gig in the terminal – but I recorded the last one, and smuggled it out through the security checkpoint so you could have it for free (or support my tomfoolery with a tour-enabling donation).

There's something ethereal-chrome-military-vacation about the airport that makes it a bizarre place to perform – not to mention the fact that I'm technically there on government contract and was warned I might be "too weird" for the daytime clientele of Ray Benson's Roadhouse Bar & Grill.  (Cue laugh track!)

Luckily, they were wrong.  As I was packing up after the show, a man come up to me and shook my hand.  "I grew up here,' he said, "but now I live in L.A.  I come back as much as I can, and THIS is why."

So enjoy the intricate fingerstyle guitar and melismatic melodies...scroll down for weirder, instrumental fare.

"Flight of Fancy" live at ABIA, 2012.04.17

Watch on Youtube

The first of six live concert footage videos from my show at the airport.  I'll be releasing a new one every week on my youtube channel until they're all online for the world to see...this first one is a "cyberacoustic" guitar loopscape I improvised to the theme of "air travel."  If you get this blog by email and the video doesn't show up, you can watch it here.


After the sweetest coercion from my roommates to throw them a private concert, I finally plugged in all of my gear at a surreal hour one balmy spring night and improvised a twenty-minute instrumental appetizer set to ride out our sleep-deprived strangeness.  Trancier and more hypnotic than my usual fare – and best for late-night listening, obviously...

(Thanks to visual alchemist Chaeli Cardenas for the dope watercolor frog cover art!)

Ode To A Paradigm Shift, Part Five:
Resonance, Connection, Reincarnation


From the latest installment in my serial essay on the changing nature of self and reality in our age of transition:

"I know many people for whom the memory of future events are occurring more and more frequently in dreams. These experiences of foreign places, people, and events are initially ignored; unfamiliar, we have no reason to remember them until a year or two later, when we’re sitting there and suddenly the pieces fit, and we’re hanging out with people we didn’t know a year ago, in a place we hadn’t visited a year ago, and of course we had no reason to recognize this as the memory of something that had yet to occur – but there it is nonetheless."  Read more...


If the spirit moves you, feel free to join the conversation this kindled on my FB profile.

Impulse Festival Collaboration

Untitled On-Site Live Art Gallery Collaboration, 2012.06.16 – 17
w/ Andy Reed, Stephen Wells, Christian Jaxtheimer, Emily Kell, 
Sarah Tracy, Maddie Moore, AllieSun Azura, Chance Losher,  Rae Vena,
Chapin Mathews, Andrew Wagner, & Thomas Robbertson-Forrest

...or at least I think so.  This tiny piece – only about 20" from top to bottom – got passed around all weekend, so my list of collaborators is an educated guess.  Some of those artists may not have been involved; but we were all there soaking up each other's creative juices all weekend, so it's safe to say there was a tacit collaboration, regardless.

In pieces like this, my niche is to augment and amplify everyone's work with fine details – only to remain invisible.  I was one of the last to work on this, so have fun seeing if you can tell my hand apart from everyone else's!

New Custom-Painted Lids


My friend Justin Ulrich, a.k.a. psytrance DJ The Psychosis Generator, wanted a hat with his new logo to rock while doing his DJ sets.  I took the 2D example he gave me and turned it into some kind of extraterrestrial marine invertebrate.  :)

Like/Share/Comment on FB

After my recent Bassnectar- and Pretty Lights-themed hat commissions, I've started getting more music-related requests.  I never imagined I'd be painting a Disco Biscuits hat, but here it is, and I like it.

New Shows Announced!

Tonight I'll be playing at Flagstaff Brewing Company with my friends, timeless American troubadour Luke Redfield, desert mystic/guitar wizard Brave Julius, & live painter Chaeli Cardenas – kindred spirits with whom I just dusted up at three great shows along Colorado's Front Range.

If you know anyone in the area, invite them out for a free evening of superb avant-acoustic music...otherwise, maybe I can catch you at one of these!



As always, my deepest gratitude for your time and attention.  Stay in touch and have a fabulous day!

03 July 2012

New Art Galore from Wakarusa, Desert Rocks, Impulse, & Sonic Bloom

First, A Message From The Future

Uploading yourself into a computer will NOT grant you immortality. There is no such thing as a stable medium. Servers crash, solar storms wipe hard drives and knock out satellites, and noisy electronic infrastructure degrades any signal over time.

Even if a million copies of yourself proliferate into the "un-erase-able" personal version of a viral youtube video, they won't remain static, unchanging objects, but will probably – and very swiftly – decide that their body memories are no longer relevant in the digital environment, and transform into something unrecognizable as "you."

The acceleration is just that: a quickening of the change that characterizes reality. The faster our world changes, the faster WE change. Our religious conviction about persistent identity is getting lost in the wash. "Shapeshifter" is the new "human." Immortality requires that we die to ourselves – not just once, but over, and over, and over...

Our age is when Science-as-exploration-of-transcendent-mystery and Religion-as-meaning-making-in-a-complex-world approach and kiss one another at the asymptote. Paradigms become transparently provisional. Self-concepts become art-forms offered hypothetically into the blossoming ecology of mind – worn like clothes, and changed just as easily.

Visit my facebook profile to read and join in the inspired group discussion this riff provoked...

Next, Help Yourself To Some Free Tunes!

I'm supremely grateful to be able to live by people's support of my art and music, but it's only really just started to happen.  My coyote heart is still animated by the spirit of street musicians and festival renegade sets, and I still get excited by handing off demos to artists I admire...

To that end, I created this compilation of my favorite concert recordings from the last twelve months.  I needed a "get to know you" mix to share with new friends and colleagues, so here it is:  forty-three minutes of the shimmering, fleet, and organic murmurations that have come to characterize my sound as an improvisational acoustic-electronic looping guitarist.

It won't be long before I drop the follow-up to Golden Hour: A Cyberacoustic Summer Daydream – recordings culled from all of the amazing festival sets I've played this year – but in the meantime, enjoy!

And Now, The Paintings

I am pleased and honored to share with you the fruits of my busiest June so far.  I have so much more to share from this summer – videos, musical recordings, new essays – but for now it can wait, so we can give these paintings their due.  I decided to focus on only one piece per festival this summer, and the extra time investment really shows.  Click on any picture for a closer look...

(In addition to my poster prints, I've decided to start making new pieces available as skins and cases in my Artsprojekt design shop to glam out everyone's proliferating electronic toy-scape – I make about 10% on each sale, which is small but worth it.  If you have some contraption-plus-artwork combo idea you don't see available, let me know and I'll be happy to post it for you.)

I Know It Means Something...
(Kingfisher & Code)
40"x30", paint markers on stretched canvas
Original painting available (email for price)
11"x17" poster prints – $20 or 2 for $30 (+ $5 s/h) – email me
Decals: iPhone 4/4S Skin | iPad 3 Skin | Laptop Skin (most sizes)

Painted live at Wakarusa Festival 2012 during:
Bob Weir Acoustic Trio, Pretty Lights, Monophonics, Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros, The Avett Brothers, Umphrey's McGee, Primus, Big Gigantic, Toubab Krewe, Tinariwen, Matisyahu, EOTO, The Floozies

"Words can be communicative only between those who share similar experiences."

"Love and courtship call forth poetry and song because of the importance of ambiguity as well as communication in creating a relationship."
Rich Doyle (amazing interview link)



Petroglyphs
40"x30", paint markers on stretched canvas
Original painting available (email for price)
11"x17" poster prints – $20 or 2 for $30 (+ $5 s/h) – email me
Decals: iPhone 4/4S Skin iPad 3 Skin | Laptop Skin (most sizes)

Painted live at Desert Rocks Festival 2012 during:
Bird of Prey, SORNE, Phadroid, Octopus Nebula, Beats Antique, Lucent Dossier, The Wailers, Hot Buttered Rum

"A thing, until it is everything, is noise, and once it is everything it is silence."

"A billion stars go spinning through the night,
Blazing high above your head.
But in you is the presence that
Will be, when all the stars are dead."



Biomechanical Tide
36"x24", paint markers on stretched canvas
Original painting available (email for price)
11"x17" poster prints – $20 or 2 for $30 (+ $5 s/h) – email me
Decals: iPhone 4/4S Skin | iPad 3 Skin | Laptop Skin (most sizes)

Painted live at Impulse Festival 2012 during:
Govinda, Boombox, Papadosio, Zoogma, Minnesota, Emancipator, EOTO

"Most microscopists have a streak of artist in them. It's hard not to. You're looking at things through a microscope that most people don't see. The nascent artist in you sort of peeks its head up."
James Hayden (cool NYTimes article link)

"Let the mind be enlarged...to the grandeur of the mysteries, and not the mysteries contracted to the narrowness of the mind."
Francis Bacon



Going Backward To Go Forward
(As Awesome As Three Unicorns)
36"x24", paint markers on stretched canvas
Original painting sold to the father of a four year old dino-maniac
11"x17" poster prints – $20 or 2 for $30 (+ $5 s/h) – email me
Decals: iPhone 4/4S Skin | >iPad 3 SkinLaptop Skin (most sizes)

Painted live at Sonic Bloom Festival 2012 during:
ESKMO, Papadosio, Ana Sia, PANTyRAID, Zilla, Emancipator, ProJect Aspect, Tipper (uptempo), Octopus Nebula, Ilya From Russia, Tipper (downtempo), Phadroid, Sonic Bloom Orchestra, EOTO

"Trying to determine what is going on in the world by reading newspapers is like trying to tell the time by watching the second hand of a clock."

“At last I look to the moon; it hangs fixed and full in the east, enormously scrubbed and simple. It must have been a wonderful sight from there, when the olive continents cracked and spread, and the white ice rolled down and up like a window blind.”
Annie Dillard (great author website)

"No human thing is of serious importance."
Plato



Upcoming Gigs

It's great to get a little downtime, but this summer's not over yet!  I'll be playing music and painting live at all of these lovely events, as well as more intimate shows in Colorado, New Mexico, Arizona, Texas, North Carolina, Indiana, and more soon to be announced.  You can find the complete calendar on my website and on facebook, updated every few days...




Thank you so much for your time, interest, and ongoing support.  Have a magnificent day!