Michael Garfield – How To Live in the Future: The Evolution of Surveillance Part 2, Looper's Night Archive, Skateboard Preorders, Perspectives on a New Age, Questions from a Grade-School Art Class, Another Hat

24 October 2013

The Evolution of Surveillance Part 2, Looper's Night Archive, Skateboard Preorders, Perspectives on a New Age, Questions from a Grade-School Art Class, Another Hat

"Tribalism is very hard to reconcile with progressive visions of a world of equality, fairness, and understanding. The moment you being to see other human beings as being somehow outside your perimeter, you can believe they’re less than human – objects to use or, worse, destroy."

"To fight the empire is to be infected by its derangement. Whoever defeats part of the empire becomes the empire; it proliferates like a virus…thereby it becomes its enemies."
– Philip K. Dick, Valis

For the first time in six years, I have no upcoming gigs on my calendar.  Art Outside was a profound, beautiful farewell to my festival season and a lovely port to kiss goodbye as I set out to sea on a frightening new adventure in self-discovery, study, writing, studio work, and wide-eyed travel.

I don't know who I am or what I am becoming, but I promise I'll have even more time to help you even more directly than I did before.

• If you'd like Skype/Hangout lessons in guitar, songwriting, live art, public speaking, or any of the other things I do, email me and I'll be happy to help.

• If you'd like to scoop a superb cut-rate deal on any of my available original live paintings, now is your chance to hit me up with an offer I can't refuse.  Split payments and offensively low bids encouraged.

• If you'd like new custom work, you know how to get ahold of me with your budget and ideas...

• And if you want to book me for music, art, or speaking, it would be my pleasure to fly out there.

For now, I'm off to the cave.  See you with more inspiring goodies in two weeks.  Enjoy, and be well!


Afraid of the machines? Worried the universe is running down into chaos? Afraid of a surveillance state, or ecstatic that we're nearing The Ascension? (Choose your flavor.) Well, cut it out. The more things change, the more they stay the same. This talk should help you keep a healthy realist optimism for, oh, another twenty years or so...

Michael Garfield at Burning Man's Center Camp Café (in a talk originally titled "These Are The Good Old Days: Reverse Nostalgia From A Citizen Of The Future") explores the basic dyads of life and death, past and future, Heaven & Hell, self & other – and explains how to move beyond them for Better Living in the 21st Century.

Note: Due to dust in the equipment, this recording was cut short right before the Q & A. Typical Burning Man technical difficulties. Apologies!


The next installment of my serial essay on cyborg spirituality and evolutionary conflict is now online at Reality Sandwich:

With the evolution of the eye came predation, and with predation came herd behaviors...So began an evolutionary arms race that modern biologists describe with the Red Queen Hypothesis, named for the way that teeth and armor, poisons and immunities, continue to leapfrog each other on a treadmill as generations come and go. Police call it 'escalation.' The logic is simple: over numberless generations, offensive and defensive strategies sharpen each other, drawing both into remarkable intricacy and precisely interlocking interdependence...  (Read more.)


The boards are almost in – now is your last chance to preorder my limited series Creation Skateboards deck artist-direct!  $85 includes the board (signed, if you like), a sticker of the painting, a download of my forthcoming album, and shipping anywhere in the US.

To order, use paypal to send money to my  email with a note including your shipping address.  That's it!  Your board will be at your doorstep ready to shred or hang on the wall in a few short weeks.


Over the last eight months I have held about a dozen experiments in musical collaboration between people who have never jammed before, all of us running through my multi-channel loop station so I can remix everyone's live performances on the fly.  Half DJ, half conductor, all terror!  What started as a residency at Flipnotics Coffeehouse in Austin grew wings and came with me on tour this summer for awesomely fun experiences at Rootwire Festival and Burning Man, among others.

Now my favorite Looper's Night performances are free for your enjoyment.  Caution: we get weird.


Tia Parr & Cory Nevins collected these questions from their art class with The Homegrown Kids Of Conway, Arkansas, Fall 2013. Here's an excerpt:

Q: Where do you think the future of art is going, and as an artist, do you feel that you are co-creator in the evolution of art?

A: I think we're creating more and more media and that art is more popularly understood as being creative in any medium. So there will be gene-poets who make new kinds of animals and plants, there will be professional dreamers who share their recorded imaginations, there will be mind sculptors who connect people's experiences in novel ways, there will be artistic explorations in robotics (musical sculptures that play along with you like living bandmates, and buildings that respond to your mood), there will be chefs who make impossible foods out of 3D printers...and there will STILL be painters, and blues guitarists, and standup comedians, and all of the other art forms. We will continue finding new ways to express ourselves and share those ideas.
(Read more.)

Aaaand, More Hats

My last bass drop hat ever.  I'm still totally open to other designs – power animals?  magical sigils?  sacred geometries? – if you'd like something with personal flair.  Let's make something that is uniquely YOURS.  You'll still be proud to wear it in a decade...