Tuesday, July 30, 2013

The Real Life Models



Sunday, July 28, 2013

Can a Toronto software developer open the art world to the masses?

by Quentin Casey

Sean Green created the MyCityMuse app to bring the world of fine art to the masses.
Aaron Vincent Elkaim for National PostSean Green created the MyCityMuse app to bring the world of fine art to the masses.
Sean Green admits he’s not an “art guy.” But after talking to a friend who is an artist, he said, “I was intrigued for some weird reason. And now I’m lost in the art space.”
The 31-year-old studied software engineering at the University of Western Ontario and computer science at Toronto’s York University. So it was a “daunting” task when he started pitching artists and gallery owners on an app designed to highlight their offerings.
“[It's] cliquey and it’s not always the most open. I’m a pretty confident individual. And I’m pretty personable. I thought, ‘I’ll start with that — and I’ll wear a pretty good suit — and see where it takes me,’ ” he added.
So far, Mr. Green’s charm offensive has delivered results. His app, MyCityMuse, is now available in iTunes, and is being tested by 40 galleries in Toronto and 15 in Manhattan, N.Y.
The mobile app is designed to replace traditional paper gallery guides, providing users with a visual tour of nearby galleries, including pictures of the most recent exhibits, as well as the ability to share that information via Facebook, Twitter and email.
The app (originally called ArtzScene) will include gallery contact information and directions. And because it will detect the user’s location, the flow of information will be from the nearest galleries. The intent is to help private galleries drive sales, especially among visitors in the 28 to 35 age bracket. For public galleries, the software is intended to boost foot traffic, which is often connected to funding levels.
“I want to try to democratize the art space and make it accessible. We’re in a day and age where everything should be accessible,” Mr. Green said.
MyCityMuse has a revenue model — galleries will pay a subscription fee to be included in the feed and they can refresh their information.
“It’s pretty ambitious. And it’s something that, in New York, is desperately needed,” said Michael Lyons Wier, owner of the Lyons Wier Gallery. “There’s no one-stop-shop where I can find out what openings are going on and who is exhibiting. It’s piecemeal across the web and magazines [now],” he added.
Scrolling through the app, Mr. Lyons Wier said the software’s use of exhibit photographs and social media is very useful. That said, he noted it’s still difficult to burrow into information from the galleries closest to him. “Once the navigation is honed, it will surely be my go-to app,” he said from New York.
Mr. Green sees MyCityMuse as the first “visual arts social network,” but with a revenue stream from the beginning. The New York and Toronto galleries currently signed up are part of a trial. He expects paying customers to be signed up by July or August.
Mr. Lyons Wier says he would “absolutely” sign up. But Kunter Kula, of New York’s Sperone Westwater gallery, isn’t yet sold. He has tested the app but isn’t ready to pay for it. “But that could change depending on the sophistication,” he said. “It’s still in development and I suspect will get better with time.”
Mr. Green hopes to launch the app, which he began developing eight months ago, in 10 more North American cities in the coming year, including Montreal, Vancouver, Los Angeles and San Francisco. A European launch could arrive by late 2013.
Not bad for a guy who has scant knowledge of the scene. “I see an opportunity,” he said. “I know it’s niche. But if you’re niche and you’re global it’s a big market.”


Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Creative Teams – What 7 elements do they all share?

creative teams

Great creative teams — what do they all have in common? What can we learn from them?

Keith Sawyer got his PhD studying under Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi — the researcher who coined the idea of Flow. Sawyer looked at how creativity came about in collaborations vs. individuals. He analyzed jazz ensembles, improv comedy groups and other great creative teams to see what worked.
What did he find?
Via Group Genius: The Creative Power of Collaboration:

1. Innovation Emerges over Time

No single actor comes up with the big picture, the whole plot. The play emerges bit by bit. Each actor, in each line of dialogue, contributes a small idea. In theater, we can see this process on stage; but with an innovative team, outsiders never see the long chain of small, incremental ideas that lead to the final innovation. Without scientific analysis, the collaboration remains invisible. Successful innovations happen when organizations combine just the right ideas in just the right structure.

2. Successful Collaborative Teams Practice Deep Listening

Trained improv actors listen for the new ideas that the other actors offer in their improvised lines, at the same time that they’re coming up with their own ideas. This difficult balancing act is essential to group genius. Most people spend too much time planning their own actions and not enough time listening and observing others.

3. Team Members Build on Their Collaborators’ Ideas

When teams practice deep listening, each new idea is an extension of the ideas that have come before. The Wright brothers couldn’t have thought of a moving vertical tail until after they discovered adverse yaw, and that discovery emerged from their experiments with wing warping. Although a single person may get credit for a specific idea, it’s hard to imagine that person having that idea apart from the hard work, in close quarters, of a dedicated team of like-minded individuals. Russ Mahon— one of the Morrow Dirt Club bikers from Cupertino— usually gets credit for putting the first derailleur on a fat-tired bike, but all ten members of the club played a role.

4. Only Afterwards Does the Meaning of Each Idea Become Clear

Even a single idea can’t be attributed to one person because ideas don’t take on their full importance until they’re taken up, reinterpreted, and applied by others. At the beginning of Jazz Freddy’s performance, we don’t know what John is doing: Is he studying for a test? Is he balancing the books of a criminal organization? Although he was the first actor to think of “studying,” the others decided that he would be a struggling umpire, a man stubbornly refusing to admit that he needed glasses. Individual creative actions take on meaning only later, after they are woven into other ideas, created by other actors. In a creative collaboration, each person acts without knowing what his or her action means. Participants are willing to allow other people to give their action meaning by building on it later.

5. Surprising Questions Emerge

The most transformative creativity results when a group either thinks of a new way to frame a problem or finds a new problem that no one had noticed before. When teams work this way, ideas are often transformed into questions and problems. That’s critical, because creativity researchers have discovered that the most creative groups are good at finding new problems rather than simply solving old ones.

6. Innovation Is Inefficient

In improvisation, actors have no time to evaluate new ideas before they speak. But without evaluation, how can they make sure it’ll be good? Improvised innovation makes more mistakes, and has as many misses as hits. But the hits can be phenomenal; they’ll make up for the inefficiency and the failures. After the full hourlong Jazz Freddy performance, we never do learn why Bill and Mary are making copies for John— that idea doesn’t go anywhere. In the second act, a brief subplot in which two actors are in the witness protection program also is never developed. Some ideas are just bad ideas; some of them are good in themselves, but the other ideas that would be necessary to turn them into an innovation just haven’t happened yet. In a sixty-minute improvisation, many ideas are proposed that are never used. When we look at an innovation after the fact, all we remember is the chain of good ideas that made it into the innovation; we don’t notice the many dead ends.

7. Innovation Emerges from the Bottom Up

Improvisational performances are self-organizing. With no director and no script, the performance emerges from the joint actions of the actors. In the same way, the most innovative teams are those that can restructure themselves in response to unexpected shifts in the environment; they don’t need a strong leader to tell them what to do. Moreover, they tend to form spontaneously; when like-minded people find each other, a group emerges. The improvisational collaboration of the entire group translates moments of individual creativity into group innovation. Allowing the space for this self-organizing emergence to occur is difficult for many managers because the outcome is not controlled by the management team’s agenda and is therefore less predictable. Most business executives like to start with the big picture and then work out the details. In improvisational innovation, teams start with the details and then work up to the big picture. It’s riskier and less efficient, but when a successful innovation emerges, it’s often so surprising and imaginative that no single individual could have thought of it.

Read more: http://www.bakadesuyo.com/2013/05/creative-teams/#ixzz2ZAQ6YUXg

Upcoming: Feuerman at ArtHamptons with Mark Borghi Fine Art

By , June 24, 2013
serena-detailMark Borghi Fine Art is proud to showcase Carole Feuerman in Art Hamptons, July 11-14, 2013 at the Sculpture Fields of Nova’s Ark in Bridgehampton, NY.  A selection of sculptures and prints by the world-renowned hyperrealist will collectively be on view in Booth 300. Following Art Hamptons, MBFA will feature Feuerman’s work during a solo exhibition in their Bridgehampton gallery, located at 2426 Main Street.
Feuerman is widely recognized for her series of bathers and swimmers, which she began in the late seventies. Rendered with exquisite detail from every eyelash, freckle, and water drop, her figures exude an inner sense of life, peace and sensuality. A selection of sculptural works, ranging from miniature to monumental size, as well as Feuerman’s latest diamond dust silkscreens Shower and limited edition Serena silkscreens on canvas are on view with MBFA through the summer.
Join us for an Artist Meet & Greet on July 12th from 5-6pm at ArtHamptons Booth 300.
For more information, please visit borghi.org or arthamptons.com.
- See more at: http://www.carolefeuerman.com/#sthash.LeyjZBY2.dpuf

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Treat Your Imagination to Daniel Merriam’s Fantasy Surrealism

Daniel Merriam was born on February 1, 1963 in a small town in Maine, USA. He was one of seven artistic children and so was surrounded by creative pursuits as a child. He began exploring his artistic skills by drawing cartoons for his high school paper and went on to become a professional architectural designer. His architectural illustrations won many awards and inspired Merriam to take up painting as a full-time career. It was a move that has brought value to the genre of modern surrealism, as Merriam’s art exhibits an aspect of curiosity that was previously lacking in the movement. Fantastic creatures frolic in his art works while pensive humanoids express the inner world of the artist in silent mime, asking nothing of the viewer but that they travel into Merriam’s fantasy world and delight in his alternate reality.
Unlike many surrealist works, Merriam’s art isn’t a reflection of society, suffering or the emotional angst of the artist. Instead his paintings portray opinions of emotion, history and nature that are based purely in the realm of curiosity. There is a sense of child-like romanticism in the beauty of his fantasy realms that is balanced with a maturity of technical skill. This is the work of an artist who has dedicated his time and energy to the pursuit of form as an expression of ideas and imagination.
Daniel Merriam has published two books of his fantasy surrealist paintings, The Impetus of Dreams and The Eye of a Dreamer. You can find out more about these books and see more watercolor paintings by Daniel Merriam on his website. Try out these links for online art galleries that sell prints of Merriam’s art, or join his Facebook page for updates from the artist.