This simple structure has since become a revered addition to our living room, and gladly accepts, stores and dispenses almost all of our household hooch.
A symbol of both oppression and freedom, The Berlin Wall fell in 1989, unifying East and West Berlin. Monuments and memorials draw hundreds of thousands each year to view the remains of this solemn reminder, whose message has become even more important as the Western political atmosphere echoes it's affects. Clever Halloween costume satire was, thus, inevitable.
One day in May, I decided that I should resume painting. I visited some art shops in Berlin; it seemed to me that all of the models I found were either too flimsy or lacked panache. Thus, I took reference photos and began to plan and construct my own extra large, customized, rolling, adjustable, stable art easel.
'Reclaimed,' 'found,' 'repurposed,' 'recycled,' 'salvaged' or just plain 'stolen,' some of my favourite furnishings have been made with shit I've either found or lifted from various places. It was this scavenger craftsman impulse that lead me to imagine and eventually construct a customized pipe and board open wardrobe.
I've been entertaining the concept of a man-sized sloth costume for about five years... and, on the best night of 2015, I finally realized it.
I've been entertaining the concept of a man-sized sloth costume for about five years, and this year, I'm finally going to realise it.
Earlier this year, I bought a new bicycle from a man in Kreuzberg over E-bay Kleinanzeigen here in Berlin. A beaten up old men's three-speed German Veteran model, the black frame remained solid, and the 28" diameter wheels and elevated seat suited my own dimensions. It was dirty, dented, and it rattled, but I knew we'd get along.
...I discovered two anatomical sculptures made from white clay by an Italian medical professor in the early 20th century. Muscular studies, one was a life-sized extended human arm, lacking skin or fascia textures to allow an understanding of the muscle groups and bone structures hidden inside our bodies. The other piece was a slightly enlarged human foot, Roman in style and no less accurate. I wanted to purchase them both of course, but decided otherwise after eyeing the respective price tags... especially as I estimated that I could very likely sculpt these myself.
Earlier last week, my social media feed was flooded with stories about how the climate in all of Canada was colder than that of the planet Mars. Of course, this phenomenon was ripe for a design/branding idea.
This holiday season, one of my gifts was a very personal and original illustration.
This year, after considering various concepts and ideas, Cor and I decided to go as Mythological Taxidermy: Cor as the beloved Jackalope (a jack rabbit with antlers), and me as a Lycanthrope (a shapeshifter; in this case, a sort of werewolf-troll-ogre-man-thing).
In September, Cor came up with the idea of creating a sort of vision wall focused on the concept of stuff to make. During the development of the concept, the idea to create large 3D letters arose, and using math, cardboard, tape, glue, scissors and my favourite typefaces, I ran with it.
When Cor and I moved to Berlin, we spent our first two weeks staying with two of our closest friends. As a thank you, I asked what their favourite animal is, and offered to make it into a sculpture; thus, I ended up sculpting Speckie, the golden pig.
If any couple ever asks you to marry them,
Shed whatever stage fright you might have, ignore the paranoia that you'll somehow ruin the day, find your cadence, have a shot, speak clearly and own that shit. It's worth spending the money, taking the time, traveling half way across the world and realizing, because hey -- how many times does that kind of opportunity arise?
Between finding and furnishing a flat, landing a creative leadership position, navigating the transit system, exploring the city and networking, I will have to make a serious effort to dedicate time to language studies. Though part of the challenge of moving to Berlin, learning German is, in itself, an adventure. I have no idea how long it will take, but I'm gonna guess that it'll be something of an extended effort.
It is interesting to compare Canada's biggest city to somewhere like, say, Berlin. Though both share a familiar presence of creative culture, Berlin's creative class has emerged and permeated the city as a result of a more liberal European sensibility, inexpensive living costs, an extensive transit infrastructure, and a strange series of societal circumstances. Forced to (literally and figuratively) rebuild three times over the last one hundred years, Berliners are resilient, determined, diverse and resourceful people.
Chow was good enough to allow me to occupy his loft studio earlier this year in an attempt to sculpt his likeness as a 3/4 size bust. While he finished his latest series of oil paintings, I spent two days teaching myself how to work with clay.
For Hallowe'en 2013, I decided to be a Vintage Deep Sea Diver... and made the entire costume myself, from scratch.