Back To iBlog
I’ve switched back to iBlog, so this blog has now returned to my site.

Welcome back.

Purgatorio
Gatwick “Village” is an enclosed indoor complex of wide, irregularly-angled corridors opening onto generic shop franchises and large open areas filled with low rows of padded chairs. At 3am all the chairs are covered with people. They’re asleep, still clutching mobile phones, books, bags and clocks. Dozens of them, all stretched out over chairs and backpacks.
Nothing happens. No one leaves. Nothing is stolen. There’s nothing to do and nowhere to go. There’s no way to get out and actually get anywhere.
The departure board VDUs update second by second, all the times seeming a long way off. We spend some time in McDonalds then I keep watch as one by one the others pass out as we wait for the first train to London some time after 4am.

Back From Tunisia
I’m back from Tunisia. It’s an excellent place. I filled a sketchbook whilst I was there.

Got lots of rest, lazed around the beach and the hotel pool, went to Soose and Monastir, ate far too much. I didn’t go to the Sahara with Evie and Tom, though.

I’ve come back to find the MacOSX Tiger DR waiting for me and my email inbox limit exceeded (!).

Disney Fonts
Fonts used in various Disney graphics:

http://mickeyavenue.com/fonts/

particularly see the list of fonts used at Walt Disney World.

Cultural Studies Goes Blog
The usual Cultural Studies nonsense, this time regarding blogs:

http://blog.lib.umn.edu/blogosphere/

Masking Paint
One problem I’ve had with using masking tape or airbrush mask film to mask off areas of canvas when painting is that the paint bleeds under the mask. This leads to unsightly blobs and runs along the edge of the masked area, and just looks ugly.
The solution is to paint the unmasked area in the same colour as the area under the mask first. So the same colour bleeds into the same colour and seals the edge of the mask. You may need to do apply two coats of the same colour for thin paint.
You can then paint over this, and the new colour doesn’t bleed. This does build up the paint fairly high with a fairly sharp border, but that can be an interesting effect in itself, and explains what I’ve seen on lots of contemporary painting. 🙂

Kinkade on QVC
Thomas Kinkade was on QVC this evening in the UK. He cam across as insincere, or possibly jet-lagged, or possibly someone who has sold something they love too many times before. I believe he is sincere at some level below subject-matter and above technique. If Jeff Koons can sell ironically to collectors, Kinkade can sell super-sincerely to the masses.
Kinkade’s technique is pre-modern, oriented to pre-calculated effect. Or is that postmodern? He mentioned Millais. I think of Wright of Derby when I see his work, if only because of that cottage on fire. I want to know if Kinkade takes the differing gamuts of oils and inks into account when painting what are in effect masters for reproduction.
There’s lots of satanic imagery that can be found there for the looking: the ghosts in the smoke, the spirits in the waves, the serpents of the bridges and houses. Spooky.
He called the prints “product” at one point then backtracked. Everyone has to sell their work. Kinkade’s inbetween the Diamonique (fake diamond) and non-brand brand cosmetics.
The thing that interested me above all was the effect of the canvas on his prints. It adds visual noise. That noise is like the noise at dusk or when you close your eyes. That quality gave his works that are printed on canvas a curiosly realworld, meditative effect. But oh, as I posted to aesethetics-L, the horror…

copy-art
http://www.copy-art.net/

An Open Content Art host. This is great. But it explicitly requires that all work be Noncommercial, rather than allowing a choice of license. Noncommercial is less Free than allowing commercial use, and grows less value (less art in this case). Hopefully they’ll allow people to choose their own license soon.
Ideally there’ll be a “ContentForge” for Free Culture projects soon like the Sourceforge site for software projects today.

Open Source Material
The problem with Open Content is that it is concerned with end products, not source material, and is aimed at consumers, not producers. This reduces its value to both.
Free Software (Open Source), the inspiration for Open Content, ensures the free availability and free circulation of source code and supporting files. These are the materials that are used to make the program. If you want to change, extend, build on or borrow part of the source code existing program you can because it is the responsibility of everyone who works with the source code to make it publicly available.
Open Content only requires that the end product be made available. You can sample Open Content, remix it or compile it, but you don’t have access to the source materials used to make it as a guarantee of the license. If Open Content were software, the binaries (the runnable application) would be free, but the source code wouldn’t be released.
Open Content licenses must contain a guarantee to make source material available. The Midi files, the samples, the LaTeX or Docbook sources, the 3D models, the textures, the shaders, the patches, the PhotoShop or Gimp layered files, the graphical elements and scans, even the preparatory sketches, the written score, the script, the character and plot descriptions, unfinished versions of the work. All this will allow other people to build on Open Content rather than just to recycle it. Physical media are no limit. Free Software began when programs had to be distributed on bulky magnetic tapes. Open Content doesn’t necessarily need the Internet; photocopies of sketches and scores are much better than no source material at all.
Moving from Open Content to Open Source Material will enable a creative explosion in culture like the one that Free Software has enabled for programming. And for the same reason: shared source material improved and added to by a creative community that creators can build on.

The End Of Art Theory Is Not
This essay: The End of Art Theory, argues that Art Theory is finished.
It does this by trying to show that The Institutional Theory of art is untenable. The Institutional Theory, it claims, contains so many free terms that it is all-inclusive and unable to separate art from any other objects. It is circular to boot. In fact, the Institutional Theory is not a theory.
Ironically, if this is true it means that the Institutional Theory is the only tenable post-Art-Theory means of identifying and considering art. If the Institutional Theory is not a theory, it can survive the End Of Art Theory. Worse, without any guiding theory to identify or evaluate art, identifying art becomes a matter of nomination, of saying that something is art. The Institutional Theory is based on nomination, and is slightly stronger than random nomination as it is underwritten by the social authority of those doing the nominating (the critics, theorists and curators of the Artworld).
If this is the death of the Institutional Theory, it’s a Freddy Kreuger kind of death…