It goes without saying that Martyn Cross‘ work probably should be shown in the forest. The earth tones, soft and worn colors of the oil painting, the are-they-figures-or-are-they-mythical-beings populate each canvas and work on paper. Everything feels aged and organic, like buried in the soil and unearthed for an exhibition. So a white cube can be jarring.
His first major NYC solo show, All Shall Be Well, on view at Marianne Boesky to close out 2023, starts with a poem: “All shall be well, and all shall be well, and all manner of thing shall be well,” a line from Julian of Norwich. The history goes that Julian was an “English anchoress of the Middle Ages. Her writings, now known as Revelations of Divine Love, are the earliest surviving English language works by a woman.” So this is where we start. And it makes sense in the sense that the Welsh painter Cross is inspired by medieval religious imagery and literature, and the gallery notes “Cross layers scratched and scrubbed dry-brushed pigment to yield weathered and worn textures that glow with the internal luminosity of medieval manuscripts and frescoes—that seem to hold within them ambiguous, untold histories. From these surfaces emerge references to the terrestrial and to the celestial: roots grow into the ground and morph into strange, humanoid creatures, immense hands reach down from the clouds, comets transform into eyeballs as they blaze across the sky.”
This is a rare scene in a Chelsea gallery; a Middle Ages inspired collection of worn and mythical paintings. Cross is challenging us to think all shall be well, but in an imaginary and utopian way. It may be exactly what we need. —Evan Pricco
Elegant, richly textured garments cloak artist Carlos Cabo’s enchanting ceramic figures, showcasing the endless possibilities of clay.
A companion to Tau Lewis’s Vox Populi, Vox Dei, a monograph contextualizes and celebrates the artist’s enigmatic, post-apocalyptic vision.
I shut down my entire career that was in Hollywood to pursue and create [climate] solutions,” Fox tells The Verge. “I had to move around the industry that was new to me and meet people that were looking at me like, ‘What the hell are you doing in concrete?’””“What the hell are you doing in concrete?””Concrete just happens to be a major source of the greenhouse gas emissions causing more intense storms, wildfires, and other catastrophes through climate change. The culprit is actually cement, a key ingredient in concrete that alone is responsible for more than 8 percent of carbon dioxide emissions globally.“My entry into the world of concrete was one out of just sheer survival and the need to innovate in my own home country,” Fox says. Hurricane Dorian struck the Bahamas in 2019, wrecking 75 percent of homes on the worst hit island of Abaco and displacing thousands of people. Fox was in Los Angeles at the time. “The closest thing I could do was race to CNN to scream from the rooftops that we needed to do something better,” he says.Soon after, he met California-based architect Sam Marshall, whose home had sustained damage in the 2018 Woolsey fire, one of the most destructive blazes in the state’s history. Marshall had already “caught lightning in a bottle,” according to Fox. Working with material scientists, they’d developed a way to make concrete without using carbon-intensive cement. Together, they co-founded Partanna.The pair are pretty tight-lipped around the process, but the main ingredients are brine from desalination plants and a byproduct of steel production called slag. By getting rid of cement as an ingredient, Partanna can avoid the carbon dioxide emissions that come with it. Making cement produces a lot of climate pollution because it has to be heated to high temperatures in a kiln and because it triggers a chemical reaction that releases additional CO2 from limestone.Partanna says its mixture can cure at ambient temperatures, so it doesn’t have to use as much energy. It also says binder ingredients in the mixture absorb CO2 from the air and trap it in the material. In a home or building, the material continues to pull in CO2. Even if that structure is demolished, the material holds onto the CO2 and can be reused as an aggregate to make more of the alternative concrete.That’s how the startup and can call its material and the newly constructed home “carbon negative.” The 1,250-square-foot structure is supposed to have captured as much CO2 as 5,200 mature trees a year.
Last Thursday, my organization, People Reluctant To Kill for an Abstraction, orchestrated an overwhelming show of force around the globe.At precisely 9 in the morning, working with focus and stealth, our entire membership succeeded in simultaneously beheading no one. At 10, Phase II began, during which our entire membership did not force a single man to suck another man’s penis. Also, none of us blew himself/herself up in a crowded public place. No civilians were literally turned inside out via our powerful explosives. In addition, at 11, in Phase III, zero (0) planes were flown into buildings.During Phase IV, just after lunch, we were able to avoid bulldozing a single home. Furthermore, we set, on roads in every city, in every nation in the world, a total of zero (0) roadside bombs which, not being there, did not subsequently explode, killing/maiming a total of nobody. No bombs were dropped, during the lazy afternoon hours, on crowded civilian neighborhoods, from which, it was observed, no post-bomb momentary silences were then heard. These silences were, in all cases, followed by no unimaginable, grief-stricken bellows of rage, and/or frantic imprecations to a deity. No sleeping baby was awakened from an afternoon nap by the sudden collapse and/or bursting into flame of his/her domicile during Phase IV.In the late afternoon (Phase V), our membership focused on using zero (0) trained dogs to bite/terrorize naked prisoners. In addition, no stun guns, rubber batons, rubber bullets, tear gas, or bullets were used, by our membership, on any individual, anywhere in the world. No one was forced to don a hood. No teeth were pulled in darkened rooms. No drills were used on human flesh, nor were whips or flames. No one was reduced to hysterical tears via a series of blows to the head or body, by us. Our membership, while casting no racial or ethnic aspersions, skillfully continued not to rape, gang-rape, or sexually assault a single person. On the contrary, during this late-afternoon phase, many of our membership flirted happily and even consoled, in a nonsexual way, individuals to whom they were attracted, putting aside their sexual feelings out of a sudden welling of empathy.As night fell, our membership harbored no secret feelings of rage or, if they did, meditated, or discussed these feelings with a friend until such time as the feelings abated, or were understood to be symptomatic of some deeper sadness.It should be noted that, in addition to the above-listed and planned activities completed by our members, a number of unplanned activities were completed by part-time members, or even nonmembers.In London, a bitter homophobic grandfather whose grocery bag broke open gave a loaf of very nice bread to a balding gay man who stopped to help him. A stooped toothless woman in Tokyo pounded her head with her hands, tired beyond belief of her lifelong feelings of anger and negativity, and silently prayed that her heart would somehow be opened before it was too late. In Syracuse, New York, holding the broken body of his kitten, a man felt a sudden kinship for all small things.Even declared nonmembers, it would appear, responded to our efforts. In Chitral, Pakistan, for example, a recent al-Qaida recruit remembered the way an elderly American tourist once made an encouraging remark about his English, and how, as she made the remark, she touched his arm, like a mother. In Gaza, an Israeli soldier and a young Palestinian, just before averting their eyes and muttering insults in their respective languages, exchanged a brief look of mutual shame.Who are we? A word about our membership.Since the world began, we have gone about our work quietly, resisting the urge to generalize, valuing the individual over the group, the actual over the conceptual, the inherent sweetness of the present moment over the theoretically peaceful future to be obtained via murder. Many of us have trouble sleeping and lie awake at night, worrying about something catastrophic befalling someone we love. We rise in the morning with no plans to convert anyone via beating, humiliation, or invasion. To tell the truth, we are tired. We work. We would just like some peace and quiet. When wrong, we think about it awhile, then apologize. We stand under awnings during urban thunderstorms, moved to thoughtfulness by the troubled, umbrella-tinged faces rushing by. In moments of crisis, we pat one another awkwardly on the back, mumbling shy truisms. Rushing to an appointment, remembering a friend who has passed away, our eyes well with tears and we think: Well, my God, he could be a pain, but still I’m lucky to have known him.This is PRKA. To those who would oppose us, I would simply say: We are many. We are worldwide. We, in fact, outnumber you. Though you are louder, though you create a momentary ripple on the water of life, we will endure, and prevail.
Resistance is futile.
If god doesn’t exist, we would have to create him
I can only suppose it was intentional that Simon Jenkins chose to dedicate his Easter weekend column in the Guardian to the decline of organized Christian religion in these isles — and if so, fair shout, I guess. What’s curious, though, is that he devotes most of his space to exploring what is surely one of the less ob
I can’t look you in the voice.
Thanks to Mason Currey’s Substack — Subtle Maneuvers for this.
archived 7 Apr 2019 21:46:26 UTC
Klinenberg is interested in the ways that common spaces can repair our fractious and polarized civic life. And though he argues in his new book, Palaces for the People, that playgrounds, sporting clubs, diners, parks, farmer’s markets, and churches—anything, really, that puts people in close contact with one another—have the capacity to strengthen what Tocqueville called the cross-cutting ties that bind us to those who in many ways are different from us, he suggests that libraries may be the most effective. “Libraries are the kinds of places where ordinary people with different backgrounds, passions, and interests can take part in a living democratic culture,” he writes. Yet as Susan Orlean observes in her loving encomium to libraries everywhere, aptly titled The Library Book, “The publicness of the public library is an increasingly rare commodity. It becomes harder all the time to think of places that welcome everyone and don’t charge any money for that warm embrace.”
Scientists have created a new material derived from seaweed that can store heat for re-use. It could be used to capture summer sun for use in winter, or to store heat from industry that currently goes up the chimney, potentially slashing carbon emissions. The material is in the form of small beads made from alginate, which is cheap, abundant and non-toxic. It stores heat four times more efficiently than a previous material the team had developed.