Well, I really did love this class for a lot of reasons.
BUT, here are my top five favorite activities…
1. Self-portraits: I thought this was a great way to get to know one another and the last day I had a really nice time thinking about how far we’ve come in our relationships we’ve developed.
2. ALL the workshops!! I really did love every workshop and learned so much from everyone. Ya’ll are my best resources.
3. Non-western contemporary artists. I just thought these were interesting to learn about.
4. The blog! Thanks, Matt!
5. The spontaneity and organic-ness of the class was really nice and good way of teaching. Thanks, Drea.
I wanted to discuss the Guggenheim museum located in Venice, Italy. Peggy Guggenheim is such an interesting global figure, especially within the art world. She was American, born in New York to a very wealthy family. Her father, Benjamin Guggenheim was killed in the sinking of The Titanic and inherited her fortune from him, but it was her uncle’s foundation, Soloman R. Guggenheim, who started the Guggenheim foundation. It was in a bookstore when Peggy first became captivated by the world of art.
Venice, Italy, itself is a fascinating geography, but what I’m interested in is focusing on the Guggenheim estate, (now a museum), located in Venice. But I can’t really discuss my experience of visiting the museum without connecting it to the obscure layout and haunting architecture of Venice.
I have been to Venice on many occasions as it is only a two hour train ride from my family located in Montecchia Di Crosara. Every time I visit Venice, I find myself not only lost in the romanticism and enchantment of the city, but actually lost. The city is incredibly difficult to navigate and because it is surrounded by water, you find yourself hitting dead ends often and just having to turn around and retrace your steps.
It was just this last summer that I actually found the Guggenheim, although if I really wanted to find it, I suppose I could have looked harder or just asked, but I guess what I really like doing when I’m there is getting lost. I believe that is the best way to enjoy such a city.
Anyway, the Guggenheim was once the house of Peggy Guggenheim and has now been transformed into a museum with her wonderful collection of art. Though the art is quite impressive and wonderful to see, what I found equally interesting, were the photographs of Peggy in each of the rooms when it was her home. It was neat to see the way she was living there and then to look around and to see how it is now laid out as a museum.
It’s amazing to see her just lounging among these priceless works of art…
Hey ya’ll! So check this out!
You guys know I love films, so how about some contemporary non-western filmmakers.
Let’s start with this controversial Thai filmmaker, Apichatpong Weerasethakul, also known as “Joe.”
Joe is a film director, producer, and screenwriter, originally from Thailand. Some of his independent features, include, Tropical Malady and Syndromes and A Century among many. Themes reflected in his films (frequently discussed in interviews) include dreams, nature, sexuality (including his own homosexuality) and Western perceptions of Thailand and Asia, and his films display a preference for unconventional narrative structures (like placing titles/credits at the middle of a film) and for working with non-actors.
He has a bachelor’s degree in architecture from Khon Kaen University (where he’s from), and guess what?!?! He got his master’s degree from SAIC!!!
“I, as a filmmaker, treat my works as I do my own sons or daughters. I don’t care if people are fond of them or despise them, as long as I created them with my best intentions and efforts. If these offspring of mine cannot live in their own country for whatever reason, let them be free. There is no reason to mutilate them in fear of the system. Otherwise there is no reason for one to continue making art.”
I’ll keep adding to this discussion about filmmakers, but this is what I will share with you guys in class.
p.s. He also has a film playing this Sunday (October 10th) and next Friday (October 15th) at the Chicago International Film Festival.