New Projects Are Roger, That!
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As True/False Film Festival Director David Wilson says, "Only the Young powerfully summons up an evanescent moment: that potent stew of teenage urgency, boredom, and young love that adults misconstrue as aimless wandering. It will lure you in with sugar-sweet shots of abandoned mini-golf courses and an infectiously expectation-defying score, but it sets its hooks by working both with and against the performative veneer of teen life that is universal. Even the film’s wide-eyed Christian youth, unsure quite how to rebel, still know they need to. This is the kind of film you’ll want to hold close to your chest for days, revisiting its tender love for its subjects. Only the Young isn’t jealous of youth, it is youth.” So. Right. I've got nothin' to add besides back.this.project.plz.&.thx. — Elisabeth H.
Crown Heights, my Brooklyn neighborhood, is experiencing what the New York Times is calling a "renaissance, with unease"—there are a lot of mixed feelings about the artisanal doughnuts and fancy pizza moving in with the exploding gentrification. That's why it's exciting to see initiatives that bring the community together. So of course, I was thrilled to find that Roger That, a lovely community garden project, is just a few blocks away from my apartment. Emily Bell Dinan and friends are transforming an empty lot that used to be the site of a hardware store in the 1960s to 80s into a lush garden of trees, veggies, flowers, compost, and more. They invite backers to play in the dirt with them, so I know exactly what I'm doing this summer. — Nicole H.
Ghosts with Shit Jobs is a sci-fi film that takes place 30-ish years in the future, where the economy is flipped and Asian markets are outsourcing cheap labor to North Americans ("ghosts" as the Chinese call them). So yes, the premise is GENIUS and it only gets better from there. "What do these ghosts do for a living in 2040?" you ask. Well there's a digital janitor who goes about the city blurring out ads, there's a lady who is a human spammer, mentioning products in every day conversation (OOF, #tooreal), and well, some sort of robot baby farm with a scene in the project video that made me gasp out loud. You'll see. — Meaghan O.
Data Garden is a publication seeking to explore an unlikely intersection: plants, people, music, and technology. I certainly like all of those things, but had never fully considered the ramifications of their relationships to each other. After watching the video for Switched-On Garden, an interactive public exhibition that takes place in Philadelphia, I can't stop thinking about it. The free event incorporates everything from live shows, to cool devices that let you make sounds out of apples, or "listen" to a bed of flowers, and it's cool to watch everybody from your Gram to your kid sister getting in on the fun. Their rewards are also knock-out, and include audio mixes of sounds from the sculptures and live performances. So exciting! — Cassie M.
Public art is pretty easy to like. You know, you are just walking around, minding your own business and then, all of the sudden, you come across some seemingly random thing and you are like, "Whoa. This wasn't here yesterday." you peek around, examine and walk away with a 'that was cool' smirk on your face. I call that the Public Art smirk. A project hell-bent on creating this sort of smirk is Rosy, a new urban design project from the group behind reSITE, a design festival in Prague, that seeks to explore the interaction between humans and public spaces. Through Rosy, a gigantic, inflatable orb, people can re-evaluate their everyday routines and re-think exactly what public art means. Dope! — Mike M.
I am ludicrously addicted to bread, and all things bread-related. Bread-pudding, panzanella salad, bread-crumb topped mac'n'cheese, but most of all especially good ol' fashioned, straight up loaves of freshly-baked bread. And the Wisconsin-based Island Bread Company seems like it was invented precisely to feed these doughy dreams of mine. The bake rustic, crusty bread using locally-produced wheat and a natural leavening process. They even feed their oven with locally harvested wood. Am I insane? Or did I die and go to heaven? I can't figure it out but I don't care. Watching this project video is making me so happy that I can't even fathom what tasting the actual bread would do for me. — Cassie M.