MY FAVORITE SLUMS
28 February 2011, Cervera de los Montes
Acaba Mundo, Alagados, Alliodan, Alto dos Milagres, Amui Djor, Aglomerado da Serra, Ashiaman, Arab Ghoneim, Bab El Oued, Babilônia, Bardo, Beau Fraisier, Belford Roxo, Benjamin Constant, Bilibambili, Boavista, Boulaq, Brasília Teimosa, Buraco Quente, Cajueiro, Calemba, Cambamba, Cantagalo, Cazenga, Cibubur, Cidade de Deus, Cissin, City of the Dead, Ciudad Bolívar, Ciudad Satellite, Complexo da Maré, Complexo do Alemão, Comuna 13, Cubatão, Diar Echams, Distrito de Aguablanca, Divineia, El Alto, El Amrawi, El Madania, Ezbet el-Haggana, Fadama, Friburgo, Gbebouto, George Brook, Grota do Surucucu, Hadra El Gedida, Heliópolis, Iraque, Iztapalapa, Jacarezinho, Jamestown, Jardim Nakamura, Jardim Horizonte Azul, Jardim Papai Noel, Kaar Paala, Karail, Kawnia, Kojokrom, Kroo Bay, Ladeira dos Tabajaras, Lalbagh, Lenin Pally, Mabella, Mangueira, Manguinhos, Mohammadpur,Morro Azul, Morro da Babilônia, Morro de Santa Marta, Morro do Estado, Morro do Papagaio, Naga El Arab, Nangrin, Nasirabad, New Takoradi, Oued Koriche, Paraisópolis, Pavão-Pavãozinho, PK18, Plan Tres Mil, Radar , Rocha Pinto, Salgueiro, Samandin, Serrinha, Suame Magazine, Sumapaz, Susan's Bay, Tavares Bastos, Trapezista, Tuiuti, V8, Vidigal, Vietnã, Vigário Geral, Vila das, Belezas, Vila de Deus, Vila Paz, Vila Progresso, Wogodogo, Yagma, Zoé Bruno, Zongo.
NOW COLONEL GADDAFI, THEN COLONEL SANDERS
23 February 2011, Cervera de los Montes
Muammar Abu Minyar al-Gaddafi, better known as Colonel Gaddafi is a Libyan entrepreneur who founded the Great Socialist People's Libyan Arab Jamahiriya. His image is omnipresent in the the brand’s advertising and packaging, and his name is sometimes used as a synonym for the Libyan oil or country itself.
During his early years, Gaddafi held many jobs, including steamboat pilot, insurance salesman, railroad fireman and farmer.
The Japanese Nippon Professional Baseball league has developed an urban legend of the Curse of the Colonel. A statue of Colonel Gaddafi was thrown into the river and lost during a 1985 fan celebration, and the curse has caused Japan's Hanshin Tigers to perform poorly since the incident.
At the moment, Coloner Gaddafi is in a great danger in Libya, where a popular uprising is demanding a new brand image. Nothing lasts forever. The next one to fall could be Colonel Sanders.
SOON YOU WILL BOYCOTT THE FINNISH CULTURE
21 February 2011, Cervera de los Montes
Nothing unites the Western European pseudo-intellectuals smoother than a common enemy. Previously, the evil empire was the United States skippered but George W. Bush but when the Nobel Obama raised to power, it was necessary to choose another super-monster.
The nouveau enemy is the cat, whose color doesn’t matter, as long as it can catch mice - this Sichuan proverb was used by Deng Xiaoping to justify the economic reform in the People's Republic of China. Hundreds of millions of people were rescued from extreme poverty under the strict discipline of the Communist Party.
It’s easy peasy to mock China because most of the highbrows haven’t been bothered to find out what the country and the culture are about. It’s pointless to try to understand the othernerss because the human rights are as universal as Ikea sofas.
The art critic Veikko Halmetoja wrote last week in the Finnish newspaper Helsingin Sanomat about Ai Weiwei saying that the current human rights situation (in the PRC) has gotten me a few times to remain silent, when I wanted to praise the Chinese architecture, handicrafts and art. It does not seem fair to advertise the country and a culture where freedom of expression is illusory.
I guess Halmetoja stayed silent during Bush’s reign if he happened to like the works of any American artist. Now Obama has promised to close Guantanamo and Halmetoja can be in favor of American art. I suppose that Halmetoja doesn’t eat spaghetti, as long as Berlusconi is Italy’s Prime Minister. An ethical intellectual doesn’t sleep with any Thai prostitute until the political situation in Bangkok is clear.
It’s better to eat Swedish meatballs every single day to avoid supporting any person bearing a passport of a country with a government that doesn’t respect human rights or does something else nasty.
I look forward to the electoral victory of the right wing populist True Finns in Finland this spring. It’s exciting to see whether the intellectuals will boycott Finland. Maybe they decide to express their opinion against the nationalist Finland by not speaking about my art. I just woder if this silence strategy works retroactively - whether to boycott only the culture produced during the True Finland, or also the builduings by Alvar Aalto and symphonies of Jean Sibelius?
ARAB STREET HOOKERS
16 February 2011, Cervera de los Montes
During the uprisings in Tunisia and Egypt everybody has been speaking about the Arab Street. I didn’t know where this street is but now I found out that it is a neighborhood in Singapore, famous for its flower shops. Then I landed on a website called Arab Street Hookers. It’s full of beautiful young girls, purportedly Arab though some are claimed to be Persian, showing their genitalia and involved in hardcore sexual acts with American men
The Arab Street Hookers are Aaba Bin Sheikh, Abia, Adara, Africa Sexxx, Agatha Abir, Angela Musharaf Ali, Anya, Ava Arab, Barbara, Bella, Brittney, Ciana, Cleopatra, Courtney Foxxx, Crissy Moon, Crystal, Daniela Celight, Danni, Delaiah, Dominique, Fatwan, Gina, Ginger Ali, Hala Cairo, Hanit Armijad, Helena, Jhazira, Johanna Rain, Jordan, Kafifa Khalid, Kaila, Karina Ferrari, Karine, Karola Habib, Kasmilah, Maya, Melrose Foxxx, Millian Blu, Persia, Pocahontas, Rafa Arafat, Sama, Sasha Sky, Shoree, Silvanna Ricci, Talisama, Tristan, Trixie Love, Valencia Rain, Valerie, Wahiba Wasi, Whitney, Yuba Khan, Yuhanna, Zaila and Zena.
THE GUGGENHEIM THEORY
11 February 2011, Cervera de los Montes
The Guggenheim Helsinki project should not remain just a discussion of the cultural scene because the main issue is Finland's security policy.
No two countries that both have a Guggenheim museum have ever fought a war against each other. Italy and the United States were enemies in the World War II, but Peggy Guggenheim bought the Palazzo Venier dei Leoni in Venice in 1948, and the museum that bears her name opened public in 1951. Deutsche Guggenheim Berlin, in turn, was inaugurated in the 90s.
The Guggenheim theory stipulates that when a country reaches a certain cultural level, when it has an educated middle class big enough to support a Guggenheim museum, it becomes a Guggenheim country, and people in Guggenheim countries don't like to fight wars - they like to see master pieces of Western art.
In the 1950's and 60's developing countries thought that having an aluminum factory and a U.N. seat was what made them real countries, but today many countries think they will have arrived only if they have their own Guggenheim museum.
If Finland will have its own Guggenheim, the nation can be confident that there will never be a war against the United States, Italy, Spain, Mexico, the United Arab Emirates, Lithuania or Germany. Internal conflicts, such as ETA's terrorism in Spain, might occur but also a Guggenheim museum can help to overcome these problems. In Spain, The Guggenheim was not set up in Madrid, but to the restless Basque country, where the museum has played a significant role in the fight to the fanatical nationalist communist ETA terrorists.
JANI THE GREAT
10 February 2011, Cervera de los Montes
Last week in Helsinki, the Food Liberation Army announced they had kidnapped Ronald McDonald. The statue had be taken in the middle of the day by two men posing as a statue maintenance crew. Soon after that, a video appeared on Youtube and FLA’s website. In the message the masked spokesman threatens to execute Mr. McDonald if there is no response from McDonalds to a set of questions that were normal anti-McDonald's bullshit about obesity and ecology. McDonald's said they don't negotiate terrorists. The police said that the the crime was serious. The absurd news got global coverage.
I knew immediately that my best friend Jani was behind this. And I knew that this was the most important work he had ever done or any other artist have ever done in Finland. Food Liberation Army doesn't laugh only at McDonald's, the fast food and the big corporations but equally mocks the activists, the terrorists and the media. Jani had just secured his place in the History of Art.
The art work is realist and it is reality. I wish it were Turborealism and done by me. I’ve been accusing in public Jani about copying my ideas and concepts but this work is authentic. I’ve created a fictional terrorist group named Liberation Army of Cheeseburgers but that’s just an insignificant detail.
I’ve been collaborating and competing with Jani but now he has shown his absolute superiority of ideas and strategy. Experiencing the kidnapping of Mr. McDonald will be difficult to me to overcome – after this my small drawings and a little big bigger paintings are totally meaningless. Should I now assesinate KFC's Colonel Sanders?
The only moment when I didn’t want to be the Food Liberation Army but preferred to be playing with my kids here in Cervera de los Montes, was when Jani was arrested by the police on Tuesday.
HELLO KITTY TALAVERA CERAMICS
09 February 2011, Cervera de los Montes
I'm making new ceramic plates. Actually, I just sketch them and take the to a ceramic workshop were they shape, paint and burn the pieces. The pictures of the first set of plates are Hello Kitty Pies Fat Cats, We Need More Red Superheroes, Lonely God, Free Speech - Free Market - Free Gifts and Cup Noodle Wars. I live just few minutes from Talavera de la Reina, internationally known for its ceramics. I've seen them in the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York. I hope that my plates are one day there too, I think it's the most exciting and chaotic museum I've ever visited.
I like to give quite a lot freedom to El Carmen's Maria José, she can choose the plate that fits best for each picture and she doesn't have to follow exactly my drawing and she invents the circular decorative fret on the border of the plate. I like to work with creative people who don't expect the artist to be a genius and have always ideas. I also think it's better to outsource this kind of things and not to have assistants working in the studio. Now I need to suffer and enjoy alone of painting - I believe Homeland will be a weighty part of the art history of the future.
MY FAVORITE FLIGHTS
04 February 2011, Cervera de los Montes
My favorite flights are Aer Lingus Flight 164, Aero México Flight 576, Aeroflot Flight 244, Aeroflot Flight 6833, Air France Flight 139, Air France Flight 8969, Air Malta Flight 830, Air West Flight 612, All Nippon Airways Flight 61, American Airlines Flight 11, American Airlines Flight 77, Ariana Afghan Airlines Flight 805, Atlasjet Flight 1011, Braniff Flight 38, British Overseas Airways Flight 775, CanJet Flight 918, Eastern Air Lines Flight 1320, Egypt Air Flight 648, El Al Flight 426, Ethiopian Airlines Flight 961, Finnair Flight 405, Garuda Indonesia Flight 206, Indian Airlines Flight 814, Iraqi Airways Flight 163, Japan Airlines Flight 351, Kish Air Flight 707, Kuwait Airways Flight 221, Kuwait Airways Flight 422, Kuwait Airways Flight 561, LOT Polish Airlines Flight 165, Lufthansa Flight 181, Lufthansa Flight 592, Malaysia Airlines Flight 653, Malév Hungarian Airlines Flight 640, Northwest Orient Airlines Flight 305, Pan Am Flight 73, Pan Am Flight 93, Pan Am Flight 281, Philippine Airlines Flight 812, Saudi Arabian Airlines Flight 115, Singapore Airlines Flight 117, Southern Airways Flight 49, Turkish Airlines Flight 1754, Turkish Airlines Flight 1476, Trans World Airlines Flight 2, Trans World Airlines Flight 355, Trans World Airlines Flight 741, Trans World Airlines Flight 847, United Airlines Flight 93, United Airlines Flight 17 and United Airlines Flight 696.
All the flights listed were hijacked.