Brain Pickings

The Creators Project


Brazilian digital graffiti, Korean engineering and the evolution of modern art.

Brain Pickings is all about providing a platform of visibility for the projects, ideas and creators moving the world forward. Unfortunately, we don’t (yet) have the bandwidth that today’s media titans do. So we’re always happy to see said titans pull their media prowess together to give a share of voice to these creators. This month, two of them — VICE and Intel — are doing just that in a new partnership dubbed The Creators Project: A new network celebrating global creativity and culture across media.

From French hipster music darlings Phoenix to Brazilian digital artist Muti Randolph to South Korean engineer Hojun Song, the multiyear project showcases over 80 of the world’s most compelling creators, spanning an incredibly wide spectrum of creativity — art, design, fashion, gaming , film, music and more — which we think is tremendously important in an age when creative storytelling and self-expression continue to take new forms, explore new media and create new vocabulary for what it means to be an “artist.”

At a time in the history of the arts where digital technologies have revolutionized distribution, democratized access, and completely re-imagined the scope and scale with which an artist can create a vision and reach an audience, The Creators Project is a completely new kind of arts and culture channel for a completely new kind of world.

The project has two key missions: One, to continually identify visionary artists and offer a platform for celebrating their work; two, to serve as a content creation studio (they’ve already created a video for Phoenix), allowing artist to collaborate, facilitating the production and distribution of their work, and helping them reach new audiences both via the site itself and through the multiple events The Creators Project is holding around the world. The event series includes collections of curated artworks and installations, screenings, panel discussions and dozens of performances by the featured creators, beginning next month in New York City, then moving to London, Sao Paulo, and Seoul to finally culminate in Beijing with a massive three-day Creators exposition in September.

Co-created by DJ extraordinaire Mark Ronson, the project holds riveting promise for the intersection of creativity and technology. More importantly, it reclaims this future-forward conception of art from the grip of today’s fluff-lined manifestos and creates a tangible, actionable, put-your-money-where-your-mouth-is platform for what is so often talked about and so rarely enacted.

You can follow The Creators Project on Twitter and show some love on Facebook. (While you’re at it, show some for us as well, eh?)

via Jawbone TV

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Music Philosophy: Famous Lyrics as Typographic Art


Love is all you need, worry vs. laughter, and why Plato’s got nothing on Jay Z.

Music is the quintessential vehicle for modern philosophy, a poetic gateway into our most deepest existential truths and sincerest beliefs. Add to it the visual treat of superb art direction, and you’ve got a powerhouse of cerebral-creative indulgence. That’s exactly what UK-based designer Mico Toledo does in his wonderful Music Philosophy project, bringing together three of our favorite things — music, philosophy and typography — in weekly typographic renditions of famously profound song quotes.

From Judy Garland to Jay Z, by way of Lennon and Dylan, the project captures in the minimalism of lyrical candor what ancient philosophers did in voluminous tomes — the timeless human quests for love, happiness and the meaning of life. And, okay, rock’n'roll.

The posters look fantastic as iPhone wallpaper — you can grab them for free right from the site. And for the t-shirt aficionados among us, some of the quotes are available on screen-printed tees.

See more of Toledo’s work on his Flickr stream. And if there’s a song lyric you’d like immortalized, you can submit it for consideration.

via Coudal

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Remix Culture Spotlight: Walking on Eggshells


What legal anachronism has to do with Bob Dylan, Picasso and Family Guy.

We’re big proponents of remix culture here because at the core of our mission lies the idea that creativity is merely the ability to combine all the existing pieces in our head — knowledge, memory, inspiration — into incredible new things. Last year, we featured a brilliant panel with Shepard Fairey and CreativeCommons founder Lawrence Lessig titled Making Art and Commerce Thrive in the Hybrid Economy, followed closely by the excellent documentary RiP: A Remix Manifesto.

Today, we bring you Walking on Eggshells: Borrowing Culture in the Remix Age — a new documentary from Yale Law & Technology, offering 24 densely compelling minutes of insight into various facets of intellectual property in the age of remix. From appropriation to sampling to creative influence to reuse, the film is an anthology of conversations with some of today’s most notable remix artists and media theorists, exposing the central paradox of contemporary copyright law: How can something originally intended to incentivize people to create serve to hinder new forms of creativity?

You’re not gonna tell me ‘oh, that’s not creative because you’re using someone’s sampled piano note’ There’s no question that at some point using other people’s recordings is 100% your creativity, and at some points it’s 0% your creativity. Then it’s even trickier because sometimes it’s just this recognition — you recognize that this fits, and isn’t that recognition something amazing that maybe no one else recognized?” ~ DJ Earworm

Let’s just take Bob Dylan or somebody like that, whom we take for granted. Does he have a grocery list, an inventory of all of his influences, all the people he has plagiarized and taken from and sampled? These are things that are part of creativity. They are previous things, previous artworks, previous entities. They already exist. Nothing comes out of your ear, out of thin air.” ~ Joy Garnett

For those of us living on the remix side of things, the film’s thesis is hardly groundbreaking. But what makes it important is that it adds another voice to one of the most necessary and urgent creative conversations of our time, building on a narrative that will continue to bend an antiquated law until it breaks and makes room for a more inclusive, era-appropriate conception of creativity.

via GOOD

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