List of Monumental sculpture projects 2015

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Friday, 27 January 2012

Heart of Glass***

Heart of Glass*** by Werner Herzog

genre: historical docudrama, experimental film : all actors worked under hynotism

Photography is very beautiful and atmospheric with long shots of rolling hills, clouds, with gd music. The story is rather slow moving and the acting wooden - due to the experimental method of hypnotising all the actors. So everybody is ad libbing from somewhere else. Story of a glass making town when the receipe for Ruby Red glass is lost, everybody slowly becomes mad and townspeople kill each other, fights, the town returns to a stony island without much inhabitants.

I am my films***half

I am my films - Werner Herzog ***half

genre: interview of director Werner Herzog by Erwin Keusch

The film goes by a chronological order of works by Herzog. Herzog talks about what and in which circumstances where the films made, difficulties, actors, costumes, his own back ground, how he broke into houses as a youth to sleep here and there. Most interesting part is a recording of Klaus Kinski how he shouted at Herzog when he was a new director. I can imagine the crazy guy screaming non stop with spittles flying all over the place. Herzogs films are very authentic courageous self expressions. I watched Fitzcarldo many years ago and was amazed by the scenes shown in the movie, poetic, magical, powerful. But when I saw the making of this movie, thats when I discovered that they didnt "just hauled a boat over a mountain to make the film", not once, but twice!!

If you dont have the nerve to tackle difficulties which occurs in film making, you will never make it as a film maker.

He produces all his own films. Maybe his film making is his destiny? Such is the strength of his conviction of what should or not should be filmed? A natural film maker, it takes him 3, to 4 days to write a script as he could see everything in his head already. The movie plays in his head and he writes it down.

Inspires me to watch all his films.

Thursday, 26 January 2012

La Buche***

La Buche***
genre: drama, family stories, family secrets, social norm stories; setting in contemporary Paris

Three sisters from a violin player father, mother re-married a man and the film opens when he just died. So; a cell phone rings, nobody knows whos phone is ringing and it turns out to be the dead mans. The wife never told the first wife that this man has passed away because she is mad at the first wife. Such is the tone of the whole film.
People with lovers left and right, nobody has a "happy perfect" life. Rich, poor, mentally unstable, all with children or wishing to have a child to be born, dancer entertainer at a restaurant, all, everyone is in the middle of break ups. Affairs left and right, whose child is by whom? Only the mother knows.
The violin player is about to die, he goes to the hospital, the doc says, nothing wrong with you, just your heart is a little big will be fine. He goes to the fancy shop and buys himself new clothes so that he would look better and meets with ex wife. They tell each other "truths".
The film weaves intricate human relationships, happy and unhappy things. Nobody gets everything they wish. But we all find some small items small events to console ourselves on Christmas eve.

Very nice details on scenarios, restaurants, decors, artisants courtyard atelier, motorcycle riders, Luxembourg garden, bourgeois shopping, various house for rents turns meeting places for love affairs (how mean and degrading, and maybe realistic form of romantic rendez vous, do as you can? The scriptwriter has eyes for showing the various social groups and their situations) at every level of life, all finely rendered.

Look at me ***, Freaky Friday **half

Look at me ***,
genre: psychological, family, drama
Very nice fine touches, portrait of a fat girl with a famous writer father. Her piano teacher, fiction writer husband on his way up, the famous writer father is a sort of rude insensitive person, young wife with young child, human comedy.
Very finely tuned, nice french setting, in country side, in nice ordinary restaurants, partying, making out.

Freaky Friday **half
Fairy tale story
genre: family romance with a magic twist via fortune cookies

stereotypical american mother daughter brother, new husband, moto bike boyfriend, rock band girl, cheesy girlfriends, wedding, stereotypcial asian characters, magic fortune cookies... fun. Even though everything is stereotypcial, it is fun. And the scenario does depict ordinary upper middle class America.

Tuesday, 24 January 2012

Irina Palm**half

Irina Palm**half

genre: kinky drama romance family love
grandma goes to do a whanking job to make money for a medical operation for the grandson and son and daughter in law are kept in secret, super grandma falls in love w angel boss. They kiss and live happily ever after in a sunset romance.

The film has an interesting outline, Marianne Faithfull is superb. However, the script is a little rough. We cannot believe, or are not allowed to see why the son is so clunky, hes just totally wishy washy and hard headed. We dont know why he is so hard on his mother, and dont know why his wife is not getting on w the super grandmother. As to the young couple, why are they so useless? poor? A lot of story line is missing. We only have eyes for Marianne Faithfull, but she alone could not save the film. Miki has an interesting face. We also dont know how he fell into this sleazy business. All cardboard characters.

Thursday, 19 January 2012

Yayoi Kusama documentary ***, Basquiat***, Suzan Pitt***half, Hula Girls***half

Yayoi Kusama documentary ***,
Very interesting to see her walking around, answering interviews, directing assistants, speaking to international critics. You see someone slightly in their own world, but still functions very well in everyday situations. She murmurs that she is a genius, and that she is the greatest, the bestest, the most extraordinary better than anyone anyone alive. And she also adds that as an artist, if you didnt think you were the best, you would have given up along the way.

Very well made, this Julian Schnabel film with David Bowie playing Andy Warhol and Basquiat is such a handsome man in real life and in this film, everybody else acts and speaks, surrounds themselves in the realistic decors. Unlike art films made by "non artists", this film has a good pace and shows more or less truthfully what actually happens in the market place when a new artist comes into the arena. Glossified but the basic reference points are accurate, so I think its a great film. A collectable.

Suzan Pitt***half,
Surrealistic animation, very sexy, erotic, somber, everything all mixed. El Doctor is a very funny film based on tabloid newspaper stories. Very original and I see her style has been borrowed by certain younger artists. Especially the very rich lush flower motifs and dark midnight backgrounds.

Hula Girls***half
tones are brown, sun burnt, and retro colored, because the film is an old film but what a story. Very good dialogues, everybody speaks from their stand points and the Japanese girls, mother, over size gentle giant girl, tough as nail dance teacher, everybody is wonderful. The dance teacher runs into a male bath house to kick this guys ass, shes fully dressed and she jumps into the pool with all these fat naked men! Very good scenes. Brings tears to my eyes! Even though I already knew what the story is going to be about. :)

Thursday, 12 January 2012

Big Monster Coming to Taiwan***

Big Monster Coming to Taiwan 大怪獸台湾上陸 ***

Documentary by Tang ChengWei 唐澄暐, a young film maker from Taiwan.
Very charming film. It shows Godzilla, from the first look to the evaluation of what Godzilla means, how he must hide all the books from his mother, the teachers words about himself the Godzilla monster specialist, what shared memories of Godzilla are like, the Japanese history of Godzilla, the Hollywood Godzilla flop - how Godzilla really doesnt look like Gozilla himself but a giant lizard, only the original Godzilla has the spirit of Godzilla... Gozilla Gozilla Gozillarama galore!! and more,... crazy fans of pop monster culture, the loving obsessions with pop icons of monsters.

The opening credit title with walking paper cutouts of Gozilla drawn by a childs hand is so full of love, its impossible to not watch it to the end.

Sunday, 8 January 2012

Rosetta ***, Pollock***half, Hannah and her sisters***half

Rosetta ***
Dogme film of a struggling young girl at a trailer park. Her decision to find a real job and be honest and not a beggar nor at the shadow of someone else's help makes her a strong willed character. The film shows all the everyday banal, heaviness of poor peoples living. In the end, she has committed betrayal to her only friend, but he forgives her because he sees and understands her. A ray of sunlight comes into Rosetta's life. We never see the young man much, just Rosetta and her struggles. I am often amazed by the uninventiveness of "white trash" people. Surely Rosetta could have gotten a job somewhere if she persisted. Shes clean, local person (not an immigrant, speaks the local language) where did she come from? She looks almost angelic, for a girl like her, certainly she could have gotten a job somewhere. The premise of the movie is not convincing.

If Rosetta was less good looking, or say even banal stupid looking, then her position and solution would be believable but we viewers would not want to watch such a character due to unattractiveness.

I noticed that in all the scenes, color schemes are well put together, very esthetic and very quick paced well told story of Jackson Pollock and Lee Krasner. Two important abstract painters of the 50s.

Hannah and her sisters***half
A very intricate human relations story, i like everything in it. Woody Allen has all these complicated people with comfortable surroundings, and neurotic lives. Mia Farrow is very pretty, really like an angel. The other two are realistic people with more imperfection. And the old painter that the young sister lives with, why the hell she even began to live with him? I would say, its a good thing that Hannahs husband seduced her, as a stepping stone to get out of this crazy prison.
Well,I think I begin to like his films afterall.

Friday, 6 January 2012

Secret Sunshine 密陽***

Secret Sunshine 密陽***

Film opens with a very sweet young woman SangHae with a boy. She is a perfect mother, caring, romantic - young and pristine in some conventional way. She is a piano teacher. Widowed, she returns to MirYang to give her son the same stable child hood that her husband had. But bad things happens one after another, son got kidnapped, etc etc. Tragedy one after another, small town gossips, devote Christians worshipping in a very routine way, wooden tongues, but she finally accepted god, and found happiness. Then she decided to visit the prisoner who was the killer-kidnapper of the son to forgive him, but surprise surprise. The evil one said to her, that he also has been forgiven by god and prays for her everyday! She is no better than him in the eye of god, she cannot "forgive him" - because he has already been "forgiven" by god through his own efforts! Meanwhile, this man-man garagist- a common male who throws sexist comments in a crude way to his fellow female worker - is kind of in love with her. He began his long-distance close-ranged chasing. He does everything to make things better for SangHae, all in small details. The director doesnt show love by showing stereotypical roses and wine, fancy dinning. He does it in a very subtle correct to the situation way, fine brush work, showing who he is. He would put up a false prize certificate for her piano school - it is not her way, but sincerely he thought it good for her. He explains to the crying grandmother that SangHae is the one who suffered most. Everything is realistic, I could understand the Asian stuffiness as portrayed in this film. The young girl who quit school, got pushed, beaten by her boyfriend in a back alley, all this details makes the film very rich. It is the real world as we live it. Her romantic "secret sunshine" Miryang, is not at all special, it is just as imperfect, as evil, as stuffy as any old small town. Her "secret sunshine" in the end is the man who, through long patient devotion, sees her through all her difficulties and stays by her side.

He holds up a mirror so she could comb and cut it herself. There is a rich character development throughout the film and everything said /shown in a subtle way. Sanghae the sweet girl-mom, the devote christian, the sexy seductress, the crazy heart-broken-betrayed one (betrayed by god), and the one who finally gets very angry, and shows it!! She becomes human, no longer naive, someone who shows her anger, a more realistic person. Someone who doesnt live in a dream anymore.

The male actor is very good. He is very likeable.
The director is very subtle, he uses many small touches to describe his characters. For example, when Sanghae agrees to have dinner with him over the phone, he strikes this little "victory" pose - we only see it from the back. He swings his hips left and right, aha got it!! One step further in the right direction !

The film is also critical of certain "do good" religious groups because he shows that it could only help general cohesions -mediocre words and feelings- but doesnt really touch the real issue of people's deep pains.

Therefore, people like the garagist finds peace by going to the church - as he is not a complicated man, but the church would not do for someone like Sanghae, a much more sensitive romantic type.

Sunday, 1 January 2012

Happy New Year 2012!! FoGuangShan Photomaton, sl DGM Buddha

Swann Jie at sl Digital Guqin Museum, with friendly giant Buddha!

Visited FoGuangShan in Dec2011, at their Buddha Memorial Center, and am impressed by everything I have seen. Its been managed along the lines of the Louvre Museum; fancy shopping malls, good coffee, ice cream the whole package. Many clean large tables for rests w high backed chair clothed in removable cloth coverings like in fancy restaurants. I am most amused by two installations. First one is the "How to become a Buddha" - you are asked to step inside a secluded area with a reflection mirror. Some words are flashed on the wall, you are to repeat the words out loud, and that would trigger a mechanism. The words were, I will be kind etc etc and the flash that comes up was a halo, and the word "I am Buddha" is lit up. So everybody becomes a buddha if they do good. A very simple easy to understand way of Buddhism.

Installation number two was a giant size camera.
You put yourself on the foot prints on the ground and use the touch screen on the camera, facing you. It offers you many locations of FoGuangShan, Switzerland, Taiwan many places. Once you choose your location, you take a pic, and type in sender, email and off the picture goes.
Especially good for people who didnt have a good camera on hand. You could still get that special souvenir photo!
Global locations on the photomaton screen.

I know that in sl there are many Buddhism worship places, so I will try to go visit them later. I remember I had visited a place with Dalai Lamas picture.

And, I found a Buddha in my own inventory, so i set up a photo place at Digital Guqin Museum for those who cannot go to FoGuangShan but still like to have their avatar taken with a big friendly Buddha. Its rather nice. I enclose a sample picture here too.

You are welcome to visit Digital Guqin Museum anytime.

Currently its here: Pelinor 60, 6, 271

Come get a picture of yourself with the Giant Buddha!
You will have good wind, great sun, and much happiness!!