Passages

Over the years our various identities as 'digital citizens' are invented, lived out, and then pass into the ether. I like the ritual of clearing space out in one's life, giving your "old you" a salute and proper funeral. This is one of those times. Today marks the day that my other creative 'personality', The Supernature, bites the dust. When I moved to NYC in 2004, I started The Supernature as a project that would let me explore my creative interests in the design & commercial realm. Specifically the notion that the moving image had become an "architectural concern", and to experiment with animated forms of pattern, ornament, wallpaper, and other kinds of spatial, built environments. Between 2006-2014 the project did quite well, especially in the fashion, event & beauty industries: I was tapped to work on projects for Prada, Chanel, Tiffany & Co, Macy's, Elle Magazine, Van Cleef & Arpels, La Prairie, Alexander McQueen & SHOWstudio, L'Oreal, NY Times' T Magazine, IdN Magazine, and several big museums. It wasn't always a breeze but I got to do some fascinating work, I had a solid commercial career without resorting to mere logo-spinning, and I think maybe I established a distinctive voice & vision (way too specific a vision, at times) -- and maybe the concept was stronger than the actual work, who knows.

In any case, these industries have changed quite a bit since then (inasmuch as they intersect with my skill set and creative interests). The Supernature hasn't been too active a concern these last few years --I think I've said all I had to say with it -- so I've allowed the domains and email accounts to expire, and will no longer be representing myself as such. Here's a look at a few of my favorite projects. Feel free to dig around in the basement of my Vimeo page for more videos if you like.

I was tapped by design agency 2x4 to create this 'welcome video' for the Frederic Fekkai salon in Bendel's. This was one of my first real 'Supernature' projects of substance.

These backdrop animations I made for Macy's Chicago Designer runway show (held in the just recently opened Millennium Park in Chicago) set the tone for most of the work I did the next several years -- slowly evolving floral loops in a graphic, patterned style.

The last of my visual work for Prada, as my relationship with 2x4 was winding down at this point:

I think this piece is as good a sendoff as I have to offer ... if only for the very clever mix I made (if I do say so myself) between different versions of 'La Vie En Rose'. The animated forms were all inspired by actual jewelry pieces in the VC&A aniversary collection of Parisian-inspired landmarks.

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Also in 'passing' news: I've been banned for 3 days from Facebook for a random picture I posted years ago of a Larry Clark art exhibition (I guess it had some peen in it). What this means is: one of my "#1 fans" took the time to engage my page and sift through old photo albums until they found something suitably offensive to report (and it was far from the most lurid image in there). The most unsettling thing about this, though (aside from being stalked by a troll), was that Facebook forced me to run a gauntlet of self-censorship through my photo albums, and then checkmark a form consenting that my account was now 'clean'. Maybe I'm just on edge because of all the proud fascism-on-parade that's been the hallmark of this ridiculous election season -- but I think this "sign your own confession / citizen, police thyself" bullshit is straight out of Kafka or 1984. I mean, not to conflate this with the problems of people who really are living in a police state... get a grip, ok?... but still....Facebook needs us more than we need it, right? Maybe it's time to shed that vestige of my "online identity" along with Supernature and try out some new strategies for living. What do you think?

Paddy Johnson talks about my plight in this ArtFCity post here. As the editor of a popular arts blog that ocassionally features NSFW material, she has suffered similarly under Facebook's seemingly random disapprobations and censorships (as have many other artists & critics who use Facebook as a forum & platform for discussing and sharing art -- at this point, Jerry Saltz probably has his own freakin' caseworker that reports directly to Mark Zuckerberg). Thanks, Paddy for the clickbait headline, it should do wonders for my Klout score!