News post – Sun Ra’s stellar centennial, Piper Brett in Utah, Airbnb makes a home in Trafalgar Square, opportunities and more!


The incredible Sun Ra, circa 1980. Photo courtesy of Ars Nova Workshop.
The incredible Sun Ra, circa 1980. Photo courtesy of Ars Nova Workshop.

This planet is doomed – but we’re going to celebrate.  By honoring the one and only Sun Ra, that is. On Thursday, the Penn Museum, the Galleries at Moore and Ars Nova Workshop are putting on a cosmic show to celebrate Sun Ra’s 100th anniversary. Expect poetry, Afro-futuristic sounds, and archival films of Sun Ra and his Arkestra held, of course, in the Penn Museum’s Lower Egypt Gallery (where the film “Sun Ra: A Joyful Noise” was shot in 1980). The evening (7-10 PM)  is led by Pew Fellow CA Conrad, writer Ras Mashramani, and Sun Ra biographer John Szwed; accompaniments come courtesy of Buchla Music Easel pioneer Charles Cohen, DJs Anthony Campuzano and Jack Sloss, and an epic close-out with an Afro-Futurist dance party tribute in the Kintner galleries. Admission is free, so get your futurist garb together…

The Philadelphia Geek Awards are almost here! It’s nominations time, and the ranks of the hopefuls are full of talent.  In the visual arts cetegory, we have Kyle Cassidy, Kid Hazo and Benjamin Volta. Best of luck to everyone going up! This year’s Awards are presented by some notable names, including Joel Hodgson of Mystery Science Theater 3000 and comic book illustrator J.G. Jones. They’re scheduled for August 16 at the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University at 8 PM.
via Samuel Delmara – A team of NYU film grads that includes friend-of-Artblog Samuel Delmara are behind a new adventure-comedy called Artistically Challenged. Not merely an anguished portrayal of being a twenty-something struggling artist, the film was written, directed, and shot exclusively for the untested medium of Instagram. Shot over two weeks throughout New York City with a volunteer crew and a cast of more than 30 people, the plot stars Nick Romaine, a struggling young artist in New York City who finds overnight success thanks to a fib but must then weigh the consequences. Featuring “crazed fans, pirates, henchmen, eccentric collectors and powerful art dealers,” the show’s first seven episodes debuted on July 1; Episode 8 debuted yesterday, and they’re planning on releasing one episode each day until all 32 episodes of Season One have aired. You can see all of the episodes online, as well as on their Instagram account @ACtheSeries.

A Place Called Home in Trafalgar Square. Photo courtesy of the London Design Festival.
A Place Called Home in Trafalgar Square.
Photo courtesy of the London Design Festival.

The sharing economy is getting pretty good at finding ways to stay nimble, including plum projects with artists and designers. A recent example is the London Design Festival partnership with Airbnb for a project in Trafalgar Square for this year’s fair, from September 13–21. The project, A Place Called Home, features four home designs by four star designers in the square. Jasper Morrison, Patternity, Raw Edges, and Studioilse’s one-room interior are all using a cabin-like exterior as a template but inside’s a different story, with each artist taking an individual vision of what “home” looks like.


Philadelphia LISC is holding a community-benefiting Request for Proposals for its Creative Placemaking Strategy in West and Eastern North Philadelphia. Grants of up to $7,500 are available for up to eight projects. The deadline is September 5, 2014; if you’d like to get a jump on it, there’s an RFP briefing session on Tuesday, July 15 at 9:30 AM at the LISC offices.

via e-flux – The WYNG Masters Award is now accepting applications from all over the world for its photographic-based competition, whose theme this year is waste. Applicants must submit work that is either made in Hong Kong, or relates to waste in Hong Kong. The deadline for submission is September 15, 2014 (23:59 Hong Kong time; GMT + 8:00). The finalists are selected by a panel of international judges, with works exhibited in Hong Kong in spring 2015 and a series of talks, panels, and seminars during the exhibition period. The winner receives a cash prize of 250,000 HKD ($32258), and each of the six additional finalists will receive 15,000 HKD ($1936). For details on how to enter please visit entry rules.

Artist News

Piper Brett's trademark gold forks. Photo courtesy of CUAC.
Piper Brett’s trademark gold forks. Photo courtesy of CUAC.

Piper Brett has an upcoming show at Central Utah Art Center. Although details are still forthcoming, We Be All Night runs July-August, and Piper’s familiar gold-coated articles are back once more.
SHAFT co-founder Lauren Ruth has a show at Zeitgeist in Chattanooga that just opened.  Cannonball Run III runs July 5 – August 30, 2014.