Saturday, May 16, 2009

New work from one of my favorite artists of all time

As long as I've known him (since we sat next to each other in 5th grade), Brendan Bell has been one of the most naturally gifted, precise and meticulous artists I know of.

Just a year or two ago he was asking me rudimentary questions about Photoshop and Illustrator, trying to figure out where the "right mouse click" button is on his Macbook Pro laptop. He has always been technologically challenged. He is easily overwhelmed by software and hardware alike. But as he did with his Jonny Classic record, with little help (not to discount the effectiveness of his professors) and a whole lot of time locked in a bedroom, he produces something far more advanced and beautiful than most tech-savvy people will dream of in their entire lifetime. This video is no exception.

He's just finished his degree in Graphic Design at UMASS, an achievement eleven+ years in the making, and I couldn't be more proud of him. This video/audio/writing is his senior project - he worked harder on this than you or I can fathom and it shows:

Five ( Dramatic Pauses ) from Brendan Bell on Vimeo.

Description: We let the television news into the perceived safety of our lives on a daily basis. Even without direct contact, the language of the medium connects with us via background noise, internet blips, and watercooler small-talk. It has a distinct, and often overlooked, authority over the way we think and feel.

The nightly half-hour national news format attempts to condense the state of the world into easily digestible soundbites. My intention is to release these soundbites, inherent powers intact, realign them and force them to interact in unintended ways.

For seven months, I watched NBC Nightly News, recording phrases that piqued my interest. I focused on this single media outlet to give the project a specific voice and began reconfiguring the phrases into what can best be described as collage poems. Poetry, like the news media, uses evocative language to provide insight into the inner workings of the world. However, poetry allows subtleties and subtext to take center stage. The resulting collage poems highlight the ambiguous spaces between language and life, exposing the vagaries of the ostensibly concrete world around us.

The term (Dramatic Pause) implies a brief deviation from an intended script, or a small crack in real time, where things that are normally hidden become visible. It is based on instructions written for news broadcasters on their teleprompters.

the poster he designed:


md imaging said...

The video was beautiful and frightening. He did an outstanding job.

Anonymous said...

This is cool and very nicely put together.

Pogo Park said...

you guys are wicked kyoot.

Pogo Park said...

also, obviously, this is great.

Ryan Dutkus said...

Ah, this could partially explain his MIA-ness.

Interesting concept and impressive video, jolly good show BB!