Gayle from the School of Visual Arts in NYC sez, "Acclaimed multimedia artist Laurie Anderson gave the commencement address this year at the School of Visual Arts' (SVA) graduation ceremony, held at New York City's Radio City Music Hall on May 10. In a speech that was at turns thoughtful and lighthearted, she interwove stories from her own career beginnings, including lessons learned while studying at SVA with Sol Lewitt, anecdotes from her experience as NASA's first artist-in-residence and advice for the 2012 graduates, encouraging them to relish the freedom inherent in being an artist. Anderson explained, 'The reason I'm an artist is that it's one of the few things that you can do in this world in which you are totally free -- absolutely no one tells you what you can do and what you can't do.' Anderson ended her address with a treat for the audience: she played a tune using what she called "a pillow recorder" as a make-shift harmonica. Afterward, Anderson accepted an honorary degree presented by SVA Board Member Janet Knox."
NASA cancelled the Artist-in-Residence program after Anderson's tenure, thanks to an unnamed senator's austerity witch-hunt, and Anderson makes a good case for what an artist adds to a venture like NASA. She's a fascinating and insightful speaker, and manages to say intelligent things about art without being esoteric or opaque, which is a rare gift.
5. Commencement Speaker's Address: Laurie Anderson
Scientists discovered this new species of “glass frog” in Ecuador’s Amazon lowlands. Hyalinobatrachium yaku’s belly is so transparent that you can clearly see its kidneys, bladder, and beating heart. From Science News: Yaku means “water” in Kichwa, a language spoken in Ecuador and parts of Peru where H. yaku may also live. Glass frogs, like […]
Jennifer Raff — a bioanthropologist and geneticist who researches and teaches at U Kansas and U Texas — provides some excellent advice and context on how to read a scientific paper, from figuring out which papers and journals are worthy of your attention to understanding the paper in its wider context in the relevant field.
Apple released this lovely new commercial featuring Carl Sagan reading from his magnificent 1994 book Pale Blue Dot: A Vision of the Human Future in Space, now available as an audiobook. This surprising partnership spurred Adweek to interview my friend Ann Druyan, Sagan’s wife, collaborator, and creative director of the Voyager Golden Record, about being […]
Learning a new language will give your resume an upgrade, sure, but it will also provide a huge cognitive boost for mental tasks outside of translation and conversation. Bilingual brains have been shown to be better at handling multiple concurrent tasks, and gaining fluency in a new tongue is an amazing way to improve memory, […]
If you struggle to get a good night’s rest, consider replacing your pillows before dropping hundreds on a new mattress. You can give your tired neck a break with a 2-pack of memory foam pillows, available now in the Boing Boing Store.Each of these pillows is stuffed with cooling polyurethane foam that molds to your […]
Although flagship smartphones are unlikely to adopt heavy-duty outer casing anytime soon, you can always prepare your device for the outdoors with a beefy case and and an external battery like this Nomad Tile Trackable PowerPack, available in the Boing Boing Store for $119.95.The Nomad Tile can fully recharge an iPhone 7 over three times […]