Monday, 21 June 2010

Poetry market in Paris (marché de la poésie)

Poetry at all stands, a market for poets and poetry lovers. Words, verses, books, collections, all to use the beauty of language.
For three days (until the 20th of June) at the "place St Sulpice" in Paris, the poetry market has organized seminars, talks and lectures on poetry. In its 28th edition, the market promotes new comers in the field, new publishers and those who are well versed in the matter.

Alain Gorius has created the "al Manar" publishing house dedicated for literature from countries south of the Mediterranean. After living for quite a while in Morocco, where he established an art gallery, he went back to France in 1998 and opted for his passion of poetry, mostly arabic translated to french. The books he publishes are often combining words with illustrations by artists. Maram al Masri is one of al Manar's authors, and her latest "I look at you" is a delicate, profound book on intimacy and modesty.
Without restrictions or limitations, the poetry in his stand has a sense of freedom and openness.

Link to al Manar web site

Tuesday, 15 June 2010

Vuvuzela and world cup

Original Vuvuzela

Are you for or against the Vuvuzela at the world cup? ban or keep?
The crowds are there to cheer, they need the public collective mass activity to feel the thrill. The vuvuzela is a great catch object and a good marketing tool as a symbol of South Africa's football fields. Brand your vuvuzela, buy your vuvuzela, show your support and know that you belong if you make that noise.
And if your're annoyed, keep your tv quiet and watch the game in silence...

BBC talks about it: link

Sunday, 6 June 2010

Washington conquers the 9-3. "Le Monde"

The reputable newspaper in France, "Le Monde" writes today about the culture of influence and empowerment, and how the US embassy, has done very thorough work of assessing and reaching out to the "hot" suburbs of Paris where in 2005, riots flared up.
The main issues are about integrations of migrants' generations into the main stream French society. The overseas Obama team identifies potential leaders, those who act and work hard in making a difference. They are given a helping hand in their process through a trip to the US to learn more, or a hollywood actor that visits.
The US seems to open channels to any potential change in France, a change hard to look at from the French themselves. Ali, Reda, Roukhya, Majid, Yassine are interviewed and give their opinion on this incredible capacity to be recognized by the outside world and not by the establishment.

In the Arab World, we are used to such post-colonialist discourse and cultural imperialism. Our way, their way, the traditional way, the modern way, which way is the best way to evolve? Is it true that confronting the western liberal democratic highway, we can only find the religious extremism as an alternative? Is there a solution to instill some hope of improvement in today's youth?

Le Monde article link in French


Recycling, remodeling, using the old to make a new vision. Interesting architectural concept, from LAVA an architectural firm in Australia, to make use of old buildings and introduce new concepts: energy saving, energy generating, sustainability, supply of natural air flow - in two words: Eco-conscious!
In Kuwait, there is a frivolous sense of endless oil wells, hence total disregards to what the planet needs.
We see old buildings just torn down as if made of carton and new ones built with little consciousness. Could it be the heritage of nomadic bedouin culture: put your tent where your camel can graze, remove your tent as soon as the well is dry, move on to another spot?
But Nomads have a deep sense of resources and earthly respect. They keep their carbon footprint as light as possible. What was lost along the way of development?

Saturday, 5 June 2010

Adam Young - OWL CITY

In an interview, Adam Young said "The basement is where I write all my songs, there is no distractions", he started to create his music in 2007 as an antidote to his insomnia. It's a formula he hasn't messed with.
" I'd like to make myself believe
That planet Earth turns slowly
It's hard to say that I'd rather stay
Awake when I'm asleep
'Cause everything is never as
it seems

'Cause I'd get a thousand hugs
From ten thousand lightning bugs
As they tried to teach me how to dance"

Arabs with Insomnia, get down to your basement, write lyrics and play music...

Wednesday, 2 June 2010

Louise Bourgeois. 1911 - 2010

Louise Bourgeois passed away on Monday 31th of May 2010. She lived in Manhattan, New York. Her works of art are the disturbing kind, the kind that doesn't leave you, the kind that haunts you. She was an icon in the feminist movement but she was first an artist who explored new frontiers on expressing emotions, fears and scars. She was known for her installations and sculptures with very evocative sexual emblems.

New York Times article : link