Distance: Plenty of Exercise
So, the times they are changin, and Ciwt tries to keep up. (Ha!) Here are a few modern things she has learned lately.
At a recent club lecture she learned the world has over 2,000 new currencies. Crytocurrencies to be more precise. They are virtual, ie, air. One of them is the Bitcoin. Techies love it. Here's one picture of it:
It also has several logos. Ciwt likes this one
because it captures what she thinks is the flyaway nature of any money you might commit to Bitcoin.
Tattoos are now officially ART worthy of museum shows. Right now two major San Francisco museums, the Asian Art Museum and the de Young Museum are featuring tattoo shows. The roots of tattooing are 'outsider,' beginning in the Edo period (1603-1868) as a way to identify prisoners, making it hard for them to re-enter society and find work. In protest to this practice, the Yakuza tribes began tattooing themselves - often with full body tattoos - and the practice continues to this day among clan members as well as non-members.
In the States, tattoos have been decidely 'outsider' until, well, last Wednesday when the press (including Ciwt) was introduced to the de Young's latest show: Ed Hardy: Deeper than Skin
by museum honchos and Mr. Hardy himself.
This elevating of the tattoo from (negative) subculture to an important art form is no accident. It has been Ed Hardy's lifelong goal. He turned down Yale Art School in the 60's and opened the first formal, by appointment, personalized tattoo parlor in the U.S. to pursue it. The shop was minute, but the word spread and eventually Hardy became famous worldwide for his tattoos and decorated the bodies of myriad people from common folk to celebrities.
Driving over to the press briefing Ciwt was skeptical at best. But when she really looked at the paper originals of his tattoo work and saw the intricacy and artist skill of Hardy's design and application work she was very moved. Over 40 years Hardy singlehandedly (with serendiptous help from 'outsiders' who supported what he was about) has brought the ancient practice into unprecedented global popularity. And what moved Ciwt even more was Hardy's humility and pure joy that more and more artists are now free to travel the world, gain recognition and make their livings as tattoo artists. Also that the human body is more free to be a vehicle for personal artistic expression.