Erhu, Reimagined

December 30, 2016 2016年12月30日

The erhu, a traditional Chinese music instrument with over 4,000 years of history. A collaboration between the Hong Kong-born musician and DJ Andy Leung and virtuoso erhist Wan Pinchu has given the instrument new life. Andy Leung’s debut album New Cola (Part 1) successfully combines the traditional Chinese stringed instrument with modern technology, and through his experimental approach, Leung created a distinctly signature sound. The entire album has been released as a free download on their website, and recently, Leung spoke with us about his view on the roles of traditional music instruments and the “lifetime project” that he began earlier this year.


二胡是一部拥有四千多年历史的中国传统乐器,香港出生的音乐家和DJ梁启浩与知名二胡手朱芸編进行了合作,以前所未有的方式将传统的中国弦乐器和新兴科技相结合,创造出了独特的音乐,并在他首张专辑《New Cola (Part 1)》中赋予了二胡新的活力,并且这张专辑已在他的网站上进行免费下载。最近,梁启浩与我们分享了音乐传统对他的启发,并解释了这个从今年早些时候他就开始做的“lifetime project”背后的一些想法。

Listen to some of our favorite tracks from Andy Leung:

Andy Leung – Lights
Andy Leung – Newsfeed
Andy Leung – Organ 2016


以下是来自Andy Leung的几首精选歌曲,欢迎试听:

Andy Leung – Lights
Andy Leung – Newsfeed
Andy Leung – Organ 2016

Neocha: What’s your journey in music been like? You were trained in classical music – what inspired you to transition to electronic music?

Andy Leung: The hardest thing is to categorise my own music – it’s not quite contemporary classical, not quite electronic, probably somewhere in between. I learned classical piano and had all the classical training. But at home, I would find cassettes from my parents, and they would have country, folk, ’80s Cantopop, some really old Mandarin pop, and even Michael Jackson. I was exposed to a lot of music while I was very young. Later on, I also played in a rock band during secondary school because I thought it was cool. That’s where how I learned to play the guitar, bass and drums. We were playing covers songs of Queen, Jimi Hendrix, Red Hot Chilli Peppers and so on. I got into jazz and hip-hop in university, so I studied Dr. Dre and Quincy Jones’ production techniques; they are my favourite producers. I studied music and sound recording at the university; I’ve always been technically minded and nerdy. I started working with electronics and newer technology early on and became interested in electronic music then. After graduating, I played in an electronica band called Introducing, and we toured through the UK and Europe. Working with electronic music is inspiring because the sounds and tones of electronic music are limitless. If you take a piano or guitar, the sound it generates is limited by the design of the piano maker or guitar maker. It is a preset or fixed. Whereas when working with electronic sounds, the possibilities are infinite.


Neocha: 你一直以来的音乐历程是怎样的?您接受过古典音乐方面的学习,是什么契机促使你转换到电子音乐创作的?

Andy Leung: 最困难的事情是归类自己的音乐。我的音乐不算是纯粹的当代古典音乐,也不完全是电子音乐,大概是介于两者之间吧。我学习弹古典钢琴,并接受了所有的古典音乐培训。但是在家里,我喜欢听我的父母收藏的音乐磁带,有乡村音乐、民谣、80年代的粤语流行曲,一些真的非常老的国语流行歌曲,甚至还有Michael Jackson的音乐!所以我从小就接触到了大量不同风格的音乐。后来,在中学期间我还加入了一个摇滚乐队,因为我觉得这很酷。就是在这个期间我学会了弹吉他、贝司和打鼓。我们当时翻唱了Queen,Jimi Hendrix,Red Hot Chilli Peppers等歌手和乐队的歌曲。到了大学的时候,我又喜欢上爵士和嘻哈音乐,于是我开始研究Dr. Dre和Quincy Jones的音乐制作技巧,他们是我最喜欢的音乐制作人。在大学的时候,我学习了音乐录制。我是一个对科技特别感兴趣的怪咖,从很早的时候开始,我就喜欢电子类的东西以及跟新科技有关的事物。从那时起,我开始对电子音乐感兴趣。毕业后,我在一个名为Introducing的电子乐队里表演,我们在英国和欧洲各地巡演。制作电子音乐是让人很受启发的事情,因为电子音乐里的声音和音调是无限的。如果是钢琴或吉他,它们所产生的音色会受到制作这台钢琴或这把吉他的人的设计所限制。它们的声音是预设的,固定不变的。而在电子音乐里,却有着无限的可能性。

Neocha: In 2012, you composed and performed for the London Olympics, becoming the youngest Chinese musician to have done so. What did this experience mean to you?

Andy Leung: Looking back, that was the project that helped me establish credbiity and set a foundation for my journey to being a composer. I was very young and I was suddenly on the same stage with composers who I aspired to be.  This was actually the first time I incorporated Chinese elements into electronic music. In the beginning, I thought it was cheesy to do so because it was too obvious: Chinese composers playing Chinese instruments. I always thought that it was a gimmick. But In 2014, when I worked with Wan Pinchu, who I collaborated with for New Cola, my entire thought process and creative process matured a lot and I started to embrace Chinese instruments. I now see it as just an instrument and not an “Eastern” instrument. Of course, most people don’t see it in the same way.


Neocha: 2012年,你为伦敦奥运会创作音乐并表演,成为当时被选中的最年轻的中国音乐家。这次的经历对你来说有什么意义?

Andy Leung: 回想起来,这一次的经历让我有了一定的信誉,并为我成为作曲家奠定了基础。那时候我还很年轻,却突然能够与那些我所崇拜的作曲家同台演出。那实际上也是我第一次将中国传统元素运用到电子音乐中。一开始,我觉得这样做有点太俗气,因为实在是太理所当然了:中国作曲家演奏中国乐器。我一直认为这只是一个噱头。但就在2014年,当我和朱芸編开始合作时,我的整个思维过程和创作过程中成熟了很多,我开始真正地接受中国传统乐器。我和朱芸編合作创作了New Cola》这张专辑。现在在我看来,二胡只是一个乐器,而不是一个属于“东方”的乐器。当然,大多数人的想法可能和我不一样。

Neocha: In your debut album New Cola (Part 1), what was your biggest challenges working with the erhu?

Andy Leung: In the New Cola project, we took a traditional erhu and enhanced the instrument so it can make distorted tone, like dubstep bass, and even a scratch DJ sound. We really tried to push the boundary of creating “new” experiences, and that’s why the album is called New Cola; it’s the same drink, but in a different bottle. I was always aware of the erhu, but never fully understood or appreciated it until I met Wan when we were both backstage at a show. I found that he was a very gifted musician, but the type of music that he was playing was not fulfilling to me, though it had potential. So he showed me a lot of the erhu’s capabilities and we worked together to try to take it to the next level. One of the biggest obstacles is when other people call it “East meets West” or “traditional vs modern”. I think it’s an outdated and overused concept. Instead, I see it as the natural progression of an instrument. The question that we asked ourselves when working on this the project was “What would erhu music sound like in 2016, composed and performed by two musicians with such diverse music experiences?”


Neocha: 在你的首张专辑《New Cola (Part 1)》中,要结合二胡来创作最大的挑战是什么?

Andy Leung: 在New Cola专辑里,我们融入了传统的二胡音乐,同时对这种乐器进行了调整,让它可以产生不一样的音色,譬如dubstep的低音,甚至是DJ刮碟的声音。我们试图真正地突破,呈现“全新”的体验,这就是为什么这张专辑取名New Cola,因为虽然里面是一样的饮料,但瓶子却是截然不同的。我一直都知道二胡这种乐器,但从来没有真正理解或认识它,直到我在一场表演的后台遇见Wan。我发现他是一个非常有天赋的音乐家,他所演奏的音乐感觉很有潜力,但似乎缺了点什么。于是,他向我展示了很多二胡的音乐可能性,我们在一起工作,试图把二胡的音乐带到一个新的水平。对我来说,最大的障碍之一是其他人把我们的音乐称为是“中西合璧”或“传统与现代的结合”。我认为这是一种过时和泛滥的概念。相反,我认为我们的音乐是一种乐器自然发展的结果。在创作这一张专辑时,我们会问自己:“二胡音乐在2016年由两位拥有如此多元音乐体验的音乐家来演奏应该是怎样的?”

Neocha: What does collaboration mean to you? What are some of the challenges and how does it inspire you?

Andy Leung: I’m a big fan of collaborations. Collaborations can trigger a moment of inspiration that you cannot trigger on your own. My tip is to never work alone as a creative because there is always something to learn from others. Make sure that the collaborators are bringing something unique and you are compliant with each other. For example, Jihyun Park’s painting is inspired by music. I worked with her earlier this year alongside a contemporary classical group. She always draws amazing stuff and I’m very into the graphics and visual aspects of art too. I think music on its own loses face value, so we have to combine it with other mediums to create unique experiences. I actually want to work with a chef and try to combine music and food in the future as well!


Neocha: 合作对你来说意味着什么?其中有什么挑战和启示?

Andy Leung: 我很热衷于与他人合作。合作可以触发灵感,这往往是你一个人创作时所没有的。我的秘诀是不要一个人单独创作,因为你总是可以从别人身上发现值得学习的地方。确保合作双方都能带来一些独特的东西,并且双方相处得来。例如,Jihyun Park的绘画就是以音乐为灵感创作的。今年早些时候我加入了一个当代古典音乐小组中,曾和她一起合作过。她的绘画作品很棒,而我也对平面设计和视觉艺术很感兴趣。我认为,限制于音乐本身的创作会失去其价值,因此,我们必须把它与其它媒介相结合,才能创造出独特的体验。坦白讲,我很希望将来可以和厨师合作,尝试将音乐与美食结合!

Neocha: For your lifetime project, you plan to release a single for free every single month. What’s the motivation behind it?

Andy Leung: Consistency is as important as artistic quality. I’ve done a lot of one-off projects in the past, so once it is finished, there aren’t follow-ups. So this is a project that will make sure I’m constantly putting out music and staying in people’s minds. Every song for the lifetime project will be free because I think the next generation will grow up without the habit of paying for music. There are already enough legal sites to listen to music for free anyways, so why would anyone pay for music? Instead, my focus is on creating the relationship between the listener and myself, and to create unique experiences—such as live shows and studio tours—in order to make money. So my music is just a marketing tool rather than a product. As I’m giving a lifetime worth of my work for free, in return, all I ask for is any supporters’ contact details so I can reach them. I message all my supporters about the release of every new song and send them invites if I’m performing in their towns. I actually learned coding to make this work.


Neocha: 你创作这个“lifetime project”每个月都会发布一首免费单曲,这样做背后的动机是什么?

Andy Leung: 作品中的坚持与艺术品质是一样重要的。在过去,我已经做了很多一次性的项目,一旦完成后,就没有了后续。因此,这一次的项目可以确保我会不断地推出新的音乐,让人们一直记得我的音乐。这一张专辑中的每一首歌都将是免费的,因为我觉得下一代人长大后已经不会有付费听音乐的习惯。不管怎样,现在已经有很多合法免费收听音乐的网站,所以为什么人们还需要付费听音乐呢?相反,我的焦点在于建立听众和我之间的关系,并通过创造独特的体验——譬如现场表演或参观录音棚来赚钱。所以我的音乐只是一种营销手段,而不是商品。我的“人生大项目”是免费的,作为回报,我只需要所有支持者的联系方式,这样我就能联系到他们。每首新歌发布时,我会发短信通知他们,如果我在他们当地表演时,还会给他们发送邀请信息。为此,我还学会了编码。

Neocha: What’s your next project and what’s new about it?

Andy Leung: I am going to start a new project in China next year. It will involve electronic music and a lot of collaborations with local underground artists. I’m trying to develop Beat Nations, which is my brand that’s mainly working on event production. It acts as a PR bridge between the UK and China, helping local artists in both countries to have further reach.


Neocha: 你现在正在着手什么项目,将会给我们带来什么样的作品呢?

Andy Leung: 我打算明年在中国开始一个新的项目。这个项目会与电子音乐相关,还会与当地的地下艺术家有很多的合作。我在成立Beat Nations,这是一个有关活动制作的品牌。它将成为英国与中国之间公关宣传的桥梁,帮助两地艺术家在这两个国家有进一步的发展。

Websitebeatnations.com
Facebook~/iamandyleung
Soundcloud: ~/iamandyleung

 

Contributor & Photographer: Shanshan Chen
Additional Images Courtesy of Anthony Tam, CAS, Kii Studios & Photography, Harry Parvin, MRCK, and Vivian Fong


网站: beatnations.com
脸书: ~/iamandyleung
Soundcloud: ~/iamandyleung

 

供稿人与摄影师: Shanshan Chen
附加图片由Anthony Tam, CAS, Kii Studios & Photography, Harry Parvin, MRCK与Vivian Fong提供

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The People of Yangon

December 28, 2016 2016年12月28日

Earlier this year, Neocha’s founder and creative director Adam J. Schokora spent a week exploring Myanmar. For him, Yangon, the largest and most-populated city of the country, was one of the most unforgettable legs of the trip, a city that’s rich with life and colors. Below, he presents a visual diary of his travels.


今年早些时候,Neocha创始人兼创意总监Adam J. Schokora用了一个星期的时间来探索缅甸。对于他来说,他在缅甸最大和人口最多的仰光的经历是整段旅行中最为难忘的部分,这是一座充满了蓬勃活力和缤纷色彩的城市。下面是他在这段旅行中记录的视觉日记。

“When I travel, I’m not particularly interested in visiting scenic spots or the ‘must-sees.’ For me, the charm of any destination is found in its people and that’s what I try to capture when I’m out shooting. I shot the following pictures during a trip to Yangon, Myanmar earlier this year. The pictures show a glimpse of the wonderfully photogenic, friendly, and colorful people of the city.”


旅行的时候,我对于风景名胜区或所谓的“必看”景点不怎么感兴趣。对我来说,任何一个旅游目的地的魅力都在于生活在那里的人,他们也是我在旅行时尝试着用相机捕捉的对象。今年早些时候,我在前往缅甸仰光旅行期间拍摄了下面这组照片。这一系列的照片展示了这座城市里极其上镜,友好亲切又多彩多姿的人们。

“Yangon is bustling in the same way any big Asian city is, but in many ways, it still feels undiscovered. The saturated colors, the worn textures, and the general throwback aesthetic of the city gives any image a unique, nostalgic feel quite unlike anywhere else I’ve travelled. The locals don’t seem to mind having their photo taken, nor are they overly clamoring for the attention of your lens. Bouncing around and capturing authentic moments without disturbing anyone or raising suspicions is done with ease. Yangon is a paradise for casual street photography.”


“与其它亚洲大都市一样,仰光也是一个繁华的城市,但从许多方面来说,又让人觉得它仍然是一座未被发现的城市。浓郁饱和的色彩、古旧磨损的纹理以及整座城市弥漫的“复古”美学风格,令每一张摄影作品都充溢着一种独特的怀旧氛围,与我去过的其它地方截然不同。当地人似乎也并不介意别人给他们拍照,也不会过份喧嚷来吸引你的镜头。在这里,四处闲逛,就能轻易捕捉到各种真实的画面,同时不会打扰到任何人或令人起疑。仰光绝对是一个休闲街头摄影的天堂。”

“Equipped with just a Leica M, a Leica M6, and two Summicron lenses (a 50mm and a 90mm), I roamed the city and shot these pictures over the course of a few short days without a predetermined agenda or route. A few of the locations shown in the images include the Pansodan Ferry Terminal and Yangon River boardwalk area, the Yangon Central Railway Station, the Theingyi Market, along with countless other intersections, overpasses, alleyways, shop fronts, and courtyards.”


“我拍摄使用的设备只有一部徕卡M相机,一部徕卡M6相机和两支Summicron镜头(分别为50毫米头和90毫米的定焦镜头),在短短的几天时间里,我漫游于这座城市,拍下了这些照片。我没有预定的行程,也没有计划好的路线。这组照片中的部分摄影地包括Pansodan客运码头、仰光河滨的木板散步道、仰光中央火车站、Theingyi市场和无数个随意逛到的交叉路口、立交桥、小巷、商店门前和庭院。”

Instagram: @ajschokora

 

Contributor & Photographer: Adam J. Schokora


Instagram: @ajschokora

 

供稿人与摄影师: Adam J. Schokora

studio O

December 27, 2016 2016年12月27日

Film by Elisa Cucinelli / Assistant Director: Kun Liang / Music: Huzi / Props: studio O

 

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The conventional mentality that places art, architecture, media, and design in separate categories has been completely discarded by studio O, a Beijing-based “ar(t)chitecture” studio. Besides architectural designs alone, they’ve created installation art for Beijing Design Week, collaborated with artist Elisa Cucinelli on a stop motion short video, and been involved in a variety of other projects that go beyond the services expected of a normal architecture firm. Led by Enrico Ancilli, Effi Meridor, and Cristiano Bianchi, the studio was established back in 2013 with the belief that a return to basics was long overdue.


位于北京的studio O是一家完全抛弃将艺术、建筑、媒体和设计按传统理念严格分类的“艺术与建筑’ar(t)chitecture’”工作室。除了建筑设计外,他们还为北京国际设计周创作了装置艺术作品,与艺术Elisa Cucinelli合作制作了一条定格短片,并参与了一系列超越常规建筑事务所基本服务范围的项目。该工作室由Enrico Ancilli、Effi Meridor和Cristiano Bianchi怀抱着期待已久的返朴归真理念创立于2013年。

For studio O, collaborating with creatives from different fields and engaging with different artistic and non-artistic disciplines are vital aspects of their return to fundamentals.“Historically, the best architectural results were achieved when people with different specialties were exchanging ideas: artists, philosophers, writers, and poets,” says Ancilli. “Nowadays, architecture has become too fragmented, too specialized, and too technical somehow. Artists are more direct and straight in their approach.”


对studio O工作室来说,与不同领域的创意人合作并参与到各种艺术和非艺术类项目对于回归本质至关重要。Ancilli说:“纵观历史,最好的建筑设计往往是由不同专业背景的人们——艺术家、哲学家、作家和诗人——进行思想交流的成果。如今,建筑设计逐渐碎片化,过于专业,甚至太过专注于技术了。而艺术家的做法则会更为直截了当。”

In our increasingly digitized lives, another part of studio O’s vision of returning to the roots of architecture also meant unchaining the shackles of our modern technological dependencies. Rather than solely relying on virtual images, studio O often prefers working with real materials to create physical and tangible models. Scoffing at the idea of a manifesto, which they consider to be too often riddled with empty and pretentious proclamations, studio O rather defines what it means to be an architect for themselves through their work.


在我们现今日益数字化的生活中,studio O工作室回归建筑本质的愿景从另一层意义上来说,也意味着解除我们对现代科技依赖所带来的束缚。在studio O工作室,设计师们不再仅仅依靠虚拟图像,他们通常更喜欢利用实质材料创建可触可碰的实体模型。他们对宣言之类的声明嗤之以鼻,认为所谓的宣言往往充斥着空洞和造作,而studio O工作室更倾向于通过自身作品来定义他们作为建筑设计师的真正意义。

“In the DNA of an architect, there should be the desire to explore, to deal with different cultural environments, traditions, and materials,” Ancilli says. After many discussions with some of his peers in Europe, who couldn’t fathom why he would move to China, his perspective on this became even clearer. “We shouldn’t fear what is different from us, closing ourselves in a comfortable, beautiful world. We should deal with the differences.”


Ancilli说:“在建筑师的基因中,应该有一股探索的欲望,以应对不同文化环境、传统和材质。”与身在欧洲的一些无法理解他移居中国的同行探讨过后,他自身的认知更加清晰了。“我们不应惧怕与我们不同的事物而把自己关在一个舒适美好的世界里。我们要去面对差异。”

“People often ask what kind of architecture we do,” Ancilli says. “I find it to be really interesting because it’s like reducing a certain discipline into a specific pigeonhole. What kind of art does this artist create? Classic? Neoclassic? Baroque? Modern? Bauhaus? Venetian Gothic? It’s funny and scary at the same time because it gives perspective to the crisis that creators of different disciplines are facing. We try not to follow any styles or trends at studio O. Sure, we’re influenced by other architects, but we try to keep a certain distance in order to develop our own ideas in an original way according to our own sensibilities.”


“人们时常会问我们设计的都是什么风格的建筑,”Ancilli说,“这让我觉得很有趣,因为它似乎把某一个专业缩窄至一个类别框框中。就像在问,这位艺术家创造什么风格的艺术作品?古典?新古典?巴洛克?现代?包豪斯风格?威尼斯哥特式?有趣又可怕,因为它承托出了不同领域创意人所面临的危机。在studio O工作室,我们尽量不去追随某一种特定的风格或趋势。当然,我们也会受其他建筑师的影响,但我们会尽量保持一定距离,以便通过自己的感触以原创方式来构筑自身想法。”

Echoing the sentiments of famous Italian architect Renzo Piano, Ancilli believes architecture is a contaminated craft, but the negative connotations of the word “contaminated” should be overlooked. “Architecture is complex, often requiring a balance between technique and art,” Ancilli comments. “But it’s contaminated from all the worst sides of life like money, urgency, and power. At the same time, it’s also been contaminated by the best parts of life, like our environment, history, and traditions.”


与意大利著名建筑师Renzo Piano的想法相一致,Ancilli也认为建筑是一种被“污染”了的工艺,但这里的“污染”不是一个负面的词。“建筑是复杂的,往往需要在技术和艺术之间做到平衡,”Ancilli解释道,“但它又受到来自生活各种糟糕面的‘污染’,譬如资金、时间限制和权力等。同时它亦受到生活中最美好事物的‘污染’,譬如我们的周身环境、历史和传统。”

studio O is in a constant state of evolution, adapting to the demands of an ever-changing world. They continuously seek out both challenges and inspirations with the same eagerness, moving forward with both open-mindedness and a sense of insatiable curiosity. “We have many things planned for the future,” Ancilli says. “We’re tracing a general direction for studio O, but at the same time, we don’t like to over-plan. We believe that the studio has to grow naturally.”


studio O工作室尚处于不断进化的过程中,以适应不断变化的世界之需求。他们持续寻求挑战和灵感,带着开放理念和永不满足的好奇心前行。“对于未来,我们有很多计划,”Ancilli说,“我们正在为studio O探寻一个大方向,但同时,我们也不喜欢过多做计划,而是想让工作室自然成长。”

Website: studioo.cc
Facebook~/studioo.cc

 

Contributors: Leon Yan, David Yen
Images & Video Courtesy of studio O & Elisa Cucinelli


Website: studioo.cc
脸书: ~/studioo.cc

 

供稿人: Leon Yan, David Yen
图片与视频由studio O与Elisa Cucinelli提供

 

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Farmers, Roasters, Baristas

December 26, 2016 2016年12月26日

At the end of an unkempt highway lies a series of dirt roads that snake into rows of single-story warehouses. Crunching gravel and the hum of loaded trucks are drowned out by a single scent that wafts longingly through Kunming’s crisp afternoon air. Curious neighbours curve their heads around the corner to find a young engineer pouring fresh coffee beans into a roaring roasting machine. Taking ten minutes to roast, the hand-picked coffee beans from Yunnan’s sun-kissed mountaintops evolve from a natural moss green to a dark and rich whiskey brown.


在一段乡间公路的尽头,连接着几条蜿蜒曲折的泥路,两旁建着几排只有一层楼的仓库。在昆明午后凉爽的空气中,一股诱人芳香飘荡而来,令人忘却了路上嘎吱作响的碎石和载满货物的卡车发出的嗡嗡声音。好奇的邻居在街角伸着头,看着一名年轻的工程师往一台轰隆着的烘焙机里放入新鲜的咖啡豆。十分钟后,这些从沐浴于阳光下的云南山颠纯手工采撷下来的天然鲜绿咖啡豆逐渐变为威士忌酒般的浓郁暗棕色调。

The best of Yunnan’s coffee trees are tucked away in the mountains of Baoshan, an hour and a half by air out of Kunming, Yunnan’s capital. Typica remains one of the most highly sought after breed of Arabica, growing tall and temperamental amongst the fringes of farming communities. Three years ago—before the boom of specialty coffee in China—coffee beans were almost considered to be a negative resource. Lanna Coffee founder Bryan Ra began to experiment with Yunnan-grown beans after moving to Kunming in 2010. At the time, veteran farmer Ms. Yang was days away from unearthing her plantation of Typica plants in favour of fruit trees. If not for his timely partnership with the loyal matriarch of Typica, one of Yunnan’s largest coffee farms would cease to exist today.


在云南,最为上乘的咖啡树藏身于保山地区的群山之中,从云南首府昆明出发,需要乘坐一个半小时的飞机才能到达。铁皮卡仍然是最备受追捧的阿拉比卡咖啡豆品种,这种咖啡豆种植于农业区域边缘高高的咖啡树上,栽培难度很大。三年前——在中国精品咖啡流行之前——咖啡豆可以说一直被视为是一种无益的资源。杨女士是一名有着多年农业种植经验的农民。还有几天,她就要开始开垦她的铁皮卡咖啡豆种植园。她最终选择了种植咖啡豆,而放弃了种植水果。在2010年 兰纳咖啡创始人Bryan Ra搬到昆明生活后,成为了首批尝试云南咖啡豆的人。如果他没有与这名坚持种植铁皮卡咖啡豆的女种植园主及时达成合作,云南其中一个最大的咖啡豆种植园今天可能已经不复存在。

“When we first started coming [to Baoshan, Yunnan], there was nobody else. We scouted from farm to farm until we found Ms. Yang, and we started working with her because she grew the best coffee beans. Five years later, everyone, all the big guys—Starbucks, Nespresso, Costa—they’re all here and vying for a piece of Yunnan coffee. But it feels good to know that we were here first and because of that, we get to give our customers the very best cup.”


“当我们刚开始来到这里 (云南,保山) 的时候,还没有其他人来这里买咖啡豆。我们一个个农场地去走访,直到我们找到了杨女士,然后我们开始和她进行合作,因为她能种出品质最佳的咖啡豆。”五年后,所有人,所有的大型咖啡商——Starbucks,Nespresso,Costa——他们都来到了这里,争着购买云南咖啡。但是我们很高兴我们是首先发掘到这个地方的人,正因为如此,我们才能够给我们的顾客提供最好的咖啡。“

Fast forward to today. In a little lane house that’s nestled amongst titan skyscrapers in the heart of Shanghai is where visitors can find Lanna Coffee, their sole coffee shop and the heart of their business that powers the surrounding suits and coffee enthusiasts with quality brew. This tiny café is manned by experienced baristas who charm and delight, greeting customers by name.


让我们把目光转回到今天。兰纳咖啡就坐落于上海的一条小巷子里,藏身于市中心的摩天大楼之间。作为他们经营的唯一一间咖啡厅,这个咖啡厅无疑是他们的业务核心所在,为附近的上班族和咖啡爱好者提供着品质上乘的咖啡。在这一间小小的咖啡厅内,经验丰富的咖啡师以过人魅力和快乐的气氛来迎接顾客,亲切地称呼着每位顾客的名字。

Regulars have their coffee orders confirmed and made upon arrival with nothing more than a familiar glance and a comforting smile. The term “farm-to-cup” is coined from farm-to-table cuisine and is appropriately displayed on their walls – it’s truly the most sincere embodiment of the company’s ethos. Farmers, roasters, baristas—from Yunnan to Shanghai—they’re all working together to put Lanna’s specialty Chinese coffee on the map.


对于这里的常客来说,来到咖啡厅里,他们只需要一个熟悉的眼神和笑容,店员就能知道他们要点的咖啡,并为他们制作好咖啡。“农场到咖啡杯”(farm-to-cup)这个词的灵感来源于“农场到餐桌”(farm-to-table)的美食理念,这个词被郑重地摆放在咖啡厅的墙上,完美地诠释了这家公司的创业宗旨。从云南到上海,农民、咖啡豆烘焙师、咖啡师,他们一起努力,通过兰纳咖啡让精品中国咖啡在咖啡行业留下自己的标记。

Website: lannacoffee.cn
Instagram: @lannacoffee

 

Address:
8 Yuyuan East Road
Jing An, Shanghai
People’s Republic of China

Hours:
Monday – Friday, 8am ~ 7pm
Weekends, 10am ~ 7pm

 

Contributor & Photographer: Whitney Ng


网站: lannacoffee.cn
Instagram: @lannacoffee

 

地址
中国
上海市静安区
豫园东路8号

营业时间:
周一至周五, 早上8点至晚上7点
周末, 早上10点至晚上7点

 

供稿人与摄影师: Whitney Ng

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Yen Tech

December 23, 2016 2016年12月23日

 

无法观看?前往优酷

Yen Tech is the brainchild of Nick Newlin, a visionary Korean American artist who creates genre-breaking music and visuals immersed in dystopian, futuristic worlds. His first full-length debut album Mobis was recently released through Shanghai-based record label SVBKVLT. A manic reflection on self and society, Mobis takes us through apocalyptic soundscapes that reference electronica, rap, and K-pop to bring the artist’s vision to life. Neocha spoke to Yen Tech about his thoughts on identity, culture, and creativity.


Yen Tech는 환상적이고 미래 지향적인 세계에 몰입하여 장르 파괴적 음악과 영상을 창조하는 환상적인 한인 아티스트인 닉 뉴린 (Nick Newlin)의 창조의 산물입니다. 최근 상하이에 기반을 둔 레이블인 SVBKVLT를 통해 그의 첫 번째 장편 데뷔 앨범인 Mobis가 발표되었습니다. 자기 자신과 사회에 대한 격정이 반영된 Mobis는 일렉트로니카, 랩, K-pop을 아우르는 묵시적인 사운드 스케이프를 통해 삶에 대한 예술가의 비전을 실현하고 있습니다. Neocha 는 Yen Tech와 함께 정체성, 문화 및 창조성에 대한 그의 생각에 관하여 이야기를 나누었습니다.

Take a listen to some of our favorite tracks from Mobis below. The full album is available for purchase on iTunes.

 Yen Tech – Armored Core
 Yen Tech – Holo Mode
 Yen Tech – Lotus


아래의 Mobis에서 사람들이 가장 선호하는 몇 개의 트랙을 들어보시기 바랍니다. 전체 앨범은 iTunes에서 구입할 수 있습니다.

 Yen Tech – Armored Core
 Yen Tech – Holo Mode
 Yen Tech – Lotus

Neocha: How did the Yen Tech persona come into existence? Is he a true representation of your personality or a fictional character?

Yen Tech: It’s a bit of both. My early work was focused on these really broad pop structures and the idea of the idol. So it went hand in hand where if you listened to my music or saw my videos you would maybe ask, “Is this guy for real?” I guess I like that kind of dissonance, where there’s a shiny veneer but something more complex underneath. Now Yen Tech is evolving to the point where that veneer is stripping away, and we can see a darker undertone where he’s not only projecting this sort of irrational confidence but also revealing his inner turmoils and paranoias. I guess in that way it’s sort of a split personality or a mirror to my own obsessions and neuroses. I created Yen Tech as this empty vessel, but he’s slowly gaining consciousness.


Neocha: 엔 테크 페르소나는 어떻게 생겨났습니까? 그는 당신의 성격을 진실로 대변하는 존재인가요 아니면 단순한 허구의 캐릭터인가요?

Yen Tech: 두 가지 모두가 조금씩 섞여 있다고 할 수 있습니다. 저의 초기 작품은 정말로 광범위한 팝의 구조와 아이돌의 개념에 초점이 맞추어져 있습니다. 그 두 가지가 같이 접목되어 있기 때문에 제 음악을 듣거나 비디오를 본 사람들은 “이 사람 진짜야?”하고 묻게 되지요. 제 생각에 저는 그런 불협화음을 좋아하는 것 같습니다. 이를테면, 겉으로 보기에는 화려한 무늬목이지만 그 이면에는 훨씬 더 복잡한 무엇인가가 존재하는 것 같은 것 말이죠. 이제 엔 테크는 그 표면의 무늬목이 벗겨지는 지점으로 진화하고 있습니다. 그러면 사람들은 바로 그 이면의 비합리적인 자신감뿐 아니라 내면의 혼란과 편집증적 모습이 내재된 그의 어두운 면까지도 보게 되는 것이죠. 저는 그런 식으로 엔 테크를 저의 또 하나의 인격이나 저 자신의 강박 관념과 신경증에 대한 일종의 거울이라고 생각하고 있습니다. 엔 테크라는 일종의 빈 껍데기를 만든 것은 저이지만 그는 서서히 자신의 의식을 만들어가고 있는 것입니다.

Neocha: How do you channel your creative energy?

Yen Tech: For me, it’s all about world building. I approach Yen Tech the same way you would design a video game or write a novel. It has its own specific language and context. It’s not really enough for Yen Tech to just be a rapper, or a singer, and to be out here trying to get Soundcloud plays and tours, although I do those things as a platform. I treat the whole project more like an abstract narrative, and I try to apply that to all aspects, including the music and the visuals.


Neocha: 당신의 창조적 에너지는 어떤 채널을 통해 전달합니까?

Yen Tech: 제게 있어서 그것은 세계적인 건물과도 같은 것입니다. 저는 엔 테크에게도 비디오 게임 디자인이나 소설을 쓰는 것과 같은 방식으로 접근합니다. 모두 각각 자체 고유의 언어와 문맥을 가지고 있는 것이지요. 엔 테크는 단순히 래퍼나, 가수가 되려고 하는 존재는 아닙니다. 물론 사운드 클라우드 (Soundcloud)를 플레이하고 투어나 다니려고 만들어지지도 않았고요. 그런 모습들은 단순한 플랫폼에 지나지 않습니다. 저는 전체 프로젝트를 더욱 추상적인 서사의 형식으로 다루고 싶고 이 방향성을 음악과 영상을 포함한 모든 측면에 적용 하려고합니다.

Neocha: A lot of your work has a global, pan-Asian feel. How do you identify culturally?

Yen Tech: I’m a half-Korean American, but being mixed is sort of an interesting thing. I’m not really sure how to identify myself, and honestly, I’m kind of into that. It’s not some futuristic idea per se, but I do think that in today’s world, being some sort of global hybrid is necessary. I’ve tried to embody that with my project. In the end, I think these lines don’t really matter, we all come from the ocean anyway.


Neocha: 당신의 많은 작업에서는 글로벌하고 팬 아시아적인 느낌이 납니다. 이 작업을 문화적으로 어떻게 규정할 수 있을까요?

Yen Tech: 나는 한국계 미국 혼혈입니다. 하지만 혼혈이란 흥미로운 일이지요. 저는 저 자신을 어떻게 규정해야 할지 잘 모르겠습니다. 솔직히 말해서 그 문제에 집중하고 있는 것도 사실입니다. 미래에도 반드시 그럴지는 잘 모르겠지만, 현대에 있어서 일종의 글로벌 하이브리드는 필요하다고 생각합니다. 저는 그것을 제 프로젝트로 구현하려고 했었습니다. 하지만 결국에는 이런 구분이 의미가 없다는 것을 깨닫게 되었습니다. 우리는 모두 바다 너머 어디에선가 이주해온 사람들이니까요.

Neocha: Can you tell us about your upcoming plans?

Yen Tech: I’m working on a new record right now, and it has a very unexpected sound. The goal is to make it this very massive, sprawling experience. Before that, I’ll be releasing another video or two, one of which was for the Berlin Biennale and done in collaboration with Korakrit Arunanondchai, Alex Gvojic, and boychild – it’s pretty insane. Also, I really want to try and come back to China soon and do a performance, like maybe on top of a mountain. Stay tuned.


Neocha: 앞으로의 계획에 대해 말씀해 주실 수 있습니까?

Yen Tech: 지금은 새로운 녹음을 하는 중인데, 전혀 예기치 않은 사운드입니다. 매우 거대하고 폭넓은 경험을 하는 것이 목표입니다. 앞으로 한 두 장의 비디오를 발표할 예정인데 그중 하나는 베를린 비엔날레 출품용입니다. 코라크리트 아루나논드차이(Korakrit Arunanondchai), 알렉스 그보치(Alex Gvojic) 그리고 보이차일드(boychild)와 콜라보를 했는데 좀 파격적입니다 그리고 저는 정말로 곧 중국으로 돌아와 퍼포먼스 같은 것을 해 보고 싶습니다. 산 위 같은 데서요. 관심을 가지고 계속 지켜봐 주세요.

Website: yentech.net
Facebook: ~/yentechonline
Instagram~/yentech

 

Contributor: George Zhi Zhao
Images Courtesy of Yen Tech


웹사이트: yentech.net
Facebook: ~/yentechonline
Instagram~/yentech

 

기부자: George Zhi Zhao
이미지 제공Yen Tech

In the Studio with Alex Carroll

December 22, 2016 2016年12月22日

Alex Carroll‘s art studio spans an entire floor of his family’s Shanghai home. After brewing a fresh pot of jasmine tea and leading me up to the second floor, he bittersweetly admits that there will be no such spacious luxuries after he and his family moves back to America next year. The room is filled with supplies and a series of works that range from pieces in the idea stage to fully completed works. I spent very little of the morning directing our conversation; Alex articulates his thoughts in the same way that he creates his large visual pieces – with purpose. His words are profound with meaning and balanced with both humour and humility. Through chatting with him over the course of an afternoon, I came to know him as a true advocate for boundless creativity and as someone deeply respectful of the China that he has come to call home for the last decade.


Alex Carroll 位于上海的家中,他的艺术工作室便占了整整一层楼。Alex Carroll 为我煮了一壶茉莉花茶后,带着我上了二楼, 他苦中带乐地表示,明年他和家人回到美国定居后就再也不能享受到这样宽敞的空间了。在这个艺术工作室中,摆满了艺术用品和一系列由他创作的作品,既有处于构思阶段的作品,也有已经完成的作品。当天早上的采访中,只有小部分的时间我需要引导我们的对话,大部分时候,Alex Carroll都能准确清楚地来表达着他的想法,一如他在创作大型的视觉作品时那样,总是带着明确的主题。他的话语意味深长,又不失幽默和谦卑。一整个下午,通过与他的对话,我逐渐了解到他是一名真正在拥护无限创意的艺术家,以及他对中国所怀有的深深的敬意。在过去十年来,这里一直被他称为是自己的“家”。

Neocha: Each one of your pieces is extremely textural and fluid; what mediums do you predominantly work with in order to create the moving energy that is present within your art pieces?

Carroll: I play around a lot with the ideas of the physical and metaphysical. With a charcoal stick, I can communicate a bigger idea by bringing this “dead” material to life. I’ve always thought that working with charcoal was very romantic. I’m able to get this rich value from using black, with only the paper as highlights. I try to achieve density and transparency. Finding a nice balance between light and dark enables me to create the overall mood of each piece.


Neocha: 你的每一件作品都拥有非常突出的纹理质感和流畅性。在创作的时候,你主要会采用什么样的工具来营造出作品中这些充满动感的能量的呢?

Carroll: 我经常会以形而下和形而上的理念来尝试创作,譬如,通过木炭笔,我可以为这些“死”的”材料注入生命力,用以传达出更大的理念。我一直认为,只用木炭笔来创作是一件非常浪漫的事情。只用黑色来创作,我也能够打造出丰富的效果,而画纸就是我唯一的高光色彩。我尝试表现出密度和透明度,如果能在光与影之间找到一个好的平衡,就能让我在每一件作品中营造出整体的情绪。

Neocha: Can you tell us more about your drawing process? How does your art go from concept to completion?

Carroll: Drawing is both an additive and a subtractive procedure. For me, what is taken away is just as important as what is put down. I go out and buy erasers in the same way that I buy pencils; I give it the same attention to detail because I like the erased mark as much as I like the drawn mark. Drawing is about having this vocabulary of marks that you can employ to create the work. You build up a language and the more words you can utilise in your speech, the more dynamic your speech is.

I like to get my drawings to a point where everything flows together – what really excites me is working in black and white with a figure. It’s about being able to trace softness, hardness, density and light. Because our figures are like that; the way we move, when we add stress on one leg, that movement is hard, dark and bold. For my Transient series, I set about capturing movement through space. Each piece is derived from photographs; it represents metaphysical bodies moving out of sync with the physical surrounds and how we all have an expiration date.


Neocha: 你能跟我们分享一下你的绘画过程吗?从作品构思到最后完成创作,这一过程是怎样的?

Carroll: 绘画是一个不断加加减减的过程。对我来说,被擦掉的内容与加入的内容是同等重要的。我在外面买橡皮擦的时候和我买铅笔的时候是一样的谨慎,我都会考虑到至为细微的细节,因为对我来说,被擦除的痕迹与我所描画的痕迹是一样重要的。绘画其实就是在利用一系列自己掌握的“痕迹”来创作出作品,这些“痕迹”就像是语言的词汇一样,你在学习一种语言时,当你积累了越多的单词,你就可以用在你的演讲中,进行更好的表达。

我希望让自己创作的绘画作品产生让所有元素融汇在一起流动的效果,最让我兴奋的是,只用黑色和白色来创作人物廓形。这样的创作需要描画出柔软感、硬度、密度和光线。因为我们的轮廓就是这样的。而表达我们的移动方式时,我们会往一条腿上施力,所表现的状态应该是强硬的,用深度并且大胆的方式展现。在我的《Transient》 系列中,我通过一定的空间来定格运动。每一件作品都是源自于摄影作品的再创作,它代表了形而上的物体与形而下的环境之间的不同步。它还意味着,我们都有一个“保质日期”。

Neocha: How has moving to China influenced your art and the way that you create?

Carroll: Art is so valued here in China. The language itself is an art, writing Chinese is an art. Chinese calligraphy is a series of spontaneous gestures, but yet, every stroke is so learned and practised. I love that immediacy, where the brush stroke breaks and the white of the paper comes through. Coming to China and seeing this whole school of thought; that really affirmed what I was doing and it got me excited about the kind of work that I could create here. I have been so privileged to be in a culture that appreciates art and appreciates that kind of thinking – that just doesn’t exist in America.


Neocha: 移居中国对你的艺术作品以及你创作的方式有什么影响?

Carroll: 在中国,艺术是如此的宝贵。中文这种语言本身就是一门艺术,书写汉字也是一门艺术。中国的书法由一系列自然而然的姿态组成,但每一笔都体现着学习和练习的功力。我喜欢那种即时可见的效果,当毛笔提起时,纸张的白色逐渐透现出来。来到中国,目睹这种思想学派,让我真正明确了自己的艺术创作,因此,一想到我在这里能够进行的创作我就感到非常兴奋。我很庆幸自己能来到这里,这里的文化能真正地欣赏艺术和理解这种理念,这是美国的文化中所缺乏的。

Neocha: In addition to being an artist, you’ve also been an art educator for many years. How has teaching impacted on your perception of art as a whole?

Carroll: I believe that creativity from art paves the way to understanding the world and building self-knowledge. I didn’t grow up in a very creative household. For the longest time, I saw art as a hobby and drawing was something that I did to pass the time. My parents never discouraged it, but they didn’t encourage it. I think it’s so important for kids who don’t have an artistic outlet at home to be able to go to a classroom and see their creations as achievements. Beyond being fun, art is an achievement and it’s a joy to see kids exceed their own expectations – that’s why I teach. Art education is so important; I really believe that it is the key to building self-worth. There are some artists who are confident in what their art is and their artistic voice is so strong. But I’m humbled by art. I love that I can draw. I feel very privileged that I can draw and I always have. When I draw, I don’t necessarily see it as “this is what I can do”, but rather I see it as, “this is what was given to me.” And it’s my job to keep practising it. I’m not a religious person, but I am a spiritual person, and I see this ability as a gift rather than just a talent.


Neocha: 除了身为一名艺术家,你同时也担任了多年的艺术教育工作。总的来说,教学的经验对你的艺术认知有什么影响呢?

Carroll: 我相信来自艺术的创意能帮助人们理解世界和建立自我认知。我并非出身于一个非常有创意的艺术家庭;在很长的时间里,我一直将艺术视为一种爱好,把绘画当作打发时间的事情。虽然我的父母从未阻止我画画,但他们也没有鼓励我去画画。我认为对于那些在家中难以抒发出自己艺术创意力的小朋友,如果能够去到教室中学习,让他们将自己的创作视为成就,对他们来说是很重要的。除了好玩,艺术也是一种成就,当看到孩子们的创作超过他们自己的期望时,实在是一件很令人开心的事情。这就是为什么我选择做教育的原因。艺术教育是如此重要,我真的认为它是建立自我价值的关键因素。有一些艺术家对自己创作的作品十分自信,他们艺术风格是如此的强烈。但艺术让我感到谦卑。我很开心我能绘画,我感到非常幸运,自己会画画,并能够一直坚持画画。 当我绘画时,我不会觉得“这是我所能够做的事情”,而是“这是我所被赐予的礼物”,所以我的责任是不断地练习。我不是宗教人士,但我是一个有精神信仰的人,在我看来,这种能力并不纯粹只是一种能力,更是一份天赐的礼物。

Websitealexcarroll.net

 

Contributor & Photographer: Whitney Ng


网站alexcarroll.net

 

供稿人與攝影師: Whitney Ng

Aliens of Manila

December 21, 2016 2016年12月21日

Alien sightings have been reported in the Philippines. Often bearing an uncanny resemblance to humans, these grotesque monstrosities have seemingly infiltrated the city of Manila within the last few years. Luckily, Philippine-based artist and designer Leeroy New has assured us there’s no need for alarm. Spawned from the murky depths of his imagination and brought to life at his studio in a Frankenstein-esque fashion, this ever-growing legion of anomalous and mutated life forms are all here in the name of art.


May mga naiulat na nakitang alien sa Pilipinas. Madalas nagpapakita ng nakagugulat na pagkakahawig sa mga tao, ang kakatwang mga halimaw na ito ay tila nasakop na ang lungsod ng Maynila, sa pamamagitan ng paglitaw sa nakaraang ilang taon. Sa kabutihang-palad, tiniyak sa atin ng kontemporanyong arteistang nakabase sa Pilipinas na si Leeroy New na walang dapat na ikabahala. Iniluwal ng kanyang guni-guni at binigyang-buhay sa kanyang estudyo, ang patuloy na dumaraming lehiyon ng maanomalya at pagbabagong anyo ng buhay ay naritong lahat sa ngalan ng sining.

Originally trained as a sculptor, New’s insatiable curiosity led him to dabble with a variety of different mediums over the years, ranging from fashion to filmmaking. His creative work is an amalgamation of his past accumulated skills, ongoing societal observations, and his vivid—but at times disturbing—imagination. “Growing up in a small town in the south of the Philippines, I was part of a generation that was media fed with an assortment of futuristic visions and fantasy worlds,” New explained. “They were so seductive and alluring to me because it was so distinct from my immediate reality. But as an adult working in the creative industries, I have made it a point to actively participate and contribute to the ever-growing continuum of visual and experiential interpretations of the future, as well as the unknown, all the while actively participating in the transformation of my current realities.”


Orihinal na nagsanay bilang eskultor, ang hindi matighaw na pagkamausisa ni New ang nagtulak sa kanya para subukan ang iba’t ibang midyum sa paglipas ng mga taon, mula sa usong pananamit hanggang sa paggawa ng pelikula. Ang kaniyang malikhaing paggawa ay nagmula sa pinagsama-sama niyang kasanayan sa nakaraan, kasalukuyang pagmamasid sa lipunan, at ang malinaw — ngunit minsan ay nakababahalang — imahinasyon. “Sa aking paglaki sa isang maliit na nayon sa timog ng Pilipinas, bahagi ako ng isang henerasyong sinubuan ng media ng iba’t ibang pananaw sa hinaharap at mundo ng pantasya,” paliwanag ni New. “Sobrang nakatutukso at nakahahalina sa akin ang mga ito dahil tunay na kakaiba sa aking kagyat na realidad. Ngunit bilang isang adult na nagtratrabaho sa malikhaing mga industriya, sinigurado ko ang aktibong paglahok at pag-aambag sa patuloy na lumalaking hanay ng biswal at pangkaranasang interpretasyon ng hinaharap, gayon din ang mga bagay na hindi tiyak, habang aktibong lumalahok sa transpormasyon ng kasalukuyan kong realidad.”

His mind-bending work, which ranges from large-scale installations to elaborately hideous costumes, are often intended to be exhibited in public spaces; this stems from his early realization that the Filipino art scene operates quite differently from the art scene in Western countries. Through his understanding of the Filipino people’s cultural and creative habits, New decided the standard methods of presenting or experiencing art must be revamped. “I was drawn to the idea of creating work in public spaces as a means of meeting my target audience, the majority of the Filipino population who aren’t interested in art, halfway,” New explains. Despite being outwardly hideous and not adhering to conventional ideals of beauty, New’s imaginative work ultimately aims to enrich and improve people’s lives through creativity and art.


Ang kaniyang mga gawang nakakalito ng isip, mula sa malakihang instalasyon hanggang sa detalyado at kakilakilabot na mga kasuotan, ay kadalasang ipinasasadya para ipakita sa mga pampublikong lugar; nagmumula ito sa kanyang maagang pagkabatid na ang Pilipinong sining ay sadyang kakaiba ang takbo kumpara sa sining sa mga bansa sa kanluran. Sa pamamagitan ng kanyang pag-unawa sa pangkultura at malikhaing mga kinagawian ng mga Pilipino, nagpasya si New na palitan ang mga pamantayan sa pamamaraan ng pagpapakita o pagdanas sa sining. “Naakit ako ng idea ng paglikha sa mga pampublikong lugar bilang paraan ng pakikipagtagpo sa aking mga pinupuntiryang manonood, ang karamihan ng populasyon ng Pilipino na hindi interesado sa sining,” paliwanag ni New. Kahit na kapansin-pansin ang pagiging kontra at hindi pagsunod sa kumbensiyonal na mga ideal ng kagandahan, ang pangunahing layon ng maguni-guning gawa ni New ay ang pagyamanin at pahusayin ang buhay ng mga tao sa pamamagitan ng pagkamalikhain at sining.

However visually jarring, New’s otherworldly creations forces people to take a second glance. Only upon closer examination will his surprising material choices reveal their true identities. For Baletes, one of his earlier projects, he reimagined the vines of the Filipino balete tree as a mutating organism that intertwined and entangled itself with the architecture of Quezon City’s Ateneo Art Gallery – the entirety of this amorphous creation was constructed with electric conduit casing and plastic cable ties.


Gaano man katinding tingnan, ang mga likha ni New na pang-ibang mundo ay pumipilit sa mga tao na sumulyap muli. Sa malapitang pagsusuri lang ihinahayag ng kaniyang mga piniling materyal ang tunay na pagkakakilanlan ng mga ito. Para sa Baletes, isa sa nauna niyang mga proyekto, hinaraya niyang muli ang mga baging ng punong balete ng Pilipino bilang mga nagbabagong organismong nakapulupot at nakasalabit sa sarili nito sa arkitektura ng Ateneo Art Gallery ng Quezon City — ang kabuuan ng walang hugis na likhang ito ay ginawa mula sa mga kable ng kuryente at mga pantaling kableng plastik.

“At one point, I realized that the value in my early works and methods is grounded on this practice of making the most of what is available, to be able to respond in an authentic manner to your social conditions,” says New. “I found this made things easier for me. Suddenly there was no pressure for me to try and catch up with the latest in art-making technologies. All I had to rely on was my inherent set of skills, sensibility for form, and, more importantly, a sense of empathy for socio-cultural situations.”


“Sa isang punto, nabatid kong ang halaga ng nauna kong mga gawa at pamamaraan ay nakabatay sa kaugaliang pagsulit sa kung ano ang mayroon, para makatugon sa isang awtentikong paraan sa iyong mga kondisyong panlipunan,” sabi ni New. “Nalaman kong pinadali nito ang mga bagay para sa akin. Bigla na lamang nawala ang pressure na dapat maghabol sa pinakabagong teknolohiya ng paggawa ng sining, at ang kailangan ko lang sandigan ay ang aking pinagbatayang kasanayan, sensibilidad sa anyo, at, higit na mahalaga, pagdamay sa mga sitwasyong sosyo-kultural.”

For New’s ongoing project Aliens of Manila, he continues his trend of using a myriad of unconventional materials to construct his intricate costumes, some of which have been used in his past works, such as latex and toy parts. Originally intended to be a joke and parody of the Humans of New York project, it soon developed into a collaborative project between him and fellow creatives that intended to be a visual expression of their thoughts about the relationship between people, mainstream society, and the government. 


Para sa kasalukuyang proyekto ni New na Aliens of Manila, ipinagpapatuloy niya ang kaniyang pauso sa paggamit sa sari-sari at hindi kumbensiyonal na materyal para gawin ang mabusising mga kasuotan, kung saan ang ilan ay ginamit na sa nauna niyang mga gawa, tulad ng latex at mga piyesa ng laruan. Orihinal na sinadya bilang biro at parunggit sa serye ng retrato ng Humans of New York, lumawak ito bilang bayanihang proyekto sa pagitan niya at ng mga kapwa manlilikha na nilayong maging biswal na paghayag ng kanilang iniisip tungkol sa relasyon sa pagitan ng mga tao, pangunahing lipunan, at gobyerno.

Photos from the Aliens of Manila project are sporadically updated on their Facebook and Instagram page, often accompanied by short blurbs of text, which are sourced from either the project participants or New’s writer friends. “We try to be conscious about drawing from real voices we encounter in our daily interactions. Each alien character most probably represents a person we’ve encountered in real life.”


Ang mga larawan mula sa proyektong Aliens of Manila ay ina-update paminsan-minsan sa kanilang pahina sa Facebook at Instagram, kadalasang sinasamahan ng maikling teksto, na hinalaw mula sa alinman sa kalahok ng proyekto o mga kaibigang manunulat ni New. “Pinipilit naming maging atentibo sa pagkuha mula sa mga tunay na tinig na nakakasalamuha namin sa araw-araw na pakikipamuhay. Bawat karakter ng alien ay malamang na kumakatawan sa isang taong nakasalamuha namin sa tunay na buhay.”

Website:
leeroynew.com

Facebook:
~/leeroynewpage
~/aliensofmanila

Instagram:
@newleeroy
@aliensofmanila

 

Contributor: David Yen
Images Courtesy of Leeroy New


Website:
leeroynew.com

Facebook:
~/leeroynewpage
~/aliensofmanila

Instagram:
@newleeroy
@aliensofmanila

 

Kontribyutor: David Yen
Ang Mga Imahen na Mula kay Leeroy New

Finding Beauty in Imperfection

December 20, 2016 2016年12月20日

For many people in China, porcelain is a familiar part of life, commonly seen and used on a day-to-day basis. But paradoxically, porcelain can also be thought of as an unfamiliar material, in the sense that many people know next to nothing about it. Despite the nickname ciguo, which translates into “country of porcelain,” most people in China don’t fully understand the beautiful intricacies of ceramics and the meticulous creation process. Enter Chifengge, a Hangzhou-based pottery studio that specializes in wood-fired ceramic wares, working tirelessly to perfect this underappreciated craft. Founded by three young ceramics enthusiasts, the studio has been producing a varied assortment of earthenware since 2014—each creation uniquely different from the last.


我们对瓷器既熟悉又陌生,一方面从我们的生活器皿乃至国名,瓷器几乎遍布我们的日常;而另一方面,重视不同审美趣味的瓷器又似乎只受众于小部分人群。赤枫阁是由三个年轻人于2014年创办的一个柴烧工作室,这里没有千篇一律形色规整的器皿,每个作品都独一无二。

The studio is the brainchild of Yuan Cunze, Xu Chaoqi and Han Min, who all graduated from the China Academy of Art in 2013. Having graduated with a fine arts degree in ceramic design, the trio, like many of their peers, felt apprehensive about the future. Unlike other design-related majors, finding a stable career relevant to their field is considerably more difficult. Many of their fellow graduates chose to continue on to graduate school, switch career paths entirely, or pursue higher education overseas. After exploring their options over the course of a year, the three finally made the decision to start their own studio.


工作室由袁存泽,许超奇与韩敏发起,2013年毕业于中国美术学院的三个年轻人,像大多数纯艺专业毕业的人一样,对未来充满迷茫,他们所学习的工艺美术陶瓷设计并不像普通设计类专业那么容易找到对应工作,同系的朋友大多选择读研、转业或者出国深造,所以兜兜转转的下一年,工作室才成立起来。

The chifeng in their studio’s name means red maple in Chinese, a tree known for its vibrant red leaves during autumn, and alludes to Chifengge’s approach of using wood rather than commonly seen modern pottery firing methods. Nowadays, electric-powered kilns are preferred for their convenience and ease. But even in the past, using wood for the firing process wasn’t the norm; the inconsistent results from ashes and scorch marks were thought of as flaws. However, the recent resurgence of interest in wood-fired ceramics is revealing of society’s ever-changing taste and how the definition of beauty has broadened over time.


赤枫阁的名字源于对火焰痕迹的追求,这本身也对应了柴烧的特点。现代普遍使用电窑烧制瓷器,柴烧这种古老的烧制方法在古代正统瓷器烧制技术允许的情况下是不被欣赏的,并认为这是一种瑕疵,柴烧的兴起也恰恰证明了社会的发展,人们对美有了更广义的理解

The scorch marks and glazed ashes of wood-fired pottery are central to the creation process in modern times. Many different factors affect the outcome when using a wood-firing technique. The speed that wood is added during the process, weather conditions, and the kiln’s flow of air can all drastically affect how the creation turns out in the end. The final appearance of a wood-fired ceramic creation tells an unabashedly revealing story of the entire creation process, a story of its own birth laid out in plain view for all to see. Every scorch mark and layer of ash from the firing process adds unique characteristics to each piece of pottery and are considered as beautiful additions, rather than flaws.


现代柴烧注重火痕与落灰,顾名思义需要燃烧木材提供热能,加柴的速度和方式、天气的状况、空气的进流量等任何细微因素都会对烧制造成天差地别的影响,器物会忠实地记录它经历的所有考验,随意飘散经过的木灰造成的色彩变化与火焰行进的痕迹共同呈现出一种无法复制的美感。

Success stories of young people rolling up their sleeves and building something out of nothing are becoming more and more commonplace nowadays. But when I asked about how they planned to make money in the beginning, Han Min told me: “If we wanted to earn money, we would have used an electric kiln instead. Before we started this, we never thought about how to turn this into a business. The only thoughts that crossed our minds were on how can we make the best wood-fired pottery.” Coming from a design background myself, hearing such an earnest answer that focuses on creativity over profit, made me feel that much more hopeful about the future.


这种年轻人白手起家的故事我们似乎听的太多了,但当问及初期是否考虑销售问题时,韩敏说:“想赚钱的话,我们就直接去烧电窑了。我们在做这件事之前,完全没想过应该怎么去做生意,当时只考虑了怎么去烧制出最好的柴烧作品。”对于当下一个学服装的平面设计师来说,也许这是星星之火。

Dongjia: ~/chifengge
WeChat
: han15868835868

 

Contributor: Shou Xing
Images Courtesy of Chifengge


东家~/赤枫阁
微信
: han15868835868

 

供稿人: Shou Xing
图片由赤枫阁提供

Performing Sculpture

December 19, 2016 2016年12月19日

Widely regarded as one of the most innovative artists of the 20th century, Alexander Calder’s creations modernized and reimagined the possibilities of sculptural art. Transcending time and mediums, his lasting influence is still evident today. Performing Sculpture, a playful photo series that pays homage to the iconic American artist, debuted just last year on BROWNIE.


作为20世纪最具创意的艺术家之一,Alexander Calder的作品以现代化的风格重新演绎雕塑艺术的无限可能性。他作品的影响力跨越时间与媒介时至今日依然显而易见。《舞蹈的雕塑》是一组致敬 Alexander Calder 这位传奇美国艺术家的摄影作品系列,在去年首次发表于BROWNIE网站

Shot by Tan Yuxi, a Chongqing-born and Shanghai-based photographer who was inspired after seeing Calder’s exhibition at Tate Modern, Performing Sculpture is comprised of ten image pairings that consist of wires, disc-shaped props, and women in colorful one-piece swimsuits; it’s a whimsical reimagining of Calder’s creations. Beyond vaguely alluding to the nature of interpersonal connections between us as humans, Yuxi has left the narrative purposefully ambiguous and open to interpretation.


该系列创作者谭羽希是一名出生于重庆,现居上海的摄影师。《舞蹈的雕塑》是她在伦敦泰特现代美术馆(Tate Modern)看到Alexander Calder的展览后大受启发而创作的,她以线、唱片圆盘形状的道具及身穿连体泳衣的女性为元素创作出10组摄影作品,以异想天开的风格对Alexander Calder的雕塑作品进行创新构思。除了隐晦地影射人际关系本质,谭羽希故意模糊作品要表达的想法,而让观众自己来定义作品背后的意义。

“When someone looks at this series, they can extract their own meanings out of it,” Yuxi says. “I feel like that’s the purpose of this project. It’s possible that some people won’t have any thoughts about it, but to me, them not finding any meaning in it is part of the work. So to that effect, I’m purposefully omitting what I want to express and the meaning behind it.”


谭羽希解释:“当不同的人看到这个作品,或多或少都有自己能想到的东西,我觉得这就是作品的意思。其实可能会有人没有任何想法,但对于我,没有想法也是表达内容的一种。所以我不会说我要表达什么,或者想传递的信息是什么。”

Despite femininity and females being the main narrative-driving force behind this project, Yuxi considers Performing Sculpture to be a slight departure from some of her previous works. The main differentiating factor was the number of models involved in the shoot. Coordinating multiple subjects at once was a fairly new and challenging experiencing for Yuxi, a challenge that pushed her out of her comfort zone. But as with many other great artists, she regards all difficulties as invaluable learning experiences.


尽管女性主题和女性依然是这个作品背后的主要叙事动力,但谭羽希认为《舞蹈的雕塑》与她以前的作品还是有所不同的。最主要的差别在于参与拍摄的模特的数量。同时协调多名拍摄对象对她来说是一件相当具有挑战性的事情,是一次全新的经历,这也迫使她不得不走出自己的舒适区。但是,正如其他优秀的艺术家一样,在她眼中,困难是宝贵的学习经验。

Similar to the masterful manner that Calder’s able to use sculptures to bring his creative vision to life, Yuxi’s talent lies in her ability to use photography and the female form as the vessel for her creative energy. “I enjoy shooting females,” she says. “Perhaps it’s because I find them to be endlessly interesting. I want to know what they’re thinking and why they do what they do.”


正如Alexander Calder 以巧妙绝伦的方式通过雕塑作品让自己的创意构思唤发蓬勃生命力,谭羽希的天赋也在于她能够让摄影和女性主体变成展现她的创作能量的载体。“我很喜欢拍女人,”她说道,“也许是因为对于我来说,女人更有趣。我想知道她们在想什么,她们为什么这样做。”

Prints from Tan Yuxi’s Performing Sculpture are now available from the BROWNIE online shop.


谭羽希《舞蹈的雕塑》印制品现已于BROWNIE网上商店发售。

Website: yukivigo.com
Instagram@yukivigo

 

Contributors: David Yen, Banny Wang
Images Courtesy of BROWNIE


网站: yukivigo.com
Instagram@yukivigo

 

供稿人: David Yen, Banny Wang
图片由BROWNIE提供

Of Light & Time

December 16, 2016 2016年12月16日
Cubic light (2015) Photographer: Tong Cheng / 《立方的光》(2015) 摄影师: Tong Cheng

Constructed of light and found objects, the work of Wang Lingjie and Hao Jingfang is at once of time and timeless, infinite yet infinitesimal. They offer a tiny glimpse of a higher consciousness, a wisdom that surpasses our constraint of time and space. At once logical and poetic, their works radiate an innate peacefulness. A result perhaps, of a complex and lengthy creation process that involves endless discussions, deliberations, and decisions.


王令杰与郝经芳的作品由光与拾获物品构成,代表瞬间和永恒,既无限大又无穷小。他们的作品用智慧带我们超越时间和空间约束,使我们从微小的一瞥中窥见更高的觉知。作品既富有逻辑又充满诗意,散发出一种内在的宁静。这是经过复杂与漫长的创作,不断探讨,推敲,与选择以后获得的丰硕结晶。

Below Above / Beyond Beneath (2016) / 《斜面》(2016)
Below Above / Beyond Beneath (2016) / 《斜面》(2016)

Otherworldliness belies their work. Walking into Below Above / Beyond Beneath, their contribution to the 2016 Shanghai West Bund Art & Design fair, visitors encountered a pitch-black space with nothing but two horizontal beams of light that crosses a mist-filled space. Consciously, it’s apparent that it is a room, yet it is also somehow elsewhere. Upon making it to the opposite side and turning around, outlines of other visitors would emerge from the mist, almost as if they were arriving from another dimension.


他们的作品有一种超越世俗感。他们2016年在上海西岸艺术与设计展展示的作品“斜面“,在漆黑中没有别的,仅用两条平行的光束穿过雾朦的空间。你走进去,知道它就是一个房间,但又好象置身于别处。当你走到房间的另一头,转过身来,看到迷雾中显现的人群的轮廓,仿佛是来自另一个世界。

In a universe where everything moves at all (2015) Photography: Tong Cheng / 《在一个万物运动的宇宙中》(2015) 摄影师: Tong Cheng
In a universe where everything moves at all (2015) Photography: Tong Cheng / 《在一个万物运动的宇宙中》(2015) 摄影师: Tong Cheng

This tension between this world and another is found in an ascetic, minimalist form. In their works, blacks and whites dominate, a choice made explicitly by Wang, says Hao. Stripped back to essentials, their art echoes a Taoist duality, akin to “a kind of philosophy,” says Wang. Yet, far from simple, their works are the result of their daily travail, of countless trials and failures, of a sometimes painful, yet constant dialogue with their work in progress.


这两个世界之间的张力以克制与简洁的形式表现。在他们的作品中,王令杰刻意地选择黑与白为主色。他们的艺术返璞归真,反映了道教的二元性,“是一种哲学”,王说。然而,看似简单的作品,却是通过无数的试验和失败,忍痛割爱,每日不断的努力、取舍以后的结果。

Sun Drawing (2012) / 《太阳》 (2012)
Sun Drawing (2012) / 《太阳》 (2012)
Sun Drawing (2012) / 《太阳》 (2012)

Discipline and dedication rule their approach to creation. Sun Drawing, a series of daily marks left by the sun on heat-sensitive paper, is a past piece of work that characterises their signature approach; it’s revealing their ongoing fascination with the passage of time, as well as light, as they continuously attempt to capture their ephemeral essence.


他们自律地全身心投入他们的创作。他们的系列作品《太阳》,源自每一天在热敏纸上纪录的太阳的轨迹。这种持续性方式是他们作品的一个特征。试图捕捉稍纵即逝的光与短暂时间,这实在使他们着迷。

Creak and groan (2016) / 《吱呀》(2016)
Creak and groan (2016) / 《吱呀》(2016)

It is surprising then that the works themselves are not sterile but filled with lightness and vitality, maybe because they are the reflection of the artists themselves. So that when the works are experienced, they inadvertently express their creators’ curiosity about the world, as well as the joy and wonder of the creation process.


令人惊讶的是,他们的作品不会枯燥乏味,而是轻盈,充满活力的。这也许是因为这些作品是艺术家本身性格的反映。因此,当你在感受作品的时候,会不知不觉地感觉到他们对这个奇妙世界的好奇,以及他们在创作中所获得的乐趣。

Rainbow (2016) / 《彩虹》 (2016)

Never loud, showy or pretentious, their works are quiet, unobtrusive, yet singular in their view. For Wang Lingjie and Hao Jingfang, to make art is to be true to oneself, as Hao sums it up, “I wanted to do something for myself… to find my own inner peace.”


绝不张扬或装腔作势,他们的作品平静低调,却表现了他们的独特观点。对于王令杰与郝经芳,艺术是真实地表达自己,郝说,“艺术是为了自己…为了寻找自己内心的平静。”

Cubic light (2015) Photographer: Tong Cheng / 《立方的光》(2015) 摄影师: Tong Cheng

Website: wanglingjie.com

 

Contributor: Kiwi Qin


网站: wanglingjie.com

 

供稿人: Kiwi Qin

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