Psychadelic Pshowcase

You don’t need to take shrooms to go on a crazy psychadelic ride! Just drop by the de Young Museum for the Dale Chihuly Exhibit of glass sculptures, figures, and gardens.

The exhibit features over a dozen rooms of glass sculptures created by Team Chihuly, followed by a documentary at the end showing how the pieces were created. It showcases everything from fantastical gardens of colorful glass plants to Chihuly’s glass interpretations of Native American woven baskets. The exhibit employs light to showcase the bright and exuberant colors Chihuly uses. Chihuly incorporates nature into his pieces, including “Reeds”, which features purple irridescent glass rods emerging from logs strewn about the ground. Chihuly also immitates nature in his flat disc-like orange and yellow pieces, which are reminiscent of sea anemones and mysterious aquatic life forms.

In the video after, and from the Audio Tour (which is definitely worth the extra $6), I learned that Chihuly was influenced by everything from delicate Japanese floral arrangements called Ikebana, to how glass breaks when thrown into the water.

It’s worth a visit, so drop by the de Young Museum in Golden Gate Park to see the show.

To learn more about the show:

To learn more about the artist:


Miley Cyrus is the New Britney Spears

BY Asha Richardson

OAKLAND_Britney Spears’ spotlight has shifted to a new star, 15-year-old Miley Cyrus. Last year seemed to be the downfall for Britney, from her extremely publicized life drama to her disastrous come-back attempt at the 2007 MTV Music Awards.

Last year also marked the release of Miley Cyrus’ “Hannah Montana 2: Meet Miley Cyrus”. The previous year, the Disney sitcom Hannah Montana debuted, where Miley Cyrus plays a girl who is secretly the country pop sensation Hannah Montana. In only two years Miley already released 2 albums, 6 soundtracks and just finished her year long Best of Both Worlds Tour. She also guest stared in cartoon show “the Emperors New School”, previously she played Ruthie in Big Fish (2003). She hosted this year’s Teen Choice Awards, winning 3 awards herself, and will acting in the upcoming movie Bolt.

Some parents paid hundreds and even thousands of dollars to get the best seats for their kids to see Miley/Hannah perform. I thought only 10- 14 year old little girls would want to go see the show, but girls in their late teens were seen throughout the crowd at her concert. Even girls in my class left school early super excited to see her concert. I honestly don’t understand how quickly she is reaching her stardom.

While Britney and Miley share the experience of skyrocketing to fame, the main difference to me between the two is that Britney is way more sexualized than Miley. Britney appeared in the “Hit Me Baby One more time” music video in a naughty school girl outfit.  Throughout Britney career she was seen as a sexual icon, showing skin in tight outfits, or belly dancing half naked with a snake. Despite the recent pictures blasted across the web of Miley in tiny skirts or hotel bathtubs; Miley, in her concerts and on her TV show seems to look like your average teenage girl layering graphic tees on top of jeans or skirt. Occasionally she wears short skirt or little dress, but her outfits don’t seem to be to out of the norm for the teen girl of 2008.

Also Miley does more than sing. She acts in her own TV sitcom, and in two upcoming movies. The cycle of blond pop star will never end. Let’s see if she will make it through the negative tabloid attacks or truly become New Britney Spears, bald head and all.

No, YOU’RE hipster!

Hipster: The Dead End of Civilization

We’ve reached a point in our civilization where counterculture has mutated into a self-obsessed aesthetic vacuum. So while hipsterdom is the end product of all prior countercultures, it’s been stripped of its subversion and originality, and is leaving a generation pointlessly obsessing over fashion, faux individuality, cultural capital and the commodities of style.

In true Hipster fashion, Adbusters, the ultimate Hipster magazine (self-described as “the journal of the mental environment”) has jumped on yet another bandwagon. Although deeply hipster itself, Adbusters just released the September/October #79 issue featuring a main article on Hipsters, titled “Hipster: The Dead End of Western Civilization.” The reporter, Douglas Haddow, makes the point that Hipsters simply absorb the life of other trends and cultures and do not generate any life or creativity of their own. They are consumers, not producers, he says.

The entire story centers around a Hipster party. Haddow writes of how he lurks around and comments negatively on what everyone is wearing and doing. He says everyone at the party has a “Fuck you” mentality, and points out whatever the person he is interviewing is wearing. By the end of the party, and by the end of the story, Haddow comes to the conclusion that hipsters are lazy, pessimistic hypocrites who are an unnecessary evil in this world.

But as a drinker of coffee, a listener of Andrew Bird, and a proud owner of a pair of skinny jeans, I’m here to defend the way of the hipster.

Haddow spends the entire article mocking the clothes and ways of the people around him, and then makes the point that hipsters spend all their time mocking the clothes and the ways of the people around them. He accuses them of being negative and without hope, as he pessimisticly generalizes their attitudes and writes of only the bad. He says they are shallow and aesthically obsessed as he judges every person he interviews. And worst of all, he’s writing an article making fun of hipsters for the magazine ADBUSTERS. Really, though?

Adbusters is only sold in natural, organic, vegan grocery stores. I wonder who will read this article!?!?


As Haddow attempts to separate himself from the Hipster label and world, he does not realize that part of the hipster culture IS to make fun of other hipsters. It takes one to know one. Every hipster is embarassed to be a hipster. Why? Because hipsters DON’T want to fit in, and if they’re just like all the people around them, then they do.

All Hipsters have an identity complex, Haddow included. And if he thinks he doesn’t, he needs to talk to Freud, and fast.

Read the entire article and another reflection on it:

Youth Radio Benefit @ Ashkenaz in Berkeley

Thursday, 06/19/08
Doors at 7:30 pm; Show at 8:00 pm
$10-up sliding scale

Hip-hop and funk music is the foundation of this fundraiser for Oakland’s Youth Radio, the organization that trains young people in radio, news, and public affairs work and provides an outlet for a young perspective on news, much of it not covered by mainstream media. Performers include Trackademicks, the Jack Sprat Collective, Paragon, and DJ Amp Live of Zion I.

1317 San Pablo Avenue
Berkeley, CA
Showline 510-525-5054


From WTNW: Organic Clothing is the New Haute Couture

Lauren Silverman contends that Organic Clothing is the New Haute Couture at our sister blog, “What’s The New What?”

[Major] retailers such as Payless and Target have embraced “green” clothing. Payless doesn’t only offer silver stilettos, brightly colored plastic flip-flops, and fake leather boots. Now, it features 100% organic sneakers and hemp slides. Target, “where fashion fanatic meets organic-on-a-budget,” just launched its first international collection featuring certified organic items.

Check out all the “New What’s” @ What’s The New What.

From WTNW: Public is the New Private

Lauren Silverman makes the case that Public is the New Private at our sister blog What’s The New What?.

It’s gotten out of hand. For my generation, sharing information is no big deal. I no longer hesitate when I type my phone number and detailed plans for the evening on social networking sites. In fact, sending information through private channels has become unheard of, even out of style. The last time I got a Facebook message, I expected it to be SUPER juicy, since only I would be able to access it.

Check out all the “New What’s” @ What’s The New What.

Manga is the New Marvel

What with action packed fights with mechanic octopi, catchy theme songs, and Jessica Alba, who would believe that such a beautiful, beautiful thing as Marvel Comics could ever be replaced? As the Spiderman trilogy, X-Men, the Fantastic 4, Ghost Rider, and of course Iron Man have all impressed audiences at the theaters over the past few years, there’s been a resurgence of the popularity of Marvel Comics. But at the same time there’s a whole different line of heroes and super villains just waiting to save the day, and their names are less like Steve Rogers and Peter Parker, and more like Naruto Uzumaki and Piccolo.

Anime, a style of art originally from Japan with exaggerated physical features, speech bubbles, and tapered lines, usually expressed in dramatic comic books and graphic novels called Manga, came to America a long time ago in the form of a little yellow fur ball with rosy cheeks and a lightning bolt tail, along with his friends Squirtle and Bulbasaur.

But anime has expanded its horizons far past the Cerulean City, and is currently bordering on world domination. The anime and manga sections in bookstores are growing larger and larger, and every time I try to get the kid next to me to play hangman during math class, he’s drawing some anime action shot!

This thing is an epidemic.

I know kids who design entire anime comic books, with their own original story lines, characters, and styles. A lot my classmaters won’t draw or read anything else but anime. Comic books like Naruto, Kare Kano and other manga series have gotten kids into reading, drawing, and writing. Although many people are offended by the intense violence and sexual innuendo in manga, whatever lets people express their creativity and come up with new ideas is great in my book.