simple is beautiful
New York Daily Photo: Conflux
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Monday, 15 September 2008


Some try to find beauty in all things or aspire to love everyone. Now although these are admirable goals, if you live in New York City, dead rats are not endearing. Personally I do not like rats and try as I may, I do not find beauty in them yet. So for thisreason, I did not want to feature the dead rat (with a tiny blue triangular icon near it) which appeared that it might have been (?) part of the Conflux festival and have this image haunting me and disgusting you in perpetuity. So if you want to see the dead rat which was located on LaGuardia place, you can see it here.
On the other hand, if you want an easy task of finding beauty, I recommend you fix your sight on the work of Joe Mangrum whose work in the photo graced the pavement in Washington Square Park for the last few days. It was a show stopper and appeared to please every passerby. See a second photo here. These sand paintings were created in brilliant colors - unprotected like sandcastles, their slow dissolution a necessary feature of this type of installation. See more of his work at his website.
Unfortunately, this was a 4-day event which I only became aware of in its last few minutes. A jog over to the AIA headquarters on LaGuardia Place found me looking at a locked door at 5:04 PM - their exhibit had closed 4 minutes earlier. 
There were indoor, outdoor and offsite events. From the Conflux website: 

Starting September 11th, over one hundred local and international artists will transform New York City streets into a laboratory for exploring the urban environment at the Conflux Festival. Located in Greenwich Village at the Center for Architecture (a.k.a. Conflux HQ), the four-day event includes art installations, street art interventions, interactive performance, walking tours, bicycle and public-transit expeditions, DIY media workshops, lectures, films and music.

Read more here and find complete listings with all the participants and photos of their work.
I did catch just a couple of other art works - one was the extremely ambitious project, Compli-mum (complete woman), by computer artist Hyojin Ju. Her motorized skeletal structure, appearing as feminine armor, changes through the use of microcontrollers and features two video displays. See a photo of Hyojin displaying her work here. Many of the projects seemed quite imaginative. You can see them all at the Conflux website ...


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