Review: Amy Tan’s “Mother Tongue”

Review: Amy Tan’s “Mother Tongue”

By, Afua Serwah Osei-Bonsu

Amy Tan’s, “Mother Tongue,” is a sentimental short story which chronicles the relationship between mother and daughter while looking through the lens of language.  Tan, describes herself as speaking two “Englishs” that relate to Chinese immigration and second generation American born English scholarship.  The author centers the dialog on scholarship in general and her rebellion to become a writer while so many Chinese focus on STEM subjects.  In the end, Tan’s mother’s hard work and attention to financial details, advances the second generation and as if a privilege, Tan is able to take a unique path into writing.  The theme of Amy Tan’s, “Mother Tongue,” is English and culture because she focuses on immigration, second-generation issues and English scholarship.

The author’s goal may be to highlight English scholarship. However, her goals may have a cultural aim and strategy.  In the end, are more Chinese guided towards English scholarship and the documentation of unique Chinese histories?  Can Chinese absence from writing be described as a lack of historical documentation? It may become compulsory that a slice of the population treasure and document the immigrant experience and China’s history through China’s special lens. The first point illustrates and establishes the author as a scholar of English. The article commences with her sophisticated ideas around English, “the way it can evoke an emotion, a visual image, a complex idea, or a simple truth.” Amy Tan opens the essay, “Mother Tongue,” with a rhetorical question, “I am not a scholar of English or literature.”

Amy Tan goes on to describe the intricacies of English both within her family and within her academic life as all her “English’s”.  When describing the debut of her novel, “Joy Luck Club,” she said, “the intersection of memory and imagination.” Scholarship may be guided in this way via the door through which one walks and that may be a second generation door of immigration to America. Scholarship also presents itself as something cultivated and culturally refined where English as Second Language (ESL) English may highlight, “past perfect tenses or conditional phrases.” An immigrant may present fresh eyes on a subject or even on a language with more acute sensitivity to its variations or what she describes as thoughts about the “power of language and how it can evoke an emotion, a visual image or simple truth.” Part of Tan’s power may also be as a gifted historian and scholar, she may extract special selections that are autobiographical, memoir or cultural, which shine an intimate light on what this group’s experience may be.

The second point deals with what culture dictates in terms of language, relationships, customs, common practices, charm, and generational differences.  She recounts a story of her and her Mother in a memoir styled chronicling of their relationship, exploiting tender and comic moments.  Tan had to impersonate her mother as a child by telephone to stockbrokers.  She would say, “This is Mrs. Tan,” and her mother would say in a whisper next to her, ‘why he don’t send me check, already two weeks late. So mad he lie to me, losing me money.’ Then Tan in perfect English says, “Yes, I’m getting rather concerned.  You had agreed to send the check two weeks ago, but it hasn’t arrived.” Tan comically uses the above exchange to show off her two English’s. She details for the reader how language barriers play a role in immigrant life.  She shows how a loving daughter may come to assist her parent.  The author used the verb “wrought” in terms of vocabulary which may use language associated to irons and metals to describe older generations with difficulty assimilating.  What becomes paramount are the unique conditions that come to inform the trajectory of the author.  Cultural practice may lead to career choice when guided by shortages and necessities.

Tan may have been proving her worth to American readers, inspiring Chinese-Americans to alternative career choices and filling in gaps.  Her mother may have been financially savvy enabling her departure from the normal cultural standards.  Amy Tan’s mother was painted as financially savvy.  “She reads the Forbes report, listens to Wall Street Week, converses daily with her stockbroker, reads Shirley MacLaine’s books with ease-all kinds of things I can’t begin to understand.” Tan’s mother’s savvy was the magic elixir that produced a second generation scholar and rebel. The hard work of immigrant parents enables the future generations to choose, to differ, to experiment, to do what they really, really want to do- or start to get into new areas.  Tan’s choice to become an English scholar was culturally fresh. Many Chinese may be drawn to STEM fields or engineering in a manufacturing focused country. In the end, other sectors may have had shortages, inclusive of English. Language barriers may have also been an impediment.

Tan illustrated in “Mother Tongue,” how life threatening or moments of struggle have comic relief which she relates back to English and scholarship. The necessity for Tan’s family for her to improve on the families English may have transformed her into an English scholar. Necessity as the old saying goes can be the mother of invention.  The two ideas combined both finance and English may have joined forces to advance via her mother’s shrewd business practices and secondly out of necessity to satisfy a need her family and country of origin lacked.

Amy Tan’s, “Mother Tongue,” highlighted a need for Chinese immigrants to document and chronicle their lives.  Tan highlighted this comic and tender language barrier that may drive future generations into writing fields and English scholarship. The shrewdness of their parents in finance will open doors to fill in gaps that may later account for missing histories or the detailing of the immigrant experience. Tan leaves the reader with a feeling of general liberation, rebellion, distinction, trailblazer, and necessity.

Tan used the context of language and scholarship to illustrate the immigrant experience.  Tan’s use of comic relief shows how tragic experiences have a kind of duplicity, where in a moment two “Englishs” can be spoken.  Tan, a trailblazer, may usher in a new generation of Chinese writers.

Language and writing have a variety of doors and your background becomes the guiding force for your skills. Chinese immigrants to California may have prospered to the extent that their offspring are catapulted to stardom.

Fit, Lean & Beautiful #38

Fit, Lean & Beautiful #38
By Afua Serwah Osei-Bonsu

One of the best books you can buy on fitness is called “Stretching” by Bob Anderson and illustrated by Jean Anderson. You can order Stretch and Strength Charts for your home gym or exercise area from:
Stretching Inc.
Box 767
Palmer Lake, Colo. 80133
1(800)333-1307
http://shelterpub.com
shelter@shelterpub.com

Bob Anderson offers stretching charts for the following: Aerobic Exercise, Badminton, Baseball, Basketball, Boardsailing, Bowling, Computer and Desk, Curling, Cycling, Equestrian, Everyday (general), Figure Skating, Football, Golf, Groin/Hip, Gymnastics, Ice Hockey, In-Line Skating, Kids, Legs, Lower Back, Martial Arts, Motorcross, Neck/Shoulder/Arms, Over 50, Partners, Pregnancy, Racquetball/Handball/Squash, Rodeo, Rowing, Running, Skiing (Downhill), Soccer, Softball, Surfing, Swimming, Tennis, Triathlon, Volleyball, Walking, Weight Training, Wrestling, X-Country Skiing.
He also offers pocket sized cards for running, cycling, every day or travelers.

It’s beneficial to intellectualize your fitness regime and become knowledgeable about health simultaneously.  Good fitness may start in the brain!  See below Fitness Book List:

Fitness Book List

Stretching, By Bob Anderson
Stretching at Your Computer Desk, By Bob Anderson
Getting in Shape Workout Programs for Men & Women, By Bob Anderson
Alexander Technique, By Wilfred Barlow
Awareness Through Movement, By Moshe Feldenkrais
Bike Tripping, By Tom Cuthbertson
Breathing, What You Need to Know, By Ruth and Edward Brecher
The Complete Book of Running, By James Fixx
Essential Exercises for the Childbearing Year, By Elizabeth Noble
Foot and Ankle Pain, By Rene Cailliet
Guidelines To Successful Jogging, By Rory Donaldson
Healthful Eating Without Confusion, By Paul Bragg
Helping Yourself With Foot Reflexology, By Mildred Carter
Hypokinetic Disease, Disease Produced By Lack of Exercise, By Hans Kraus
The Knee in Sports, By Karl K. Klein
Knee Pain and Disability, By Rene Cailliet
The Knees: Growth-Development and Activity Influences, By Karl K. Klein
Low Back Pain Syndrome, By, Rene Cailliet
The Massage Book, By George Downing
Mucusless Diet Healing System, By Prof. Arnold Ehret
New Aerobics, By Kenneth Cooper
Oh My Aching Back, By Leon Root and Thomas Kiernan
Prevention and Treatment of Running Injuries, By John Pagliano
Richards Bicycle Book, By Richard Ballantine
Run, Run, Run, By Fred Wilt
Runner’s Medical Guide, By Richard Magni
Running Free, By Joan Ullyot
The Shocking Truth About Water, By Paul Bragg
Super Brain Breathing, By Paul C. Bragg
Touch For Health, By John F. Thie
Treatment of Injuries to Athletes, Don H. O’Donoghue
Track Technique, By Fred Wilt
Van Aaken Method, By Ernst Van Aaken
The Mindful Practice of Falun Gong, Meditation, Health and Wellness Beyond, By Dr. Margaret Trey
Falun Gong, Li Hongzhi
Light on Pranayama, the Yogic Art of Breathing, By B.K.S. Iyengar
Iyengar, His Life and Work, By Iyengar
Yoga 28 Day Exercise Plan, By Richard Hittleman’s
Yoga for Women, Nancy Phelan and Nancy Volin

The majority of the book list is extracted from the bibliography in “Stretching” By Bob Anderson pg. 189

Up To Snuff #66: Book Review and Fiction Lesson, “The Sun Also Rises,” By Ernest Hemingway

Up to Snuff #66: Book Review and Fiction Lesson “The Sun Also Rises” By Ernest Hemingway
By, Afua Serwah Osei-Bonsu

Hemingway’s 1920’s based fiction novel, covers spiritual dissolution, often describing both Jewish and Catholic Views, immorality and bacchanalian bar hopping and on a lesser note, unrequited love. What may resonate with the reader are micro points like the French, “aperitif” and “digestif” and grander points like his two city, “international agenda.”

“International Agenda” in fact may be what the reader is left with thinking, of what it means to write fiction and how it can be done across two of the world’s most amazing cities, in this case Paris, France and Pamplona, Spain. Hemingway’s piece of modernist fiction, leads the reader to ponder fiction itself, being something of illustrious descriptions, the practice of detail and analysis as description. How one may plan trips or excursions to illuminate a story and embody the setting. One can imagine Hemingway carting around small tablets of paper to bullfights and down Parisian streets, even while in carriages.

It is in fact, the emotion about descriptions, in fiction, that grips you. What also grips the reader is how a writer may become an instigator and define a place, time period, era, a group or a movement. In this case the book chronicles a group of writers and Foreign Correspondents in Paris and appears to be autobiographical. “The Sun Also Rises,” describes the romance for the writers life, the spontaneity, the comradery with other notables of the time period, and how the stories unfold into novels, articles and love affairs, some of which manifest into marriages, others that go unrequited.

They were described as a “lost generation,” perhaps many facing short lived marriages in favor of the dramatic high living of a traveler. What becomes interesting is the fame and publicity that writing generates, the resulting introductions that create, the “Who’s Who” lifestyle. Reporters regularly write about and therefore hob nob with notables, if at the bullfight-the bullfighter.

It is as if a writer must cultivate a “writerly” richness. The writer is at once a manufacturer, instigator, and conjurer. Everything for the writer becomes vivid, when you desire the writing to be as good as life, if not better. Having more power to act as taste master, direct society via writing, and dress your content. Hemingway was a master of description much like James Baldwin. Hemingway would make wonderful “observations,” such as to watch, the feet of dancers, to bottle their dance performance, as difficult as that may be.

Hemingway was an angler as was seen in later books like, “Old Man and The Sea.” He was later overseas, with many of the same interests he may have cultivated in America; which became a part of his “international agenda”-fishing in Germany and Spain for example.

The good fiction may be written in “non- stop” fashion. The writer establishes their setting, carries their tablets and writes literally “non-stop” while traveling; then at a later time transcribes collected details to form the story. Then perhaps an editor or programs help you to iron out your dialog. Perhaps if you are guided by some kind of “North Star” and utilizing precision, you will reach a fine piece of literature at the finish.

Great planning may go into a classic piece of literature. One may pursue degree’s or charter boats and acquire nets. Some of literature’s greatest works may not have been easy to come by. Hemingway provides a good fiction lesson.

Up to Snuff #51: How to Research Books

Up to Snuff #51: How to Research Books

Compiled By Afua Serwah Osei-Bonsu

-Public Libraries and University libraries and area libraries catalog searches, key word searches in collections, put in quotes phrases to search, subject searches and use a ? to truncate a search  or search America and American at the same time

-Addall.com   for rare and out of print books

-Online book stores like amazon.com or Amazons international book retailers, type in search box Amazon then country or language, new used and out of print, carries most books

-Online retailer such as Barnes and Noble

-Interlibrary loans

-Ebooks in online libraries or university libraries or booksellers

-www.questia.com

-Us.sage.pub.com

-bookfinder.com

-Googles   www.easybib.com    to help you to create a bibliography of books

-www.informationvine.com/answers

-Wikipedia bibliographies or wiki searches in general like a country or continent  then writers of that country or continent

-Searching awards histories

-College Publishers and their Presses eg. Northwestern University  Press for scholarly academic writing

-Small Presses

-Search Publishers of the world websites for their books eg. Random House, Penguin, Prentice Hall, Trafford

-Taking classes and receiving syllabus and special college printings

-Book Stores of the world

-Cheap book hubs

-Library of Congress, searchable

-Follet

-American Library Association Book Lists

-Book lists in general

-Google Search

-Search functions of websites or databases

-Book Fairs, local, regional and International

-Magazines showcase books

-Publishers Catalog mailings

-Book Reviews, eg. New York Times Book Review

-Research outfits

-Blogs connected to authors

-Author Learning Center

-Used Book Sales

-Thrift Stores

-Journals

-Nobel Laureates

-Museums like Museum of Modern Art Books

-Author Searches

-Search Areas, search authors-

-Compendiums

-Book jackets for other books by author or by publisher

-Super computer

-bibliographies in general

-Newspaper Database searches

-Books for how to Research

-www.bibio.com  browse booksellers for scholarly books

-How to find anything by Don Macleod

-International book stores on vacation

-Catalogues at Art Exhibitions

-textbooks.com

-academicscholarlybooks.com

-used bookstores

-Search Presidential Libraries

-Garage sales, moving sales and estate sales

-Company libraries

-Author book clubs, readings, book signings, Poetry slams

-A search wiz

-Contact Artist Galleries for artist books

-buy books after checking them out from library

-Search academic, search scholarly or go direct to where PHD”S are written or to a research org or a research college’s press

-Search all university presses

-Search college websites

-Research each area of interest thoroughly to know its authors and contributors

-Chronologies

-Books cited or mentioned in books

-Search for example a small British Press

-Register school to get access to a good library or ebooks

-Ask colleagues for sources, share or trade syllabi

-Teachers can use wiki bibliographies

-College News

-indexes at the backs of books

-Magazines

 

 

Just Released “The Pearl Reader” By Afua Serwah Osei-Bonsu

To order “The Pearl Reader” and “Magic 8 and The Bone Marrow Sucker,” two delightful collections of poems by Ghanaian-American poet, Afua Serwah Osei-Bonsu, see below links.  Available from the website, or the publisher on trafford.com or from Amazon.com or Chapters in Indigo in Canada and coming soon on Barnes and Noble online. Enter your contact information at www.magic8book.com to receive future notices about upcoming book releases.

Magic 8 & the Bone Marrow Sucker:

https://www.amazon.com/Magic-Bone-Marrow-Sucker-Collected/dp/1490766499/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1500068880&sr=8-1&keywords=9781490766492

http://www.trafford.com/Bookstore/BookDetail.aspx?BookId=SKU-001047266

www.magic8book.com

In Canada:

https://www.chapters.indigo.ca/en-CA/home/search/?keywords=Afua%20Serwah%20Osei-Bonsu

The Pearl Reader:

https://www.amazon.com/dp/1490783482/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1500069192&sr=8-1&keywords=9781490783482

http://www.trafford.com/Bookstore/BookDetail.aspx?BookId=SKU-001049410

www.thepearlreader.com

 

 

 

Book Review of “Complex Knowledge: Studies in Organizational Epistemology”

By, Afua Serwah Osei-Bonsu

A review of “Complex Knowledge: Studies in Organizational Epistemology” by Haridimos Tsoukas provided a gripping portrayal of the issues involved in what is desired as a “field” rather than that which is-knowledge only based- of organizational studies and management research.

Tsoukas immediately grabs the hand of the reader and engages them with a riveting tale about fluxus theory which describes how the world flows, “fluxes”, “changes and how it’s sensitive to things such as context, time, beliefs, desires, power and loops.” He explains how the world is in fact an “open world” and not a closed world and goes on to develop the dialog into a parallel with the chaos and the cosmos. He goes deeper to make comparisons to “ecological theories” eg. fluxus in nature and still further to perhaps “Austrian Economics” or the diversity of mankind in terms of ethnography.  The research unravels and one is left connecting dots and looking at the evidence.

Tsoukas intended to make three key points in his book about complex knowledge, 1) regarding tacit knowledge, claims and adoption of ideas, 2) chaosmos, the mixture of chaos with cosmos parallel, and 3) in regards to the connected meta knowledge.

Tsoukas was concerned with “agency” in an organization, and “how organizational knowledge is embraced and informs practice.” Tsoukas advice to his reader was based on Weick’s quote was to “complicate yourself.”

Tsoukas goes on to break down research about the information marketplace quoting the MIT Media Lab and linking information with communication eg. computer and telephone as a new network system and subsequent knowledge system. The research transforms into a chilling thriller when Tsoukas begins to talk about how things turn into information and how things are experienced without being in close proximity. What stirs the reader later was the statement of “information at your fingertips.” The reader experiences both fear of and excitement for potential knowledge.

A few problems highlighted in the book describe all information turning into objects that are contained, stored and retrieved, the caricaturization of mankind in information systems and “observed purpose in information.”  Observed purpose in information related to an example where a condom manufacturer desired numeric data on the number of people having sexual intercourse.  For example, one could look at the population count and further to those in relationships or married to establish a statistic of likelihood or perhaps buried within the information marketplace information that is retrieved for purposes beyond “observed purposes.”

The cognitive wheels turning, in terms of organizational epistemology, how do all the dots connect?  One problem may exist where Tsoukas has justified evidence regarding “potential and absent.”  The evidence suggests the “finite” representation is never complete and that there is more in “reserve.”  “That to be aware of potential is to become.”  The crux had to do with the need for potential and how things could be different and how information was confined to what has been-“as are, not as might be.” The build-up of the book describes entrapment in the status quo by scholars who may fail to recognize potential.

Tsoukas research rejected rationalist epistemological approaches in favor of “post rationalism.” One goal of the book is to look at the nature of knowledge within an organizational context inclusive of “vocabulary, practice, enactment, mutual constitution, improvisation, and how an organization justifies what they know.”

One problem that organizations face is “overcoming dominant forms of knowing.” Tsoukas desires to replace dominant forms with complex forms of knowing thus the parallel to chaosmos and fluxus and ultimately a “theory of complexity.”  It becomes the sensitization of an organization to context, time, change, events, beliefs, desires etc.  Tsoukas presented an Empiricist model rejecting earlier Rationalist models which he wished to graduate from “within the world and within tradition” to discover “flow, flux, change.”

Early philosophers such as Heraclitus were also highlighted in the book. Heraclitus is a Greek Philosopher whose research had to do with change being fundamental to the Universe. Heraclitus has the famous quote that “no man ever steps in the same river twice.”  Part of Heraclitus “claim to fame” was that he “taught himself by questioning himself.[1]

“Diogenes relates that as a boy Heraclitus had said he “knew nothing” but later claimed to “know everything.”[14] His statement that he “heard no one” but “questioned himself,” can be placed alongside his statement that “the things that can be seen, heard and learned are what I prize the most.”[15][2]

               Heraclitus is perhaps the father of philosophy. Empiricism was concerned with a posteriori and more investigative models that were gained by experience. [3] Rationalist was concerned with a priori as if that which is from God or innate methods. Tsoukas overtly rejected innate concepts from Rationalism which his alignment with Heraclitus suggests.

A beautiful point the book makes has to do with the description of poetic praxeology.  The 7 points in poetic praxeology listed were: 1) motives in human action, 2) influence of past, 3) transmutation into new forms in present 4) opaque intentionality, 5) chance allowed events, 6) feedback loops, 7) context inescapable.  Tsoukas described “all humans as in fluxus.”

The book generally relies on social scientific and philosophical research to support its claims.  What becomes paramount in the book is a subtle goal about “how creative action arises.”

Useful philosophers listed in the book as relevant to Tsoukas research are: Bergson, Dewey, Gadaner, Heidegger, James, Lakeoff, Tyre, Polanzi, Toulmin, Taylor, Whitehead, Wittgenstein.

The book not an “art book” or “poetry book” but references popular or obscure concepts relevant to both.  Fluxus in Tsoukas book of “Complex Knowledge” whirls and dazzles and could buttress conceptual work related to fluxus in high art.   The book presents research which could become the frame work or seed of emergent fields of study which were formally housed in epistemology courses or in dialogs about knowledge.  “Complex Knowledge” presents well-crafted research, stylishly modeled after Konl Weick’s style of research. “Complex Knowledge” published on Oxford Press is very fine reading with lovely chaotic imagery, language, and relevant content.

[1] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Heraclitus

[2] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Heraclitus

[3] Markie, P. (2015). Rationalism vs. Empiricism in The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy in the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy, (Summer 2015 Edition), Edward N. Zalta (ed.).

 

 

 

An Approach to Art Making #1

An Approach to art making can include diverse formulae. One such formula may root an artwork in “research.” A body of research may form the foundation of an artwork.  “Rich” artwork may result from a body of research.  Research may need to employ writing, to develop the artwork or artworks.  Without writing, it is difficult to have the dialogue one needs to be engaged with an art work-before and after the artwork. Research may also involve data collection or formal methods employed by scientists in, for example, social methods or qualitative methods or quantitative research methods. An artist may also utilize methods in investigative journalism.

A second road may be a formula such as “Quepine (QPN),” Question, Proverb and News. Quepine can be a divine formula for beauty or knowledge or beauty from knowledge. Quepine is a formula that may result in sacred artworks and make an artist wise. Quepine can root a subject matter in history by attaching it to the news. News is history. Giving a subject history gives it depth and a road to travel on in time.  News has been a theme in art for a long time.  News is used in wax print textiles, art, and music of certain cultures, especially African cultures, who may name a baby or feature a notable from the news.  In some of the African music, the news may be right in the music. A small rural village may become reliant on musicians to convey the news to the people via songs.  Also, some art schools taught “news” as a way of plucking from current events, subjects relevant to the human condition as was done by a student colleague from the Parisian E’cole de Beaux Arts.  Human condition is not exclusive to the news, but it is a worthy method.  Human Condition was taught, perhaps, as a notch from existentialism and existentialism is perhaps “the root of art.”

Why this writer believes that existentialism is “the root of art”  is the relationship to “art” of the word in “Crackiola,”  “are-tea,” or  “our essence” or the “I AM” which was used by many supercomputers and by the Chinese Manufacturers.  The English language breaks down into codes and root systems.  Secondly, many crucial areas in art are easily organized around existentialism or the “I AM,” such as history, the human condition, social, observational, humanitarian and so on.  Drawing, painting, sculpting and photography etc. may all be existential.

-Existentialism

“Planning” may also be something that architects utilize to build houses and could be a word that artists need. This writer was explained how an architect may have a very detailed and specific set of plans to build an exact design precisely and swiftly with all the electrical outlets etc. An artist may make “plans.” An artwork based on plans may have an interesting result that is often mechanical or electrical or structural. Computer Aided Drafting may be utilized.

Recently, this writer was asked “what are your goals?” and “how will you design your studio?” right after. It was asked in a sewing class and functioned like an epiphany, the student began to develop this wild list of “sewing goals.”

If one picked up a good newspaper or a selection of newspapers and thought about say for example “world peace” or integrated social elements into ones goals their studio may take a different turn. What if one had an “umbrella” under which they were working from? An artist’s umbrella.

-Goals

– Studio Design

-Umbrella

“Technique” is the fourth road. The technique provides an endless possibility. Most art schools provide students with strong technical backgrounds, which always serve an artist.  An artist may choose to hinge their artwork on a technique and be infinite within it.  The technique can be powerful when coupled with for example, “history.” Students of art may also embark on an existential path that explores diverse techniques.

“Studies” are another road that was used in Nikolai Gogol’s book “Diary of a Madman.” Studies can provide a context for future works or larger works or thumbnails or for manifestation.  With studies, one may take it apart in many ways, to ascertain many diverse things. Studies may lead to problem solving or product design or anything in the realm of possibility. Studies may serve government and help people to bridge gaps and jump over fences. In Gogol’s book, “Diary of a Madman,” his main character was engaged in studies and posted an ad in the newspaper to solicit clients for his portraiture.

-Research

-Quepine

-Planning (as in Architecture)

-Technique

-Studies

In the presence of writing an artwork can literally fall- “when it falls.” When one is writing a book, for example, and illustrating pages, drawings are easily pulled from the text.

However, most artworks are “site-specific.” An artist can search for a locale, build a locale or create a site-specific work of art.  Recently an artist went to plan an exhibition and recognized this phenomenon- that in fact, artwork is almost always “site-specific.” Or an artwork can be adapted to space and remade.

Another intersection I find very meaningful is “custom design,” for the artist and for the designer.  Custom design, commissions and site specific art works, bare a relationship. There is a necessity in art to think about space.

Custom Design may be very relevant to artists, who in turn may pursue credentials from multidisciplinary design programs such as “MDP” in the College of Engineering at the University of Michigan.  Custom design may involve manufacturing, technology or systems design mixed with artworks. For example “Church Pop,” may be installed in a house or perhaps a fiber art wall installation or a sound system. An artist may need to be an engineer. An artist’s ability to manifest their ideas has often been incongruent. But the creativity of an artist may place on paper, a vision for an entire city or even in exhibition unveil viable ideas to solve the world’s problems.

-When it falls

-Site Specific

-Custom Design

 In the Middle East, it has been said, to employ “finery techniques,” that “fine art should be fine.”  In the Middle East it is commonplace for a lot of people to reside in palaces, which would further create a desire for finery, or art that is compatible with the local architecture.

At the Central Academy of Fine Art in China, they are painting birds and flowers-not exclusively. It was said to me by a Chinese Artist that “birds are always beautiful.” If you choose a beautiful subject, the result is almost always beautiful.

-Finery

Art Relevant Juncture has also to do with relevance itself. It was said to this artist that she has a “relevant” artwork. That “the more relevant, perhaps the better the art,” was said by someone from the University of Michigan.

Afua Serwah Osei-Bonsu

(Excerpt from “Art Relevant Juncture,” by Afua Serwah Osei-Bonsu based on her research about art.

“Happy and Existential Birthday” By, Afua Serwah Osei-Bonsu

A tall-ish woman with fluffy hair rolled and pinned up behind both ears, who we shall call Hara, was celebrating her birthday, both happy and existential. We call her Hara for her love of half cooked, half raw foods including Thai and Mexican. Early in the month, she began celebrating her birthday, pulling over to garage sales and purchasing miscellaneous treasures including a curling iron, hamburger shaping rings for grilling, a round white with azul painted filigree set of four Elizabethan Coat Hooks, a stack of cook books and bartending manuals. Things were found to make cocktails from the Virgin Islands, and a book of Recipes for a Michigan Christmas.
The Garage Sale prior, Hara found unopened stain removing detergents, a little black velvet purse, and a box of books on writing. She bought the detergent hoping to have special detergents for her Chef’s uniform jacket, color safe bleach for the olive embroidery of her name.
Almost home, she continued down a back street and pulled over to purchase a Puppy Manual, some kitchen utensils, and a brown leather purse with embossed floral detailing and braiding.
A few days later, Hara heard about a Book Sale at the library and rejoiced that for her birthday she would stock her library. At the Book Sale, she filled two large boxes that a library assistant helped her to cart to the back of her car. One box was filled with humanities subjects such as magic, fine paintings, Circus, a book on Korea, a rare book making book, 100 World’s Most Beautiful Paintings, Celebrity Caricature, The Authentic Gilbert and Sullivan Songbook, an Iraqi Cook Book, The Calligraphy Source Book, Gaugin, Varga, Faces Fantasy Make Up, The Bible Portrayed, The Golden Age of Toys, The Nude in Art, and Victorian Portraits.
In the Second box she placed Sociological, Philosophical, Travel and Religious books which included: Back Roads and Byways of Michigan, China A to Z, Mexico Guide Book, Let’s Go France, Great Britain Guide Book, Sayings of Paramahansa Yogananda, A Year in Provence, King Solomon’s Ring, Original Blessings, Wizards Spell Compendium, The Trickster, The Holy Bible, Holman Concise Topical Concordance, Best American Travel Writings, The Book of Prayer, Around the Golden Ring of Russia, How to Know God, The New Union Prayer Book, The Mind, and Devotional Classics.
Early in the month Hara came across a free Lowery Organ online and picked it up. Hara planned for after her move to buy a Baby Grand Piano and collect Christmas Songs and Christmas Recipes. “Wouldn’t it be lovely,” she thought, “to learn many, many Christmas Songs with which to entertain holiday guests.” She registered for Piano lessons and sewing lessons in three locations. Hara was at Bethesda Church and received a blessing from a parishioner that said, “God, build a wall around her.” Hara was at Hope Church and received a Birthday Blessing and the Parishioner said, “Lord Bless her Birthday….Lead her towards good things and close all doors to bad things.”

Applies Philosophy to Social Questions: Professor Frithjof Bergmann

Professor Frithjof Bergmann:
Applies Philosophy to Social Questions
By Afua Serwah Osei-Bonsu
A gruff sounding Philosophy Professor Emeritus from the University of Michigan, born in Saxony Germany on December 24, 1930, on Christmas Eve, was called upon for interview, Frithjof Bergmann. Bergmann holds his  PHD from Princeton University and taught formerly at the University of California Berkeley, University of California Santa Cruz and Stanford University.
Bergmann said in regards to students coming into his class, “that above all what I want from a student is curiosity.” Bergmann described Philosophy as, “the most unbound way of thinking, you can discuss anything, no limits, no fences.”
When I searched “Frithjof Bergmann” online a range a philosophers popped up including: Karl Marx, Arthur Schopenhauer, Immanuel Kant, Meister Eckhart, Theodor Adorno, Martin Heidegger and Georg Wilhem Freidrich Hegel. Bergmann studied under Walter Kaufman at Princeton, who he recommended reading. Bergmann wrote his dissertation on “Harmony and Reason, An Introduction to The Philosophy of Hegel.”
Bergmann also recommended reading “Nietzsche” of whom he is a scholar. Nietzsche is a German Philosopher, Cultural Critic, Poet and Composer. About Nietzsche, Bergmann wrote, “Nietzsche’s Critique of Morality,” on Oxford University Press in 1988.
Bergmann, in about 2003, in Ann Arbor Michigan, lectured on his organization “New Work.” Bergmann spoke as often did Gandhi about doing “what you really, really want to do” and also about the world being at that time in about 80% poverty. Bergmann had decided to turn his focus to poverty and still now in 2015, he was guided in this interview by that early “big topic” of poverty.
Bergmann said, “Many jobs will be eliminated and how to solve the problem of division between rich and poor was one of my main topics.”
Bergmann’s publications include “On Being Free,” and “New Work, New Culture.” His book “New Work, New Culture,” deals with his research on “how to solve huge problems with resources, climate, poverty and reorganizing work in drastic fundamental ways.”
New Work got legs in about 1983 or 1984 and has grown since then. Many places and countries have realized ideas from New Work. This year Bergmann is preparing for trips to India, Russia, Europe, and Africa to see how ideas from New Work can be put into practice. Bergmann is concerned with: “new roles in manufacturing, the role of working and the role of culture.”
Back in 2003, Bergmann was in South Africa building these incredible architectural “dome” structures. He described spraying concrete on  huge balloons to get these gigantic domes that when dried could serve communities and modern architecture. The images of the domes Bergmann was building, were in harmony with this wild architecture, from the Austrian Artist Friedensreich Hundertwasser, who built right into the sides of hills, where as Bergmann’s architecture appeared to be hills.
When Bergmann lands in Michigan, he teaches at The University of Michigan courses on Existentialism and Continental Philosophy. Bergmann answered, when asked about what is a good application of philosophy, “social questions.”
Bergmann said, “Teaching is wonderful, if your students love you and teaching is horrible if your students hate you.”
Bergmann described, The University of Michigan Philosophy for teaching as “serious teaching” and that philosophy teaches how to “…get to the bottom of things, unmask and be good at critical thinking.”
Bergmann, a professor and political activist is also credited as one of the creators of the teach-in.
“One of the first teach-in’s was held at the University of Michigan Campus in March 1965.”Frithjof Bergmann Photo copy