Thom is a 19 year-old from the Sunshine Coast, in Queensland, mid-way down the east coast of Australia. He’s also the subject of Riley Blakeway’s eponymous, debut biopic film embedded above. Like a lot of films that capture the essence of Australian culture, there’s an underlying and at times depressing sense of sparseness and futility – a sense that in fact, the portrait of Australian youth in many senses, is much the same as it ever was.
Jonathan Van Smit lives in Hong Kong and captures documentary-style street photography between the hours of 11pm and 4am. He’s one of the most open and interesting guys I’ve ever met: the kind of guy that makes you want to put the mic away and be mates. His gritty, black and white captures are almost always shot from-the-hip and tell a story of Hong Kong’s underbelly.
“We All Want To Be Young in China” is a video I concepted/directed for enovate (edited by Giuseppe Farina). It’s a 3-minute crash course on the evolution of contemporary youth culture in China. I really hope it inspires young people in China and educates those outside China on some of the influences on this increasingly important and ever changing consumer group.
Those in China sans VPN can view it here.
The video was inspired by the popular online video from Box1824 called “We All Want To Be Young”.
It’s been a couple months in the making, and I couldn’t be happier to release it for all to read. Filled with text and photos, the China Outlook dishes up some much-needed insight into the evolving youth culture of Mainland China. Keeping with THE PUSH SHOVE’s penchants, this publication focuses predominantly on developments in Chinese sub-cultures, and is organized into four areas:
- Youth culture beyond Shanghai and Beijing
- The expanding underground music scene
- 2011 the year of Action Sports
- The Virtual – Actual Network
[via The Push Shove]
A couple of my photographs are being published in a forthcoming book about fixed gear bicycles. It’s called “One Gear”. Congratulations to the guys at Anybody’s Fixed Gear. The sample spreads (below) look great.
If you’re like me and you don’t have time to look at every Thom, Mick and Iggy’s “2010 Best Album” list. Head straight for the buffet of the most respected “2010 Best Album” lists –an incredibly thorough, beautifully designed, interactive data visualisation.
End of Year Top Albums 2010 [zoho.co.uk] provides a visual summary of the most successful music albums in 2010, based on the aggregation of a large variety of music rankings and charts, ranging from Amazon.com‘s list, over the Daily Telegraph to Rolling Stone and The Times).
I really enjoyed this short documentary on street fashion photographer, Scott Schumann aka The Satorialist. He has such an professional, friendly, but somehow odd report with his subjects. There were two quotes from the film that particularly resonated with me. See below.
Shanghai 5 is a documentary of the development of the the city’s skate culture and their on-going love affair with it’s dreamy urban architecture. The debut screening was held at The Source, back in early December and I really wish I could have made it along. Late or not Shanghai 5 deserves to be written about. More after the jump.
Yesterday Mattias and I rode our bikes to the outskirts of Shanghai to check out the world’s largest skate park (‘SMP International Skate Park‘). We ran into seven year-old Xiao He, comfortably dropping-in and rolling around the various banks, hips, fun boxes, rails, ledges and hubbas. He told us he’d been skating for one year. For me it was further evidence of a growing mainstream acceptance of alternative sports and sub-cultural movements like skateboarding, fixed-gear cycling, punk, indie music, urban art and sneaker culture. After all, his parents had to buy the equipment and drive him to the skate park every weekend for the past year.
Shots of Xiao He in action after the jump.
I don’t want to get all philosophical on you. But sometimes I enjoy stretching my brain in this way. In this TEDx video, so-called “Account Planning Guru” Paul Feldwick explains the need to re-define “creativity” away from terms like originality and innovation. To me, that’s like saying we need to avoid using words like rhythm and melody when defining the word “music”.
Earlier this week Diederik van Middelkoop of Massive Music emailed me their latest music video, “Shanghai, Shanghai” featuring rapper ‘TK’ Tang King. It’s a really fun clip, featuring glimpses into all the iconic scenes you encounter everyday, living in Shanghai.
After the 2010 Shanghai World Expo, and the millions and millions of visitors who came and went, the message still lingers on in Shanghai: ‘Better City, Better Life’
Film Director Bas Roeterink, music house MassiveMusic Shanghai and Rapper Tang King (‘TK’) sat down, took that message, and spun it around.
‘Make a Better City, Have a Better Life’.
Beijing indie-pop rockers Queen Sea Big Shark played at Shanghai’s Mao Livehouse on Friday night. I’ve had people in the (China music) industry tell me their live show was over-rated. Friday night was anything but. The venue brought great sound and front gal Fu Han brought a visual feast of a show and bag loads of intensity. The set flirted between club music and their signature guitar-pop and B52s-baselines. One friend aptly described the mix as almost Bowie-esque.
20 images from the show below. And a playlist to stream while you browse…
My first attempt at a technique called “lens wacking” or “free lensing”:
A short film about our neighbours.
The couple downstairs in our Shanghai laneway compound spend every afternoon dicing up fresh vegetables and cooking fresh noodle pasta. Then at 9pm, they wheel it out onto the intersection at the end of our laneway and fry-up woks full of tasty vegetable noodles until 5am.
Between the laneway and the intersection is one of the most popular fruit shops among residents of the French Concession. The local business owner stocks a huge range of hard-to-get imported ingredients and fresh produce, which has earned her the name ‘Arugula Lady‘ among expats.
For 5 kuai, you can eat like a king in Shanghai.
Song is a special Daytrotter Studio recording of ‘Ghosting’ by Freelance Whales. Download the whole session free.
If you’re in Sydney on Thursday 11 November, don’t miss what will be a hella exciting collection of photographs from Yimmy Yayo, aka my dear friend James W. Mataitis Bailey.
All prints will be raffled off (tickets $1) with the proceeds going to JUMP, Australia’s largest mentoring program for young emerging artists. Images from the exhibition will be posted here on Pity The Cool, following the opening.
All the details after the jump.
Wrote a post yesterday about JR’s work. Went and check out his latest exhibition opening at 18Gallery on the Bund tonight in Shanghai. JR himself (+team) was at the gallery and I managed to catch him to ask a few questions that I was keen for answers on. I also found out the locations of some of his Shanghai pieces.
Pervasive street artist JR, who was just awarded the TED Prize, is opening his latest exhibition ‘The Wrinkles of a City’ in Shanghai tonight. His work is characterised by intimately-shot black and white photographs, super-sized and pasted in remarkable urban locations. There’s always a strong humanitarian message in his works.
The Sound Chaser is an amplified toy train with a stylus (record needle) that runs along tracks made of old vinyl records. The artist, Yuri Suzuki is an amazing dude who, for the last few years, has been leading innovation on the relationship between music and product design. Watch the video above to see a demonstration of the new music-inspired products he produced for the London Design Festival. Below are some of my favourite musical products Suzuki has created over the last few years…including a musical kettle, which looks more like a guitar than a kitchen appliance.
On the surface, Mumbai (formerly Bombay) is true to the imaginative representations of popular fiction. But chaos, noise and filth are merely birthmarks on India’s biggest and most diverse city. Offensive contradictions coexist harmoniously in its flesh. But its dusty old soul rewards persistent open-mindedness and brave curiosity…
Here’s a selection of really interesting images from Nick Peden. Nick recently returned to Shanghai, after a research adventure through greater China, focusing on youth culture in the country’s second-tier cities. These images remind me why I love living in this part of the world.
The unveiling of China’s innovative, congestion-alleviating new bus design caused a web storm this week. But what hasn’t been released yet is what the inside of such a groundbreaking concept will look like. Here’s the answer.
Swiss artist and my good mate, Ian White (aka Cutterskink, aka ARAB) recently dropped into Shanghai for a visit. Among some of the the mischief while he was here, we thew some paint up in an incredible abandoned old building. Check out some of the stills from the area on flickr.
The most over-observed, polite conversation point in Shanghai: the tardy arrival of the new (warmer) season. Rather than pine about how much we missed the weather, with it’s beautiful blue sky, tweeting birds and golden morning sun, we celebrated it’s company with a delicious home-cooked stack of thin pancakes — not crepes — thin pancakes. I’m not going to explain the difference, you’ll just have to trust this former skeptic that one indeed exists.
Words and pictures covering the New York Bicycle Film Festival published by FHM:
http://fhm.com.au/touring-nyc-on-two-wheels.htm (full article).
I’m really not a fan of the Hordern Pavillion as a venue. But for a huge act like Bloc Party you really can’t argue with that venue choice. The guys were extremely gracious during a meet & greet with triple j winners. Kele welcomed the 10 winners and their guests from on stage, as they made their way across the vast hanger-like space. The band finished the soundcheck with three tunes especially for the 20 punters voluntarily jammed up against the pit barrier. After soundcheck Kele, Russell, Gordon and Matt took the time to meet everyone personally and sign whatever was thrown in front of them.
Their set was a perfect mix of their huge radio hits and new material.
Check out the rest of the photos from their Sydney show @ The Hordern Pavillion on the triple j gallery.
Big ups to a band who are grounded enough to know the value of their fans and really know how to turn-on a live performance.
Emiliana Torrini’s live show was beautiful. It was one of the best I’ve seen since Regina Spektor toured in 2007. CW Stoneking, who played at the Metro the night before Emiliana was also one of the most brilliant shows I’ve seen this year. The key is in their storytelling (between songs). After attending one of their gigs, you’re left feeling like you know them better on a personal level — something you’ll never get from just listening to the record.
I hope these photos have captured some of that memorable performance. All photos posted in the triple j gallery.