by Mariya Guzova
You may not know his name, but you have probably seen his face.
Bryan Saunders’ drug induced self portrait series recently took the internet by storm. The bold artistic experiment had Saunders consuming a new drug everyday and drawing himself under the influence.
100 mg Seroquel
Morphine IV (dosage unknown)
Saunders is no stranger to risky, innovative, and avant-garde creativity. He has drawn a self-portrait of himself everyday since 1995. This march marks his 19th anniversary of the practice, having drawn just under 7000 self portraits.
“Every day my brain and central nervous system processes an unyielding amount of phenomena. Any of these phenomena coming in have the ability to change my brain chemistry and how I perceive things in the world around me as well as the physical and mental world inside of me. Through the process of existence my metabolism, health, heart rate, chemistry, thoughts, feelings, behaviors and beliefs etc. are subject to often mild but sometimes drastic changes too. Therefore, to me personally, there is no one correct or standard ‘personal’ way of interpreting the world, so I choose myself as the vessel that captures this because I am the medium by which all of this is processed or filtered through in the first place. But that’s just me,” explains Saunders.
Placing himself as the subject, Bryan has created a vast variety of artistic works.
by Maria de Cardenas
Round Venue in Toronto’s Kensington Market opened its doors one more time to Costume Life Drawing at Toons on Tap, under Acid Animation Company’s direction.
zeeBigBang celebrated with Toons on Tap the second anniversary to the theme of Captain Hook.
Sion Irwin-Childs as Captain Hook at Round Venue for Toons on Tap.
Following their passion for drawing and their addiction to animation, Canadian artists, Jeremy Carderelli and Lauri Lewis created Costume Gestured Drawing through their own company Acid Animation. For the past two years, they have been organizing different events, each with a new living cartoon character. “We think about what kind of character that would lend themselves to some great storytelling poses,” explains Jeremy.
They also work with photographer Jeffrey Danyleyko, who is part of every session, event and concert they organize.
Toons on Tap model for Iron Pencil Competition. Photo by Jeffrey Danyleyko.
Poetry is a literary art form seldom seen as modern, competitive, or alive. But that is exactly what the Toronto Poetry Slam is doing for the poetic community across Canada.
Electric Jon at the 2011 Toronto Poetry Slam.
The Toronto Poetry Slam (TPS) is a twice-monthly spoken word competition held at the Drake Hotel in Toronto. Participants compete to join the TPS team that will go on to compete in international and national poetry competitions.
David Silverberg, managing editor at Digital Journal, founded TPS in 2003. “I always loved spoken word and poetry while I was growing up and I just thought it was lacking and hard to come by in the underground community. So I started the slam to get people on the stage, and talking, and performing for everyone’s enjoyment,” explains David.
Shoolie at the TPS competition.
Each slam has 12 participants, who have three minutes to perform their piece for the judges. At the end, three finalists are chosen to move on to the semi finals. “We’ve had all kinds of people participate. Professional writers who are established and known, and we’ve had your average college kid who likes to write poetry in their free time.”
Toronto is now in the midst of one its most beloved festivals. Winterlicious is offering up some of Toronto’s best and most diverse culinary treats.
Chicken Cordon Bleu at Biff’s Bistro
Ryo Ozawa, Executive Chef for EDO Restaurants preps a selection of sizzling mains available during Winterlicious.
The winter and summer “licious” festivals were created in 2003 by the City of Toronto, as an initiative to promote the culturally diverse culinary scene in Toronto, pump up the local restaurant economy, to bring people together to explore the city and to celebrate great food.
Chef’s choice of Omakase sushi or Omakase vegetable sushi, available on EDO’s Winterlicious menu.
Ortomisto Pizza from Piola Famosi per la pizza.
Daniel Wurtzel is New York based artist who creates sculptures out of the most unexpected things. His work has evolved from stone and wood into elaborate jello and rubber installations, and now, into beautifully structured air sculptures.
Pas de Deux by Daniel Wurtzel
Using fans and flowing fabrics and materials, Daniel creates shapes and movements that are both magical and enticing to a viewer. “I was inspired to do this suddenly one day. I saw a leaf get picked up by the wind, and watched it as it moved along the air current. As it glided, I was inspired to re-create the phenomenon in my work,” explains Daniel.
Many of the air sculptures utilise an air vortex that sends the material spinning and flowing in a precise and powerful way.
Daniel’s work has been turned into performance pieces and has been seen around the world in installations, fashion shows, and cirque du soleil performances. “I find that these pieces are very exciting and that’s why they’ve been such a hit. They really bring things to life and make people feel more energized, and bring the arts of sculpture and performance together. ”
The world of arts and entertainment can be a tough terrain for anyone to conquer. The creative world is a competitive environment that can be both intimidating and challenging, especially if you’re coming from a marginalized or disadvantaged background. This is why Gavin Sheppard and Derek Jancar started The Remix Project, an alternative training program that helps level the playing field for talented youth with limited resources who are trying to enter arts and entertainment industries. The Remix Project provides an innovative educational program and state of the art facilities at no cost to their participants in order to propel them towards success in their field.
The First Weekend Club is a non-profit organization helping make Canadian film a household name. When you join the club, you get notified when a Canadian film is being released in your city, or a city you’re interested in. This help fill seats for opening weekends, spread the word, and promote Canadian films.
Sean Metelerkamp is a South African photographer and video maker exploring the various boundaries of visual expression. Raised in Knysna, SA, Sean first picked up a camera when his school offered a new course in photography. “The classes took place in a dark room with no teacher – how could I not want to sit in a dark room and play with chemicals for an hour everyday?” explains Sean.
“I was doing my PhD when I started to do research in trying to bridge the physical world with the digital world,” explains Hao Li, professor and 3D software developer. Li has been on the leading edge of the new generation of 3D technology.
zeeBigBang spoke with Hao Li, currently a University of Southern California professor, whose research led him to a great development in 3D capture technology. He has been working away from traditional computer graphics, where you have a virtual object that you’re trying to render in a way that will make it look as real as possible, and started working inversely, where you have a real object and you’re trying to bring it into the digital.