Sunday, July 29, 2007

On Dalí and Film

Art Review

DaliOh boy, have I worked on getting my ass to the exhibition Dali and Film at Tate Modern. Since its opening in early June, I have meant to go. But I managed finally, so was it worth the efforts? Dali, the first great self-promoter within the art circles and one of the master visionary. For me his greatest strenght is his belief that creation is just about getting rid of your limits.

I have been a Dali fan this reason, and his paintings reflect the limitless approach really well. However, even thought being aware of his films, such as Un chien andalou (1929) with Luis Buñuel, I never thought films were such an influence for Mr Dali. Also I was not aware of his efforts to break into Hollywood, using his signature surrealistic designs. In this sense the exhibition did a really good job.

Highlight was his only recently accomplished collaboration with Walt Disney, titled Destino (2003). Storyboarded by Disney studio artist John Hench and Dalí for eight months in late 1945 and 1946; however, financial concerns caused Disney to cease production. The Walt Disney Company, then Walt Disney Studios, was plagued by many financial woes in the World War II era. Hench compiled a short animation test of about 18 seconds in the hopes of rekindling Disney's interest in the project, but the production was no longer deemed financially viable and put on indefinite hiatus.

The importance of this piece for me was is the fact that I'm a huge Disney fan. His animations have been very forward thinking, and especially Fantasia (1940) was one of the first films to involve visualized music.

One must credit Dali with in passion and drive to use film as a medium for his visions. However, Dali's directorial efforts are not very high quality. His storytelling so very surreal that, limit in film technology made it impossible to fully realise the visions. I believe oil painting was the best media for surrealism at his time, though one must wonder what if Dali would have had the CG technology to create 3D animated moving worlds.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Minor Tones



To be honest, I think I'm more after the easy life than the little bohemian artist inside wants to be. I have nothing but good things to say about the people, though their current government is betraying the whole human kind for the sake of profits. That is beside the point however, as I wanted to talk about a situation that evolved last weekend in a lounge bar. A dude, dressed in an expensive suit, asks this from my friend.

"Where are you from?"
"Nice, very cool. I am from California, Los Angeles."
(I give away short laugh, for the obviously cocky manner he used)
"Why are you smiling like that? You must be jeaulous."

Right, just why the hell would he think I am jealous for him. California is great in many ways...really it is, and I would move there if the opportunity should provide me the chance. Or to be precise, I do have the chance all the time, though have chosen to take another direction than moving there right now. Actually I think I'm more jealous for the homeless ones living in Barcelona than for him living in LA.

So what I am trying to say is that, stop being so god damn simple minded. Life is not always about sunshine, money and girls (although most of the time it is...). And beside, repetition kills you. The cookie you eat everyday, will soon taste like dust. Sometimes I admire my dad for his favourite hobby:

Sitting beside the lake, alone and just thinking.

Monday, July 16, 2007

Crossover of Senses @ MoS

Performance + Visuals

On Sat we had the launch night of a monthly performance at Ministry of Sound. I seem to tie myself a lot with the famed club, which I don't mind actually. It has been my second home in London and when the club is rocking it is really good. For the Crossover of Senses, we created a platform for an audio-visual experience.

Each staging will see me, VJ Hudson, with a specially selected headline guest. For the July night we had Anna aka VJ Bopa. She is the top female VJ in the world and has nice glamourous graphical style, with a lot of references to the Scandinavian design style. For my own set, I used a lot of themes from the Global Cool performance a week earlier, though mixed it with "Live Your Dream" approach. "Be Cool and Live Your Dream".

My time is becoming increasingly limited, due to a nice new development with MoS. I'm doing more and more on the visual side of the club...I'm writing this from the MoS offices and got to get back to work. Later ya'll.


Visuals: VJ Bopa & VJ Hudson
Producers: Teppo Hudson & Evy Magoulas
Director / Editor: Teppo Hudson
Photography: Chester (Cut Creative) + Teppo Hudson
Music: Cedric Gervais feat. Caroline - Spirit In My Life

Sunday, July 08, 2007

Global Cool @ Ministry of Sound


I was commissioned to produce Live Visuals for DJ Pete Tong’s 'Wonderland' night on 07.07.07 in Ministry of Sound. If nothing else, at least the lucky seven was lined up for me. One of the major current debate is global warming and Ministry of Sound is the first dance brand addressing the clubbers, projected through a non-profit Global Cool. Therefore, I collaborated with Pete Tong in order get the punters to take action.

Aim of the visuals was to create a propaganda style moving imagery about the beauty of the planet. I used elements of video, photography, graphics with propaganda addressed using text layers. The content was rather easily created, coordinating photographers in the cities of Barcelona, London and New York. You can find a sample of the contents here.

Major challenge was the time limit. The commission came some 2 weeks before the night and was actually confirmed just 4 days before the stage time. That left me very little time to write narratives. The direction ended up being very improvised, with emphasis on content collection and punch line creation. Live editing was done on the spot.

However, the night was a success. I had fun, enjoyed my contribution for the good cause and visuals worked really well most of the time. Hopefully the Global Cool movement continues. There is only one thing that I am missing. Again, like on those hundreds of music gigs, I can't recall any concious moments of mixing. Am I doomed to lose the most amazing moments of my life?

Thursday, July 05, 2007

Global Cool Trailer


The video is a trailer sample of the performance "Global Cool". This is a project aimed to address clubbers about the dangers of Global Warming and will be performed in Ministry of Sound on 7/7/7. The performance is produced for DJ Pete Tong.


Producer: Teppo Hudson
Director / Editor: Teppo Hudson
Photography: Emmi Kaarna + Chester (Cut Creative) + Sam Javanrouh + Kathleen Connelly + National Geographics
Graphics: Various Sources
Music: Polaroid - So Damn Beautiful (amethyst mix) - from GU 10

Monday, July 02, 2007

Flames of Imagination


Do you know why we are interested about visual representations? My personal interest is in all kind of visualizations, which has developed through abstract visuals of music videos in my childhood. What I took away back then was a whole set of expectations about what an image could look like. That is what I miss in TV, and that's why I do what I do in arts. Basically, it is the idea of cinema that isn't driven by storytelling in the conventional sense.

I don't mind narrative; in fact. I love a good narrative, expecially a Hollywood technical quality. Anything is valid as long as you do it right. If the message that's being delivered makes me think, entertains me, makes me laugh or cry, gives me a place to forget, or whatever - then I'm interested.

With abstract visuals we are seeing things now that were unthinkable five years ago. I think this is because a wide audience is being introduced to audio-synchronised abstraction through their computers' music visuazation apps. To me it's common sense that people enjoy watching abstraction, and seeing an interaction between sound and image that isn't necessarily dictated by telling a story.

As displays become brighter, bigger, and flatter, the image becomes environmental, allowing the video to color a room's ambience rather than just deliver information. Today's media is undergoing a metamorphosis as new displays beg for beautiful picture to fill them. So we're now seeing companies offering footage of tropical fish aquariums and slideshows of impressionist paintings for all these HD screens. This market will demand new and fresher content, and VJs are the natural providers.

In a 2003 speech by William Gibson to Director's Guild of America's Digital Day says that cinema began when prehistoric people sat in circles around fire, looked into the flames, and told stories about what they saw. Resulting in a symbolic narrative triggered by the moving abstact flames:

The story of film begins around a fire, in darkness. Gathered around this fire are primates of a certain species, our ancestors, an animal distinguished by a peculiar ability to recognize patterns.
There is movement in the fire: embers glow and crawl on charcoal. Fire looks like nothing else. It generates light in darkness. It moves. It is alive.

They see the faces of wolves and of their own dead in the flames. They crouch, watching the fire, watching its constant, unpredictable movements, and someone is telling a story. In the watching of the fire and the telling of the tale lie the beginning of what we still call film.

With the advent of the digital, which I would date from, approximately, World War Two, the nature of this project begins to become more apparent, more overt; the texture of these more recent technologies, the grain of them, becomes progressively finer, progressively more divorced from Newtonian mechanics. In terms of scale, they are more akin to the workings of the brain itself.

Sunday, July 01, 2007

Photo of the Month - Red Bar

Photo Blog

I'm starting to upload a photo at first day of the month. The photo will be taken by me, and always tries to signify the events, feelings and memories of the latest month. I hope it will grow to be a photojourney, that will tell a lot with a single shot.

Here goes for the first one. Titled Redbar. June was red, with passion in soul for what went on in Barcelona, anxiety towards the bar management and blood poured on VJ event. Still in a bar happened the most beautiful event of the month. It was an underground afterparty in Barcelona...Though that is all I'll tell.