Today, as the sun tows spring slowly onto the shore, I’m longing to get back out into the world outside and gaze upon some wonder. In the meantime, I’ve collected Three Good Things for Wide Eyes that will help in the ‘visual wonder’ department.
Thing To Listen To: Earth Crisis
Dirty Projectors tread some unique sonic territory. To be honest, I don’t always love it but it’s always interesting and sometimes truly beautiful in that way only mystery and wonder can be. Case in point, this animated video (short film, really) for the band’s EP Earth Crisis.
I’m a big fan of stop motion animation and this is some of the best and most original I’ve seen in a long while.
Thing to Watch: The Best Documentaries Of All Time, Maybe
Vogue recently compiled a list of the “71 Best Documentaries Of All Time” and a lot of them are available to watch on the services you likely already subscribe to.
There are so many films on this list I have yet to see. Some I just haven’t made time for yet, like American Factory, 13thor Jiro Dreams of Sushi. Others require just the right mood (My Octopus Teacher) or tolerance for despair (The Act of Killing). There are many I’ve never heard of but sound fascinating, like Kate Plays Christine, Cameraperson and Nanook of the North. Those I have seen I have enjoyed (mostly) and some are on my own must-watch list, like Won’t You Be My Nieghbour, Koyannisqatsi, The Fog of War and Capturing the Friedmans.
My biggest gripe with this list is the omission of Dick Johnson is Dead – an absolutely beautiful and absurd meditation on the death of our parents, even before they’ve actually died. Dick Johnson is Dead is totally original, quirky and hopeful while dealing with very heavy subjects. Writer/Director/Cameraperson Kirsten Johnson made me laugh and cry several times and if you haven’t seen it yet it’s available now on Netflix. I cannot recommend it enough.
“It would be so easy if loving only gave us the beautiful, but what loving demands is that we face the fear of losing each other; that when it gets messy we hold each other close. And when we can, we defiantly celebrate our brief moments of joy.”Director Kirsten Johnson, Dick Johnson is Dead
All lists will have their flaws and peculiarities, but you’d be hard pressed to find a better collection of docs than those Vogue has gathered here.
Thing to See: Faces by Karen Carson
Like so many good things, I was introduced to the work of Karen Carson through the excellent newsletter of artist Austin Kleon.
Karen Carson’s work is bold – paintings that look like iconic graphic design. Her Faces series captures a series of states of being on faces that could have come from a Coney Island sideshow posters. States like “periodic happiness” and “chronic envy” run the gamut of emotions exaggerated into charicature.
I really, really like these paintings. Check out the series online here.