'S' is for Sincerity

Get unstuck and set your vision

Are you in transition? Are you looking to start a new chapter?

Get to know DK and the way we work with people to walk through the process of going from A to ‘I’m not sure yet.’

‘It’s the discovery phase of any creative process that can yield a lot of great insights,’ says A. Spaice, ‘before you even make a step in any direction.’ Connect directly to work with DK’s original founding team members who started this kind of consulting work together in 1994.

Continue reading “Get unstuck and set your vision”

'S' is for Sincerity · Ideas of Curiosity

A vision & a collection of S P A C E made to realize it

The vision


S P A C E started out as a reaction to the mainstream media’s castings of peoples and places that are ‘exotic’ as something ‘other’, to be exalted or observed rather than commingled with.


Maybe it’s colonization that got us perturbed, or the high school British Literature and American Literature course syllabi that were insisted up on us as ‘literature’ without the global context of so, so very much more that can round out one’s perspectives, and challenge one’s beliefs. That, to me, is real travel.


More room for dialogue, more scope for relating, more opportunity for discovering Self in Other… that’s what I wanted to set out to explore and co-create and then record in weekly e-mag format, in this collected series. In the end, or at least, one chapter’s end, it was to spend a great chunk of time uninterrupted in Vietnam (pandemic) in order to find… Solitude.

Solitude (Kismuth Books / 2021)

The collections


The series has been going since 2017 and began in Cambodia with the first sequence, ‘A Philosophy of the Moment.’ Here are some of the other collections, made in popup ateliers in the places where we’ve been, looking for the real and the now. In other words, true stories.

The people who tell their stories to us, directly. In the way they speak. After a period of time in which to build trust, and establish rapport. Not everyone is open to it. But a few are. And when I find them, that’s where we do the Atelier S P A C E jam. To make the zine, and our own, co-created and highly curated arrangements, of S P A C E.

***

A Philosophy of the Moment, Winter 2018
Finland, Cambodia

The Book of New Things, Spring 2019
Vietnam and Japan

In the Vernacular, Summer 2019
Latvia, Slovakia and Poland

Trust the Process, Autumn 2019
Malaysia and Vietnam

Uncertainty, Winter 2019
Cambodia

In the Flowers, Spring 2020
Vietnam

Start with Something Simple, Summer 2020
Vietnam

Here & Now, Autumn 2020
Vietnam

Trust, Winter 2020-2021
Vietnam

Comfort, Spring 2021
Vietnam

Summer of Design, Summer 2021
Vietnam

Solving for I, Autumn 2021
Vietnam

Relational Aesthetics, Winter 2021
??

***

See all issues from these sets in our online shop:
http://designkompany.gumroad.com

'S' is for Sincerity · Ideas of Curiosity

‘Seeing’ No. 1 (That is thật)


Thái An

Greg Rosenke

‘Seeing’ No. 1 is a conversation about the art of delivering emotion into one’s photography. What you see is what you get attitudes towards making pictures, we feel, doesn’t get close to the root of what great art can show us. Get to know a person before you snap away their photo. See how they see. Learn how they learn. Love how they love. Then it gets truly… real.

That is thật.

designkompany.gumroad.com/membership

Experiments in Expression · Found in the Field · Gallery

Cuizines!


Zines & Cuizines aka ‘New Cuizines’


a project of

Atelier S P A C E // Ho Chi Minh City


The food scene in Vietnam is its very own unique thing and well worth spending time with, while DK is here. (And… while I am here, I should also learn how to cook, something that I just skipped over most of my life.)… [deleted]… it’s also quite beautiful to discover new things. Which all began, in September 2020, with this:


Van Tran prepared this food and took this photo. It’s the cover image of S P A C E | ‘Home’. Find this issue in our shop >

So yeah. Since getting the chance to see how quickly one can prepare a gorgeous meal, and being the kind of person who loves collages, and so, yeah, why not just try it. Collaging with… ingredients. So, since lockdown started in June of this year, I got more serious about it. And I decided to try my hand at this new adventure, in.. what is this thing!? Cooking.

Getting better. I think. All this is possible in New Cuizines thanks to some new crowdfunding support. Yes. That’s right. Thank you. So I have been reading more and more about… food. Background, you know. Research. For fun, I found some pictures of the things that I see every day and wanted to put them together in a mini-collage below. I found them online, and the artists’ names are below each image, shared with permission. I got them from a website that lets you share images for free, because it was way too hard to ask people who take pictures here to work with me on anything; it’s just too much effort to get in touch and ask people to meet you and talk about things, share, that sort of craic… [deleted]… With whomever shows up. So, I came online again and searched and sorted. Curating things, now, more and more. Lately I found:


Hoang Thanh

Lynda Hinton

Anh Nguyen

Special thanks to

Atelier S P A C E // Ho Chi Minh City teammates

Anonymous & Van Tran

#newcuizines
http://chuffed.org/project/spacethezine

'S' is for Sincerity · Ideations

Opt-in

I’m in Ho Chi Minh City (‘HCMC’ is this city, if you’re not familiar with that acronym).

We’re in social distancing, currently, and have been, since the beginning of June.



So many emails. So many zooms. I’ve had time.


Been writing the updates, but felt like starting a brand new slate for sharing online with those whose paths I haven’t crossed in some giant stretch of time. (Could you resubscribe to the mailing list if you want to keep in touch?) Cool.

The link is here:

https://mailchi.mp/cd5e419a39bf/bookoffeelings


Hoang Thanh

 

Ideas of Curiosity

‘Art Brut’

Snippets from a search today that landed me on ‘Outsider Art.’ I’ve had some difficult relationships with ‘Arts’ people and all their Things, including those who put on ‘Outsider Art’ shows. That said, this stuff I read (which I’ll paste now, below), kind of struck me as… noteworthy.

The original Wikipedia page is here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Outsider_art


 

They talk about ‘Outsider Art’ being sort of like, I’ll just do what I want and who cares about your cultural institutions. I’ve never looked into this, or felt ‘community’ with it, or anything. But maybe that attitude is… right.

 

 

 

 

The source, unedited and raw, is here…

Outsider art[edit]

The relation between the fields of art therapy and outsider art has been widely debated. The term ‘art brut’ was first coined by French artist Jean Dubuffet to describe art created outside the boundaries of official culture. Dubuffet used the term ‘art brut’ to focus on artistic practice by insane-asylum patients. The English translation “outsider art” was first used by art critic Roger Cardinal in 1972.[66][67]

Both terms have been criticized because of their social and personal impact on both patients and artists. Art therapy professionals have been accused of not putting enough emphasis on the artistic value and meaning of the artist’s works, considering them only from a medical perspective. This led to the misconception of the whole outsider art practice, while addressing therapeutical issues within the field of aesthetical discussion. Outsider Art, on the contrary, has been negatively judged because of the labeling of the artists’ work, i.e. the equation artist = genius = insane. Moreover, the business-related issues on the term outsider art carry some misunderstandings.[68][69] While the outsider artist is part of a specific art system, which can add a positive value to both the artist’s work as well as his personal development, it can also imprison him within the boundaries of the system itself.[70][71]

 

Jean Dubuffet and art brut[edit]

View inside the Collection de l’art brutmuseum, Lausanne

French artist Jean Dubuffet was particularly struck by Bildnerei der Geisteskranken and began his own collection of such art, which he called art brut or raw art. In 1948 he formed the Compagnie de l’Art Brut along with other artists, including André Breton. The collection he established became known as the Collection de l’art brut. It contains thousands of works and is now permanently housed in Lausanne, Switzerland.

Dubuffet characterized art brut as:

“Those works created from solitude and from pure and authentic creative impulses – where the worries of competition, acclaim and social promotion do not interfere – are, because of these very facts, more precious than the productions of professionals. After a certain familiarity with these flourishings of an exalted feverishness, lived so fully and so intensely by their authors, we cannot avoid the feeling that in relation to these works, cultural art in its entirety appears to be the game of a futile society, a fallacious parade.” — Jean Dubuffet. Place à l’incivisme (Make way for Incivism). Art and Text no.27 (December 1987 – February 1988). p.36 Dubuffet’s writing on art brut was the subject of a noted program at the Art Club of Chicago in the early 1950s.

Dubuffet argued that ‘culture’, that is mainstream culture, managed to assimilate every new development in art, and by doing so took away whatever power it might have had. The result was to asphyxiate genuine expression.


Art brut was his solution to this problem – only art brut was immune to the influences of culture, immune to being absorbed and assimilated, because the artists themselves were not willing or able to be assimilated.

 

 

Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Outsider_art

In Việt Nam

Covid fourth wave in Việt Nam: Mini-report from Hồ Chí Minh City

Nguyễn Mỹ Hà‘s lede in a story in the Vietnam News hits the note, exactly. It’s this: ‘Hồ Chí Minh City is not feeling well.’


From the article: https://vietnamnews.vn/society/993809/united-viet-nam-fights-covid-19-as-outbreak-in-hcm-city-worsens.html

‘The most vibrant and economically wealthy city in Việt Nam has offered financial aid* to help people whose incomes have been slashed due to the city’s 14-day lockdown.

‘When HCM City coughs, the whole country feels the cold. Its daily number of positive cases this week has been consistently above 1,000 and topped 2,000 on Wednesday.

‘The Ministry of Health continues to send medical teams with doctors and other health personnel to help HCM City fight the pandemic. More than 7,000 medical students have been added to the health force to start work in the city’s quarantine camps and hospitals.’


When a horse is sick, the whole stable feels the pain, goes a popular saying,” writes Nguyễn Mỹ Hà.


Read the full story: https://vietnamnews.vn/society/993809/united-viet-nam-fights-covid-19-as-outbreak-in-hcm-city-worsens.html

***


*Friends tell us how hard it is to do the paperwork to actually get to any package that might come out, and some people are waiting and waiting for previous similar things to come to fruit, is the word on the street, to our knowledge. Meantime the need for cash is real. So here’s what’s up…. Social sustainability-shaped things, up next, in S P A C E. This is where DK has been taking shelter since the outbreak of the virus, and thanks to help from friends and neighbors, gotten by with… being in a foreign land, unplannedly. Now, this. Support DK’s own effort to create small, paid writing and design commissions. These would be for people whom we have gotten to know and whose work we value and even cherish, at Atelier S P A C E Ho Chi Minh City. See ‘Book of Feelings’ at our recently updated crowdfunding page. Here is a link.

http;//chuffed.org/project/spacethezine

Help me make it *happen*.

Thanks!

Ideas of Curiosity

What is Post-postmodernism?

Hi.

Esoterica, today.

Post-postmodernism, anyone?

Right, for those who are still with me…


Yeah, two ‘posts’:

Post-postmodernism.

Not a mistake.


Been thinking about this since the phrase fell across my radar a few years ago, in response to some things I was making like 16N (‘most people, ‘What the…’?’) and other salons, workshops, conversation spaces in real life for the serendipitous encounter. A few pics:



So what is ‘post post modernism?’ Large, cumbersome, and unwieldy topic. Also not much is talked about there, yet. It’s a good time to bring it up; so let me try.

I’ll start with the definition from Wikipedia

Post-Postmodernism is a general term used to describe new developments emerging from postmodernism. A similar term is metamodernism. Put less simply, post-postmodernism is a wide-ranging set of developments in critical theory, philosophy, architecture, art, literature, and culture which are emerging from and reacting to postmodernism.


History[change | change source]


Modernism began around 1900. It was a rejection of tradition and an attempt to see the world differently. Events such as World War 2 and the Great Depression made many feel modernism had failed. This led to postmodernism, which is cold and skeptical of the grand narrative of Western Society. This grand narrative is explained by Jean-François Lyotard as something.[2] Postmodernism is a very broad term that cannot be defined by specific themes. It is an all-encompassing way of thinking.


Advances such as the internet have changed the way we live, making the world a smaller place but also making communication and interaction with things around us less intimate. Post-Postmodernism takes this as a key reason why a return to sincerity and authentic expression is the way forward for the 21st Century.



Definitions[change | change source]


Post-postmodernism is a very new idea that is still forming. There are many different ideas about how post-postmodernism could evolve and shape culture. They look to where faith, trust, dialogue, performance, and sincerity can work to overcome postmodern irony.


‘The search for authenticity’


Most scholars would agree that modernism began around 1900 and continued on as the dominant cultural force in the intellectual circles of Western culture well into the mid-twentieth century.[1]


Like all eras, modernism encompasses many competing individual directions and is impossible to define as a discrete unity or totality. However, its chief general characteristics are often thought to include an emphasis on “radical aesthetics, technical experimentation, spatial or rhythmic, rather than chronological form, [and] self-conscious reflexiveness”[2] as well as the search for authenticity in human relations, [Emphasis mine] abstraction in art, and utopian striving. These characteristics are normally lacking in postmodernism or are treated as objects of irony [Emphasis mine]


 

May 2021

Postmodernism arose after World War II as a reaction to the perceived failings of modernism, whose radical artistic projects had come to be associated with totalitarianism[3] or had been assimilated into mainstream culture. [Emphasis mine] … Since the 1960s, postmodernism has been a dominant, though not undisputed, force in art, literature, film, music, drama, architecture, history, and continental philosophy. Salient features of postmodernism are normally thought to include the ironic play with styles, citations and narrative levels,[6] a metaphysical skepticism or nihilism towards a “grand narrative” of Western culture,[7] a preference for the virtual at the expense of the real (or more accurately, a fundamental questioning of what ‘the real’ constitutes)[8] and a “waning of affect”[9] on the part of the subject, who is caught up in the free interplay of virtual, endlessly reproducible signs inducing a state of consciousness similar to schizophrenia.[10]

Since the late 1990s there has been a small but growing feeling both in popular culture and in academia that postmodernism “has gone out of fashion.”[11]


A common theme of current attempts to define post-postmodernism is emerging as one where faith, trust, dialogue, performance, and sincerity can work to transcend postmodern irony. [deleted]


In his 2006 paper The Death of Postmodernism and Beyond, British scholar Alan Kirby formulated a socio-cultural assessment of post-postmodernism that he calls “pseudo-modernism”.[23] Kirby associates pseudo-modernism with the triteness and shallowness resulting from the instantaneous, direct, and superficial participation in culture [Emphasis mine] made possible by the internet, mobile phones, interactive television and similar means: “In pseudo-modernism one phones, clicks, presses, surfs, chooses, moves, downloads.”[23]


Feature image: Zines by DK, S P A C E | Autumn 2020, ‘Trust.’

A Philosophy of the Moment

‘Facts’, et al

I found this quote in our 2017 short anthology, S P A C E | ‘Circumference.’ 


The student then asked, “What should I do next?”‘

‘Oh, look at the fish,’ professor and zoologist Jean-Louis Agassiz said, and left the room.’

Later the prof would say, ‘That is right. A pencil is one of the best of eyes… Facts are stupid things.’


This week in Atelier S P A C E we’re in ‘social distancing’ week three in Ho Chi Minh City. So I have even more time than I did when I was merely doing the existing-today stuff of, um, waiting. Waiting for the pandemic to end. Cause now I can’t really hang out and peoplewatch, even. So I’m home. Naturally.  Okay, no problem. I’ll search the archives, then.

Right. Back I go, to Dropbox.

Fact.

In real life

3 April | S P A C E | HCMC, ‘Miniparty’

LET’S TALK ABOUT learning. How we discover, find, and make new connections. Ideas, shapes of thinking and the input that comes from places that might not be the ‘usual’ ones. No more boring meetings: What are the containers that make great conversations *happen*? Conversations that lead to better collaboration and better work? Those are important. Let’s not waste time. Let’s make things better, together.

Better and more enjoyable: that’s the key.

How do we design the S P A C E that lets fresh thinking flow? Continue reading “3 April | S P A C E | HCMC, ‘Miniparty’”

A Philosophy of the Moment · Experiments in Expression

24 March | Popup Atelier S P A C E Meetup

 

 

Wondering how we got to making bilingual issues of S P A C E, ever since winding up in Vietnam (long story). Well. It starts simply enough. Shall I tell you? Alright then.

This is how it starts.

I gather my energies and finally get around to making an invitation.

[deleted]

Ready and set.

The next popup? Is on.

Discover Atelier S P A C E

About this Event

A meetup for those interested in new things.

We are Design Kompany, a producer of experiential learning workshops in Asia, Europe, and N. America (usually). Lately we are in Vietnam and collaborating with new people who make things, too. Photographers, designers, illustrators, graphic artists, typographers, digital media specialists, and the very curious are welcome to meet us in real life at this rare poup art installation.

Atelier S P A C E is in HCMC, in District 3. The event will be at a cafe on Ly Van Sy near the big market, by the canal. The exact location will be shared with registered guests *only*. You will receive an email with the meetpoint and a number to connect with in case you get lost.

This is an open format program. The invitation is open. There is a participation fee. Register to confirm your spot. Here’s a link.

https://www.eventbrite.com/e/atelier-s-p-a-c-e-meetup-tickets-146866045295

Thanks.

Desk Notes

20 February | DK at Festival of the Photocopier

Melbourne-based Sticky Institute hosts its world-famous (amongst us who make zines, anyway) Festival of the Photocopier next week. DK will be in it! DK was there last year in the real life version, thanks to our collaboration with a Melbourne based teammate that year, Nicki Duncan. For 2021, we’ll launch a very special zine collection. This time, it’s made with those with whom I’ve worked with us closely over the last six months in 2020 project online, DK | Interactive Papers Project.

I love sharing the work they do, in forums like zine festivals. It’s fun.

Cool to be able to take part in the 2021 Festival of the Photocopier. The idea of a virtual zine fair was something that got my curiosity when I first heard they’d be doing this online. So we reached out to them, and wrote an interview-style post to share more about how that got sorted out, internally, behind the scenes. Read it here.

 

Papers >

 

S P A C E | Decolonization

I’ve seen a lot of zines, ladies and gentlemen. They’re about [deleted] and everything under the sun. For this coming festival, we’ll make a very special zine collection set,  S P A C E | Decolonization. So many things to say. Saying what we we feel. Putting those ideas, images, stories, narrations, discoveries, and what we’ve learned–together—into the 16-page PDF format that is S P A C E the zine. For those who want to know how to educate themselves on this important topic. I’m learning a hell of a lot, personally. Which is always a nice perk. Actually, you know, writing and sharing on topics like this… it’s pretty exciting.

HT AD, MT & MB

See everyone online?, at the festival…

fotp.online >

 

Desk Notes

Tết

Today was extremely quiet; except for two things. A parade. And a long period of gong going. A going gong.

Hm. It was really fascinating hearing the latter, last night, waking up to it. Yeah. Strange how a sound can take you back. I remembered Japan… about twenty years ago, when AM shuffled me out of his parents’ house at roundabout midnight, in the cold, with an air of adventurousness and conspiring together between us, to the closest temple. In order to do one thing. To hear the New Year get rung in. This was in Tokyo. Snowy. Cool. A new coat. A best friend. Warmth and comfort and a sense of beginnings. A different lifetime, a different mood, a different moment.

Now it’s Lunar New Year, or Tết, not the January 1st Western calendar year for New Year … that I got to celebrate more than once… even this year, 2021, in a fun, light way… at New Years, or, Oshogatsu, in Japan. I think we drank something kind of warm and extremely stiff. I still love that time of year, in Japan.

This time is different. I’m not having mochi and I’m not in the innermost, smallest circle of just the dearest-and-nearest to me. Not right now, I can’t be. Physically. Even emotionally. So many kinds of  borders are closed, and that’s that. Accepted it. Right. Now, with that, I get to sit still and enjoy this peace and quiet as there is no traffic. I repeat. No traffic. This, in Saigon, is bliss. So yeah. I’m just here, on my own, thinking about things, reflecting on the years and years of being with people, elsewhere, and at different times, in life.

[deleted]

[deleted]… Anyway, who really wants to go to an Indian restaurant just to be mistreated? Not me. Fact is, that’s why I skip most things.

[deleted]

And, like, also going… to the United States.

‘Microaggressions.’

What an understatement, like. Ooh, there’s my Irish accent now. West Cork, so. [deleted] These are the things. Today. For now. Happy New Year, from VN.

This post is for NM. (I’m going to re-email, since that one bounced, and I want to send you the PDF, ‘Home.’)