Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Shanghai Art Fair

The 2008 Shanghai Art Fair, with some of the best dealers from around the world, had perhaps the best collection of contemporary art I've seen in the past 5 years. The exhibition hall that was donated by the Soviet Union to China before the relationship between the two countries ground to a halt overflowed with art.

View some of the art here.

Peter Sarkisian
Extruded Video Engine 2008
Vacuum formed thermal plastic and video projection

Friday, September 5, 2008

Putin and Siberian Tiger PR stunt

This "story" of Putin saving a TV crew from an escaped Amur Tiger is as easily digestible and almost as amateurish as the North Korean propaganda about Kim Il Sung getting 18 hole-in-ones in a row on the Pyongyang golf course.

With Putin stepping aside, but not down, a carefully planned but poorly executed PR campaign will continue to boast of his heroism and implied statesmanship.

Most of the released photos showcase Putin sternly gazing on while the tiger is tagged. I can only chuckle and then shake my head in disappointment as most media have spread this story, without questioning or ridiculing it. This isn't real news.

Seemingly out of place, and obviously in response to the West's strong reaction of Russia's military incursions in Georgia, Putin's spin doctors appended a conciliatory volley, "First of all, we must thank our colleagues, Americans, European colleagues for being involved with this during a difficult time for Russia when no-one was paying any attention to this."

Last October I spent a week in the heart of the Amur valley where this Siberian Tiger is still hunting. It's both fortunate for me and unfortunate for this largest of cats that there aren't many left.