Monday, December 18, 2017

Fulbright Global Scholar Award in Chile: Day 14-18 - Production Blur

Days 14-18 were a production blur. This 3-country Fulbright has offered dislocation-as-catalyst in profound ways, but planning for travel to three countries is a challenge. Furthermore, I feel paralyzed by all this change without my family. This program is excellent for making connections and doing preliminary research, but is not ideal for production. Just FYI for all future applicants. Know your stage in the process.

More about my Fulbright Global Scholar Award to Germany, Chile and Hong Kong
More about the Fulbright Global Scholar Award in general

Saturday, December 09, 2017

Fulbright Global Scholar Award in Chile: Day 09 - César Hidalgo

Busy touring about city and nearby valley, but using blog to make note of MIT Professor César Hidalgo’s recent talk at Microsoft about the Observatory of Economic Complexity with Chile as an example.

More about my Fulbright Global Scholar Award to Germany, Chile and Hong Kong
More about the Fulbright Global Scholar Award in general

Thursday, December 07, 2017

Fulbright Global Scholar Award in Chile: Day 07 - Latin American Art

Visitors to the Museo Jumex in Mexico City attend an opening-night party above a series of pill sculptures by art collective General Idea.

Today I’m going through some culture shock. After a quick glance at the Fulbright’s reminders about culture shock, I think, yes I know this and can handle it.

Yesterday at PUCV’s architecture school, I met two staff from Documenta, one in exhibitions and the other in communications. They are in Chile for a month and then will stay Mexico City. Everyone’s talking about Mexico City, they said. I remember this from my time at UCSD when some artists in the mid-2000s were starting to connect to Jumex for funding. This morning, I read the following update from the LA Times.

A PUCV student asked me what North American artists think of Latin American art. Having gone to school in San Diego, our connection to Mexico was always strong. Beyond Mexico, I think of the modernist architecture and vivid use of color from Brazilian artists like Lygia Clark. Having known many Chilean artists at Carnegie Mellon University in the late 1990s, I know the work of Juan Downey and painter Roberto Matta, who studied at my host school PUCV, and his son Gordon Matta-Clark, born in New York City. Rafael Lozano-Hemmer, Allora & Calzadilla, Pia Camil, Jose Davila, Gabriel Kuri, Adrián Villar Rojas, Gabriel Orozco, Damian Ortega, Analia Saban, Alex Da Corte and my friend Ricardo Miranda Zuniga. I could keep writing many names, but the Getty currently has an amazing survey up right now called Pacific Standard Time: LA/LA about the connection between art in LA and Latin America. More here: Highlights for me are the exhibitions at the Hammer ( and LAXART ( I write all this here so that I can remember the next time a Chilean student asks me.

Today I am wrapping up grades and hopefully moving onto my research here. Future global scholar awardees, this is not an ideal time to schedule part of your Fulbright, especially when you have to leave your six-year old daughter in the States (a detail that is quietly breaking me). Still, I’ll get the work done.

More about my Fulbright Global Scholar Award to Germany, Chile and Hong Kong
More about the Fulbright Global Scholar Award in general

Wednesday, December 06, 2017

Fulbright Global Scholar Award in Chile: Day 06 - PUCV Architecture

A visit to PUCV’s architecture program with PUCV Professor Peter Kroeger Claussen.
Their Open City program was given a grant from Graham Foundation this year.

Workshop and Digital Fabrication Space (Laser cutter, CNC machine, 3D printer)

Exam exhibition

Patio overlooking the Pacific

Travel to build temporary structures and experiments outside of Valparaiso. 

First-year class experiments coming out of their travesia

Rain in the region caused them to rethink the way they touched the ground.
The class was led by Michèle Wilkomirsky.

Tuesday, December 05, 2017

Fulbright Global Scholar Award in Chile: Day 05 - Income Inequality 

I’m aware of the air pollution today in Valparaiso.

But look, Charlotte has sections that are worse. Is that from traffic?

This local detail reminds me of the Container podcast, Episode 6: And They Won, They Won Big.

Additionally, Chile is and is not the place I visited in the 1990s. I don’t remember watching a young man take garbage from a public trash can and throw it violently to the ground. Or an angry woman with a child yell superlatives. Chile’s economy has gotten stronger, but it’s a complicated picture, according to this 2014 New York Times article from Eduardo Porter.

More about my Fulbright Global Scholar Award to Germany, Chile and Hong Kong
More about the Fulbright Global Scholar Award in general

Sunday, December 03, 2017

Fulbright Global Scholar Award in Chile: Day 03 - Solitude

Agnes Martin. “Summer” (1964): Synthesizing both Abstract Expressionism and minimalism. From Peter Schjeldahl’s 2016 article in the New Yorker titled “Agnes Martin, a Matter-of-Fact Mystic.” By Peter Schjeldahl,

Leave it to by Maria Popova to remind me of the importance of being alone.

“Nourish yourself with grand and austere ideas of beauty that feed the soul… Seek solitude,” young Delacroix counseled himself in 1824. Keats saw solitude as a sublime conduit to truth and beauty. Elizabeth Bishop believed that everyone should experience at least one prolonged period of solitude in life. Even if we don’t take so extreme a view as artist Agnes Martin’s assertion that “the best things in life happen to you when you’re alone,” one thing is certain: Our capacity for what psychoanalyst Adam Phillips has termed “fertile solitude” is absolutely essential not only for our creativity but for the basic fabric of our happiness — without time and space unburdened from external input and social strain, we’d be unable to fully inhabit our interior life, which is the raw material of all art.
She’s talked about it through the lens of many artists and writers. I’m especially attracted to the following posts:

Agnes Martin:
Louis Bourgeois:
Virginia Wolfe:
Adrienne Rich:

At a time when I am happy in my Davidson bubble, I know it’s good for my soul, artwork and everyone in my life to slow down a bit and escape into a productive state of solitude. But I miss all the ease of routines and the love of my family, but I’m trying to make the transition to Chile as fearlessly and efficiently as I am able. In the meantime, a few good reminders about adapting to a new place and adopting the right mindset:

More about my Fulbright Global Scholar Award to Germany, Chile and Hong Kong
More about the Fulbright Global Scholar Award in general

Saturday, July 29, 2017

100 Days on a Fulbright: Day 93-100: One-Week Catchup / Final Post

Not surprisingly, I’m lumping together my final week in Hamburg in one large post. The mad dash to get studio work done before leaving has me feeling a fantastic sense of accomplishment. This first leg of my 3-country Fulbright has had its ups and downs, but mostly many, many ups.

Here’s the final stretch in summary:

HFBK Graduation Show
- Opening was Thursday, July 13, 7 pm to 2 am.

Artistic Influences
- Tru Luv Media on video games for people who don’t like video games
- Burly Men at Sea by Brain&Brain
- Tearaway, Media Molecule, 2013, UK
- Johnny Lui’s graduation show in London
- Elemental Incremental Housing in Chile

Technical Hurdles:
- More work in Blender (z-fighting), Unity, After Effects


October 2017:
Two-person exhibitions with Owen Mundy at:
- Lake Forest College, Chicago, Illinois
- University of Tulsa, Tulsa, Oklahoma
- Art Center Nabi, Seoul Korea

December 2017: 2nd part of Fulbright in Santiago and Valparaiso, Chile

February 2018: Co-chair panel about women in new media art with Kathy Rae Huffman at College Art Association conference in Los Angeles

More details on my news page soon.

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

100 Days on a Fulbright: Day 92: Blender Struggles

Another day of Blender struggles, but hopefully soon will have a breakthrough.

Hong Kong's main container terminal, Kwai Tsing Container Terminals (Kwai Chung Container Terminals until Container Terminal 9 was opened on Tsing Yi)

I'm using a Blender addon called blender-osm (documentation on Git Hub). I wanted to download the port, downtown buildings and mountains (makes it clearly Hong Kong), but the model became too complicated.

The addon allows you download terrain...

Then OSM buildings. See Open Street Map wiki to figure out how the edges of land masses are tagged. Still figuring that out

But building do not seem to land correctly (note on the left, the plaza floats above the land)

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

100 Days on a Fulbright: Day 91: Wim Wenders and Laurie Anderson

Today, HFBK's 250 Year Anniversary Celebrations kicked off with Laurie Anderson's film Heart of a Dog. She was there, introduced by Wim Wender's who said: "A film is about what you invest, and if you invest a lot of love, that’s what you get out of it." Owen and I were feeling that recently during our studio production for the Korean hackathon. Sounds cheesy but it's absolutely so true.

Also true: Laurie Anderson's thoughts on death, the focus of this film. Released in 2015, the film was created as she mourned the death of her husband Lou Reed in October 2013. There is no mention of him until the end, but during the film she walks us through her mother and their dog's death. A Buddhist, she explains that the Buddhist do not cry when someone is dying, it confused the dead. As my aunt on the other side of the Atlantic is dying, I find this comforting, especially since I cry so easily. More here and here: From a Buddhist viewpoint, that kind of situation is one that’s just going to set off your attachment and make it incredibly difficult to leave. If somebody’s dying and their relatives are in there crying and crying, “How am I going to live without you? I love you so much!” Doing these things invokes a person’s clinging and attachment, making it very difficult for them to die peacefully. The mind is agitated, making it more likely for negative karma to arise.

That makes so much sense. So impressed by Anderson and Wenders. Both seem to be filled with kindness and compassion. 

Sunday, July 09, 2017

100 Days on a Fulbright: Day 77-89: Conference Studio Production Blur

Should I be lumping together Fulbright days on this blog? It is what it is. It has been a long time since I’ve been in such a happy, frenzied state of studio production so that needs to take priority over blogging. Because I get to make fun animations like the one posted above! But a few quick highlights from my last two weeks.

Unity Unite Europe conference in Amsterdam (June 27-29)

Filled with non-stop workshops, Unity Unite Europe inspired a week of game-making, from which we’re now just emerging…and about to dive back in.

Women in Gaming Meeting at the Conference

My best guess is that there were about 100 women at a conference of about 1000 people, and many of those women seemed be running registration or testing the games (maybe paid to do so?)…I can’t say any of that with certainty. What I can say with confidence is that I was grateful for the Women in Gaming meeting. Producer Veronica Peshterianu from System Era Softworks emphasized the importance of mentors for young women in the field. So true.

MIT Lab Observatory of Economic Complexity

This lab’s research completely aligns with our blockchain game.
I need to be in touch.

Korean Hackathon during the G20 Protests

While Trump visited Hamburg and the G20 Protests raged on, Owen and I participated in Hackathon held at the Art Center Nabi in Seoul. We won the top prize and will be in the exhibition this coming October. The plug animation is from that event. More details soon…

Monday, June 26, 2017

100 Days on a Fulbright: Day 76: Women in Gaming at Unity Unite Europe 2017

Screenshot from Astroneer, space-based sandbox adventure game released in 2016 by System Era Softworks Veronica Peshterianu from System Era Softworks will speak at the Women in Gaming Speaker Series
I'm excited to attend the Women in Gaming Speaker Series event, on Wednesday June 28, at Mossel & Gin restaurant, located next to Unity Unite Europe's main conference venue.

The session will include learnings from Producer Veronica Peshterianu, who has spent time at a variety of gaming companies (Pop Cap, Msft etc), and insights from Unity Technologies CEO John Riccitiello and Head of HR, Elizabeth Brown.

Sunday, June 25, 2017

100 Days on a Fulbright: Day 75: Back in Hamburg, Off to Unity Unite Europe 2017

Unity Unite Europe 2017,
Excited for Unity Unite Europe 2017 in Amsterdam this week. The schedule is packed. Handy tip: use the Unite 2017 app to access the schedule and bookmark your favorites. Many thanks to Davidson College for funding to attend!

#unity, #unityunite, #amsterdam, #gameresearch, #conference

Sunday, June 11, 2017

100 Days on a Fulbright: Days 61-74: 2-Week Blog Break

Image source: From the boat tour of Hamburg’s harbor that I attended one week ago.
Details about “Port of Hope” Harbor Tour – Colonialism, Migration and Racism
I’m taking a two-week break from the blog to deliver my daughter back to my parents in the States. This six-year old bravely navigated my husband’s Fulbright to Austria last spring but has done less well here in Germany. This morning I’m reading the collection of Fulbrighters with families posted here:  I see I am not alone with my daughter’s range of reactions to this experience. It’s both amazing and hard to be overseas. If we had a year-long Fulbright in one place, we would make this work and she would adapt, but in the unusual case of my 3-country global award, it’s time to take her back and give her a much deserved break.

While back home, I’ll continue my Fulbright-related research and related studio production, but it’s time to take a brief break on the blog. Bis bald.

Thursday, June 08, 2017

100 Days on a Fulbright: Day 58: Building a City

Hamburg 1700. Created by Johann Baptist Homann, German cartographer, publisher and copper cutter. Image source.
I’m still focused on blender, but finally working the whole city for our game. I’m not so zoomed out as the image above, but I love this image. From the 1700s.

Different view below. Plague hit in Hamburg in 1712 so below is from after. I have similar images of Rotterdam maps that I found during a research trip to the Getty in LA. For a later post.

Hamburg 1730. Published by Covens & Mortier. Image source.