The artist uses canvas and words to express conflicting ideas in reality and the ideal of human nature. With this exhibit, he conveys the discrepancy between genders when “boycotting” traditional gender roles. For example, women are sometimes seen as caregivers, while men are perceived as strong, unmoving emotionless walls. Men have been represented rather poorly. Through the lens of various authors in the 1920s, with different perspectives, female, and male, he takes his own spin on the controversy. By challenging our roles, not just as males and females, but also as human beings, he hopes to change our view The words on canvas intertwine with images to symbolize our struggle, what we are and what we hope or think we “should” be. The broken bits of mirror represents the thought that our perception of ourselves, in the majority of cases, is often flawed. The artist not only wanted to expose that erroneous thinking but to also reassure the audience that, “that’s okay, life goes on.” To reveal the things that make us different makes us human, which is to mean what makes us unique also makes us strong and beautiful.
In Inlab, we had an exhibition of our group documentaries that tackled local issues. We had been working on them for around six weeks and this exhibition, since the middle of the first marking period, was what we had been working towards. In other words, it was our end goal. Ths past exhibition was my second one, so I knew what to expect and what to do, but it still gave me some challenges like any test would. On the other hand, though the exhibition makes the projects feel more “real” similar to how some businesses are run, by quite literally exhibiting a project to a board of people. It gave us a sense of urgency and provided a sort of positive stress, and by using that we were able to make a better collaborative piece that showed our joint learning experience. In my exhibition experience, I learned a lot about myself and my classmates, my strengths when things come down to the wire and just tips and tricks to presenting. I learned that by manipulating the questions asked to me and deflecting some I could shine myself in a positive light which obviously benefits me. I failed a lot throughout this experience, notably with collaboration, but I feel as though I am better for it, through this, I grew not only as a presenter but also as a student and a human being.
On October 22nd, we went to the Bush-Holley House and the Greenwich Historical Society. We left around 10:30 it was like about a 20-minute walk there. While walking there, we made a few stops and learned about local history and stopped at a pizza place. When we got there we split into two groups: one went to the House the other went into the Historical Societies archives. The tour of the Bush-Holley House centered around immigration through the Progressive Era and touched a lot upon Impressionist Art which gave my group a lot of insight because we’re the Arts and Culture group for our Local Problems project. We also discussed how the view of immigrants has changed and when did we start using “us vs. them” mentality towards immigrants and when did we call them such. When we switched with the other group and went to the archives we saw a lot of records that showed us how they treated immigrants back then and some political cartoons that showed us how people viewed immigrants then and we talked about how to some extent things are the same or similar. It was an interesting and enlightening experience, I really liked it because I got to think in a different way and was able to go into my past and experienced some nostalgia in the beautiful art. I better understand the perspectives of other demographics.
When I was on route for my interview with the Executive Director of the Art Council, Ms. Tatianna Mori, I had the pleasure of talking to three prominent people in the Greenwich Public Schools District: The HR Director, Ms. Shannon Johnson, The HR assistant Director, Regina Williams and the superintendent Dr.Jones. Meeting these people gave me perspective and tips on how to conduct myself in my own interview. What I found in these interviews, was that though I was being put under a microscope and being “studied,” I wasn’t nervous. Because of this, I got a little over my head and I dare I say “too friendly.” I wouldn’t say I was off-putting but with those who aren’t familiar with my conduct, I can seem very unprofessional. Through this experience, I was able to learn how to first off, fake a “professional” persona on the spot but also make questions and comments that were articulated in a way that supported said persona. I feel that being able to do this, especially in my case, is important because of how important these interactions are. In addition to that, a lot of the nervousness I had melted away throughout
the interview as I realized that most of the people their are very down to earth and when it comes down to it also just normal human beings. This really helped me moving forward in each interview and my mentality going into the documentary.
In Inlab we had a project, called the wallet project, in which we made the “ideal” wallet for one of our two teachers, Mr. Belanger or Ms. von Brachel. We were first asked to develop empathy by interviewing one of our educators. Through this experience, we were better able to create an “ideal” wallet for our “subject,” in my case Ms. von Brachel. We realized that she felt she needed a sense of security, organization and valued effective minimalism in her wallet, so in efforts to do such a thing, I tried to take advantage of a small space, by creating four pockets on one side plus a zipper on the seam in order to create a change pocket. On the other side, I did the same but without the zipper and with tabs for better organization. I feel like this part of the process was most effective because, at this point, it helped to learn what we actually needed to do for the wallet. I feel like in a different project, that has to do with some type of personal aspects, the interviewing process would help because it’s a great way to gather data.
In design studio we underwent a project assessing the Vision of The Graduate facets. We would pick one or two that we thought the school could improve in. We could decide what format we would want to express it in. We could also decide to work in groups or not. Andre and I decided to to make a piece of work where we accentuated words and syllables together in a rhyming scheme/cadence over a metronome and instrumental sounds combined to produce a form of emotional expression; basically, we made a rap tackling two of the faces included in the vision of the graduate. We used an application called Soundtrap in order to record and edit. We also used a snowball mic when recording our verses and the chorus. We were sick so that impeded on our overall efficiency in the project we managed to record key parts and I felt good about it, though we messed up some editing. I’ve made songs and raps before but I’ve never really gone and recorded seriously in a long time or to the same extent as we did in class so I learned a lot from that process. Andre and I are mediocre at best at making beats and mixing music so it was very important to find an instrumental. We looked far and wide, with different creators and types of beats but we were finally able to find a beat that we both liked and found went with the overall message of the song. We were able to assemble all this and make a piece, it could have been better but I’m proud of what we were able to accomplish in the time we were allowed, our experience and our current state of health.
If I was given the opportunity to continue the project with Andre I would do a lot. Firstly we would re-record and try to ease up on the voice editing except for perhaps some autotune. I would also like for us to edit and revise some verses and the chorus. I want to do this because I want to instead of just complaining I want to better assess the root cause and talk about solutions also.
I learned that to make a change is really hard but also very easy to try and even if you fail people respect the effort. I learned that through failure and freedom when I can take charge of most of my learning Icam successful.
We had to write an editorial that we submitted for the New York Times Sixth Annual Editorial Contest. I wrote about the Law and the controversy with it. Here it is:
There’s no such thing as justice in the absence of morality, nor are there such a thing as morality in the absence of empathy; but justice is rarely present at the same time as empathy. If our experiences and influences shape our understanding of the world, and empathy by definition is “the ability to share or understand the feelings of another.” then it makes sense that if we understand what another person has been through, we will judge them accordingly. For example, if Joe killed Bob because Bob killed Joe’s mom, your reaction would be different then if Joe had killed Bob for no reason. Though the “avenger”, Joe, is guilty of murder, instead of sentencing them to some harsh penalty you Joe would most likely serve a few years with the possibility of bail and probation or Joe may just get off innocent. That’s not the law. In the law Joe would go to jail for murder or manslaughter plain and simple but because we have empathy than we are more sensitive to his situation but the law doesn’t allow that.
Understanding the reasoning behind certain actions may alter how we judge someone. So when asked if something is “just” or “right” the correct answer should be is “….well it all depends.” When pursuing justice we should be moral but not absent of emotion, void of empathy or without heart; asking such a thing of humanity would be both immoral and impossible. Then why is it that laws are objective, why is it that the situation of a crime does not matter in the eyes of lady justice and why is the jury forced to go against their oath. We fight against our own nature and try to isolate ourselves from a situation where prosecutors and defense attorneys play a game heavily resting on emotions.
I feel that I have achieved growth in being able to analyze information and effectively share ideas and what I have learned. In Humanities we have been actively been working on and focused on how to analyze information a present that information in order to show our understanding which showed in our midterms. Also in Design Studio, during our podcast, we did a lot of research and I was personally able to critically analyze the information get an idea out of it and help my group better our podcast. I feel that I want to grow in my efficiency in teamwork while creating a project because I feel that more than one mind working on something together is not just a good thing but a practical thing. I plan to achieve this goal by trying to throw myself into more situation that is group oriented so that I can just learn how to communicate and work in a group effectively and also so that I can learn techniques I can learn in order to make both group and partner work better. I also feel that just learning to listen to people more instead of imposing my will would help my productivity in class or in any other settings.
I’m done with my Genius Hour Project. I’ve gotten a lot of stats I’ve even gotten close to beating Usain Bolt’s Record of 9.58; with a 9.81. My vertical is really high as well It can reach around 38-41 in. My vitals have been off the charts, my hearts pulse rate is 88 beats per min. I feel that my project has not only been a success but has really inspired me to do more if I can get this healthy this easily and reach these heights then what else can I do if I were to work even harder? The possibilities are virtually endless. I encountered a few problems like the weather but I feel like I handled my problems very well. I think I expressed a growth mindset (According to Dweck, “In a fixed mindset, people believe their basic qualities, like their intelligence or talent, are simply fixed traits. They spend their time documenting their intelligence or talent instead of developing them. They also believe that talent alone creates success—without effort.” A growth mindset would be the opposite but still have some similarities like documenting intelligence but they would develop it further.) because I didn’t freeze or give up when I encountered something I tried to find my way over or around it. In other situations, I feel like I would want to react in a similar fashion because doing so would help me work more efficiently. I like how I felt during the project everything felt right and free I was more awake, though it might have been cold when I ran I felt on fire and it was amazing. I’m thankful for this experience and I would love to do something like this again. Thank you Ms. von Brachel, thank you very much.