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David Choe Inspiring A Generation Of Asian Kids To Ditch Pre-Med For Art

February 3rd, 2012 | 0 comments | Posted by Jen

Hardass Asian Parents, take note.

You can be an artist, and still rule at the maths. That’s true, at least, in the case of Korean American graffiti artist David Choe, who painted the walls of Facebook’s first corporate headquarters back in 2005. Instead of taking cash for his work, Choe chose to be paid in Facebook stock, even though he thought Facebook was “ridiculous and pointless” at the time. (This was his right brain talking. His left brain, meanwhile, was ignoring the right brain as it crunched the numbers.) As Facebook prepares to go public at a valuation between $75 and $100 billion, Choe’s stock will reportedly be worth $200 million.

Now that Choe no longer has to rely on art to pay the bills, he’s free to pursue his real dream…of becoming a doctor!

[NYT: From Founders to Decorators, Facebook Riches]

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DISGRASIAN OF THE WEAK! Ai Weiwei’s Pseudo-Sentence Of Silence

June 24th, 2011 | 1 comment | Posted by Diana



Renowned satirical artist and Chinese dissident Ai Weiwei, who disappeared in early April and has been detained under shaky allusions to “economic crimes” by the Chinese government for over two months, has finally been released. After admitting to tax evasian, promising to pay fines, and showing a good attitude in detainment, the outspoken trailblazer is FREE AT LAST.

Free to move freely around Beijing, that is, as long as he notifies authorities every time he leaves the house.

Free, despite the fact that he can’t give interviews, make a peep on social media outlets (with 90k followers, Twitter was a major tool for Ai, who tweeted about disappearing activists, human rights violations, etc. prior to his detainment), or step outside of the city without permission. Though he cheerfully emerged to say hello to reporters and the International community this week, Ai has made it clear that he cannot speak publicly about his investigation or life situation, for “at least a year,” intimating a gag order that authorities won’t confirm.

An activist without a voice? That’s a prison unto itself. Let’s not pretend Ai Weiwei is free when he isn’t.

[via TDB]
[CBS News: Chinese dissident Ai Weiwei free, but silenced]

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DISGRASIAN’s Extracurricular Activities

July 2nd, 2010 | 1 comment | Posted by jasmine

What to do when you’re not studying, calculating your taxes on an abacus, or practicing piano:

Hyphen presents Alien/ation

Hyphen magazine (you might remember the issue that featured Jen and Diana on the cover) presents “Alien/ation: An Illustration Show” on Saturday, July 10 in Los Angeles. This group show features the work of past and present Hyphen illustrators and painters. [Hyphen]

The Armed with A Camera Fellowship for Emerging Artists wants emerging media artists to “capture their world, surroundings and outlook on life as a part of a new generation of Asian Pacific Americans.” Up to ten fellows will be receive $500 awards to make five-minute digital vieos. [Visual Communications]

Vincent Who?, Tony Lam’s documentary about the murder of Vincent Chin, is out on a special edition DVD. [Vincent Who?]

The oh!-so fabulous Oh! Industry has relaunched, and it’s “no-brow approach” to “politics, music, fashion, current events, hot messes” is just as fresh as ever. [Oh! Industry]

Facebook – it ain’t just for Farmville anymore. A few simple clicks, and you can help the Asian Pacific Community Fund, which helps the Asian Pacific Islander community in Los Angeles, win $250,000 from Chase Community Giving. [Facebook]

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Thanks to Lanlien, Eliana, Edward and Karen!

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AMAZIAN OF THE WEEK! Mike Shinoda

April 19th, 2010 | 11 comments | Posted by Diana

Name: Mike Shinoda

Age: 33

Hails from: LA-ish

Occupation: Artist, musician, record producer

Known for: Staying busy. Shinoda is beloved by some for his decade of rockstardom with rock-hop (hip-rock?) band Linkin Park and side project Fort Minor. Others hail him for his music producing achievements, which include tracks and albums with the likes of Busta Rhymes and X-Ecutioners, and a slate of remixes from Depeche Mode to Metric.

Still others gasp at Shinoda’s art (he’s an Illustration grad of Pasadena’s Art Center, and created a scholarship there five years ago), which is integral to LP’s visual identity. Continue reading AMAZIAN OF THE WEEK! Mike Shinoda

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AMAZIAN OF THE WEEK! Liu “The Invisible Man” Bolin

March 8th, 2010 | 2 comments | Posted by Diana

"Individual rights often disappear amid the roaring sound of the government's will."

Name: Liu Bolin

Age: 38

Hails from: Beijing, China

Occupation: Visual Artist

Known for: Appearing to disappear. China Daily just did a feature on Liu, a Chinese performance artist who camouflages himself into everyday surroundings for photographs using an awe-inspiring combination of paint and patience. Liu has created over 80 “invisible” works since 2006 and has been featured in museums across Europe and the US–one of the few modern Chinese artists to be recognized by the worldwide art market.

Continue reading AMAZIAN OF THE WEEK! Liu “The Invisible Man” Bolin

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AMAZIAN OF THE WEEK! Maya Lin

March 1st, 2010 | 2 comments | Posted by Diana

Name: Maya Lin

Age: 50

Hails from: NYC

Occupation: Artist, Architect

Known for: Making visual impact. Early success. Lasting Impressions.

Lin was among the 19 artists honored by President Obama on Thursday with the National Medal of Arts. The minimalist artist, who grew up amidst mostly white folks in Ohio and “didn’t realize [she] was Chinese” until her twenties, also designed the Museum of Chinese in America, which opened in NYC last September.

But what’s next for Lin? “What’s Missing?“–her new multimedia exhibit depicting our planet in peril, which will debut at MOCA on Earth Day, April 22. The accompanying site will also Continue reading AMAZIAN OF THE WEEK! Maya Lin

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BABEWATCH: Yiying Lu

March 31st, 2009 | 0 comments | Posted by Jen

Name: Yiying Lu

Hails from: Sydney, Australia

Occupation: Artist and Graphic Designer

Why She’s a Babe: All you Twitter users are already familiar with Yiying’s iconic logo, the Fail Whale, an adorable creature buoyed by birds that pops up whenever Twitter gets overloaded with traffic, which is a lot, lately. What you may not know is that Yiying is as cute as her creation. Or that she doesn’t earn revenue from the perpetual use of her design, apart from the Fail Whale gift items available on Zazzle. Which seems kinda messed up–though legal–especially since Twitter is the fastest-growing social media platform in the sea. Just sayin’.

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And Speaking of Appetite Suppressants…

March 26th, 2009 | 0 comments | Posted by Diana

My friend Chris, a brilliant comfort food chef (he once served a magnificent nine dinner courses of bacon–a life-changing, so-worth-it event that my arteries may never forgive me for) told me about a very special bread chef from Thailand this morning.

I was so intrigued by the gastronomic innovasian that I wrote a poem to describe my reaction:

This Thailand Bread
Looks like people so dead
Mostly cabezas
,
A treat that does faze us

Is that a heart?
Baker says that it’s art

But I’d rather see canvas

Than floured forearms and bare ass

It’s awfully gruesome
Like
friendship with Gavin Newsom,
Like chlamydia prick

The scene makes me sick

Still, the baker, he sifts
Making these unique gifts

So that folks that bring bread

Can give wonderful head.

Here’s what I’m talkin’ about, Willis:


Uh, yuck. I’m so un-hungry now I could be an aspiring model. Jesus.

[via Inventor Spot]

Thank you x2, Chris!!

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BABEWATCH: Kacey Wong

March 24th, 2009 | 0 comments | Posted by Diana


Name: Kacey Wong

Hails from: Hong Kong

Occupation: Visual Artist

Why He’s A Babe: Besides rocking cool-geek chic as naturally as black hair, Wong applies poetic impressions of Hong Kong to very quirky, easy-on-the-eyes “experiments.”

Recently, Wong created a wheeled homeless shelter–including a bed and a desk–that unfolds from the shape of a robot (see photo, above). He says: “My question is: what if the homeless shelter is beautiful, to the point where it becomes a public artwork on the street?”

A four-eyed do-gooder with great intentions and an even better aesthetic? If that ain’t hot, we don’t know what is.

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AMAZIAN OF THE WEEK! Tofer Chin

March 9th, 2009 | 0 comments | Posted by Diana


Name: Christofer “Tofer™” Chin

Occupation: Artist

Known for: Inciting a street epidemic of googly-eyes (with his incomparable logo), showing his paintings and hand-painted eggs in galleries across the globe, authoring two photography books–Finger Bang! and Vacation Standards (new!)–for Rojo‘s Spanish imprint, and in general ejaculating a little piss, sex, and fun onto the stiff walls of the fine art world.

For you Angelenos, Tofer debuts his latest show, “Double Dip,” in Culver City’s Cerasoli Gallery on March 14th at 6pm.


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BIRTHDAY CELEBRASIAN!

October 23rd, 2008 | 0 comments | Posted by Diana


Happy Birthday to genius auteur Ang Lee, who turns 54 today! You are a special man with an incredible vision and balls of steel. Have a smokin’ year.

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ROCK OF ASIAN: Kid Koala

September 17th, 2008 | 0 comments | Posted by Diana


Few tickle vinyl with such brilliant fervor as our favorite Canadiasian deejay Kid Koala, whose turntable-told stories fascinate us, and soft-spoken illustrative aesthetic somehow warms our icy cold hearts. Kids are cute, koalas even cuter– we hate to say this about the man, but he is CUTE with all capital letters. CUTE CUTE CUTE.

Check out Koala’s latest project, Your Mom’s Favorite DJ, out on Ninja Tune Records now.

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