Category Archives: Being Political

The Feminist Antics of Ryan Gosling

I stumbled upon something on the internet, and just laughed my socks off. Okay, it may be a little academic/nerdy/brainy but it’s also completely hilarious/funny/witty. I give you…. (imagine a drum roll here)….Feminist Ryan Gosling

According to some internet sources I’ve been hiding under a rock somewhere because I didn’t know about this phenomenon until now. But I’m just gonna go ahead and call that rock the Netherlands.

What did you say? You didn’t hear about it either? Sssshhhh…. I swear I won’t tell! Here’s what you need to know before you share this with all of your friends:
Feminist Ryan Gosling was created by Danielle Henderson and meant as a study aid to keep up with the insane amount of theoretics that come with Gender and Women’ studies graduate degree. The whole thing started after she watched a Ryan Gosling movie and saw some of the original Hey Girl memes. She thought it would be funny to mix the dry theoretics with some lighthearted internet fun. And now it’s such a success that there is even a book coming out!

Mother’s Day and Unethical Questions

Yesterday I was spoiled rotten with great gifts from Boyfriend and Mini. Awesome shoes, a funny old school telephone receiver for my iphone (which will enable me to finally chat away with a receiver clutched between my neck and shoulder again and also no more grease schmears on my iphone. And some tea light holders. Every day that allows me to receive gifts in abundance is a fine day in my book!

Also, Mini ‘made’ (because let’s face it, the guy is 2 years old) something at day care. Shamefully, I must admit that I think it’s awful don’t really like it. It’s not Mini’s artistic experiments that I don’t like. But his contribution was just the bare minimum (notice the intense scratching in blue).

What I really don’t like (and excuse me for getting all gender studies on you) is the fact that the symbol for moms is a teapot, which is just so cliché and not at all a symbol for ‘momness’ in any way. It’s seems such a passive symbol to me, while being a mom is anything but passive! Also the little pre-written poem that goes with the teapot makes me throw up in my mouth a little.

So now for my completely unethical question: I’m I supposed to save all this stuff? And for how long? Mini doesn’t even make these things himself as he’s got the motor skills of a 2 year old. I’m more then happy to save his own creations. But this pre-fab stuff just seems wrong to me.

Ai Wei Wei

Being rather new in the blog scene, I often think about what blogging means (for me) and where I’d like to take this little ‘experiment’ of mine. What do I want to say? How personal/critical/political do I want to be? Writing about interior design, DIY projects, personal finds or art often has a rather upbeat tone of voice. Things I post are generally things I’m enthusiastic about. But lately I’ve been reading up about the social and political climate in China, especially in relation to (critical) art. Having a blog or even a twitter-account there isn’t nearly as easy as it is for me. And it genuinely makes me appreciate my own position. Reading about China doesn’t make you enthusiastic at all. It’s rather depressing actually.

Above you see an artwork of Ai Wei Wei called Coloured Vases. It looks kinda pretty. And it even makes me think of a design image like this, the vases by Dahlhaus.

Though the difference between these two works is huge. Ai Wei Wei used not just any vase, he used Neolithic vases, actual archaeological finds, from the Han Dynasty (206 BC-220 AD). He dipped them in industrial paint thus destroying their historical value. Doing this could be seen as a comment on the organised destruction of Chinese culture during the Cultural revolution. Or as the continued erosion of the present Chinese culture. What Ai’s exact intension was remains unclear. But this work definitely functions as a critique on China and it’s past. So a pretty image such as this can make you think critically about very different issues.

Being critical in a society with a state-controlled media such as China is hard. They don’t allow for much criticism. Ai Wei Wei was arrested by the Chinese government the third of April, as you may know. Currently his whereabouts are unknown. The Chinese government are holding him (and with him several other artists) captive and will not give the public any information as to why, how or where. I just want to say that I deeply regret that things like this occur. And I hope China will soon release the wrongly imprisoned. Of course this is just one of the many things wrong with the world, but if you want to read a little more about it, click here.

I’ll try and be a little more upbeat next time!

[image coloured vases courtesy of the Artist Ai Wei Wei, image Dahlhaus via Poppytalk]