Woot woot, “The Farmer and the Philosopher” got honorable mention for Mitten Movie Project’s “Best of” screening event on December 7. For some context, the Mitten Movie Project screened a whopping 177 shorts and trailers from Jan-Nov 2010– one of which was “The Farmer and the Philosopher.” 14 shorts from all 177 films were chosen by the audience as Audience Choice Award winners and 25 shorts have been selected for Honorable Mention. DL! is quite honored to be in the bunch.
Now, back to the wall for some painting today. If you haven’t seen the new mural going up, check the progress here.
Paul Harris with the UK’s The Guardian came to Detroit not too long ago to produce an article on the way that urban agriculture is revitalizing and changing Detroit for the better. It was his second visit to the city and an attempt at presenting a wider view of the kind of strides farming is taking in the city. In the article he covers many folks in Detroit– Mark Covington and his Georgia Street Garden (the same guy featured in DL!’s documentary “The Farmer and the Philosopher”), beekeeper Rich Wieske with Green Toe Gardens, Taja Sevelle’s Linwood Street Urban Farm, Patrick Crouch and Earthworks Urban Farm and Mike Score with Hantz Farm. Quite a talent bill, eh? Harris weaves a fabric of hope in the article with equal parts devoted to each character. Covington tells the tale of gardens saving neighborhoods, Wieske talks about how perfect Detroit is for all sorts of agricultural endeavors, Savelle addresses the progress of the urban farming movement, Crouch discusses income potential from gardening for poor residents and Score looks at large scale commercial farming as a viable industry in Detroit. All pieces fit together nicely to display the potential of farming in this city from a variety of different angles. All of which point once again to the fact that as Detroit pushes forward re-defining itself with its signature pioneering spirit, there is a good chance other struggling cities will listen and take note. Evidence, once again, that we gotta keep pushing. Onwards.
Some of you may remember the DL! exhibition at Ladybug Gallery last January. We had music by Alan Scheurman, screened the Farmer and the Philosopher, LOVELAND’s Jerry P was there selling inches of Detroit, Vanessa Miller had her photography series “Making it Happen in Detroit” on display. Yeah. Pretty swell night. Now, gather yourself, but as the title may imply, part TWO is coming. You betcha. On September 11, 2010 we will have another gallery show in conjunction with CAID and Whitdel Arts (formerly the Ladybug Gallery) to basically showcase this underlying theme of Detroit’s re-invention and the future. We are doing an open call this time for submissions (!!!) of all varying types of media, so if you feel inclined, put together a proposal and send it in. First, download the Call For Entries. Follow the instructions on there for submitting proposals and be mindful of the deadlines and such. It’s going to be exciting, lots of cool stuff in store! Let’s dance.
Link Wray, the rock and roll maestro, churned out songs like the popular “Rumble” and the not-nearly-as-popular-but-equally-if-not-more-exciting “Raw-Hide.” Many would argue that Link (and his Ray Men) were wholeheartedly responsible in 1958 for creating the power chord. Yeah. Believe it. But guess what, this aint no music blog as much as I sometimes want it to be, and so today I introduce you not to LINK WRAY, but rather LINK DROPPA– the new character in the DL! universe responsible for sharing important weblinks. Wow, that was such a wordy introduction.
First, a recent post by Karen Dybis with TIME’s Detroit Blog supporting the DL! film “The Farmer and Philosopher.” In the article, Karen urges readers to VOTE FOR THE FILM ON CURRENT.COM (so as to increase the possibility that the film will be on national television). Word on the street is that following Karen’s advice is actually a brilliant idea.
Finally, just when you thought Midtown was on a roll, dig this to keep the wave going– a brand new meat laboratory to be installed at Cass and Canfield in the mix with all the other cool cats in the area (Burea of Urban Living, City Bird, Motor City Brewing Works, Traffic Jam, etc). Bring on the smoked sausage and other meat-sorts of stuff.
As it turns out, the DL!’verse is still spinning, and by spinning, I mean “The Farmer and the Philosopher” is screening on Tuesday this week (2/2) as part of Mitten Movie Project. We’ve discussed MMP before, but it’s basically a monthly film festival that takes place at the Main Art in Royal Oak showcasing independent local filmmakers. It’s pretty fun. The bill is looking good for this month’s installment, chock full of all kinds of firepower. WDET has been airing some interviews and stuff with Connie Mangilin, the gal behind the wheel of the whole project. Anyway, it’s all getting going at 7:00 with a reception before. The films start rolling at 7:30pm (this was corrected, it used to 8pm. The correct time is 7:30pm). TFATP is towards the end of the bill screening in the latter part of the evening. Come on out and see the film on the big screen. Maybe throw in a cold beer or two? Forget about it. Come to think of it, make it an evening and head over to Ferndale after to Club Bart for a little Honky Tonk Tuesday.
HONKY TONK TUESDAY?! Is that what I hear you saying? Believe it. Easily one of the more redeeming musical affairs in the metro area, every week it’s a turn-back-the-clock affair re-hashing the sounds of Merle, Waylon, Conway, George, Ernest, Johnnie and Hank. The music usually starts a bit before 10pm, so it’s actually the perfect night in the making.
Alright, lots of plans with the film “The Farmer and the Philosopher” coming up. First, it will screen as part of Mitten Movie Project’s February 2 showing (at Main Art in Royal Oak). It is also going to air on Public Television for customers with WOW! and Comcast cable all throughout Southeast Michigan within a month or so. Details on specific airing times and dates will be posted when available. The film will also screen in March alongside Jeffrey Dechausse’s feature-length documentary about an honst used car salesman in Detroit called “American Auto.” And finally, last and certainly not least, the film is going up as a contender to air on the nationally broadcasted Current TV network. Please view the film here and vote it up (to vote you have to click on the link and hit the green button) so that we can make a shot at getting it on national television. I mean, hey, do it for Detroit if nothing else. Enjoy!
Well, “DETROIT LIVES! // the exhibition” went well. Really well. There was a great turnout for all components of the exhibition. Photos from Vanessa’s “People Making it Happen in Detroit” series looked tremendous lining the central corridor of the gallery, each portrait inviting in its own way and telling a story of each young person’s positive efforts in Detroit. It was certainly a window in to the world young people making a difference in the city. Jerry’s LOVELAND showcase was also a big hit, with people lining up by the dozen to get the lowdown on these inches of land selling for $1. Alan’s music sounded great, too. You can listen to more of his stuff here, though word on the street is that his album “Old Patterns” will be available for free download again here soon.
The screen printing station popped like dynamite with people bringing in everything from t-shirts to plywood and all kinds of stuff in betweeen. Everyone was kind of fascinated with the process of screen printing, and even happier when they lifted their hands off the squeegee, popped up the screen, and pulled out their masterpiece. It was fun. The design was made specifically for the show, so everyone got a brand new piece that looked quite nice– if I do say so myself.
The film screening went over so well, too. There was a large collection of people huddled around for the viewing– probably something between 50 and 75– and just about everyone remnained for the Q+A after with Toby and Mark, the film’s featured subjects. The conversation was intriguing and insightful with a lot of thoughtful questioning on real issues and opportunities in Detroit. This was easily one of the more redeeming components of the night providing evidence that people were enlightened and curious. Toby talked about his thoughts on Detroit’s forward movements and Mark talked about the garden and future plans.
Thanks to everyone who came out, and I mean that sincerely. Everyone that showed up quite literally made the night. It’s fairly clear that we should do another event like this soon. A ton of people want to see more based on some of the conversations I had. So, time to make it happen. Stay tuned!
So, it’s official– “DETROIT LIVES! // the exhibit” is happening next Thursday, January 14 at CAID’s (Contemporary Art Institute of Detroit) Ladbybug Gallery in Southwest Detroit (Map). And sure, this will servive as the official screening for the DL! film “The Farmer and the Philosopher,” but there’s a whole lot more. There are a host of other folks involved– artists, visionaries and people just doing cool stuff in Detroit. Vanessa Miller will have a portion of the exhibit devoted to displaying her photo essay “Making it Happen”– simple, expressive portraits of young people in Detroit making a difference on the ground. Jerry Paffendorf, the mind behind the project “Loveland,” will have a portion of the exhibit devoted to his endeavor that involves selling off inches of land in Detroit (hundreds of people have already “moved” here as a result). Alan Scheurman, the same fellow that did the music for the film, will be on hand to play some tunes. And then once the film screens, both of the film’s featured figures Toby Barlow (NYTimes, Creative Director at Team Detroit) and Mark Covington (Farmer, Georgia Street Community Garden) will be on hand for a Q+A session to follow. DL! will also have some interactive portions of the exhibit, including a DIY screen printing station where we will have a new design that people can print on their own piece of clothing or paper or whatever. So, the show becomes this dynamic look at a lot of different ways that Detroit is a colossal force of creativity. It’s going to be fun. Really. Admission is free and there will even be some drinks there. The open reception to meet all the artists starts at 6pm. Alan will play a show at 7pm, followed by the film screening at 8pm. The Q+A with Toby and Mark will follow after the screening. You can see the official press release here. See you there!
Exciting news is here. The official screening for the DL! film “The Farmer and the Philosopher” will take place on Thursday, January 14, time TBD. The venue is the Ladybug Gallery in Southwest Detroit (Hubbard and Porter), associated with CAID (Contemporary Art Institute of Detroit). A host of other artists are participating in the event to provide other attractions and installations. No question it will be just a little bit more than a film screening. Other details for the event will be announced as they unfold, but save the date for now. Hope to see you there!
And Pontiac gets some love in a recent listing by Builder Online of the 10 Coolest Houses of 2009. Yeah. See the house that Pontiac put on the list.
Finally, work is still underway to finalize details for the screening of the DL! film “The Farmer and the Philosopher.” More details on a date and other participating projects and talent will be unveiled soon. Rest assured, it isn’t going to be just a film showing.