Tag Archives: Creativity

Mark Hood Exhibition opens Thursday June 11

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a short history of roomies artspace


ROOMIES ARTSPACE started as a series of art workshops in Inner West boarding houses conducted in 1996 and 1997 by KANCAM (later Inner West Cultural Services). In 1999, this developed into fortnightly workshops at the Tom Foster Community Centre in Newtown under the aegis of Newtown Neighbourhood Centre’s Boarding House Project.

This award winning art group has had several sell out exhibitions since 1999 and it has long been a dream of the artists and art workers (many of whom are volunteers) to have a space of their own. ROOMIES are people with mental illnesses or disabilities who live in the community in a boarding house. ROOMIES have very little money, they share rooms and often clothing and personal possessions. They have very little privacy and no space to themselves.


With the assistance of Addison Rd Gallery and Newtown Neighbourhood Centre, ROOMIES ARTSPACE was founded at the Addison Rd Community Centre in an old army hut. ROOMIES ARTSPACE was officially opened in October 2005 by Archibald prize winning artist Cherry Hood, with a sellout exhibition and a highly enjoyable opening party.

Sex Strike – thinking outside the box

from SMH

Thousands of Kenyan women vowed on Wednesday to begin a week-long sex strike to try to protest their country’s bickering leadership, which they say threatens to revive the bloody chaos that convulsed the African country last year.

Leaders from Kenya’s largest and oldest group dedicated to women’s rights, the Women’s Development Organisation, said they hope the boycott will persuade men to pressure the government to make peace.

Eleven women’s groups are participating in the strike. The groups have also called on the wives of President Mwai Kibaki and Prime Minister Raila Odinga to abstain. It was not clear how either wife responded to the request.

“We have looked at all issues which can bring people to talk and we have seen that sex is the answer,” said Rukia Subow, chairman of the Women’s Development Organisation.

“It does not know tribe, it does not have a (political) party and it happens in the lowest households.”

Many men in Kenya are polygamous, as is allowed by law. Kenyan government spokesman Alfred Mutua said he was unaware of the strike. The disputed election between Kibaki and then-challenger Odinga led to violence that killed more than 1000 people and left more than 600,000 homeless. The two were installed after a month of mediation, but infighting has threatened to break apart the fragile coalition.

TED Talks in Newtown – Robots

Guerrilla Science! I’ve been putting up posters on King St. I haven’t exactly done a band run and my sticky tape dispenser is dinky but it brings back memories! Thursday night is the first of our planned TED Talks at Newtown Public School and we have no idea how it will go!

THURS 2nd April 6 to 7.30
at Newtown Public School
screening short videos and talks about
the now of robotics and nanotechnology
by Prof Rodney Brooks from MIT
and Hod Lipson from Cornell
chaired by Dr Michael Harries
PhD Artificial Intelligence

Robots & Superhumans

ENTRY FREE, OPEN to all members of community

WARNING.. WARNING..
there will be real robots

This is my second year running a science club at the school. Last year we were overwhelmed with interest from children (60+) but had only a few parent volunteers. This year, I’ve arranged for paid professional workshops. It’s cheap as, yet the enrolments are not quite at the expected level. Perhaps I made it too cheap! Still, my kids are getting great workshops out of it.

We’ve just finished two sessions of robotics using Lego Mindstorms robots and some of us are inspired to do a science show fundraiser next term to raise money for school robots and laptops and do a robotics competition!

In the meantime… I’m going to try to tweet out the TED talks although it unfortunately clashes with the Sydney Skeptics in the Pub.

Google Project 10^100 results?

Too many drafts and not enough blog love!

I was going to post our Google Project 10^100 applications in January (we put them in October 08) but the announcement of Google’s shortlist was postponed from Australia Day to St Pats day, due to the overwhelming response.

It’s a great idea. Google are going to pick 100 of the most interesting implementable ideas for changing the world and put them out for public vote and give the winning ideas $10 million.

So… any news yet?

#followfriday, Donald Norman, Emotional Design and Stupid Dolphins.

Twitter has sucked the productivity out of me but is pumping me full of ideas and new acquaintances. Something I’m playing with (soon to be @Twisterature) is the way of communicating texts in bursts, conversationally as it were. What can be seeded into a 140char limit conversation? This has some overlaps with the cut-ups of Burroughs and the Beatniks.

So, I’m reading Donald A. Norman on Emotional Design, finally, and I’ve decided to reTweet a section that grabbed me. P18 to P20 of the chapter ‘Attractive Things Work Better’ to be precise. It’s really study notes – can they survive the twansition?

** nope they didn’t. Some claim to have created ‘literature’ with tweets. Poetry is possible. Novels are not. And links are for articles.

The internet is a wide and wonderful place!

But my friends are luddites and won’t get online.

Apparently things like gaming with my partner in separate rooms of the same house and communicating by headset gives virtual reality a bad name. I do think we’re on to a winner with the real treadmill powering World of Warcraft corpse runs though!

Memo to self: Must hack treadmill! Now if we could put it together with the Roomba and the Wiimote Whiteboard… think we’re on to something insanely amazing here! Warcraft controlled by wiimote causing new cleaning (and beer fetching) algorithm for Roomba all powered by treadmill human/rodent. I think we can get the government to fund this as modern performance installation art!

But I digress. I think there is as much real social interaction from internet communication as any other non face to face communication! I also love the surprise sites where I ‘stumbleupon’ something I wasn’t looking for but am interested in. It’s a continual trash and treasure market place!

Here’s a tidbit unearthed from a rather old site regarding internet regulation and censorship which has cleverly reworked an even older poem. Both included below from www.razorsedge.org .

First they came…

First they came for the hackers.
But I never did anything illegal with my computer,
so I didn’t speak up.
Then they came for the pornographers.
But I thought there was too much smut on the Internet anyway,
so I didn’t speak up.
Then they came for the anonymous remailers.
But a lot of nasty stuff gets sent from anon.penet.fi,
so I didn’t speak up.
Then they came for the encryption users.
But I could never figure out how to work PGP anyway,
so I didn’t speak up.
Then they came for me.
And by that time there was no one left to speak up. — Alara Rogers

In Germany they first came for the Communists,
and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a Communist.
Then they came for the Jews,
and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a Jew.
Then they came for the trade unionists,
and I didn’t speak up because I wasn’t a trade unionist.
Then they came for the Catholics,
and I didn’t speak up because I was a Protestant.
Then they came for me –
and by that time no one was left to speak up.