Saturday, February 18, 2017

art from banned humans vol. 14

what it is: art from banned humans vol. 14
where I found it: the outside world

If you've never seen a film by the Iranian Abbas Kiarostrami, one of the world's great filmmakers, you should probably rectify that. He made many films, the best known of which is probably Taste of Cherry, about a guy driving through the outskirts of Tehran looking for someone to bury him after he carries out his plan to commit suicide. Roger Ebert said that it was one of his ten most hated films, which in and of itself makes it worth seeing.

Aside from his filmography, there are troves of writings, interviews, and other info out there on Kiarostrami ready for mining. Here's an interesting short documentary that includes every day scenes in Tehran, some of K's directing philisophy, and his comments on filmmaking without millions of bucks. In a separate video, not posted here, he speaks about the challenges of making art under a restrictive regime. Along those lines, there's a tiny moment at the end of the above short doc when he promises an actor that he'll continue the conversation after the cameras are gone so they can speak freely. Ugh.

Blah, blah, blah, just see some of this banned human's movies.

art from banned humans vol. 13

what it is: art from banned humans vol. 13
where I found it: the outside world

Clearly Steely Dan stole all of their tricks from this Libyan:



Friday, February 17, 2017

art from banned humans vol. 12

what it is: art from banned humans vol. 12
where I found it: the outside world

Let's now take a little journey through some corners of Sudanese music, at least those that a several-hours-long survey of youtube uncovers:

Here's a group of folks who do a range of workshops and lectures centered around Sudanese drumming. The leader works some spirited educational material into his poetic monologue:




An example of Ethio-Sudanese music, a deep well you can dive into if you enjoy this style:
 

A Sudanese girl group, a little like a North African Supremes:
 

Great stuff from an old school Sudanese crooner, Abdelkarim Al Kabli Hani Ardon:



This final example has some elements that remind me a great deal of Cajun music. Unfortunately the titles and comments are 99% in Arabic, so I can't even decode the artist's name. Enjoy:

 

Thursday, February 16, 2017

art from banned humans vol. 11

what it is: art from banned humans vol. 11
where i found it: the outside world

Black metal, especially the oneman band variety, has spread it tentacles to pretty much every country in the world by now, often cross breeding with the local folk or ethnic music. Here's a cool example from Iran:

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

art from banned humans vol. 10

what it is: art from banned humans vol. 10
where i found it: the outside world

Maryam Mursal of Somalia has the distinction of being the first female "Somali jazz" star as well as the first female Somali taxi driver (after the government banned her from performing). Here she is in a somewhat tripped out video featuring autotune and strange graphics.



Here she is again, with more autotune and, towards the end, a cadre of strangely uncomfortable looking backup singers.


And here in a more classic pre-autotune era. The offstage oud player is excellent and there's something just magical in the flat fidelity of it all.

 

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

art from banned humans vol. 9

what it is: art from banned humans vol. 9
where i found it: the outside world

A quick trip through some highlights of Libyan architecture:















Monday, February 13, 2017

art from banned humans vol. 8

what it is: art from banned humans vol.8
where i found it: the outside world

Here's a soundcloud page full of material from the Iranian DJ duo Blade & Beard. I don't know much about EDM, but this stuff is all pretty darkly tripped out and mellow at the same time, sort of like a stretched out John Carpenter soundtrack. Enjoy.


Sunday, February 12, 2017

art from banned humans vol. 7

what it is: art from banned humans
where i found it: the outside world

 . . . and of course the great deadpan Syrian musician Omar Souleyman and his unbelievable keyboardist has to be included in this survey. Check it:






Saturday, February 11, 2017

art from banned humans vol. 6

what it is: art from banned humans vol. 6
where i found it: the outside world

Next we visit the Syrian artist Fateh Moudarres. Active until his death in '99, Moudarres developed his own expressionistic style, mixing ordinary people from the Syrian countryside with figures from traditional Syrian folklore to create a range of interesting narrative scenes. Click on images for a closer view. Behold:















 

Friday, February 10, 2017

art from banned humans vol. 5

what it is: art from banned humans vol. 5
where i found it: the outside world

Here's a Somalian rap crew for you. 


Thursday, February 9, 2017

art from banned humans vol. 4

what it is: art from banned humans vol. 4
where i found it: the outside world

Here we have a collection of Persian (Iranian) carpets and mosaic designs. If you have an "oriental" carpet in your home, it's design can probably be traced back to Persia. Granted, looking at a small series of jpegs is probably among the worst way to try to appreciate this grand tradition, but just take a minute to really look at these. You can click on each for larger detail.

















Wednesday, February 8, 2017

art from banned humans vol. 3

what it is: art from banned humans vol. 3
where i found it: the outside world

This isn't exactly my favorite kind of metal, but you have to give it to these guys, Acrassicauda, from Iraq, who got this band up and running when Saddam Hussein was still running the show. They got chased out of the country by militants though Syria, then Turkey, and eventually made it to the US as, yes,  refugees.  Here they are, live on Seattle's KEXP:



As a special bonus, check out the look true wonderment on this band member's face when he gets a surprise from James Hetfield."Welcome to America."


Tuesday, February 7, 2017

art from banned humans vol. 2

what it is: art from banned humans vol. 2
where i found it: the outside world

Next up we have some traditional Sudanese architecture. Several of the shots are from this page on the Al Jazeera site, which has many more photos along with context-giving captions.