Sarah Howerter loves music, art, nature, and really passionate people. She spends her time drawing, reading, taking photos, listening to and studying music, riding bikes, drinking coffee, working, or just playing outside. She loves discovering new things and seeing from new perspectives. Space and creation fascinate her while most human beings puzzle her. She often wishes she was a bird... or a squirrel.
"Meanwhile down at the mall there's a mid-season sale. Everything's discounted-oceans, rivers, oil, gene pools, fig wasps, flowers, childhoods, aluminum factories, phone companies, wisdom, wilderness, civil rights, ecosystems, air-all 4.6 billion years of evolution. It's packed, sealed, tagged, valued, and available off the rack (no returns). As for justice-I'm told it's on offer too. You can get the best that money can buy.
Donald Rumsfeld said that his mission in the War against Terror was to persuade the world that Americans must be allowed to continue their way of life. When the maddened king stamps his foot, slaves tremble in their quarters. So, standing here today, it's hard for me to say this, but The American Way of Life is the simply not sustainable. Because it doesn't acknowledge that there is a world beyond America.
Fortunately power has a shelf life. When the time comes, maybe this mighty empire will, like others before it, overreach itself and implode from within. It looks as though structural cracks have already appeared. As the War against Terror casts its net wider and wider, America's corporate heart is hemorrhaging. For all the endless empty chatter about democracy, today the world is run by three of the most secretive institutions in the world: the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank, and the World Trade Organization, all three of which, in turn, are dominated by the United States. Their decisions are made in secret. The people who head them are appointed behind closed doors. Nobody really knows anything about them, their politics, their beliefs, their intentions. Nobody elected them. Nobody said they could make decisions on our behalf. A world run by a handful of greedy bankers and CEOs whom nobody elected can't possibly last.
Soviet-style communism failed, not because it was intrinsically evil, but because it was flawed. It allowed too few people to usurp too much power. Twenty-first century market capitalism, American-style, will fail for the same reasons. Both are edifices constructed by human intelligence, undone by human nature.
The time has come, the Walrus said. Perhaps things will get worse then better. Perhaps there's a small god up in heaven readying herself for us. Another world is not only possible, she's on her way. Maybe many of us won't be here to greet her, but on a quiet day, if I listen very carefully, I can hear her breathing."
So last weekend I went on a trip to Chicago for Pitchfork Music Festival and Flatstock 21. It was an amazing time and an amazing place. This was my first time to Chicago and it definably held up to all of what people told me it would be. We got to go around the city while we were not at the festival and I was blown away at the vast amount people and places that intrigued me. And also the amount of schwinns everywhere. It made me quite happy. So my roommate Chelsea and I bummed around and rode the L all over. We were shown a few hot spots by my good friend Ahndhi Sticha such as Quimby's book store and Revolution Records (aka Heaven). I dropped way too much money on vinyl and books and I can't forget the delicous deep dish pizza. (Yumm)
But as for the festival, that seemed like an entirely different adventure in itself. I got to see some really great shows such as Final Fantasy, Yeasayer, Beirut, Grizzly Bear, The Walkmen, The National, and the Bowerbirds. (The Flaming Lips are terrible and played sort of the final show of the fest but whatever, people are dumb.) But seeing all of those bands that I like was really cool, I actually got close for a few of them. But the really cool part about the festival was Flatstock and all of the vendors that were there. There was so much awesome art and craft type things for sale there and seeing the artists that create the posters that I look at online and love so much was really really cool. There were a lot of local artists from Chicago that I got to talk to about the scene there especially with printmaking. One printer that I got to chat with was Justin Santora. He told me about Chicago and how the printmaking scene there is really open and welcoming. I am highly considering relocating there after I finish school. You should check out his website though, he has some great stuff, www.justinsantora.com I got to meet a lot of great printers at Flatstock such as Kevin Tong, one of my favorites, Jay Ryan of the Bird Machine, Diane Sudyka, one of whos prints I actually already owned and love, and many others.
The trip as a whole was really good for me I feel in the terms of my art and of figuring out where I feel I should be in my life. I can't wait to go back and visit again. -Sarah E Howerter