Archive for the ‘My Writing’ Category

Parks and Recreation Recap-Season 5 Episode 6

Friday, November 9th, 2012

“Ben’s Parents”

Ben’s parents hate each other, can Leslie and Ben survive their engagement party with his parents in the same room?

TV Recap: Parks and Recreation: Season 5, Episode 5

Friday, October 26th, 2012

My latest recap for Parks and Recreation: Season 5, Episode 5.  Enjoy, but beware there are spoilers!

Klimt and Art Nouveau

Thursday, September 8th, 2011

During the latter part of the 19thcentury, the European and American art communities began to fall away from the harsh and severe constraints of the Victorian Era and Industrial Revolution. “The new art” or Art nouveau made its way into the lives of everyday people from 1890-1910, through decorative furniture, architecture, products, fashion and in traditional art pieces. Art Nouveau was a rejection of the previous historical approach to art and depicted an organic flow with free and graceful lines. Gustav Klimt’s piece, Three Ages of Women, 1905, is an astounding example of this period.

In the latter part of the 1800s printing and mass production inventions allowed for artists to reach a large population of “everyday people”, where before the industrial revolution this was not possible. The industrial revolution was a catalyst for the urban environment and commercial media. Meanwhile the Victorian Era’s elaborate design work was full of romantic notions portraying a desire to return to a simpler life. However, both time periods clashed with one another in social movements that transcended into art. Led by William Morris (1834-96), the Arts and Crafts movement rejected these previous periods and wished to keep the integrity and individuality of each hand worked piece at the forefront of society.

As art and the idea of design was finding its way into mass society, artists felt freer to deviate from the previous classic artwork of the past, such as neo-classicism, Romanticism, Medievalism, etc.  Instead, artists began to experiment with new techniques and began to look to the Far East for inspiration.  The art movement of Japan, Ukiyo-e, meaning “pictures of the floating world” amazed European artists and caused them to realize a new way of depicting a scene.  Ukiyo-e was an innovative method of subjects and landscapes suggesting impressionistic qualities, simplifying lines while utilizing bold black shapes and decorative patterns.  Japanese art gave way to the Art Nouveau period, motivating artists with a variety of new ideas and techniques that displayed individual expression rather than detailed depictions. During this period artists that previously worked with past styles and media began to experiment in an exciting new world of decadence and freedom from the restraints of art being standardized in any one way.

Gustav Klimt (1862-1918) was an Austrian painter and co-founder of the Vienna Secession, or the Viennese version of art nouveau.   Klimt began in 1883 as an artist/decorator, painting murals in the Museum of Vienna.  Perhaps his largest accomplishment was the Beethoven Frieze (1905-09), a cycle of mosaic decorations for Josef Hofman’s Palais Stoclet in Brussels.  Klimt was inspired by many styles including classical Greek, Byzantine, Egyptian, and Minoan art.  As well as, late-medieval painting, woodcuts of Albert Durer, symbolist art to name a few; Klimt incorporated all of these sources into a fresh and eclectic style combining symbolism and art nouveau.

Klimt’s Three Ages of Women invokes a very primal connection between women in various stages of life and death.  Klimt’s use of mosaics of different colors, shapes, the flowing lines, the gold leaf accents and the abstract yet detailed female forms are typical of this new age of decadence.  The symbolism of dark shadow cast over the old woman, and the light embracing the mother and child, are utter reminders of the cycle of life.  The contrasting colors of red on the bed, nude dark wrinkled skin (the old woman) and blue on the bed and clothing against the pale, nude youthful bodies (the mother and child) are set against an impressionistic type dark background. The textures and colors are interchangeably muted and bright throughout Klimt’s painting creating a swirl of emotion. The elongated bodies and distorted angles of the females were part of the “art nouveau” female depiction of the time. Klimt often used sexuality, regeneration, life and death as primal dominant themes in his work, Three Ages of Women is an example of all of these aspects his individual style.


The Green Movement and Design

Sunday, October 3rd, 2010

By Jemile Bata

The Green Movement has swept our nation and globe in a whirlwind of new ideas and old habits.   The green movement in this country is not something innovative; it was begun by Transcendentalists, in the 1860s, largely led by Henry David Thoreau: “Nature is full of genius, full of the divinity; so that not a snowflake escapes its fashioning hand.” It is from Thoreau’s love of nature that America finds its roots in environmentalism.  Although, it was not until the 1970’s that this country began a tree hugging crusade into advocating preservation of our environment.  The current Green Movement is full of history, and has reappeared in society in a status quo position today.  The Green Movement and its effect on design and art in all aspects can be traced to the inspiration of Art Nouveau and Psychedelic art periods, two short yet profound eras of our time.  One can surely see the social reactionary/rebellion and artistic similarities of these previous eras and notice the coinciding time periods of the environmental time line itself.

It seems humans instinctively revert back to nature when technology bombards our individual lives.  The Green Movement may have roots in our history, but it exploded into our mass global society as soon as Al Gore uttered “Global Warming” and its effects in his movie, An Inconvenient Truth. Millions of Americans began to “go green” in an effort to reverse the effects of years of pollution and wasteful habits.  Consumers began to purchase things based on eco-friendly benefits rather than aesthetic qualities.  Designers and companies began to re-invent themselves and design began to go into a new and fresh direction.  Nature and green began to flood the artistic world, including the world of graphic design.

Due to the Green Movement, artists began to implement nature into every field of art and design, from traditional art, architecture, furniture, graphic design, fashion and advertising…not unlike art nouveau did when the world reacted against the industrial revolution.  As quoted from an online article, “A Brief History of the Green Movement”: “But American citizens have taken it upon themselves join a global movement, to learn more despite the gridlock in Washington; to conserve, to drive the development of eco-friendly consumption, to buy hybrids or use mass transit, even to telecommute. More and more people now recycle, compost, “go organic”, grow gardens and understand the connection between saving money, improving health and helping the environment. More people are interested in technology and efficient living than ever before. And more and more people are becoming curious about the natural world in all its majesty and strangeness.”  It is a revolution to return to a simpler way of life, but as an aesthetically and consumer driven society we have found a way to have our cake and eat it too.

Design fueled by the Green Movement uses organic and free flowing curvilinear lines and colors, shades and tones found in nature.  Most commonly greens, blues and browns are used in addition to a large number of trees, globes, leaves and abstract images of objects found in nature.  Recycling and conservation are the main themes of these images, but most of all the idea of worshipping nature and all of its magic is prevalent as well.  The inspiration of the Art Nouveau and its plant-like and natural forms can be seen, the psychedelic periods way of using art as a political message is also apparent.  Photography, collage, painting, graphic design and typography, and company logos all incorporate these principles into a visual icon of the Green Movement itself.

The calming tones of green and nature are the identifying feature of this new wave of design, but it is the political message behind it that has stirred a nation of Americans to demand it as the main artistic theme behind their purchases.  From reusable water bottles and shopping bags, to organic or hemp clothing, whimsical household eco-friendly objects and food packaging.  All carrying the unified reminder of a eco-conscious back to nature world.  Unlike the fleeting design periods of art nouveau and psychedelic rebellion art, mass media has latched onto the Green Movement with a fierce grip.  Americans that used to make fun of the “hippy weirdo” have thus becoming that in themselves, if only because everyone else is doing it.  Our nation is consumed with organic and sustainable living and everything it signifies.  It is a hope redeemed in our ever-increasingly technological computerized world full of cell phones, social networks and gadgets galore.  We have etched out a part of our world and past that we want to hang on to.  A simple and carefree world that wishes it could just leisurely picnic in a meadow full flowers and surrounded by trees, stopping only to skinny dip in the nearby water hole.  So no matter how many people we text or email, no matter how rushed and over stimulated our lives become, we can be surrounded by beautiful things, inspired by nature in the art and products designed by environmentalism.  While design may influence society most of the time, society has now dictated design.

A Poem: Woman

Wednesday, September 29th, 2010

By: Jemile Bata

A mother, sister, lover, friend

Joyful times and sadness fills her

Times in memory

Times in the now

Holding hands

Small ones

Strong ones

A head on my shoulder

On my lap

Her ears yearn to listen

Her heart longs to help

To love

To just be

A love of life

Of experiences

Her heart beats hard and strong

Little miss curious

Mind always racing

Cherishing the small

Cradling the old

Joyous reflection in the back of my mind

Hectic, stressed

Calm, relaxed, bored


A “mommy” rings in her ears

Loud and warm

“I love you” dances upon her soul

Venturing out into the world

Wind that carries her

Water, that which she can ride

Who is she?

She wonders

How can I find me?

Confusion like sobs

Racking her chest

She feels weak

She is determined

Honesty, she seeks

She appreciates

Holds on to

She is petrified

Of what might come to be

She worries

She understands

Perhaps too much

So used to the pain

Occasional emptiness

A burden heavy and long

Her life is uncontrollable

Yet in the dense thick fog

She searches

And within her heart

Underneath her pain

The drama

Happiness flutters inside her

Like an orange butterfly

Optimism claws deep within her

Hope renewed and lifted

The vast life she leads

Friendships, so good, delightful

Her soul is free

Love for all

Sweetness in the people she cares for

In the world she lives

To be with child

To leave an imprint

To savor a moment

Just beginning



For the core of this thing called


Soft and beautiful…