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May 28, 2009

Vienna- the #1 livable city

Got to go to a great Mozart concert last night.  We were invited by one of the musicians as her guest in a lovely guilded theatre- (tickets were about $100 each!).  It was not only great fun, but they were really good.  Impeccable!  Turns out most of the players in the 40-some piece orchestra have been together for 20 years, playing 4 times a week between tours around the world.  Surprisingly, their expressive and very funny director is not permanent. In fact they don't have a regular director- they change every few nights, like underwear.  Tonight we go to a Japanese theatre with this woman, and another concert on Sunday in a small town north of here, after which we walk to the home of an excentric artist who lives near. 

Yesterday after a meeting with the head of the Stephansdom Museum we were invited to an unveiling of a new sculpture in the main cathedral; an hour of standing crammed in a very small chapel listening to speeches we couldn't comprehend surrounded by photographers (the record for flash photos from one camera of a talking head was 7 within one second!)  Finally the sculpture was unveiled, a large bronze wall piece.  I thought there was nothing remarkable or even very good about it, yet it is a big deal, probably because the much-cooed-over artist is Austria's most well-known and at the end of his years.  (He did a show at this museum last year that stirred world-wide controversy, mostly from American conservative Christians, oddly.  That's the reason I picked this museum, because they were not put off by that.)  We left singularly unimpressed– as with most Austrian contemporary art I've seen– but again it's nice to be greeted by officials, we strange newcomers to the world's most livable city. 

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Tim Holmes Studio

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I'm a sculptor/filmmaker living in Montana, USA. I am using art to move the evolution of humanity forward into an increasingly responsive, inclusive and interactive culture. As globalization flattens peoples into a capitalist monoculture I hope to use my art to celebrate historical cultural differences and imagine how we can co-create a rich future together.

I see myself as an artist/philosopher laboring deep in the mines of joy. I've had a good long career of exhibiting work around the world and working on international outreach projects, most notably being the first American to be invited to present a one-person exhibit in the Hermitage Museum. Recently I have turned my attention from simply making metal sculpture to creating films and workshops for engaging communities directly, tinkering with the very ideas and mechanisms behind cultural transformation. I feel that as we face tragic world crises, if the human species favors our imaginative and creative capacities we can cultivate a rich world to enjoy.

For me the deepest satisfaction in making art comes in engaging people's real life concerns rather than providing simple entertainment or decoration. Areas of conflict or tension are particularly ripe for the kind of transformative power that art uniquely carries. I invite any kind of challenge that serves people on a deep level.