T-Shirts and the Chests Who Wear Them

One of the cooler parts of the Idea Festival this week is a project by local photographer Leslie Lyons, who wants you to wear your most provocative t-shirt down to the 21C Hotel on Thursday so she can take your photo.

It’s called Talking Back. As Lyons explained, one of the featured subjects from Louisville will be featured in an exhibition at the Art Directors Club in New York next month. The images, all shot in Polaroids, will be enlarged to life-size, just like one that’s currently on display down at 21C.  The idea is to express an idea using only the power of the message on your chest. She’s done shoots like this one in several cities, with the concept to celebrate self-expression.

But don’t wear that “I’m with Stupid” shirt you think is so cool and expect to get in the exhibit.

Here’s a more eloquent way of saying what it’s all about. You can go down to 21C on Thursday between 9 a.m. and 7 p.m. to be photographed in your shirt.

TALKING BACK aims to elucidate the dynamics of personal expression across the landscape of pop culture in America with a fashion monograph celebrating the unique personal essence of T-shirt culture and its power to convey the essential passions of its wearer. Lyon’s subjects are real people and these are their real shirts. Working as journalist as much as artist, she invites all who are inspired to literally wear their thoughts on their sleeves as it were. Some shirts are bought, some home made but all represent an extension of self that each subject wishes you to know or believe about them or to provoke a thought or stance.

Monday Morning Dept. of Meatball Express

So the Cats beat the Cards in an entertaining game in Lexington by a 31-27 count, so now we can move on to the Jan. 2 basketball game between the two schools. The notable part of the broadcast, other than the no-name announce team of Clay Matvick and David Diaz-Infante, was the excess of brownie and meatball-making commercial spots.

Seriously, did anyone out there just give up and order one of those magic brownie serving thingies that aired about a dozen times? Or did you throw up seeing all that raw hamburger rolling around in that plastic contraption? It’s a shame for local advertisers, many of whom would have jumped at the chance to buy time in the highly-rated sporting event.

When the game is controlled by ESPN, however, with no local station involved, the majority of the spots are controlled by the big network. And that means very limited opportunities for local spots in the broadcast.

As for the game broadcast, it’s almost like the four-letter network goes out of its way to remove any local flavor from the game broadcast. No sideline interviews and no guests in the broadcast booth.

You can watch Coach Steve Kragthorpe’s press conference on the C-J website today at 1:30.

So on to the week ahead, which includes…

The Idea Festival starts tomorrow with the Main Course, in which a formal dining table set for 200 is set up on Main Street in front of the Humana Building. Of course, it’s $175. There’s a chance of rain.

Mystery Man: No one who attended the Gaslight Festival in Jeffersontown over the weekend saw Mayor Clay Foreman on the grounds. Which is like Jerry Abramson skipping the Derby.  And Foreman is supposedly running for re-election. Here’s the way the non-partisan race works there – if there are at least three candidates, all run in the primary, with the top two surviving to the November election.

There was a big Hal Heiner presence at Gaslight.

At Least It’s Friday Edition

The Big Game: No one’s come through with tickets, yet, so I guess I’ll watch the big game on TV. It would be much more fun to live blog from the stands in defiance of the new Southeastern Conference rule. Anyway the game’s on ESPNU, but you can catch it on Insight’s channel 11. Noon tomorrow.

Redneck Fringe: Last week Billy Reed wrote a piece that pointed an accusing finger at the redneck element of the University of Kentucky fan base. It prompted nearly 100 responses, some from rednecks. OK, mostly from rednecks. [BillyReedSays]

Time Bomb Ticking: Erratic, irrational behavior was nothing new to Steve Nunn. He was abusive to his aging father, sister and ex-wife, according to a letter written by Louie Nunn. [Courier]

Covering Tyler: Now that we know how sensitive they are over at the C-J, it will be interesting to see what kind of coverage the Tyler Allen campaign gets in the less-important-than-ever newspaper in the future.  Can the “Big Ideas” candidate get any press in the paper whose editorial writers hate him? [Page One, (check the comments) Fat Lip]

Want to Get Paid? The local SPJ is holding a program at Baptist East next Saturday. The idea is to find ways to market yourself as a writer/journalist, since there aren’t any jobs left in mainstream media.  [SPJ]

 IF Is Here: The acclaimed Idea Festival is back in town next week. You should check the schedule and see who you want to check out. For me, it’s the hilarious writer A.J. Jacobs next Thursday afternoon. [IF]

Officially, The Flu is Widespread: According to the state’s Dept. of Public Health, the flu has gone from regional to widespread in the state, mostly due to H1N1. It’s so bad they cancelled a high school football game in northern Kentucky. [USAToday]

Friends of NuLu

Here’s an idea that we’re pretty excited about — the NuLu Festival. It’s coming up in two weeks, celebrating the newest, hippest stuff happening on East Market Street. Here’s the news on it:

LOUISVILLE, KENTUCKY ­ The first annual NuLu Festival will take place on East Market Street Saturday, September 26th, from 5- ­11 pm. The 700 block of East Market Street (between Clay & Shelby), will play host to the festival and will be closed to vehicle traffic during the event. Held on the closing night of the third annual Idea Festival, the NuLu Festival is presented in conjunction with the 30th anniversary of Leadership Louisville and the Bingham Fellows Class of 2009.

Local restaurants and retailers will be on hand, and sponsor Bluegrass Brewing Co. will supply their local micro-brewed beer with wine by Felice Vineyard and Winery.  With live music all night, cellist Ben Sollee will perform, as well as Generic Alternatives, Thomas A Minor & the Picket Line, Lucky Pineapple and local rockers The Instruction.

The event is free, family-friendly including the Gallopalooza foals and the Bubble Truck, and open to the public.  The festival is presented by the East Market District Association with generous support from the following sponsors:  IDEAFESTIVAL, Bluegrass Brewing Company, Felice Vineyard and Winery, JAVA Brewing Company, Brightside, JEB Advertising, Action Graphics, Eon, Bingham Fellows, Leadership Louisville Center, Home of the Innocents, Tucker Booker Donhoff & Partners, Stock Yards Bank, Bargain Supply, sonaBLAST Records and 732 Social.

In November 2008, “The Heart of NuLu” became the official tagline for the East Market District in Louisville, Kentucky.

NuLu, more a state of mind than an area of town, is present in this relaxed artsy neighborhood with old buildings and new ideas. The area comprises parts of two of Louisville’s oldest neighborhoods, Butchertown and Phoenix Hill, and is home to some of the city’s oldest homes and businesses, as well as The Green Building, Louisville’s first commercial building anticipating Platinum LEED certification.  The neighborhood business association is made up of over 60 businesses which include galleries, creative retail stores, and artists in residence.

The event is intended to allow everyone to experience Nulu for themselves

IF Lineup of Artists, Scientists, Media Types Announced

Time to get excited about the 2009 Idea Festival and start figuring out which sessions you want to attend.

My favorites, or at least the ones I’ve heard of, are author A.J. Jacobs and “Kitchen Confidential” author Anthony Bourdain.

Jacobs is a regular contributor to Esquire, and has written a pair of really intriguing books — “The Know-it-All” is about his year spent reading the Encyclopedia Britannica, and “The Year of Living Biblically” which pretty much explains itself. If you haven’t read Bourdain’s book, you don’t know what really goes on in the kitchens at restaurants.

But the great thing about the IF is all the smart and talented folks you’ve never heard of — the scientists, the artists, the filmmakers, the writers. Oh, yeah, and the ideas. Check out the roundup in the Herald-Leader story. And the Idea Festival link for everything in the Sept. 23-26 event.