Cheatahs - Fall

blackhallmanor:

Hussein Chalayan’s “Ambimorphous” (Autumn/Winter 2002)

blackhallmanor:

Hussein Chalayan’s “Ambimorphous” (Autumn/Winter 2002)

titanium44:

The goal, this weekend, is

  • to not get killed
  • to not kill anybody
  • to not die 

Always

I guess the option of walking/biking/mass transit is just a foreign concept for some people. 

I guess the option of walking/biking/mass transit is just a foreign concept for some people. 

lacollectionneuse:

asymmetric landscape print skirt (be 36) • dries van notenUS $595.00 

lacollectionneuse:

asymmetric landscape print skirt (be 36) • dries van noten
US $595.00 

Behind the scenes photo from the filming of 2001: A Space Odyssey

Behind the scenes photo from the filming of 2001: A Space Odyssey

Stranger presents “Peir Wu”

Peir Wu, founder and designer of her menswear label, Peir Wu talks about her brand and her design process.

All footage shot and edited by TISU at Peir Wu’s studio in London.

Did I Do That? Distinguishing Real from Imagined Actions

Why is reality monitoring a challenge? To illustrate, let’s say you’re at the Louvre standing before the Mona Lisa. As you look at the painting, visual areas of your brain are busy representing the image with specific patterns of activity. So far, so good. But problems emerge if we rewind to a time before you saw the Mona Lisa at the Louvre. Let’s say you were about to head over to the museum and you imagined the special moment when you would gaze upon Da Vinci’s masterwork. When you imagined seeing the picture, you were activating the same visual areas of the brain in a similar pattern to when you would look at the masterpiece itself.*

When you finally return home from Paris and try to remember that magical moment at the Louvre, how will you be able to distinguish your memories of seeing the Mona Lisa from imagining her? Reality monitoring studies have asked this very question (minus the Mona Lisa). Their findings suggest that you’ll probably use additional details associated with the memory to ferret out the mnemonic wheat from the chaff. You might use memory of perceptual details, like how the lights reflected off the brushstrokes, or you might use details of what you thought or felt, like your surprise at the painting’s actual size. Studies find that people activate both visual areas (like the fusiform gyrus) and self-monitoring regions of the brain (like the medial prefrontal cortex) when they are deciding whether they saw or just imagined seeing a picture.

It’s important to know what you did and didn’t see, but another crucial and arguably more important facet of reality monitoring involves determining what you did and didn’tdo. How do you distinguish memories of things you’ve actually done from those you’ve planned to do or imagined doing? You have to do this every day and it isn’t a trivial task. Perhaps you’ve left the house and headed to work, only to wonder en route if you’d locked the door. Even if you thought you did, it can be hard to tell whether you remember actually doing it or just thinking about doing it. The distinction has consequences. Going home and checking could make you late for work, but leaving your door unlocked all day could mean losing your possessions. So how do we tell the possibilities apart?

Valerie BrandtJon Simons, and colleagues at the University of Cambridge looked into this question and published their findings last month in the journal Cognitive, Affective, and Behavioral Neuroscience. For the first part of the experiment (the study phase), they sat healthy adult participants down in front of two giant boxes – one red and one blue – that each contained 80 ordinary objects. The experimenter would draw each object out of one of the two boxes, place it in front of the participant, and tell him or her to either perform or to imagine performing a logical action with the object. For example, when the object was a book, participants were told to either open or imagine opening it.

After the study phase, the experiment moved to a scanner for fMRI. During these scans, participants were shown photographs of all 160 of the studied objects and, for each item, were asked to indicate either 1) whether they had performed or merely imagined performing an action on that object, or 2) which box the object had been drawn from.** When the scans were over, the participants saw the pictures of the objects again and were asked to rate how much specific detail they’d recalled about encountering each object and how hard it had been to bring that particular memory to mind.

The scientists compared fMRI measures of brain activation during the reality-monitoring task (Did I use or imagine using that object?) with activation during the location task (Which box did this object come from?). One of the areas they found to be more active during reality monitoring was the supplementary motor area, a region involved in planning and executing movements of the body. Just as visual areas are activated for reality monitoring of visual memories, motor areas are activated when people evaluate their action memories. In other words, when you ask yourself whether you locked the door or just imagined it, you may be using details of motor aspects of the memory (e.g., pronating your wrist to turn the key in the lock) to make your decision.

The study’s authors also found greater activation in the anterior medial prefrontal cortex when they compared reality monitoring for actions participants performed with those they only imagined performing. The medial prefrontal cortex encompasses a respectable swath of the brain with a variety of functions that appear to include making self-referential judgments, or evaluating how you feel or think about experiences, sensations, and the like. Other experiments have implicated a role for this or nearby areas in reality monitoring of visual memories. The study by Brandt and Simons also found that activation of this medial prefrontal region during reality-monitoring trials correlated with the number of internal details the participants said they’d recalled in those trials. In other words, the more details participants remembered about their thoughts and feelings during the past actions, the busier this area appeared to be. So when faced with uncertainty about a past action, the medial prefrontal cortex may be piping up about the internal details of the memory. I must have locked the door because I remember simultaneously wondering when my package would arrive from Amazon, or, because I was also feeling sad about leaving my dog alone at home.

As I read these results, I found myself thinking about the topic of my prior post on OCD. Pathological checking is a common and often disruptive symptom of the illness. Although it may seem like a failure of reality monitoring, several behavioral studies have shown that people with OCD have normal reality monitoring for past actions. The difference is that people with checking symptoms of OCD have much lower confidence in the quality of their memories than others. It seems to be this distrust of their own memories, along with relentless anxiety, that drives them to double-check over and over again.

So the next time you find yourself wondering whether you actually locked the door, cut yourself some slack. Reality monitoring ain’t easy. All you can do is trust your brain not to lead you astray. Make a call and stick with it. You’re better off being wrong than being anxious about it – that is, unless you have really nice stuff.

Wassily Kandinsky, “Tanzkurven: Zu den Tänzen der Palucca,” Das Kunstblatt, Potsdam, vol. 10, no. 3 (1926)

Dancer and choreographer Gret Palucca (1902-1993) was a former student of Mary Wigman, the leading figure in German Expressionist dance. In 1925, Palucca opened her own dance studio in Dresden and developed close contacts with various Bauhaus instructors, many of whom greatly admired her dance style. Wassily Kandinsky’s four “analytical drawings,” which were based on photographs of Palucca by Charlotte Rudolph, illustrate how closely the dancer’s style coincided with the Bauhaus aesthetic. The drawings and photographs were published in the arts journal Das Kunstblatt in 1926. According to Kandinsky, Palucca’s “principal assets” were “1. Simplicity of the whole form, and 2. Construction of the large form.”

Wassily Kandinsky, “Tanzkurven: Zu den Tänzen der Palucca,” Das Kunstblatt, Potsdam, vol. 10, no. 3 (1926)

Dancer and choreographer Gret Palucca (1902-1993) was a former student of Mary Wigman, the leading figure in German Expressionist dance. In 1925, Palucca opened her own dance studio in Dresden and developed close contacts with various Bauhaus instructors, many of whom greatly admired her dance style. Wassily Kandinsky’s four “analytical drawings,” which were based on photographs of Palucca by Charlotte Rudolph, illustrate how closely the dancer’s style coincided with the Bauhaus aesthetic. The drawings and photographs were published in the arts journal Das Kunstblatt in 1926. According to Kandinsky, Palucca’s “principal assets” were “1. Simplicity of the whole form, and 2. Construction of the large form.”

(Source: germanhistorydocs.ghi-dc.org)

Nas - NY State of Mind

David Lynch and Isabella Rossellini, 1986
by Annie Leibovitz

David Lynch and Isabella Rossellini, 1986

by Annie Leibovitz

(Source: laurapalmerwalkswithme)

I think it’s very bad manners of people my age to turn around and say, well, the kids aren’t doing this and the kids aren’t doing that. Obviously I’m fascinated by teen culture, but I no longer live it and I don’t think it’s my place to be. So I don’t condemn today’s youth for whatever it is they are or are not doing, and I tend to remain thankful that teenagers, certainly people 18, 29, 20, 21—it’s a very powerful moment when you come out into the world and you realize the world isn’t great and, you know, you want to do something about it, if you’ve got any spirit of argument in you. I think that will always be the case, and I’m very hopeful that today’s teenagers will find solutions to the problems that they face, because they are also the problems that [old people] face, and if change doesn’t happen then you have stasis, entropy and decay.

Jon Savage on his documentary Teenage.