Letter from the Editor (Fall ’15)

Letter from the Editor (Fall ’15)

When I think of a live wire, I always remember a night at a restaurant, when the power went out. My friends and I were evacuated outside, and saw a downed telephone pole blocking the street, catching flame. The wires extending from it were sparking, bright light against the asphalt. I can still remember the sound of them popping and crackling.

This project sparked many things as well. It lit up a team of hard-working individuals, all excited about facilitating a place for art to thrive. It ignited the creation of seven new art pieces, inspired by seven incredibly diverse works of word. It caused us to reflect, and to redefine ourselves— to re-establish what LiveWire Journal is all about.
LiveWire seeks to create a space for a community of artists to grow together. It is interdisciplinary, collaborative, creative, and inclusive. It evolves as the culture around us evolves, reflecting the vast human experiences we all can relate to, and inspiring through the power of “someday” and “yet.”
So, enjoy! Become electrified by the words on each page. Be enflamed by the beauty of each provocative visual masterpiece. Take a journey with us through a treacherous slide, try on some new pants, and watch a boy become an almost-man before your very eyes. Howl with us at the moon, run away in the moonlight, explore really knowing someone, and taste our homemade jam. We are so glad to have you on this whirlwind adventure, and hope your internal wiring comes away a-blazed.

Thank you to the amazing visual artists with whom we had the utmost privilege to work: Patrick Quirk, Jess Johnson, Sue Hwang, and Michelle Corvino. And thank you to the incredible writers, who took our suggestions with grace, and left it all out on the page: Celida Cambuston, Ellis Macaulay, Richard Levesque, Caitlin Orr, Hailey Woo, Max Villa, and our very own Amanda Walzer. Enormous thanks to the incredible LiveWire staff: Jessie Bullard, Thor Roe, Rebecca White, Allison Clifton, Berenice Galvez, Julia Moon for all your hard work, patience, and persistence. Thank you to Richard Levesque and Ryan Shiroma for all your help to us throughout this process. Thank you to Dan Willoughby and the Humanities Division for all your support, and the Printing Department for all the color. Thank you a million times over to the wonderful Zachary Kam and Jasmin Zuniga for jumping into building our website. A gigantic thanks and lots of coffee to our head of marketing, Whitney Dunkle. And of course, there’s no way this would have happened without the one and only Amanda Walzer; we are all eternally grateful for your wisdom, guidance, and faith in us. We’re Live!

Katelyn Hall
Editor-in-Chief
LiveWire Journal

Middle School Open House

Middle School Open House

From my seat on the lunch benches at Open House,
I see him standing in the middle of his boys –
standing the way boys can stand
it, not touching but somehow touching,
thumbs in belt loops, chins tilted up,
ready for whiskers or maybe a punch.

At the benches, they pass out cups of punch
to the parents of the girls and boys.
It’s 7:00pm and 90 degrees at Open House.
I’m sticky, and under my skirt my thighs are touching.
I want to stretch and stand,
but I see him, so instead, I pick my camera up…

At the sound of the click, his eyebrows raise up,
pupils dilate, eyes dart to the other boys –
then to me. My picture hits like a sucker punch.
How dare I perceive him as touching
when we are outside of our house!
My audacity is more than he can stand.

But I have to take a stand
because even his outrage is touching.
We have microseconds with our boys
before their shoulders zoom out, their philosophies rise up,
and they are men – they stink, they punch,
they leave our arms, our house…

No. Tonight he is still the child of my house.
To prove it, I keep my camera aimed up,
look through the lens, refocus, and punch
right at the space between men and boys
even though I stand
to lose everything I am touching.

My camera clicks again, but now he’s gone – past all touching –
fifty yards away, lost in a stand
of other teenagers also betrayed by Open House,
all smiling over cups of warm punch
but probably planning how to fuck us up –
get the girls pregnant, start a heroin habit, fall in with bad boys…

I know; I’m a fool to think I can keep touching
his soft cheek, clutching his small hand, but I just can’t stand
that Open House is closing down, and my time with him is up.


Writer: Amanda Walzer is a graduate of UCLA (B.A., English, 1994) and Antioch University (M.F.A., Creative Writing, 2000). She is currently a professor in the English Department at Fullerton College, where she teaches composition, critical thinking, creative writing, and children’s literature. When she’s not teaching or writing, she enjoys playing piano, singing, running track, and playing soccer with her two sons, ages 10 & 13.


Artist: Patrick Quirk has been interested in photography since he was a freshman in high school and began taking photo classes there. It was his teacher Maggie Crail who mentored him and really got him to want to do photo as a career. He is now finishing up the professional photography certificate at Fullerton College with Professor Melody La Montia. He enjoys studio and sport photography the most because it can be challenging but rewarding.


 

Howling of the Wolves

Howling of the Wolves

The wolves’ crying echoes in my small village when the sun starts setting behind the mountain. Their howling sounds are different from each wolf in my village. Among them, the one that lives behind my house is especially making a powerfully long and abysmal sound, as if it comes from the deepest part in his body. All the dogs in my village begin to howl because of the dog behind my house. The dog has so much in common with a wild wolf in many aspects. Although everyone in my village knows he is a mongrel, which has no good pedigree, he is in excellent shape and displays similar traits that the Siberian Husky breed has. His body is covered with thick and voluminous dark gray fur, and his snout is white. Besides that, he seems even more clever and nimbler than any other dogs in the village. When I see the dog walking with his owner, I stick my neck out of the window to watch the dog pass by because it strolls in an elegant and triumphant way, unlike other mixed-breed dogs.

His long and slim legs, a solid and sturdy body, and a straight neck make me mistake him for a decent canine with a superb pedigree. The pink-colored tongue sticking out of his firm mouth looks beautiful, and his sharp and dignified ears make him look more like a well-sculptured purebred dog. Particularly, the short black fur around his eyes catches my attention because the black fur contrasted with his light gray-colored eyes makes me feel that he has kind of a melancholy and gloomy mood, unlike other dogs I see around my neighborhood. Usually the dogs in my village start howling at the time when I make dinner in my kitchen. I always thought dogs cry like wolves, but as I hear the wail of the dogs more frequently, I come to believe more and more that they might be real wolves in dogs’ clothing. Who knows, they might be enchanted wolves that fell under a spell. When the dogs wail as though they are sending some kind of enigmatic signals to each other, I feel a tight and weird tension from their mysterious way of communication.

Ironically, although my neighbor’s dog is a male, he has a female name, Sooki, which is the same name of his owner’s estranged wife who left over ten years ago. Sooki’s owner usually works at the market from early in the morning until very late at night. He really hates the hunger and poverty that have been torturing him almost for his entire life. It makes him become a workaholic, who obsessively believes that only constant work can help him escape from the vicious cycle of poverty that has agonized his life. Through his incessant work and personal integrity as a conscientious and skillful merchant, he has accumulated a large fortune to satisfy his hunger for money and has built his own beautiful house that he has dreamt of for a long time for his wife and himself. However, his excessive work has caused his wife to feel lonely and stressed and ended up making her leave without saying good-bye to him because she couldn’t overcome the solitude caused by the absence of a normal, affectionate relationship between a husband and a wife. He still can’t thoroughly understand what brought about their separation, but he desperately yearns for her return. Out of his deep-seeded longing for his wife, he has named the dog after her. Whenever he takes a walk with the dog, I hear his warm and loving voice calling his dog like calling his wife, Sooki.

Every day, Sooki’s owner routinely goes to work at dawn and comes back very late though he has become a big merchant at the marketplace (not for individual customers, but for other smaller and bigger vendors). However, he no longer hungers for money; now, his daily work is just a distraction from his suffering while he waits and hopes for his wife’s return. Until Sooki’s owner comes back at night, Sooki has to stay all alone at home.

My own daily work is not much different from Sooki’s activities. I sit at my desk and write stories almost all day long while Sooki wanders around his yard all day long waiting for his owner to come back. During the day, he just watches cars and strangers passing through the neighborhood and barks wildly at them through the low fence made of shrubs. Likewise, I keep writing and looking for mistakes in my writing. Once I find them, I start to bark at and get rid of them like Sooki does at home. The clever dog, with his animal instinct, senses immediately his owner’s arrival even before he comes back home. He barks differently when he spots strangers than when he greets his owner. He even can differentiate his owner’s car from others’ only by the sound. Like Sooki, I quickly come out of my house into the front yard to greet my husband when he arrives home, exhausted from work. Of course, I can distinguish between my husband’s shabby car and my neighbor’s brand-new one by their different engine sounds, like Sooki does.

My husband prohibits me from having a dog since he has severe allergies. However, Sooki knows how much I care for dogs, especially him. We both know some kind of special bond has already formed between us, even though he isn’t mine at all. He acts as though he regards my house as his own territory. He barks fiercely at the strangers who drop by my house, showing a sharp antagonism towards them. Sometimes, if he roams freely because his owner forgets to leash him when he leaves for work in the morning, he jumps over his low fence and into my yard. Then, he starts to mark his territory by urinating here and there. He gently approaches me, swaying his tail and thinking of me as his owner or close friend. The intangible but definitely special bond between us started from my generous treatment of him in his owner’s absence all day. At first, Sooki was wary of my kindness towards him. Over time, my sincere, unconditional hospitality, and affection towards him seemed to slowly create an undeniable connection. Now, I really enjoy the warm and affectionate friendship with him, which is like that between humans, so I keep tossing a roasted fatty strip of pork into his mouth, although I know his owner hates such kindness from others towards his dog for some reason. However, I don’t really care about what his owner thinks about my relationship with Sooki because I feel a much stronger bond with Sooki as time goes by, even without any verbal communication with him.

Last night, Sooki’s owner came over to my house without any notice and sadly told us that Sooki’s previous owner wanted to take him back because she didn’t realize that Sooki was a purebred Siberian Husky when she sold him almost for nothing. Even until now, my neighbor has been ignoring Sooki’s previous owner’s insistent request, but the situation has turned much worse than he expected because she has filed a lawsuit against him. My drunken neighbor shouted, “I can’t lose him. Nobody can take Sooki away from me. It’s mine!” And he began to pound harshly on his chest like a furious animal out of his uncontrollable anger and pain. He already lost his wife, Sooki. Now, he was about to lose another Sooki in his life. I didn’t say anything, but I could understand how much Sooki meant to him for overcoming his emptiness and desperation caused by his wife’s long absence.

Even before Sooki’s owner revealed the legal complaint to me about the ownership of Sooki, Sooki felt something strange in his owner and started to act weirdly. Whenever he saw any passers-by, he began roaring and barking insanely through his low fence, as though he really wanted to hurt them. He even tried to threaten others when unleashed outside his house. Now I understand why Sooki had to act that way. Actually, he doesn’t really want to threaten or bite anybody. Rather, his abnormal behavior seems to express his mental anxiety or disturbance against anyone approaching. However, the situation grows worse and worse each day. All the village people have begun to fear Sooki’s menacing behavior because they feel threatened by his sudden wild reaction towards them. Now, his owner makes sure that Sooki is tied up in his own yard and can’t move around freely as he did before.

About a month later, when the sun is slowly setting behind the mountain in the village, Sooki suddenly bursts out howling more like a huge, wild wolf in the wilderness. I am not an animal expert, but his long, loud emotional howling seems totally different from those of other ordinary dogs around us. There is something magnificently solemn in his howling, as if he were worshiping his holy heaven out of his inner desperation or deep sorrow. Without warning, all the dogs tied up at every door in the village join in the howling after Sooki. It assures me that dogs definitely have something we can call emotions in them, like we humans have. Sooki’s emotional turbulence and loneliness seem to be transferred into every single heart of other neighbors’ dogs. So, they are responding to Sooki as if showing that they understand how he feels in his confined, small world facing an uncertain, but clearly approaching misfortune. It isn’t his usual howling, but rather it is a painful and emotional screaming out of his complicated inner anxiety that seems to be afraid of an unwanted and forced separation, being cut from his familiar surroundings and above all things, the heartwarming and tight relationship with others around himself, especially me.

When the sun has already set behind the mountains, I am slowly steaming eggplants in my small kitchen. Suddenly I feel as if I were enchanted by something indescribable and catch a glimpse of the Bible that has been sitting on the kitchen table all day long. I start singing a hymn that pops into my mind. Of course, I know there are no such songs like hymns when we worship God out of our absolute solitude and agony, seeking relief and comfort. Right after I begin singing the hymn, I hear Sooki making a long, loud cry as if he were in grief or sorrow. The other dogs in the village follow him by bellowing a long, heartbreaking wail almost at the same time. Now my village is completely wrapped with the howling of wolves in the evening sunset.


Writer: Hailey Woo has recently graduated from Fullerton College as an English major student and has planned on transferring to a four-year university in the near future. She is travelling and visiting her home country to have fun and get some literary inspiration. During her leisure time, she loves reading realistic adventure books based on life experiences.


Artist: Sue Hwang is a photographer and visual artist who tends to notice the stranger things in life. She enrolled in the professional photography program at Fullerton College last fall and receives her certificate at the end of this year.


 

The Great Stirrup-Pants Incident of 1986

The Great Stirrup-Pants Incident of 1986

It all started with a tiny pair of pants. Little did I know this single incident would set the stage for a lifetime of miscommunications, repressed emotions, and a desperate need (and subsequent failure) to feel understood by those that I love. The year was 1986. I was an abnormally independent three year-old with a very strong sense of self and something to say about everything, almost like I came right into this world a miniature adult. Growing up, my family looked like your standard 1950’s-style nuclear family unit – parents were high school sweethearts with two kids (a boy and a girl) and a little house in the suburbs. But no matter how hard I tried, I never seemed to be able to fit into that mold very well because it has never been in my nature to just fall in line and blend into the background. I can remember wondering, around this time in my life, if maybe there had been some sort of mistake and the stork dropped me off at the wrong house. There wasn’t any place I knew of where I would have fit in better, I just knew it wasn’t in the place I called home. For most of my life, I would feel like an alien in my own family. I had always struggled to articulate my wants, needs, and feelings, and this incident was no different.

The occasion was my third birthday party. My extended family was really close back then, spending all of our holidays and birthdays with one another, so the party was held at one of our frequent family haunts– my grandparents’ house –on the earliest day of spring that year. Everybody was there together eating, laughing, and enjoying each other’s company. At the end of a long afternoon of playing with my cousins, I was a bit sleepy after all the food I had eaten and running around we had done. But it was time for presents, so everyone gathered their chairs together to watch me open them, even though I wasn’t all that interested in receiving gifts or making a big presentation of it. I don’t really recall any of the presents except for that last one; it was in a big department store box with a beautiful red bow.

I ripped open the box and pulled back the tissue paper to reveal a purple and green-striped shirt with a pair of ivory spandex leggings that had elastic stirrups at the feet. The shirt looked normal and soft, but the pants looked bizarre and uncomfortable. I had heard of this illusive “stirrup-pant” before, but had never had the misfortune of having to wear a pair. But hey, I guess there’s a first time for everything, right? Not wanting to change and do a birthday fashion show, I told my mom I didn’t want to try them on at the party. Apparently, this request was no good for my mother, who then told me that I would be disrespecting my grandparents if I did not immediately try on the outfit they had gifted me for them to see.

Being a little kid, and a tomboy at that, all I wanted to do was play a little longer in the dirt, go home with a belly full of BBQ and birthday cake, and slowly pass out watching a Disney movie. But, after several minutes of my mom telling me that I wasn’t going to leave without trying that stupid outfit on, I finally gave in, and off to the bathroom we went to change.

I was starting to get a bit “moody” because my mom wasn’t listening to what I was trying to tell to her, which was that I didn’t want to change, and I really did not have a good feeling about those damn stirrup-pants. But, since I loved my grandparents so much, I started to put on the new outfit so I could show them how much I liked it. The shirt wasn’t too bad – it was soft and I liked the colors; I can remember briefly thinking, “this could work.”

But then it happened. It was like a showdown at high noon in front of the OK Corral – me versus the stirrup-pants. I had already felt mildly suspicious of them when my mom pulled them out, and as soon as those two elastic stirrups touched the arches of my feet, my feelings were instantly confirmed. From birth, I’ve always had overactive nerves and the natural constitution of a high-strung Chihuahua, so the second those little stirrups hit my feet, my whole body felt like one big funny bone. Waves of painfully tingling vibrations started violently coursing through my body all at once. Since I was too young to understand or verbally articulate what was happening, I got scared and tried to take the pants off while we were still in the bathroom.

“What are you doing? Put those back on,” my mom snapped in response to the spontaneous removal of the bottom half of my new outfit.

“Mama, please – I hate these pants – I wanna wear my pants! Please lemme have my pants, Mama…please?” I begged, with tears in my eyes.

“No! Put them back on right now! We’re going to go show your grandparents how much we love the outfit they got for you and how much we love them, okay? You’re just going to have to deal with the pants,” she said, crushing any hope I had of escaping.

Now, I was just born with anxiety – I swear, I must have had a panic attack coming out of the womb. My parents have told me that when I was a baby I used to bang my head against the walls and floor whenever I would get too frustrated, anxious, or bored – I guess that’s just the way I’m wired. Despite being fiercely independent and outspoken, this part of my personality always made me feel like a slave to the effects of my stress-ridden anatomy. It was an absolute paradox – I would do these insanely brave things like jump off the top of the refrigerator into my dad’s arms one minute, and then be reduced to frantic tears the next because I couldn’t figure out how to open up my child-proofed bottle of Flintstone’s vitamins all by myself.

Panic became this invisible juggernaut that followed me around like a psychotic stalker, never giving me a break, no matter how ballsy I might have thought I was. My catch phrase as a child was “you’re not the boss of me – I’m the boss of me!” But that was all just a big load of crap because the true boss of me wasn’t me at all – it was the anxiety. I can remember having such severe anxiety as a small child that it was almost physically painful. And that’s exactly what began to happen here. The more I begged and pleaded for the removal of those tyrannical stirrup-pants and my mom said no, the more anxious I became.

It wasn’t just about the pants anymore. It was the panic. The shortness of breath. The uncontrollable heart beat. The feeling of chaotic helplessness. The panic was starting to set in as I desperately struggled to find the words to tell my mom that I was uncomfortable and scared because I didn’t understand why the pants felt so bad against my skin. I began to protest and cry harder – I was beyond frustrated that my own mother didn’t understand that her child was in distress and needed help.

Then, before I knew it, I was being dragged outside to show off the new outfit for the whole family. Kicking, screaming, and bawling my eyes out, I was on display for all to see, like a bright, shiny, dysfunctional show pony. I needed help, but no one was actually paying attention to what was really going on. Being limited by my tender age, I didn’t yet have the skill set to articulate to anyone what I was truly feeling, why I needed help, or how my family could possibly fix it. I felt hopelessly trapped inside a stirrup-pant-induced-prison of-darkness that was not of my own creation and seemed to have no beginning or end.

For the briefest of nanoseconds, I thought surely one of my other relatives would see how miserable I was and immediately rush me back inside to take off those awful pants. Much to my horror, however, as soon as everyone saw that I was crying, they all started to laugh at me. This is the moment that always plays in slow motion in my memory. Me, sitting in the middle of twenty people, so upset that I could no longer speak, looking desperately around for help, and seeing nothing but adult faces laughing at me like I was some sort of sideshow freak at the local circus.

I can actually remember reaching a point where I kind of forgot about the goddamn pants because I was so horrified that my own family didn’t seem to care that I was in distress. Every person there thought I was throwing your standard spoiled-bratty-toddler tantrum – all blissfully unaware of the fact that I was being permanently traumatized by their lack of empathy and understanding.

Not only was this the first time in my life that I was seriously let down by the people I loved and trusted, but it was also my first childhood memory.

To this day, that is one of the most intense cries I can ever remember having– you know the kind when you’re crying so hard that you make no noise and just violently convulse as the tears pour down your face? The sense of desperation I felt was both overwhelming and incredibly sad – I looked to every person there to help me, and no one did. I was suffering and they didn’t even realize it – the entire situation made me feel like some sort of alien species doomed to wander this earth alone. Even today, my family still laughs about it just as callously as they did in 1986, teasing me about that epically bratty stirrup-pants-tantrum I had when I was three. Little do they know, because of their unintentional apathy, I will forever remember that “incident” as the day I realized how extraordinarily fucked I would be in life from that point forward.


Writer: An Orange County Native, Ellis Macaulay graduated Cum Laude from Cal State Fullerton with a BA in Radio, Television, and Film in 2006 and is a member of the National Society of Collegiate Scholars. Known by loved ones for her quirk and charm, she is passionate about backpacking through the wild, helping others, and all things creative.


Artist: Sue Hwang is a photographer and visual artist who tends to notice the stranger things in life. She enrolled in the professional photography program at Fullerton College last fall and receives her certificate at the end of this year.


 

A Sweet Misery

A Sweet Misery

Strawberry Sally was a very good little girl. Though she played with her dolls and entertained her stuffed animals with tea parties, everyone knew that what she really wanted to do was go outside and climb trees. But, as the obedient child that she was, she stayed in her castle bedroom as instructed.

“But, darling, little girls just don’t climb trees,” her mother said. “It’s best if you stay inside and be good, just for a few more months. Then, and just maybe then, we’ll let you outside to climb. Until then, I’ll send in the doctor to give you a massage every day to help you relax.”

A few more months seemed like an eternity to Strawberry Sally. She started arranging blocks around her room in tall structures and had her dolls climb them. She used her curtain rod in place of a trunk and was often found scaling to the top of it clinging on, her legs dangling below her, before getting caught by her maid, who panicked frightfully.

“Strawberry Sally! GET DOWN HERE RIGHT NOW! Don’t slip, don’t slip,” she’d say. “Your parents would never forgive me if you were to fall before you were ready!”

“Ready for what?” Sally thought aloud.

“Oh. Ready for real trees of course. Just be patient, and in a week’s time, you’ll be able to climb outside,” the maid said.

So, Strawberry Sally waited and waited and played and played.

A few Bluebirds came chirping at her window a few days before Tree Climbing Day. She tweeted with them, asking them to fly across the yard and show her the tallest tree in the forest. That would be the one she would go to first. A few of them flew off a few yards away and perched on the branch of a mighty oak.

“Oh, yes! That’s to be my first climb, most definitely,” Sally said to them smiling.

The days passed, and it was time for her to head out into the yard, a brave smile smacked on her face. Just as she was about to leave the entryway of the castle, she was stopped by her maid, who “just wanted to inspect” her before she went “running off.”

Sally was patted down here and there, as if the maid was searching for something.

“You are quite plump now, Miss Strawberry Sally.”

“Well, maybe if you’d all let me climb trees earlier, I’d have been in better shape.”

“Oh, no, you are perfect just like this. Now go along, have fun. I’ll be nearby if you need help. Climb as high as you like, now, okay?”

Strawberry Sally sprinted to the oak she had seen earlier and climbed up, and up, and up, and up. She couldn’t believe how agile she was after being stuck inside for so many years. Even some of the Bluebirds flew over to watch her.

“You’re my only friends,” she said to them as she reached the highest branch she could.

She surveyed the yard and her castle for a few minutes until it felt time to descend. Only, she hadn’t thought much about getting down. She realized that the branches were too far spread for her to easily maneuver her way to the ground.

“Help!” She called, waiting for her maid to come rushing outside. Sure enough, out she came, along with Strawberry Sally’s parents. They even had a tarp with them.

“How thoughtful,” Strawberry Sally thought.

“We knew this would happen, Dear. Now just walk out to the end of that branch and jump. We’ll catch you with the tarp!” her mother said.

So, Strawberry Sally walked out and looked one last time to her Blue Bird friends who had followed her along the tree branch, looking nervous and excited. She looked below, saw the outstretched tarp, and took a giant leap to the ground, the air rushing around her.

Midway down, she saw that the tarp had been laid down by her parents and the maid. It was now just like a blanket on the ground instead of a safety net. Before she could fathom much else, she hit the grass hard and felt bursts all over her round body.

“Oh, how wonderful! We did it just perfectly this time!” said her father, who pulled three large spoons out of his back pocket, handing them to both his wife and the maid. “Let’s get the butler to bring out the mason jars, and we’ll get her all inside them now while she’s fresh. We’ll add sugar later, yes?”

“I think this is the best one yet,” the maid said as she dipped her finger where Strawberry Sally’s leg used to be, licking it and smiling. “We waited until she was just ripe enough.”

“We’ll have the most delicious jam in town this year. I’m sure we’ll win the ribbon at the fair,” her mother said.

“Of course we will!” her father said.

And Strawberry Sally closed her eyes, realizing that she was raised in safety only to be thrown from a tree and bottled for jam. The last sound she heard was the excited twittering of the Bluebirds as they fluttered down to where she lay.


Writer: Caitlin Orr is a writer of quirky short stories and a lover of wonder. She lives in California with her lovely dog Cornelia.


Artist: Jess Johnson is a multi-disciplined artist and graphic designer enthusiastic about adding photography to her creative palette. She also runs a design studio in Fullerton where she passionately pursues artistic projects.