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“Project Uplift” a Physical and Literal Demonstration of Change with Native New York Artist Michael

Native New York cutting edge, style inventing artist Michael Alan “Alien” has been steadily uplifting his community with his deep dive into abstract figurative paintings that hit home and then morph into a human living art project, the Living Installation. Michael’s emotional realistic paintings and dramatic drawings transcend into living sculptures and future fashion. Teamed up and splashed up with his female partner Jadda Cat, the dynamic duo turn themselves into living sculptures running free “masked and safe”, uplifting, for hope and justice in a time of dismay.

Michael Alan, Portrait of ODB, courtesy of the artist

On Saturday, June 27th, at 8pm and available online all through July, let’s tune in and be a part as they ascend to new heights, literally. They will be broadcasting a live call for love and creativity across the globe. The comic book superheroes will be working from a remote Manhattan rooftop, transforming themselves in front of the iconic and beloved backdrop, the New York City skyline. They aim to raise everyone’s spirits in times of despair, with iconic levity and true NY punk spirit, as they continue their work taking their body smash up ongoing madness into your phone, computer, and home! I can’t wait to tune into an “other” mentality. I need a break from the world, as I look forward to tuning in for their upcoming online performance “Project Uplift!”. I need something OTHER!

Michael Alan, New World Beginnings, courtesy of the artist

Now that I’ve got your attention, let me discuss what I think is important about this upcoming view and the work in general. It’s a physical and literal demonstration of change. We all need this now. There is no self portrait, there are just colors, flesh, fabrics, dolls, a changing painted human matrix. Humans come together to create new symbolic forms that constantly change and move to the future. They apply an arsenal of materials to themselves, incorporating sound, puppetry, and comedy. There is a long history of art activism in the Living Installation. They have always stood for change. The Living Installation unites us in our common childlike fascination. It takes us to a place where we are all connected in creative thinking. The ongoing theme of the Living Installation makes so much sense right now. They’ve been creating and working in masks for years, and now masks are the latest fashion. It’s the opposite of capitalistic. They have no funding and continue as DIY. A third member is a DIY mom. If you follow Michael’s career you’ll know he has been taking care of his parents and including them in his work for years. His mother and his recently late father are permanently in the shows soundtrack, doing the vocals for the music, the mom x Jello Biafra song is insane! Download the albums here.

Michael Alan, Project Uplift, courtesy of the artist

With all that said, I want to make the difference clear between the Living Installation online view vs. online gallery view. Art shows have become virtual in recent months, where galleries and museums have had to switch to virtual tours in order to survive. I applaud these efforts that artists and galleries are taking, yet sadly I feel disconnected from what I’ve experienced. I want to feel something more from my tune in. I don’t want to be disconnected, I don’t want to be in just another zoom class. If I have to be online, if I have to socially distance, I want my experiences to be as real as possible. I have and am following this visceral and extremely authentic odd and fun online experience, one that engages me in the present moment. One that literally makes me love online. the secret wacky online world of The Living Installation. This adventure lures me in each time. These strange online experiences have been ongoing for years. Strange but heartfelt. They take the notion of the online show and make it intensely alive, so intense that you feel as if you’re in their brains at times. I’ve viewed several virtual Living Installations where I saw Jadda Cat pick up the camera and look right at me, while wrapping Michael’s head in toilet paper. I needed that laugh in art.

Michael Alan, We do not live forever, courtesy of the artist

You can sadly shut down Broadway for a year, but you can’t shut down the Living Installation! Nothing can stop them from doing what they have to do creatively, Michael Alan’s roots lie in graffiti, punk, and rap culture. He is a child who grew up in the late 70’s in New York. He isn’t going to give up, just how nothing ever stopped Old Dirty Bastard. He still created his album on the road, city to city, while he was running from the police to be sentenced. Attached is Michael’s tribute to ODB. (Fun fact, ODB’s brother Ramsey Jones has been a long time part of the Living Installation).

Michael Alan, Art Protest, courtesy of the artist

Michael Alan and Jadda Cat are always inclusive, inviting people into their world to lighten up and explore themselves. A change is needed in art and life, the elimination of exclusion. Many people feel isolation in these times. Michael and Jadda are trying to do something outside of the box to keep conversation and art going, giving hope with images and action with sincerity.

I’ll end on a quote from Michael Alan:

- This world is fucked up, things could blow up, let’s do something positive -

Michael Alan, Alien, courtesy of the artist

If you want to be a part of this online experience (And I urge you to do so for your own well being!) you can find a link here.

For more information check out these links:

Michael Alan’s website.

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