Above & Beyond

November 21, 2017 by Sparky Recent 0 comments 41
Published on YouTube Oct 28, 2014
A group of professional test pilots explore the remote and rarely visited Island of Socotra off the coast of Yemen in the heart of the Middle East. Join them as they thermal up to 1000m over the Indian Ocean, battle 40km winds, and fly from the longest caves in the orient. A 37 minute documentary including spectacular aerial footage from one of the few remaining flying secrets left on earth.

My Place: Jake Chapman

Inside the Cotswolds home and studio of the art world enfant terrible

Known for his offbeat artworks made alone and collaboratively with brother Dinos Chapman, British art rebel Jake Chapman has made a name for himself for his provocative works that play on subjects of the bizarre, grotesque or macabre. His and Dinos Chapman’s work often features groups of life-sized, life-like models in strange scenarios, and their 2003 Turner Prize entry debuted a bronze statue showing two sex dolls in the ’69 position.

“Chapman has made a name for himself with often-provocative works that play on subjects of the bizarre, grotesque or macabre”


For the latest episode of My Place, the British artist invites director Barbara Anastacio into his home in the idyllic Cotswolds, England, where he talks about art, life and the city-country disconnect.

Here’s a Sparky friend for whom music has changed her life in a magnificent way. From a steady career in publications and graphic design to an amazing singer songwriter, and learning music and guitar in the process – all is a matter of a few years of juggling her old and new skills, Excellent and inspiring to anyone who doesn’t believe they can change their ways to find satisfaction, real dignity, sanctuary and self-worth.


The Album ‘Blue Skin’ is available on iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/album/id1253… Title track of the first EP by Julie B Wild, featuring 5 songs: ‘Blue Skin’*, ‘Oh I Wish I’d Got Me a Super Power, ‘The Red Room’*, I’m in Love wth the Thought of You’, and ‘Goddam Mud’. *Co-written with James House. Recorded in Milford on Sea, Uk, and White Bluff, Tennessee. Produced by Julie B Wild, James House, and Simon Johnson. Mixed by Mills Logan. © 2017 Poolbeg Records

Published on YouTube Jun 29, 2017

EU moves to restrict hormone-disrupting chemical found in plastics

Green groups welcome a historical ruling recognising that bisphenol A (BPA), found in TVs, plastic water bottles and kettles, poses a threat to human health.

A chemical found in CDs, DVDs, kettles and water bottles could soon be restricted after the EU authorities ruled that it posed a threat to human health because of its effects on hormones.

The European chemicals agency (Echa) voted unanimously that bisphenol A (BPA) was an ‘endocrine disruptor’, linking it to a range of hormone-twisting health effects including cancer, learning difficulties and diabetes. The substance has already been singled out for its toxicity to the human reproduction system.

The Green law group ClientEarth, which contributed to a 20-year battle against BPA, said the decision was “historic” and called for rapid action by the authorities.

“Now BPA is finally recognised as an endocrine disruptor, the EU and national governments must act fast to limit the irreversible damage this chemical does to people and the environment,” said ClientEarth’s lawyer Alice Bernard.

BPA is one of the world’s best-selling chemicals, with 3.8m tonnes of the substance produced in 2006, around a third of which was sold in Europe.

Originally developed as a synthetic mimic of the female sex hormone oestrogen, it was marketed as an industrial chemical and, in 1957, kickstarted the plastics revolution when it was polymerised with phosgene to produce what is today known as polycarbonate.

More than 90% of the world’s population are thought to have BPA in their urine according to epidemiological studies with one report by the German Federal Environment Agency finding traces in the urine of 591 out of 599 children tested.

But unease among health professionals grew as a growing body of studies linked the chemical to an increased risk of cancer, cell tumours, miscarriages and birth defects.

Natacha Cingotti, a spokeswoman for the Health and Environment Alliance, said that the Echa vote was “long overdue and of crucial importance so that measures to reduce people’s exposure to the substance can be introduced in the future.”

“Endocrine disrupting chemicals that are omnipresent, such as bisphenol A, are one of the defining human health challenges of our times,” she added.

NGOs fear that industry groups are likely to challenge the Echa judgement, with the Plastics Europe trade association already opposing Echa’s earlier finding that BPA is toxic to human reproduction.

Jasmin Bird, a spokeswoman for Plastics Europe told the Guardian: “We are highly concerned about this development. We believe that it weakens the strong principle of science-based regulatory decisions in the EU, and will result in further uncertainty without providing benefit to the safety of consumers.”

Bird cited a previous assessment by the European food safety authority which that BPA was not an endocrine disruptor.

Even so, Echa is now expected to recommend constraints on BPA’s use under the EU’s Reach regulation, possibly as soon as next year.

“We can’t predict when it will happen,” an Echa spokesman said. “Most probably it will happen, but not very quickly.”

Source: EU moves to restrict hormone-disrupting chemical found in plastics | Society | The Guardian

Thank you Becky, for sharing your experiences with us – do pay some attention to what she says – don’t judge, just relate. If you have questions about any of the topics raised, please let Sparky know, so that we can create a social space to discuss, analyse and find solutions and positive response to current social issues.

Private View: El Racó

“Profession isn’t the most important thing. One’s identity, spirit, and creations are what matters”Inside the studio of Catalan ceramicist and Miró collaborator Joan Gardy-Artigas: bit.ly/2pcOSET

Posted by NOWNESS on Tuesday, 18 April 2017

“Profession isn’t the most important thing. One’s identity, spirit, and creations are what matters”

Private View: El Racó

Inside the studio of Catalan ceramicist and Miró collaborator Joan Gardy-Artigas

Throughout his illustrious career, Catalan sculptor Joan Gardy-Artigas has worked alongside some of the leading artists of the twentieth century, from Picasso and Miró to Giacometti and Chagall. The son of artist Josep Llorens Artigas, Artigas junior began assisting Miró—a collaborator of his father’s on a number of projects, including a famous series of tiled walls. The artist has since made a career with his own ceramic and painting practice, creating stylized sculptures of human and animal forms.

“Artigas has worked alongside some of the leading artists of the twentieth century, from Picasso and Miró to Giacometti and Chagall”

In a new film, Barcelona-based director Marc Puig takes us into the artist’s stunning rural studio for a tour, where he reflects back on his life and career.


Inside the studio of Catalan ceramicist and Miró collaborator Joan Gardy-Artigas: bit.ly/2pcOSET

Posted by NOWNESS

The Art of Acting – Eden Sher in “The Middle” (Episode#1)

I decided to start this series of videos where I point out a single moment or an entire scene on which I think an actor absolutely excels. Be it in a film or television show. I think actors can make or break a good script sometimes and I’m a sucker for a good performance. Because I teach acting and work with actors professionally I tend to notice subtleties that can, sometimes, go unnoticed and my goal is to point those out and try and dissect a performance so people can start appreciating and understanding even more why a performance is good.

Support my work over at Patreon

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Film Vibe Blog (Written versions of reviews)

Published on YouTube Jan 9, 2016

There’s more to what you believe than you think. By Daniele Anastasion.

Read the story here: nyti.ms/2eiXb8w

Mark Blyth, who accurately predicted Brexit and Trump, explains in clear language how globalization and capitalism are failing people throughout the world, and why that means more Brexits and Trumps are on the way.

Full audio version of The Jimmy Dore Show on iTunes ▶ https://itunes.apple.com/podcast/the-…

Mourning Remembrance by Jim Earl on Amazon ▶ https://www.amazon.com/Mourning-Remem…

Join our community by liking, commenting and sharing to help us reach a wider audience. Keep it positive!

Published on YouTube Nov 17, 2016

Poor Kids (Documentary) – Real Stories


3.5 million children are growing up in poverty in the UK. It’s one of the worst rates in the industrialised world and successive governments continue to struggle to bring it into line. Struggling & without a voice, ‘Poor Kids’ shines a light on this pressing issue.

Want to watch more full-length Documentaries?
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Poor Kids was produced by True Vision Productions. If you wish to find out more the people featured in this documentary then go to http://truevisiontv.com/foundation

Content licensed from Digital Rights Group (DRG). Any queries, please contact us at: realstories@littledotstudios.com


Published on YouTube Feb 24, 2016

Can’t get enough of the ukulele – and this is one of the best Hawaiian players – it’s amazing.

Without reservation we can say that you have never heard a ukulele played like this before! Taimane, which translates to “Diamond” in Samoan, sparkles on stage at TEDxPurdueU with a variety of genres of music, from classical to rock and a bit of traditional Hawaiian.

Taimane perfectly reflects the different facets of her nature. Whether delicately finger­picking through Bach or radically ripping through Led Zeppelin, Taimane has the ability to morph genres – from classical to rock to flamenco – and stretch her instrument far beyond the familiar melodies of Hawaii, where she grew up. In addition to performing her own distinctive versions of well-­known pieces, Taimane weaves in original compositions that are as far ranging as her musical tastes. With the fierceness of a rocker, and the grace of a dancer, Taimane lights up rooms wherever she goes, sparkling like the diamond that she is.

This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community. Learn more at http://ted.com/tedx

Published on YouTube May 24, 2016