The Brilliance!


We’re really internet and we’re really back. A website about things Benjamin , Chuck , Virgil , and various friends & guests think are interesting. Little-to-no specific focus, a bit odd, speling errors, and incredibly culturally relevant.

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New interview…Jen Stark!

And yeah, we just posted about her a page ago or so…we move quick right? So yeah, Jen Stark took some time to answer a few quick ones for us. Maybe its just me, probably not, but man…her work is going to be a big deal sooner than later…no?! It’s kind of something we strive for here at THE BRILLIANCE…vouch for them when they are still a bit under the radar, and right now I feel extra-wrapped in the art scene. Especially ‘new’ artists. We’ve got some other interviews on the way soon as well – some fun ones. And I think we will actually be collaborating with another rather large site to provide their ‘interview swagger’ if you will, ha. A cross-marketed setup…It’ll make more sense when it launches. So yeah…enjoy this nice weather man!!!

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David DiMichele’s Pseudo Documentation!

This is just…really, really wild. Some of the most interesting work I’ve seen…in a long time. Brought that ‘weird out’ feeling back from when I was like 9 and I experienced really weird modern art instillations at the Art Institute. Love that feeling. So yeah, David does this: makes a tiny, but wildly realistic model of a gallery space and then makes equally tiny installations pieces in them – he then places even tinier scaled people that are gazing upon this model installation. The magic lies in how he then photographs these spaces in perfect context and lighting to make them appear as though they are real places and the those tiny scaled people are used as a reference point for the size of everything else…the effect is honestly just amazing. The feeling of massiveness is nuts. Insanely large melting ice cubes, 50 foot tall shards of glass…etc. Really just amazing stuff. Perhaps a new favorite artist of mine…wow, love it. Check the photos that were on display at the Paul Kopeikin gallery.

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Super Sleepy on So Me!!!

Man I feel extra late in this because I ‘heard’ the track but I was paying attention to the movement. That D.A.N.C.E. track by Justice is burning up myspace pages, Europe AND U.S.(finally!!) dancefloors alike. If that wasn’t enough its all coming out under one house, Ed Banger records, art directed by So Me. I am still hazing on the details and I enjoy that fact. One week I see Daft Punk Crew in the studio rocking what I think is an amazing graphic tee, next thing I know I am super late on this t-shirt laden video. Man, so inspiring. Paris your up, love the sound.

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“The People” by Common, produced by Kanye!

Thank you for this song Common and Kanye “something thick again” its been months since I’ve heard something new like this. But yeah so full, so thick, real visual you know? Listenable like 20 times in row. I would love to hear the original sample(s) Kanye used for this - that electronic organ thing?! so nuts. Short post or whatever, needless to say I’m looking forward to this ‘Finding Forever’ album this summer some time… I’m going to go back to listening to this track some more.

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Martin Margiela website, pure genius!!!

A website hasn’t hit me like this in a while. Unbelievable clever and a top-tier designer to boot. I am sure some people might think its nothing special but after visiting you cannot help but feel like you ‘get’ the brand. Super low tech, throwback, but surpasses anything fancy for fancy sake. I can’t get over the pop-up ads…after years on the net we are trained to just close them out, but these are ‘friendly’ and there’s a content benefit to actually clicking these. Spend a second on the site, look out for their artisanal pieces…it doesn’t get anymore creative than that. The background behind the pieces are what I found most interesting. Web designer people….we need more sites like this, fashion people we need more brands like this…

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Ace Hotel Portland OPEN!

Ahh…THE BRILLIANCE loves the whole Ace Hotel brand. They were one of the first ‘real businesses’ to connect with us, and ever since then it’s been a cool relationship. Alex Calderwood, Mr. Ace Hotel himself, was gracious enough to not only do an interview with us but give us (before Virgil joined!) two fresh suites at Ace Seattle for the weekend a year or so ago…a gracious host, and an inspiration with all his team has going. So anyway…we mentioned a while back that they would be doing an Ace Hotel in Portland, well its here, and we are quite happy for them. The Portland setup is on a considerably larger scale than the Seattle location…79 rooms, coffee shop, restaurant, and a gallery exhibit space. I really like that they did an exhibit space – it makes so much sense to have that on-site but its usually so corny at hotels you know? Ace knocks it out of the park of course. So yeah, congrats to Alex and the gang, the whole Ace team, the Neverstop team, Rudy’s Babershop, and his new site We’ll be in Portland this summer for a little THE BRILLIANCE get-away weekend…Portland is a creative-hub for sure, renaissance style right now.

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Hip-Hop Colony!!!

I met Michael Wanguhu a couple years ago after he contacted me to possibly do some work for a DVD he was working on at the time. He told me it was a documentary about the rise of hip-hop in Kenya, which I thought was pretty interesting, not to mention I knew absolutely nothing about it. Skip ahead a few years later - Michael’s DVD is now complete and available to buy in stores and online. Basically, it is about the Kenyan hip-hop explosion - better known as Genge or Kapuka music - and where it has been, where it is today, and where they believe it is moving forward. The whole thing is very interesting and Michael truly believes in this piece of work he’s put together so show some support, check it out, and pick up the DVD…

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Past weekend action, Flickr flicking!

Per Virgil’s previous post – I spent a refreshing weekend in Chicago catching up on live shows, business lunches, roaming the Chicago art museum, shopping, family and friends. Good times. Check our Flickr page at the link below for a little visual re-cap. The show at Subterranean on Thursday was too good (sorry I left early gang)…but seriously, if this is the new hip-hop then please sign me up man. Reminded me of a punk show at Off The Alley back in the day. Just refreshing man – Cool Kids killed it, Mic Terror seriously tore it down…honestly the hi-top-fade-hero is fresh, check for him – Mano and Hollywood Holt did their thing crazy too. Such an entertaining show. The rest of the weekend was spent enjoying the beautiful weather and taking the University Park Metra train to the art museum by myself to zone out a bit…very inspiring and relaxing. It had probably been since high school (maybe a field trip?) since I’d been. I forgot how it feels to wander the perfectly humid halls and see mind-numbing originals in-person feet away from you. If they could talk right?! Yeah…good weekend man. Check the Flickr page.

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Community Support!!

News Flash! Your town is the ‘New’ New York. Remember when it felt like everything that was cool was only happening in New York. Well now it’s goin down in all sorts of cities. Its going down tonight and its Chicago’s turn. This for real feels good to have a local movement to get behind instead of some obscure band or DJ on some other continent. Benjamin and I will be in the place to support this Hustle Simmons’ show featuring Qualo , The Cool Kids , Hollywood Holt , Mano etc. all at Subterranean. Hip-Hop fans watch this Mic Terror video and tell me there isn’t something refreshing going on here. Now everyone move here straight outta college.

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Diet x Coke x Minerals x Vitamins = Soda 2.0!!

I know, I know…the whole ’2.0’ thing isn’t going to be funny in like 3 weeks…I’m just getting the last bit out of my system. Of course I’m going to post on something like this…and true story, I’m actually enjoying my second can of it right now. So yeah, its touted as “the first nutrient-enhanced carbonated soda to be offered by a major brand” from the already number-one selling sugar-free soda maker…and to be honest, the first time I tried it I didn’t really like it, has a weird after taste, but its actually growing on me. I guess it gives you something like 15% of the daily value for niacin and vitamins B6 and B12, and 10% for zinc and magnesium. I’m going to go out on a limb and say that’s probably about 14-15% more than I am getting of those today…ha, so I guess this is a good thing. Just another reason to love Diet Coke.