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Who it is I am

I'm a libertine with a conscience who refuses to acknowledge a distinction between work and play, who believes that you don't get the days back and therefore aspires to embrace the eternally messy present for what it is; a gift. And all gifts should be shared.

Within this framework I'm also a dad, an angel investor, a business owner, deeply passionate about the visual arts, music, literature, technology and politics (the degrees of interest aren't equal and what's posted here is a fair barometer of what captures my attention), and a dedicated philanthropist.

Do I contradict myself? Very well, then I contradict myself, I am large, I contain multitudes. - Walt Whitman

robert@fastorbit.com

212-671-2030

Affiliations

Updated 09/19/2012

Board Member: Hallwalls Contemporary Arts Center "Whenever someone asks me where I studied art, I always say it was at Hallwalls." - Cindy Sherman

Former Board Member: No Longer Empty: No Longer Empty redefines public art through temporary site -specific exhibitions that draw together the vitality of the contemporary art world and the values of building community.

Owner: Fast Orbit, LLC

Owner/Partner: ParkSleepFly.com

Owner/Partner: AirportParkingReservations.com

Owner/Investor: Wireless-NRG: Innovative consumer, commerical and industrial applications using unique solar technology.  Stay tuned for the imminent introduction of the Lillypad (Kudocase) for IPad, IPad2, IPad3.

Owner/InvestorVeenome - a video enabling platform translating video content into machine-readable data for superior organization, publishing, searching and monetization.

Owner/InvestorSocial Prize: Social Prize is a new way of sharing that makes it easy for you to share what you like with your friends and win. For the everyday business owner, Social Prize evens the odds by making it a snap for you to use social sweepstakes as a cost-effective means to get the word out about your business and grow your customer base.

Owner/Investor: uKnow.com:
Smart Tools.  Safer Kids
Keep your kids safe from bad guys and bullies online and on the mobile phone.

Projects & Participation

Updated 09/19/2012

Loan: Oded Hirsch's 50 Blue to Art Miami's curatorial project CONTEXT, December 2012 (curated by Julia Draganovic)

Collector-level Member - Issue Project Room 

Sponsor of Hallwalls
Fall 2012 Music Program

Nora Ligorano/Marshall Reese: Morning In America Ice Sculpture at the RNC/DNC Conventions

Composer Poul Ruders: New Symphonic Music (including a solo piano commission)

Channeling Coltrane: A concert video of "Electric Ascension"

Grammar: A documentary film about Jason Moran

Even Though the Whole World is Burning: A film about the life and work of Poet Laureate, two-time Pulitzer winner, and environmental activist W.S. Merwin.

George: A feature length documentary on George Maciunas, the founder and impresario of Fluxus, the radical international art movement.

Electronic Arts Intermix Benefactor
Founded in 1971, Electronic Arts Intermix (EAI) is a nonprofit arts organization that is a leading international resource for video and media art. A pioneering advocate for media art and artists, EAI's core program is the distribution and preservation of a major collection of over 3,500 new and historical video works by artists. For 40 years, EAI has fostered the creation, exhibition, distribution and preservation of video art, and more recently, digital art projects. 

Sponsor: Kreppa: A Symphonic Poem about the Financial Situation in Iceland
By: Örn Alexander Ámundason, Performed by Metropolis Ensemble, Andrew Cyr, Artistic Director/Conductor
The Armory Show 03/07/2012 The Wall Street Journal Media Lounge

Sponsor of Hallwalls
Winter 2012 Music Program

Sponsor of Hallwalls
Fall 2011 Music Program

Richard Garet (refer to post)
Espacios No-Euclídeos
Curated by Laura Bardier
11 August - 30 October 2011
EAC – Espacio Arte Contemporáneo
Montevideo, Uruguay  http://www.eac.gub.uy

Steve Swell's Nation of We Recording: "The Business of Here"

Producer (one of thousands) of the upcoming 2011 film: Lemonade: Detroit

Contributor: +Pool: A Floating Pool in the River For Everyone

Challenge grant to the Metropolis Ensemble for the recording of composer Timothy Andres on Nonesuch Records Fall 2011.  (Supporting contemporary composition is critical to the health of the culture and visionary Director Andrew Cyr is a living, breathing exemplar of leadership.)

Sponsor: No Longer Empty's About Face art exhibition May/June 2011

Sponsor: Hallwalls Artists & Models 2011 - RAPTURE/RUPTURE May 2011

Principal Benefactor NMC Recordings

Donor of artist Kate Gilmore's (a tireless, fearless creator with a limitless imagination) "Blood From a Stone" to the Brooklyn Museum 2010.

Bedrock financial support for the Cecil Taylor / Tony Oxley 2LP limited edition recording "AILANTHUS / ALTISSIMA bilateral dimensions of 2 root songs" on Triple Point Records.

Sponsor of composer Mayke Nas and artist Joe Diebbes at the 2010 Liverpool Bienniel.

Sponsor of numerous Hallwalls concerts including: Cecil Taylor's 80th birthday performance, Evan Parker & Ned Rothenberg, Henry Grimes solo, Chicago Underground duo, etc.

Commissioned Composer Frederic Rzweski's "Peace Dances" as part of pianist Sarah Cahill's project "A Sweeter Music."

Causes & Contributions

Updated 08/03/2012

UnPac

The Woodshed at the Jazz Gallery

World Food Programme

Jazz Foundation of America

Wordplay: Celebrating Buffalo's Youngest Writers

Join My Village: a click-to-commit social change initiative that gives you the power to inspire charitable donations from companies to women and girls in Malawi through CARE.

Hallwalls

Buffalo Olmsted Parks Conservancy

It Gets Better

Catalog Choice

Village Enterprise Fund

This Week in Tech's (TWIT) new studio

CMH Counseling, Buffalo, NY

Worldreader

Mercy Corp

Food Bank of Western New York

Wednesday
Sep072011

Steve Reich WTC 9/11

The good folks at Nonesuch Records in conjunction with NPR are streaming the entirety of Steve Reich's new recording WTC 9/11 on NPR's First Listen.  As you'd expect, the long awaited title track is extremely well constructed and Reich's vocal sampling from a diverse group of people impacted by the attack interwoven with the string writing for Kronos Quartet creates a tense and unsettling narrative thread.

The remainder of the album, Mallet Quartet and Dance Patterns provide a welcome sonic and emotional counterbalance.

The full recording is being released 09/26/2011.  A digital EP of just WTC 9/11 is available for purchase now.

Listen to an interview with Steve Reich on WTC 9/11. 

It's a shame so much attention has been paid to the cover which has now been changed.  It suited the context of WTC 9/11.  Judge for yourself.

 WTC 9/11 original

WTC 9/11 new

Tuesday
Sep062011

Another kind of labor

Labor's fallen out of favor but not for lack of want or need. Yanked out from under the feet of at least fourteen million men and women; a man made disaster.  Their collective vacant stare - familiar to victim and onlooker alike of all calamities - casts a dark stain over the country.  

The "United" States of America has lost all the grand and well deserved metaphorical accolades it once so deservedly earned through the toil of its citizenry reaching common ground amidst vast differences and the temporary wounds of sacrifice shared for the greater good.

It feels odd and dirty and shamefully appropriate to surround the U in USA in quotes this Labor Day. I mourn the loss of my own reverence.

And so out of bewilderment I'll pivot towards the poetry of Philip Levine, the newly appointed poet laureate. I'll appreciate the irony of his association with Detroit, a place synonymous with Work (capital W intended), delight in the effort required of plainspoken wisdom and pay hommage to him and to the ideal of Labor Day by reading the title poem from his Pulitzer Prize winning collection of poetry, The Simple Truth.

 Click to Play 

The Simple Truth by Philip Levine

Sunday
Sep042011

On the road

A late summer road trip.  Lungs full of fresh air.  A scenic vista around every bend. From Dia Beacon to the Storm King Arts Center to Bard College.  From Mass Moca to the Clark Art Institute.  Sun and warmth our friendly companions until scared away by that bitch Irene. (note that those using the Firefox browser will be unable to see the image titles so switch to a different web browser temporarily.)

Friday
Sep022011

Catching my ear

Recently acquired (and newly released) recordings well worth your time and attention.  All available from Amazon.com.  Many of the recordings are recently released on Kairos, a recording label focusing on some of the finest composers writing music today.

Michael Gordon - Timber (Cantaloupe MP3)
Video excerpt

Ikue Mori, Evan Parker, Bill Laswell, Marc Nauseef - Near Nadir (Tzadik MP3)

I've never been a Laswell fan but both his bass playing and superb mixing help make this a truly fascinating electro-acoustic improvisation.  Further, percussionist Marc Nauseef is criminally under-recorded.  Be sure to check out his indespensible contribution to Leo Smith's recording "Snakish" on Leo Records.

Unsuk Chin (Ensemble Intercontemporain) - Akrostichon-Wortspiel, etc. (Kairos MP3 - reissue from 1995 Deutsche Grammophone's 20/21 series)

Friederich Cerha - Bruchstück, geträumt; Neun Bagatellen; etc. (Kairos MP3)

Ruben S. Gjersten - Grains (Plus3db MP3)
Winner of Arne Nordheim’s composers prize 2010

Alberto Posadas (Ensemble Intercontemporain) - Glossopoeia (Kairos MP3)

Lefteris Papadimitriou - Panaramo (self-released MP3)
Winner of the inaugural 2009 CeReNeM/HCMF Scholarship.  Featured composer at the 2011 Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival

Uri Caine & the Arditti String Quartet - Twelve Caprices (Winter & Winter MP3)

A joy to hear Uri Caine branch out from covering classical composers from the standard repertoire (albeit in a highly personalized style) and inject his originality and jazz chops in a collaboration with one of the world's leading string quartets.

Friederich Cerha - Spiegel; Monumentum Fur Karl Prantl; Fur K - World Premier Records Digitally Remastered (Kairos double MP3)

Bernhard Lang - Die Sterne des Hungers (Kairos MP3)

Matthew Ship & Joe Morris - Broken Partials (NotTwo Records MP3)

Matthias Pintscher - Sonic Eclipse; A Twilight's Song; She-cholat ahavah ani (Kairos MP3)

Wednesday
Aug312011

Forward from the backpage

All the news that's fit to print
you need not read
above the fold
or on A1

to catch a glimpse
that acts as flint
to set a spark
and earn a start

a text, a call,
a drink or two
or three then fall

inebriated charm
convinced her
that I meant no harm

it sounds so fucking orthodox
but ask the last
about the paradox
of carnal authenticity

the interest's genuine
it's not a ruse
duality of intention
arouse a mutual muse


Artist Daniel Rozin's Mirror No. 10 (snapshot)

Tuesday
Aug302011

The Free Jazz of Mark di Suvero

There's a insightful article in the August 25th edition of the Wall Street Journal by Marc Myers on the sculptor Mark di Suvero.  I've just returned from the breathtaking 500 acre landscape of the Storm King Arts Center in New Windsor, NY just about an hour outside of NYC.  They hold the definitive collection of di Suvero's large sculptures and in addition to featuring his work prominently on-site, have an exhibition of his work on Governers Island through September 25th.

At 77, di Suvero is still - despite a serious injury suffered long ago - knee deep in the execution of his creations.  His child-like wonderment reminds me of Isamu Noguchi's words: "You can find out how to do something and then do it or do something and find out what you did."

The final two paragraphs of the article resonate brightly.

At the end of our conversation, I spotted a vibraphone near the door and asked him to play. "I will, but first you have to lie on that over there," he commanded, pointing to a mattress suspended waist-high by four cables.

As I lay on my back, swaying slightly, Mr. di Suvero ran mallets over the metal keys, playing in a free-jazz style that shares much in common with his art. When he finished, Mr. di Suvero turned and smiled: "And that's how steel sounds."

Mark di Suvero at Storm King Art Center

Monday
Aug292011

Warning: blatant self promotion ahead

As indicated in the Affiliations section of the right hand column, I'm an owner/investor in Wireless-NRG, maker of the LilyPad for IPad 1 and IPad 2.  I believe in the technology.  I believe in founder Dave Foster and the managing team.  I believe in solar energy.  And, I'm an Apple fan.  For me, the stars align.

We've begun a Kickstarter campaign.  Be so kind as to watch the video and click on the Kickstarter link if so inclined.  (Note that the LilyPad shown in the video and (most) images are from an early prototype.  The finished, Apple Certified (yeah!) product has a much sleeker, spirit-of-Apple design.)

Thanks!

 

Monday
Aug292011

Hallwalls fall 2011 music schedule

I'm sponsoring the fall 2011 Hallwalls (Buffalo, NY) music program.  September's schedule is below.  Stay tuned for some exciting events in October and November too!

Monday
Aug292011

The hard truth

Action precedes motivation.

It's counterintuitive and true.  Certainly not an original thought but a recurring theme in my life nonetheless.  Damn!

Monday
Aug292011

If you have it, share it

I'm grateful that I'm not a hoarder.  No stuffed closets.  No stacked piles of yesteryear waiting to [never] be rummaged.  Detritus can lead to selfishness.  I try and avoid it. 

Relish what you have.  Keep what you need. Indulge (because to paraphrase Nigerian author and wiseman Chris Abani, we have an obligation to partake in "delight" even surrounded by near hopelessness) and then pay it forward.

And so if you happen to want or need any of the items below, they're yours for the taking.  They're all in perfect or near perfect condition. 

  • Olympus XZ-1 10 MP Digital Camera with f1.8 Lens and 3-Inch OLED Monitor (Black) with 4GB SD card

  • 2 Olympus Digital Voice Recorders WS-331M

  • 2 Logitech DiNovo Edge Rechargeable Bluetooth Keyboards (with trackpads) for Mac

Shipping's on me.