Pecha Kucha from the Perspective of the Stage

Knoxville Urban Guy does Pecha Kucha, Relix Theater, Knoxville, November 2014

Knoxville Urban Guy does Pecha Kucha, Relix Theater, Knoxville, November 2014

I attended the first Pecha Kucha several years ago at the Jackson Avenue Workshops. I left feeling my intelligence was a bit below average and my creativity didn’t register on the graph. It would never have occurred to me that I might be a presenter at one of the events. But last night I was given the opportunity and I really appreciated it.

Gene Burr and Suzanne Wedekind, Pecha Kucha, Knoxville, November 2014

Gene Burr and Suzanne Wedekind, Pecha Kucha, Knoxville, November 2014

Gene Burr and Suzanne Wedekind presented  regarding a grant they administered to teach young students, from elementary to high school, how to observe the built environment. They utilized local structures and focused on the how and why of the building as well as who utilized it for understanding its form and function.

Brian Jobe, Pecha Kucha, Knoxville, November 2014

Brian Jobe, Pecha Kucha, Knoxville, November 2014

Artist Brian Jobe showed slides of the construction of his structure at the Knoxville Botanical Gardens. It’s a structure designed to engage visitors to the gardens and will be a permanent fixture there. He feels strongly that built art should engage its surroundings as well as its community.

Bridgid Oesterling, Pecha Kucha, Knoxville, November 2014

Bridgid Oesterling, Pecha Kucha, Knoxville, November 2014

Brigid Oesterling talked about wondering if she should continue making art given there is already so much “stuff” in the world. Eventually, about to toss an inner tube from a motorcycle, she stopped and recognized it would be in a dump forever. Thus began her efforts to make useful objects from trash. Eventually she made a line of clothing from inner tubes and has found success in the fashion world, leading her to the question of whether she is making art or making clothing.

Bob Sutton, Pecha Kucha, Knoxville, November 2014

Bob Sutton, Pecha Kucha, Knoxville, November 2014

Bob Sutton strummed a guitar and told a story of a boy who had his life saved in Coalfield, Tennessee in 1965. The boy, John Foust, would grow up to be a important man in the area. Bob’s presentation was accompanied by beautiful photographs by James Newby.

Brenna Elwood, Pecha Kucha, Knoxville, November 2014

Brenna Elrod, Pecha Kucha, Knoxville, November 2014

Brenna Elrod said she comes from a long line of hoarders and she spoke her childhood concerns or “quiet worries,” about the accumulation of trash in the world.. In fact she is actively seeking ways to re-use materials that might otherwise have been discarded and that is the premise of her blog. As a result of that focus she has started making a clothing line from table cloths and other used fabrics.

Matthew Debardelaben, Pecha Kucha, Knoxville, November 2014

Matthew Debardelaben, Pecha Kucha, Knoxville, November 2014

Matthew Debardelaben is writing a children’s book and showed photographs of his children, who play prominently into the story as well as beautiful illustrations by Dani Collins from the work in progress. The writing was as beautiful as the illustrations and follows a grandfather and a boy learning life lessons as they talk about the value of the natural environment and of hard work.

Matt Culver, Pecha Kucha, Relix Theater, Knoxville, November 2014

Matt Culver, Pecha Kucha, Relix Theater, Knoxville, November 2014

Matt Culver, an architect whose love of furniture making and wood work has led him to teach those skills at UT, supervises the Fab Lab at UT where students take their concepts and produce full scale models with their own hands. His passion for working with his hands and seeing others come to believe they can do the same radiated throughout his presentation.

Noble Robinette, Pecha Kucha, Relix Theater, Knoxville, November 2014

Noble Robinette, Pecha Kucha, Relix Theater, Knoxville, November 2014

Noble Robinette is an award-winning short-film maker. He’s lived in LA recently, but returned to Knoxville where he has participated in several 48 film festivals and won awards from each. His presentation focused on his short film MALK which is about a male breast-feeding support group (Pro tip: If it says “Male” and “breast-feeding,” it’s probably humor).

Crowd at Pecha Kucha as seen from the stage, Knoxville, November 2014

Crowd at Pecha Kucha as seen from the stage, Knoxville, November 2014

Knoxville Urban Guy does Pecha Kucha, Relix Theater, Knoxville, November 2014

Knoxville Urban Guy does Pecha Kucha, Relix Theater, Knoxville, November 2014

And what did I talk about? I talked about how I always wanted to be a writer, loved cities and mashed the two loves up for this blog. I thanked several people – Metro Pulse, Josh Flory, Dale Mackey and Blank Newspaper for the support they’ve given me. I discussed all the arenas of information I’ve been exposed to in this blog from historic preservation to urban design and photography. I’ve learned quite a bit and I continue to learn.

Knoxville Urban Guy does Pecha Kucha, Relix Theater, Knoxville, November 2014

Knoxville Urban Guy does Pecha Kucha, Relix Theater, Knoxville, November 2014

 

Mostly I talked about how much I appreciate having you guys – my readers, many of whom were present. From 1700 page views the first month I published, the site has grown to over 50,000 page views in September of this year. The Facebook Page registered its 3000th “like” just yesterday. It’s humbling and I appreciate the opportunity to write for you. I love our city and I’m glad we are on this journey together.

Comments

  1. Michelle Shory says

    Looks like an amazing event, and I know you were a fascinating speaker! I’m so happy for you and your success.

  2. In the 1985 Scorsese film, AFTER HOURS, one of the many great bits in this bad-dream comedy is the Soho bar that opens and closes seemingly at will, the times of which are obviously apparent to its regulars, but a mystery to the protagonist played by Griffin Dunne.

    I feel the same way about finding out about the upcoming Pecha Kuchas. Every time I go to the website, the dates haven’t been set. Then later, I hear about the meeting I just missed. Isn’t there an email list or something?

    • KnoxvilleUrbanGuy says

      Dang, man, we were trying to keep it a secret from you! 🙂 One step would be to “like” their page on FB. They have a list at the events for sign-up, but otherwise, email them at Pknknoxville@gmail.com to get added to the list. I might add that one of the best ways to know it’s coming up is to read carefully the calendar that comes out each week on this little local blog. 🙂

  3. Alan, I’m sure you were wonderful, as always. So glad to see my friends and acquaintances on this list. Sorry I missed all of you. Brigid is a friend and neighbor, and I met Noble for the first time at our Halloween party this year. Such wonderfully artistic friends. I’m truly blessed to know each of you. Thanks for all you do.

  4. Thanks so much, Alan! All great presentations!

  5. Your talk was great, Alan!

  6. As always, I learned something new about Knoxville through you. I hope one day to attend these types of events, but until then I will enjoy Knoxville vicariously through you.

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