pecha kucha

My friend Tim, as coincidence would have it, lives in a house in Ann Arbor that I used to frequent in my undergrad days. When I knew the house, it was a filthy place full of drug-taking, pizza-making miscreants. Today, it’s immaculate. Instead of spending their days sniffing glue, the boys who live there now garden and hold public showings of foreign films. I think they may even sew. Times, they change. Anyway, I wanted to pass along word of this new project that Tim and some others are planning for the house — which is now called the Bluish Barn. Here’s Tim’s note:

I would like to invite you all to the first Pecha Kucha Ann Arbor if you are in town on Thursday December 14th. It will be meeting at the Bluish Barn.

We’re looking for 10 artist/designer/architect/types to present. If you are interested in presenting on this first night please email Zack Denfeld at by this Friday Dec. 8th. First come first served, but with enough interest this will become a regular event in 2007, so there should be lots of chances to participate.

What is Pecha Kucha? Sort of a glorified, hipsterized-but-still-somewhat-geeky Show and Tell. From Pecha Kucha dot org:

Pecha Kucha Night, devised by Astrid Klein and Mark Dytham (Klein Dytham architecture), was conceived in 2003 as a place for young designers to meet, network, and show their work in public.

But as we all know, give a mic to a designer (especially an architect) and you’ll be trapped for hours. The key to Pecha Kucha Night is its patented system for avoiding this fate. Each presenter is allowed 20 images, each shown for 20 seconds each – giving 6 minutes 40 seconds of fame before the next presenter is up. This keeps presentations concise, the interest level up, and gives more people the chance to show.

Pecha Kucha (which is Japanese for the sound of conversation) has tapped into a demand for a forum in which creative work can be easily and informally shown, without having to rent a gallery or chat up a magazine editor. This is a demand that seems to be global – as Pecha Kucha Night, without any pushing, has spread virally to over a dozen cities across the world. Find a location and join the conversation.

It’s good to know that a house can redeem itself. It gives me hope for the world… I don’t know if I can make it yet, but, if I’m there for this first Pecha Kucha, find me, and I’ll show you where I was sitting, slumped over and drooling, when someone cut off my ponytail with a kitchen knife.

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  1. mark
    Posted December 7, 2006 at 9:57 am | Permalink

    To clarify, I was not myself a “drug-taking, pizza-making miscreant.” I was a hard-drunking, pizza-making miscreant.

    At the time, the house was shared by a number of employees of an Ann Arbor shit-hole called The Brown Jug. I never lived there, but I spent a lot of time there.

    (I’m home today with Clementine, who has a cold.)

  2. Chubb Sessions
    Posted December 7, 2006 at 9:29 pm | Permalink

    A lot of craziness went on there, but never any glue sniffing…

  3. mark
    Posted December 7, 2006 at 11:03 pm | Permalink


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