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Creative Mornings Seattle: Chris Jordan, Encountering Midway

**Please note, we had some serious audio/video issues while recording, so this video is a far cry from our usual stuff. We’re terribly sorry for coming short in presenting you with this amazing talk. :( **

On Midway Atoll, a remote cluster of islands more than 2000 miles from the nearest continent, the detritus of our mass consumption surfaces in an astonishing place: inside the stomachs of thousands of dead baby albatrosses. The nesting chicks are fed lethal quantities of plastic by their parents, who mistake the floating trash for food as they forage over the vast, polluted Pacific Ocean. For me, kneeling over their carcasses is like looking into a macabre mirror. These birds reflect back an appallingly emblematic result of the collective trance of our consumerism and runaway industrial growth. Like the albatross, we first-world humans find ourselves lacking the ability to discern anymore what is nourishing from what is toxic to our lives and our spirits. Choked to death on our waste, the mythical albatross calls upon us to recognize that our greatest challenge lies not out there, but in here.Chris Jordan is an internationally acclaimed artist and cultural activist based in Seattle, USA. His work explores contemporary mass culture from a variety of photographic and conceptual perspectives, connecting the viewer viscerally to the enormity and power of humanity’s collective behaviors. Edge-walking the lines between beauty and horror, abstraction and representation, the near and the far, the visible and the invisible, his work asks us to consider our own role in the overwhelmingly complex world we find ourselves part of. Jordan’s works are exhibited and published worldwide. chrisjordan.com/gallery/midway/#CF000313%2018x24

Bill Flora and his talk The Microsoft Design Language: How did we get here… 

Bill recently founded Tectonic, an interactive design firm in Seattle, where he helps major corporate clients deliver delightful user experiences. In his 19 year tenure at Microsoft Bill led design for a broad range of products such as Encarta Encyclopedia, Windows Media Center, Xbox, Zune and Metro. Bill is a graduate of Art Center College of Design.