Michael Garfield – How To Live in the Future

20 March 2017

What is the Opposite of Fear? + The Evolution of Beauty + Talk & Music from COSM + JF Martel on Future Fossils

“Ultimately, art does have a function: it’s to help us better navigate the infinite chaos that is reality.”
JF Martel

Yay, it's spring!  Time to navigate the chaos of 2017 with grace, open-mindedness, exuberance, and playfulness.  Here are some things that, hopefully, will help you with that – starting with a few quick videos and one extremely deep and magical discussion...

New Videos

On my recent tour of Oz, I stopped by Uplift Connect to chat with them about what I've learned from studying the fossil record and what it can teach us about the extraordinary times we're living in.

Here's a quick two-minute takeaway insight I hope serves you as well as it serves me.

I think this is the coolest video I've ever made – in which I lay it plain how sex, art, and consciousness all intersect and led to the creation of the world we know.  Bookmark this for when you have seven minutes to appreciate it.

It's a 360º time-lapse live painting video of my first collaboration with my friends Randal Roberts and Morgan Mandala, two of the coolest people I know.  But the real magic sauce is in how the music and narration combine with this video to create a synesthetic, synergetic and emergent something-greater-than-its-parts.

I literally spooked myself with the synchronicities of the end result.  Enjoy!

New Podcast

My latest inspiring conversation about the cosmos is with JF Martel, film-maker and author of Reclaiming Art in the Age of Artifice – as well as the three-part essay "Reality is Analog," about the philosophical themes lurking behind Netflix's series Stranger Things.

You can download it here or subscribe to the show on iTunes or Stitcher Radio.

New Music & Talk from COSM

Stream or Download it here.  

Recorded live on 12 November 2016 at COSM, Alex & Allyson Grey's Chapel of Sacred Mirrors, in Wappingers Falls, New York.  Performed on acoustic guitar, voice, and hardware effects pedals (no computers, no prerecorded samples, entirely live and improvised).

This music is an invocation of creative spirit for the benefit of all beings. Recommended listening environments: painting parties, cuddle puddles, chillout sessions, game night, long daylight drives, and making love...

33% of sales go to supporting the Chapel of Sacred Mirrors and their project to build Entheon, a museum of visionary art.

Stream or Download here.

Delivered at the Chapel of Sacred Mirrors (Wappingers Falls, New York) on 12 November 2016, this talk – my first at COSM – was truly epic (three hours, minus the half-hour of pauses and throat-clearing I edited out for your benefit). Based on the work of Penn State professor Richard Doyle – especially his book, Darwin's Pharmacy: Sex, Plants, and the Evolution of the Noösphere – this is a talk about art as magic, and awareness as the medium of all creative work.

It's about how we got here and what we're doing and how the cosmic table's tilted in favor of evermore creative and intelligent ideas and organisms. It's about your purpose in the world and where this ride is taking us and how you can embrace the change and chaos for a more creative and rewarding life...

New Merch

I've been slacking on my society6 merchandise shop for a while, so I just fixed that with dozens of new items featuring some of my favorite recent pieces.  If you have a new device or space, consider fancying it up with some of these new decals, cases, pillows, notebooks, tapestries, etc.  ...

That's all for now.  Thank you for reading and have a magnificent week!


17 February 2017

Greetings from Australia Tour! Abundant Creativity From Oz & Onward

“Through how many dimensions and how many media will life have to pass?”
– Loren Eiseley, The Incredible Journey (p8)

Greetings from the last week of my Australia tour!  This last month's surges of intense and revolutionary energy have served my citizen diplomacy and art so well, and I'll be sharing videos and fresh work from this trip for quite a while to come.  Some of the most amazing moments:

- Painting my first collaboration with my friends Randal Roberts & Morgan Manley;
- Giving a talk on psychedelic transhumanism to executives at the largest bank in Australia;
- Visiting the Easternmost point of the continent and its stark, beautiful eroded beaches.

That is not to say that it's been easy.  This has been the most demanding, difficult, and complicated journey that I've had in years, and knowing that it's all scored to the music of my country's painful transformations hasn't made it any easier.

My heart goes out to everyone who's suffering right now, but all this just reminds me of the deeply valuable, important work ahead of us, to keep our minds sharp and hearts open.  Here are some things I hope will let some light into your life.

Australia Tour 360º Travelogue (Part 1)

Here are the photos (and videos!) I've been taking with my Samsung Gear 360 camera while on painting/music/speaking tour Down Under. I'm so excited to share these with you!
360º photography is such an immersive, rich, delightful way to share the feeling of a place, the energy of all these festivals and underground gigs carrying me on a song-line through the synchronistic magic of Australia.

How to Live in the Future Part 3: 
The Future is Both True & False

The latest section of How To Live in the Future, the book I'm writing in public, is a timely message for an age of fake news and splintering realities:

'Lying will persist as long as there are lines to cross, as long as there are others to communicate with. So you cannot really say and mean that lies are fully false; for each of them contains the truth, reflects it, and says yet more about the hidden mind that models and presents such falsehoods. (You can, but then you would be lying to your self, aware of it, and holding both perspectives from opposing banks across an oxbow of your fractal subjectivity, and only ritually “siding” with one view to immanentize and involve and push-against, cuz God gets bored, so what?)'

Making Sure Technology's "A Good Trip"

Here's the slideshow for my five-minute talk at Ignite Freelance Austin last autumn, "Tech Ethics As Psychedelic Parenting." Twenty slides on how to rightly think about the future.

I've never given such a whirlwind talk before – just 15 seconds for each slide – and it was great to wrangle my discursive and nonlinear ideas into a simpler presentation.

Comments welcome!

New Paintings: Red & Green Bioglyphs
16"20" – acrylic paint on canvas
both currently available

18"x24" – acrylic paint on canvas
both currently available

New Instrumental Track:
"Slow Dream Through A Wet Wood"

Okay, not new, exactly.  I recorded this in March of 2014 with Casey Smith of Spindlegraf on voice and Ableton, back in the peak of my engagement with the Boss RC-300 looping pedal.  What starts off as very dark and sparse grows roots and crystallizes into something groovy, rolling, even funky.  It is unique amidst my hours of solo music, similar ideas but somewhat different colors, more inflected with the faerie magic of a sylvan film score and the curiosities of small things...

Future Fossils Podcast with Cory Allen

“It’s just all what is. And I accept every state of being as glorious.”

Join two dedicated truth-seekers and cosmos-abiders as we make a lot of dirty jokes and somehow manage to harmonize our angles on the practice of rigorous inquiry into the nature of reality and consciousness…

We have a totally tangential, irreverent, penetrating conversation. (Luckily for you it’s audio only.) Somehow it all hangs together…much like Cory and I would, if they ever found out about the unrecorded parts of this chat. (Kidding!)

Episode Show Notes & Download Permalink
Subscribe/Rate/Review Future Fossils Podcast on iTunes

Third Eye Drops with Douglas Rushkoff

I also had the honor of another guest appearance on Third Eye Drops Podcast, this time with Douglas Rushkoff, one of my favorite authors on the complex interplay of magic, myth, and media.  We went deep, as per usual – check out our whole chat here.

25 January 2017

I'm In Australia! // New Song, 360 Video, Painting, Stickers // Westworld Problems & Body Hacking on Future Fossils

“Do not look for the purpose. Think of the way we came and be a little proud. Think of this hand – the utter pain of its first venture on the pebbly shore.”
– Loren Eiseley, poet-archeologist

Greetings, friends!  Since we're now at cruising altitude on the adventure that is 2017...

I'm on tour in Australia for the next month.  Here's my tour schedule (more updates to come) – if you know people out this way please introduce us!  Time is precious and I'm eager to contribute all I can to the enduring reputation of Americans as generous, inspired, helpful, interesting, lovely people, regardless of the tensions of our world at large.

Thanks hugely to my supporters on Patreon for helping me fund this trip.  You've helped me immensely with your many modest contributions – every bit has helped and I can't wait to pay it back

Here are my latest works, for you – the fruits of my love's labor – enjoy, and stay in touch!

Unplugged in Odemira, Portugal
(freestyle instrumental intro) 

Filmed at the ruins of a gorgeous old windmill in rural Portugal while I was visiting form Boom Festival in August 2016.  My song off the forthcoming album about how every moment of our lives is like a little near-death experience. Every choice we make, a little death...a gorgeous new horizon.

Be sure to watch this video on Chrome or the YouTube app so you can move around it and explore the whole surround...   Full lyrics and more info here.

In the moment before acting lies a void
where every future gleams, reflecting every other

each potential a uniquely blooming world.

In the space between two thoughts

where every instant pours, expanding now into infinity
and every possibility unfurls...
How do you choose your next life?

"The Land After Time (Littlefoot Considers Singularities)"
48"x24" // paint pens on canvas

The Land Before Time is one of my favorite movies from childhood; the title implies an antipode, a post-historical reciprocation.  In my vision of this moment, my most time-intensive painting to date and the latest in my series, The Psychedelic Age of Dinosaurs (Triceratops, Tyrannosaurus, and more soon), Littlefoot grows up and lives through the Singularity to inhabit a transfigured landscape populated by mysterious and metamorphic life-forms...

Painted at Unify Festival 2016 (Santa Fe, New Mexico), Green Beer Festival 2016 (Boulder, Colorado), and months of work in my Austin, Texas studio.  Finished on New Year's Eve 2016.

New 4"x3" Stickers: "Beija Flor" & "End of the World Party"
High Quality Weather Resistant Vinyl, 
Backsplit & UV Coated


The show that explores our distant past, deep future, and the countless other dimension-perspectives on time and the human condition that our mainstream narratives ignore.  Subscribe to us on iTunes (for iOS) or Stitcher (for Android).  Here are our latest episodes:

0014:  "Westworld Problems" with Michael Phillip

One of my favorite TV shows ever, Westworld, deserves a conversation smart enough to match its writing.  If you're not familiar with this awesome sci-fi series and its explorations of consciousness, robotics, free will, and the human spirit – go watch the first season right now and then come back and listen to this fun and penetrating chat with Michael Phillip, host of the Third Eye Drops podcast, on what WE think's going on in Westworld...  (Download here.)

0015:  Body Hacking & Sensory Substitution with Trevor Goodman

While I'm in Australia, I'm missing a super fun and interesting event in Austin, The Body Hacking Conference.  Trevor Goodman helps throw this annual celebration of our expanding horizons and bold new approaches to re-imagining the human body.  This conversation gets into some very out-there places – but nothing that won't seem normal in ten years...  (Download here.)