2010 Summer Stipend Finalists Announced

Jen Dougherty

My Object: Yellow Submarine

The submarine was inspired by the Beatles’ film (and song) Yellow Submarine. Our web series is influenced by British comedy and one of our biggest inspirations has been the Beatles films, including SUBMARINE and HELP! Their madcap adventures helped us to shape the crazy situations that The Archnemeses find themselves in. It’s an iconic object that is also fun – wind it up and submerge it!

My Project: The Archnemesis

We are seeking the Stipend for THE ARCHNEMESES — a character-driven web series chronicling the misadventures of four members of a New York City pub quiz team.

Inspired by the dark, surreal humor of such British shows as BLACK BOOKS, THE IT CROWD and THE YOUNG ONES as well as the insane predicaments that the Paddy’s Pub crew find themselves in on FX’s IT’S ALWAYS SUNNY IN PHILADELPHIA, the show will bring together these madcap worlds into a completely unique series.

The Archnemeses are a mismatched group of friends who form a pub quiz team for a competitive weekly trivia night at a local Brooklyn bar. After losing for weeks on end, they decide that they must push their general knowledge skills to the test and finally win! The first episode sets up our four characters with subsequent plots becoming increasingly surreal and strange as we follow their quest to beat their rivals, the Don Quizotes, and come out on top.

FRAN (Kate Riley) hates everybody. She is obsessed with winning the pub quiz and chides the rest of the team into doing better. Stuck in a meaningless job she commutes to work everyday and just can’t deal with city life. Cutting your fingernails on the subway? Making everyone listen to your cell phone conversation? Chewing with your mouth open? Fran hates you, and she’ll let it be known.

Though CLARK (Brian Faas) seems like the type of beatnik who is constantly high on something, it’s mostly his dreamy brain that fuels — or rather doesn’t fuel — his inactive lifestyle. Content to read and think and get lost in the city, Clark often frustrates everyone around him by being completely undependable. He doesn t mind one bit.

ADDY (Laura Willcox) is a real firecracker. Full of boundless energy, it seems she never stops talking. You ll get her whole life story, minus the important details and context, with every conversation. Exceedingly good-natured, Addy is also on the look out for a good man and whatever perks her friends can get her.

STEWART (Brian Barrett) works in finance and lets you know it by the way he dresses. Six hundred dollar pants? Check. Different expensive watches for different occasions? Check. Fine linen button down shirts for beer pong? Check. Stewart has a lot of responsibilities but will never let you see him sweat.

We have been gathering fans and producing short mini-sodes for the past several months and our big 5-episode shoot is coming up. We have an amazing cast from the Upright Citizen’s Brigade theater and a terrific, hard-working crew. We have been raising funds toward our $10k budget and are almost there — the $500 Stipend would allow us to complete the shoot as scheduled and stay on track for our December premiere date!

Additional project information:

Nicole Kenney

My Object: Rubber Duck

A rubber duck is a toy shaped like a duck, and is generally yellow. It may be made of rubber or rubber-like material such as vinyl plastic (which is more often used). The yellow rubber duck has achieved an iconic status in American pop culture and is often symbolically linked to bathing.

My Project: The Science of Sadness

How often do we cry? Why? Do we cry more in the winter than the summer? How many tears are shed for happiness and how many for sadness?

For 365 days (the entirety that I’m 30-years-old) I will wear a glass container around my neck and capture my tears each time I’m moved to cry. The container of tears will be photographed and uploaded here onto www.thescienceofsadness.com. I will journal on the emotion / situation that moved me to tears. For the days where no tears were shed, an empty container will be uploaded. By scrolling through the 365 containers, you will be able to scientifically tell how many days I cried, how many days I didn’t, and why.

This is my second autobiographical 365 project. The first one is www.diary29.com which is almost complete. I have taken a photo a day for the entire year that I have been 29-years-old. The BBC reported on this project calling it “a fascinating travelogue through a year in someone’s life.” I look forward to documenting next year’s journey – through tears.

If awarded the Macktez summer stipend, funds would go towards purchasing the 365+ mini-glass containers and corks as well as the tools and raw materials to mount each of these containers. I envision 12 painted wooden boards (signifying the 12 months)… and a container per day (so 28-31) on each board. Funds would also go towards securing this domain for a number of years so that the project can live on the internet for a while.

Additional project information:

Mae Ryan

My Object: The Yellow Deck

Bicycle cards screaming yellow knock my rods and cones every which way.

My Project: Mary the Queen

For the past three months I’ve been working on a project entitled Mary the Queen that focuses on a nursing home for nuns in the Sisters of Charity order. Founded in 1809, the Sisters of Charity community was once the largest order of nuns in New York. For years they were the Catholic pillars of New York; they founded St. Vincent s Hospital in 1849, taught at a majority of catholic schools and served as nurses throughout the metropolitan area. However, their influence and numbers have dwindled in recent years. In 1960 there were over 3,000 sisters in the order, while today there are just over 300 and no one has joined the community for the past five years. 80 of the oldest members of the community reside in Mary the Queen Convent, a hospice for the retired sisters in Yonkers, NY. The Sisters of Charity built this particular convent in 1958 for nuns who can no longer care for themselves and are approaching death. Most of the sisters within the walls of Mary the Queen have been in the order for over 60 years, lived through the depression and witnessed the dissipation of the power of Catholicism in the Northeast, which has seen a decline in parishes since 1970.

The photos from the series Mary the Queen visually convey these larger themes of the decline of women s religious orders and their complicated relationship to modern society. On a more universal level, this series offers an intimate look into the pain of women on the verge of death and the isolation associated with aging in America. From a spiritual view, the sisters of Mary the Queen are at a point in their life where they are contemplating if their complete devotion to God will carry them into a comfortable afterlife. They live in a fine balance between the banality of everyday life and the promises of the afterlife.

To see the work please visit my website: www.maeryan.com and click on the tab Mary the Queen.

To finish shooting this project I will need to purchase 25 rolls of 800 120 Portra NC Kodak. I shot the entire series using a Contax 645 and do not have the funds to complete the body of work. I plan on finishing the work by the end of October and would also use a portion of the money to make large scale prints for exhibition at the Henry Gregg Gallery, who has already agreed to exhibit my work.

Additional project information:

Patrik Rytikangas

My Object: Painting, oil on canvas

It is a small but good example of my passion for painting yellow frogs (and butterflies).

My Project: Large Oil Paintings

To finish two large oil paintings (30 x 40″ and 60 x 40″), both are of yellow frogs and yellow butterflies. More of these paintings can be seen at http://patrikrytikangas.com (click Paintings).

Additional project information:

Andrew Schneider

My Object: Sexy Lamby

It’s summertime. We’re all stuck here suffering in this wonderful gritty hot mess of a city. And so is Sexy Lamby, sitting on my table. From the calm of the predawn, through the sweltering noon-day sun, to the cool of the evening, Sexy Lamby cooly looks on, as if to say, “Hey…lookin’ good.” We can all keep our cool when Sexy Lamby’s around. A gift from a man in Mexico City.

My Project: iDrink

A solar film bikini that charges your iPod! (With a USB connection!) The suit is a custom made bikini swimsuit retrofitted with forty 1″ x 4″ photovoltaic film strips sewn together in series with conductive thread. The cells terminate in a 5 volt regulator into a female USB connection. The prototype of this thing is actually made and actually did work, until it was destroyed in my collapsed apartment (http://bit.ly/bpejjj).

A blessing in disguise! Now I finally have reason to make what I had originally planned on. The charge-your-iPod-through-your-swimwear idea arose as a back-up plan when I realized the solar panels I got my hands on just couldn’t kick out the power I needed to do this:

The male version of the Solar Bikini – called the iDrink, features a greater surface area which equals more output voltage. The bikini has traditionally and obviously had little surface area. The iDrink will be based on men’s board shorts, which have a huge amount of surface area. The more surface area – the more flexible photovoltaic cells. The more photovoltaic cells – the more power. This additional juice is used to power a 1.5 amp peltier junction which cools a single beer in a custom coozy. Double cool! The iDrink Solar SwimWare line is perfect for those who want to go the beach, listen to music, and enjoy a cold and deserved beverage, but who don’t want to get wet! You’ve got tunes, you’ve got beer, you’ve got sun, and you’ve got each other in swimwear. The rest is up to you.

A beer cooled with alternative energy, hot.

A Macktez Summer Stipend would allow me finally realize the iDrink, the male version of the solar bikini. It would cover the cost of the new, advanced flexible photovoltaic cells, and conductive thread necessary to push enough juice to a peltier junction and give us some relief from this heat!

Thank you for your consideration!

Additional project information:
Several pictures of the completed and destroyed bikini prototype are here, here, here, here, here, and here.

Jack Shaw

My Object: Portable Memory Retention Device (Post-it)

Sometimes the best ideas are the simplest. In our world of iPhones, iPads, and other handheld electronics it’s amazing that this little adhesive notepad still holds its own. Perhaps it has something to do with its tactile nature: the satisfaction of crumpling up a completed task list always brings a smile to my face.

My Project: The Light Box


About one-third of an average landfill is made up of packaging material. That’s around 64 million tons in the U.S. alone every year. Now imagine if we lived in a world without waste. The Light Box is an experimental lighting design project incorporating the product’s packaging into its design – there is no waste! In fact, the product’s construction of mostly post-consumer waste serves to take these humble materials out of the waste stream and give them new life as a design object. This elegant approach to rethinking the products we live with everyday and their impact on the world is not a novelty but integral to the Light Box’s mission of of showing the world that a zero waste lifestyle is possible, profitable, and beautiful.

How does it work?

Light Box is a packaging-free light fixture and environmentally sustainable business model. It functions as a floor lamp or a wall sconce (with the use of a simple picture frame mount.) The boxes are made per order and shipped directly to the consumer, eliminating the need for a physical retail or storage location.

What is needed?

Further Prototyping – The initial prototype used a CFL bulb, but without adequate space between the bulb and the Light Box’s structure there is a risk of too much heat being generated. A revised prototype using no-heat LED bulbs is needed to solve the problem.

Delivery Testing – Since the Light Boxes will be delivered directly to the consumer by postal mail a dry run of a long distance delivery is necessary to test how well the Light Box will hold up under real-world conditions. A test delivery from NYC to San Francisco and back is an ideal evaluation of the delivery system.

A Web Presence – While the product can be sold via online retailing sites such as Etsy.com or Supermarkethq.com. It would be great if the Light Box had its own home on the web, a place not only to purchase it but to share information about the beauty of waste-free living.

Initial Production – After prototyping and delivery testing a small production run of Light Boxes will be needed for website photographs and one-on-one demonstrations.

Proposed Budget

LED Bulbs $100
Postage $50
Website $250
Initial Production $100

Total $500


Thank you for considering this application for Macktez’s Summer Stipend. I hope you will be persuaded to aid in Light Box’s experiment in packaging-free, negative waste manufacturing. Together we can kick waste’s ass!