The Image of a Storm Cloud

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The following is a fictionalized account of the opening of Jon Rafman's You Are Standing in an Open Field, which was on view from Sept 12 - Oct 26, 2013 at Zach Feuer Gallery in New York. 

"Zach Feuer's on 22nd Street," said Thor. He looked up from his iPhone and pointed downtown.

"That sounds right," said Zoe. "A really even number. I can picture it on their website." Zoe nodded and then coughed.

I shrugged and joined them—Thor, Zoe, and my girlfriend Ann. Thor leaned over his phone.

Thor was a tall man, handsome with thick eyebrows. At twenty-two, he was a decade younger than me. Zoe, meanwhile, had sparkly eyes. I think she was Ann's age, twenty-eight. "I haven't seen anything new by Jon in a long time," she said. "I don't even know what this is going to be like."

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Artist Profile: Michael Manning

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Animated GIF via dump.fm

LH: For as long as I've been familiar with your work—starting on dump.fm in 2010—you've been incredibly prolific. Back then, you were creating and sharing abstract animated GIFs. I remember you would post hundreds of variations on a single shape. I see that kind of preoccupation, or obsession, come up again and again in your work, with the Phone Arts series, the Microsoft Store Paintings, and most recently, the Sheryl Crow Pandora Paintings. These expansive projects create a sense of repetition, ultimately a smooth rhythm, which appears to be so continuous as to not have a beginning or an end. Can you describe the process for coming up with these projects? How do you distinguish the individual pieces?

MM: I don't like to take any single piece too seriously, I want to work on something without the pressure of it being perfect. I think people discount producing a lot of work because they connect it to feed culture like it's more important to produce massive amounts of content for tumblr or instagram or w/e but that's not really what I'm trying to do. I think it's more interesting to like shit out a bunch of work in a natural way whether it's through a rhythm that you just stumble upon or if you see a jpeg on dump and you're like "loloolllollll pssssssh what in the even fuck ommmmmg" so you have to like rework it 50 times because you're obsessed with it, and then step back after you make this massive body of work and say to yourself "what is all that about dude?", than if you try and distill an idea into one perfect piece you've over thought to death. When you try and make a piece fit a preconceived concept it feels like graphic design, you have the message and the content you're just trying to solve how to effectively communicate that through the work and I don't want to work like that.

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All the News We Hope to Print

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Photo of Salon de Thé Facebook, Tunis, shared on Twitter by @WadhahJebri on February 16, 2011 and recirculated with the #16juin2014 hashtag.

It sounds, at first, like something out of H.G. Wells. On February 16, 2011, a person opening a Tunisian newspaper or website might have come across an article dated more than three years in the future. 

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Beware of Geeks Bearing Formulas: When property becomes smart

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From Joe Hamilton, hypergeographySources: ultrazapping and darrellg.

If you thought cryptocurrencies were hard to understand, you probably want to sit down for your first introduction to smart property.

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Connecting With My Inner Bot

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Incorporate introduces itself in the iOS app store with a simple inquiry: "How do you connect to others, if you're not connected to yourself? This experiment in digital relaxation comes from artist duo Essex Olivares by way of support from SculptureCenter and a grant from the Krasner Foundation. It is an artwork designed to circulate among apps, taking its place in—and perhaps commenting on—an increasingly crowded landscape of self-help tools for the informationally overloaded.

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911,000 B.C. at Grand Century

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In order to increase survivability in the event of a crash, scientist Charles Yost developed memory foam in 1966 at the NASA Ames Research Center, within walking distance of what would later become the Googleplex. Memory foam holds the mark of any pressure made against it before slowly returning to its original form when the pressure is removed.

Curated by Agatha Wara, ٩١١,000 B.C. was the inaugural show at Grand Century, an exhibition space in an artist's studio on New York's Lower East Side organized by artists Dora Budor, Alex Mackin Dolan, and Olivia Erlanger. The show lasted less than twenty-four hours, opening on Saturday night (March 29) and closing the following evening. The visitor found foam pieces in the first and last corners of the space.

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Successful Apps Fill Gaps

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Jon Nash and Michael Petruzzo, Slight 1.0 (2014), screenshot of iOS app.

A smartphone app feels special when, upon first being opened, one has no clue what one is supposed to be doing with it. If life is a series of bricks or whatever, then a successful app can be a kind of mortar, filling gaps that you never knew were there (thats where the title of this essay came from). I don't mean *invented* gaps, or *fake* gaps, the type that boring Menlo Park chads cook up after one too many rails, apps with such a specific purpose that they end up sitting in the back of your phone somewhere, sad and utterly useless. I'm talking about apps that come out of the gate with no purpose, or a purpose so open-ended that the original creators could never have dreamed how it would end up being used. This is DUH but twitter: you write text! and look at all this malarkey we have to deal with now! Sad Twitter, Weird Twitter, Talking Tower Bridge Twitter, Commuter Express 437 Updates Twitter, Will Smith's Kid's Twitter, JEFF BAIJ TWITTER!

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Announcing Seven on Seven's Fifth Anniversary Edition, NYC

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Saturday, May 3, 2014
12-6pm EST at the New Museum, New York 
Livestreamed on Rhizome.org 

For Rhizome's Seven on Seven, leading contemporary artists are paired with tech luminaries for one day. Their assignment: to make something new. 

On Saturday, May 3, the duos unveil their creations, with rich discussion, for the first time. A five-time sold-out event, Seven on Seven brings the thinkers and makers who shape contemporary culture, today and in the future, into critical and creative conversation.

This year's NYC line-up features: 

 

MORE INFORMATION & TICKETS: rhizome.org/sevenonseven

 

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