Posts for 2007

Magical Subversion

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Commenting on our relationship with modern science, writer and futurist Sir Arthur C. Clark famously stated that "any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic." A highly cited quote that connects the most hi-tech gadgetry of today to the illusionism of yesterday. Tapping into this approach is HARDcoded, "an ongoing collaboration between new media artists in Chicago and Mexico City, that explore the cross-over between digital noise, punk, and magic." This collaboration will surface as a day of workshops, screenings, and performances being held in Chicago at the space EN3MY and being simultaneously broadcast in Mexico City at CentroMultiMedia and the Border on December 8th, 2007. Mark Beasley, The Chicago Hacked Hardware Orchestra, Criticalartware, Paul Hertz, and Temporary Services are among the participating artists who, along with the organizers, seek "to create a space where ruptures in our digital playing field (glitch, noise, + hacked/repurposed material/tools) can take precedence over the norms of our contemporary static digital landscape." New media art is defined by the exploration of new, networked technologies; HARDcoded stands apart for its introduction of magic--awe and punk-style trickery--into the mix. -- David Michael Perez

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Miguel Soares: Present States of Siege

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Lisbon-based artist Miguel Soares' signature 3D animations render virtual realms in which landscapes, characters and objects provoke myriad futuristic fantasies. In 'Time Zones' (2003), sequences of collaged images that evoke the Cold War accompany experimental band Negativland's track by the same title. An engaging allusion to the post-war world order, this work connects what was seen as a permanent state of siege with our current time. Recently, Soares has utilized different technologies to develop his practice, making it less politically charged and more metaphorical. On view until the end of last week at Lisbon's Museum of Electricity was the installation 'Do Robots Dream of Electric Art?' (2007), that consisted of three robots, all equipped with moving heads, tracing red laser beams on the gallery wall in the rough outlines of human bodies. Bringing together Philip K. Dick's science fiction best-seller 'Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?,' in which the main character is an android, with the imagery of cave painting, Soares combines representations of the past and the future into an allegory for present society. Another notable work is 'Jumping Nauman' (2006), that is currently featured in the group show 'Stream,' presented by New York's White Box. Using the Google Earth software, this video compiles the exhibition spaces in which Bruce Nauman work was shown in 2006-- from New York's Andrea Rosen Gallery to the Berlin Biennale--thus illustrating the global economy of today's art scene. A sort of digital appropriation artist 'fascinated by things that do not exist'--as he once put it--Soares' output is one of the most significant in the contemporary expanded field of new media, in which concept is taking the place of the once prevailing high-tech fetishism. - Miguel Amado

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Shawn Decker

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Standing in Shawn Decker’s sound installation A small migration is like being inside an exploded piano, or more precisely it is like standing inside the moment of explosion. The component parts of the work are suspended around me as though frozen in time. Still, yet full of potential movement; they generate a physical sense of imminence. At either end of the gallery large wooden frames support scaffolding bars rigged by chains from the ceiling. Piano wires are stretched across the gallery between the frames. At one end small striker motors are positioned alongside each wire; the installation responds to a series of computer-generated algorithms which trigger the motors that strike the wires. From A deep vibration: A small migration by Lizzie Muller

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Read through for full Networked Music Review post on Decker's piece.

Originally posted on Networked Music Review by jo


new Treewave Software

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I’m working on new software for Tree Wave that is designed to create abstract remixes. It is a software sampler that loops portions a very large source sample, usually an entire song or songs, and allows many layers of loops to be played simultaneously. There is a performance mode and soon, a sequencer mode. It can be used with any source sample, but I’ve found that the aesthetics of contemporary Christian music work best for what I’m trying to do (more on this later…) Eventually it’ll also include a simple drum machine.

It incorporates a random generator to aid finding interesting loop points in a long sample. And it is designed with the idea that loops don’t need any relation to the original sample’s tempo as long as the loop lengths all fit a consistent tempo.

example sound output MP3 — source sample: Casting Crowns East to West

tech: Win32 app written in C++ using MinGW and the SDL library. Display is all text-based and input is all keyboard. Code should be reasonably portable.

update: I updated the screenshot. The program and sequencer are fully working now. I’m doing a remix for a band with it. I’ll post the program on my site when I get a few more bugs out and write up a basic manual

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Artist and blogger Tom Moody interviewed Slocum about the Sample Remixer. Read here: tommoody.us/...

Originally posted on qotile/slocum by Luap


"B I T M A P: as good as new" online

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We just finished and uploaded a quick online list of work in the show.
Here is an html version and a pdf. (33Mb)


Also, check out the review on poptronics.fr (french)

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For those who couldn't make it to the Bitmap in-person, there is now a catalogue available online.

Originally posted on vertexlistblog by Rhizome


2008 Rhizome Commission: Data Sonification

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A few times each week, I drag my laptop down to Gorilla Coffee in Brooklyn to join hordes of other writers who are itching to get out of the house and looking for inspiration from the outside world. Rows of us sit on our laptops, seemingly immersed in our own worlds, though keenly aware that we aren't. It's precisely this environment that Vancouver-based artist Jack Stockholm targets with 'Eavesdropping.' One of Rhizome's 2008 commissions, 'Eavesdropping' capitalizes on our desire to be part of a group, even when we ostensibly want to be alone. By setting up what is essentially a local network, Stockholm will create an audio platform that harnesses computer noises for musical purposes. Anyone can become a composer/ conductor by uploading a 'score' to a localized 'Eavesdropping' network and inviting others to join. The resulting composition will transform what once may have seemed like ambient sound in the coffee shop into a rich musical performance. One of an increasing number of artists engaged with data sonification, Stockholm's interests are evident in earlier works, such as MIDIfier' which elevates mundane data to music by transcribing text from the web into MIDI compositions. Data and network visualization have been major themes in new media for many years; it's refreshing to have our aural impulses and behaviors get their due. Eavesdropping will be finished, along with the rest of the Rhizome Commissions, in early 2008. More information will be available on rhizome.org. - Caitlin Jones

http://rhizome.org/commissions/2007/

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Media Art Mirage

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Located within Dubai's sci-fi sounding 'Internet City' (an area that is billed as a 'tax free zone') is the Dubai Digital Arts Center (DUDAC). Built by the government to promote the arts within this city's hyper-commercial environment, DUDAC has the potential to be a hub for media arts in the Middle East. For the past month, DUDAC has been host to a retrospective of N3krozoft Ltd , a multi-disciplinary "delocalized collective research project" who use technology as medium, as product, and as part of an event-based practice. Their preoccupation with surveillance and geopolitics makes Dubai an intriguing locale for their performance-based work. Part performance, and part spy movie, their performance BLACKBOX:GVA incorporates both stock and real-time footage of the city to tell the story of 'John Doe' a military technician who can intercept psychic communication. N3krozoft Ltd will also perform KASPAROV 9000 a new work based on the mous Kasparov v. Deep Blue chess match (with accompaniment from the Dubai Chamber Orchestra who will adapt of the infamous Tetris game score). With the proposed Saadiyat Cultural District in the United Arab Emirates' other major center, Abu Dhabi (with is slated to include both Louvre and Guggenheim Museum outputs), as well as Art Dubai (another art fair) it seems as though the government is looking beyond

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Robot Ballet

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In 1924 American composer George Antheil and artist/filmmaker Fernand Léger collaborated on 'Ballet Mécanique.' Inspired by the ever-expanding presence of machines in modern life, the two artists reconstituted the dance form with whirring, grinding mechanical parts overseen by human guides. Although the two parts (score and film) were never married in the artists’ lifetimes, both pieces became landmarks in the their respective fields. Léger's film has been well restored and is a notable chapter in modern art history, and 'Ballet Mécanique' remains Antheil's most famous orchestration. This December, Paul Lehrman and LEMUR (League of Electronic Musical Urban Robots) will present an all-robotic version of Antheil's score. Originally written for 16 player pianos, four bass drums, three xylophones, a tam-tam, seven electric bells, a siren, and three different-sized airplane propellers, the 'all robot version’ replaces any and all human participation with pre-programmed robotic knowledge. The piece will play twice a day from December 1-11th at the Wolfsonian Museum at Florida International University, offering rhythmic and evocative respite from the Miami Art Fair shopping season. --Caitlin Jones

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Audio Heart

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Regardless of whether or not one lives in a country with socialized or privatized medicine, when we think of staying in a hospital we are often overwhelmed by a feeling of loneliness and the chill of our own mortality. In such an isolated environment, sound is often a comforting reminder of the chaos of life. English sound artist John Wynne has been an artist-in-residence at Harefield Hospital in Middlesex, England, one of the world's leading facilities for heart and lung transplantation, exploring the soundscape and interviewing patients and caregivers on their relationship with sound in the space. Working with photographer Tim Wainwright, the two artists have kept an audio-visual blog of the residency, The Transplant Log, a tender and engaging collection of interviews and experiences. When asked about the sounds of the hospital in an audio interview, Senior Nurse Sherrie Panther equates hearing silence with death, inadvertently echoing activists ACT UP, and notes how patients leave televisions on at all hours to keep from feeling alone. This is just one of the illuminating audio documents on the site. FLOW, 'a site-specific surround sound 7-screen video installation' about their experience at Harefield is open until December 15th at London's Old Operating Theatre Museum in conjunction with the exhibit Operations of Sound. The two artists are also working on a 24-channel photographic sound installation, which will premiere in 2008. -- David Michael Perez

http://www.thetransplantlog.com/

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A Day With(out) Art

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December 1st is World AIDS day, and as has been tradition since 1989, arts organizations across the United States and abroad will make the day a moment to 'inspire positive action' by participating in the Day With(out) Art program. The initiative began as an effort to mobilize the arts community to amplify their own voice in support of AIDS awareness and to respond to the 'crisis' with proactive programs. On that first day, over 800 institutions went dark, closing their museums and sending staff to volunteer at AIDS services, or mounting special shows on AIDS-related issues. Orchestrated by the organization Visual Aids, this collaborative effort has certainly harnessed the internet's mobilizing power. In the late nineties, as more artists and orgs went online, partners in the program set their web pages to black or mounted dark banners on December 1st, in order to create a moment of visual silence in which to think about how AIDS effects us all. In 1997, the name of the event was changed from 'A Day Without Art' to 'A Day WITH Art' in order to encourage the 8,000+ project participants to use their voices and venues to speak out about AIDS-related issues. Visual Aids ultimately retained the name as 'a metaphor for the chilling possibility of a future day without art or artists.'


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