Posts for February 2008

2nd Inclusiva-net Meeting: Projects developed during the workshop

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Short summary of selected proposals to be developed in a collaborative way during the workshop directed by Juan Marti­n Prada.

Una Ciudad Mejor (1CM) / A Better City
By Flavio Escribano & Ana G. Angulo
Una ciudad mejor (A Better City) is an online application, based on social network (or Web 2.0) methods, protocols, standards, and services (Google Maps' API), to stimulate democratic participation in the configuration of cities, by making it possible for citizens to communicate incidents, inconveniences, and urban problems of all kinds that arise in their daily lives.

Security vs. Liberty: Hobbes vs. Locke, the debate continues...
By Miguel Angel Lastra Cobo
This project will map out the security cameras installed on the streets of Madrid, and then suggest a game: Can you get from one part of the city to another, without being recorded on any of the cameras?

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For a full list of proposals for Inclusiva-net's's workshop on "digital networks and physical space", visit the website. A program sponsored by Medialab Prado, Inclusiva-net is "a platform dedicated to the research, documentation, and circulation of network culture theory". They are currently seeking collaborators in order to realize these projects. For more information, visit the post in Rhizome's Opportunities section.

Originally posted on inclusiva-net by Rhizome


Mobile Media Hits MoMA

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The sometimes-celebrated, sometimes-critiqued origin myth of video art is that it was born with Sony's Portapak video camera and that the eponymous portability of this device enabled the medium to flourish. A similar logic might explain the recent plethora of exhibitions related to mobile phone pictures and videos. Though this line of reasoning seems to privilege the machine's form over its content, there is the sense that the increasing availability and usability of mobile devices (in Western culture, that is) is leading to a democratization of form that will ultimately generate an expansion of the genre. We saw this with internet art when the initial, highly self-reflexive context of net art gave way to a more diverse range of online practices. This has also been the trajectory for documentary film, which is the context of an upcoming mobile video screening at New York's Museum of Modern Art. CELLuloid is a screening of nine short docs, all made on cell phone cameras. The playlist boasts a range of humorous, politically-engaged, and highly topical works by "established artists experimenting with new technology as well as first-time creators inspired to document the world around them." These include Nao Bustamante's "Nanookie Of The North," Darrin Martin's "Every (Text, Image, Sound, Movie) from my cell phone," and Joshua Thorson's "UFO Days." Programmed in conjunction with MoMA's Documentary Fortnight series, the screening happens February 20 and will be followed by a discussion with the artists. - Marisa Olson

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NMR Commission: “Air Detritus” by Miya Masaoka

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Air Detritus
is derived from sounds that were collected from the air and water detritus of Central Park, New York. Sounds were collected via a 2-way radio submerged in a pond, and on land. The act of recycling materials into a new piece, and re-using objects and sound fragments seems a way to re-imagine the world, a symbolic treatment that enacts the idea of sustainability as an elusive but critical goal of consuming fewer materials. As a consumer working with digital tools, I have accumulated many old monitors, hard drives, cords, and interfaces that are quickly obsolete. The molded plastic and metal have a perverse dialectical relationship to the data of ones and zeros that are transported and stored. This piece is a moment of reflection upon these relationships, and our relationship to the world. - Miya Masaoka

Air Detritus is a 2007 commission of New Radio and Performing Arts, Inc., for Networked Music Review.

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Originally posted on Networked Music Review by jo


Blinking Lights

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"There is a certain beauty in trying to fulfill the potential of the obsolete. As we have become a culture that is defined by the latest and greatest, and at the same time built in obsoleteness. Why are we in such a hurry to progress when we haven't realized the potential of what we have, where is this thing called progress taking us?"

This anxious quandary, posed by artist Mike Beradino, elucidates the concept behind his use of outmoded technologies. The New York-based artist has created several works that reflect upon the rapid consumption of technology, where a piece of software or hardware is embraced one moment and tossed out the very next. His lo-fi, 8X18 LED grid pieces, Liquid Pixels (2007) and blinken (2007), for example, employ the spirit of DIY, tinkering and the open source movement as a foil to an increasingly dense technological mediation within and throughout daily life. Liquid Pixels uses the LED display to create morphing patterns of ferrofluid, while blinken narrates a perverse, LED animation of a character free falling from a roof as clocks spin out of control. Beradino was inspired to create these LED pieces by the techno-primitive genre of "flashing/sparkling/blinking" art known as "Blinken" which, in 2001, emerged out of the German hacker community, Chaos Computer Club, who continue to remain active today via the BlinkenArea portal. The BlinkenArea hackers have developed a Blinken-centric operating system (BlinkOS), their own programming language (ARCADEmini Assembler), software for Blinken programs and animations, and a far-reaching manifesto for its role in "world domination," which includes an entertaining set of bullet points for achieving said domination. This auto-obsolescence as practiced by Beradino and the Blinken hackers may employ tongue-in-cheek rhetoric, but it could also be seen as an increasingly viable strategy of dissidence ...

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Montage: Unmonumental Online

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"Montage: Unmonumental Online," Rhizome's portion of the New Museum's four part exhibition "Unmonumental," opens this week online and in the galleries. "Unmonumental" is an exploration of the various methods of disassembly in contemporary art practice, and with the installment of "Montage," the exhibition will examine the artistic appropriation of diverse materials from the web. An international group of fourteen emerging and midcareer artists were selected by Rhizome Executive Director Lauren Cornell and Rhizome Curator-at-Large Marisa Olson for the show, including Michael Bell-Smith, John Michael Boling, William Boling, Charles Broskoski, Jessica Ciocci, Petra Cortright, Chris Coy, Cao Fei, Kenneth Hung, Nina Katchadourian, Oliver Laric, Olia Lialina, Guthrie Lonergan, and Paul Slocum. Cutting and pasting, breaking apart and re-assembling, ripping and remixing, the participating artists extend the radical practice of collage to the internet, demonstrating how previously tried techniques can engender rich, new artistic practices. Their works incorporate varied formal elements: digital images, sound, video, or code. The internet is a veritable theme park for commerce, popular entertainment, and self-marketing. Rather than dismiss this creative space for these reasons, the artists in "Montage" embrace these unique conditions. The logic behind the selection of the work argues that an artist's engagement with this system and simultaneous refusal to entrench commerce is among the most powerful tactics available to them. "Montage" is available online until April 6, and runs in the New Museum's galleries until March 30th.

View "Montage: Unmonumental Online"

Join Rhizome Saturday February 16 for a talk with a selection of the artists included in "Montage." Beginning at 3pm in the New Museum's auditorium, Rhizome Curator-at-Large Marisa Olson will lead a conversation with Michael Bell-Smith, William Boling, Kenneth Tin-Kin Hung and Nina Katchadourian. Each artist will briefly present their work and join in a roundtable discussion of ...

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Strange Apparatus

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New York-based artist Lynda Abraham combines video, installation, and performance to create scenarios for the contemplation of complicated relationships. Many of these works engage the viewer's body to intensely dramatize these connections. In Compassion (2006), two people with a contentious relationship are strapped into a device that will alternately shove each partner's face into a trough of water until they learn to work together, in balance. In Toxic Drink (2001), Abraham presents a dark sculptural proposal to replace the liquid in water coolers at corrupt corporations with the excrement of their poisoned victims. Other capital ideas include inventions like the Humbler (2000), which keeps subordinate workers shackled into a crawling position, and the Neglect-O (2000), which "transfigures the adult from a useless parental unit into a toy" by allowing the child to play with and control the movements of an adult confined to a contraption that resembles a classic red wagon. These and many of Abraham's other projects allude to the interpersonal fallout that results from the "advances" of a technologically-evolved culture, while recalling the conventions of early, sketchy social science experiments and turn-of-the-(Twentieth)-Century kinetic novelties. Abraham's current solo show "Bad Behavior" is on display at Brooklyn's Dam, Stuhltrager Gallery until March 17. - Marisa Olson

Image: Lynda Abraham, Neglect-O, 2000

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Listen In 2/25/08

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Harvestworks Artists In Residence John Brattin and Melanie Crean present and discuss their recent works in the Harvestworks presentation room.

Monday February 25, 2008,
6:30 PM FREE
HARVESTWORKS Digital Media Arts Center
596 Broadway, Suite 602 (at Houston St.)
New York, NY
http://www.harvestworks.org
Subway: F/V Broadway/Lafayette, 6 Bleecker, W/R Prince

Filmmaker John Brattin will show the completed version of Eros Is Sick, a twenty-minute Super 8 film on video with Patrick Blumer, Stephen Ward, and Dan Graff. Described by the artist as "a black and white requiem for the doomed," Brattin will answer questions following the screening.

Media artist Melanie Crean will discuss her Perception Series Projects, a series of three multi-media works on perception, politics and technology. Using sound, video and website interactivity, each of the works focuses on a specific aspect of perception as experienced by her unique subjects. The second work for example, Phrenology which was created during her Harvestworks residency, investigates the relationship between memory, writing and the perception of space, though writings created by incarcerated women.

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Media artist and Harvestworks Artist In Residence Melanie Crean will present her work February 25th. Crean's projects combine video, sound, and websites to present multifaceted stories narrated by women. In Phrenology she held a workshop with incarcerated women at the Bedford Hills Correctional Facility and composited these accounts onto the landscape of 360 degree photographic panoramas. Described as a "spatial poem", viewers navigate through these different environments by clicking through the text. Work-in-progress Chiros derives from a workshop with a group of HIV positive women in Flatbush, Brooklyn. Participants created video essays detailing their experience of time and memory after becoming positive. The final project will be realized as a website, installation and public projection. - Ceci Moss

Originally posted on Harvestworks RSS by Administrator <info@harvestworks.org>


"Invisible Influenced" by Will Pappenheimer and Chipp Jansen

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Turbulence Commission Invisible Influenced by Will Pappenheimer and Chipp Jansen [Needs Flash plugin]

Invisible Influenced is a Rorschach test for envisioning the US as the recipient rather than the cause of worldwide events. Contrary to the notion of impervious superpower, the artwork projects the emerging perception that the country is vulnerable to foreign conditions of climate, public opinion, economics and a variety of social institutions. Shape reads, in this case, as the confluence of intercontinental subconscious activity, which is in the process of becoming visible. The work also operates metaphorically through the concept of the "butterfly effect" from chaos theory. Small changes to nonlinear dynamical systems can produce large long term transformational phenomena. The beating of a butterfly's wings in the Kurile Islands causes a hurricane over Florida. The site displays a simple map silhouette of the country with pull-down menus for a number of searchable real-time categories of influence. Users select from foreign sources of news, weather conditions, health conditions, stock indexes, and blogs. Informational sources are chosen for their seeming "distance" from the US daily experience.

Qualitative and quantitative indices found in global internet texts and databases are translated into up to four directional vector "magnitude" forces surrounding the continent. The US map silhouette then responds and distorts according to elastic physics properties programmed to its perimeter. The right-hand selection panel displays menu choices and the source information, text and imagery being retrieved. There are two modes for operation, a default "test" mode that allows the forces to act for a limited period of time, generating a finished image test and an alternate "drift" mode allowing the map to continue to transform until the program is reset.

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Originally posted on networked_performance by jo


Fashion Forward

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The LilyPad Arduino


Demonstration of a shirt made with a mounted motion-responsive LilyPad


At first glance, it would seem that wearable computing and traditional craft operate in distinctly different realms of cultural production. However, Leah Buechley, a University of Colorado at Boulder PhD student working with the Craft Technology Group, bridges this gap by taking a homemade approach to the use of computation in clothing or jewelery. The LilyPad Arduino Kit allows for the construction of simple, but aesthetically innovative, computational jewelery made out of the environmentally responsive open source platform known as Arduino. According to Buechley's site, the LilyPad is "designed to empower novices to work with electronic textiles. Using the kit, you can build your own soft interactive clothing." Along with the necessary tools, the kit also includes a highly instructive tutorial that will provide those without a strong background in technology with the know-how to build their own arduino and apply it to their projects. Leah Buechley will lead a lesson on the LilyPad Arduino at Mediamatic's Designing Wearable Hybrids workshop from February 19-21 at Mediamatic, Amsterdam. - Gene McHugh

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The Influencers at Center of Contemporary Culture Barcelona February 28-March 1st

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THE INFLUENCERS Festival of media action and radical entertainment
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February 28-29-1 March 2008
Center of Contemporary Culture Barcelona
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with ALAN ABEL, ALTERAZIONI VIDEO, SANTI CIRUGEDA, BRODY CONDON, LAIBACH, MONOCHROM, TREVOR PAGLEN
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Welcome to 4th edition of The Influencers, the talk show you won't see on TV!

The Influencers explores controversial forms of art and communication guerrilla, presenting independent projects that play with global popular culture, infiltrate the mass media, and transform fashions, consumption and technological fetishism.

The key to The Influencers is found in its guests and stories: impostors, pseudo-totalitarian musicians, conceptual hackers, deviant geographers, anarchitects and actors from invisible theatre. In these three days they are going to present their work, show known and less known material and speak with the public about challenges, goals and strategies.

With The Influencers, the border between disciplines is erased (since the message really is the message, and the medium is just a tactic), links between apparently distant projects are found, and bold genealogies are drawn between different countries and generations. Ambiguities are also explored and contradictions are discussed. In the manipulation of everyday symbols, as well as within what is excessive and politically incorrect, we will possibly find inspiration for changing the present and imagining the future.

FREE ENTRANCE

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Originally posted on Rhizome.org Announcements by Rhizome