Posts for 2013

Kentucky Route Zero: Adventuring into Appalachian Limbo

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Still image from Cardboard Computer (Tamas Kemenczy and Jake Elliott), Kentucky Route Zero (video game). Act I, Scene I: Equus Oils.

"I've got a delivery on Dogwood Drive, but I'd rather watch the sunset." –Conway, Act I, Scene I

Kentucky Route Zero, created by indie developer Cardboard Computer (Tamas Kemenczy and Jake Elliott) is, so far, a well-polished crystal that shimmers out of the otherwise looming darkness of the video game industry.

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The Week Ahead: Go to Japan Edition

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Participants in JAPIC's 2012-2013 Animation Artist in Residency Program.

A notable opportunity came through the wire this week from Tokyo, where the Japan Image Council are offering a 70-day residency in early 2014 for young animators interested in engaging directly with Japanese animation culture (in other words, all young animators). Applicants must be between the ages of 20 and 35, and have had their work screened previously at an international film festival. More information can be found on JAPIC's website.

Now, without further ado, are this week's opportunities, events and job openings, all culled from Rhizome Announce.

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Red Burns, 1925-2013

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We were deeply saddened to learn this weekend of the passing of Red Burns. On Saturday, NYU's ITP department announced her passing with a statement. "After living several full lives, one of which we were a part of at ITP, she died peacefully at home surrounded by her children. Red lives on strongly in the thousands of lives that she redirected at ITP." 

We offer our deepest condolences to those in our community who were close to Burns. 

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'My Little Pony' is the Nearest I Can Get to LSD: UBERMORGEN on Teletext Art

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Artist duo Ubermorgen are participating in the International Teletext Art Festival, which was recently profiled here on Rhizome. The following interview by Raffaela Kolb with Hans Bernhard of Ubermorgen was originally conducted for RCKSTR Magazine—viewable here—and has been translated and reprinted with permission.

UBERMORGEN, My Little Pony, Friendship is Magic (2013), Youtube comments translated to teletext, 24 text rows of 40 characters each.

RK: How did you and your partner get invited to the ITAF 2013?

UM: I have no idea. Somewhere, somehow, sometime, a person unknown to me, from Finland I believe, sent an email to one of the hundreds of UBERMORGEN email addresses. I also did not read the email, but just saw the words teletext, Finland, Switzerland (SRF), Austria (ORF), Germany (ARD) and art, and intuitively replied with "YES WE CAN"... It wasn't until much later that I read about all the bans: no pornography (although that is the best part of teletext), no advertising (shit! that would be the second best) and they can censor everything, if it doesn't suit them, i.e the organizers. Shit! I thought to myself, but then it was already too late... I then pinged my friend, Dragan Espenschied, of Bodenständig2000, who happens to be a big fan of [German synthpop duo] Modern Talking and has wanted to feature Thomas Anders with his Nora Ketterl on teletext for quite a while now... I then integrated a small reference into our piece... A fitting tribute to a great artist (DRX) and a great German band (Modern Talking).

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A Network for a Space: Auto Italia South East Moves Into King’s Cross

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Tim Ivison, Julia Tcharfas, George Moustakas and Rachel Pimm. View of Recent Work by Artists (2013).

Auto Italia South East is no stranger to precarity. The inaugural event for this artist-run project’s new space located on York Way in King’s Cross was a conference titled "Immaterial Labour Isn't Working" (20th April—12th May 2013, organized in collaboration with Huw Lemmey), which built on and extended a growing international discourse surrounding art and labor. The title was suggestively open-ended. It could be taken to mean that immaterial labor—the post-Fordist condition in which work is based on knowledge, and may not even be recognizable as work in a traditional sense—leads to untenable and precarious situations for workers. Or, it could be taken to mean that immaterial labor isn't work at all, because it is so close to leisure.

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The Voluptuous Blinking Art of Teletext

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With its blocky, low-res graphics and clunky interaction, the television-based information retrieval system known as teletext seems out of place in today's world of touchscreens and flatscreen TVs. But in an excellent blog post on the history of teletext art posted Friday, Goto80 (aka Anders Carlsson) pointed out that the medium is still very much in use in several European countries. In fact, the iPhone and iPad app for Swedish teletext was one of the most popular iTunes downloads in that country 2011. And as Carlson writes, among the latter-day fans of the medium are numerous artists, from JODI to the participants in the 2006 Microtel project that inspired the title of this article to the participants of the second annual International Teletext Art Festival (through September 15).

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The Week Ahead: Analog Sunset (Down Under) Edition

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Analog Sunset at Ludlow 38.

In 2009, I went to an amazing event at 38 Ludlow called Analog Sunset, which took place on the night that analog television was due to be turned off in the US forever, giving way to the digital broadcast future. Three artists going by the moniker Off the Record (Ethan Breckenridge, Liz Linden and Phil Vanderhyden) had piled up a stack of old TVs in the space. As the appointed hour approached, more and more urgent warnings began flashing at the bottom of the screen; the announcers on Univision grew particularly animated. And then, not at the same time, but—with true analog precision—one by one, over the course of several minutes, the televisions faded away to static. (Auspiciously, Liza Béar of Send/Receive was in attendance.)

Later this year, the analog sunset will hit Australia, as that country moves to solely digital broadcast. To mark the transition, Emma Ramsay and Alex White are organizing a series of events and broadcasts under the name Tele Visions. They're looking for new and existing works that engage with TV as a medium; the deadline is next week.

Now, without further ado, here is our weekly roundup of Events, Opportunities and Deadlines, culled from Rhizome Announce.

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Prosthetic Knowledge Picks: The Polygon Glitch

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A collection of items from the Prosthetic Knowledge Tumblr and around the web that involve constructive distortions and creative error in 3D computer graphics.


The glitch aesthetic is now mainstream, appearing in Wreck-It Ralph, Adventure TimeMan of Steel and even Skyfall, and when we see it we immediately recognize it. What constitutes a glitch can be contradictory—some can be genuine errors, others merely noise. What they all have in common is a broken appearance interrupting, for a moment, the seamless design of human media consumption, an embrace of encryption entropism.

The pop-cultural examples listed above mostly involve two-dimentional signal errors, but the polygon glitch, in contrast with these, is more sculptural. Polygons are used to model 3D graphical environments in real time (particularly for video games), resulting in a carefully constructed realism that often breaks down momentarily, which means that polygon glitches are familiar to players and developers alike. Processing power and software availability has brought such glitches into further dimensions of visual complexity, with richer palettes and lighting. Tools that were originally designed for 3D construction and online game environments have now become interactive canvases for creative or accidental sculpture, a pseudo-Vorticism.
 
Below is a collection of examples which highlight this aesthetic.

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Art & Technology According to Powhida and Townsend

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William Powhida and Jade Townsend's drawing Bellum Omnium Contra Omnes (2012). Detail.  

William Powhida and Jade Townsend's drawing Bellum Omnium Contra Omnes is a depiction of the art world as a medieval battlefield populated by warring factions, complete with a legend identifying each faction in language that is part literary epic, part incoherent rant. It's an excellent time-waster, both funny and irritating. For example, one part of the drawing depicts a suburban hinterland where burghers gather outside the church of Thomas Kinkade (above). Steve Lambert can be seen rolling by with his "Capitalism works for me!" sign, one of only a few artists found in these uncharted middlebrow realms. (Lambert toured the large sign across the US, asking people to vote on whether the sign is true or false for them.)

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The Rhizome ArtBase As Seen Through Vince McKelvie's 3dGif

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GIF by Vince McKelvie. (The artbase GIFs can be found below).

We've been enjoying learning more about the work of Vince McKelvie since he released the web-based toy 3dGif a couple of weeks back. 

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