A full scale (80"x141") copy in oil of Ilya Repin's Reply of the Zaporozhian Cossacks to Sultan Mehmed IV of the Ottoman Empire, 1880-1891 is fabricated by a made-to-order painting workshop and mailed to the United States for the exhibition Rotation X, 2009. Cossacks, a painting made notorious as a textbook example of kitsch in Clement Greenberg's 1939 essay Avant-Garde and Kitsch, is currently displayed at The State Russian Museum, Saint Petersburg and has putatively been seen by only a fraction of those who have read Greenberg's criticism.
This project features a full archive of all 743 Jogging posts from 2009-2010. Images of these works are viewable in chronological secession on Youtube videos that feature the Billboard Top 100 tracks for the first week of September 2010. Each image is shown for 10 seconds in the videos. The first 24 Jogging posts are presented with the #1 Billboard song playing. Posts continue to unfold chronologically, moving down the chart and ending at the 31st song on the charts...
The songs in Jogging Commemorative are not intended as musical accompaniments. In this project, Billboard Top 100 tracks are the medium Jogging’s history exists through; the sites at which the Youtube viewer’s consensual desire to listen is paired with an unwitting visual experience. By choosing the most popular songs currently available, the artists intend to make use of this music’s universality as a form of digital public space. Here art is a parasite, assuming the shape of popular culture insidiously while seemingly undergoing minimal alteration in visual content.
Though these songs may be commonly heard due to their advantageous corporate sponsorship, they are not cultural commons. Each video in Jogging Commemorative stands as a display of Youtube users’ contextual helplessness in the face of heavily lobbied copyright law. The array of subsidized advertisements to purchase the songs is a constant reminder of the music industry’s tenuous relationship with freely distributed subject matter. “This is property on loan”, the advertisements figuratively tell viewers, as the RIAA hedges a bet that the more widely distributed the forced advertisements for MP3 purchases on available Youtube videos, the more likely they will recoup the lost profits of music listened to without cost. Jogging’s distributive and aesthetic intentions are nestled within this counterintuitive marketing ploy.
Not all will be able ...
Jordan Crandall is an artist and media theorist whose work deals with the cultural and political dimensions of new technologies. Between 1991 and 1995 he was the editor of Blast, a multimedia magazine that was initially published in a box format. Blast evolved alongside the popularization of the Internet, and much of its work occurred at the intersection of publishing, digital culture, and the production and distribution of art objects. This spring, Crandall spoke with Triple Canopy about the history of Blast, the nature of the magazine as a form, and the days of accessing bulletin board systems via suitcase-size modems.
For my exhibition I would like to present to viewers artworks that can be interminably downloaded and displayed concomitantly in several areas. Berlin based artist collective AIDS-3D will present a framed print titled Berserker, a computer generated portrait of an alien, which will be accompanied with a flash drive containing a file for the actual print. New York artist Ben Schumacher will showcase seven 3D models of iPhones all found off of Google’s 3D Warehouse and displayed on IKEA shelves. Artist Victor Vaughn, from Baltimore, will present a series of prints detailing his family’s history of internationally outsourcing for horse breeding. All of these works at the PPOW will be available for free download off the Internet for public access and simultaneously all pieces will be exhibited at REFERENCE Art Gallery in Richmond, Virginia. All works address concurrent issues of originality, distance, and reproduction - a theme attended to with the actual exhibition itself.
"Time doesn't exist when you're... just chilling!" Topping an administrative page on the site of curatorial collective Jstchillin, this slogan rephrases a familiar bit of folk phenomenology: Time flies when you're having fun! But in denying time's existence, rather making its perceived acceleration a metaphor for losing yourself in the moment, the slogan suggests a swap of the trinity of past-present-future for something else -- a sense of time that (until the end of this essay, at least) I will call "chill time." Jstchillin is concerned with the internet, and my description of chill time will be, too. It entails an awareness of parallel threads of messages, ordered by clock-time sequence and subjective assignments of importance (cf. Facebook's feed settings: "Top News" and "Most Recent"), and the knowledge that these messages will wait until you find them (in your e-mail, in your RSS aggregator, etc.) but might be irrelevant when you do if you wait too long. Chill time is simultaneity of the recent past and lagging present, the sum of attempts to track some threads into the past and push others toward the future. Awareness of physical surroundings tends to be fuzzy as you sift through old layers of digital sediment and deposit new ones. Jstchillin founders Caitlyn Denny and Parker Ito describe it like this: "[T]o chill is to live in a constant state of multiplicities, a flow of existence between web and physicality."
Jstchillin encompasses a number of initiatives, including the gallery show "Avatar 4D," but its flagship project is "Serial Chillers in Paradise," an online exhibition that has featured a different artist every other week since October 2009. Chill time, I think, is the central theme of "Serial Chillers," one that many commissioned artists have approached through conventional associations with chilling. Video games were the subject of an illustrated short story/film treatment by Jon Rafman, and Jonathan Vingiano's browser add-on Space Chillers was a game. Ida Lehtonen's contribution folded soothing ocean sounds into a video of exercises that computer laborers can do to stay limber during breaks, while Eilis Mcdonald's sent you scrolling through bits of pat, New-Agey advice and then to a page with equivalent visuals; both artists drew on packaged relaxation. Zach Schipko and Tucker Bennett's feature-length movie Why Are You Weird?, parceled into YouTube uploads, is a story of art-school students who spend almost all of their onscreen time at parties or hanging out in their dorm rooms, rehashing crits.
A few months ago, we published a statement by dump.fm co-founder Ryder Ripps on the image-only chatroom, which had just been launched. Since then, the site has taken off big time. See below for some gifs from two ace memes to emerge from dump.fm - Sloth Goth and Deal With It. dump.fm have also instituted a Hall of Fame for other gems produced by users as well as an image vortex which visualizes the images dumped to the site in real time.
Rumblr is a new web application that allows users to pit Tumblr blogs against one another by placing randomly selected images from two or more blogs in juxtaposition with one another. Users then select the preferred image and after a certain number have been judged a winner is declared. The site launched in alpha about a month ago alongside TUMBLR_WRS, a party held at Home Sweet Home in New York City.
[via Feminine Itch]
The site capitalizes on the decontextualization and random juxtaposition of images that Tumblr is known for and attempts to objectively judge the taste of users and the quality of sites through a competition or brawl. This random selection often produces unexpected, odd, and beautiful combinations which are frequently screencapped and placed back on Tumblr. These same screencapped images might then appear as standalone images in yet another Rumblr battle, producing a kind of Russian Doll effect.
Rumblr in still in beta and the site's producer, Benjamin Lotan is hoping to add additional features that quantify and visualize user's decisions in new ways, such as producing average color gradients based on the images selected. Check out the site to pit your favorite Tumblrs against each other.
Nicholas O'Brien has produced another killer interview for Bad At Sports. (We posted his previous one, A Conversation with Jon Rafman a few weeks back.) This time, he speaks with artist Eric Fleischauer about his work and his current exhibition "Post-Cursor" at Chicago's threewalls. Fleischauer is keenly interested in the process of obsolescence in recording technology, and its importance for storage and archives. It seems fitting then, that the entire interview is recorded on videotape.