When the staff of the New York Underground Film Festival decided to end the fifteen-year-old institution and start fresh, they named their new venture Migrating Forms. The title of the new festival, which debuted last week at Anthology Film Archives, resonates with the theories that heavyweight curators like Roger Brueghel and Nicolas Bourriaud have proposed to describe art-making in conditions of international interconnectedness, where a finite number of cultural models yield a seemingly infinite number of variations. The term “migrating forms” could also refer to the travel of moving-image art between gallery and cinema, or describe aspects of films in the festival program, from the content of documentaries like Lucy Raven’s China Town, a stop-motion photographic animation about the U.S.-China copper trade, to the form of shorts that repurposed found footage, like Jesse McLean’s Somewhere Only We Know, which included a montage of reality-show contestants’ faces as they are kicked off television.
Oksana Bulgakowa’s The Factory of Gestures, based on her book of the same name, explored how Russian and Soviet cinema manufactured and recalibrated codes of body language over eighty years of social upheaval. Running commentary explained gestures’ shifting meanings, and the replacement of the films’ sound with a spare, atonal score helped separate the actors’ motions from narrative. The subject matter of The Factory of Gestures had limited appeal for the experimental film crowd (I was the only viewer at the Saturday afternoon screening), but Bulgakowa’s work suggested an interesting direction for creative presentations of scholarly research.
The lecture format appeared again in Oliver Laric’s Versions, a pithy essay on the irrelevance of the notion of authenticity and the “animistic” attitude that has taken ...
Combine a gif of an irate Sean Connery, an audio loop of his comment "You're the Man Now, Dog" from the film Finding Forrester, and bold, zooming text of the same statement and you have the simple recipe behind the popular internet meme http://www.yourethemannowdog.com/. Created by Max Goldberg, the site became a sensation in the early 2000's, and it soon lead to numerous spoofs. Goldberg began mirroring the sites in an effort to keep track of these rudimentary creations, and, eventually overwhelmed by the quantity of spin-offs, Goldberg developed a platform for YTMNDs, http://ytmnd.com/. For the current exhibition "YTMND" at Dallas gallery And/Or, Paul Slocum and Guthrie Lonergan have assembled some of their favorite YTMNDs and installed them on monitors placed in metal shelving units. A short essay "Picture. Sound. Text." by Lonergan on the significance of the genre's unapologetically lowbrow humor accompanies the show. Lonergan argues that the YTMNDs embrace and celebrate the reality that the "Internet turns culture into small pieces of shit." Regardless of one's opinion on the role of the Internet in the advancement of shittiness, the YTMNDs culled by Lonergan and Slocum are funny, weird, random, surreal and unquestionably entertaining, proving that YTMNDs bring something to the table.
Rhizome's Curatorial Fellow Brian Droitcour organized an online exhibition, which went live last night, for Why + Wherefore's series "7 x 7." Titled "The Long Gallery" the show brings together works that horizontally exceed the standard-sized frame of the browser. Artists include Justin Kemp, Christy Matson, Brenna Murphy, Bennett Williamson, Petra Cortright, Peter Baldes, and Daniel Eatock. The show is the sixth installment of seven separate online exhibitions curated by seven websites with seven works each. (Whew! So many 7s.) Apparently it was a pain to code too, sorry W+W!