Site Specific

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Replacing the white cube with an off-white browser frame, Harm van den Dorpel's Club Internet provides an ingenious, minimally-invasive strategy for the online presentation of a gallery-style group show. Eschewing the thumbnail and commentary of surfing clubs and art blogs, van den Dorpel offers instead a thin toolbar top-border that allows the reader to cycle through full pages by the 24 artists assembled for Club Internet's inaugural show, "First Selection," running until June 14. The exhibit itself has a zeitgeisty greatest-hits quality; some of the work on display by the likes of Paul Slocum, Guthrie Lonergan, Jodi and Oliver Laric will be already familiar to Rhizome readers. But the selection serves as an excellent showcase for Club Internet's full-screen format, as many of the works require the entire browser frame, and in some cases, their native domain name displayed for full effect, and none go deeper than a single page each. The disorientingly distended jpegs of Constant Dullart's blown up balloon and blown up explosion, or the similarly large-scale, low-res flash animation of Damon Zucconi's Form Over Communication (Do not go gentle into that good night), for example, would be difficult to translate to a bite-sized blog post--likewise Michael Guidetti's glorious full-page text-and-image jumbles. Similarly, works like Thomas Traum's walking and neon, Petra Cortright's . . ..~ <[-/=^=-]>~.. . ., and van den Dorpel's own Sleepwalker I live up to their quasi-cinematic potential when allowed to flourish in full frame. -- Ed Halter

Image is an excerpt from Harm Van Den Dorpel's Sleepwalker I, 2007.

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Phase Chancellor at the Stone

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This past February, renowned experimental composer and harpist Zeena Parkins curated an eclectic series of events at New York's avant-garde music venue The Stone. During the last week, Parkins invited a number of guiding lights from San Francisco's experimental media scene to perform. One highlight was the synthesizer trio Phase Chancellor, an improvisational group who have made memorable, yet infrequent appearances at various art and music spaces since 2005. Comprised of video artist Nate Boyce, musician J. Lesser, and Matmos's M.C. Schmidt, the outfit channels the early investigations in electronic art and video carried out by John Cage, David Tudor, and Nam June Paik. Phase Chancellor distance themselves from their predecessors through their integration of digital technology. The backbone of the performance is Boyce's mesmeric imagery, prepared mostly through the processing software Jitter, but altered and added upon live using a hacked video mixer fed oscillations by his Korg Mono/Poly synth. (In the accompanying video, imploding circles in the center of the image are generated by the arpeggiator function on this device.) The Mono/Poly is also part of the sound mix, to which Lesser and Schmidt contribute a rich counterpoint of electronic textures, avoiding the concept of drone altogether in favor of a perplexing and ever-shifting sonic environment. - Nick Hallett

Video: Phase Chancellor at the Stone, February 22, 2008

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Cory Arcangel's "Colors" Available for Download

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Artist Cory Arcangel, in keeping with his practice of providing public tutorials for his art projects, recently made his video application "Colors" available as "Colors PE" or "Personal Edition." Arcangel used "Colors" to screen Dennis Hopper's film Colors in his 2006 exhibition "subtractions, modifications, addenda, and other recent contributions to participatory culture" at Team Gallery, and the same version of the work will be exhibited in the upcoming show "Color Chart: Reinventing Color, 1950 to Today" at the MoMA. To begin experimenting with Arcangel's application, click here. Further information about "Colors" from the artist's website below:

"A couple years ago I made a very small video application called "Colors". This video came out of my interest in wanting to make something using slit scan. This is a very common and quite easy technique where basically something is photographed through a slit. After spending some time trying to teach myself how quicktime works and how video is displayed on a modern computer, I finally ended up with Colors. Anyway, basically Colors PE (the personal edition version) is a small application that will play any quicktime movie using a slit scan technique one line at a time starting from the top."

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Tone Poem (2005) by Marc Kremers

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Infinite, randomly generated song, based on glitches from a bad taping of Rodox Video Programme 358 by Color Climax Corp.

Tone Poem is a web-based work by London-based digital artist and animator Marc Kremers. This piece, which presents a peach-colored screen periodically intercepted by flashes of colored light and a minimalist score, is derived from a pornographic video tape. The final product totally obscures the original source material, rendering it invisible. Kremers, along with Thomas Eberwein, also launched the website As-Found which culls random images from the web. As-Found proposes to, "...choose images for different qualities than those which were intended to be seen. Therefore the creator is often irrelevant." Tone Poem similarly reframes and redirects visual imagery toward a new configuration, away from the intent of its initial creator. - Ceci Moss

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Past to Present

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In 2000, electronic musician Kim Cascone proclaimed the emergence of a discernable "post-digital" genre, using the example of 'glitch music,' through which artists crafted "deconstructive audio and visual techniques" to test the limits and possibilities of their software. Cascone points to this tendency as the harbinger of a conceptual shift in art practice, in which "...the medium is no longer the message...specific tools themselves have become the message". Over the past few years, "post-digital" disassembly has run parallel to a more widespread interest in dismantling and refiguring analog technologies. Many of the artists selected for this year's Netmage, an international electronic arts festival held in the castle Palazzo Re Enzo in Bologna, Italy, reflect this direction. The live audio and visual performances slated for the three-day event, which kicked off yesterday, demonstrate a variety of methods by which artists work with and through analog hardware. TONEWHEELS, by sound artist Derek Holzer and media artist Sara Kolster, is inspired by the peculiar electronic music contraptions of the early 20th Century. Revolving see-through tonewheels form the locus of the performance, whose unwieldy movement across the lens of an overhead projector activates sound and visuals through light sensitive circuitry. The open exposure of the technology used in TONEWHEELS demystifies its inter-workings, revealing how rudimentary most systems are. Media artist Luka Dekleva, sound artist Miha Ciglar and musician Luka Princic draw on analog video feedback techniques in FeedForward Cinema, a project in which the trio perform distortion generated by a feedback loop between two video devices. Similarly, audio/visual group Demons (Nate Young, Steve Kenney, Alivia Zilich) produce stark, mind-bending analog video feedback alongside bleak, resonating soundscapes eminating from damaged vintage synthesizers. The overall jarring effect recalls 1960s psychedelia, yet is stripped of its joyful exuberance and deeply cognizant of the anger ...

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