Arbores Laetae (Joyful Trees) (2008) - Diller, Scofidio + Renfro

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Consisting of 17 vibrant hornbeam trees formally planted in a grid pattern, at the heart of this landscape three trees will slowly rotate. In place of the familiar movement of shade according to the rotation of the earth around the sun, here shade migrates at an artificial speed, transforming the familiar patterns of the natural world into artificial creations.

-- FROM THE PROJECT DESCRIPTION FOR THE 2008 LIVERPOOL BIENNIAL

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Nonmonumental

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Wendeltrap by Miriam Ellen Ewers (from nonmonument.com)

Created by artist Peter Baldes's Electronic Strategies Class at Virginia Commonwealth University, nonmonument.com is a collection of 3D models tagged with geolocation data and viewed in Google Earth. The project uses Google Earth to introduce impossible and possible interventions and objects in that space, and it plays with the program's claim to represent reality. In a communication with me, Baldes stated that these nonmonuments be thought of "...as real, at their own resolution." He sees the works as a unique form of public art and/or graffiti that "exist in a different layer of our reality." His class has opened up the forum to submissions as well, and visitors are invited to submit their own nonmonument.

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Apparitions (1993-Ongoing) - Mathieu Laurette

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"JACQUES RANCIERE IS SO COOL", THE TODAY SHOW, NBC, 30 OCTOBER 2009

"YOUR NAME HERE: MARC ATLAN", THE EARLY SHOW, CBS, OCTOBER 31, 2009

Since his first Apparition on Tournez Manege (1993), Matthieu Laurette has been developing an ongoing series of what he calls 'Apparitions' on TV and in the media. (In French, the word apparition means both 'apparition' and 'appearances'). For Pandora's Sound Box, Laurette will develop a new performative series of Apparitions, airing on various American national TV channels from October 27 through November 1st, and continuously on the Video Box in White Box's exterior window. For the opening on November 2nd, Matthieu Laurette will conceive a site-specific related performative event.

-- FROM THE PRESS RELEASE FOR "WHITE NOISE III: PANDORA'S SOUND BOX" AT WHITE BOX (OPENS TONIGHT).

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Corporate Culture

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"Contact," the most recent exhibition by the group Art Business Consulting, featured a rocket ship built from computer hardware, with a trio of yuppies floating weightlessly on a video screen inside. The trappings and denizens of the office have figured in ABC's work since Mikhail Kosoplapov, Maxim Ilyukhin, and Natalia Struchkova formed the group in 2001, and as in "Contact," they have always been subject to some sort of disfigurement. Early on, ABC established a pseudo-corporate identity by showing up at art openings in expensive cars and nice suits, performing the role of Russia's nascent upper-middle class while their colleagues in the Moscow boheme were riding public transport in sweaters and jeans. To solidify that image, ABC made good on their name's promise of "business"--in 2004, they became dealers, selling the work of artists they liked at ABC Gallery. Change happens quickly in Moscow; now that the market has dwarfed institutional influence in Russia's art world, linking the words "art" and "business" doesn't feel as novel as it did in 2001, and Western-style corporate culture has lost the cachet of an exotic interloper. ABC's symbolic launch of the office into space in "Contact" came on the heels of the loss of their own office space; at the end of May, the arts complex where ABC Gallery was located shut down to make room for a new development. While Ilyukhin, Kosolapov, and Struchkova continue to work as artists, businesspeople, and consultants, the events of last summer seem to mark a turning point, a time for reflecting on the future of a project initiated to document social change now that those changes are entrenched.

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Homeland Security (Blanket) (2008) - Jerilea Zempel

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I was going to write an artist statement about how I wanted to turn an oversized, macho, gas-guzzling vehicle into a technological ghost by shrouding it in a white, fuzzy cover, reminiscent of women's handwork from another time, another place.

What happened when I re-entered the US from Canada made me re-examine what my lowly art project could mean in a larger political sphere. And it gave me an idea for a title.

My worn-out passport set off the first alarm with the US Border Patrol. US citizen who have traveled to the places I've been over the past 9 years (Africa, Australia, Mexico, Central and South America, Turkey and Europe) need to be looked at more carefully.

A half hour at the computer gave the agent cause to put me into another suspicious category that merited a full car search. After going through my computer, digital camera, cell phone, business cads, suitcase, reading materials, boxes of yarn and crochet tools, she returned with my sketchbook in hand. I was taken to a room and told to sit on a bench with handcuffs at both ends.

"Just what were you doing in Canada? We think you're engaged in some kind of copyright infringement." The accusation was based on drawings of cars like this. After a lively discussion, my university faculty status and positive ID persuaded her to call of the dogs. Then she welcomed me back to the US.

-- THE ARTIST'S STATEMENT

Note: Zempel was also interviewed on the Colbert Report about this incident and project.

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Upgrade (2007) - Kelly Jazvac

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A used car is completely wrapped, inside and out, in an adhesive vinyl skin to make it look like a 2007 Porsche 911.

-- THE ARTIST'S STATEMENT

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Secret Agency

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Image: Jill Magid, Prologue, 2009
(Courtesy Jill Magid, Courtesy Yvon Lambert Paris, New York)

"The secret itself is much more beautiful than its revelation." Written backward and presented through translucent paper, this text can be deciphered on the obverse of a large framed page of the suppressed novel Becoming Tarden in Jill Magid's solo exhibition at the Yvon Lambert Gallery. On another wall hang seven detailed photographs of banal notebooks with brightly colored tabs and scrawled titles, a white pedestal with a glass case contains a stack of prints neatly wrapped in paper, and a monitor plays a fuzzy live feed from a security camera at the Tate Modern. "Objects to Be Handed Over or Destroyed" documents a project that explores the connections between transparency, secrecy, and, ultimately, power.

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Image: Installation shots of Jill Magid's "Objects to be Handed Over or Destroyed" at Yvon Lambert New York
(Courtesy Jill Magid, Courtesy Yvon Lambert Paris, New York)

In 2005, the Dutch secret service (AIVD) invited Magid to create a work of art for their headquarters with the dual objective of improving the agency's public image as well as fulfilling a Dutch law requiring new buildings to commission art. In response to their offer, Magid posed as an undercover agent and interviewed members of the AIVD with the intention of giving a personal face to the organization without revealing individual identities. The commission resulted in the exhibition "Article 12" in 2008, but the agency refused to allow the public display of seven prints from the letterpress series "18 Spies", and heavily redacted a manuscript for a novel based on her experience.

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Image: Jill Magid, Notebook I Personal Data, 2008
(Courtesy Jill Magid, Courtesy Yvon Lambert Paris, New York)

Consistent with her earlier work, Magid's project attempts to personalize ...

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Video Takeover

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Borna Sammak's debut solo show "Best Buy" took place last night for an exclusive two hour stint in the Soho location of electronics mega-retailer Best Buy. Thirteen of his vibrant and hallucinogenic high-definition "video paintings" were displayed on every single television on the lower level floor, making for an incredible (and gloriously surreal) sight. I snapped a few photos of the installation, below. To read the full backstory behind the show, check this interview with Borna Sammak and curator Thomas McDonell, conducted by artist Kari Altmann.

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This is where we’ll do it #5 (2008) - Martijn Hendriks

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YouTube video that was downloaded, partially erased and uploaded to YouTube again 18 sec loop, black and white, no sound

From This is where we’ll do it, series of YouTube videos from which the performing people were erased

-- FROM THE ARTIST'S STATEMENT

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Conflux 2009 Festival Schedule

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Rhizome is a proud media partner of New York's annual psychogeographic festival Conflux, which kicked off yesterday evening. See below for the festival's jam-packed schedule this weekend, you can also download a pdf version here or check out their interactive schedule here. All the events are open to the public, and they suggest a $5 donation.

Friday, September 18 11:30am-8:30pm

Unless otherwise noted, all workshops begin in NYU Steinhardt’s Barney building (34 Stuyvesant Street).

11:30am

Christina Ray & David Darts . Opening Remarks (Commons Gallery, Barney building)

12:00pm

Tianna Kennedy . Swimming Cities of Serenissima

Jessica Thompson . mobile performance device

Marc Horowitz . NYCommercial

Jeff Stark . Subway Theater

Joseph Grima . Storefront for Art and Architecture

2:00pm

Transportation Alternatives . POP.Park: Reclaim Your Street

College of Tactical Culture (CTC) . College of Tactical Culture

Leon Reid IV . An Afternoon With Leon IV

What We Know So Far . Probability

Waterpod . The Waterpod: Life afloat, on the edge of the grid *Begins off-site

4:00pm

Caroline Woolard . OurGoods

Not an Alternative . Occupations and interventions on the urban/cultural landscape

Eve Mosher . Insert _____ here

6:00pm

Theodore Bouloukos . Memes and Temes

Mark Shepard . Sentient City Survival Kit

7:00pm

Elizabeth Streb . PopAction

Andrea Reynosa & Kevin Vertrees . Time Based Landscape Studies *Begins off-site

7:30pm

Carlos J. Gómez de Llarena . Urballoon *Begins off-site

8:30pm

Starting at Conflux headquarters in the Barney Building, Conflux and Foursquare present Foursquare @ Conflux, an interactive iPhone-driven social networking event that will lead participants on a tour of hidden East Village locations.

Saturday, September 19 10:00am-6:00pm

All workshops begin in NYU Steinhardt’s Barney building (34 Stuyvesant Street).

10:00am

Dara Greenwald, Olivia Robinson and Josh MacPhee . Spectres of Liberty

Julia kaganskiy & An Xiao . E-Derive: Psychogeography and the Digital Landscape

Matt Knutzen . Rebuilding the Historical City

Meredith Johnson . Creative Time

12:00pm

Natalie Jeremijenko . Fish ‘n microChips

Sal Randolph . Free Money & Other Urban Money Actions

Brooke Singer . Demolition Drugstore!

Kurt Braunohler . Urban Disorientation Game

Britta Riley & Rebecca Bray . Windowfarms and R&D-I-Y;

2:00pm

Sharilyn Neidhardt . Human Scale Chess Game

Ricardo Miranda Zúñiga, L.M.Bogad & Andrew Boyd . Fantastic Politics: Art as Political Campaign

Marc Horowitz & Peter Baldes . Google Maps Roadtrip (NYC)

Andrea Reynosa & Kevin Vertrees . Time Based Landscape Studies

Jason Eppink . Adventures in Urban Alchemy

4:00pm

Greg Trefry . Gigaputt: The City is Your Golf Course

Reverend Billy & Savitri D. . Breaking in to Public Space

Tom Angotti . Reclaiming the City, Community Organizing, and Planning

Moses Gates . What’s Your City Horoscope?

Cassim Shepard . Urban Omnibus

7:00pm

From 7-10pm Conflux Founder and Producer Glowlab hosts a party at their 30 Grand Street location in SoHo to coincide with a related exhibition entitled Modern Ruins by artist Emily Henretta.

Sunday, September 20 10:00am-6:00pm

ConfluxCity - city-wide!

Sunday, September 20 from 6-10pm at the Delancey Lounge (168 Delancey St, www.thedelancey.com), a chance to unwind, connect with other Conflux participants and reflect on the weekend’s happenings.

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