In this short clip, filmmaker Bruce McClure is interviewed on the occasion of the 25 FPS International Experimental Film and Video Festival 2010. Video by Daria Blažević, Mario Kozina and Igor Lušić.
This interview originally appeared Video Vortex Reader II: moving images beyond YouTube (Institute of Network Cultures, Amsterdam, March 2011) edited by Geert Lovink and Rachel Somers Miles. The Video Vortex Reader II launches this week in conjunction with the Video Vortex #6 conference at TrouwAmsterdam in Amsterdam on Friday March 11th and Saturday March 12th.
Natalie Bookchin and Blake Stimson first met in New York in the early 1990s when they were both affiliated with the Whitney Independent Study Program. This exchange took place over email, for the most part between their respective homes in Southern and Northern California during the summer of 2010.
Although she has a rich and varied artistic background, one theme that has regularly come to the fore in Natalie Bookchin’s work is a concern with documentary. In some of her early work, this concern seemed to emphasize the inhumanity of recording machines in the way that Andy Warhol’s, or perhaps Gerhard Richter’s, work did. In a different way, the entire ‘found object’ tradition associated with Duchampian indifference, and still so manifest in much contemporary art, also seemed to feature in Bookchin’s work. Here, we might recall an early piece for which Bookchin photographed everything she owned, object by object, down to the last paperclip; or perhaps, in a different sense, the Universal Page she created with Alexei Shulgin in 2000, which promised an algorithmically derived objective average of all web content. In one sense, her recent work of gathering videos from the internet might be said to continue in this vein—at least insofar as she is functioning as an aggregator of existing content drawn largely from YouTube, in a way similar to a service like Digg or any of the many interest or attention measuring functions of the web (not the least being Google and other search engines).
On the other hand, Bookchin’s work possesses a strong, even impassioned, activist element of the sort consistent with the reportage tradition extending back to John Heartfield and Sergei Tretiakov, or Jacob Riis and Lewis Hine before them. For example, in the interview Bookchin and Shulgin published in conjunction with the exhibition of Universal Page, Bookchin spoke of that time as one that demanded ‘superactivity’ because ‘there are vitally important things that need to be done’ to ‘resist total corporate, technological, and institutional takeovers’. In addition, her multiplayer game agoraXchange was created in collaboration with the political theorist Jackie Stevens, and called for ‘an end to the system of nation-states, the demise of rules rendering us passive objects tied to identities and locations given at birth’, and the elimination of ‘those laws requiring us to live and be seen largely as vessels for ancestral identities’. And finally, there was her very funny announcement, in 1999, of her intention for a journal titled BAD (standing for Burn the Artworld Down) that was ‘committed to the documentation of acts of terrorism and agitation against the institutional art world’. All of these works have performative dimensions to them, and as such call up a sense of tongue-in-cheek detachment from the subjects they purport to represent. Yet, to varying degrees, they also seem earnest and forceful political statements.
The Future of Art was shot from the 1st through the 6th of February 2011 during Transmediale. The short film asks the following: What are the defining aesthetics of art in the networked era? How is mass collaboration changing notions of ownership in art? How does micropatronage change the way artists produce and distribute artwork? The creators behind The Future of Art describe the project as "an immediated autodocumentary" where "immediation is immediate mediation – an instant transfer of experience into media, enabling self-reflection and perspective shift. Immediation enables collaborative storytelling via frameworks of participation. Autodocumentary; auto as in autodidactic + documentary. Autodocumentaries are made by the people they are about."
No Layout is a new online platform for independent art and fashion publishers. While mainstream print publishers are struggling to address online content, making their magazines available through clunky PDF apps like Exactly or posting limited articles to their websites, no one has yet come up with a solution for the relatively niche market of independent art publications and zines. No Layout, started by Daniel Pianetti, provides a fully readable library of this print material. So far, their roster rivals that of a well curated museum bookstore or specialty shop, including gallerist Javier Peres' art mag Daddy, Swiss contemporary art journal der:die:das:, urbanism magazine Monu, small art zines like FPCF, and even historical publications like the avant garde journal 291 from 1915, to name a few of the 100 or so publishers available through the site. I spoke with Pianetti to find out more about the project.
Here's a short video documenting Allora & Calzadilla's work Stop, Repair, Prepare: Variations on Ode to Joy for a Prepared Piano (2008), which the group will perform on an hourly schedule, every day, at MOMA until January 10, 2011.
Kickstarter, the funding platform for creative projects, will host a panel tomorrow at the New Museum at 3pm, as part of the "Free" exhibition. We posted an mini interview with panelists filmmaker Zana Briski and artists Michael Crow & Lenka Clayton to the Free blog. You can read the interview here. Short description of the event below.
Founded in 2009, Kickstarter is the largest funding platform for creative projects in the world. Every month, tens of thousands of people pledge millions of dollars to projects from the worlds of music, film, art, technology, design, food, publishing and other creative fields. Kickstarter is a new form of patronage and commerce: creators offer products and experiences that are unique to each project, and keep 100% ownership and control over their work. What underlies Kickstarter’s straightforward premise is a powerful alternate model of funding for the arts: one that enables creators, of all stripes, to realize their projects without the support of the grants, galleries, or the larger art world apparatus. It also raises certain fundamental questions: such as, does art lose its mystique if it is financing is laid bare? How do artworks exist outside the parameters of the art world? Is art, in 2010, at home in mass culture? For this panel, Kickstarter founders Perry Chen and Yancey Strickler will be in conversation with artists who have successfully used this platform to realize projects: Michael Crowe & Lenka Clayton (of Mysterious Letters), Zana Briski (of Reverence & Born Into Brothels), Zach Lieberman (of EyeWriter).
Greek-Italian artist Angelo Plessas’ interactive websites (Angeloplessas.com) integrate elements of drawing, sound, Flash animation and innovative HTML coding. Each of his online two-dimensional “sculptures” is sealed with a domain name that playfully evokes the language of philosophy, literature and drama. Challenging concepts of space and ownership on the Internet, Plessas’ websites are, like graffiti bombed on a public wall, the acts of a guerrilla artist intervening in public space.
Plessas has come a long way since his first and ongoing aesthetic project: documenting face-like compositions he discovers in random configurations of objects and architecture (InternationalPortraitGallery.com). He officially launched his artistic career in 2001 when artist and curator Miltos Manetas selected his work for the Internet-inspired group show Biennale.net at Deitch Projects, New York. Now, the artist is exploring projects that take on a curatorial scope, including the recent one-day video projection extravaganza Bring Your Own Beamer at the Kunsthalle Athena.
With the lines between his online and offline work becoming increasingly blurred, Plessas is evolving in the manner of his medium. As the Internet expands, so does Plessas’ practice, and as the artist matures, perhaps he might shed light on where the Internet might take us. Sitting at his seaside apartment in Athens, Plessas takes me on a journey through his virtual universe, which ultimately leads right back to reality itself…whatever that might be, or could become.
This rich pamphlet grew out of The Internet as Playground and Factory, a conference organized at The New School and held in November 2009. In this seventh pamphlet in the Situated Technologies Pamphlets Series, Trebor Scholz and Laura Y. Liu reflect on the relationship between labor and technology in urban space, where communication, attention, and physical movement generate financial value for a small number of private stakeholders. Online and off, Internet users are increasingly wielded as a resource for economic amelioration, for private capture, and the channels of communication are becoming increasingly inscrutable. The Internet has become a simple-to-join, anyone-can-play system where the sites and practices of work and play, as well as production and reproduction, are increasingly unnoticeable.
Norbert Wiener warned that the role of new technology under capitalism would intensify the exploitation of workers. For Michel Foucault, institutions used technologies of power to control individual bodies. In her essay “Free Labor” (1999), Tiziana Terranova described what constitutes “voluntarily given, unwaged, enjoyed and exploited, free labor on the Net.” Along these lines, Liu and Scholz ask: How does the intertwining of labor and play complicate our understanding of exploitation and “the urban”?
This pamphlet aims to understand “the urban” through the lens of digital and not-digital work in terms of those less visible sites and forms of work such as homework, care work, interactivity on social networking sites, life energy spent contributing to corporate crowd sourcing projects, and other unpaid work. While we are discussing the shift of labor markets to the Internet, the authors contend that traditional sweatshop economies continue to structure the urban environment.
The pages of this pamphlet unfold between a film still from Alex Rivera’s Sleep Dealer on the front cover and an image by Lewis Hine on the back. Set in the near ...
Contemporary media art collective CONT3XT.NET posted an interview with Amsterdam-based artist Jan Robert Leegte. Leegte discusses his practice, and how his physical sculptural works engage the virtual. See the introduction below, full interview here.
Between reality and illusion, between abstraction and the ornament, between the virtual and the real, between architecture and art - the main focus in Jan Robert Leegte’s artworks are the spaces inbetween. The Amsterdam-based artist continuously deconstructs the experience of architecture and sculpture by questioning the perception of space and material which is alternately brought into relation to the real as well as to the digital space. Since the mid-1990s the academically trained sculptor and architect works on the transfer of digital media into expanded installative arrangements. Very early he started exploring the multifaceted formal possibilities of the Internet-browser for its sculptural feature: buttons, scrollbars and table borders were used for real space installations which had the same quality as his previous studio and computer work. The elements of the browser appear to have a striking physical reality mostly gained by the large public daily use, interactivity, animation and especially the three-dimensional extrusion.
The experience-based way of testing physical reality defines the choice of material in his installations and Internet-based work, which has often been said to have late-modernistic tendencies. Ultimately he develops so called single-serving-sites, which are defined as “web sites comprised of a single page with a dedicated domain name and do only one thing.” In Blue Monochrome .com (2008) for example Jan Robert Leegte makes use of the tools of Google-Earth to transform satellite images of the globe’s water surface into ready-mades. Geographic coordinates are linked to the coordinates of a website, the real space is linked to the virtual; the title of the artwork represents ...