curt cloninger
Since the beginning
Works in Canton, North Carolina United States of America

Curt Cloninger is an artist, writer, and Assistant Professor of New Media at the University of North Carolina Asheville (US). His art undermines language as a system of meaning in order to reveal it as an embodied force in the world. By layering, restructuring, hashing, eroding, exhausting, and (dis)splaying language, he causes language to perform itself until its "meaning" has less to do with what it denotes and more to do with how it behaves. His work has been featured in the New York Times and at festivals and galleries from Korea to Brazil. Exhibition venues include Digital Art Museum [DAM] Berlin, L'Instituto de México à Paris, Living Arts of Tulsa, and The Art Gallery of Knoxville.

Cloninger has written on a wide range of topics, including new media and internet art, installation and performance art, experimental graphic design, popular music, network culture, and continental philosophy. His articles have appeared in Intelligent Agent, Mute, Paste, Tekka, Rhizome Digest, A List Apart, and on ABC World News. He is also the author of seven books, most recently "Fresher Styles for Web Designers" (New Riders). He maintains, , and in hopes of facilitating a more lively remote dialogue with the Sundry Contagions of Wonder.
Discussions (1122) Opportunities (4) Events (17) Jobs (0)


Sat Jul 27, 2013 10:30 - Sat Jul 27, 2013

Asheville, North Carolina
United States of America

Hi all. I am doing this talk / event. If you find yourself around Asheville, North Carolina, please come.


For July's Off the MAP event, we're heading to the banks of the French Broad River for summertime fun, combining an art lecture with a tubing adventure.

Participants will meet under the Haywood Road overpass at Jean Webb Park on Riverside Drive. UNC Asheville educator, new media artist and author Curt Cloninger will give a brief lecture about the Situationist practice of derive, psychogeography, and Henri Bergson's understanding of time, memory, matter, and the mind.

Cloninger will give instructions about how to subjectively drift through time in order to reclaim it. The unRACE begins around noon -- the last person to reach the finish line (The Bywater bar) wins!

See the link for details about what to bring.


Breaking the Ice

The funny thing is, Daniel and Rob are both right smart, and a similar kind of smart, and both live on the same island. It makes me think about arguing on RAW with Michael Sarff in 2001, and then him curating a weekend of performances I did in 2008. And it makes me think of this quote: "Because now, thanks to technology, and everybody being huge pussies about everything..." from this amusing skit: . Don't hate me because I'm beautiful.


Breaking the Ice

Here is my art star trajectory, a massively inspiring biographical tale imparting hope and courage to all who dare wander within the circumference of its nurturing glow. I grew up in south Alabama, US. My first band was George and the Weedeaters. We played REM and U2 covers. I was 12. My second band was Voodoo Bar-B-Q. We played originals that fell somewhere between The Minutemen and The Velvet Underground's "Sister Ray." REsearch Magazine was my ARTforum. I was 15. My third band was Infinite Scrotum, falling somewhere between Black Sabbath and Black Sabbath. Outside cultural forces sent free Jandek albums to our college radio station. I was 18. At 26 I got online. My first joys were midnight computer intrusion binges via telnet. Then web design and Then net art and Arguing in cryptic englishcode with polyonamous eastern european anarchist collectives ( ). getting up to speed on Deleuze, Foucault, Baudrillard to be able to hang in there theoretically with Alex and Mark. Dissing overly political art and championing visual viscerality for its own sake. A real young gun. I was teaching Literature to 12 year olds. Still living in south Alabama. I had been to New York once, on a family vacation when I was 12.

Now I am 44. I teach new media art and theory to undergraduates. I make art. I write. I have 5 children. I finally moved north... to North Carolina. Honestly, I don't really care about the upcoming opening of your latest group show (in Chelsea, Bushwick, Dumbo, Kansas City, Detroit, London, Sao Paulo, Mars), unless I happen to be in your town that week, or unless it has some sort of online instantiation. The following video clip rougly approximates how I feel about your "art career" ( ), although I love you as a human. I am writing this as a way to procrastinate a big pile of grading, just to hear myself talk. God bless the colonies.


Breaking the Ice

Michael, I don't distain the odd lurker. But when an entire community is comprised of lurkers, they're not lurkers anymore -- they're readers (and occasional re-bloggers) of journalistic content. And it's not a community anymore; it's an online magazine.


Breaking the Ice

Hi all,

I am here now posting this simply because I was invited via an email from Michael Szpakowski. Otherwise I wouldn't have known about this thread at all. I had to log-in to even post, which is how long it's been since I've posted anything here.

Michael Connor, congratulations on your new position. If you really, pragmatically want to encourage participation in the community discussion section, then you have to be willing to occasionally post threads begun in the community discussion section as entries in the main content area on the front page. Otherwise, nothing will change.

In academia, faculty are always being asked to complete surveys. Nothing ever changes based on the surveys. So the surveys serve three functions for the administration: 1) they are a way that the administration can waste faculty time, 2) they are a way the administration can pacify the faculty into feeling as if the administration cares about their input, and 3) they provide some sort of data that the administration can give to the board of directors to show that the administration has collected some sort of data.

Likewise, every three years or so, some new person is placed in charge of the dead-in-the-water "community" aspect of rhizome, and they ask for input from the community. They get input, nothing changes based on the input, and thus no community re-emerges. The community at rhizome historically ended with this byline: "rhizome: at the new museum." That sums up in a wonderfully oxymoronic phrase the difficulty of shoehorning several distributed, international, hobbyist/activist/passionist new media art communities into a hierarchical, commodified, centralized, Manhattan art community.

The dearth in Rhizome community participation currently seems to be a situation of either:
1) too much to lose OR
2) not enough at stake.

So, in the first case, there are a group of young Brooklyn/Berlin artists to whom appearing on the front page of Rhizome is something like getting your picture on the cover of the Rolling Stone, Rolling Stone. To them, posting to the community discussion section is just too risky. You don't want to appear anywhere on Rhizome just speculating and honestly talking about stuff. Maybe you will accidentally say something stupid, and then your potential art star street cred will be blown, and nobody will put you in their list of the next 50 upcoming x artists in whatever x online or print magazine. Heck, this same group is hesitant to post more than a two sentence response to some Petra Cortright Facebook selfie for fear of someone responding, "nice post, bro." They aren't going to suddenly engage in public dialogue at rhizome. Add a thumbs up like button, and maybe this group will emerge.

In the second case, you've got a bunch of older artists (over-30! Egad!) and theorists from around the world (some in New York, but by no means the majority) that have no motivation to post at rhizome anymore. They have been marginalized at rhizome over the years (for whatever editorial reasons); they can (and do) already have meaningful discussions on lists like netbehaviour, crumb, empyre, and occasionally even afc. Sadly, I have had more meaningful dialogue on a single Alan Sondheim facebook post than I have had on Rhizome in the last six years. (I'm not dissing the quality of Rhizome's editorial articles, which I have enjoyed.)

I look forward to another call for increased rhizome community participation in the next three years. Good night and good luck. (Here's hoping y'all prove me wrong this time.)