Jim Andrews
Since the beginning
Works in Victoria Canada

Jim Andrews does http://vispo.com . He is a poet-programmer and audio guy. His work explores the new media possibilities of poetry, and seeks to synthesize the poetical with other arts and media.
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article: audio programming in Director

An article I wrote about audio programming in Director:
http://www.macromedia.com/desdev/articles/nio_audio.html .

Originally published (a different version) at http://turbulence.org/Works/Nio/NioTech.htm .



links to dynamic algorithmic art

Get yer surfin gear revved up:

"This site mainly consists in a list of links to sites having to do with dynamic algorithmic art
(exhibitions, theory, documentation of pieces, technologies, critiques)."



Irreconcilable, Lipservice, and Arteroids 2.02


Montreal's David Jhave Johnston and I have work in the "Spotlight" section of turbulence.org if you'd like to check it out.

Irreconcilable and Lipservice are works created by Montreal-based multimedia-poet, David Jhave Johnston (Read bio). The first is a work from Johnston's
NomadLingo, a year long exploration of digitally-generated mobile-text works exhibited as monthly installments at www.year01.com Lipservice will launch as a
digital billboard in Toronto in the near future. The Flash Player plugin is required.

This is a literary computer game for the Web. Best viewed with IE for the PC (though not required) because then it goes full screen, no browser chrome. Best
viewed in total darkness except for a bit of light on the keyboard, if possible, and with the sound up to room-shaking volume. The project also includes an
essay called "Games, Play, Po, Art, and Arteroids 2.02".



on some of Kate Armstrong's work

When I do anything when viewing much of Kate Armstrong's work at
http://eventfoundation.securedata.net/kate/projects.html , I find that she has made the action
meaningful, made the action into a poetically significant verb that dominates or overrides the
typical association with the action; in "Cold Chinese Salad", for instance, the action of
clicking and thereby closing the window becomes an event of sudden and unexpected energy, part
of the piece itself, rather than just the closing of a window after the piece is finished. The
action finds/discovers the human dimensions of closing a window, which we usually take for
granted as a kind of page-turning or switch flipping, like turning off the lights when you exit
a room.

All the programming in the world doesn't get much better than this, but affords opportunity to
discover/create a wider range of the human dimensions of technology/programming/science, and a
wider range of new 'media language', a wider realm of expression in this language; if the
programming does not provide such energy and human relation, if the actions are not poetically
significant verbs but instead allow the default language of functionality to blandly assert
itself and dominate the imaginative and poetical, then the loudest statement is from the machine
itself, not the artist, ie, the medium is indeed the message, in such case.

While programming does not often get any better than what she has already done, in the sense
that she has created some wonderfully magical pieces--which is, after all, a big part of the
'goal' for artists, surely--it does expand the range of possibilities dramatically. Those who
sustain invention over the longer run generally have found knowledge of programming useful in
moving forward rather than repeating themselves. There are many artists who either have given up
on web/net.art or are predictable by now, are repeating themselves.

I love Armstrong's line "Because art attracts pretenders" in her piece "Explanation". No
questions are posed explicitly in this simple yet effective piece (though they teem implicitly).
Yes, this is unfortunately the answer to too many questions--but her line also suggests a wider
meaning to the word "pretenders": art attracts people who 'pretend' in many ways, like Chrissie
Hynde and the Pretenders...or storytellers, those who are interested in pretense in a
constructively imaginative way, and this informs the line with something other than censure of
the milieu in which art operates, opens it up more broadly to a deeper consideration of the
nature of art and its milieus, so that we come to see art as attracting "pretenders" of many
types, not all necessarily insufferable but perhaps equally desperate to "pretend", though in
different ways, and with different goals.

More generally, one is struck with her writing. She's an excellent writer. We read on her site
that she has studied philosophy, which isn't surprising; she has a delicious and highly
intelligent sense of language and humour, her own voice. She retains a high and exhilarating
intellectual energy and humour in her work. We don't run across titles as good as "Delicate
Weasels" very often, which is another finely concentrated piece on her site.

The writing is spare and telling. The use of media and tech is in synch with the writing. The
verbs drive the work, and the idea of the verb extends beyond the word into the interaction and,
occassionally, the animation.

"Because elevators were all invented by the same person." Good elevators. Ding.

See also http://katearmstrong.com .



Re: Enigmatic argyle detours

> >I'm sorry you didn't get anything out of the piece I posted, Judson,
> >but I am not inclined to
> >defend it when it feels like all I can expect is
> >list-as-competitive-computer-game.
> personal space invaders.
> sorry, jim, wasn't meant to pick on you and your piece but the vast
> majority of art advertising on these lists. no defense necessary. i
> really would just like to get some kind of answers from SOMEBODY
> though. these aren't rhetorical questions.
> PvB said something recently on the Thing (if you're on 6 art lists,
> you might be on that one) about "sometimes artists ask ?s for other
> reasons than getting the answer". But I was brought up in the
> mid-west. when i want to get an answer, i ask a question. (Is that
> the problem? Artists might assume questions are really statements
> with funny punctuation?)
> hope your having a happy day.
> Judson

I see that my post was unaware of the context in which it appeared, Judson. My bad.

Thanks for writing again.

When posting work on lists, particularly if one isn't familiar with the list, it's hard to know
how to present the email so that the work is in a useful context. I should have waited longer
before posting work to the list.

You asked why artists want people to experience their work.

I imagine there are many reasons. When I was a child, I remember trying to tell my parents about
the amazingness of having felt that I was flying when I was running down the sidewalk. They
assured me that I hadn't been. I knew that, but what I was trying to get at was the amazingness
of the intensity of the feeling that I had been. Ah yes, very nice. Yes but yes but what is
real?, I might have asked, if I'd had the language for it. Uh, you felt like you were flying but
you weren't.

I came to the sad conclusion that there were things that you just couldn't communicate, that
words had basic limitations that ruled out the communication of a lot of interesting things.

Then when I ran across William Carlos Williams's poem The Great Figure in grade 5, it seemed to
me that, ah, poetry breaks all those boundaries and you could communicate anything if only you
found the right words, at which point I was hooked, and it's been all downhill from there.

Thanks for your post, Judson.