Plasma Studii
Since the beginning
Works in New York United States of America

PORTFOLIO (8)
BIO
judsoN = computer artist for shows internationally on stages, galleries and the web, and the Artistic Director of Plasma Studii, a non-profit arts organization in New York. His goal is to use technology as a tool to fuse arbitrary distinctions in art, such as dance and sculpture, color and sound frequencies, stages and web sites. His live interactive pieces appear in such venues as plays in circus tents across Europe, installations for places like the Arts Council of Mildura, Australia, on web sites at ISCAM (in Istanbul) and cTheory for Cornell University (twice). His artwork published in books (US, Europe, South America) and on CD-Roms worldwide. Studied choreography under Doug Elkins, music composition with a student of Stockhausen.
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DISCUSSION

we are all just stamp collectors


makin art without doping paperwork is a hobby. nothing wrong with a hobby though.

there is TONS of bureaucracy to doing art. there are grant proposals, putting together press kits, meeting/shmoozing/maintaining relationships, IRS non-profit filing, renting/coordinating rehearsal space, ... many of those things are done by one person. but few arty endeavors can support more than the artist. so the artist (particularly at the beginning) has to do all of these on top of the work.

it would be tempting to call this a "career", and you certainly could. but it is FAR more useful to think of it as a sponge for your resources. an investment implies, you are gambling that a certain amount in, will eventually yield a certain amount out. the art world has no direct link like that.

art is exactly like stamp collecting, eating at fancy restaurants or buying perfume, in this respect. there is no limit to the amount it will absorb and no relationship making the more you invest, the higher your odds of a big return. this is not true. you simply buy it as any other luxury item. first, you buy what you need to survive and afterwards, what makes survival more pleasant. if not, you end up in debt. (which happens to a lot of artists)

art is like stamp collecting because it not only costs to play, but there are things to know, a history to learn, theories to be familiar with. to claim either is more important is just being silly and clinging to old biases. to consider either a career, is to forget you really do ultimately end up "paying to play". folks who delude themselves into thinking it's possible not to, A are not accounting for their total investments and B. probably buy lottery tickets too, hoping they'll win one day. there are a handful of exceptions out of billions. but everyone looks to that handful, and doesn't hear about the rest.

it's no fun to let odds run your life, but charging blindly, full-force against them is SO much the norm, it makes the system harder on us all. most institutions seem to believe it and expect all others to stricly. faith and determination are cool, but sometimes without a reality check we can veer way off and wonder why they're not working. they really are working in the current context, but we often don't realize where we are.

the most helpful advice i've heard though was to a group of artists "stop defining things so strictly. it has never helped anyone. never will. forget strict definitions and your life will be so much more clear." forget trying to pin down exactly what "career" and "art" mean. it ain't what's "right", it's what "works" and "art career" just doesn't work in the long run.

DISCUSSION

Re: not so sad, Re: The sadness of the dream of Pixar.


actually, i thought this post seemed extremely reasonable. not at all unrealistic. and a helpful attitude.

being an artist, making (and certainly losing a lot of) money at it, it would be tempting to say it was a "career". it is just a fact that there is only an illusion (at least in the US) of there being a "career artists". the chelsea gallery scene and broadway theaters are among the few places on earth that are art for profit. depending where you draw the line, pixar is one of the others. only a handful of choreographers out of the millions could actually live off dance. we don't teach in our spare time, we teach to eat and if there is time left to us, we CHOOSE to make creative things.

kids out of school, don't have nearly the pressure to earn, so art is a more viable option. or there are some who max out their credit cards, pay with more than they have. they may think art is a career, but see this is not a long term situation. the "i will spend anything i need to further my career" attitude is completely common, but eventually self-destructive.

for the vast vast majority art as a career is just not realistic. it's an activity one can toss expendable cash at (and doing so is absolutely fine, beats drugs. some collect and learn to maintain antique cars, some become gourmets, study in Italy and keep an impressive wine seller. everyone wants to be an expert/brilliant.).

yeah it probably will piss people off to even try to burst that bubble, but bubbles are the abusive boyfriend of the art scene. whether they are good deep down or not, for our own safety, we gotta get out of there. no one likes it in the short term, but sometimes medicine just tastes bad. there are things to fix and getting rid of these grand illusions is the first step.

(i pasted the original reply below just cuz i liked it so much, then the reply to that reply.)

>>a few comments -

pixar has a long line of enjoyable and entertaining, and witty and clever, works that have stood multiple viewings (with my kids). Many things that I have seen in galleries and museums and cinemas under the banner of art are none of the above.

should museums be showing works that are easily accessable elsewhere? Preferably not, but then should they be hosting fashion exhibitions and be charging 20 dollars to get in, following art world trends, be influenced by commercial and financial considerations, etc, which are much bigger issues, and like high and low art, never simple nor clear cut.

Art (and artist) are terms that fluctuate culturally and historically, mean different things ad have different values at different times. One could look at artists (Giotto, Reubens, Warhol) also as working for someone else's profits and power (whatever the personal gains that they made), and also look at the art world's mythology of success, and why it might not be in the student's best interest to buy into it, and also look into the art world's mythologies of high and low art.

There are worse jobs in the world than being a Pixar animator, and if that is what someone wants to do, then good luck to them, maybe they'll be contributing to another enjoyable pixar film, and/or gain some technical knowledge and do something hip and subversive on their own time....

just my 2 cents worth.

Zev

Zev Robinson
www.artafterscience.com
www.zrdesign.co.uk

>On Dec 19, 2005, at 9:00 AM, Pall Thayer wrote:

>>There are worse jobs in the world than being a Pixar animator, and if that is what someone wants to do, then good luck to them, maybe they'll be contributing to another enjoyable pixar film, and/or gain some technical knowledge and do something hip and subversive on their own time....

>Comments like this always get to me. Being an artist isn't something that you do "on [your] own time". It's a full-time job. It's not a hobby. Sometimes artists need a job on the side to pay the bills but being an artist takes a lot of devotion. Devotion that you're not going to muster if you're working a pion 8 am to 10 pm job at Pixar. Sure, if that's what you want, go for it. But don't fool yourself into thinking that you're going to be able to have a meaningful art practice on the side.

>Pall

>>just my 2 cents worth.

>Sorry, but to me that comment dropped the worth to zilch.

>>Zev

>>Zev Robinson
>>www.artafterscience.com
>>www.zrdesign.co.uk

DISCUSSION

Re: Re: NYT art critic reviews Pixar exhibition at MoMA


On Dec 17, 2005, at 7:53 AM, patrick lichty wrote:

>> We may feel work x is more "Art" than Pixar. But isn't it a little
like >granny saying rock-n-roll isn't REAL music like sinatra or
lawrence welk. >rap could easily be seen as a pop culture shift,
commercially motivated, >etc too. but even we would never argue it
isn't art. why would pixar be >any different?

> Because Elvis was an iconoclast; a rebel. He was upsetting the apple
cart. Same for the Beatles, Rap, etc. Pixar is doing exactly the
opposite - cute cuddly monsters to seduce audiences into reinforcing
what they already believe and to kill their individuality.

haha did you think elvis or the beatles would have been hits without all those screaming teenage girls thinking they were cute and cuddly? pixar does upset the apple cart of feature animation. the simpsons is now mainstream, but it's still anti-disney.

there is nothing too innovative in Toy Story (much less TS2 and both got Prix Ars). But Monsters Inc really is innovative (like sesame street was long ago). I think Shrek was pixar too? anyway, nickelodeon started the ball rolling, but then you might as well argue if bracht or picasso deserve kudos for "cubism".

>> in the 50's every song went G-Em-C-D over and over. generally under 5
parts/instruments.

> But that's a technical argument, not an aesthetic one. Look at the
Ramones - they were amazing, and basically used three chords for three
minutes. This idea of "more chords, better music" ain't necessarily so.
That's like saying Final Fantasy: Spirits within was great because it
was beautiful and took inordinate amounts of technique.

not that more chords IS better music, but that there was a time when A. the technical complexity was paramount, the cultural effects went un-noticed until long after it had a profound effect B. no one thought R&R was impressive given the then current criteria. it's always too easy to project our current ideas , in retrospect, onto what was at one time new and judgment unsettled.

the ramones are anti-beatles. joey's perspective is not paul's (back when he wore a leather jacket too. but our generation (loosely defined fourth wave of net artists?) has to acknowledge the difference in attitudes. or be left behind in a nostalgic dust cloud.

it's easier to see now it was a change of fashions, know where to look. we are using old criteria and not looking at what will probably seem inescapably obvious ten years from now. folks will have a hard time NOT seeing it, like now we think anti-establishment means anti-corporate or anti-fashion.

>> Pixar may not be as impressive on one level we are accustomed to, but
probably if we feel that way, we are surely looking at the wrong
element(s).

> If the MoMA is showing it, maybe we aren't looking hard enough? This
sounds like The Emperor's New Clothes. Sure, Pixar is beautiful and
magical, but it also isn't art _in the context_ of a place like the
MoMA.

not at all. if the kids are psyched about it, perhaps we're missing something. (even if it's not exactly what those same kids see) the MoMA may have picked up on it, but more likely it's just a sellout. who cares either way.

in fact, it would sound as if many people here are being let down by their faith in looking to the MoMA for integrity and leadership. too bad. we are all hit and miss. and the older the institution, the more likely it is to miss. but everyone hits once in a while.

DISCUSSION

Re: Re: Re: NYT art critic reviews Pixar exhibition at MoMA


i think you're onto something important. we may feel work x is more "Art" than Pixar. But isn't it a little like granny saying rock-n-roll isn't REAL music like sinatra or lawrence welk. rap could easily be seen as a pop culture shift, commercially motivated, etc too. but even we would never argue it isn't art. why would pixar be any different?

good point that they hardly deserve attention from the MoMA. but remember, the MoMA is just trying to get folks through the door. People who aren't interested in Pixar are in the minority. This show'll probably end up paying indirectly for 3 that don''t bring in nearly the traffic but we find more Artistic. and i'm sure their funding hinges on traffic not just ticket price.

in the 50's every song went G-Em-C-D over and over. generally under 5 parts/instruments. By (pre-50's) jazz and classical standards, calling this "music" is a joke. but what changed had nothing to do with that criteria and much more to do with hair cuts. Pixar may not be as impressive on one level we are accustomed to, but probably if we feel that way, we are surely looking at the wrong element(s).

- judsoN

Eric Dymond wrote:

> Rob Myers wrote:
>
> > If MoMA are just presenting Pixar as a gee-whizz cash cow
> blockbuster
> >
> > show (as it sounds they are), then I agree that it is bad. Museums
> in
> >
> > the UK are starting to do that sort of thing as the funding dries
> up.
> >
> > But please don't throw the Pixar baby out with the MoMA water. Rent
>
> > the 2-disc version of The Incredibles and watch the documentaries.
> > Consider the finished film as a competent cultural product. And take
>
> > a look at http://www.renderman.org/ .
> >
> > As artists we can learn a lot from Pixar. And there is content to
> > their films, as much as to any non-cultural-studies-academic art.
> > And, if you want to go the subtext route or look at the argument
> over
> >
> > how nietzschean The Incredibles is, there's probably more.
> >
> > - Rob.
> I have had to deal with this issue at a new student level (first year
> arts students) for the past semester.
> It is a daunting task to point out the need for a conceptual
> underpinning in art while still maintaining a level of currency.
> I must admit there are times when I have said to myself "well the 19th
> century academy wasn't overthrown it was slowly abandoned".
> What I think is merely rendering and design is, to many of the new
> students, a holy grail.
> It is very difficult to show them why Robert Irwin's fence is more
> important than the rendering of Jaba the Huts village.And a MacArthur
> grant cuts no ice with them.
> It sounds absurd, but are we missing a major sea change?
> The pressure of omni-present multi media productions on the new
> students is very hard to overcome.
> What passes for mere culture to me is high Art (with a capital A) to
> them.
> I do not have an answer, but I am very aware of the change that is
> overwhelming arts instructors at every major college and University.
> Before I tell them they are wrong, I should address why they don't
> think I am right.
> Eric Dymond

DISCUSSION

Re: NYT art critic reviews Pixar exhibition at MoMA


i agree. but while maybe half (probably less than) is "visual
culture", there's another half that's theoretical culture. art that is
satisfying in both is rare, but art that satisfies in experience
culture (interactivity, the visual or theoretical being secondary to
the experience created) or anything other than visual or theoretical
(traditional ways of seeing "art") is even more rare.

am in school, watching younger people, people who've never had much
previous experience in programming, electronics or interactivity. who
actually have a lot stronger intuitive sense of it that many of the
teachers of a previous generation. gallery owners, curators, funders,
etc. tend to even be a few generations behind that. it's certainly not
always the case, but the vast majorityy. it will just be a waiting
game, when the enlightened of today take over the decision making
positions.

oh well. masterpieces don't become masterpieces until we're dead. so
there's no hurry. just make a bunch now while we still can, so we
leave them with something. the economics are a little ahead of the
culture part in this respect. the economics is just a game but one
that's slightly more savvy.

judsoN