ryan griffis
Since 2002
Works in United States of America

PORTFOLIO (4)
BIO
Ryan Griffis currently teaches new media art at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. He often works under the name Temporary Travel Office and collaborates with many other writers, artists, activists and interesting people in the Midwest Radical Culture Corridor.
The Temporary Travel Office produces a variety of services relating to tourism and technology aimed at exploring the non-rational connections existing between public and private spaces. The Travel Office has operated in a variety of locations, including Missouri, Chicago, Southern California and Norway.

Is MySpace a Place?


Networked Performance pointed me toward an interview (download in PDF)with Networked Publics speaker Henry Jenkins and Networked Publics friend danah boyd about Myspace. The site, popular with teenagers, has become increasingly controversial as parents and the press raise concerns about the openness of information on the site and the vulnerability this supposedly poses to predators (Henry points out that only .1% of abductions are by strangers) and the behavior of teens towards each other (certainly nothing new, only now in persistent form). In another essay on Identity Production in Networked Culture, danah suggests that Myspace is popular not only because the technology makes new forms of interaction possible, but because older hang-outs such as the mall and the convenience store are prohibiting teens from congregating and roller rinks and burger joints are disappearing.

This begs the question, is Myspace media or is it space? Architecture theorists have long had this thorn in their side. "This will kill that," wrote Victor Hugo with respect to the book and the building. In the early 1990s, concern about a dwindling public culture and the character of late twentieth century urban space led us to investigate Jürgen Habermas's idea of the public sphere. But the public sphere, for Habermas is a forum, something that, for the most part, emerges in media and in the institutions of the state:

The bourgeois public sphere may be conceived above all as the sphere of private people come together as a public; they soon claimed the public sphere regulated from above against the public authorities themselves, to engage them in a debate over the general rules governing relations in the basically privatized but publicly relevant sphere of commodity exchange and social labor. The medium of this political confrontation was peculiar and without historical precedent: people's ...

READ ON »


SWITCH: Issue 22



Carlos Castellanos:

HI everyone. Just wanted to announce the new issue of SWITCH:

SWITCH : The online New Media Art Journal of the CADRE Laboratory for
New Media at San Jose State University

http://switch.sjsu.edu switch@cadre.sjsu.edu

SWITCH Journal is proud to announce the launch of Issue 22: A Special
Preview Edition to ISEA 2006/ ZeroOne San Jose.

As San Jose State University and the CADRE Laboratory are serving as
the academic host for the ZeroOne San Jose /ISEA 2006 Symposium,
SWITCH has dedicated itself to serving as an official media
correspondent of the Festival and Symposium. SWITCH has focused the
past three issues of publication prior to ZeroOne San Jose/ISEA2006
on publishing content reflecting on the themes of the symposium. Our
editorial staff has interviewed and reported on artists, theorists,
and practitioners interested in the intersections of Art & Technology
as related to the themes of ZeroOne San Jose/ ISEA 2006. While some
of those featured in SWITCH are part of the festival and symposium,
others provide a complimentary perspective.

Issue 22 focuses on the intersections of CADRE and ZeroOne San Jose/
ISEA 2006. Over the past year, students at the CADRE Laboratory for
New Media have been working intensely with artists on two different
residency projects for the festival – “Social Networking” with Antoni
Muntadas and the City as Interface Residency, “Karaoke Ice” with
Nancy Nowacek, Marina Zurkow & Katie Salen. Carlos Castellanos,
James Morgan, Aaron Siegel, all give us a sneak preview of their
projects which will be featured at the ISEA 2006 exhibition. Alumni
Sheila Malone introduces ex_XX:: post position, an exhibition
celebrating the 20th anniversary of the CADRE Institute that will run
as a parallel exhibition to ZeroOne San Jose/ ISEA 2006. LeE
Montgomery provides a preview of NPR (Neighborhood Public Radio)
presence at ...

READ ON »


Art & Mapping



The North American Cartographic Information Society (NACIS) has released a special issue of their journal, Cartographic Perspectives:
Art and Mapping Issue 53, Winter 2006 Edited by Denis Wood and and John Krygier Price: $25
The issue includes articles by kanarinka, Denis Wood, Dalia Varanka and John Krygier, and an extensive catalogue of map artists compiled by Denis Wood.

READ ON »


[-empyre-] Liquid Narrative for June 2006


Christina McPhee:

hi all, I am not sure we got this message out to Rhizome!

Please join our guests this month, Dene Grigar (US), Jim Barrett
(AU/SE), Lucio Santaella (BR), and Sergio Basbaum (BR) , with
moderator Marcus Bastos (BR), for a spirited discussion of "Liquid
Narratives" ----- digital media story telling with a dash, perhaps,
of 'aura' .

Here's the intro from Marcus:

The topic of June at the - empyre - mailing list will be Liquid Narratives. The concept of 'liquid narrative' is interesting in that it allows to think about the unfoldings of contemporary languages beyond tech achievements, by relating user controlled applications with formats such as the essay (as described by Adorno in "Der Essay als Form", The essay as a form) and procedures related to the figure of the narrator (as described by Benjamin in his writings about Nikolai Leskov). Both authors are accute critics of modern culture, but a lot of his ideas can be expanded towards contemporary culture. As a matter of fact, one of the main concerns in Benjamin's essay is a description of how the rise of modernism happens on account of an increasing nprivilege of information over knowledge, which is even more intense nowadays. To understand this proposal, it is important to remember how Benjamin distinguishes between an oral oriented knowledge, that results from 'an experience that goes from person to person' and is sometimes anonymous, from the information and authoritative oriented print culture. One of the aspects of this discussion is how contemporary networked culture rescues this 'person to person' dimension, given the distributed and non-authoritative procedures that technologies such as the GPS, mobile phones and others stimulate.

READ ON »


state of the planet infographics


stateoftheplanet.jpg
a small collection of beautiful information graphics documenting the current state of the planet.
see also gapminder & 3d data globe.
[seedmagazine.com]

READ ON »



Discussions (909) Opportunities (7) Events (16) Jobs (0)
DISCUSSION

more wacky scam-spam


original spam message:

NOTE:IF YOU INTEND TO BE PART OF THIS,KINDLY SEND YOUR
REPLY
TO:legal_consult22@yahoo.co.uk Dear friend,
I am a lawyer by profession.Some years back(precisely
1995),one MR.ASGEIR ARMGRIMMSON who introduced himself

as the President/CEO of NORFISH LTD,ICELAND situate
at(as at then)620 Dalvik and resident at Brekkusidu
18,603 Akureyri (all in Iceland).He engaged/retained
my services as his lawyer/consultant to help him
process documents and pursue the release of a debt of
USD18.7M being proceeds of a contract he executed here

in Nigeria.He told me then that he was in a legal suit

with the wife and would not want anybody know of the
fund until the case was over hence he paid in the
money into an account he opened in one of the
commercial banks here.When I never heard from him some

years after he travelled back,I called his office and
was told the man is DEAD.

Since this sum is stillintact in the account and I am
privy to details except that I am not a
signatory(which is the reason I need you),I solicit
your partnership so we jointly pursue and finance the
release/collection of this money.All it requires is a
fresh documentation in your name now as the
next-of-kin to the deceased and beneficiary to the
sum,then you send in your account details for
normalization.

Proceeds from the transaction will be shared at equall

percentage(50/50)between us upon a successful
completion.I could even send you picture outlay of the

cash paid to us before it was lodged into the
commercial bank account if you wish.
Get back to me for details.

Barr.Marti

__________________________________________________
Do you Yahoo!?
Yahoo! Mail Plus - Powerful. Affordable. Sign up now.
http://mailplus.yahoo.com

DISCUSSION

FWD: Coco Fusco on Thacker on Rifkin on Bio-Art


Date: Sat, 25 Jan 2003 14:36:43 EST
From: TONGOLELE@aol.com
Subject: Re: <nettime> Fwd: Aesthetic Biology,
Biological Art (Rifkin,
bioart, science)

Dear Eugene
I wish I could respond to all your points in detail,
but time limits
and
workloads prevent it. However, I read your defense of
biotech art not
just as
response to Rivkin's text but as one skirmish in a
larger, longer
battle
that is being played out in various cultural sectors,
including the
artworld
and the terrain of "avant-garde" aesthetic and
theoretical practice and
I
recognize in your defense some very familiar tropes.
The "defense of
science" position coming from sectors of the new media
community I
would
argue, needs to be interrogated. The frequent
accusations that those
who
critique are essentialists about nature, about
identity, neo-Luddites
and
phobic about science really need to be put aside for a
moment if any
kind of
serious discussion is going to happen. In short, I'd
say you and others
are
stereotyping and fetishizing those who criticize your
position and this
creates a smokescreen that deters self-reflection on
the aesthetics and
politics of biotech art. Not all criticism of what
biotech art is comes
from
people who are intellectually naive or uninformed
about science and
art. Like
any other self proclaimed avant garde of western art
history, biotech
artists
have claimed that they are redefining art practice and
therefore the
old
rules don't apply to them. But that heroic stance and
imperviousness to
criticism sounds a bit hollow and self-serving after a
while,
especially when
the demand for inclusion in mainstream art
institutions, art
departments in
universities, art curricula, artworld money and art
press is so strong.
If
biotech artists want to be institutionalized as they
clearly do, they
are
inevitably going to be subjected to processes of
evaluation by the
agents of
those institutions.

I don't think it makes sense for you to feel that your
field is being
singled
out. Every art fad goes through boom and bust cycles
and biotech art is
susceptible to such vicissitudes. That said, biotech
art is directly
implicated in the entrenchment of new scientific
discourses as the
"total
explanation of everything" in the present moment. I
agree with Virilio,
who
argues in Crepuscular Dawn, that science is not just
research or
discovery --
it is our politics and it is imperial in its exercise
of power. It is a
technology of social and political control, managed
and financed by the
military and designed for global domination -- and art
that engages
with
it is impossible to divorce from that nexus. Biotech
art then, is not
ever
disinterested, not is it ever just about art or beauty
or about a
scientific
practice that is pure or objective. Because of this, I
find the
attempts by
many biotech art endorsers to celebrate their endeavor
as if it were
just about
a scientific or aesthetic pursuit to be disingenuous.
Its very rhetoric
of
transcendence of the human is itself an violent act of
erasure, a
master
discourse that entails the creation of "slaves" as
others that must be
dominated. Even those who claim to be deconstructing
biotech in their
art
practice depend on a rhetoric of transcendence that
effectively
marginalizes
any other form of artistic or political engagement.

A few years ago, when hype about the Human Genome
Project was plastered
across every newspapers on a regular basis , and art
institutions began
searching for new sources of funding through alliances
with science,
biotech
art was all the rage. I realize that many people who
took it up were
inspired
by Baudrillard's claim that cloning was paradigmatic
of the age of
simulation
and thus to make art about this phenomenon was to be
in tune with the
zeitgeist. It is also evident that the last wave of
art about science
has
been dominated by a drive to draw parallels between
digitalization and
molecularization, to find in the mathematical
structures of the
machinic and
the organic a the "beauty" of some kind of
transcendent truth. But that
utopian vision of this venture ennobles and masks the
economic and
underpinnings of the artworld's investment in a social
issue that
appeared at
least at one time to be very fundable and politically
neutral
("post-identitarian") because it came wrapped in the
language of
science, and
"accessible" to new audiences that art institutions
are always looking
to
develop. Furthermore, none of the promoters of the
recent love affair
between
art and science seem very open to an interrogation of
how university
art
programs are finding ways to link up with science as a
fundraising
strategy.
Many universities have lost large portions of their
endowments in the
downturn of the stock market and as a result are
compelled to seek more
income from scientific research grants. In short,
there is nothing
disinterested or pure about what is happening with art
and science, and
in
the end, money and power are determinant. So biotech
art may be
presented as
innovative because it is fundable, not because the art
is that radical
or
beautiful or interesting.

The Genome project is not as newsworthy anymore, and
in a post 9/11
world,
the fad in new media has shifted to questions of
globalization, which
to my
mind are often posed in very problematic terms. In any
case, now that
the
spotlight has dimmed, it is par for the course that
some arbiters would
ask,
well is the biotech art out there any good? Is it
interesting? Is it
art?
Does it communicate anything that straightforward
scientific
information does
not? Is the art being used to endorse an ideology? It
seems to me that
these
are logical questions to ask when faced with a lot of
art that present
science as a spectacle that we are to be in awe. It
also seems like
logical
questions to ask the artists themselves, many of whom
are very
defensive
about their motives, about their "love" of science (as
if this would
make
them immune to political and economic investment in
championing it),
and
about questions of quality, which, as old fashioned as
they may seem,
are
asked about any kind of cultural expression, and not
always for
horrifically
conservative reasons. Audiences and critics usually do
get their say in
these
matters, whether artists and their promoters want to
hear it or not.

The last wave of biotech art does not represent the
first time in the
history
of art that visual artists have engaged with hard
science, nor is the
first
time that artists have engaged with social issues and
political issues.
Yet
no discourse on biotech art and no biotech artwork
I've seen
acknowledges
that this history exists nor is any dialogue with that
history
attempted in a
rigorous manner. The assumption is invariably that
biotech art is
something
new, a claim that quickly turns into a defense against
any critical
evaluation. Furthermore, in every discussion I have
had with the
cultural
bureaucrats and artists who are touting the current
intertwining of art
and
science as new and radical, no one has wanted to
review the history of
how
and why hard science has been allowed to influence art
production and
criticism in the past, how myths about the neutrality
of science and
the
superiority of western science have remained intact
and have been
enforced by
the imposition of scientistic vocabulary in art
criticism, as was the
case in
the 1950s, for example. Yet, to my mind, there is a
crucial
relationship
between the retrograde universalism evoked by the
"return to beauty" as
a
organizing principle of visual art in the late 1990s,
as represented by
powerful critics such as Dave Hickey, and the
celebration of the
discovery of
"master codes" that function as universal truths in
the discourse of
biotech
art. Even the heroic radicalism in much of CAE's
writing and their
premise
that the molecular is everything and no other battles
are meaningful
sounds
alarmingly dismissive and positions science as the
only discourse of
truth.
For all their claims to want to share knowledge about
contestational
biology
I find it quite telling that there is no sustained
effort in the work
to
build alliances with grassroots indigenous groups who
elaborate their
own
tactics against being run over by corporate science,
or with activists
in
poor communities who are developing methods for
tackling environmental
racism, developing better quality food supplies, or
fighting against
being
turned in lab rats for pharmaceutical research. In
other words, there
are
very important embodied politics of contestation of
corporate science
that,
while buttressed by various modes of identity politics
and sometimes
couched
in language that deifies nature, deserve
acknowledgement, respect, and
attention, as they are more compelling to the large
sectors of the
disenfranchised than the posthuman lingo of biotech
artists.

My own skepticism about biotech has to do with
political and ethical
questions more than aesthetic ones. I am profoundly
disturbed by the
systematic suppression of the roots of genetics in
eugenics and about
the
ways that fascination with biotech forecloses analysis
of its
connection with
deeply racist ideas that glorify the engineering of a
supra-human order
that
is leading to the justification of the absolute
dehumanization of the
majority of the world population. I cannot just sit
back as you do and
write
one sentence to the effect that well yeah biotech and
science is doing
some
pretty creepy things but hey it's exciting and it's
the future. It
isn't
enough for me that for example Fakeshop would just
invoke the poor
masses of
people in the third world who sell their organs and
then go on to
create
ghoulish sci fi spectacles about the "post-human" that
make the process
appear so dramatic and exciting -- too many details
about the global
forces of
racialized and class oppression get downplayed in that
mix.

I would also point out that I do think critics who
have noted that the
visual
quality of much biotech art is either predicated on
fetishizing
scientific
process as spectacle (ie, look at the glow in the dark
rat or watch
your
designer baby grown before your eyes); or on the
suppression of the
optic
through the construction of work with texts, graphs
and data (biotech
conceptualism); or on the staged parody of scientific
method as
institutional
critique. None of the methods are new, radical in
themselves or
absolute
recipes for success. The " biotech as entertainment"
approach collapses
the
distance between art and propaganda and often results
in work that
looks very
much like "feel-good" documentaries about science on
public television,
albeit with a weird, hipster twist. Crucial questions
about the ethics
and
politics of biotechnology are completely occluded by
the fetishizing of
new
technologies' visualization of heretofore invisible
processes. The act
of
illustrating and foregrounding scientific method
becomes a substitute
for
critical reflection on the politics of science. This
kind of approach
functions as an implicit endorsement of biotech,
regardless of what
artists
may claim their own personal positions to be. The more
conceptual
approach,
while politically well intentioned as a mapping of the
commodification
of the
organic via science, is very difficult to pull off as
compelling visual
art.
In terms of expediency, I am left wondering in the
face of this work
why the
information is being presented in an art context,
since it seems as
though I
would grasp it better as a book. Unlike early
conceptual art, which was
quite
minimal its use of text and quite humble in its
materials, biotech
conceptualism is often overloaded and overcoded. It's
so busy, so hard
to
decipher, so hard to read through and so hard to
process that the
mapping
tends to muddle rather than elucidate. There is a long
history of
system
analysis in sculpture and installation, which began in
the 60s with the
mapping of natural ecosystems and organic cycles and
moved through the
plotting of social systems onto institutional critique
of social and
cultural
institutions, but none of that rich history appears to
be drawn on by
biotech
artists. Finally, the parody of scientific method are
usually limited
in
their physical situation to art contexts, which
deflates the political
force
of the parody. Sure, many of those artists attend
meetings with "real"
scientists, but in that contexts they become advisors
on how to
popularize
science, which is hardly what I would call a critical
intervention in
scientific institutions. Unlike parodies of corporate
entities, which
"rub
shoulders" with real corporations and generate
productive tension in
doing
so, or parodies of ethnographic discourses that are
located in natural
history museums and dislodge the status of
anthropology as science, or
parodies of museological language that were
strategically located in
art
museums, and thus forced a certain critical reflection
on the politics
of
each place, the many biotech parodies located in the
artworld encourage
somewhat problematically self-serving views of artists
as "better
scientists"
or of scientific process as a better way of making art
than any other.

I don't think that most critics of biotech hoopla are
essentializing
nature.
I think they are more worried about a political
culture in which
man-made
forces are destroying nature, natural resources, and
human beings and
about
people who see that is just fine and dandy. Yes I know
I'm already
eating
transgenic foods and that my life may be saved by
biotechnology -- but
it may
also be terminated by it. Having respect for organic
life is not
necessarily
wacko or naive. Many of us see the price of living in
a world of
endless
simulation and posthuman engineering as too dear --
too many are shut
out, too
much is imperiled, and the loss of concern for ethics
is more
terrifying than
liberating for most people in the world . The ability
to maintain world
peace
as a goal is lost when technological innovation is
predicated on making
war --
that was what Walter Benjamin once said would happen
if technology
served
capitalism. Losing respect for human life is certainly
the underbelly
of any
militaristic adventure, and lies at the root of the
racist and classist
ideas
that have justified the violent use of science for
centuries. I don't
think
there is any reason to believe that suddenly, that
kind of science will
disappear because some artists find beauty in biotech.

Coco Fusco

__________________________________________________
Do you Yahoo!?
Yahoo! Mail Plus - Powerful. Affordable. Sign up now.
http://mailplus.yahoo.com

DISCUSSION

Hmm... what will the WTO say?


Dutch Homosexual Fights to Ban Gay-Shooting Game
By Jana Sanchez

AMSTERDAM (Reuters) - A Dutch gay activist is fighting
to outlaw the import of a U.S. computer game in which
the player can shoot homosexuals, junkies, dogs and
cats.

Henk Krol, editor of the leading Dutch gay newspaper,
has asked prosecutors to start court proceedings and
is lobbying parliamentarians to outlaw the game,
called "Postal 2."

"It is disgusting. In the Netherlands we have
anti-discrimination laws to protect people from
discrimination based on sexual preference and that
makes it easier to do something," Krol told Reuters on
Thursday.

Postal 2, produced by Arizona-based Running with
Scissors, is due to become available in the
Netherlands in late March.

Vince Desi, who runs Running with Scissors, said the
game did not discriminate against homosexuals.

"It's definitely not anti-gay. You know what? It's a
game -- get over it," Desi told Reuters by telephone
from Tucson.

Desi said the player can shoot gay people but does not
have to do so, and does not win any points for
shooting anyone.

"In the game, the player plays the role of a character
called The Postal Dude. He lives in a town where there
are all kinds of people, white, black, skinny, fat,
straight and gay. You can play the game in a passive
role without killing anyone," Desi said.

"We are not political," he added.

POSTAL BANNED IN AUSTRALIA

Postal 2 is a new version of the firm's earlier game
"Postal." That game has been banned in Australia, but
Krol said it was widely sold in Dutch toy stores.

The target of that game was to eliminate hostile
elements and unarmed civilians in city streets, parks
and suburbs using a variety of weapons. The player
could exit the game by "committing suicide."

Krol says he is not certain the authorities will be
able to prevent Dutch residents from buying the game
from the company's Web site, but hopes his campaign to
prevent it being sold in toy stores will make buyers
aware of the game's content.

"A lot of these games are being bought by parents and
grandparents and one of our goals is to get people to
understand what they are buying," Krol said.

Desi said he did not believe a ban on selling the game
in the Netherlands would apply to Internet sales.

"I don't think anything would prevent people from
buying it on the Internet," he said.

__________________________________________________
Do you Yahoo!?
Yahoo! Mail Plus - Powerful. Affordable. Sign up now.
http://mailplus.yahoo.com

DISCUSSION

Re: Do You Have the V.2.0 Human Upgrade


> New Genre Artist/body-sculptor Natasha Vita-More has created a
> web-site for 'Primo Posthuman,' her plan for making humans live

>why is that more exciting than Stelarc's work? The third arm seems a little disappointing... I think some kind of comparison could be interesting....

>andrei

certainly, it's not that it's more interesting/exciting than stelarc's work. but why shouldn't all the facets of posthuman idealism in art (and any where else it shows up) be up for criticism? do we let people get away with things because they're not as exciting as something else?
best,
ryan

DISCUSSION

Anti-War Group Revives the 'Daisy' Ad


Anti-War Group Revives the 'Daisy' Ad
Thu Jan 16, 9:53 AM ET

By IAN STEWART, Associated Press Writer

SAN FRANCISCO - Revisiting a jarring television
commercial from the Cold War era, a grass-roots
anti-war group has remade the 1964 "Daisy" ad, warning
that a war against Iraq could spark nuclear
Armageddon.

Like the original, the 30-second ad by the
Internet-based group MoveOn.org depicts a girl
plucking petals from a daisy