Tom Moody
Since 2002
Works in New York, New York United States of America

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Hi, Ed,
I was referring to how Boswell became Johnson's de facto mouthpiece through a much-lauded biography. (Isn't that what we usually mean when we say "_______'s Boswell"? Maybe that's just me being cynical.)

If the Rhizome editors think something is "going on," that is, art that imitates the internet, they should just say it and claim credit for the observation rather than put it into mouth of an artist. By having Lonergan say it (even though he didn't, not in the way that the editors meant), in a sense it frees them from having to come up with other examples.

I'm not convinced there is any such art but am as keen as anyone else to see Lonergan's version of it.

As for it being circulated by "other people" I think those were mostly Rhizome editors.



bodega list (2009) - Jeff Sisson

It's refreshing to be criticized for having a social conscience, since I'm usually "insulting artists" by being apolitical. My point is once you have your little moment of absurd non-functionality it's on to the next project. I was imagining absurd non-functionality on a rather grander scale, with lots of New Yorkers actually participating in this thing. I believe something could be an urban resource and still kind of a joke. We-love-bodegas-but-not-really.


bodega list (2009) - Jeff Sisson

I think this is a good idea but as I suggested to Jeff Sisson via email, the documentation could be clearer.

As I understand it there are two different lists:

When it says "Bodegas on the bodega list come from off-premise liquor license listings"

that refers to an *unpublished list* of unverified bodegas that Sisson maintains.

When it says "once a bodega has been verified, it appears on the list and on the red dot map, and it is given a homepage"

*that* list is the long list you see at

The "homepages" are the pages with the embedded google street view and address, where it looks like you can add comments.

My fear with a project like this is that its "success" is defined as getting reblogged by Rhizome and We Make Money Not Art and then it gradually falls apart. Remember Street Meme? An Eyebeam-launched crowdsourcing project where people identified graffiti tags out on the street and there was some kind of ranking system. The system was never completely functional and the creators lost interest in I think less than a year. But it didn't matter because the main tech art portal/aggregator sites all gave it the big thumbs up.

I'd like to see the Bodega project become a popular NYC institution, loved outside the tech art ghetto and enduring for many years, a real urban resource celebrating these non-chain store, practically invisible but vital institutions, so prove my gloomy prognosis wrong.


Response to "New Media Artists vs Artists With Computers"

I did post a reply to the allegation that I was "missing the point":

According to my omniscient stats no one replied to this so I think it's fair to say I won the argument.


Guthrie Lonergan is unusually perceptive and has a caustic wit. That said, credit is generally given for defining a term when it's actually defined. "Internet Aware Art" is a Delphic utterance that flatters each person who uses it with his/her own definition, as seen in the posts here following the Net Aesthetics 2 panel discussion, when it was clear that no one knew what it meant. You attempted to qualify your attribution to Guthrie, but people who don't follow the link can't know how thin his authorship is:

"Beard: You recently told me that you were working on some ideas for 'offline art.' Care to elaborate on what shape they might take?

"Lonergan: Right now I'm scheming how to take the emphasis off of the Internet and technology, but keep my ideas intact. Objects that aren't objects... I got a couple of books and a t-shirt in the works. Right now I'm really into text (not visually/typography... just... text...), and lots and lots of lists… 'Internet Aware Art.' :)"

I'm not reading where it says internet aware art is "an attempt to describe the tendency for artists to translate behavioral or situational tendencies occurring online to other contexts, particularly offline." I think the authors of this post are giving themselves "best of 2008" for a Boswell-like coinage.