Posts for July 2008

Tonewheels Installation

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ACCESS SPACE - SHEFFIELD UNTIL 1 AUGUST 2008

Tonewheels is an experiment in converting graphical imagery to sound, inspired by some of the pioneering 20th Century electronic music inventions. Transparent tonewheels with repeating patterns are spun over light-sensitive electronic circuitry to produce sound. This all-analog set is performed entirely live without the use of computers, using only overhead projectors as light source, performance interface and audience display. In this way, Tonewheels aims to open up the "black box" of electronic music and video by exposing the working processes of the performance for the audience to see.

Up until now, Tonewheels has been realized as a live performance or a workshop (at WAVES, Dortmund, May 2008). However, for Access Space, Holzer has decided to create a playable installation based on these simple optoelectronic principles. Users of Access Space will be invited to produce patterns for the spinning tonewheels as well as graphical scores to be projected on the instrument in order to play it.

The inspiration for this installation comes from the ANS synthesizer. The ANS is a pioneering electronic music instrument conceived and built by Evgeny Murzin in the Soviet Union during the late 1950's. It is also one of the first experiments in direct graphical composition. To compose with the ANS, the user scratches lines through the opaque black covering on a glass plate. Light shines through these lines as the plate passes through the machine, and activates photocells inside it. Lines at the bottom of the plate produce low tones, while lines at the top of the plate produce high tones.

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Originally posted on Digicult RSS (IT) by Rhizome


Fruit Brut

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Indie gaming has been the hot topic in the videogame world in 2008, but even the most erudite and well-informed game bloggers have smashed into an impenetrable wall of critical stupefaction when attempting to grapple with the strange and unheralded wonder that is Fruit Mystery, a ultra-low-fi flash challenger created by something named Brett Graham. TIGSource proves speechless, Play This Thing! attempts an intelligent exegesis of its procedural rhetoric, but ends up saying it's a kind of game that "should be put in the dumpster and ignored after use, like disposable diapers," and a commentator at Rock Paper Shotgun simply asks, "What the utter fuck did I just play?" Set to the incisively irritating rhythms of the 80s' worst song, the garishly-colored Fruit Mystery enjoins you to feed a variety of badly-drawn edibles to zoo animals, represented by a marquee procession of stock photographs; each food-plus-animal combination elicits a unique edugame-style tidbit of rude, poorly-spelled nonsense. At the end of this cross-species gastronomic adventure, (spoiler alert!) you are assaulted by Zookeeper Steve. Thanks to his huge resume, which is posted to his site, one would be led to believe that Mr. Graham lives in Australia, where he works as a web designer. He also provides free advice for dog owners, does not like white rice, and may still live with his mum and dad. - Ed Halter


Image: Fruit Mystery (screengrab)

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Dancing with the Stars

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This week, critic Ben Davis wrote an interesting treatise on "The Superartist." Davis uses the term to describe those artists who are super savvy at penetrating the media, and become superstars by virtue of their collaborations with big corporations and work in mainstream contexts. His argument was that so-called 'Superart' has a populist touch, and appreciation of the work tends to be an appreciation of being part of a collective, as opposed to an individual, aesthetic experience, just as the works themselves tend away from personal statements and towards blank social referents. As it turns out, this could be a very good critique of Lincoln Schatz's newest project, Esquire's Portrait of the 21st Century, in which the generative artist uses his own custom software to create an evolving portrait of those 75 people the magazine has deemed the most important people of the coming decades...Just in time for Esquire's 75th anniversary issue. Schatz has constructed a "CUBE," the white frosted glass walls of which very much resemble a Chelsea gallery facade except that the structure is studded with video cameras and Mac minis. The stars in question are invited into the cube for hour-long interviews about their personal interests, after which they are generatively collaged into an evolving constellation with other stars, according to their shared interests. In a tried and true display of the magazine's firm grasp of 21st century media, Schatz is keeping a blog in which the portraits are uploaded. So far, the footage is very beautiful and almost painterly in the ways that it overlaps and meshes together. It's easy to create corporate collaborations as sell-out projects, but harder to spend the time thinking about a work's wider resonance. The artist's bio says that his work "has focused ...

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Call for Submissions: Le:60 - LUMEN ECLIPSE’S 1ST ANNUAL 1-MINUTE FILM FESTIVAL

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Le:60 - LUMEN ECLIPSE'S 1ST ANNUAL 1-MINUTE FILM FESTIVAL

Send us your best minutes, the minute you surprise yourself with -- if your minute glimmers like a fish just under the surface of the water, we want to spear that bad boy. Not to exceed sixty seconds, your films, will compete to be the first screened at this perennial event.

As ever, Lumen Eclipse's mission to bring film and video to a public arena is steadfast. Selections will be screened outdoors under the stars, setting submissions free from dark theatres and computer screens.

Friday, September 27, 2008
6:00 -- 10:00 PM
Palmer Street, Harvard Square
Cambridge, MA

Submission Guidelines and Prizes at:
www.le60.org

Event hosted by:
www.lumeneclipse.com

SUBMISSION DEADLINE:
postmarked/uploaded by midnight, August 15th, 2008
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Originally posted on Rhizome.org Announcements by Rhizome


Harris Lieberman Gallery: November Again

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Harris Lieberman Gallery

89 Vandam Street
Soho
July 30 - September 20, 2008

Opening: Wednesday, July 30, 6 - 8PM


FRANCESCA DIMATTIO, JASON DUNGAN, SHANA LUTKER, YASUE MAETAKE, MARCO RIOS, KIANJA STROBERT, KARA TANAKA, ROBERT ZUNGU

Curated by Jeffrey Uslip

Harris Lieberman is pleased to present November, Again, a restaging of an exhibition curated by Jeffrey Uslip at the gallery in 2006. Revisiting the exhibition demonstrates a commitment to a group of artists, most of whom are not represented by the gallery, in an effort to afford viewers consistency in their examination of these artists' development over the course of two years. November brought together artists whose work examines issues of the body in flux and responds to the immediacy and urgency of the (then) current socio-political climate. November, Again seeks to highlight its aftermath. Now, the body is presented as a cyborg gesture, the focus on the individual is substituted for global and environmental concerns. Building on themes presented in the first exhibition, November, Again narrows the original group of fourteen artists to eight, focusing specifically on those artists whose work shares this common ground.

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Originally posted on ArtCal by Rhizome


PDF at Why + Wherefore

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Fia Backstrom and Danna Vajda, Conversation between Danna Vajda and Fia Backström 20th of July 2008 in Backström's exhibition That social space between speaking and meaning, detail. Via Why + Wherefore.
PDF
Curated by Summer Guthery, Lumi Tan, and Nicholas Weist
Various locations
19 July 2008

PDF, a group exhibition presented by Why + Wherefore and curated by Summer Guthery, Lumi Tan and Nicholas Weist opened simultaneously this month on 19 July across more than 20 international venues. The exhibition was a reproducible selection of specially commissioned PDF files authored by the invited artists. It was installed at each of its material sites for a single day only, while the PDF files constituting the show remain freely available on Why + Wherefore's website, along with instructions for producing a material exhibition of the work. Adobe's 15 year old Portable Document Format is the successor to several alternative page description formats - like the more print-oriented Postscript (also developed by Adobe) - and has been popularized in the distribution of technical literature, business documents, electronically published texts, and artist portfolios. PDF likewise plays across this technology's many popular uses, with contributions including Fia Backström and Danna Vajda's engaging dialog on the meaning of content and the production of meaning, Bozidar Brazda's single-page concrete poem, Jordan Wolfson's book-length collage of found and original images and texts, Paul Ramirez Jonas' ascii drawing, Rachel Mason's playbill for a morbid re-imagining of the trial of a fallen dictator, Brian Clifton's serial memorial to the known victims of the Tiananmen Square Massacre, Sean Raspet's cryptic assemblage, and an arbitrary selection from Dexter Sinister's library.

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Originally posted on ArtCal Zine by Rhizome


Dinner Table Conversation

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This past Saturday at General Public, in Berlin, e+l staged Media Plate, their latest investigation of the micro- and macro-forces at play in the consumption of food and production of waste. These have been central topics over recent years for e+l, a collaboration between Ken Ehrlich and Brandon LaBelle. For their 2003 residency at Hull Time Based Arts, in the United Kingdom, the non-English artists cooked "foreign" cuisine (fish tacos) for a "performance-picnic," played music from the origin countries of ingredients, and incorporated placemats that mapped the journey of each ingredient from its origin-point to Hull (Active Ingredient, 2003). Through the seemingly innocuous social convention of the picnic, Ehrlich and LaBelle highlighted the various structural and economic tiers of food distribution and made participants aware of their localized position in these networks. Shifting focus to the far end of food consumption, the artists laid ginger and compost at various urban development and waste sites throughout Berlin as an open invitation for ginger plant cultivation (Active Refuse, 2005). They concluded the project with a discussion and cooking-presentation of ginger-carrot soup. The cycles of development characteristic of a contemporary metropolis were here given analogous, naturalistic form in Ehrlich and LaBelle's urban gardens, while their placement on waste sites equally drew attention to the often hidden side of a city's maintenance. As with their broader body of collaborations, Active Refuse builds upon Ehrlich and LaBelle's extensive research into waste management in Berlin, including visits to local plants and centers and interviews with waste-management officials. Lyrical conceptualism and deep inquiry thus come together, somewhat uncommonly, in this and other of e+l's projects, and always end up staying for dinner. - Tyler Coburn

Image: Ginger-carrot soup ingredients for Active Refuse

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Run Silent; Run Deep

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At ISEA 2008, a new work by Nigel Helyer and Daniel Woo, of AudioNomad (also see audionomad.com), with whom I worked on Syren works, based on locative spatial audio technology.

The following is a re-blogged excerpt from We Make Money Not Art:

0arun2silent.jpg

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Images Priscilla Bracks

Run Silent; Run Deep by Nigel Helyer (UK/Australia) & Daniel Woo (Australia) collaborating with the Marine Mammal Research Laboratory, provides an ‘audio portrait’ of Singapore - in particular the area around the harbour. The interface of this work enables you to move through a stylized ‘map’ of the city, listening to sound recordings made using hydrophones in areas corresponding to coloured circles on the map. Surround sound in the installation space, gives the sense of a 3 dimensional map, and hand drawn images laid over the map gives it cartographic feel.

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Originally posted on sonic surrounds by nmariette


A Feast for Your Eyezz

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One of the hallmarks of the current era of net art is the exhibitory display of one's consumption. While a lot of early net art was self-reflexively directed at the traits of networked environments, newer work seems to be largely about running around and exploring those environments, then generating responses. The output of the pseudonymous artists behind Triptych.tv (Jimpunk, Abe Linkoln, and Mr. Tamale) forms a bridge between these two eras. It incubated in the hour of the first boom's waning and waxed ahead of the current surf blog curve. As a result, Triptych.tv (which, readers are forewarned, could very much hijack its predecessor Screenfull.net's motto, "We Crash Your Browser With Content") marries the best qualities of these two eras. The site simultaneously evades initial detection as a blog while exploiting (in the true hacker sense of the word) all of the default structural conditions that make blogs such a performative space. The artists post heavily and skillfully manipulated videos, sound clips, images, and animations, to the order of optical poptitude; and while their individual posts stand on their own, the degree to which they harmonize with each other could finally--after so many decades--stand to illustrate the truly exquisite nature of the exquisite corpse. This is net art decadence at its richest. Now if the site sounds familiar to you, we'll admit to having covered it before, but the group's current summer marathon inspired us to remind you of its presence. This, afterall, is another trait of current net art blogs. There are no one-hit-wonders, and despite the ".tv" in the site's URL, there are no reruns here. To truly take in this collaborative artwork's beauty, one needs to resign themselves to the compulsion to repeat. - Marisa Olson


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Windows Washing Machine (2005) by Harm Van Den Dorpel

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Sculpture made out of a 'normal' personal computer, an electrical tincan-opener, an alu-frame and two roadbricks.

The computer rotates 360 degrees around its axis. All desktop elements such as windows, buttons and scrollbars respond to the constantly changing direction of gravity: they fall to the bottom of the screen all the time.

A little stone is attached to the mouse which is also connected to the computer and functions as a balancing receptor. When the computer rotates, the mouse clicks and releases by the changes in gravity.





sculpture

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Originally posted on harmlog by harm