Posts for 2012

Rhizome Commissions Deadline May 1, 2012

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Aram Bartholl's Dust, Awarded Rhizome Commission in 2011

The deadline is fast approaching for Rhizome's 2012 Commissions cycle! Each year, this program supports emerging artists by providing grants for the creation of significant works of new media art. Projects can be made for the context of the gallery, the public, the web or networked devices. Rhizome Commissions awards generally range from $1,000 to $5,000. Deadline is Sunday, April 15th. Be sure to read over the eligibility, policy and procedures before you begin the application process.

Two of the commissions will be determined by Rhizome's membership through an open vote. The majority will be decided by a jury moderated by Lauren Cornell, executive director of Rhizome.

The jury includes:

  • Hans Ulrich Obrist, co-director of Exhibitions and Programmes and Director of International Projects at the Serpentine Gallery, London
  • Jonathan Lethem, author of The Ecstasy of InfluenceThe Fortress of Solitude, and Motherless Brooklyn
  • Caitlin Jones, executive director of Western Front 

 


 

Application Deadline: Sunday April 15, 2012

Approval Voting: Wednesday April 18, 2012 - Saturday May 12, 2012

Rank Voting: Monday May 14, 2012 - Friday June 01, 2012

 


 

The Rhizome Commissions program is supported, in part, by funds from Deutsche Bank Americas Foundation, Wieden + Kennedy, the Jerome Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, and by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs and New York State Council on the Arts. Additional support is provided by generous individuals and Rhizome members.

 

 

 

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RECOMMENDED READING: An Essay on the New Aesthetic

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Maps TD via The New Aesthetic

The "New Asthetic" is a term coined by James Bridle, and collected on Tumblr, further shaped by Matt Jones' comments on "sensor-vernacular" and the "robot-readable world." It is an investigation in the ways that imagry for and from machines has become a popular visual culture of its own, even shaping behaviors (as Tom Armitage asks, "How long before, rather than waving, or shaking hands, we greet each other with a calibration pose"?) If that is still confusing, perhaps Bruce Sterling might better explain the "New Aesthetic."

In "An Essay on the New Aesthetic," Sterling begins discussing the SXSW panel on the New Aesthetic, which included Bridle and Rhizome editor Joanne McNeil, in addition to Ben Terrett, Aaron Straup Cope, and Russell Davies. From there he explains, in almost a manifesto of sorts, just where these influences came from and where it is going:

Look at those images objectively. Scarcely one of the real things in there would have made any sense to anyone in 1982, or even in 1992. People of those times would not have known what they were seeing with those New Aesthetic images. It’s the news, and it’s the truth.

Next, the New Aesthetic is culturally agnostic. Most anybody with a net connection ought to be able to see the New Aesthetic transpiring in real time. It is British in origin (more specifically, it’s part and parcel of a region of London seething with creative atelier “tech houses”). However, it exists wherever there is satellite surveillance, locative mapping, smartphone photos, wifi coverage and Photoshop.

The New Aesthetic is comprehensible. It’s easier to perceive than, for instance, the “surrealism” of a fur-covered teacup. Your Mom could get it. It’s funny. It’s pop. It’s transgressive and ...

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Artist Profile: Antoine Catala

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In a statement for your 2009 exhibition "TV Show" at 179 Canal, you described television as a dying medium, suggesting that the work in the show was a kind of eulogy for TV. Television is a recurring theme in your work, but you’ve used it in various ways, both as a material and as a subject, often taking the most familiar types of programs—the news, for instance—and altering the way we see it. What is it about television that appeals to you? Are you interested in defamiliarizing something we take for granted, forcing the viewer to reconsider its place in everyday life? Is this work reflecting a sense of nostalgia for television’s past? If it’s a dying medium, what do you think has replaced it?

TV is no longer the all-powerful medium it used to be.  It’s dead in the same way radio is dead, whereby it only occupies a peripheral position in our lives. Internet is the new place, because it encompasses words, images, videos, audio, as well as the viewer’s participation.  The internet packs more information; in that sense it’s more HD than TV and that’s what people go for, the better, more fulfilling, more entertaining medium.

I was interested in TV broadcasts initially because I thought it was funny to bring live TV into the museum or the gallery.  In my TV work I encourage the use of any entertaining program.  However, screening an episode of Spongebob (a personal favorite) doesn’t work the same, in an exhibition context, than say the news or any program with live content. That’s because the viewer’s common assumption is that if a video is shown, it must be pre-recorded.  But I am not at all interested in working with ...

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Rhizome Benefit: May 9, 2012

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The Scanner at Saamlung

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Prepared Scanner, a composition in clay (Travess Smalley, 2011)

Untitled (Jo-ey Tang, 2011-2012)

Rhizome asked Travess Smalley and Jo-ey Tang, two artists with digitally-based work in the upcoming group exhibition "The Untouchables" at Saamlung in Hong Kong, to answer the same question(s) via email.

Surface is a theme of this show: is there a particular way you connect the visual elements of your pieces to something non-visual? Considering each piece has a digital and physical aspect, would you expand on the relationship between the two forms? What do you consider your pieces to be made of (e.g., substance, bit, concept, etc.)?  

Travess Smalley: I have always looked for ways to bring the home office into my studio practice. I mean, for most artists the home office holds many of the tools we use on a day-to-day basis -- inkjet printer, scanner, personal computer, even scotch tape and staples. I've always felt that my role as an artist and creator would be somewhat dependent on these tools. I mean, it's always been easier for me to find a mouse than a paintbrush.

Of all the home office devices, the printer/scanner is the most interesting to me. These are the two devices that convert the digital to the physical and back again. They are one of the few ports where the visual can get in and out of the separated digital and physical worlds. The printer and scanner have been my most important tools for the past few years. From my experiences and processes using them for artistic ends, I have come to think of my relationship to them akin to a contemporary printmaker. A home office printmaker perhaps. I've developed an understanding and elaborate choreography of process that attempts to blur the line of these convertors ...

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Artist Profile: Ed Fornieles

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Could you tell me a little about your "Facebook sitcom" Dorm Daze? How long did the narrative play out on Facebook? 

Dorm Daze was a performance conducted on a self-contained network on Facebook. Participants inhabited profiles scalped from real life American college students, which over three months were developed within a semi-scripted narrative - through interaction with each other and direction from me. 

In general, social networking sites reward engagement with engagement, and those characters that invested most time within the community became the lead roles of the sitcom. The exciting thing for me was watching these local narratives develop, feeding into and accelerating the narrative as a whole. Further, playing out the sitcom over three months gave opportunity to bring in real world events; for example, one character became very involved in the Occupy movement, propagating within our fictitious environment at the same time as these events were kicking off all around the world. In fact series one ended on a cliffhanger when a group that evolved out of the occupy movement blew up Wells Fargo bank and took to the road. 

Important also is that Dorm Daze was a piece in itself, but also a content generating system which has created material I’ve then been able to use in sculptural and installation works, brought together in the show The Hangover (Part II). Beyond these physical environments, the project has also spawned a book and a read only version of Dorm Daze 1, soon to be available for limited time only online. Recently, we’ve also begun talking to a TV network about the potential of turning it into a TV series. The point that this happens, the point that Dorm Daze becomes part of a cultural feedback loop in a very real, tangible way, is the point where ...

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The Download: James Howard

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Rhizome is pleased to announce London-based artist James Howard is featured this month on The Download.

Still from www.luckyluckydice.com (2012)

Utilizing spam that lands in his junk email folder and pop up ads, Howard appropriates the deceitful images and text in his collages highlighting the emotional tiggers that trap users. Rhizome members can download www.luckyluckydice.com (2012), a 51MB animated GIF of 1990s internet-style advertisments; a file size too large for dial-up speeds, but now easily viewable in any internet browser once downloaded. Rhizome editor Joanne McNeil interviewed him last year about the images he collects:

Images in online scams and phishing schemes can seem as artificially generated as the text — like botnet generated folk art. But there is a human hand at work. What do you think is the human element that draws people into these schemes?

People are like machines - their brains react to temptation like a computer does. Most people are able to recognise a scam, but if someone pulls the right string, sooner or later all that subconscious stuff inside you is going to lead you down the wrong path. Scams  get people by playing on insecurities, desires, fears, greed, whatever - it's uncontrollable and causes one in a thousand people to make a snap decision and pay up.

What do you consider the visual clues of this kind of kitsch of deception? Any interesting patterns or trends you've spotted over the years of collecting examples?

Squashed grinning businessmen looking into fisheye lenses, sunsets over serene oceans, happy families, sexy nurses- it's an endless and totally recognisable global visual language. There's a gruesome image of someone hooked up to a life support machine that keeps landing in my junk-mail folder these days -it always comes from a new person, with ...

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Thank You to This Month’s Sponsors

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We would like to take a brief moment to thank this month’s sponsors. These are the organizations and companies that keep us publishing, so be sure to check them out!

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Rhizome Digest: Best of Rhizome March

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Essays

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The Diacritics of Glitchr

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Diacritics are accent marks used to indicate the type of pronunciation a certain word infers. Diacritics are used in Latin script, but are also specific to other alphabetic systems such as the vowel pointing scripts of the Arabic harakat. In Laimonas Zakas’ project, Glitchr, a facebook page is dedicated to glitchily deforming the posting interfaces of Facebook.  Diacritical marks are emptied from their primary communicative signifiers and repurposed as formalized, aestheticized objects; accomplices in the jailbreaking of Facebook page hegemony.

Rather then its users shaping and determining its network, Facebook is known—amongst other things—for creating quite the opposite for users: a loss of control, of malleability and the continued reiteration of a standardized user conduct.  Glitchr then, in such a world, becomes a refreshing, if not odd spectacle: gifs become enabled, symbols and text float around up and down the page never adhering to the coded structure within.   

Though Glitchr to some degree interrupts the normativity of the Facebook structure revealing what one can safetly get away with, its subversive aesthetics survive only as mirage in the desert of the Zuckerberg empire.

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