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Subject : newsletter
From : Joy garnett
Date : 2001/01/29 Link : http://www.geocities.com/newsgrist/newsgrist2-4.html

============================ ============================ Newsgrist where spin is art http://newsgrist.com back issues: http://www.geocities.com/newsgrist/newsarchive.html ============================ Volume 2, no. 4 (January 29, 2001) ============================ now featuring "The Underbelly" post your spin directly to the site: http://www.geocities.com/newsgrist/underbelly.html {type posts in continuous lines or they'll be abridged!} Image of the week: Cool Mint http://www.geocities.com/newsgrist/Image.html ................................... CONTENTS - *Favorite URL/s* jimpunk; 010101 pages - *Favorite Quote/s* Art Talks Back - *Really?* at Artists Space - *Yes, Really* "Reality Video" - *Flatland Revisited* Superflat - *War Whores?* Disasters at PS 1 - *Humpty Domety* Millennium Dome Falls - *Obits* Just Merit is Dead. - *Classifieds* WANTED:Skilled Computer Programmer;Webmaster ============================ ============================ *Favorite URL/s* http://www.jimpunk.com ................................ Direct links to artists' pages in SFMOMA's 010101: Art in Technological Times http://010101.sfmoma.org/ eric adigard http://timelocator.projects.sfmoma.org/ entropy8zuper! http://eden.garden1.0.projects.sfmoma.org/ mark napier http://feed.projects.sfmoma.org matthew ritchie http://newplace.projects.sfmoma.org/ thompson&craighead http://yahoo.projects.sfmoma.org ============================ ============================ *Favorite Quote/s* "Imagine [...] a world where artworks talk back, where they sense your presence and are, perhaps, not at all pleased to see you." (NYTimes, January 28, 2001 http://www.nytimes.com/2001/01/28/technology/28UNGE.html In a Virtual Sculpture Park, the Art Talks Back By Miles Unger) ============================ ============================ *Really?* January 27th - March 17th, 2001 "REALLY" an exhibition curated by Barbara Hunt at Artists Space 38 Greene St. NYC Artists: Frank Benson, Steven Brower, David Henry Brown Jr., Alain Bublex, The Butterflies of Love, Kate Howard, Janice Kerbel, Cees Krijnen, Matthieu Laurette Perhaps the technological explosion, the constructed worlds of cyberspace and digital manipulation are to blame for the current, seemingly worldwide, obsession with "Real Life." There presently exists a notion that unedited, unscripted, reality is much more exciting than fiction or fantasy; in an age of exponentially expanding entertainment and information options, media presentations repeatedly offer us a window into the real world, however tedious, painful or palpably boring. It is within this context that Artists Space presents "Really," a group exhibition of artists who consciously operate in the borders between reality and fantasy, art and life. Using video, sculpture, digital prints, photography and architectural drawings, the artists challenge notions of authenticity, provoking us to question assumptions, institutions or established narratives that constitute our daily lives. Using humor, they deliberately position the viewer in the realm of uncertainty. [...] Throughout the exhibition, the relationship between the artist and the viewer is critical. The included works ask us to reconsider notions of the "suspension of disbelief" within the interactions that make up our daily lives. What is art, what is life, and what is artifice? Really? ============================ ============================ *Yes, Really* NYTimes, January 21, 2001 Before `Reality TV' There Was Reality Video By Michael Rush http://www.nytimes.com/2001/01/21/arts/21RUSH.html?pagewanted=all THIRTY years before millions of Americans worried whether Gervase would get booted off "Survivor" before Sean, or whether the purple-haired Brittany would lose her virginity under the ever watchful eye of "Big Brother," Frank Gillette and his cronies in the video-art Collective Raindance sat on a beach in Point Reyes, Calif., turned on their portable video camera and passed it around "like a joint," as Mr. Gillette remembers it. In a setting not unlike the tranquil tropical island of "Survivor," Mr. Gillette, Paul Ryan and Michael Shamberg taped their youthful musings on life, television and the imposing transmitter jutting up to the sky just across the road. "We were na•vely idealistic," Mr. Gillette said. "We thought we were going to revolutionize television, put it in the hands of artists and radicalize the medium." The earliest days of video art in the mid- to late 60's had a motley mix of video sculptures (Nam June Paik, Wolf Vostell), feedback systems (Mr. Gillette, Ira Schneider, Peter Weibel, Valie Export), alternative television and documentaries (Jean- Luc Godard, Skip Blumberg) and conceptual performance tapes (Joan Jonas, Vito Acconci, Bruce Nauman, John Baldessari). What appealed to these artists was the real-time immediacy of video tape. Unlike film, whose lush texture required chemical processing, video was simultaneously viewable: you saw what you got, either right away on the monitor or later when you slipped the tape into the Betamax machine. The term "up close and personal" soon caught on to describe the intimate feel of the taped interview or news report. Today, with video cameras on every street corner, at every Automated teller and on the tie clips of tabloid television news investigators, everyone is "up close," and our casual comings and goings are suddenly "personal" to the nameless security experts who scour these tapes watching for "false moves." One of the first installations of video art was the 1969 "Wipe Cycle," created by Mr. Gillette and Mr. Schneider for the Howard Wise Gallery in New York and shown in the exhibition "TV as a Creative Medium," the first show in the United States devoted to video art. The piece featured nine video monitors, four of which played pretaped material (some grabbed from television shows) and five of which played live and delayed images of viewers as they entered the gallery. "Viewers were mystified," Mr. Gillette said. "They were seeing themselves on television mixed in with all these other images from TV shows, and they were shocked as well as delighted." Recalling Andy Warhol's visit to the gallery, he said: "Andy, of course, loved seeing himself on television, but even he was a little confused by the multiple images and time delays. He kept shifting his briefcase from hand to hand to see if he was really being filmed live or not." If anything, the current batch of "reality TV" shows clearly Demonstrates a loss of innocence in everyday folk regarding being on television. It's as if camera culture has made professionals of us all. The New York video artist and editor Dieter Froese, who made video performances in the early 70's by taping visitors in a SoHo gallery, projecting their movements onto a monitor as an "immediate work of art" and then having a critic write an instant review of the piece, said: "These eager participants in the current `reality' shows become professionals fast. They learn how to hide behind the camera while at the same time suggesting something genuine, just like film actors." To Mr. Gillette this "lack of reticence" on the part of the participants is endemic in the culture at large. People seem all too willing to tell their story to anyone at any time, and if a camera's running, all the better. "For us, it was the ideas we found interesting," Mr. Gillette said. "We were exploring notions of time. For the first time, past, present and future were `materials' for our art, just like paint and wood." [...] The least camera shy of the early video artists was Vito Acconci, now 60, who put the lens close-up on his face and other body parts, using it as a mirror in which he could see what was usually hidden. In his first tape, "Corrections," 1970, he focused on a perceived imperfection, a tuft of hair on the back of his neck. "I used video as a way of exploring myself," Mr. Acconci said. "As an artist, my most basic instrument was myself, and the camera was a way inside." If critics of "reality TV" lament the collapse of distinctions between public and private in these shows, Mr. Acconci blasted private domains 30 years ago in his live performances and videotapes. The difference is when he did it he was pointing to the futility of suggesting that television or even art could offer real intimacy or real personal revelation. [...] At the birth of video art, artists turned the camera on themselves (another crucial distinction from television) or on others to investigate new meanings of time and identity, or to create new definitions of space and perception in a gallery setting. Naturally, there was an innocence in all of this, but there was also a quest for ideas, a hunger for experimentation. Audiences were part of the action, a necessary component of the experiment. In turn, they were offered a place in the development of an alternative to television, an interactive art that really did need them and really did place them center stage. (Some of these and other early video art tapes are available through Electronic Arts Intermix in Chelsea, http://www.eai.org ) TELEVISION is a medium of desire: it creates dreams, answers dreams, sells dreams. It promises to reflect us back to ourselves, but it ends up bouncing back what we long to see. "Reality TV" is a part of this mechanism of desire, more akin to the lottery than to actual everyday life. Perhaps this is as it should be. The images of ourselves that we might have seen in an installation by Mr. Gillette or Mr. Nauman can now be viewed in department store windows or on multiple screens in electronics stores. We can "star" in a video display on Sixth Avenue any time we want. All we have to do is walk in front of the camera. The artists' motivations for turning on their portable cameras were what set them apart, however. They didn't know if anyone would ever watch their primitive videos or venture into their techno-installations. Much less did they think someone would actually pay them to make these tapes or broadcast them on television. They had a camera. They knew it had far reaching possibilities, and they wanted to find out what they were. ============================ ============================ *Flatland Revisited* Artnet Magazine, January 18th, 2001 http://www.artnet.com/magazine/features/drohojowska-philp/drohojowska-philp1-18-01.asp Superflat by Hunter Drohojowska-Philp "Superflat," Jan. 14-May 27, 2001, at MoCA Gallery at the Pacific Design Center, 8687 Melrose Avenue, West Hollywood, Ca. It is a 90-minute subway ride from Tokyo to Saitama, where artist Takashi Murakami maintains his studio, Hiropon Factory, a series of quonset huts in the middle of a bamboo field. Murakami, 38, comes out to offer warm greetings, his round face accentuated by round glasses, wearing the goatee and many-pocketed sports clothing favored by film directors. After requesting the removal of shoes, he ushers his visitor into the tidy building. Murakami, who lived for many years in New York City and still keeps a studio there, speaks fairly fluent English. He is planning a project for Los Angeles at the MoCA Gallery at the Pacific Design Center, a westside satellite of the downtown Museum of Contemporary Art. As acting as curator of the new satellite gallery's first show, "Superflat," Murakami is transforming the exterior of the boxy building into a monster by draping it with vinyl banners of rolling eyes and pointed teeth. Since joining MoCA as director a year and a half ago, Jeremy Strick has boosted visibility and membership. Recognizing that much of the museum's funding comes from L.A.'s affluent West Side, Strick was amenable to opening the West Hollywood site. MoCA trustee Cliff Einstein, chairman and corporate creative director of Daley and Associates Advertising Agency, is one of the principal tenants of the Pacific Design Center and arranged a meeting between Strick and the building's owner Charles Cohen. Cohen agreed to provide free use of the space that was formerly the PDC's Murray Feldman Gallery and to provide all operating expenses, the salary of the new architecture and design curator, Brook Hodge. In Strick's words, it will be devoted to "the full range of MoCA's programming with an emphasis on architecture and design." Which is where Superflat comes in. The term is Murakami's own, his manifesto on the way various forms of graphic design, pop culture and fine arts are compressed - flattened -- in Japan. The term also refers to the two-dimensionality of Japanese graphic art and animation, as well as to the shallow emptiness of its consumer culture. Murakami first used it to label an exhibition he organized for the PARCO department store museums in Tokyo and Nagoya. Now, in a few days, an expanded version of that show is to inaugurate MoCA's new venue, bringing together work by 19 artists, illustrators, animators, manga artists and commercial photographers, all pushing the boundaries of their genres where commercial art media meets fine art. "The show suggests the unity of so many of the visual arts, Strick says later, "it seems to exemplify a great deal of what we are attempting to do at the new gallery." Murakami settles into a chair in his studio next to his larger than life-size fiberglass sculpture, My Lonesome Cowboy, -- a pornographic take on the characters in Japanese animation films -- to talk about his evolution and the concept behind "Superflat." To Western observers, Murakami's art initially seems something of an homage to Pop artist Andy Warhol. His working methods are similar to those of the Warhol Factory, whereby his sculpture and painting, no less than his toys, t-shirts, and publications, are the result of teamwork. As Murakami speaks, a dozen young Japanese artists monitor Developments at computers or do the background work on paintings that he later will finish by hand. His pieces frequently include a cast list of his collaborators and he embraces the techniques of mass production and media manipulation. In the beginning, Murakami says, he wanted to be an animator in the style of the pioneering Yoshinori Kanada, who is known for his sci-fi animation films from the late 1970s and '80s. But Murakami felt his technique to be so weak that he could only qualify for background painting. The best training was thought to be nihon-ga, the painstaking painting of traditional Japanese subjects emphasizing outline and flat areas of color. Like Warhol, Murakami is frank about his original motives. "My goal was to make money and build a traditional Japanese house. My parents are from Kyushu and I was raised in Tokyo. My father was a taxi driver and I was poor as a child. I hate the poor life." Both animators and nihon-ga artists are handsomely rewarded for their efforts in Japan. His brother Yuji Murakami remains a well-known nihon-ga practitioner. [...] [...], he had perfected his own version of superflatness. Murakami bases his painting and sculpture on traditional Japanese themes, especially the celebration of playful childlike humor. But his images -- pastel flowers, figures like the Lonesome Cowboy, and those signature teeth and rolling eyes -- meld such influences as Japanese manga, racy cartoon books, and anime, or Japan's stylized animated films, with traditional Japanese painting and printmaking. [...] Murakami first arrived at the concept of superflat as it pertained to his own art. "I'd been thinking about the reality of Japanese drawing and painting and how it is different from Western art. What is important in Japanese art is the feeling of flatness. Our culture doesn't have 3-D," he says. "Even Nintendo, when it uses 3-D, the Japanese version looks different from the U.S. version. Mortal Combat in the U.S comes out as Virtual Fighter in Japan and it's different." [...] One notion of flatness led to another - the compression of genres in the pop-inflected work of younger artists. "The new generation doesn't think about what is art or what is illustration," Murakami explains. "Their work is 'no genre.'" Murakami points out that his transformation partly the result of Japan's long recession. The bubble burst in the early '90s, creating a generation that faced a level of economic uncertainty unknown since the '50s. Murakami feels that Japan's long celebration of consumerism has turned to critique. "The Japanese people get fed TV and media for 24 hours a day," he says. "Now, we have a chance to think, 'what is my life?'" Consumer culture looks only one direction, not evolved. In the '80s, Japanese people didn't think about the meaning of life because of the strong consumer culture. Now, people are realizing there is an end. They have to think about it more than in the past. Young people are looking outside of consumer culture and asking, 'What is life?'" Superflat artists, Murakami says, create their own version of popular culture to draw attention to the dominance of the media, entertainment and consumption. Significantly, many in the exhibition work in the industries they critique. In addition to fine artists, there are commercial photographers, fashion designers, animators, graphic designers and illustrators. Sexual innuendo and black humor are popular topics throughout the show. [...] "Superflat" features works by the following artists: Takashi Murakami, Yoshitomo Nara, Chiho Aoshima, Yoshinori Kanada, Henmaru Machino, Koji Morimoto, Katsushige Nakahashi, Shigeyoshi Ohi, Masafumi Sanai, Chikashi Suzuki, Aya Takano, Kentaro Takekuma and Hitoshi Tomizawa, and those who have adopted unconventional monikers: Bome, Enlightenment (Hiro Sugiyama), groovisions, SLEEP, and 20471120. (HUNTER DROHOJOWSKA-PHILP is completing a biography of Georgia O'Keeffe for Alfred Knopf. She writes regularly about art and design.) ============================ ============================ *War Whores?* TimeOutNY, Issue No. 278 January 18-25, 2001 http://www.timeoutny.com/art/278/278.art.disasters.open.html War in pieces Images of war at P.S. 1 create their own disaster By Howard Halle P.S. 1's latest offering, "Disasters of War: Francisco de Goya, Henry Darger, Jake and Dinos Chapman," follows in the wake of the Museum of Modern Art's "MoMA 2000" series, and it displays the same propensity for lumping disparate artworks by theme-except here, the subject is conflict and all its attendant horrors. The exhibit slaps a generous hunk of recent work by the Chapman brothers between pieces by Goya (whose intaglios, Los Desastres de la Guerra, lend their title to the proceedings) and by Darger, the American outsider. It is an ice-cube sandwich of a show, however, guaranteed to leave your spirits as soggy as just such a misbegotten menu item would be. True, "Disasters" is hardly intended as a walk in the park for gallerygoers: We are supposed to be rudely awakened by curator Klaus Biesenbach's unorthodox selections and the parallels they draw between suffering and spectacle, violence and sexual frenzy. And there is something kicky about the way the exhibition bounces from Goya's certified Old Master-ish renderings and Darger's untutored, out-there fantasias to the Chapmans' slickly contempo shtick. So what? The cumulative effect is still more titillating than shocking, more snuff porn than sober consideration of the human condition. The main problem is that the show, which was originally mounted (minus Darger) at Kunst-Werke Berlin last summer, is obviously conceived as a showcase for the Chapman brothers. No offense to Biesenbach, but I suspect that it is the Chapmans themselves who are the masterminds behind "Disasters." The whole affair reeks of their sense of humor, of that Brit bad-boy attitude so mired in 1995. Throw in their healthy sense of self-regard and their affinity for Goya (whose work they've plundered in the past), and voilˆ! You've got an instant lesson in art history posited as a sick joke. Luckily, Goya's etchings are impervious to tampering; they remain, as ever, one artist's starkly brutal testimony to his homeland's defilement. Some 80 images depict the occupation of Spain by Napoleon's marauding armies, and though the plates for them were created between 1810 and 1816, the prints themselves weren't struck until 1892, long after Goya's death. His shockingly candid portrayals of atrocity-of various garrotings and limbless torsos lashed to trees, of branches ripe with the strange fruit of hanging bodies-still demand a strong stomach, and the surreality of their impact continues to seem strikingly modern today. Even so, their inclusion with the rest of the work in this show implies that Goya was simply indulging his imagination when in fact his "Disasters" are meant to be taken as a form of reportage, however biased. Darger's works, on the other hand, are the pure products of Artistic imagination, and a rather strange one at that. Born in Chicago, Darger (1892-1973) was abandoned by his father to a remedial institution for children sometime after his mother's death around 1905. Eventually, he escaped the place to a life of menial jobs and a shabby room from which he'd emerge to attend Mass several times a day. In between, he'd retreat into a universe of his own making-a "history" of a future civil war fought on an alien planet over the issue of child slavery. [...] So what do the lads offer? Two things: a meditation on the Holocaust, titled "What the Hell, I-IX," and their own cartoony takeoff on Goya's etchings, a series titled "Gigantic Fun." The former is a group of large photographic close-ups of some of the same toy-soldier scenes that the Chapmans created for Fucking Hell (a huge, railroad-model-type tableau that gathers some 10,000 figures into in a swastika-shaped diorama of wartime carnage). The images of "What the Hell" imagine the camps as Freddy Krueger might have run them. Instead of Nazis killing Jews, however, we see Nazis doing their worst to one another: heads on hooks, bodies being dragged into the ovens, that sort of thing. This can be read as either an elaborate revenge fantasy or a twisted expression of moral relativism-that the Germans were really hurting themselves with all that genocide stuff. I'm not sure which idea seems stupider. "Gigantic Fun," meanwhile, just plays stupid with Goya, though to what end eludes me. In the final analysis, "Disasters of War" (the show, not the etchings) is an exercise in the sort of cynicism at which the Chapmans are quite practiced-in this case, the suggestion that we are all complicit, somehow, in a game of cultural fraud. That certainly isn't true of either Goya or Darger; it's too bad they had to be dragged into the act. "Disasters of War: Francisco de Goya, Henry Darger, Jake and Dinos Chapman" is on view at P.S. 1 through February 25. ============================ ============================ *Humpty Domety* The Art Newspaper, Friday January 26th, 2001 http://www.theartnewspaper.com/news/article.asp?idart=4495 Artworks dispersed Dome artists are rescuing their works By Martin Bailey LONDON. Now that the Millennium Dome is being sold off and its contents dispersed, most of the dozen or so major artworks which it once housed will be returned to the artists. Sadly, the story of how the New Millennium Experience Company (NMEC) dealt with art reflects the general ineptitude of its management. Although seven important sculptures were commissioned for the area between the Dome and the Thames, these were crassly displayed and a promised grant from the Henry Moore Foundation was needlessly lost. Curator Andrea Schlieker, who coordinated the outdoor sculpture programme, soon became disillusioned with the Dome administrators. "I wanted to ensure that the sculptures were in a dignified setting, but as soon as the Dome opened it was clear that the reverse would be true." A booklet showing the location of the works ran out after three weeks and was never reprinted, so few visitors could even find the art. Richard Cork, critic for The Times and a member of the commissioning Sculpture Group, is even more outspoken, saying that Dome officials showed an "appalling lack of respect" for the outdoor works. Tony Cragg's "Life Time" was "largely obscured by yellow litter bins" and Tacita Dean's "Friday/Saturday" was used as "a stacking depot for plastic chairs". Anish Kapoor's "Parabolic Waters" was "drained and boarded off with rudimentary metal fencing", less than a week after it had been inaugurated. Although NMEC paid around £250,000 for construction costs for "Parabolic Waters", it was probably seen in working order by only a few thousand visitors. The Dome administrators also failed to follow up a £100,000 grant they had requested from the Henry Moore Foundation. Although the money was awarded, NMEC did not get round to submitting the necessary paperwork, so it was never paid out. Altogether at least £1 million was spent by NMEC on the seven outdoor sculptures - a £10,000 fee for each artist, plus the much larger costs of having the works made. [...] Unlike the artworks, most of the contents of the Dome belong to NMEC. The main contents are being sold off through Henry Butcher International, in some cases by private treaty sale, but mainly at auction from 27 February to 2 March. As for the Dome structure and site, it still looks as if it will be bought by the Legacy consortium, which hopes to use it for a business park. A Cabinet decision on the £125 million Legacy bid is expected to be made by the end of next month. ============================ ============================ *Obit* Just Merit is Dead. Just Merit, the artist from Linz/Austria, died of cancer earlier this week. Just had been working as one of the pre-eminent international machine artists since the 1980's and was the driving force behind projects like Contained (in the Voest steel factory) and Time's Up (based in Linz harbour- http://www.timesup.org ). Just's creativity, energy and enthusiasm were an inspiration not only for the people who worked closely with him, but also to the visitors of the shows and art projects he participated in, as well as to the international electronic art community. Strange physical experiences, the limitations of the human body, the pleasure of working with machines and having fun with people - all these were characteristics of his rich artistic life. [...] Sad greetings to those who were closest to him. Andreas Broeckmann ============================ ============================ *Classifieds* I: Skilled Computer Programmer Location: Chelsea, Manhattan, NY Tired of working "inside" the Matrix? CharacterWare is looking for a talented, capable programmer with demonstrated skills in designing, coding, porting and debugging software applications for the Internet and PC-based platforms. Creative Environment. Artists Welcome. - Strong understanding of C/C++, Open GL, Visual C, VB, along with Internet related programming languages (Java, Javascript, HTML, DHTML, etc.). - Experience within wireless O/S's, protocol's and devices considered a plus. - Candidate should possess a strong working knowledge of Active X, Direct X, and COM. Salary and benefits are competitive and will relate to experience. Send your resume to bill@characterware.com or fax to (212) 675-7747. ................................................ II: Webmaster CharacterWare is also looking for a Webmaster who can build and maintain our internal and external Websites. Design aspects are as important as technical abilities in this position. The Webmaster will be responsible for building and maintaining our external website which includes client privileged access, together with our intranet which is designed to assist Administration, QA, and Marketing. The position will also include responsibility for connecting to backend database (or write server-side scripts to connect to outsourced db's) and developing and maintaining web usage tracking (web trends, keynote systems, etc). - Must know JavaScript, HTML, DHTML, and XML. - Excellent understanding of the Internet and popular browsers (particularly most versions of Internet Explorer, Netscape and AOL). - Familiarity with Java SDK a plus - Be able to use a scripting language for CGI (Perl, etc). - Awareness and working understanding of network security. - Experience setting up and maintaining the physical equipment for the web servers a plus. Send your resume to bill@characterware.com or fax to (212) 675-7747. ============================ ============================ http://newsgrist.com free e-subscriptions: subscribe@%%%%%%%%%%%%%%% Classifieds, submissions + editorial: underbelly@********** ============================ ============================ Newsgrist where spin is art is a subsidiary of First Pulse Projects, Inc. P.O. Box 1269 Canal Street Station New York, NY 10013 http://www.firstpulseprojects.org info@*************** ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++