Read a speech written by Päivi as “a man with a moustache which looks like the moustache of Kyösti Kallio” at the RaivioBumann (Raivio & Daniel Bumann) Hiljainen vieras / Silent Guest event. The performance was a part of Patsastellaan: Parties for Public Sculpture series organized by James Prevett (Taideyliopisto). The role of being just an actor/speaker felt nice.. I wasn’t as nervous as when I perform my own material.
Bought a Bastl Dude mixer for the upcoming Childrens Techno workshop (Teknomuskari) in Turku (NPTurku covers the expenses!). The mixer can also be used in Brussels next month. Made a website for our upcoming show wheredoyouwanttogofromhere.com. The Brussel gig is causing a lot of stress.. The recent attacks in Barcelona and Turku are adding to the mix. Working with horses is stressful, working with people is stressful and working in public spaces is stressful. To top it off, we are drafting strong arguments concerning the changing nature of public space (in relation to recent attacks) and framing climate change as a weaponized method of colonial dominance.
The booklist we’ve selected as our framework requires intensive learning. We are studying classics like Foucault, new material from Butler, new materialism/anthropocene inspired texts, the history of horses in European cities, re-reading Hribal and Eyal Weizman’s theories concerning the Arab Spring (The Roundabout Revolutions, Critical Spatial Practice 6, 2015). Majority of the text deal with infrastructure and how urban structures serve as authors of the modern self-regulating subjectivity. The texts (even the history of the horses) are centered around the concept of public assembly and examining how the concept of “the people” is build and used.
I guess part of the stress is caused by the indoctrination of these texts. Changing is stressful.. And I guess developing as an artist requires constant change.
Major updates at Ore.e Ref. main site (10 years of celebration!). The biggest structural updates are internal: Cleaned dead links, re-organized the folder structure (./media, ./praxis) and relinked files to corresponding .html pages. Also added company staff (Eleonoora Lundell, Päivi Raivio, Hanna Karppinen & Pietari Kylmälä) and reframed Ore.e Ref. as “a public utility company”. While working on the site I found a lot of cute stuff (like a copperplate sale announcement and an attempt to make an interpretation of the company logo from 2011). Also noticed that NO-CHAIR-DESIGN in featured on a top 100 design manifestos list. The site is still missing an announcement of the Meta- Collection. I’ll start working on it during the summer. I guess it will be hosted on the “projects” page.
Got a call from a random English speaking copper scavenger asking if I could buy his 100kg batch. Referred him to Niemen romukauppa and provided him with the addresses, contact details and bus schedules. This isn’t the first time Ore.e Ref. has caused strange enquiries. Once I got a call from Rick DuBois a Sea captain from Imperial Yachts. He wanted Ore.e Ref. to repair a ventilation ring while the boat was docked in Helsinki (Unfortunately Jesse was busy at the time so forwarded the commission to Kylmateras.fi). Ore.e Ref. website might look shady for creatives but it spells P-R-O-F-E-S-S-I-O-N-A-L for people who need of custom metalworks.
Visited Homage 1 at TeaK yesterday. The piece was choreographed by Janina Rajakangas, featured nine dancers and it dealt with emotions. Rajakangas explained that she was exploring dance as a stylized convention for movement which is primed by the dancers desire to portrays emotions/feelings on stage. The approach was analytical. Dancers working on stage presented themselves as emotional teflon by swapping their moods and gestures impulsively. In a dicussion after the piece Rajakangas talked about “tunteet” and “tunteiden esittäminen” but I’m not sure if she was talking about emotions, moods or feelings. The audience (consisting of dancers) talked about the piece using weird vocabulary. They asked Rajakangas if she was interested in “liikkeen laatuisuus”. This apparently meant “the formal structure of movement”. “Kehon laatuisuus” was also to describe specific muscular tensions. People were trying to sort out if the emotions the dancers portrayed were real of formal representations emotions. I don’t know.. Everything looked fake to me.
I read the piece as a critique of contemporary dance. It’s statement was: If artists can acquire emotional-teflon-skills and they truly can swap their emotions on cue or if the dancers can make the audience believe that their emotions are true by using specific gestures… Then it must mean that the emotions they perform on on stage categorically fake or that the audience is gaullable (or crazy).
Digital-to-Tangible Clinic & Workshop for Rescue Museum at Temporary went relatively well. I didn’t feel 100% prepared to host the clinic but we had some decent moments with the four guests and people appeared satisfied. I could have been more dynamic in my presentation and kept a more packed schedule. People seemed to enjoy re-mediating digital content (drawing).
Visited Hybrid Matter symposium at TeaK last Thursday. Jennifer Gabrys gave a talk concerning animals as sensors. She referenced projects that had embedded animals with sensory technologies to collect data on weather conditions, migration routes etc. The approach is of interest for our Trans-Horse project. We’ve investigated the possibility to set the horse’s views and environmental requirements as a premise of urban planning in hopes of crafting more environmentally engaged and versatile environments. Gabrys approach was critical and she argued the majority of animal aided data is used to confirm human perceptions. She is currently working in a project called citizensense.net. Her talk gave me the idea to use the horse care-journals of the Mounted police of Helsinki as data to study city development!
Steen Rasmussen gave an interesting talk about BINC economics (bio-, info-, nano- and cogno.). His talk was a useful reminder of the historical importance of the middle class: The empowered, wealthy and democratic middle class of the last century was a unique historical glitch and automation of labor is it’s biggest threat. He was optimistic about 3d printing and other “new” manufacturing technologies and urged the audience to engage with new technologies open mindedly. Unfortunately many new technologies categorically renunciate agency of the makers. This renunciation is embedded in modern worldviews – Factories and 3d printers are equally bad! There are no new technologies.. New tools fuel the same old colonization. After the symposiums I came across the concept of Critical Making which I’ll have to study more. Critical Making seems to fit many Ore.e Refineries projects neatly.
On Friday I joined a dinner organized by the Union for Rural Culture and Education. The dinner completed my involvement with the Grey Cube Gallery project. I was seated next to Päivi and sound artist Petri Kuljuntausta. Kuljuntausta was kind enough to share field recording techniques and motivated me to continue with sonic experimentations. We talked about the Ihme audio-guide project I completed last spring and he had some ideas on whom to contact concerning the future of the project. I had to leave the dinner early as I rushed to Turku. On the buss I read some of Kuljuntaustas texts on sound art. He has used a KaossPad in his live setup.
In Turku I met with Jesse and we made 232 separate machine/tool sounds and two binaural recording at his smithy (The binaural equipment is on loan from Circus Maximus). The recording went as planned and we worked on site for eight hours. The majority of the sounds are high pitched and we’ll possibly make additional recordings next year. Jesse had the idea of fitting the smithys floor with piezo microphones, so that we could hear the bottom end sounds. We’ll likely call this sample-pack “Sound of Work: Blacksmith vol.1”. I’ll demo the sounds for Jesse next weekend.
I’m meeting students from the Kankaanpää Art School online this week to discuss their upcoming graduate exhibition and art projects. Also met with Antoine Pickels concerning possible Trans-Horse engagements next year.
Finished my article “New Material Intercource” regarding contemporary sex-toys and their impact on the environment and our sexual expression. It’s currently being edited by Tuomas Laitinen and it’ll likely come out before Christmas in the Esitys-magazines Masturbation-edition. I draw nifty pictures to accompany the text. The illustrations are available on Openclipart: New Material Intercourse – Clipart collection and they are licensed for unlimited commercial use! The text echoes the “handicraft-ethical / future archeological” thinking we’ve developed over the years through various Ore.e Refineries activities. One slogan we’ve deployed with Jesse was: “The future is decided with hands” and the “New Material Intercource” text takes this statement literally.
Watched and appreciated “November” (2004) by Hito Steyerl. The movie convinced me that narratives are a thing of the past. At time artist were trained to produce counter-narratives in an effort to voice out opinions of the oppressed. I’ve now come to understand that the problem is with narrativity itself. Every narrative ground events in to mythological continuum.
Every story, tells the story that there is a founding myth. #ॐ
Met with Päivi Raivio and I agreed to join her “Rescue Museum” events in November. I’ll possibly be working to salvage personal digital heritages of unknown Facebook users.
Met with Pilvi Porkola and went through my participation in her upcoming show for New Performance Turku. I’ll be using a kettlebell and making techno on stage with her.
In the future we can borrow clothing from the libraries.
Got a job working for the Grey Cube Galleries! I’ll be in charge of documenting their summer events at the Helsinki Zoo. Discussed the gig with Päivi Raivio and as requested I’ll make 4-6 short documentaries of various events and projects. I’ll get to interview Katrin Caspar & Eeva-Liisa Puhakka, Päivi Allonen and artist of the Honkasalo-Niemi-Virtanen group. These artist talks will be backed with interviews of various animal caretakers and zoo personel. I worked for the Grey Cube Galleries last summer too. I build the Zoovision reality-headset during my residency. This gig is a interesting continuation of last years work and offers a new view to the zoo institution.