Heard Andrew Lafkas in a Pennies from Heaven #9 event, organized by Control & Bánh Mì Verlag. This was one of the best gigs I’ve visited in the city. Lafkas played a contra-bass. He started the concert by droning individual strings for very long, which heightened our sensitivity to the resonances of the instrument. After the drone-phase be begun strumming the strings, while partially muting them. This caused string harmonic tones, which Lafkas focused on for the rest of the show. He produced a string harmonic melody, simultaneously with a bass line (caused by the striking of the strings) and the strings hitting the neck of the bass developed into a percussive beat. His performance was very physical and intensive.
Spicy Takes – Is Intersectionality Class-Cucking the Left? by Zero Books. A humorous and provocative attempt to reaffirm an alliance between Marxist class analysis and intersectional feminism.
Took some time and transferred all of the posts from hevoslinja.tumblr.com to this site. All of the +90 entries are designated to the Hevoslinja category (Finnish only). This was done due to changes in the tumblr service. Also transferred all no-chair-design.tumblr.com entries to this blog. Had to do some cleaning (removing broken links etc. There is still work to be done). All of the +50 entries are designated the NO-CHAIR-DESIGN category (English only). Also transferred the trans-mars.com blog entries from 2005 to this blog. Those entries are found in the TRANS-MARS category (Finnish).
Hevoslinjan taiteelliseen toimintaan on sisältynyt alusta pitäen taiteen- ja kulttuurintutkimusta ja oppia on haettu myös eläintieteiden puolelta. Aineistot ovat rikastuttaneet työtä, motivoineet, pohjustaneet taiteellisia valintoja sekä antaneet eväitä eläimen kanssa toimimiseen. Samansuuntainen liikehdintä posthumanistista ajattelua edistävien taiteilijoiden ja tutkijoiden kanssa sekä antoisat kokemukset TeaKin yleisen opetuksen ohjelmalle järjestämistämme “Hevonen ja esiintyminen” kursseista, johtivat ajatukseen syventää työskentelyä 4-6 vuotisella taiteellisella tutkimuksella teatterikorkeakoulun tohtoriohjelmassa. Työskentely olisi päättynyt väitöskirjaan. Valitettavasti ehdotusta ei haastattelun jälkeen hyväksytty jatkoon. Ohessa tutkimussuunnitelman luonnos inspiraatioksi ja opiksi. Kiitos kaikille palautetta antaneille sekä aloitetta ja työskentelyä tukeneille!
Tutkimussuunnitelma / Taideyliopiston Teatterikorkeakoulu / Tohtoriohjelmahaku
Tutkimus tarkastelee, mistä puhumme kun puhumme hevosesta suomalaisessa talli- ja harrasteympäristöissä. Esitän saman kysymyksen hevosille itselleen julkisten performanssien ja ryhmissä toteutettavien harjoitteiden avulla. Työn pohjana on nykyhevoskulttuurin taiteellinen tutkimus, joka nojaa hevosharrastajien ja asiantuntijoiden työskentelyn seurantaan ja haastatteluihin. Kartoitan minkälaisissa rakennetuissa ympäristöissä kohtaamme hevosia ja pyrin erottelemaan, miten paikka vaikuttaa eläinkäsitysten muodostumiseen. Hevosalan ammattilaisten ja harrastajien esityksiä peilataan eläinkäänteeseen osallistuneiden taiteilijoiden sekä teoreetikkojen ajatteluun. Näiden lähteiden varassa muodostuva tutkimus ja siihen kuuluvat taiteelliset osuudet koostuvat hevosten (ja ihmisten) kanssa toteutettavista performanssiesityksistä ja harjoitteista, joita suoritetaan hevostalleilla ja kaupunkiympäristössä. Eläimen esittäminen tuottaa konflikteja, joiden kautta voidaan avata niihin liitettyjä mielikuvia ja luoda väyliä eläinten tuottaman tiedon ääreen. Tutkimus kehittää posthumanistista työotetta, joka edistää eläinten kanssa toteutuvaa taiteellista työskentelyä ja mahdollistaa eläinten tuottaman tiedon hyödyntämisen yhdyskuntasuunnittelua koskevan päätöksenteon tukena. Tutkimuksen tuottama osaaminen pyrkii edistämään eläinten hyvinvointia ja luomaan välineitä kestävämmän ympäristösuunnittelun tueksi. Kestävästi suunnitellut ympäristöt edellyttävät fossiilikapitalistisen maailmankuvan tuottamista normeista poikkeavia ajattelun ja esiintymisen tapoja.
Visited a screening of Mediums (2017) by James N. Kienitz Wilkins & Kodak (2018) by Andrew Norman Wilson at Union Docs – Center for Documentary Art yesterday. Wilson was supposed to give a talk after the screening but he cancelled. After the films we heard Wilkins (who also co-authored Kodak) interviewed by Aily Nash.
Kodak was an media archeological analysis of film (both as a material and technology). The movie centered on Kodak as a company, looking at the ideological premises which fueled its development. The story is tied to Wilson, whos father worked for the company. Some of the footage was from their family archive. The film made a critical examination of Kodak’s key innovations (how cow brain gelatin was introduced as an emulsion and how processes were streamlined for efficiency) and an analysis on the development of the culture of photography. Photo-culture was presented as a cult of newness, which is trying to combat death, by collecting (and worshiping) fragments of time that technocratic superstructures enable mortals (consumers) to freeze (“You Press the Button, We Do the Rest” – Kodak slogan). The story was narrated by a man who suffered from some kind of amnesia (mad-cow disease?) and tried desperately to piece together the story of inventor George Eastman (sometimes believing himself to be partially Eastman). The movie ended up in a portrayal of virtual reality, which was presented as a hell were all of the residues of peoples (captured in frozen moments), were re-animated and doomed to live in the past.
Mediums was a faux-sitcom located at a courthouse staircase. The actors were faking to be people who were called for jury duty. The people were trying to make sense of each others and their roles as possible jurors trough intentionally clumsy dialogue. It was a classic Brechtian educational theater as a movie experience. Occasionally the actors started mind numbing monologues, which provided the audience with very specific information of very specific matters (Such as: Franchising legislation, model-faults of specific cars, organization of NYC health insurance organizations, copyright legislation, actors unions missions etc.). The monologues felt very lighthearted, but I imagine people dealing with the specific issues learned a lot. The discussions after the movie didn’t engage with the movies cynical take on art as a vessel of social change (the director explained that the monologues were only meant to highlight the actors as vessels for the text the director had written). People were more interested in contemplating the relations which the actors had had with the obscure dialogue.
- Motorola c520 (Dropped in a creek)
- Nokia i8110 (Bought used. Antenna broke)
- Nokia 6150 (Got as a gift)
- Nokia 6230i (Wanted a camera. Buttons broke)
- Nokia e50 (Wanted to write email on the go)
- Nokia 5530 (Brainfart)
- iPhone 3 (Got as a gift. Didn’t work well)
- Nokia N900 (Bought used. Broke after fall)
- Samsung s5690 (Wanted a phone that would not break)
- Samsung s3 (Wanted GPS. Screen cracked after fall. Tried to fix)
- Oneplus3t* (Wanted a fancy phone)
- Samsung J7 Prime (Needed a phone that works in USA)
All the phones I’ve ever owned (since 1998). Bought new 8, bought used/got 4. * Current phone.
Visited Aruna D’Souza’s talk Writing in the Reparative Mode (video link) at the 8th floor. The event was organized by the The New School. She offered a road-map on how she developed from an academician into an art-writer and art critic. D’Souza became disillusioned by the academia after witnessing numerous race related scandals which the organizations failed to respond to. After leaving university, she felt that Facebook helped her to develop as a writer. Posting on her wall felt like brainstorming and gave her the opportunity to pose questions instead of re-affirming what is already known (I really dislike her emphasis on Facebook and Instagram as “real venues for art writing”, because the technology is based on exclusion).
She invited the audience to think about “reparative criticism” which is an attempt to compensate for the injustices which effect the decedents of the enslaved. In the beginning she started to “write as a student”, which means she wants to understand an artwork on the artworks own terms (I’m weirdly reminded by the self-reflectionism of minimal art). Her writing is “drawing attention” to works which teach her how to be “an ethical and political citizen of this fraud moment in history” (D’Souza acknowledges this as signal-boosting). She is also constantly learning to talk about her own failures. “Our culture is weakened by peoples inability to apologize”. She refers to her writing concerning a Jimmie Durham exhibition, in which she downplayed the critique stirred up by Durham’s claims of Native Ancestry (More on the topic by Sheila Regan). After she re-freshened her opinion on Durham (after learning about the topic trough the debate), her act was seen of as opportunism (changing sides) instead of rethinking and apologizing.
In D’Souzas view art writing is primarily made for the white gaze. Art writing excludes the subjectivity of the artist (and the critic). When writing for the black-gaze, she is more sensitive when talking about race and politics. There are benefits too: Some key concepts such as “the existence of structural violence, “the consent of white fragility” and “the weaponized use of white tears” do not need explaining. She invites writers to “punch up” in their critiques and not to be afraid “name names” of people who are responsible for oppressive acts. She wants to name people so that we will not talk “around the problems of institutional racism” (I find this troubling. Naming people feels like vain punishment and I find it hard to imagine how it will help in changing structures). This process has made her friends, peers and audiences feel uneasy.
She wants to center on the voice of the protesters, instead on the “voice of analysis”. This approach has helped her to understand “the protest as a site” which gives some artists (who are excluded by institutions) the only opportunity to engage with the art world. Her starting point is that freedom of speech is not a universal value but a relationship. In her own words she is “not writing good art history” but “writing good something-else”. She points out that all art criticism is “advocacy” and the majority of contemporary art criticism is “advocacy of the supremacy of white male artists”. D’Souza is currently working on a book which is called “Against Empathy”. A critique of the individual affect, at the center of political transformation (in a manner which de-centers collective action). Her argument that “There is no aesthetic understanding, unless there is structural understanding” feels heroic but coming from a new-materialistic, Marxist point of view it feels old.
Our proposal (with Ilari) to have the publication on land- and environmental art conservation co-published by the Finnish Cultural Institute in New York and the Fine Art Academy of Helsinki was excepted and the book will be out this spring! I’ve been busy editing my text for it. Currently re-reading Entropy Made Visible (1973) and Entropy And The New Monuments (1966) by Robert Smithson. Revisited Dia: Beacon to make photocopies of Moira Roth’s interview of the artist found in Eugenie Tsai’s book Robert Smithson (2004). Feeling like a ghetto scholar (I’m literally stealing knowledge to make ends meet).
I got into the interview phase for the Doctoral Studies Programme in Artistic Research in Performing Arts at the Theater Academy of the University of the Arts Helsinki. I felt that I couldn’t reply adequately to the questions: Why I want to conduct my research in the framework of the Theater Academy and what its my relationship to performance studies. I mumbled something about, public craft fairs being transparent process of the production of commodity value. I wanted to say that I see performance a material deposit of located behavior, squeezed into acts by the design and affordances which places offer.