20190323

Visited Performance and Feminism seminar at TeaK. I went particularly for Marina Valle Noronhas and Kim Modigs Performing professionalism: Why do we travel for art and what does it do to us? talk but stayed for Lim Paik Yins movie and Minna Harris presentation about time. The three presentations formed a loose arch, which dealt with ecology and challenges caused by development. The Performing professionalism… was a performance. The stylish duo played a prerecorded sound piece while sitting confidently in front of the crowd. I interpreted the presentation as an attempt to problematize the image of the contemporary creative (art) professional, whose relevance is measured by the amount their international flights and prestige appetites, which attempt to transcendent the limits of bourgeoisie taste (and end up being mega-bourgeoisie).

Yins movie IN[formal] INTERchange (2018) offered a good contrast to the critique. She had conducted interviews (video-voip) with various amateur(?) practitioners of performance art in the Southeast Asian region. The performers talked candidly about their relationship to performance art while engaging in various joined performances (or performance exercises) with each other and the Yin. The film was appealing because it used low-key/accessible esthetics and utilized consumer services (such as Skype) for artistic research. It reminded me that there are global alternatives and strategies that work against the performance of professionalism.

Made a short teaching gig to Hyvinkää for middle to high-school aged kids who take art classes at Willa Arttu. I continued with the “Poststructuralism for Kids” program. We talked about strikes and how the act of “striking” halts movement (which offers a good time to contemplate what to do next) and practiced halting trough contact improvisation. After this we played with doors. We explored what doors are (the kids had some really smart ideas: gates to new dimension etc.) and then we experimented with different ways of opening a doors and discussed about the experience. Used this door opening tutorial (1979) as reference. I’ll do a full write up after the last gig.

Also dabbled with electronics during the week. Scavenged smd components from a failed project and used them to make a voltage regulator for a headlight (9v-to-5v) and a assembled solder smoke removal fan.

I’m making electronics to energize my grant application process. I’ve prepared 16 pages for a five year plan. Five years is not enough. The application consists of an array of loosely linked projects and ideas, some of which are framed as development motifs for work that will be executed around 2038. I’m currently most excited about the idea to organize Smithing in Public Spaces forging workshops. I’ve written the texts so that Jesse can use them in his personal grant applications too. If everything goes as planned we’d host public forging workshops in open city spaces, during which participants would learn how to mend and make metal things. The workshops will also serve as a vessel for collecting stories partisipants tell of metal objects they hold dear.

Catching up on Critical Making. Design and the Construction of Publics (2009) Carl DiSalvo.

[…] the notion that publics are “constructed” is perhaps most salient to contemporary design because it prompts a consideration of the means by which publics are assembled; begging the question: “How does, or might, design contribute to the construction of publics?” [John Dewey]

[…] inquiry into design and the construction of publics begins with a more thorough understanding of the Deweyan public. The assertion that publics are not a priori existing masses is central to the notion of the construction of publics. The public is not something that has been and always will be. It is neither universal nor an abstraction. […] for Dewey, the public is an entity brought into being through issues for the purpose of contending with these issues in their current state and in anticipation of the future consequences of these issues.

As designers and educators, [Anthony] Dunne and [Fiona] Raby are well known for their development of “Critical Design,”19 which they regard as an alternative to mainstream design in that the goal is the use of design to expose and explore the conditions and trajectories of contemporary design rather than the utilitarian problem-solving or surface-styling that has historically characterized design (particularly industrial design).

By the contributions of design, will publics inherit problematic qualities of being “engineered” or “commodities”? Such concerns are legitimate and substantial. The subject of design ethics should go hand-in-hand with the construction of publics, and have a significant place in future discourse.

20190317

I have a strong urge to assemble a Elektrosluch. It is a “open-source device for electromagnetic listening”. The design is by Lom audio, which seems like a very fine organization. I’d like to attempt to develop a binaural unit and to experiment listening to the electromagnetic properties of water (when it is electrified in some way) to confirm that different batches of Faux San Pelligriano have the same consistency. I attempted to make an electromagnetic microphone last night (and to listen to it with my new Lm071 preamp) but the loose 3,5mm jack picked up more noise then the coil.

I’m feeling empowered by my new electronics skills but I lack a clear focus. I’m get inspired by everything. I’m trying to keep grounded and set my bearings by listening to still & stretched: a mute tumult of memories (2017) by Heather B. Frasch. Her gig at Control last autumn set a trajectory for my current sound work. Perhaps I should take my eurorack and other loose projects to Jesse’s smithy and attempt to formalize something in relation to the Sound of Work series. There is also the possibility to develop something with Kristian (kettlebells?) or to possibly drone out at Kontula Electronic.

I skipped the Zodiak “men’s advanced dance course” this fall. I have some plans for bodybuilding and holistic kettlebell moves. Here are some inspirational videos.

20180703

Wrote the text “JOBINTERVIEW” on my studio wall (in cat size letters) to keep me grounded. It’s written in turquoise. If I could start over I’d write “THE DANCE COMPANY”. There is ample room in my studio so I still might.

I cycled to Manhattan today to meet other residents from Finland at the Fciny offices. Crossing the Williamsburg Bridge felt like entering a new world. The skyline was thick with smoke. Someone had written cynical words on the cycling lane pavement: “Self absorbed”, “Smothered”, “Rich”… etc. The words, written in faint white spray paint formed a welcome mat for entering Manhattan. A lot of cyclists sing while they ride and some play music from their boom boxes.. They sing to make themselves noticeable on the road – Being visible makes riders more safe (the same logic applies to working with horses). Americans speak and laugh loudly. I guess this habit could be read as a safety measure: When people hear each other perform they can locate each other and set their bearings straight. Are people who talk loudly afraid of something?

My time in New York feels like an investment. I now have 177 days to yield profits from this trip. I operate on a Day-Currency which is slipping trough my fingers when I make bad investments (like wait in traffic lights). Messaged Jesse and plotted new Ore.e Ref. services:

  1. “Product photos in New York service for Artisans”
  2. “The Temporary New York Sock Repair service”

In the first service artisans could send their craft items for me in New York to have them photographed against the Manhattan skyline. The second service is self explanatory: People could send their socks to me in NYC and I’d fix them (and take photos of them against the Manhattan skyline and wash them in the East River before sending them back).

This city is teaching me about scales. I have some ideas formulating on this matter but nothing clear yet (things felt clear for a second on the bridge but I forgot everything when I returned home).

20180504

We manufactured eight Trans-Horse medals from recycled aluminium with Jesse over the weekend. I’ll send five of them to Brussels to honour the participants of the Trans-Horse Parade. The Parade was a part of a series of horse related performances we prepared for Signal #6 Festival / Cifas last Autumn. Casting the aluminium was relatively easy (we succeeded in making one medal in 20minutes!). The horse in the medal is The Awaited Son (A drawing based on the photo can be downloaded from OpenClipArt). I’m really exited to send a medal to the Cavalry department of the General Reserve of the Federal Police of Belgium! Other recipients are horse stables around Brussels and the staff of the Schaerbeek recycling center.

We are preparing the third Horse & Performance course for the Theatre Academy Helsinki with Pietari.

I’m preparing a performance for the Kone foundation Lauttasaari manor spring party with the Neighborizome crew. Repurposing an old Trans-Horse ethical infta text for a small publication I plan to share with my audience.