Rasmus Hedlund Luminös Klang (2018). A good vibes summer techno track with a video by Paula. The track has a strong Maurizio vibe and the road trip music video is in baltic-style.
A Kulttuuri ykkönen episode on the power of curating. Jussi gives a good description on what culture institutions are: Factories which reproduce the past. This is why we should not expect museums, stages etc. to react to pressing political issues. They are specifically designed to keep art and life separate, which is why they cannot serve decolonial, radical identity politics (they can only create representations of these movements). He also offers an honest description of the work of curators: It’s only partly about curating.
Settling to New York City. The Fciny crew welcomed our four member family warmly. We sorted our two room apartment so that the kids have their own room. The apartment building has a gym in its basement and it’s located very close to the Grand Street in Brooklyn (Control is right next door!). Had to buy a new phone, my Oneplus3t LTE doesn’t work here. Got a Samsung 7J Prime (it’s scrappy). All of the food is coated with sugar, everyone I’ve seen has an iPhone and our apartment air-conditioner is leaking water (had to pry it open to drain it). And it’s all great! The city is more spacious then I expected.
I want a Rakit Analogue Drum Synthesizer kit.
Autogynephilia (2018) ContraPoints.
KANYE WEST STYLE (2017) Mark Angel Comedy / Episode 133
Kanye West has killed me ooooh..
A very heavy text looking back at a curatorial project Jussi Koitela organized: Politics as Art against the Art of Economics; Reflections on the Skills of Economy Sessions (2018) Georgios Papadopoulos. It’s great that Jussi got a detailed conclusion for the project but the text feels like a monument. It says nice things in a very complicated way.
Art is not constrained by the limits of theory or language in its efforts to account for the unrepresented elements of reality through aesthetic interventions, so artistic critique can create frictions in the circulation of ideology and ruptures in the layer of meaning that is superimposed on the world by it.
Contrary to most mainstream curatorial activity, which, whether intentionally or not, tends to produce the artist as a commodity, the Skills of Economy Sessions attempted, and partly succeeded, in highlighting the grip of economic ideology on artistic practice, challenging the shared perception of the curator as a collaborator or even an apologist for the market.
My text for Esitys mag. is out: Uusmaterialistista yhdyntää (2016). The online version of the mag also features an insightful text from Pilvi: Jumalattaria vai sarjamurhaajia?, which looks at how masturbation has been represented on stages.
Masha Gessen details how to survive autocracy in the USA. The same logic applies to today’s politics in Finland under the “True Finns” thumb.
- Believe the autocrat [If he says that he’s gonna – He will].
- Do not be taken in by small signs of normality [If things look like they are staying the same it doesn’t mean they are].
- Institutions will not save you [There are no neutral public institutions. They are managed by the government].
- Be outraged [If you stop resisting they will silence you).
- Don’t make compromises [If you negotiate you legitimise their reign].
- Remember the future [The outcome of events can be affected].
“… when Marx wondered about what would happen if commodities could speak, he might as well have asked slaves, or the Haitian revolutionaries.” writes María Iñigo Clavo in Modernity vs. Epistemodiversity on e-flux (as recommended by Jussi). The arrival of the text is well timed as we just finished a grant proposal together with Eleonora Lundell. We are seeking funds for a talk-shop, where people who have settled to Helsinki would talk about objects they hold dear.
Jussi Koitela send me two texts to ponder. “Self branding anarchist…” (In Finnish) looks at how self-employed political activists and creatives fit to the new-work ethos. The text attempts to update the critique of new-work. But other then looking at how social media serves the demands of new-work, the text fails in providing new insight on the matter. I think Tero Nauha’s old article “Pickpocketer or Politician” (In Finnish) is still more successful in building awareness. A recent text by Janne Saarakkala also covers issues well (In Finnish).
The “Self branding anarchist..” looks at the case of self proclaimed “anarchist on watch” Suvi Auvinen and analyses her status as a new-worker, primarily through her presence in social media. She is an outspoken anarchist and has used media to create awareness for projects she’s been involved with. Through this exposure she has gained nationwide recognition as an political intellectual, who can be consulted on any issue. The text argues that she is actually a tool for ideologies advocating self-employment and that she has made her political efforts vain by popularising them. The argument is that anarchistic practices cannot remain autonomous in corporate controlled social medias.
That argument is as silly as claiming that critical thinking could not manifest as text.
The critique is unfair to Auvinen and fails to see her as a precariat object conforming to the pressures of new-work conditions. She is an antagonist whose struggle for autonomy we are witnessing and learning from. I see her as an accelerationist and her relation to mainstream media as an effort to implode its exploitative nature. She already has broader audience than the old leftist People’s News magazine which published the critique.
I’m not her fan. I think her presence in social medias was irritating. She was fast to react to news but her responses were fuelled by feel-good-hype and her update pace was breathtaking. I do feel that her efforts in making anarchism know do more good than harm. I got to know her 2011 when I was visiting the Jokikatu squat (More on Jokikatu in the waybackmachine archive in Finnish) when there were plans to make Turku the “Subculture Capital of Europe 2011”.
The other text Koitela send me was “The Artist-in-Consultance: Welcome to the New Management“. The article by Elvia Wilk recaps how different artist-in-residency programs for corporations have been organized through the years. The text gives a short introduction to organisations like the late Artist Placement Group and tries to understand why big companies (like FB or Google) are keen in inviting artists to work with them. The reasoning is that through the artist’s body and by witnessing her/his struggle, the workers of the corporations get to experience freedom and can align themselves with creative culture (I have personal experience of this as a worker of the Kone Corporation approached me after I got a grant from the Kone Foundation. We exchanged some messages and it was fun).
Andrew Norman Wilson tells a completely different story about artistic practice in the corporate sphere.
Wilk text presents artists as particularly fitting workers to serve big businesses desire for innovation and their aim to revolutionize life through their designs. Wilks argues that artist&corporation collaborations a fact of life as artist cannot escape monetary economics. Instead of wasting energy to fight for the autonomy in arts, the text tries to set a new angle for corporate collaborations. The audience (and judge) of artistic practices that develop in partnerships with corporations, should be the ecological well being of the planet. The text also sets a tactical guideline for these collaborations: “The goal of the artist-in-consultance should not be to force the interests of business, art, and the planet to overlap, but to preserve their misalignment at all costs.”.
Edit: Made a song about my-new-work.