View current page
...more recent posts
Creepy as he is, Karl Rove is politically gifted. WIthin days of the White House's media black eye in New Orleans he was circulating two memes--"blame game" and "we had to deliberate carefully on sending US troops in because of the Posse Comitatus laws." Both utter bullshit, but they sound plausible and the media is biting.
Today in the New York area it's just as beautiful outside as it was September 11 four years ago, which should give us a worried feeling. It's especially troublesome that the people who were in power on that horrible, sad day are still in power, thanks to 59 million incredibly stupid American voters. Thanks, guys!
Added to the links at left: Thorrific. When I lived in Dallas I used to say the city was "a great source of negative inspiration, ha ha" while slowly rotting inside. Eventually fled screaming ten years ago but Thorrific (aka Thor Johnson) stays there and makes good art, music and video, while also documenting with his camera what former prisoner Randall Adams, framed by the Dallas DA's office and freed in the '80s by Errol Morris, called the "hell on earth that is Dallas County." Recommended is the animated vid "Adventures of the Christian Pirate Pussies," based on the beliefs of certain idiot wackos in freeway churches and, sadly, at the highest levels of the US government, that a "red heifer" must be born and sacrificed in Jerusalem before Jay-sus can come again. In the video, the eponymous vaginas transport such a beast, genetically engineered in a lab in Texas, to the holy land by pirate ship, while a talking, flying bible explains the superstitious beliefs surrounding it. Thorrific's photographs likewise excel; think William Eggleston not just as a chronicler of the quirky beauty of the South but someone burning up with hatred for the epidemic obesity and preacher-promulgated ignorance so abundant in that part of the world. (Start with the Texas State Fair photos, but they're all pretty powerful.) Lastly, check out the site's streaming files of spacy, dubbed-out atmospheric tunes, layering Thorrific's guttural didgeridoo-playing with jangly, ominous electronics. A web-place well worth your time: oppositional culture at its finest.
Chris Ashley presents greatest hits from two years of posting daily html drawings. Not to take away from any others, but this one's a beaut, fusing golden section neoplatonism, designer paint swatches, and what I can only see as a pictogram of a hand (Four, July 28, 2005, HTML, 404 x 344 pixels).
The participation of Chris, jimpunk, Linkoln, and me in the empyre listserv forum in June, as "artists who blog," seems to have thrown a spanner in everyone's works. As explained here earlier, it went badly, with the moderators allowing a bunch of faux-academic boors to bash blogs and bloggers. I bailed after two weeks and still wake up in a cold sweat. Shortly thereafter, Ashley went on hiatus from daily html drawing posting (since resumed with added photo-imagery), jimpunk disappeared from Screenfull, followed by Linkoln, after posting a "searching for jimpunk" drawing. Maybe "artists blogging" is a fragile thing, even if the artists aren't fragile people, a pursuit to be cherished and supported as opposed to acting all threatened about.
Steve Gilliard on Republican racial "inclusiveness" post-Katrina:
The unhappiest man with a home today is Ken Mehlman, [Republican National Comittee] chair. All his dreams of cutting into the Democratic base went up in smoke as the [National Review Online] lit their verbal cross and Bush failed like he has always failed. Bush could charm himself into a job, but once he did, the shitty decisions started and kept on coming. Mehlman would be laughed out of the room if he said the GOP was a party of inclusion. Please. You had the President's mother speaking like a Kenyan colonist in a village.If you're feeling glum, the video of the guy (off camera) saying "Go Fuck Yourself, Mr. Cheney" will really lift your spirits. I watched it with a group and we all laughed really hard. Cheney is giving a serious speech--being his usual Mr. In-Control self, even though he failed in Iraq and the only thing he's good at is lining his pockets--and the heckler (a doctor, apparently), who has a very clear voice and sounds like he's about 10 feet away from the VP--completely breaks the flow. He says "Go Fuck Yourself, Mr. Cheney" twice! The reporter comments on it and Cheney attempts to make a lame joke. Cheney likes to pretend he's the only adult in the room, but if you'll you'll recall, "Go fuck yourself" is what he snarled at Patrick Leahy on the Senate floor. It's great to see that when he goes out in public he's not so insulated as to escape hearing that people out there are mad and specifically hate him--him, personally--as the architect of a failed war and failed economic policies.
Congratulations to Stefan Eberstadt, whose sculpture Rucksack Haus adorns the cover of Dwell magazine this month. In the US we'd say "backpack house." I called it sculpture but it's also fully functional architecture; the box, perforated with wraparound windows, skylights, and "floor-windows" hangs suspended by cables from a larger building. The piece has received much attention in Germany and it's great to see it getting ink in the States. It occurs to me that housing such as this might be very useful in a certain flooded city we know. Not being flip here--the city should encourage provisional structures such as this parabuilding, rather than just letting the fat cats raze and redevelop to make New Orleans safe for their ilk.
I was in Munich last month attending the wedding of Stefan to Courtenay Smith, a friend and colleague from my Texas years and who is now curator of Lothringer Dreizehn, an art space located at Lothringer Strasse 13 in Munich. I had a great time; best wishes to both.
"The Belgians" [mp3 removed]. Often I start with scraps of found (or licensed) MIDI and tweak away, snipping out parts I don't like, mating it with instruments it wasn't written for, and otherwise layering it so it sounds like a different animal. This piece I did from scratch, building it up note for note, so I guess it's more "me." Or at least the cyborg me. The drumming is all Linplug's RMIV, which is a cool instrument because it is a rhythm synthesizer as well as a sample-player. [Rant about midi files removed because the company very nicely helped me solve my problems with them.]
Tim at Travelers Diagram takes you on a virtual Met tour (permalink busted). This is refreshing, just when you're starting to think no one cares about visual culture anymore (like--only 8 drawings in James Wagner's PS1 gallery: "It hurts my feet to walk there and it hurts to lift a pen, and besides, I'm too special"--but I digress). One quarrel: it's great that the Met lets you take pictures, unlike PS1, which imposes a Stalinesque ban on all photography, but what's the point of being all open source and shit if flickr won't let viewers save images to their drives? I had to screen-capture and process this (extremely weird) one for uploading. Could it be because of that little Yahoo! logo on the flickr page? I knew there was some reason I wasn't interested in flickr. Anyway, Tim:
Last week I spent three full days (Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday) from opening to closing (9:30AM - 5:15PM) inside the Metropolitan Museum of Art with the intention of seeing everything inside. My mission was successful, with the exception of seeing the Cloisters, which would have required another day. It was also possible because several large areas -- including the Roman Court, the Lehman Wing, Islamic Art, Chinese Art, and parts of Renaissance Art -- were closed for renovation. It was a thrilling experience, I recommend it to everyone, and I fully intend to repeat it someday.
My vague plan, which I violated several times, was to proceed chronologically from ancients to modern. I began with Ancient Near East and proceeded to Egyptian and Asian. That was my first day. My second day began with the Greeks, followed by the Romans, followed by African & Latin American Art, followed by Byzantine art and the Middle Ages, then Baroque and Rococco interiors and sculpture, and 19th Century painting. Melissa joined me for all of day three, which began in the music collection and proceeded to the roof garden for the Sol Lewitt exhibit, then European painting (Renaissance-18th Century Modern), followed by the American Wing, the Matisse show, and, finally, Modern Art and photography.
Have a look at my photos, ordered roughly as I saw them: Day 1 (68 photos), Day 2 (71 photos), and Day 3 (67 photos).
"Micrometallic" [mp3 removed]