Mark B.N. Hansen
Foreword by Timothy Lenoir
In New Philosophy for New Media, Mark Hansen defines the image in digital art in terms that go beyond the merely visual. Arguing that the "digital image" encompasses the entire process by which information is made perceivable, he places the body in a privileged position—as the agent that filters information in order to create images. By doing so, he counters prevailing notions of technological transcendence and argues for the indispensability of the human in the digital era.
Hansen examines new media art and theory in light of Henri Bergson's argument that affection and memory render perception impure—that we select only those images precisely relevant to our singular form of embodiment. Hansen updates this argument for the digital age, arguing that we filter the information we receive to create images rather than simply receiving images as preexisting technical forms. This framing function yields what Hansen calls the "digital image." He argues that this new "embodied" status of the frame corresponds directly to the digital revolution: a digitized image is not a fixed representation of reality, but is defined by its complete flexibility and accessibility. It is not just that the interactivity of new media turns viewers into users; the image itself has become the body's process of perceiving it.
To illustrate his account of how the body filters information in order to create images, Hansen focuses on new media artists who follow a "Bergsonist vocation"; through concrete engagement with the work of artists like Jeffrey Shaw, Douglas Gordon, and Bill Viola, Hansen explores the contemporary aesthetic investment in the affective, bodily basis of vision.
See more of the book: http://www.amazon.com/Philosophy-Media-Mark-B-N-Hansen/dp/0262083213
The An-Archic Device is something between toy theatre, street altar and peepshow: a small-scale stage model, a blinking automata, an audio-visual machine, that produces physical and anarchic dissociation by means of laughter. Based on Antonin Artauds theater manifesto „The Conquest of Mexico“, The An-Archic Device deals with Mexico as a space of otherness and as a subjective heterotopia. Following Artaud, Mexico becomes the playground for an examination of danger and fear along the site, where each subject is set back to its self in its relation to the world. A coin starts the device.
See video : http://vimeo.com/12216101
If they could choose, where would domesticated crickets choose to be?
Living outdoors in the midwest winters is not a a survivable option for Acheta domesticus (house crickets), but perhaps they still yearn for the pastoral grasslands and woodlands experienced by their wild relatives. Actual nature would be a bit harsh for these crickets, who are raised in climate-controlled tanks as food for reptiles, so I have constructed a safe bubble for them.
This enclosure provides an artificial landscape and provides a simulation of motion through it. Through the use of a computer interface, the crickets are able to "interact" with their projected environment by chirping. Each chirp advances the panoramic, cricket-eye-view video footage of outdoor scenery.
The Body, the Image and the Space-in- Between
Avant-Garde Performance and the Effervescent Body / Greenwich Village
The year was 1963 and from Birmingham to Washington, D.C., from Vietnam to the Kremlin to the Berlin Wall, the world was in the throes of political upheaval and historic change. But that same year, in New York's Greenwich Village, another kind of history and a different sort of politics were being made. This was a political history that had nothing to do with states or governments or armies--and had everything to do with art. And this is the story that Sally Banes tells, a year in the life of American culture, a year that would change American life and culture forever. It was in 1963, as Banes's book shows us, that the Sixties really began.
A leading writer on cultural history, Banes draws a vibrant portrait of the artists and performers who gave the 1963 Village its exhilarating force, the avant-garde whose interweaving of public and private life, work and play, art and ordinary experience, began a wholesale reworking of the social and cultural fabric of America. Among these young artists were many who went on to become acknowledged masters in their fields, including Andy Warhol, John Cage, Yoko Ono, Yvonne Rainer, Lanford Wilson, Sam Shepard, Brian de Palma, Harvey Keitel, Kate Millet, and Claes Oldenburg. In live performance--Off-Off Broadway theater, Happenings, Fluxus, and dance--as well as in Pop Art and underground film, we see this generation of artists laying the groundwork for the explosion of the counterculture in the late 1960s and the emergence of postmodernism in the 1970s. Exploring themes of community, freedom, equality, the body, and the absolute, Banes shows us how the Sixties artists, though shaped by a culture of hope and optimism, helped to galvanize a culture of criticism and change. As 1963 came to define the Sixties, so this vivid account of the year will redefine a crucial generation in recent American history.
The avant - grade at the end of the century
Zewidewit Zizidäh, 2001 - 2002
Sound installation based on the scientific,
ornithological description of birds' songs,
on the mimetical (re-) construction of (and difference to)
nature through language: three large glass cylinders
contain small loudspeakers presenting scientific
descriptions of common local birds' voice and song.
Timo Kahlen is a young Berlin artist who works with installations realised directly on-site. For his exhibition in 'the gallery' he installed two video works and one sound installation. Timo Kahlen's show ran until 6th April 2001. An accompanying 12pp colour catalogue is still available.
Timo Kahlen introduces his work by describing it “as being involved with the sculptural and conceptual aspects of ‘immaterial’ phenomena and processes. ‘Immaterials’ such as wind, light, time, sound and movement become part of my work resulting in site-specific wind installations, sound sculptures, experimental photography and video.” (Timo Kahlen, Berlin 13.11.00)
Kahlen was born in 1966 and has been based in Berlin since then. It is a city that has seen many (concrete) changes over that time and yet the artist Timo Kahlen is involved in presenting, in a visual way, the unquantifiable, the fourth dimension and, as he puts it, the immaterial. He studied at the Hochschule der Künste in Berlin, his Professor was Dieter Appelt, and has worked on Wolf Kahlen’s, his father, Ruine der Künste Project since the 1980’s. He is qualified teacher (of Fine Art and English) and has lectured for five years on Visual Media/Video Art at the Humboldt University and the Hochschule der Künste in Berlin.
Kahlen’s work has mainly been shown in Europe although in 1994 he was one of three German artists-in-residence at the DC Arts Center in Washington. His work often combines a technical reliance (however slight) with a witty visual element such as Young Bags, a work from 1990, where five page bags (scrunched into a funnel shape) thronged, danced, floated in the wind of two electrical fans. The bags took on their own personality, crammed up in the corner of a room with a step in sight but no possibility of escape. So simple in many ways but, on viewing it, one began to associate with many other (human) characteristics; jostling for position, unattainable goals, fighting for space etc. And yet the work just consisted of five bags and two electrical fans. In Frogs, 1996, Timo Kahlen placed marmalade jars in a museum type display case (raised on legs) and enclosed within it frog sounds. Reminiscent of collecting pond life as a child - often saved in old jam jars - and a visual prompt to think about the sound still allowed but the freedom (so necessary for the frog to survive) contained. In this work Kahlen gives the viewer a visual springboard for extending ideas and thoughts. He has distilled ideas (ideals) into a few selected components and edited out any extraneous elements. First impressions can lead to a smile, an acknowledgment of pared down juxtapositions and yet then one begins to confront the wider issues.
It is strong work, simply done. In a society that bombards us all with unnecessary information and repetition Kahlen’s work is like an oasis of concentrated thought. It allows us time to think and from the given comment (the completed work) we are able to expand our thoughts beyond the confines of the gallery walls. It is truly ‘immaterial’ in both context, intent and, in fact, reality.
Aeolus - ruler of the four winds in Greek mythology.
An investigation into acoustics, wind, architecture and light, Aeolus was inspired by Luke Jerram's research trip to Iran where he explored the mosques of Esfahan and interviewed a Qanat desert well digger about his life. The well digger spoke of the wells singing in the wind.
Aeolus is an acoustic and optical pavilion designed for the public to contemplate the UK landscape; to make audible the silent shifting patterns of the wind and to visually amplify the ever changing sky.
Beneath the arch a viewer can look out through a field of 310 internally polished stainless steel tubes simultaneously, each of which draws the landscape of light through the structure whilst humming at a series of low frequencies. These light pipes act to frame, invert and magnify the landscape around the pavilion enabling the viewer to contemplate an ever changing landscape of light. As the clouds and sun move across the sky throughout the day, the visual experience for the public will dramatically alter minute by minute, hour by hour.
Listening to the landscape of wind. Aeolus is designed to resonate and sing with the wind without any electrical power or amplification. Aeolus will sonify the three dimensional landscape of wind, using a web of Aeolian harps. Almost like cats' whiskers sensitive to the slightest touch, the stings register the shifting landscape of wind around the artwork will be heard by visitors. The public will be able to visualise this shifting wind map by interpreting the sound around them.
Once completed, the artwork will tour to these sites, before being installed as permanent artwork, somewhere in the UK.http://lukejerram.com/projects/aeolus_acoustic_wind_pavilion
Playing the Building is a sound installation in which the infrastructure, the physical plant of the building, is converted into a giant musical instrument. Devices are attached to the building structure — to the metal beams and pillars, the heating pipes, the water pipes — and are used to make these things produce sound. The activations are of three types: wind, vibration, striking. The devices do not produce sound themselves, but they cause the building elements to vibrate, resonate and oscillate so that the building itself becomes a very large musical instrument.
Byrne’s project will consist of a retrofitted antique organ placed in the center of the building’s cavernous second-floor gallery that will control a series of devices attached to its structural features—metal beams, plumbing, electrical conduits, and heating and water pipes. These machines will vibrate, strike, and blow across the building elements, triggering unique harmonics and producing finely tuned sounds.
Byrne explains, it is an elaborate system for “activating the sound-producing qualities that are inherent in all materials.”