Y’see, The Strip Club Will Just Not Do For Your Overlords

Gotta love artists duking it out over a piece. This smells to me like one artist getting some column innches on the back of another’s name, but I could be wrong. I’ll say this, though, this is more real than wrasstlin’ folks.

Well, here’s the scenario: influentia performance artist Marina Abramovic was tapped to create a piece for a cash-begging gala at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles. You aren’t a real artist until rich people say you are, and they have said for a long time Ms. Abramovic is. The performance she plans to put on this evening is known to us, thanks to Yvonne Rainer, another artist. Ms. Rainer singlehandedly created a controversy with a letter of protest:

I am writing to protest the “entertainment” about to be provided by Marina Abramovic at the upcoming donor gala at the Museum of Contemporary Art. It has come to my attention that a number of young people will be ensconced under the diners’ tables on lazy Susans and also be required to display their nude bodies under fake skeletons.

This description is reminiscent of “Salo,” Pasolini’s controversial film of 1975 that dealt with sadism and sexual abuse of a group of adolescents at the hands of a bunch of post-war fascists. Reluctant as I am to dignify Abramovic by mentioning Pasolini in the same breath, the latter at least had a socially credible justification tied to the cause of anti-fascism. Abramovic and MOCA have no such credibility, only a flimsy personal rationale about eye contact. Subjecting her performers to public humiliation at the hands of a bunch of frolicking donors is yet another example of the Museum’s callousness and greed and Ms Abramovic’s obliviousness to differences in context and some of the implications of transposing her own powerful performances to the bodies of others. An exhibition is one thing — this is not a critique of Abramovic’s work in general — but titillation for wealthy donor/diners as a means of raising money is another.

Ms Abramovic is so wedded to her original vision that she – and by extension, the Museum director and curators — doesn’t see the egregious associations for the performers, who, though willing, will be exploited nonetheless. Their desperate voluntarism says something about the generally exploitative conditions of the art world such that people are willing to become decorative table ornaments installed by a celebrity artist in the hopes of somehow breaking into the show biz themselves. And at sub-minimal wages for the performers, the event is economic exploitation as well, verging on criminality.”

This grotesque spectacle promises to be truly embarrassing. We the undersigned wish to express our dismay that an institution that we have supported can stoop to such degrading methods of fund raising. Can other institutions be far behind? Must we re-name MOCA “MODFR” or the Museum of Degenerate Fund Raising?

Yvonne Rainer
Douglas Crimp
taisha paggett

With that lurid description and righteous denunciation of the piece the pubication of which is surely guaranteed to bring out the thrill-seeking ultra rich. (Artist, take note. Coordinate conflict in public like rappers trading diss tracks. It’s good for business. If you can get the LA Times and Artinfo.com to help stir the turds, so much the better.) I can see a statement here on the exploitation of artists and the poor, but it may just be my bias showing.

This is LA, so all that is needed is a Lady to go Gaga at the event:

Someone who attended the audition write to Yvonne Rainer about it, but I can’t find attribution. Remember folks, get your name in there:

So, I spent an hour today at the Abromovic [sic] audition at MOCA. The deal is that the artists/dancers she will hire will spend 3(!) hours under the dining tables of the donor gala with their heads protruding from the tables. They will be sitting on lazy susans under the table and slowly rotating and making eye contact with the donors/diners. Of course we were warned that we will not be able to leave to pee, etc. That the diners may try to feed us, give us drinks, fondle us under the table, etc but will be warned not to. Whatever happens, we are to remain in performance mode and unaffected. What the fuck?! And the chosen performers are expected to be there all day friday and saturday. The hours probably total 15 or more and the pay is $150 (plus a MOCA one year membership!!!). I am utterly appalled. This should be illegal. There is another audition for another role where the performers lie naked on tables with fake skeletons on them. Since I cannot stomach being a turning, severed head while people get drunk in front of me, I am seriously considering taking a naked role and performing an intervention at the gala celebration where I use my body as a surface to communicate the fact that I worked x number of hours for $150. I swear I need to do something…to speak for my community of artists who are being taken advantage of by major museums. sick shit.  God, we need a revolution.

As a wise man once wrote, Rome wasn’t burned in a day. True enough, but any time is good for fiddling.



4k revisit

during the final tweaks and mixing of  “aurum nostrum…” i/we needed some external inspiration and impulses, and perhaps you might enjoy some of it too. yet another visit to the demoscene:

– a 32×32 pixels (rgba)= 4kb

– a 0.023 sample (stereo, 44.1khz/cd-quality) = 4kb

– the following intros, with music, graphics, code, everything = 4kb

quantum flame – dma

yes we can – quite

atrium – tbc/loonies

texas – keyboarders

nucleophile – tbc/portal process

receptor – tbc

sult – loonies

micropolis – tbc/mainloop


– ccernn

RiP! A Remix Manifesto

Vodpod videos no longer available.

more about “RiP! A Remix Manifesto“, posted with vodpod

time is relative

more here:

– ccernn

DJ Spooky – That Subliminal Kid -Remix Culture

DJ Spooky (Paul Miller) talks about the history of media and thoughts about media in culture. He discusses and demonstrates the unexpected side effects of free speech, law, and copyright while showing the power of remixed art. The future and meaning of remix culture is discussed.


from wikipedia:

the demoscene is a computer art subculture that specializes in producing demos, which are non-interactive audio-visual presentations run real-time on a computer. the main goal of a demo is to show off programming, artistic, and musical skills.

the demoscene first appeared during the 8-bit era on computers such as the commodore 64 and zx spectrum, and came to prominence during the rise of the 16/32-bit home computers (the atari st and the amiga). in the early years, demos had a strong connection with software cracking. when a cracked program was started, the cracker or his team would take credit with a graphical introduction called a “crack intro” (shortened cracktro). later, the making of intros and standalone demos evolved into a new subculture independent of the software piracy scene.

‘back in the old dos days’ (94-95-96 or something) i were involved in this stuff, and have followed the ‘evolution’ closely since then. i really like the combination of technology, code, math and art, audio, graphics, and the realtime aspect of it, that connects those different worlds, and makes it a very different experience than ‘normal’ precalculated, prepared audio/video combinations.. a lot of demos popping up on youtube now, and sites like pouet.net is very active and informative… recently i found some links and references to some of the releases i were involved in, and had a nostalgic mind-trip. i mainly did the code (in assembler), but also some basic gfx and ‘design’. nowadays this doesn’t look so impressive, but remember that this was on 386 and 486 (pre-pentiums), 50mhz or something, just a few mb of ram, the executable files were from 64kb to 0,5mb, it’s all calculated and synthesized in realtime, heavy compression, and lots of math…. enjoy

fix / xenon dev

and two others, timeout / excess,  and so? / xenon dev

– ccernn

Protect me From What I Want

Jenny Holzer is an artist who has made words her art, blurring the line between language and visual art. Her work is always thought provoking, sometimes insightful and often enraging. Having started as a painter, she has taken the visual aspect of her work down to stark confrontation through a reduction of elements to naked text, though often using startling, almost guerrilla techniques that throw the art in the faces of an unsuspecting public.

From a November, 2007 interview with Holzer about her installation at the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art:

SB: I mentioned that some of your stuff was on some guy’s blog — to describe what I’m looking at, I have your stuff in one column and then he has some ads. On one side, it’s four different watch faces and in pink letters it says “Real fake watches now available.” Lower, I see something like “Coffee exposed.” All sorts of things like that and it’s funny, because it looks like the world has moved in the direction of some of your work over the years — it looks perfectly natural together on a page.

JH: That’s startling.

SB: Is that something that had ever occurred to you at all? Looking at things like that, encountering things and saying “Oh, gosh, that’s something I was commenting on 20 years ago!”

JH: I want to think occasionally I’m alert, so maybe this is reassuring yet sad.

SB: So you may be visionary, but you hadn’t given it too much thought.

JH: Better not to think about oneself, it’s paralyzing enough to think about what’s around you.


Documentary about Jenny Holzer shot in Rio de Janeiro 1999. Directed by Marcello Dantas.

Part One

Part Two

Part Three


(The Avant-Garde Will Eat Itself, or on a clear day you can see Jörmungandr choking on his own tail)

There’s a story going about that I find highlights some key issues that have faced avant garde artists, punk rockers, hippies, post-modern, post-consumer, political radicals and those cuddly black metal bands throughout their careers. How many times has a scene, movement or revolutionary impulse turned on itself, been co-opted, bought or become that it was conceived to destroy?

The article in question By Sam Anderson in New York Magazine:

The Vandalism Vandal

… On the day I went, at the center of the mess stood a Technicolor poster of an anthropomorphic pickle-shaped rainbow; above him, there was a portrait of a little Swiss-looking girl innocently playing a flute. And above her, in the upper right corner of the wall, was a sad, frowning candy corn, looking even sadder because someone had flung white paint over its face—a ragged spray that covered one cheek and part of his nose. Near the splash was a poster-size manifesto, partially torn, apparently declaring the candy corn’s crimes against humanity. It was titled AVANT-GARDE: ADVANCE SCOUTS FOR CAPITAL, and it read, in part:



First off, what first springs to mind when I read the words of the splasher is the spontaneous manifestos that constituted the interview answers given early on by bands of the second wave of black metal bands. Bold statements of war against Christianity, declarations of hate for society, institutions and all traditions but the long forgotten and abandoned aboriginal cultures of Northern Europe and Scandinavia abounded, delivered with a real energy and conviction. (For the most part. It is in the nature of radical statements, manifestos and art movements that extremes become poses, marketing, conventions, the stuff that constitutes all modern mythologizing.)

In modern civilization, we may feel that myth is left behind, except for those who mobilize to kill for their gods, but we are surrounded by myth and manipulated by myth makers. A bunch of kids trying out occult rituals in the woods are trying to shape their own stories. Art movements with their manifestos are giving a table of contents for the story they plan to unfold before us, if we’ll only listen. The stories politicians tell us make up the mythos they would have us live by, and need I explain advertising, and their myth of who you should be, and the plastic people of the media and their image making faculty?

Not to write a book here, but I may give little bits and bites to grab the threads of a train of thought and try to show how they connect.  What I bring this evening is not a set of answers or extensive commentary. What I have is questions.

In a world where corporations have become the makers of our dreams, heads of international corporations in the role of Clotho, spinning out the material from which the majority of the worlds population has to make their lives, technocrats: Lachesis, doling out favors in the forms of material reward and relative freedom to those who walk along paths that help support and expand the techno-gaia of the media/industrial/capital ecosystem, government: Atropos, deciding how far any individual or group can go in any direction, and often deciding just how long individuals existence shall last, what do the artists have to say, and is there anyone left to listen?

Have all the art movements, music trends, revolutions in nations and literature amounted to anything more than new ways to sell us stuff? Can the art of marketing give birth to something we can place beside the surrealists, the old masters and great composers?

I’m feeling in the dark for something here, and hope to be shown something.

Below is a documentary series by Adam Curtis which outlines some of the forces that has shaped th world we currently inhabit, the very deliberate ways our old myths have been replaced, and what now takes the place of those myths:

Episode 2 | Episode 3| Episode 4

Do a search for manifestos and you’ll come up with enough reading to burn your eyes and melt your brain.

The Words

The 16-Page Splasher Manifesto


– ccernn

The Fugs documentary

Since revolutions past have all been declared to have come to naught. Here’s one from a couple attempts ago. What would have happened if they’d had open source warfare, open source culture and more serious crypto-fascists in power?

Saith Boingboing:

Jess Hemerly found this fun Swedish TV special from 1968 about proto-punk group The Fugs. The interview segments at the beginning where they are asked to show their personalities in 30 seconds or less are a laugh-riot. The scene pictured here features Ed Sanders poetically commenting on his penchant for “astral perversion.”

Part One:

Part Two:

Some of you may remember Ed Sanders for “The Family”, a book on Charles Manson and his merry gang. I think he was the first to try and connect Charlie and The Process Church of the Final Judgment. (Can anyone enlighten me on that? The claim was tenuous at best, but I like to know who said what when.) The chapter on the subject can be found here.

For the “Anonymous” followers of you out there, The Process Church of the Final Judgment had links to old L. Ron and his band of merry wackos.