[-empyre-] week four | engagement with place/from Helen

Dale Hudson dale.hudson at nyu.edu
Tue Dec 1 18:21:23 AEDT 2015

Thanks, Helen, Babak, and Chris for sharing these thoughts.

Helen, your description of the projects that we’ve been discussing this month as "hacks into the system” and “creative and radical bursts” is wonderful. I think that for Patty and I (as well as our collaborators at FLEFF, especially Tom Shevory, Sharon Lin Tay, and Claudia Pederson) have been inspired by ways that people have come together to refocus our attention within all of the distraction of competing voices and perspectives. Your Love Lunch Community is amazing in this regard, particularly for the ways that its engages very particular spaces rather than flattens particularity into an oppressive universalism, which was another of Patty’s and my concerns in the book.

Babak, Dérive.app (along with Leila and Cary’s IH+) is brilliant for its locative practices via mobile networks. The customized deck — both for hiking in IH+ and for specific locations in Dérive.app — offer an opportunity to notice what we forgot to notice in the daily routines of our lives. I still remember the workshop for creating the Dérive.app deck for Abu Dhabi. Following the task cards, I got “lost” in my own neighborhood and engaged with it in a completely different way. 

Chris, your Exit Six series are fascinating. In our book, Patty and I tired to contextualize ways that artists think through digital media, and your paintings are a wonderful illustration of what we mean (and I wish that we’d included them!) for your use of an aesthetics of digital glitches and digital broadcasting as a way to reconceptualize painting — and explore the ever-shifting terrain of human relations with technologies. Same with Flag Bombs, which moves into subjects that have become increasingly taboo in the United States in a moment of what appears (at least from the outside) as one of de-democratization.

Thanks again to all of you for sharing your thoughts and projects with us. Truly inspirational!


On Nov 30, 2015, at 21:44, Kienke, Christopher <kienke at illinois.edu> wrote:

> ----------empyre- soft-skinned space----------------------Hi Everyone,
> I began my career as an abstract painter and Tarek as a photographer.
> Tarek and I
> collaborated on the War Room a decade ago. The effort started as two
> completely
> independent efforts.  We were both in our own apartments unsure how to
> react to the impending invasion and subsequent war and so we started
> photographing our television screens. I began to do this as a
> way of bearing witness, Tarek can speak to his motivations. I continued to
> photograph until President Bush stood on the back of an aircraft carrier
> and
> declared ³mission accomplished². I shut the tv off in disgust.
> A couple of months later Tarek set a photo down in front of me. It was a
> picture of the tv
> screen. Tarek is known for practical jokes so I thought he had somehow
> stolen my pictures as a joke. He assured he had not. He then showed my
> over 600+ photos he had taken with his camera. I was in shock, I went home
> and returned with my laptop to show him the 600+ photographs of the
> television I had taken
> as well. There is coincidence and then there is fate, we started to
> collaborate that day and both
> of us started to photograph the television again. Our archive documents
> the death of a Pope, the beginning of the colonization of Mars with our
> robots, the death of world leaders and the continuation of a war.
> We were fortunate enough to have the work commissioned by Jack Persekian
> for the Sharjah Biennial in 2005. An image of this work is in Patricia and
> Dale¹s book.
> Since then I have been continuing to use digital media in my work as a
> tool, often incorporating traditional painting and drawing along with
> digital imagery. I have included some writing about two recent projects
> below to help the conservation. You can see images of the new work at:
> www.kienke.com
> Thanks for reading,
> Chris Kienke
> Exit Six
> For the past five years I have been working on a series of paintings
> titled Exit Six. In Exit Six, I am painting on photographs taken from the
> television screen when the electronic signal is interrupted.  When the DVD
> gets stuck or the network is jammed, the image on screen freezes and
> becomes pixelated. Exit Six observes through this glitch. Using this
> ³post-analog² approach to painting, I have been able to abstract each
> image to
> interrupt the viewing experience in order to reflect on notions of reality
> and ³virtuality². I am interested in how the visual language of film and
> television informs the creation of an individual¹s beliefs and sense of
> identity. My ³tele-visual² images integrate technology and painting, as
> both subject and process, which
> further challenges traditional notions of painting. Moreover, my
> examination of digital images now situates my work within the discourse on
> contemporary society and its relationship to technology.
> Flag Bombs
> Flag Bombs extends the Exit Six body of work by abstracting specific
> images from the earlier series, through large-scale installation and
> collages. I am in the first year of developing this new body of work and
> through
> this new project I am searching for ways to visually describe the
> unexamined patriotism and unquestioned nationalism which I see broadcast
> through daily mediated experiences on social media, television news
> programs and films. The Flag Bombs project co-opts the shiny veneer of
> American patriotism and Hollywood action films: the flag, fireworks, stars
> and stripes, red, white and blue, explosions, hot rods and handguns in a
> very literal manner. The over the top nature of this Flag Bombs project is
> both a celebration of this great nation and a criticism of unquestioned
> nationalistic attitudes about patriotism, which impedes current debates
> about everything from the Keystone Pipeline to ISIS.  With this series of
> work, I am creating artworks that get people to think about the social,
> political, environmental and economic damage caused by not questioning our
> countries actions and motives.
> Regards,
> Chris Kienke
> Chair of the Foundations Curriculum
> Assistant Professor of Art+Design
> School of Art + Design
> University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
> On 11/27/15 7:56 AM, "empyre-bounces at lists.artdesign.unsw.edu.au on behalf
> of Babak Fakhamzadeh" <empyre-bounces at lists.artdesign.unsw.edu.au on
> behalf of babak.fakhamzadeh at gmail.com> wrote:
>> ----------empyre- soft-skinned space----------------------
>> I suppose what you're asking about is whether any of the projects
>> discussed this month also happen in the real world, as opposed to just
>> online or on the screen.
>> With Dérive app, we facilitate workshops where the participants create
>> a deck of task cards related to their urban environment and the
>> general subject of the workshop. The result is a deeper understanding
>> of the urban environment the workshop is held in.
>> More on this: http://deriveapp.com/s/v2/workshops/
>> And, of course, the obvious, Dérive app works on a mobile device, but
>> is used while exploring the real world.
>> Babak Fakhamzadeh
>> --
>> Babak Fakhamzadeh | babak.fakhamzadeh at gmail.com |
>> http://BabakFakhamzadeh.com
>> Ask me for my PGP public key to send me encrypted email.
>> On Thu, Nov 26, 2015 at 5:40 PM, Helen De Michiel
>> <helen at thirtyleaves.org> wrote:
>>> ----------empyre- soft-skinned space----------------------
>>> Hello friends,
>>> Happy birthday wishes to Dale!  Both you and I share birthdays around
>>> Thanksgiving Day (US), so we both actually have our birthdays before, on
>>> or after the holiday.
>>> I have a few general notes I've made reading and considering the issues
>>> that you all have raised this month. These are fragments, unresolved
>>> ideas that I'm thinking about these projects people are makingŠ
>>> For me, I see these projects as hacks into the system.  As creative and
>>> radical bursts, flares in the dark sky.
>>> As an artist, I'm always looking for a coherencyŠthat's available to
>>> any casual visitor, a grounding in a reality I can relate to in my real
>>> life.
>>> Can a coherent narrative be available and understood in the abundant,
>>> dynamic and decontextualized internet environment and actually have
>>> meaning for people beyond the screen?
>>> In the case of Lunch Love Community (evolved across platforms, and
>>> recontextualized several times over four years) the 'holding frame'
>>> became our live event with the short films, what we call the "Media
>>> Social" to gather people together to discuss and share stories about
>>> food issues that the films surface for the viewers. From sharing
>>> stories, people would gain a greater awareness of the bigger ecology
>>> that moved from our bodies, our communities and the environment.
>>> We opened up a dialogue space which leads to awareness and, in time,
>>> significant political action.  More on that in another post.
>>> Let's talk more about context and engagement with specific places!
>>> Helen De Michiel
>>> _______________________________________________
>>> empyre forum
>>> empyre at lists.artdesign.unsw.edu.au
>>> http://empyre.library.cornell.edu
>> _______________________________________________
>> empyre forum
>> empyre at lists.artdesign.unsw.edu.au
>> http://empyre.library.cornell.edu
> <default.xml><default[1].xml><default[2].xml>_______________________________________________
> empyre forum
> empyre at lists.artdesign.unsw.edu.au
> http://empyre.library.cornell.edu

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