Zine Fiends: Zinecamp at WORM May 2014

In the weekend of May 24-25 2014 a gathering of zine makers and zine lovers happened at WORM, the 'institute for avantgarde recreation' in Rotterdam. I dropped in to make a simple photo report.

                     

                      Overview of the Zinecamp space.

OMD: Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark bij Arti et Amicitiae in Amsterdam

Hij werkt beter des avonds dan overdag, de expositie Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark (OMD) in Arti et Amicitiea te Amsterdam. Het overdadige daglicht in de grote zaal verdringt alle duisternis, waardoor de meer donkere tonen van de expositie aan kracht inboeten. Toch blijft deze vierde expositie van curator, kunstenaar, DJ, en flamboyante persoonlijkheid Martin C. de Waal overeind. De expositie brengt een ode aan eigenzinnigheid en individualiteit in deze tijd van crisis waarin nationalisme en conservatisme soms welig lijken te tieren.

 

 

Post-Digital is Post-Screen - Towards a New Visual Art

published: 
October, 2013

This essay was written for the Post-Digital research conference in the Kunsthal Aarhus, which was a collaboration between Aarhus University and the Transmediale festival in Berlin.

 

 

Beyond net.art - escaping network nihilism in media art criticism

published: 
May, 2002

In 2002 I was invited to speak at the Reality Check for Cyber Utopias conference in Zagreb, organized by MAMA, the Croatian media lab. I decided to talk about the way art is approached in many media art contexts, something I elaborate on almost ten years later in my book Nettitudes. I make a plea for a different view of both net art and media art, and defend the legitimacy of all contemporary art practices that involve the Internet.

Outdoor installation at the Technorganic festival organized by Cary Peppermint and Leila Christine Nadir in 2005.

Caricatures of Knowbotic Research: jodi

published: 
October, 2002

 

In 2002 the Dutch Belgian artist duo Jodi (Joan Heemskerk and Dirk Paesmans) had their first big solo exhibition at Plug-In gallery in Basel. In preparation of the text I met up with the artists, and it became clear they wanted me to write a light text. They came up with the title themselves: Caricatures of Knowbotic Research. Knowbotic Research is a German-Swiss electronic art group, known for their extensive collabortions with media art labs and technologically complex works.  

 

Catalogue cover of install.exe, ed. Tilman Baumgärtel 

The space of net art

published: 
October, 2001

 

In 2001 I was asked to give a talk at NCC48, a rather curious 48 hour nonstop congress in a cave in Graz, Austria. I decided to present my very own thoughts on net art, after I felt many words had been put in my mouth by others. The hype and noise around net art had produced an almost impossible climate to discuss this new art context seriously. Needless to say my words hardly impressed anyone. Today it turns out I was right: more 'users' creates more mainstream art behavior; artists have started to explore the broader virtual field of the network (which is translated in 'new' theories from post-Internet to New Aesthetic);  and art institutions are very, very slowly exploring their new expanded field of influence. For your information: the open letter by Jon Ippolito I am referring to here criticized the possibility for art institutions to be able to get a .museum domain (instead of a .org or .com suffix), posted on the nettime mailing list in December 2000.

Today I would have to add some words to the last paragraph though, to be clear. I am NOT saying the Internet is a conceptual space, but I am saying that to think about art and the internet it is necessary to let go of simplistic and outdated notions of the Internet as a purely technological, singular medium. Quote: "So the 'web of possibilities', which is in the expanded virtual space of the combination of technology and humans is the true basis of net art. One could say the ability to see beyond the purely technical environment produces a new kind of abstraction in art."

Picture of the entrance to Dom im Berg, the cave in which the NCC48 congress was held

The Best of 386DX

published: 
October, 2001

This review of Alexei Shulgin's music and data CD was originally written for Rhizome in 2001. For those unfamiliar with the 'band' or the name, a 386DX is an old type computerchip, the Intel 80386 developed in 1985.

The Interior of Net Art

published: 
January, 2002

 


The question of how to exhibit net art came up strongly in 1997. It became clear that some works were actually interesting for a traditional, offline art audience. In the beginning it seemed that exhibiting net art in a physical space was an anomaly, something contradictive to the nature and background of the attitude from which net art sprung. The online communities a lot of net art came out of refused to think of solutions for physical exhibitions, like they also found it very difficult (with some exceptions) to find a way to deal with question how to sell a net art work.

 

When I was approached by one of the net communities' most notorious members Frederic Madre to write a text for a tongue in cheeck woman's magazine I decided therefore to write a piece that was half satire half serious about how to deal with net art. In some sense one could say the text is metaphorical. By ridiculing the style of the average woman's magazine I compare the desire to own any art work (and also to exhibit it) to certain bourgois tendencies to use art in a semi-decorative way. We could ask ourselves whether our desire to own and present an art piece is ultimately more then a wish to exhibit our own cultural awareness in a fashionable way, like the American artist Cary Peppermint jokes in this text. The intangibility of most new media art and the impossibility to set limits to certain works force us having to face what exactly it is we want from art. Many do want something of art that seems missing: something to surround oneself with. Let's dive into the interior design of net art.

 

Interview with Cary Peppermint

published: 
April, 2001

 

This short interview is part of a small set of interviews I did for a semi-ironic text about net art in the home called 'The Interior of Net Art,' which is also on this site. The goal of the interview is to find out how artists working with the Internet think their work could be exhibited in physical space, and also whether they think it could be sold. These questions have been hovering around net art from the mid-nineties. The artists and art examples in 'The Interior of Net Art' show a great variety of apporaches and opinions.

The grammar and spelling errors in this interview are not accidental, but part of Peppermint's writing style at the time.

 

 

Short interview with Peter Luining

published: 
May, 2000

Peter Luining lives and works in Amsterdam. His net art is rather 'stylish', in the sense that compared to most net art it does not that clearly reflect on net culture and information. His work is more easthetic. A few years ago [1998] he was called 'the next generation Superbad', because of his particular use of imagery in combination with sound. Peter Luining was asked to curate an exhibition for a Dutch gallery called Planet Art, on the alternative artfair Kunstvlaai. He has gathered an interesting collection there. This interview concentrates mostly on his own work though.

Identiteit en Kunst in Computernetwerken

published: 
April, 2012

 

Lezing gegeven in Januari 2000 in SubK te Utrecht, ter gelegenheid van een avond over 'digipersonae'. 

 

De kunstenaar achter antiorp, Gheorghe Dan. 

 

Interview with Mez

published: 
May, 2000

 


Mary-Anne Breeze, better known as Mez, lives and works in Australia. She first got into a larger net.art picture in 1997, via the net.art mailinglist 7-11. Her work is highly 'textual', but expands to for instance sound as well. Considering the relationship between concrete poetry and music or sound this probably should come as no surprise. She likes to change her name a lot (mz post modemism, mezchine, ms Tech.no.whore, flesque, e-mauler, and mezflesque.exe), and maybe because of this, plus the nature of her work, she has a less clearly demarcated position then some other net.artists. This relative 'instability', compared to some highly compact web artworks, is one of the attractive sides of her work for me.

The Greater Cloud

[test] The exhibition The Greater Cloud at the NIMk (Nederlands Instituut voor Mediakunst) in Amsterdam is compiled by five different curators.

Interview with Ron Kuivila

published: 
March, 2000

 

[Kuivila in 1991, courtesy soundartarchive.net]

Sound artist Ron Kuivila was in a panel at V2 during the Rotterdam Film Festival in 2000, the other speakers being David Blair (Wax Web) and Martin Berghammer (specialist in games). He had the idea to have a net arts notation festival, and would very much like to see it realised. Somehow in the edit he himself made of the interview (I let people do it together with me usually) an interesting aspect of this was lost, namely that it would be very good to also look at which notations would/do -not- get realised and why. Notation/realisation has a long history in performance and music, and a slightly younger one in the visual arts.

 

Interview with Frederic Madre

published: 
November, 2000

Meeting Frederic Madre was a pleasant surprise. Madre had made himself notorious in a very short time by inventing something called a 'spam engine', to create spam art. These days spam (unsolicited advertising in emails) is annoying. In the nineties, when spam was much less pervasive, it was considered not only rude, but also damaging to the Internet. It takes up massive amounts of bandwidth, disrupting the flow of Internet traffic and increasing costs for providers and users.The controversy around spam was easily abused however, by people who wanted to eradicate voices and expression they did not approve of on online platforms. On the mailing list nettime for example it was used in a disagreement between artists and activist and academic users, about what could and could not be posted.

In the interview Madre explains how he uses spam art as a means to criticize the urge to oversanitize the Internet. Frederic Madre's spam engine and mailing list Palais Tokyo (for which it was most used) are some of the most interesting projects in French net art. Yet Madre also talks about his first years online, between 1992 and 1995, and his stories give another interesting view of how early net culture developed. Today Frederic Madre runs an indie record company, 'Bruit Direct'.  The photo below shows Madre with his youngest son.

 

Interview with RTMark

published: 
September, 1997

RTMark was the forerunner of the Yesmen. We met at Ars Electronica in 1997. Andy Bichlbaum and Mike Bonanno presented themselves as Ernesto Lucha and Francisco Gerrero, otherwise known as 'Frank and Ernest'. Their main focus was fighting the incredible power of corporations, which have the same rights as citizens in the United States. By removing the unfair protection this gives to corporations RTMark hoped to force them to act more responsibly.

 

Interview with Steve Dietz

published: 
July, 2000

At the time of this interview Steve Dietz was director of new media initiatives at the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Since then Dietz has curated several exhibitions, lectured around the world, and he is currenty artistic director of ZeroOne, an art festival in San Jose California. 'The Walker', as the Walker Art Center is often called in short, was unique for its depth of commitment to multidisciplinary (not interdisciplinary) programming for a large part thanks to Dietz' creative adaptation of his job title of head of new media.

Interview with Station Rose

published: 
March, 1999

"...the netscene wants to stay ascii..."

Station Rose are Elisa Rose and Gary Danner. They are what could be called a multimedia group, mainly doing live performance online and offline. They have been doing this since 1989. In 1999 it was time to ask them a little bit about their motives and ideas after 10 years of engagement in network culture. .

 

Interview with Kathy Rae Huffman

published: 
September, 1998

I met Kathy Rae Huffman for the first time at the Digital Chaos conference in Bath in 1996. This interview is from about two years later, and it was published on nettime and in 'Netzkunst' edited by Verena Kuni in 1998. It is a very interesting interview in that it covers a very long period of time, from the early work Kathy Rae Huffman did as a curator with Bill Viola, to her work with Van Gogh TV at documenta 92, to her online art project Siberian Deal (with Eva Wohlgemut), and her work with the mailinglist for women in new media 'Faces'.

foto: Jan Sprij for V2

Nettitudes - Let's Talk Net Art

published: 
April, 2011

After having my work published in various catalogues and essay collections, this is the first book under my own name. It was written for the Institute for Network Cultures in Amsterdam, and published by NAi publishers. The latter is the main publisher on new media art in the Netherlands.The Mondriaan Foundation and the BKVB both supported us making this book.

 

Nettitudes contains five essays about art and new media, and consists of two parts. The first focusses on 'net art' in the broadest sense of the word, and aims to refute persisting false definitions of this emerging art field. In the second part of the book net art is approached from three very different angles: the history of net.art (with dot), a contemplation on the digital archive, and last but not least a text on music and sound art in the context of new media.

 

 

Nettitudes can be ordered through NAi Publishers http://www.naipublishers.nl/art/nettitudes_e.html

 

Interview with Jeffrey Shaw

published: 
February, 2000

In this interview Jeffrey Shaw talks, among other things, about the net.art browser he built for the exhibition Net_Condition in 1999.

Musaic, the merging of all sound spaces

published: 
June, 2000

Musaic was originally written for the music and new media festival Futuresonic. There it was noticed by Kathleen Forde of the SFMoma who asked whether it could be included in the online sound art exhibition Crossfade, which was a collaboration of three art institutions: ZKM, Walker Art Institute and the SFMoma. Musaic also appeared in Sandbox magazine in New York.

(This image was borrowed from the website visualcomplexity.com, purely for illustration purposes. It shows a screenshot of a software tool "The World of Music, by researchers at Standford, MIT and Yahoo!," which "intends to render the music space in an unprecedented way. This visualization shows 9,276 artists and how they are related to each other.")

Interview with Igor Stromajer

published: 
August, 2000

 

   

Igor Stromajer is a Slovenian artist. I interviewed him in Moscow in 2000. Stromajer talks about how he moved from making art purely for the Web to doing net art performances at the end of the nineties, whereby he would sing or dance the HTML code his website was built from. Nowadays Stromajer mostly does online performances uses robots. Interestingly also his work with robots still shows great sensitivity and the robots are easily given human or emotional traits as they dance, battle or fight for survival.

Interview with Prema Murthy

published: 
January, 2001

Prema Murthy is an artist living and working in New York. She is one of the founders of the online performance group Fakeshop. Fakeshop is well known for their performances in which a poetic mix of both on and offline environments created a powerful immersive experience. Other Fakeshop members have been fellow founder Jeff Gompertz, Eugene Thacker and Ricardo Dominguez. The interview concentrates first of all on the effects and experiences of CUseeme performance. After that Prema Murty explains why she left Fakeshop and why she has decided to make a video documentary about women working in computer hardware factories in Asia.

Interview with Atau Tanaka

This short but sweet interview about Tanaka's Global String was never published. In this beautiful installation Atau Tanaka uses the Internet as a musical instrument, in which the connection between two sites serves as a kind of guitar string.

Interview with Eugene Thacker

published: 
March, 2001

Eugene Thacker is a writer, theorist and artist. I know his work mostly through his collaboration with the New York based net performance group Fakeshop, but he has also done solo projects and is mostly a writer and theorist. Eugene Thacker's work centers around bio tech, science fiction, experimental literature, art and science. We talked at DEAF'00, The Dutch Electronic Art Festival organized by V2 in 2000.

Interview with Gerburg Treusch-Dieter: immaculate conceptions

published: 
December, 1999

This is an interview made with Gerburg Treusch-Dieter made at V2 organisation in Rotterdam December 19th 1999. It is only a brief introduction to her work, but Treusch-Dieter is one of few who deal with the tension between biotechnology and feminism. Gerburg Treusch-Dieter is a sociologist, and she works at both the Freie Universität Berlin and the University of Vienna. She also teaches genderstudies, plus she has "a history" in the women's movement (as she calls it: the second or 'new' women's movement.) The interview was roughly translated from German.

 

How to Experience Net.Art

published: 
September, 1999

Experimental text. Rewrite of an essay/lecture by the Dutch poet Komrij, originally: how to read poetry. Everywhere where Komrij wrote ‘poetry’ I replaced it by ‘net.art’, and where he wrote ‘poem’ I changed it to net.artwork. The text was and is meant to make people see net artworks individually rather than from general assumptions about what net art is. Like Komrij's text, this re-write has no paragraphs. The picture with the quote by Vuk Cosic does not belong to this text, but seems to breath the same spirit.

Interview with Jennifer and Kevin McCoy

published: 
September, 1999

This interview was made for a publication of the Walker Art Centre in Mineapolis.

Interview with Mark Bain

published: 
September, 1999

Mark Bain "I guess my Vibronic system attempts to question this architectural authority in presenting art."

 

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