In terms of living in the “Post-NSA”-world, Post-Snowden Leaks implies also  Pre-Snowden Leaks: investigations into the longer histories and panics about the interception capacities of COMINT-specialists. A sort of a media archaeology of SIGINT: the necessity to see the long term build-up of such organisations, logistics, infrastructures and political conditions where a massive level technological snooping is able to happen (after all, it did not emerge over night but is an aftereffect of World War II in many ways).

Kittler’s No Such Agency-piece is one key writing alongside a lot of texts on signal intelligence. I am currently continuing my own short blog post about Teufelsberg and the ECHELON-network into a longer academic essay, and as part of that, referring to the debate some 15 years ago after some ECHELON-network revelations. Here, a quote, even if only in German but it’s the Pynchonian version of 20th century: the paranoid-technological century (where paranoia becomes more than a state of the psyche; it becomes infrastructurally embedded).

Der Spiegel wrote on 21st of May, 1999 (as a reaction to STOA “Interception Capabilities 2000”-report): “Eine Vorstellung wie aus der Phantasie eines Paranoikers: Ob wir über Handy oder Festnetz telefonieren, E-Mail schreiben, Dateien übers Internet verschicken – kein Wort sei sicher vor dem Zugriff internationaler Geheimdienste, die systematisch und in großem Maßstab nahezu alle Wege, auch den zivilen elektronischen Datenverkehr, belauschen und für ihre Zwecke auswerten.”


http://ift.tt/1pa2Iwp July 23, 2014 at 07:05AM”
— Echelon http://ift.tt/1pa2KUZ jussiparikka
Preservation Aesthetics: My Talk for the LoC’s Digital Preservation Conference http://ift.tt/1zQkOMc Shannon 
I’m honored to be giving one of the opening plenary talks — alongside the fantastic Matt Kirschenbaum — at the Library of Congress/NDIIPP “Digital Preservation 2014″ conference next week. When Trevor Owens invited me, I wasn’t sure what I could contribute — given that most attendees are likely to be technological geniuses, and I’m, well, not. But Trevor assured me that my “schtick” would be — or at least could be — of interest to all the techno-savants in attendance. So I decided to talk about aesthetics and “preservation art.” I’ve been addressing the aesthetics of archives, libraries, databases, etc., in my “Archives + Libraries” class the past several years. And I’ve been drooling over archive art and the aesthetics of organization for my entire adult life.
Trevor and I talked about “teaching with art” on the Library of Congress’s Signal blog last month. Since then, I’ve thought more about what art — both analog and digital — might have to say about preservation, specifically digital preservation. I’ve finished a draft of my talk. It’s a bit too long, so I won’t be able to deliver it in its entirety at the conference, but I figured I’d post the full text, with all the footnotes, here. With the slides, too.
Mattern PreservationAesthetics by shannonmattern

PRESERVATION AESTHETICS
Archives and libraries are intensely aesthetic environments. [S2] Libraries, in particular, have historically been among our grandest buildings. And today, with an increasingly diverse program and patron base, it’s the source of many sounds and textures… and smells. Information reaches us in various forms and materialities. [S3] We store that information on bookshelves and server racks, and we access it on tabletops and laptops and through interfaces. Our engagement with these “furnishings,” both physical and virtual, is a multisensory experience. [S4] Aesthetics are particularly germane to the work of preservation that takes place within these archives and libraries. As you well know, one of preservation’s central concerns is determining whether something has “intrinsic value” based on its “uniqueness…of informational content, age, physical format, artistic or aesthetic qualities, and scarcity” – and if so, then safeguarding the original item.[1]
[S5:Blank] These aesthetic variables have huge epistemological significance. Acknowledging archives and libraries as aesthetic entities not only helps patrons to better understand how they think and learn; but it also, ideally, helps practitioners recognize that the physical and digital environments they create aren’t neutral containers of information: they give shape to data, information, knowledge, and history; condition how patrons access and process it – and thus constitute what those intellectual constructs are.
[S6] At The New School in New York I regularly teach a graduate seminar that explores the history, values, politics, and aesthetics of archives, libraries, and databases. We focus not only on the aesthetics of the institutions themselves – the library’s rows of books, the archive’s “dusty boxes,” the database’s interfaces – [S7] but also on the flood of archive-related and data-driven art that’s been generated in recent years. In this presentation, I’ll examine a group of artists who take up issues pertinent to digital preservation – [S8] file formats, versioning, migration, the lifespan of storage devices, metadata, digital decay, etc., as well as their pre-digital precursors. By pushing certain protocols to their extreme, or highlighting snafus and “limit cases,” these artists’ work often brings into stark relief the conventions of preservation practice, and poses potential creative new directions for that work. As I hope to show, practicing archivists, librarians, and database managers – and the patrons who use those resources – have much to learn about the nature of their enterprise from artists.
PRESERVATION OF DIGITAL ART + DIGITAL “PRESERVATION ART”
[S9] I’d like to distinguish between the “preservation of the aesthetic” and “the aesthetics of preservation.” The former, let’s say, refers to practices of preserving the “intrinsic value” of original objects. One application in which these practices have been given careful consideration, and which is especially pertinent to this group, is the preservation of digital art. We have plenty of folks here today who know a lot more about this than I do, so I won’t say too much about it. Yet I do want to quickly address how the rubrics and “best practices” developed by organizations committed to the preservation of new media art offer frameworks and vocabularies that can help us to better appreciate the aesthetics of preservation, my second category. And by that I mean the sensory contemplation of preservation itself – and particularly, for my purposes here, art that takes as its subject matter the practices, values, poetics, politics, ethics, and especially the limitations of preservation.
But first, returning quickly to the “preservation of the aesthetic”: [S10] Various consortia of scholars, artists, and archivists have been concerned with the preservation of new media art in light of the inevitable obsolescence of digital platforms. One such group, the Variable Media Network (whose purview extends beyond the digital to encompass any work on potentially unstable platforms), is dedicated to understanding a work’s “behavioral characteristics and intrinsic effects” – there’s that word again: intrinsic – independent of the medium in which that work is created and displayed.[2] [S11] Forging the Future’s Variable Media Questionnaire captures information about artworks’ various behaviors and medium-specific aspects, including how the work is contained, installed, performed, how it’s made interactive, how it’s reproduced, encoded, and networked.[3]  [S12] There are then four main strategies – storage, emulation, migration, and reinterpretation – for preserving “variable” media so as to responsibly address these behavioral characteristics.[4] Of course you know this already.
[S13] But what about the aesthetics of these preservation practices themselves? What if we considered not only how the aesthetics qualities of, say, a Nam June Paik installation are “preserved” in a reconstruction of the original work, but also how the practice of reconstruction – or emulation, or migration, or even storage – has its own aesthetics (and attendant politics, poetics, etc.)? [S14:Blank] Upon beginning this project I knew of a few artworks and exhibitions that grappled with these issues, but I asked my New School colleague Christiane Paul for other recommendations. She’s a curator of new media art at the Whitney Museum, and she’s long been a central figure in discussions regarding the preservation of net art. There isn’t much digital art that explores preservation-related issues, she said, because “most artists understandably would consider it too boring.”
Well, okay. Yet I do want to thank Christiane for directing my attention to several illuminating examples, particularly of works that highlight preservation by defying it, or highlighting its limitations. I’ll only briefly explore a few of these examples because, once again, there are folks in the room who know this work much better than I do. Hell, some of this work is yours.
[S15] To start, we have examples of the self-erasing disk, the self-destructing file, the self-deteriorating page – for example, William Gibson and Dennis Ashbaugh’s Agrippa, about which Kirschenbaum has written beautifully). [S16] We also have digital artists who highlight the volatility of data models, net architecture and storage media by building intentionally irreverent, idiosyncratic, unstable archives, or by constructing hypertext narratives meant to disintegrate with advancing link rot (e.g., three.org‘s [Jon Ippolito / Janet Cohen / Keith Frank], “The Unreliable Archivist“; Olia Lialina’s “Anna Kerenin Goes to Paradise”).[5]  [S17] We have artists aestheticizing the hard drive and other storage technology, reminding us of the materiality of the digital object and of memory (e.g., Manuel Palou’s “5 Million Dollars 1 Terabyte” and Jason Loebs’s “Anthropomemoria”). [S18] We have artists highlighting the questionable veracity of emulation, using as their primary source material their own memories of the “spirit” – hardly a reliable “record” – of historical technology (e.g., Olia Lialina & Dragan Espenschied’s “Once Upon”). [S19] We have artists transforming the processes of digital preservation and emulation into performances, and framing the documentation of those processes as aesthetic objects (e.g., JODI’s ”Jet Set Willy Variations”; The New Museum’s XFR STN).[6] And there are artists who take up other issues pertinent to digital preservation – file formats, versioning, migration, metadata, digital decay, etc. In aestheticizing the failures and limitations of digital tools and techniques, they make manifest, perceptible – aesthetically experiential – the underlying values, tacit politics, and invisible “structuring structures” of preservation.

[S20]THE AESTHETICS OF CREATIVE DESTRUCTION

I imagine that the territory I’ve covered thus far is familiar for some, if not most, of you. What I ultimately want to argue – and this next section, “The Aesthetics of Creative Destruction,” is where I think I might finally be able to share with you something you don’t already know! – is that there are plenty of analog precedents and contemporary analog counterparts to these digital works. And there’s much to be learned by historically contextualizing the aesthetic concerns central to digital preservation, and examining how core preservation principles extend across materialities and media. [S21] Agrippa is actually a great example of the latter point: not only did the floppy disk storing Gibson’s electronic poem encrypt itself after a single use; but the pages of Ashbaugh’s artist’s book, in which that disk was embedded, were also treated with photosensitive chemicals and erased themselves over a period of time. We thus see here two different material processes, two different timeframes, two different aesthetic experiences of preservation and decay, of memory and forgetting. In addition, surrounding the work we find different paratexts and “pirate” practices that aim to subvert the logics and aesthetics built into these “original” embedded objects.
There’s been a long history of artwork that “eats itself,” that defies its own preservation. [S22] Gustav Metzger first wrote about “auto-destructive art” in 1959. But well before we had the term to label the practice, we had plenty of self-destructive precedent, much of it rooted in Dada and Futurism and motivated by iconoclastic desire to demolish the hegemonic museum, the aesthetic canon, and “good taste.”[7] [S23:Blank] The 1920s brought Max Ernst’s sculpture with attached ax and Francis Picabia’s erased blackboard drawings – [S24] and 30 years later we had Rauschenberg’s Erased de Kooning Drawing. [S25] Meanwhile in Japan, the Gutai Art Association, whose name translates to “embodiment,” shot at and tore through their artworks, celebrating the creative potential of destruction. [S26] Rauschenberg then collaborated with Jean Tinguely on Homage to New York[8], a kinetic sculpture that worked itself into a fiery fervor in the Museum of Modern Art’s sculpture garden in 1960.[9] [S27] MoMA has preserved a fragment in its collection (which of course raises questions about what, exactly, is being preserved).
[S28] Just a few years after Tinguely’s pyrotechnics, Yoko Ono sat on a stage and invited guests to come up and cut away her clothes. Art history scholar Kristine Stiles suggests that projects like Ono’s “Cut Piece” are like much destruction art in that they “take the body as the principle site of destruction,” but this work also exemplifies women’s specific stake in destruction because it explores the “obliteration of identity,” too. Stiles thus reminds us that much of this work is rooted not only in the rejection of the authoritarian institution, but also in artists’ frustration over their own “otherness” or “statelessness,” and their “profound disgust and rejection of the patriarchal models of discipline, punishment, violence, and authoritarianism.”[10] We should consider how these forces are grappled with in the act of preservation, too – and perhaps where preservation falls short, inciting such drives to destruct and delete.
[S29] Ono’s London performance – which, tellingly, elicited such aggressive responses from visitors that a security force was engaged – was part of Metzger’s 1966 “Destruction in Art Symposium,” where visitors found …
Tony West running classic books through a crank meat grinder, Schreib artfully burning large photos of Willy Brandt… Al Hansen exploded a big motorscooter… Ralph Ortiz demolished a piano with a sledgehammer… Pro-Diaz exploded pyrotechnic powders and fuse cords on three large painted surfaces… John Latham burned several Skoob Towers of Encyclopedia Britannicas… Wolf Vostell of Germany destroyed TV images with paint, food and manual controls.[11]
[S30] Many of these historical examples remind us that some art, much like digital archival material, requires enactment. These works aren’t simply there “to be looked at”; they have to be “turned on,” replayed, refreshed, reenacted, migrated to new platforms. This history also reminds us of the centrality of embodiment, a quality critical to emulation-based preservation, and of the variation inherent in reinterpretation. [S31] Gustav Metzger’s own work – paintings made of acid on nylon screens, metal monuments that corrode in the atmosphere – reminds us further of just how many material means and temporalities there are to deconstruction, analog or digital. “[F]orms implode. Matter is carbonized or pulverized… Most of these transformations are visible,” Metzger wrote; yet in “auto-destructive art a great deal of activity takes place on the microscopic level and is not seen.”[12] Corrosion by acid or atmosphere, burning up from overwork or arson, implosion by explosives or longue duree decay – all things conservators aim to prevent, and all processes that unfold at variable speeds – thus become “intrinsic parts of the artwork.”[13] Metzger’s various pieces could take anywhere from 20 seconds to 20 years to die. We see this variation in material process, scale, and temporality copied in Agrippa, too.
[S32:Blank] And ultimately we are made aware of the many fronts on which the larger preservation battle is so often waged. Destruction art defies preservation, although many cultural institutions devise solutions to transform the ephemeral and processural into something collectible. In his fantastic Masters thesis for the Museum Studies program at the University of Leicester John D. Powell notes that these institutions often take into account the artist’s intention in making decisions regarding preservation. [S33] Some institutions preserve the material residue from ruinous performances, as MoMA has done with some remains of Tinguely’s Homage to New York (notably, much of this preserved detritus is then classified as painting or sculpture); [S34] others consider strategies of documenting the performance of destruction, yet doing so presumes to make reproducible a destructive act that was never meant to be so.
[S35:Blank] While many of the digital art projects I mentioned earlier seem to embody similarly destructive – or, on the lighter end of the spectrum, parodic – values, and to highlight the futility of preservation, it’s important to remember that there’s a creative dimension of destruction, too. Projects like Ono’s “Cut Piece” and JODI’s “Jet Set Willy,” in their “making strange” or “making problematic,” also make us question our choices to destroy or preserve, and the aesthetic and epistemological and political consequences of those choices. They create an awareness of the aesthetics and politics of destruction and preservation – acts that today become so radically casualized with “click to save” and “drag to delete.” What’s more, Stiles argues that destruction art, in its refusal to be collected and circulated, has the potential to “recover the social force of art from instrumental reason and the economies of late capitalism.” It also reinforces “the survivability of the body, the very materiality of existence.”

[S36]VITRINES, VISION MACHINES, AND OTHER AESTHETICIZED TECHNOLOGIES OF PRESERVATION

Now, many of these “destruction” works aren’t explicitly about preservation, in that they’re not making overtly critiquing practice and aesthetics of preservation itself, outside of highlighting their own un-preservability. Yet there are a host of others, inspired by the “archival” and “museological” turns in contemporary art, and by the rise of “institutional critique,” who take the aesthetics and politics of preservation as central (even if implicit) themes in their work. [S37] Take Theaster Gates, whose Dorchester Projects, a group of reclaimed buildings in Chicago that have been refashioned into a local arts-and-culture center that includes a slide lantern library acquired from the University of Chicago; book and LP collections acquired from the now-defunct Prairie Avenue Bookshop and Dr. Wax Records; and the library of John H. Johnson, founder of Ebony and Jet magazines. [S38] The assemblage of media and architecture inspires its immediate South Side Chicago community, and the global audience that studies Gates’s work, to consider the significance of preserving others’ cast-off media, and of integrating these collections into a vibrant, multi-purpose community space. It also prompts us to consider the roles those specific materials (architecture books, “ethnic” publications) played in constructing Chicago’s — particularly Black Chicago’s — history, a history that other institutions had to “deaccession” in order for Gates to step in as its conservator.[14]
[S39] Consider also Mark Dion, whose work frequently involves combing and dredging river beds and flea markets and existing museum collections, then staging his finds in displays that detourn traditional museological conventions. He’s asking how preservation and classification and display structure our cultural representations of, and our relationships to, nature. With all its vitrines and labels and dioramas, Dion’s work is ostensibly about preservation – but it, too, has a destructive element. [S40] As critic Martha Schwendener argues, Dion is “dedicated to highlighting and undermining Enlightenment values through the use of his own formal vocabulary. Just the act of looking at Dion’s work – all those books, photos, drawings, specimens, and [found objects] – can be fatiguing.”[15] [S41] And in one of his early works, “Artful History: A Restoration Comedy” (1988), Dion and Jason Simon offer a mock public television documentary on the work of a commercial restoration studio, where they hear tragi-comic tales of aesthetic forgery in preservation: historic paintings cut in two to increase resale value, damaged sculptures with limbs sutured on from other pieces, forgeries passed off as authentic. [S42] In the gallery, Dion accompanies the film with strips of paintings cut from works whose restoration was deemed too expensive or cumbersome. According to the curators of the 1988 Whitney Independent Study show, “The Desire of the Museum,” which included Dion’s film, “Artful History” demonstrates that restoration “respond[s] to the prompts of art dealers and museum curators as they alter paintings to suit format requirements and marketplace pressures.”[16] “Preservation” is thus driven by an aesthetic informed by display and commercial values, not by ensuring “intrinsic value.”[17]
[S43]Yet as with much auto-destructive art, the aesthetic exhaustion of Dion’s installations, and the aesthetic deception in his film, are also epistemologically generative. Schwendener makes the case quite poignantly:
[W]hat he re-creates in his art simulates the fatigue of Western history: the headlong rush to conquer, acquire, accumulate, consume, collect, classify, arrange, display, reconfigure, reconstruct, restore, preserve, and represent. Art for Dion is both academic – evoking a history lesson or a science project – and highly social; working in idiosyncratic ways, he reminds us how effective art can be when it collapses these varieties of experience.
[S44] We see many of the same themes echoed – through a similarly exhausting aesthetic of preservation and classification – in the work of Camille Henrot, particularly in her Grosse Fatigue, a video based on her 2013 artist’s residency at the Smithsonian. [S45] Within the aesthetics of the interface, she contrasts different materialities and aesthetics of preservation: a fish in a preservative bath, tagged bird carcasses in a drawer, proliferating browser windows and books and magazines and hard drives stuffed with gifs – and even technicians working in a natural history museum’s preservation lab. [S46] The “windows within windows within windows” layering of these analog and digital preservation systems, suggests Pamela Lee in Artforum, shows the “digital windows and screens” to be “just as flattened out and drained of life as all those sorry animals carcasses accumulating in cold storage.”[18] (I can’t tell you how much I love this video, and I wish I could say more – but we must move on…)
[S47] For artist Ann Hamilton, however, preservation is fully embodied and vital and social. Much of Hamilton’s work engages with the materiality and sociality of communication and historical artifacts, and how that materiality determines what constitutes a culture’s “archive.” [S48] I think that, through the material abundance of her work, and through its lack of familiarity to typical “archival architectures,” Hamilton’s work allows its inhabitants to create new, unfamiliar, affective connections to history. It calls attention to the limitations of the official historical record and suggests means of refreshing the archive’s architectures and materials with alternative sources that don’t always readily lend themselves to preservation.
Hamilton uses quotidian materials – from bread to blue jeans to pink Pearl erasers – and a variety of media formats, to form inhabitable, multisensory “archival” landscapes. [S49] At her 2012 the event of a threadat the Park Avenue Armory, we find newspaper, 8 x 11″ lined paper covered with handwriting, scrolls covered with typewritten text, pigeons (which once, like the horse, served as a vital means of transmission), vinyl-record-engravers, erasers, bells, bellows, [S50] radios, the voice. In these installations, which commonly engage the histories of their sites, she creates palimpsestic landscapes by layering sight, sound, smell, taste, and texture, then activating the scene with simple, repeated movements, or what Clark Lunberry calls “accretions of gesture.”[19] [S51] Her indigo blue and tropos, for instance, involved someone sitting at a table, [S52] “unmaking” a book through erasure, by burning away the text, line by line. Rather than an act of destruction, however, this unmaking represented a means of “clearing the field,” making room, according to Hamilton, for another “material kind of telling.”[20] She reminds us (as did many of the female destruction artists) of the body itself as the site or means of preservation and/or destruction.[S53] I took my graduate Archives + Libraries class to see the event of a thread, where several students commented on the various kinds of labor, or performance, represented in the installation. We had “official” participants, [S54] including the artist herself, reading and writing and erasing and singing and recording. And we, the visitors, gleefully labored on our swings to move a giant curtain strung across the center of the Armory. Hamilton’s work addresses, in her words, “the way the body through physical labor leaves a transparent presence in material and how labor is a way of knowing.”[21]
[S55] How do we preserve these transparent presences? How do we ensure those quotidian gestures, that invisible labor, those unheard voices are registered in the historical record? What defies recording and preservation? These are among the questions Hamilton’s work raises for me. She proposes that a history rooted not only in extraordinary events, but also in the everyday – its artifacts, sensations, labor, simple gestures – requires an archive that is embodied, material, and living.
[S56:Blank]Then again, what if there are aspects of the everyday that we simply don’t want to be recordable and preservable? [S57] This is where my final (anti-)preservation aesthete, Hito Steyerl, comes in. Her films and writing focus on the ubiquity and global distribution of images – including images that reduce identity to data. “Identity goes far beyond a relationship with images,” she says; [S58] “[I]t entails a set of private keys, passwords, etc., that can be expropriated and detourned. More generally, identity is the name of the battlefield over your code – be it genetic, informational, pictorial.”[22] One of the battles being waged is the right to exempt or extract oneself from “Leviathan’s” database, to regain some control over how one’s identity is constructed. [S59] Her 2013 “How Not to Be Seen: A Fucking Didactic Educational .MOV File” – she specifies the file format! – offers several strategies for “disappearing” oneself from the database, for rendering oneself “un-preservable” (my term). [S60] Possible approaches: camouflage yourself, hide in plain sight, shrink yourself down smaller than a pixel, live in a gated community, wear a full-body cloak, or become a female over 50.
[S61]Steyerl also acknowledges the entwined virtuality of the image and the materiality of the infrastructures that make their capture and circulation possible. In order to thwart the preservation and distribution of our identities as datasets, we sometimes simply have to rage against the machine, kill the drones, pull a 1984 and smash the screen. [S62] In Strike, which is currently on exhibit in Chelsea, she strikes an LCD screen to make visible the structures structuring our viewing, to show that “images also have a physical existence.”[23] The implication is that we need to understand the physical infrastructure of surveillance and data mining in order to undermine it.
And thus we’re back to destruction – but, again, epistemologically generative destruction. These are destructive practices that strive to reassert, as Stiles puts it, the “very materiality of existence,” to recover the archive and the human subjectivities it documents from “instrumental reason and the economies of late capitalism.” [S63] By aestheticizing the intellectual and technical and social infrastructures that undergird choices regarding what gets preserved, and how, and why; by playing out speculative “limit cases” of what our museums and archives and databases can do; by making sense-able the cracks and leaks in the system; by demonstrating what’s lost and gained in storing and migrating and reinterpreting our cultural productions, these artists – working in media of myriad materialities – demonstrate how aesthetics can pose powerful questions about the ethics and politics of what you do. And they can ideally inspire creative ways for thinking about destructive preservation, for approaches to conservation that are anything but conservative. [S64]
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[1] See Kimberly J. Barata, “Questioning Aesthetics: Are Archivists Qualified To Make Appraisal or Reappraisal Decisions Based on Aesthetic Judgments?” Provenance, Journal Of The Society Of Georgia Archivists 12:1/2 (1994)
[2] Alain Depocas, “The Variable Media Network, “ Daniel Langlois Foundation (2003): http://ift.tt/1zQkRYr
[3] “Behaviors” Variable Media Network: http://ift.tt/149qAeZ
[4]Storage, the “most conservative collecting strategy,” is “to store a work physically, whether that means mothballing dedicated equipment or archiving digital files on disk.” The “major disadvantage of storing obsolescent materials is that the work will expire once these ephemeral materials cease to function” (“Strategies” Variable Media Network: http://ift.tt/149qAeZ).
Emulation involves devising “a way of imitating the original look of the piece by completely different means.” Its possible disadvantages include “prohibitive expense sic) and inconsistency with the artist’s intent.” Matthew Kirchenbaum further explains that emulation “entails the literal, formal reproduction of the logic instantiated in the hardware or software of some now-vanished platform…. Importantly, an emulator is actually executing the original machine instructions in the reproduced logical context of the absent program.” The gaming community, he says, is the largest constituency for this approach – and for them, emulation can result in the “experience of the original game or program” being altered “by such environmental variables as screen quality, processor speeds, sound cards, controllers or peripherals, and so forth” (Matthew Kirschenbaum, “Preservation” In Marie-Laure Ryan, Lori Emerson, Benjamin J. Robertson, The Johns Hopkins Guide to Digital Media (Johns Hopkins University Press, 2014). The Guggenheim’s 2004 Seeing Double: Emulation in Theory and Practice exhibition examined the aesthetics of emulation, typically a behind-the-scenes practice, by presenting computer-based works – Cory Arcangel’s “I Shot Andy Warhol,” Mary Flanagan’s [phage], JODI’s “JET SET WILLY Variations,” etc. – in various emulated systems and hardware configurations (http://ift.tt/1zQkRYv; see also Lisa Adang, “Untitled Project: A Cross-Disciplinary Investigation of Jodi’s Untitled Game” Ver. 2 (May 2014): 4).
Migration involves “upgrading equipment and source material”, or, as Kirschenbaum explains, moving bits from one physical medium to another, as well as (sometimes) updating their format and logical (symbolic) context… Such migrations of format and logical context always introduce changes to the appearance and behavior of digital objects, necessitating trade-offs in terms of fidelity to its original manifestation as a digital artifact.”
Finally, reinterpretation, or reconstruction of the work each time it’s recreated, is the “most radical” strategy – on that’s labor intensive and may result, as Kirschenbaum says, in, at best, an approximation of the original experience.” It involves asking “what contemporary medium would have the metaphoric value of” the original medium. Answering that question, Kirschenbaum explains, draws on “documentation (usually some combination of source code, screenshots and still images, video, design notes, artist’s statements, fan products, reviews, and published scholarship) to remake the original digital artifact with contemporary tools, techniques, and materials.”
Christiane Paul argues that the work of preserving variable media, and the “living,” archives of “mutable ‘records’” it generates, requires diligent attention to documentation. “This type of archive would need to document the different versions of a work that develops through user contributions—for example, by keeping copies of the project in its different states; and it could potentially document aspects of the ‘environment’ in which the work existed at different points in time, such as discussions of the piece on blogs, mailing lists etc. The contextualization and archiving of net art require new models and criteria for documenting and preserving the process and instability of works that are often created by multiple authors and constantly develop over time” (Christiane Paul, “Context and Archive: Presenting and Preserving Net-based Art” In Dieter Daniels & Gunther Reisinger, Eds., Netpioneers 1.0: Contextualizing Early Net-Based Art (Sternberg Press: Berlin, New York, 2010)).
[5]“The Unreliable Archivist reorganizes the renowned adaweb by means of the categories of “language,” “image,” “style,” and “layout.” In each category the visitor can also choose between four tunings. Texts, videos, and sound from the recorded artistic projects are pieced together in a new combination. This form of systematization raises the question as to the motives and aims of archiving” (http://ift.tt/1wDJbZb); Olia Lialina’s early net art piece Anna Karenina Goes to Paradise, for example, sets up three “Acts” – “Anna Looking for Love,” “Anna Looking for Train,” “Anna Looking for Paradise.” The content for each act is provided by pages that list the results that search engines returned for the words love, train, and paradise at the time of the work’s creation. Lialina’s piece (obviously referencing Tolstoy) was meant to point to constant shifts of context, which ultimately are the focus and content of the artwork. If one visits the work today, most of the links will be “dead” – the piece has been reduced to its concept while the implementation is inaccessible. Even if one would rewrite the piece so that it allows returns “live” search results, the previous versions of the piece will be lost unless their documentation – for example, through screenshots of all the sites that are linked to – is “programmed” into the piece itself (Christiane Paul, “The Myth of Immateriality – Presenting & Preserving New Media” In Oliver Grau, Ed., Media Art Histories (Cambridge: MIT Press, 2006)).
[6] The original 1984 Jet Set Willy, programmed in BASIC, was one of the first non-linear narrative games. According to Lisa Adang, Jet Set Willy Variations ca. 1984 [2002] was “developed in an emulator, which JODI used to recreate the ‘proto-computer’ environment of the ZX Spectrum, a very early home computer produced from 1982 to 1987” (“Untitled Project: A Cross-Disciplinary Investigation of Jodi’s Untitled Game” Ver. 2 (May 2014): 4). In a forthcoming chapter in a collection edited by Christiane Paul, Annet Dekker explains that
…over the years Jet Set Willy ©1984has been exhibited in various ways. The first time it was shown on a table, with a 1980s television (CRT) monitor, the audiocassette with the tape, and the ZX Spectrum displayed on it. At other times JODI showed Jet Set Willy Variations (2002), a DVD containing multiple videos of modifications of the game, alongside the game itself. Almost ten years after the launch of the project, Jet Set Willy ©1984transformed into Jet Set Willy FOREVER (2010) when it was presented during the exhibition Funware at MU in Eindhoven. This time the artists decided to add documentation of the work as part of the presentation, thus making documentation part of the “final work.” Jet Set Willy FOREVER included the game on a ZX Spectrum; the DVD; video documentation of the artists demonstrating how the game can be played during a previous presentation of the work; a set of written instructions on how to play the game, and sixty prints showing the interior of the game — a cross-section of the house” (Annet Dekker, “Enabling the Future, or How to Survive FOREVER” (forthcoming)).
Notably, “the website jetsetwilly.jodi.org for Jet Set Willy Variations ©1984 [also a game modification like Untitled Game] contains a direct link to a list of downloads for various emulators needed to create a playable environment for the work: http://ift.tt/1eLaDeX.” As Lisa Adang argues, “The artists are explicitly engaged here in archival strategies and documentation. They also provide a link on this site to images of Jet Set Willy ephemera, a ZX Spectrum keyboard, and a short list of key commands for the original game [http:http://ift.tt/1zQkQni].” (Lisa Adang, “Untitled Project: A Cross-Disciplinary Investigation of Jodi’s Untitled Game” Ver. 2 (May 2014): n. 29, p. 43)
[7]These historical precedents to “auto-destructive” art are smartly chronicled in John D. Powell’s “Preserving the Unpreservable,” his Masters thesis for the Museum Studies program at the University of Leicester.
[8] D.A. Pennebaker, “Breaking It Up at the Museum” [film]
[9] Homage to New York was constructed from materials collected from dumps in New Jersey. Its components included roughly 100 wheels, 15 motors, a piano, and addressograph machine, a baby’s bath tub, klaxons, chemicals, metal drums, bell, child’s cart, piece of the American flag, bottles, fire extinguisher, radio, oil cans, hammers, saws, etc.
[10]Kristine Stiles, “Thresholds of Control: Deconstruction Art and Terminal Culture” Ars Electronic Archive: http://ift.tt/1wDJbZh.
[11] Al Hansen, quoted in Powell: 13. Kristine Stiles’s work focuses on the Destruction in Art Symposium.
[12]Gustav Metzger, Damaged Nature, Auto-Destructive Art (London: Coracle, 1996), p. 43-53; quoted in Powell 53.
[13] Powell 53. Destruction need not be incited or accelerated by the artist; see also ephemeral art like the work of Andy Goldsworthy, Robert Smithson, or Dieter Roth.
[14] See Huey Copeland’s wonderful “Dark Mirrors: Theaster Gates and Ebony” Artforum 52:2 (October 2013): 222-229.
[15]Martha Schwendener, “Mark Dion: American Fine Arts / Aldrich Museum” Artforum 41:10(June 2003).
[16] Whitney Museum of American Art, The Desire of the Museum (New York: Whitney Museum, 1998).
[17]We might also consider how techniques of preservation shape, and are shaped by, the aesthetics of other disciplines, including architectural preservation. In the CFP for a “Photography and Preservation” special issue of Future Anterior, the editors write:
By the 1840s, John Ruskin was urging preservationists to seize ‘every opportunity afforded by scaffolding to approach [art and architecture] closely, and putting the camera in any position that will command’ it…. [The] now standard practice of systematically photographing all phases of a restoration, and archiving the pictures for future reference and to insure the reversibility of treatments…
The institutionalization and professionalization of preservation in the mid-nineteenth century was spurred in part by national and colonial photographic surveys, which not only inventoried heritage efficiently but also helped to shape public perception, concentrating attention on, and therefore changing the cultural value of, a select group of buildings and objects. It is well known that the first photographic surveys mapped only earlier established travel routes such as the European Grand Tour… Photography was arguably the most effective mass media instrument to construct and disseminate visual knowledge and appreciation of buildings and immovable objects that were distant both in time and in place, and as such it also formed the necessary evidentiary basis for the internationalization of preservation movements.”
…[C]ould the obsession of preservationists with building facades be traced to Denis Baldus’s (1813-82) and Gustave Le Gray’s (1820-82) development of the standards for the elevation photograph? What were the aesthetic touch points of preservation photography, and how have they changed as the field has evolved?… How did…the sudden availability of hand-held cameras in the postwar era figure in the expansion of preservation from a restricted focus on canonical monuments to include popular and vernacular buildings? How has the popularity of so-called Ruin Porn photography influenced notions of post-industrial heritage and debates about its authenticity, and conversely, how do preservation aesthetics figure in the subtle framing of patinas, decaying timbers, and flaking paints that Ruin Porn stereotypically catalogues?…
What is the role of photography in the nascent field of architectural forensics?… In extreme cases, photography also sometimes figures as a substitute for preservation, a measure of last resort when the material object is certain to be lost. How did the photographic image come to be conceptualized in discourse as an extension of preservation?…
What role did photography play in shaping the practice of comparing, contrasting and categorizing heritage in typological and stylistic terms? What was the role and influence of architectural photographic archives in the teaching and practice of preservation? Photography figures in preservation both as a lingua franca, and as the undecipherable visual language of specialization, such as in thin section petrography or thermal photography. (CFP: Future Anterior Journal: Photography and Preservation. In: H-ArtHist (March 16, 2013): http://ift.tt/1zQkQno)
[18] Pamela M. Lee, “The Whole Earth is Heavy” Artforum (September 2013). See also Andrea Picard, “Camille Henrot: A Hunter-Gatherer During a Time of Collective ‘Grosse Fatigue’” Cinema Scope 56: http://ift.tt/1wDJbZk
[19] Clark Lunberry, “Theatre as Installation: Ann Hamilton and the Accretions of Gesture” Mosaic: A Journal for the Interdisciplinary Study of Literature 37:1 (March 2004).
[20] Amei Wallach, “A Conversation with Ann Hamilton in Ohio” American Art 22:1 (Spring 2008): 55.
[21] Wallach 74.
[22] Hito Steyerl, with Marvin Jordan, “Politics of Post-Representation” dis magazine (n.d.): http://ift.tt/1hsFMej
[23] Andrew Kreps, “How Not to Be Seen: A Fucking Didactic Educational Installation, July 2 – August 15, 2014” [press release]: http://ift.tt/1noCaKP

 http://ift.tt/1zQkOMe
Preservation Aesthetics: My Talk for the LoC’s Digital Preservation Conference http://ift.tt/1zQkOMc Shannon

md2

I’m honored to be giving one of the opening plenary talks — alongside the fantastic Matt Kirschenbaum — at the Library of Congress/NDIIPP “Digital Preservation 2014″ conference next week. When Trevor Owens invited me, I wasn’t sure what I could contribute — given that most attendees are likely to be technological geniuses, and I’m, well, not. But Trevor assured me that my “schtick” would be — or at least could be — of interest to all the techno-savants in attendance. So I decided to talk about aesthetics and “preservation art.” I’ve been addressing the aesthetics of archives, libraries, databases, etc., in my “Archives + Libraries” class the past several years. And I’ve been drooling over archive art and the aesthetics of organization for my entire adult life.

Trevor and I talked about “teaching with art” on the Library of Congress’s Signal blog last month. Since then, I’ve thought more about what art — both analog and digital — might have to say about preservation, specifically digital preservation. I’ve finished a draft of my talk. It’s a bit too long, so I won’t be able to deliver it in its entirety at the conference, but I figured I’d post the full text, with all the footnotes, here. With the slides, too.

Mattern PreservationAesthetics by shannonmattern

PRESERVATION AESTHETICS

Archives and libraries are intensely aesthetic environments. [S2] Libraries, in particular, have historically been among our grandest buildings. And today, with an increasingly diverse program and patron base, it’s the source of many sounds and textures… and smells. Information reaches us in various forms and materialities. [S3] We store that information on bookshelves and server racks, and we access it on tabletops and laptops and through interfaces. Our engagement with these “furnishings,” both physical and virtual, is a multisensory experience. [S4] Aesthetics are particularly germane to the work of preservation that takes place within these archives and libraries. As you well know, one of preservation’s central concerns is determining whether something has “intrinsic value” based on its “uniqueness…of informational content, age, physical format, artistic or aesthetic qualities, and scarcity” – and if so, then safeguarding the original item.[1]

[S5:Blank] These aesthetic variables have huge epistemological significance. Acknowledging archives and libraries as aesthetic entities not only helps patrons to better understand how they think and learn; but it also, ideally, helps practitioners recognize that the physical and digital environments they create aren’t neutral containers of information: they give shape to data, information, knowledge, and history; condition how patrons access and process it – and thus constitute what those intellectual constructs are.

[S6] At The New School in New York I regularly teach a graduate seminar that explores the history, values, politics, and aesthetics of archives, libraries, and databases. We focus not only on the aesthetics of the institutions themselves – the library’s rows of books, the archive’s “dusty boxes,” the database’s interfaces – [S7but also on the flood of archive-related and data-driven art that’s been generated in recent years. In this presentation, I’ll examine a group of artists who take up issues pertinent to digital preservation – [S8] file formats, versioning, migration, the lifespan of storage devices, metadata, digital decay, etc., as well as their pre-digital precursors. By pushing certain protocols to their extreme, or highlighting snafus and “limit cases,” these artists’ work often brings into stark relief the conventions of preservation practice, and poses potential creative new directions for that work. As I hope to show, practicing archivists, librarians, and database managers – and the patrons who use those resources – have much to learn about the nature of their enterprise from artists.

PRESERVATION OF DIGITAL ART + DIGITAL “PRESERVATION ART”

[S9] I’d like to distinguish between the “preservation of the aesthetic” and “the aesthetics of preservation.” The former, let’s say, refers to practices of preserving the “intrinsic value” of original objects. One application in which these practices have been given careful consideration, and which is especially pertinent to this group, is the preservation of digital art. We have plenty of folks here today who know a lot more about this than I do, so I won’t say too much about it. Yet I do want to quickly address how the rubrics and “best practices” developed by organizations committed to the preservation of new media art offer frameworks and vocabularies that can help us to better appreciate the aesthetics of preservation, my second category. And by that I mean the sensory contemplation of preservation itself – and particularly, for my purposes here, art that takes as its subject matter the practices, values, poetics, politics, ethics, and especially the limitations of preservation.

But first, returning quickly to the “preservation of the aesthetic”: [S10] Various consortia of scholars, artists, and archivists have been concerned with the preservation of new media art in light of the inevitable obsolescence of digital platforms. One such group, the Variable Media Network (whose purview extends beyond the digital to encompass any work on potentially unstable platforms), is dedicated to understanding a work’s “behavioral characteristics and intrinsic effects” – there’s that word again: intrinsic – independent of the medium in which that work is created and displayed.[2] [S11] Forging the Future’s Variable Media Questionnaire captures information about artworks’ various behaviors and medium-specific aspects, including how the work is contained, installed, performed, how it’s made interactive, how it’s reproduced, encoded, and networked.[3]  [S12] There are then four main strategies storage, emulation, migration, and reinterpretation – for preserving “variable” media so as to responsibly address these behavioral characteristics.[4] Of course you know this already.

[S13] But what about the aesthetics of these preservation practices themselves? What if we considered not only how the aesthetics qualities of, say, a Nam June Paik installation are “preserved” in a reconstruction of the original work, but also how the practice of reconstruction – or emulation, or migration, or even storage – has its own aesthetics (and attendant politics, poetics, etc.)? [S14:Blank] Upon beginning this project I knew of a few artworks and exhibitions that grappled with these issues, but I asked my New School colleague Christiane Paul for other recommendations. She’s a curator of new media art at the Whitney Museum, and she’s long been a central figure in discussions regarding the preservation of net art. There isn’t much digital art that explores preservation-related issues, she said, because “most artists understandably would consider it too boring.”

Well, okay. Yet I do want to thank Christiane for directing my attention to several illuminating examples, particularly of works that highlight preservation by defying it, or highlighting its limitations. I’ll only briefly explore a few of these examples because, once again, there are folks in the room who know this work much better than I do. Hell, some of this work is yours.

[S15] To start, we have examples of the self-erasing disk, the self-destructing file, the self-deteriorating page – for example, William Gibson and Dennis Ashbaugh’s Agrippa, about which Kirschenbaum has written beautifully). [S16] We also have digital artists who highlight the volatility of data models, net architecture and storage media by building intentionally irreverent, idiosyncratic, unstable archives, or by constructing hypertext narratives meant to disintegrate with advancing link rot (e.g., three.org‘s [Jon Ippolito / Janet Cohen / Keith Frank], “The Unreliable Archivist“; Olia Lialina’s “Anna Kerenin Goes to Paradise”).[5]  [S17] We have artists aestheticizing the hard drive and other storage technology, reminding us of the materiality of the digital object and of memory (e.g., Manuel Palou’s “5 Million Dollars 1 Terabyte” and Jason Loebs’s “Anthropomemoria”). [S18] We have artists highlighting the questionable veracity of emulation, using as their primary source material their own memories of the “spirit” – hardly a reliable “record” – of historical technology (e.g., Olia Lialina & Dragan Espenschied’s “Once Upon”). [S19] We have artists transforming the processes of digital preservation and emulation into performances, and framing the documentation of those processes as aesthetic objects (e.g., JODI’s ”Jet Set Willy Variations”; The New Museum’s XFR STN).[6] And there are artists who take up other issues pertinent to digital preservation – file formats, versioning, migration, metadata, digital decay, etc. In aestheticizing the failures and limitations of digital tools and techniques, they make manifest, perceptible – aesthetically experiential – the underlying values, tacit politics, and invisible “structuring structures” of preservation.

[S20]THE AESTHETICS OF CREATIVE DESTRUCTION

I imagine that the territory I’ve covered thus far is familiar for some, if not most, of you. What I ultimately want to argue – and this next section, “The Aesthetics of Creative Destruction,” is where I think I might finally be able to share with you something you don’t already know! – is that there are plenty of analog precedents and contemporary analog counterparts to these digital works. And there’s much to be learned by historically contextualizing the aesthetic concerns central to digital preservation, and examining how core preservation principles extend across materialities and media. [S21] Agrippa is actually a great example of the latter point: not only did the floppy disk storing Gibson’s electronic poem encrypt itself after a single use; but the pages of Ashbaugh’s artist’s book, in which that disk was embedded, were also treated with photosensitive chemicals and erased themselves over a period of time. We thus see here two different material processes, two different timeframes, two different aesthetic experiences of preservation and decay, of memory and forgetting. In addition, surrounding the work we find different paratexts and “pirate” practices that aim to subvert the logics and aesthetics built into these “original” embedded objects.

There’s been a long history of artwork that “eats itself,” that defies its own preservation. [S22] Gustav Metzger first wrote about “auto-destructive art” in 1959. But well before we had the term to label the practice, we had plenty of self-destructive precedent, much of it rooted in Dada and Futurism and motivated by iconoclastic desire to demolish the hegemonic museum, the aesthetic canon, and “good taste.”[7] [S23:Blank] The 1920s brought Max Ernst’s sculpture with attached ax and Francis Picabia’s erased blackboard drawings – [S24] and 30 years later we had Rauschenberg’s Erased de Kooning Drawing. [S25] Meanwhile in Japan, the Gutai Art Association, whose name translates to “embodiment,” shot at and tore through their artworks, celebrating the creative potential of destruction. [S26] Rauschenberg then collaborated with Jean Tinguely on Homage to New York[8], a kinetic sculpture that worked itself into a fiery fervor in the Museum of Modern Art’s sculpture garden in 1960.[9] [S27] MoMA has preserved a fragment in its collection (which of course raises questions about what, exactly, is being preserved).

[S28] Just a few years after Tinguely’s pyrotechnics, Yoko Ono sat on a stage and invited guests to come up and cut away her clothes. Art history scholar Kristine Stiles suggests that projects like Ono’s “Cut Piece” are like much destruction art in that they “take the body as the principle site of destruction,” but this work also exemplifies women’s specific stake in destruction because it explores the “obliteration of identity,” too. Stiles thus reminds us that much of this work is rooted not only in the rejection of the authoritarian institution, but also in artists’ frustration over their own “otherness” or “statelessness,” and their “profound disgust and rejection of the patriarchal models of discipline, punishment, violence, and authoritarianism.”[10] We should consider how these forces are grappled with in the act of preservation, too – and perhaps where preservation falls short, inciting such drives to destruct and delete.

[S29] Ono’s London performance – which, tellingly, elicited such aggressive responses from visitors that a security force was engaged – was part of Metzger’s 1966 “Destruction in Art Symposium,” where visitors found …

Tony West running classic books through a crank meat grinder, Schreib artfully burning large photos of Willy Brandt… Al Hansen exploded a big motorscooter… Ralph Ortiz demolished a piano with a sledgehammer… Pro-Diaz exploded pyrotechnic powders and fuse cords on three large painted surfaces… John Latham burned several Skoob Towers of Encyclopedia Britannicas… Wolf Vostell of Germany destroyed TV images with paint, food and manual controls.[11]

[S30] Many of these historical examples remind us that some art, much like digital archival material, requires enactment. These works aren’t simply there “to be looked at”; they have to be “turned on,” replayed, refreshed, reenacted, migrated to new platforms. This history also reminds us of the centrality of embodiment, a quality critical to emulation-based preservation, and of the variation inherent in reinterpretation. [S31] Gustav Metzger’s own work – paintings made of acid on nylon screens, metal monuments that corrode in the atmosphere – reminds us further of just how many material means and temporalities there are to deconstruction, analog or digital. “[F]orms implode. Matter is carbonized or pulverized… Most of these transformations are visible,” Metzger wrote; yet in “auto-destructive art a great deal of activity takes place on the microscopic level and is not seen.”[12] Corrosion by acid or atmosphere, burning up from overwork or arson, implosion by explosives or longue duree decay – all things conservators aim to prevent, and all processes that unfold at variable speeds – thus become “intrinsic parts of the artwork.”[13] Metzger’s various pieces could take anywhere from 20 seconds to 20 years to die. We see this variation in material process, scale, and temporality copied in Agrippa, too.

[S32:Blank] And ultimately we are made aware of the many fronts on which the larger preservation battle is so often waged. Destruction art defies preservation, although many cultural institutions devise solutions to transform the ephemeral and processural into something collectible. In his fantastic Masters thesis for the Museum Studies program at the University of Leicester John D. Powell notes that these institutions often take into account the artist’s intention in making decisions regarding preservation. [S33] Some institutions preserve the material residue from ruinous performances, as MoMA has done with some remains of Tinguely’s Homage to New York (notably, much of this preserved detritus is then classified as painting or sculpture); [S34] others consider strategies of documenting the performance of destruction, yet doing so presumes to make reproducible a destructive act that was never meant to be so.

[S35:Blank] While many of the digital art projects I mentioned earlier seem to embody similarly destructive – or, on the lighter end of the spectrum, parodic – values, and to highlight the futility of preservation, it’s important to remember that there’s a creative dimension of destruction, too. Projects like Ono’s “Cut Piece” and JODI’s “Jet Set Willy,” in their “making strange” or “making problematic,” also make us question our choices to destroy or preserve, and the aesthetic and epistemological and political consequences of those choices. They create an awareness of the aesthetics and politics of destruction and preservation – acts that today become so radically casualized with “click to save” and “drag to delete.” What’s more, Stiles argues that destruction art, in its refusal to be collected and circulated, has the potential to “recover the social force of art from instrumental reason and the economies of late capitalism.” It also reinforces “the survivability of the body, the very materiality of existence.”

[S36]VITRINES, VISION MACHINES, AND OTHER AESTHETICIZED TECHNOLOGIES OF PRESERVATION

Now, many of these “destruction” works aren’t explicitly about preservation, in that they’re not making overtly critiquing practice and aesthetics of preservation itself, outside of highlighting their own un-preservability. Yet there are a host of others, inspired by the “archival” and “museological” turns in contemporary art, and by the rise of “institutional critique,” who take the aesthetics and politics of preservation as central (even if implicit) themes in their work. [S37] Take Theaster Gates, whose Dorchester Projects, a group of reclaimed buildings in Chicago that have been refashioned into a local arts-and-culture center that includes a slide lantern library acquired from the University of Chicago; book and LP collections acquired from the now-defunct Prairie Avenue Bookshop and Dr. Wax Records; and the library of John H. Johnson, founder of Ebony and Jet magazines. [S38] The assemblage of media and architecture inspires its immediate South Side Chicago community, and the global audience that studies Gates’s work, to consider the significance of preserving others’ cast-off media, and of integrating these collections into a vibrant, multi-purpose community space. It also prompts us to consider the roles those specific materials (architecture books, “ethnic” publications) played in constructing Chicago’s — particularly Black Chicago’s — history, a history that other institutions had to “deaccession” in order for Gates to step in as its conservator.[14]

[S39] Consider also Mark Dion, whose work frequently involves combing and dredging river beds and flea markets and existing museum collections, then staging his finds in displays that detourn traditional museological conventions. He’s asking how preservation and classification and display structure our cultural representations of, and our relationships to, nature. With all its vitrines and labels and dioramas, Dion’s work is ostensibly about preservation – but it, too, has a destructive element. [S40] As critic Martha Schwendener argues, Dion is “dedicated to highlighting and undermining Enlightenment values through the use of his own formal vocabulary. Just the act of looking at Dion’s work – all those books, photos, drawings, specimens, and [found objects] – can be fatiguing.”[15] [S41] And in one of his early works, “Artful History: A Restoration Comedy” (1988), Dion and Jason Simon offer a mock public television documentary on the work of a commercial restoration studio, where they hear tragi-comic tales of aesthetic forgery in preservation: historic paintings cut in two to increase resale value, damaged sculptures with limbs sutured on from other pieces, forgeries passed off as authentic. [S42] In the gallery, Dion accompanies the film with strips of paintings cut from works whose restoration was deemed too expensive or cumbersome. According to the curators of the 1988 Whitney Independent Study show, “The Desire of the Museum,” which included Dion’s film, “Artful History” demonstrates that restoration “respond[s] to the prompts of art dealers and museum curators as they alter paintings to suit format requirements and marketplace pressures.”[16] “Preservation” is thus driven by an aesthetic informed by display and commercial values, not by ensuring “intrinsic value.”[17]

[S43]Yet as with much auto-destructive art, the aesthetic exhaustion of Dion’s installations, and the aesthetic deception in his film, are also epistemologically generative. Schwendener makes the case quite poignantly:

[W]hat he re-creates in his art simulates the fatigue of Western history: the headlong rush to conquer, acquire, accumulate, consume, collect, classify, arrange, display, reconfigure, reconstruct, restore, preserve, and represent. Art for Dion is both academic – evoking a history lesson or a science project – and highly social; working in idiosyncratic ways, he reminds us how effective art can be when it collapses these varieties of experience.

[S44] We see many of the same themes echoed – through a similarly exhausting aesthetic of preservation and classification – in the work of Camille Henrot, particularly in her Grosse Fatigue, a video based on her 2013 artist’s residency at the Smithsonian. [S45] Within the aesthetics of the interface, she contrasts different materialities and aesthetics of preservation: a fish in a preservative bath, tagged bird carcasses in a drawer, proliferating browser windows and books and magazines and hard drives stuffed with gifs – and even technicians working in a natural history museum’s preservation lab. [S46] The “windows within windows within windows” layering of these analog and digital preservation systems, suggests Pamela Lee in Artforum, shows the “digital windows and screens” to be “just as flattened out and drained of life as all those sorry animals carcasses accumulating in cold storage.”[18] (I can’t tell you how much I love this video, and I wish I could say more – but we must move on…)

[S47] For artist Ann Hamilton, however, preservation is fully embodied and vital and social. Much of Hamilton’s work engages with the materiality and sociality of communication and historical artifacts, and how that materiality determines what constitutes a culture’s “archive.” [S48] I think that, through the material abundance of her work, and through its lack of familiarity to typical “archival architectures,” Hamilton’s work allows its inhabitants to create new, unfamiliar, affective connections to history. It calls attention to the limitations of the official historical record and suggests means of refreshing the archive’s architectures and materials with alternative sources that don’t always readily lend themselves to preservation.

Hamilton uses quotidian materials – from bread to blue jeans to pink Pearl erasers – and a variety of media formats, to form inhabitable, multisensory “archival” landscapes. [S49] At her 2012 the event of a threadat the Park Avenue Armory, we find newspaper, 8 x 11″ lined paper covered with handwriting, scrolls covered with typewritten text, pigeons (which once, like the horse, served as a vital means of transmission), vinyl-record-engravers, erasers, bells, bellows, [S50] radios, the voice. In these installations, which commonly engage the histories of their sites, she creates palimpsestic landscapes by layering sight, sound, smell, taste, and texture, then activating the scene with simple, repeated movements, or what Clark Lunberry calls “accretions of gesture.”[19] [S51] Her indigo blue and tropos, for instance, involved someone sitting at a table, [S52] “unmaking” a book through erasure, by burning away the text, line by line. Rather than an act of destruction, however, this unmaking represented a means of “clearing the field,” making room, according to Hamilton, for another “material kind of telling.”[20] She reminds us (as did many of the female destruction artists) of the body itself as the site or means of preservation and/or destruction.[S53] I took my graduate Archives + Libraries class to see the event of a thread, where several students commented on the various kinds of labor, or performance, represented in the installation. We had “official” participants, [S54] including the artist herself, reading and writing and erasing and singing and recording. And we, the visitors, gleefully labored on our swings to move a giant curtain strung across the center of the Armory. Hamilton’s work addresses, in her words, “the way the body through physical labor leaves a transparent presence in material and how labor is a way of knowing.”[21]

[S55] How do we preserve these transparent presences? How do we ensure those quotidian gestures, that invisible labor, those unheard voices are registered in the historical record? What defies recording and preservation? These are among the questions Hamilton’s work raises for me. She proposes that a history rooted not only in extraordinary events, but also in the everyday – its artifacts, sensations, labor, simple gestures – requires an archive that is embodied, material, and living.

[S56:Blank]Then again, what if there are aspects of the everyday that we simply don’t want to be recordable and preservable? [S57] This is where my final (anti-)preservation aesthete, Hito Steyerl, comes in. Her films and writing focus on the ubiquity and global distribution of images – including images that reduce identity to data. “Identity goes far beyond a relationship with images,” she says; [S58] “[I]t entails a set of private keys, passwords, etc., that can be expropriated and detourned. More generally, identity is the name of the battlefield over your code – be it genetic, informational, pictorial.”[22] One of the battles being waged is the right to exempt or extract oneself from “Leviathan’s” database, to regain some control over how one’s identity is constructed. [S59] Her 2013 “How Not to Be Seen: A Fucking Didactic Educational .MOV File” – she specifies the file format! – offers several strategies for “disappearing” oneself from the database, for rendering oneself “un-preservable” (my term). [S60] Possible approaches: camouflage yourself, hide in plain sight, shrink yourself down smaller than a pixel, live in a gated community, wear a full-body cloak, or become a female over 50.

[S61]Steyerl also acknowledges the entwined virtuality of the image and the materiality of the infrastructures that make their capture and circulation possible. In order to thwart the preservation and distribution of our identities as datasets, we sometimes simply have to rage against the machine, kill the drones, pull a 1984 and smash the screen. [S62] In Strike, which is currently on exhibit in Chelsea, she strikes an LCD screen to make visible the structures structuring our viewing, to show that “images also have a physical existence.”[23] The implication is that we need to understand the physical infrastructure of surveillance and data mining in order to undermine it.

And thus we’re back to destruction – but, again, epistemologically generative destruction. These are destructive practices that strive to reassert, as Stiles puts it, the “very materiality of existence,” to recover the archive and the human subjectivities it documents from “instrumental reason and the economies of late capitalism.” [S63] By aestheticizing the intellectual and technical and social infrastructures that undergird choices regarding what gets preserved, and how, and why; by playing out speculative “limit cases” of what our museums and archives and databases can do; by making sense-able the cracks and leaks in the system; by demonstrating what’s lost and gained in storing and migrating and reinterpreting our cultural productions, these artists – working in media of myriad materialities – demonstrate how aesthetics can pose powerful questions about the ethics and politics of what you do. And they can ideally inspire creative ways for thinking about destructive preservation, for approaches to conservation that are anything but conservative. [S64]

.

*************

[1] See Kimberly J. Barata, “Questioning Aesthetics: Are Archivists Qualified To Make Appraisal or Reappraisal Decisions Based on Aesthetic Judgments?” Provenance, Journal Of The Society Of Georgia Archivists 12:1/2 (1994)

[2] Alain Depocas, “The Variable Media Network, “ Daniel Langlois Foundation (2003): http://ift.tt/1zQkRYr

[3] “Behaviors” Variable Media Network: http://ift.tt/149qAeZ

[4]Storage, the “most conservative collecting strategy,” is “to store a work physically, whether that means mothballing dedicated equipment or archiving digital files on disk.” The “major disadvantage of storing obsolescent materials is that the work will expire once these ephemeral materials cease to function” (“Strategies” Variable Media Network: http://ift.tt/149qAeZ).

Emulation involves devising “a way of imitating the original look of the piece by completely different means.” Its possible disadvantages include “prohibitive expense sic) and inconsistency with the artist’s intent.” Matthew Kirchenbaum further explains that emulation “entails the literal, formal reproduction of the logic instantiated in the hardware or software of some now-vanished platform…. Importantly, an emulator is actually executing the original machine instructions in the reproduced logical context of the absent program.” The gaming community, he says, is the largest constituency for this approach – and for them, emulation can result in the “experience of the original game or program” being altered “by such environmental variables as screen quality, processor speeds, sound cards, controllers or peripherals, and so forth” (Matthew Kirschenbaum, “Preservation” In Marie-Laure Ryan, Lori Emerson, Benjamin J. Robertson, The Johns Hopkins Guide to Digital Media (Johns Hopkins University Press, 2014). The Guggenheim’s 2004 Seeing Double: Emulation in Theory and Practice exhibition examined the aesthetics of emulation, typically a behind-the-scenes practice, by presenting computer-based works – Cory Arcangel’s “I Shot Andy Warhol,” Mary Flanagan’s [phage], JODI’s “JET SET WILLY Variations,” etc. – in various emulated systems and hardware configurations (http://ift.tt/1zQkRYv; see also Lisa Adang, “Untitled Project: A Cross-Disciplinary Investigation of Jodi’s Untitled Game” Ver. 2 (May 2014): 4).

Migration involves “upgrading equipment and source material”, or, as Kirschenbaum explains, moving bits from one physical medium to another, as well as (sometimes) updating their format and logical (symbolic) context… Such migrations of format and logical context always introduce changes to the appearance and behavior of digital objects, necessitating trade-offs in terms of fidelity to its original manifestation as a digital artifact.”

Finally, reinterpretation, or reconstruction of the work each time it’s recreated, is the “most radical” strategy – on that’s labor intensive and may result, as Kirschenbaum says, in, at best, an approximation of the original experience.” It involves asking “what contemporary medium would have the metaphoric value of” the original medium. Answering that question, Kirschenbaum explains, draws on “documentation (usually some combination of source code, screenshots and still images, video, design notes, artist’s statements, fan products, reviews, and published scholarship) to remake the original digital artifact with contemporary tools, techniques, and materials.”

Christiane Paul argues that the work of preserving variable media, and the “living,” archives of “mutable ‘records’” it generates, requires diligent attention to documentation. “This type of archive would need to document the different versions of a work that develops through user contributions—for example, by keeping copies of the project in its different states; and it could potentially document aspects of the ‘environment’ in which the work existed at different points in time, such as discussions of the piece on blogs, mailing lists etc. The contextualization and archiving of net art require new models and criteria for documenting and preserving the process and instability of works that are often created by multiple authors and constantly develop over time” (Christiane Paul, “Context and Archive: Presenting and Preserving Net-based Art” In Dieter Daniels & Gunther Reisinger, Eds., Netpioneers 1.0: Contextualizing Early Net-Based Art (Sternberg Press: Berlin, New York, 2010)).

[5]“The Unreliable Archivist reorganizes the renowned adaweb by means of the categories of “language,” “image,” “style,” and “layout.” In each category the visitor can also choose between four tunings. Texts, videos, and sound from the recorded artistic projects are pieced together in a new combination. This form of systematization raises the question as to the motives and aims of archiving” (http://ift.tt/1wDJbZb); Olia Lialina’s early net art piece Anna Karenina Goes to Paradise, for example, sets up three “Acts” – “Anna Looking for Love,” “Anna Looking for Train,” “Anna Looking for Paradise.” The content for each act is provided by pages that list the results that search engines returned for the words love, train, and paradise at the time of the work’s creation. Lialina’s piece (obviously referencing Tolstoy) was meant to point to constant shifts of context, which ultimately are the focus and content of the artwork. If one visits the work today, most of the links will be “dead” – the piece has been reduced to its concept while the implementation is inaccessible. Even if one would rewrite the piece so that it allows returns “live” search results, the previous versions of the piece will be lost unless their documentation – for example, through screenshots of all the sites that are linked to – is “programmed” into the piece itself (Christiane Paul, “The Myth of Immateriality – Presenting & Preserving New Media” In Oliver Grau, Ed., Media Art Histories (Cambridge: MIT Press, 2006)).

[6] The original 1984 Jet Set Willy, programmed in BASIC, was one of the first non-linear narrative games. According to Lisa Adang, Jet Set Willy Variations ca. 1984 [2002] was “developed in an emulator, which JODI used to recreate the ‘proto-computer’ environment of the ZX Spectrum, a very early home computer produced from 1982 to 1987” (“Untitled Project: A Cross-Disciplinary Investigation of Jodi’s Untitled Game” Ver. 2 (May 2014): 4). In a forthcoming chapter in a collection edited by Christiane Paul, Annet Dekker explains that

…over the years Jet Set Willy ©1984has been exhibited in various ways. The first time it was shown on a table, with a 1980s television (CRT) monitor, the audiocassette with the tape, and the ZX Spectrum displayed on it. At other times JODI showed Jet Set Willy Variations (2002), a DVD containing multiple videos of modifications of the game, alongside the game itself. Almost ten years after the launch of the project, Jet Set Willy ©1984transformed into Jet Set Willy FOREVER (2010) when it was presented during the exhibition Funware at MU in Eindhoven. This time the artists decided to add documentation of the work as part of the presentation, thus making documentation part of the “final work.” Jet Set Willy FOREVER included the game on a ZX Spectrum; the DVD; video documentation of the artists demonstrating how the game can be played during a previous presentation of the work; a set of written instructions on how to play the game, and sixty prints showing the interior of the game — a cross-section of the house” (Annet Dekker, “Enabling the Future, or How to Survive FOREVER” (forthcoming)).

Notably, “the website jetsetwilly.jodi.org for Jet Set Willy Variations ©1984 [also a game modification like Untitled Game] contains a direct link to a list of downloads for various emulators needed to create a playable environment for the work: http://ift.tt/1eLaDeX.” As Lisa Adang argues, “The artists are explicitly engaged here in archival strategies and documentation. They also provide a link on this site to images of Jet Set Willy ephemera, a ZX Spectrum keyboard, and a short list of key commands for the original game [http:http://ift.tt/1zQkQni].” (Lisa Adang, “Untitled Project: A Cross-Disciplinary Investigation of Jodi’s Untitled Game” Ver. 2 (May 2014): n. 29, p. 43)

[7]These historical precedents to “auto-destructive” art are smartly chronicled in John D. Powell’s “Preserving the Unpreservable,” his Masters thesis for the Museum Studies program at the University of Leicester.

[8] D.A. Pennebaker, “Breaking It Up at the Museum” [film]

[9] Homage to New York was constructed from materials collected from dumps in New Jersey. Its components included roughly 100 wheels, 15 motors, a piano, and addressograph machine, a baby’s bath tub, klaxons, chemicals, metal drums, bell, child’s cart, piece of the American flag, bottles, fire extinguisher, radio, oil cans, hammers, saws, etc.

[10]Kristine Stiles, “Thresholds of Control: Deconstruction Art and Terminal Culture” Ars Electronic Archive: http://ift.tt/1wDJbZh.

[11] Al Hansen, quoted in Powell: 13. Kristine Stiles’s work focuses on the Destruction in Art Symposium.

[12]Gustav Metzger, Damaged Nature, Auto-Destructive Art (London: Coracle, 1996), p. 43-53; quoted in Powell 53.

[13] Powell 53. Destruction need not be incited or accelerated by the artist; see also ephemeral art like the work of Andy Goldsworthy, Robert Smithson, or Dieter Roth.

[14] See Huey Copeland’s wonderful “Dark Mirrors: Theaster Gates and EbonyArtforum 52:2 (October 2013): 222-229.

[15]Martha Schwendener, “Mark Dion: American Fine Arts / Aldrich Museum” Artforum 41:10(June 2003).

[16] Whitney Museum of American Art, The Desire of the Museum (New York: Whitney Museum, 1998).

[17]We might also consider how techniques of preservation shape, and are shaped by, the aesthetics of other disciplines, including architectural preservation. In the CFP for a “Photography and Preservation” special issue of Future Anterior, the editors write:

By the 1840s, John Ruskin was urging preservationists to seize ‘every opportunity afforded by scaffolding to approach [art and architecture] closely, and putting the camera in any position that will command’ it…. [The] now standard practice of systematically photographing all phases of a restoration, and archiving the pictures for future reference and to insure the reversibility of treatments…

The institutionalization and professionalization of preservation in the mid-nineteenth century was spurred in part by national and colonial photographic surveys, which not only inventoried heritage efficiently but also helped to shape public perception, concentrating attention on, and therefore changing the cultural value of, a select group of buildings and objects. It is well known that the first photographic surveys mapped only earlier established travel routes such as the European Grand Tour… Photography was arguably the most effective mass media instrument to construct and disseminate visual knowledge and appreciation of buildings and immovable objects that were distant both in time and in place, and as such it also formed the necessary evidentiary basis for the internationalization of preservation movements.”

…[C]ould the obsession of preservationists with building facades be traced to Denis Baldus’s (1813-82) and Gustave Le Gray’s (1820-82) development of the standards for the elevation photograph? What were the aesthetic touch points of preservation photography, and how have they changed as the field has evolved?… How did…the sudden availability of hand-held cameras in the postwar era figure in the expansion of preservation from a restricted focus on canonical monuments to include popular and vernacular buildings? How has the popularity of so-called Ruin Porn photography influenced notions of post-industrial heritage and debates about its authenticity, and conversely, how do preservation aesthetics figure in the subtle framing of patinas, decaying timbers, and flaking paints that Ruin Porn stereotypically catalogues?…

What is the role of photography in the nascent field of architectural forensics?… In extreme cases, photography also sometimes figures as a substitute for preservation, a measure of last resort when the material object is certain to be lost. How did the photographic image come to be conceptualized in discourse as an extension of preservation?…

What role did photography play in shaping the practice of comparing, contrasting and categorizing heritage in typological and stylistic terms? What was the role and influence of architectural photographic archives in the teaching and practice of preservation? Photography figures in preservation both as a lingua franca, and as the undecipherable visual language of specialization, such as in thin section petrography or thermal photography. (CFP: Future Anterior Journal: Photography and Preservation. In: H-ArtHist (March 16, 2013): http://ift.tt/1zQkQno)

[18] Pamela M. Lee, “The Whole Earth is Heavy” Artforum (September 2013). See also Andrea Picard, “Camille Henrot: A Hunter-Gatherer During a Time of Collective ‘Grosse Fatigue’” Cinema Scope 56: http://ift.tt/1wDJbZk

[19] Clark Lunberry, “Theatre as Installation: Ann Hamilton and the Accretions of Gesture” Mosaic: A Journal for the Interdisciplinary Study of Literature 37:1 (March 2004).

[20] Amei Wallach, “A Conversation with Ann Hamilton in Ohio” American Art 22:1 (Spring 2008): 55.

[21] Wallach 74.

[22] Hito Steyerl, with Marvin Jordan, “Politics of Post-Representation” dis magazine (n.d.): http://ift.tt/1hsFMej

[23] Andrew Kreps, “How Not to Be Seen: A Fucking Didactic Educational Installation, July 2 – August 15, 2014” [press release]: http://ift.tt/1noCaKP

http://ift.tt/1zQkOMe
“Uh….Finally!: Tech News - Google+ Drops its “Real Name” Rule”

3 Years Later, Google+ Drops Its Dumb Real Name Rule And Apologizes

Since Google+ launched, many have complained about the service’s requirement that users use their real names. Complaints grew ever louder once Google started pushing users to use Google+ for YouTube comments.

Don’t like your legal name? Using another name for safety or personal reasons? Just don’t want the Internet at large knowing your name but still want to amaze the world with your YouTube wit? TOO BAD. If using your real name wasn’t an option, Eric Schmidt reportedly suggested finding another social network.

The idea was that people would be less willing to leave awful comments under their real name. Instead, many legit commenters stopped commenting while many jerks just carried under their real name (or whatever Google thought was their real name.)

Three years later, Google is giving up on this battle. You can now use just about any name you please. They’ll presumably have some issue if you use something like “Assface Mcgee,” but Google’s official word is that “there are no more restrictions on what name you can use.”

Google first started rolling back on the whole real name thing in January of 2012, opening up the rules to include maiden names and select nicknames. But even then, your original real name was displayed alongside your chosen name – and if you tried to pick something Google didn’t like, they’d roll it right back.

Google announced today’s change via (where else?) their Google+ page, and apologized that it took so long for them to make this decision. To quote’m directly:

We know you’ve been calling for this change for a while. We know that our names policy has been unclear, and this has led to some unnecessarily difficult experiences for some of our users. For this we apologize, and we hope that today’s change is a step toward making Google+ the welcoming and inclusive place that we want it to be.

“For New York City Dwellers: Manhattan’s first-ever Subway Bar Map”

If you spend any amount of time on the subway (even under the best of circumstances), you’re probably gonna need a drink. Or several drinks. That’s why we turned the Manhattan Subway Map into a Manhattan Subway Bar Map that breaks down the best bar within a 5-minute walk of every stop (that actually has bars near it). Enjoy.

Click here to enlarge the whole map.

The 1, 2, 3

215 St/ 10 Avenue - Liffy II Bar
207 St / 10 Avenue - Cana y Cafe
Dyckman St / Nagle Avenue - 809 Bar & Grill
191 Street / Saint Nicholas Avenue - Reynold’s Cafe
168th St -Washington Heights/ Broadway - Coogan’s
145th St/ Broadway - Harlem Public
137th St - City College/ Broadway - 137 Bar & Grill
135th St/ Lenox Ave - The Shrine
125th St/ Broadway - Cotton Club
125th St/ Lenox Ave - Ginny’s Supper Club
116th St - Columbia University/ Broadway - The Heights
116th St/ Lenox Ave - Minton’s
Cathedral Parkway (110th St)/ Broadway - Lion’s Head Tavern
103rd St/ Broadway - Abbey Pub
96th St/ Broadway - Dive Bar
86th St/ Broadway - Jacob’s Pickles
79th St/ Broadway - Burke & Willis
72nd St/ Broadway - Bin 71
66th St - Lincoln Center/ Broadway - Empire Hotel Rooftop
59th St - Columbus Circle/ Broadway - Hudson Common
50th St/ Broadway - House of Brews
Times Square - 42nd St/ 7th Avenue-Broadway - The Skylark
34th St Penn Station/ 7th Ave - American Whiskey
28th St/ 7th Ave - The Ainsworth
23rd St/ 7th Ave - Barcade
18th St/ 7th Ave - Peter McManus
14th St/ 7th Ave - Johnny’s Bar
Christopher St -Sheridan Square/ 7th Ave - Blind Tiger Ale House
Houston St/ Varick St - Houston Hall
Canal St/ Varick St - The Jimmy at the James Hotel
Franklin St/ Varick St - Brandy Library
Chambers St/ West Broadway - Ward III
Cortlandt St/ WEst Broadway - Liquid Assets
Park Pl/ Broadway - Woodrow’s
Fulton St/ William St - Iron Horse
Wall St/ William St - Vintry Wine and Whiskey
Rector St - Clinton Hall
 

The J, Z

Delancey St/ Essex St - Nitecap
Bowery/ Delancey St - Sel Rrose
Canal St/ Centre St - Whiskey Tavern
Chambers St/ Centre St - The Patriot
Fulton St/ Nassau St - Iron Horse
Broad St/ Wall St - The Growler Bites & Brews

The A, C, E

Inwood-207th St/ Broadway - Inwood Local
Dyckman St/ Broadway - Dyckman Bar
190th St/ Fort Washington Ave - Buddha Beer Bar
181st St/ Fort Washington Ave - La Cheile
175th St/ Fort Washington Ave - Vibe Lounge
Washington Hts - 168th St/ Broadway - Coogans
163rd St - Amsterdam Ave/ Saint Nicholas Ave - Heights Tavern
155th St/ St Nicholas Ave - Farafina Cafe & Lounge
145th St/ St Nicholas Ave - Honeycomb Playhouse
135th St/ St Nicholas - Epiphany Lounge
125th St/ St Nicholas Ave - Showman Jazz Club
116th St/ 8th Ave - Harlem Tavern
Cathedral Parkway (110th St)/ Central Park West - Bier International
103rd St/ Central Park West - Ding Dong Lounge
86th St/ Central Park West - Prohibition
81st St/ Central Park West - Bar Rique
72nd St/ Central Park West - The Dead Poet
59th St - Columbus Circle/ 8th Ave - Hudson Common
53rd St/  Lexington Ave - Stag’s Head
5th Ave/ 53rd St - King Cole Bar
7th Ave/ 53rd St - Faces & Names
50th St/ 8th Ave - Valhalla
42nd St- Port Authority Bus Terminal/ 8th Ave - Beer Authority
34St - Penn Station/ 8th Ave - Pennsylvania 6
23rd St/ 8th Ave - Trailer Park Lounge
14th St/ 8th Ave - Art Bar
West 4th St/ 6th Ave - Four-Faced Liar
Spring St/ 6th Ave - the room
Canal St/ 6th Ave -Nancy Whiskey
Chambers St/ Church St - Warren 77
World Trade Center/ Church St - Woodrow’s
Fulton St/ Broadway/ Nassau St/ William St - Iron Horse
 

The B, D, F, M

145th St/ St Nicholas Ave - Honeycomb Playhouse
135th St/ St Nicholas - Epiphany Lounge
125th/ St Nicholas - Showman’s
116th/ 8th Ave - Harlem Tavern
Cathedral Parkway (110th St)/ Central Park West - Bier International
103rd St/ Central Park West - Ding Dong Lounge
86th St/ Central Park West - Prohibition
81st St - Museum of Natural History/ Central Park West - The Dead Poet
72nd St/ Central Park West - The Dead Poet
Roosevelt Island - Riverwalk Bar & Grill
Lexington Ave/ 63rd St - The Bar Room
59th St - Columbus Circle/ 8th Ave - Hudson Common
57th St/ 6th Ave - Kingside
Lexington Ave/ 53rd - Stag’s Head
5th Ave/ 53rd St - King Cole Bar
47-50th Rockefeller Center - St. Andrews
34th St Herald Sq - Stout
23rd St/ 6th Ave - Flatiron Hall
14th St/ 6th Ave - Raines Law Room
West 4th St/ 6th Ave - Four-Faced Liar
Broadway - Lafayette St/ Bleecker - Bleecker St Bar
Lower East Side - 2nd Ave/ Houston - Fool’s Gold
Delancey St/ Essex St - Nitecap
Grand St & Chrystie St - Randolph Beer
East Broadway/ Canal St-Rutgers St - 169 Bar
 

The 4, 5, 6

116th St/ Lexington Ave - D’Amore Wine Bar
110th St/ Lexington Ave - Lounge 108
103rd St/ Lexington Ave - The Lexington Social
96th St/ Lexington Ave - Earl’s Beer and Cheese
86th St/ Lexington Ave - Bondurants
77th St/ Lexington Ave - JG Melons
68th St/ Lexington Ave - East Pole
59th St/ Lexington Ave - Subway Inn
51St/ Lexington Ave - Upstairs at the Kimberly
Grand Central - 42nd St/ Lexington Ave - Grand Central Oyster Bar
33rd St/ Park Ave - Middle Branch
28th St/ Park Ave - Tavern 29
23rd St/ Park Ave - Milk & Honey
14th St - Union Square/ 4th Ave - Headless Horseman
Astor Place/ 4th Ave - Angel’s Share
Broadway - Lafayette St/ Bleecker - Bleecker St Bar
Spring St/ Lafayette St - Spring Lounge
Canal St/ Lafayette St - Whiskey Tavern
Brooklyn Bridge - City Hall/ Centre St - The Patriot
Fulton St/ Broadway - Iron Horse
Wall St/ Broadway - Pound & Pence
Bowling Green/ Broadway - Whitehorse Tavern
 

The 7 & S

Grand Central - 42nd St/ Lexington Ave - Grand Central Oyster Bar
5th Ave-Bryant Park/ 42 St - Lantern’s Keep
Times Square - 42nd St/ 7th Avenue-Broadway - The Skylark

The L

8th Ave/ 14th St - Art Bar
6th Ave/ 14th St - Raines Law Room
14th St/ Union Square - Headless Horseman
3rd Ave/ 14th St - Beauty Bar
1st Ave/ 14th St - The Redhead
 

The N, Q, R

Lexington Ave/ 59th St - Subway Inn
5th Ave/ 59th St - Whiskey Park
57th St/ 7th Ave - Flute NYC
49th and 7th Ave - The Rum House
Times Square-42nd St/ Broadway - Skylark
34th St - Herald Square/ Broadway  - Stout
28th St/ Broadway - The NoMad Bar
23rd St/ Broadway - La Birreria
14th St - Union Square/ Broadway - Headless Horseman
8th St - New York University/ Broadway - Joe’s Pub
Prince St/ Broadway - Puck Fair
Canal St/ Broadway - Whiskey Tavern
City Hall/  Broadway - Manhattan Proper
Cortlandt St/ Church St - Trinity Place
Rector St/ Trinity Place - Wogies
Whitehall St - South Ferrry/ Water St - Dead Rabbit

Andrew Zimmer is Thrillist’s NYC Editor and wishes there was just a bar ON the subway. Follow him on Twitter and Instagram.
“The difference between netnography and digital ethnography”

 

The difference between netnography and digital ethnography

The 24th of June 2014 Leaft Coast Press released the “Handbook of Anthropology in Business” edited by Rita Denny and Patricia Sunderland. The work is a broad coverage of theory and practice around the world that demonstrates the vibrant tensions and innovation that emerge in intersections between anthropology and business and between corporate worlds and the lives of individual scholar-practitioners. It is the first major reference in this field and a creative production of more than 60 international scholar-practitioners working in corporate settings and universities in the fields of anthropology, marketing and consumer culture. Some of the illustrious names include Robert Kozinets, Bernard Cova, Albert Muñiz, Eric Arnould and Craig Thompson. I have personally contributed to the writing of this book with the chapter no. 35: “Ethnography in Digital Spaces: Ethnography of Virtual Worlds, Netnography, & Digital Ethnography”.

Beyond obvious reasons of self-promotion (which I hope you will forgive me), I decided to talk here about my work as in this chapter I am trying to reiterate different stiles of online ethnography by distinguishing between their specific theoretical, methodological and technical characteristics. To this purpose, I am focusing on three emblematic ethnographic styles: ethnography of the virtual worlds, netnography and digital ethnography. Hereby I will only discuss synthetically about netnography and digital ethnography, two labels that too often are mingled.

Netnography

Definition. According to Robert Kozinets’s school of thought, netnography is a qualitative research method belonging to the ethnographic branch which uses naturalistic analysis techniques (that is immersive and not intrusive) that allow the researcher to empathetically enter the consumers’ online conversations. The focus on consumption is granted by the fact that Kozinets develops this method within the Consumer Culture Theory and the Tribal Marketing frame set.

Theoretical framework. Netnography focuses mainly on the study of the online consumer communities that usually belong to either one of these categories: brand communities (ex. Apple community, Nutella community, etc.) or communities of practice (ex. the community of IT experts, the community of chocolate lovers, etc.). If the interactions take place within the community itself, the netnographic approach conceives the user/consumer’s identity as a role that (s)he assumes within her/his belonging community. Kozinets’s famous model discerns between four categories of users/consumers: Devotee, Insider, Newbie and Mingler (see Kozinets 2010).

Methodological framework. Netnography actually places itself within the epistemological paradigm of the virtual methods. The virtual methods consists of an adaptation of the traditional research strategies developed offline (like surveys or face-to-face interviews) to the online environment. Netnography in fact is a promiscuous and hybrid method; promiscuous because it relies on a wide range of virtual techniques (virtual survey, chat interviews, email interviews, etc.) and hybrid, in the sense that it skillfully combines virtual techniques with traditional ones (ex. online and offline participatory observation).

Digital Ethnography

Definition. [At the Center of Digital Ethnography Studies] we don’t define digital ethnography as an Internet based ethnography but rather as an ethnography that is: a) strictly founded on the digital methods; and b) focused on the study of the new forms of digital life emerging from the Internet (See Digital Natives on Twitter).

Theoretical framework. The research field of digital ethnography is the public, or rather, the complex network of digital platforms transited by users (Twitter, Facebook, Blogs, Forums, etc.) that constitute the natural ecosystem for their daily interactions on the Web. From this perspective, the concept of self-presentation becomes central for digital ethnography, which doesn’t conceive online social identity as a predefined role within a confined community, but rather as a dynamic instance that emerges, naturally, from the various self-presentation strategies that the users activate in front of the digital public (see #Aperitivo un’etnografia digitale su Instagram).

Methodological framework. Digital ethnography places itself, explicitly, within the digital methods epistemological paradigm. Digital methods, compared to virtual methods, do not try to adapt traditional methods to the online context (virtualizing them) but rather try to learn from the digital environment (follow the medium!), that is, to get methodological inspiration from the natural methods that the internet itself uses to collect, organize and analyze the digital data. That is why, rather than combining online and offline qualitative techniques, digital ethnography combines both quantitative (e.g. network and co-word analysis) and qualitative (e.g. sentiment and content analysis) natural digital techniques (see Etnografia Digitale delle Primarie su Twitter).

Alessandro Caliandro (@Caliviral) -  Translation by Corina Iamandi  

Nate Hill and I Have All the Answers http://ift.tt/1ytOQnj Shannon

csl-5_resize-650x433

Urban Omnibus kindly invited Nate Hill, deputy director at the Chattanooga Public Library and the man behind their much lauded 4th Floor “public laboratory and educational facility” to talk about branch libraries: what resources (human, physical, digital, spatial, civic) they do and can offer, what systems around the world are engaging in exciting experimentation, what libraries can do to better serve their publics, etc. Nate and I are both involved in the Architectural League’s design study (co-organized with the Center for an Urban Future) of New York’s three library systems’ branch libraries. 

Read “Precedents for Experimentation: Talking Libraries with Shannon Mattern and Nate Hill.” We have all the answers. 

http://ift.tt/1ytOOMp
Windows Within Windows http://ift.tt/1oCvKUV Shannon
Geoff Grace, "Buttons"

Geoff Grace, “Buttons”

Camille Henrot, "Grosse Fatigue"

Camille Henrot, “Grosse Fatigue”

Franklin Evans, "paintingassupermodel"

Franklin Evans, “paintingassupermodel”

http://ift.tt/1oCvKUX
Teams Selected for Library Design Study http://ift.tt/1yjVbSt Shannon
Tulare County Free Library, Allensworth, California. Robert Dawson + Josh Wallaert. Via Places

Tulare County Free Library, Allensworth, California. Robert Dawson + Josh Wallaert. Via Places

As I mentioned a few weeks ago, I’ve been working with the Architectural League of New York and the Center for an Urban Future for the past few months to develop a design study of New York’s branch libraries. The jury — of which I was a member, along with Seema Agnani of Chhaya Community Development Corporation; Sarah Goldhagen, architecture critic for The New Republic; Henry Myerberg of HMA2; Lyn Rice of Rice+Lipka Architects; and representatives from the League and CUF — met two weeks ago to select finalists from among the 45 entries, and today the League announced the winners. Quite an exciting group. I look forward to working with them over the next four months, and to sharing the fruits of our labors in a big public event in mid-November.  

Andrew Berman Architect | Library Development Solutions
 | Neil Donnelly | AEA Consulting | Auerbach Pollock Friedlander
Andrew Berman, architect and principal of Andrew Berman Architect; Leslie Burger, director of Princeton Public Library and founder of Library Development Solutions; Neil Donelly, graphic designer; Adrian and Elizabeth Ellis, cultural consultants and founders of AEA Consulting; and Steven Friedlander, theater consultant, founder of Auerbach Pollock Friedlander.

Marble Fairbanks with James Lima Planning + Development and Special Project Office
Scott Marble and Karen Fairbanks, architects and founding partners of Marble Fairbanks; James Lima, urban planner, real estate developer, and president of James Lima Planning + Development; Richard Tyson, design consultant and founding principal of Special Project Office; and Leah Meisterlin, urbanist, architect, planner, educator, and a director of Special Project Office.

MASS Design Group
Michael Murphy, architect and executive director of MASS Design Group; Michael Haggerty, urban planner and community service fellow at MASS Design Group; Chitra Aiyar, attorney and executive director of Sadie Nash Leadership Project; Phoebe Espirutu, design analyst, faculty member of the Flatiron School, and manager of the TechStars NYC HackStars; and Daniel Hernandez, real estate developer, planner, and project manager.

SITU Studio
Bradley Samuels, architect and founding partner of SITU Studio; Jessica Blaustein, designer, researcher, and director of The New School’s Urban Media Labs in the School of Media Studies; Jesse Keenan, research director for the Center for Urban Real Estate and professor of real estate development at the Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation at Columbia University; Rachel Meltzer, researcher and assistant professor of urban policy at the Milano School of International Affairs, Management and Urban Policy at The New School; and Christian Zabriskie and Lauren Comito, founders of Urban Librarians Unite.

UNION
Annie Barrett, architect and principal of Annie Barrett Studio; Adriel Mesznik, senior architect and urban designer at WXY; Ann Whiteside, Harvard Graduate School of Design librarian and assistant dean for information resources; Bryan Boyer, designer and principal of Dash Marshall; Ceren Bingol, senior architect at OMA; Helen Han, architect and filmmaker; Jane Lea, project architect at Architecture Research Office; Landon Brown, designer, researcher, and director of VisionArc; Ryan Thacker, graphic designer at Might Could; Sapna Advani, urban design and planning director at Grain Collective; and Scott Geiger, writer and critic.

http://ift.tt/1ubvWj5
“Links Roundup #21 

A PhotographerBlog of Interest

Teaching in Higher Ed is a blog on PKM, educational technology, and curation as applied to higher education.  The author is Bonni Stachowiak, who teaches courses in business, marketing, leadership, and human resources at Vanguard University.  Check out, for example, her post Personal Knowledge Management Online Modules and Articles – she teaches PKM as part of classes for doctoral students.

Citation/Reference Management

Catherine Pope, in her Digital Researcher blog, has some clear and concise posts on using various tools for academic research.  She has started a series on using Zotero, and one of the posts is How to Insert Citations Using Zotero, on how to insert citations into Word.  Finding articles on how to use particular reference managers is easier than finding articles on adding to your word processor, and I expect the directions are similar for Libre Office and for other reference managers.  I am not fond of Zotero myself, as I and others in my library have found the plug in slows down our computers by a major factor.  Have installed and uninstalled it twice for this reason; however, I know that it is popular with many users.

Decision Matrix

Thorin Klosowski of LifeHacker explains the Important/Urgent decision matrix more clearly than I have seen it explained before.  The difference is that urgent tasks require immediate action, while important tasks are ones that serve long term goals.

Ebooks for Free on Apps and Tools

MakeUseOf, a site I’d like to explore more in my copious spare time, offers free ebooks on computer-related topics, mostly of the how-to-use variety.  It includes guides to most computer operating systems, tablets and smartphones, but also tools we’ve mentioned such as Scrivener, Evernote, IFTTT, Markdown, PHP, tumblr, Feedly, and many more.  I don’t know their quality or currency, but it was recommended on the Scout Report’s best of the year list.  They also have a Top List section, which has the best software for various platforms.  Included is a section for the best Android productivity apps,  and the best iPhone productivity apps.

Evernote/OneNote/Notebook Apps

Whiteboards, Webmeetings, Evernote, and Skitch is one of Jamie Todd Rubin‘s Going Paperless columns.  It shows how he captures screens and whiteboards in meetings and marks them up with Evernote’s Skitch to keep them and be able to search them.

Springpad is a notebook software that is shutting down at the end of June.  Springpad users have created a Google Drive spreadsheet with alternatives, including descriptions and features.

Jamie Todd Rubin‘s post 10 Ways I Used Evernote to Plan and Track Our Kitchen Remodel (part of his Going Paperless series), has, on the surface, nothing to do with academic work.  However, it is an excellent example of the power of notebook software to organize projects, making it well worth a quick perusal .

Catherine Pope of The Digital Researcher blog has a brief but useful post Voice Recognition with Evernote.

IFTTT

IFTTT has introduced an email digest channel.  “The Email Digest Channel is a native IFTTT Channel that collects content and sends you an email digest on a daily or weekly schedule.”  There are plenty of example recipes to get you started.

Microsoft Office

AskBobRankin pointed to two useful sites:  WordTips (Ribbon Interface) and Excel Tips (Ribbon Interface).  Both offer loads of tips for using those programs, are searchable, have tips by category, and offer a weekly newsletter to which one can subscribe.  There is also a similar site for Microsoft Windows tips.

Procrastination

Lifehacker‘s post Set a Procrastination Free Block to Get Important Tasks Done discusses the concept of adding a time to your calendar that is procrastination free.  Start off small and build up to create a habit.

Productivity

Chris Bailey took a year after graduating college to intensively study productivity, and his article discusses 10 Lessons I Learned from A Year of Productivity Experiments.  I like particularly his discussion that productivity results from how well you manage your time, attention, and energy.

A Chrome extension called Dayboard takes an interesting approach to keeping you focused on tasks:  every day you choose five or so goals that are most important to accomplish that day, and in every new tab you open those items are at the top.  Should cut down on distractions!

A blog called Barking up the Wrong Tree, by Eric Barker, lists 6 Things the Most Productive People Do Every Day, taken from an interview with Tim Ferriss, author of the 4-hour Workweek.  While I don’t find much new in the list of 6, it is a nice summary of some very useful productivity tips.  In looking at Barker’s blog, I found another useful post – How to Motivate Yourself: 3 Steps Backed by Science.  He’s right – the hardest part of a task is getting started!

Research Management Tools

Readcube has always been an interesting product, as it adds value to reading a research paper.  For instance, it makes references live links when it can.  Also offers annotation and other features for scholars.  Now they are adding more functionality, according to Readcube Adds More Features to Its Popular Research Management Platform.  It includes SmartCite, for easy citation of papers in a Readcube library, integration with institutional proxies, searching literature within the program, and more.

RSS

Waqas Ahmad on Addictive Tips has an article Blogtrottr Turns RSS Feeds into Email News Letters & Lets You Filter Stories – the title pretty much says it all.  Blogtrottr lets you get email digests of your RSS feeds.

Statistical/Data Analysis

Data is increasingly being used and produced in all academic disciplines, including the sciences, social sciences, AND humanities.  So many academics are learning to use R, an open source and powerful statistical analysis software.  Andrea Zellner in a recent Gradhacker post Learning R has useful tips and tools for getting started.

Team Communication

An announcement by IFTTT that they now have a channel for Slack introduced me to that product which looks like it could serve as an intranet.  It has a freemium model, and looks like the free version could be very useful for educators.  “Slack brings all your communication together in one place. It’s real-time messaging, archiving and search for modern teams.”  It is organized around a good search engine, so you can find any communication, document, etc.  It also integrates with a lot of external services, though the free version limits you to five external integrations.  Among the services are Dropbox, GitHub, Google Drive, Google+ Hangouts, IFTTT, MailChimp, RSS feeds, Trello, Twitter, and Zapier.  The big one I see missing is Evernote.  Please add a comment if you have used it.

Time Management

Francis Wade of 2Time Labs has a library of academic papers relating to time management. The library is arranged with images of the first pages in the format of a slide show.  He and his group do a good job of providing information on time management.  I read his book Bill’s Im-perfect Tiime Management Adventure (and wish that all organizations were run by the principles it discusses) and am looking forward to his next book.

Top 100 Tools for Learning

Voting is now open for the 2014 list, which will be announced September 29th.  This will be the 8th annual survey.  While you are votiing, check out the 2013 list.

Twitter

Catherine Pope of The Digital Researcher blog is quickly becoming one of my favorite writers on academic workflow.  Her article Using Twitter for Research has some wonderful tips for finding Twitter streams for specific academic disciplines as well as other useful tips.

Writing Productively

Kelly Hanson‘s GradHacker post Scheduling Summer Writing integrates a number of academic productivity techniques and tools including setting realistic goals, using calendars and to-do lists for writing goals, and using techniques such as Pomodoro to get writing done.

The post Links Roundup #21 appeared first on Personal Knowledge Management for Academia & Librarians.

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— Links Roundup #21 http://ift.tt/1scnqSk Mary
Faces, Furnishings & Flowers http://ift.tt/1noCauq Shannon 
Mikalene Thomas

I caught a few shows this week. First, at Lehmann Maupin: Mikalene Thomas, whose exhibition at the Brooklyn Museum I really enjoyed last year. Here, Tête de Femme mixed cut-outs and screenprints — layered with all the vibrant colors and viscous creams and sparkly doodads women use to adorn themselves — to construct Cubist and Pop takes on portraiture. What I’m about to say next is so predictable and obvious that I choose to subvert the cliché by making it a parody of itself: Thomas is “interrogating” the simultaneously formulaic/templated and personalized/improvised tools and techniques for “constructing” female beauty.

On, then, to the chroma-keyed face of the astoundingly brilliant Hito Steyerl at Andrew Kreps. Her “How Not to be Seen: A Fucking Didactic Educational Installation” — which I’ve been super-excited to see – is fantastic. Steyerl argues that we live amidst
an avalanche of digital images, which multiply and proliferate while real people disappear or are fixed, scanned and over-represented by an overbearing architecture of surveillance. How do people disappear in an age of total over-visibility? Which huge institutional and legal effort has to be made to keep things unspoken and unspeakable even if they are pretty obviously sitting right in front of everyone’s eyes? Are people hidden by too many images? Do they go hide amongst other images? Do they become images?


The video — a Python-esque send up of educational films, with a dark Virilio twist — proposes several strategies for disappearance: camouflaging oneself, hiding in plain sight, shrinking down smaller than a pixel, living in a gated community, wearing a full-body cloak, being a female over 50 (ha!). The setting for much of the video – on location in a California desert blanketed with military photo calibration targets, once used to calibrate pre-drone aerial cameras — hints at the presence of ubiquitous imaging technologies that very skillfully make themselves unseen. And this imagery brings to mind the humans now piloting those unmammed aircraft via some computer screen, surveying and obliterating landscapes from a remove — safe and unseen. Yet in “disappearing” ourselves from these present-but-invisible cameras, we run the risk of de-subjectivizing ourselves. We run the risk of becoming little more than anonymous, interchangeable “scalies” — those CGI’d human forms that exist merely to show speculative spaces “in action” — populating architectural renderings. 

A Frieze review of her show at the Van Abbemuseum, notes that that exhibition — and this one — illustrates central themes from her essay “Too Much World: Is the Internet Dead?”:
She describes a condition ‘partly created by humans but also only partly controlled by them’, in which images are coming out of our screens and travelling around – shaping human relations, rewriting social and political systems, triggering events, morphing, warping, and then dematerializing again, retreating back into the screen before invading other spaces. ‘The all-out internet condition is not an interface but an environment,’ Steyerl writes. ‘We thought it was a plumbing system, so how did this tsunami creep up in my sink?’
And speaking of sinks, I then moved on to Petzel’s “A Machinery for Living,” which riffs on Le Corbusier’s proclamation that the modern house is a “machine for living,” incorporating new technologies and mass produced and pre-fabricated materials. Interestingly, an anonymized, de-subjectivized mannequin — who happens to be sitting at Friedrich Petzel’s own desk — welcomes us into the gallery.
Curator Walead Beshty assembles the components of that “machine for living” — the technologies that compose the structures of everyday life. At the same time, the exhibition illustrates various mechanisms — means of visualization, display, illumination, ornamentation, etc. — we employ either to make familiar or to make strange these everyday objects. Barbara T. Smith’s photocopied Clocks reduces quotidian tools to their silhouettes. Photocopies appear again in Jay DeFeo’s Untitled. Harsh light and shadow make a frequent appearance, too: in Henry Wessel’s Night Walk and a gallery in which Dan Flavin’s light installation provides the only source of illumination for Josiah McElheny’s Models for an Abstract Body and a pair of Stephen Prina photographs, each titled A photograph, the principal source of illumination of which is work by Dan Flavin. And of course the cross-beams in the gallery’s skylights cast pronounced shadows on the walls and floor.



Barbara T. Smith, Clocks


Wessel


Dan Flavin, Josiah McElheny, Stephen Prina

Diagrams and plans and pinboards and tableaux and documentation of arranged collections offer alternative means of mapping out a living space and the objects that occupy it.

Lucy McKenzie, Project for a Nazi Living Room; Project for a Nazi Decor; Project for an Objectivist Hallway


Mark Dion, Harbingers of the Fifth Season, @ James Cohan

I then moved from the “making uncanny” to the “making unnatural,” with James Cohan’s The Fifth Season, a group show that examines the disruption of “natural” seasonal rhythms. As the gallery explains it: “Ecological and technological changes have created a less defined cycle of life, one that is sped up by the velocity of communication and slowed down by unpredictable environmental behavior calling into notion our long-held notions of how time behaves,” adding a fifth season to the traditional four. There were so many compelling individual pieces in this show — Natalie Jerimijenko’s FLOWERXFACADE, an xClinicFarmacy project to inflorescence the barren urban structures; Mark Dion’s Harbingers of the Fifth Season; Pierre Huyghe’s La saison des fetes; Katie Paterson’s Future Library (certificate) — but there was just too much diversity, and I had too little time, to parse out how each pertained to the theme. On the whole, the assortment of work offered myriad means of visualizing and materializing and algorithmicizing “nature” and temporality — much in the same way that the Petzel show offered diverse means of representing (diagramming, planning, staging, outlining, highlighting) “everyday life” and the spaces in which we live it.

Pierre Huyghe


ERIK WYSOCAN Untitled (iPhone Mine), 2014 Wood, halite, chalcopyrite, bauxite, colemanite, chromite, peridotite, quartz, sphalerite, crude oil, dolomite, graphite ore, limestone, magnesite, gold ore, silver ore, pyrolusite, celestite, hematite

Of course one of the most hackneyed means of representing “nature” is via botanical imagery — which typically doesn’t do much for me. But I couldn’t help but be drawn in by the suffocating summery cheerfulness of Vera Neumann’s Vera Paints a Summer Bouquet at Alexander Gray Associates.

And to close: a couple random shots.
First, a view from the bus window, from central PA back to New York. My childhood summers had a familiar daily rhythm: I’d wake up to clear blue skies, play outside all day until the clouds started rolling in around 3, head in for the daily 4pm thunderstorm, wait until after dinner for the clouds to clear, then head back outside into the misty pre-sunset pastels (below), and that fabulous horizontal evening light, for one last bike ride before hide-and-seek in the dark.

Second: an accidental partial selfie. I inexplicably like this one.

 http://ift.tt/1y7GtOm
Faces, Furnishings & Flowers http://ift.tt/1noCauq Shannon
Mikalene Thomas

Mikalene Thomas

I caught a few shows this week. First, at Lehmann Maupin: Mikalene Thomas, whose exhibition at the Brooklyn Museum I really enjoyed last year. Here, Tête de Femme mixed cut-outs and screenprints — layered with all the vibrant colors and viscous creams and sparkly doodads women use to adorn themselves — to construct Cubist and Pop takes on portraiture. What I’m about to say next is so predictable and obvious that I choose to subvert the cliché by making it a parody of itself: Thomas is “interrogating” the simultaneously formulaic/templated and personalized/improvised tools and techniques for “constructing” female beauty.

IMG_5836

On, then, to the chroma-keyed face of the astoundingly brilliant Hito Steyerl at Andrew Kreps. Her “How Not to be Seen: A Fucking Didactic Educational Installation” — which I’ve been super-excited to see – is fantastic. Steyerl argues that we live amidst

an avalanche of digital images, which multiply and proliferate while real people disappear or are fixed, scanned and over-represented by an overbearing architecture of surveillance. How do people disappear in an age of total over-visibility? Which huge institutional and legal effort has to be made to keep things unspoken and unspeakable even if they are pretty obviously sitting right in front of everyone’s eyes? Are people hidden by too many images? Do they go hide amongst other images? Do they become images?

IMG_5870

IMG_5876

The video — a Python-esque send up of educational films, with a dark Virilio twist — proposes several strategies for disappearance: camouflaging oneself, hiding in plain sight, shrinking down smaller than a pixel, living in a gated community, wearing a full-body cloak, being a female over 50 (ha!). The setting for much of the video – on location in a California desert blanketed with military photo calibration targets, once used to calibrate pre-drone aerial cameras — hints at the presence of ubiquitous imaging technologies that very skillfully make themselves unseen. And this imagery brings to mind the humans now piloting those unmammed aircraft via some computer screen, surveying and obliterating landscapes from a remove — safe and unseen. Yet in “disappearing” ourselves from these present-but-invisible cameras, we run the risk of de-subjectivizing ourselves. We run the risk of becoming little more than anonymous, interchangeable “scalies” — those CGI’d human forms that exist merely to show speculative spaces “in action” — populating architectural renderings. 

IMG_5868

Frieze review of her show at the Van Abbemuseum, notes that that exhibition — and this one — illustrates central themes from her essay “Too Much World: Is the Internet Dead?”:

She describes a condition ‘partly created by humans but also only partly controlled by them’, in which images are coming out of our screens and travelling around – shaping human relations, rewriting social and political systems, triggering events, morphing, warping, and then dematerializing again, retreating back into the screen before invading other spaces. ‘The all-out internet condition is not an interface but an environment,’ Steyerl writes. ‘We thought it was a plumbing system, so how did this tsunami creep up in my sink?’

And speaking of sinks, I then moved on to Petzel’s “A Machinery for Living,” which riffs on Le Corbusier’s proclamation that the modern house is a “machine for living,” incorporating new technologies and mass produced and pre-fabricated materials. Interestingly, an anonymized, de-subjectivized mannequin — who happens to be sitting at Friedrich Petzel’s own desk — welcomes us into the gallery.

Curator Walead Beshty assembles the components of that “machine for living” — the technologies that compose the structures of everyday life. At the same time, the exhibition illustrates various mechanisms — means of visualization, display, illumination, ornamentation, etc. — we employ either to make familiar or to make strange these everyday objects. Barbara T. Smith’s photocopied Clocks reduces quotidian tools to their silhouettes. Photocopies appear again in Jay DeFeo’s Untitled. Harsh light and shadow make a frequent appearance, too: in Henry Wessel’s Night Walk and a gallery in which Dan Flavin’s light installation provides the only source of illumination for Josiah McElheny’s Models for an Abstract Body and a pair of Stephen Prina photographs, each titled A photograph, the principal source of illumination of which is work by Dan Flavin. And of course the cross-beams in the gallery’s skylights cast pronounced shadows on the walls and floor.

IMG_5879

IMG_5889

Barbara T. Smith, Clocks

Barbara T. Smith, Clocks

Wessel

Wessel

Dan Flavin, Josiah McElheny, Stephen Prina

Dan Flavin, Josiah McElheny, Stephen Prina

Diagrams and plans and pinboards and tableaux and documentation of arranged collections offer alternative means of mapping out a living space and the objects that occupy it.

Lucy McKenzie, Project for a Nazi Living Room; Project for a Nazi Decor; Project for an Objectivist Hallway

Lucy McKenzie, Project for a Nazi Living Room; Project for a Nazi Decor; Project for an Objectivist Hallway

Mark Dion, Harbingers of the Fifth Season, @ James Cohan

Mark Dion, Harbingers of the Fifth Season, @ James Cohan

I then moved from the “making uncanny” to the “making unnatural,” with James Cohan’s The Fifth Season, a group show that examines the disruption of “natural” seasonal rhythms. As the gallery explains it: “Ecological and technological changes have created a less defined cycle of life, one that is sped up by the velocity of communication and slowed down by unpredictable environmental behavior calling into notion our long-held notions of how time behaves,” adding a fifth season to the traditional four. There were so many compelling individual pieces in this show — Natalie Jerimijenko’s FLOWERXFACADE, an xClinicFarmacy project to inflorescence the barren urban structures; Mark Dion’s Harbingers of the Fifth Season; Pierre Huyghe’s La saison des fetes; Katie Paterson’s Future Library (certificate) — but there was just too much diversity, and I had too little time, to parse out how each pertained to the theme. On the whole, the assortment of work offered myriad means of visualizing and materializing and algorithmicizing “nature” and temporality — much in the same way that the Petzel show offered diverse means of representing (diagramming, planning, staging, outlining, highlighting) “everyday life” and the spaces in which we live it.

Pierre Huyghe

Pierre Huyghe

ERIK WYSOCAN Untitled (iPhone Mine), 2014 Wood, halite, chalcopyrite, bauxite, colemanite, chromite, peridotite, quartz, sphalerite, crude oil, dolomite, graphite ore, limestone, magnesite, gold ore, silver ore, pyrolusite, celestite, hematite

ERIK WYSOCAN Untitled (iPhone Mine), 2014 Wood, halite, chalcopyrite, bauxite, colemanite, chromite, peridotite, quartz, sphalerite, crude oil, dolomite, graphite ore, limestone, magnesite, gold ore, silver ore, pyrolusite, celestite, hematite

Of course one of the most hackneyed means of representing “nature” is via botanical imagery — which typically doesn’t do much for me. But I couldn’t help but be drawn in by the suffocating summery cheerfulness of Vera Neumann’s Vera Paints a Summer Bouquet at Alexander Gray Associates.

IMG_5855

And to close: a couple random shots.

First, a view from the bus window, from central PA back to New York. My childhood summers had a familiar daily rhythm: I’d wake up to clear blue skies, play outside all day until the clouds started rolling in around 3, head in for the daily 4pm thunderstorm, wait until after dinner for the clouds to clear, then head back outside into the misty pre-sunset pastels (below), and that fabulous horizontal evening light, for one last bike ride before hide-and-seek in the dark.

IMG_5828

Second: an accidental partial selfie. I inexplicably like this one.

IMG_5830

http://ift.tt/1y7GtOm

My good news of the day is that my university (University of Southampton) confirmed that I have been promoted to full professor. It comes with a fancy title Professor in Technological Culture & Aesthetics and kicks in next month for the new academic year! Big thanks to Winchester School of Art, it’s head Ed D’Souza and other colleagues for the support!

Or in other words:

homer_simpson-t1


http://ift.tt/1s2ipf3 July 11, 2014 at 07:19AM”
— Professor http://ift.tt/1kcX2QI jussiparikka

meson press first book, Rethinking Gamification (PDF), was just released in Lüneburg. Part of the Hybrid Publishing Lab at the Leuphana University, the press focuses on digital culture and network media with the aim to “challenge contemporary theories and advance key debates in the humanities today.” I was interested in inviting one of the representatives of the press, Mercedes Bunz, to share in the style of some earlier mini-interviews I have conducted what she sees as the stakes in coming up with a multiple-format publishing house that focuses on theory.

Most of scholars are increasingly frustrated with the dinosauric habits of big academic publishers, but how to establish alternatives in the academic world that is challenged both by the necessity of new formats and by the only slowly changing recognition systems of the academic world?

The burning questions in publishing seem to be about the changing media ecology of academia of which publishing is one part – and inherently connected to institutional settings and subject-positions.

In other words, the question posed to Bunz: mesonpress_gamification

“What and why is meson press as a theory publishing project and does it connect with the wider question of the “post-digital scholar?”

Mercedes Bunz: “You are right: publishing itself gets profoundly questioned by digital media, it isn’t just that digital media is an exciting field for theory because it never stands still.

The interesting thing: while we all know that within publishing there is “disruption”, oddly enough this doesn’t necessarily mean that there will be change. It might be true that technology offers alternative ways of publishing. However, reputation management and academic recognition systems stand in the way and ensure that nothing changes. Thus, the situation we find ourselves in is slightly mad: technically there are many ways to publish and share intelligent thoughts by now. However, young academics can’t use those alternatives because then their book a) can’t find its way into academic libraries which means b) they don’t get cited, or c) the book isn’t recognized for their CV. For all of that it still needs an approved publisher. Our technical super-connected, post-digital world is left helpless.

Of course, one can’t accept this.

meson press works its way through this situation. Naturally as academics who are also media scholars, we are quite interested in exploring the question: What chances are there in digital book production for theory debates? Our answer so far is the following: We publish open access, and this makes books easily findable and pushes citation. Also we foster the findability of our books regarding search engines and catalogues, and take marketing quite serious. However, the most important difference in my opinion is the conceptual understanding of what this is: a book.

Similar to Mattering Press, or Christopher Kelty’s scholarly magazine Limn http://limn.it/ our publishing project is an academic cooperative: from academics for academics. This means in our view, a book becomes a place to meet and debate, similar to a lecture, a workshop, or a seminar. Editing a book was always a starting point for a discussion, copy-editing was always a way to connect or disagree. It is this tendency which now needs to be further amplified. In other words, we take quality assessment very serious and try to turn it into a concept: A book isn’t just a product that starts a dialogue between author and reader. It is accompanied by lots of other academic conversations – peer review, co-authors, copy editors – and these conversations deserve to be taken more serious. In a post-digital world one needs to understand that a book is a process that gives good reason to meet in person. Formats like book sprints have lead the way. Wendy Chun has also inspired us to create a writing group in which we constructively discuss a non-completed essay or chapter.

So I suppose this is how meson press connects to our situation as post-digital scholars. As a publishing house which is also a publishing project, we focus on the book as a form of communication, and this communication is an important part of its production. This is a way to optimize its task: to intervene, and challenge (which is not an easy task in our neoliberal societies). But we like the humanities, and we like them alive and kicking.

If I may give you a little overview of our upcoming publishing projects: After”Rethinking Gamification” we will publish two forgotten classics: The first will be by the Greek-French philosopher Kostas Axelos “On Marx and Heidegger”, who is translated and introduced with great care and expertise by Stuart Elden. We are very interested in his take on technology and alienation. The second will be by Antonia Caronia “The Cyborg”.

Also we are very proud that Yuk Hui and Erich Hörl have started editing the series “After Simondon” with us, and we are preparing two edited collections “Diffracting Kittler: German Media Theory and Beyond” and “Critical Keywords for the Digital Humanities”.

Sorry, but may I end this little interview with an appeal? If anyone has an idea for a thrilling book proposal in the context of digital culture and media studies, please send us a short trenchant abstract and chapter overview to: mesonpress@hybridpublishing.org.”


http://ift.tt/1ndv2fu July 11, 2014 at 03:06AM”
— A Mini-Interview: Mercedes Bunz explains meson press http://ift.tt/1nduZR1 jussiparikka
“Nieman Journalism Lab - Newest from Alberto Cairo: Data journalism needs to up its own standards”

noisy-data-cc

The data visualization expert argues that FiveThirtyEight and Vox have overpromised and underdelivered — and that they need to treat their data with more scientific rigor.

Did you know that wearing a helmet when riding a bike may be bad for you? Or that it’s possible to infer the rise of kidnappings in Nigeria from news reports? Or that we can predict the year when a majority of Americans will reject the death penalty (hint: 2044)? Or that it’s possible to see that healthcare prices in the U.S. are “insane” in 15 simple charts? Or that the 2015 El Niño event may increase the percentage of Americans who accept climate change as a reality?

If you answered “yes” to at least 60 percent of the questions above, I’m 95 percent certain that you’ve been following the recent buzz around “data” and “explanatory” journalism. I’m talking about websites like Nate Silver’s FiveThirtyEight and Ezra Klein’s Vox.com. A few traditional news organizations have followed suit, either creating their own in-house operations (The New York Times’ The Upshot) or strengthening existing efforts.

There is a lot to praise in what all those ventures — and others that will appear in the future — are trying to achieve. Journalists are known for being allergic to math and to the scientific method; some even proudly boast about it. Many in our profession still stick to flawed practices, such as asking the same questions to two or more sources and then just reporting their answers, without weighing the evidence and then pointing out which opinion is better grounded.

At first, the current popularity of the new wave of data journalism seemed to be a good antidote to the epidemic of hardball punditry and tomfriedmanism that has plagued the news for ages. When  Silver published FiveThirtyEight’s foundational manifesto, “What the Fox Knows,” I applauded him with enthusiasm. After all, bad data is pervasive in traditional newsrooms. If you think I’m exaggerating, read this recent and infuriating Washington Post op-ed, which gets causality wrong, is oblivious of ecological fallacies, misinterprets sources, and ends with a coarse, insulting, and condescending line. Don’t blame just the authors. Blame the editors at the Post, too.

But I have to confess my disappointment with the new wave of data journalism — at least for now. All the questions in the first paragraph are malarkey. Those stories may not be representative of everything that FiveThirtyEight, Vox, or The Upshot are publishing — I haven’t gathered a proper sample — but they suggest that, when you pay close attention at what they do, it’s possible to notice worrying cracks that may undermine their own core principles.

So what’s wrong with the stories in the first paragraph?

First, the piece on bike helmets is an example of cherry-picking and carelessly connecting studies to support an idea. It’s possible to “prove” almost anything if you act like this. I can “prove” that vaccines cause autism — they don’t — just by selecting certain papers, particularly those based on tiny samples or simple correlations, while ignoring the crushing majority that refutes my intuitions. Gladwellism— deriving grand theories from a handful of undersubstantiated studies — may be popular nowadays, but it’s still dubious journalism.

Second, using news reports on kidnappings in Nigeria as a proxy variable of actual kidnappings is risky. Proxy variables need to be handled with care. You cannot assert that there are more kidnappings just because the media is running more stories about them. It might be that you’re seeing more stories simply because news publications are increasingly interested in this beat. You won’t know until you do some proper analysis.

Third, long-term linear predictions of nonlinear phenomena are nearly always wrong. Writing that a majority of Americans will reject the death penalty by 2044 “if the trend continues” yields a catchy, SEO-friendly headline, but it means very little. The article says that there’s no “reason to expect the trend to pick up speed anytime soon,” but the same could have been said about support for gay rights a decade ago, and see where we are today. Unknown unknowns, confounding variables, and black swans can kill any simplistic prediction. As xkcd explained, you cannot predict that a woman will have four dozen husbands next month just because she was unmarried yesterday (zero husbands) and married today (one husband.) That’s not just bad Math. It’s lack of common sense.

extrapolating

Fourth, will the 2015 El Niño event make more Americans accept that climate change is real? No idea. It could be. Or not. It’s impossible to know, as that piece by The Upshot reads like wishful thinking. It does say that “belief in warming jumps when global temperatures hit record highs; it drops in cooler years,” but the evidence to support that claim is not fully revealed, so we don’t know if those “jumps” are relevant, significant, or just pure noise. Why should I trust the writer? I’m a journalist myself. I don’t trust journalists.

Fifth, can we really assert that health care prices in the U.S. are “insane” based on 15 simple charts? I won’t bore you this time, as there’s a lot of fishy details in those graphics. If you’re interested in the nitty gritty, read this blog post. I bet you’ll be as shocked as I was.

Is data journalism in crisis (already)?

The main challenge that FiveThirtyEight and Vox (and, to a lesser extent, The Upshot) face is that they overpromised before they were launched but underdelivered after they went public. They promised journalism based on a rigorous pondering of facts and data, but they have offered some stories based on flimsy evidence — with a consequent pushback from readers. As I’m one of those readers, I will take the liberty to offer some suggestions:

1. Data and explanatory journalism cannot be done on the cheap.

It’s hard to produce a constant stream of good data journalism on the cheap and with a small team. If history can be considered as a guidance, we should remember that this is not how data journalism was done in the past.

Journalism that takes advantage of quantitative methods and visualization is not new. As the Columbia Journalism Review wrote a while ago, “[Nate] Silver’s work is arguably less revolution than evolution, one facet of a journalistic practice that has actually been around for decades.”

True. In 1973, Philip Meyer, now a retired professor at the University of North Carolina, coined the term “precision journalism” in a book with that same title. Meyer is the most popular (but not the only) advocate for a methodical application of social science to the practice of journalism, and one of the founding parents of computer-assisted reporting.

To give you an example of the power of this kind of journalism: In 1993, The Miami Herald won a Pulitzer for an investigation about why Hurricane Andrew caused such a sweeping destruction in certain neighborhoods of Miami and Homestead, while leaving others almost intact. It was related to lax zoning inspection and building quality standards. The investigation was based on databases and mapping, but also on careful on-the-ground reporting.

Data-savvy investigative reporters and visual designers at established news organizations haven’t historically worked in complete isolation. They can rely on relatively large infrastructures to provide funding, support, and legal aid, when needed. It remains to be seen if a publication that conducts just this type of journalism can survive on its own. This leads to my next point.

2. Data and explanatory journalism cannot be produced in a rush.

Both Vox and FiveThirtyEight are publishing new stories, blog posts, and explanatory pieces nonstop. As any news organization nowadays, they live in a 24/7 world. They need to feed the goat, as their business models seem to be based on attracting adequately large audiences.

There’s a big risk in that. It’s much easier to feed the goat with stories with titles like “The New York Times Editorial Shakeup As Explained By ‘Game Of Thrones’” than with thorough analyses of population trends in Ukraine. (I’ll admit I found both quite enticing, though.) It is tempting for a news startup to try to be both BuzzFeed and The Economist at the same time, no matter how chimerical that goal is. Lighthearted blahblah can be done quickly and nonchalantly. Proper analytical journalism can’t. If you have a small organization, you may have to choose between producing a lot of bad stuff or publishing just a small amount of excellent stories.

3. Part of your audience knows more than you do.

Here’s the description for a perfect storm: Data journalism is often based on publicly available databases. Besides, current standards of journalism transparency dictate that, after a journalist writes or visualizes stories based on data, she should disclose her sources and make her spreadsheets downloadable for anyone to check. Finally, due to the very nature of those stories, a good portion of the audience will likely be quite numerate. This helps explain some recent takedowns in social media. Plenty of readers out there know much more than we do about our own data, and nowadays they have the means to broadcast their outrage. They don’t hesitate to do it.

4. Data journalists cannot survive in a cocoon.

Silver likes to quote Archilochus’ phrase about foxes and hedgehogs: “The fox knows many things, but the hedgehog knows one big thing.” Hedgehog intellectuals see the world through the lens of expertise on a single area, or of a single grand idea; fox thinkers borrow tools from many fields. Journalists tend to be foxes: We have a basic understanding of different disciplines, but we don’t necessarily specialize in any of them.

This is good on one hand, as it allows for richer and more lively reporting. But it also poses problems for data journalists, as you can’t really extract meaning from data using only cookie-cutter templates. No matter how great you are at analyzing stuff with the R statistics language, you’ll be in trouble if you don’t have a deep understanding of where the data came from, of how they were gathered, filtered, and processed, of their strengths and shortcomings.

That’s the reason why, in many universities, science departments teach their own statistics courses: It’s not the same to use stats for sociological observations as for genetics, psychology, astronomy, or physics. The equations may be similar, but the outcomes of your analyses don’t depend only on those equations. Context matters.

Foxes need to partner up with hedgehogs, journalists with specialists. And it’s not just a matter of asking a couple of researchers some questions while you write a blog post — something that, by the way, neither Vox or FiveThirtyEight do often enough (therefore the lack of quoted experts in many of their stories.) It’s also a matter of doing your reporting in collaboration with those researchers, as they’re the ones that know the data really well. This isn’t a particularly groundbreaking notion: The publications who regularly conduct solid data and investigative journalism nowadays, like ProPublica, work this way on a regular basis. Their journalists are very conscious of the limits of their knowledge.

(Side note: It is dubious that Nate Silver himself is a pure fox. His biggest successes when he was still at The New York Times depended on his familiarity with sports and election data. When it comes to those topics, he’s a werehedgehog, so to speak.)

Most novel technological concepts or tools follow a Gartner Hype Curve: First, the novelty is released and enjoys a peak of inflated expectations. Then it suffers through a valley of disillusionment. After that, when the hype vanishes, it reaches maturity and is widely adopted.

Even if data journalism is by no means a new phenomenon, it has entered the mainstream quite recently, breezed over the peak of inflated expectations, and precipitously sank into a valley of gloom. Hopefully, it’ll soon enter the last phase, one of stability and productivity. There’s a need for a journalism which is more rigorous and scientific. Data skills shouldn’t be the turf of a small guild of savants — they should permeate journalism in general. Data and explanatory news organizations can help achieve those goals.

Therefore, pundits and math-challenged journalists (like the folks at The New Republic, who seem to know as much about stats as I do about quantum mechanics, but feel entitled to write about it anyway) shouldn’t feel triumphant after reading this column. First, because Silver’s manifesto is still a great read. The news data and explanatory journalism organizations just need to be up to their own standards to thrive — something that I honestly hope will happen soon.

Second, because it’s a good thing to be reminded of Fred Mosteller’s famous assertion: “It is easy to lie with statistics, but easier to lie without them.” Or Richard Feynman’s: “The first principle is that you must not fool yourself, and you are the easiest person to fool.” Indeed. Particularly when you don’t know how to weigh qualitative and quantitative evidence.

Photo of painting by Abraham Palatnik by See-ming Lee used under a Creative Commons license.
prostheticknowledge:

Rhizome - Prosthetic Knowledge Picks: The Year of the Oculus Rift
The latest in an ongoing series of themed collections of creative projects assembled by Prosthetic Knowledge. This edition brings together projects that make use of the Oculus Rift, a device that has reignited interest in Virtual Reality and provided creative inspiration for hackers and artists alike.
You can read the entire submission at Rhizome here
prostheticknowledge:

Rhizome - Prosthetic Knowledge Picks: The Year of the Oculus Rift
The latest in an ongoing series of themed collections of creative projects assembled by Prosthetic Knowledge. This edition brings together projects that make use of the Oculus Rift, a device that has reignited interest in Virtual Reality and provided creative inspiration for hackers and artists alike.
You can read the entire submission at Rhizome here
prostheticknowledge:

Rhizome - Prosthetic Knowledge Picks: The Year of the Oculus Rift
The latest in an ongoing series of themed collections of creative projects assembled by Prosthetic Knowledge. This edition brings together projects that make use of the Oculus Rift, a device that has reignited interest in Virtual Reality and provided creative inspiration for hackers and artists alike.
You can read the entire submission at Rhizome here
prostheticknowledge:

Rhizome - Prosthetic Knowledge Picks: The Year of the Oculus Rift
The latest in an ongoing series of themed collections of creative projects assembled by Prosthetic Knowledge. This edition brings together projects that make use of the Oculus Rift, a device that has reignited interest in Virtual Reality and provided creative inspiration for hackers and artists alike.
You can read the entire submission at Rhizome here
prostheticknowledge:

Rhizome - Prosthetic Knowledge Picks: The Year of the Oculus Rift
The latest in an ongoing series of themed collections of creative projects assembled by Prosthetic Knowledge. This edition brings together projects that make use of the Oculus Rift, a device that has reignited interest in Virtual Reality and provided creative inspiration for hackers and artists alike.
You can read the entire submission at Rhizome here
prostheticknowledge:

Rhizome - Prosthetic Knowledge Picks: The Year of the Oculus Rift
The latest in an ongoing series of themed collections of creative projects assembled by Prosthetic Knowledge. This edition brings together projects that make use of the Oculus Rift, a device that has reignited interest in Virtual Reality and provided creative inspiration for hackers and artists alike.
You can read the entire submission at Rhizome here
prostheticknowledge:

Rhizome - Prosthetic Knowledge Picks: The Year of the Oculus Rift
The latest in an ongoing series of themed collections of creative projects assembled by Prosthetic Knowledge. This edition brings together projects that make use of the Oculus Rift, a device that has reignited interest in Virtual Reality and provided creative inspiration for hackers and artists alike.
You can read the entire submission at Rhizome here
prostheticknowledge:

Rhizome - Prosthetic Knowledge Picks: The Year of the Oculus Rift
The latest in an ongoing series of themed collections of creative projects assembled by Prosthetic Knowledge. This edition brings together projects that make use of the Oculus Rift, a device that has reignited interest in Virtual Reality and provided creative inspiration for hackers and artists alike.
You can read the entire submission at Rhizome here
prostheticknowledge:

Rhizome - Prosthetic Knowledge Picks: The Year of the Oculus Rift
The latest in an ongoing series of themed collections of creative projects assembled by Prosthetic Knowledge. This edition brings together projects that make use of the Oculus Rift, a device that has reignited interest in Virtual Reality and provided creative inspiration for hackers and artists alike.
You can read the entire submission at Rhizome here
prostheticknowledge:

Rhizome - Prosthetic Knowledge Picks: The Year of the Oculus Rift
The latest in an ongoing series of themed collections of creative projects assembled by Prosthetic Knowledge. This edition brings together projects that make use of the Oculus Rift, a device that has reignited interest in Virtual Reality and provided creative inspiration for hackers and artists alike.
You can read the entire submission at Rhizome here

prostheticknowledge:

Rhizome - Prosthetic Knowledge Picks: The Year of the Oculus Rift

The latest in an ongoing series of themed collections of creative projects assembled by Prosthetic Knowledge. This edition brings together projects that make use of the Oculus Rift, a device that has reignited interest in Virtual Reality and provided creative inspiration for hackers and artists alike.

You can read the entire submission at Rhizome here

(via absurdhowl)