Monday, May 30, 2016

SH*T ART: WHAT IT IS NOT


French Symbolist poet, essayist, and philosopher Paul Valery (1871-1945) summed up art for 20th century eyes thusly:

"Modern art tends almost exclusively to exploit sensory sensibility... it has a marvelous flair for arousing our attention,  and for exploiting every means to that end -  intensification,  contrast,  the startling, or the enigmatic. It can capture, by the subtlety of its means or the audacity of its execution, certain very valuable effects: states of extreme transience or complexity, irrational values, inarticulate sensations, resonances, correspondences,  intuitions of shifting depths... "

Rightly so, a work of art that succeeds in communicating its "meaning" directly is both flawed and superficial in its certainty, hence merely a work of illustration.

Friday, May 27, 2016

PROCESS: CORRESPONDENCE ART


Born out of a need to travel beyond the physical and financial constrictions of the gallery system, "mail art" was first dispatched by Fluxus artists during the fifties and sixties as both as both populist toy and dada impulse, and eventually turned into a world wide phenomenon. Ray Johnson is widely considered its father,  and it was he that turned this free flow of media and ideas into a bold aesthetic/ cultural exchange. It may also be seen as the beginning of an alternative cultural explosion that included things  like sound art, cassette culture,  zines, and independent record labels/production.  Above is a recent sending by HEENTodile.

Sunday, May 1, 2016

THIS IS HOW WE DEFORM: MUTABLE INSTRUMENTS "Warps"


Mutable Instruments has impressed me with its design ethic, packaging,  clearly written manuals, and most of all their quirky, but user friendly modules. The WARPS module is no exception with crossfading, cross-folding, and vocoding just a few of its tricks. An internal oscillator  and several CV inputs add to the modulation potential.  As the Buzzcocks say, "noise annoys", but it's just so much fun getting to that point!

Thursday, April 28, 2016

SOMEONE SOMEWHERE IN BROOKLYN


Back with the CONTROL boys and girls on Lorimer Street, and having a truly nice time, as always!