Friday, December 18, 2009
Thursday, February 19, 2009
Saturday, October 25, 2008
Monday, Oct. 16, 1939
According to Cinema & Radio Comic Lew Lehr, a German refugee named Meyer, never in the U. S. before, was met at a Manhattan pier by ship news reporters. Said he,right off the bat: "How happy I am a-a-awrk to be at last in your beautiful America sque-e-e-e, to live in peace and freedom bukabukabuk without fear of concentration camps ow-o-o-o-ow, to raise my children to know the full meaning of mental and physical liberty kre-e-e-sh, I can hardly wait to set foot on your happy shores whe-e-e-e!"
"But Mr. Meyer," queried one reporter, "you have never been in our country before, yet you handle the language astonishingly. Where did you pick it up?"
Said Mr. Lehr's Mr. Meyer, with understandable pride: "From your short-wave radio."
so the radiopathic mr. mr.
the 30s megastar of the newsreel industry
(a pretty marvelous gem to troll up
from the depths of interwebbing time-space vortex
let me here redirect readers to the fabulous j.h c craven favorite bert lahr)
Comedian best known for his narration on the Fox Movietone newsreel novelty segments, usually with a reference to:
As noted, the odd error can creep in: some typos, some discs that don’t qualify even as peripheral (Les Benson's "Borsht Belt Blues" somehow got included along with Lew Lehr’s stories listed under Manor). These are insignificant problems in a book lavishly illustrated in full colour on every page and printed on top quality paper (HEAVY paper!), and priced at a reasonable US$25.
[ps on pic below-right: WTF? see related story at time Refugag page]
Various cartoons have Lehr caricatures or people doing the Lehr schtick. These include: She Was an Acrobats Daughter (Freleng, 1937), which has a caricature of Lehr; Russian Rhapsody (Clampett, 1944), where Adolf Hitler says: Nazis is the cwaziest peoples!; Porky in Egypt (Clampett, 1938) done by the Camel; and Daffy Duck Hunt (McKimson, 1949), said by Daffy at the very beginning. Porky does a Lew Lehr imitation as he narrates a novelty bit in Porkys Snooze Reel (Clampett/McCabe, 1941).
March 6, 1950 in History
Between 1937 and 1948, he was caricatured in six Warner Bros. animated cartoons: "She Was An Acrobat's Daughter" (1937), "Porky in Egypt" (1938), "The Sour Puss" (1940), "Russian Rhapsody" (1944), "Herr Meets Hare" (1945), and "Scaredy Cat" (1948).
I'll rate 'The Boob Weekly' 3 points for good intentions and one more point for execution. I'm a fan of Rube Goldberg, but he did his best and funniest work in newspapers, not movies.
Lew Lehr and Durante crack each other up and have trouble reading their lines. The system cue has been deleted.
Where is Hitler / Hitler as Lehr
(russian death cry by uh gremlin frm teh kremlin without permission of a.h.)
700 billion krondet question: why/how the clampett '44 propaganda short featured on the youtube of the avant-garde? dunno, can't figure, but some several geniuses of the wartime culture industry refigured there as hypnotically destructive gremlins.
below, the lambeth walk, the editorial dance behind the 2nd war
&IMHO the single most prescient bit of editing that side of the atom bomb.
this clip (oft circulated: some several studios, including movietone
& universal, reciruclated the british propaganda crowd pleaser)
rolled around to my eyes via the exquisite taste &exhaustive archive
of keith sanborn, who screened it in a course on political montage.
(this post dedicated to fellow traveler Wilfried Hou Je Bek
& his simian explorations at socialfiction.org with apologies to readers as i've been editing an islamo-terrorist plot at work all week &as some small portion of the preceding post may be an outpouring thereof)
Friday, October 10, 2008
Kareem Estefan is the host of Ceptuetics, a weekly radio program investigating the poetics of conceptually innovative contemporary writers. He will be performing a self-interrogation as a retrospective of the voices and poetries aired on his show over the last year.
Alexis Bhagat, the co-editor of An Atlas of Radical Cartography, is a transmission artist and writer. He will be performing in his latest four voice composition along with Tanwi Nandini Islam, Stephen Mosblech, and Delia Springstubb. The multivocal reading will approach topics of memory and change.
Danny Snelson (editor and archivist) and Phoebe Springstubb (artist and architect) will perform their latest collaborative work: Testimony, a live processed, monolingual sound poem in Deseret.
or, tune in:
live video streams on Friday the 17th 8pm EST @ this link.
Others there are that have no composition at all but a kind of tuning and rhyming fall in what they write. It runs and slides, and only makes a sound. [ Ben Johnson's Introduction to Sound Poetry: A Catalogue (Toronto, 1978) ]
Tougher than anything
No one listens to poetry. The ocean
Does not mean to be listened to. A drop
Or crash of water. It means
It pounds ashore. White and aimless signals. No
One listens to poetry.
And those messages (God would not damn them) do not even
know they are champions.
Friday, September 12, 2008
THE, TESTIMONY, OF, ELEVEN, WITNESSES, Be, it, known, unto, all, nations, kindreds, tongues, and, people, unto, whom, this, work, shall, come, That, we, through, the, grace, of, God, the, Father, and, our, Lord, Jesus, Christ, have, seen, the, plates, which, contain, this, record, which, is, a, record, of, the, people, of, Nephi, and, also, of, the, Lamanites, their, brethren, and, also, of, the, people, of, Jared, who, came, from, the, tower, of, which, hath, been, spoken, That, Joseph, Smith, Jun, the, translator, of, this, work, has, shown, unto, us, the, plates, of, which, hath, been, spoken, which, have, the, appearance, of, gold, and, as, many, of, the, leaves, as, the, said, Smith, has, translated, we, did, handle, with, our, hands, and, we, also, saw, the, engravings, thereon, all, of, which, has, the, appearance, of, ancient, work, and, of, curious, workmanship, And, we, also, know, that, they, have, been, translated, by, the, gift, and, power, of, God, for, his, voice, hath, declared, it, unto, us, wherefore, we, know, of, a, surety, that, the, work, is, true, And, we, also, testify, that, we, have, seen, the, engravings, which, are, upon, the, plates, and, they, have, been, shown, unto, us, by, the, power, of, God, and, not, of, man, And, we, declare, with, words, of, soberness, that, an, angel, of, God, came, down, from, heaven, and, he, brought, and, laid, before, our, eyes, that, we, beheld, and, saw, the, plates, and, the, engravings, thereon, and, we, know, that, it, is, by, the, grace, of, God, the, Father, and, our, Lord, Jesus, Christ, that, we, beheld, and, bear, record, that, these, things, are, true, And, it, is, marvelous, in, our, eyes, Nevertheless, the, voice, of, the, Lord, commanded, us, that, we, should, bear, record, of, it, wherefore, to, be, obedient, unto, the, commandments, of, God, we, bear, testimony, of, these, things, And, we, know, that, if, we, are, faithful, in, Christ, we, shall, rid, our, garments, of, the, blood, of, all, men, and, be, found, spotless, before, the, judgment, seat, of, Christ, and, shall, dwell, with, him, eternally, in, the, heavens, And, we, give, our, names, unto, the, world, to, witness, unto, the, world, that, which, we, have, seen, And, we, lie, not, God, bearing, witness, of, it, And, the, honor, be, to, the, Father, and, to, the, Son, and, to, the, Holy, Ghost, which, is, one, God, Amen, Christian, Whitmer, Jacob, Whitmer, Peter, Whitmer, Jun, John, Whitmer, Hiram, Page, Joseph, Smith, Sen, Hyrum, Smith, Samuel, H, Smith, Oliver, Cowdery, David, Whitmer, Martin, Harris
in wch a project underway feeds yr own j.h c w/some special non-results & he can't resist sharing them as a revelatory poem for all. more shortly on some several things, till then: faithfully & go get 'em.
Sunday, August 24, 2008
Saturday, Aug. 23, 2008 By J.Henry Chunko / Greenpoint
[via_Alterati post : : Explosions Near Canada, Mormon Sex Slaves, Martial Law in Arkansas, & Bigfoot]
This is an updated version of a story that originally appeared on Friday August 8, 2008
It took a while to register, but there was something naggingly familiar about Bernann McKinney, the 57-year-old California woman whose ecstatically beaming features were splashed across the world's media on Aug. 6. The story was already a corker: the five baby pitbull terriers McKinney was showing off had been cloned in Korea from the ear of her late and much-missed pet Booger, who'd once saved her from an attack by another dog that had practically ripped McKinney's arm off.
But the story got even better when newspaper suspicions proved true and McKinney was forced to admit she was none other than Joyce McKinney, the former Miss Wyoming who 30 years ago fled Britain to escape charges of kidnapping a Mormon missionary and forcibly having sex with him.
Britons over a certain age will recall with a shudder the surreal and sexy details of that story from the winter of 1977. The 27-year-old McKinney was accused in court, along with a friend, Keith May, of abducting 21-year-old Mormon missionary Kirk Anderson from a church in a London suburb and taking him to a cottage in Okehampton, Devon in the southwest of England. There, said Anderson, he was chained to a bed and forced to have sex with McKinney for three days. McKinney, once a Mormon herself, was said to have formed a crush on him after they'd first met and had sex in 1975. Anderson tried to break off the relationship but McKinney was infatuated and stalked him to England where he'd asked for a posting as a missionary to escape her attentions.
The story was gift-wrapped for Britain's tabloid press and the "Mormon Sex Slave" case held the country agog as Anderson and McKinney gave their versions of what went on in the idyllic Devon cottage to a court assembled to decide whether McKinney had a case to answer. McKinney claimed that she was trying to rekindle her affair with Anderson using techniques of seduction recommended by Alex Comfort, author of that redolent manual of the day, The Joy of Sex.
McKinney told the court that the chains, fur-lined manacles, rope, chloroform and wedding trousseau complete with "pink feathers and see-through nighties" were all props for the bondage sessions she planned for McKinnon. "We had such a fun time — just like old times," McKinney told the court in her native North Carolina drawl. "I love him so much that I would ski naked down Mount Everest with a carnation up my nose if he asked me to," she added. Such sexual frankness rather stuck out in a magistrates court in sedate, suburban Surrey, England, in those days.
For his part, Anderson claimed that he'd been kidnapped at gunpoint (albeit a replica), forced to have sex while chained to the bed (and twice more unchained), and that, despite being six foot four and 240 lbs. (110 kg), had never resisted. "I had made a plan for my release," Anderson testified, "but it wasn't through running away. I was going to cooperate." Even after his ordeal, when McKinney and May drove him back to London and a long lunch in Trafalgar Square, he still cooperated.
After deliberating, the Surrey magistrates decided that McKinney and May should stand trial on kidnap charges but granted McKinney bail. Outside the court she declared her innocence, regaled the press with the promise that they'd heard nothing yet and walked off, tossing over her shoulder, "You can have my life story for twenty-five thousand!" But in April 1978, a month before her trial was due to begin, McKinney and May fled the country.
The police and media both chased after, with British tabloids competing to find McKinney, making do in the meantime with pictures and revelations about her former career as a nude model for sex magazines. When reporters ran McKinney and May to ground in Atlanta, Georgia a month later, the couple revealed how they'd used a succession of disguises — first as nuns, then in a sari and Sinbad the Sailor outfit.
In July, 1979, the FBI finally caught up with the couple in Asheville, North Carolina, where they got suspended sentences for falsifying passports but were not considered liable for extradition. In 1984, McKinney surfaced again, when she was arrested outside the office of Kirk Anderson in Salt Lake City where he was living. Police found rope and handcuffs in her car.
In Seoul, as she prepared to return home with one of her brand new Boogers, Bernann McKinney initially denied that she is one and the same Joyce McKinney who is still technically a fugitive from British justice. But confronted by the weight of circumstantial evidence — Joyce McKinney's middle name is Bernann, both are former beauty queens, both owned pitbulls and even appear to share the same social security number, birth date and home address — Bernann McKinney confessed to being a reinvention rather than a clone of her former self. "I thought people would be honest enough to see me as a person who was trying to do something good and not as a celebrity," a tearful McKinney told the Associated Press in a phone call. Ignoring the fact that police in her hometown of Newland, Avery County in North Carolina still want to talk to her about various other charges on file from recent years, McKinney still proclaims her innocence and calls her capers of 30 years ago "a figment of the tabloid press ... I don't want that garbage in with the puppy story."
This is an updated version of a story that originally appeared on Friday August 8, 2008
a poem for LZ:
|Come shadow, come, and take this shadow up,||Not Verified|
|Come shadow shadow, come and take this up,||Not Verified|
|Come, shadow, come, and take this shadow up,||Not Verified|
|Come, come shadow, and take this shadow up,||Not Verified|
|Come, come and shadow, take this shadow up,||Not Verified|
|Come, up, come shadow and take this shadow,||Not Verified|
|Come, up, come shadow and take this shadow,||Not Verified|
|And up, come, come shadow, take this shadow,||Not Verified|
|And come shadow, come up, take this shadow,||Not Verified|
|Come up, come shadow this, and take shadow,||Not Verified|
|Up, shadow this, come and take shadow, come||Not Verified|
|Shadow this, take and come up shadow, come||Not Verified|
|Take and come, shadow, come up, shadow this,||Not Verified|
|Up, come and take shadow, come this shadow,||Not Verified|
|Come up, take shadow, and come this shadow,||Not Verified|
|Come and take shadow, come up this shadow,||Not Verified|
|Shadow, shadow come, come and take this up,||Not Verified|
|Come, shadow, take, and come this shadow, up,||Not Verified|
|Come shadow, come, and take this shadow up,||Not Verified|
|Come, shadow, come, and take this shadow up.||Not Verified|
better! -- hear the original, a momentous discovery from the depths of the LZ poetry archive (i've been editing, more words shortly! -- it's'll be a prodigious resource.. .) : : a disastrously reverby 1966 recording of Come Shadow, Come from the NET USA poetry series made-for-TV zukofsky program.. . (snore?).. . what's remarkable? an aurally fabulous incidental intertextuality with the other great permutational poem of the 60s, the one written to magnetic tape: brion gysin's machine-poem "I am" -- question is, how much of LZ is in the intonation, that voice breathing the 'am' that meaning into the the shakespearean line?
Thursday, August 14, 2008
First Movement: (five chorales}
d . B . e . A . a . B . d . E
B . d . A . e . B . a . E . d
B . A . d . B . e . E . a . d
B . A . B. d . E . e . a . d
B . A . B . E . d . e . a . d
his voice with others, steining:
"He Said It" - Robert Quillen Camp
A lecture by James Hoff
at the National Academy of Art, Oslo, Norway on February 11, 2008
Transcribed in real time by Danny Snelson in Tokyo, Japan
In the winter of 2007, James Hoff contacted me to transcribe a lecture he would be giving on minor histories as primary information -- or rather, secondary information as source material for primary history -- in Oslo, Norway. In the spirit of collaboration, I took this offer as an opportunity to experiment in performative editing & live data processing.
His lecture was improvisational, based on hundreds of images and hours of artists' curated video running simultaneously and connected anecdotally, so there was no set agenda or instructions for the material that would or wouldn't be used.
However, the process to transcribe the lecture was simple. First, I received a thorough list of key figures, publications, and works James might address. Over the next couple of months, I googled together a massive body of text around this list (from the various virtual resources available to me online in Japan). The sources ran from book reviews to artist interviews, from essays, memoirs and stock lists to articles, blog posts and even full length books: whatever was searchable & citable, informative or interesting.
We then arranged for Børre Saethre, a Norweigan artist, to relay the lecture via Skype telephony to my computer in Tokyo. Taking James' words from this digital transmission, I culled paragraphs from my previously complied text file using the 'find', 'copy' & 'paste' functions of my TextEdit program. One rule in this selective hearing was that no proper names could be used as search functions. For example, when I heard James say the word "taking" in the first sentence of his lecture, I inserted the first paragraph in the transcript as follows:
Some critics genuinely loved his work and understood what he was trying to say. Others, not. But the people: no problem. He spoke to them and they spoke back to him. Mutually they deepened imagery and meaning in America. On New York's Lower East Side in 1986, Latinos leaned out of tenement windows to cheer him on while he painted a mural of allusion, attacking crack,extolling life.3 Because they knew. Knew that he had invented an extraordinary pictorial language that spoke to the city, spoke to the '80s, spoke to the whole damn world. Inventively he drew the terrors and the pleasures of our times - the threat of nuclear annihilation, religious bigotry, the fusion of cultures in the dance, the brotherhood of the boom box -all by cartoonlike ellipsis. He graced Grace Jones with body paint. He painted the Berlin Wall.4 He chanted the paranoia out of our system, chalk-tracing parody and paraphrase. All this with a supreme self-confidence. I never knew a person who was more certain of his place in world history and who was less conceited about it, taking no credit for the powers of his hand.
The first poem in the first issue of the magazine is a translation of a poem by Pierre Reverdy by Kenneth Koch and Georges Guy. Georges was a French professor at Bennington who would frequently take Anne and me to dinner (a French restaurant, The Rain Barrel) on weekends when I'd go visit Anne, who was in her last year at college. Kenneth Koch had been my teacher at the New School in fall '63. When we decided to start the magazine — we were in the backseat of a car driving from Bennington to New York when we looked at each other and said 'Let's do it' and five minutes later 'Let's call it Angel Hair' — Georges offered us this poem.
9.3 x 12 x 1.6 cm, transparent plastic box from the original Fluxus source with 25 offset printed cards (some are vintage, others re-printed). The instructions for a 15 minute performance using 15 performers (who remain anonymous amongst the audience until required) are very co-ordinated and great fun. With vintage Maciunas-designed label. Fine.
CC: Right, sure. I think very much. Including, one of my big sources is just the way I can mishear things. You know you walk down the street and you overhear a little snatch of conversation, but you can never be sure you heard it right. But, so what! You take whatever it is that appealed to you and you... I remember Ted used to do that, used to pick up a lot of stuff walking down the street. In fact, I remember John Ashbery one time when they came out with those little tiny pocket tape recorders he had one and he tried for a little while walking around New York with that, but I don't think that it ultimately worked for him very well. I think he was already set up to do that with his ear anyway. It wasn't that much good to just record. Plus, if you do that obviously you get a lot of noise that you don't want to, you can hardly hear anybody. Imagine walking down the New York streets you get buses and trucks, but Cage would say well that's music that's happening!
You know, when I negotiate a contract for an acting job if I have to fly my whole salary for the job is based on the pain of the flight. If I have to be in Europe, the price is double. If I have to go to South America or other primitive places, it's triple. You couldn't pay me enough to go to a place like Israel, or Morocco, or Korea, or Albania, or Spain. For a million bucks I wouldn't even go to Harlem. However, I would consider parts of Austria and Germany.
American Expressionism, which grounds literary authority in the personality of the writer rather than, say, a political creed or traditional aesthetics, can be traced to the work of mid-nineteenth-century writers such as Ralph Waldo Emerson, Henry David Thoreau, and Walt Whitman. Its most influential twentieth-century practitioner was Gertrude Stein, whose disciples included Sherwood Anderson and William Faulkner, as well as Saroyan and Wolfe. Kerouac stated his own Expressionist position in "Essentials of Spontaneous Prose," where he said that a writer should pursue "not 'selectivity' of expression but following free deviation (association) of mind into limitless blow-on-subject seas of thought, swimming in a sea of English with no discipline other than rhythms of exhalation and expostulated statement."
Berrigan initially supported himself in New York by writing papers for Columbia students (papers that consistently earned an A or better), then tried assorted odd jobs, and finally taught at various universities. He insisted that any work he did be somehow related to writing. As his wife Alice Notley said, he "famously believed that being a poet was a 24-hour-a-day job--you did it in your sleep too, in your dreams when you gave in to sleep. It was full-time also in the sense that it was worthy of all one's attention, and a poet shouldn't have to have another job as well."
This approach to such Conceptual matters was developed at California Institute of the Arts, the legendary school established by Walt Disney in 1961. The period Jack spent at CalArts "changed the course of (his] life." It was there, under the tutelage of John Baldessari, that a group of students including Jack, David Salle, Troy Brauntuch, Matt Mullican, Robert Longo, Barbara Bloom, and James Welling emerged. Baldessari termed his teaching "post-studio" and encouraged the use of Super-8 cameras, photographic equipment, and the surrounding popular culture in his students' work. The new teaching philosophy, not to mention the college's proximity to Hollywood, provided a logical context for Jack's embrace of pictorial objectification.
Each page contained three sentences taken from literary and philosophical sources. Numerous quotes, from Plato and Kant to Freud and Kafka, were interwoven into a conceptual encyclopedia. In each block of writing, the first quote was in capital letters, the second lowercase, and the third bold. The intense labor of the project was astonishing. (The work will be published next year by the gallery in a small edition under the title Selected Writings, 1992-2002.) It was as though the deep thinking that had always lain invisible beneath the sheen of the perfect surface had finally been exposed. As with all of Jack's work, the distance of intellectual appropriation belied a personal, emotional intensity. I wanted to read it all. I told myself that I would show this too. That was the last time I saw Jack.
DEAK, ROBINSON, AND COHN MET in 1972, when they were all in their early twenties and the three of them took an art-criticism class taught by Brian O'Doherty at Barnard College in New York. Under another hat O'Doherty was the editor of Art in America, which he wanted to make new, and he liked to ask his strongest students to write for it. He extended this invitation to Cohn, Robinson, and finally deAk, whom, however, it puzzled: "I thought, Aestheticism must be in trouble if they want baby blood--I mean, what do we know? We were in the last year of undergraduate work. I had come from Budapest, didn't even speak English when I started school. We started giggling; there must be some weird void-- what's wrong with the system that they want us?" She and the pair she still calls "the boys" did write for O'Doherty, but they also began to fantasize about producing a magazine of their own, perhaps as a newsprint insert in Art in America--"piggybacking on the establishment, having the establishment distribute the enemy , our voice. This was the period when people talked about things like that." The insert idea died but the larger idea stuck, and to make it happen they enrolled in the Whitney Museum's Independent Study Program, for which they proposed to publish a magazine as their class project. Robinson meanwhile had gotten a job as a typesetter and designer for a Jewish weekly newspaper, and, he says, "We stole all the type from there until they caught me and I got fired." And that's how Art-Rite began.
77 x 63.5cm, 15 colour screenprint - a reproduced and appropriated image of a 20 year old Liz Taylor is surrounded by various cuttings from 1960s fetish and other adult magazines - by the judicious use of a limited colour range Jones has unified the overall effect of the cuttings and pictures to suggest Taylor's on-screen sexuality was little more than an extension of other male fantasies. One of 100 (plus 10 A/Ps) printed. Fine estate.
Born in Stuttgart. 1959 studied philosophy with Max Bense and music, University of Stuttgart. Studied Graphics, School of Painting. Stuttgart. 1962 moved to Zurich, attended School of Painting. Made contact with Dom Sylvester Houédard, John Furnival, Edwin Morgan and Ian Hamilton Finlay. His work included in Between Painting and Poetry and exhibition of Concrete Poetry, organized by Jasia Reichardt ICA, 1965; Mayer came to opening of exhibition where met Clifford Ellis who invited him to teach, based in London. Taught graphic design in irregular blocks from January 1966, through him John Furnival and Tom Phillips were brought onto the staff. Involved in special projects with certain students. After 1971 visited Corsham giving lectures from time to time. Now a publisher living in London, he has worked with many artists including Tom Phillips, Dieter Rot, Lillian Lijn and Richard Hamilton.
That same year, Crimp's group show "Pictures," which had opened at Artists Space, traveled to Los Angeles. The Southern California installment included The Pull, 1976, a work by Jack based on three photographs--images of an astronaut, a deep-sea diver, and a free-falling man in the act of committing suicide. The soaring movement of a body falling through space in both Pull and Jump underlined Jack's preoccupation with death, impending doom, and disappearance.
The Fugs relationship with ESP records was, mildly to state it, turbulent. We were told, for instance, that the mafia was illegally manufacturing Fugs records and selling them. We can be forgiven for not really believing that the Genovese crime family would bother with the Fugs, when there were the Beatles, the Stones, Mantovani, and Petulia Clark to rip off. The owner of ESP had insisted on ducking some of the lyrics of Ted Berrigan's song, "Doin' All Right" when we mixed it. The more we learned about the implications of our contract, the more the shackles came into view.
He also directed the cyberpunk movie Johnny Mnemonic, starring Keanu Reeves, Dolph Lundgren and Takeshi Kitano, and a short film named Arena Brains. During the late 1980s and early 1990s Longo developed a number of performance art theatre pieces, such as "Marble Fog" and "Killing Angels", collaborating with Stuart Argabright and the guitarist Chuck Hammer.
All the while, Flynt ceased to consider art-making a justifiable activity. In 1962, he began to criticize art wholesale, in the name of absolute subjectivity of taste—wanting no part of the socially regimenting function of art. In all fairness, the cessation of art had already been proposed by Cage and Wolff (prominently by Wolff in Die Reihe 5 in 1960), but when Flynt turned in this direction two years later, they reverted to the defense of art. Flynt began to give lectures assailing art to avant-garde artists, including a June 1962 lecture in an apartment in Manhattan attended by a number of today's notables. Art was to be replaced with "general acognitive culture," later "veramusement," finally "brend."
At the time, I thought a lot about what I was doing in this area of the 'cultural' world. The conclusions I reached then are still relevant, in large part, to my current publishing and research work. One of the problems with running a gallery is that you don't run it - it runs you. It becomes an alienated activity. You have fixed overheads and regular monthly schedules and obligations - a rhythm of work whereby you have to fill up the space. It became very clear to me very quickly that it really was not possible to fill up a space - or the pages of a book - with quality work - whatever that may mean! - with that kind of regular rhythm, under that kind of pressure.
CG: This was the contradiction, already apparent, at the heart of conceptual art.
Each of these three poems is created through time and sound rather than through space and the seen image; they cannot, therefore, be regarded as strictly "concrete." It is in the work of Eugen Gomringer that one begins to find a use of space which is untranslatable into any other dimension. Perhaps the most well-known, though not the best, of his "constellations" (which dispose their groups of words "as if they were clusters of stars"2) is the frequently anthologized "silence." Fourteen repetitions of the word are so arranged that they form a rectangular bar of black print, itself penetrated by the white of the paper as to give an iron trellis-work effect,3 within which a gap is left precisely large enough to hold a fifteenth repetition. The obvious point made is that silence is the absence of something; the poem speaks most eloquently where it does not speak at all. But the gap could not "speak" were it not for the surrounding words, and, further paradox, nothing, in any case, is actually spoken. Silence is thus contextual, and the context exists essentially in space.
The vehicle I chose, the word "intermedia," appears in the writings of Samuel Taylor Coleridge in 1812 in exactly its contemporary sense--to define works which fall conceptually between media that are already known, and I had been using the term for several years in lectures and discussions before my little essay was written. Furthermore, as part of my campaign to popularize what was known as "avant-garde: for specialists only," to demystify it if you will, I had become a publisher of a small press, Something Else Press (1964-1974), which brought out editions of many primary sources and materials in the new arts (as well as reissuing works of the past which seemed to merit new attention--works by Gertrude Stein, the dadaists, the composer Henry Cowell, etc.). It seemed foolish simply to publish my little essay in some existing magazine, where it could be shelved or forgotten. So it was printed as the first Something Else Newsletter and sent to our customers, to all the people on our mailing list, to people to whom I felt the idea would be useful (for example, to artists doing what seemed to me to be intermedial work and to critics who might be in a position to discuss such work). All in all, I gave away some 10,000 copies of the essay, as many as I could afford; and I encouraged its republication by anyone who asked for permission to do so. It was reprinted seven or eight times that I knew of, and it still lives on in print in various books, not just of mine, but where it has been anthologized along with other texts of the time or as part of surveys.
Harper's Bazaar, Vogue, and the like catered to this appetite for the new and the tasteful -- middlebrow taste, Clement Greenberg called it -- inviting vanguard artists and critics to report on the latest trends. Harper's Bazaar went a step further. The editors at the magazine, including Dale McConathy, the former associate director of the Betty Parsons Gallery, took a keen interest in the avant-garde, publishing texts by then-unknown figures like Robert Smithson and Dan Graham concurrently with or even in advance of the art magazines. The critical aims of these projects have been much noted and, without a doubt, the glossy fashion magazine provided an effective means of circumventing the gallery system and achieving a mass distribution. But just as the artists used this venue for their own purposes, so too they were used. Their presence in Harper's Bazaar was part of a larger marketing strategy or "culture sell," whereby a product's image could be "upgraded" be associating it with the most advanced culture.
SCREW MAGAZINE — "The World's Greatest Newspaper" — was founded in 1968 by Al Goldstein. Begun as a response to a burgeoning sexual revolution and to the air-brushed soft-pedaled sexuality in magazines such as Playboy, Screw set out to be the most outrageous magazine of its type. Printed weekly in tabloid form, the magazine quickly succeeded, reaching a circulation of 500,000, and making armies of enemies among conservatives and the "moral hypocrites" in government that Screw had vowed to fight.
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Baldessari has expressed that his interest in language comes from its similarities in structure to games, as both operate by an arbitrary and mandatory system of rules. In this spirit, many of his works are sequences showing attempts at accomplishing an arbitrary goal, such as Throwing 4 Balls in the Air to Get a Square, in which the artist attempted to do just that, photographing the results, and eventually selecting the "best out of 36 tries", with 36 being the determining number just because that is the standard number of shots on a roll of film.
Goldstein's reference to van Gogh is considered, creating a fertile parallel between industrialization and the birth of modernity and the conditions of his own emergent postmodern moment. (Indeed, in this light, is it too much to read an homage to Degas into A Ballet Shoe, 1975, the film that immediately followed Pere Tanguy?) Postmodernism is characterized by the unprecedented dominance of the culture industry, and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, 1975, Goldstein's iconic two-minute tour de force, brings media's subliminal power to the fore. The roar of the movie studio's trademark lion here is looped into a (neurotic) repetition, making it easy to discern that the picture moves partly in reverse. This attempt to pass off "backward" for "forward"--a quirk of the source material underscored by Goldstein's manipulation--stands as a particularly compelling visual analogy for the cyclical nature of history and exploitation, as well as for the endless diet of recycled stories Hollywood dishes ours.
Throughout his career, Mac Low has consistently confounded the expectations of listeners and readers alike. "People are looking to poetry for an argument, a moral, a plot, and in music they're looking for the usual progression of harmonies and rhythms," Mac Low once said, explaining why audiences sometimes resist his work. "I suppose the things they expect to get aren't there and other things are."
TEACHING HAS BECOME A CENTRAL part of the job of nearly every academic librarian. Nowhere is this more true than in liberal arts colleges and other institutions where undergraduates are the primary focus. Whether or not librarians are able to offer courses for credit, we do a great deal of instruc- tion at the reference desk, in group instruction sessions, and in one-on-one appointments. Although much of this teaching focuses on using online resources, a substantial portion is aimed at making sure that students understand that not everything is available on the Internet, nor will it ever be. We teach students how to locate and evaluate sources of all kinds, in all formats. Special collections librarians have a particular mission and responsibility to teach the history of the book; to look at books, manu- scripts, and archives as artifacts; to expose students to ways of under- standing primary sources that take into account more than just their texts. Why is the book as artifact so important today, when ever-changing technology drives so much of our lives? The rise of electronic resources, of disembodied texts, makes the understanding of the book as both a text and an object with its own particular history of special impor- tance.
7) The artist's will is secondary to the process he initiates from idea to completion. His willfulness may only be ego.
The drawings of Mel Bochner from the years 1966 to 1973 include verbal constructions, arrangements of numerals, geometric diagrams, and plans for installation works. Through these works, one can trace the thinking of an important figure in the development of Conceptual Art, and consider the changes the very notion of drawing was undergoing in the 1960s and 1970s--publisher's statement.
In this paper the value of secondary information services is discussed from the viewpoints of service-providers and a small group of scientists as users of current awareness services. A selection of earlier studies on the subject is briefly reviewed. The exchange value of secondary information services is demonstrated from the viewpoint of a service-provider. Users usually see the services in the light of their value-in-use though the services often have exchange values as well. In conclusions the problem of assessing the value of secondary information is discussed.
However, similarities between concrete poetry and conceptual art could be said to exist, they were certainly amongst the first visual arts movements to deploy text simultaneously as both object and narrative, as signifier and signified. This synergy of communicative means as communicated meaning ('the medium is the message') had already been broached by Marshall McLuhan in the context of the early articulations of his thesis describing an electronic 'global village'.39 If one accepts a characterisation of both conceptual art and concrete poetry as 'communication about communication', this might well be seen as a common undercurrent.
A fundamental assumption in much recent past art was that things have stable properties, i.e., boundaries. This seemingly simple premise became the basis for a spiraling series of conclusions. Boundaries, however, are only the fabrication of our desire to detect them . . . a trade-off between seeing something and wanting to enclose it. For example, what we attribute to objects as "constancy of size," during their progressive diminution when we walk away from them, is not a set of snapshot images gradually blending together. Concentration produces the illusion of consistency. Sight itself is prelogical and without constants (out of focus). The problem is that surrendering the stability of objects immediately subverts any control we think we have over situations. Consider the possibility that the need to identify art with objects is probably the outgrowth of the need to assign our feelings to the things that prompt them.
I am the most boring writer that has ever lived. If there were an Olympic sport for extreme boredom, I would get a gold medal. My books are impossible to read straight through. In fact, every time I have to proofread them before sending them off to the publisher, I fall asleep repeatedly. You really don't need to read my books to get the idea of what they're like; you just need to know the general concept.
Much of Baldessari's work involves pointing, in which he tells the viewer not only what to look at but how to make selections and comparisons, often simply for the sake of doing so. Baldessari critiques formalist assessments of art in a segment from his video How We Do Art Now, entitled "Examining Three 8d Nails", in which he gives obsessive attention to minute details of the nails, such as how much rust they have, or descriptive qualities such as which appears "cooler, more distant, less important" than the others.
From 1967 to 1969, Vito Acconci & Bernadette Mayer collected the works of the some of the most exciting artists and writers for their mimeographed magazine, 0 TO 9. Robert Barry, Ted Berrigan, Clark Coolidge, John Giorno, Dan Graham, Michael Heizer, Kenneth Koch, Sol LeWitt, Jackson Mac Low, Harry Mathews, Adrian Piper, Bern Porter, Yvonne Rainer, Jerome Rothenberg, Aram Saroyan, Robert Smithson, Alan Sondheim, Hannah Weiner, and Emmett Williams, among others, were contributors.
Keith's death is incomprehensible. I refuse to believe that the next time I ring the bell to his Broadway studio, just south of Great Jones Street, he won't be there - Great Jones Street where I ignored bad weather in February 1985 because I knew Keith was at one end of the block, Jean-Michel at the other, and Keith's friend Kenny Scharf in between.1 Or summer 1984, when Houston was virtually Haring Boulevard, what with his hip-hop mural at the corner of Avenue D, his studio at Broadway, and various tags and images all in between. In 1987 and 1988 as well, I'd ring Keith's bell, and take the elevator to his neat and gleaming studio, stand in wonder before new paintings in progress, and suddenly there he was, cool, lean, and humorous, eyebrows moving like the "action lines" that animate his figures, lips pursed for the punch line.
We drew inspiration for the Fugs from a long and varied tradition, going all the way back to the dances of Dionysus in the ancient Greek plays and the "Theory of the Spectacle" in Aristotle's Poetics, and moving forward to the famous premier performance of Alfred Jarry's Ubu Roi in 1896, to the poèmes simultanés of the Dadaists in Zurich's Cabaret Voltaire in 1916, to the jazz-poetry of the Beats, to Charlie Parker's seething sax, to the silence of John Cage, to the calm pushiness of the Happening movement, the songs of the Civil Rights movement, and to our concept that there was oddles of freedom guaranteed by the United States Constitution that was not being used.
In September 1966, Flynt played violin with the Velvet Underground as a stand-in for John Cale for two weekends (four days) at The Dom in the East Village. The notice in the Village Voice, 29 September 1966, referred to "the screeching electric violin."
This is written before the piece is recorded. What I want is: ten packed minutes (that can be the title-or, maybe, "Ten Minutes to Zero".) The beginning is a single voice: crooning familiars as a base for tongue-twisting (after all, this is a record: there's no space to pin down here-now do you get the picture?-so there are games in the air, yes, it's you/me/ we/go/come/who goes further/the question is, who made somebody come tonight, who among those crowds of people ... ) But the song drifts off: there's a world out there, besides you and me: so this is a record of war, there's been an invasion of the city that could have been built into the empire of our love. But things go quickly, on the air: there's an underground, time passes, the scene changes: this is like overhearing a police broadcast: there's a report, from person A, under the grating, of person B's movements, on top of the grating-have we caught a sneak out of those multitudes of armies? (So the picture becomes clearer, no? But, all the while, there's always the thought: we can go to the movies later.) Say, then, that person C has escaped: there's a bar in another part of the forest: but person C fades away here, person C is just the excuse for the placement of a duel duet: bring back the music, bring on the night. After a life like this, I come back to you, bearing my very first songs: but, now, by this time- oh-oh-oh ... At this point, then the picture should have disappeared right in front of your eyes; but what replaces it is, no, not a thousand words-rather, the sound of the sounding that the words were there merely to prop up.
Richard Prince: Continuation, media partnered by 'The Independent', is at the Serpentine Gallery in collaboration with Louis Vuitton, London W2 (020 7402 6075) from Thursday until 7 September.
Subject Names: Acconci, Vito, 1940- Clark, Tom, 1941- Coolidge, Clark, 1939- Eshleman, Clayton. Giorno, John. Koch, Kenneth, 1925- Kostelanetz, Richard Lewitt, Sol, 1928- Mayer, Bernadette. Piper, Adrian, 1948- Rainer, Yvonne, 1934- Saroyan, Aram. Warsh, Lewis
Homage to Jackson Mac Low is the title of "a poem for readers" by Joseph Byrd that was published in the important collection of indeterminate works titled An Anthology from 1963. An Anthology was edited by poet, composer, performance artist Jackson Mac Low and composer La Monte Young in 1961 and designed by Fluxus founder George Maciunas. The long out of print publication is still a historical reference source for early works that helped propel the art of the early 1960s.
Later, while trying to sell his art work, he encounters many downtown New York characters, from musician Arto Lindsay and his band DNA to David McDermott to graffiti artists Lee Quinones and Fab Five Freddy. Jean eventually does manage to sell some of his art work to a rich middle-aged woman who is interested in more than just his art, but she pays with a check. As the film progresses, he wanders the streets of New York City, looking for Beatrice. He catches performances by Kid Creole and the Coconuts and James White and the Blacks. Finally he happens upon a bag lady (Debbie Harry) who turns into a princess when he kisses her. As a reward, she gives him a stack of cash.
Synopsis: Sometimes harrowing, often hilarious, PLEASE KILL ME is a history of the birth of punk rock told by many of the people involved. Starting with the Velvet Underground, one of the bands that provided inspiration for the movement, Legs McNeil and co-author Gillian McCain interview members of the New York Dolls and the MC5, as well as Iggy Pop, associates of Andy Warhol, and the Ramones, among many others. Though most of their stories aren't pretty, they make compulsive reading. This is the kind of rock & roll history rarely found outside the confines of bars or dressing rooms, where confidences are shared and juicy gossip dished, reputations trashed, and legends made. Iconic figures like punk poet Patti Smith, music writer Lester Bangs, punk godfather Lou Reed, punk rocker Johnny Rotten, and Sex Pistols manager Malcolm McLaren stagger across its pages--ambitious, abusive, drugged, drunk, or all of the above. Crackling with wayward energy, PLEASE KILL ME is the story of the individuals who first made punk possible, and then inevitable.
Further lycanthropy: an undulating caterpillar, pun on the endless, transforming waves of the boogie, wearing a mask with square eyes. (Possibly the mask derived from the Dogon of Mali but more probably it was a transformation of a subway-drawing figure with a television set as head.) Swipes. Locking. Wave-dancing, tying up the dancer in loops. Hand-glide with split.
Every revolution of musical form was due to, or had something to do with the new ontological form of music. for example In the gregorian chant the time when it was to be played was of main importance. Imagine how matin services in the early mornings sound completely different from vesper services in the evenings, although melody is almost same for the outsider. This WHEN (time of day and day of year, a very interesting measure, which shall be intensely developped & exploited in my post music "The Monthly Review of the University of Avant-garde Hinduism") disappeared in 18th century when that music escaped from the church. Pre-classical symphony (mood music a la MANTOVANI) came into life to entertain the half-intellectual nobles in their dining rooms, grew up to the Ninth Symphony to satisfy the heroism of romantic free-bourgeois And then fell down to the Schubertlieder, to be sung in a Vienna "gasse". Bach's Goldberg Variations should be so long as to make the "lord" fall asleep.
b 1932 in Seoul. 1953–56 studies music, history, art history and philosophy at the University of Tokyo, where he writes a dissertation on Arnold Schönberg. Continues studies in Munich and Freiburg. In 1958 meets John Cage in Darmstadt and works with Karlheinz Stockhausen at the electronic music studio of Westdeutscher Rundfunk in Cologne. Becomes a member of the Fluxus movement. 1963 shows the first manipulated TV sets, in Wuppertal. 1964 moves to New York and becomes the first artist to make videotapes. During the 1970s and 1980s his work is widely exhibited all over the world. 1978 appointed professor at the Kunstakademie, Düsseldorf. 1987 elected to membership of the Akademie der Künste, Berlin. Lives in New York and Florida.
Robert Grenier's hand-generated poetry emerges to offer pow- erful alternatives to the poem restricted by type. His dexterous, amuletic compositions propose a poem that can be entered from many or any point in the form. This possibility results from the visual com- ponent of his poetry. His poems are minimal, hand-composed, multi- colored, word-gesture images. You might imagine an expressionistic Robert Lax. The poems push the stagnancy of visual poetry from its frozen state to a more organic and highly flexible visual form. In so doing, the poems also force an imaginative rather than intellectual reading. Creative reading renders each poem aurally unique. The read- ing of a Grenier poem is not fixed. Reading is a creative act. The poems are opems because they are open. They incorporate the bur- geoning aurally of the imaginations attempt to enunciate.
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However, to make of what is essentially a stack of minor giggles, all mostly characterized by a distinct lack of ambition, and no different in import than any number of other giggles the age produced, a "crowning achievement" is to exhibit a curious time-provincialism, occupy a blindspot, or willfully diminish one's own era (outside of what small portion one witness'd oneself). Then again, that's Silliman's modus operandi: inflate the cultural capital nearest oneself in an attempt to get (oneself) swept up in the general boosterism. It's a dishonest use of history.
The relevance of this short run was probably beyond the imaginings of either editor at the time, Frank O'Hara. Jimmy Schuyler, Kenneth Koch, and John Ashbery had already emerged and been given the designation, "The New York School." The critical stance toward their works was in development, but what these poets had in common was already being debated, pro and con. It wasn't until the publication of C Magazine, Adventures In Poetry (two other crucial magazines of the period) and Angel Hair that readers could really say what the designation meant. Obviously, there was a new attitude about daily life. Ted Berrigan and Anne Waldman were writing poems that simply listed the activities of their day(s). Ted and Larry Fagin were known for their top ten lists of things they did, favorite songs, favorite books, etc. There was a glorification of the mundane in these works, as well as another strain which reflected a more interesting set of activities to write about, namely sex, drugs, and rock and roll (in that order). It was, after all, the sixties, and there was a lot of consciousness expansion going around in those days. Imagine John Crowe Ransom writing on acid, or imagine Ted Hughes writing about rolling up a joint and smoking it with W.D. Snodgrass. A new bloom was on the rose, and these poets were enjoying a period of prosperity and freedom from the 50's mores that would have been impossible six years earlier. There was also a willingness to experiment with form, to focus on the plasticity of language (especially in works by Clark Coolidge, Aram Saroyan, and Bernadette Mayer). This sense of word play and abstraction in the midst of every day life was already present in Ashbery, Koch, O'Hara, and Schuyler, but it became so much more pronounced in the works of the so-called second generation of New York School poets.
We drew inspiration for the Fugs from a long and varied tradition, going all the way back to the dances of Dionysus in the ancient Greek plays and the "Theory of the Spectacle" in Aristotle's Poetics, and moving forward to the famous premier performance of Alfred Jarry's Ubu Roi in 1896, to the poèmes simultanés of the Dadaists in Zurich's Cabaret Voltaire in 1916, to the jazz-poetry of the Beats, to Charlie Parker's seething sax, to the silence of John Cage, to the calm pushiness of the Happening movement, the songs of the Civil Rights movement, and to our concept that there was oddles of freedom guaranteed by the United States Constitution that was not being used.
We had done 700-800 performances by then. My judgment, as the leader of the band, was that we had to have some musicians who were stable- who would show up for gigs, who were willing to rehearse and could do harmony singing and who had good chops. By hook or crook, I finally came up with some guys who could really play. We had Danny Kootch there for a while- he was really a talented musician. He wrote with Don Henley of the Eagles later but he was just a boy from the East somewhere when he was with us. We finally wound up with Ken Pine on guitar and Bob Mason on second drums (we had two drum sets like the Mothers) and a bass player named Bill Wolf. They were really good, especially Pine. He was really an underrated, creative and talented guitar player. I understand that one of Jimi Hendrix's jam sessions has just been released with Ken sitting in on guitar (ED NOTE: he appears on 'My Friend' from FIRST RAYS OF THE NEW RISING SUN). We used to jam with Jimi.
CP: Classical science was founded on a metaphysical model where you have no relationship between nature and the object of science which was a pure abstract model of relationships. Although classical science is founded on abstraction - and if it can define grids of regularities - it is because it supposes that relationships are fixed because they are conceptual.
In the middle 1950s many painters began to realize the fundamental irrelevance of abstract expressionism, which was the dominant mode at the time. Such painters as Allan Kaprow and Robert Rauschenberg in the United States and Wolf Vostell in Germany turned to collage or, in the latter's case, dé-collage, in the sense of making work by adding or removing, replacing and substituting or altering components of a visual work. They began to include increasingly incongruous objects in their work. Rauschenberg called his constructions "combines" and went so far as to place a stuffed goat--spattered with paint and with a rubber tire around its neck--onto one. Kaprow, more philosophical and restless, meditated on the relationship of the spectator and the work. He put mirrors into his things so the spectator could feel included in them. That wasn't physical enough, so he made enveloping collages which surrounded the spectator. These he called "environments." Finally, in the spring of 1958, he began to include live people as part of the collage, and this he called a "happening."
But reading Bochner's litany of slurs merely as a sly allusion to his own past disgruntlement suggests a solipsism at odds with his career-long commitment to expansion of artistic paradigms. There is a larger context against which to read the sudden shift in the tone of Bochner's works: the contemporary climate of politically consequential misspeaking and malapropism. "[As] recent history has painfully taught us," Bochner said during a lecture at NYU last September, "all abuses of power begin with the abuse of language." Bochner's new paintings, composed of the language of abuse, and confrontational in their material presence, seem to protest against the entropic verbal landscape against which they are set. In his seminal work, "The Domain of the Great Bear," Bochner poked fun at new paradigms of critical and creative practice by imitating the "Hemingway-esque" style of Donald Judd. Here, he "blah blah blahs" the vocabulary of power by transforming it into an absurd parody of itself. By inverting the aims of his previous work, by revealing synonymity as merely a tool, one that can be put to the service of variegation but which quickly dissolves, under the strain of excess, into uniformity, Bochner has once again shown that signification is tied to materiality—that "language is not transparent."
The set for the opera's final scene depicts a landscape with the three figures of the German Romantic painter Philip Otto Runge's The Hülsenbeck Children (1806) collaged into the foreground. Two children, no more than four of five years old, pull a cart in which an infant is seated. Like Runge's painting, Wild in the Streets: The Sixties envisions children as genuine, spontaneous, irrational beings that imagine themselves living a magical Alice-in-Wonderland life, in absolute harmony with nature. Of course, the dream of going back to a primal state of what Herbert Marcuse at the time referred to as 'polymorphous sexuality,' where life instincts still dominate the death drive and 'the human body is [an] instrument of pleasure rather than labour,' was also a prime motivation for leagues of flower children embarking on the psychedelic drug experience.
Related to his early text paintings were his Wrong series, which paired photographic images with lines of text from a book about composition.  His photographic California Map Project found physical forms that resembled the letters in "California" geographically near to the very spots on the map that they were printed. In the Binary Code Series, Baldessari used images as information holders by alternating photographs to stand in for the on-off state of binary code; one example alternated photos of a woman holding a cigarette parallel to her mouth and then dropping it away.
As the 1980s continued and finally fizzled out there was less and less call for "salon paintings" and Goldstein's work sold less well than some others'. Reluctant to teach rather than practice full time, Goldstein left New York in the early 1990s and returned to California where he lived out the decade in relative isolation.
Ultimately, the Namers want to donate the graffiti to a major museum and are currently in discussions with several. Few graffiti walls exist, as many were painted over or destroyed.
Edit deAk and Lisa Liebmann touched upon another element of the electric boogie in his work. Discussing Haring's New York show of October/November 1982, they note "a current of energy transmitted by and to male creatures ever-readily recharging themselves or one another… the act of recharging appears to be both praxis and erotic principle."23 Electric boogie derived its name precisely from its exquisitely percussive parody of the animating powers of electricity, which it sited in the human body. Again and again at the Roxy in New York, early-'80s dancers mimed passing electrical charges, one to another. A dancer would begin an electric wave in his right arm, touching another dancer's arm, which would vibrate with the received energy and then pass it on to as many dancers as could play this game of electronic calling-and-responding.24 Haring's most amusing dancer of electric boogie, among the subway drawings: a figure so filled with electricity, spouting sparks from head to trunk, that he lights up a light bulb with the current in his own body.
A few of the Art-Rite covers were also labor intensive since they were partly handmade. For no. 8, dated winter 1975, Pat Steir designed a triplet of roses that had to be potato-printed red, yellow, and blue. (There were six thousand copies; each cover was stamped three times, once per color; that is a lot of potatoes.) DeAk has a vivid memory of these issues laid out as a field of flowers on the floor of her loft. For no. 6, dated summer 1974, Dorothea Rockburne had the staff (deAk, Robinson, and Cohn, that is) fold the bottom right-hand comet of every cover upward on a diagonal to divide a large, delicately outlined, but otherwise blank square into a pair of triangles. Looking at this device, which applies the principles of Rockburne's work in folded paper to turning the issue into a mass-produced multiple, you may not realize at first that it also rephrases the notion of a cover: To make it function, the magazine's first spread--the inside cover on the left and the facing page on the right--must be blank, since the folded-over outer cover lays them bare, including them in the work. Asked to create one page, Rockburne used up three--a real expense for a penniless magazine. ("She took three pages for a cover, and we were very poor, and very conscious of it, but we did it," says deAk. "That was classy.") It is a brilliant design.
Sure. I took a BFA at Southern Illinois University in Carbondale first, taking design classes with Buckminster Fuller and making art in a permissive post-minimalist environment. I then went to Cornell University with the idea of getting an MFA, but found the art department there years behind Southern Illinois University, so I left and went to New York and Columbia University where I worked towards an MPhil, studying with Arthur Danto most notably.
"When I grew up I just knew that photographers were ... nerds or they were pornographers, there was no real redeeming social value to somebody who has a camera and takes pictures. But then as I started seriously working as an artist, travelling was essential, so I was continually driving back on US66 between here and Oklahoma, when I would take all these gasoline stations."
Let me start by saying that the latter's book is, among other things, the most substantial exposition we have of the aesthetic aspirations and critical ideas that inform much of the recent scene. If nothing else, it demonstrates why Kaprow became the primary theorist of several tendencies in post-abstract expressionist American art. His 1958 essay on "The Legacy of Jackson Pollock" forecast, if not influenced, the styles of art that we now call pop and happenings, while the manuscript of this book, which he circulated among friends for several years before its publication, had an enormous influence upon many of the most interesting current talents. American publishing took an unconscionably long time to get his words into public print (nearly everyone, rumor has it, enclosed a cutely worded rejection slip, as if to exonerate himself from the industry's Philistinism). It is even more regrettable that reviewers and review editors have so far been slow to recognize its seminal significance.
Berrigan was much respected as a teacher of poetry, in part, no doubt, because of his uncompromised dedication to his work, but also, it may be, because of his democratic ability to appreciate poetry and poetics radically different from his own. At a time when American poets were divided between academic, traditional poets and those, like Berrigan, whose work was more innovative or experimental, he spoke highly of comparatively conventional poets such as Conrad Aiken. (Aiken was less generous, insisting that Berrigan submit himself to a regimen of Dantean and Virgilian poetics.)
TD: And if you don't know about SPD (Small Press Distribution) you're kind of screwed.
Are we to say that because comprehension of a musical idea is limited to only a few that this makes the idea of limited significance and value to the advancement of musical thought? How many people in our society fully understand quantum physics, or for that matter, how many people have any idea of how their fax machine works? The point which must be stressed is that even arcane ideas have their place in our community and can eventually have far-reaching implications for civilization. One of the grave shortcomings of the West is that we crave instant gratification, instant profit, and instant accessibility rather than looking ahead to the long haul. Someone has to do the research, and this applies as much to music as it does to the field of science. If we don't soon arrive at a consensus among artists and composers which recognizes this, we will risk a course of events unfolding in the field of music in North America similar to the sad story of what happened to our once vibrant fields of home & computer electronics, hi-fi & video equipment, the automobile industry, and modern dance.
SS: It is certainly the aggravation between the role of the artist and the ruling capitalist values which is one of the essential rasons for the resurgence of interest in 'conceptual' art. Because in the meantime, the situation of art in the capitalist world has changed fundamentally. The dominant mode of production has passed from the stage of craft production to that of small business in 20 short years. The mentality, even the aspirations of the artist has changed. The artist no longer thinks of him-or-herself as a worker exploited by collectors (public or private) - even if sometimes he were as rich and famous as a successful businessman - but considers himself as an art professional, in the same way that a stock broker is a professional in the stock market. Art has become one way among others to earn a good living. The very idea of the artist as 'outsider,' 'contestataire,' etc., has become marginal, almost ridiculous in light of how securely art has been integrated into the center of capitalist life, alongside the rock music and fashion industries, which were its immediate 'creative' models.
15 This puzzle of language was obviously key for both Gomringer and de Campos not only in terms of their poetic works, but also in moulding their respective manifestoes which went to great lengths in laying out the defining formal characteristics of concrete poetry.
But, without falling into anecdote, one can mention the names of some who insisted upon breaking the bonds imposed by the Word. If timid essays by Aristophanes showed that sound was indispensable- the sound imitative of an element or an animal then -that does not mean that it was sought after for its own sake. In that case, the sound uttered by the mouth was cut off, since it only came from an imagined and subordinated usage, when in fact it is the major element.
To me, one attractiveness of Mac Low's use of systemic techniques to create the text to be performed as well as the manner to perform it, is that performative readers can conduct the exercise without expecting more than to be surprised at the results. Aesthetic considerations have been stretched. Some results may be different than expected or desired, but they would never have sprung together without the patient carrying out of the tasks set before the writer or performer. Carrying out the tasks is such a satisfying busywork type of exercise, and the result is generally a surprise. In a pedagogical environment, this freedom to do without judgment is especially important. And as Mac Low has reported about his work, "They often surprise me, and they almost always give me pleasure, and seem to give pleasure to others."
It's almost as if Mel Bochner works in your office! Slip this piece into your next PowerPoint presentation and see if anyone notices. Bochner's paintings of blahs, and many naughtier synonyms, are on display at Peter Freeman, Inc in Tribeca until Saturday.
Yes. The wires were so thin and were in certain pieces stretched so high above the ground that it was virtually impossible to see them – or to photograph them. And from that I went to things that could be neither seen nor perceived in any way. My father, who is an electrical engineer and always worked with carrier waves and radio transmitters, ever since I was a kid – helped me out and that was the thing I knew about. I guess it was the first invisible art. It could not be perceived directly. And in the "January 1968 Show" (Seth Siegelaub) I included several carrier wave pieces. One was called 88mc Carrier Wave (FM) and another – 1600 kc Carrier Wave AM. Since you cannot photograph a carrier wave, we had to photograph the place where the carrier wave existed. The carrier waves have several very beautiful qualities. For example, they travel into space with the speed of light. They can be enclosed in a room. The nature of carrier waves in a room – especially the FM – is affected by people. The body itself, as you know, is an electrical device. Like a radio or an electric shaver it affects carrier waves. The carrier waves are part of the electromagnetic spectrum of which light waves are also a part. A carrier wave is a form of energy. Light waves are made of the same material as carrier waves, only they are of a different length. A person is also a source of some kind of a carrier wave. Let me call that telepathy. The form of a piece is affected because of the nature of the material that it is made of. The form is changed by the people near it although the people may not be aware of the fact that they are affecting the actual form of the piece, because they cannot feel it.
Finally, as far as we are concerned, it must be clearly understood that when theory is considered as producer/creator, the only theory or theoretic practice is the result presented/the painting or, according to Althusser's definition: "Theory: a specific form of practice." We are aware that this exposition of facts may be somewhat didactic; nevertheless we consider it indispensable to proceed in this way at this time.
Secondary sources help define the population. Secondary data can be extremely useful both in defining the population and in structuring the sample to be taken. For instance, government statistics on a country's agriculture will help decide how to stratify a sample and, once sample estimates have been calculated, these can be used to project those estimates to the population.
At the same time the objects are irresolvable by design, refusing to cohere into a single scene. Scale shifts woozily from piece to piece: some are life-size, others blown up to clownish not-quite-monumentality. Sometimes within a single piece incongruously sized objects are yoked together by amorphous chunks of hardened ooze - a dripping ice-cream cone dwarfed by the heel of a shoe. Verisimilitude wavers: a dangling joint of roast beef, thick with creamy fat, approaches trompe l'oeil, while the till is almost an abstraction, its blocky shape merely sufficient to indicate its inspiration. Freestanding pieces are mixed in with flattened reliefs and rough-edged fragments, bits torn away from some absent whole. Within the world of the store, signs are as palpable as the things they represent, and prices take on a life of their own, as in the huge '9.99,' suspended like innards on a meat hook.
Thus the happening developed as an intermedium, an uncharted land that lies between collage, music and the theater. It is not governed by rules; each work determines its own medium and form according to its needs. The concept itself is better understood by what it is not, rather than what it is. Approaching it, we are pioneers again, and shall continue to be so as long as there's plenty of elbow room and no neighbors around for a few miles. Of course, a concept like this is very disturbing to those whose mentality is compartmentalized. Time, Life, and the High Priests have been announcing the death of happenings regularly since the form gained momentum in the late fifties, but this says more about the accuracy of their information than about the liveliness of the form.
The fascination that language held (and still holds) for many artists associated with concrete poetry and conceptual art and to question the intentions of both movements towards language. Rather than trying to assert a visual correlation between Concrete Poetry and Conceptual Art, (which may only be symptomatic or coincidental anyway), it seems more important to try to discover any causal links that may exist to connect them.
Another early Something Else publication was The Paper Snake by New York Correspondence School of Art pioneer Ray Johnson (1965). Here is a bit of Higgins's somewhat polemical jacket copy description: "The meaning in Ray Johnson's work is not logical, like an Aristotelian syllogism, but counterlogical, like a psalm. All art represents reality, there is no non-representational art." Al Hansen's A Primer of Happenings & Time/Space Art (1965) is a straightforward elaboration of the Happenings phenomena and includes an account of John Cage's seminal New School for Social Research class of 1958. Rumanian-born nouveau réaliste artist Daniel Spoerri's 1966 classic, An Anecdoted Topography of Chance, "Done with the help of his very dear friend Robert Filliou and Translated from the French, and further anecdoted at random by their very dear friend Emmett Williams With One Hundred Reflective Illustrations by Topor" is a sort of verbal "snare picture" which "documents in loving, indulgent, but never boring detail the history of every morsel of detritus situated on a table in Spoerri's Paris flat." In 1970 Something Else published Spoerri's The Mythological Travels of a Modern Sir John Mandeville, being an account of the Magic, Meatballs and other Monkey Business Peculiar to the Sojourn of Daniel Spoerri on the Isle of Symi, together with divers speculations thereon.
This is precisely what happened in his first exhibition 'Toward Events: An Arrangement' (1959) in New York's Reuben Gallery. These works brought together objects similar in shape to the vocabulary emerging from Robert Rauschenberg's assemblage and combination, and from the 'collection' in the work by Joseph Cornell and Marcel Duchamp. One radical difference however lay in the insistent emphasis on the temporary and participatory nature inherent in the words 'event' and 'arrangement'. This quality alone reveals Cage's impact and the originality with which Brecht had been able to broaden his sources. All of the objects made in the years immediately following this group of works included a variety of different types of scores. In some cases they would arise out of the creation of the object, while in others the object was discovered and Brecht subsequently wrote a score for it, thus highlighting the relationship between language and perception. Or, in the words of the artist, "ensuring that the details of everyday life, the random constellations of objects that surround us, stop going unnoticed." The event-score was as much a critique of conventional artistic representation as it was a gesture of firm resistance against individual alienation, as may be appreciated in his last long-format score Motor Vehicle Sundown (Event) 1960 to John Cage. The score idea evolved between 1959 and 1962, until reaching the form of a simple white card bearing a few typed lines intended to propose an object, thought or action.
MAXIMS AND APHORISMS FROM THE LETTERS OF D.H. LAWRENCE. Compiled with appended poems by Marguerite Harris. 1964.
FUCK YOU/ A MAGAZINE OF THE ARTS, Number 5, Volume1. (NY: December 1962). 4to. Mimeographed stapled sheets. Cover by Ed Sanders. Contributors include: . "Dedicated to pacificism, national defense thru nonviolent resistence, total assault on the culture, vaginal zapping, multilateral indiscriminate apertural conjugation, Hole Cons, Crotch Lake, Peace Eye, mad bands of stompers for peace, & all those gropped by J. Edgar Hoover in the silent halls of congress."
What kind of musical freedom would we enjoy in medieval societies such as these? How easy would it be to make the music we want in countries such as Ethiopia, Cambodia, or Liberia, whose class, tribal, and economic struggles rule out the possibility of working on anything else. It is only in an evolved society that we can begin to position advanced ideas in art on the same level as advanced ideas in technology and science; to have the luxury of putting as much value on the development of aesthetics as on the development of the weapons of war. At the dawn of the nineties, we find ourselves with unprecedented liberty to explore whatever musical direction we wish; we must hasten to take advantage of this because we may very well be in a golden age for development of musical thought, a period not unlike that of the ancient Greece of the classical age. We must immediately avail ourselves of the new intellectual tools provided us; the present golden age, as with the one which occurred in Greece so long ago, may not be again repeated for another two millennia.
Funding from private or public organizations sometimes provides additional funding, but hardly enough to replace the initiative and determination which carry these projects through on a sustained basis. Artist's book publishing -- whether by artists or by the publishers dedicated to artists' books, of which there are a significant number -- is often in this financial category. This is not to suggest that artists never make money off their books, but simply to suggest that the same impetus which gives rise to independent publishing -- the desire to make a voice heard, or a vision available, is part of the impetus behind artist's books.
"Clear Eyd Fox Quickn Brown Hoax" was generated by taking the phrase "Clear Eyd Fox Quickn Brown Hoax", my own variation of the old typewriter repairman's infamous "a quick brown fox jumped over the lazy moon", and using these words as pattern words. The work was generated and built within the unix c shell. For the first web version of this work, html was used to display the output files. For the print version, word wrap was determined by Netscape's default dis- play parameters. (Internal truncation of title words was also guided by Netscape's pixel width on a standard monitor.)
Since 1951, the year he founded Jargon Society, Williams worked inexhaustibly to produce, publish, and promote the whole art, following without discrimination the shifting landscape of poetry, prose, the visual arts, and music. Friends and correspondents ranged from Black Mountain luminaries Charles Olson, Robert Creeley and Edward Dahlberg to British figures such as James Furnival, Ian Hamilton Finlay and Basil Bunting to outsider artists like Georgia Blizzard and Howard Finster to photographers Guy Mendes, Raymond Moore and Reuben Cox.
In The Pronouns these cards, woven together by both chance and choice into forty poems, are scores realized by dancers. The value of dancing the poems lies in "finding concrete meanings as actions" (RW 181). Although chance plays a major role in the composition of Mac Low's works, those works once written are to be seen as determinate and meaningful. The performance/realization of these poems makes randomly organized units concrete through action. Mac Low continually insists that although the dancers have "a very large degree of freedom of interpretation," they nevertheless must "find some definite interpretation of the meaning of every line of the dance-poems they choose to realize" (RW 180-1; his emphasis).
Flynt wrote a script for private experience, "Exercise Awareness-States," later reconstructed and pubulished as "Mock Risk Games." (The original text was ultimately retrieved and published.) He presented a selection of current work in lecture-like appearances at George Maciunas' AG Gallery in July 1961.
This belongs among the most important passages in modern aesthetics; for not only did his writing influence several students and colleagues at Rutgers who have since established themselves as important artists (George Segal, Lucas Samaras, Robert Watts, Robert Whitman, and Roy Lichtenstein), but it also reached other maturing artists who were then total strangers, among them Claes Oldenburg. In addition, Kaprow successfully coined an epithet—in his case, "happenings"—which so appropriately characterized a certain kind of experience that the term has since entered common parlance. Once a polemical young prophet, he is now, at forty, an elder sage.
NY: Something Else Press, 1967. 4to. Hardbound in dust jacket. First edition. Photographs, texts, and graphics document the early "Happenings" scene in New York. Envelope containing a business card from "The Store" affixed to the front endpaper. Fine in near fine dust jacket with minor wear to extremities (price sticker to front flap). Price: USD 125.00 other currencies order no. SKB-1856 [send a quick inquiry about this item] inquire (To order this book, press this button)
Artists have lately been taken up with architecture or "environments" and the results are curiously refreshing, especially when they make fon of architects. The accompanying blurb noted that architects write "fabulous theory books, then they turn around and build the same old crap." The editors also warn that this is not a typical piece of architectural publishing, such as " 'seventeen American architects' 'seventy German architects' or 'seven-hundred Minnesota architects' or even 'your handy clip file for hospital construction.' The idea was to concentrate on how to organize a field where the amateurs have it coming and going over the pros, though this need not be so."
V. You'll edit out the questions that I give answers to that you don't like or YOU don't feel are important or that offend YOU or offend anyone who controls your magazine. I will also be stuck answering your questions. Besides, the best interview of Vincent Gallo was done by Vincent Gallo. The best articles about Vincent Gallo were written by Vincent Gallo, the best acting performance of Vincent Gallo was directed and edited by Vincent Gallo from a screenplay written by Vincent Gallo, even the best photographs of Vincent Gallo were taken by Vincent Gallo. So you see, this is painful for me.
The same year, Bochner and Smithson experimented with another kind of alternative to the conventional gallery exhibition. The pair wrote and designed a magazine article titled "The Domain of the Great Bear" (published in Art Voices, fall 1966) which offered a poetically cryptic analysis of the Hayden Planetarium. Separately, they went on to create other magazine projects, including Bochner's response to Jean-Luc Godard's sci-fi noir film, Alphaville (Arts Magazine, May 1968). These articles combined text - at times florid and incantatory, at times descriptive and dead with movie stills, found photographs, illustrations and diagrams. By appearing in art magazines, such text-and-image layouts effectively moved the exhibition site out of the gallery and into the world.
Brecht's closeness to John Cage, with whom he shared an interest for Oriental thinking, led him to attend the classes on 'Experimental Composition' Cage was giving in New York. He encouraged Brecht to look for new mediums for his creative practice, such as the generation of a new (musical) score by means of procedures involving chance and the use of surrounding noise employed as sound ready-mades. Brecht was convinced that 'experience in every dimension' could be highlighted and encapsulated in the shape of verbal scores and, from there, developed the concept of 'event scores' with which he structured the space and time of his work, at the same time inviting the audience to participate in the piece.
Conceptual art was one of the most influential art movements of the second half of the twentieth century. In this book Alexander Alberro traces its origins to the mid-1960s, when its principles were first articulated by the artists Dan Graham, Joseph Kosuth, Sol LeWitt, Lawrence Weiner, and others. One of Alberro's central arguments is that the conceptual art movement was founded not just by the artists but also by the dealer Seth Siegelaub. Siegelaub promoted the artists, curated groundbreaking shows, organized symposia and publications, and in many ways set the stage for another kind of entrepreneur: the freelance curator. Alberro examines both Siegelaub's role in launching the careers of artists who were making "something from nothing" and his tactful business practices, particularly in marketing and advertising.
In his essay on Pollock's legacy, Kaprow, then a young painter of some reputation and an instructor in art history at Rutgers, wrote the following prophetic words:
4 Most of the examples of concrete poems referred to in this essay will be found in one or other of the following anthologies: Anthology of Concrete Poetry, ed. Emmett Williams (New York, Something Else Press, 1967). Chicago Review, XIX, 4 (September, 1967), (issue devoted to concrete poetry). Concrete Poetry: An International Anthology (see above, note 1).
After living in New York City for 25 years, Prince moved to upstate New York. His minimuseum, Second House, was owned by the Guggenheim Museum, but was hit by lightning and burned down after being up for only six years from 2001 to 2007. 
Over thirty years ago, in the dark, violence-riddled spring of 1968, Random House brought out my first book of poems. Actually, that's not quite the case; I should say that they published my first mainstream book of poems, since, like many New York poets of my generation, I was active in the small press scene chronicled recently in the New York Public Library's exhibit and book, A Secret Location on the Lower East Side. What was distinctively different about that April publication was that now I could walk Manhattan with my typewriter-page-size book, printed in typewriter facsimile, in virtually every bookstore that I passed. The book, called only Aram Saroyan, comprises thirty minimal poems, also without titles, and can be read easily from cover-to-cover in a minute or two.
But why want these a-significant human sounds, without alphabet, without reference to an explicative clarity? Simply, I have implied it, the Word is incomprehensible and abusive, because it is in all the hands, rather in all the mouths, which are being given orders by a few mostly unauthorized voices.
If art has a general aspect to it and if someone receives a work in 1968 and chooses to have it built, then either tires of looking at it or needs the space for a new television set, he can erase it. If – in 1975 – he chooses to have it built again – he has a piece of 1975 art. As materials change, the person who may think about the art, as well as the person who has it built, approach the material itself in a contemporary sense and help to negate the preciousness of 1968 materials . . . I personally am more interested in the idea of the material than in the material itself.
The following chronological list of recordings hints at the vast range of material included within the realms of "'anti" and "conceptual" music. The list emphasizes achievements of the last few years. It would be difficult to define this odd category of music, because the artists' motivations and intentions and the results of their labors are extremely diverse. However, the records in this category have one common bond - they are all self-referential. Shifting emphasis away from the music, they point to their own existence as cultural artifacts and objects to be consumed These recordings transcend the sound contained within their packaging (often there is no sound at all) to question "'extra-musical" elements such as music industry practice, the notion of "quality "I the role of the music critic, the role of the listener, etc.
For Two Pipes Fourteen Locations Downsbrough photographed two pieces of industrial pipe in rural and urban landscapes against backdrops of both natural and architectural elements. The heights of each pipe are listed in the table of contents next to the location of each photograph, but the data itself seems less important than the fact that the artist gathered it and that he placed these arbitrary (but deliberate) markers of something in the landscape. Downsbrough's signifying vertical lines from the printed page of previous books here migrate into the actual world, the place from which he chooses to address abstract notions of structure and order.
Diarmuid Costello introduces Noel Carroll who was to give a paper on 'Art and Alienation', which would be followed by Adrian Piper making some comments and questions on the paper, then a break; and then Adrian Piper giving her paper 'Political Art and the Paradigm of Innovation', followed by Noel Carroll making comments and questions on the paper, and some questions at the end from us, the audience. "Through Modernist practice and aesthetic philosophy, ambitious art has been alienated from social life", Carroll's paper attempted to "diagnose these developments, criticise their philosophical foundations, and make limited suggestions about dealing with this impasse". Carroll pointed towards his idea of celebratory art as the way out of the impasse. In her comments Piper asked what if anything we should be celebrating, given, for example, the recent re-election of Bush. She asked what could we celebrate as a group of people here together in this moment. Neither Carroll, Piper nor anyone from the audience could think of anything, it felt hopeless; perhaps the least we could do was share our collective sense of hopelessness and try to find a way of energising our dissent. I forgot about my sweating palms, and felt relieved that Piper has asked this question.
Our taste for the unboring boring won't last forever. I assume that someday soon it'll go back to boring boring once again, though for reasons and conditions I can't predict at this time. But until then, even though I construct boring works, I wouldn't dream of forcing you to sit through an extended reading of my work: at least not without a fair warning, giving you an out, a chance for you to edit the dull parts by fast forwarding, leaving the room, or switching me off.
12 x 12 x 0.6cm (approx.) - a filled rubber condom (prophylatic) brand unknown. Astonishingly the condom is unbroken and still flexible Ð unusual with latex/rubber items from the 60s. Content of loose seeds inserted by Kudo. Knotted and then again tied with a pink printed ribbon "INSTANT SPERM". Distributed free by the artist at a 1962 public performance. Added: 27 x 21cm mimeographed leaflet published by Kudo and issued at the performance. The leaflet has a grease mark from where the condom has been stored on top of it for many years otherwise in very good condition. Text in English. "Instant sperm excels in efficiency and portability. You can put it in your bag or pocket and use it when you need." Added: 21 x 14.5cm mimeographed leaflet published by Kudo again in 1962 'HAPPENING /"Harikari" of humanism/ Bottled humanism/ Cutlets of humanism/Steak Tartare of humanism'
Pryings is a video recording of a performance by Vito Acconci in public with Kathy Dillon at a New York university. The artist shows a situation in which he is trying by force to open the eyes of the woman who stubbornly persists in keeping them closed. The camera follows the action of the couple by focusing on the chests of two of the protagonists. He pulls at her eyelids while she keeps her eyes shut tight. She tilts her head forwards and backwards, but he takes it in his hands and straightens it again. When her long hair covers her face, Vito Acconci sweeps it away with one hand and keeps the woman against him with the other. He pulls on her skin again and one eye opens, but the woman hides her iris by turning her eyes in their orbits. The white eye sees nothing. She struggles, pulling with her the body of the artist who holds her by the shoulders. The couple's tension is a source of emotion. The live soundtrack gives an idea of their movements and, in particular, Vito Acconci's breathing becomes louder with the physical effort. This struggle represents tensions - rather than oppositions - in couples of forces: feminine/masculine, open/closed. Vito Acconci experiments with the action of one individual aware of the other (open to the outside) on an individual closed in on herself.
So this is what I was doing at the beginning of my career as an editor. Anne, meanwhile, found a job as an assistant to a newly formed arts organization — The Poetry Project at St. Mark's Church. Joel Oppenheimer was the first director, Joel Sloman the co-director. By 1968 Anne became the director. Almost simultaneously, Ted Berrigan began visiting us at our apartment, usually late at night as he meandered home to his apartment on 2nd Street between C & D. The second issue of Angel Hair had appeared by then and we had included a chapter from his novel, Clear the Range. I had quit my job at the Welfare Department after eight months. Anne kept her own (albeit regular) hours at the church, and we could stay up most of the night and get through the next day without much trouble.
ROBERT LONGO: I ended up in Buffalo in the mid-'70s [at the State University College of New York, as a fine arts major]. I had decided I wanted to be an artist after failing at everything else. I had just returned from Europe, studying art history. The college wasn't much, but I was fortunate to meet up with some interesting people and a few teachers, and the fuse was lit.
The fanzine image carries, since Art-Rite had a loving relationship with the art world and particularly with its own generation. Distributed free, it was "given away," according to an undated grant application, "in recognition of the community which nurtures it." The application goes on to describe the magazine's "close relationship with the art community" and its reflection of "the younger generation's view.... For its collective audience, Art-Rite represents a restless but friendly, constantly evolving entity." In a statement deAk and Robinson wrote for Studio International in 1976, the editors admitted to "some nasty comments about a few 'major' artists," but those artists "were famous and successful and because they were safe we couldn't hurt them and since we spent the rest of our life defending babies we had to attack someplace." Even when the magazine went negative it did it amicably.
The newest works appear strikingly contrary in their aims. Bochner's former intentions to "slow down" the automatism of reading so that one might reflect on the cognitive processes at play is here discarded in favor of an accelerating crescendo easily scanned from left to right as one cumulative tirade. In these loud, brassy paintings, the viewer is made to transgress the physical boundaries of the canvas not through contemplative divagation but as a result of the train-like inertia gathered en-route to the picture's lower right hand corner.
OLDENBURG, CLAES Claes Oldenburg's Store Days: Documents from The Store (1961) and Ray Gun Theater (1962); selected by Claes Oldenburg and Emmett Williams. New York, NY: Something Else Press, 1967. First Edition. Hard Cover. Very Good book. Clean square and solid showing only light edge darkening. dust jacket is lightly/moderately scuffed and nicked with a few short tears. Card from "The Store, prop. Claes Oldenburg" affixed to EP in glassine envelope. Jacket in new Brodart protector.. Very Good/Good .
The most celebrated artists of the décollage technique, especially of the lacerated poster, are François Dufrene, Jacques Villeglé, Mimmo Rotella and Raymond Hains. Often these artists worked collaboratively and it was their intention to present their artworks in the city of Paris anonymously. These four artists were part of a larger group in the 1960s called Nouveau Réalisme (New Realism), Paris' answer to the American Pop movement. This was a mostly Paris-based group (which included Yves Klein and Christo and was created with the help of critic Pierre Restany), although Rotella was Italian and moved back to Italy shortly after the group was formed. Some early practitioners sought to extract the defaced poster from its original context and to take it into areas of poetry, photography, or painting.
"I am for an art that is political-erotic-mystical, that does something other than sit on its ass in a museum."
V. You mean, how can I create when I'm focused on petty grievances how can I then pull away from that pettiness? And think about more broad-minded things? Well it's an old habit from childhood, I lived in a very petty environment that I had to deal with but I always thought of things outside that environment. I've developed the capacity to go back and forth from being easy to antagonize and easily made to feel poorly to thinking in a very focused way about way bigger more conceptual things. Or spending a lot of time focusing on aesthetics. Did you hear my record?
Acconci's open mouth is framed by the camera in an extreme close-up, bringing the viewer uncomfortably close. A desperate sense of strained urgency comes across as Acconci gasps, "I'll accept you, I won't shut down, I won't shut you out.... Im open to you, I'm open to everything.... This is not a trap, we can go inside, yes, come inside...." Acconci continues to plead in this way for the length of the tape, his mouth held unnaturally wide open. The pathological psychology of such enforced openness betrays a desperate struggle to accept and be accepted by others. The sustained image of Acconci's open mouth also evidences a sinister, vaguely threatening streak that is more or less evident in much of Acconci's work.
Something Else Press books include the first American editions of several works by Gertrude Stein, including The Making of Americans (1966); a reprint of composer, performer and musical innovator Henry Cowell's New Musical Resources (1969); Merce Cunningham's graphically rich and challenging Changes: Notes on Choreography (1968); John Cage's anthology of radical musical scores Notations, compiled and produced with Alison Knowles (1969); A Sailor's Calendar by concrete poet and sculptor Ian Hamilton Finlay in collaboration with Gordon Huntley (1971); Jackson Mac Low's aleatoric and systematic composition Stanzas for Iris Lezak (1971); R[ichard] Meltzer's serious analytic study of rock 'n' roll The Aesthetics of Rock (1970); a reprint of the 1902 mycological bible One Thousand American Fungi by Charles McIlvaine and Robert K. MacAdam (1973); and Emmett Williams's Anthology of Concrete Poetry (1967)--which still stands as one of the defining gatherings of the subject. Other artists and writers represented include Claes Oldenberg, George Brecht, Marhall McLuhan, Wolf Vostell, Robert Filliou, Alison Knowles, Dieter Roth, Bern Porter, Emmett Williams, Richard Kostelanetz, Eugen Gomringer, Jerome Rothenberg among many others. Through the use of conventional production, distribution and marketing strategies Higgins was able to place often unconventional works--artists' books, critical theory, early Modernism, concrete poetry, amusement, Fluxus, back-to-the-land hippie culture--into the hands of new and often unsuspecting readers.
1971 Lippard Lucy R. / Changing essay in art criticism / A.Dutton, New York (Book)
The term shortly acquired a life of its own, as I had hoped. In no way was it my private property. It was picked up; used and misused, often by confusion with the term "mixed media." This last is a venerable term from art criticism, which covers works executed in more than one medium, such as oil color and guache. But by extension it is also appropriate to such forms as the opera, where the music, the libretto, and the mise-en-scene are quite separate: at no time is the operagoer in doubt as to whether he is seeing the mise-en-scene, the stage spectacle, hearing the music, etc. Many fine works are being done in mixed media: paintings which incorporate poems within their visual fields, for instance. But one knows which is which.
The obscured word patterns of "Un Coup...." resemble a series of histograms that correspond to the visual characteristics of language but wholly disrupts any possibility of reading as a means of accumulating information.. "Un Coup de Dés..."was probably one of the first modern poetic works to utilise blank page space as a visual metaphor for interpretive silence. Mallarmé described this spatial counterpoint as "espacement de la lecture", or a contemplative space for the reader. "Un Coup de Dés..." also effaced the distinction between pictorial representation and representations made in words. Linguistic conventions became transformed into aesthetic determinants and, more crucially, the symbolic status of language became subverted as its letter forms became pressed into service as decorative typographic motifs. Mallarmé's belief that text could be manipulated as a visual special effect ran contra to many sanctioned uses of language, either as an agent for the preservation of knowledge or as a tool for enlightenment. As if to reinforce the near-heretical nature of his claims against legibility, Mallarmé is alleged to have declared: "strictly speaking I envisage reading as a hopeless exercise."
At the risk of appearing self-contradictory, I do not believe art is understood through intellectual operations, but rather that we intercept the outline of a certain manner of treating (being in) the world.
Outline of the architecture: Primary Information Structuring, Secondary Information Structuring and conceptual level.
This catalogue not only has a text in English by Kirby and another detailed German essay by Heubach (the publisher of Interfunktionen) but has on the cover an original drawing (offset) by Wolf Vostell showing the exhibition layout (with drawings of where the various exhibits - Maciunas Flux-Toilet, Kaprow's Yard, Higgins Thousand Symphonies and others including Ay-o, Judo, Jones, Corner, Friedman etc. would have stalls/spaces). One major aspect of this catalogue was a 12pp list of documents and items offered at the show for sale. This copy was originally owned by the English Beau Geste Press/David Mayor who organised Fluxshoe and was an active English Fluxist and is annotated in his hand throughout - mostly noting dates on many of the listed items and a "tick" if he bought the item or not at the show. Thus what might normally be a defect is actually a plus here since this catalogue contains extra research information about many Fluxus items. A very good copy. Rare.
Pierre Albert-Birot is another forgotten figure, editor of a journal titled SIC, or Sons Idees Couleurs (Sounds Ideas Colors), as well as of numerous books of his own publication which included visual poems, typographic experiments, and theatrical scripts. Susan Compton's Worldbackwards, (British Museum, 1978) and her Russian Avant-Garde Books 1917 to 1934 (MIT University Press, 1992) are a good point of departure for the Russian materials. The Italian work is also well documented in Giovanni Lista's Futurusime (L'Age D'Homme, 1973) among other sources, but Marjorie Perloff's The Futurist Moment, (University of Chicago Press, 1986) and the 1993 catalogue of a monumental exhibition in Marseille, Poesure et Peintrie, and the older Herbert Spencer volumes on experimental and avant-garde typography, Pioneers of Modern Typography (Lund Humphries, 1969) and The Liberated Page (Bedford, 1987) are also invaluable indexes to this material; see also my The Visible Word: Experimental Typography and Modern Art Practice, though it does not deal with books as much as typographic work.
Gay Sunshine. I will try to emend this in the next day or two and get precise information, but far and away the finest interview with Jonathan Williams I've yet read is contained in a 1976 issue of Gay Sunshine. It is a three-way written interview with Jonathan and Tom Meyer covering a wide range of topics, from their first introduction through Robert Kelly, their poetic production and processes of composition, and early Black Mountain and Bard College days. Most importantly to my eye, it marks Jonathan and Tom's enduring connection to one another as both poets and beings in the world, covering the period of their lives from the late 1960s through the '70s, a moment in Williams' life often given short shrift in interviews.
And in this regard Juan Goytisolo was a shining example. When the great Spaniard attacked his former incarnation as a didactically hal- lowed prince of Communist right thinking, he exhibited the courage to extinguish his narrowed agenda, his airtight Marxist programmatics, thereby forgoing superficial adulation in order to swell within the imagi- nal kingdom of true fertility and chance. A writer no longer of the enterprise to command the range of an infertile public. By working with such examples as this, we began to brew a creative fuel capable of transmuting collective biography.
As an adolescent enrolled at St. Albans Academy in Washington DC, Williams occasionally made his way to New York City where he worked intermittently shelving and packaging books for Elias, Jan and Ted Wilentz at now-mythic Eighth Street Books. Here he first encountered, on Ted's recommendation, the work of Kenneth Patchen, Henry Miller, Kenneth Rexroth and others. He continued traveling from DC (and later North Carolina) to NYC, attending readings, gatherings, openings and other events. And it was during these years that Harry Redl took a number of what are, to my eye, the finest photographs of Williams as a young man. The images are striking. One finds Williams, then in his mid-twenties, looking visually determined and even thuggish, hands firmly on hips and a tweed flatcap yanked down low over the brow. I have seen these pictures at Buffalo, where his literary archive is kept, and they're certainly available at the Beinecke where his photography archive is housed, but any attempt to find these powerful images on the web is vain. If they are available on the web (which seems doubtful) they are crowded out by images of Ginsberg, Dylan, Kerouac, McClure and others. Like those poets Williams later struggled to draw into the fold, Williams somehow fell out of view as a poet. Perhaps it is this — the critical and popular attention one deserves as a poet — that is lost when sanctuary and sanity are found in all things remote.
Before conceptual art became prominent in the late 1960s, there was already, so Craig Dworkin has suggested in his "Anthology of Conceptual Writing" for Ubu Web (http://www.ubu.com/), a form of writing identifiable as conceptual poetry, although that term was not normally used to discuss the chance-generated texts of John Cage and Jackson Mac Low or the "word events" of George Brecht and La Monte Young. In his Introduction to the Ubu Web anthology, Dworkin makes an interesting case for a "non- expressive poetry," "a poetry of intellect rather than emotion," in which "the substitutions at the heart of metaphor and image were replaced by the direct presentation of language itself, with [Wordsworth's] 'spontaneous overflow [ of powerful feelings]' supplanted by meticulous procedure and exhaustively logical process."
"In a visual style of address exactly equivalent to the presidential address, the face-to-face camera regards The Insignificant Man making the Outrageous Confession that is as likely as not to be an Incredible Lie. Who can escape the television image of Nixon?" - David Antin, "Television: Video's Frightful Parent," Artforum (December 1975)
CC: Yeah, that's the luck of the draw really. I met him at a time when we were both kind of reduced down to... He was making those drawing with just one or two lines right before they accumulated into pictures of shoes and houses and so on. I met him because I wanted him to do the cover for Ing which he did. Of course, the works in that are pretty reduced down to syllables and fragments. So I always think we kind of paralleled in an odd way; we just happened to come together at the time when we were both kind of becoming more you know... what is it? I don't know... more dense, more rich, less afraid of the common images, whatever you want to call it. I used to run away from the fact that I used the word... what is it? Oh, great I've forgotten the word... Shit, I think I've finally gotten rid of that word. It's a sense of, you know, that the words always refer to something. What the fuck is that word?
"Pictures" was significant because what Crimp was able to articulate made sense to me; it helped me. I was raised on movies, television, and Life magazine. I wasn't interested in images that were based on reality; my concerns were more for representations of representations. I was interested in what art could be, not what art was.
NBC's Tim Russert Collapses, Dies; "Meet the Press" host has apparent heart attack; fired black anchor goes public: "I'm being trashed"; AAJA president named in bias suit; Fox apologizes for calling Michelle Obama "baby mama." (6/13/2008)
Another marvelous feature of this book is the section "Angel Hair Memoirs," where most of the contributors write brief memoirs of the times, or the circumstances of being published by Angel Hair, or the specific entries themselves. Along with these memoirs are pictures. Frank O'Hara in 1964 in his Broadway loft. Clark Coolidge playing drums in 1967. A nude photo of Coolidge, Carol Clifford, Gerard Malanga, Tessie Mitchell, Dick Gallup, Tom Veitch, Katie Schneeman, and Anne Waldman, 1972, at the Schneeman's apartment on St. Mark's Place. A young Tony Towle at work. Anne Waldman and her mother, Anne Waldman and Philip Whalen, Bob Rosenthal and Jim Brodey, 1977 at Dick Gallup's apartment. I like a particularly wind-blown photo of Kenward Elmslie, Anne and Lewis on the beach in Westhampton in 1968. Everybody I've talked to about this book admits to starting with this section, even though it is in the back of the book.
Fuck You was dedicated to free expression, and especially defying the taboos around sex and drugs, advocating free sex and the use of psychedelics long before those were picked up by the more widespread countercultural movements of the late Sixties. Sanders and his collaborators served as a bridge between the Beat generation of the Fifties and the later counterculture, and helped define many of the differences between the two--the latter building on the breakthroughs initiated by the former.
I'm not sure what nudged me toward asymmetry in late summer 1960. Maybe it was the emphasis on asymmetrical design in Zen Buddhist aesthetics. . . . Perhaps it was my admiration for the irregular verse of Ezra Pound and of such contemporaries of mine as Paul Blackburn and Larry Eigner. . . . Possibly it was just that "I'd had it" with stanzas and symmetry—seven years of it after December 1954.
My family didn't travel much. Biggest trips of my childhood were before I started school. My mother worked everyday in her beauty parlor that was in the storefront of our house. My father, who didn't want a job, was stuck with me and dragged me seven days a week to various racetracks within driving distance of Buffalo. Lots of traveling. And boy, was it fun. I got to starve all day long, and finally maybe get a hot dog and a cup of warm water, while watching my father lose my mother's hard-earned pay.
Bochner began making paintings in the late 1970s, and his paintings range from extremely colorful works containing words to works more clearly connected to the conceptual art he pioneered. For a 1998 work titled Event Horizon, for example, he arranged prestretched canvases of various sizes along a wall, each marked with a horizontal line and a number denoting its width in inches. Together, the lines appear to form a horizon, creating what Jeffrey Weiss in his catalog essay for Bochner's 2007 exhibit Event Horizon called a representation of "the world as a fantasy of quantifiable truth." Bochner made his first prints at Crown Point Press in the early 1970s, published by Parasol Press.
When Mike Sperlinger suggested the idea of writing about Adrian Piper's work for a book, I was surprised because we had not discussed Adrian Piper's work before. Perhaps because to my knowledge it has not been widely exhibited or referenced in London in the past three years, and this is how long I have known Mike. I felt some discomfort at the thought of writing about the work of an individual artist who I did not know, when my thoughts are with social strategies and the disassembling of the individualised artist and art institutions, including the way artists' work is written about. I want to show in my writing how Adrian Piper's work has done much towards acting on such concerns, and how her work activates or encourages the practice of writing and articulating one's position where possible, by articulating some of my own position. In a text called 'Cheap Art Utopia', first published in Art-Rite a magazine published, edited, designed, typeset and distributed by Edit Deak and Walter Robinson from 1973-1978, Piper poses the question,
If art were as accessible to everyone as comic books? As cheap and as available? What social and economic conditions would this state of things presuppose?
RELATED RESOURCES: Jack Goldstein in UbuWeb Sound
In 1982, my longtime fascination with Paik's work resulted in a retrospective exhibition that I organized for the Whitney Museum of American Art in NewYork.1 Over the ensuing years, his success and renown have grown steadily.The wide presence of the media arts in contemporary culture is in no small measure due to the power of Paik's art and ideas.Through television projects, installations, performances, collaborations, development of new artists' tools, writing, and teaching, he has contributed to the creation of a media culture that has expanded the definitions and languages of art making. Paik's life in art grew out of the politics and anti-art movements of the 1950s, 1960s, and 1970s. During this time of societal and cultural change, he pursued a determined quest to combine the expressive capacity and conceptual power of performance with the new technological possibilities associated with the moving image. I will argue that Paik realized the ambition of the cinematic imaginary in avant-garde and independent film by treating film and video as flexible and dynamic multitextual art forms. Using television, as well as the modalities of singlechannel videotape and sculptural/installation formats, he imbued the electronic moving image with new meanings. Paik's investigations into video and television and his key role in transforming the electronic moving image into an artist's medium are part of the history of the media arts. As we look back at the twentieth century, the concept of the moving image, as it has been employed to express representational and abstract imagery through recorded and virtual technologies, constitutes a powerful discourse maintained across different media.The concept of the moving, temporal image is a key modality through which artists have articulated new strategies and forms of image making; to understand them, we need to fashion historiographic models and theoretical interpretations that locate the moving image as central in our visual culture.
There is a developing context for this anthology. In recent years, there has been a significant increase of interest and awareness of the New York School. Penguin republished Ted Berrigan's Sonnets and Joe Brainard's I Remember. They also published Alice Notley's Descent of Alette. There is a retrospective of Joe Brainard's artworks touring now; it just left NYC. Granary Books brought out a lovely bibliography of Ted Berrigan a few years ago, as well as the magnificent bibliography of the mimeo era, A Secret Location in the Lower East Side. The New York School has come to occupy a more robust locale in academia, and in the publishing world. The old Adventures In Poetry imprint has been revived as a book publisher, already in print with new books from Charles North and John Ashbery. Perhaps we will see more major works of the sixties and seventies come back into print. At least some of this work has been rescued already, and can be found in this 619 page masterpiece anthology.
CATALOG #3, books, freak-tomes, literary relics, magazines, tapes, broadsides, tractata, zapata, rare poetry scenes, & other vectors from the literary Ejaculatorum. (NYC: Spring 1965). 4to. Stapled wrappers. 34pages. Duplicated and stapled sheets on different coloured paper stocks. Included in this catalog that foreshadowed the opening of Sanders' Peace Eye Bookshop are Jack Smith's Beautiful Book, publications by Sanders and the Fuck You Press, Ginsberg and Orlovsky's annotated pot of Pond's Cold Cream, Warhol's "Holy Cats", Manuscripts by Paul Blackburn.
My fanzine, Sniffin' Glue, ran from July 1976 to September 1977 and is probably the most accurate record available of those exciting times. All the issues (14 in all) have been compiled into a book which was published by Sanctuary in 2000. The title - 'Sniffin' Glue: The Essential Punk Accessory' - says it all.
Chatham began his musical career as a piano tuner for avant-garde pioneers La Monte Young and Glenn Gould. He soon studied under electronic music pioneer Morton Subotnick and minimalist icon Tony Conrad; Chatham and Conrad played together in an early ensemble. In 1971, while still in his teens, Chatham became the first music director at the experimental art space The Kitchen in lower Manhattan. His early works, such as Two Gongs (1971) owed a significant debt to Young and other minimalists.
James Hoff is an editor living in Brooklyn, NY. He recently edited 0 To 9: The Complete Magazine, a compilation of the conceptual writing journal edited by Vito Acconci and Bernadette Mayer from 1967-1969. He is the co-founder of Primary Information ; an organization devoted to publishing lost works of the avant-garde and artists publications vital to discussions in contemporary artistic practice. Since its founding in 2007, Primary Information has published an anthology of Real Life Magazine, Aram Saroyan¹s Coffee Coffee and a facsimile edition of Something Else Press¹s Great Bear Pamphlet Series. Hoff was also the curator of recent exhibitions Fuck for Peace: A History of the Fugs (2007) and Leaderless: Contemporary Tape Culture Now (2007).
The technique of composition that postulates a creative function of chance utilizing the throwing of dice, supposedly discovered by Cage (!), was first described in 1793, and is usually attributed to… Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. Incidentally, a related technique, described by Hummel at the end of 18th century as the Instruction for composition of new contredanses by chance selection of pre-made musical material composed by others, precedes by more than 200 years the supposedly revolutionary (!) concept of John Zorn's "game pieces", and resembles the "Plunderphonics" advertised by Oswald, Marclay, and their successors, or the related sampling technique (by the way, all these techniques were "discovered" by the New York artists….). Interestingly, historians argue that such techniques, quite popular in 18th century salons, were thought of as particularly well suited for those lacking in musical talents. Not surprisingly, Henry Flynt, continuously exposing the traditionalism and historical baggage of avant-garde, will often repeat the memorable sentence: "I became very angry about the fact that I'd been talked into going to these Cage concerts when I was in college, that I'd sat and tried to make myself like that stuff and think in those terms."
For several centuries, the "art of ideas" has been practiced incidentally in the margins of philosophy and literature. In the early 1960's it became an acknowledged artistic genre, first in avant-garde music and subsequently in the visual arts. This page provides links to material about this tradition, and to material about its antecedents and parallels in other domains and periods.
My main criticism of Kaprow's book is its presumptuous exclusivity. Though his own conception of happenings is quite clearly explained, he does not sufficiently differentiate them from other theatrical events that occasionally pass under the same name, such as the performance pieces of John Cage, Robert Whitman, Ken Dewey, or Oldenburg. My own suggestion, which is developed in my forthcoming study, The Theatre of Mixed Means (1968), is that Kaprow's pure happenings represent only one of the four distinct genres of mixed-means theatrical art—the others being staged happenings, kinetic environments, and staged performances. Each of these achieves a particular mix of the general dimensions of time, space, and materials. Perhaps because Kaprow has the philosopher's preoccupation with correct positions and thus the necessity of excluding invalid alternatives, he is the only major mixed-means practitioner to devote himself entirely to pure happenings, as the text explains why his own ethics persuaded him not only to give up painting but to regard the other mixed-means genres as essentially compromised. (This devotion to rationally deduced scruple has led to quarrels with other artists, Oldenburg among them.)
Oldenburg's Store Days is an entirely different sort of publication, designed less as an exposition than as a memento of Oldenburg's first major artistic innovation and first great work of art. "The Store" (1961) was a real Lower-East Village store filled with miscellaneous objects, most of which Oldenburg created in the semblance of junk and then actually offered for sale; and this "store" subsequently became the setting for his first major series of mixed-means theatrical events, "The Ray Gun Theater" (1962). In contrast to Kaprow, whose interest is mostly in conceptions, Oldenburg is primarily concerned with image and materials. His leap in "The Store" consisted of making the stuff within the store itself into an artistic object that bore approximately the same ironic relation to a real store as his miscellaneous sculptural objects did to their respective models. For this reason, just as we can appreciate his mammoth Giant Hamburger as a sculptured object that at once resembles a hamburger and yet expresses other archetypal resonances (some of them sexual, the erotic suggestiveness of familiar objects being a favorite Oldenburg theme), so The Store was a store, where things were sold, and yet it was much else besides.
The traveling survey of Mel Bochner's early Conceptual work Con view until Sept. 8 at the Stadtische Galerie im Lenbachhaus, in Munich) manages the trick of being upbeat and fresh, and tartly nostalgic at the same time. As seen at the Yale University Art Gallery last fall, "Mel Bochner: Thought Made Visible 1966-1973" consisted of nearly 70 drawings and 17 photo pieces and installations. While some of the installations were quite close in form to the originals, others were freely and imaginatively adapted by the artist to the gallery's exhibition space. For Bochner, who installed the show himself, it is the ideas that count, not absolute historical exactness.
Three-dimensional art of any kind is a physical fact. The physicality is its most obvious and expressive content. Conceptual art is made to engage the mind of the viewer rather than his eye or emotions. The physicality of a three-dimensional object then becomes a contradiction to its non-emotive intent. Color, surface, texture, and shape only emphasize the physical aspects of the work. Anything that calls attention to and interests the viewer in this physicality is a deterrent to our understanding of the idea and is used as an expressive device. The conceptual artist would want o ameliorate this emphasis on materiality as much as possible or to use it in a paradoxical way (to convert it into an idea). This kind of art, then, should be stated with the greatest economy of means. Any idea that is better stated in two dimensions should not be in three dimensions. Ideas may also be stated with numbers, photographs, or words or any way the artist chooses, the form being unimportant.
In the obit posted on his blog earlier today Ron Silliman noted that Williams was included on Larry Fagin's neglectorino list, a catalog of criminally neglected poets. More widely regarded as one of America's most important small press publishers, Williams work as poet and essayist has been eclipsed by his publishing accomplishments. It's easy to forget Williams was among those poets included in Donald Allen's New American Poetry and The Beat Scene, edited by Elias Wilentz and published the year before Allen's seminal anthology.
Futura 15 (1967). Edited by Hansjorg Mayer and published in Stuttgart, Germany, this issue of Futura contains Williams response to Ian Hamilton Finlay "for a one word poem anthology issue of his magazine poor old tired horse". Williams was also strongly connected to concrete poetry, largely through figures like Finlay and Furnival. Williams himself produced a number of concrete poems, as did Ronald Johnson, a poet Williams fiercely promoted and whose Book of the Green Man comes from hiking with Williams through England's fells and dales.
There was also the context of The Berkeley Poetry Conference, which took place in the summer of 1965. This is where Anne and I met, at Robert Duncan's reading. The conference was one of the major convergences of the poets included in the Don Allen anthology, with emphasis on the Black Mountain poets and the poets of the San Francisco Renaissance. (None of the first-generation New York School poets were present, though I'd heard that Frank O'Hara had been invited and couldn't make it.) So from the start this was the tradition we wanted to explore as publishers and editors. A feeling of wanting to go beyond that tradition came later — another step in the process of becoming, of being. It was just a matter of time before we realized that our real work wasn't simply to mine the tradition of the poets of that world, but to create our own.
Now what is artistic, aesthetic, about a work which is a body of concepts? This question can best be answered by telling where concept art came from; I developed it in an attempt to straighten out certain traditional activities generally regarded as aesthetic. The first of these is "structure art," music, visual art, a.s.f., in which the important thing is "structure." My definitive discussion of structure art can be found in "General Aesthetics"; here I will just summarize that discussion. Much structure art is a vestige of the time when for ex. music was believed to be knowledge, a science which had important things to say in astronomy a.s.f. Contemporary structure artists, on the other hand, tend to claim the kind of cognitive value for their art that conventional contemporary mathematicians claim for mathematics. Modern examples of structure art are the fugue and total serial music. These examples illustrate the important division of structure art into two kinds according to how the structure is appreciated. In the case of a fugue, one is aware of its structure in listening to it; one imposes "relationships," a categorization (hopefully that intended by the composer) on the sounds while listening to them, that is, has an "(associated) artistic structure experience." In the case of total serial music, the structure is such that this cannot be done; one just has to read an "analysis" of the music, definition of the relationships. Now there are two things wrong with structure art. First, its cognitive pretensions are utterly wrong. Secondly, by trying to be music or whatever (which has nothing to do with knowledge), and knowledge represented by structure, structure art both fails, is completely boring, as music, and doesn't begin to explore the aesthetic possibilities structure can have when freed from trying to be music or whatever. The first step in straightening out for ex. structure music is to stop calling it "music," and start saying that the sound is used only to carry the structure and that the real point is the structure--and then you will see how limited, impoverished, the structure is. Incidentally, anyone who says that works of structure music do occasionally have musical value just doesn't know how good real music (the Goli Dance of the Baoule; "Cans on Windows" by L. Young; the contemporary American hit song "Sweets for My Sweets," by the Drifters) can get. When you make the change, then since structures are concepts, you have concept art. Incidentally, there is another, less important kind of art which when straightened out becomes concept art: art involving play with the concepts of the art such as, in music, "the score," "performer vs. listener," "playing a work." The second criticism of structure art applies, with the necessary changes, to this art.
A SIGNIFICANT ARCHIVE FROM SOMEONE ELSE'S WORLD
Hershman's groundbreaking performance/conceptual artwork about identity in the mid-1970s when she lived as Roberta Breitmore. Hershman, an influential multi-media artist and filmmaker, created/became/lived as 'Roberta' for a 9 year period and documented many of Roberta's daily activities through photographs, keep-sakes and artworks. Eventually the power of Roberta lead Hershman to create three multiple characterisations of Roberta, and ultimately, to hold an exorcism to destroy the persona after the full power of the alter ego become too strong. This assemblage is a museum quality archive of almost all of the works created/extant from that period and is one of only 3 such works created by Hershman in this format (the other two boxes are currently in private collections). The complete listing of the contents of the box are as follows: Roberta's Body Language Chart 1978; Roberta in Session 1977; Letters to Roberta from her psychiatrist ; Roberta's Psychiatric Evaluation 1978, 7 pages from the Roberta Comix 1974, Lost Button from Roberta's Coat 1975, Roberta's Diary Open, Roberta's Diary Closed, Page from Roberta's Diary, Description of Use of the Diary, Dental X Rays, Purse, Driver's License, Check, Roberta with Blaine/Ad/Transcript 1974, 3 Surveillance images with Blaine 1974, San Diego Ad 1976, Letter to Irwin 1975, Letter from Irwin 1975, Envelope response to the ad 1976, Roberta with Hand, Roberta with Irwin, S.F. Museum of Art, 1976, Roberta with Preacher, San Diego 1976, Roberta with I in Park 1975, two x film strip collages 1978, water woman 1979, Roberta as Cat, Areas of Sensitivity, Roberta with ghost face, Lynn looking at Roberta, Roberta on Bridge, Multiple dancing in North beach (Kristine Stiles) 1978, Multiple with Lynn Hershman 1978, Roberta's Replacement after She Was Fired from Work 1977, Multiple on bus 1977, Lynn becoming Roberta 1974, Multiple (Stiles) becoming Roberta 1974, Multiples looking at construction Chart 1978, Close up on Multiple (Stiles) 1977, Multiple at a Gallery 1977, Roberta at Gallery 1976, Lynn watching Multiple at Gallery 1978, Going to Work 1974, Multiple on a Bus 1979, Roberta waiting for a Bus 1974, Check, Roberta Button, Audio tape, Dental X Ray, 1 celluloid frame of a Roberta film Added: large C-prints Construction Chart 1 1974, Construction Chart 2 1975, Roberta's Physical Stance1975, Lay Off and Leave Me Alone 1975, Chair Roberta Sat on to Write in her Diary 1975, Roberta's Handwriting chart 1973, Roberta's Jacket 1975, Roberta meeting Blaine 1976, Roberta Thinking of Writing Letters 1976, Roberta's Transformation1977, Meaning is the Message 1976 , Plastic Flowers from Roberta's Crypt 1979, Roberta multiple in Exorcism Ritual 1979. A fuller description including sizes, images and other details are available on request. All in fine condition.
I've always liked him and am interested in his work. I lost touch over the past few years. I don't know what he's been doing. I know he got kind of more professionally published though.
It was the Spring of 1966. U.S. soldiers were climbing into underground Tunnels in Vietnam. The body count was in full swing. Martin Luther King Jr. was active in Chicago. The Beatles' Rubber Soul was getting a lot of airplay. Lewis Warsh and Anne Waldman put out the first issue of Angel Hair. It included new works by Jonathan Cott, Lew Ellingham, Lee Harwood, Denise Levertov, Charles Stein, and Gerard Malanga. Later issues would typify the emergence of a group of writers who literally changed the rules and delivered on the promises of The New American Poetry (Donald Allen's anthology of 1960). This was where you would find the works of Bernadette Mayer, Jack Anderson, Ted Berrigan, Michael Brownstein, Lewis MacAdams, Dick Gallup, Rene Ricard, Kenward Elmslie, Ron Padgett, Joanne Kyger, Lorenzo Thomas, Joe Ceravolo, Tom Clark, Steve Carey, Bill Berkson, Jim Carroll, Larry Fagin, and, of course, the works of Anne and Lewis. Angel Hair was oversized, with simple letterpress titles (except for the last issue, Spring 1969, which featured a cover by George Schneeman).
Sanders, Ed. A VALORIUM EDITION OF THE EXTIRE EXTANT WORKS OF THALES!: THE FAMOUS MILESIAN POET, PHILOSOPHER, PHYSICIST, ASTRONOMER, MATHEMATICIAN, COSMOLOGIST, URSTOFF-FREAK, ABSENT-MINDED PROFESSOR, & MADMAN; with an introduction by Aristotle. 1964.
It's impossible to know why Goldstein killed himself, and I'd like to think I'd be writing about him now even if he hadn't. The forgotten star is a tempting topic; the self-destructive artist a story so common as to be a cliché. But we should turn away from such things and simply attend to what Goldstein did; because little histories like this are so easily lost in the vast swirl of things, and if we don't owe it to him to recover them, surely we owe it to ourselves.
In a notorious 1967 incident, Charlotte Moorman was arrested for going topless while performing in Paik's Opera Sextronique. Two years later, in 1969, they performed TV Bra for Living Sculpture, in which Charlotte wore a bra with small TV screens over her breasts. Paik developed the idea of an "Electronic Superhighway" as early as 1974 in his text "Media Planning for the Postindustrial Society". Many of Paik's early works and writings are collected in a volume edited by Judson Rosebush titled Nam June Paik: Videa 'n' Videology 1959-1973, published by the Everson Museum of Art, Syracuse, New York, in 1974.
I first met deAk well after Art-Rite folded, in 1981, when I came on staff at Artforum. Ingrid Sischy, who had become the magazine's editor a year or so earlier, had made Edit a regular contributor, and besides writing unorthodox articles--I remember, for example, a spectacular piece about the hip-hop artist Rammellzee, and another on, of all things, those Cabbage Patch dolls--she served as an all-purpose one-person think tank. Ingrid tended to keep her meetings with Edit deux, I suspected then (and have not changed my mind) because Edit contributed more to her plans for the magazine than she wanted to let the rest of us see. (I should add that Ingrid was formidably inventive herself.) But Edit regularly danced by. She would hurry through the office, laughing, vivid, bright-clothed, Hungarian, making herself brieflyfocal before she and Ingrid would run out to a gallery, a studio, a bar. To a rather shy and quiet Irish/English person (my main contribution to Artforum at the time, I'm quite sure, was a trivial willingness to work ninety-hour weeks), she was intimidatingly glamorous; but besides being sparkling in both her perceptions and her style, she was always warm and always utterly a pleasure. Even now, talking to her about Art-Rite and reading through old statements and interviews of hers on the magazine, I'm struck by her generosity and by an endearing modesty that runs through her general flamboyance. A use of the word "humble" seems a long-term habit: "We were really thinking very humbly," she told me, and back in 1974 she told Alan Moore, who was writing an ultimately unpublished article on Art-Rite for Artforum (Edit has a copy of the hot-type-set galleys), that she saw herself as the "humble servant" of artists. A lot of readers, I would guess, may snort, "Oh, sure"--but the remark rings true to my sense of Edit's character.
The idea of the independent publisher is closely linked to that of the activist artist. Activist artists often give little thought to financial return or careerist investment (though both publishers and artists often establish a name and a reputation which they can leverage to future successes as a result of these efforts). Much activist work is topical, politically or socially motivated in its thematics, and distributed through inexpensive editions as cheaply and widely as possible. Artists with a social or political motivation for their work have frequently turned to the inexpensive multiple as a means of gaining a wider audience for the work. Books, because they have the capacity to circulate freely, are independent of any specific institutional restraints (one finds them in friends' houses, motel rooms, railroad cars, school desks). They are low maintenance, relatively long-lived, free floating objects with the capacity to convey a great deal of information, and serve as a vehicle to communicate far beyond the limits of an individual life or contacts. The notion of the book as a means of available communication is part of what informs the myth of the book as democratic multiple, in spite of the many paradoxes of production involved in this idea. (17) From the Russian Futurists to the Fluxus artists to the Press at the Woman's Building in Los Angeles, to the Lower East Side Print Shop in New York, the idea of making the book a tool of independent, activist thought has been one of the persistent elements of the mystique of the artist's book. That artists' books can facilitate a change of consciousness is clear, as with any other symbolic form be it poetry, visual arts, or music; whether such work can result in a change of political structure and policy opens the door to another set of debates about the role and function of art in the 20th century which cannot be adequately addressed here.
The first sheet also contains the "rules of the game" which are equally obtuse whilst still fulfilling the Witgensteinian idea of a game. The whole relates to a series of 'variable paintings' (installations and works which can be recombined in different ways using magnetic pieces) regarding 'Dr. Schweitzer' - a comic, stereotyped authority figure who Fahlstrom uses to create disturbing scenarios where the worldview is unsettled by the intrusion of medical instruments and procedures: thus may be viewed as a symbolic and all powerful stand-in for reactionary government. Small scratch on back cover, otherwise a fine copy of this very scarce 60s work from the famous agit-prop artist who has been influenced at different times by US underground comics (especially Crumb), Scandinavian pornography and Nordic expressionism. Intriguing.
SOMETHING ELSE NEWSLETTER (Vol 2, Nr 4 and Nr 5) September 1972 NYC: Something Else Press, 1972. 30 x 21.5cm, 4pp, b/w newsletter. Two separate numbers from the series comprising the texts "Why do we publish so much Gertrude Stein" and "Seen, heard and understood" by Higgins. Both formerly folded for mailing purposes but otherwise fine.
When poet and composer Jackson Mac Low began performing his work in the mid-1950s, it was met with considerable confusion and resistance. Audiences didn't know what to make of his poems; for example, "184.108.40.206.11.9.3!11.6.7!4.,a biblical poem," is accompanied by two pages of reading instructions, performed by multiple people speaking simultaneously, and begins:
In /____/ /____/ wherein the /____/ /____/
/____/ /____/ eat lest they /____/ and taken /____/ /____/ the
/____/ twenty /____/ /____/ shalt waters the ark /____/ /____/ /____/
There's some nostalgia in this attempt to reconstruct lost context, I suppose, an embarrassing bit of good-old-days corn. Perhaps this is unavoidable. The title of the collection of notes, sketches and photographs Oldenburg published in 1967 already has the air of the wistfully retrospective about it: Store Days. Vladimir Nabokov was once asked in an interview, 'Is nostalgia debilitating or enriching?' His response: 'Neither. It's one of a thousand tender emotions.' Tenderness seems to be a useful way to approach Oldenburg's belated gentrified objects, a way to think oneself back to that starting-point of zero.
Nobody cannibalizes an image like Richard Prince, who has carved his place in contemporary art by recycling, reflecting, and reframing photographs, cartoons, advertisements, and other images already existing in the public sphere. It's a practice cut from 1970s and '80s SoHo—Cindy Sherman, Jenny Holzer, Jeff Koons, Barbara Kruger, and Sherrie Levine are among his contemporaries. But more than his peers, Prince sees himself as a funnel rather than a filter: he pilfers freely from the vast image bank of pop culture and recasts these appropriated images in a new light, embracing and at the same time critiquing a distinct American sensibility.
As a kid, I had only seen airplanes on TV. I was from boat-people. I didn't know anybody who actually went on a plane until I was sixteen and living in New York City. I had to hitchhike there from Buffalo. One fag who gave me a ride tried to blow me so I made him let me out. I didn't get another lift for seven hours. It was cold that day.
In this kind of poem meaning arises out of the associative conjunctions that pattern brings about. One way to describe Gomringer's "constellations" would be to call them rhetoric without syntax. He develops the characteristically modern tendency, deplored by a strongly syntactical poet and theorist such as Donald Davie,5 to dispense with logical syntax as embodied in grammatical relationships. Many of his poems consist of words, especially nouns, not articulated into sentences, but poised in spatially suggestive relationship to one another.6 This involves some loss of semantic control by the poet, but a corresponding increase of opportunity for the reader. As Gomringer says, the poem becomes "a playground" and "an invitation":
the constellation is a system, it is a playground with definite boundaries. the poet sets it all up. He designs the play-ground as a field-of-force & suggests its possible workings. the reader, the new reader, accepts it in the spirit of play, then plays with it .
. . . with each constellation something new comes into the world. Each constellation is a reality in itself & not a poem about some other thing .
. . . the constellation is a challenge, it is also an invitation.7
Whilst the phenomenon of concrete poetry might claim to have attended a minor revolution in graphic and literary communication, the advent of conceptual art was symptomatic of a far more fundamental reexamination of political, social and cultural values. Whilst conceptual art itself effected a crisis in a particular version of Modernism, it also became a litmus for the global economic, social and moral reevaluation that seemed in evidence around much of the industrialised world.18
The status and tenor of Weiner's statements is left open to conjecture, texts such as 'Terminal Boundary'(1969) can be read as hypothetical description, imaginary performance or apocryphal anecdote. Perhaps surprisingly, concrete poets such as Gomringer also seemed to share Weiner's fascination with the aesthetic astringency of the litany and its potential for representation as narrative; Gomringer's 1961 work, "Snow is English", is mechanically descriptive in such a way as to defeat any sentimentalised (modernist literary) interpretation of pastoral landscape. The list of over one hundred implausible adjectives used to describe snow transcends any experience or expectation that we may have about pastoral verse, but confirms what we know about the potential for language to combine as visual 'free radical' elements to dramatic poetic effect. The meticulous attention to typographical detail that individuates concrete poets such as Gomringer also serves to promote simultaneous and conflicting readings of the text that leaves the spectator as speculator. Typically, Weiner's texts are floated speculatively as a territorial or linguistic markers that indicate not only an absence of the materials of art (apart from text) but also stand as approximate representations of ideas rather than as objects in their own right. Weiner's works are symptomatic of the idea that the consciousness of the viewer should be seen as a direct corollary of 'place', and potentially in opposition to the idea of the exteriorised pastoral 'landscape'. Support for this view might be drawn from an unexpected source in the form of Ian Hamilton Finlay, who in his 'Detached Sentences' states : "An inscription need not actually exist in the landscape; if it is in the consciousness of the viewer it is in the landscape."33
Within the context of conceptual art the sited text works of Lawrence Weiner, Douglas Heubler and others were intended to mobilise the potential of place and to sensitive the audience to the conditions of production for the artist at work in 'real-time'. In this 'situationist' setting, the frequently austere production values more generally associated with conceptual art demonstrated a potential to elicit a dynamic critical reception that transcended the means of production. In addition to this, in works such as Weiner's Lambert text (1970) 37 the written word allowed the kind of reader access that could be neatly adapted to accommodate emerging aspirations to democratise cultural property rights whilst expediting the idea of communication about communication. For artists such as Kosuth, Art & Language, Hanne Darboven, et al., the susceptibility of written language to become art, whether as information or textual analogue, helped form a direct challenge to the hierarchy of linguistic and cultural power that had previously been the preserve of institutions and critical commentators.
35 Compare for example: Ian Hamilton Finlay's 'Blue and Brown Poems', (1968) with Lawrence Weiner's: '10 pieces in English and German', exhibited: Aachen Zentrum fur Aktuelle Kunst (May 1970)
TD: Trying to write the static that's in the background, or overlooked, or something?
It was an attempt to consciously standardize, in terms of an exhibition, book, or project, the conditions of production underlying the exhibition process. It was the first exhibition in fact where I asked the artists to do something, and it was probably somewhat less collaborative than I am now making it sound. But I do have the impression that the close working relationship with the artist was an important factor of all the projects, even when I was not particularly close to an artist, as for example, Bob Morris. (participating artists in the Xerox book were Carl Andre, Robert Barry, Douglas Huebler, Joseph Kosuth, Sol LeWitt, Robert Morris and Lawrence Weiner).
In 1966, Bochner was invited to curate a Christmas show of drawings at the gallery of the School of Visual Arts. He borrowed rough working drawings from his artist friends (including a $3,051.16 fabricator's bill from Donald Judd) and, since there was no money for framing, hit on the idea of photocopying the drawings and binding them in four black loose-leaf notebooks. Bochner also included photocopies of diagrams (including the technical drawing of the Xerox machine itself), mathematical proofs, selections from Scientific American, architectural blueprints, musical and choreographic notation, and similarly schematicized items. The four notebooks, each containing 100 pages, were placed on pedestals so that the viewer had to experience the exhibition by bending over (rather uncomfortably) and reading. It's worth noting that while today an installation of this sort might seem commonplace, at the dawn of Conceptual art it decidedly was not.
I would like to make a case for a new occupation for artists. This occupation might exist as part of, alongside, or instead of the art itself. If it existed as part of or alongside art, it might have the effect of giving art a perspicuous and visible interpretation, support, or framework, although I don't see this as it's intention.
I sometimes wonder how rich an artwork has to be to inspire interpretations so opposite to mine - so antithetical to what I take to be the main gist of the piece. Are the contradictions that are necessary to produce such a diversity of readings located in the artwork, or in the social experience of the observers who constitute the artwork's public? I'm thinking of Wild in the Streets: The Sixties (1994), the tragicomic rock opera by Dan Graham and Marie-Paule Macdonald recently published by Imschoot, uitgevers as an illustrated pop-up book. In the liner notes, Mike Kelley writes: 'For those of us who are now long past the age of 30, the age at which you became useless, it is a bitter experience to look back and see how a generation was seduced by this cult of youth.' 1 While there is a certain despair in the work, Wild in the Streets: The Sixties, as I see it, is wistfully nostalgic for the youth culture of the decade and sullen about its demise. An earlier work by Dan Graham, Eisenhower and the Hippies (1967), is permeated by a similar longing, though this time for the 50s from the retrospective vantage point of the late 60s. 2 Taken together, these artworks suggest two poles in a mini-history of the hippies, one contemplating the emergence of hippie culture, the other its end. The 'bitter experience' behind these works though, is not in their consideration of how the 60s generation was 'seduced [read: duped] by the cult of youth,' but precisely in the waning of this cult, and by extension the dissipation of its Arcadian dreams.
Baldessari's early major works were canvas paintings that were empty but for painted statements derived from contemporary art theory. An early attempt of Baldessari's included the hand-painted phrase "Suppose it is true after all? WHAT THEN?" on a heavily worked painted surface. However, this proved personally disappointing because the form and method conflicted with the objective use of language that he preferred to employ. Baldessari decided the solution was to remove his own hand from the construction of the image and to employ a commercial, lifeless style so that the text would impact the viewer without distractions. The words were then physically lettered by sign painters, in an unornamented black font. The first of this series presented the ironic statement "A TWO-DIMENSIONAL SURFACE WITHOUT ANY ARTICULATION IS A DEAD EXPERIENCE." (1967)
In the same vein, as I said before, I don't expect you to even read my books cover to cover. It's for that reason I like the idea that you can know each of my books in one sentence. For instance, there's the book of every word I spoke for a week unedited. Or the book of every move my body made over the course of a day, a process so dry and tedious that I had to get drunk halfway though the day in order to make it to the end. Or my most recent book, Day, in which I retyped a day's copy of the New York Times and published it as a 900 page book. Now you know what I do without ever having to have read a word of it.
In September, I saw Jack in Los Angeles. It was his birthday, and he was in a good mood. Jack, Brian Butler, and I sat in a local diner eating pancakes and talking about the film he was finishing, Under Water Sea Fantasy (begun in 1983), which I had committed to show, sight unseen. I had absolute faith in his work. When I went to see him again two months later, he was standing beside a huge pile of bound Xerox books on the table in the 1301PE gallery office. He was restless, and without saying hello he began to talk animatedly about the eighteen volumes in front of us, which he had just completed. I sat down and began reading.
I will try to define some of the main larger issues connected to digital consciousness as I see them; issues which run parallel to, and feed into, the epistemological transformations generated by contemporary theories of physics, biology and mathematics which have become closely associated with poststructuralist theory and cyber culture.
Books are often less easily abstracted from their surroundings than artworks, better at bringing contexts with them as they move through the world. In 1961, the year Oldenburg set up shop, Jane Jacobs published The Death and Life of Great American Cities, a book of urban theory unlike any that had been written before. Reading it today, Jacobs' carefully rendered portrait of lived urban experience seems just as significant as her polemic - or, more accurately, the two are inseparable. Jacobs' world, and her arguments, revolved around her West Village neighbourhood (as it happens, just across town from Oldenburg's store). She wrote unsentimentally of the tangle of relations on her block, describing the small necessary negotiations occurring in the 'ballet' of everyday life, and then moved outwards, asking what worked and why. What worked - what made cities desirable places to live - were things no one had valued before, at least not in urban planning circles: clutter and density, people loitering on the streets, old buildings and the intermingling of industrial, commercial and residential spaces. These were what made a city 'lively' - the book's highest term of praise. Suspicious of top-down theorizing and over-arching schemes, Jacobs' adversaries were those who would raze lively 'slums' and turn the city into an idyllic green place: suburbanize it, in other words.
A new art has been with us for nearly a decade now, as it emerged from the void that followed the diminishing presence of abstract expressionism. One would hope that happenings, pop art, minimal sculpture, and the like are, like the computer and thermonuclear capability, sufficiently established in our common sensibility by now so that we can accept them as subjects worthy of intelligent discussion. Nonetheless, the criticism of the new art distinctly of the sixties has been just about as baffled and evasive, if not downright ignorant, as, say, most writing about computers; for the new art, sometimes masquerading as an anti-art, is so radically different from the dominant styles preceding it that the long-established critics have been less than helpful.
Q. How can I do that if this is a Question and Answer?
The work of artists such as Lawrence Weiner is also central to the debate concerning the potential for tension between language and object (signifier and signified). From 1968 onwards Weiner's sited statements, books, posters and records were augmented by a written 'schema' that was intended to characterise alternative options for the production and distribution of art. This 'schema' has accompanied all of the work he has made since this period.
In 1914, in England, Ezra Pound and Wyndham Lewis founded the Vorticist movement. through The journal 'BLAST' gave artists the opportunity to publish experimental typographic works and imagist poems. These proved to be influential among poets and artists in the immediate period post-1945.
As the frontispiece for this introduction, I have chosen to reproduce a work from 1973 called A New Design for TV Chair. In it, Paik appropriated an image from a 1940s popular-science magazine that depicts the home viewer of the future watching television. Television had already become a monopolistic industry that was a conduit for advertising, a "communication" industry that operated on a one-way street of information. But in A New Design for TV Chair, Paik posited his own questions to project an alternative future for television:
DO YOU KNOW...?
52 x 44 cm b/cream offset poster for the Fluxus travelling show that moved from town to town within the UK during the 1970s and also featured some well known performance artists. Noted on the poster as participants are Ay-o, Brecht, Chopin, Crozier, Higgins, Lennon, Vautier, Vostell, Watts and many, many more., This copy has had a gallery sticker overlaid for the local event datails and rubberstamped "Good grief!". Very good.
But if for editors these books were attractive in part as a new commodity, for artists they often offered the possibility to produce work which they wouldn't or couldn't produce themselves. This might include working in a printmaking medium, for example, or pursing a theme which didn't find an easy place in their other work. The artists whose work was featured in early livres d'artistes are among the foremost in 20th century art, their names the roster known from survey lectures and blockbuster exhibitions: Pierre Bonnard, Henri Matisse, Joan Miro, Max Ernst, and Pablo Picasso. (4) These books are, in most cases, finely made works, but they stop short of being artists' books. In fact, they stop just at the threshold, or even a bit before the threshold, of the conceptual space in which artists' books operate. First of all, it is rare to find a livre d'artiste which interrogates the conceptual or material form of the book as part of its intention, thematic interests, or production activities. This is perhaps one of the most important distinguishing criteria of the two forms, since artist's books are almost always at least self-conscious about the structure and meaning of the book as a form, even when they are not entirely about that form or its conventions while the standard distinction between image and text, generally on facing pages, is maintained in most livres d'artistes. By contrast to the lively innovations which abound in artists' books, the work of even recent, late 20th century, livres d'artistes tend to feel embalmed in excessive production values, burdened by the weight of traditional format and materials. (5) The paper wrappers of these books can barely contain their thick paper pages, and the large scale of the typefaces is surrounded by a veritable swath of blank margin, while the images and text often face each other like new acquaintances across the gutter, wondering, indeed, how they came to be bound together for all eternity in the hushed, mute, interior of the ponderous tome.
The non-resolution of this situation highlights the resources used in the performance. In Vito Acconci's conception and the logic initiated by his introspective actions - filmed in Super 8 - the performance has physical resources, the body as place or medium, and a clearly delimited space. Pryings is a representation of the performance as an artistic process and medium, and a metaphor of the idea "opening someone's eyes".
lots of other projects & works in the thick city air, but i'm still on internet hiatus until the cablemen deem my new abode suitable for their wiry penetration.
until that day,
i remain, as always,