Sunday, November 21, 2010

Final Paper: Networking a Global Culture

   Rafael Rozendaal

Aram Bartholl

    Art as interactive communication and networking a global culture is a genre that Margot Lovejoy introduces as emerging art in the digital age and is the fulcrum of both Aram Bartholl's and Rafael Rozendaal's work. They both come at this concept in different ways but meet in the middle with their group and large scale global social connecting events. Rozendaal tends to work almost completely web based when it comes to his most well known art pieces, though introduces other mediums such as drawings, oil paintings and hand made books as well as projecting his work and filling a space almost entirely of his production. Bartholl works strategically to bring his usually appropriated computer based concepts off the computer that created them in the first place and recreate them within the real world around us in real three-dimensional form. These two come together with their public events of drawing in digital artists and creators alike from around the world with the use of VOIP communications into internet cafes or other spaces with computer stations and connection to the internet.


    Rafael Rozendaal born and residing still in Amsterdam, Netherlands is a interactive graphics artist. He was first introduced to the internet at the age of 16 and to VPRO broadcasting station that hosted various experimental artists of the time such as Peter Keuning and Han Hoogerbrugge. These artists were exploring and continue to expound on what a website could be and play with the speeds of connection to and from the sites and making it all work in their artworks favor. At 30 years old, he has become infamous for his URL animation work that requires interpretation, curiosity and investigation of the viewer to complete the art piece. His work focuses on color and its interchangeability along with layers and textures that switches, breaks or barks with the click of a button. Rafael has been working in this media since 2001 and has close to 60 web domains dedicated to individual concepts of which he sells as collectibles. In an artist statement for his solo exhibition “Thank You Very Much”, he mentions that his choices are made “to reduce, to reconstruct reality into a universal language, and to optimize it for the infrastructure that is the internet”. (The Future Gallery Exhibition). Almost all of his work is interactive, however he sells posters of his interactive web pieces and has created an application for Iphones of one of his pieces called “Clouds” which the user pops the clouds as they come floating by with a touch of their finger. His work often shows his dark humor with creepy and jumpy thematics or sexual innuendos along with his love of old cartoon strips and comics in his hand drawn animations.His work is often very surreal, breaking the idea of having framed art work that doesn't leave the surface it was created on. Images float in and out or come screaming out at you and at times making you quickly close the screen. In this respect his work is very similar to Aram's that in it's breaking of boundaries that normally cage art work in and taking it from it's normal sitting and placing it in a different context.

yes for sure

    Rozendaal has been exhibiting all over the world in both solo and group participated gallery events. His work is most often displayed on large and numerous screens or projected upon the walls replicating itself and surrounding the public space to immerse the audience with his work as if it is almost a living and moving wall paper or paint upon the wall. Mirrors are often incorporated as well to bounce and reflect the piece and encompass the walls, floors and ceilings. Commenting on what exhibitions represent to him on his personal blog at he says “they are a celebration and a research on what computing could look like in the future.” These rooms he's created to hold his art work places the audience within the art and computer environment itself, trapping the viewer in his created world. He continues to talk about what the internet and computer age has brought to the generations today. “The computer offers new possibilities in deception, the use of interactivity and infinity. Those were not possible before the computer and the web made them very easy for artists to share.” In a dream he notes on his blog that Dali asks him to describe the internet for him after Rafael tells him he uses it as his canvas. He asks Dali to “imagine a lot of color TV's around the world in a network, connected to typewriters, and when you touch the screen it starts to bleed.”


    Aram Bartholl born in Bremen and residing in Berlin, Germany is also an interactive graphics artist with a slight twist of bringing the work into public space. He has been working since 1995 with exploring the relationships of digital art and the physical world and blurring the line between the two. His work commonly appropriates elements from computer games or the internet's social networking scene and reproduces these elements in a three-dimensional form within real world space. From his artist statement for he says that “pixels seem to be unsatisfied with their binary existence and have decided to jump into the tangible universe.”

    Having studied as an architect at the University of the Arts UdK Berlin he continues to incorporate building and design in the psychical to create his public and what has become termed 'intervention' events and performances. 0,16 is a light installation consisting of a transparent paper covered wall built out of cells, 17 cells tall and 6 cells wide. A light is then placed several feet behind this wall and a person or object is placed in between. The cell wall breaks up the shadows and displays them on the front side of the wall as large scale pixels. He has incorporated this idea in several other projects on smaller scales, one being the 'TV Filter' where the wall is reduced for the size of a twenty four inch TV screen and again the picture projected is broken up into large pixels of the actual image and blows out the actual detail to where it is merely large squares of moving color. This has a feel of looking at fire when the image is viewed in video form.

Sandbox Berlin

     Second Life virtual social network has Sim islands called Sandboxes where users are allowed to create, experiment and play with the various building tools allowed within the viewer software capabilities. Aram has taken this concept and created his own sandboxes around the real world. Supplying the wood and tools, he invites the public along with his own crew of workers to build whatever objects and concepts they can imagine. The first of these 'public interventions' was held in a large open field of Berlin in the Mitte district formally part of the Berlin Wall. This is an interesting community activity and is more about getting people out of pixels and allowing the objects and the people to become apart of the real world. It questions the energy used in creating and building objects in Second Life and other programs. Both are similar to just an exercise of group effort and commendatory.

     Margot Lovejoy brings up the use of the internet as a means of producing and creating if not being art itself. However, she questions the issues of content and context as a danger to the artists and their work as to whether the meanings of content will actually get lost in the vast space or the fact that it is intangible and seen only within the pixels of a screen. “To engage in telematic communication is to be at once everywhere and nowhere. In this it is subversive. It subverts the idea of authorship bound up within the solitary individual. It subverts the idea of individual ownership of the works of imagination.” Roy Ascott – Digital Currents, Margot Lovejoy. Both Aram and Rafael embrace these facts of loss of context, content, intangiblity, and ownership and incorporate these dangers as strong points of their art work and the motivation behind each project. Both artists seem unafraid of their work being manipulated or taken. That in fact they wish the work to be taken, recreated and evolved. Aram specifically works with and is a member of F.A.T free art and technology and his work is actually incomplete without the involvement of large groups or multiple groups world wide. He often places his works with instructions and recipes for others to pick up and continue, to construct and spread like some viral video. Aram's and Rafael's group events string and bring together the long distances between artists working today and place them together within arms or fingers length to communicate discuss and exhibit in large scale.

Speed Show

    Tele-Internet and Speed Show's are a concept Bartholl introduced and both Aram and Rafael and numerous other digital media artists participate in. Similar to comic and electronic cons in the meet and greet atmosphere, these events are held in rented out internet cafe's or rooms full of computer stations that the hosts connect with digital artists world wide over VOIP communications and allow for Q and A from viewers and other participants. Other stations are set up for users to work on their own creations and talk about their work while others can sit, drink coffee, and discuss. It has been described as a “blissful semi-chaos that encouraged people to stay and create” and as “a hackerspace, (un-)conference, exhibition, performance and social installation”. (


    BYOB or Bring Your Own Beamer is an event conceived by Rozendaal where participants bring projectors along with their computers and project their art work on any open space of large gallery settings or warehouses. Images are shot against the walls, ceilings or floors, where projectors are hand held, set up on floors or balanced on people as they lay on the ground. Some works include artist performances along with the moveable projections, while the entire event is held as a meet and greet reception and allow artists, participants and viewers alike to explore and question their peers work. These are great events for artists to discuss their work with other artists and people interested in the field. It would seem to be a place of brainstorming and picking other peoples brains to create more and new group related material and work. It would also allow these works of art to come to a larger life and introduce new artists who are continually exploring new media's.

    Though working in the same media field these two artists participate in the art world completely differently, Rafael embracing and living within the world of the internet and Aram breaking away from the frame work of the computer that holds these virtual worlds captive and bringing them into the real world. They both, however, see the benefit of social events and bringing the artists around the world together to continually question, brainstorm and delve further into the concepts behind the digital world.

Rafael Rozendaal

Aram Bartholl

Lecture Review #2: Matteo Bittanti

Visiting Artists Lecture Series

Matteo Bittanti is a professor at the California College of the Arts in San Francisco, instructing Game Studies. He's own research is an interest in the cultural impact of emerging technologies and video games within popular culture and the arts. He received his Ph.D in New Media Studies at IULM University in Milan along with his Masters of Science in Communications at San Jose' State University and a Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy and Media Studies in Milan. He is the director of , along with Game Culture where he keeps a running blog on the newest artists in the video gaming arts and their use of the gaming scene. He also writes for Wired, a monthly magazine that follows the continuing effect of technologies on culture, economy and politics.
He describes his own lifestyle to be a procrastinator by profession, living the Italian life of leisure while he indulges his love for video games and media for income. He used this love to create a profession in analyzing the things he liked, writing editorials, thesis, and basically connected the dots in relating things in the gaming and visual media scene. The Game Scenes book, he says, attempts to map out the art and game world using video games to comment on societies values and beliefs. He researches the internet and collects related art, games and artists to a larger whole, where he then creates a collective and sometimes a gallery or exhibition of these materials.
Battanti and Kristoffer Zetterstrand from Sweden are collaborating on a book based on the trends of the new development of language and reinvention of reproduced games of the 1980's in the form of pixel art in the form of sculpture and 2d design. Zetterstrand has currently been working on a slow motion version art representative of Street Fighter, forcing critical thinking on games, their storyline and context.
He continued his lecture by showing random artists working with 80's simple colors and landscapes having been repainted, rebuilt, or even enshrining controllers under glass in museums. Other artists talked about had been using war games to comment on society and politics today. Some of these war statements being video art of performances or interactive sculpture. A recreation of the story War Games is juxtaposed with soothing music while the computer strategises the action of nuclear war and the complete destruction of the earth and its people within the push of a button. Real time war footage and recreated video game footage from Call of Duty 4 Modern War Fare are being placed together along with the conversations from live captured war communication and the recreated simulation. This work is being presented at the Guggenheim YouTube Gallery. The simulation of these videos are so close to the real thing it becomes hard to separate the two of which is real and which is fictional. Work out of New York and London have seen artists working with the old arcade cabinets and turning arcade rooms into art galleries with live preforming street bands and artists. Some artists have been working with pixelated photography creating game like landscapes and environments and pixelating the people within as they fit them into the space created.
Matteo's own work has seen the placement of Obama ads and stickers within war and criminal games as a tongue in cheek stab at Obama's own statement that video games are a waste of time and that kids today should be outside away from these things. However, Obama's presidential campaign was the first to go across all media and was even seen in video games released during his run for office to encourage gamers to vote for him. Matteo's reproductions of these ads place stickers, symbols, statements and posters all within graffiti, billboards and bumper stickers of these games. Other work has seen video displayed upon 9 screens in gallery spaces of recordings of several different cities and high speed car races through the streets of cities like Paris and London. Or the slowed to almost painful time, games which are meant to be played fast and almost without thought as the player hurls himself over buildings and through streets. One video produced in this manor was Bruno which was a dedication to his good friend who had committed suicide by jumping off a building to his death.
He ended by answering several questions. One asked was; given games normally have intent and objective, what becomes the intent when these are placed in a gallery? What becomes the objective? He stated that the art creates the new objective and breaks or becomes against the rules. What was once the normal context or objective of the original game, has now become up to the creator or the observer. Another question was; how did he get to his job and position now? He was a gamer since a child and as growing up 'sucks' he decided to continue this love of playing around as he has always done within a profession. Why do people game? As a vicarious style of living or being out of your own world and into some fantasy. A way of control and just basic fun. He said if they made a game out of shopping he'd be happy to shop all day everyday.  

Lecture Review #1: Paho Mann

Scatter and Heap Exhibition
Paho Mann is the second artist to exhibit in the Scatter and Heap Exhibition showing at the Sheppard Fine Art Gallery. He lived in New Mexico most of his life but, he is now currently living and working out of Dallas Texas at the University of North Texas. He received his BFA from the University of New Mexico and his MFA from the Arizona State University.
He originally started working in photography cataloging various medicine cabinets from the 1950's. Paho mainly used his friends and families homes to photograph these and didn't expand out. In these experiments and cataloging, he was looking for a the differences and similarities between household items and the people who had them. Within this small field of collections he found that most people were consuming the same sorts of items. However, one thing he noted was the cleanliness of the cabinets and the lack of items they didn't wish anyone else to see, like actual medication. He felt there was a complete lack of personal individuality in these photos as everything had been hand selected as if for a still-life presentation, ready for viewing at anytime by anyone.
Paho then decided to look into the depths of the 'junk drawer'. In this he felt he would find a more random sort of collection in this catch all drawer, and show more of an individual presence of the householders. He selected his friends and family once again and pulled out the drawer and placed it on a black background and snapped the photos. Because this was a small view of a large world he wanted to expand out and continue his experiment of similarities and differences among consumer collecting, and moved out one degree of separation and contacted friends of friends. He then placed an ad into Craigs List. Presenting himself as a photographer who wanted to collect images of random kitchens, he hoped that this would keep them from organizing their drawers and throwing out anything he was hoping to catalog. Continuing to work this way he introduced himself to the area's he moved into as an artist and collected several years worth of these images.
Re-inhabited Circle K's were next on his agenda. These buildings back in the 1950's were somewhat the 'Starbucks' of their day and were located on almost every street corner. Paho felt it would be interesting to catalog the locations of all of these buildings in each city he came through. Using the same process of framing each building in the same exact location and photographing it. These were then collected and placed in a mapping program that listed buildings that were destroyed, buildings that were re-inhabited, and others that were photographed and to be photographed.
This process prepared him to catalog everything in his household. He had always been concerned with what materials he and his partner were bringing in and consuming as a member of society and this allowed him to see how many things and sometimes how many of one thing he actually had. This concern and process led up to a collaboration with the City of Phoenix which commissioned photographed images of recyclable products that came in to a plant to be recycled. This was to raise awareness of material waste and recycling as well as to create a large body of work.
Paho works very straight forward and linear. His photographs are tight, clean and simple and the collage of these pieces, are also just as orderly. By seeing his 'Sort' website one can see how detailed and meticulous he is at his work and his dedication to see the end result. He is very interested in data and collecting, to find all the information one can gather and place that information into a data base that can be updated and maintained to add more and more information. Not only are they individual projects but also something that many can become involved with, in adding to or simply browsing through. He stated that his work has made him more thoughtful about what he buys and brings home and that he hoped it would effect others in a similar fashion. He also found that though his travels and exploring that we are more similar across the board than we are all different in what we consume as householders.
Would he consider doing a larger web based project where others could submit images/objects as well?
Will he continue to add to his Sort project and document things from his household in the passing years?

Exhibition/Screening Review #1: Extreme Animals


The Extreme Animals, a band, that in their own words, stand up when they  play but this night are going to be sitting down as this will be the unplugged version with plugs. David and Jacob preformed at the Joe Crawley Student Union theater and presented three songs, a bit of stand up and a few unexpected readings of poems. They are out of North Carolina and have been together since 9th grade, having worked in several bands up to this point. They brought along a few props to the stage: a Tazz stuffed animal to work sound, a green hand, a blow up beach ball of the earth and a human skull for the dark thoughts of death, of course. As for the set up of the stage and their dress it was indicative of the rest of their performance – eclectic, bizarre and a bit maddening.
The hour and a half show consisted of 3 songs and a guitar solo of Fortress of Amplitude. The first of these was introduced by informing the audience of what '2010' stood for. They did this by a presentation of YouTube videos of various music artists  including Millie Cyrus's younger sister in the Noie & Ems Show. This was basically a tongue-n-cheek talk to show what 'tweens' were doing today, making videos about absolutely nothing of their everyday and having fun with it. Eminem and Lady Gaga were also brought into the picture with the description of 'Marsic' and how they have both found a new revelation in bringing High Art into music videos. The feelings and thoughts of  confusion 'Where am I, which version of me is doing this, how did I get here, is something they showed to be common in the thoughts behind what '2010' meant.

This idea of confusion continued through the rest of the performance. The videos and music associated with it were loud, fast, intense and extremely over stimulating and to me a representation of the world today full of so much choice and  information, that everything and everyone is on overload. The images were usually rough and as if hurriedly pasted, almost as if without thought or care, or to get them in and down as quickly as possible before moving onto the next set of thoughts coming in. Images repeated endlessly along with sounds that beat out the same tune through the entirety. The sounds and rhythm at times elicited emotions of stress, excitement and in one case sadness as the video to me spoke of a need or want to be something different and something more, the fear of separation and division and of being trapped all colliding together.

I found a line from one of the poems that David read towards the end of the program to be insightful for what they seemed to be dealing with in their art. “Abstraction in the brain, creates a maze in another mans brain.” They're work almost questioned you as to how far you're willing to go down the rabbit hole with them. Then at times when nothing being thrown at you was making sense, words would flash up that reminded you “that we've become overly concerned with things that don't make sense” quickly making you let go of forcing any reason on what was being presented. And to remember “it's all in your head.”
By the end of it I had felt like I had been on a bad acid trip, but had enjoyed the entire time of it. It was a rush of energy, vibrations and motion. Although I questioned at times what was happening and why I was still sitting there, I had found myself staying to the point that he told us to leave as he was finished and nothing else was going to happen.
Has anyone suffered from an epileptic seizure from any of their performances?
Are they as mentally exhausted after a performance as the audience is after viewing it?

Final Projects

Part #:1 Learning to Love You More

I chose my first project to be from 'Learning to love you more' as most of the projects are to be hand crafted and built. I found a lot of them interesting but chose these two for the drawing and craft building that came along with it. 

Shadow Poster
Assignment #6
Make a poster of shadows.

You may take pictures of the shadows or simply trace them. These solid shapes should then be drawn on paper and colored in with a single color. You are not interested in anything but the shadow itself, and you are most interested in shadows that don't look anything like the objects that created them; abstract shapes.. Choose either brown, pink, light green, orange or white. Use only one of these colors. If you would prefer you may cut out the shapes from colored paper. The shadows should appear on the page in a grid formation, in rows. Treat this like a index of shadows rather than a work of abstract art. The finished report should include 10-20 shadows and should be pasted on (or drawn on) white paper of any size (even if, especially if, the color you chose for your shadows was white.) Do not label this poster in any way, except to write your name and the date on the back. My god these are going to be beautiful.
D O C U M E N T A T I O N >
Photograph the poster

Paper Bed
Assignment #16
Make a paper replica of your bed.

Using paper, cardboard, colored pencils, glue and/or tape, make replicas of your sheets, blankets, comforters, pillows and anything else that comprises your bed. Then assemble them the way you assemble your bed. The completed bed should be roughly the length of a pencil. Take special care to reproduce the patterns on the fabric and any stains or other irregularities.
D O C U M E N T A T I O N >
Take one photograph of the bedding elements laid out separately, and another photograph of the assembled bed.

- - - E X H I B I T I O N _ H I S T O R Y:
03 Oct-16 Nov 2003
Boulder Museum of Contemporary Art
Boulder, Colorado USA

Part #2: The Johnny Cash Project

For the second part I chose to participate in the Johnny Cash Project by drawing, with the tools provided online, a single frame of the music video 'Aint No Grave' by Johnny Cash. 

Link to The Johnnny Cash Project

My uploaded Frame #659

Original Frame

My Rendering
Music Video from The Johnny Cash Project

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Project #5: Youtube Mix

Hallelujah Remix

This project was intended to incorporate appropriated videos from Youtube in a compilation for a new experience. I searched for the many covers of the song Hallelujah by Leonard Cohen and grabbed twenty of over a hundred to be played separately or simultaneousness. The song itself is a powerful one, but has been ridiculously over done to the point that even American Idol has now band it from their stage. My intention was for these videos to overwhelm the viewer and give the feeling that this rendition will almost fall apart. However, with the lyrics and cords played it holds itself together to the end with an almost painful and slightly creepy feel.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Project #4: Snoutastic Chindogu

Snoutastic Chindogu

This is a collaboration project with Charlene and Lindsay. Here we introduce the Snoutasitc Chindogu Muzzle Enhancement for dogs in a quick infomercial.

Chindogu Meaning

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Project #4: Snoutastik Chindogu

This is a collaboration project with Charlene and Lindsay. We introduce here the amazing benefits of the Snoutastick Chindogu Muzzle Enhancement for dogs. 

Chindogu Meaning