It is time once again for another edition of Fielding Practice, Bad at Sports’ Chicago-focused podcast produced for the Art21 Blog! In this month’s edition, we switch up formats and focus on a single topic: The Essential New Art Examiner (Northern Illinois University Press), edited by Kathryn Born, Janet Koplos and Terri Griffith, an anthology of writings from Chicago’s only major art periodical. Duncan MacKenzie, Dan Gunn and I sit down with Terri Griffith to get a behind-the-scenes look at the making of this anthology and learn why the NAE still inspires impassioned discussion today, a decade after it folded. And as always, we have our monthly picks for events and exhibitions taking place in the Chicagoland area and beyond. Click on over to the Art21 Blog to listen to the podcast and see our picks, and as always, thank you so much for listening!
Every week a flood of emails come in and while most are super boring, some are genuine things from genuine people we love and want to share. As always, feel free to email us with magical things to post and help spread the Internet word around.
Highlights include exhibition and curatorial open calls in New York, ACRE residency, Marfa, Texas fieldwork research and the Version 12: Bridgeport kickstarter link.
What happens when you invite cultural workers, community developers, entrepreneurs, artists, designers, foodies, public space hackers, urban planners, cultural geographers, and dreamers to swarm a neighborhood and transform it for one month? Version 12: Bridgeport: The Community of the Future.
Deadline: We have 5 days to make sure this incredibly awesome thing happens
[SIC] APPAREL is garage operation made up of individuals who enjoy creating art together. Fairly standard for a start up apparel company, but they seem to have an angle. The collective is made up of a group of talented and dedicated artists. These artists treat the shirts you buy like a canvas: each shirt you buy is a piece of art. The selling of these shirts benefits the artists by spreading their work far and wide across the world. The artists at [SIC] also work to support causes by dedicating the funds of many their shirt designs to particular non profit organizations. The [SIC] facility is an energetic and creative space for artists that works to develop unique and superior apparel.
Deadline: April 23, 2012
Free Radio: A Project by Brian Gillis and Robin Lambert
Deadline: May 5th, 2012
CUE Art Foundation is pleased to announce the opening of Free Radio,
the winning selection of the inaugural open call for proposals. The
call, titled Community Cultural Hub: Re-thinking CUE’s Space, seeks
proposals that would utilize the gallery space in a non-traditional
manner, address a wider audience than the typical gallery-going
public, and promote the activity of artists over the art object.
Free Radio is a community-based project that uses CUE Art Foundation’s
gallery as a laboratory in which a different local community will be
aided each week with the construction of an on-site radio station and
the development of radio programming relative to that community. Each
one-week session will be comprised of a series of activities directed
toward community building, the development of a voice, archiving that
voice, and developing the skills associated with radio technology. The
result is a public broadcast produced entirely by each community and
transmitted to the greater New York City metropolitan area each week.
The process will be perpetually archived and transmitted via the
Internet, so as to simultaneously preserve and broadcast the process
beyond the walls of the gallery and beyond the range of the radio
Humble Art Foundation’s Young Curators, New Ideas IV
Open Call for Curatorial Proposals
Deadline: Friday, April 27, 2012, 6PM, PST
Young Curators, New Ideas IV is an experimental group exhibition that broadly examines the intersection between curatorial practice and modes of artistic production. YCNI seeks to provide a venue for emerging curators to develop their practice, experiment with ideas, form relationships with artists and expand their presence within the contemporary art community. In the past, YCNI has supported projects by Karen Archey, Jon Feinstein, Laurel Ptak, Jose Ruiz, James Shaeffer, Lumi Tan and Cleopatra’s, to name a few.
The Summer Show Project at FOLEYgallery
Deadline: May 6, 2012
The Summer Show Project offers the unique chance for artists to work directly with FOLEYgallery. The exhibition will feature one artist that works with photography and one artist that makes works on paper. This initiative will provide an opportunity for emerging or under represented artists to have their work seen, recognized and reviewed in a professional gallery setting.
Psst…today is the deadline for Ox-Bow. We hope you had a pleasant application experience and if not, there is always next year!
Deadline: April 20, 2012
The ACRE Residency Program takes place every summer in rural Southwest
Wisconsin. Developed as a means to support emerging visual artists and
musicians, the program provides artists with the opportunity to expand
upon their individual practices as well as take part in optional
programming within a collaborative community. Additionally, visiting
artists are invited to conduct studio visits and present lectures,
discussions, and workshops. Residents can apply for a 12-day residency
or are free to determine the length of their stay for a reasonable day
rate. The residency supports 25-30 residents at a given time.
Texas & Beyond
International researcher-in-residence program – Fieldwork: Marfa
Deadline: April 12, 2012
Fieldwork: Marfa is the joint project of three leading European schools, ESBA Nantes Métropole, HEAD – Genève and Gerrit Rietveld Academie in Amsterdam. This international researcher-in-residence program is dedicated to the practice of art in public space, critical approaches to landscape/ borders and artistic projects based on field investigation methods. Located in Marfa, Texas, USA, this outstanding platform is intended for emerging artists, critics and/or researchers.
Deadline: Rolling basis, no formal application process (!!!)
All are welcome, including – farmers, gardeners, builders, writers, thinkers, talkers, cooks, architects, bon vivants, hikers, students, lazy sods, designers, dreamers, fools, office jockeys, etc.
ACE Artist in Residence Center Open Call 2012
Buenos Aires, Argentina
Deadline: April 30, 2012
Looking for an excellent place to experience life and create art in a new location? Come to ´ACE! Your time and space for reflection, research, presentation and art production!
The Rockefeller Foundation Bellagio Center’s Residency Program
Deadline: May 1, 2012
The Residency Program allows for focused work, uninterrupted by the professional and personal demands of daily life. In addition to time for dedicated work on individual projects and for reflection during the day, building new connections and collegial interaction with other residents is a defining characteristic of the Bellagio experience.
The Rockefeller Foundation Bellagio Center’s mission is to promote innovation, creativity, and impact-oriented solutions to critical global problems. Residencies and conferences at the Center, located in Northern Italy, support work in the Foundation’s key issue areas: global health; climate change resilience; urbanization; social and economic security; as well as food, water, and housing. In addition, the Center welcomes proposals from all fields that advance the Foundations’ long-standing mission to promote the well-being of humankind.
The Harvestworks New Works Program
Deadline: May 1, 2012
The Harvestworks New Works Program offers commissions of up to $5000 to make a new work in our Technology, Engineering, Art and Music (TEAM) lab. Each artist receives up to a $2000 artist fee with the balance of the award used for the TEAM lab activities. The artist works with a team comprised of Harvestworks’ Project Manager and consultants, technicians or instructors.
New works may include multiple channel audio or video installations, interactive performance systems, data visualization or projects involving hardware hacking, circuit bending or custom built interfaces, as well as projects that use the web. Up to 12 residencies will be selected (depending on project size and funding) along with up to five $1000 project scholarships. Priority will be given to the creative use of the Harvestworks’ production facility and the innovative use of sound and/or picture. Emerging artists and artists of color are encouraged to apply.
THE DISTILLERY RESIDENCY – Summer 2012
Deadline: May 1, 2012
The Distillery Residency is an 8 week free workspace-only residency running from June 18th to August 17th at The Distillery, a former rum distillery and arts building in South Boston, MA. Residents will be given a 240 sq/ft studio space to work in for the duration of their residency and will be provided a materials budget up to $800 depending on the scope of their project.
ENCATC – Cultural Policy Research Award 2012
Deadline: May 7, 2012
The Cultural Policy Research Award was launched in 2004 by the European Cultural Foundation (ECF) and the Riksbankens Jubileumsfond, and since 2008, is developed in partnership with ENCATC. Designed to foster academic and applied cultural policy research and to explore issues at stake in contemporary Europe, the Cultural Policy Research Award aims to contribute to new competence building among young scholars in comparative cultural policy research.
The International Ibsen Scholarships
Deadline: April 30, 2012
The Ibsen Scholarships award innovative projects in the field of drama and performing arts and projects that act as incentives for critical discourse in regards to existential and society-related subject matters concerning Henrik Ibsen and his plays. Scholarship funds amount to 1,000,000 NOK (approx. 130.000 Euro/170.000 US Dollars) will be awarded projects worldwide.
Scholarships are applicable to individuals, organizations or institutions within the artistic and cultural community.
During my first visit to Signal-Return, a letterpress print shop and exhibition space opened last fall in Detroit’s Eastern Market, I had strangest inkling of déjà vu. Not déjà vu in the traditional sense of having been there before; but rather, I was struck by the distinct feeling that the workshop, antiquated presses, and even the intern sorting type, had been in that location for decades or perhaps even centuries. Indeed, Signal-Return falls in the robust tradition of Detroit-based artisanal print houses. The independent press is rooted in the early-twentieth century Arts and Crafts Movement when studios such as the Cranbrook Press, (1902), were established in the tradition of William Morris’s Kelmscott Press. The small press phenomenon continued into the latter part of century by those seeking to harness the revolutionary potential of the media. Most notably, the Detroit Artists’ Workshop, a multimedia collective that produced an array of printed matter, opened in November 1964—exactly 47 years before Signal-Return unveiled itself to the public.
Where Signal-Return deviates from its predecessors is in the organization’s four principles: teach, serve, connect, and produce. Beyond defining itself as a functioning print shop that caters to projects ranging from wedding invitations to artist’s books, Signal-Return operates as a laboratory and archive, offering hands-on participatory experimentation that simultaneously preserves, honors, and hybridizes the materials and methods of traditional letterpress printing. Further, in mere months, Signal-Return has become a hub where makers, creative producers, educators, and enthusiasts have come together to create work and exchange ideas. In essence, the workshop functions as a network of networks, cultivating new connections, conversations, and communities that otherwise wouldn’t have the context to engage. At Signal-Return, the potential of printed matter to serve as a democratic medium extends beyond the materiality of the page to disseminate through discourse and, (dare I say), intertext. The workshop has some thrilling projects in the works that will be the product of numerous thinkers, activists, and creative workers, engaging with the conditions and reimagining the mythology of here-and-now Detroit.
Signal-Return co-founder Megan O’Connell currently serves as the non-profit’s director, curator, chief development officer, outreach coordinator, and designer. She describes herself an unabashed typophyle, and in lieu of the term “printmaker” she has adopted the ethos of the “press”—a tool, process, product, and metaphor that creates any kind of imprint. I spoke with O’Connell at Signal-Return in Detroit’s Eastern Market on printed matter and its twenty-first century incarnations and aspirations.
Megan O’Connell A printing press, as a shaper of culture and dispatcher of narratives, continually reflects back its context, even after the fact of its existence. It provides a portal into the ideals, structures, priorities, production modes, economies, and material assets of a particular time and place. As a newly-forged initiative, Signal-Return–a letterpress workshop–is a site for the incubation of ideas and a promulgator of traditional and hybrid printing methods.
By design, both physically and philosophically, the project is porous. It showcases a range of presses, an extensive library of fonts of type [acquired from area print shops updating to digital publishing], a retail/gallery area, and an archive. Essentially, it reveals the back-end of production to anyone walking through the doors while offering easy contact with output of the press. The skillful melding of all aspects of the space is the work of designer Christian Unverzagt of M1/DTW, whose printed matter now comprises an on-site solo exhibition titled Artifacts and Identities. He immediately grasped what to leave raw and what to transform in our 3,000 square foot space, striking a balance between old and new. I walked out of our first charette practically pinching myself—it was uncanny to sense a typophile/designer shaping the space and imbuing it with an unfaltering logic.
In assuming the directorship of a press that serves as a cultural beacon in an economically vulnerable, post-industrial city, I am responsible for telling myriad stories. The press is a conduit for this time and place: residents long to see something created and circulated. Detroit was once a major printing hub, with many of its talented students learning the trade in High School and continuing onto life-long careers, so it is natural that there is synergy around our workshop. I have to acknowledge, too, the interest in the mythology of the city stemming from places beyond the city is far-reaching. There’s something that captivates people’s imaginations, whether they are in Berlin, Brooklyn, or Boulder, when they witness resources being re-directed, new forms of collaboration emerging, and a thoughtful reweaving of social fabric. The press is a model for this, and we intend to claim these phenomena and give them voice while the focus stays on Detroit. On a very basic level, we are sparking curiosity and inviting participation from those within and beyond the city.
SMP: Who are your clients? Are they specifically artists or have you reached a wider public, and what sort of work has Signal-Return been producing?
MO’C: As of yet, there is no template for any of our jobs: we’ve kept our operations fluid, producing for both individuals and organizations. We get walk-in clients nearly every day, and it gives me deep pleasure to watch someone navigate the space and then proclaim “I want you to make _______ for me–can you do that?” We support them by helping to dream up a format, source materials, and select typefaces and color palettes. We quote out the job, and then, if given the green light, we realize the project. This might apply to a firefighter who has been promoted and needs new business cards, to an organizer of a seed saving project at a nearby Senior center seeking custom envelopes, to a poet looking to publish a chapbook, to a gallery director ordering an entire kit for an upcoming exhibition. It’s a way to honor our community, amplifying what’s happening here without defaulting to the simplistic ‘Go Detroit!’ response.
Conversations are underway with noteworthy writers, artists, curators, and collectors to yield various projects through Signal-Return. There is excitement about what have done to accrue currency in the art world, having produced for The Detroit Institute of Art, MOCAD, Mark Dion, Alison Knowles, and Etienne Turpin, fellow at the Taubman School of Architecture. We plan to serve as the publishing arm for Market Studio Kitchen/Detroit Emergent Futures Lab, opening this summer in our neighborhood. We are partnering with InsideOut Literary Arts Project to promote writers through the 4×5 reading series. Fritz Haeg, who will be working with and eventually disseminating the research of Wayne State University students in the fall, will look to us to produce print-based work. Plus, one of our staff has arranged for a curator from Paris to spend the bulk of August setting up our archive and a special exhibition. Our enthusiasm about these prospects borders on the uncontainable!
SMP: The 20th century print has such a lengthy, complicated, and politicized history: mechanical reproduction, the broadside, collage, pastiche, and even ‘zines and the revival of the local artisanal press. How are you expanding the concept of printmaking in the 21st century? Are you integrating new materials, practices, and discourses into your project?
MO’C As the 21st century advances, practitioners are concerned with how their work can confirm, provoke, surprise, or undermine one’s expectations. This, for the most part, remains media-specific and context reliant. The print, however, just might possess a bit more latitude to ‘show up’ in new contexts and to spur us into action. I think this is where its power lies.
Some of my hero-producers are those early progenitors of pamphlets, broadsides, posters, theater, and actions that readily dismantled old forms to cultivate new systems: the Russian Constructivists, Dadaists, and Futurists being the primary models. Based on what I have seen in the past, I cannot predict what the press and its products will look like a year from now, a decade from now, or even farther into the future. It stands as an open proposition.
SMP: It seems to me that by rooting your practice in the press, or a mechanized process, you are evoking the language of industry, but also the craft workshop. Is this an intentional?
MO’C: It’s impossible to be in a city like Detroit and to not consider what “industry” has meant. There’s a palpable point of pride around the scope and caliber of what has proliferated in this place: I find it awe-inspiring. I’m apprehensive about attaching any sentimentality to the idea of the printing press, and will circumvent a melancholy lament of what craft once ‘was’. Rather, the press holds potentiality while providing a tangible connection with the past. A printing operation of Signal-Return’s scale will never match the standards of industry, but it can serve as a cue for what was once there. If I had to choose, I would say that the qualities of our press are related more closely to the idea of workshop than factory.
SMP: What is your relationship to the digital?
MO’C: An epiphany that I had early on as a producer was that there is something very powerful in being able to see every aspect of a book’s production through–from beginning to end–and that limitations imposed through non-digital means invited me to take risks and problem-solve in ways that would never be invoked by the digital platform. This runs consistent with what I witnessed later on as an educator. As the director of the Typography Lab at the University of Oregon, I found my students craving a kinesthetic relationship to material. Physically laying out type on a galley, imposing and printing forms on the press bed, and collating pages into a book is unrivalled for what it teaches about the totality of an effort—it is a tonic after spending countless hours in front of a computer screen with pretty predictable results, finding yourself pushing ‘print’ again and again until you get it right. The habituation of designing with a computer can train us to rely on default settings and severely limits the range of what might get produced.
The flipside is that if one understands the nuances of analogue typesetting, it is possible to invest nearly the same degree of attention into a digitally typeset composition. One of the ways we can cross platforms from pixels to the ‘real’ is through custom photoengraved plates. They are produced type-high, so printing from them yields a look and feel that bears much the same aura of authenticity of a hand-set piece, but allows for more flexibility than traditional compositing.
SMP: What role does preservation play at Signal-Return, or do you place more emphasis on modifying and hybridizing traditional tools and practices for a new generation makers and audiences?
MO’C: There are four principles at Signal-Return: Teach, Serve, Connect, and Produce. I feel almost ready to add a fifth, which is to Steward, because this equipment, wood type, and all of the tools and materials you see here are only preserved if they’re actively being used. Wood type will get dry, cracked, and will become unusable if it’s stowed away, and, obviously, the presses need to run in order to stay viable. Thus, the stewardship piece is becoming clearer to me.
SMP: What are some of the projects that made you most excited?
MO’C: Friso Wiersum, an historian-in-residence in Detroit through Expodium, a collective based in Utrecht, came in [to Signal-Return] before we had officially opened. He was doing research on Detroit—taking photos, logging journal entries, writing a blog, etc., while comparing his perceptions to those of his father, also from The Netherlands, who happened to live in Detroit as an exchange student in 1964. Over time, in collaboration with the Wiersums, I distilled the ‘findings’ down into a simple folded poster/artist’s multiple titled Clearly Not All About Detroit, pt. III. It is emblematic of a conversation that could only happen here. On a modest scale, I’ve been able to bring focus to their dual stays in this city—what the elder chronicled and what the son reassessed 47 years later. This publication, the first bearing the Signal-Return imprint, was released simultaneously in Europe and the U.S. Plans are afoot to circulate it in Berlin, Athens, Toronto, and NYC.
Amongst other thrilling things we’ve produced are the Salon, Book, and Bread evenings, which consist of a three-course dinner followed by instruction in binding a monastery-style book led by Leon Johnson. Novelists, journalists, artists, advertisers, film makers, chefs, small business owners, contractors, students, and teachers who gather provide a sweeping look at what others are making, thinking, and aspiring to. Participants are invited back for drop-in bookbinding hours on the weekends, so it’s helped to build a critical mass of some of the brightest and most motivated denizens of the city. They are all stakeholders at the press.
photo courtesy of Jamie Schafer
SMP: It’s interesting how you’ve taken the mantra of printed matter as a democratic medium and really absorbed this concept into your programming and overall methodology. It’s not necessarily about your way of working—the processes and materials of production, but rather, about bringing together a multiplicity of voices to really initiate a new dialogue.
MO’C: Essentially it’s about what it means to be human—part of a community, connected by language and participating in the transformation of the here-and-now. I don’t know of many other sites where this can happen. People tend to feel comfortable here. We seek to flatten hierarchies and allow the possibility for the participant to become the teacher, the intern to be the curator, and the person cranking the press to stand as a voice of the organization. All of that flow strengthens our case, performs what is important to us, and gives the opportunity to share ownership. There’s this sense of: what might I do? It’s a catalyst for creative people to claim some inspiration, and start firing on all cylinders.
There’s much to celebrate, much to be disappointed in, and much to compel us to throw our arms up about. To craft something that uses the resources at hand to the best of our abilities is ultimately the aim here. At Signal-Return, we shed light on the complexities of what it is to live in this city rife with struggle, without tamping them down or diminishing their import. I guess you could say it is an empathic and evolving project.
Signal Return’s second exhibition, M1/DTW: Artifacts and Identities, opens this Friday April 6, 6-9pm, and will continue through June 9, 2012. This exhibition will survey the work of Christian Unverzagt, director of M1/DTW design studio and architect of Signal-Return. Artifacts and Identities demonstrates the ways in which Unverzagt’s print work traverses myriad graphic qualities and uses, reveling in manifold material options and formats. The exhibition will feature a survey of work including books, cards, press sheets, posters, and other ephemera from a range of projects including those that are long out-of-print. Signal-Return’s retail storefront will carry more than one dozen titles designed by the studio, and a limited edition letterpress printed poster of the exhibition will also be available for purchase. On April 18, 7pm, Unverzagt will deliver a presentation in conjunction with the show.
Addendum: Since this article was published, Megan O’Connell has left Signal-Return to start a new venture, Salt & Cedar, in Detroit’s Eastern Market. Salt & Cedar is a letterpress studio producing custom invitations, calling cards, stationery, booklets, and posters. Their workshops, led by renowned instructors, include traditional and experimental printing, ‘zine making, book structures, and paper making. Within the 3,000 square foot space, farm-to-table food events, a pop-up cinema, exhibitions, dinner theaters, readings, design lectures, and special curricular offerings are slated with a diversity of cultural partners.
Salt & Cedar is located at 2448 Riopelle Street in Detroit. Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org.
“The fascination with monsters — that is, with human and animal oddities and hybrids — is as old as human civilization. Indeed, a history of the monstrous would constitute a veritable history of culture and civilization, for the monstrous marks the boundary of culture, where it shades off into nature or some other form of radical otherness against which cultural identity is defined. Though the discourse on monstrosity is wildly heterogeneous, this culture-defining property is constant from ancient Greek, Babylonian, and Roman reports of monstrous races to contemporary discussions of animal and human cloning, stem-cell research, and ‘partial-birth abortions.’” from C.Cox’s essay Becoming Animal
Over the last several months, I have grown intensely interested in the relationship between humans and animals — this has, in no small part, inspired a number of interviews that have taken place on Badatsports. But there has been a significant amount of bleed off into other areas of my writing, thinking and reading. As my research and interest deepens so does the seeming impossible task of defining, clearly and fixedly, the distinction between human and animal. A more interesting question begins to emerge, however: how we do negotiate our own identity, and the identify of animals if such a differentiating border is impossible?
The question leads to subsequent and necessary upheaval; our whole way of life as human beings is predicated on an ancient insistence of difference. Humanity considers it somewhere between the beast and the divine, yet we cannot define that difference with certainty. That insecurity has led to an insistent reiteration of human superiority. “However one interprets it, whatever practical, technical, scientific, juridical, ethical, or political consequence one draws from it, no one can today deny this event — that is, the unprecedented proportions of this subjection of the animal. Such a subjection can be called violence in the most morally neutral sense of the term and even includes the interventionist violence that is practiced, as in some very minor and in no way dominant cases, let us never forget, in the service of or for the protection of the animal, but most often the human animal.” (p.25, Derrida, The Animal That Therefore I Am.)
At the same time, our species shares a collective sense that we are capable of destroying, (no, are destroying) the environment by way of that very separate identity to which we cling. Our subjection of not just animals, but also the earth, our profound ability to produce waste (I sat in a class once where the professor singled out humanity as the “messiest animal”) — an ability we seem incapable of controlling, makes the boundaries between human beings and “nature” impossible to support. Our sphere of influence underscores a deep and undeniable interconnectivity. Yet to accept, embrace, and work with such an integrated perspective requires a reorganizing a centuries-old hierarchy.
Certain artists face this predicament head on and make work about or around the upheaval of interspecies power dynamics. In an intriguing paper by Marie Laval-Jeantet, she describes her work with animals; under the moniker AOo, she and her partner Mangrin used prosthetic limbs, extending her neck to communicate with giraffes or wearing cat-like stilts to redefine her relationship with their cat. “It showed us the force of visual illusion which, irrespective of olfactory signs, was capable of transforming man into, if not exactly a deer, into a type of hybrid man-animal that was more acceptable to them [animals]” (Jeantet, Plastik: Art & Science).
In another instance, Natalie Jeremijenko created a series of sites that facilitate human/animal interactions called OOZ. Animals stay by choice, not because of cages. “OOZ is interactive — it provides humans a set of actions, the animals provide reactions and these couplets add to a collective pool of observations. The human/animal interface has two components: 1) an architecture of reciprocity, i.e. any action you can direct at an animal, it can direct at you, and 2) an information architecture of collective observation and interpretation. OOZ addresses learning that reveals interconnections among complex natural systems and the ongoing political effect of changing someone’s ideas about their role in the local environment.” The first phase of the project is slated for the Netherlands, where humans can explore the possibilities of geese-communication. Here, they climb into a “goose chair” that communicates with a robotic goose on the water. By moving their body within the “chair,” participants can manipulate the goose robot as it paddles through a pond full of geese. Meanwhile, pond animals learn to push certain buttons that will communicate phrases to human beings.
I read about Agnetha Dyck, a Canadian artist who has spent the last 14 years “collaborating” with bees to make sculptures. Through this work, she investigates interspecies communication. ”[Her] research has included the bee’s use of sound, sight, scent, vibration, and dance. [She is] studying the bee’s use of the earth’s magnetic fields as well as their use of the pheromones (chemicals) they produce to communicate with one another, with other species and possibly with the foliage they pollinate.”
In each of these efforts, there is a sense that something might be learned from non-humans — furthermore, what might be learned is potentially personal, something that akin to the rewards of friendship wherein one is not simply a subject studying an object. Very likely suffer these interpersonal dynamics are prone to equivalent interpersonal complications.
What could this look on a larger scale? How might humanity’s relationship to its environment change if it were to similarly give voice to the environment? At first glance Bolivia’s Ley de Derechos de la Madre Tierre (Law of Mother Nature) looks like an exotic stunt. In December 2010, President Evo Morales presented a bill in which Bolivia granted Mother Nature the rights of a “collective public interest.” Accordingly, Nature is granted the right to “not be affected by mega-infrastructures and development projects that affect the balance of ecosystems and the local inhabitant communities.” This is another attempt to translate the environment into human terms. It’s an effort to protect the natural world by giving it legal status. Individuals can become guardians of land in the same way that an adult might become the guardian of a child: protecting its human rights when it is unable to protect itself. Despite the initial sensation, the law is quite reasonable. Mother Nature is defined as “the dynamic living system made up of an indivisible community of all living systems and living beings, interrelated, interdependent, sharing one common destiny” (article 3). The implementation of “Nature’s” right would curtail any singular self-determination in order to account for the impact one action might have on others. Corporate interest would have to accommodate local populations, which would also have to accommodate one another. The sticking point of the law is that, as yet, there is no built-in system to moderate the interests and impact of different groups. The inter-relatedness of self-determined capitalism goes dumb in the face of interrelation. Because much of Bolivia’s GDP comes from the harvesting of its natural resources (and the fallout environmental destruction) it is both of utmost importance the Bolivia be at the fore of this popular reform; both its immediate livelihood and long term sustenance hang in the balance. Bolivia is a peaking reminder of our global situation.
April 3, 2012 · Print This Article
Do you think you are brain enough to take our friends at the London United Psychic Club? Or maybe this is the year Bad at Sports steps up to show our psychic dominance? Maybe not. But we feel that this might be your year.
2012 WORLD TELEKINESIS COMPETITION
a Noxious Sector project
June 7 – 30, 2012
Noxious Sector Arts Collective invites submissions for the 2012
WORLD TELEKINESIS COMPETITION, to be held in Seattle (WA) from
June 7 to June 30, 2012. Participation is not geographically
dependent — teams may participate from their home locations, in
North America and Internationally. Only the first 32 teams to
register will be included in the 2012 competition.
TEAM REGISTRATION NOW OPEN
DEADLINE: MAY 15, 2012 (or until tournament schedule is full)
The WORLD TELEKINESIS COMPETITION is a forum for speculative
action — an organized tournament in which teams from around the
world engage in psychic competition to remotely influence the
behavior of a candle. Matches are played by lighting a candle at
the centre of the official game board, at an agreed-upon time,
signaling the beginning of the game. A match lasts for one hour,
or until the game candle is extinguished, whichever comes first.
In the event of a tie at the end of one hour, the match goes into
sudden death. The object of the game is to have the wax from the
candle drip onto the opposing team’s side of the game board. This
objective is to be accomplished by remote telekinetic influence.
The winning team will be awarded the World Telekinesis
Competition trophy, which they will get to keep until next year’s
competition. To commemorate the 5th anniversary of the World
Telekinesis Competition, theere will also be a set of
championship rings produced for the winning team.
To qualify for competition, teams must submit the following:
1. A statement of interest or method;
2. A list of three (3) members who comprise the team, and a
concise biographical statement for each team member;
3. A medium-resolution (2MB) image of each team member;
4. A team name and logo (medium resolution).
Submissions should be sent by email to: email@example.com with
ATTN: WORLD TELEKINESIS COMPETITION as the subject line.
DEADLINE FOR REGISTRATION: MAY 15, 2012
(or until tournament schedule is full)
Noxious Sector is a formalized forum for informal inquiry.
Dedicated to the exploration of questions of the imaginative, the
paranormal and the absurd, Noxious Sector attempts to redefine
the meaning of artistic possibility through extended propositions
that challenge consensual norms while also provoking stimulating
forums for dialogue and discourse.