It’s been a busy week both on and off Bad at Sports. A number of our contributors were at CAA and I, for my part, took my hat (and new best friend) on the Carl Sandburg train to Macomb, Illinois for an overnight trip to Western Illinois University. I happened to give a talk there about (among other things) transcription and translation which no doubt has colored the way I’m thinking about the last week on Bad at Sports. In looking back and taking stock on what was posted, so we ready ourselves for the new week ahead with its ever lengthening days. My sense of this week is that it was about windows and frames and the transmission of ideas. It’s about education and the power that stories have over us, to affect change and muddy whatever assumptions might be otherwise taken for granted.
Tonight, I am excitedly headed to Every house has a door’s performance at Links Hall, They’re Mending the Great Forest Highway. I’ve seen an iteration of the piece once already, and am looking forward to seeing it again. Goulish posted an essay about it here last Sunday, including a couple of amazing youtube videos with some excellent dance moves.
The week began with Jesse Malmed’s interview with contemporary filmmaker Fern Silva. Among other highlights, Silva talks about teaching film. “Experimental films that were made 50 years ago can be as fresh as films being made now in a classroom setting. I like to show films that I found inspiring and share stories about the filmmakers who we’re watching. For example, when I show Meshes of the Afternoon, I’ll tell the story of when Maya Deren threw a fridge across the kitchen while she was possessed in her West Village apartment that Brakhage writes about in Film at Wit’s End.” (Reconfirming my perhaps over zealous love for Deren). There is also a lovely moment, so brief as to almost be missed where Fern states that structure, (non-)narrativity and collage are all the same to him. Monday went on with another description of class dynamics from Shane McAdams. There was a subsequent dispatch from Gene Tanta on Tuesday, where he described a performance workshop with Irina Botea and 13 other performers. He asked each of them (and got five responses) “What does your work protest?” I reposted one response
“Our work focused on the impact of this replacement (of old windows with multiple-layer double-glazed windows) on the people who purchase them. In Romania, this transition is advertised and widely acclaimed as being more than just necessary – but the defaultupgrade, perfect for every house. While questioning this widespread idealistic belief that Termopane are the right (almost the only valid) choice, we pursued in deconstructing its “promises”. And since you referenced Adorno’s claim that art documents history, one of the key aspects this work documented is how the perfect isolation, the safety promised by the Termopane comes with an unexpected turn: isolation means protection, security, intimacy but it also raises questions regarding responsibility and anxiety. These new guidelines of the private space influence people’s social and psychological behaviors, by means of a rather unnoticeable slow process of adaptation.” Ioana Gheorghiu
The way that windows and cameras and frames tie in together always makes me happy.
Mary Jane Jacobs covered a lot of ground, as she reflected on an a Grant Kester essay in Engagement Party: Social Practice at MOCA, 2008-2012, and interviewed Kyungwon Moon and Joonho Jeon. The biggest moment for me comes at the beginning of Jacobs’ post, when she announced that TAMMS Super Max Prison was officially closed on January 4th of this year, in no small part due to the hard work of artist Laurie Jo Reynolds who took up residence at the Sullivan Galleries this past fall. Abby Satinsky goes on to provide a bibliography for “Creative Placemaking,” while musing on the complicated scenario artists are faced with as they move into and revitalize depressed neighborhoods, a subject discussed at length in a recent conference, The Art of Place-making.
Jeffrey Songco interviewed performance artist Renne Rhodesabout her background in dance (among other things) during which they discuss Rudolph Laban’s “Labnotation” — as a means to score dance moves — an image of which you’ll see above. As I have been thinking a lot about transcription lately, and since so many of this week posts focused on the transmission of knowledge or experience, this seemed like a particularly lovely moment. The image of those static, abstract footprints(?) have been in my head every since. That they would somehow convey movement in time and space is beyond me. Sam Davis follows suit with a suite of videos that try to articulate what FUNK really is — namely “it’s about juicing a feeling.”
I rounded out the week with a post about Sofie Calle’s Address Book (which is now available in English). She seems always to be providing windows into private worlds, activating the aura of an individual, in this case Pierre D. who has recently passed away (thereby enabling her to release her findings about him). It seems like a macabre kind of dictionary in a way, and reminds me of Graham Greene’s biographer who was allegedly hired by the author to follow in his rather debauched footsteps, at the expense of the biographer’s family. I ended the week with a post about a sound performance at LAMPO by Hong Chulki and Choi Joonyong, — which like so many of LAMPO’s events effectively blew my mind. Maybe even more than this little red comb which I purchased for a mere 5cents at a Macomb antique mall.
This month’s On Moves YouTube Round-Up is about FUNK. There’s no Funkadelic or Parliament because this isn’t about painting a portrait, it’s about juicing a feeling. It’s not about a history lesson, what’s essential, or what’s relevant, accurate, etc. etc. This is my own public research into the nature of Funk and you’re just along for the ride. Is this an overshare studio diary kind of thing? Some West-Coast feelings-meditation-slime-spill? Probably.
Within the last few weeks, any number of people with the misfortune to be saved in the address book of my bargain bin cell phone have received brief text messages about Funk. These messages are a sentence or less, a word, an idea, never an image because my phone can’t do that. These Funk-waves from the void are research, like I said. Rather than take notes in my sketchbook, I’m taking notes in our telecomfriendship.
Am I trying to find out what Funk really “IS” beyond just a genre of music? Not really, I’m secure in my relationship to the Funk but I think I’m playing with it now, using it as a raw material, a building block towards something. Where it comes from or who does it best and truest are irrelevant for my purposes and I believe for the purposes of intentional Funking everywhere. It’s a conundrum. As Bootsy says in “The Pinocchio Theory:” “If you fake the funk, your nose will grow.” But Bootsy, if you won’t tell me what it is how do I know if I’m faking it?
Uh-huh and now let’s look at this stuff in action, chronologic-ish.
I’ll be expecting your report.
January 18, 2013 · Print This Article
I came on as the Managing Editor of the Bad at Sports blog about a month ago. It’s been an exciting turn and I hope to do well by it. A few people have asked what my vision going forward is, and I thought I might say something about it here. I hope to continue reflecting on the dynamic energy in Chicago’s contemporary art world while connecting to conversations and aesthetic agendas in other cities and disciplines. That agenda was set in place a while ago and I believe I can continue to guide and focus that intention. There is room for experimentation in that vision, which seems necessary to me. Bad at Sports has never presented a tidy, singular package and as such, I believe it would go against the nature of the project to filter content and tone through a single, editorial lens. Its roots in independent, DIY and Punk Rock collectivism remain at the heart of the project’s vitality and the blog is a platform for unique and individual voices that pass through the subject of contemporary art and culture. As such it becomes a nexus of concerns and responses to culture at large. That is something I hope to preserve under my stewardship. As an artist-run forum, Bad at Sports has the unique capacity to reflect on a host of subjects, exposing the intellectual, aesthetic and social networks that define and subsequently influence cultural production. I believe it is our job to explore and discuss the contexts we inhabit. In doing so, we further establish a living touchstone and future archive of contemporary discourse.
Some changes should be apparent already — others will fall into place like pieces of a puzzle in the coming months. The process is organic, but I’ve been trying to set up a casual, thematic architecture that unfolds over the course of a given week. Eventually, I hope to schedule two posts a day, one before 2pm and one after. Built in to this, is room for special occasions and guest writers — those posts would either go live in the evenings, or fill in existing gaps. To that end I’ve been inviting a number of new writers, many of whom I have admired for a long time.
Here is something of a loose schedule:
Mondays: Essays and reflections from old favorites Jeriah Hildewin, Shane McAdams and Nicholas O’Brien — writers who have been posting with consistent dedication. In addition, I’m excited to announce a new bi-weekly column by Dana Bassett, whom you may know for her ACRE Newsletters.
Tuesdays are dedicated to three subjects: Performance, Social Practice, Language (or the performance thereof) and Object Oriented Ontology. Confirmed participants include longstanding contributor Abigail Satinsky and Mary Jane Jacob (Social Practice), Anthony Romero and João Florêncio (performance), Gene Tanta (language), Robert Jackson (OOO).
On Wednesdays, we will read about artists and art in other cities. The following writers will post on rotation: Jeffery Songco is covering the Bay Area, Sam Davis continues to represent Bad at Sports’ Los Angeles Bureau, Sarah Margolis-Pineo is writing about Portland. Juliana Driever will be relaying posts, interviews and artist profiles about New York, and then we’ll bring it back to the Midwest with Kelly Shindler’s dispatch from St. Louis, and Jamilee Polson Lacy writing about Kansas City.
Thursdays herald our illustrious Stephanie Burke’s Top 5 Weekend Picks and a new monthly contribution from author/translator Johannes Göransson whose writing you can also find here.
Fridays have been set aside for art reviews and artist profiles with contributions from Danny Orendoff, Monica Westin, Abraham Ritchie and myself.
WEEKENDS will feature a range and flux of the above, plus Brit Barton’s Endless Opportunities, cultural reflections and short essays by Terri Griffith, continued posts from Jesse Malmed, in addition to a monthly contribution from the newly confirmed Bailey Romaine and Adrienne Harris.
My last note is this — there is room in this schedule for additional posts, posts that would feature special events, festivals and conferences in the city. That space would also be available to, at times, connect the blog and the podcast. As a first indication of this, we will be highlighting IN>TIME, a performance festival that is going on as we speak, from January until March.
Otherwise if you have any comments, suggestions or, even guest posts you would like to submit, please feel free to contact me at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Roots and Culture, 1034 N. Milwaukee Ave. Reception Friday 6-9pm.
Curated by Nicholas Steindorf, with work by Tom Costa, EJ Hill, Betsy Odom, Industry of the Ordinary, Mary Mattingly, Rusty Shackleford, Joey Weiss and Darren Will.
Kunz,Vis,Projects, 2324 w. Montana, in the garage. Reception Friday 6-9pm.
Work by Jay Heikes.
Shane Campbell Gallery, 673 N. Milwaukee Ave. Reception Saturday 6-8pm.
Work by Josef Aguilar, Michelle Anderson, Emilie Bennett-Kjenstad, Daniel Bertner, Alexandra Calhoun, Sarah Campbell, Edward Chong, Esther Chow, Tory Christopherson-Sommerfeldt, Francisco Cordero-Oceguera, Jessee Crane, Kristina Daignault, Theodore Darst, Sam Davis, John Deardourff, Stephanie Del Carpio, Claire Demos, Ben Dimock, Lara Dorsett, Kait Doyle, Jay Fernandez, Brandy Fisher, Charles Fogarty, Jasmine Grant, Christopher Grieshaber, Alison Groh, Yo Ahn Han, Zachary Harvey, Caitlin Hennessy, Danielle Jacklin, William Joyce, Ellie Younjeong Jung, Matthew Keable, Cindy Myung Jin Kim, Minkyung Kim, Elizabeth Kovach, Hyun Jee Kwon, Youjeong Kwon, Melissa Leandro, Christina Joorie Lee, Kang Hoon Lee, Kyusun Lee, Sulhwa Lee, Sarah Legow, Jiyeon Lim, Matthew Litwin, Elyse Mack, Elizabeth Mallery, Mark Mcwilliams, Caroline Moody, Alicia Moreno, Mara Mullen, Drew Noble, Eileen O’Donnell, Alp Oz, Mark Palmen, Jiha Park, Kaitlin Patterson, Heather Platen, Lou Regele, Thomas Roland, Camila Rosas, Nathan Scealf, Nicholas Schleicher, Jules Schmid, Noelle Sharp, Sam Sieger, Kollin Strand, Eric Tai, Geoffrey Thais, Claire Valdez, Sarah Welch, and Nayeon Yang.
Sullivan Galleries, School of the Art Institute, 33 S. State St., 7th fl. Reception Friday 6-8pm.
Work by Daniel Danger.
Rotofugi Gallery, 2780 N. Lincoln Ave. Reception Friday 7-10pm.