Archive for August, 2011

Pop-Up Poets: Yedda Morrison on Nancy Holt and Robert Smithson

08.31.2011  |  By
Filed under: One on One

This summer we enjoyed a special poets-in-the-galleries series, organized by Small Press Traffic. Inspired by The Steins Collect, the series honored writer Gertrude Stein and her relationships with the visual artists of her day. Each Thursday evening in July and August a poet gave a reading, talk, or performance about an artist or artwork on view.... More

Third Hand Plays: The Comedy of Association

08.30.2011  |  By
Filed under: Projects/Series

This next comedy might be the one most associated with electronic literature, as it corrals work in both hypertext and computer-generated writing. I describe hypertext a bit in the first blog post in this series; it is basically the association of different text blocks, called “lexia,” through links embedded in the text itself, commonplace on the web but still exotic in the 1990s. Important early works in hypertext include Shelley Jackson’s “Patchwork Girl” (1995), Stuart Moulthrop’s “Victory Garden” (199... More

Six Lines of Flight: Tangier, Beirut, Cali, Ho Chi Minh City, Cluj, San Francisco

08.30.2011  |  By
Filed under: 151 3rd, Field Notes

I do in fact have a job with fabulous perks: yesterday’s three-hour meeting-by-requirement was to attend a compelling set of presentations, in a closed-door session, by a fantastic group of artists from six cities around the globe. These artists have been instrumental in building artist organizations or collectives that continue to make dynam... More

Wayne Koestenbaum: The Desire to Write (II)

08.29.2011  |  By
Filed under: Essay

In celebration of our landmark exhibition The Steins Collect, Open Space is pleased to present a special two-part feature from essayist, cultural critic, and poet Wayne Koestenbaum. For this year’s Phyllis Wattis Distinguished Lecture, SFMOMA commissioned Wayne to write and perform a new work related to the exhibition. His topic: painting and writing. The result: “The Desire to Write.” Enjoy. (Part one is here.)

The Desire to Write about André Derain

Matisse’s 1905 portrait of André Derain attracts me because thick paint ... More

Hey! Open Space has been nominated for a 2011 Web Award

08.25.2011  |  By
Filed under: 151 3rd

Thanks to the marvelous readers of SFWeekly, who have nominated Open Space for a 2011 Web Award for Best Arts Blog! We’re honored and excited to be in a stellar group of Bay Area nominees (which includes some of our fantastic collaborators).

You can help vote Open Space into the finals from now through August 30, when the online voting close... More

Third Hand Plays, “The Quick Brown Fox …” by Alan Bigelow

08.25.2011  |  By
Filed under: Projects/Series

Alan Bigelow has been one of the stalwarts of electronic literature for over a decade now, careful never to stray too far into what could be simply called “digital art” or even avant-garde poetry, building an impressive body of multimedia works that are both innovative and accessible. The artist statement on his website, “webyarns,”... More

Pop-Up Poets: Brent Cunningham on Hanne Darboven

08.24.2011  |  By
Filed under: One on One

This summer we’re enjoying a special poets-in-the-galleries series, organized by Small Press Traffic. Inspired by The Steins Collect, the series honors writer Gertrude Stein and her relationships with the visual artists of her day. Each Thursday evening in July and August a poet gives a reading, talk, or performance about an artist or artwor... More

Third Hand Plays: The Comedy of Duplication

08.23.2011  |  By
Filed under: Projects/Series

My seventh comedy ties into many of the tropes common to new media discourse. Most prevalent among them might be the loss of the “aura” — that which obtains around an object of religious veneration, in Walter Benjamin’s original formulation, partly because only the elite were allowed to be in its presence — in the digital object, which ha... More

Wayne Koestenbaum: The Desire to Write

08.22.2011  |  By
Filed under: Essay

As we enter the last few weeks of our landmark exhibition The Steins Collect, Open Space is pleased to present a special two-part feature from essayist, cultural critic, and poet Wayne Koestenbaum. For this year’s Phyllis Wattis Distinguished Lecture, held on June 2, SFMOMA commissioned Wayne to write and perform a new work related to the exhibition. His topic: painting and writing. The result: “The Desire to Write.” Enjoy. (Part two, next Monday.)

The Desire to Write about Blue Nude
Writing, alas, is never nude. Grammar cloth... More

Third Hand Plays: “Palimpsest” by Alison Clifford

08.18.2011  |  By
Filed under: Projects/Series

Alisson Clifford first came to my attention through her digital setting of a sequence of e. e. cummings’s poetry, a marvelous Flash piece called “The Sweet Old Et Cetera.” Especially impressive was how she managed to preserve the kinetic aspect that the poems themselves already had as still images; cummings’s poem “r-p-o-p-h-e-s-s-a-g-r,... More

Four Saints in Three Acts: An Opera Installation — in Rehearsal in SFMOMA’s Phyllis Wattis Theater

08.17.2011  |  By
Filed under: 151 3rd

Video: Willa Koerner

A short clip of Ensemble Parallèle rehearsing for Four Saints in Three Acts: An Opera Installation. This new production of Virgil Thomson and Gertrude Stein’s landmark opera — presented by SFMOMA in association with YBCA — previews tomorrow evening, and runs through the weekend.

The production is a collaboration between contemporary chamber opera organization Ensemble Parallèle (production design by Brian Staufenbiel, conducted by Nicole Paiement), composer Luciano Chessa, and artist Kalup Linzy, and pairs Thomson’s final score for Four Saints with the premiere of A Heavenly Act, a new opera-installation by Chessa, with video and performance by Linzy and libretto by Stein.

Details.

Tickets!

More

Pop-Up Poets: Evan Kennedy on Marie Laurencin

08.17.2011  |  By
Filed under: One on One

This summer we’re enjoying a special poets-in-the-galleries series, organized by Small Press Traffic. Inspired by The Steins Collect, the series honors writer Gertrude Stein and her relationships with the visual artists of her day. Each Thursday evening in July and August a poet gives a reading, talk, or performance about an artist or artwor... More

Third Hand Plays: The Comedy of Simulation

08.16.2011  |  By
Filed under: Projects/Series

The internet has been characterized by acts of fakery since its inception; in fact, the general tenor of one’s attitude toward information on the web in the 1.0 era was that it was immediately of suspicious character simply by having been posted without the imprimatur of an editor or publisher. Certainly, times have changed: Wikipedia is considered a legitimate source for information of all natures — history, for example, which is the object of much contention when governments or even religions (when it comes to evolution) alter it to suppo... More

Anonymous Comic Book Antiheroes Protest BART Rider Slaying

08.16.2011  |  By
Filed under: Field Notes

Rule number one for BART cops: DON’T SHOOT THE PASSENGERS. Hell, you have my permission to beat the BART riders with billy clubs, handcuff them, arrest them, tase them, pepper spray them, but for God’s sake, DON’T SHOOT THEM! Everyone knows that when cops shoot you they aim at your head or your chest. Cops don’t shoot to wound or disarm, they shoot to kill. If I am wrong please enlighten me. And whatever happened to rubber bullets? If BART cops have the green light to shoot at riders, can’t they at least use rubber... More

5 Questions: Kalup Linzy

08.15.2011  |  By
Filed under: Conversations

[Five questions to SFMOMA artists, staff, or guests. Kalup Linzy is a video and performance artist, originally from Stuckey, Florida, now based in Brooklyn, New York. Kalup is performing this week in a new production of Gertrude Stein and Virgil Thomson’s opera Four Saints in Three Acts — a collaboration between the artist, composer Luciano Chessa, and contemporary opera organization Ensemble Parallèle.]

Do you collect anything?

I used to collect CDs, and now I don’t because everything is digital. I feel like I collect music. I know... More

Third Hand Plays: “Big Cradle” by Erik Loyer

08.11.2011  |  By
Filed under: Projects/Series

Erik Loyer combines the skills of a graphic designer, sound artist, and computer engineer in virtuoso, meditative works that negotiate fiction and science — the narrativized and the biological self — in eerie, seductive ways. “Chroma” initially impresses with its high production values, with its techno-rave aesthetic that harkens ba... More

Pop-Up Poets: Amber DiPietra on IwamotoScott Architecture

08.10.2011  |  By
Filed under: One on One

This summer we’re enjoying a special poets-in-the-galleries series, organized by Small Press Traffic. Inspired by The Steins Collect, the series honors writer Gertrude Stein and her relationships with the visual artists of her day. Each Thursday evening in July and August a poet gives a reading, talk, or performance about an artist or artwor... More

Third Hand Plays: The Comedy of Recursion

08.09.2011  |  By
Filed under: Projects/Series

Recursion is the phenomenon of an algorithmic function referring to itself within its execution. For example, if I were writing an algorithm that was to continue running until the value of x, which presently equals 10, attained the value of 0 and named this function subtract1UntilZero, I would call subtract1UntilZero — which subtracts one from x — from within the function itself until x equaled 0. Recursion can occur on linguistic levels (a common joke about recursion is the dictionary entry that says, “Recursion (n.), See, recursion“); it can also (and quite often does) occur in nature, such as in the shape of a sea shell, where the same pattern is repeated, though slightly mor... More

Sex Work Pays for Art School and Student Loans, She Said

08.05.2011  |  By
Filed under: Essay

When I was living in San Francisco I didn’t realize just how many guys went to prostitutes — not once in a while, but all the time. It was like no big deal to them. One person I worked with told me he just wasn’t a relationship kind of guy and said that he couldn’t stand all the nagging, all the complaining, and all the BS girlfriends would give him. Hookers, he told me, knew what their job was, did it, then left. No endless talking about problems, no criticism, just simple.

Well one day he and I and my other coworke... More

Third Hand Plays: “TYPEOMS” by Jhave

08.04.2011  |  By
Filed under: Projects/Series

The basic parameters of Jhave’s work are the use of video imagery that finds more of a basis in traditions of photography than cinema (the camera is often still, and he rarely uses montage), a clean but effective use of typography that harkens back to the “fixed” designs of print rather than the variable designs of HTML (Alan Liu writes about... More

Pop-Up Poets: Arnold J. Kemp on Mary Heilmann

08.03.2011  |  By
Filed under: One on One

This summer we’re enjoying a special poets-in-the-galleries series, organized by Small Press Traffic. Inspired by The Steins Collect, the series honors writer Gertrude Stein and her relationships with the visual artists of her day. Each Thursday evening in July and August a poet gives a reading, talk, or performance about an artist or artwork... More

Third Hand Plays: The Comedy of Exhaustion

08.02.2011  |  By
Filed under: Projects/Series

When I teach or try to describe what “electronic literature” is, I often include works that are not produced by, or necessarily intended to be read on, computers. Artist/critic Stephanie Strickland, an accomplished poet and artist known for works such as “V: vniverse” and “slippingglimpse,” begins her short essay “Born Digital” with the statement, “E-poetry relies on code for its creation, preservation, and display: there is no way to experience a work of e-literature unless a computer is running it — reading... More

Nocturne

08.01.2011  |  By
Filed under: Field Notes

One of the most enjoyable aspects of curatorial practice is research, following thoughts to discover how random or apparently unrelated artworks that strike one’s interest can often have a literal or metaphorical connection. I am currently enjoying one such serendipitous occurrence which I thought I’d share.

I have followed San Francisco artist Sean McFarland’s art since he was in graduate school at CCA, where I teach. At that time he was engaged with the work of such artists as Thomas Demand and James Casebere, both noted for their phot... More