The Rhizome Digest merged into the Rhizome News in November 2008. These pages serve as an archive for 6-years worth of discussions and happenings from when the Digest was simply a plain-text, weekly email.

Subject: RHIZOME DIGEST: 9.6.02
Date: Fri, 6 Sep 2002 20:09:43 -0400

RHIZOME DIGEST: September 6, 2002


1. yukiko shikata: Kingdom of Piracy (KOP)
2. Joseph Nechvatal:Space - Villette Numerique

3. Francis Hwang: Design & Production Intern

4. lwhitl AT and Lee Wells: looking for a studioxx like organization
in the states

5. Jonah Brucker-Cohen: Space- The New Frontier for Art?

6. Lev Manovich: Spatial Montage, Spatial Imaging, and the Archeology of
Windows - a Response to Marc Lafia

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Date: 9.3.2
From: yukiko shikata (sica AT
Subject: Kingdom of Piracy (KOP)

Kingdom of Piracy (KOP)
Online Project
Premiere: Ars Electronica, September 7-12,2002.

Joint Curation: Shu Lea Cheang, Armin Medosch, Yukiko Shikata
Kingdom of Piracy (KOP)is an online, open work space to explore the free
sharing of digital content - often condemned as piracy - as the net's
ultimate art form. Commissioned by the Acer Digital Art Center [ADAC]
in Taiwan for ArtFuture 2002, <KOP> was designed to include links,
objects, ideas, software, commissioned artists' projects, critical
writing and online streaming media events. Hailed as the first
international online exhibition sponsored by Taiwan's computer giant
Acer Group, a pilot website <> was launched in December
2001 and presented with a press conference at the Museum of Contemporary
Art in Taipai, Taiwan.

In April 2002 the leadership and direction of ADAC changed. At about the
same time a major anti-piracy initiative was launched in Taiwan. <KOP>
became a politically sensitive issue in Taiwan and by May, the
curatorial and artists' FTP access to the (KOP) server was denied. By
mid-June, <> was taken offline. ADAC demanded editorial
rights to artists' links and requested a change of the title, Kingdom of
Piracy. The joint curatorial team rejected this demand and sought ways
of preserving the project as both a Taiwanese initiative and an
International online art project. Through the efforts of ADAC's former
director Ray Wang, (KOP) server access at ADAC was resumed. However, an
IP address was assigned, the use of the domain name is

(KOP) will now be premiered at Ars Electronica, September 7-12,2002.

[Artists' projects] -Low Level_All_Stars (BEIGE vs. RSG) -Global Village
Health Manual v.1 (Raqs Media Collective + Joy Chatterjee), -Stealth
Waltz (Mukul Patel & Manu Luksch) -injunction generator(
-The File That Wouldn't Leave( -ResourceHanger+
(doubleNegatives) -I love you, world (Vladimir Radisic) -Explorer 98
game (EASTWOOD - Real Time Strategy Group) -HIGH BALL (exonemo)
-Warriors of Perception: Search and Manifest (Agnese Trocchi) -i_Biology
Patent Engine: (i-BPE)(Diane Ludin) -All Universe for heike, dragan and
internet explorer (Olia Lialina) -Top 100 Net Blockers (Dragan
Espenschied, Alvar Freude).

[Writers' projects] -The Right to Copy: Local study on piracy as an art
form (Whiteg weng) -Distributed Media -> Digital Abundance: Property
Decay in C21? (J.J. King) -Culture Without Commodities:From Dada to Open
Source and Beyond (Felix Stalder).

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Date: 9.1.02
From: Joseph Nechvatal (joseph_nechvatal AT
Subject: Space: Villette Numerique

" Villette Numerique " is the first biennial festival devoted to digital
creation. Installations, shows, concerts, cinema, games, clubbing,
workshops, lectures, La Villette hosts artists from all over the world
and invites the audience to share multiple experiences between
discoveries and sensations.

Grande Halle de la Villette - Cité des Sciences et de l'Industrie - Cité
de la Musique - Paris

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Date: 9.5.02
From: Francis Hwang (francis AT
Subject: Design & Production Intern

Rhizome is looking for a Design and Production Intern for the Fall 2002
session. The intern will assist the Director of Technology with
production tasks, including editing HTML pages and graphics production.
In addition, there will also be opportunities to do self-directed work
in fields such as website design, information architecture, and

We are looking for a responsible individual who can handle large
independent projects. She/he will have a strong interest in new media
and new media art, and an eagerness to learn about cutting-edge
technologies and ideas by putting them into practice. Experience with
the basics of web production (HTML, FTP, Photoshop) required.

To apply, email your detailed cover letter and resume to Francis Hwang
at francis AT

Hours: 10 hours per week, scheduling flexible
Dates: September 15 - December 15, 2002
Notes: On-site, unpaid

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**MUTE MAGAZINE NO. 24 OUT NOW** 'Knocking Holes in Fortress Europe',
Florian Schneider on no-border activism in the EU; Brian Holmes on
resistance to networked individualism; Alvaro de los Angeles on and Andrew Goffey on the politics of immunology. More AT

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Date: 9.5.02
From: lwhitl AT and Lee Wells (leewells AT
Subject: looking for a studioxx like organization in the states

lwhitl AT asked:

Hi all,

I was looking for a media arts and multimedia center for women, but in
the States. If anyone knows of an organization pls fwd. the link.

Lee Wells replied:

Two orgs out of Chicago I dont have the URLS

Women in the Directors Chair and WebGurls Collective

You should be able to find them online


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Date: 8.29.02
From: Jonah Brucker-Cohen (jonah AT
Subject: Space: The New Frontier for Art?

As technology speeds into the 21st century, it's inevitable new spaces
to experience art will materialize. From the virtual Guggenheim to the
Whitney's Artport, major institutions are taking notice and creating
hybrid physical / online worlds where artists can exhibit their work.
These new platforms for both artist and audience allow for mainstream
access to commissioned work and a global avenue for audience interaction
in the art making process through online participation. But what lies
beyond the terrestrial and digital horizon for art? What new territories
are left for exploration?

Joining the venue-pioneering mission, London's Tate Gallery is taking
one "giant leap" into a new frontier for the art world: Space. Tate in
Space ( has commissioned artist Susan Collins to create
a fictional venture by the museum meant to provoke dialog about the
possibilities of intergalactic art. "Tate in Space is really more
involved with examining the (primarily western) cultural ambitions of an
institution and cultural production rather than space art per se,"
explains Collins who worked with the Mullard Space Science Laboratory,
University College London on the feasibility of launching a Tate
Satellite "[Tate in Space] seeks to provide a thorough examination,
history and discussion into issues surrounding space art and is intended
to raise questions, provoke thought and encourage discourse in relation
to ourselves and our own ambitions." The online gallery includes
pictures of earth from the orbiting satellite, programs for audience
participation, and a submission form to send designs of your own model
for the orbiting gallery.

Although anti-gravity museum gift-shops might be a world away, artists
are beginning to embrace the potential of this new landscape. Arthur
Wood's "Cosmic Dancer" (1993) (, an aluminum
snake-like sculpture that inhabited the MIR space station was built
specifically for a weightless environment as an art piece that would
enliven the drab conditions inside the vessel. His focus in creating the
work was to exploit the physiological, philosophical and new sensory
experiences of space travel. Similarly, artist Richard Clar's
( project "Earth Star" (1997) features a ceramic
artwork created in space and comprised of rock samples that react to
heat generated by the spacecraft's re-entry. Other past space projects
including Frank Pietronigro's "Research Project Number 33" focus on
performance in weightless environments such as dancing, "action
painting", and video documentation.

Recently, Dublin-based artist Anna Hill's ( project,
"Space Synapse" highlights the interactive possibilities between
space-based art and earth-based installation. The work is an autonomous
communications device developed in cooperation with the European Space
Agency that will blast into orbit and be deployed inside the
International Space Station (ISS). Despite Tate in Space's emphasis on
space functioning as a separate entity for art experience, Hill, a
graduate of RCA's Interaction Design program, asks how connections
between the two realms can augment new forms of creative expression.

In her case, Space Synapse will interact with art projects in gallery
and site-specific locations across the planet. For instance, her
earth-based work "An Eye Open to the Night" reacts to Space Synapse's
orbit and consists of a beehive-like structure visitors can enter.
"Copper windpipes directed at the sea will utilize solar energy to power
an interactive device triggered by frequencies from the ISS and Space
Synapse during hours of daylight," Hill explains. "An antenna will pick
up broadcast frequencies (when the ISS orbit appears on the horizon)
that will open the pipes allowing wind music to play within the

As we explore new areas of artistic expression beyond earthly realms,
possibilities seem limitless. Projects like Tate in Space, Space
Synapse, and Earth Star are merely starting points for interpreting not
only the physical and psychological impacts of space travel, but also
the interactive relationship between planet and space. "Twentieth
century culture with all its specialist knowledge and material concerns
is, I think, in crisis, " Hill admits. "Yet we rely on the natural world
and need a sense of the spiritual implicit within it." If that's the
case, the answers might actually be in the stars.

Related Space Art Links:

Tate in Space
Anna Hill - Space Synapse -
Ars Astronautica - Space Art Web Project -
Arthur Woods - Cosmic Dancer on Mir
Arts Catalyst - the science-art agency
International Association of Astronomical
Leonardo On-Line Space Art Special Project
Leonardo Space Art Working Group
Richard Clar - Art Techologies ®
Space Art: Research Project Number 33

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Date: 9.2.02
From: Lev Manovich (manovich AT
Subject: Spatial Montage, Spatial Imaging, and the Archeology of
Windows: a Response to Marc Lafia

Spatial Montage, Spatial Imaging, and the Arheology of Windows: a
Responce to Marc Lafia

1. Montage vs. Co-Presence.

My apologies for responding to Marc's exellent text so late - however,
now that some of you had a chance to visit Documeta 11 and to see the
works he discusses, this maybe a good moment to pick up the thread. (For
those who will not be going to Documenta, note that the Documenta
installations of Isaac Julian and Eija-Lisa Ahtila would be also
included in ZKM's Cinema Future exhibition which opens on November 15.)

I think that Marc's observations arevery perceptive and that his overall
paradigm of "the spatialization of the image" is a productive way to
start thinking about various recent practices of a time-based (and now,
"space-based" as well) moving image. I agree with Marc that "new spatial
cinema or spatial imaging" often bypasses the logic of montage (i.e.,
juxtaposition as the source of meaning and effect) in favor of other
logics - which Marc started to map out.

Yet I also think that Marc's proposal that "the whole concept and
project of montage or cinema as the place from which to speak of these
new forms, new regimes of image is wholly inadequate and a looking at
the moment in a backwards fashion" is being underminded by his own
examples. He does admit that some of the key practioners of "spatial
cinema" - Sherin Neshat, Eija-Lisa Ahtila, and Isaac Julian - all rely
on the cinematic montage. And while I agree with Marc that a number of
other "spatial imaging" installations included in the Documenta 11, or
show elsewhere, do not operate within the cinematic montage paradigm
(works by Chantal Ackerman, Lorna Simpson, Fiona Tan, Bruce Nauman at
DIA), I still think that the montage paradigm can be a useful starting
point to understand how these works function diffirently.

Eloborating what the new paradigms of spatial image are would require at
least a few articles but let me very briefly comment on one of these
paradigms. Marc writes: "the distribution of images spatially
complicates the intensity of such [montage] strategies and grammars as
they are deployed in parallel. A parallel that at times is not
necessarily juxtaposition, and may be even be thought of as a-parallel."
I have the same feeling that many "spatial imaging" works also do not
rely on juxtaposition. The terms I would use to talk about their logic
is "co-existience," and "simultaneity." Documenta installations of Lorna
Simpson and Chantal Ackerman, as well as Doug Aitkens's "Electric
Earth," work not by juxtaposing images but by adding them next to each
other. In contrast to montage, where juxtaposition of images is used to
built one single whole narrative world, in these works diffirent times
and/or spaces presented in diffirent images simply co-exist. They do not
"talk" to each other as in cinematic montage - instead they simply
ignore each other. There is no single space and time they add up to. In
rhetorical terms, this is the logic of metonomy.

In "The Language of New Media" I used the quote from Foucault' lecture
"?Of Other Spaces" as a justification for the approprietness of spatial
montage today - but I now think that this quote better describes this
new sense of "co-existence" (or ³co-presence) where co-existing elements
simply ignore each other, and a considerable mental and emotional effort
is needed to connect them to each other at all. Here is the quote: "We
are now in the epoch of simultaneity: we are in epoch of juxtaposition,
the epoch of near and far, of the side-by-side, of the dispersed..." Of
course, since Foucault (or rather, his translator), places "simulaneity"
next to "juxtaposition," which may suggest that we keep trying to
"montage" together whatever "dispersed" and "simultaneous" elements we
encounter. ((think of driving through Los Angeles's neighboorhoods and
trying to find some common denominator between them - a futuile exercise
I engage in periodically since I moved to Southern California seven
years ago.)

I am looking forward to part 3 of Marc's text. Meanwhile, I would like
to clarify some of my earlier statements about "spatial montage" in
relation to Marc's discussion of them.

2. Montage and GUI Windows.

Marc writes: " Lev describes windows as a collection of various kinds of
data that form a block that graphic designers are accustomed to
arranging or seeing as elements that make up a page. In other words, as
described by Lev, these windows don¹t represent coexisting events
happening in different durations of time, the varied windows form the
semblance of a whole."

While visually windows of GUI can be be connected to film montage, it
may appear at first that, ultimately, GUI and cinema obey two diffirent
logics. Cinema indeed often presents us with the juxtaposition of times
and/or spaces belonging to the same fictional world; in GUI the
"signifieds" of diffirent windows typically have no connection to each
other (for instance, a document opened in a Word, the spreadsheet opened
in Exel, music tracks shown in a MP3 player, etc.)

However, it actually turns out that the two logics are much closer to
each other than we may expect. According to Alan Kay (the lecture at
UCSB, April 2002), when in the late 1960s he conceived of twindows as
general interface technique, he was thinking of Ivan Sutheralnd¹s
Sketchpad (1962) ­ which itself followed the standard convention of
engineering and architectural drawings to present multiple views of the
same 3D object / 3Dspace in diffirent windows. Sutherland's used this
convention for his computer CAD program; Kay and others generalised this
technique, extending it from VISUAL domain to other domains. In GUI,
multiple windows not only show diffirent views of a 3D object / space
but of ANY data (for instance multiple views of the same document in
Word). And while an engineer or an architect were typically working with
one object / space at a time (i.e., dealing with 4 views of one
object/space), GUI allowed a the user to work with a few projects at
once, easily switching from windows belonging to one project to windows
belonging to another project (within one application), as well as
between diffirent "work desks" (i.e., diffirent applications).

The fact that windows paradigm was derived from the conventions of using
multiple windows to look at the VISIBLE world is very relevant to our
discussions of montage. It means the following. While today multiple
windows of GUI showing diffirent views of the same data or diffirent
data generally do not refer to spatial dimension at all (with the
obvious exeption of CAD or 3D animation software), originally (i.e., in
the case of Sutherland's Sketchpad) they did. Therefore it becomes
possible to think of GUI windows in terms of diffirent SPACES
co-existing on the screen - not a "mental space" but the actual physical
3D spaces.

Following this argument further we realise that GUI windows are related
to film montage in substance, and not just in apperance. Cinema presents
us with various windows onto a single physical (and fictional) space.
In the case of montage, these multiple views are juxtaposed with each
other - think of a chase scene where a film repetedaly switches back and
forth between two locations ­ or, the more extreme example of
"Kuleshov's Effect" according to which a viewer has a tendency to
construct a single coherent physical/fictional from an arbitrary image
sequence. But of course cinema often avoids such extreme juxtapositiona
in favor of a "peaceful co-existence" of diffirent views of a
physical/fictional world of a film (note that this "co-existence" is
quite diffirent from "co-existence" as descibed above where diffirent
images do not form a single coherent world.) This "peaceful
co-existence" is what we also found in GUI: diffirent windows showing
one document; diffirent windows showing diffirent documents but still
belonging to a single application; finally, diffirent applications each
with its own set of windows running on a computer in the same time, some
not doing anything and waiting until the user input, others engaged in
some computation and/or monitoring. And while today the sense of a
single world behind all these windows is gone, recalling the connection
between GUI and "Sketchpad" (and the convention of engineering/drafting
graphic communication which it followed), helps us to see connection to
cinema as well.

3. Montage and Compositing.

Marc writes:

"Lev puts forward the notion of spatial montage as a way to get a grasp
on and understand the new aesthetics of compositing, the procedure that
takes us to spatial montage. Spatial montage for him refers to layering,
this smooth layering referred to above. ... The term spatial does not
refer to the spatialization or distribution of image as seen in many art
and film works today but a post renaissance deep space of layers and

Although this point does not have bearings on Marc's subsequent original
discussion of spatial imaging, I think he does not correctly represent
here. Therefore I would like to clarify the relationship between my
concept of spatial montage and compositing, so we can adequately use
them in subsequent discussions.

I see compositing and spatial montage are two diffirent phenomena. For
me "spatial montage" means meaningful juxtaposition of more than one
image stream within a single screen. In the book I discuss the works by
Boussier and Lialina to develop this concept further. Both works
juxtapose multiple images within a single screen, creating both a visual
and semantic contrast ­ which for me justifies talking about them as a
type of montage:

³In general, spatial montage would involve a number of images,
potentially of different sizes and proportions, appearing on the screen
at the same time. This by itself of course does not result in montage;
it up to the filmmaker to construct a logic which drives which images
appear together, when they appear and what kind of relationships they
enter with each other.² (section ³Spatial Montage² in The Language of
New Media).

When I was finishing the book in 1999, I could not find any examples of
spatial montage in contemporary cinema, and this is why I use as my
examples a net project (Lialiana) and a CD-ROM multimedia project
(Boissier). In the next couple of years, the spatial montage gradually
become more present in in film and television, from Mike Figgis¹s
Timecode (2000) to a TV series "24 hours" and many music videos and

The new layered space achieved through diffirent types of compositing
(discussed in the earlier section ³Compositing and New Types of Montage)
is a diffirent phenomenon. It refers to the ³technical² or ³material²
shifts in the organisation of a moving image. If traditional cinema
privelleges the temporal relationship between a particular image and
other images which come before and atter, computer cinema brings in a
set of new relationships which can be described by terms ³spatial² and
³simultaneous²: the relationships between diffirent layers ina 2D or 3D
composite, the relationship between a frame of a movie and other
information which can be hyperlinked to this frame, etc. These new
³techniques² of a moving image can be used to achieve ³spatial montage²
­ but as the examples of Boissier, Lialina (and numerous works from the
history of art) show, spatial montage can be created without them.

Dr. Lev Manovich | | manovich AT
Associate Professor of New Media, UCSD
2002-03 Guggenheim Fellow
2002 Digital Culture Fellow, UCSB
2002 Fellow, The Zentrum für Literaturforschung, Berlin

University of California San Diego, Visual Arts Department, 0084,
9500 Gilman Drive, La Jolla, CA 92093-0084, U.S.A

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Rhizome Digest is filtered by Rachel Greene (rachel AT ISSN:
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