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: 10.28.05
Date: Fri, 28 Oct 2005 11:19:52 -0700

RHIZOME DIGEST: October 28, 2005


1. Marisa Olson: Rhizome Exhibition: Net Art's Cyborg[feminist]s, Punks,
and Manifestos

2. Kristin O'Friel: ISEA2006 :: Call for Participation :: Pacific Rim
3. Liz Nofziger: ASPECT Volume 7: Personas & Personalities
4. Jeff Ritchie: 2006 iDMAa + IMS Conference- <code> HumanSystems |

5. Jane Marsching: exhibition: Blur of the Otherworldly: Contemporary Art,
Technology, and the Paranormal
6. Trebor: Audio from "Share, Share Widely" conference on new-media art
8. voipunk AT The Hotmails Performance

9. Brett Stalbaum: A Short History of Virtual Hiking + video

+Commissioned for
10. Cory Arcangel: Interview with Tom Moody by Cory Arcangel

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Rhizome is now offering Organizational Subscriptions, group memberships
that can be purchased at the institutional level. These subscriptions
allow participants at institutions to access Rhizome's services without
having to purchase individual memberships. For a discounted rate, students
or faculty at universities or visitors to art centers can have access to
Rhizome?s archives of art and text as well as guides and educational tools
to make navigation of this content easy. Rhizome is also offering
subsidized Organizational Subscriptions to qualifying institutions in poor
or excluded communities. Please visit for
more information or contact Lauren Cornell at LaurenCornell AT

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From: Marisa Olson <marisa AT>
Subject: Rhizome Exhibition: Net Art's Cyborg[feminist]s, Punks, and
Date: Fri, October 28, 2005 11:10 am

Hello. I'd like to encourage you to visit the newest exhibition
guest-curated from the Rhizome ArtBase. "Net Art's Cyborg[feminist]s,
Punks, and Manifestos" is an exhibition on the politics of [internet]
appearances, guest-curated by Marina Grzinic. Ten works and the curator's
statement are online, here:

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Marisa Olson
Editor & Curator at Large

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Please Support Rhizome!
Rhizome launched its membership drive, the Community Campaign, on
September 19th. The campaign is incredibly important to Rhizome's
survival and growth over the next year, and we sincerely hope that you
will help us meet our goal of $25,000 by December 1st by becoming a
Member or making a donation today! This targeted amount will go into
strengthening our current programs, and seeding our energy into new
initiatives. Higher-level donors are thanked on our support page and have
an opportunity to secure limited-edition works by Cory Arcangel, Lew
Baldwin, and MTAA. This is a very exciting time for the organization, and
a great time to get involved. Thank you for your ongoing support.

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From: Kristin O'Friel <kristin.ofriel AT>
Date: Oct 25, 2005 8:14 AM
Subject: ISEA2006 :: Call for Participation :: Pacific Rim


This is an invitation by the ISEA2006 Symposium and ZeroOne San Jose: A
Global Festival of Art on the Edge to groups and individuals to submit
proposals for exhibition of interactive art work and projects reflecting
on the thematic of the Pacific Rim. This is the second and final call for
artworks in this category.
Proposals Due: December 15th, 2005
Final Decisions: Feb 10, 2006


The political and economic space of the Pacific Rim represents a dynamic
context for innovation and creativity. Convergent and divergent practices
involving art, science, architecture and urban planning, engineering,
industrial and interior design, communications, literature and performance
are being manifested in new forms of cultural production and social

The complex relations and diversity of Pacific Rim nations is exemplified
throughout the hybridized communities that comprise Silicon Valley
including local indigenous peoples. As the 10th largest city in the United
States, San Jose is an important portal on the eastern edge of the Pacific
region, which shares deep historical and cultural connections that range
from Latin America and the South Pacific to Southeast Asia and Asia.
ISEA2006 and ZeroOne San Jose Festival are highlighting the Pacific Rim
defined in the broadest possible sense to include not only those states
and nations that border the Pacific Ocean but also the geo-political,
economic, social and historical frameworks of which they are part.

We are seeking proposals that address, but are not limited to, art work
that emphasize radical and alternative responses to contemporary cultural
conditions throughout the Pacific Rim. We want to encourage proposals
specifically from emerging artists. Of particular interest are projects
that focus on engagements and interaction strategies with Diaspora
communities and local context as well as work that enable new discourses,
platforms and explorations.

Proposals may reflect works in the form of interactive installations,
wearable computing, site works, DIY alternatives, networks and mobile
systems, activist projects and public insertions. Proposals should
therefore identify target audiences as much as is possible, although it is
not necessary to specify a venue. Venues are distributed throughout the
city and include galleries, exhibitions spaces and outdoor spaces and
theaters. Proposals may consider the use of the City of San Jose's public
resources (wireless network, transportation systems, etc.)

Note: There are separate calls for participation for artworks for each of
the ISEA2006/ZeroOneFestival Themes: Transvergence, Pacific Rim,
Interactive City and Community Domain. There will be a separate call for
symposium papers related to the Pacific Rim (and other) themes.


The 2006 edition of the internationally renowned ISEA Symposium will be
held August 5-13, 2006, in San Jose, California.

The Inter-Society for Electronic Arts (ISEA) is an international
non-profit organization fostering interdisciplinary academic discourse and
exchange among culturally diverse organizations and individuals working
with art, science and emerging technologies. Prior host cities include
Helsinki, Paris, Sydney, Montreal, Chicago, Manchester and Nagoya.

ZeroOne San Jose is a milestone festival to be held biennially making the
work of the most innovative contemporary artists in the world accessible.
In 2006 it will be held in conjunction with the ISEA2006 Symposium.


The CADRE Laboratory at San Jose State University will also host a 2 day
pre-symposium, The Pacific Rim New Media Summit, on August 7th and 8th.
The Summit is focused on issues influencing new media programs,
educational and research centers, and cultural arts initiatives. The
primary objective of the Summit is the networking of organizations with
the intention of identifying and enabling future cross-cultural
interaction. The summit is intended to explore and build interpretive
?bridges? between institutional, corporate, social and cultural
enterprises, with an emphasis on the emergence of new media arts programs
and initiatives. An important objective is to examine and create new
transaction spaces for creativity and innovation. For more information:


Submissions are due: December 15th, 2005

On line submissions:

All entries will be reviewed by an international jury.

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From: Liz Nofziger <liz AT>
Date: Oct 26, 2005 3:51 PM
Subject: ASPECT Volume 7: Personas & Personalities

Aspect Magazine is accepting submissions for the spring 2006 edition of
its biannual DVD publication titled "Personas & Personalities". Aspect's
seventh volume will feature artists or groups of artists working with
constructed identities and elements of personality. Work of any medium,
material or genre will be accepted, but submitted documentation must be on

The staff of ASPECT is asking curators, art critics, and members of the
contemporary art community to help assemble and comment on works for the
next issue by submitting a work of art on which they wish to provide audio
commentary. Due to the format of the publication, the criteria for
selection will include both the qualifications of the commentator and the
quality of the work submitted. Audio recordings of the commentary will be
assembled after the submissions have been selected.

Submissions should include:
- Video documentation of a work or small group of works by a single artist
- Resume of the artist
- Contact information for the commentator and artist
- Resume of the commentator
- Brief notes outlining the contents of the proposed commentary
- A SASE (self-addressed stamped envelope) for return of materials

Submissions must be received by December 20th 2005 and sent to:
Aspect Magazine
316 Summer St.
5th Floor
Boston, MA 02210

Submitters will be contacted via email no later than January 20th, 2006.

For more information see our FAQ:

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Rhizome ArtBase Exhibitions

Visit the fourth ArtBase Exhibition "City/Observer," curated by Yukie
Kamiya of the New Museum of Contemporary Art in New York and designed by
T.Whid of MTAA.

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From: Jeff Ritchie <ritchie AT>
Date: Oct 27, 2005 9:12 PM
Subject: 2006 iDMAa + IMS Conference- <code> HumanSystems | DigitalBodies

2006 iDMAa + IMS Conference- <code> HumanSystems | DigitalBodies

Call for Papers

The International Digital Media and Arts Association and Miami
University?s Center for Interactive Media Studies presents the 2006 iDMAa
+ IMS Conference. The conference?s theme is built around an examination of
the many codes that drive the digital media and arts world. The Conference
will bring academics, artists, and industry representatives together to
help define, refine and advance the leading edge of new media. This is the
third annual iDMAa Conference and fifth annual IMS Conference.

The conference will include refereed paper presentations, panels,
discussion workshops, gallery talks, and performances. Pre-conference,
hands-on tutorials (free for iDMAa members) will begin on Wednesday, April
5th, 2006. The conference will begin on April 6th and end on April 8th.
The conference will also include a juried exhibition and a vendor fair.
This conference is sponsored and hosted in Oxford, Ohio by Miami
University?s Center for Interactive Media Studies.

The Conference seeks submissions of papers for presentation and
discussion. All papers will be refereed for acceptance and selected papers
will be published in the iDMAa Journal. There will be an on-line
proceedings, including all accepted work, as well. Submissions will be
accepted in two categories: papers and notes. Papers will follow
traditional academic writing standards and should not exceed ten pages.
Notes are at most two pages long. Online and interactive supplements can
be included.

Please send all submissions by November 23rd, 2005 to:
Prof. Peg Faimon, Program Chair
231 Hiestand Hall
Miami University
Oxford, OH 45056
faimonma AT

Papers may be submitted for review in Microsoft Word or PDF format. Please
follow standard academic paper formatting conventions.

Supplementary materials may be submitted in formats displayable by
standard web browsers with freely available plug-ins (e. g. Flash,
RealPlayer, Windows Media Player 10 or Quicktime). Authors will be
notified of acceptance by January 6, 2006.

Your submission should include a cover letter indicating which conference
track is preferred (See list below). Participants are also encouraged to
propose panels or complete ?paper sessions? on topics of specific
interest. Special conference rates are available to individuals who
organize and bring complete panels for sessions.

We encourage the submission of panels. Panel submissions should include a
brief description of the panel topic and list of panelists. Note that any
panel chair submitting a panel with a minimum of four panelists who are
full paying registrants to the conference will receive a discounted

<code> Conference Tracks

?We all have the extraordinary coded within us, waiting to be released?
? Jean Houston

The 2006 iDMAa + IMS conference is structured around the taxonomy outlined
below. These categories are meant only to be broad groupings as an
organizational tool. The suggestions included below each track are just
that ? suggestions. We encourage broad, creative, and radical
interpretations of these tracks.

Track One: Art Code | Code Art
Sample Topics: Algorithmic Art, Software Art, Net Art, Installation Art,
Physic Computing, Sonic Art, Interactive Design and Development

Track Two: Academic Code
Sample Topics: Curriculum Development, Promotion & Tenure, Program
Development, Pedagogy, Technical Support and Funding, Inter-Institutional
Collaboration, Digital Film Schools, Classroom and Lab Exemplars,

Track Three: Image Code
Sample Topics: Digital Photography, Digital Imaging as Art, 3-D Modeling,
Digital Printing, Medical Imaging, Commercial Design, Installation,
Digital Painting

Track Four: Time-Based Code
Sample Topics: Digital Video, Flash, Processing, Distance
Collaboration/Performance, Animation, Film, Interactive

Track Five: Cultural Code
Sample Topics: Network Culture and Complexity/Change, Philosophy, Digital

Track Six: Legal Code
Sample Topics: Copyright, Legal Issues for Artists, P2P File Sharing, Open
Source, Creative Commons

Track Seven: Semiotic Code & Storytelling Sample Topics: Digital
Narrative, Digital Asset Management, Still Image as Narrative, Semantic

Track Eight: Commercial Code
Sample Topics: Mobile Media, Emerging Technologies, Business Applications

Track Nine: Game Code
Sample Topics: Serious games, artistic games, commercial games, games as
pedagogy, analysis of games

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The Rhizome Commissioning Program makes financial support available to
artists for the creation of innovative new media art work via
panel-awarded commissions.

For the 2005-2006 Rhizome Commissions, eleven artists/groups were selected
to create original works of net art.

The Rhizome Commissions Program is made possible by support from the
Jerome Foundation in celebration of the Jerome Hill Centennial, the
Greenwall Foundation, the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, and
the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs. Additional support has
been provided by members of the Rhizome community.

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From: Jane Marsching <jane AT>
Date: Oct 21, 2005 8:50 AM
Subject: exhibition: Blur of the Otherworldly: Contemporary Art,
Technology, and the Paranormal

The Blur of the Otherworldly: Contemporary Art, Technology, and the
Center for Art and Visual Culture, UMBC, Baltimore, MD
Curated by Mark Alice Durant and Jane D. Marsching
October 20, 2005 -- December 17, 2005,
Opening Reception October 20th from 5 - 7pm

Organized by the Center for Art and Visual Culture, The Blur of the
Otherworldly: Contemporary Art, Technology, and the Paranormal is a major
traveling exhibition featuring twenty eight contemporary artists whose
work employs modern communication technologies (photography, film, video,
computers, radio, internet, and digital media) to explore culturally
inbred questions / superstitions concerning parallel worlds to our own.

Today, the amount of attention devoted to paranormal phenomena such as
UFOs, demonic possession, psychics, and ghosts in the media indicates that
photography 's early fascinations have not disappeared. Millennial angst,
bewildering leaps of science, wildly improbable technological inventions,
and ever-decreasing wilderness as human sprawl grows exponentially, makes
other worlds once again appear possible, even probable, and definitely
alluring. Our escalating desire to prove the existence of another
dimension (no matter which one) is linked to photography, with its history
of providing us with our proofs. Seduced by the invisible in the face of
the medium's relentless and dull dependence upon the physical, photography
as a tool of fact (in science), fantasy (in spirit photography), and
invention (in the hands of artists) is exploring new frontiers once again.

Included in the exhibition are: Mark Amerika, Zoe Beloff, Diane Bertolo,
Jeremy Blake, Corrine May Botz, Susan Collins, Gregory Crewdson, Paul
DeMarinis, Spencer Finch, Ken Goldberg, Susan Hiller, Marko Maetamm, Miya
Masaoka, Jennifer and Kevin McCoy, Mariko Mori, Maria Miranda and Norie
Neumark, Paul Pfeiffer, Fred Ressler, John Roach, Ted Serios, Leslie
Sharpe, Chrysanne Stathacos, Thomson & Craighead, Suzanne Treister, and
Anne Walsh & Chris Kubick

Blur of the Otherworldly: Contemporary Art, Technology, and the Paranormal
will be accompanied by a 200 page fully illustrated catalogue with essays
on the significance of paranormal and the supernatural in contemporary
culture by Lynne Tillman, associate professor and writer-in-residence at
the University at Albany, and Marina Warner, novelist and former scholar
at the Getty Center for History of Art and Humanities. Mark Alice Durant
and Jane D. Marsching, co-curators of the exhibition, will contribute
extensive essays on the interplay between science, art, and the occult as
it relates to the artworks in the exhibition. The publication will contain
over eighty illustrations in color and black and white as well as a
checklist for the exhibition, illustrated timeline, and a bibliography.
Published by the Center for Art and Visual Culture, as the ninth title of
its Issues in Cultural Theory series, Blur of the Otherworldly:
Contemporary Art, Technology, and the Paranormal will be distributed
internationally by Distributed Art Publishers (DAP), in New York

The exhibition website is:

The press release can be viewed at:
(includes images and video clips)


jane d. marsching
554 poplar street
roslindale, MA 02131
617-325-2088 home
617-763-8627 cell
jane AT


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Reliable, robust hosting plans from $65 per year.

Purchasing hosting from BroadSpire contributes directly to Rhizome's
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a thorough review of the web hosting industry, we selected BroadSpire as
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full range of services. We have been working with BroadSpire since June
2002, and have been very impressed with the quality of their service.

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From: Trebor <trebor AT>
Date: Oct 23, 2005 3:43 PM
Subject: Audio from "Share, Share Widely" conference on new-media art

Now you can listen to hours of audio recordings from the May 05 "Share,
Share Widely" conference at or
Live conference contributions and audio blog entries discuss issues in
new-media art education.

Conference presentations:
Stephen Brier, Rick Maxwell, Stanley Aronowitz, McKenzie Wark, Trebor
Scholz, Pattie Belle Hastings, Hana Iverson, Patrick Lichty, Natalie
Jerimjenko, Tiffany Holmes, Andrea Polli, Share Group, Colleen Macklin,
Douglas Repetto,
Jon Ippolito, Joline Blais, Brooke Singer, Stephanie Rothenberg, Mark
Tribe, Chris Salter, Liz Slagus, Thomas Slomka, Daniel Perlin, Timothy

Audio blog:
Saul Albert, Amy Alexander, Axel Bruns, Jon Cates, Susan Collins, Eugene
I. Dairianathan and Paul Benedict Lincoln, Kenneth Fields, Brian Goldfarb,
Elizabeth Goodman, Alexander Halavais, Dew Harrison, Jeff Knowlton, Geert
Lovink, Martin Lucas, Nathan Martin, Kevin McCauley, Casey Reas, Shawn
Rider, Ricardo Rosas, Joel Slayton, Paul Vanouse

Vlog entries:
Richard Barbrook, Jon Cates, Tony Conrad, Jessica Irish


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From: Defne ayas <defne AT>
Date: Oct 23, 2005 5:18 PM

Content-Type: text/plain; charset=utf-8

November 3 through November 21, 2005

PERFORMA is pleased to announce the program of PERFORMA05, the first
biennial of new visual art performance in New York City. More than 20
venues throughout New York will present a multidisciplinary program of
live performances, film screenings, lectures, and exhibitions from
November 3 through 21, 2005. Ten major new works will be premiered and
more than 90 artists will participate in the three-week contemporary art
program. PERFORMA05 is organized under the curatorial direction of
Founding Director and Curator RoseLee Goldberg.


PERFORMA?s first commission True Love is Yet to Come, a new work by Danish
artist Jesper Just, will open PERFORMA05 at the Stephan Weiss Studio on
November 3rd. Working with the Danish multi-media theater company VISION4
and the cutting edge Eyeliner 3-D projection system, Just will bring to
life his seductively elegant style and complex take on male identity to
life through a layering of a live performance by Denmark's Baard Owe
interacting with projected images of the Finnish Screaming Men?s Choir and
animated sets.

Belgian artist Francis Alÿs will present Rehearsal II on November 17, a
PERFORMA commission and Alÿs?s first indoor performance, in collaboration
with Rafael Ortega with a trio of performers ? a strip-tease artist,
pianist and singer ? who will rehearse, over and over, the same
performance at the Slipper Room on the Lower Eastside. Eyebeam and
PERFORMA co-present Screen Play, a moving image visual score for live
musicians, by artist and composer Christian Marclay. Marclay?s video
collage combines computer animation, motion graphics and found footage,
and will be interpreted live by three different ensembles of live
musicians, including Elliott Sharp, TOT Trio, and Zeena Parkins, among

Salon 94 will preview a work-in-progress by Laurie Simmons, entitled, The
Music of Regret, a mini-musical film in three acts examining the
challenges of modern living in three tales of disappointment and regret.
Incorporating narrative cinema, musical theater, puppetry, and dance, the
film features key players from Simmons?s oeuvre, including her signature
walking objects, ventriloquist dummies, and vintage puppets. Acts I and II
of the film will be shown alongside a special live performance. The Music
of Regret is co-produced by Salon 94 and PERFORMA, and is Laurie Simmons?s
directorial debut.

LISTEN UP! Lectures as Performance at The Kitchen, will be an evening
highlighting the current interest of artists in using the formal lecture
setting as a context for visual art. Astrophysics with High Energy Light
is Bernar Venet?s reconstruction of an early conceptual work, Neutron
emission from muon capture in Ca40, which was first presented at The
Judson Church Theater in 1968. A Room of One?s Own, a new work by Coco
Fusco, will be a window onto special training sessions for women to learn
interrogation techniques.

NOT FOR SALE: Writing on Performance and New Media on November 12 is a
symposium presented in association with New York University?s Steinhardt
School of Education, Department of Art. A dynamic continuation of the
discussion initiated by PERFORMA in 2004, NOT FOR SALE examines
performance and its relationship to the museum, gallery, and collector.
The two-part symposium will bring together a distinguished panel of
critics and curators including Catherine Wood, curator of Tate Modern;
Katy Siegel, art historian, curator and critic; and Phillippe Vergne,
Co-Curator of Whitney Biennial 2006, who will discuss the art of writing
about multidisciplinary work as well as individual approaches to archiving
ephemeral art.

PERFORMA Radio, organized by Anthony Huberman, curator of SculptureCenter,
will expand the field of performance into radio space with projects by
invited artists including Ceal Floyer, Pierre Huyghe, and Banks Violette,
which will be broadcast on WFMU (91.1FM-NY, and WKCR (89.9FM-NY).PERFORMA
and Swiss Institute ? Contemporary Art will co-present 24-Hour Incidental,
which will simultaneous feature performances by ten artists, including
John Armleder, Peter Coffin, Jason Dodge, Annika Eriksson, Karl Holmqvist,
and Koo Jeong-A from noon one day to the next alongside the installation
of Yes Painting, 1966 by Yoko Ono.

Anthology Film Archives and PERFORMA will present an evening of
commissioned performances by three New York artists, Ei Arakawa, Jutta
Koether and Emily Sundblad, and will present film retrospectives of Bas
Jan Ader and Michael Smith, as well as the premiere of Rene Daalder?s
documentary on the art and life of Bas Jan Ader, Here Is Always Somewhere

Paula Cooper Gallery and PERFORMA co-present Carey Young?s Consideration,
a series of process-based contracts developed by artist in consultation
with a lawyer. WPS1 Art Radio, as the official Internet radio station of
PERFORMA05, will present a lineup of live broadcasts, interviews, and
documentation from the biennial including the launch of a book project
Cosmograms by Melik Ohanian, and Pablo Helguera's first operatic live
performance Foreign Legion-presented by Lower Manhattan Cultural Council
and Gigantic Art Space for PERFORMA05.

Artists Space joins forces with PERFORMA to present Empty Space with
Exciting Events. Artists Space curator, Christian Rattemeyer, has invited
guest curators and artists to present individual evenings of performance
that will form an extensive series in gallery?s main space. Artists
include Vlatka Horvat, Sabrina Gschwandtner, Cat Mazza, and Lee Walton.
Each Wednesday night will feature bands, with performances including
Discoteca Flaming Star, Larry Krone, and Millree Hughes.

PARTICIPANT INC will stage a performance-based installation as the site of
durational actions and several evenings of live video and performance
including Derrick Adams, Ron Athey & Juliana Snapper, Charles Atlas with
Chris Peck, Vaginal Davis, Lovett/Codagnone, My Barbarian, Luther Price
and Katherine Finneran, Rafael Sánchez, and Julie Tolentino.

Over 20 venues and organizations will present additional programming as
part of PERFORMA05, including: Anthology Film Archives, apexart, Art In
General, Art Production Fund, Artists Space, Eyebeam, The Kitchen, Lower
Manhattan Cultural Council, Museum for African Art, New York University,
Participant Inc., Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, The Studio Museum in
Harlem, Swiss Institute ? Contemporary Art and White Box. Participating
galleries include, Deitch Projects, Paula Cooper Gallery, Jack The Pelican
Presents, Leo Koenig Inc., Salon 94, and Yvon Lambert.


A full program of events is available online:

For Schedule information:

For Ticket Information:

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Submit to a Rhizome Commissioned Art Project!
Panel Junction is a project co-produced by media artist Andy Deck and many
volunteers. It combines the graphic novel with forms of shared authorship
that are unique to the Internet. Contributions from visitors become
material and base imagery for the narrative of the novel, which will
culminate in a free document good for online viewing and printing on any
standard inket printer. All images and text contributed to the project
will remain free for non-commercial use with attribution under a Creative
Commons license. Panel Junction received and 05-06 Commission.
Check it out, here:

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From: voipunk AT <voipunk AT>
Date: Oct 25, 2005 8:07 PM
Subject: The Hotmails Performance

Performance: Saturday, October 29, 2005 at 8:00 pm Helen Pitt Gallery

The Hotmails

The Hotmails is an Internet punk project produced by internationally
exhibiting Media Artists Alberto Guedea (Mexico) and Jeremy Turner
(Canada). For this project, Turner and Guedea perform as an Internet punk
band in attempts to evolve Internet Art from that of a dry archival
database to a rebellious purveyor of direct experience?as performance art.

The Hotmails audio works are computerized compositions made out of samples
taken from classic and contemporary punk and metal bands that accentuate
and investigate the nostalgic cliches surrounding the Punk aesthetic and
sensibility. Considered the first VoIPUNK project on the Net, The Hotmails
stream from Vancouver, through the Hotmail voice-chat service MSN and
other Voice-Over Internet Protocol (VoIP) platforms (Skype, Google Talk),
to galleries, artist-run centres and happenings around the world.

Helen Pitt Gallery
102-148 Alexander Street
Vancouver, B.C.
V6A 1B5 Canada
T: (604) 681-6740

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From: Brett Stalbaum <stalbaum AT>
Date: Oct 26, 2005 3:54 PM
Subject: A Short History of Virtual Hiking + video
+ short video ~ 9MB

A virtual hiker is an algorithm that produces computationally derived
paths from data in such a way that allows them to be re-followed through
the actual world. The virtual hikers that are included in the C5 Landscape
Database, beginning with version 2.0, include various Least Cost Path
hikers and a Slope Reduction hiker based on a natural selection algorithm.

The first attempt to follow a virtual hiker through a real landscape was
performed by C5 on April 9th 2005 near Dunsmuir California as part of the
quest to discover the *Other Path* of the Great Wall of China in
California, or as it is now known, simply the Great Wall of California.
After a rigorous insertion hike and facing both fading daylight and rapid
waters flowing through necessary water crossings, C5 was only able reach
the beginning of the Great Wall's other path. The visual comparison of the
China terrain and its California other were satisfyingly documented, even
through it was impossible to actually walk in the footsteps of the virtual
hiker. (C5 personnel are Joel Slayton, Steve Durie, Geri Wittig, Jack
Toolin, Brett Stalbaum, Bruce Gardner, Amul Goswamy and Matt Mays.)

The second attempts to follow a virtual hiker were performed by Paula
Poole and Brett Stalbaum using C5-developed software in the Anza Borrego
desert of Southern California. On May 28th 2005, we attempted to follow
the stepwise 3 degree Least Cost virtual hiker from Agua Caliente Springs
to the Inner Pasture. An earlier scouting mission had revealed that part
of the LCP path dead ended in a box canyon, but some probative scouting
revealed a saddle over which the canyon could be bypassed. Even though
this would cause a small divergence from the course, we proceeded to try
the full hike. Unfortunately, the virtual hiker's track also led over a
steep talus slope. While the path was not impossible to traverse due of
the severity of the slope alone, the combination of loose talus and the
many agave plants, cholla and barrel cactus in the area presented painful
safety challenges. The idea of following the LCP path to Inner Pasture was
abandoned after Brett slipped and fell, speari!
ng his arm on an agave.

Realizing that most paths in the area were probably untenable due to the
floristic nature of the Anza Borrego desert and its many sharp plants
including the beautiful ocotillo, jumping and teddy bear cholla, it was
decided to follow the nominal foot path to the Inner Pasture known as
Moonlight Canyon. While both the LCP hiker and Slope Reduction Virtual
Hiker utilized parts of Moonlight Canyon, they diverged enough that the
claim to have followed the virtual hikers could not be sustained.
Interestingly, however the virtual hikers did traverse parts of Moonlight

The desert mountain ranges of the Great Basin provide much less in the way
of spiny botanical hazards than do the Sonoran desert. A scouting mission
including Brett, Paula and Naomi Spellman was performed on June 18 2005 to
evaluate the terrain, and During the Locative Media in the Wild Workshop
at the White Mountain Research Station Crooked Creek Facility, July 22nd
of 2005, Brett, Naomi, Kimberlee Chambers and Nico Tripcevich became the
first to actually successfully follow the path of both a Three Degree
Least Cost Path hiker and a Slope Reduction hiker. True to form, the LCP
path followed a waterway, and the Slope Reduction Path discovered a
surprising and unexpectedly easier path than the non-computational path
that had originally been scoped out on June 18th. Experiments with virtual
hikers are ongoing.

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From: Cory Arcangel <cory.arcangel AT>
Date: Oct 28, 2005 8:26 AM
Subject: Interview with Tom Moody by Cory Arcangel

+Commissioned by
Interview with Tom Moody, by Cory Arcangel

+ Editor's Note: The following is an interview of Tom Moody, conducted by
Cory Arcangel, over several emails. Below are their bio's, followed by
the interview, which touches upon blogging, fandom, defunct hardware &
software, music, code, studio processes, and their shared appreciation for
the lo-fi... [ If this interview is truncated, in your email version of
the Rhizome Digest, you may view the entire piece online, here: ]

Tom Moody is a visual artist based in New York. His low-tech art made with
MSPaintbrush, photocopiers, and consumer printers has appeared in solo
shows at Derek Eller Gallery and UP&CO and numerous group shows. His
weblog at, begun in February 2001, was
recently recommended in the Art in America article "Art in the
Blogosphere," and his web video "Guitar Solo" made its live audience debut
this month in "23 Reasons to Spare New York," curated by Nick Hallett at
Galapagos Art Space in Williamsburg, NY.

Cory Arcangel is a computer artist, performer, and curator who lives and
works in Brooklyn. His work centers on his love of personal computers, the
internet, and popular culture. He is a member of the artist groups BEIGE
+ R.S.G. His work has shown recently in the Whitney Biennial of American
Art, The Guggenheim Museum, New York, the Museum of Modern Art, New York,
the Migros Museum in Zurich, and Team and Deitch Galleries, in New York.
Aside from gallery installations, most of his projects can be downloaded
with source code from his website...
Future projects include the music group Van Led, a self produced version
of MTV cribz, and various assorted computer hacks.

+ + +

Cory: One of the things I think is interesting about you is that you seem
to have done so many things. From being a fan of your blog over the past
couple of years (is there a word for this? blogfan?
RSStailgater?....anyway....), I have learned in bits and pieces that at
one point or another you were a painter, a DJ, and also a critic for more
traditional art magazines. As far as I can tell, you did this all at the
same time. Is it possible to connect the dots to give a bit of pre-blog
background about yourself, about how you came to each?

Tom: I double-majored in English lit and studio art at the University of
Virginia; I DJ'd all four years and was Program Director of the student FM
radio station, WTJU, the last two. Painting or being an artist is my main
focus, but my original interests are mostly all still going strong. After
college and a year of art school at the Corcoran in DC I moved to NY and
painted, without a clue of how to access the art scene. I tried to get
into SVA but applied too late for the fall semester. If I had gotten in,
Keith Haring would have been my classmate (!).

Then I moved to Texas, where I originally grew up. I exhibited work, wrote
art reviews for a Dallas zine, and to shorten a long story, that writing
eventually led to a Dallas Morning News freelance gig and covering Texas
for Artforum. Music took a back seat but one of my regrets was turning
down a radio show on KNON-FM--I wanted to but didn't have time. I wrote
tunes on the Macintosh but found music too time-intensive to produce at
that stage.

I moved back to NY in 1995, had my first solo show here in '98, and wrote
regularly for Artforum, which helped me get a sense of what was here. I
exhibited at Derek Eller Gallery and Uscha Pohl's UP&CO space and actually
sold work during the dot-com era, but by 2000 the first wave of what I'd
call viable computer-made art also began to implode. A show I co-organized
at Cristinerose Gallery called "Cyber Drawings," which also included
Claire Corey's and Marsha Cottrell's work, got enthusiastic press
response, but a certain momentum was being lost as potential collectors
watched their businesses go south. Around this time Annika Sundvik and
John Lavelle, who I met through the gallery world, opened a restaurant in
Chinatown called Good World Bar & Grill. I DJ'd there for the better part
of 2000. I started the blog in 2001, and started seriously making music
again last year.

Cory: Digital Media Tree seems to also have an interesting history. It is
a custom-built blog community which has many members of which you are one.
Running your blog on custom built software is actually quite rare, so I am
curious, how did Digital Media Tree get started?

Tom: Digital Media Tree is the brainchild of Jim Bassett, who wrote the
software and has been the low-key, creative, officially-unofficial
webmaster since 2000. It is a blog collective and quite active, with all
of us commenting on each other's pages and posting to public and private
group pages. My invitation to join the group came from artist Bill
Schwarz, who has a page at There
are features at the Tree at I haven't found in other blog packages, such
as the ease of configuring pages with "use your own html" options, and the
ability to spin off an infinite series of customized pages, as blogs or
fixed pages. I'm too lazy to learn CSS, but actually prefer my page's
under-designed html look.

Cory: It seems Bill was right-on by inviting you 'cause, looking through
your archives, you jumped really quickly into blog format. You were
reviewing shows, posting your own work, and even posting political
commentary. I am not sure where I am going with this...basically what was
your first impression of the blog format? Why didn't you restrict yourself
to one topic? And also, what was your motivation in posting your studio
process (a traditionally private practice) to the web?

Tom: I had my own site, and a site devoted to science fiction writer Doris
Piserchia (, up and
running a few months before joining the Tree so my basic rules of
navigation were already in place: no splash pages, images must load
quickly, assume no surfer will stay longer than .5 seconds so you better
deliver, etc. The range of my blog content emerged within the first six
months. Looking back at the "attack on America" posts from fall 2001, I
was still apologizing to an imagined art readership for all the political
ranting. By the end of the first year I knew the blog was going to be
based on desire, passion, whim, or whatever you want to call it. That I'd
post what I felt like and let the content emerge from that process.

Cory: Ok, so let's talk about your work. I did a studio visit a while
back, and the work that I remember being the most interesting in person
was your inkjet and MSPaint work. What is your fascination with personal
computer software and hardware? When did you make the switch from
paint-paint to MS paint? Why? Also is it true that your previous job had a
role to play in this transition? I remember you mentioning this once to

Tom: I started using MSPaintbrush, actually an older version of MSPaint,
on my first permatemp job in NY, which had a lot of downtime. The
computers we used didn't have Photoshop back then (around '95-'96). Actual
painting was giving me health problems--everything from turpentine
poisoning to repetitive stress injuries--and over a period of a couple
years, I gradually phased it out and started channeling everything I'd
been doing previously through this one dumb program. I liked the idea of
Paintbrush as a "found art tool"--it seemed genuinely exotic within the
still slightly medieval, hand-crafty art world but also didn't buy into
the whiz-bang futuristic assumptions I hated about so much computer art. I
figured almost everyone had fooled around with one of these early programs
and could intuitively get that I was doing something more elaborate with
it. That didn't necessarily turn out to be true, but that was the intent.

Cory: I love this post from your blog
(, talking about your
pre-computer work: "I mean, I like the ability of avowedly maximalist work
to upset people. Collectors prefer elegant black and white abstractions
that fade into the background, and the bad kid in me wants to make
something they'll totally hate. And these are bad--there are a lot of
degraded, half-finished pin-up girl drawings you can't see in the scanned
polaroid, and bug-eyed caricatures, just the worst stuff. I'm compelled to
do this kind of work (still) but once it's finished and I step back and
look at it, I sometimes wish I hadn't." Do u still agree with this?

Tom: The work I did before moving to NY was packed with imagery, much of
it unfiltered and kind of nasty. In the passage immediately prior to that
quote I talked about getting "minimalist religion" on moving here,
referring to all these studio visits I had with artists who said "You've
got to start breaking this down into its parts, figure out what matters to
you, open it up..." Otherwise--and I came to agree with this--the content
would just be that we all live in a haze of information and conflicting
signals, blah blah. The critiques made sense to me, and I ended up
isolating the tripped-out, spherical abstractions, slightly pitiful but
well-drawn portraits of media babes, and weird cartoons into separate
bodies of work, each drawn in Paintbrush and printed out on xerox paper
(and later EPSON home printer paper). I guess the point being you don't
have to fill up a picture to annoy collectors.

Cory: So, if I am understanding this correctly, all your visual art is
done on MSPaint?

Tom: It's actually Paintbrush--I know I'm a nerd on this subject. Paint
ships with all Windows-equipped computers now, Paintbrush is the earlier
version. It's abandonware but I still use it. I recently emailed the .exe
file to drx of Bodenstandig 2000 and he was really happy to get it! I
wrote a long blog post about why the earlier version was better before
Microsoft "improved" it. Mostly it's in the handling of shading with the
"spraycan tool"--you get much richer intermediate values. In answer to
your question, it's my main drawing and painting tool. I use Photoshop for
resizing and printing but I've never warmed up to painting in it--I like
seeing the pixels, especially with a photorealistic rendering; it's
literally edgier. Those spheres I do aren't made with a gradient tool,
they're all hand-shaded in Paintbrush.

Cory: There is a lot of talk about craft on your blog. You have stated
that you started to use MSPaint(brush) primarily because it was exotic and
you felt that the process was accessible to a wider art audience. Did the
idea of craft ever enter into this transition? What are/ were the various
hang-ups, and the advantages of using something like MSPaint in terms of
building a craft?

Tom: Hmmm, it sounds like I contradicted myself. When I said using that
particular computer program was exotic I meant in the sense that the art
world only just embraced *photography* as a legitimate medium, after
decades of resistance to it as a lesser art form. The computer still has
the shock of the new, or the shock of the bad in some cases. Art world
folks know painting, photo, and printmaking lore, but are less
secure--myself included--knowing what constitutes talent on the computer
as opposed to some easy-to-do technical trick. I thought because everyone
had Paint or the equivalent on their computer and had at least made a mark
or spritzed the spraycan, they could see that I was doing something more
ambitious with it. I was thinking of this guy in New Mexico who made
perfect perspective drawings using an Etch a Sketch. If I could draw La
Femme Nikita from scratch on this toy program and actually have people
(well, guys) say she's hot, then a landmark would be achieved for both
Paintbrush and the computer. The problem is I drew her so realistically
people assumed I was running a photo though a pixelating filter.

When I talk about craft on the blog, just to make it clear, I'm not
talking about drawing ability but things like mosaics and needlepoints
that relate to the computer on a much more fundamental image-making level,
the grid level. I love the cross-stitch patterns and beadwork you can find
online based on MSPaint drawings. In the late '90s I was impressed by the
writing of cyberfeminist Sadie Plant, who opened up for me a whole
organic, non-analytical way of looking at computation. She traces digital
equipment back to one of its earliest uses, as punchcards for looms, and
talks of the internet as a distributed collaborative artwork akin to
traditionally feminine craft projects At the time I was drawing and
printing hundreds of spheres at work and bringing them home, cutting
polygons around them, and then taping the polygons back together in
enormous paper quilts. In my press release for the Derek Eller show we
called it "corporate tramp art."

Cory: Lets talk about what you are working on now..... recently you (and
I) were included in the Fuzzy Logic show of the Futuresonic festival. What
did you show there?

Tom: One of those quilts, which I'm still making. That body of work has
been shown quite a bit over the years but the Fuzzy Logic show was the
first where a surrounding dialogue perfectly fit it. Plant attended
Futuresonic as a speaker, and co-curator Jackie Passmore wrote about the
art show: "the between the tools of handcraft and computer
programming indiscriminately, highlighting the oft-overlooked correlation
between the lo-fi art of handcraft and knitting and its digital
descendant, the computer. Fuzzy Logic celebrates the art of the
microprocess: knitting numbers, aligning loom and logic, weaving program
and pattern." The quilt I had in Fuzzy Logic was a little different in
that I made a big Buckyball from a scan of an old painting and hand pieced
an Op art pattern drawn in Paintbrush around it. What did you show?

Cory: Well, at Futuresonic, I showed an "Infinite Fill Blanket." People
may or may not remember that about a year ago, my sister and I put
together a show, at the gallery Foxy Production, all based around the
paint patterns in Mac Paint (called Infinite Fill patterns). It was a
group show, and in the end we had 93 people. Basically we let anyone in
who submitted stuff that was black and white and had patterns. So yeah,
for this, at one point I wanted to make Infinite Fill clothes. So Jamie
went and bought this big piece of fabric, and took it to the silkscreeners and they silkscreened a pattern on the fabric. So to make
a long story short, the fabric never ended up getting to a fashion
designer and became a blanket, which I (for some reason) brought to
Liverpool when I was in residency AT the FACT center. From there it ended
up in the show!

Speaking of the "Infinite Fill Show," you submitted a piece for it, which
was an animated gif similar to the gifs on your blog. I was interested in
knowing how having the blog has changed your art? For example, much of the
earlier work you posted to the blog was documentation, but now I am seeing
finished pieces, or "end files," meaning the file you post IS the art. I
would consider your mp3's in that category also....

Tom: The "Infinite Fill Show" also featured that "MacPaint meets repeating
pattern meets craft" theme that hardly existed in the late '90s. At least
in the gallery environment. The show felt new and fresh to me and I went a
little crazy writing about it on the weblog. Over the course of a few
weeks I did about 20 posts, with photos and some attempt to articulate a
theory ('s review referenced psychedelia and goth but I wanted it clear
that, as you said, the operative buzz words were "Op Art" and "geek." I
like that you made it open call--that gave it some of the energy of Jim
Shaw's "Thrift Store Paintings" show at Metro Pictures in the '90s,
combined with what's out there now on the amateur web.

You are right about the change in my own work on the weblog. At a certain
point, if you know a few people are checking out the page it's tempting to
make work specifically for that setting. I try to balance different types
of writing and art, because the web screams for dynamic change. Animated
GIFs punch up the page, or annoy, depending on how you see them, just as
they do on the commercial web. The music has really taken off in the last
year and I've been pleased with the stats and supportive comments. After
my early experiments with MusicWorks on the Macintosh in the '80s, I've
been blown away to discover what you can do on a home computer now.

Cory: Yes, I have been quite interested in the music.... It seems, right
now, the web is perfectly geared towards this... I mean u can basically
sit at home, upload some music, and because your blog has a built-in
audience, basically get that music out the door right away. About one of
them ( Talk
to me about those weird techno synth pads that come in a pitch shift all
over the place! Awesome.

Tom: They come from a software synthesizer called Absynth; I find most of
its presets kind of arty but that one is too lush not to use. It has some
kind of gating effect that changes it depending on what's playing in the

Cory: What are your influences for this music? They sound quite studied,
actually. They make me think of my first rave experiences. Do u know what
you are going for, or do you just play around until you get something you
like? They are also quite a bit more advanced than even I remember when
you started, which is amazing. Are you interested in the idea that people
can basically hear you develop your sound?

Tom: That first work you heard was done with my old Mac SE, lock grooves,
beats from turntables, etc. I'm doing almost everything on the PC now, and
have learned quite a few new tricks in the past year with a sequencer
(Cubase SE) and various softsynths. I'm not too conscious of the
evolution, glad to hear it, but I'm obviously not self-conscious about
trying out things in public. Knowing there's an audience, however small,
means I'll put in that extra twelve hours to make the thing as tight as I
can get it.

One thing I omitted from my bio was that, in my "tweener" years, I
traveled around Texas with a boys choir, performing Benjamin Britten
carols, mostly to church audiences. At age eleven I sang the countertenor
in Britten's "Canticle II: Abraham and Isaac": I sucked as Isaac but I
learned it. I've been involved with music my whole life but never
particularly cared about playing it; what I'm doing now is composing and
letting the machines do the manual part. Fortunately, electronic music
provides an arena where you're *expected* to be both composer and
performer. In my college DJ years I was airing Can, Ralf and Florian, Tony
Williams Lifetime, Iggy Pop's The Idiot, etc. My jaw dropped, in the early
'90s, when I first heard breakbeat 'ardkore rave stuff. I couldn't believe
how good it was--it was like all my influences grew up (and sped up).

Cory: I like this one ( Where is
the drum machine from? What is the name of that eerie piano sound? That
sound is great and got lost in the post-rave era. Where are the drum
samples from? (Sorry for everyone reading this to get so technical, but
after studying music for so many years, I no longer have the ability to
talk about music normally.)

Tom: The drum beats are from the Vermona DRM1, a German-made beatbox from
the late '80s. I downloaded a demo with individual hits and snipped the
.wav files to make a kit, which plays in the drum sampler Battery. Every
two bars, the drumming speeds up: that's a Cubase effect called "midi
echoes." The eerie piano is a "house pad" that ships with another
softsampler, Kompakt--it is really pretty and definitely has that rave
sound. I have no problem using presets as long as the surrounding context
shows some thought. Sampling opens up a whole historical dimension in
music, it's a pity we have to use licensed materials now or get our brains
sued out, but that's another interview.

Cory: So yeah, basically, even doing this interview was hard for me, cause
u do so much. i mean, you are a critic, have a visual art practice which
is somewhere between real and virtual, and also u are constantly making
music. So, i mean, woah, you are all over the place. I think my practice
is similar, and recently when i lecture about my work, the whole point of
my lectures is trying to have people see the thread that holds it all
together. Does a similar thread exist for you?

Tom: Well, there's good "all over the place" as well as bad. When I got to
New York I had some interesting studio discussions with artists about
forcing yourself to do one thing. Obviously it makes for a smoother ride
in the art world, which still seems to have only one model--the driven
Mondrian or Pollock working toward a signature style, which, surprise,
surprise, fits into the market's need for a streamlined identifiable
product. Despite all the curatorial talk about cross-disciplinary
practices, the monomaniacs have an easier time of it. A painter I talked
to quite a bit, in the '90s, is a terrific cartoonist, musician,
musicologist, and writer, and at a certain point he made the conscious
decision to begin channeling his energy and interests through his
painting, trusting that all his content would come out through that one
activity. And it worked for him--he's had a great career.

But there are different ways to be a monomaniac. The artists I admire most
are all multiple stylists: Polke, Kippenberger, Picabia. For all my
supposed diversity, I cycle back again and again to certain things: the
lo-fi, the love/hate relationship with technology, some kind of squirmy
vortex image (or sound), an arrested-adolescent eroticism... I'm for the
irrational and against narratives, despite my use of them as a critic. My
abstract work is quite focused, paradoxical as that sounds, and is getting
more so, but these other activities may be increasing the noise-to-signal
ratio in the short term. Sometimes it feels like the only thread is the
urge not to have a thread; I take it on faith there's an overall direction
even I might not be aware of.

+ + +


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Rhizome Digest is filtered by Marisa Olson (marisa AT ISSN:
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