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: 02.10.06
Date: Fri, 10 Feb 2006 15:32:44 -0800

RHIZOME DIGEST: February 10, 2006

++ Always online at ++


2. Lauren Cornell: Rhizome Commissions Program call for proposals
3. carlos rosas: Job Posting: Assistant/Associate Professor of New Media Art
4. Marisa Olson: call for entries: DOLORES, artist residency in Munich
5. {soundLAB): SoundLab: call for soundart

6. Lee Walton, Marisa Olson, Sal Randolph, T.Whid: Wappening #2

7. nathaniel stern: The Upgrade! Joburg presents: Daniel Hirschmann
8. Chris Byrne: Art-Place-Technology, Liverpool: International Symposium
on Curating New Media Art, 30 March - 1 April 2006
9. Marjan van Mourik: Lovebytes 2006

10. Sal Randolph: Re: Net Aesthetics 2.0 Panel

11. abe linkoln, Michael Szpakowski, Marisa Olson, aabrahams, Pall Thayer,
Ryan Griffis, marc, Dirk Vekemans, manik, Lee Wells, Jim Andrews,
jo AT, Eric Dymond, Myron Turner, op, Nad: isabelle dinoire

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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: sachiko hayashi <look AT>
Date: Feb 4, 2006



[Kon.[Text]] Symposium
Zurich, Switzerland, Thursday July 13th to Sunday July 16th, 2006

Digital Art Weeks - ETH Zurich -

The Digital Art Weeks PROGRAM (DAW06) is concerned with the application of
digital technology in the arts. Consisting of symposium, workshops and
performances, the program offers insight into current research and
innovations in art and technology as well as illustrating resulting
synergies in a series of performances during the Digital Art Weeks
Festival each year, making artists aware of impulses in technology and
scientists aware of the possibilities of the application of technology in
the arts.

[Kon.[Text]], this year's Digital Art Weeks SYMPOSIUM concerns the use of
the Performative Surround in the arts and the technology that drives it.
The Performative Surround pertains to the immersive quality and quantity
of the setting of a performative artwork that uses electronic media
enhancement. In a series of lectures, demonstrations, panels and
performances, artists and researcher will examine the use of electronic
media in articulating the performer's presence through the possibilities
of the multi-sensuality of electronic media.

The organizers of the Digital Art Weeks ETH Zurich are seeking
presentations, demonstrations and performances on all themes specific to
performance using electronic media that explore a concept of the
Performative Surround. Submissions of both theoretical and empirical
studies are invited from the perspectives of the performing arts and
computer science and as well as other topics relevant areas.

Suggested submission topics for papers, demonstrations and performance
include, but are not limited to the following themes:

1. Media Enhanced Artwork in the areas of Performance, Dance and Sound-Art
2. Laptop Music (including Live-Coding!) & Film Accompaniment (Live-Cinema
& Re-Scoring)
3. Mobile Art & Music Works that explore Performer Networking and Audience
4. Net-poetry and literature & computer mediated communication (i.e.,
Hyper-Media Embedding)
5. Grammar- or Syntactically based Software Systems for Multimedia Systems

DEADLINE FOR ALL PROPOSALS: Friday, March 17, 2006.

Notification of acceptance of proposals will be sent out on or before
Friday, April 7, 2006.


DIGITAL ART WEEKS 2006 (DAW06) is interested in artistic and theoretical
work in the form of:

* Papers, Panels and Presentations can include DVDs, audio CDs,
videotapes, web-sites, etc. Papers and Presentations can be 25 or 45
minutes in length. DAW06 organizers will build panels based on reviews of
materials submitted.

* Proposed artwork to be included in the DAW06 Festival may take the form
of performances with or without media enhancement or be in the form
screenings live or fixed material.

* Applications should not exceed 500 words. Applicants should indicate one
of the festival categories in the subject of the message. Please include a
200 word max bio.

* All proposals must be submitted in plaintext only format either as an
attachment and/or within the body of the email message.

* In case of Audio and/or Video examples, please provide a valid URL to a
web site containing them.

* If your presentation requires specific technologies, please describe
your needs in detail.

All proposals should be submitted electronically to:
Art Clay - arthur.clay AT

or should be sent per mail to:
Art Clay
Computer Systems Institute
ETH Zentrum, RZ H 18
Clausiusstrasse 59
CH-8092 Zürich

All accepted papers will be published on-line in the Digital Art Weeks
digital library.


DIGITAL ART WEEKS General Requests:
daw-info AT

Jürg Gutknecht
Art Clay
Stefan Müller Arisona

Join the DAW Mailing List:

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From: Lauren Cornell <laurencornell AT>
Date: Feb 9, 2006
Subject: Rhizome Commissions Program call for proposals

Please submit, and help us spread the word!

Information on how to submit can be found at the following link:

Thanks and best,

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From: carlos rosas <rosasstudio AT>
Date: Feb 9, 2006
Subject: Job Posting: Assistant/Associate Professor of New Media Art

We are in the process of an ongoing new media search at Penn State
University: see description below...


New Media Art, Early Career Position
The Pennsylvania State University
State College, Pennsylvania

NEW MEDIA ARTIST - Assistant Professor or untenured Associate Professor.
This is a permanent, tenure-track position.

Qualifications: Graduate degree and at least two years of college-level
teaching experience beyond graduate assistantship. Demonstrated commitment
to research and professional activity at the national and international
level. Outstanding teacher of new media studio art courses. In addition to
experience with digital media, the successful candidate should possess
knowledge of contemporary art, theory and criticism as it relates to new
media art practice.

Responsibilities: Teach undergraduate and graduate new media courses.
Provide leadership in curriculum development for the new media area of
concentration in the Penn State School of Visual Arts. Active
participation in undergraduate and graduate programs across disciplines,
plus other school duties.

The New Media Art area of concentration in the Penn State School of Visual
Arts (SoVA) includes creative 2d, 3d, and 4d work in Net art, sound,
video, interactivity, gaming, multimedia, installation, activism/tactical
media, robotics, haptic environments, open source, hybridity, transmedia,
wireless art, nomadic work, motion graphics, animation, and technological
and cultural interfaced performance. Applicants with expertise and
creative research in one or more of these areas are encouraged to apply.

Starting Date: AUGUST 2006

Salary: Commensurate with qualifications and experience.

Application Deadline: Ongoing search and will continue until a suitable
candidate is identified.

Application Procedure: Applicants should submit a letter addressing her or
his qualifications relative to the responsibilities specified above; a
current vitae; artist statement; video, DVD, CD-ROM, or other appropriate
media; and the name, address, email, and phone number of four (4)
references. Please submit materials to: New Media Search committee c/o Dr.
Charles Garoian, Director, PENN STATE School of Visual Arts, Position
#W005-34, 210 Patterson Building, University Park, PA 16802.

Please include a self-addressed, stamped envelope for the return of your

Penn State is committed to affirmative action, equal opportunity, and the
diversity of its workforce.

----------------------------------- -----------------------------------------

Carlos Rosas
Associate Professor, Head New Media Art
New Media Search Committee Chair
Studio Program Head (interim)
School of Visual Arts (SoVA)
The Pennsylvania State University
University Park, PA 16802
email: crosas AT

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From: Marisa Olson <marisa AT>
Date: Feb 9, 2006
Subject: call for entries: DOLORES, artist residency in Munich

From: Annette Schemmel <a.schemmel AT>

Dear ladies and gentlemen,

being one of the curators of a young Munich art institution,
Lothringer13/laden (, I would like to ask for your
network-support in order to spread the information on our latest format:

DOLORES, a new, 2-months artist residency for foreign fine art
practicioners in Munich. Application-Deadline: 28.2.2006!

Please find information on DOLORES and detailed criteria for applications
Below. Please feel free to forward that information to anyone you consider
as fitting!

Thanks in advance,

Annette Schemmel
annette AT

DOLORES (Doku e.V. - Lothringer13/laden - Residency)

For the first time in 2006 two Munich art institutions, the unique
artist-colony Domagkstrasse/Doku e.V. and the established city-run art
space Lothringer13/laden offer a 2-month artist residency in Munich for
art producers from abroad: DOLORES!

E-mail-application deadline: 28.2. 2006

Our interest is to temporarily overcome the financial exclusiveness of our
home-town for foreign artists and to connect to art praxes aside the first
art market on an international level by creating dialogue and networks.

The residency term is 1.08.2006 - 30.09.2006. Doku e.V. places a single
bedroom in an artist Wohngemeinschaft and a 2-moths public transport
ticket at the host?s disposal. In addition to that the Lothringer13/laden
show-room is kept vacant for studio work and a 10-day solo-exhibit
(including a 500.- EUR project-budget, PR and opening event) by the
resident at the end of September 2006.


Interested artists, fitting into the below listed criteria, are asked for
digital applications up to the 28.2.2006 on alle AT with
the code ?DOLORES-application? in the subject line of the e-mail,

1. their post- and e-mail-address and telephone-number
2. a short text about their motivation (max. 1 page)
3. a short CV
4. a project proposal for the residency-term and the exhibit (about 1 page).

A jury, consisting in a curator from Doku e.V., the curatorial team of
Lothringer13/laden and the editor of Munich arts-Newsletter (RADAR), will
decide about the proposals by the middle of march 2006.

Candidates musn?t live in Germany by the date of their application and
have to have a foreign citizenship. Candidates musn?t profit from second
stipends in Munich by the time of their application, neither by the time
of the residency (august/september 2006).

Candidates for DOLORES should have a degree in Fine Arts or an
equivalent/similar education. There is no age-limit. Experimental and/or
media-based artistic strategies, such as performance, net-art,
installation, are preferred, yet not conditional.

For the Dolores-programme?s focus being on the dialogue with the host, the
candidate's ability to speak English is a prerequisite. If interested, the
resident will be brought into contact with the local art scene (art
academy, galleries, musea, artist community).

Residence in Munich during august/September 2006, participation in an
official welcome-event in DOKU e.V. and developing a solo-show for
Lothringer13/laden are obligatory conditions for the resident. The
resident must not labour more then 10 h/week besides his artistic work
during his residency-term in Munich.

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Rhizome ArtBase Exhibitions

Visit "Net Art's Cyborg[feminist]s, Punks, and Manifestos", an exhibition
on the politics of internet appearances, guest-curated by Marina Grzinic
from the Rhizome ArtBase.

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From: {soundLAB} <virtu AT>
Date: Feb 10, 2006
Subject: SoundLab: call for soundart

Call for soundart
deadline 30 June 2006
is invited to launch its 4th edition
in the framework of the Cologne based soundart event
KlangDrang Festival
6-7 October 2006 and be part of the interactive media exhibition
by [R][R][F]2006--->XP -
on the same occasion.
--->Call for submissions
Deadline 30 June 2006
is looking for soundart works of
a) experimental character
b) electronic music
c) Voice -sound/music integration
d) and other forms
Theme : "Memoryscapes"
based on the subjects: ---> "memory" and "identity"
The submission has to be posted on a webpage for download,
please do not send it as an email attachement.
Submission format: .mp3
Size: Max 5MB, exceptions possible, but on request.
The authors/artists keep all rights on their submitted works.
Deadline 30 June 2006
Please use this form for submitting:
******************* of artist, email address, URL
2. short biography/CV (not more than 300 words)
3. works (maximum 3), year of production, running time
a) URL for download
4. short statement for each work
(not more than 300 words each)
The submitter declares and confirms
that he/she is holding all author's rights
and gives permission to include the submitted work
in "Soundlab" online environment until revoke.
Signed by (submitter)
Please send the complete submission to
soundlab AT
subject: Soundlab edition IV
Deadline 30 June 2006
This call can be also found on
editions I - III of SoundLab -
can be found on
SoundLab Channel/Memory Channel 7-->at
[R][R][F]2006--->XP via the artistic body
or separately also via or

Both are corporate parts of
the experimental platform for art and New Media
operating from Cologne/Germany

and its common weblog is
NetEX - networked experience


+ + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + 2005-2006 Net Art Commissions

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: T.Whid <twhid AT>
Date: Feb 10, 2006
Subject: Re: Fwd: Wappening #2

Hi all,

I made it. I had a strange sort of elation when I exited the subway and
saw him still standing there freezing and knowing that I had his salvation
bulging in my coat pocket.

Lee's pieces along this line are a weird sort of flash anti-mob where only
a few 'in-the-know' even know there's art happening. A sly statement on
the 'special' knowledge some contend one needs to appreciate some forms of
contemporary art?

Also we need to coin a phrase for this type of work (MTAA has also made
work along these lines): net.flux anybody?

On 2/10/06, Sal Randolph <sal AT> wrote:
> I'm getting ready to head over there, but is anybody closer? It
> would take me 45 min or so to get there.
> On Feb 10, 2006, at 12:34 PM, Marisa Olson wrote:
> > These are some of Lee Walton's best projects...
> >
> > Will someone in NY please get to the 23rd street NRW & give this dude
> > an orange? :)
> >
> > ---------- Forwarded message ----------
> > From: Lee Walton <lee AT>
> > Date: Feb 10, 2006 9:15 AM
> >
> >
> > Greetings,
> >
> > At this very moment Rob Bohn is standing on a corner in NYC and
> > desperately
> > needs your help.
> >
> >
> >
> > Utilize your vast networks and resources. He is depending on you...

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From: nathaniel stern <nathaniel.stern AT>
Date: Feb 6, 2006
Subject: The Upgrade! Joburg presents: Daniel Hirschmann

Announcing the latest node in the International Upgrade! network:
Johannesburg, South Africa.

We begin this Friday with a presentation by Daniel Hirschmann, 3PM in the
"Digital Convent" at Wits School of the Arts' Digital Arts Program. Map:

Daniel Hirschmann is an artist, technology enthusiast and Harry Potter
fan. He is passionate about building and playing with sculptural
interfaces between the real and digital worlds. Other interests include
most things geeky, gorgeous or interesting. His work has been shown at art
exhibitions and conferences in New York, France, England and South Africa.
Recent works include a tactile 3D display surface titled Glowbits (2004),
and an exhibition involving a fleet of personality enhanced robots in
Nice, the Nicebots (2004). His days are currently spent as a researcher in
Fabrica, Benetton's creativity hub in Italy.

His presentation: an introduction to the Benetton-owned creative hub known
to the world as Fabrica - a space in which the fusion of Art and Marketing
is explored. In the presentation, Daniel will look at
questions of approach and creativity tailored to the retail/ commercial

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From: Chris Byrne <chris AT>
Date: Feb 6, 2006
Subject: Art-Place-Technology, Liverpool: International Symposium on
Curating New Media Art, 30 March - 1 April 2006

International Symposium on Curating New Media Art
Liverpool School of Art & Design and FACT Centre
30 March - 1 April 2006

New media art is a global phenomenon: a rapidly changing and dynamic field
of creative practice which crosses conventional categories and
disciplinary boundaries, challenging our assumptions about art.

- How do curators engage with new media art?
- What makes a good curator of new media art?
- What can we learn from the pioneers of this field?
- What does the future hold for curating new media art?
- What common ground exists with other disciplines?

These and other issues will be explored at Art-Place-Technology. Speakers
include figures who are shaping the practice and theory of curating new
media art, including:

Inke Arns, Artistic Director, Hartware MedienKunstVerein, Dortmund.
Sarah Cook, Curator and Co-editor, CRUMB, University of Sunderland
Paul Domela, Deputy Chief Executive, Liverpool Biennial
Lina Dzuverovic, Director, Electra, London
Charlie Gere, Reader in New Media Research, Lancaster University
Beryl Graham, Curator and Co-editor, CRUMB, University of Sunderland
Ceri Hand, Director of Exhibitions, FACT, Liverpool
Drew Hemment, Director, Futuresonic, Manchester
Kathy Rae Huffman, Director of Visual Arts, Cornerhouse, Manchester
Stephen Kovats, International Programs Developer, V2, Rotterdam
Amanda McDonald Crowley, Director, Eyebeam Art & Technology Center, New York
Francis McKee, Head of Digital Arts & New Media, CCA, Glasgow
Alfred Rotert, Co-director, European Media Art Festival, Osnabrück
Trebor Scholz, Institute for Distributed Creativity, New York
Dimitrina Sevova & Alain Kessi, codeflow, Zurich
Paul Sullivan, Director, Static Gallery, Liverpool
Simon Worthington, Mute, London

Art-Place-Technology will look at historical and current projects by some
of the world's leading curators of new media art, and discuss how curating
new media art creates interfaces with the art world, museum culture,
media, publishing and academia.

Further programme details and registration:
Tel +44 (0)151 2315190
E-mail APT AT

Art-Place-Technology is hosted by the Liverpool School of Art & Design,
Liverpool John Moores University in collaboration with FACT and Art
Research Communication.

Supported by Arts Council England North West, Media Arts Network.

Art Research Communication
newsletter AT

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From: Marjan van Mourik <webmaster AT>
Date: Feb 8, 2006
Subject: Lovebytes 2006

Lovebytes 2006. Environments
International Festival of Digital Art and Media

20 - 25 March
Sheffield UK

The 10th Lovebytes Festival explores the relationship between physical
and digital environments. Featuring live music and multi- media
performances, film screenings, workshops and exhibitions of new media
work from around the world.

Main events 23 - 25 March
Exhibitions run for various periods between 20 March - 11 June

Performing Live: Francis Dhomont / Fennesz / Aoki Takamasa / CM von
Hausswolff / Dfuse / Leafcutter John / Iris Garrelfs / Pixelwrangler /
Si-Cut Db / Dave Clarke / Nathan Fake / Calika / Mint / Millicent / Ochre
/ Digitonal / Ultre / Jethro Bagust / Rowan Porteus / Jake Harries

Djs: V3ctor / A+R (Alku/Mego)

Film Screenings and Talks: Richard Fenwick / desperate optimists / David
Slade / Colin Harvey / Semiconductor / Carl Michael von Hausswolff &
Thomas Nordanstad / Leo Obstbaum & Miguel Marin / Prevett & McArthur /
Olsen / UK Film Council / Japan Media Arts Festival / International
Festival of Cinema & Technology / onedotzero / Animate! / Mirrorball

Workshops: Julian Oliver / Mark Fell & George Saxon / Flat-e / Matt Gray

Exhibitions: HFR-LAB / Junebum Park / Julian Oliver & Steven Pickles /
Hiraki Sawa / Squidsoup / Daniel Crooks

Venues: Showroom Cinema / Workstation / Millennium Galleries / Sheffield
University Student's Union / Access Space / Site Gallery / HUBs
(Sheffield Hallam Student's Union)

+ more to be confirmed.

Programme details and booking information available 25 February

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From: Sal Randolph <sal AT>
Date: Feb 9, 2006
Subject: Re: Net Aesthetics 2.0 Panel

To view this entire thread, click here:

+ + +

> On 2/8/06, Lee Wells <lee AT> wrote:
>> Curious to hear what people thought about the Panel at EAI on Monday?

Some interesting things that came up during the panel:

-- Outsider Imagery -- The widespread influence of what one of the
artist's (Michael Bell-Smith) called 'internet folk art' -- animated gifs,
avatars, personal blogs, home pages, mashups, game sprites, etc. All of
the individual quirky production of gazillions of internet users. If you
include webcams in that list, then all of the artists on the panel used
some of these elements and aesthetics.

-- Nostalgia -- Caitlin Jones brought up the question of whether most of
the work had an aspect of nostalgia for earlier (more utopian?)
technological times (sometimes just a few years ago) -- all the
artists resisted this idea, saying pretty much that it was just too hard
to keep up with the absolute now of the internet, and that using aesthetic
elements which were a few years in the past was just a side effect of
this. Despite that, once the idea of nostalgia was in the air, it was
hard to dismiss.

-- The Sublime -- interestingly the Sublime was somehow connected (during
the discussion) with being in a gallery (as opposed to being online -- is
that the mundane?) -- And as MTAA mentioned on their blog post ( ) there was an
amazing mashup on the projector for a good long time with the wikipedia
entry for the sublime interrupted by manic (and gorgeous) black
and white pop-up windows. Sublime indeed. Other candidates for the
sublime were Marisa Olson's & Abe Linkoln's universal acid videos (which
you can see at ) , Michael Bell-Smith's
video Continue (not online, but there's a still at ) and Cory Archangel's
classic Super Mario Clouds.

-- Memes -- on the internets, no one can hear you unless you meme. Cory
Archangel brought up the need for his online work to be meme- able, and
also the idea that he keeps his internet work what he called 'fey' --
meaning that it has to function in the non-art context of someone running
across it while at work etc. where it's "just a website". Internet
artworks have to survive without the hushed chapel of the gallery,
competing with all the other information & detritus, and amusement online.
One of the strategies internet artworks use as a survival tool is to be

-- The Game -- to roughly quote Michael Connor "The last thing you want to
tell somebody is that the Superbowl is just a game -- 'turn that off, it's
just a game'. Art isn't just a game. It's a *game*." Meaning that the
fact the art world is a play space, and that art is a kind of game doesn't
make it any less serious, if anything it makes it more serious. I believe
he used the word 'transcendent'. There's that sublime again.

-- 2.0 -- No one on the panel really thought we were at a 2.0 moment, but
I wonder if we might be without knowing it. To me the interesting element
of what's usually called web 2.0 is the shift from websites as spaces of
presentation towards websites as genuinely social spaces. Most of the
panelists worked in the (very extended) tradition of video, so we didn't
really see the other side of net art, the really networked, collaborative
end of things which is a much a part of net art as what might be visible
on a screen.

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From: abe linkoln <abe AT>, Michael Szpakowski
<szpako AT>, Marisa Olson <marisa AT>, aabrahams
<aabrahams AT>, Pall Thayer <p_thay AT>, Ryan
Griffis <ryan.griffis AT>, marc <marc.garrett AT>,
Dirk Vekemans <dv AT>, manik <manik AT ptt.yu>, Lee Wells
<lee AT>, Jim Andrews <jim AT>, jo AT, Eric
Dymond <dymond AT>, Myron Turner <myron_turner AT>, op
<t AT>, Nad <nad AT>
Date: Feb 7-9, 2006
Subject: isabelle dinoire

To view this entire thread, click here:

+ + +

+abe linkoln <abe AT> posted:+

+Michael Szpakowski <szpako AT> replied:+

This is as well made as one would expect it to be. The music is great &
the creation of a kind of 'arc of suspense', of crafting an implied
narrative out of the source material is done with consummate skill. Why
then do I feel so uncomfortable with it? I think because it seems to
impose a narrative from particular fictional genres, horror, SF ( & here I
call as my witness the music, accomplished as it is, and the synching of
the final frames to the music, the
convulsive quality of it - & I don't think I am simply projecting any
personal squeamishness here) onto a current event,the story of which
moreover, even allowing for the hype & distortion endemic to our media, is
clearly a complex web of tragedy, resourcefulness, gratitude, ( oh -& a
deep strangeness, I don't deny).. I can't help feeling that this piece,
effective as it is (& perhaps precisely because of this) somehow fails in
an artistically and ethically problematic way to *tell the truth*...

+Marisa Olson <marisa AT> replied:+

I agree. It was very engaging.

> I can't help feeling that this piece, effective as it
> is (& perhaps precisely because of this) somehow fails
> in an artistically and ethically problematic way to
> *tell the truth*...

I find this to be an interesting point. Some questions...

*Why is it artistically important to tell the truth?
*Why is it ethically important to tell the truth in a work of art?
*How does this piece fail to tell the truth, in your opinion?
*[How] does it lie?
*Is this simply a question of humane reference to human subjects or some
larger point about the responsibility of art? (all art?)
*Is this an expectation imposed on a work of art because of its use of
"documentary" material?
*Is the "reality" of the source material, itself, not true enough?
*Or do you find this to be some sort of "double positive" (ie true footage
plus true footage equals falsity..)?
*Without implying that this piece tries to do so, but just jumping to the
larger question, is it "artistically and ethically problematic" to draw
from verite to escape from and/or parody reality?

Sorry--I had to use at least one French word in this post. :)

+aabrahams <aabrahams AT> replied:+

This is what I wrote to Abe this morning :

> "I do appreciate your work a lot, but this time I don't understand you.
> For me the images on the télé were a lot more impressive.
> you made a cartoon out of an act of courage. (even when certainly
> inspired/obliged by for-fame-looking surgeons)
> and you didn't denounce anything
> you were
> just making fun?
> did I miss something?
> best Annie Abrahams"

it's impossible to tell the truth.
this is not about truth or falsity

maybe about morals?

+Marisa Olson <marisa AT> replied:+

I fully understand where you are coming from in saying that Linkoln might
have "made a cartoon out of an act of courage," but this piece doesn't
read to me as someone "just making fun"--except perhaps in the sense that
it employs many techniques that are common to his work and which are, in
themselves, often "fun."

To put it very crudely, we are talking about an act of remixing a face.
Given Linkoln's body of work, it's interesting to juxtapose tissue
sampling and the sampling of media. It's not my role to overstate or
impose such an "intention" upon this work, but I think it can definitely
be read in that way.

I honestly see nothing immoral about this video. That's obviously just one
person's subjective response, but it's one informed by another subjective
response to the mainstream discourse surrounding face transplants. The
subject is scary, exciting, and confusing. I think Linkoln is part of a
generation of artists who make remixes to make sense of things in a media
saturated culture.

And it just so happens that this all occurs in a time of intense policy
debate about both cloning and copyright.

> it's impossible to tell the truth.
> this is not about truth or falsity

I agree with you here, Annie.

This video reads, to me, like an animation of the "techniques of the
observer," as Jonathan Crary famously put it. Observation, itself, is a
complex operation...

Meanwhile, it's interesting to observe the response to this work. Dare I
ask in what way "the images on the télé were a lot more impressive," and
how they were any more "moral" than Linkoln's video? Is this your
sentiment about the footage?

I have to say that I personally find some of the pithy headlines and media
treatment of this story to be more outrageous...

Anyway, I think this is an important conversation with implications far
broader than the reception of Linkoln's video.


+abe linkoln <abe AT> replied:+


this video is about the truth of nerve endings and microphones.


+Michael Szpakowski <szpako AT> replied:+

Hi Marisa
Whoa! :)
I did try to phrase my rather uncertain response to the piece in as
temperate a way as possible precisely in order to avoid a polarised yes it
is no it isn't kind of thing.

Some responses:
<*Why is it artistically important to tell the truth?>
Of course there's no law that says it is but my contention would be that
art which in *some sense* reflects the complex structure of reality is
more likely to interest me & take up my time & lead me to recommend it to
others as worthy of *their* time than work that does not.

<*Why is it ethically important to tell the truth in a work of art?>
I'm in favour of truth telling in general - of striving to understand how
& why things work the way they do & then (in life , politics &c) stating
this as clearly & straightforwardly as possible & (in art) creating work
which *somehow* (begs a lot of questions I know!) bears witness to or
least does not oversimplify tendentiously, or glibly, or cheaply,
what is going on.

<*How does this piece fail to tell the truth, in your opinion? & *[How]
does it lie?>
Well I *worry* that it doesn't tell the truth -I *worry* that it ( & I'll
put it more brutally than Annie) feels like a cheap shot -*but* I'm not
sure..I'm genuinely interested & open to discussion on it..

This is open to misunderstanding & I absolutely don't want to raise the
polemical temperature but I have a similar problem with this rather nicely
made miniature that I do with 'Birth of a Nation' or 'Triumph of The Will'
-the *craply made* problem pieces are not in the long run problem
pieces... and of course I'm *not*, absolutely *not* suggesting there is a
similar degree of moral doubt here as in those pieces, but it's the
combination of a very assured technique with the problematic content that
bothers me.(& I don't reject *anything* in principle in art as far a
content or
technique goes, *how* it's deployed is the interesting question & this
comes back to me to what I would call artistic 'truth')

I'm going to pass on the rest of your questions because I've set out my
stall here I think as clearly
as I can. I just wanted to address two more issues from other bits of this

One. The remix thing. Well, Marisa, as you know, nobody loves a remix as
much has I do but, I do find your analogy "remixing the face" a little
strained -I'm not sure that one can in any way read back worries about
this piece to attacks or concerns about or even defense of remix culture
from this rather artifical rhetorical tactic..

Two. I *do* believe in truth -or at least that we can approach the truth
about things by the exercise of observation & reason both scientifically (
& I include history &c. here) and artistically. I think this probably does
underlie some of our differences? What do you think? :)

+Pall Thayer <p_thay AT> replied:+

I would just like to jump in here and say that, although I'm not going to
say that art has to tell the truth in any way shape or form, I believe an
element of truth adds validity to the conceptual side of work. For
instance, a piece purporting to be a carnivore client could easily be
faked with a simple script generating the data that is being presented as
carnivore data. Would we know the difference? But one of the things that
makes carnivore clients interesting is the fact that the data being used
is a true representation of what's going on on a given network. Since we
can't necessarily tell the difference, it's comes down to the artist's own
personal integrity. If we take for instance, Vito Acconci's Seedbed. He
didn't really have to masturbate under the floorboards. No-one even knew
he was
there. What if we found out that he faked it all, he wasn't really
masturbating. Does the work remain the same?

One of the reasons I have an opinion about this is that a couple of years
ago I was doing some work with some theater people. I had all sorts of
ideas, wanted to set up some sensors and use them to trigger lighting etc.
The theater people looked at me and said, "Why?" We can just fake it. We
can make it "look" like the actors are controlling the lights, and it
dawned on me that theater is an art of lies and fakery whereas (I think)
conceptually grounded visual arts are an art of truth.

BUT (and there always has to be a "but".) As is always the case in art,
you have instances where the opposite is tested. Where the primary concept
is the "lie". Such as with MTAA's One Year Performance. But of course it's
presented in a way that you know that slight-of-hand plays a part. The lie
isn't being hidden.

OK, I'm just spewing this stuff out as I go along so I reserve the right
to reverse my position on anything I've said. I think this is a topic
worthy of much discussion. Especially in regards to data-based artwork,
much of which takes the "truth" (data) and twists it into something else.
As in Jonah Brucker-Cohens Police State. The carnivore collected data is
true. But what about the message that the work relays to the viewer? I
know the piece is hearing the truth, but is it telling me the truth?


+Ryan Griffis <ryan.griffis AT> replied:+

this is an interesting thread...

to take up Pall's points, which bring up some great things to discuss: how
does work like Walid Raad/Atlas Project's generate a response in relation
to truth/fabrication? One could say the there are "give aways" to the
work's fabricated elements, but i think that all depends on the audience.
Those "in the know" know...

Or how about the Center for Tactical Magic? or CAE? or the Yes Men? Part
of the effect and affect of the work is that momentary (or for some,
sustained) suspension of disbelief. (or maybe more accurately, suspension
of relief!)

Going back a bit historically for this discussion, Alan Sekula's critique
of documentary and photography are interesting to consider. This statement
is particularly relevant here: "What I am arguing is that we understand
the extent to which art redeems a repressive social order by offering a
wholly imaginary transcendence, a false harmony, to docile and isolated
spectators." (from "Dismantling Modernism, Reinventing Documentary"
1976/8) Sekula goes on however to argue that a new kind of documentary is
needed, from his very Marxist position, that is critical of the
"objectivity of the camera" while recreating a kind of socialist realism.
To update that, Nato Thompson (MassMoCA curator of "The Interventionists")
has been working with people like CAE, CTM, CLUI, Speculative Archive,
Trevor Paglen, etc) and compiled a small article + series of works for Art
Journal last year, prefacing the works with this statement:

"What unifies their individual approaches is a shared attempt to deploy
the aesthetics of truth in order to raise criticality. By aesthetics of
truth, I mean an intellectual manipulation of visual codes that signify a
truth claim. To be clear about what this entails, examples might include
videotaped confessions, textbook-inspired design strategies, and
experimental lectures in which claims are asserted that are, in fact,
inaccurate, if not flagrantly false. Yet these projects do not simply
manipulate the visuality of what may lead us to accept them as truth but,
more important, they use this method critically to raise concrete
historical issues. Their work is not simply sign play. The subjects of the
individual projects range from Ninjitsu to beekeeping to the prison
industry to the United States--backed coup in Chile."

i don't think i would have arrived at this discussion so much from abe's
video on my own... it just doesn't push those same buttons for me. i have
a similar reaction to it as Marisa expressed. i read it as a response to
the immediacy of the media image (document) that is already read through
other narratives (sci-fi, "Face Off," etc). it doesn't challenge the
dominant narrative (as "truth") as much as show how problematic and
discursive that narrative already is.

+aabrahams <aabrahams AT> replied:+

I just watched the video again

What I saw yesterday on the television, was more scary, more exciting and
more confusing. ( and I would like to add : also more interesting and even
more artistic )

In my opinion the remixing didn't bring around an extra that might justify
the use of the image of a person with a handicap without her conscent.

I don't think the metaphor of remixing a face is chosen quit well.
Isabelles face was repaired. Remixing a face would have been served better
with Orlan as the subject.


I was profoundly shocked yesterday when I saw this woman, being glad with
a face I thought ugly monstruous. (but she came from no face at all, no
control at all over her mouth muscles, so indeed what a gain) I cannot
look at a media image as an image or as a narration. I see and feel
reality behind. (but not truth)

+marc <marc.garrett AT> replied:+

I agree with Annie,

and I also see the mediation and the spectacle of someone's pain created
into theatre, snuff-tainment.

+Dirk Vekemans <dv AT> replied:+

> exciting, and confusing. I think Linkoln is part of a
> generation of artists who make remixes to make sense of
> things in a media saturated culture.
> Marisa

Nice wording and the artist might agree, but personally i don't see how
remixing media into more media brings you or your audience any closer to
making sense of things. Can be fun but it only adds more media to the
media, reiterates pointless referrals to referrals to prrt prrt building
up to an endless repetition of the global amen to the the state of things.
If this particular instance is a statement (the indicative artistic
framing of it), it is a (funny/sarcastic/whathaveyou) statement of echoing
the statement of that amen. Sure it _also_ echoes the other (?) media's
disrespect for the individual once called isabelle d., but who could hold
anyone responsible for such a minor moral injustice when he's part of a
generation of artists?

OTH Abe's work is nice enough, i admire it's vitality, but that part of it
that makes it that vital sure isn't the remixing methodology, more in
spite of it like what often happens to a good artist using a method.
There's that old delicate balance of punk in it, sometimes, haha. And then
this, well no, it doesn't/didn't get really through to me, hence it fails
for me, no truthbells ringing, or, to be more exact, i see no way out
hiding behind it, only some well-crafted powerful images that stick to
your retina a while, until the usual dumbness of give-us-our-daily-horror
takes over.

+manik <manik AT ptt.yu> replied:+

Marisa wrote:

>To put it very crudely, we are talking about an act of remixing a face.
>Given Linkoln's body of work, it's interesting to juxtapose tissue
>sampling and the sampling of media. It's not my role to overstate or
>impose such an "intention" upon this work, but I think it can definitely
>be read in that way.

Annie's right.In Isabelle's case we couldn't talk about
"remixing",maybe,we can talk about "insert"(part of face
,de facto, fill a gap in one missing face.Remixing could,eventuality,
treat completed,new look of Isabella's face,so this term
point the way this man(Mr.Linkoln)treat a problem:it's something out of
his comprehend of human as a
complex structure.In his words:" This video is about the truth of nerve
endings and microphones."
On certain way this particular woman became heap of nerve
endings,playground for bad comprehend "remixing" game.
So :Orlan's kind of"remixing"product,same as Mickey Rourke,or
Isabelle is horrible incident,and Marisa's quasi excuse("To put it very
crudely")talk about something
worse than crudely-she is indifferent same as Mr.Linkoln."It's not my role
to overstate or
impose such an "intention" upon this work, but I think it can definitely
be read in that way."
Obvious your role IS to do what you've already dun.
About "intention":my intention's to put in one grave all dead
person(soldiers and their victims)in Iraq war.
That could be nice example of "remixing",more cynical intention than
Must I ask what you think about political consequence of such
"intention"?Just think about Danish comic.
To treat Isabelle Dinoire on Mr.Linkolns way is easy,mean and immorality.

More Marisa:

>I honestly see nothing immoral about this video. That's obviously just one
>person's subjective response, but it's one informed by another subjective
>response to the mainstream discourse surrounding face transplants. The
>subject is scary, exciting, and confusing. I think Linkoln is part of a
>generation of artists who make remixes to make sense of things in a media
>saturated culture.

>And it just so happens that this all occurs in a time of intense policy

I'm sure you deeply doubt in moral of this video(simple psychological
rule is when somebody talk
about honest,there's something wrong with it,kind of "homosemantism",I
suppose,equivalent in body
language,touch nose when lie etc).
I'm not familiar with "mainstream discourse surrounding face
transplants",but it's consolation for us to know that Mr.Linkoln is part
of such semantic disposed generation.
He maid express his self one day?In culture...
I'm disgust with people who profit on somebody else's pain.
(Mr.Linkoln is paradigm for cases like that,as artist unimportant.)


+Lee Wells <lee AT> replied:+

I love reading the list when it gets all revved up and the personalities
textually collide.

I think there could have been a more well thought out explanation about
the piece as well. Only putting it context with his previous work doesn't
doesn't quiet cut it. Abe's piece is kind of a one liner and conceptually
falls short for me. I didn't see the interview on tv but saw the photos
today in the paper in addition to Abe's video, I felt sorry for her.

For as little as Abe has said today about his piece I find it interesting
that Manik is the only one to evoke any sort of response out of him.

+Jim Andrews <jim AT> replied:+

I haven't seen the original footage it was taken from. I suspect that must
have been painful to view. Certainly viewing Abe's piece produced painful
little shivers. Not solely at what the surgeons had done but what the
video editing had done. A face transplant and then a video transplant of

I wasn't sure, actually, about Abe's intent. I didn't really make any
judgements about it.

The video reminded me of something Salman Rushdie once said (and I
undoubtedly recollect it improperly), to the effect that we sometimes
become grotesques (but freer) in our nonetheless real and valuable
attempts to heal ourselves in a world that is often grotesquely
indifferent to pain and suffering.

Of course the question crossed my mind if Abe was being cruel in his use
of this footage, later, reading the posts, but that wasn't really clear to
me in viewing the video, although it is painful to watch.

But, Abe, I don't think you can hide behind statements like "this video is
about the truth of nerve endings and microphones". That may or may not be
what you thought it was about. It is definitely about this particular
woman's pain, isn't it, whatever else it is about such as media blah blah.
However you cut it. However you cut it, you cut her.

It feels to me that you should acknowledge that. Presenting the pain of
other people in works of art is not uncommon. It goes way back even beyond
the tragedies to religious ritual. But it is still volatile and delicate
as flesh and bone. As is the recognition.

+jo AT replied:+

Two human faces, side by side, stretched taught as a drum, manipulated and
toyed with (much like a cat toys with a mouse before he kills it). As if
this is not monstrous enough, Linkoln has cut her vocal chords, silenced
her, period.


The artist?s?
The subject?s?

+Dirk Vekemans <dv AT> replied:+

i thought sth similar for a moment too, but i find that's (sorry for the
pun) stretching it a bit, art i mean: no way this is going to register as
an event to that effect, it would have to matter before it could do that
and it doesn't matter because it doesn't escape the (monstrous) repetition
it re-enacts. Art fails, thank god and these things are orchestrated for

You're taking the metaphor where it doesn't go, it's mistaking what we put
into it for what gets out, including its unwonted side effects. Cartoons
and cartoonists don't kill people, mediatised avalanches of hatred and
frustration do.

In the unlikely event i.d. (sic) get's to see this, she'll (hopefully)
just classify it as more media bs. If there's any real moral issue here
it's restricted to us, Lincoln's piece making us perhaps painfully aware
of what might be, or how we fail to make the audience aware, or even
ourselves. Art silencing art. Remixing as an artistic process encourages
silence, encapsulating the encapsulation.

+Ryan Griffis <ryan.griffis AT> replied:+

i'm starting to think that the whole "truth" discussion was/is a bit off
the mark...

i could, very likely, be totally wrong, but it sounds like people are more
concerned with the responsibility of affect + representation?

when someone says "linkoln has cut her vocal chords..." that has to be
taken as a statement about representation. we're not talking about
Santiago Sierra after all.

both the original video and linkoln's mod are tools for affect, no? is the
question about which one is more manipulative (i.e. less transparent)?
which one is more oppressive/repressive to the objectified (and, i guess,
by extension, us)? i think the critiques of the vid make some good

all of this kind of reminds me of the news i've been listening to all day
regarding the controversial danish cartoons... many journalists are saying
they understand the "free speech" rights of the publishers, but such
rights don't negate responsibility or create obligations. "just because
they can" isn't justification. that point can def be translated into remix
culture... is a remix liberating just by nature?

+Eric Dymond <dymond AT> replied:+

I think the piece has much in common with a Francis Bacon Portrait.
I'm not going to get heavily involved, but I don't see why this either
truthful, untruthful, moral or immoral. It seems to use digital media to
push and pull reality without losing the essence of the source, as a
Bacon painting pushes and pulls the appearance of his subject. This is
interesting in that it's time based( now I'm thinking of the Nurse from
The Battleship Potemkin by Eisenstien). You should know there is a good
deal of distance between the actual subjects life and the imagination
contained in the work, which makes it successful for me.

+Myron Turner <myron_turner AT> replied:+

This thread has worked up such a great amount of interest that I was
finally drawn in to see what it was all about. I'm afraid I couldn't help
finding the video amusing--it was so over the top. So the question is,
first: what did I find amusing, and secondly at what is the amusement

My amusement was first of all separate from the subject, isabelle
dinoire--that is, what I saw was a spoof of 40's/50's horror flicks. But,
I had seen the Dinoire interview on the news, and cutting through the
sympathy that one could not help but feel was her intention to continue
smoking despite its dangers to the immune system and its potential to
cause rejection. So, somehow absurdity seemed to pile on absurdity. And my

But once the real Isabelle entered into my reaction, when I was no longer
reacting to just the spoof of horror flicks, I had to step back and ask
what kind of person I was to find this pathetic situation amusing. And
here is where the second question comes in: at what is the amusement

Well, I don't really think I'm such a bad guy. But, I found her intention
to continue smoking to be ridiculous, ethically ridiculous. Not that she
doesn't have the right to destroy herslf. But here is a person who has
focused on her case the attention of the world's medical community, who
has put the state to great expense in order to undertake the procedure and
who has moreover, willingly or not, participated in bringing the attention
of the world to her plight and has implictly if not in fact explicity, in
the interview, asked for our sympathy and good wishes. So her reckless
disregard struck me as ridiculous, and I'm afraid that that sense of the
ridiculous added to my amusement when I watched the video.

That's my personal response. But it doesn't answer any questions about the
video itself. Is the video in fact a spoof? And if so at what is the humor
directed? Is it simply directed at the genre? Well, it can't be, at least
not for us, since we can't dissociate it from the interview and the
situation. Or is it a serious piece, expressing revulsion. If so, what's
the revulsion directed at? Or is it ambidextrous, expressing both
amusement and revulsion? Someone mentioned that the video is part of the
artist's larger interest in re-mixing. I can see that, but I'm not clear
about what the video wants us to understand from that allusion. I guest
what I'm saying is that I don't feel the video supplies us with enough
context to make these judgments and that we are left to supply the
contexts ourselves. It's hard for me to believe, for instance, that
there's not an element of pardoy in the piece. But to be honest, I'm not
sure. And if there is parody, I'm not sure what the parody means.
So,finally, I'm left on my own.

+op <t AT> replied:+

i think that only parts of her face have been replaced, not all of it
(from what i got from the news) so i believe she still retains most of her
original emotions (i think emotions express intuitive stuff and when we
use our body language to communicate such things they transcend the
physicality of the body, well, i think this experience will tell us more
about how the body codes intuitive communication)

+Nad <nad AT> replied:+

Marisa Olson wrote:

> To put it very crudely, we are talking about an act of remixing a
> face.
> Given Linkoln's body of work, it's interesting to juxtapose tissue
> sampling and the sampling of media. It's not my role to overstate or
> impose such an "intention" upon this work, but I think it can
> definitely
> be read in that way.

yes i also think one could read it in this way. However there is something
crucially missing in this juxtaposition:

What is so special about Dinoires case? Its not the remixing of tissue
itself. It is the fact that the tissue comes from another persons face. a
dead person. another living.

and that fact is the scary and facinating part of it - not the way she
looks like now or the tissue mixing. a face is also an interface. it is
the bridge from the outside to the inside. if you meet someone you try to
"read in his/her face". so what tells us her face now?

I do not see that Abes work reflects this (to my point of view) most
important part. So i miss it.

Moreover I didnt see Isabelle Dinoire speaking, I saw only Abes video and
the first thought i had was: you can always find someone make an odd face
at a moment and then sample it into a horror face. My computer is quite
slow and so even Marisas beautiful face (in your joint blog video) stopped
sometimes in some awkward positions, which made her look "scary" once in a
while :-).... So why is it so scary to see Isabelle Dinoire in Abes
video?- my guess is that this is only in part due to the fact of her
actual appearance it is mostly due to what we know about her... the fact
of the dual person.

Abes images are truely catching. He did a good job in choosing them.

they are really sticky.
however i cant help it, they remind me of some school yard situation:
there was a girl who was heavily limping due to a polio. she also had to
wear some device. there was a group of boys watching her and then some of
the boys started to mimic her by limping around. the boys were scared,
they were feeling uneasy and invoking the disrespectful reaction was
somehow helping them. a strange mechanism, but one can observe it quite

i do not want to draw any parallels to your work Abe I have no idea what
your intentions were...this is just what i got in my head when i saw your

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