Adjustable table: adult rollercoaster

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Last fall I got a grant in order to take some time off, buy some equipment, read a book and hopefully produce some new art. Perhaps not surprisingly, I’ve done fuck-all since I got that grant except working on non-art related things. What the grant money did get me — in addition to a very nice knife, new running shoes and tights, an unending supply of freshly squeezed juice and some new in-ear-headphones — is some peace of mind and a bourgeois disposition. Just cause I’m not flat out broke, I suddenly felt that getting a stockbroker account was a “sound idea” and it feels as though I’m spiraling into a bad habit which will end up with me crashing at the end anyway, when I’m back to hand-to-mouth.

The new apartment is nice enough but I keep putting off inviting people. I don’t know if it’s cause I’ve still not gotten around to getting a proper lamp in the hall, where the rechargeable flashlight is getting electronically incontinent, or if I’m in a reclusive state of mind of late. I have an adjustable table which goes up and down at the touch of a button, and standing at it I can watch the ferries pass my window, which is nice and occasionally disconcerting, creating an illusion of the whole building moving. I would have liked to have learned the names of the ships by now but they don’t seem to stick. Perhaps I need a diagram.

Earlier today, my barber Hasse told me of a friend of his who, having spent his life and career on land, decided to fulfill his dream and signed on to a ship at the age of 57. He had dreamed of going to sea for all his life, and when he finally badgered the shipping line to give him a chance he concluded after the three month stint that it sucked balls. The moral being that you set some goals for yourself in life, and even if those don’t become fulfilled at least you did some fun stuff along the way, made some good friends and didn’t start a genocide or something similarly awful. As morals go, it’s not that bad.

Three Quarks for Master Mark; alt_cph 2010

I’m in Copenhagen at the alt_cph artfair. Unlike last year, I’m here on a technical assignment, as I and Jonas have been tasked to document the Skup Palet project with which Anna and Jan are participating. They’ve relocated 13 kids and two teachers from Hølstebro into the exhibition space, where they have daily classes. Read more about it on the alt_cph homepage as well as

It’s been great fun to see the project take off; just the logistics of transporting and housing all kids is daunting, but if you take into consideration that the parents had to be persuaded and the accompanying teachers are doing this on their own time, it’s bloody impressive. The kids have been extremely brave in the face of it all, and hardly flinch at all at being gawked at by the art-going public.

Jonas has been shooting video, I’m the sound guy which has had me wearing headphones and staring into space as if in a daze. I’m pretty sure that we’re visible in every picture anyone has taken so far, since we’re climbing all over the podium to get the awesome which Jonas keeps delivering. Should you want to see me looking confused, holding a microphone, you can do so in the video here:

Come together. Right now. Over here.

Over at We Make Money Not Art, there’s a brief description of the work Hello Process which is being exhibited at the Process Becomes Paradigm show. In a related vein, Rhizome just published an editorial by Jacob Gaboury on the art collective JOGGING which are all about process instead of product. JOGGING are indeed mostly interesting in terms of process, as most of the documentation / made for net / performance, is undistinguishable from a Onion parody of art, or perhaps a Mcsweeneys piece.

While each piece may seem unimportant on its own, when viewed as part of a growing collection of work unconcerned with the materiality, permanence, or the importance of the individual piece, any insistence on the auratic quality of the object itself falls away. Indeed the content of each piece is doubly immaterial. Not only do they exist in passing, as documentation, or not at all, they are also unconcerned with the question of quality or importance, and are relevant as process rather than as product.

→ Rhizome, Jacob Gaboury: Immaterial Incoherence: Art Collective JOGGING

It’s through editing we make something beautiful appear. This Youtube choir, bringing together 185 individuals in a performance is inspiring — despite the slightly cheesy look of the stage and conductor Eric Whitacre — not because it resulted in this particular musical arrangement, but because there is a sense of universality to the participant’s ambitions. There’s a common denominator which becomes visible exactly because it’s mediated through a webcam, each video independently recorded. It’s the audience performing for itself.

The arrangement of the singers and panning over their individual videos in faux 3D also changes the interpretation of the piece; Compare the feeling of this version to the previous experiment he did, Sleep, in which all videos are arranged on a flat grid. The edit of Sleep creates a monumental feeling of the choir, whereas Lux Aurumque seems made up of individuals acting in concert. [Via The Technium]

As an aside, my name appears in an Excel file at one of the largest dairy producers in Sweden, Arla, since I sent in a bogus recipe containing cottage cheese to a competition. I don’t know if I’ve won anything, but judging from the other entries (all visible in the same document) I’m not the only one who’ve fibbed a love to that product. Twohundredandeightysix other people filled sent in their recipes to win whatever it was one could win. Imagine if you could get 287 people to spend those five minutes working doing some work for you, paying all of them fractionally more for their time than they stand to gain on average from a competition and thereby creating a win-win! What would you do with those 24 hours of labour? Or is an XLS-file with slogans enough?

Editing the point of view.

A couple of months ago there was a outrage and general brouhaha over an how ACORN — an organisation which helps underclass folk in US with getting bank loans and such — supposedly was advising a pimp & hooker couple on how to start a child prostitution business. It turned into a giant shitstorm, and it’s only now that the dust has settled and the source material has been examined that a more true version of the story is emerging.

→ MSNBC: Rachel Maddow explains how Fox News bought and sold the ACORN story. [Via Media Matters]

“This place,” says Bahram, shouting somewhat, it’s amazing. You can’t imagine! The schools, the hospitals, the way they live! And nothing is done by hand, even the baking, even cleaning the street. They have these little carts, just press a button. The police, they smile at you and say “hej.”

→ From our own correspondents, Monica Whitlock: Adjusting to Swedish life after the Andjian massacre

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I do not want to prescribe a means of viewing images of Fabienne’s death. I am interested in informing the public about the photographers who witnessed and recorded the event.

Prison Photography, Pete Brook: Fabienne Cherisma [via A Photo Editor]

But what makes it all such good fun is the element of surprise. No matter how much you practise or prepare, many of your best mammal behaviour shots will be of moments you hardly remember – because they happened so fast. These are the ones that make all that effort worthwhile.

→ BBC Wildlife Magazine, Mark Carwardine: Mammal Behaviour [scroll down for individual PDF]

And he spake onto them: Readeth this!

In Grand Theft Auto, no misbehavior is so grievous that it can’t be washed away after a quick trip to the police station or the hospital. That conceit works well for gameplay, but it hinders the narrative by suggesting a world in which even the gravest actions have no meaning. How could we buy Lady Macbeth’s “Out, damn’d spot! Out, I say!” if she could have just headed to the nearest Pay’n’Spray?

→ Escapist magazine, Brendan Main: Fall of the house Bellic

We’re pleased to announce a new addition to our shop, in the shape of If Drawings Were photographs – the first ever zine published by It’s Nice That. The brainchild of designer Rob Matthews and Illustrator Tom Edwards, put simply – “Tom gave drawings to Rob and Rob tried to make them into photographs.”

→ It’s Nice That, Alex: If drawings were photographs Via Wakaba

Avatar Machine is a wearable system which replicates the aesthetics and visuals of third person gaming, allowing the user to view themselves as a virtual character in real space via a head mounted interface. The system potentially allows for a diminished sense of social responsibility, and could lead the user to demonstrate behaviors normally reserved for the gaming environment. Via Jonas

This product was originally designed to be: Impossible for child to suck the thumb while wearing, Unrestrictive and fun to wear, Extremely difficult for child to remove. The function of the Thumb Guard is to prevent the seal made around the thumb with the child’s lips. Without this seal, there can be no suction, which is the main source of pleasure in sucking the thumb.

→ Stop Thumb Sucking with Thumb Guard Kit for One Hand

Morning noise.

In order to keep the neighbourhood pretty and motivate the costly housing, we’ve had peeping toms on both sides the yard the past weeks. They’re painting and hammering and doing stuff that Real Men® do.


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Rebus competition! Win shit!

Take a look at the video rebus below. The first person to post the correct resulting sentence will win the exclusive commercial rights to the next short video work I do. Good luck!

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Art. Bees. Wax

Waxweb had totally passed me by. It’s an online movie experiment that’s going on twenty years old. Most people didn’t know Internet from a hole in the ground when this was made, and it is still really good.

To speak with today’s terms, there’s a Matthew Barney + Lost feeling to the story of Jacob Maker as the beekeeper who works on flight simulators. I haven’t watched the whole thing, but there’s a hypertextual element to it (make your own adventure multiple choice type of thing) as well as a nonchalant appropriation of footage.

The everyday feeling of what is taking place makes it all seem so much more surreal but plausible – no-one would fake something this improbable. Atonal sounds help to reinforce the sense of unease and apprehension.

The Playstation and 3DO game Psychic Detective comes to mind as I’m watching Waxweb. It was a relative early attempt at interactive storytelling, and I was enthralled with it despite having to switch between a bunch of cd-s all the time. This link gives an inkling of how it might look, although the gameplay isn’t very obvious.

Foundlings 2

Of all the 6 and a half billion people in the world, what are the odds that any two people are a real match? Stories from people who know they’ve beat the odds, and the lengths they’ve gone to do it—including an American professor who sings Chinese opera for anyone who’ll listen, to get one step closer to his mate, and two kids who travel halfway around the country to find each other and become best friends.

→ This American Life episode 374: Somewhere Out There.


Bernie Madoff woke up in jail today, after pleading guilty to 11 charges stemming from an enormous Ponzi scheme. How enormous? The most recent court documents put the figure at $65 billion. In another amazing Planet Money Radio Dramatization, Alex Blumberg, Adam Davidson and David Kestenbaum act out a Ponzi scheme of their own.

→ NPR, Planet Money: A Ponzi Drama.


And two clips from Weeds. I don’t know if I look forwards to the next season, but It’s prolly worth a look.

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