|Current Reblogger: Chloë Bass|
Chloë Bass is an artist, curator and community organizer based in Brooklyn. She is the co-lead organizer for Arts in Bushwick (artsinbushwick.org), which produces the ever-sprawling Bushwick Open Studios, BETA Spaces, and performance festival SITE Fest, which she founded. Recent artistic work has been seen at SCOPE Art Fair, CultureFix, the Bushwick Starr Theater, Figment, and The Last Supper Art Festival, as well as in and around the public spaces of New York City. She has guest lectured at Parsons, the Polytechnic University of Puerto Rico, and Brooklyn College. Other moments have found her co-cheffing Umami: People + Food, a 90 person private supper club; growing plants with Boswyck Farms (boswyckfarms.org); and curating with architecture gallery SUPERFRONT (superfront.org). Chloë holds a BA in Theater Studies from Yale University, and an MFA in Performance and Interactive Media Arts (PIMA) from Brooklyn College.
A group of young designers, (who are students at the graphic design department of Seoul National University), have been intervening in urban space by putting stickers on top of city branding advertisement and various urban hacking.
The current government and the city of Seoul has been rebranding Seoul as a ‘DESIGN’ capital of the world. The word design has been used to justify gentrification and development, sometimes by taking away space from the lower income citizens. Also various design strategies have been used to brainwash, terms like ‘I Like Seoul’ ‘Seoul is DESIGN’ is ubiquitous around the city. Its effect is thus making of boring space, not unlike other Asian megapolis. Seoul is an intricately layered matrix of different style, speed, and time. It’s beauty was it’s contradictions and diversity. By ‘DESIGN’ing seoul, the state is making the urban space an abstract machine of control and production, and leaving less space for freedom of expression and cultural production. The effect of design is prevalent in demolition and protest at Yong San district, reconstruction of Chunggye chun, and the notorious ‘Seoul Design Olympic’ and ‘World Design Capital’ events.
Young designers are responding to the matter in an engaging and controversial manner. It is pleasantly surprising as the notion of designers in Seoul are the ones who don’t care for social matter, but work as the machine for production (at least that is the idea of DESIGN as the city’s largest design campaign promotes). One group, called ‘Hatch men’ have been communicating with the people via social network system such as twitter. They print out comments on adhesive paper, and put it on top of advertisements and slogans. The effect is a strange mix of humor and critical intervention of graphic images in urban space. Thus the smiling faces of models with word bubbles are saying “I only like Seoul, when I can dislike it as well” “I only like South of river (new developed district)” “Seoul is under construction 365 days”. Their process is well documented in website as well as youtube. . They have said their idea got inspiration from Ji Lee’s Bubble project.
Soon after they gained some publicity and praise as well as critical reflection, ‘Hatch men’ were summoned for damaging public property. Their tweets and interview tells that they were questioned ‘Who is behind the act’, as if there is an ulterior political force behind the intervention. This incident is well representative of the neo liberal government’s limits of imagination and love for control. The designers are still enthusiastic about intervention, and planning next series using video projection and inflatable text bubbles. Inspiration from past works of G.R.L and F.A.T lab, especially Aram Barthol is apparent.
The price of ‘DESIGN’ing Seoul is the loss of the city’s essence and beauty. As many of extreme developments take place, and sometimes fail to be completed, as in the case of Yong San, city is left with defunct advertisements and propaganda. One can wonder what difference is there from North Korean propaganda saying ‘We are happy’. It is hopeful that designers are creating space of discourse and debate. While the incumbent government is doing it’s thing to raise real estate value and control culture industry, it is the right time for artists, architects, musicians to work against unjust development under the name of ‘DESIGN’ and ‘Green development’.
Tina Kim Gallery in Chelsea has KimgHongSok's show. Ending in few days.
Shared by reBlog @ Eyebeam
Summer Guthery is a committee member of the Public School New York.
The story is often told of Marx that he was the product of a specific tripartite European formation: British political economy, German idealism, and French socialism. The Europe of today is different: in Germany we have media theory, in Italy we have political theory, and in France we have philosophy. The period of crisis and retrenchment that began in French philosophy around 1975 or 1976, and that lasted for twenty-five years, is, happily, coming to an end. The children of the '68ers are now of age. And they are writing.
There are two figures poised to emerge as important young voices in France. They could not be more different. The first is already known in the English-speaking world. He is Quentin Meillassoux, the author of After Finitude (Continuum, 2008). The second is almost entirely unknown outside of France. His name is Mehdi Belhaj Kacem but he often goes by his initials, MBK. Both Meillassoux and MBK have been propelled in part by the vast intellectual richness and patronage of Alain Badiou. While Meillassoux is a rigorous scientist and, as an intellectual presence at the École Normale Supérieure, already an institutional insider, MBK is a self-styled outsider, a trickster, an autodidact, or, in his own words, an "anti-scholastic," an "anti-philosopher."
From the Press Release:
SATURDAY, OCTOBER, 16th 14:00 [class will start at 15:00]
Location: Tschaikowskistraße 51, 13156 Berlin, Germany
As part of an ongoing project that seeks to reengage the abandoned Iraqi Embassy the group Collasus has asked artists both international and local to produce a site specific work for the abandoned building. There were no guidelines, and no limit to participation. The ultimate group of participants will be that of varied backgrounds, ages, and practices within the umbrella of ‘art’.
This opportunity is seen less as a lament to buildings past, a claiming of its future, or the complex history between Iraq and the rest of the world, rather it seeks to find an alternative use through collectivity, art and criticism.
It was asked that each participant consider the space carefully, considering both the social weight, and the fact that installations will be left in the former embassy free to be interacted with (and possibly altered or stolen) by the public. The work will remain anonymous in the former embassy. Each work will be published with its author on the website iraq-embassy.com in the following weeks.
Collasus, Alex Auriema, Ben Wolf Noam, Beny Wagner, Billy Rennekamp, Caleb Waldorf, David Knowles, Eddie Peake, Elizabeth Skadden, Emily Kocken, Hayley Silverman and James Whipple, Heath Valentine, Legwork, Leila Peacock, Luca Antonucci, Mariette Auvray, Matt Austin, Mirak Jamal, Nishita Mehta, Saulius Leonavicius, Sean Fabi
In conjunction with the installed work at the embassy, Collasus will be organizing a four day seminar with the Public School Berlin around the topic of Territorial Regimes. The first class will take place on opening day (October 16th at 14:00) at the Embassy rain or shine. If you have not already signed up, please do so via The Public School Berlin.
Note the suggested readings for the first day.
Disclaimer: Entering the abandoned embassy is trespassing. Visitors to the Embassy will need to traverse a small fence (we will provide assistance to those who need it) and understand that the once inside they are breaking the law – and this is potentially punishable under German/Iraqi law. Please wear warm clothing and proper footwear.
via Platypus 1917
Alexander R. Galloway is an author and programmer. He is a founding member of the software collective RSG and creator of the Carnivore and Kriegspiel projects. Galloway is the author of Protocol: How Control Exists After Decentralization (MIT, 2004), Gaming: Essays on Algorithmic Culture (Minnesota, 2006), and most recently The Exploit: A Theory of Networks (Minnesota, 2007), cowritten with Eugene Thacker. The Unworkable Interface, his Flusser lecture from 2008, has rapidly become an essential exploration of the contemporary tensions between art and politics, form and content. More recently, Galloway has translated, along with Jason E. Smith, Introduction to Civil War by Tiqqun, released this year by Semiotexte. Galloway’s week long seminar, French Theory Today: An Introduction to Possible Futures begins tonight at The Public School. Stephen Squibb passed virtual notes with Galloway about Tiqqun, the nature of the political, the continuing significance of French thinking.
Idiom: Let’s start with Tiqqun. You’ve recently translated their Introduction to Civil War, which you and I and several of our closest friends recently discussed. How did you first learn about Civil War?
Alex Galloway: I learned about Tiqqun from a short translation of excerpts from Civil War that Jason Smith did for the Brooklyn ‘zine that he co-edited called Soft Targets, sadly now defunct. I was also living in France in 2008 and had a chance to learn a bit about Tiqqun and some of the new political and theoretical writings being produced over there. Jason and I struck up a friendship over email and eventually decided to go ahead and translate the entire book, since at the time there was almost nothing available from Tiqqun in English. This was before the The Coming Insurrection was published (written by a group calling themselves The Invisible Committee, but often lumped together with Tiqqun). Since then Tiqqun, the Invisible Committee, and other related groups have received a fair amount of attention, and today it is relatively easy to find bootleg translations of most of their texts online.
Idiom: How would you characterize these works? What interests you about them?
AG: It would be easy to call these works “neo-situationist,” as I and others have admittedly been sometimes tempted to do. There is indeed some superficial similarity between some of the Tiqqun writings and those of the Situationist International. But Tiqqun is really quite different and this is most apparent in the attention they give to the historical period. In their piece on the “cybernetic hypothesis,” for example, they describe the political and social formation that took root at the beginning of the second half of the twentieth century. Or in their book on the figure of the “Bloom,” modeled loosely after Leopold Bloom of Joyce’s Ulysses, we find modern man lost in a sea of flexible networks and neo-liberal apparatuses. Tiqqun is certainly inspired by previous figures – including Giorgio Agamben and Guy Debord – but they have made their own contribution to an older political discourse by evolving existing concepts such as the “form-of-life” or the “whatever singularity,” in addition to developing new ones such as the “human strike.” Tiqqun also maintains a defiant streak that I really appreciate, particularly in their blanket hatred for all forms of academic and institutionalized discourse. They know what they think of the contemporary world and they know what they want to do about it.
Idiom:What do they want to do?
AG: I mean that in a very straight forward manner. They know what they want to do and and what they want to say. Much of intellectual life today consists of timidly regurgitating existing theories and positions. Tiqqun is willing to experiment, both formally and substantively. So they are not uncomfortable talking about real political change or about how life ought to be lived. And they are not uncomfortable saying that something is a rotten stinking mess, if it is a rotten stinking mess.
Idiom: Excellent. Can you speak a little about what the working process of this project?
AG: Jason had been in touch with some of the members of Tiqqun for some time when I got on board, and this was still before the Tarnac arrests. I remember thinking that they were a bit cloak-and-dagger over email. They used pseudonyms and changed email addresses frequently. Then I woke up one morning and read about their arrests, which certainly justified their caution! Much of the translation was done right around the time of the arrests and we were in email contact with their representatives throughout. It is important to realize that Tiqqun and The Invisible Committee are different groups with different projects and different agendas, but these realms nevertheless overlap in significant ways. They did a complete edit on our final translation, correcting many errors, and shaping the tone to echo the original French. The whole process was carried out virtually.
via Void Mirror
Idiom: The politics here are fascinating to me. On the one hand, Tiqqun is very clearly ‘political’ in the sense that they are addressing issues of power and its organization, and these reflections alone have been enough to attract the ill-will of the authorities. On the other hand, though, reading their work, its not typically political in the sense we understand it in this country. To what extent does the national context play in shaping both Tiqqun’s politics and our reception of it?
AG: Tiqqun does not follow the traditional identity of the left. They reject, for example, the notion that there should be political parties (vanguard or otherwise) to negotiate the relationship between the working and ruling classes. Indeed, they reject the entire tradition that designates the working class as the subject-object of history, capable of leading humanity to freedom. These are at best convenient myths, beastly traces of a bygone era. Empire has changed everything. Today the state functions differently, having proven itself entirely amenable to all hitherto constructions of identity, revolutionary or otherwise. Thus Tiqqun is engaged in reinventing many basic philosophical categories from the ground up. This is why, perhaps, their work may not appear ‘political’ in the traditional sense. By proposing new definitions of the person and of the community, they offer a wholesale rejection of contemporary “society” (a word dripping with scorn in Tiqqun). All this makes their work political.
Idiom: How do you see Tiqqun fitting in to the contemporary constellation of French thought, some of which you are teaching this week at The Public School (disclosure: I sit on the committee for TPS -SS) ? Are there overlaps? Or are these currents pretty distinct?
AG: Tiqqun would certainly blanch at the suggestion that they are doing philosophy, and as you know “French Theory” is largely an American invention, applied somewhat retroactively. This is one of the reasons why I chose not to devote a session to Tiqqun in The Public School seminar. Though not anti-intellectual by any means, the Tiqqun group certainly does disdain organized scholarly pursuits in favor of more direct criticism and immediate action. I respect them for this. That said, there might be some overlaps, yes, even if quite remote. For example there seems to be a trend toward political withdrawal and the denuding of the self. Tiqqun is influenced by Gilles Deleuze and Agamben’s concept of the “whatever.” And they likewise share an interest in the “community of those who have nothing in common.” This has been on the lips of writers like Agamben, yes, but also Jean-Luc Nancy and Maurice Blanchot, as well as Michael Hardt and Antonio Negri. (Although Tiqqun are ultimately rather dismissive of the latter’s project, even if they import their concept of “empire” wholesale.) So we might say that the “fog” of the social is a target as much for Tiqqun as it is for François Laruelle (who would do away with the social entirely, as well as all perceiving beings in it) or even Quentin Meillassoux (who seeks out an absolute beyond the old Kantian contract forged between subject and object). But these are all rather flimsy comparisons at best. Tiqqun would have nothing to do with Meillassoux or Laruelle or, I would guess, any other professional philosopher. Theirs is a politics first and a philosophy second.
Idiom:So the thinkers this week are all professional, in that sense? How did you encounter their work? Are there threads that connect them?
AG: Yes, all professional. All except Mehdi Belhaj Kacem who fashions himself an “anti-philosopher,” although that may be more about style and affiliation than anything else. Catherine Malabou and Bernard Stiegler share a number of things in common, not least of which their common relationship with Jacques Derrida (with whom each has written a book) and a mutual interest in Martin Heidegger. Meillassoux and Laruelle are both extremely technical thinkers writing with a high degree of precision. By contrast Belhaj Kacem is a very associative thinker, working moment by moment, and with a great facility with popular culture; which the others lack, to some extent.
Screenshot from The Ister, via Icarus Films
I encountered these thinkers in the predictable ways. I learned of Meillassoux and Laruelle from Ray Brassier who has translated and written on both figures (and was kind enough once a few years ago to let me pepper him with what was probably an endless series of naive questions). The British philosophy journal Collapse was also key in giving a number of these authors exposure in English. It is the only philosophy journal worth reading right now. Malabou I learned about through the French publication Fresh Théorie as well as her impressive book on Hegel. As for Belhaj Kacem, it was mostly luck, first via reading his ex-wife – the French novelist Chloé Delaume – and also because he had a brief period of collaboration with the Tiqqun group. Alain Badiou is also something of a kingmaker here, since he has endorsed both Belhaj Kacem and Meillassoux by publishing them in his book series. Stiegler is the only one of the five who has been relatively well known in the English speaking world for a few years now. The first volume of his Technics and Time came out in English already in 1998, and has been read widely by people interested in theories of media and technology. And there is also the pivotal role he plays in the film The Ister which piqued my interest.
Idiom: You’ve sub-titled the seminar “an introduction to possible futures.” Can you speak a little about this formulation?
AG: I was inspired by a special issue of the journal Angelaki that Peter Hallward put together in 2003 under the banner of “French Philosophy Today.” The generation of philosophers who came of age around May 1968 have been so influential here in American and elsewhere, culminating today in the attention given to figures like Badiou and Jacques Rancière. But the goal of this seminar is not to focus on well known authors. I wouldn’t put too much stock in the notion of “possible futures,” since that’s just a marketing ploy. Although admittedly Malabou speaks of the “future of Hegel” and Laruelle the “future Christ.” The issue for me is less conceptual than merely practical. Here are five figures who are either mostly unpublished in English (Belhaj Kacem and Laruelle) or who have only recently begun to appear in translation (Malabou, Stiegler and Meillassoux). The goal is not to predict a future, and certainly one has no interest in proscribing some sort of new philosophical syllabus. But it is nevertheless clear that the most interesting philosophical work being done today is still happening in France, and this seminar is simply an opportunity to continue to engage with it.
">"> Sorry for not posting for so long time, no excuse.
Photo : Todd Rouhe
If you didn't have a chance to discuss 'introduction to civil war', 'becoming post capitalist self' and said somethings like 'there is nothing less passive than the act of fleeing', you missed the Public School New York's program past summer. Similar event happened in Berlin.
Well, that's the past and there is a fascinating seminar happening right now at the Public School New York in 177 Livingston st space. It is called ‘French Theory Today: Introduction to possible futures’. The sessions are taught by Alex Galloway, who teaches at NYU Media studies, honorary fellow at EYEBEAM and also member of Radical Software Group. The classes are free and open to all. Readings are intensive and rather difficult for someone without prior understanding of contemporary Continental philosophy. However, the classes are informing and discussions are insightful. The past first two days have been going well so far, and audio recordings and comments can be found at the class page. We have three more days to learn about unfamiliar yet compelling contemporary philosophy from France.
Equally exciting is Introduction to impossible futures, a barn razing class. The public school new york is leaving our beloved 177 space, and have to dismantle the interior structures which we built. Please come help and learn how to deconstruct space, pun intended.
I had the luck of participating in
biennial for new media art in San Jose, California. I also participated in the
first biennial in 2006, which was much larger in scale and well attended by the
professional in the field, largely due to the official collaboration with
I.S.E.A. (Inter Society of Electronic Arts) In the past, I participated in Ars
Electronica, Austria and visited Transmediale, Berlin, and media_city, Seoul,
which are some experiences that taught me how these events work. Zero One is
one of the youngest in the circle of large media art biennials, and through
three incarnations it served well as a cultural venue to the general public in
San Jose and Silicon Valley area. It makes sense that the Silicon Valley has a
media art biennial, given its material resource and proximity to the large
corporations and the community around them. For the corporation and academic
institutions that support the event, it is the easiest way to transfer their
technical and financial capital into a cultural one.
This year’s theme was ‘Out of garage’ and the description ‘Build
Your Own World!’ celebrates Californian notion of DIY (especially in relation
with Burning man festival enthusiasts) and the Art and Technology. Steve Dietz,
based in Minneapolis, curated the biennial for the third time. There were
various art projects, public installation, theatrical and musical shows,
‘locative cinema’, entertainment and ‘green prix’ march of electronic-recycled
bikes of all sorts. My experience as a participant and an audience largely
centered on the ‘South Hall’ a giant tent that is often used for commercial
conventions. Through 10 days of my stay at the South Hall, I observed couple
dozen projects being made, presented to the public, and torn down to the bear
material. I was delighted to learn about some artists, make few new friends,
and be part of an exciting environment. However I also felt a deep sense of
disorientation about the way some of the projects were presented.
‘Out of garage’ is an exhibition in the making, process
oriented event, that the audience were invited to participate in many
activities, workshops, and performances. The central space was dedicated to
‘Tech Shop’, with heavy machineries that were used for making many of the
works. The exhibition seems to focus on the potential of Do It Yourself, in
literal sense of ‘personal laboratory in a garage’, as well as more metaphoric
way of opening up ideas, knowledge, and technology. Some artists ‘open up’ by
making tutorial, some share codes, and some conduct workshops that invite audience
to participate. Such attempt to ‘open up’ artistic practice is happening
everywhere, it is not only with in media art. The trend may be more apparent
for media art because the technical ideas and source code can be shared by
others immediately. Idea and practice of ‘workshop’ is a prevalent medium for
many young artists now, as one can see or not see-unless participate, at events
like ‘Greater New York’ at PS1-MOMA. Pedagogy and research is not considered separately,
and participating in an art work is in a way being educated by the artist in
order to understand the art work. Such practice requires commitment from the
audience, much more so than walking into a gallery to see pictures. In that
context, Zero One’s
willingness to cooperate with artists to invite the public to the art work.
It is important to note on failure, but it is more important
to note it’s success. However noting on the success may sound redundant, as I
may repeat the curatorial attempt described in their website. I’d like to focus
on it’s shortcomings, because there was a lot more of accomplishment, it is
only possible to do better next time by learning from the shortcomings. The successful
side of the biennial, or the aspect of it which worked, was that it really did
invite the public to see the artists at work, their failure and success, and to
engage in conversation with the artists. The aspect of which did not work so
well is that it could as well have been artists were up for display, not the
art work. One can argue artists inevitably take on a performativity in
participatory practice. However, for the case of Zero One, It is partly due to
the fact that the exhibition per se never looked presentable in general. The
architectural structure dominated the space. They were made of crude metal
supports and clear plastic walls, which looked somewhere between Burning Man
and run down high school gym. Many projects were shadowed by the space, and
lack of control in sound and light made it hard to present the work properly.
Another problem was lack of participation. At times, it
seemed like the number of artists outnumbered the public in the city of San
Jose. Simply, there were too many artists and too much projects that require
participatory involvement. Artists and groups were often seen waiting for the
public, almost like a vendor waiting for shoppers at a country fair. Yet again,
this can be a problem that is typical of any sort of biennial, where
unprecedented numbers of art works are invited for a short period of time.
However, if there is a lesson to be learned from this, next biennial will need
to connect with the general public, social centers, community groups, schools,
and fans in engaging way throughout the two years of preparation. New biennials
often end up creating a public event for the non-local audience, thus a
biennial for the visiting artists and curators. Zero One is not a conventional
art biennial, and the world doesn’t seem to need another one. Institutions like
Zero One need to find a way to connect with local venues and people, have them
engaged in curatorial decisions, production, and thus creating a true sense of
new public space through the biennial practice. This year’s number of
attendants seemed to be lower than the first two festivals. The numbers are not
so important as much as audience experience and artist’s gratification of
participating in the event. There were many visitors during the weekend,
however much of the workshop and participatory practices were over by then.
Also many visitors did not have the time to participate in time consuming
Zero One biennial presented many cutting edge practitioners,
rare breed of artists who work in the field of Art and Technology with a
specific agenda for social cause and community involvement. Future Farmers,
Kitchen Budapest, MTAA, Blast Theory, Carl Disalvo and his students at Georgria
Tech, my fellow collaborators at the EYEBEAM roadshow, and the list goes on.
There were not as many usual ‘interactive’, ‘data visualization’ , ‘playful’,
‘location aware’, ‘audio visualization’ or ‘large outdoor projections’ that are
repeatedly presented at media art festivals, to a degree that they constructed
a genre in itself, called ‘media art festival art’. Many of the participating
artists required devoted audience and community involvement to complete their
projects, and the ‘South Hall’ was only filled with other artists, busy making
their projects happen. I was working with youths to create ‘First Person
Perspective’ head-camera apparatus and film about their private and public
space. I was fortunate to have few students to show up daily, for five days,
thus completing my workshop. Many other workshops had no participants during
the week, and many visitors, yet not so many participants during the weekend. I
was hoping to participate in many other artist’s workshops, but it often
contradicted with my schedule and responsibility as an artist, thus we
exchanged many ‘Hi’ ‘Nice to meet you’ ‘I love your practice’ and ‘Bye’.
Artist talk was a public venue for presentations and
discussion, which was one of the ways to meet other artists. I appreciated
having the chance to listen Brody Condon’s talk about ‘Level Five’. Inspired by
Live action role playing and Self-help events in the US few decades ago, he
created a very intimate, private, participatory performance at the convention
center, few minutes away from the South Hall. No audience was allowed to see
it, no video was exhibited at the biennial. Although his practice is highly
sophisticated, touching upon various cultural factors of our behavior and
desire, and the projects are compelling with a sense of humor and absurdity yet
very critical about conditions of our social expectations, I don’t think any
visitor knew what he was doing, or if he was doing anything at all. No one will
know until he exhibits the work at a gallery in some other place. Brooklyn
based artist group MTAA raised a barn, which the online audience decided which
parts go where. The project was supposed to be collaboration with local
community, who help the artists raise the barn, through participation on the
net, as well as physically building them. There were only a couple of folks to
help them, and the artists struggled to raise the barn mostly themselves. The
moment is a proper symbol for the biennial, artists building their own world,
without public. Jeff Stark and Todd Chandler presented his film with a drive in
theater and smashed up cars. The film was shot at the boat trip on the Hudson
river, made in collaboration with artist Swoon and many of their friends. A
truly all-American spectacle of obsolete technology and culture, it was a
beautiful project that was presented properly. Monica Haller’s Veteran’s book
project ‘Object for deployment’ was also another inspiring practice. The artist
collaborated with war veterans to write, edit, and publish their own book about
the war in a week’s time. It was the most emotionally moving piece in the show,
some had very graphic contents of emergency room in Iraq, some very sad notes
about a dead brother. These are some of the projects in which idea of personal
practice, metaphorically coined as the term of ‘garage’ or their studio/office,
meets the public, community, and audience into the world.
Airplane back to New York City, I saw the city of San Jose becoming smaller
until it looked like pieces of LEGO blocks. I realized where I was. It is the
suburban space without the community in a communal sense, the neighborhood
without shared public space, highways of micro private spaces coexisting on the
move. It is not especially more eccentrically boring than other suburban towns
in the country, and yet it is notable because not every suburban towns have
international biennials. We stayed at an extended stay suite called ‘Stay
Bridge’. Our place was by no means luxurious, but in no way filthy. It was
modest in all manners, and I appreciated it for being so. Across the street
from our lodge was ‘Bay 101’, a legal gambling house. Few blocks down, there was
‘Ebay’ and ‘Pay Pal’ headquarters, and near the central San Jose, ‘Adobe’ and
‘Sun’ corporation buildings are visible. Between our lodge and downtown, there
are endless rows of single story business malls. While driving around the area,
my friend Jeff Crouse played some tunes which he considers to be ‘Business
casual funk’. Some miles of ride on the highway leads to ‘Santana Row’, a
European themed life style mall that seems as artificial as Disneyland, yet
this one tries to be real in the way reality tv’s are real. This realization of
where I was (social and geographical context of the biennial) reminded me that
it was the disconnection between the community and artist was the root of
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