Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Marina Abramovic turns 70 today






We Do Not Work Alone










Visit We Do Not Work Alone (Unusual Objects by Artists) at the Untitled Miami Art Fair this week. Prices range from five to seven-hundred dollars, for works by Claude Closky, Katerina Jebb, Mathieu Mercier, Elsa Werth and others.



Printed Matter Post-Election Statement

Printed Matter Post-Election Statement, sent out this morning via email:


Dear Friends,

The U.S. election has shaken our country and we have felt the deep impact it has had on so many within our own community: the artists and publishers that we represent, our staff, our customers, and our audience at large.

In the wake of the election, Printed Matter reaffirms its commitment to social and political justice and to free expression. We stand against all forms of bigotry and political oppression. And we reaffirm that Printed Matter is an open and inclusive space and welcomes all members of the public, regardless of gender, class, race, religion, sexual orientation, national origin, ethnicity, age, medical condition, physical or mental disability.

With new urgency, Printed Matter will continue to provide a physical and online space for the public to engage with activist and political publishing projects by artists. We encourage artists working with activist and political themes to submit their books to Printed Matter through our open submission program. And we are committed to develop Printed Matter as a platform to critique and challenge not only the incoming Trump administration, but the power systems that have made it possible.

We will continue to provide a forum where voices of dissent can speak freely and with amplification—and will support and encourage art that expresses both resistance and hope.

Thank you,

Max Schumann
Director

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Ubuweb turns 20 today


Artist’s book trends in Brazil: 30 years later






Amir Brito Cadôr & Paulo Silveira
Tendências do livrode artista no Brasil: 30 anos depois
São Paulo, Brazil: Centro Cultural, 2016
Edition size unknown
14 pp., staple-bound

Artist’s book trends in Brazil: 30 years later is a slim exhibition catalogue documenting curators Amir Brito Cadôr and Paulo Silveira's re-staging of a 1985 exhibition at the Centro Cultural São Paulo, Brazil. Copies of the book are available from Silveira, at paulo.silveira@ufrgs.br.

Monday, November 28, 2016

MKG127 at the Untitled Art Fair, Miami





MKG127 is participating in the UNTITLED Art Fair at Miami Beach this week, for the third consecutive year. The gallery is presenting works by Kristiina Lahde and Roula Partheniou at Booth D7. The fair is open to the public Wednesday November 30 - Saturday December 3, 11 AM - 7 PM, and Sunday December 4, 11 AM - 5PM.

Partheniou's replicas include the above coffee cup, rubiks cube, gluestick, plunger, styrofoam, plates, milk carton, thermoses, tape rolls, tools, sponge, fluorescent bulb, cardboard boxes, colour field record crate and the (easy to miss) fire alarm and wall vent. These are all made of wood or MDF, painted with acrylic, I believe. The sculptures are accompanied by a few framed drawings of photocopies. She is also presenting a brand new series of wooden paintbrushes hanging on wooden nails. 

Lahde's work includes a beautiful photo series on the outer wall, collages made with measuring tapes and the large circular modular work on the back wall, made with metal rulers. 

Pauline Oliveros | Reverberations: Tape & Electronic Music 1961-1970



Pauline Oliveros
Reverberations: Tape & Electronic Music 1961-1970
Groveland, USA: Important Records, 2012
12 CD box set
Edition size unknown

Released in conjunction with the composer's 80th birthday, Reverberations is a dense twelve disc collection of early and mostly previously unreleased electronic work, including Oliveros' very first piece for tape, made in 1961. The set includes extensive liner notes by Alex Chechile, Ramon Sender, David Bernstein, Corey Arcangel, Benjamin Tinker and Oliveros herself.

Available from Important Records, here, for $100 or $120 for copies signed by Oliveros.



"She was there at the San Francisco Tape Music Center — alongside Terry Riley and Morton Subotnick — in the 1960s and her pioneering studies with tape delay were critical in the advancement of American experimental music. Yet for a long time, Pauline Oliveros' name wasn't so well-known. That's changed in recent years, partially due to this 12-CD set of Oliveros' electronic and tape pieces from the 1960s. After Cage made the world safe for silence, Oliveros made it safe for noise, pushing the new electronic tools of the time to harsh extremes, as pieces such as "50-50 Heads/Tails" reveal. Unlike Stockhausen, she wasn't a prognosticator of strict new styles, instead adopting an intuitive, receptive approach to the new sounds made possible by throwing out the users' manuals. The early "Mnemonics" studies reveal Oliveros's gripping way with longform improvisation-composition; the buzzing oscillations and echoing tape-manipulations achieve a charm that feels influenced by Oliveros' curious, open-minded attitude. And these 12-plus hours of early experiments only show one side of her art; her electro-acoustic explorations and extended-technique accordion playing still transport audiences to this day."

"One advantageous thing about tape music is that the performance is also the recording, so there was no shortage of material for this retrospective, which fills a dozen discs in almost as many hours. While any massive tape music collection will have its share of desultory windshear, the vision and variety of Reverberations are incredible, and feel surprisingly untarnished by 50 years of imitation. In the music, two distinct intelligences, one human and one mechanical, circle each other cautiously but inquisitively. We hear unpredictable occurrences, captured in the moment of discovery, becoming first principles for a new generation."

"A 12-CD set definitely constitutes an "immersive experience" with any artist's music. And Pauline Oliveros is well served by Important Records' retrospective of her unreleased earlier work, coinciding with her 80th birthday celebrations being held throughout 2012. Unlike many of her contemporaries, Oliveros approached electronic music composing as an improviser. Her tape pieces for Buchla synthesizer, and sometimes tape delay, sound in-the-moment, being realized in real-time by someone whose acute sensitivity to the qualities in sound allowed her to paint intricate pictures with sine tones and filters on the fly. Denser, her work at the University of Toronto's electronic music studio came from her immersion with its 12-tone generator system, which was cutting edge for its time. While some pieces may sound dated and a bit dry (i.e., reverb-less), this extensive audio document tracks an influential artist's creative output over a decade. It's a meditation on, and in, "deep listening," being sonically aware, attuned to the characteristics, movements, placement and relationships of sounds over time. Being entirely studio-centric solo work, the set omits two significant aspects of Oliveros's canon: site-based acoustics and improvisational collaborations with other artists. Oliveros won the John Cage prize this year and the music here shows why."

"Turning eighty has been fantastic. Forty years ago, people weren’t so familiar with performance, and they certainly didn’t know my work very well. But now esteemed groups such as the International Contemporary Ensemble play my compositions, and it’s very heartening. Receiving this year’s John Cage Award was a total and welcome surprise, too. I thought this would be a relaxing time in my life —a time to retire! I was wrong."
- Pauline Oliveros



Oliveros died on Thursday in her Kingston, New York home. She was eighty-four.



Sunday, November 27, 2016

Euan Macdonald | Untitled



Euan Macdonald
Untitled
Toronto, Canada: Bywater Brothers, 2001
6.5 x 25 x 26.5 cm
Edition of 25 signed and numbered copies

The second Bywater Brothers edition (following the David Shrigley Swan) is another cast polyurethane resin object: a plane atop another, hung by fishing line.


Saturday, November 26, 2016

Larry Clark | Skateboard










Larry Clark
Skateboard
San Francisco, USA: Venture Trucks, 1992
21.6 x 80.6 cm.
Edition of 8 signed, dated and numbered copies

A wooden skateboard with 45 mm wheels and black grip tape with a black and white photography silkscreened on bottom.

The work often appears at auction with an estimate of between $8,000 and $12,000 US, but fails to attract any bidders.

Friday, November 25, 2016

Pauline Oliveros, RIP


John Chick | Flux Food






John Chick
Flux Food
New York City, USA: Fluxus, 1969
10 x 12 x 1.3 cm.
Edition size unknown

A variation on the more common John Chick Fluxkit (see post here) which includes either "forest found objects or synthetic food-like objects" (as they were advertised in a March 1969 Fluxus newsletter). This version, in the collection of the Museum of Modern Art, contains eleven commercial food labels.

Whereas the other Flux Food kits are typically (but not exclusively) made using clear plastic boxes, this version is white. Both contain the same George Maciunas designed label.





Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Printopolis book launch



When I was first invited to contribute a chapter to Open Studio's new book Printopolis in 2012, Steven Leiber had just died. Based in San Francisco, Steven was a leading authority on the subject of artists' book and multiples and the authority on the subject of artists' ephemera. We only met a few times, but have many friends in common, and would often consult over the phone, email or letter (though his postcards were mostly illegible).

Choosing to tackle his area of expertise was a tribute of sorts, and I'm glad it's finally in print. The book launches Friday night at Open Studio, at 6:30 pm. Edited by Jenn Law and Tara Cooper, the title includes texts by Patrick Mahon, Lisa Deanne Smith, Luke Painter, Adam Welch, Kristie MacDonald, Shannon Gerard and many others. Additionally, there are interviews with Mary Tremonte, JP King,  Kirsten McCrea and AA Bronson (with General Idea the subject of another text, also).

My essay is about five a half thousand words, here are the first six hundred or so:



Short-lived Phenomena

The word “ephemeral” derives from the Greek, meaning things “lasting no more than one day.” This may refer to a Moon Flower, a Mayfly, a fever, or a body of water than exists briefly after precipitation or snowmelt. Contemporary usage of the noun “ephemera” tends toward transitory printed materials, which are not intended to be retained or preserved.

Despite this definition, many of these materials are highly sought-after items, with Cartophily and postage stamp collecting being the most obvious examples. Trading cards were originally created to prevent the contents of the product being sold (cigarettes, and later chewing gum) from being damaged. Initially blank, the “stiffeners” were soon printed with images of ships, soldiers, baseball players and actresses in an effort to secure brand loyalty. They quickly became coveted in their own right, with children taking to loitering outside of tobacconists and pleading with customers to part with the card from their cigarette pack. Stamp collecting, a practice almost certainly on the wane, is still considered one of the world’s most popular hobbies, with an estimated 200 million collectors worldwide, and tens of thousands of stamp dealers.

Other examples range from old menus and recipe leaflets, to greeting cards, ticket stubs and road maps. Recently published titles suggest the growing popularity of collecting printed miscellany: Cigarette Cards and How To Collect Them, Old Magazines: Identification & Value Guide and Design for Impact: Fifty Years of Airline Safety Cards. Dutch marketing consultant Niek Vermeulen, has been collecting airsickness bags since the 1970s. As of January 2010 he had amassed a collection of 6,016 bags from 1,142 different airlines, from more than 160 countries.  Belgian artist Wim Delvoye, best known for tattooing pigs, x-raying blowjobs and a machine that produces shit, is the world’s leading collector of Vache qui Rit (The Laughing Cow) cheese spread labels, with a collection of more than 4,000.

“Artists’ ephemera” refers to materials related to an art practice whose use-value has expired (an invitation or announcement card being the most common) but which holds other interest for collectors. Examples include beer coasters, bookmarks, business cards, buttons, calendars, decals, flyers, greeting cards, invitations, letterhead, magazines, magnets, matchbooks, pamphlets, postcards, posters, shopping bags, stickers and temporary tattoos. A notable sub-section of the genre is artists’ advertisements, which are distinguished from commissioned artists’ projects within the pages of a publication (which are not uncommon) and typically consist of interventions within the available advertising spaces of a periodical.

The leading authority on artists’ ephemera, Steven Leiber, died in 2012 of brain cancer. Sometime in the mid 80s Leiber, an art dealer in San Francisco, had bought “twenty-one boxes of crap” from the Fluxus artist Jeff Berner. After sifting through the collection for over a year he realized that he was less interested in the items of intrinsic value, but was drawn to the transient printed materials. He went on to amass one of the largest collections of artists’ ephemera, published over forty sales catalogues (many of which themselves became collectible) and curated several exhibitions around his collection, including the landmark Extra Art: A Survey of Artists’ Ephemera, 1960-1999. The 2001 exhibition featured over 500 pieces and was presented at the Wattis Institute for Contemporary Arts, before travelling to the Institute of Contemporary Art in London.

The accompanying catalogue, featuring over 1500 items (the bulk of which are illustrated), remains the definitive volume on the subject. In their introductory essay, Steven Leiber and Todd Alden identify three criteria for ascertaining what constitutes artists’ ephemera:

- All materials are conceived and/or created by artists specifically for the purpose of being reproduced.

- All materials are distributed for free or very inexpensively.

- All materials have a supplemental relationship to art and perform a double function: a) they are secondary expressions of or about art, finding distribution in contexts in which these expressions are useful or instrumental for a short, limited time, and b) although these secondary expressions sometimes function in an external relationship to art, they also function, to varying degrees, as integral components of art or as art itself.



Open Studio is located at

401 Richmond Street West, Suite #104
Toronto ON  M5V 3A8
Canada
416-504-8238

For more information about the book, visit the website, here.


Franz Erhard Walther | Objekte Benutzen





Franz Erhard Walther
Objekte Benutzen
Cologne, Germany: Walther Konig, 1968
[unpaginated], 22 X 10 xm., softcover
Edition size unknown

An instruction manual and guidebook to Walther's interactive sculptural works, most of which are  are made from fabric and are designed for simple physical actions: pressing, folding, unfolding, covering, and being worn.

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

David Horvitz | Studio Rent Editions/August, 2015



David Horvitz
Studio Rent Editions/August, 2015
Los Angeles, USA: Self-published, 2015
10.4 x 24 cm. / 10.2 x 15 cm.
Edition of ten signed, numbered and dated copies


"My studio rent edition series are a series of monthly editions that subsidizes my monthly studio rent. They are all an edition of 10 and sold for 1/10th of my studio rent. Most of previous ones are sold out (some are available at my gallery in Berlin). Each month I send out an email describing the new piece, and you can purchase one, and it is then mailed to you. Maybe this series could also be seen as a monthly mail art project as well."

....

"For an exhibition last year in Santa Barbara, California, I had 30 copies of my Public Access artist-book bound to library standards in an archival blue material with gold foil stamping by Trappist monks in Oregon. I drove up the California coast and left these books in local libraries.
The edition is five 4″x6″ photographs in a business envelope. The stamp and signature is on the back of the envelope…”

- David Horvitz


Horvitz has been producing the Studio Rent Editions since 2010, with buyers of the works covering the rental cost of his studio (first in New York, and then in Los Angeles). His commitment to the pricing model is consistent - a few years ago he spent the month of December on residence where there was no studio fee. The Studio Rent Edition that month was distributed without charge.

Opening today at the Joseph Gross Gallery (at the University of Arizona - not, uh, the Joseph Gross Gallery in NYC) is the exhibition David Horvitz: The Studio Rent Editions: 2010 –Ongoing, bringing back together six years of dispersed projects that include an envelope of sand, collections of snapshot photographs, postcards, rubber stamped envelopes and various other mail art projects.   

The exhibition continues until January 13th, 2017 and an opening reception is being held on December 1st, from 5 to 7pm, which will include a talk by the artist.

For more information visit the gallery website, here, and for further examples, see The Archive is Limited, here











David Horvitz | Studio Rent Editions, 2016 (rent for March)


David Horvitz
Studio Rent Editions, 2016 (rent for March)
Los Angeles, USA: Self-published, 2016
10.5 x 23.9 cm.
Edition of ten signed, numbered and dated copies

California wild flowers pressed into an envelope and damaged on the postal journey from the artist's home to the buyers. Sold as part of the artist's Studio Rent Editions series.


David Horvitz | Studio Rent Editions, 2015 (rent for October)



David Horvitz
Studio Rent Editions, 2015 (rent for October)
Los Angeles, USA: Self-published, 2015
17.5 x 12.6 cm.
Edition of 10 signed, numbered and dated copies


A photograph of Horvitz' 2015 book Mood Disorder (see post, here) being held up by helium-filled balloons. Sold as part of the artist's Studio Rent Editions series.


David Horvitz | Studio Rent Editions [rent for February]







David Horvitz
Studio Rent Editions [rent for February]
Los Angeles, USA: Self-published, 2016
29.6 x 20.9 cm
Edition of 10 signed, numbered and dated copies

A pair of envelopes mailed separately which join to complete a text work. Sold as part of the Studio Rent Editions project. The text work has also been produced as a poster and bookbag (below, available for $25 US, here).









Monday, November 21, 2016

Layne Hinton and Rui Pimenta talk




Art Spin and In/future curators Layne Hinton and Rui Pimenta speak at Interaccess on Thursday November 24th, at 7pm. The pair will discuss collaborative curation, site-specific projects and situating art in alternative public spaces.

The event is PWYC (with a $5 suggested donation) and takes place at InterAccess, at 9 Ossington Ave, Toronto. Register in advance for tickets, here.


"Hinton and Pimenta will speak about their recently finished and most ambitious project to date – In/future: a transformative art experience – an 11 day multidisciplinary art and music festival that reanimated the 14 acre West Island of Ontario Place for the first time since its controversial closure in 2012. Hear about the experience of activating a long-dormant amusement park, working collaboratively with hundreds of artists and partner organizations, and the inspirations and challenges of responding to a site with such a high-profile and troubled history.

Since 2010 Layne Hinton and Rui Pimenta have been the creative force behind Art Spin, overseeing all aspects of its operations from curation and programming to administration and production. Layne and Rui bring many of the skills and insights of their individual art practices to their roles as curators to work closely with other artists in ways that are highly collaborative. Art Spin has been animating the city with arts programming for over seven years, activating decommissioned venues and unique public spaces to produce large scale group exhibitions along with curated bicycle led art tours to showcase a wide range of newly commissioned art programming in unique site-specific settings. Most recently Art Spin was the lead presenter behind in/future, an 11 day multidisciplinary art and music festival that transformed the 14 acre West Island of the iconic Ontario Place with multidisciplinary site-responsive art projects."
- press release






Letch Kinloch lecture at PLATFORM



A week from today (Monday November 28th), PLATFORM in Winnipeg will present a lecture by Letch Kinloch, in conjunction with their exhibition "Cover to Cover" by Ho Tam.

Kinloch’s lecture will "consider the artist book, its many forms and possibilities, and its continued decategorization through digital experimentation." Kinloch is an artist and the founder of Winnipeg’s artist book library, Also as Well Too.

The talk, like all in the organization's Active Research Lectures Series, is free and open to the public.


Monday, 28 November 2016, 7:00-8:00 PM
Cinematheque Theatre, 100 Arthur Street
Reception to follow in the gallery.

Sunday, November 20, 2016

Brian Jungen | Carapace







Brian Jungen 
Carapace [special edition]
Edmonton, Canada: Art Gallery of Alberta, 2011
63 pp., 25 x 18 cm., plastic slipcase
Edition of 200 signed and numbered copies

Carapace is a turtle-shell-like dome made entirely of trash bins and recycling containers. It was first presented in North America at the Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian in Washington six years ago, and was remounted for the final time in January 2011, for the Art Gallery of Alberta, Edmonton. The special edition of the catalogue that the AGA produced for the exhibition came housed in a slipcase made of the recycled recycling bins.

Available here, for $200.00 CDN. 



Saturday, November 19, 2016

herman de vries | meine poesie ist die welt









herman de vries
meine poesie ist die welt
Bern, Switzerland: edition Lydia Megert, 1976
ad:: 11.5 x 11.3 cm., newspaper: 49.5 x 33 cm.
Edition of 33 signed and numbered copies

meine poesie ist die welt (or my poetry is the world) is an advertisement placed in the Anzeiger für die Stadt Bern on Friday May 7th, 1976. 

Copies are still available from the publisher, here


Friday, November 18, 2016

This week on Tumblr: Implosions, Inc.



Intended as a revenue-generating arm of Fluxus, Implosions Inc. was founded by George Maciunas, artist Robert Watts and businessman Herman Fine in 1967. The goal was to mass produce works by Fluxus artists which might have the potential to cross over into a larger audience. They produced items such as items such as temporary tattoos, stickers, posters and postage stamps, and prototypes for printed aprons and other wearable works.

In a Fluxus newsletter dated March 8th, 1967, Maciunas announced:

"Triple partnership was formed between Bob Watts, Herman Fine and myself to introduce into mass market some potentialy [sic] money producing products (of practical nature) (mostly) Some contacts with manufacturers may promise success. This business will be operated in commercial manner, with intent to make profits. Artists will be offered 5% royalty from total gross sales of products designed by him. Though connection between Fluxus collective and Implosions Inc. has not been clarified yet (though 66% of Implosions is Fluxus in personel [sic] and products), we could consider at present Fluxus to be a kind of division or subsidiary of Implosions.”



Ulises




Last Saturday, a new bookstore "dedicated to Artists' Books and Independent Art Publications" opened in Philadelphia, the first of it's kind in the city. Founded by Nerissa Cooney, Lauren Downing, Kayla Romberger, Gee Wesley, Ricky Yanas, and Joel Evey, the non-profit venture will invite contributors to "present publications, workshops, lectures, artworks or collaborations in response to a theme". The inaugural theme is "Active Voice", with an exhibition featuring video by Hannah Black and sound work by Steffani Jemison, alongside a reading station with titles selected by Performa curator Mark Beasley.

The store is named Ulises, after Ulises Carrión, the Mexican conceptualist whose Other Books and So (Amsterdam, 1975-1979) serves as a model for the project. Ulises is located in a converted garage space at 31 E Columbia Avenue, and is opened from noon to 6pm on Saturdays and Sundays.

Visit their website, here.