Documenting personal objects

This project I worked in collaboration with Rebeca Lieberman. In which we describe a person through 5 personal and valuable (not monetary) objects for him.

This project is related to this week strategy, because the person we will describe  is an immigrant from Mexico, so my point, more now that a repulse against immigrants has been created in the USA with the future elections candidates, is to show immigrants human side and with this affect people feelings and judges against them.

Social Practice, Resistance and Culture Jamming

For this week strategy i picked the Yes Men duo. Mainly because of their way to show injustice generated by corporate companies, and how they turned a blind eye to any disaster generated. A clear example of this companies is Union Carbide/Dow and the Bhopal incident.

I relate their strategy to use movies to transmit their message:

“The reason to do a movie is because it can have even more of an impact than media stories do. People pay attention to media stories for a few minutes or an hour and maybe remember them a couple days later, if you’re lucky. But a movie can stick with you for life.”(2)

similar to the AgitProp in the Soviet Union where “the only effective propaganda was that which could be understood by its audience”(1), being at that time most lower class people illiterate the content had to be highly visual. I think that even now most of the people are “illiterate”, that nowadays we see so many injustice in the media, but after a week goes by we forget it and let it go without doing anything, like if we’re accepting that theres nothing to do about it.

Im always curious if this kind of strategy could be later hazardous for them, for example their appearance as part of Dow saying they gonna give money to Bhopal tragedy, put the company on the spot light in USA media, and affecting the stock value of the company.

  1. Brown, Kevin, “Agitprop in Soviet Rusia”
  2. Lambert, Steve, “The Yes Men”

Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots

Fuchs questions:

I. THE WORLD OF THE PLAY: FIRST THINGS FIRST.

The world of the play takes place in a built city (Philadelphia could be an option), were most of the scenes happens interior, except in the fantasy world, where the fights can happen in open field. The time feels linear, starting end of summer and finishing beginning of winter. The mood and tone pace of the play goes by the advanced of Yoshimi’s cancer.

The music of the play is not as sad as the plot, giving another point of view when dealing with a sad theme as cancer.

II. THE SOCIAL WORLD OF THE PLAY: A CLOSER LOOK

In this world the central figure, Yoshimi, is surround  by rest of characters, where you can also feel the interlocking triangle withe her, Booker and Ben. Characters are 2 dimensional figures that interact by dialogue between each other,  with exception of the robots in the fantasy world, which interact by fighting.

Yoshimi’s cancer is the one that controls this whole world, including the emotions of the characters, who show feelings of helplessness.

III. WHAT CHANGES?

The essential scene is number 10 where Yoshimi confronts Booker for not being brave, I believe this scene re-activates her emotions for Ben, but at the same time puts the thought on her that there would be no chance for her to win this battle. You feel the time change through stages of Yoshimi’s life.

The place of the play goes back and forward between the real world and the Yoshimi’s fantasy world, (could be whenever she is tired because of medicine or the moment when she passed out)

IV. DON’T FORGET YOURSELF

This world makes me appreciate life, and make me want to be a loved person by being nice to the people that surround me, the thought of not knowing when someone you love can suffer a disease like Yoshimi, or even yourself, and the idea of losing that person with a conflict in between.

V. THEATRICAL MIRRORS

There are some performances that deal with sickness and lost of one of the main character, the one that comes to my mind could be Stepmom, or 21 grams.

VI. THE CHARACTER FITS THE PATTERN

Character fit the pattern of the world, you can tell how the emotions of them change and go proportionally with the advance of Yoshimi’ sickness.

—————-

SENTENCES OF THE STORY

  1. Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots is a story about a girl trying to defeat cancer.
  2. Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots is a story about a girl trying to defeat cancer, and how this affects also her closest ones.
  3. Yoshimi Battles the PInk Robots is a story about a girl trying to defeat cancer and also confuse in her emotional life with his boyfriend and ex-boyfriend. In where she ends with the person that correspond her the most but she dies.

perFormance

The artist I liked the most in this 2 weeks strategy was Joseph Beuys, and he believed everyday life is a performance.

For this project I wanted to do something that make me a better person specially with people that surround me.

I believe my personal attitude occasionally generates  tension with some friends so I decide to approach to them and ask them how I can improve my daily behavior to be more estimate, and make them feel gratify, relax with my presence. As a symbol and commitment to whatever their response is, I give them a laserCut cocktail glass, because personally I feel gratifying the moment I enjoy a cocktail, feeling refresh.

photo 2 photo 1 photo 2 (1) photo 1 (1)


STRATEGY PROTOTYPE

For this week strategy prototype I would like to get people reactions as a main part of the piece.

My idea is to put rare objects that normally you can not find in the junk shelf of ITP (damaged electronics, old toys, vase, etc that anyone can grabbed). I want to record when people approach to the objects and see their reaction to them.

photo 1photo 2

 

 

 

 

The purpose of this will be to create unexpected emotions in people, hopefully trying to make them smile.

PERFORMANCE AND SOCIAL PRACTICE

The work I chose for this week strategy is Joseph Beuys, “Beuys believed everyone is an artist and all actions are art he lived in a constant performance”(1), that’s why I didn’t picked a specific work of him, I chose his whole life as the piece.

I think that beside a performer he could been seen as a philosopher, who was seeking to share and influence others with his anthroposophical ideas, where he “strongly believed that humankind survival depends on its letting go of materialism in order to move on to the next evolutionary stage” (2) This kind of idea shows me more the shaman adjective that he held, because is a similar thinking from the Mayas, which I believe in it too, who assured that humans where in constant evolution.

The best way to show your point of view, especially if you want to influence others is by being an example of it, and that’s for me Beuys principal strategy, the way he lived according to the principles he believed in.

I do believe his work was effective, because it did influence a lot of people, or at least plant an emotion or a thought, to followers and haters. As he said:

“Art that can’t shape society and therefore also can’t penetrate the heart questions of society”

The material and tools he used for their exhibition weren’t random pick, all of them had a purpose and meaning:

“Felt represents heat, fat mental strength, while Beuys himself acts as the transmitter … Copper, another typical Beuys material which he used for many of his actions, is the conductor which stands for venus force. The rabbit is the organic force….”(1)

Joseph Beuys totally fits into the context of the period it was produced as a conceptual artist and a performance, where the action is the art, no so much the physical result (3)

1.- Khayyer, Jina, “Energy Plan for the Western Man

2.- Levi Strauss, David “American Beuys “I Like America & America Likes Me””, 1999.

3.- Chayka, Kyle, “WTF is … Performance Art?”, 2011­­

Cornell box for the Completeness

For this assignment we had to do a Cornell box related to the play by Itamar Moses.

The Completeness is a story about Elliot and Molly, two grad students, and the romance between them. Where both feel uncertain once they achieve the goals, romantic and professional, they where looking for. At the end the attraction between them gets back after they realize that the project in which they worked together in not solved.

To do this I used an old ACTION portable TV set. Choose this to give the feeling of computer (the characters met in a computer room, and Elliot was Computer Science).

I emptied all the components inside and desolder some components of the main board, to be able to cut it and fit vertical on the “box”.photo

Finally on the main board I solder an open hearth shape, that represent the gap of the main characters in committing to a relationship.

Here are some pictures of the finish project
a1 a2 a3

 

Exposure bracketing feature

For this assignment we test the exposure bracketing feature of the camera (Canon EOS), here are the 3 examples with their respective histogram, (ISO 400 and 3.5 aperture for all three pictures):

1/8
a31:8

 

 

 

 

1/13

a1

1:13

 

 

 

 

1/20

a2 1:20

 

 

 

Personally I like the 1/13 exposure, despite you can tell the histogram tells is to dark, what made me pick this picture instead of the 1/8 exposure is that this last one is to bright on the reflexion created by some guitars. For next time, I will try playing with the aperture of the lens in order to get a more balanced histogram.

Fuch’s questions for “The Completeness”

1.THE WORLD OF THE PLAY:

Personally the play takes part in an interior, built and contained space such as a University Campus, between a lab room of the Computer Science department, a lab in the Molecular Biophysics & Biochemistry department, the public computer cluster and the apartments of Elliot and Molly, all walking distance from each other.

You can feel the linear time in the play except for the part Molly and Elliot remembers their first serious relationship where their past and present merge together in the scene, and the lapse where the actors act like themselves pretending there was a technical problem with the play, “it got frozen”.

The climate environment feels like a mild weather, nothing extreme like a snowstorm or massive heath wave, so either spring or fall could fit.

The season and climate environment, influences the serious polytechnic mood, where people are really focus on their studies as its main goal in live before satisfying personal emotions.

Lastly, the tone of the play goes without rush, at cool steady pace. I’ll imagine for sound ambient noise of computer room, biology lab sounds, with a soft tune on the background corresponding to the mood of the scene.

2.THE SOCIAL WORLD OF THE PLAY: A CLOSER LOOK:

This is a private world because actions taken place affects only characters involve and not third parties. We can see Molly and Elliot as central figures because the plot is about the relationship between them and also the personal conflicts that they have in showing affection to another that could be consequence of loneliness due to the toughness of the grad program and investigation they are doing. That conflict with himself or herself could be the interlocking triangle, instead of Nell or Franklin.

The Figures in this planet focus more in their present, with short-term goals. Because of the technological dialogue between the characters, the time where the play happens is contemporary to nowadays. The interaction is a reasoned discussion between educated people, using dialogue as a speech tool. The language seems to be logical at first, but when they use the action when computer “freeze” again and stop the real play, you could think that this action can happen to our feelings or emotion, becoming metaphorical.

3.WHAT CHANGES?:

The striking image or act in this play happens at Molly apartment, when Elliot explains his condition of being in a relationship:

“For a while it seems like you got everything right, finally, like everything is perfect, and then suddenly some…unforeseen issue arises out of nowhere, and you’re just like, oh god, no, not this again”

To which Molly agree she has the same feeling but with a different reaction. It is worth it to point that this same condition is shown at the beginning of the play, the moment both of the principal characters break up with their respective couples.

The end scene gives the impression that the main characters overcome the situation that scares them of having a stable relationship, but the moment where it ends gives the viewer the option to imagine their own finale (would they end up together as friends, lovers, etc.)

4.DON’T FORGET YOURSELF:

This plays made me thought of how human being can get bored after achieving something they were looking for. Also intrigues me the analogy of the frozen display, and how they use it later as if the play has frozen, which made me think that is impossible or it will take infinite time to solve the algorithm in matching a person with their soul mate. If somehow that algorithm gets solved we would stop having the intrigue in our partner, that’ll avoids us to get bored.

5.THEATRICAL MIRRORS:

The only mirror I see here is the scientific language and procedure to resolve a problem of science, and how this same language is tried to use in a social problem.

6.THE CHARACTER FITS THE PATTERN:

The main characters of the play fit the pattern of the world. You can see in the striking image (point 4) how this generates the same reaction in their professional as in their sentimental life.

Elliot: He doesn’t know what to do after he solves the algorithm he was working from a long time, and it’s the same reaction when he gets to be in a relationship he wanted.

Molly: She tends to get away when she gets what she wants, example when finally he gets to test her proteins in the mice, then she wants to transfer to another university, that’s the same when she gets in a relationship, when this reach to a steady point, she find the need to run away too.

In the final scene Elliot says to Molly the algorithm is not really solve, bursting again the feelings that he had for her, creating in her a need to keep exploring or waiting till the new algorithm is solved in order to try again in her studies, postponing the will to walk away.

SYSTEMS/ MAPS, ETHNOGRAPHY AND INFRASTRUCTURE

9/30/2015

For this week strategy, and after seeing some of the artists related to it.

In order to keep working with the reflection paper I did for the lamp presented last week I would like to create a corn shape prototype and add the reflexion paper on some of the grains in order to generate a skull on the reflection when it is lighted.

This would be related to this week strategy to create or highlight in the viewers the massive damage that companies like Monsanto are responsible with genetic modified organism.

images

9/30/2015

All the examples for this strategy involves investigation on the subject in which the artist will like to do his work about. Ex (Mark Lombardi Narrative Structures) so it make me investigate a little more on GM corn.

Making it short it all started in 1980 with the Diamond vs Chakrabarty case, where the highest court decided that biological life could be legally patentable. After that “certain biotech companies then quickly moved to utilize such patenting for the control of seed stock”(1). Nowadays Monsanto is spread in all the States and other countries with the possibility to alter the life in the soil forever and the worst is that television don’t show this danger. Here is the commercial that is shown to us.

For this prototype I used a old portable TV that shows a nice maize representing the commercial. But at the top of TV frame you can pull a black curtain with the intention to stop the viewer of looking the GM maize, also representing darkness and fear of what can come next if theres no action to corporate farming.

Here are some pictures of the project

a1 a2P1000084

 

 

 

 

References I read to get more information about this subject:

  1. Batalion, Nathan, “50 Harmful Effects of Genitecally Modified Foods
  2. Van der Belt, Henk, “Debating the Precautionary Principle: “Guilty until proven Innocent” or “Innoncent until Proven Guilty”?”
  3. Henderson, Elizabeth, “Rebuilding Local Food Systems from the Grassroots Up”

 

PROCEDURAL, ALEATORY AND INSTRUCTIONAL

I really like disco balls, specially the reflection of light on them. Lately I’ve been creating “rooster balls” that are laser cut roosters covered with reflective paper (gallo).Screen Shot 2015-09-09 at 1.22.45 PM

In this 2 weeks I would like to create new polygon shapes applying this technique of procedural, aleatory and instructional strategy.

Materials: wood, reflective paper.

 

Procedure:

  1. select the number of points of the polygon (random number between 4 – 10).
  2. select the x and y point where each point would be located (random floating number). The number should be inside the dimension of the wood piece, now I was thinking 0 – 6″ for the prototype, but I would like it to be bigger.
  3. Join all the coordinates, with his closer point.
  4. Cut the figure that is form.
  5. Cover with reflective paper.
  6. Repeat step 1 to 5, three more times till you have four shapes, and join them through a cross shape, attaching each figure to one end.
  7. Put a fish line so you can have how to hang it, and reflect some light on it.

Her Long Black Hair

Janet Cardiff is a Canadian sound artist whom I just heard about her last year while doing her sound walk called “Her long black Hair (2004)”. Which according to her description of the piece is a:

“…complex sensory investigation of location, time, sound, and physicality, interweaving stream-of-consciousness observations with fact and fiction, local history, opera and gospel music, and other atmospheric and cultural elements.”

            Personally I think that the purpose of this sound walk is to disconnect the user from the reality with audio, by using at the same time real time objects (park environment), that would help create a “unique walk for everyone (Sara Ivry)”. The use of binaural recording and equalization allows you to feel the pan and effects (for example reverb) of sounds while you are walking through the paths and different environments in the park, which even makes you look back or to another direction thinking that someone or something is there.

The fact of being most of the time in movement and changing panoramas prevent the sound walk to fall into monotony and boring experience. Megan Ratner attributes that this creates an inner feeling saying, “…walking is one of our strongest links to our ancestors.”

Other attribute that stands out this experience is the mix of body and technology and how even though the narrator (Cardiff) is not physically present the user can’t feel that void, it seems like she’s is always with you in this journey.

As conclusion I would recommend this experience to everybody, because there are moments in the experience where the story telling matches with the reality and makes you wonder if that was the intention of the artist or just coincidence.

References:

  1. Ivry, Sara, 2004. “It’s a Walk in the Park. No, Really”. The New York Times.
  2. Ratner, Megan, 2007. “Janet Cardiff”. Frieze Magazine.
  3. Nedelkopoulou, Erini, 2011. “Walking Out on Our Bodies Participation as ecstasis in Janet Cardiff’s Walks”. Performance Research: A Journal of the Performing Arts