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 (, 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 (; and curating with architecture gallery SUPERFRONT ( Chloë holds a BA in Theater Studies from Yale University, and an MFA in Performance and Interactive Media Arts (PIMA) from Brooklyn College.

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Carmen:: A few days ago I was thinking about relational aesthetics and sound works and then today I heard about the project
Play Me, I’m Yours. What a nice idea. I would love to be walking around town and then just happen to see a stranger playing a piano on the street. Simple, direct and altogether wonderful.

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Carmen :: Sound art, HD, composition, electroacoustic music, Max/MSP, Audio vision, Visual Music, FCP, mapping, interactivity…

All this really makes me wish I could crochet or knit, do anything exciting with yarn. Why yarn? Because yarn is AWESOME.

I like the graffiti work of Knitta Please

And this piece by Theresa Honeywell all but sent me straight away to Michael’s.

Knit Machine Gun

How wonderfully neutralizing. (That’s not the word I really wanted to use.)

Just today I had the pleasure of seeing this piece by my good friend, Jeanne Jo. It’s so beautiful in form and idea. It made me feel warm and serene and I guess that’s what a love letter is supposed to do, no? Yes.

If A Mouth Were to Whisper

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Doug Aitken

Carmen :: I fell down a rabbit hole. I was looking for interesting work by Mexican artists living near Morelia and as I stumbled around on line I found out about Mexico: Expected /Unexpected. The traveling exhibition included work by Mexican artists as well an international mix of makers. The goal of the exhibition was to explore a possible definition of Mexican contemporary art through dialogue with works from the international scene. Looking at the collection, one gets the sense of just how unstable such categories are.

But that heady art theory might be best saved for a chat over cocktails-lots of cocktails.

Deeper into the rabbit hole I go. There is a bright light at the end of the tunnel. What is it? It’s neon! What is it about neon? I love it! It’s the handwriting of low-end goods, sleazy commercialism, but the works in this collection use it to write poetry.

I immediately wanted to move in with Doug Aitken’s 99 cent dreams . (Pictured above) The collection also includes
this neon work by Kendell Greers.
I made Red Dress (pictured below) in 2008 and felt dangerously over but I just couldn’t help myself. I’m happy to know that I was wrong about neon being over.

Red Dress

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Art floats.
Or at least that is the impression I got as I read about the
Polaroid bankruptcy sale . The Sotheby’s auction of
more than 1000 photographs from the Polaroid Collection founded by Edwin H. Land in the 1950s will go ahead tomorrow to raise funds to pay creditors of the defunct company.

I imagine a wide and turbulent sea. Single shoes, ties and employee badges drift amid desks and computers bobbing helplessly in the surf. These are the remains of Polaroid but not everything.

The Ansel Adams landscapes, Andy Warhol’s sneeze, David Levinthal’s Desire, Robert Rauschenberg’s Japanese Sky and hundreds of other images just seem to hover above the wave.

The whole thing is sad. But it's also somehow just a little bit encouraging that when everything has sunk, art still floats.

The high estimate for the Sotheby’s auction is nearly $11 million.

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Vestigial Sum

Carmen :: as we approach the beginning of our residency in Mexico, I was working on some of the workshop materials. One piece of the framework software Kevin and I are developing is on manipulating video with extrusions. Extrusions are strange things, but they should not be so. After all it is merely using the information of one image (or video) to bend another, such that the brighter part of an image, an outline for instance, is extruded through a geometrical object like the image above (in this case a plane). The extrusion geometry seems to act like an averaging machine in so far as brightness abstracted reveals something about the image you cannot see on its own.

The composite image begins to operate like a vestigial sum.

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Riyad Mall

Carmen :: in between project initiations and swimming in ideas about everything all the time.

A dear friend of mine, glass artist Anjali Srinivasan , is living in Riyadh at the moment. We were talking (emailing actually) about how Lacan theorized that an infant is not aware fully aware of itself until it sees its own reflection. Seeing its own self in a mirror, in a pool of water, in another’s eyes gives it a sense of self and thereafter its ego.

She told me that she has noticed that people on the street seem to have a general disinterest in the site of each other, that the feeling of an external gaze is somehow missing. Is it that the Abaya is an erasing device, erasing the site of the self. And if the site of the self is erased then is the sense of self also erased or in a way eroded?

It is astounding to think that this practice of easing the site of the woman is less than one generation old.

There are women in Riyad who remember not having to wear a black full body cover in 113 degree heat. It’s suffocating to imagine.

Do these women feel a faded sense of self or has it merely been driven somewhere deep and secret where it grows ?

What I wouldn’t give to go there and look- a lot and intensely at everything and everyone.

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Miroslaw Balka's The Unilever Series, How It Is

Carmen :: thinking somewhere between the work I am doing with composers in Mexico and the work with Ghana Think Tank. Intervention and relational aesthetics are two terms that came up often in discussion at Eyebeam. Interaction and mapping are two concepts that we consider in composing interactive music. I wonder what these two processes could say to each other. I found this interesting discussion about relational aesthetics on Someone brings up Miroslaw Balka's The Unilever Series, How It Is as an example of a sound work that explores the "realm of human interactions and its social context, rather than the assertion of an independent and private symbolic space." This is the case because visitors create a soundscape when walking inside the enormous steel chamber. I didn't have the pleasure of experiencing the work but from what I understand others can also walk beneath the structure and hear and feel the pounding of footsteps overhead. In the opinion of one man "it only becomes an art piece when the public audience are participating. No foot steps, no feeling of claustrophobia, no other people, no feeling of in/out." Relational aesthetics in a sound work? Then Kevin brought up the very good point that in composing interactive multimedia we are always considering the realm of human interactions, not just that of the audience with the work or with each other within the work but of audience and performers with a technological system as well. In a sense we are designing potentials for action. Fascinating.

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Carmen :: preparing discussion topics for the Composing Interactive Multimedia residency I will be leading in Morelia, Michoacan, Mexico with composers Kevin Patton and Ken Ueno. Since 4'33" we've all considered the value of silence. But as visual artists — what is the value of darkness? What can video artists, or in this case sound artists making interactive video for their compositions, learn by exploring the way we see? We can begin by considering that music has always been an audiovisual spectacle, that the visible has always been part of the practice of sharing and understanding music. Other modes of expression insinuate themselves into every manifestation of artistic creation, be it implicitly or explicitly, even when it does not result from the artist's intent. Critical acknowledgement of this phenomenon allows composers to craft the effects of this multimodal stimulus on their audience.

I am also excited about exploring the practices of electroacoustic music in Latin America. Until now I have experienced it only in a Western European or American context. I remember how exciting it was so see the works included in Inverted Utopias by curator Mari Carmen Ramirez.

What lies across the border? Ya veremos.

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Thanks to Sissu for (re)blogging with us the last two weeks, it's been totally fascinating and took the reBlog into some exciting new directions. Now I'm going to turn it over to Maria Del Carmen Montoya who is exhibiting with us, with the project Ghana Think Tank, in our current show RE:GROUP: Beyond Models of Consensus. She is a new media artist that works in sculpture, performance and video. Her work explores the personal, emotional and utterly irrational tendencies of technology. Most recently Carmen received the 2009 Rhizome Commission for New Media Art, with composer Kevin Patton, for I Sky You—an installation using chemically synthesized light and computerized sound.

ReBlogged by: 
Maria del Carmen Montoya
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Sissu Tarka says: Take off. The desire to live/stay on islands is not inherited. In fact journeys in my childhood took place in no man’s land, sometimes arctic regions, Ural mountains, and around Mongolia. Infected by the diversity of language. Now there is the United Kingdom (actual home) ---- and Japan (imaginary virtual home). Plane associations: the death of Concorde (2003) and Wolfgang Tillmans’ 62 photographs in Concorde, artist book publ. 1997. The sky, terrorism, violence; the Dictionary of war The Sine Wave Orchestra The silence of traffic
Gilles Deleuze, Desert Island and Other Texts, 1953-1974: “Geographers say there are two kinds of islands . . . . Continental islands are accidental, derived islands. They are separated from a continent . . . . Oceanic islands are originary, essential islands. Some are formed from coral reefs . . . others emerge from underwater eruptions . . . . These two islands, continental and originary, reveal a profound opposition between ocean and island.” “Dreaming of islands . . . is dreaming of pulling away, or being already separate, far from any continent, of being lost and alone——or it is dreaming of starting from scratch, recreating, beginning anew.”

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