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Today is the launch party for my new project, Fairytale Fashion.

Fairytale Fashion by Diana Eng is a program that combines fairytales and fashion to introduce young girls to technology. Girls are asked to make-believe they are fashion designers in a fairytale and imagine what magical fashions they would create. These may be fashions that change color, transform, have blooming flowers and moving patterns. The magical fashion design ideas will be evaluated and created in real life using technology such as muscle wire, inflatables, thermochromatic ink, microcontrollers, conductive thread and 3-d printing. The working fairytale fashions and the technology behind them will be documented on this website, FairytaleFashion.org to show girls how technology can be used to turn make-believe a reality.

The Fairytale Fashion program will last five months working with girls throughout the world. FairytaleFashion.org will be used to collect magical fashion design ideas from young girls. The fairytale fashions will be made in real life for documentation by early 2010.

I just received an Eyebeam residency and will be creating Fairytale Fashion for the residency. I am very excited to join the Eyebeam community.

This is a more readable diagram than the chicken scratch one I wrote last Friday.

Print

This shows the Open Hardware modular component design for the custom LED projectors that I have begun  prototyping at Eyebeam.

The gray boxes are the mandatory components and the white ones are optional, depending on the design. The idea here is to let others come up with better battery systems and LED bulbs but still keep the structure of this project intact.

Incidentally, if you are looking for a good Arduino startup kit, check this one out from adafruit — just $50. I just ordered one as a prototyping tool for things such as the PWM for the LEDs.

S.A.S.E.

Marijke Appelman, Paul Branca, Jennifer Cane, Travis Hallenbeck and Guthrie Lonergan, Michael Mandiberg, Jennifer Delos Reyes, Gabriel Saloman, Suzie Silver, Lia Trinka-Browner, Jess Wilcox

S.A.S.E. uses the idea of the self addressed stamped envelope as its foundation (a method of distribution within the postal mail system that is always initiated by the one who wants to receive the information).

This method of distribution was (futilely) translated into a digital communication system, e-mail.

Eleven people were asked to organize an exhibition of images that would be contained within the space of an e-mail.

Ten e-mail exhibitions were created (each includes a selection of images, a statement, and a works list).

All the images were found online - either from web-sites or in e-mails.

To receive the e-mail exhibition one would initiate the process by sending a request email.

The exhibition e-mail would then be sent to the requester.

HOW TO RECEIVE AN E-MAIL EXHIBITION:

▸ Each e-mail exhibition must be requested individually
▸ Send an e-mail to sase.asdf@gmail.com
▸ Copy the title of the exhibition you want and paste it into the
e-mail subject

▸ Within 1-7 days your exhibition will arrive in your e-mail box
▸ NOTE: We will not be personally reading these emails
▸ NOTE: You must paste the show title exactly how it appears below
(a program will automatically be replying to the e-mails)

Marijke Appelman
IN CASE IT RAINS, IT MIGHT INVOLVE WATER
edition of 365

Paul Branca
Dont…Where…You…
edition of 5000

Jennifer Cane
Arcadian Arrow
edition of 100

Travis Hallenbeck and Guthrie Lonergan
summer thumbs 09
edition of 1,000,000

Michael Mandiberg
FDIC Insured

edition of 2,500

Jen Delos Reyes
The Sound We Make Together

edition of 250

Gabriel Saloman
Miscalled a Republic

edition of 1684

Suzie Silver
Unusual Animal Friends (aka Interspecies Friendship)

edition of 1,000,001

Lia Trinka-Browner
NO PUSSYFOOTING

edition of 110

Jess Wilcox
The Discovery of Orange

edition of 66

Click here to download PDF of the complete statements and work lists.

One thing lost when communication became digital was the activity of waiting (obviously, it has not disappeared completely, and that is not the point of discussion here). This waiting corresponded with a travel - and the technologies of travel. A travel of an object of communication. A letter sent from one person to another, transported across an ocean on a boat. Or in an airplane across the sky. The receiver, waiting the duration it takes for this boat to sail across the ocean, or for the airplane to fly from one place to the next. The waiting corresponded with movement across a physical distance. It is an absurd gesture to intentionally insert this idea of waiting into e-mail communication (there ceases to be a physical distance traversed, and it is possibly argued there is no object).. But the same can be said of attempting to “translate” the idea of the Self Addressed Stamped Envelope, or S.A.S.E into digital. If anything, what is happening is that an older way is being pointed to. A way, with its own subtleties and distinctions, that has been lost. Yet, this does not become about nostalgia or an embracing of an anachronism. It is simply a reflection (and maybe a rupture). The exhibitions organized for S.A.S.E. tread in different areas. Some can be seen as curated art exhibitions, such as Lia Trinka-Browner’s NO PUSSYFOOTING, which uses the cover of the 1973 Brian Eno and Robert Fripp album of the same title as a central locus to pull together different art-works. Some such as Michael Mandiberg’s FDIC Insured can be seen more as a work-in-itself. Mandiberg used image searches, and The Way Back Machine to group image files of logos of recently failed banks. Miscalled a Republic by Gabriel Saloman comes out of neither a curatorial or art-making position. It can be seen more as a visual presentation of Saloman’s historical research into movements of secession and autonomy in North America. And there is Suzie Silver’s Unusual Animal Friends (aka Interspecies Friendship). I would say that this would be similar to Mandiburg’s (an artist using an e-mail to make a work). Yet there is something more happening here. Silver’s images were collected from emails forwarded to her by her mother. These images, already freely circulating through the meme-pool via the personal communication of e-mail, were pulled out and put back into circulation (or maybe never pulled out, just re-contextualized). The editioning of the e-mail exhibitions was obviously out of humor (who makes something digital an edition?). Yet it also has larger motives. It was not to stop the circulation of these e-mails by closing the door. But to hope that they continue to live by the act of forwarding (and possibly being altered as well). Letting the images continue to traffic by entering new in-boxes, just as Silver’s selected images had done organically. These may be high hopes, to want people share the e-mails once they become unavailable, but there is nothing wrong with that.
11″ x 17″ print outs of each show will be available from Aug 10 – Sept 12 as an open edition. These are available only by a real self addressed stamped envelope. Requests must be post-marked no later then Sept 12, 2009. Only one print out per request. You may request a specific exhibition, or we will send you a random one. The bigger the envelope you send, the less amount of folds the print out will have when you receive it. NOTE: Please make sure you include enough postage.

Send here:

Mylinh Nguyen
165 Park St #6
New Haven, CT 06511

For those who live outside of the United States and cannot purchase US postage stamps, do as follows: Mail in an unstamped envelope. Paypal $5 to asdf.makes@gmail.com. In your paypal payment clearly state your name and address. When your envelope arrives we will buy your shipping. If you mail in a heavy envelope send $10.

From today’s NY Times: Reviving the Lost Art of Naming the World, an article on what the decline of taxonomy means for us as narrative beings.

The past few decades have seen a stream of studies that show that sorting and naming the natural world is a universal, deep-seated and fundamental human activity, one we cannot afford to lose because it is essential to understanding the living world, and our place in it.

image from the book “Kunstformen der Natur,” by Ernst Haeckel, 1900.

image from the book “Kunstformen der Natur,” by Ernst Haeckel, 1900.

Excellent video clip of our Pop Up Party courtesy of (PUP artist)  Christina Kral

Picture 1The folks at Laboral finally announced the FEEDFORWARD show.  Stephanie and I will be presenting our Invisible Threads project there from Fri, October 23 , 2009 – Mon, April 5, 2010, and I am currently accepting applications to work in our wonderful SecondLife factory.  Apply now!  Keep in mind that it is a sweatshop, so be prepared to work in very uncomfortable situations for inhumane amounts of time for ridiculously low pay!  Hope to see you there!

Brooklyn is Watching (BiW) hosts a sim in Second Life which is a wonderful curatorial project that invites SL artists to create artwork on their space. The resulting creations range in quality and are subject to commentary by a weekly podcast by several commentators. I’ve been a guest podcaster a few times, participating in a production of the absurd: a radio podcast commentary of an entirely visual environment that most people don’t understand.

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Jay Van Buren, the main guy currently behind BiW

On Friday I went to the BiW presentation of The Final Five at Jack the Pelican Presents (JTTP) Gallery in Williamsburg. These were the five selected artworks which were presented on montiors with headphones and a voting sheet. My major critique is that the BiW project seems to presents Second Life art from the vantage point of an insider’s perspective rather than a contemporary art point-of-view.

This doesn’t have to be the case. There are a number of works which bridge the virtual and the real including RMB City (Cao Fei), Invisible Threads (Stephanie Rothenberg and Jeff Crouse), The Salt Satyagraha (Joe Delappe), in all fairness to the dialogue, my collaboration with Victoria Scott, No Matter and not to overlook the recent Summer of Love 2.0 (Patrick Lichty)

The presentation of the BiW works at the gallery reinforced this — a level of confusion for the viewers who often had more general questions of what is Second Life and so often didn’t even understand what they were judging. Coupled with the fact that you had to put headphones on to listen to one our rambling podcasts, I wondered how successful this physical exhibition was.

jtpp_biw

Final Five at Jack the Pelican Presents

The strength of Brooklyn is Watching is in the community it creates — and I would like to see them explore this side of things: discussing Second Life works but in a way that creates a tangible bridge to the real. This is why the podcasts have been sucessful because it makes the broadcasters and the audience strain to understand what is not in front of them: an imaginary realm that reflects the nature of Second Life itself.

I had a little fun of my own and during the show itself, I sneaked onto the computer and transferred $50L to my own avatar, Great Escape from the BiW avatar. Hey, performance art costs money!

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Bright Bike Prototype (w/ + w/o flash)

Simon Jolly has been learning how to use the Vinyl Cutter. New fun kits coming soon.

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