Have you ever wondered who the man under the hood is?
Is he a torturer getting tortured as part of a karmic payment plan?
Is he a poor bastard who simply got caught in the wrong place at the wrong time?
Have you ever thought that it doesn't matter?
That systematic violence is eternally repackaged?
That torture is a virulent virus that keeps replicating itself across ideologies, nations and time?
Have you ever tasted a sour smile thinking this guy is thinking a thousand and none thoughts as he stands hodded in fear, not knowing he has become an icon?
(for provenance of photo click on the image. All links raided here.)
Looking beyond the stereotype of bungalow and bowling club, does suburban edge end up staring at other stereotypes or does it strut into mythopoeia?
Read books, it's much sexier.
(images from Alexandre Dupouy's scenes d'interieur)
Across the Gibraltar Straight, between Tarifa and Tangiers, where the ancients used to think the world ended and where now the life of many an economic migrant ends, a temporary no border media lab project is taking place today and tomorrow to promote freedom of knowledge and freedom of movement. The eventīs codename is Fadaiat, which means "through spaces" in Arab (Fadaiat is also used to define a satellite dish and space ship).
He fell off his face,
neural implant imploded,
never left a trace,
his DNA all corroded.
Just received a Nigerian scam spam with a torture twist. Here's the opening paragraph:
Following the sudden death of my husband, I have been subjected to physical and psychological torture by the security agents in the country. As a widow that is so traumatized, I have lost confidence with anybody within the country."
The country indeed!
"...an easy chair designed for the undisturbed use of your mobile phone. The panes at the sides cause transparency without disturbing the user's privacy. The sound enters and leaves the "phone box" reduced, so that this easy chair is outstandingly good suitable for visitors of open-plan offices or for the entrance area."
(image pillaged from a newswire)
(detail of image found here)
I remember seeing an exhibition in Antiqua years ago, of photos taken by the kids that lived in the garbage dumps of Guatemala City.
The poorest of the poor. Picking an existence (far removed from a life) among the toxic mountains of waste. The chance of breaking out, more elusive than finding that rusty nail in a shit stack. Literally.
And then finding out that garbage patch people are endemic to all the rubbish tips of all the cities in the so-called third world.
Here's an article about the children of the garbage fields in Phnom Penh.
There is no spectacular terror at play here, just daily low-intensity horror.
"The sage is the heir of human labour, the bearer of the intelligence accumulated by the infinite sucession of acts of labour and the infinite series of acts of refusal of labour. The refusal of labour induces the evolutive motion of intelligence. Intelligence is refusal of work realised into socially useful form. Because of intelligence it becomes possible to substitute human labour with machines. Because of refusal of work, science is pushed forward, developed, put into practice. Since the outset, modern science has been aware of its function in this respect. Knowledge multiplies the human capacity to produce useful things and the spaces of freedom for all human beings, by reducing the necessary labour time to produce what society needs. This means that to know is power. The merchant and the warrior want to turn knowledge into an instrument of power. And to this end they have to subdue the sage. But this does not occur easily, because knowledge does not tolerate domination. Thus, the warrior and the merchant resort to traps and deceit, to submit the power of thinking to the power of money and violence."
Remember those ol' lyrics from the dead kennedys:
" Now it is 1984 / Knock knock at your front door / It’s the suede denim secret police / They have come for your uncool niece"
In the meanwhile support Steve Kurtz and the Critical Art Ensemble.
Media updates here.
Thoughts that flutter to the floor of the mind, get left behind.
Matteo Guarnaccia is a seminal figure in the history of the italian underground movement. An historian of counterculture(s) himself, he has been active as a writer and artist since the seventies.
His illustrations, for which I have a fondness, are extremely vibrant. They interconnect hippie influences, psychonautical references, shamanic and tantric symbols.
According to 3G news the British TV broadcaster ITV now welcomes DIY breaking-news clips from viewers equipped with 3G videophones.
Couldn't find anything about this on their site though.
Conceptual art masquerades as prostitution in Andrea Fraser's "untitled", a 60-minute videotape of her having sex in a NY hotel room with an art collector who paid close to 20,000 dollars for having/being in this work of concept. A concept which plays in sassy terms with the idea of possession. But will the end product excite and provoke, or simply bore like some monotonous porn tape clone?
If you know italian, take the time to read: warporn warpunk! by Matteo Pasquinelli.
"I nuovi media digitali sembrano fondare un'anarchia digitale imprevedibile, dove un videotelefono combatte l'impero."
"Steve Kurtz was already suffering from one tragedy when he called 911 early in the morning to tell them his wife had suffered a cardiac arrest and died in her sleep. The police arrived and, cranked up on the rhetoric of the "War on Terror," decided Kurtz's art supplies were actually bioterrorism weapons.
Thus began an Orwellian stream of events in which FBI agents abducted Kurtz without charges, sealed off his entire block, and confiscated his computers, manuscripts, art supplies... and even his wife's body.
Like the case of Brandon Mayfield, the Muslim lawyer from Portland imprisoned for two weeks on the flimsiest of false evidence, Kurtz's case amply demonstrates the dangers posed by the USA PATRIOT Act coupled with government-nurtured terrorism hysteria."
"Seven artists have been served subpoenas to appear before a federal grand jury that will consider bioterrorism charges against a university professor whose art involves the use of simple biology equipment.
The subpoenas are the latest installment in a bizarre investigation in which members of the Joint Terrorism Task Force have mistaken an art project for a biological weapons laboratory. While most observers have assumed that the Task Force would realize the absurd error of its initial investigation of Steve Kurtz, the subpoenas indicate that the feds have instead chosen to press their "case" against the baffled professor....
The artists involved are at a loss to explain the increasingly bizarre case. "I have no idea why they're continuing (to investigate)," said Beatriz da Costa (an art professor at the University of California at Irvine), one of those subpoenaed. "It was shocking that this investigation was ever launched. That it is continuing is positively frightening, and shows how vulnerable the Patriot Act has made freedom of speech in this country."
Spent a couple of weeks in California.
Flew into San Francisco.
So disquieting to see the same green latex gloves that have featured in those photos on the hands of custom officers.
So great to be outside, on the freeway, under a visionary blue sky.
Watched winnie the pooh at 5.30 am on the disney channel with a jet-lagged 2.5-year-old daughter, repeatedly.
The analogue tingle of sun and pool water played in loop on my skin in San Jose.
Eat fudge in Monterey with Marianna, as we paddled in the ocean.
Walked out of restaurants and into bars beyond the borders of Yosemite.
Perfect light on a mountain lake. Later, past the tioga pass, a marvelously massive burrito somewhere close to Nevada payed tribute to culinary immigration.
Visualising the bad days of Bodie under the midday sun.
Tranquil days on the shores of Lake Tahoe.
The landscape a continual allusion to the hollywood diet we grew up on: from inner-city wire fences to telegraph poles.
Driving out of San Francisco (again) listening to beautiful Bukowski slur his words on the in-car CD player, picked up like a cheap slut with a 20-dollar bill at City Lights.
At a wedding in Half Moon Bay, the sun broke free of schackling mist during a Neruda poem and the guests got tipsy on mutant martinis.
San Francisco so quiet on a sunday night.