Ubu Roulette

Explore the bizarre world of video art without clicking through names of artists you probably haven’t heard about anyway. This single feature website contains just one button that launches a random video. Organize your own Ubu Roulette party. Invite friends (or better even random people), connect a beamer and point your browser to ubu-roulette.com. Random art is a perfect way to trigger random conversations.

Afraid of White and Blue?

Last Friday (March 3, 2012), Tobias Leingruber issued IDs. The number was limited to 100. As expected one had to stand in line in order to get one, after all standing in line has at all times been an essential part of any interaction with administration.

Unlike other artists and activists before him, Tobias does not claim to start his own state and his critique is not aimed at the state as such, but at what he believes may replace the state some time soon: Facebook


Artful Gentrification

Last night I was at an opening at LoBe art space, at a small project space in Wedding. After closing the gallery we went to a pub across the street. Some of the kids running the place asked me whether I was conscious of we were accelerating gentrification. By showing art that is of no interest to the people who live in the neighborhood we would attract people with money who would start moving there. Well, probably true. They explained to me that they had bought the house with the pub and were running it as an alternative space and that that they were showing art too, but only art produced by locals. They pointed out that the neighborhood management had communicated in flyers that they were trying to “improve” the neighborhood by giving cheap space to (non-commercial) art galleries. In other words: The clueless artists are being used. Point made. However, I thought that the place with the alternative kids did just as much to make the area attractive for people like myself. More so anyway, than some of the other establishments in the neighborhood, like the gambling place next door, which again are probably a lot more popular amongst a majority of the neighbors, than a bar with windows covered with wooden panels and a lesbian band playing in the back. Catch 22.

Note: The space of LoBe is actually not rented but privately owned and–while probably very welcome–not funded or aided by the neighborhood management.

More than 15 sec

Last Sunday I followed an invitation to witness an Art performance at Galerie M in Marzahn (for non-Berliners: Eastern outskirts with visually extremely cool socialist high rises that will take at least 50 years to become popular amongst Mitte hipsters and only under the condition that yuppies will invade Neukölln and Wedding before).

The performance exceeded the 15 seconds that it claimed to take through its title (15sec) by 2:30min. I did a bootleg recording with my cellphone from a safe position behind glass in the gallery’s entrance space.

Veoh More than 15 sec

Isn’t the tiny Smart on a leash sweet? To bad it couldn’t go wild on its own without a driver.

Book for Shelf Exhibition?

I am reading “Topologie der Kunst” (“Topolgy of Art”) by Boris Groys (as far as I know, it has not been translated to English). In the book Groys deals with contemporary art practice, the role of the museum, the significance of showing film and video in exhibitions and even with art on the web. Of course he does not escape referencing Walter Benjamin quite a bit since Benjamin’s topics are omnipresent in the book.

If I am not mistaken, it was Benjamin, who, ahead of his time as often, proposed writing a book by using texts from existing books only. Probably this has been done many times by now (not that I know of a specific example). Groys seems to have a slightly different approach.

More than once while reading the book I had the feeling that I had already read what I was reading. At some point (on page 94 to be exact) I was certain that I had indeed read the exact same words. I went through the previous chapters and found that Groys had recycled almost an entire page from an earlier chapter (page 64). Continuing I found more examples where he reused sentences and paragraphs, sometimes mildly changed, but often without any changes at all. weiterlesen