You’ve probably already heard of the Monome, or (if you went to ITP), you may have even already made one of your own. In this tutorial, we’re going to take things a step further and show you how to play a Vonome.
First, download the Vonome software, along with sample files, here:
-Mac users, you’ll need Perian, “the Swiss Army Knife of Quicktime”
-PC users, you’ll need a Mac prbly
Once you’ve downloaded and unzipped the folder, you should see the application itself, a readme file, the schematic, some example video files you can delete once you get what’s going on, and the all-important themovies.txt file.
Now, sit back, watch the video demo below, then get at it!
It’s 9 o’clock on a surprisingly warm September evening in San Francisco, and I’m already at my third art opening of the night. I should be in New York. Two years ago at a normal bar a few normal blocks from the normal NYU campus, my friends threw me a going away party. I was leaving town to get my MFA in Art from San Francisco Art Institute. With a giant grin on my face, I drunkenly told everyone, “don’t cry for me Argentina, I’ll be back. Two years, and I’m back. Trust me. No really, trust me.” Two years later, with an SFAI graduate degree in the back pocket of my NYC UNIQLO skinny jeans, I’ve found myself living in a studio apartment in SF’s Mission District making the most significant artwork I’ve ever produced, and I can’t tell if it’s because of my BFA, my MFA, my love affair with SF, my longing for NYC, or simply because I was born this way.
Regardless of where or what or who I’m fantasizing about, the point is, I’m at my third gallery opening on the hottest night of the year. It’s my buddy and MFA classmate Mitsu Okubo’s show, Subscription/Prescription. The “Who’s Who of San Francisco” is out tonight, and with four months having gone by since we all graduated and abruptly left our sanctuary graduate studios of the last two years, it’s a festive atmosphere to drink some sangria, chat about composting, and cry about our last juried review rejection.
I started the night at Matt Borruso’s The Hermit’s Revenge Fantasy at Steven Wolf Fine Arts, a gallery in the Mission. After I graduated, Steven and I became buddies and because of the proximity of his gallery to my apartment and the fabulousness of the Mission renewing itself as the center of contemporary art in SF, I like to pretend that it’s the West Coast version of Chelsea, and Steven Wolf is like Matthew Marks and I’m like Nayland Blake. I don’t know where the hell Nayland Blake lives, but I follow him on Twitter, he’s fabulous, and I bet he drinks ice water with Matthew Marks like I do with Steven Wolf. Matt and I were in Steven’s summer group show, Negative Space, and Matt teaches in the Painting department at SFAI but I didn’t work with him because I was in New Genres and I don’t own a paintbrush. Continue reading »
Art21 Blog is pleased to announce our newest column, Praxis Makes Perfect, written by Jacquelyn Gleisner and Jeffrey Augustine Songco. While pursuing MFA degrees at Cranbrook Academy of Art and San Francisco Art Institute, respectively, Gleisner and Songco were regular contributors to Open Enrollment, where they blogged about the ups and downs of graduate school life and mused on their futures. Now, both artists have their MFAs firmly in hand–so what comes next? That’s the big question facing all recent art school grads, and one that everyone must answer for themselves. Jeffrey remains in San Francisco for now, while Jacquelyn has moved to New York, where she works as an administrative assistant in a field unrelated to art. Praxis Makes Perfect will follow both artists through the next stage in their lives and careers–that strange, liberating, and occasionally lonely period immediately following grad school, when an artist’s identity is no longer defined by the pursuit of a fine arts degree.
Over the coming months, Jacquelyn and Jeffrey will alternate posts, interweaving personal accounts of post-grad life with interviews of other artists who are charting new courses. They’ll look at day jobs versus “art jobs,” explore the ins and outs of grants and juried art competitions, and offer advice on how to get a teaching job while maintaining a studio practice. In short, Praxis Makes Perfect will continue the conversations that Open Enrollment started. We hope you’ll check in often!
Jacquelyn Gleisner is a visual artist and writer who lives and works in New York City. She holds a BFA in studio art from Boston University and an MFA in painting from Cranbrook Academy of Art. She has also studied abroad at the Scuola Internazionale di Grafica in Venice, Italy and at Aalto University in Helsinki, Finland as a Fulbright scholar. Gleisner’s writings have been published on the Open Enrollment column for Art21, the United States Embassy of Finland’s blog, Beat of America, and in the exhibition catalog Funeral Notice for the Finnish artist Jani Leinonen. She has exhibited her paintings and installations in the United States and Europe.
Jeffrey Augustine Songco (b. 1983) is a multi-media artist. He was born and raised in New Jersey to Filipino parents. He is classically trained in ballet and voice and was a cast member of the original American production of Children of Eden. He has appeared on stage with such performers as Betty Buckley and Deborah Gibson and has studied and worked with such artists as Tony Labat, Allan deSouza, Tim Sullivan, Ayanah Moor, and the House of Diehl. He holds a BFA from Carnegie Mellon University and an MFA from San Francisco Art Institute. Jeffrey would like to be the US representative to the 2023 Venice Biennale.
Praxis Makes Perfect publishes on the second and fourth Thursday of each month. We wish to thank Santtu Mustonen for designing the column’s logo. You can view more of Santtu’s graphic design work here.
More than ever it’s important to do ourself a big favor by documenting our work with students. Whether we’re sharing video of students engaged in a particular unit of study with parents, utilizing photos when building portfolios, or displaying works of art through a digital gallery, keeping a digital camera and video camera close by can be a wonderful habit to fall into… if you’re not already doing so.
About once a week I will walk through our hallways and take photos of colleagues’ work with their classes (see Deirdre’s photo above). I will also occasionally take candid shots of students at work or even teachers doing a demonstration in the classrooms. Sometimes I will ask students to take the video camera and record a reflection about their work or interview a classmate. Many of these photographs and videos make their way to a variety of places where they get shared, including:
- The district website and annual calendar
- Online galleries and an in-school digital gallery
- Promotional materials for our visual arts department
- Professional development workshops
- Parent workshops
- Teacher portfolios
- Online class web pages
Everyone has a system that works for them and mine includes keeping folders of student work on the computer in order to share work from alumni with students I’m currently teaching. I will also keep folders on my desktop that are full of visual examples for each of the units I teach. As the unit progresses, I share a few examples at a time in order to steer clear of overwhelming my classes.
At different points writing this column over the years I have suggested positive routines and rhythms we want to embrace as contemporary art educators. Documenting our work regularly through photographs and video can be used as a tool for reflection, assessment, and best of all, celebration.
During my year-long MA course at University College London, nearly all of our readings and texts were available at the library, as PDF files, or online, unlike my experience during undergraduate coursework back home in the US. As a result, I had a lot less books as souvenirs to take home with me. However, out of a combination of convenience, intellectual interest, and self-indulgence, I did wind up buying a number of books that ended up being key texts for the papers I wrote this year. As much as I cringe to think about looking back on my dissertation, I imagine myself looking fondly at my bookcase, these bright covers with dog-eared and underlined pages as little reminders of my course.
For my paper on General Idea’s Imagevirus, many of the key readings I used as sources came from the AIDS Riot anthology. I bought the book at the Le Palais de Tokyo giftshop during their conveniently timed General Idea retrospective. I enjoyed Gregg Bordowitz’s One Work title on Imagevirus as well.
Video feedback. It’s a phenomenon as old as the medium of video itself. In fact, it might even be considered an inherent attribute. The infinite tunnel of psychedelic light-forms that make up a feedback pattern can have a powerful effect on any viewer and has the benefit of coming pre-loaded with all sorts of “meta” connotations; making it particularly effective at aiding your exploration into ideas about perception, phenomenology, image-making, or even the medium mediating itself.
In this tutorial, we’ll show you how to harness the creative potential of the video feedback loop by combining abstract, hypnotic visual patterns with the semiotic specificity of language to create formally unique videos/concrete poems/screen-savers.
What you’ll need: video camera (with an A/V output), tripod, television or monitor with a line-in, appropriate video cable, text printed out on transparency sheet (make a trip to your neighborhood
Kinko’s FedEx copy shop), and basic knowledge of video editing software (or a friend who has it).
Get your hands on a decent video camera – cheaper photo/video hybrids and cell phones won’t work here because the camera needs to have a line-out with a live signal to create feedback. Also, the more control you have over things like zoom, focus, and exposure, the more you can manipulate the images you’re creating.
When choosing your television or monitor, consider the aesthetic implications of your decision; plasma, LCD and CRT monitors each use different technologies and will each respond in a unique way. In terms of size, avoid extremes. Since you’ll be adding another layer to the screen with a transparency, you might try to match the size of the monitor with your printout.
In today’s How To, we’ll write a small program in Python that searches the photo sharing site Flickr for images with a given tag, downloads them, and then glitches them out. We won’t presume you know anything about Python programming, but we also won’t cover it in much depth–the goal is for you to understand just enough about this small program to modify it to suit your purposes, even if it’s not 100% clear what’s happening at every stage.
First you’ll need to be sure you have Python installed and know how to run Python programs. We recommend the excellent Learning Python the Hard Way for a straightforward guide to getting up and running with Python on your choice of computer, available online for free. Do at least Exercise 0 in that guide to be sure you have Python installed and know how to run it.
Next, you’ll need a few modules which add extra functionality to Python: PIL (not the band) for image manipulation and BeautifulSoup to parse Flickr’s search results. We’d also recommend using easy_install or pip when adding new modules to your Python setup.
Then, fire up your text editor of choice and enter this code:
For the most part, this code should read like a description of what the program will do in plain English (plus some funky punctuation and that __name__ == ‘__main__’ thing which you can ignore for now). The first few lines tell Python to load in the modules we’ll be using to write the program. The commands “find_an_image,” “download_an_image,” and “glitch_an_image” are commands that we’ll define ourselves in just a minute. Basically, our program will find an image on Flickr that uses the tag ‘art,’ download the image, glitch the image, and finally print out the image’s filename. You can change ‘art’ to any keyword you like. We might be a little biased here, so we’re just going to leave it like that.
It’s late summer in Montreal, and many of the major museums and even smaller art galleries are doing what they often do during the summer months: exhibit works from their permanent collections. Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal (MACM) is no different. However, their “black box” room (denigrated to the institution’s basement no less), has something different and excitingly relevant going on, thanks to their Head of Multimedia Events, Louise Simard. For about four weeks and for the first time in a Canadian venue, the box is exhibiting RealTime UnReal, the latest project by the new media collective Workspace Unlimited, whose members include Kora Van Den Bulcke and Thomas Soetens. Built site-specifically for the MACM, this slick and elegantly-presented installation presents visitors with a large rectangular screen on which the projected image of another screen is displayed. Once the network of motion and location sensors detect the user’s presence, the onscreen image “comes alive” as the user’s speed and movement transform what appears on the screen: a metamorphosis of the room and parts of the larger museum outside the black box, triggered by the user. The transformation evokes a constant negotiation between our perceptions and expectations of how space is represented. While the technology in this architecture-meets-video art installation is certainly impressive, it is also integral to the conceptual ideas about lived and imagined spaces the installation presents.
1. Collect as many images of mountains as you can get. Source from Internet using Google, Corbis, etc…. Images should not contain any visible evidence of human technology or the presence of actual humans. Images should be as majestic as possible. Collect between 150-200 images.
2. Bring your images into Photoshop or your preferred image editing software. Remove the sky from every image. Cut-out sky area should become transparent.
3. Resize every image to same width and resolution (height may vary).
4. Separate mountains into different folders based on color.
5. Create a new Photoshop document. For the size, use the width and resolution already established in your prep work (see Step 4). Determine an average height and multiply this by your total number of images. Make a rough estimation and adjust later as needed. This document will become enormous in terms of pixel dimensions and document size but can retain a low resolution, i.e. 10” x 1200” at 72 dpi.
6. Begin ordering your images based on chromatic scale. Begin with grey and move to green, yellow, orange, red, pink, purple, blue and finish with white. Save often.
7. The top few images (3 or 4) and the bottom images must be exactly the same and in the same order to allow for seamless looping.
In this week’s roundup Paul Pfeiffer and Cao Fei are exhibiting in Istanbul, John Baldessari is honored in LA, Andrea Zittel presents work from the Mojave desert, and more.
- Paul Pfeiffer‘s single-channel video Empire is currently on view at SALT Beyoğlu (Istanbul). The once real-time video documented the three-month development and life cycle of a wasp nest. This work highlights the artist’s expanded use of original footage as a commentary on the analogies between the structure of our society and the process of the queen building her nest, laying her eggs, and becoming the matriarch of her community. This video is on view until December 31.
- John Baldessari will be honored with Clint Eastwood at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) Art + Film Gala on November 5. The evening will celebrate the art of the moving image and will bring together luminaries from both communities. Proceeds from the gala will be used to support LACMA’s initiative to make film more central to the museum’s curatorial programming, while also funding LACMA’s broader mission.
- Andrea Zittel has a completely new and large-scale piece on view at Magasin 3 (Stockholm). Lay of My Land is a sculptural installation–a dramatic topographical figuration of the landscape that surrounds her site A-Z West in the Mojave desert. An extensive new monograph on the artist accompanies the exhibition. This work is on view until December 11.
- James Turrell is at Kayne Griffin Corcoran in Santa Monica, CA. The gallery is presenting a selection of Turrell’s works, including Present Tense, a space division construction dating from 1991, and Yukaloo, an installation that shows off the artist’s glass works. Each piece of the latter work contains an LED, which is carefully programmed to evolve with the colors of the sky as the day progresses. This exhibition closes December 17.
- Bruce Nauman and Richard Serra are featured in Extended Drawing at Bonnefantenmuseum (The Netherlands). It shows works in which line and drawing are taken beyond their original boundaries. Nauman used the outlines of the bodies of himself and his wife, in different colors indicating where neon is to be used. Serra’s paintstick drawing enabled him to work large surface areas with a single movement. The exhibition closes January 15, 2012.
- Pierre Huyghe‘s Influants is at Esther Schipper gallery in Berlin. The artist continues to inquire into the way we relate inside and outside of the exhibition context. Arriving in the gallery space, a male door attendant loudly announces the visitor’s name and surname (in a piece titled Name Announcer). At first sight, the rooms look empty, but in reality live insects and contagions abound. Fifty live spiders move towards the corners of the ceiling, captured by CCTV security cameras. This work is on view until October 22.
- Cai Guo-Qiang: Move Along, Nothing to See Here is on view at Brown University’s Cohen Gallery (Providence, Rhode Island). Cai Guo-Qiang‘s inaugural exhibition celebrates The Year of China, a series of public lectures, cultural events, academic conferences, and multimedia activities focusing on the history, politics, culture, arts, and economy of China and its rapidly growing global impact. This show closes October 28.
- Walton Ford‘s exhibition of nine new, large-scale watercolor paintings will soon be on view for the first time at the Paul Kasmin Gallery (NYC). Of the works on display, one comprises three portraits of King Kong and the other six meditations on a passage from the memoirs of the ornithologist John James Audubon. Both series were painted in 2011, and are consistent with Ford’s practice of expanding the visual language and narrative scope of traditional natural history painting.
- Cao Fei‘s Cosplayers is now on view at YEM Building-Industrial Center (Istanbul). This work is part of the Space Invaders: Video Game Art and Environment exhibition that explores the connection between video games and art, as well as to what extent games and art are intertwined. The work is on view until September 23.