Tuesday, May 31, 2011


What is the tarbaby folktale about?
"Variations on the tar baby legend are spread among the folklores of more than one culture. In the Journal of American Folklore, Aurelio M. Espinosa examined 267 versions of the tar baby story.[10] The mythical West African hero Anansi is recorded as once being similarly trapped.[11] In a Spanish language version told in the mountainous parts of Colombia, an unnamed rabbit is trapped by the "Muñeco de Brea" (tar doll). A Buddhist myth tells of Prince Five-weapons (the Future Buddha) who encounters the ogre, Sticky Hair, in a forest.[12]

The Tar Baby theme is present in the lores in various tribes of Meso-America and of South America : it is to be found such stories[13] as the Nahuatl (of Mexico) "Lazy Boy and Little Rabbit" (González Casanova 1946, pp. 55–67), Pipil (of El Salvador) "Rabbit and Little Fox" (Schultes 1977, pp. 113–116), and Palenquero (of Colombia) "Rabbit, Toad, and Tiger" (Patiño Rosselli 1983, pp. 224–229)."

to read]

Inside Al Jazeera

Al Jazeera is a Rorschach test: anti-American propaganda arm of a Gulf monarchy or populist voice of the Arab Spring? [...]

Monday, May 30, 2011

A phrase

My boss just used the following case in relation to the Vic markets, however I really like it - it seems to resonate :
"Courtesy of the Market"

computer trading

[ ]

Henkin sentences

A Henkin Sentence proves it own provability. I can not seem to find some good examples though.

Okwui Enwezor

Born 1963 in Kabala, Nigeria, Okwui Enwezor is one of the most influential curators and theorists in contemporary art. In 1998, he became known to a broader public when he was appointed as the first representative of a non-Western country to be artistic director of the documenta 11. In 2002, he set a new attendance record for a medially and regionally diverse exhibition in Kassel. Five international "platforms" preceded the actual exhibition, creating an impressive format and expanding it to a global scale both theoretically and conceptually.
Enwezor grew up in Enugu in eastern Nigeria. He moved to the US in the early 1980s, where he earned a BA in political science at Jersey City State College. During this time he developed an interest in art and exhibitions and concluded that African artists were under-represented in the art market. From this standpoint, Enwezor began to develop and sharpen his profile as an art critic. 

The Politics of Spectacle: The Gwangju Biennale and the Asian Century

Foreigners out! Schlingensiefs Container

The concept of the show was that a dozen real asylum seekers lived inside containers, but instead of being voted out of the show (like in Big Brother), the candidates were to be voted out of the country. Creating and utilizing such a situation of living in a strictly confined area, not knowing what would happen next, was to remind the audience of Nazi concentration camps, pointing at and making artistic use of existing parallels between the Nazi camps and television formats like Big Brother

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Claire Bishop- Spectacle: Where are we now?

This is the woman who Liam Gillick had a massive argument with on Relational Aesthetics giving a talk at Creative Time.

Claire Bishop Participation and Spectacle: Where Are We Now? from creativetime on Vimeo.

Interface tech

I tend to agree with this idea of "interface"
What I like about this work is it is so succinct and streamlined. Very effectively expresses its theses.

Living as Form at Creative Time

Looking forward to this [...]

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Ecology without Nature: Hymens and Logic

Ecology without Nature: Hymens and Logic: "P ∧ ¬ P During my recent trip to Melbourne I had the pleasure of meeting with Graham Priest, a logician working on (or rather against) the ..."

Friday, May 27, 2011



Human Body


21st Century Primo Prototype

Limited lifespan


Legacy genes

Replaceable genes

Wears out


Random mistakes

Error correction

Sense of humanity

Enlighten transhumanity

Intelligence capacity 100 trillion synapses

Intelligence capacity 100 quadrillion synapses

Gender restricted

Gender changeability

Prone to environmental damage

Impervious to environmental damage

Corrosion by irritability and depression

Turbocharged optimism

Elimination of messy gaseous waste

Recycles and purifies waste

Table 1. "Primo Posthuman Prototype Comparison Chart" ]

Transhumanist Declaration

Transhumanist Declaration

  1. Humanity stands to be profoundly affected by science and technology in the future. We envision the possibility of broadening human potential by overcoming aging, cognitive shortcomings, involuntary suffering, and our confinement to planet Earth.
  2. We believe that humanity's potential is still mostly unrealized. There are possible scenarios that lead to wonderful and exceedingly worthwhile enhanced human conditions.
  3. We recognize that humanity faces serious risks, especially from the misuse of new technologies. There are possible realistic scenarios that lead to the loss of most, or even all, of what we hold valuable. Some of these scenarios are drastic, others are subtle. Although all progress is change, not all change is progress.
  4. Research effort needs to be invested into understanding these prospects. We need to carefully deliberate how best to reduce risks and expedite beneficial applications. We also need forums where people can constructively discuss what should be done, and a social order where responsible decisions can be implemented.
  5. Reduction of existential risks, and development of means for the preservation of life and health, the alleviation of grave suffering, and the improvement of human foresight and wisdom should be pursued as urgent priorities, and heavily funded.
  6. Policy making ought to be guided by responsible and inclusive moral vision, taking seriously both opportunities and risks, respecting autonomy and individual rights, and showing solidarity with and concern for the interests and dignity of all people around the globe. We must also consider our moral responsibilities towards generations that will exist in the future.
  7. We advocate the well-being of all sentience, including humans, non-human animals, and any future artificial intellects, modified life forms, or other intelligences to which technological and scientific advance may give rise.
  8. We favour allowing individuals wide personal choice over how they enable their lives. This includes use of techniques that may be developed to assist memory, concentration, and mental energy; life extension therapies; reproductive choice technologies; cryonics procedures; and many other possible human modification and enhancement technologies.

The Transhumanist Declaration was originally crafted in 1998 by an international group of authors: Doug Baily, Anders Sandberg, Gustavo Alves, Max More, Holger Wagner, Natasha Vita-More, Eugene Leitl, Bernie Staring, David Pearce, Bill Fantegrossi, den Otter, Ralf Fletcher, Kathryn Aegis, Tom Morrow, Alexander Chislenko, Lee Daniel Crocker, Darren Reynolds, Keith Elis, Thom Quinn, Mikhail Sverdlov, Arjen Kamphuis, Shane Spaulding, and Nick Bostrom. This Transhumanist Declaration has been modified over the years by several authors and organizations. It was adopted by the Humanity+ Board in March, 2009.


Chinese Dominoes

Do you buy this argument, that the Chinese would deliberately let power plants fail resulting in electricity shortages in order to cool the economy. Isnt China's biggest concern social discontent, and wouldn't that be aggravated by such a strategy? Would the government be more concerned with keeping the global economy from falling back in to recession rather than risk losing their power?

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Erothug promo ideas thread


qu'est-ce que c'est?

[ ]

An aside on cultural appropriation

I am super sensitive about racism, especially the implicit racism in mainstream culture which always makes me prickle. Why do I find this not racist and actually the funniest thing ever? Is it that the funny overrides the offense or that it's such an over the top caricature that it crosses the line into absurdity? Or is it, as Zizek argues when you can make racist jokes and for them to be funny to everyone have we truly gone beyond racism as opposed to the politically correctness prohibition on offending anyone? 

Cultural appropriation

I wish to begin an ongoing dialogue about cultural appropriation and

Can cultural appropriation ever really be exploitative? Are we not
forced to open ourselves to the Otherness of the Other whether we mean
to or not? Can we really judge cultural appropriation at the level of
"the forces at work"?

[ ]

On the other hand, does the "flattening" of culture in contemporary
modes really amount to western capitalist logic par excellence. Is the
the presentation of Otherness now merely reduced to form while
effectively being disemboweled of all its Otherness at the level of

(apropos Zizek on multiculturilism (from memory)) -

When we listen to say, a remix of global music, to what extent are we
actually coming into contact with Otherness and does it matter? In
what way can a remix such as this one be said to exist not entirely
within the confines of a localised, Brooklyn based internalisation of

[ ]

And to what extent does it actually try to address Universality
anyway? - is it not mostly directed at undermining those claims
themsleves; that genuine dialogue and openess to the Other is inherent
in "Global Culture"?

Monday, May 23, 2011

[Insert Title Here]

Google discloses that between 1999 and 2011, there were at least nine different exhibitions named after the Jorge Luis Borges short story 'The Garden of Forking Paths' (1941) alone.

Who are the film industry's real pirates?

So why hasn't the the long tail business model which the music industry and online shopping sites have adopted worked as successfully in the film industry?

Who are the film industry's real pirates?

Ecology without Nature: Dark Ecologies MP3

Are we living in the Uncanny Valley?

(40 -45 min)

Ecology without Nature: Dark Ecologies MP3

Do you know anything about this?

Koreans Heart the Talmud

Not An Alternative Interview

What do you think of the idea that art is a parralel to the economy at large? I mean, some things are a given, that Modernism arose as a response to Modernization and the Industrial Revolution. I also think it's pretty well accepted that conceptual and immaterial art mirrors the dematerialized, information/knowledge/service based economy. But what about relational aesthetics as a mirror of 1990's, third-way consesus politics, and the issue that this interview brings up, that the idea of 'participation' and 'social 'practice' is in someway commensurate with the emergence of 'social networking'. That when these things become visible enough to be noticeable, which basically means they've finally got institutional recognition, it means they've become co-opted and are implicated or at least complicit in the workings of the economy, which in this case is the commodification of social and human relationships by corporations via facebook etc. I guess the point that Not An Alternative want to make is that the only viable form left is to use these co-opted strategies like participation and social engagement, because at least they reflect a current state of affairs and are relevant but then to adopt a situationist tactic of detournement, by subverting and intervening in these vocabularies to make critical statements.

As soon as I read the name of the group, Not an Alternative, I knew they would reference Zizek because he's always talking about how the Neo-Liberal capitalist system is so totalizing and been so succefully 'naturalized' as ideology that it seems impossible for us to imagine any alternative or that any alternative is immediately labeled Utopian. He makes the point that the albeit justifiable obsession with the environment at the moment is a bit disarming because it suggests that it's easier for us to imagine the complete destruction of the planet that to imagine an alternative to the capitalist model of society which is producing the ecological disasters. I guess it would be interesting to think about how OOO fit's into this.

I also want to think more about how 'creativity' has superseded manual labor and bureaucracy as the engine of economic value in present Western economies, in the form of the corporate work structures which companies like Google, Facebook and Apple are based on and what implication that has for artistic practice. This article by an academic at University of Queensland contained a lot of ideas which were completely new to me and also commented on how Asia is now going through this process of positioning cultural production at the center for their models of economic growth in the future.

Friday, May 20, 2011

global warming

What do you think of this argument? It is essentially economic rationalism (and so I mistrust it a lot), but its conclusions are not all totally ridiculous. I cant but help feel theres something shonky about the data: its like a divide and conquer approach by taking localised examples.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

How to make anything signify anything


What do you think about Phds? Are they a waste of time?

I kind of want to do one – but really I want to find a project that I
would do anyway and just find a way to get it backed by a uni. I want
it to be theoretical in motivation but to involve field
work/experiment/projects. I want to be really clever about it so that
I do not get swallowed up/destroyed/left to die in academic

Still debating