Welcome to the FINAL jərˈmān of the season. Take this time to reflect back the amazing pieces of work that we’ve featured over the past months.
Meanwhile, we have an equally inspiring piece of work before us this month. What better way to finish off this season of jərˈmān than by getting all self-reflexive up in here. “Feedback” turns the apparatus of the gaze back upon itself, capturing the static and crackle given off when filmic technology confronts itself. A moment of technological self-recognition produces excessive flash, only to quickly fade into its opposite: blind-spot, non-seeing. The work treads the tension of this dialectic as camera turns toward and then away from itself, mediating exposure and camouflage. Find an artist statement regarding the work as well as a brief bio of the artist below.
Five cameras are placed in a gallery. One is fixed on a tripod and shoots another camera that is mounted on the rotating rack of fan. The camera pan left to right. Above them is a wireless camera that is mounted on the engine of the wireless disco ball and slowly rotate in a circle, shooting both cameras below. Other cameras shoot situation from distance.
All five cameras are connected with a quad-mounted device that edit signals every 2-3 seconds and includes the following camera. The image is projected on the wall behind the system. Fixed camera image is projected on a LCD screen on the side. On the floor below the camera projects a color test. The projected images are the background in sight of each camera.
Installation completes ambient drone sound with deep reverb.
In this installation, monitoring and control system is transformed into an absurd panopticon. Every day we are exposed to hundreds of camera views in the city. Big Brother is watching us. There are more and more 3D movies. The reality is expanded. The camera is an extension of the eye (McLuhan). Baudrillard’s simulacrum comes to its true form, and the Internet gives everyone 15 megabytes of fame. Each camera is now equipped with a night vision option that allows the impossible – visibility in the dark. Things that we used to see only on the screen become tangible and erases the boundary between the real and meditised, real and virtual, virtual and actual, visual and verbal. We no longer watch television, but television watching us. Driving along the highway, over time, we are being driven: turn, stop, slow down, move to the other side (Horkheimer). By Gržinić technology does not serve us, we serve the technology, as Flusser’s apparatus operators. We are becoming cyborgs, machized people versus robots – humanized machines. Australian artist Stelarc built himself a third, robotic arm. The technique achieves autonomy. The elimination of human is necessary because it can be a source of error and unpredictability, it tends to fatigue. Ten percent of the telephone calls was wrong, because of the human factor. Thus man becomes a inspector, who oversees the automated machines, unmanned aerial vehicles, steering mechanisms … In the near future, no one will use the pen. Everyone will write on your phone, computer. Manually becomes manipulative. Futurists advocated the cult of the machine, but it seems that we strive from the Society of the Spectacle to Society of Debacle.
Bob Miloshevic (aka Incredible Bob, Belgrade, 1978.) is a Belgrade based media artist. Bob works in a field of glitch art by recycling drops, bugs, pixels, scrambles, feedbacks and noises in a structural way.
Bob performed with numerous artists including Deadbeat, Sutekh, Murcof, Kit Clayton, Dan Deacon, Konque, WoO, Mats Gustafsson and others, on festivals like Mutek, TodaysArt, Dis Patch, Communikey, EXIT, Terraneo, Elevate, Joshua Tree…
Some of his videos were screened on Transmediale, European Media Art Festival, Videoex, Mediawave…
MANGELOS, Salon Muzeja savremene umetnosti, Beograd, 2002
S verom u sex, Galerija Remont, Beograd, 2002.
Globalni Seljak, Galerija Studentskog kulturnog centra, Beograd, 2003.
Backspace 000, Galerija Studentskog kulturnog centra Beograd, 2003.
Backspace 001, Cinema REX, Begrad, 2003.
NIGHT OF 1000 DRAWINGS – Artist Space, New York, 2003.
BELEF 03, 04Backspace 002, Galerija Doma omladine, Beograd, 2004.
Dis-patch, Presentation at Museum of Contemporary Arts, Beograd, 2004.
Upgrade! Belgrade, 2006.
FLICKER, Galerija Doma omladine, Beograd, 2007.
Kritichari su izabrali, Galerija KCB, Beograd 2008.
Za ovu izlozbu Sofija, with group Kosmoplovci, Galerija FLU, Beograd, 2009.
Patherns, with Lillevan Pobjoy, Galerija Progres, Beograd 2009.
Feedback, Galery Belgrade, 2012.
Preslisavanje 7, Remont Gallery, 2012.
Mangelos Award for best Serbian young artist, 2002.,
BelgradeAward for best documentary, 8. Festival neovisnoga filma,
Ljubljana Award for best soft porn film, Festival jeftinog filma,
Krško Award for best one minute film, 9. Festival neovisnoga filma,
Ljubljana Award for most funny film, 9. Festival neovisnoga filma,
Ljubljana Special award for film EUFORIA, Vojvodjanski Festival Filma i Videa,
Novi Sad Award for significant achievement for video ALGORYTHM, ALTERNATIVEFILMVIDEO 04,
Beograd Diploma for film (X) at TOTI Film Festival,
Maribor Grand Prix for film EUFORIA at Festival Amaterskog Filma, Bitolj
Review by Sarah Ghusson
To float – through the air, or in water, an action that is either aimless or directed, perhaps both; floating through rivers and on seas to reach other continents, floating on the winds, like a bird, simply because the bird is capable by nature, or because it holds an ultimate destination at wing; humankind floats through space for discovery. In David Abel’s Float, this motion is captured in several related ways — his words mimic flotation in that they are conjoined in carefree looseness. This poetry, like something caught in water or on air, seems to merely flow wherever the current takes it. However, if attention is paid, and the current of Abel’s movements is tracked with consideration, the destination the author has perhaps intended through this innovative work will be reached.
The first section of three is titled “Conduction,” suggesting a process or movement of material through a medium, whether that material is electricity, heat, liquid, or sound. In this case, the material is meaning, and language the medium. “Conduction” is a montage of Abel’s poetic work interspersed with italicized passages from the work of others, sourced in endnotes. Thus the work already compels readers to hover between its first pages and its last ones, and thus begin their own process of conduction: drawing meaning through words. He writes: A combination of characteristics: dense, vibrant rhythms within constrained compass (thus the pattern almost parsable) – as in moving water (24). Abel’s work is rich and varied, it challenges and compels us to float with it and discover its nearly discernible design, but escapes perfect examination for: The meaning of a meaning / (its tendency) / is more than the sum, sequence, or / description / of its instances (15).
“Orbis Pictus” is named after the first picture book written for children, suggesting this section’s intention to function as its own “Visible World in Pictures.” The section is split into six parts, and the first two are drawn from volumes of Orbis Pictus. “Land Sought, Found, Claimed” contains vibrant imagery from historical events, colorful description of natural environments, enchanting bits of of fable and myth, and lessons of science. “Ambulatory Windows” enters the creation of blown glass as if an alchemistic attempting to produce wonder. Therein, David Antin describes glass as a desert / that transmits light / the thirst is not appeased (47). The motif of transference and the illusion of fluid are cleverly reflected in the material of glass, but the water-like substance will not satiate. It is another instance of the challenge of Abel’s work, where the reader’s thirst for meaning is continuous and ever-increasing. “Lebanon” is described in the end notes as a homage that draws from a book of Lebanese colloquial poetry, and so Abel’s work here is largely influenced by the poems of Michel Trad. He prefaces this piece by stating that bodies are the truest sense of words, emphasizing the human aspect of language, and the pivotal role they play in the interaction of words and meaning (51).
“Time Words” is a compendium of terms all containing “time,” and this broad search warrants results from a variety of subjects. This section speaks to the human desire to classify and contain even that which cannot be classified and contained, and perhaps the futility of such endeavors — with time serving as an ultimate example. “NEG” and “First to Last” function in a similar way, both sections gather sentences from other works in an attempt to create meaning beyond the source text; they are concerned with the intertextuality of language. The first collects example sentences from The New English Grammar, which itself reads like a source text, forming magnetic images of race contention and war, as well as motifs of water and epitstomology in lines such as: Knowledge is power / How much is there?, Swimmers are graceful, and We have our language problems (74-75). Abel again brings up the limits of knowledge through language, and the graceful swimmers serve as a metaphor of the desperate navigate towards meaning, floating through waters, words. In “First to Last,” Abel gathers first and last sentences from every work in an anthology of first stories by famous authors. In doing so, he creates a near fiction of his own. Throughout “Orbis Pictus,” one must gracefully swim through Abel’s semi-adapted creations, referring to his endnotes for clarity, seeking for meaning and hoping it exists.
The third and final part of Float, a single poem called “Times of Day,” is a long sequence of words, arranged vertically into mostly single-word lines. The act of reading this piece recalls the continuity of motion requisite for floating, the swift consistency of word after word is like the rhythm of waves lapping on a shore. The contradiction lies in the simultaneously jarring quality of language. When read aloud, the brain rebels against the logic of Abel’s word arrangement — it breaks with expected sentence structure. The disparity of these two characteristics forges comment on the duality of language, it can be used to inform and create, to convey meaning through academic and creative product, but it can also perplex, divide, and fail us. Abel’s book of poetry encapsulates the many possibilities language provides, and inspires a dedicated analysis of adapted texts and innovative forms. He encourages us to float, to delight in the floating, to seek what may await us at journey’s end.
David Abel is an editor and teacher in Portland, Oregon and the proprietor of Passages Bookshop and The Text Garage. He is the publisher (with Sam Lohmann) of the Airfoil chapbook series, and edits and produces the free broadside series Envelope. A founding member of the Spare Room reading series (now in its eleventh year) and the collaboration collective 13 Hats, he is also a Research Fellow of the Center for Art + Environment of the Nevada Museum of Art. As an interdisciplinary artist, he has devised numerous performance, film, theater, and intermedia projects with a wide range of co-conspirators. In 2011, he curated the international exhibition Object Poems for 23 Sandy Gallery in Portland. His recent publications include the chapbooks Tether (Bare bone books), Carrier (c_L), Commonly (Airfoil), and Black Valentine (Chax), and the collaborative artist’s books While You Were In and Let Us Repair (disposable books, with Leo & Anna Daedalus).
Sarah Ghusson is working towards a BA in English Literature with minors in Creative Writing and Business Administration at the University of Arizona. She is currently composing a creative thesis of short stories within the English Honors Program. She work as a Publications Intern for Chax Press.