Robb Bradely/Randy Newman – I’m Dreaming of a White President

10th October 2012 by michael
activism | arts | audio | collaboration | community | controversy | humor | music video | performance | politics | remix/mashup | satire | video | YouTube

I’m Dreaming of a White President (2012, 15MB, 3:16 min)

Great bit of film-making to match a genius song.
Of course you want Obama to win just
to wrongfoot the racists et. al. but you
can’t help wishing he’d actually done something
to merit the mad hostility of the rich, the bigots
and the terminally gullible.

More Larissa Sansour – Happy Days

2nd May 2012 by michael
activism | arts | controversy | exhibition | music video | observational | performance | place | politics | satire | video

Larissa Sansour: Happy Days
Larissa Sansour: A Happy Days (2006, 13MB, 2:57 min)

Following on from the work we showed last week from the
excellent Subversions show, here’s another piece by
Larissa Sansour.
This is featured in the other UK show featuring work
from the Arabic speaking world, this time specifically
from artists with roots in Palestine, Navigations at
the Barbican in London.

There’s some tremendous work on show there, not least this
one – all the work Sansour I’ve so far seen has delighted me
by being much better than a verbal description might lead one
to expect. So with this one you might hear:

“To the tune of the theme from Happy Days Larissa Sansour
edits together stills of herself, a Palestinian woman,
in various locations in the occupied territories.”

And you might think:

“Ho-hum, seen it all, virtuous agit-prop, with the usual sledgehammer irony”

and you would be totally wrong.

Of course the irony is there, and anger, of course, but
there’s a lightness of treatment – the Sansour “character”,
the everyday found surrealism of some of the shots, the
little jokes (the titles: “The Palestinian”
– “The Israeli Army as…Itself” &c.)
which, without negating any political content, makes the
whole thing richly human and a pleasure to watch and watch again.

Navigations is definitely worth a visit – there is a great variety
of very engaging work.
Apart from the two Sansour pieces there’s a tremendous semi-documentary
shot in a Miami auto paint and body shop by Shadi Habib Allah
Two complaints though – unlike the lovingly assembled and spacious show
in Manchester, Navigations feels like a somewhat cramped and token
footnote to the “proper business” of the Palestine Film Festival
publicity for it only appears on the Barbicam website in this context.
(Better than a couple of weeks back when a search for “Navigations” on the Barbican
website yielded precisely – nothing.)
This is disrespectful to artist moving image work in general and
also, I think, to the artists concerned.
Secondly the fact that it sits, looking a tad temporary, on the
busy walk-through mezzanine on four small identical screens, with long
compilation times, gives it an anthropological rather than an art
exhibition character, whilst the (yawn!) Bauhaus blockbuster takes place
upstairs in the galleries proper. This is again disrespectful to
the artists and specifically to them as Palestinian artists:
footnotes, curiosities, on the margins.
Work of this strength and diversity would have made a great large scale
show – Cornerhouse show that it can be done and how to do it very well.
What a shame that the Barbican, with all its resources, doesn’t
seem to understand both why and how it should have attempted something
Nonetheless, if in London, you should go!

Wikipedia Art in London

26th May 2011 by michael
arts | bliss | collaboration | community | conceptual | controversy | documentary | exhibition | experimental | installation | new media art | strange

Wikipedia Art Intro (2011, 114MB, 2:29 min)

And, appropriately following on from yesterday’s post, a little intro
to the splendid Kildall/Stern Wikipedia Art project which is showing, as part
of a two person show at London’s Furtherfield gallery (formerly HTTP)
from this Friday.
(One individual piece by each artist too – promises to be a real treat)

Private view tonight 6:30 (Thurs.) – all welcome, maybe see you there.

This piece narrated in Stern’s breathless-puppy-dog-with-an-off-the-dial-IQ
trademark delivery with reassuringly measured interventions by the
no less smart & talented Kildall.

Edit by Foster Stilp, plus suitably keyed up and excited music by Stilp and
Kevin McGillivray, who together trade as Felixsofia

Marina Abramovic & Ulay: Relation Work (1976 – 1979)

11th November 2010 by doron
architecture | arts | collaboration | community | conceptual | controversy | documentary arts | happening | historical | participatory | performance

Relation in Space (1976, 2 MB, 26 sec.)

Expansion in Space (1977, 5 MB, 1:18 min.)

In “Relation in Space” (1976) Marina Abramovic & Ulay ran around the room – two
bodies repeatedly move past each other. They collide at great speed like two planets,
mixing male and female energy into a third component called

The Idea of Karen Blisset

21st July 2010 by michael
arts | conceptual | controversy | experimental | identity | performance | strange | video

The Idea of Karen Blisset
The Idea of Karen Blisset (2010, 77 MB, 1:13 min)

On the ever splendid Netbehaviour list there are all sorts of
interesting shenanigans as Karen Blisset, a fairly long time
contributor, offers to give her e mail log in to anyone who asks for it
in order to allow them to “be” her.
One of the interesting things about it is I’m not sure how
many people have actually taken up the offer ( and, of course, there’s
no way of telling)
(Go and join Netbehaviour to get the full works, it’s a warm and
welcoming place but one, nonetheless, with a tradition of robust
and interesting debate)
Anyway, one of this set of Karens contacts us
with a movie called ‘The Idea of Karen Blisset’.
I for one expected something quite fierce & in your
face but instead there’s this rather delicate & gentle &
lovely piece.
Very nice.
Interesting to see how it all unfolds…

PS 25th July
Since we posted this, another movie from ‘Karen Blisset’ appeared on the list:

The Idea of Karen Blisset
I am Karen Blisset (2010, 17 MB, 38 secs)

and, later the same day, yet more…

Studio Banana TV Interviews Chen Chieh Jen

13th May 2010 by doron
activism | arts | community | controversy | documentary arts | film | interview | observational | photography | politics

Interview with Chen Chieh Jen (2008, 40 MB, 6:05 min)

Studio Banana TV interviews Taiwanese videoartist Chen Chieh Jen.


Sacha Baron Cohen – Borat on Politics

30th April 2010 by doron
arts | community | controversy | documentary odd | humor | participatory | performance | politics | satire | serial | strange | tv

Borat on Politics
Borat on politics (2004, 25MB, 3:31 min)

Wiki Borat. More Borat on DVblog.

Pictures of Assholes – Joseph Gordon-Levitt

1st April 2010 by admin
activism | cellphone | community | controversy | documentary | participatory | politics | satire | strange | video

Pictures of Assholes (2006, 6.8MB 3.44Min.)

Actor Joseph Gordon-Levitt takes on those pesky celebrity-hounding paparazzi
with a novel new approach, his own video camera (and an impressive amount of patience).
In doing so, he manages to turn the entire relationship on it’s head with true situationist flair.
I found it fascinating to experience this from his perspective, and then, I was kind of shocked
that more famous people don’t do things like this and then publish it online?

I mean, if they really want us normal people to feel sympathy for what their fame and our culture of celebrity worship does to their daily lives..
In any case, Levitt is clearly a cut above, go see whatever movies he’s in.

By Mica.

The Yes Men Fix The World

27th October 2009 by doron
activism | arts | cinema | community | conceptual | controversy | humor | new media art | observational | participatory | politics | satire | strange | trailer

The Yes Men Fix The World (2009, 37 MB, 2:30 min)

Coming to theaters in October, The Yes MenFix The World.
They have an unusual hobby: posing as top executives
of corporations they hate. Armed with nothing but thrift-store suits,
the Yes Men lie their way into business conferences and parody their
corporate targets in ever more extreme ways – basically doing everything
that they can to wake up their audiences to the danger of letting greed run our world.

More vids here and here.

Sebastian Hernandez –Truth or Consequences

21st October 2009 by michael
activism | community | controversy | documentary | interview | politics | technology | video

Truth or Consequences (2009, 90 MB, 10:03 min)

Very nicely made and engaging documentary, first of three,
all of which we hope to feature here, by Sebastian Hernandez,
amply fulfilling earlier promise.
Technically this work is even more assured.
I have to say personally I preferred the politics of his earlier work.
(Not that I assume Hernandez views are necessarily to be identified with
those of his subjects, so, to put it better, I preferred the folks
in the earlier movies)

There’s more context here.