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1. Source: Art Competitions provided by Artshow.com
Item: Emerging Artists 2015 - Hudson, New York
Solo exhibition and $2400 in publication awards. Deadline: November 30, 2014
3. Source: Art Competitions provided by Artshow.com
Item: CAM Biennial - Coos Bay, Oregon
Solo exhibition for People's Choice Award winner. Deadline: October 2, 2014
8. Source: Art Competitions provided by Artshow.com
Item: One 5 - Cincinnati, Ohio
$1500 Cash Award + Solo Feature Exhibit of One Prize-winning work. Deadline: October 27, 2014
11. Source: booktwo.org
Item: AQD: Remembrancer
Date: 20 September 2014, 4:01 am

The Remembrancer

A Quiet Disposition, my weak AI for gathering information about drones, is now open to the public online, and anyone can review it. AQD scours the public internet for information about UAVs of all forms, and analyses it, extracting names, companies, locations, and anything else it can make sense of. Running since January 2013, the database contains 25,644 people, 33252 documents, and 76414 terms – all linked by semantic analysis, bearing the signature of the drone.

I’ve previously shown AQD as a set of books, and a related visualisation, combing through the database to find pairs of names, linked by incriminating terms. The development of AQD has been assisted by the Open Data Institute’s Data as Culture programme, and for the Victoria & Albert Museum’s Digital Design Weekend, AQD has taken the form of a free newspaper, called The Remembrancer. 3000 of them are stacked up in the sculpture galleries, to be distributed over the course of the weekend. The editorial written for the back page of this publication can be found below.

The Remembrancer

In a series of articles in the Washington Post in October 2012, reporter Greg Miller revealed the existence of the Obama administration’s strategic database for pursuing terrorists, a “next-generation targeting list” called the “disposition matrix.” This database contains the names of suspected terrorists, together with “an accounting of the resources being marshalled to track them down, including sealed indictments and clandestine operations.”

The purpose of the disposition matrix is to determine the targets for the US covert drone programme, an ongoing programme of assassinations in Pakistan, Yemen, Somalia and possibly elsewhere. Previous to the announcement of the disposition matrix, the administration had repeatedly denied the existence of the so-called “kill lists”, but the killing continued. Between June 2004 and the end of 2013, these attacks killed an estimated 3105 people in Pakistan alone, including 535 known civilians and 175 children. (Sources: The Bureau of Investigative Journalism, New America Foundation.)

Drones—unmanned aerial vehicles—are a secretive technology, by nature and by design. Intended to operate in distant and hostile environments, they remain largely invisible both to their intended targets, and to the democracies which consent to their use. They also freight this secrecy to other areas of operation. Named spokespeople do not discuss the drones, they are the domain of the “unnamed official”. Even the London Metropolitan Police, in response to a series of Freedom of Information requests, have asserted the exception of the drone, and refused to discuss its use in civilian contexts. This secrecy extends to the information gathered on its behalf, the reams of data, and the means by which it is analysed and processed. In 2010, the New York Times reported that this deluge of data gathered by drones was overwhelming military analysts, who were looking to ‘big data’ solutions from the television and news industries to understand what they were seeing. The disposition matrix, too, is likely to consist of such automated, algorithmic systems to analyse and interpret the data fed into it. How much of its analysis is performed by humans, and how much by machines, we are unlikely to be told.

Occasionally, we are given glimpses into the ways the disposition matrix makes decisions, how it decides who will be killed. In February 2014, the Intercept revealed that the Joint Special Operations Command, which controls drone strikes in Yemen, Somalia, Afghanistan and elsewhere, often based its attacks on automated analysis of cell phone data: a cell phone signal detected at a known meeting of suspicious individuals and later detected travelling down a desert road in a remote part of the country could be enough to incriminate the person carrying it. A former JSOC High Value Targeting Team member stated that: “People get hung up that there’s a targeted list of people. It’s really like we’re targeting a cell phone. We’re not going after people – we’re going after their phones, in the hopes that the person on the other end of that missile is the bad guy.” These attacks are called “signature strikes”, undertaken on the basis not of a name, but on the signature, the appearance, of information itself.

This information is known as “metadata”. It consists not of the data itself—what people talk about, what they are planning—but the associations between them, networks of relationships which purport to reveal something about their intentions. NSA General Counsel Stewart Baker has stated that “metadata absolutely tells you everything about somebody’s life. If you have enough metadata, you don’t really need content.” During a debate at John Hopkins University in April 2014, Michael Hayden, a former Director of both the NSA and the CIA, confirmed that position, and went further: “We kill people based on metadata.”

A Quiet Disposition is an automated intelligence-gathering system which lives on the civilian network—the internet. It scours the web for information about drones, collected from news stories, blog posts and company reports. Using an open-source semantic analysis programme called Calais, developed by Thomson Reuters, it analyses the content of these texts to harvest their metadata: the names of people and places, of companies and organisations. From this information it builds a map of associations, its own network of inference and intention. Through their association, however distant, with the drone programme, these people and companies are implicated in the wider uses and abuses of the technology. A Quiet Disposition is a weak artificial intelligence: collecting information, drawing connections, building a picture. Since its inception in January 2013, the database has expanded to include some 25,000 people, 32,000 documents, and almost 75,000 “terms”—locations, technologies, titles and industries.

The City Remembrancer is an officer of the City of London, the financial and semi-independent centre of the nation’s capital, whose role is to communicate the desires of the City to parliament. Writing in the Guardian, George Monbiot described the Remembrancer thusly: “The City of London is the only part of Britain over which parliament has no authority. In one respect at least the Corporation acts as the superior body: it imposes on the House of Commons a figure called the remembrancer: an official lobbyist who sits behind the Speaker’s chair and ensures that, whatever our elected representatives might think, the City’s rights and privileges are protected.”

The City of London is also home to the FTSE 350 index, a list the largest 350 companies by capitalisation which have their primary listing on the London Stock Exchange. Of these 350 companies, 46 are known to A Quiet Disposition, identified in its long trawl through the deep web. Some of these companies are directly associated with the drone programme, such as BAE Systems and Qinetiq which design and build automated systems, to less obvious suspects, such as British Telecom, which constructed the dedicated fibre-optic link from RAF Croughton in Northamptonshire to Camp Lemonnier in Djibouti used by the US Air Force to operate drone strikes. Other companies may seem even more distant, but in their dealings the system has, somehow, detected the signature of the drone. They are implicated by association.

The Remembrancer, this newspaper, is one form of the information held in the database—but it’s barely readable. Or at least, its readable, but its near incomprehensible. The stories it tells are generated from the information it has gathered, in the same way that spam emails are generated: text from real sources, garbled by the machine as it attempts to make sense of them, and tell them back to us. Terms which are significant to the system are highlighted, weighted with meaning, but the meaning assigned to them by an algorithm, a non-human near-intelligence. The information it has gathered is too vast to be comprehended in its totality by us, but we must try to make sense of it. Lives depend upon it.

“Big Data”, the slippery term for the overwhelming flood of information unleashed by our increasingly surveilled and analysed world, is both promise and menace. It plays into our universal desire to know more about the world, and thus to operate in it more efficiently, but downplays the extent to which the world is shaped by the data that we choose to gather, the technology that gathers it, and the politics of those who design that technology. Increasingly, we inhabit a world where decisions are made by unknowable machines; not a dystopian future, but a banal recreation of the present, constructed from the traces of phone calls, credit card transactions, voting records. In this world, we must take responsibility not only for our own actions, but the actions of the vast non-human assemblages we have built around us—from corporations to complex software systems—and acknowledge the moral and physical limits of our technologies, and ourselves.

The Remembrancer

View the whole newspaper at Flickr.

12. Source: booktwo.org
Item: On the Rainbow Plane
Date: 4 July 2014, 8:38 am

I recently completed an installation at Farnborough in Hampshire, where I got to do something I’ve wanted to do for quite a while: draw a rainbow plane. (More images of the installation are available on Flickr.)

rainbow-plane

Farnborough is the home of British aviation, site of the first powered flight on British soil (by the American showman William Cody) in 1908, as well as the British Army Balloon School, the formation of the RAF, the Royal Aircraft Establishment, and the research facilities which produced the jet engine, carbon fibre and more. Much of the site of the RAE has now been cleared, but, thanks in large part to the efforts of the Farnborough Air Sciences Trust, several buildings have been saved, including the extraordinary wind tunnels and the magnificent, reconstructed airship shed, under which the installation is sited.

Like the Drone Shadows, the Rainbow Plane is a 1:1 outline of an aircraft – in this case, the Miles M.52, an experimental jet plane developed at Farnborough in the 1940s. The M.52 never flew, but several of its innovations, including the all-moving tailplane and the biconvex “Gilette” wing, were crucial to the success of the American effort to break the sound barrier with the Bell X-1.

The M.52 is shown here as if distorted by the characteristic pansharpening effect of satellite photography – as if viewed, in flight, from space. I’ve been fascinated by the “rainbow plane” effect visible in satellite maps for some time, and have collected many examples.

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I’d seen many of these but didn’t really understand what I was looking at, until I started to process the imagery myself. After installing the Washington DC drone shadow, I purchased commercial satellite imagery of the city, in order to try to see my drone from space.

The image which I purchased came from Digital Globe’s WorldView-2, a 6000lb commercial observation satellite fired into space aboard a Delta II rocket from Vandenberg Air Force Base, California, in October 2009. Digital Globe was originally founded in 1992, ahead of the 1992 Land Remote Sensing Policy Act which permitted private companies to enter the satellite imaging business. It received its initial funding from Silicon Valley, and corporations in the US, Europe and Japan. Much of Google Maps imagery is purchased from Digital Globe.

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The image shows 25 square kilometres of Washington, D.C., photographed on the 26th August, 2013 – but it’s not a photograph. Observation satellites do not carry conventional cameras, but multispectral scanners which contain an array of sensors for recording data across a range of frequencies. WorldView-2’s scanner contains 8 sensors with a resolution of 1.85m per pixel: four in the visible spectrum, recording red, yellow, green, and blue, and four more, in the deep blue, the red edge, and in the inner and outer near-infrared, covering a total spectrum of more than twice the visual range of the human eye. One more sensor measures panchromatic intensity across the visible spectrum, allowing images to be sharpened to a resolution of 0.46m per pixel.

In order to make this image, it is necessary to combine data from different sensors, so a 5-3-2 image, in this case, composites data from the visible red, green and blue sensors into a single, “true colour” image (although there is nothing ‘true’ about this). This image is then used to add colour to the higher resolution but black-and-white panchromatic image, a process called “panchromatic sharpening.”

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This is the process which produces the rainbow planes, which move fast enough to blur themselves across the satellites’ different chromatic sensors. It’s a glitch, but like all good glitches the rainbow plane is also a key to uncovering the functioning of the image-making machines, a glimpse into the way the machines see the world.

13. Source: booktwo.org
Item: Spectacular Sports Visualisations
Date: 29 June 2014, 4:36 am

The 2014 World Cup in Brazil marks the first time that goal-line technology has been used for FIFA’s international tournament and with that in mind National Football Museum commissioned me to give an overview of where these systems are coming from, and where they might be going. This essay was originally published at The Commentary Project.

When Google unveiled its long-awaited wearable computer, Glass, in June of 2012, it did so through what might be called a lifestyle montage, a series of extreme sports events performed by “some of the world’s top athletes”. The Glass-wearers first skydived out of an aeroplane, then took to mountain bikes to manoeuvre through the conference centre onto the event stage. Throughout, what was streamed to viewers in the auditorium and watching online was not footage of the athletes undertaking the events, but what the athletes themselves were seeing, their point of view. What is spectacular about Glass, despite its real power as a connected, networked object, and what almost all discussion of it concentrates on, is its camera, the ability to see from another’s viewpoint, and everything this reveals.

While miniature high-definition cameras such as the GoPro Hero – particularly popular with the extreme sports community, bracketed to helmets, handlebars and snowboards – have made POV shots possible for a while, there’s something about Glass’ head-mounted position which appeals, as if it were not a camera, but the eye itself. Basketball teams have been early adopters of Glass. The Sacramento Kings, Indiana Pacers and Orlando Magic have all used Glass to enhance the “fan experience” by sharing headsets between announcers, resting players, support staff and coaches, and relaying the feed to giant screens above the action – but the NBA has yet to permit the use of Glass on court during play itself.

Another function of these cameras, aside from both the focus on, and the freedom from, a human-centred viewpoint, is that they transform our idea not only of vision, but also of memory. Many wearable cameras are marketed as such, like ‘Memoto’ (now rebranded as ‘Narrative’) and ‘Autographer’, small wearable digital cameras clipped to the chest or hung round the neck which photograph the owner’s viewpoint almost continually, building a continuous stream of images and data called a ‘lifelog’. The promise of such devices is total recall (“we can remember it for you wholesale”) – a promise, of course, which is always illusory.

A more rugged version of Glass, Broadcast Sports Inc’s head-mounted Ref Cam, has been deployed by Major League Soccer in the US. While it looks like a massive pain to wear, its wide-angle lens, bobbing with the referee’s pace, seems to open up a correspondingly wide field of view from the centre of the field, which feels liberating after the surveillance-like gaze of stand-mounted cameras. This is in stark contrast to Sky Sports’ version in the UK, whose chest-mounted ref cam was derided by former England hooker Brian Moore, writing in the Telegraph that “apart from nausea nothing was added to the viewing experience and the only previously unseen footage was that of the sky or the top of the scrum.” Moore’s real point, however, was that there was a fundamental flaw in the idea that such cameras could capture more of the “truth” of the game unfolding in front of them: “What is seen on camera is not a true rendering of what is actually perceived in a stressful moment.” Moore even cited a 2010 science paper on the use of wearable cameras by the Hillsboro, Oregon, Police Department, which found that even when every moment of a police investigation was recorded digitally, this evidence still had the potential to mislead officers, the judiciary and juries because of “the lack of understanding of important factors like the field of view, focus of attention and interpretation” – which sounds, too, like the advice of a particularly astute sports coach.

Indeed, much debate which happens in sports commentary around technologies of vision and adjudication would not sound out of place in academic journals of both the sciences and the humanities. Sporting fields have become the testing grounds for these technologies, providing as they do enclosed, hermetic fields of view, and strictly managed rules of movement and engagement – the kind of laboratory only dreamt of by scientists developing surveillance and monitoring platforms for military and urban situations, their most common applications.

When the English and Australian cricket teams faced each other in the Ashes series of the Summer of 2013, much of the commentary-box discussion focussed on the use of the new Umpire Decision Review System (DRS), a suite of technologies which assist – or rather, overrule – the umpire adjudicating some of sports greatest unknowables, the LBW, and the snick. Of course, these technologies, intended to increase accuracy, only inflamed controversy as their own accuracy was questioned as much as the human umpires. LBW is, after all, an epistemological problem – the question of whether a ball which strikes the batsman would have struck the wicket were the batsman not there is a question for Plato, not for machines. Nevertheless, cameras and sensors descended from military targetting systems are trained on the wicket in order to determine the best possible answer, and the algorithms which make up this situation determine the outcome of games – much to the frustration of many players and spectators. As Test Match Special commentator Jonathan Agnew, echoing Moore, noted: “The problem with the introduction of technology is the expectation of 100% accuracy” – a simple observation, but one which cuts to the heart of applying such supposedly rigorous approaches to sport, a fundamentally human endeavour which thrives on close calls, points of view, and, ultimately, chance.

Digital cameras are always more than cameras: they do not just make images, they ‘see’ and process them. Every connected digital-imaging system is also a computer, observing and making decisions about what it sees. This distinction is particularly well illustrated by “freeD” technology, which stands for Free Dimensional Video, a proprietary imaging system which debuted at Yankee Stadium in the 2013 Baseball season. Video feeds from multiple 12-megapixel cameras around the ground are combined within a dedicated server to produce a three-dimensional “scene”, through which the director can manoeuvre a virtual camera to produce unlimited, even “impossible” points of view. The entirety of the game world is simultaneously captured and re-viewed as a simulation. As with Eadweard Muybridge’s development of high-speed photography, which first allowed us to perceive a galloping racehorse with all four feet off the ground, the augmentation of the eye with technological systems allows us to see sport in new ways.

This total release of the visible “point of view” from any “human” viewpoint corresponds to the perceived freeing of decision-making from human error. This summer, the Football World Cup will for the first time utilise goal-line technology to determine whether the ball has crossed the line. Several different systems competed for selection, including the version of Hawk Eye used in Premier League, but the one which was chosen is a German surveillance system called GoalControl 4D. A total of fourteen cameras mounted on the stadium roof capture the three-dimensional position of the ball to within a few millimetres, enabling not only accurate decisions about goal-line crossings to be immediately relayed to referees via wrist-mounted “smart watches”, but also stored, replayed, and endlessly reanalysed. As in Cricket, the deployment of such decision systems has been much debated and often opposed, most volubly by FIFA president Sepp Blatter who has stated that “Other sports regularly change the laws of the game to react to the new technology. … We don’t do it and this makes the fascination and the popularity of football”. In this too we hear the deeply felt but ultimately fruitless appeal to the idea of sport as a fundamentally human endeavour, not at risk from, but essentially composed of, human frailty and fallibility.

Fruitless, of course, because we apparently find ourselves incapable of resisting the technological promise of an ever greater, ever more incremental, approach to some impossible “truth”, a Zeno’s arrow fired by a linesman towards the centre of the field. In sport, this truth-of-outcome is inextricably linked to the truth-of-performance, wherein one competitor, one side, ‘deserves’ to win because they are better prepared, better trained, better deployed, better equipped with what, in military circles, is referred to as “battlefield awareness”, leading to “full spectrum dominance of the battlespace”. As such, the same technologies of surveillance and appraisal are applied not just to decision-making during play, but also to data-gathering for post-game analysis by commentators and coaches alike.

From the beginning of the 2011-12 season, the NBA started installing STATS LLC SportVU cameras in basketball arenas, a technology expected to be mandated by the end of 2014 (again, like the application of surveillance systems in civilian environments, what begin as experiments in technology are ultimately and almost always codified in law). The SportVU system consists, like GoalControl, of a network of cameras around the arena connected to a data-processing system which tracks not only the ball in play, but individually identifiable players as well. The system’s sophisticated algorithms are capable of determining not only positioning, but through situational analysis, the events produced by and at these locations, such as dribbles, passes, touches and shots. The data is used to produce official NBA stats for every game, but also – for teams which pay a subscription of around $100,000 per year – to analyse and determine optimal strategy for the players themselves.

In March 2013, the Grantland blog revealed that the Toronto Raptors were using the data to – among many other things – “build computerized “ghost defenders” that reacted in optimal ways to every offensive action. The team could then overlay camera recordings of actual game play to see how closely Toronto’s real players mirrored the actions of their ghosts.” Once again, the real-world action on the court is filtered and replayed through simulations in order to re-direct the action back in meatspace. This is what is really driving the adoption of seeing systems in sport: truth-of-outcome not only produced by truth-of-performance, but, through technological feedback, fine tuning that performance as well.

To see where such systems might go in the future, we need only look to their current limitations – and the parallels of and responses to those limitations in other, surveillance-saturated spheres. Cairos Systems was another German-based bidder for the World Cup goal-line job, using a system called GLT which embedded magnetic sensors into the frame of the goal, and into the ball itself (of course, Cairos also has a system, called VIS.TRACK, which tracks player performance data through a network of cameras). On their website, Cairos writes – unusually explicitly for a technology company, that “In football, there are many decisions and scenes that may be discussed controversially. In the end the truth often lies in the eye of the beholder. Penalty or not? Red card or a dive? Active or passive offside?” It goes on to state that whether or not the goal line is crossed is one decision which “is clearly defined by the rules and does not leave space for interpretation. The question whether or not a goal has been scored can be decided without any doubts due to the rules.” As such, this particular decision is particularly amenable to technological intervention.

The counter-examples given here – penalties, red cards, offside – are instructive, because they fit far better what Brian Moore called the “focus of attention and interpretation”, the contentious, context-is-everything moments of sporting contact. Once again, we are in the domain not of observation, but of inference. The claim is now being made, however, that many automated, intelligent surveillance systems cannot only determine what happened, they can infer intent; they not only look back, but forward.

A study by the universities of Bradford and Aberystwyth in conjunction with the UK Border Agency in 2011 used video cameras and high-definition thermal imagery – essentially the same technology used to detect the “hot spot” in cricket – alongside yet more algorithms to determine whether study participants were lying. Telling signals such as eye movement, dilated pupils and nose wrinkling are visible to the human/video eye, but thermal imagery also reveals subconscious swelling of the blood vessels around the eye, a sign of distress or fear which signals that untruths may be in play. The UKBA stressed, as they prepared to install such systems at UK airports in the summer of 2012, that the technology is only useful when paired with an experienced human judge – and by that logic, why should it not be deployed alongside positioning cameras in the stands of the World Cup, to assist referees in determining which of two participants in a contested foul is telling the truth?

Why, after all, should we wait for fouls and other offences, such as offside, to be committed? It should be just as easy to award penalties and free kicks on the basis of players’ intent, and would be much safer and fairer for all involved. Recently, the US Department of Homeland Security’s “Project Hostile Intent”, for example, secured funding for a host of technologies claiming to predict crime based on “suspicious” behaviour. One of them, another camera-server assemblage produced by BRS Labs, uses “a range of in-built parameters of what is ‘normal’, [and] can track up to 150 people at a time to build up a “memory” of suspicious behaviour to begin determining what is inappropriate.” They are currently being installed in more than 300 locations in San Francisco, with strong expressions of interest from other global cities – although, as yet, none from FIFA. But if such systems can be trusted to protect our lives and livelihoods from the threat of terrorist attack, then surely they can be trusted to prevent another Hand of God?

Blatter, Moore, and Agnew, are all, surprisingly or not, for better or worse, at the forefront of a debate which extends far beyond the playing field. When we see sport through the eyes of the machines, we fundamentally change the nature of sport – and reveal, too, the extent to which the rest of society is reformed by our drive to visualise and reframe it with these technologies. As in so many ways, sport itself becomes the lens through which we understand ourselves.

14. Source: booktwo.org
Item: #Rorschcam NYC
Date: 11 March 2014, 10:35 am

I just arrived in New York for a three-month residency at Eyebeam. I had a rough first week, but on Monday fellow resident Ingrid Burrington showed me the Department of Transport’s online traffic cameras for New York City. I’d wanted to do a new rorsch-thing for a while (see, previously, Rorschmap and Rorschmap: Street View Edition) – and, as the streetview version was a little love letter to London, I thought I could redeem myself with this city by making it something nice: so I did.

rorschcam1

#Rorschcam NYC takes hundreds of live New York traffic cameras, from all five boroughs, and makes what I call rorsches out of them; simple, reflected auto-images – or the network dreaming the city.

They look pretty great at night too (see this Flickr set for more screen captures – but they’re better live):

rorschcam2

Like the city itself, it’s a little grimmer, a little darker than London. And then you start to see the stories. Have fun exploring.

15. Source: booktwo.org
Item: Planespotting
Date: 18 December 2013, 11:19 am

Today is International Migrants Day. Last week, I wrote about the failed deportation of Isa Muaza. Yesterday, Unity Centre Glasgow announced that another appeal by Muaza’s legal team had failed, and he was rescheduled for deportation, alongside a large number of others, on Tuesday night.

Blog_01

I heard at about 7pm that several detainees had been loaded onto vans at Harmondsworth Detention Centre and were on the move. I didn’t know where they were headed, but I knew that many previous flights had left from the private aviation area at Stansted Airport, a largely un-signposted collection of car parks and hangars on the western side of the airport. I arrived there at 8, just in time to see the first of several coaches and security vans, together with a police escort, arrive at the Inflite Jet Centre, a private customs and handling facility mostly used by private jets.

The coaches, five in all and probably from several different detention centres, arrived between 8 and 9, and were accompanied by silver vans bearing the logo of security company Tascor, formerly Reliance, who took over the role of deportation escorts from G4S in 2011 following the death of Jimmy Mubenga. Tascor has a page on its website called Our Values, where it boasts: “We steer clear of politics”. Most of the coaches were from WH Tours in Crawley, although one bore the bright yellow sun and jaunty typography of Just Go!

Blog_05

It is profoundly uncomfortable watching anonymous people of colour being loaded on and off vans and planes in the middle of the night under tight security. When you know a little of the background of the detainees, when you read their claims of torture and violence, their long battles to secure asylum, the institutional racism and homophobia, it’s terrible. But even without knowing these things, the manner in which it is done should tell you everything you need to know. The British Human Rights lawyer Gareth Peirce writes in Dispatches from the Dark Side, on UK complicity in torture, that “what is in fact the law precisely mirrors instinctive moral revulsion” but that “in this country, the government hardly needs such acceptance, since here the additional and crucial factor is that the public is unlikely to be given sufficient information to trigger revulsion.” Hence the night, the private terminals, charter flights, the hired coaches. All of this is deliberate: it is a policy of not being seen.

The detainees were kept on the coaches for some time, and there appeared to be some confusion about when they were going to depart. It’s standard practice in this situation to bring extra “reserve” deportees to the airport without warning, a practice condemned as inhumane by some MPs and the Inspector of Prisons. Before deportation, each detainee is issued with a plane ticket which gives the flight time – 22:20hrs in this case – and a flight number. As the flights are chartered, the flight number – here PVT091 – is internal, so it’s impossible to find out more details about it, except by going to the airport. The Home Office has been running deportation charter flights for some time, under as much secrecy as they can get away with, and refuses to disclose the companies involved in case it damages their commercial relationships. The ongoing deportation of Nigerians on charter flights is called “Operation Majestic”, but there are regular flights to many other countries, including “popular destinations” such as Pakistan and Afghanistan. Corporate Watch published a comprehensive report on what they call collective expulsion last month.

Blog_02

On the tarmac by the jet centre sat a Titan Airways 767. Titan Airways is based at Stansted, and describes itself as “the UK’s most prestigious charter airline.” Its fleet ranges from small business aircraft to widebodied airliners:

Since it’s foundation in 1988, Titan Airways has grown into the UK’s most prestigious charter airline, specialising in bespoke air charter, tour operator programmes and high end / corporate air travel as well as airline sub charter and aircraft leasing. It brings the very best standards of care and comfort to all its passengers. Once safely aboard, they can relax and enjoy our superb in-flight service and a wide choice of cuisine and fine wines to complete the experience. Titan’s modern, reliable aircraft can operate from all major international and regional airports day and night, 365 days a year.

It’s cold, and wet, and dark, and some of the deportees have been sitting on board coaches for hours, while Tascor guards mill about, smoke and chat. As it approached midnight, there was more activity around the plane, and it appeared that all the deportees were on board as the coaches left the terminal compound empty and parked up outside. (The next day, Unity tells me that two people were taken off the flight at the last minute, but those people estimated that around 80 Nigerians and Ghanaians were on board, including Isa Muaza, who was taken straight to hospital on arrival in Lagos, and a woman who married a British citizen two years ago, and was not expected to be deported).

Blog_04

You can watch flights taking off from the far side of the airport, from a muddy lane alongside the north end of the runway. On the way over to it, I was stopped by the Police, who had been told I had been seen around the private aviation area. They were happy that I was a ‘spotter’ looking for planes – and advised me to join Essex Police’s Plane Watch scheme – but also warned me that the private aviation section was a restricted area, and I shouldn’t go there.

At 00:27, the Titan Airways 767 roared down the Stansted runway and into the night. Moments before, its call-sign appeared on Flightradar: AWC48A. And from there, an aircraft registration number: G-POWD.

We can see G-POWD on approach to Lagos a little after 6am. Two hours later, it’s on the move again, making the hop westwards from Lagos to Accra, the capital of Ghana, where it makes another stop. And then at 11am it appears to lift off back in the direction of London – at time of writing, it is probably somewhere over North Africa.

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Flight_001

Flight_002

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When I got back to my car around 1, I had a flat battery, and had to wait for a repair man. When he arrived, and I explained what I was doing in this godforsaken place, he told me he’d been at the Inflite Terminal recently too, to jump-start a brand-new Tascor transporter van, whose driver told him these flights happen all the time, and nobody knows about it, not even most of the people who work at the airport. “Makes you think,” he said. “Makes you think.”

*

Photos are available at Flickr

16. Source: booktwo.org
Item: DIY Drone Shadows
Date: 6 December 2013, 9:30 am

The Drone Shadow Handbook is available for sale. You can also download an electronic copy for free below.

Drone-Shadow-006

Last week I drew a Drone Shadow, number 006, in Brixton, London, for the premiere of Jeremy Scahill’s investigative documentary Dirty Wars. The work was commissioned by Picturehouse and Britdoc, who are distributing the film nationwide. You can read more on this site about the previous Drone Shadows in Istanbul, Brighton and Australia, as well as in Washington DC. There are more photos of the Brixton shadow at Flickr.

Dirty Wars is an excellent and powerful film investigating America’s covert wars in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Yemen, Somalia and elsewhere. Scahill visits the communities and families affected by the ever-expanding policy of special forces actions and drone attacks outside declared theatres of war, and digs deep into the politics and policies behind America’s version of ‘total war’. It is currently touring the UK and I urge you to see it – you can download it from the website if there’s no screening near you. I’ll be taking part in a discussion of the film at the Hackney Picturehouse this weekend.

As well as the Drone Shadow installation, I created a projection for Picturehouse which is touring the country with the film. It has so far appeared in London, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Newcastle, York, Liverpool, and elsewhere.

Drone-Projection-01

Drone-Projection-02

The Drone Shadow is a piece of public art, undertaken in public space, for the purpose of public debate, originating in work performed at public protests. For some time, I’ve wanted to open up the project, so that anyone can draw one. With this in mind, I’ve created a handbook, which gives guidance on how to draw a drone shadow, including advice on measuring and materials, and schematics for four of the most common types of drone: the Predator, Reaper, Global Hawk, and Hermes/Watchkeeper.

Please consider supporting the Drone Shadow project by purchasing one or more printed handbooks: Buy Drone Shadow Handbook.

You can also download it free here: Drone Shadow Handbook [PDF, 572KB, CC BY-NC-SA] ↓

See the full handbook at Flickr →

Drone-Shadow-Handbook

For Dirty Wars, Britdoc and Picturehouse printed 2000 copies of this handbook (above), via the ever-excellent Newspaper Club, which are being distributed at screenings.

Several Drone Shadows have already been drawn based on these plans, including one in Detroit’s Eastern Market for The Gallery Project‘s ‘Drones’ exhibition (installed by Lea Bult) …

Drone-Shadow-Detroit

… and several around São Paulo, Brazil, as part of the IV Mostra 3M de Arte Digital (these are Elbit Hermes drones, in use with the Brazlian airforce – which has used them to film football matches. A variant, called the Watchkeeper, is currently on trial with the British Army):

Drone-Shadow-Brazil-01

Drone-Shadow-Brazil-02

If you do use the plans to draw your own Drone Shadow, please have a read of the handbook, let me know about it, and send any feedback you have.

17. Source: booktwo.org
Item: Recent Work, November 2013: Render Ghosts, GPS, Landsat.
Date: 15 November 2013, 7:55 am

render-desert

For some time, I have been threatening to write about the Render Ghosts. I was asked to contribute something to Electronic Voice Phenomena, an online literature and art project by Mercy and Penned in the Margins, and so I wrote about my recent trip to New Mexico, in search of the Render Ghosts:

I first noticed the Render Ghosts on the hoardings surrounding a new development near Finsbury Square. On the balconies of some vast, virtual tower, two pixelated figures looked out over a darkened London, a perfect red-pink gradient sunset behind them. He had short dark hair and stubble, wore a black jacket and blue jeans. She had a cropped red bob, white jacket, and a purple knee-length skirt. I didn’t know who they were, but I started seeing them everywhere.

Read the full piece over at EVP.

I also have a short essay and illustrations in the wonderful new Visual Editions‘ book of writing and maps, Where You Are, which also includes contributions from Joe Dunthorne, Geoff Dyer, Olafur Eliasson, Sheila Heti, and more.

VE5_WhereYouAre_LR10

To ask “Where You Are” invites a series of responses: cartographic, historical, social, spiritual, situational; discursive or prescriptive. The GPS system is a monumental network that provides a permanent “You Are Here” sign hanging in the sky, its signal a constant, synchronised timecode. It suggests the possibility that one may never need be lost again; that future generations will grow up not knowing what it means to be truly lost.

The book is available to order now, but you can read the essay, and see the illustrations (much beautified by the designers at Bibliothèque), alongside all the other contributions on the Where You Are website.

The astute among you might notice a strong similarity between the diagrams in Where You Are and the piece I made for Container some months back:

gps-container

This 3D-printed object is the same thing under discussion in Where You Are:

This is a model of the Global Positioning System (GPS), a constellation of 24 satellites, in six orbital groups of four satellites, each orbital plane at 55 degrees inclination, and 60 degrees right ascension to its neighbour, 20,200 kilometres above the surface of the earth; a machine we are all living inside.

I’d had the original model sitting on my desk for some time before Tim asked me for a contribution to Container. In trying to draw and understand the GPS system as an abstract machine, I’d modelled the constellation in Sketchup – it was a natural step to flip-flop this nest of intersecting cones of influence back into the physical realm again, so that I could roll it between my fingers, as Einar and I did with airfix models of the drones, before the shadows (Einar’s own thinking about GPS, with Timo and Jørn, led to the Satellite Lamps project.) I call this the “Close Encounters” method.

landsat

A while back, I started the Laaaaaaandsat tumblr, which automatically posts, several times a day, every image released by the USGS Landsat observation programme – an ongoing, comprehensive survey of the planet by another satellite, 700km above the earth’s surface.

The endless stream of off-kilter images – reoriented so North is ‘up’ – remains a endless source of pleasure. So when Aperture magazine asked for 200 words on “What Matters Now” in photography, I thought of this little robot cameraman in the sky. 200 words is not enough, but it’s in the new issue.

NASA’s Landsat is the longest-running program dedicated to photographing the Earth from space, and has created millions of images since its inception in 1969. The first satellite, Landsat 1, was launched on July 23, 1972, atop a Delta 900 rocket from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California. Its mission was to photograph the whole Earth using three cameras which see both visible light and the near-infrared, and a four-channel multispectral scanner. The scanner was the project’s greatest innovation as it reveals hidden details about the planet’s surface, producing data and imagery used for everything from disaster relief, to agriculture, to studying climate change.

In February of this year, the program continued with the launch of Landsat 8. This incarnation features a more powerful scanner which sees in the ultraviolet; the panchromatic; the shortwave, near-, and thermal-infrared; revealing the presence of dust and smoke, of chlorophyll, of sub-surface rock formations, and the shape of clouds. The satellite captures four hundred images every day, creating a complete picture of the planet every sixteen days. Every one of these images is in the public domain, allowing every one of us to use, benefit from, and marvel at this ever-growing, ever-changing automated portrait of our planet.

18. Source: booktwo.org
Item: #OccupyTheCloud
Date: 31 October 2013, 11:06 am

“Occupy the Cloud”, an installation for Open Heart Surgery, The Moving Museum, 180 Strand, October – December 2013.

Occupy-Long

“Occupy the Cloud” is an installation of three banners on the facade of 180 Strand, a brutalist office block on a main road in central London. The banners are made of pixelated, virtual skies taken from architectural renderings, like those which adorn nearby building sites. They feature three symbols: the lightning bolt through a circle of the international squatters’ movement; the @-symbol used to denote digital location or direction (and acquired in 2010 by MoMA); and the Cloud symbol, which has come to stand for the vast and remote data storage and processing capabilities of corporations and governments. (I have previously made the assertion, both humorously and more directly that the Cloud is a lie.) The banners themselves occupy an uneasy position between corporate branding, and protest.

When I was asked to contribute to the Moving Museum’s London show, I initially intended to make work based on my ongoing Render Ghosts project, which examines the effects of software designs and processes on society and the built environment (I’ve previously written about this for Domus). One plan was to create flags for the Render Ghosts, who are the people who appear in architectural visualisations, to mark their occupation of that liminal space between the real and the virtual, the physical and the digital, the present and the future.

A couple of things focussed the work. The first was a site visit to 180 Strand, a vast and currently empty building in central London, surrounded by major streets, and major developments (the next site on the street, surrounded by hoardings, boasts “a luxurious new development of stunning apartments and penthouses”). The second was my experience of censorship in Australia last month. I realised it would be possible to make a very public work; and there was no point in being subtle.

Occupy-Banners

In the last few months we’ve learned much about the extent to which supposedly secure “cloud” services have been infiltrated by our security services without oversight or consent. The latest revelations detail explicitly how data passed between Google and Yahoo servers is directly intercepted. But anyone who saw the hundreds of metal barriers which were used to fill Paternoster Square by its corporate owners in February 2012 to prevent peaceful protestors approaching the London Stock Exchange is unlikely to assume that we can trust corporations to act in our best interests any more than governments. Indeed, some of them are starting to act like governments, and no less opaquely than the traditional nation-states.

At the same time, the UK government’s primary response to rising house prices and rental costs, a lack of affordable housing, local councils moving residents out of the city, and a steep rise in homelessness, has been to criminalise squatting, a practice which has a long and radical tradition in this country.

The Levellers and the Diggers of the 17th Century occupied public lands and cultivated them for the public benefit – the state and the landowners conspired to imprison and execute them. It was a young Leveller, John Lilburne, whose false imprisonment and torture lead directly to the establishment of the principle of human rights in English law, and the founding documents which became the US Constitution and Bill of Rights. It is those same rights and laws which have been so violently abused over the last decade to permit exactly the same tortures and renditions which Lilburne was subjected to. The brutal reactions to peaceful public protest in the UK, from Occupy to anti-war marches and the student protests, reveal the illusion of “public” space once again.

As I write this, the UK government is debating its own oversight of the intelligence and security services. The MP Tom Watson, as well as linking the abuse of secrecy powers to the CIA’s drone assassination programme, just made the assertion that “An individual’s data is like their vote: individually minor, privately performed, and hugely powerful when aggregated. We should no more tamper with an individual’s data than tamper with their vote.” In my essay earlier this Summer for Matter magazine, Ring of Steel, I attempted to show how our technological systems tend towards secrecy, and are complicit in abuses of state power, and blanket, undemocratic surveillance. In his essay Turnkey Tyranny, Surveillance and the Terror State, Trevor Paglen states that “[b]y exposing NSA programs like PRISM and Boundless Informant, Edward Snowden has revealed that we are not moving toward a surveillance state: we live in the heart of one.” Paglen asserts that networked technologies as they are employed now do “not merely provide the capacity for “turnkey tyranny”—they render any other future all but impossible.” Powerful organisations which are cavalier with democratic rights are also cavalier with personal data and privacy: the two are linked, directly.

The depredations of corporations and governments on the internet reveal that it, too, is only a potential commons: not a zone of freedom, but one of conflict and power. We have re-discovered the efficacy of spatial protest: we can take the banks to protest unjust tax arrangements, but can we occupy the datacentres over the same issues?

It’s hard to shift these debates from the physical sphere to the digital and back again, to make the necessary connections. But as a friend pointed out about the online harassment debate in the UK, the only way to make sense of it was to remove the prefix “online”, and the issue becomes much clearer. In order to act fully and democratically in the world, we need to recognise that that world does not end at the screen, that the shadowy infrastructure of the network and the cloud is both a political territory and as viable and vital a platform for activism and action as the piazza and the high street. We need to fully account for the imbalances in power produced by the shifting of vast computing resources offboard, offshore, and out of sight.

The entreaty to “Occupy the Cloud” is a call to link these spheres of action, to recognise the central role that technology plays in shaping, producing, and sustaining contemporary politics; and to develop the tactics for action and the frameworks for understanding which will allow us to intervene for a more democratic future.

Occupy-Banner-1

Occupy-Banner-2

Occupy-Banner-3

More pictures at Flickr.

Purchase an “Occupy the Cloud” t-shirt. 30% of profits will be donated to Shelter.

19. Source: The Guardian Culture Podcast
Item: The Truth podcast: Eat Cake
Date: 14 February 2011, 9:22 am
Can coconut cake + random phone calls = love? Find out in our alternative Valentine's Day radio drama from US producer Jonathan Mitchell
Enclosure (mp3)
20. Source: The Guardian Culture Podcast
Item: The Heckle 02: Mistaken identities
Date: 7 August 2007, 5:35 am
In the Guardian's daily podcast from Edinburgh, Lucy Porter and Brian Logan mull over mistaken identities with Phill Jupitus and Andre Vincent and comedy bigwigs report on this year's if.comedy awards, plus Phil Nichol.
Enclosure (mp3)
21. Source: The Guardian Culture Podcast
Item: Venice Biennale: Interview with Sophie Calle
Date: 15 June 2007, 5:35 am
The Guardian's Adrian Searle talks to artist Sophie Calle about her installation, Take Care of Yourself, on display at the Venice Biennale 2007.
Enclosure (mp3)
22. Source: ArtScene with Erika Funke
Item: Jon Nakamatsu - September 17 2014
Date: 16 September 2014, 11:00 pm
WVIA's Larry Vojtko speaks with award-winning pianist Jon Nakamatsu before his visit to NEPA to perform Tchaikovsky with The Northeastern Pennsylvania Philharmonic as it opens its 43rd season at 8 p.m. Sept. 19 at the F.M. Kirby Center, Wilkes-Barre. The NEPA Philharmonic will celebrate the 10th Anniversary of Maestro Lawrence Loh. www.nepaphil.org.
Enclosure (mp3)
23. Source: Western Front
Item: Collective Works: Questions and Answers
Date: 20 July 2014, 12:38 pm

FREE

In conjunction with their performance of LIQUID TRUST, international video installation artists Susanne Clausen and Pavlo Keresty of Szuper Gallery, and musician-in-residence and curator of Music and Movement Mondays Ben Brown introduce their approaches to collaboration, mixed media, and contemporary practices.

_______________________

Biographies

Szuper Gallery (London, UK and Munich, Germany) is a co-operation between Susanne Clausen and Pavlo Keresty that presents filmed and live performances, video installations, interventions, and curatorial projects that incorporate multi-media installations and crash choreography. Szuper Gallery has exhibited at various international venues including the Institute of Contemporary Arts (London), Kuntshalle Wien (Vienna), Whitechapel Art Gallery (London), Lenbachhaus Museum (Munich), Kunsthalle Helsinki (Helsinki), Western Front (Vancouver), Shedhalle (Zurich), and Zeh Gallery (Kiev).

Ben Brown is a Vancouver-based musician, composer, and member of the Juno award-winning group Pugs and Crows. He has collaborated with contemporary and ballet dancers including Justine Chambers, Heidi Bunting, Lee Su-Feh, Kenny Pearl, Edmond Kilpatrick, and Megan Walker Straight. He is a mainstay in Vancouver’s creative music scene, performing with Jill Barber, Michael Bates Quartet, The Unsupervised, The Crackling, and the C.R. Avery Band. He is the founder of a new weekly collaborative series between live musicians and dancers entitled Music and Movement Mondays. He has recently returned from a Canadian tour with Tony Wilson and the Pugs and Crows and his duo with Vancouver vocalist/pianist Alicia Hansen is set to release their new album entitled “Companion” in the fall, 2014.

 

24. Source: Western Front
Item: Life and People
Date: 18 July 2014, 12:39 pm

Mark DeLong Book Launch and Performance:
September 25 @ 8pm, Free

Borrowing its title from Vancouver artist Barry Doupé’s new film, the result of a 2013 Western Front Production Residency, our fall exhibition includes Doupé’s new work alongside sculptures by Vancouver artist Mark DeLong and animated GIFs by Toronto-based Lorna Mills. Often focusing on pop culture material that occupies the fringes of the mainstream, each of these artists produces their work with an intensive, craft-like rigor. Obscuring representation and narrative, these works embody the funny, scary and banal qualities that make up the messy performance of daily life.

Exhibition Brochure and Catalogue Essay (PDF)

Artist Biographies

Mark DeLong (b. 1978, New Brunswick, Canada) is a self-taught artist. His work has been displayed at Acme Gallery, Los Angeles; Bee Studios, Tokyo;  Edward Thorp Gallery, New York; Abel Neue Kunst Gallery, Berlin; Perugi Art Contemporenea, Padova, Italy; Museum Of Contemporary Canadian Art, Toronto; Little Cakes, New York;  DeLong has collaborated with such artists as Paul Butler, Jason McLean and Geoffrey Farmer. His work has been seen in Border Crossings and Canadian Art Magazine and he has published books with Nieves, Switzerland; Seems Books, and TV Books in New York. DeLong currently lives and works in Vancouver, British Columbia.

Barry Doupé (b. 1982 Victoria, BC) is a Vancouver based artist primarily working with video and animation. He graduated from the Emily Carr University in 2004 with a Bachelor of Media Arts majoring in animation. His films use imagery and language derived from the subconscious; developed through writing exercises and automatic drawing. He often creates settings within which a characters’ self-expression or action is challenged and thwarted, resulting in comic, violent and poetic spectacles.  His films have been screened throughout Canada and Internationally including the Ann Arbor Film Festival (Ann Arbor, Michigan), International Film Festival Rotterdam (Rotterdam, the Netherlands), Anthology Film Archives (NY, New York), Lyon Contemporary Art Museum (Lyon, France), Pleasure Dome (Toronto, ON), MOCCA (Toronto, ON), Whitechapel Gallery (London, UK), Centre Pompidou (Paris, France) and the Tate Modern (London, UK).

Lorna Mills has actively exhibited her work in both solo and group exhibitions since the early 1990s. Her obsessive practice includes Ilfochrome printing, painting, super 8 film & video, and on-line animated GIFs incorporated into restrained off-line installation work. In addition to her practice as an artist, Mills has organized GIF installations for Sheroes (year(s)), Toronto; When Analog Was Periodical (2013) Berlin; and :::Zip The Bright::: (2013) at Trinity Square Video, Toronto. Her most recent solo exhibition, The Axis of Something (2013) was exhibited at Transfer Gallery in Brooklyn, New York. Lorna Mills also curated in 2014 a two-part video remake of John Berger’s 1972 BBC production, Ways of Seeing, retitled Ways of Something for Theoneminutes program at The Sandberg Institute in Amsterdam.

25. Source: Western Front
Item: New Forms 2014: Kevin Beasley Talk
Date: 16 July 2014, 4:30 pm

Western Front is pleased to present a talk by New York-based artist Kevin Beasley in conjunction with the 14th Annual New Forms Festival.

The physicality of sound is foundational to Beasley’s site-specific practice that works to expose a location’s historical weight by revealing the invisible aural materiality and protracted moments from both mythical and scientific time. Prior to his current residency at the Studio Museum in Harlem, he was an artist-in-residence at the International Studio and Curatorial Program (ISCP) in Brooklyn, NY. Beasley’s sculptural installations and performances have been included in recent internationally renowned exhibitions, such as at the 2014 Whitney Biennial, New York; the Walker Art Center, Minneapolis; the Museum of Contemporary Art Cleveland; and the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), New York. He received his BFA from the College of Creative Studies, Detroit, and an MFA in Sculpture from Yale University in 2012.

For more information about the New Forms Festival, visit their website or the event page on Facebook.

26. Source: Western Front
Item: Krista Belle Stewart
Date: 15 July 2014, 12:47 pm

Vancouver-based artist Krista Belle Stewart will be producing a new media work along with research during her two-month residency. Her work engages the complexities of intention and interpretation made possible by archival material. The work approaches mediation and storytelling to unfold the interplay between personal and institutional history. Stewart has exhibited in numerous group exhibitions, most recently as part of Fiction/Non-fiction at the Esker Foundation (2013), Where Does it Hurt? at Artspeak (2014), and the Western Front production Music from the New Wilderness (2014). She is a member of the Upper Nicola Band of the Okanagan Nation.

27. Source: Western Front
Item: The Muted Note
Date: 12 July 2014, 12:51 pm

Advance $15 / $10  BUY TICKETS

Door $20 / $12

 

For where love is no word can be compounded

extravagant enough to frame the kiss

and so I use the under-emphasis,

the muted note, the less than purely rounded.

Excerpt from “The Understatement,” Cosmologies, by P.K. Page

 

Unaccompanied trombone and voice boldly interpret the poems of the late P.K. Page through song and dance. Scott Thomson’s suite of songs originally commenced in 2010 as arrangements for his Steve Lacey inspired project, The Rent, but have since been adapted to an intimate duet specially designed for vocalist/dancer Susanna Hood.  Together they fuse word and song with dances choreographed and performed by Susanna Hood, “what emerges is a kind of dance between voice and trombone, between word and sound, a subtle counterpoint between conjoined melodies and ideas of voice, always in close connection to the gestural power of Page’s phrases,” Stuart Broomer, Music Works, 2013.

____

POST-CONCERT TALK BACK SESSION

Following their performance, Governor General Award winner and author of Journey with No Maps, A Life of P.K. Page Sandra Djwa leads a conversation with artists Scott Thomson and Susanna Hood.

______________________________

Biographies

Scott Thomson is a trombonist and composer who lives in Montréal, having moved from Toronto in 2010. He plays in established groups in many styles, and prizes ad hoc improvising as a way to meet many creative people. He has studied with Roswell Rudd, Jean Derome, Eddie Prévost, and John Oswald. Thomson is one of the founders of the Association of Improvising Musicians in Toronto (AIMToronto), and co-directs the AIMToronto Orchestra, which was formed for a project with Anthony Braxton in September 2007. While in Toronto, Scott was the artistic director of Somewhere There, a performance space for live creative music in Toronto’s Parkdale neighbourhood that he founded in 2007. Scott has composed a series of site-specific works that he calls ‘cartographic compositions’ for mobile musicians and audiences in unconventional performance contexts, including pieces for the galleries and corridors of the National Gallery of Canada and the Art Gallery of Ontario. His principal project, currently, is a multi-faceted project with singer and dance artist, Susanna Hood, to perform his suite of songs based on P.K. Page poems. For this project, The Muted Note, Scott and Susanna perform the suite as a duo; with Scott’s quintet, The Disguises; and as a full stage work featuring Susanna’s choreography on three other dancers with live music by The Disguises.

Susanna Hood is a compelling and virtuosic performer in dance and music. She began her career with Toronto Dance Theatre, 1991-95. Independently, she has performed the works of various Toronto choreographers; created singing/dancing roles with Autumn Leaf Productions; acted on film for filmmaker Philip Barker; created music for the dance works of Louis Laberge Coté, Rebecca Todd, and Eryn Dace Trudell; collaborated extensively with composers John Oswald and Nilan Perera; and performed widely as an improviser in dance and music. Her collaborative projects as well as her own choreography and music compositions have been presented throughout Toronto, nationally, and internationally on stage and film since 1991. She has won the K.M. Hunter Emerging Artist Award and the Victor Martyn Lynch-Staunton Award for Outstanding Achievement in Dance. Her principal project, currently, is a multi-faceted project with composer and trombonist, Scott Thomson, to his perform his suite of songs based on P.K. Page poems. For this project, The Muted Note, Susanna and Scott perform the suite as a duo; with Scott’s quintet, The Disguises; and as a full stage work featuring Susanna’s choreography on three other dancers with live music by The Disguises.

Patricia Kathleen Page (1917-2010) is one of Canada’s most celebrated literary figures, and wrote some of this nation’s finest poems. Although she was best known as a Canadian poet, the citation as she was inducted as a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada reads “poet, novelist, script writer, playwright, essayist, journalist, librettist, teacher and artist.” She was the author of more than thirty published books that include poetry, fiction, travel diaries, essays, children’s books, and an autobiography. As a visual artist, she exhibited her work as P.K. Irwin at a number of venues in Canada and abroad. Her works are in the permanent collections of the National Gallery of Canada and the Art Gallery of Ontario. By special resolution of the United Nations, in 2001 Page’s poem “Planet Earth” was read simultaneously in New York, the Antarctic, and the South Pacific to celebrate the International Year of Dialogue Among Civilizations.

Sandra Djwa is a Canadian writer, critic and cultural biographer. Originally from Newfoundland, she moved to British Columbia where she obtained her PhD from the University of British Columbia in 1968. In 1999, she was honored to deliver the Garnett Sedgewick Memorial Lecture in honor of the department’s 80th anniversary. She taught Canadian literature in the English department at Simon Fraser University from 1968 to 2005 when she retired as J.S. Woodsworth Resident Scholar, Humanities. She was part of a seventies movement to establish the study of Canadian literature and, in 1973, cofounded the Association for Canadian and Québec Literatures (ACQL). She was Chair of the inaugural meeting of ACQL. She initiated textual studies of the poems of E.J. Pratt in the eighties, was editor of Poetry, “Letters in Canada” for the University of Toronto Quarterly (1980-4), and Chair of Canadian Heads and Chairs of English (1989). She is best known for articles on Canadian poets like Margaret Atwood and for her biographies of distinguished Canadians including F.R. Scott, and Roy Daniells. The biography of PK Page, Journey With No Maps was released in the fall of 2012 by McGill-Queen’s University Press. It was shortlisted for the 2013 Charles Taylor Prize for Literary Non-Fiction. It also won the 2013 Governor General Award for Non-fiction.

          

28. Source: Western Front
Item: Wrong Wave 2014: Art Rock? Reprise.
Date: 11 July 2014, 12:53 pm

the grain of the voice

Eden Veaudry, Frog Eyes and Nicholas Krgovich

Door $8

Wrong Wave 2014 is an annual celebration of Art Rock. Brought to you by Unit/Pitt, Western Front co-presents an evening of performances:

 

Eden Veaudry

Eden Veaudry was born in Guelph, ON. Her practice incorporates textiles, video, drawing and sound. Recent exhibitions and performances include Conference On the Wave at CSA Space in Vancouver (2014), Shape Painter at the Audio Foundation in Auckland NZ (2013) and Joining the Periphery at VIVO Media Arts Centre in Vancouver (2012).  She lives and works in Vancouver.

Veaudry will perform new sound and video work.

Frog Eyes

Frog Eyes was formed in 2001 by Carey Mercer with his wife, Melanie Campbell.  Two days after competing the final mixes for his most recent and sixth album, Carey’s Cold Spring, he received a call from his doctor telling him that he had throat cancer. At the time, Mercer had this to say, “Illness is nothing to be ashamed of, but it is a big thing, a thing that impacts a life and forces changes on the way…”.  News like this has a way of understandably overshadowing the music itself, and thankfully, Mercer’s cancer seems to be departed, leaving us the opportunity to appreciate the record without such a dire context.  As a bonus, the record is awesome.

Carey’s Cold Spring was released by Canada’s Paper Bag Records on June 17th, 2014.  Mercer also released his first published collection of written work, Clouds of Evil, in the Spring of  2014 on Paper Bag  Press.

Nicholas Krgovich

Nicholas Krgovich is a songwriter and multi-instrumentalist best known for his work with NO KIDS, GIGI, P:ANO and MOUNT EERIE. He has been releasing records under various monikers since P:ANO’s acclaimed chamber pop debut “When It’s Dark And It’s Summer” in 2002, and most recently to the singular pop dreams released under his full legal name NICHOLAS KRGOVICH.

With songs that owe as much to the Great American Songbook as to perennial favourites like Sade, Prefab Sprout and The Blue Nile, Krgovich creates a dreamland where palm trees cast impossibly long shadows, courtyard swimming pools glow at night, and washed-up movie stars haunt the streets looking for love.  Krgovich released his must hear lp Who Cares? On JAZ Records in 2013.

 

See UNIT/PITT for information on other Wrong Wave events.

29. Source: Indianapolis Museum of Art Blog
Item: Oscar Tusquets Blanca – The Gaulino Chair
Date: 16 August 2013, 2:21 pm
Oscar T. Blanca, designer (Spanish, b. 1941), B.D. Barcelona Designs, manufacturer Gaulino Armchair, 1987 Indianapolis Museum of Art, Robertine Daniels Art Fund in Memory of Her Late Husband, Richard Monroe Fairbanks Sr., and Her Late Son, Michael Fairbanks, 2013.4

Oscar T. Blanca, designer (Spanish, b. 1941), B.D. Barcelona Designs, manufacturer
Gaulino Armchair, 1987
Indianapolis Museum of Art, Robertine Daniels Art Fund in Memory of Her Late Husband, Richard Monroe Fairbanks Sr., and Her Late Son, Michael Fairbanks, 2013.4

Oscar Tusquets Blanca (who prefers we use both surnames) was born in 1941. The Barcelona native trained as an architect and began working as a designer of furniture and objects in 1972 with BD (Barcelona Design). Since then he has won several award,s including the Spanish National Design Award. Tusquets Blanca designed the Gaulino chair in 1987 and it is a prime example of Spanish design and functional art. Every angle of the Gaulino chair has beautiful complex lines bringing joy to your eyes as you follow along its subtle, sculptural curves. This is the result of his friendship with Salvador Dali and his interests in painting and writing. It seems clear he was also inspired by Antoni Gaudi and Carlo Mollino for which he named the chair.

The Gaulino chair, winner of the 1989 Industrial Design Prize, has a handmade appearance yet it was his first industrial project in wood. Its structure is made of solid ash and is available in a natural varnish, oak stain or black stain. The oak seat can be upholstered in black, natural, or honey leather. It can be stacked, but what a crime that would be! This is a gorgeous piece that I want to sit in, touch, and be close to in order to study every detail. The anamorphic shapes speak to me and fascinate me. I am not surprised to learn that Tusquets Blanca considers this chair one of his best works. The Gaulino chair is now a part of the Design Arts permanent collection at the IMA.

— Marika Klemm, ASID, Marika Designs, LLC

Tusquets Blanca’s Gaulino chair is an inspired mix of masculine and feminine lines. It may be a dining chair but I prefer to see it as a stand-alone chair that exudes an international design ethos of beauty and functionality. At first glance, the Gaulino chair has a masculine stance on the floor that dares you to have a seat. Yet its machismo belies the feminine, almost sensual, lines of the seat and arms which draw you in and seal the deal. Some will use the Gaulino with the matching table. Others will place it in any room as a side chair to add a sophisticated, sublime and lean design element for the occasional aperitif, but I would use it as the ultimate desk chair, in black, at a small writing desk.

— Michael Lubarsky, DAS Member

 

Enclosure (jpg)
30. Source: Indianapolis Museum of Art Blog
Item: Straw Bale Gardening: A How-To Guide
Date: 5 June 2013, 8:00 am

1. Start with a bale of Straw.

Bale1

2. Saturate it with water for about 3 days.

Watering a straw bale

3. Sprinkle the top of the bale with 1/2 cup granular nitrogen fertilizer and continue watering, adding 1/2 cup fertilizer for the next 3 days. Then for the next 3 days only add 1/4 cup fertilizer and water.

4. On day 10, begin digging 3 holes in the the top of the bale, a little larger than the plant pot diameter. Then fill the holes with potting soil or compost, or a combination, and water gently.

A straw bale with holes in it

A straw bale with dirt filled in the holes

Be sure to dig your holes slightly larger than the plant pot diameter

5. When the soil is no longer hot to the touch, plant and water gently. Clean gallon milk jugs with their bottoms removed make a good cloche if the temperature drops suddenly!

A planted straw bale with a watering pale

6. Continue watering gently and occasionally add dilute fertilizer or compost tea about once per week. The continued watering will leach the fertilizer out.

A straw bale with plants in it

Advantages to Straw Bale Gardening

  • Easier (raised) for folks with limited mobility
  • Useful if your garden soil is poor
  • Useful if you have little or no soil in which to garden
  • Virtually no weeding (Don’t use hay bales!)
  • Don’t have to rotate crops, use a fresh bale each year
  • At season’s end, provides great compost for rest of garden

Possible Disadvantages to Straw Bale Gardening

  • May look a little messy as the bale decomposes
  • Bales dry out quickly, so ultimately may use too much water…jury is still out on this one

 

 

Enclosure (jpg)
31. Source: AGO Art Matters
Item: Meet the artists of the 2014 Aimia | AGO Photography Prize shortlist
Date: 15 August 2014, 10:19 am

Together with our partners at Aimia, we were excited to announce the 2014 Aimia | AGO Photography Prize shortlist on Aug. 13. Below, learn about the four artists from around the world who were our jurors’ top picks, then head to the Prize website to see more of their work and choose your favourite.


David Hartt

Image courtesy of the artist.

Image courtesy of the artist.

“Our understanding of ourselves is deeply rooted in the spaces we occupy.”

David Hartt was born in Montreal and currently lives and works in Chicago. In his installations, which include photographs, videos, and sculptures, he explores how physical spaces reflect the ideas and beliefs of a particular time and place. By investigating the materials, symbols and histories that shape our surroundings, Hartt calls attention to the ways our built environments exist and evolve. After extensive research and site visits, he distils this material into complex and elegant installations.

Artist’s web page

On David’s work:
David Hartt by Aimee Walleston for Art in America
David Hartt: Stray Light at the Studio Museum in Harlem by Andrew Russeth for Gallerist


Elad Lassry

Image courtesy of the artist.

Image courtesy of the artist.

“The questions for me are about this very mysterious unit that is the picture. It brings on a set of assumptions and built-in ways of looking with which I am in constant battle.”

At the centre of Israel-born, Los Angeles-based artist Elad Lassry’s work is the question: “What is a picture?” His practice suggests that the photograph is an elusive “unit.” Lassry uses multiple aesthetic modes and technologies to create analog images, digital interventions, moving pictures, design applications and applied arts that seem utilitarian but produce complex visual sensations. His ongoing investigation leads him to refer back to and experiment with a variety of visual sources – textbooks, manuals, film stills, marketing materials and science texts – which at turns contradict and play off one another in his work. Lassry uses this dynamic to pinpoint what he calls a “contemporary condition” in which the photograph is a flexible entity, seductively powerful and yet untrustworthy. “Once the photograph is not what it appears to be,” Lassry asks, “what else is at stake?”

Artist’s web page

On Elad’s work:
Elad Lassry by Gillian Young for Art in America
Elad Lassry at David Kordansky via Contemporary Art Daily


Nandipha Mntambo

Image courtesy of the artist.

Image courtesy of the artist.

“I’m interested in uncovering that binary – that in-between space that you can’t always pinpoint or articulate.”

Nandipha Mntambo was born in Swaziland and lives in Johannesburg. She originally trained as a sculptor and then expanded her practice to include photography, performance, and video. Her work investigates such dualities as male and female, attraction and repulsion, animal and human, European and African. Mntambo makes sculptures from cowhide, using her own body to mould the forms. In many of her videos and photographs, she appears wearing her sculptures, suggesting our capacity as individuals to shape the world around us, while also highlighting the forces that form us, including notions of race, gender and history.

Artist’s web page

On Nandipha’s work:
Nandipha Mntambo: Hide & Seek by Kudi Maradzika for AkAthemag
Visiting Artist Profiles – Nandipha Mntambo by Matthew Harrison Tedford for ArtPractical


Lisa Oppenheim

Image courtesy of the artist.

Image courtesy of the artist.

“I want the viewer to ask, ‘What am I looking at? How is it made?’ Somehow, that provides a way of critically reading how images come to all of us through our daily lives.”

Lisa Oppenheim, who lives and works in New York, creates photographs and videos that connect historical imagery and techniques with the present moment. Her process often begins with online research, to source images that she reinterprets using old and new technologies. Oppenheim also employs unusual materials as negatives – fabric, lace, slices of wood – directly recording the objects’ specific textures to create near-abstract compositions. Through her experiments with analog darkroom and digital methods, Oppenheim gives photographic images new forms and new contexts, inviting us to question and to wonder.

Artist’s website

On Lisa’s work:
Lisa Oppenheim by Shama Khanna for Frieze
Lisa Oppenheim: Elemental Process by Brian Sholis for Aperture

32. Source: AGO Art Matters
Item: Conservation Notes: Looking at ephemera in Betty Goodwin’s notebooks
Date: 11 August 2014, 3:32 pm

Ephemera 2
Ephemera 3
Ephemera 5
Ephemera 6

Click arrows to see inside the notebooks.

Betty Goodwin’s notebooks and sketchbooks are both interesting documents of the artist’s process and important objects in their own right, offering insight into her daily life and art practice. The term “ephemera” refers to documents or items that were not necessarily meant to last long and are often made of materials that deteriorate quickly. The ephemera found in Goodwin’s notes comprise a variety of materials, including sticky notes, banana stickers, instant photographs, newspaper articles and pressed flowers. Making sure the sketchbooks are preserved in the exact condition that Goodwin left them, with ephemeral items intact where Goodwin placed them, allows researchers to see the artist’s thoughts on her own works.

In the late 1990s and early 2000s Goodwin, with the help of her studio assistant, revisited a number of her sketchbooks from the earlier days of her career, using sticky notes and metal clips to mark key pages, some of which date back to the 1960s. Some sketchbooks have pages that have been removed, with photocopies pasted back in their place, and some of these copied pages even re-appear in later sketchbooks, stuck onto pages or tucked in as loose leaves in agendas or diaries. Maintaining these re-arrangements, along with clips and the sticky notes, lets researchers see which of Goodwin’s own entries, sketches or notes she considered important.

The temporary nature of various ephemeral elements presents some challenges to conservation: the low-tack glue of sticky notes makes them vulnerable to detaching and metal clips will rust. However, each of the individually created enclosures made by Digital Special Collections Assistant Marianne Williams securely contains the ephemera in each volume and ensures no materials or information will be lost. Read about those here.


Curious about Conservation?
If you have a burning question about Conservation, leave a comment below. We’ll do our best to give you an answer in an upcoming Conservation Notes post.


Signature Partner of the AGO’s Conservation Program


33. Source: AGO Art Matters
Item: Artist’s statement: Christi Belcourt on The Wisdom of the Universe
Date: 7 August 2014, 2:51 pm
Christi Belcourt, The  Wisdom of the Universe, 2014, acrylic on canvas, 171 × 282 cm, purchased with funds donated by Greg Latremoille, 2014 ©  2014 Christi Belcourt.

Christi Belcourt, The Wisdom of the Universe, 2014, acrylic on canvas, 171 × 282 cm, purchased with funds donated by Greg Latremoille, 2014 © 2014 Christi Belcourt.

The AGO has commissioned and acquired an extraordinary painting entitled The Wisdom of the Universe by Christi Belcourt, a Métis visual artist and author who received the 2014 Ontario Arts Council Aboriginal Arts Award at a ceremony held here on July 30, 2014. Below, Belcourt discusses the ecological concerns that inspired the work.

AGO.116615.d02
Christi Belcourt, <em>The Wisdom of the Universe</em> (detail), 2014, acrylic on canvas, 171 × 282 cm, purchased with funds donated by Greg Latremoille, 2014 © 2014 Christi Belcourt.
AGO.116615.d01
Christi Belcourt, <em>The Wisdom of the Universe</em> (detail), 2014, acrylic on canvas, 171 × 282 cm, purchased with funds donated by Greg Latremoille, 2014 © 2014 Christi Belcourt.
AGO.116615.d
Christi Belcourt, <em>The Wisdom of the Universe</em> (detail), 2014, acrylic on canvas, 171 × 282 cm, purchased with funds donated by Greg Latremoille, 2014 © 2014 Christi Belcourt.

In Ontario, over 200 species of plants and animals are listed as threatened, endangered or extinct. Of those, included in this painting are the Dwarf Lake Iris, the Eastern Prairie Fringed Orchid, the Karner Blue butterfly, the West Virginia White butterfly, the Spring Blue-eyed Mary, the Cerulean Warbler and Acadian Flycatcher.

Globally, we live in a time of great upheaval. The state of the world is in crisis. We are witness to the unbearable suffering of species, including humans. Much of this we do to ourselves. It is possible for the planet to return to a state of well-being, but it requires a radical change in our thinking. It requires a willingness to be open to the idea that perhaps human beings have got it all wrong.

All species, the lands, the waters are one beating organism that pulses like a heart. We are all a part of a whole. The animals and plants, lands and waters, are our relatives each with as much right to exist as we have. When we see ourselves as separate from each other and think of other species, the waters and the planet itself as objects that can be owned, dominated or subjugated, we lose connection with our humanity and we create imbalance on the earth. This is what we are witnessing around us.

The planet already contains all the wisdom of the universe, as do you and I. It has the ability to recover built into its DNA and we have the ability to change what we are doing so this can happen.

Perhaps it’s time to place the rights of Mother Earth ahead of the rights to Mother Earth.

– Christi Belcourt


This work is one of two paintings by Belcourt currently on display in the Gallery. In the video below, Belcourt discusses the other, entitled So Much Depends Upon Who Holds the Shovel (2008), which appears in our exhibition Before and after the Horizon: Anishinaabe Artists of the Great Lakes.

34. Source: AGO Art Matters
Item: Catching up with Chino Otsuka, 2013 Aimia | AGO Photography Prize finalist
Date: 29 July 2014, 11:22 am

Chino Otsuka, <em>Imagine Finding Me</em>, 1975 and 2005, Spain, Japan, 2005, Chromogenic print, 305 mm x 406 mm.</

Chino Otsuka, Imagine Finding Me, 1975 and 2005, Spain, Japan, 2005, Chromogenic print, 305 mm x 406 mm.

Born in Tokyo and educated in the U.K., 2013 Aimia | AGO Photography Prize finalist Chino Otsuka uses photography and video to explore the fluid relationship between memory, photography, and time. She recently completed her residency at the Nikkei National Museum in Burnaby, B.C., which focused on researching Japanese picture brides and their forgotten stories. We caught up with Otsuka to discuss her residency research, work and experience.

AGO: While you were in Vancouver, you worked inside the archives and collection of the Nikkei National Museum & Cultural Centre. What did your research focus on, and what affect has working in Vancouver had on your work?

Chino Otsuka: The research I conduct is integral to the development of my work. For a while now I have been researching the history of Japanese emigrants. When I found out about the residency component of the AIMIA | AGO Photography Prize and was able to choose anywhere in Canada, I knew I wanted to go to the Nikkei National Museum. Since I had previously done similar research on a group of Japanese who went to the Netherlands in the mid-19th century, I wanted to see the museum’s collections and learn more about the history of Japanese-Canadian immigrants.

During the residency I had the opportunity to access and explore museum collections that are not normally seen or easily accessible. I knew very little about the history of Japanese immigrants in Canada, or the hardships and injustice that they suffered. I read and came across so many moving stories. All of this is a very important part of Japanese history, and I’m so surprised that many of these stories are untold outside of Canada.

As my research progressed I became more and more interested in the stories of young women who came over from Japan as a “picture brides,” young Japanese women usually between 17 and 19 years old who came to Canada as in the early 20th century. Their marriages were arranged by showing the prospective bride and groom photographs of each other. Most of these women travelled from Japan and saw their husband-to-be for the first time when they arrived in Canada. I was drawn to their innocence, ambition and courage — their journey. They all longed for a new life in their new country. Yet when they arrived in Canada the life they had imagined was completely different. Hardship and many tragedies would follow them. They struggled and endured so much.

I’ve looked through many photographs and artefacts in the collection and chose to focus especially on their journey to Canada. There is a sense of anticipation around the little moment in their life when they were dreaming about the future. I’ve been working with the old photographs as well as photographing their belongings that they brought with them from Japan.

With your residency now complete, can you speak to the effect that the overall experience has had on your work? Did your work move in a new direction during the residency? If so, how?

The residency has given me a new perspective on my practice, as well as time to explore and experiment with new ideas. The work I started during my residency is not quite finished yet. I’m done with the research and photographing and am now working with these materials through editing and finding ways to present them.

What has the residency allowed you to do in terms of your work and research?

In my work I mainly explore the notion of autobiographical memory, so the residency at the Nikkei National Museum has given me the opportunity to explore and research the history, the collective memory – how the individual memories weave together to tell a story.

In her essay “Chino Otsuka’s Time Machine” Michiko Kasahara writes that your “journeys into the past are not sentimental and do not display a nostalgic atmosphere,” yet much of your work explores issues of duality, history, memory and self. Can you elaborate on/explain your method? Do you agree with the writer’s statement?

I work with the past and many of my works show my past. How I take my works, restage and rework them is really about today, not yesterday.
My works are personal but by carefully selecting the images, and recreating them in the certain ways, I’m trying to engage the viewers’ internal dialogue of their experiences. I hope to make the images/stories resonate and trigger the viewers’ own memories.

Your work, specifically in the series “Imagine Finding Me,” is extremely personal with the subject being your own self and memory. The Aimia | AGO Photography Prize is awarded by public vote. As the subject of the work, what were your thoughts on it being considered in this way?

I visited the AGO during the exhibition while the voting was going on, and when I wandered around the museum strangers came up to tell me that they voted for me. I guess they recognized me from my work, and that was a really strange experience.


*This interview was conducted via email in July 2014 and has been edited for style and brevity.
35. Source: AGO Art Matters
Item: Conservation Notes: Artist Betty Goodwin’s thoughts on paper
Date: 28 July 2014, 8:00 am

Marianne at work in the studio

Marianne at work in the studio


As Digital Special Collections Assistant in the AGO Library and Archives this summer, Marianne Williams is building new enclosures to preserve decades’ worth of sketchbooks and notebooks of the late Montreal-based artist Betty Goodwin.

Goodwin bequeathed more than 100 sketchbooks, notebooks, agendas and diaries to the AGO. Many of them were featured in the Gallery’s 2010/2011 exhibition Work Notes, which showcased Goodwin’s artistic practice and process. Once off display, the books were wrapped in acid-free tissue as a temporary storage measure, as seen above.


Click through slideshow to see all the steps

The first step in creating a new enclosure is measuring the dimensions of the notebook to the millimetre and then creating a custom-made box from archival-quality materials to house the book. Using these materials protects the notebook from acid normally found in paper materials that can yellow and deteriorate over time, causing brittleness and increased risk of damage.

The customized box, called an enclosure, is then labelled and tied together with cotton tape in order to secure all of the flaps. This protects the books from shifting around when being handled, prevents scratches or rips and ensures that any loose materials, like pressed flowers or loose leaves of paper, stay snug in their original places.

The individual book enclosures are then placed in larger boxes for storage in the AGO Library and Archives vault.

The re-housed notebooks will be kept in the AGO’s Edward P. Taylor Library and Archives, where curators and other researchers will have access to them to study and examine in the future.


Curious about Conservation?
If you have a burning question about Conservation, leave a comment below. We’ll do our best to give you an answer in an upcoming Conservation Notes post.


Signature Partner of the AGO’s Conservation Program


36. Source: Digital Filmmaking Blog
Item: TTTOW - A unique film festival
Date: 22 August 2013, 1:40 pm
TTTOW or Taxi Takes on The World is a unique film festival where anyone across the world can participate. All you need is a camcorder (a smartphone will do!), a taxi ride and the ensuing conversation with the taxi driver - recorded and sent to the organizers. 




Yes, its as simple as that. But what exactly is this film festival about? 

The Taxi Takes on the World is a crowd sourced interactive documentary about conversations between drivers and passengers from inside taxis all around the globe. This user generated project aims to harness honest grassroots interactions and present the world’s ‘video takes’ on matters that affect us all. 


“Talks inside taxis are usually between people of diverse backgrounds and so offer a variety of perspectives. These ‘takes’ have the power to blur boundaries and bridge cultures. The Taxi Takes on the World will showcase crowd sourced video stories that mainstream media ignores about times when people find common ground and break stereotypes about the ‘other’. Mobile technology allows a democratization of media which aligns with my work’s vision for how new media will shape our future. This film festival will be part of a traveling film festival and offers a great opportunity to showcase citizens’ stories of brotherhood” - Vandana Sood - Giddings, Creator, Founder, Executive Director.

Date & Venues


The film festival will be held from The 21ST of September 2013 to the 2nd of October 2013 in Jammu and Kashmir, New Delhi, Punjab and Manipur. Kashmir and Manipur are both conflict states of India. 

This film festival is a partnership between The Taxi Takes on the World project and Standing Together to Enable Peace, Trust (STEP) a non-profit organization established in New Delhi in 2009.

Themes


The film festival will focus on certain broad themes:

  • Religious and ethnic conflict
  • War and terror
  • Race
  • Gender
  • Class
  • Culture

Each of these broad global topics has regional nuances that the mainstream media often overlooks. Through the prism of the taxi, where every day people from often widely disparate backgrounds meet, this film festival will tell a story about how, given the right space, we all can understand each other and speak a common language.

Where & How to

Need guidance on how to go about it? Check out this short prezi that suggests the kind of questions you can ask to begin a conversation and start your take. Find the application procedure, rules & regulations all on the TTOW submissions">submissions page.

Hurry, the submissions deadline is September 10, 2013!
Enclosure
37. Source: Digital Filmmaking Blog
Item: 10 Free Video Editing Software for Filmmakers
Date: 6 July 2013, 6:48 am



Money is, by definition, 
always a difficult issue for the low budget filmmaker.  The challenge is in getting as much of your meagre budget up on the screen as possible. Luckily, by the wonders of open source development, just about every $800 software package has its freebie equivalent.

1. Lightworks

PC ( LINUX public beta released early 2013, MAC TBA)
An incredibly powerful editing package that is head and shoulders above all other freebie editing packages.  Just take a look at their website to see some of the high profile projects that have used Lightworks.  Lightworks has features that even some of the big packages don’t have without the addition of expensive plugins.  With a strong community supporting it, this is only going to get better.
Get Lightworks here

2. HyperEngine-AV – Equivalent to Adobe Premiere, Final Cut Pro

MAC/PC
A decent editing package.  A step up from the likes of imovie though still not up to the professional standards of the pricey packages.  For simple edits though, you could do a lot worse.
Get HyperEngine-AV here

3. Avidemux

MAC/PC/LINUX
One of the best free editing packages out there.  Avidemux allows you to do basic cutting, apply filters and work with a wide variety of different file types.  It gets better with each release.
Get Avidemux here

4. Windows movie maker, pinnacle videospin

PC
These lightweight freebie editors should not be overlooked entirely.  For quick edits and changes there’s no need for the big guns.
Get Windows Movie Maker
Get Pinnacle Videospin

5. Avid Free DV

MAC
This was a great idea but has sadly been discontinued by Avid.  Avid Free DV is a free version of their high end editing software, preserving the interface but removing many of the advanced features.  Great for simple editing whilst also learning your way around Avid.  Copies are still floating around online, though now it’s unsupported it is just going to get more out of date with time.  Get it while it’s still useful.
Get Avid Free DV here

6. MPEG Streamclip

MAC/PC
Another powerful, professional encoding and conversion tool.  It accepts even the most obscure video formats and can even download YouTube videos. It is widely used as a simple tool for transcoding unwieldly DSLR footage.
Get MPEG Streamclip here

7. ffmpeg

MAC/PC/LINUX
A powerful encoding tool that can read and convert just about any video file format.
Get ffmpeg here

8. DCP Builder – Equivalent to taking your project to an expensive post house

MAC/PC/LINUX
Want to screen your film at the utmost quality?  Modern digital projectors require something called a DCP (Digital Cinema Package).  Most post houses will charge you several thousands for the privilege, even for a short.  DCP Builder is free.
Get DCP Builder here

9. Open DCP

MAC/PC/LINUX
Another DCP package.  Personally I’ve had better results with this one than with DCP Builder.  But hey, they’re both free so give them both a shot and see what works best for you.
Get Open DCP here

10. Black Magic DaVinci Resolve Lite

MAC/PC/LINUX
A good colour correcting job can make your budget movie look a million dollars.  Black Magic now offer a lite version of their powerful colour correcting tool absolutely free!
Please feel free to add your own favourite free software that give an edge to the filmmaker.
Enclosure
38. Source: Digital Filmmaking Blog
Item: Free stock footage, music from Video Blocks
Date: 11 January 2013, 9:54 am
Got an email yesterday about an upcoming company called Video Blocks that's offering free stock footage from their collection of over 50,000 video, motion backgrounds and production music - if you sign up for a 7-day trial.


The offer seemed really tempting so I did some research on Video Blocks and realized they were featured on TechCrunch too:


Anyhow, I still have to check them out. The 7-day trial offer is really tempting, the only catch is that they require your credit card info to complete the trial sign-up. This is so that if you forget to cancel your trial in 7 days you will be charged at their regular monthly fee of $79 per month. But this kind of marketing tactic is not new at all...many big and small retailers, including Netflix have used a similar model of internet marketing to generate leads.

In any case, if you're into video editing or post production this offer is really attractive. Even the monthly cost of $79 is quite a decent deal for the amount of stock footage and clips that Video Blocks have on offer. But if you think you're not at the stage where you can afford a recurring cost, just take up their 7-day free trial and remember to cancel before it ends!



Enclosure
39. Source: Digital Filmmaking Blog
Item: How Apple's new computers impact filmmaking
Date: 26 October 2012, 12:04 pm

The new Macbook Pro and iMac announced by Apple on October 24 heralds a major shift in the way PCs will be designed and have a cumulative impact on digital filmmaking.



Below are some of the major upgrades that affect the digital filmmaking process:

1.    No Optical Drive: Both the new Macbook Pro with retina display and the new iMac have done away with the DVD drive, with Apple calling it  obsolete in the age of blazing broadband speeds when movies and television can be easily streamed online or downloaded. The new iMac does have 2 Thunderbolt ports and 4 USB 3.0 ports to allow connection of external hard drives and other devices. Seeing that Apple is usually the trendsetter in computer design, we can expect competitors like HP and Dell to follow suit. This could spell the death knell for the DVD industry, and moviemakers will now be looking to go completely digital. Of course, home theatre systems and bluray players will ensure that the home video market doesn’t completely evaporate in the near future, but the transition to a more 'online' movie watching experience is surely on its way.  

2.    Much better screen resolutions: The new iMac has a full HD display (1,920 × 1,080 pixels) for the 21.5” version and 2,560 × 1,440 pixel for the 27” version. It certainly translates into a better film/video watching experience and the computer being used for watching movies and gaming more than ever. The Macbook Pro with Retina display boats of a tantalizing 2,560 x 1,600 at 227 pixels per inch. This one has four times the screen resolution of the previous 13-inch version of the MacBook Pro.

3.    Super powerful processors: The new 21.5” iMac starts with a config of Intel Core i5 Quad Core 2.7 Ghz Processor with 8GB RAM , 1GB dedicated NVIDIA graphics and 1TB hard disk. Even the Macbook Pro with Retina display is all about performance, speed and graphics. It boasts of an Intel dual-core i5 Ivy Bridge processor clock at 2.5 Ghz (minimum) For graphics it has the Intel HD 4,000 graphics support. The RAM is 8 GB and its all-flash storage has three configurations available: 256 GB, 512 GB, or 768 GB. Such top-end configurations in the base models bode well for popular film editing applications like Final Cut Pro.  Apple will be looking to release an even more powerful version of its flagship video editing app to utilize the full potential of its new line of computer devices.

The rise of smartphones and tablets coupled with faster broadband speeds have already given a fillip to the various kinds of digital filmmaking, both in terms of production and post production.  Apple’s new line of smart computers will be prove to be another turning point, particularly because the optical drive has been dropped across its iMac and Macbook Pro ranges.

What do you think of Apple’s new devices, and their potential impact on filmmaking?
40. Source: Digital Filmmaking Blog
Item: 6 Frequently Used Transitions Between Shots
Date: 1 October 2012, 4:04 am

Film editing is all about making (mostly smooth) transitions from one shot to another. Here we briefly discuss the 6 frequently used transitions between shots:

1. CUT: The end of the first shot is attached to the beginning of the second shot. The most often used of all transitions, it creates an instantaneous change in one or more of the following: angle, distance, subject etc. In narrative films, normally only cuts are used within a scene.

2. MATCH CUT: A match cut (sometimes called a form cut) maintains continuity between two shots by matching objects with similar shapes or movements or both similar shapes and similar movements. One of the best known examples of a match cut is from 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968), in which a bone slowly tumbling end over end in the air is replaced by an orbiting spacecraft with a similar shape. Watch video below for reference:

3. JUMP CUT: A jump cut is a discontinuous transition between shots. For example, one shot shows a woman running on a beach towards the water, and the next shot shows her running away from the water. A jump cut is sometimes used to surprise or disorient viewers. It may also occur if the film print or video has missing footage. Many filmmakers and film schools associate a jump cut with bad editing.

4. FADE OUT, FADE IN: The first shot fades to darkness, (normally black); then the second shot fades in(by degree goes from darkness to illuminated image). The fade out, fade in can provide a short but meaningful pause between scenes and sequences. If this editing transition is doe slowly, it can serve as a leisurely transition.; if done rapidly, it is less noticeable or not noticeable at all. Perhaps because of the current popularity of fast pacing in films, this transition is used far less often than it used to be,

5. LAP DISSOLVE: The first shot fades out as the second shot fades in, overlaps the first, then replaces it entirely. Lap dissolves may be rapid and nearly imperceptible or slow and quite noticeable, creating a momentary superimposition of two images, sometimes suggesting similarities or even meaning.

lap dissolve

6. WIPE: A wipe seems to push one shot off the screen as it replaces it with the next shot. The wipe, which comes with many variations, has been popular in science fiction, serials and action movies. but it has also been used in such diverse films as It Happened on Night, (1934), The Maltese Falcon (1941), The Seven Samurai (1954), Ed Wood (1994) and Battlefield Earth (2000).

Many other transitions are used but much less often than these six mentioned above. We will post more on video editing techniques on the Digital Filmmaking Blog in the coming days,

Enclosure
41. Source: Digital Filmmaking Blog
Item: SXSW festival being streamed live
Date: 11 March 2012, 5:36 am
The South by Southwest multi-day gathering, also called the SXSW Festival, since it’s being livestreamed from Austin, TX, enabling viewers around the globe to feel the love even sitting in the comfort of their home. 



From March 9 - March 18, there’s a party going on, and you didn’t even need to fly there in order to attend. This event, which is popularly know by its acronym SXSW is streaming various live events, music and photos online here. Events are best viewed using Internet Explorer 9.

This year, more than 500 parties — a record — are on tap at venues around town. With its focus on music, film and interactive offerings, SXSW naturally attracts interest each year from record labels, film distributors and high-tech firms looking to make a big splash with lavish events featuring celebrities, freebies and, of course, lots of food and booze.

Overall, SXSW is known as a great creative mashup attracting filmmakers, distributors, music promoters, talent buyers, members of the national and international press, digital creatives, technology geeks, entrepreneurs, fans and fanatics. This year is the 19th time the South by Southwest film event is being held. The largest demographic represented among attendees are people in their 30’s (40%), followed by twenty-somethings (31%).

While it has a reputation for being hip, it aims to steer clear of being a stuffy, snobbish atmosphere, and based upon press testimonies , the South by Southwest gathering seems to have reached that goal in past years. And then some.

The interactive part of the festival continues for 4 more days through March 13th, while film viewing will last 8 more days through March 17th and for those who love the music events, there’s a great line up that will take folks out 9 more days, through March 18th.

A Microsoft gala last year at downtown's ACL Live venue, for example, reportedly cost $750,000. But the festival also appeals to other firms, including automakers, fashion designers, television networks and even the makers of Red Bull energy drink.

All are eager to reach the 20,000-plus trendsetters in town, hoping to generate buzz, which, in turn, generates sales.

 Visit the South by Southwest home page for a more comprehensive list of events and programs.
42. Source: Digital Filmmaking Blog
Item: George Clooney honoured at Palm Springs Film Festival
Date: 23 November 2011, 8:20 am

George Clooney will receive the Chairman's Award for his acting work in The Descendants and his directing of The Ides of March at the 2012 Palm Springs International Film Festival.

The award will be presented on January 7 at PSIFF's annual Awards Gala, a black-tie event that always hands out an array of awards to luminaries who figure to be in the Oscar race.

Like the awards given at the Santa Barbara International Film Festival in late January, the Palm Springs event has become a valuable stop on the Oscar campaign trail. Previous recipients of the Chairman's Award include Dustin Hoffman, Nicole Kidman and Ben Affleck.

Oscar-nominated actress Michelle Williams will also be rewarded for her portrayal of Marilyn Monroe in “My Week With Marilyn,” which is already generating Oscar buzz.

Williams, 31, will receive the Desert Palm Achievement Actress Award at the Palm Springs International Film Festival awards gala at the Palm Springs Convention Center. Previous recipients include Academy Award winners Natalie Portman, Marion Cotillard, Charlize Theron and Kate Winslet.

“My Week With Marilyn,” which opens Wednesday in limited distribution, premiered Oct. 9 at the New York International Film Festival. Directed by Simon Curtis, the film was presented Nov. 6 as part of the AFI Fest at Grauman's Chinese Theatre in Hollywood, where Monroe put her hand and footprints in cement in 1952.

The Palm Springs International Film Festival runs Jan. 5-16 2012 at various venues in Palm Springs

Sources: mydesert.com & Reuters

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43. Source: Digital Filmmaking Blog
Item: Final Cut Pro X released
Date: 24 June 2011, 10:11 am
Apple has released Final Cut Pro X, the latest version of its professional video-editing software and one of the most popular programs for digital filmmaking.
Its actually been two days since FCP X was launched, and of course there’s been a strong buzz about it in the market. Video professionals were not only impressed with the new features, but with the new price too. Final Cut Pro X is available in the Mac App Store for $299.99. Compare that to 2009, when the fully loaded Final Cut Studio retailed for $999.99.

Final Cut Pro X is a big update for the powerful editing suite, in no small part because it is now (finally) built with 64-bit support. That means that the app will be able to take advantage of the additional memory space in Mac OS X Snow Leopard and the upcoming Mac OS X Lion.

Installing Final Cut Pro X
Since the only way to get Final Cut Pro X is through the Mac App Store, installation is easy: You just click "Buy" in the store, and the app's icon appears in your Finder, ready to run. You'll be able to install it on five Macs, and you receive updates automatically. The program requires at least a Core 2 Duo-based Mac running Snow Leopard, a decent video processor, 2.4GB of disk space, and 2GB RAM (4GB recommended).


The big new feature is called the Magnetic Timeline, which takes a trackless approach to editing. Like Adobe, Apple has also put a lot of effort into what it calls Content Auto-Analysis, which is another way of saying that the software uses meta-tags to better organize and import content, based on shot type, media format and other information.

Check out this video Apple released to show off the new features in Final Cut Pro X:



Enclosure
44. Source: Digital Filmmaking Blog
Item: Shortie Awards Youth Film Festival
Date: 6 May 2011, 4:28 am
awards.org/shortie_awards/Welcome_files/card-draft-5.jpg" />

Hollyn Randolph just mailed me in about the forthcoming Shortie Awards film festival.

The Shortie Awards film festival will be held June 5, 2011 in Arlington, VA a suburb of Washington D.C. The Shortie Awards recognizes original short film productions created by student filmmakers, ages 7-18, and their teachers.

This year we have entries from 26 states and 14 countries and India has 36 entries which is the largest number from outside of the US.
Apparently the last date for submitting the entries was April 1, 2011. But we can look forward to the screenings and the winners. Those who live around Arlingtom and Washington DC should attend the event!
45. Source: Digital Filmmaking Blog
Item: Short Film: Damn Your Eyes
Date: 26 April 2011, 4:52 am

David Guglielmo, an alumni of School of Visual Arts, New York emailed me his short film titled Damn Your Eyes.
damn your eyes

Damn Your Eyes a Spaghetti Western-influenced revenge film shot on the Sony EX1 digital camera in the NY Metropolitan area for $5,000. It has been successful at film festivals and recently won two awards.


WINNER: "Best Student Film" at Royal Flush Festival '09
WINNER: "Best More Than Horror Short" at Buffalo Screams Horror Festival '10


I liked the visual quality of the film: the lighting, the locations, set, framing, composition etc. The DoP used the Sony EXI camcorder given to him pretty well. Most of the actors did a really professional job and that took the movie experience a notch higher. The screenplay could have been written better. Some of the moments in the movie were clichéd and boring but on the whole it is a decent production. What do you think of the movie? Please watch and comment (feed subscribers will need to visit the blog to watch it).

David Guglielmo must be congratulated for doing his excellent direction. Considering he is relatively new to this profession, he has done a laudable job that commands appreciation.
 Digital filmmaking is indeed growing from strength to strength.
Enclosure
46. Source: Digital Filmmaking Blog
Item: Tribeca Film Festival Launches Online Version
Date: 23 March 2011, 6:50 pm
I had recently blogged about Tribeca Film Festival's announcement of filmmaking grants for funding documentaries of social significance. Well now it has gone a step further further launched an online version of the increasingly popular movie fest.

According to Hollywood Reporter, the 2011 Tribeca Film Festival, which kicks off from April 20 and ends on May 1 in New York city, will have a new online component where audiences will be able to watch live streams of events and interact with other audience members.

Online audiences will also be allowed to submit questions to a host of festival executives and other notable guests and access detailed information on all of the online fest filmmakers. There will also be a Future of Film blog that will include posts from film and technology experts.

If you want to know about the screenings at Tribeca 2011, check out the Tribeca Film Festival 2011 film guide .

47. Source: ArtRightNow News
Item: Emerging artists wanting to participate in the Splendid festival read on...(May 2011)
Date: 20 March 2011, 1:03 pm
Calling creatives of all stripes who have an inquisitive mind, an innovative approach and a desire to collaborate to participate in the 2011 Splendid program.
48. Source: Digital Filmmaking Blog
Item: Salon Films launches filmmaker training program
Date: 10 January 2011, 9:02 am
Salon Films will launch a cross-border training program for young Singapore and Hong Kong filmmakers, and a funding initiative in connection with the Hong Kong government subsidy for filmmakers.

The training program is organized with the Media Development Authority of Singapore to bring budding Singaporean filmmakers to work in Hong Kong and China.

The program began in Hong Kong, in partnership with the Academy of Film of the Hong Kong Baptist University, and continues in Beijing, Shanghai, Suzhou, in cooperation with the China Film Foundation and CCTV, and will conclude in the Hengdian studio, lasting three weeks in each city.

The film crew is shooting a documentary to commemorate the 20th anniversary the establishment of economic relations between China and Singapore.

"Asian culture shares common origins," Wang said, "The training program is aimed at providing an opportunity for young filmmakers across Asia to meet, exchange ideas, and make films that speak to our mutual cultural roots."

To capitalize on the current prevalence of Hong Kong-Chinese co-productions and the growing film industry in China, the program also intends for young filmmakers and film students to obtain hands-on practical experience in China.

Film students at the Academy of Film of the Baptist University will also join the Salon team in Beijing and Hengdian.
49. Source: ArtRightNow News
Item: Winners for the 2010 Gold Coast Indigenous Art and Design Award
Date: 19 November 2010, 10:47 am
Anthony Walker is the winner of the 2010 prize.
50. Source: Digital Filmmaking Blog
Item: Tribeca announces filmmaking grants
Date: 17 September 2010, 1:08 pm
The Tribeca Film Institute announced Wednesday its submission period for grants is now open. TFI will award more than $500,000 in filmmaker support through 2011 and more than $100,000 through its new TFI Documentary Fund, presented by HBO.


The Gucci Tribeca Documentary Fund provides finishing grants totaling $100,000 to feature-length documentaries that highlight and humanize topics of social significance. The TFI Sloan Filmmaker Fund will award up to $140,000 to support compelling narrative filmmaking that explores scientific, mathematic and technological themes.

The Tribeca All Access Program will continue cultivating relationships between filmmakers from traditionally underrepresented communities and film industry executives, and provide each 2011 participant with $10,000. And, the TFI Latin America Media Arts Fund will support film and video artists working in narrative or documentary film and living in Mexico, Central and South America.


“We are excited to expand the reach and depth of our programming to support individual artists in the field,”
 said TFI artistic director Beth Janson.


The early submission deadline is Nov. 8; final deadline is Dec. 8. More info: tribecafilminstitute.org.
51. Source: Digital Filmmaking Blog
Item: Taiwan's Tsai Liang is Asian Filmmaker of the Year
Date: 6 September 2010, 4:47 am
South Korea's most prestigious film festival said Wednesday it has chosen Taiwanese director Tsai Ming Liang as its Asian Filmmaker of the Year.


The Pusan International Film Festival praised Tsai's work over the past three decades for pioneering unexplored areas that overcome the limitations of the art film industry.

"His 30-year-long devotion to filmmaking has greatly influenced Asian cinema and made considerable contributions to enhance the global status of Asian cinema," it said in a statement.


"He is renowned for seeking fresh ways of communicating with his audience... We can find the root of his endless spirit of challenging himself and the borderlines of art in his earlier works in the 1990s."

Malaysian-born Tsai is best known for "Vive L'Amour" that won the Golden Lion (best picture) award at the Venice Film Festival in 1994, and "The River" that won the Silver Bear/Special Jury Prize at the 1997 Berlin International Film Festival.


The 52-year-old has also won numerous awards with other films.

He is considered a leading exponent of the "Second New Wave" -- a group of Taiwanese directors in the 1990s who produced films with realistic and sympathetic portrayals of life rather than melodramas or action pictures.


The festival, held in the southern port city of Busan since 1996, will be staged from October 7-15 this year.
52. Source: Digital Filmmaking Blog
Item: Latest Web startups for filmmakers
Date: 18 June 2010, 1:39 am
As the author of the Digital Filmmaking Blog I often get emails about the launch of a new film camera or filmmaking scholarhip or film training program requesting to get featured on this blog. Often I find those things overtly promotional and commercial and decide to ignore them. But I would like to list a few good web startups for filmmakers:

1. Tyro TV: tyrotv.com is a website that's intended for emerging television and filmmakers. They are sponsoring a new kind of online film festival/contest. According to the site owner,


We give young filmmakers a topic and everything they need to create their own movie -- video, music, and sound effects. Then let them create the best short film they can using these materials. Because everyone's using the same "building blocks," contestants will be judged not by their budget but on their creativity and storytelling abilities.

Their first competition is called "The Marijuana Mash-Up." For this contest, they are asking contestants to “mash up” (that is, creatively condense and re-edit) an hour’s worth of hilariously dated drug education films from the 50s and 60s to create a short campaign commercial that convinces people to vote for or against legalizing marijuana. The contest is motivated by the California initiative that'll be on the ballot this fall, but young filmmakers across the country have passionate views on this issue, to say the least! Finalists will be named late in the summer and a winner just before the election.

2. Fleetflicks: FleetFlicks.com is trying to revive the short film as both art and entertainment. It's a place for filmmakers to expose their work to an international audience. The site hopes to spread the word to a diverse viewership and combat the stigma that the short film is only for crotch-punch and cat videos. The site has been up for a few months and has gathered a lot of followers, many of whom have uploaded their short films on the site.

3. Student Film Makers of India: SFMI is a site for student film from India where they can upload their films, make their profile and network with other film makers. The website has a decent design and has got quite a few members already who have uploaded their short films and animations there.

53. Source: Digital Filmmaking Blog
Item: Jumpstart Your Film and Television Career: 5 powerful TIPS on how to land more tv film jobs than you can handle
Date: 23 April 2010, 5:57 pm
This is a guest post by Ian Agard of ianagard.com. Ian is a Toronto based writer/director/film producer who loves to entertain and inspire people through his movies and his filmmaking blog.



As you probably know, one of the most desirable yet challenging industries to make a living from is in the film and television industry.

By far, the most commonly asked question I receive from people throughout my six years working as actor, screenwriter, director and film producer is...how do you get into the industry and make a living?

As a film producer; I have interviewed, hired and worked with several casts and crews while making my films. It becomes quite easy to notice the difference between individuals who struggle to find film/tv work and those who make a comfortable living.

Is it about luck?

Or

Who you know?

I would like to share with you 5 POWERFUL TIPS that will help you jumpstart your film/tv career and get you on the road towards landing more paying industry work than you can handle.


TIP Number One: Be Willing To Work For Free

I know, you probably didn’t want to hear that but it’s imperative that you are willing to either work for free or very low pay. It’s a sacrifice that many in the entertainment industry must do when starting out, however, you’ll have the opportunity to meet others in the business as well as learn on the job. Taking “free” jobs quickly leads to full time careers.


TIP Number Two: Attitude Is Everything

This is one of the most important tips regarding developing a successful film/tv industry career. More important than your talent, your experience or your education; your attitude will determine how far you will rise within your career.
It will determine if people will refer job opportunities to you or hire you again for future projects. You must be a flexible, professional, team oriented person who is committed to “serving” the story/project to the best of your ability.

Production sets are full of egos, there’s no need for one more.

TIP Number Three: Recognize and seizure opportunity

You’ve probably heard the old saying luck is when preparation meets opportunity. I like to believe in a slightly different statement, luck = opportunity + willingness.
A certain film/tv industry work opportunity might present itself to you; you’re prepared...but are you willing to maybe work for free, work for low pay, work 12 hour days, be team-oriented, be flexible and agreeable or go the extra mile to help the project succeed.

TIP Number Four: Network and be visible

The reality of the film/TV industry is that most production jobs are never advertised. Those positions are usually filled through word of mouth and pre-established relationships. That’s why it is extremely important for you to always be committed to meeting new like-minded people.
The best places to meet and connect with people who share your zeal and passion are:

1) Onset while shooting a movie or television show
2) Through industry specific classes
3) At film festivals

TIP Number Five: Always be learning

As humans, we are learning machines. We are most alive and functioning closest to our potential when we are learning, adapting, adjusting and finding new ways, approaches and techniques to improve our lives (and our careers)in some way.

No matter how many years working experience you might have within the film/TV industry it would be hugely important for you to maintain a beginner’s mindset. A beginner looks constantly for one new tibit, one or more ways to expand on their current expertise.

To learn more valuable tips and in-depth advice, listen to my MP3 60 minute audio interview with film and television expert and veteran Stephen Dranitsaris at: www.ianagard.com/tv-film-jobs
54. Source: - Features RSS Feed
Item: Kasimir Malevich's 'Black Square': What does it say to you?
Date: 15 July 2014, 6:00 pm

The painting itself sits in a relatively darkened room at Tate Modern, where a major retrospective of the career of its creator, Kasimir Malevich from Kiev, opens today. Given that the painting is black from top to toe and hip to hip, and that it is often said to represent a pivotal moment in the history of abstraction and the art of the 20th century, this strikes the onlooker as an odd decision. Why not be given the opportunity to see it as clearly as possible?

55. Source: - Features RSS Feed
Item: Should galleries display more art by women?
Date: 7 July 2014, 1:12 pm

One of the Royal Academy of Arts’ most senior figures has called for a quota to ensure equality between the balance of male and female members. Eileen Cooper, the first woman to be appointed to the role of Keeper of the Royal Academy in 2011, also thinks that national collections should display more works by women artists.

56. Source: - Features RSS Feed
Item: Stunning photos from the National Geographic Travel photography contest
Date: 17 June 2014, 5:50 pm

Extraordinary entries for a travel photography competition were unveiled on Tuesday – including a man canoeing past dripping globules of molten lava, and a giraffe towering through a window to polish off some crumbs left on a plate. 

57. Source: World Art News at IrishArt.com
Item: Lowry Art Trickery?
Date: 3 March 2009, 1:23 pm
Wigan Today reports that an art lover from Cheshire accused of tricking a dealer into buying a fake LS Lowry has told a court he thought the painting was genuine. Maurice Taylor - who calls himself Lord Taylor Windsor after buying the title on the internet for £1,000 - sold the Mill Street scene to businessman David Smith during a meeting in a Ritz hotel room in 2007. Mr Smith, managing director of Neptune Fine Arts, paid over £230,000 before discovering the work was bogus. Taylor, 60, who lives in a mansion near Congleton, had bought the snowy scene featuring matchstick-style figures three years earlier through friend and Lowry expert Ivan Aird. Mr Aird acted as an agent for the previous owner Martin Heaps who, the crown say, sold the picture for £7,500 with an invoice describing it as "After Lowry" because it was created by artist Arthur Delaney. Prosecuting at Chester Crown Court, Sion Ap Mihangel, said Taylor knew the picture was fake, invented history to boost its provenance, and doctored the invoice so it appeared he was sold a genuine work. Taylor admitted telling his buyer and auctioneers Bonhams he bought the painting several decades earlier from industrialist Eddie Rosenfeld. He said he did not know why he lied but claimed Mr Aird asked him not to say he bought the painting through him. He said Mr Aird told him the painting was genuine and said: "When he sold me that picture there was never a question in his mind. I didn't question him, he told me it was original." A team of experts from Bonhams later assessed the work and were taken in by it. They provided a £600,000 insurance valuation and laid on the red carpet treatment, hoping Taylor would sell it through them. Mr Mihangel said Taylor acquired the Bonhams valuation to strengthen his selling position and to ensure a private sale. Taylor denies denies six counts of fraud and one of forging an invoice. The trial continues. (For full source and full article click the Headline). Irish Art
58. Source: World Art News at IrishArt.com
Item: Caged Art Recognised
Date: 1 March 2009, 4:44 am
The New York Times reports that 1974 Tehching Hsieh, a young Taiwanese performance artist working as a seaman, walked down the gangplank of an oil tanker docked in the Delaware River and slipped into the United States. His destination: Manhattan, center of the art world. Once there, though, Mr. Hsieh found himself ensnared in the benumbing life of an illegal immigrant. With the downtown art scene vibrating around him, he eked out a living at Chinese restaurants and construction jobs, feeling alien, alienated and creatively barren until it came to him: He could turn his isolation into art. Inside an unfinished loft, he could build himself a beautiful cage, shave his head, stencil his name onto a uniform and lock himself away for a year. Thirty years later Mr. Hsieh’s “Cage Piece” is on display at the Museum of Modern Art as the inaugural installation in a series on performance art. But formal recognition of Mr. Hsieh (pronounced shay), who is now a 58-year-old American citizen with spiky salt-and-pepper hair, has been a long time coming. For decades he was almost an urban legend, his harrowing performances — the year he punched a time clock hourly, the year he lived on the streets, the year he spent tethered by a rope to a female artist — kept alive by talk. This winter, owing to renewed interest in performance art, new passion for contemporary Chinese art and the coinciding interests of several curators, Mr. Hsieh’s moment of recognition has arrived from many directions at once. The one-man show at MoMA runs through May 18. The Guggenheim is featuring his time-clock piece in “The Third Mind: American Artists Contemplate Asia, 1860-1989” through April 19. M.I.T. Press is about to release “Out of Now,” a large-format book devoted to his “lifeworks.” And United States Artists, an advocacy organization, has awarded Mr. Hsieh $50,000, his first grant. He is gratified by the exhibitions. But he judges the book, which is 384 pages and weighs almost six pounds, to be the definitive ode to his artistic career. “Because of this book I can die tomorrow,” said Mr.Hsieh. (For full source and full article click the Headline). Irish Art
59. Source: World Art News at IrishArt.com
Item: "Nazi" Picasso's Stay In NY
Date: 10 February 2009, 3:42 am
Time/CNN reports that it may have been possible for Picasso's boy to lead that horse without a rein, but it appears that the Museum of Modern Art didn't have the famous painting on as tight a leash as you might have thought. For more than a year that 1906 picture, one of the high points of MoMA's art collection, has been the focus of a Holocaust restitution fight that also involved another Picasso, Le Moulin de la Galette, this one hanging at the Guggenheim. Yesterday both museums settled out of court with three plaintiffs seeking return of the paintings, which they claim had been relinquished under duress by their Jewish owner in the 1930s. As with most settlements the details of this one are sealed, so we may never know whether or how much money changed hands. And by itself the mere fact that the two art museums chose to settle doesn't mean they didn't have faith in their own arguments. (Or, for that matter, that the plaintiffs didn't have faith in their's.) But jury trials are a crapshoot and for the museums at least, the paintings were too important to lose. (For full source and full article click the Headline). Irish Art
60. Source: World Art News at IrishArt.com
Item: Joe Boyle's Art at Waterfront Hall, Belfast
Date: 25 January 2009, 4:10 pm
There is a small number of artists that savvy Irish Art collectors should carefully track in 2009 - and Joe Boyle (a previous Conor Prize Winner at the Royal Ulster Academy) - is one of them. This Belfast Waterfront exhibition fuses three themes. The first is Boyle's response to a trip to China investigating 17th century dry brush calligraphy combined with Chinese contemporary aspiration for a western iconography. The second is the notion that the fragment can intentionally signify the whole - as part of an ancient object may be considered a work of art - despite that not being the original artistic intention. In this exploration Boyle chooses the Eye as the part that signifies the whole in a meaningful manner - presenting an opportunity to explore different ways of seeing aspects of change in Irish Society. The final theme is a response to Landscape which employs notions of metaphor, edge and parameter to explore emotions which we experience and are challenged by what is often a familiar and sometimes threatening environment. Joe Boyle - Solo Gallery 2 Waterfront Hall 2 Lanyon Place, Belfast Tel: 028 9033 4400 Opens Tuesday 3rd February (7pm- 9pm) until 27th February 2009 Irish Art
61. Source: World Art News at IrishArt.com
Item: Irish Art Thieves Took Taxi
Date: 9 November 2008, 11:43 pm
Bungling Irish art thieves led Gardai to their door last weekend when they brought their loot home in a taxicab. Two men were apprehended at a residence in Kilmore following the theft of three paintings. It is believed that the thieves were easily located after they hired a taxi to ferry them, and two of the paintings home following the robbery. According to Gardai a plate glass window in Greenacres was smashed and paintings removed from the display. Gardai this week said that while investigations into the matter are 'not yet complete', they are 'not looking for anyone else in connection with the matter'. (For full source and full article click the Headline). Irish Art
63. Source: International Art Competitions provided by Artshow.com
Item: Hadassah-Brandeis Institute Artist Residency - Waltham, Massachusetts
$3000 stipend, $250 materials subsidy, studio, solo exhibition. Deadline: October 8, 2014
65. Source: International Art Competitions provided by Artshow.com
Item: One 5 - Cincinnati, Ohio
$1500 Cash Award + Solo Feature Exhibit of One Prize-winning work. Deadline: October 27, 2014
67. Source: International Art Competitions provided by Artshow.com
Item: 8th GICBiennale 2015 International Competition - Gyeonggi-do, South Korea
$48,100 Grand Prize with solo exhibition in 2017. Deadline: November 7, 2014
68. Source: International Art Competitions provided by Artshow.com
Item: Au Naturel: the Nude in the 21st Century - Astoria, Oregon
$1000 in cash prizes; Up to $2000 in purchase awards. Deadline: November 7, 2014
70. Source: International Art Competitions provided by Artshow.com
Item: Emerging Artists 2015 - Hudson, New York
Solo exhibition and $2400 in publication awards. Deadline: November 30, 2014
71. Source: International Art Competitions provided by Artshow.com
Item: Dave Bown Projects 9th Semiannual Competition - Online exhibition
$10,000 in cash prizes and purchases. Deadline: December 6, 2014
74. Source: Network Front | The Guardian
Item: Climate change activists stage Wall Street sit-in protest live updates
Date: 22 September 2014, 12:52 pm

Sit-in protesters dressed in blue manage a flood-like spectacle:

A flood of seated protesters filling the street. #FloodWallStreet pic.twitter.com/s9HeAjdbke

A striking aerial view of a banner at the protest, via Democracy Now. The banner reads: Capitalism = Climate Chaos. Flood Wall St!

Aerial image of #FloodWallStreet from http://t.co/z9gWx7v370 @Uneditedcamera pic.twitter.com/d2pKRyEcKU

The sit-in appears to be staying put for the moment.

Rally organizers tell the crowd: We think itd be a good idea to stay here awhile. Do you think its a good idea?

Were gonna order pizza... this is an opportunity to get to know one another better. Maybe strategy conversations about how do we take this home. Its also an opportunity to talk about collective power. Our movement still has a lot to learn. And we can learn from one another. One of the things we need to learn about: How [inaudible] white privilege and those of us who are male to learn how to open space instead of taking it for ourselves.

This movement is growing. The communities most affected are rising up. [inaudible] together to create the space to [inaudible].

The Guardians Amanda Holpuch reports a police action against a member of the rally.

Someone is being held down by the NYPD, who have formed a barrier against the dozens of cameras recording it.

@Nypd arrests first protestor at #FloodWallStreet pic.twitter.com/QEWApt3Qvz

Ive spoken with Adam Gabbatt at the Flood Wall Street protests. He describes the scene:

[There are] Several hundred [protesters] certainly, although its difficult to make a guess. The protesters walked up from Battery Park... Its a very colorful protest, a lot of people dressed in blue, theres flags, theres two large balloons which have carbon bubble written on them... People have staged a sit-in, they havent done it on Wall Street, which was their intention, but just here by the bull.

Some of Americas pro-sustainability companies are making campaign contributions to climate-change deniers in Congress, writes Bruce Watson for Guardian Sustainable Business. Are they double dealing or victims of a flawed political system?

According to oft-cited statistics, climate scientists are 95%-99% certain of climate change about as certain as they are of the link between smoking and lung cancer. Nonetheless, an estimated 58% of US Republican congressmen claim to be unconvinced of it. This group, the so-called climate denier caucus, is a big part of the reason that meaningful climate activist legislation keeps getting shot down. And according to a recent report, some of Americas most popular companies are helping to fund the effort.

Forecast the Facts and Sum of Us, two sustainability oriented NGOs, recently released #DisruptDenial, a report outlining the corporate contributions to the 160 members of the climate denier caucus in Congress. According to them, these legislators have received $641m in campaign contributions from US companies, including $98m in 2014. [...]

As our live blog coverage continues, heres a summary of where things stand:

More demonstrators sit down in the street. Mic check! Sit down! Get down for justice! Thank you!

Another consistent chant:

The people gonna rise like the water

gonna calm this crisis down

The demonstrators have congregated around the Charging Bull statue at the top of Bowling Green park. Many demonstrators are sitting on Broadway, which divides at the bull.

Mic check! yells an organizer. Were gonna hang out here for a little while.

The UN General Assembly is hosting a noon briefing in advance of tomorrows summit on the climate. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon calls for all hands on deck:

We need all hands on deck, #UNSG says at start of #CWNYC #climate2014 pic.twitter.com/dzOWKBsZfj

One view from the other side of Wall Street:

"What do you think of the protest?" @holpuch asks a broker. "I think it's bullshit," he replies #FloodWallStreet pic.twitter.com/3wMWNMftNP

The demonstrators consider their next step, via Nation writer Wen Stephenson:

There's a discussion of sorts going on about whether to hold the space on Broadway or keep going. #FloodWallStreet pic.twitter.com/wdrIzdj5VN

#FloodWallStreet Livestreams: http://t.co/hREvKvjGLs & http://t.co/D4Z2PiBbg2 & http://t.co/dCoXrIl8Qd

The marchers have seized traffic on Broadway. Caught in the jam is at least one tour bus.

Cops, stuck tour bus and demonstrators. #FloodWallStreet pic.twitter.com/QPJWcmzvyz

Energy-hogging helicopters are in the sky to surveil the climate protesters:

#nypd broke out the copters for @FloodWallStreet Bad for the environment, bad for people. http://t.co/ckowDhybfe pic.twitter.com/HN6i1iXS8x

The police have deflated the carbon bubble. Not a popular move with the crowd.

Carbon bubble confiscated, swiftly deflated, by NYPD #FloodWallStreet https://t.co/Bchcm8hmTU

The Guardians Adam Gabbatt is also at the march:

Brief drama as Wall Street bull involuntarily gores protesters' large "carbon bubble" #FloodWallStreet pic.twitter.com/fMINDeb9QS

The Guardians Amanda Holpuch is at the march and gets a shot of protesters in the streets:

Front of climate march to the stock exchange pic.twitter.com/nTg4QcvLdz

More chants of whose streets? our streets! and now, whose planet? our planet!

#FloodWallStreet has taken the streets! pic.twitter.com/XCdWw04uKh

The protesters are walking among stopped traffic down Broadway (against traffic). Whose streets, our streets! they chant. There are barricades blocking the sidewalk from the street. In this case the barricades are keeping the marchers on the street and off the sidewalk.

The marchers have left the park and are headed toward the financial district.

They chant: Were changing up the system, were changing up the plan. We colonize [?] the water, we colonize the land.

Theres new pressure on leaders attending the UN climate change summit starting tomorrow to reach a global deal, the Guardians Fiona Harvey (@fionaharvey) reports:

Efforts to forge a new global agreement on climate change, kicking off in New York this week, will not repeat the mistakes that dogged the previous landmark climate summit in Copenhagen five years ago, the UNs special envoy on climate change has vowed.

This is a different environment to Copenhagen, Mary Robinson, former president of Ireland and now the UNs climate change envoy, told the Guardian. Pressure on leaders for an agreement is building up more than 12 months ahead. I think leaders realise they need to have transformative change.

If you have an appetite for more granular information from todays rally, you can scroll through #floodwallstreet on Twitter.

Todays planned human flood of Wall Street is meant to evoke the flood of water with Hurricane Sandy that filled the area on 29 October 2012.

Heres what Battery Place, a few blocks West of the protesters current location in Bowling Green Park, looked like on Hurricane Sandy night:

Battery place is a river. Water has risen six inches in 10 mins pic.twitter.com/lCEaG1dE

Organizers are addressing the possibility likelihood it seems of arrest for some protesters.

We believe well be facing fairly minor charges. And we believe if youve never been arrested before, this is the perfect action to join.

Now its not so big. If you have friends or family who have resources, and there is bail leverage against you for some reason, we are going to ask that you talk to them first, so that those without resources dont rot in jail. One more thing. You can help us make the fund bigger. Were on Twitter @owsbail. You can share our donate link so that we can make the fund huge again to support actions like this and in the future.

Correct link! A sea of BLUE ready to @FloodWallStreet ! Donate to our bail fund: http://t.co/ckowDhybfe @JennaBPope @OccupyWallStNYC

Police are creating new barricades and lines of defense in the Wall Street area.

#nypd bring in more truckloads of barricades #floodwallstreet pic.twitter.com/GWGDOdV2wK

Event organizers are telling the crowd how the group will move.

In a few minutes, were going to form a living river, and were gonna flow to Wall St and form a sea of humanity by sitting down together, an organizer says.

Can we do one mic check? So I want to go over the brief plan. When were done here, we will flow out that side and this side. And well form a river right out on the walkway. Were not leaving right away. Were getting organized. There will be three groups. The first two are the same. Everyone thats willing to sit down and stay, and everyone thats willing to sit down anyway, for just a little bit, and when we need to, those of us will rise up. The very last group are people were assuming dont want to sit down. You still can. But that last group will help support.

We have two code words and three signals. [A discussion of codes and signals ensues.]

Final instructions before the #FloodWallStreet march. pic.twitter.com/kDptnSmvQe

One line of critique from todays march faults capitalism with promoting climate abuses. There is no clean energy in the capitalist system, a speaker in Battery Park concludes.

Chris Hedges, the journalist and author, speaks next:

Up that road lies the Emerald City of Wall Street. In that city the wizards of finance profit from the death of the planet. The wizards own the press, the politicians, the courts and the government. No one will stop them but the people. We are the people. This means revolution.

@BrianLehrer pic.twitter.com/Bgpg4hudKC

Anna Merlan of the Village Voice is in Battery Park:

Meanwhile in Battery Park, this guy. #floodwallst pic.twitter.com/cDgcAJaNRX

The @floodwallstreet Twitter account is a good one to follow for updates on todays march. And below find links to live streams of the event.

Currently demonstrators are rallying at the World War II memorial in Battery Park. The march to the adjacent financial district is scheduled to begin at 11.30am.

Here's the chant for later today #FloodWallStreet pic.twitter.com/spZ1NZQpsw

#FloodWallStreet Livestreams: http://t.co/hREvKvjGLs & http://t.co/D4Z2PiBbg2 & http://t.co/dCoXrIl8Qd

Welcome to our live blog coverage of a mass rally in downtown Manhattan to highlight the role of Wall Street in fueling the climate crisis. A flood of people dressed in blue plan to march to the financial district and conduct a sit-in.

Todays rally falls on the eve of a United Nations summit on climate change in New York. The Wall Street rally follows a historic demonstration on Sunday in which, according to figures provided by organisers, more than 300,000 marchers took to the streets of Manhattan and 2,700 climate events were held worldwide.

NYC #climatemarch crowd est 310,000 MT @natmoss This photo my favorite of day #PeopleClimateMarch pic.twitter.com/MUZnQJYXxs Continue reading...

Enclosure (jpeg)
75. Source: Network Front | The Guardian
Item: Apples software updates are like changing the water in a fish tank. Id rather let the fish die
Date: 22 September 2014, 12:47 pm
The all-new iPhones and Apple Watch can be easily avoided but theres no escaping iOS 8

The past few weeks havent been great for Apple. First they were implicated in the stolen celebrity nude photo disaster, which reminded everybody how easily clouds leak. Correct me if Im wrong, but I dont think the iPhone is generally marketed as a diabolical timewasting device with the potential to wreak a grotesque and devastating invasion of your personal privacy. They tend to focus more on all the cool colours it comes in.

Then they launched the horrible-looking Apple Watch, which does everything an iPhone can do, but more expensively and pointlessly, and on a slightly different part of your body. Only an unhealthily devoted Apple fanatic could bear to wear a Apple Watch, and even that poor notional idiot would have to keep putting their iPhone down in order to operate the damn thing. Itll scarcely be used for telling the time, just as the iPhone is scarcely used for making calls. Its not a watch. Its a gaudy wristband aimed at raising awareness of Chinese factory conditions. Or a handy visual tag that helps con artists instantly identify gullible rich idiots in a crowd. Continue reading...

Enclosure (jpg)
76. Source: Network Front | The Guardian
Item: £2bn wiped off Tesco's value as profit overstating scandal sends shares sliding business live
Date: 22 September 2014, 12:29 pm

Bleak day for Britains biggest supermarket chain as new chief executive warns that first-half profits were overstated by around £250m, and suspends four senior executives

Heres Associated Presss take on the Tesco crisis tonight, for the benefit of new readers:

Ugly end to the day for #Tesco shares. Every little hurts (run out of fresh puns). pic.twitter.com/3MB5z17Lrj

We have uncovered a serious issue and have responded accordingly,

Such an announcement is not the stuff of a well operated FTSE-100 organization.

More significantly, it means that performance which is already extremely weak is actually much weaker than anticipated, he said. This is something that will alarm investors and means that Tesco has much further to travel to recovery than first thought.

And heres more expert reaction to the Tesco crisis tonight.

Meltdown of Tesco could soon rank with New Coke/BP oil spill as one of great business disasters of our age. Shares halved since 2012

A Tesco takeover looks less and less crazy; @qtwebb says its shrunken market cap of $27 bln should have suitors running the numbers...

Tesco: why did it all go so wrong? By @andrewsimms_nef http://t.co/24t7fnjehG

Tescos turmoil cant be overstated: it may go right back to the drawing board http://t.co/hGvUVPZIIp

I think it might be helpful to recap, with links to the key points in the liveblog.

Its been a dark day for Britains biggest retailer, Tesco, after it shocked the City by admitting that it had overstated its forecasts for profits by a staggering £250m.

We have uncovered a serious issue and have responded accordingly. The Chairman and I have acted quickly to establish a comprehensive independent investigation.

The Board, my colleagues, our customers and I expect Tesco to operate with integrity and transparency and we will take decisive action as the results of the investigation become clear.

..fundamental questions over the Chairmans position.

The Guardians financial editor, Nils Pratley, warns tonight that we may not yet know the full scale of the crisis at Britains biggest retailer.

This mornings shock admission that various earnings from Tescos own suppliers have been banked early, and that some costs have been deferred, could be just the start of the matter.

Tescos financial numbers have been poor for about three years but at least shareholders thought they were an accurate account of the supermarket groups troubles. Even that assumption is now exploded.

The revelation of a £250m overstatement in half-year profits forecasts was understandably short on detail but any warning that relates to when income is recognised tends to be toxic for a companys reputation. For retailers that take up-front promotional payments from suppliers, this is basic accounting territory.

More trouble for Tesco - Fitch, the rating agency, has just announced that it has put the companys on rating watch negative.

That could be the prelude to downgrading Tescos credit rating, which is currently BBB.

Following the August profit warning, Fitch noted that the profitability of domestic operations, trading performance and market share remained under pressure over the summer period and that the EBIT margin erosion guided was sharper than previously anticipated in Fitchs rating case.

This trend has been further accelerated as a result of the accounting errors and is evidence of the significant operational leverage in the business, particularly driven by Tescos dominant presence in the large scale hypermarket formats.

Fitch highlighted in its September comment that the group had been subject to management changes at senior and secondary level, which the agency viewed as a potential negative rating factor for the strategic development of the group in light of increasing competitive pressures in the UK food-retail market.

Jim Osman, CEO at The Edge Consulting Group, has warned investors not to see Tescos share price tumble today as a buying opportunity.

Osman reckons small shareholders should keep away until the companys future is clearer:

We strongly advise investors to stay away from Tesco stocks. Tescos senior management team has severely misrepresented its figures and losses are just the start of major problems for the business. Theres little vision from senior management, with only small and ineffective changes being made, as the business continues to suffer decline.

Investors in Tesco must push for a massive restructuring and break-up of the business if they want to see any further return on their investment. By separating the retail arm of Tesco from its £20bn property portfolio, it will be able to deliver true value for shareholders and kick-start the transition towards profitability.

Tescos CEO should be looking at the value potential that a break-up of the supermarkets property portfolio will have for his shareholders and investors. Dave Lewis has to look beyond Tesco as simply being a retailer; its a retailer that has a substantial property empire and it must look at the possibilities of separating its property assets into individual listed companies.

This chart, of Tescos share price over the last two decades, shows how shares hit an 11-year low tonight:

After a bruising day, Tesco shares have closed down 11.5% at 203p, their lowest level since June 2003.

That wipes around £2.1bn off the companys market capitalisation.

Over on Comment is Free, Andrew Simms argues that Tescos relentless and blinkered pursuit of profits over many years has been its undoing.

From putting suppliers in an armlock to relentlessly pushing on with store expansion even as shopping habits changed in the recession, Tescos overconfidence led it to todays humiliation, he argues.

There are two types of chancellor, Gordon Brown used to joke. Those who fail and those who get out in time.

Tescos former chief executive,Terry Leahy, now enjoying a lucrative career as a feted business guru, got out in time. The irony is that many of the problems now bringing the retail giant low are a legacy of the strategic decisions he made....

Retail advisor Paul Foley also suspects that Tescos weakening sales (down 3.8% earlier this year) prompted the profit overstatement.

Tesco, not the first or last retail company to indulge in "creative accounting" when sales slow down!

Business Insider has a handy summary of the main developments at Tesco:

A Simple List Of All The Incredibly Suspicious Things Happening At Tesco Right Now http://t.co/cD7Ul7iuZ9 via @themoneygame

when does #Tesco become a bid target? 200p? 160p?

Jasper Lawler of CMC Markets says Tesco shares are being crushed by unimpressed investors:

Hopes of a turnaround at Tesco after prior CEO Phillip Clarke departed two months ago have been dashed. Lewis is not responsible and has seemingly acted on the front foot since learning of the news but wider questions are being asked of Clarke and the Board of Directors including Chairman Richard Broadbent.

The more immediate worry for investors than the resulting investigation is that this is the 3rd profit warning in two months for Tesco who in the last quarter lost almost 1.5% of market share particularly to discounters newcomers Aldi and Lidl.

This chart shows how Tescos shares are now hitting new 11-year lows this afternoon.

Tesco $TSCO lurches lower still, down 12.5%. Fresh 11 year lows, back to May 2003 levels. Chart: pic.twitter.com/92G5yxmeZh

Crumbs, Tescos shares are hitting new lows -- now down 12.5% at 201p.

Espirito Santos warning that UK profits could fall to zero (details), and HSBCs suggestion that a rescue rights issue may be needed (details) may be spurring the selloff.

We cant blame Dave Lewis for this crisis at Tesco, given he only arrived at the supermarket less than a month ago.

The knives are being sharpened for chairman Sir Richard Broadbent, though.

The pressure is clearly mounting higher and higher, said Bernstein Securities analyst Bruno Monteyne. [Can] he weather this storm?

I didnt think he would weather the last storm [when Tesco CEO Philip Clarke left]. But with a new CEO in place, you wouldnt want the chairman to just be stepping down right away.

Heres a video clip of Dave Lewis discussing how Tesco managed to overstate its profit estimate for the six months to 23 August by £250m.

A reminder of the state of play.

Rather than working on a repositioning, the CEO currently has another (major) fire to put out.

Tesco chairman says finance director McIlwee hasn't been in the office because he hasn't been "directly involved in recent days or weeks".

Tesco CEO Lewis says problem came to light from "internal alarm bell". Report was given to Tesco general counsel who alerted Lewis on Friday

Tescos crisis is also bad news for billionaire investor Warren Buffet.

Buffetts Berkshire Hathaway is the third largest shareholder, with a 3.96% stake, so Tescos share price tumble (down 8.5%) has wiped around £57m off that holding, by my maths.

Some investors might have bought the shares having a perception of quality based on Warren Buffets ownership, but in this case the free cash flows and business stability are not there,

OK, weve now got hold of HSBCs research note into Tesco, and its a corker.

David McCarthy, HSBCs head of European Consumer Retail Research, warned that investing in Tesco is investing in the unknown and is a high risk activity at present.

The market is unsure what Tescos true level of profitability is, to what extent the new CEO may choose to rebase profits, and what todays news will do to morale and the management team (4 senior executives have been suspended while the matter is investigated by external lawyers and accountants).

In short, confidence in Tesco has been undermined again, downwards momentum is accelerating, and it is unclear whether the real underlying level of profits has yet been found and to what extent the new CEO may choose to rebase profits.

In short, we believe that Tescos gross margin has been falling rapidly and that this has been artificially hidden.

Many issues remain unanswered and the possibility of a rescue rights issue should not be ignored.

HSBC: "investing in Tesco is investing in the unknown and is high risk" #EveryLidlHelps

HSBC has just cut its target price on Tescos shares from 195p to 175p (compared to 211p today), Reuters reports.

The FTs Lex team have also been kicking the tires of the Tesco warning today.

They give this example of how supermarkets work today:

Lets say the supplier is, say, Lexs Liverworst (LL).

1) LL ships Tesco some liverwurst at an agreed cost of £100m (Tesco takes delivery, does not pay).

Lex is doing a live note (like @ftalpha's Markets Live... but Lexy) on the Tesco accounting failure. Do tune in http://t.co/MbiFxYYkXR

Were collecting expert reaction to Tescos profit forecast overstatement here:

"Full & frank inquiry" promised by chief executive after #Tesco's £250m miscalculation http://t.co/jQJR7B0QRR pic.twitter.com/ilDz5BmDZg

Observer food writer Jay Rayner has suggested that Tesco will respond to this crisis by tightening the screw on its supply chain:

1/2 Any pleasure taken in probs @tesco this morning should be tempered by fact they sell 25% of all food in GB. Terrible news for farmers.

2/2 When @tesco finds itself in a corner they do what they always do: cut prices and it's the producers who are forced to feel pain. Tragic.

Those Espírito Santo analysts also fear that Tesco could be an even trickier turnaround job than Frances Carrefour, which went through a tough restructuring a few years ago.

They say:

We think both companies are drastically different. In our view, Carrefour benefited from good prices but poor price clarity as well as a local food supply, limited transport costs and the benefit of franchisees. Tesco has higher transport costs and limited domestic food supply as well as no franchising model, alongside poor value for money and produce quality scores based on our proprietary surveys.

We think a turnaround at Tesco could take another 3-5 years.

Analysts at Portuguese bank Espírito Santo have a dire warning for Tesco - they reckon its UK arm could eventually stop being profitable at all.

They cut their price target on Tesco to 165p from 190p (compared to 211p now), and predicted that profits this year will almost halve:

We believe most of the accounting issues will centre on UK profitability. As a result, we expect UK profits to be down 48% in 2014/15 implying a UK margin of 2.7%.

With some prices 38% more expensive (ESIB estimate) than Aldi, questionable pricing architecture and higher levels of salt and sugar in some fresh products alongside an ailing non-food business, we believe that Tesco could eventually generate zero profits in the UK the extent of the risks to us remain large and uncertain.

The cost of insuring Tescos bonds against default has risen, according to data firm Markit which tracks credit default swaps:

Tesco CDS 19bps wider at 107bps after profit overstatement. A volatile credit in a traditionally stable sector

How bad could this get for Tesco?

Crawford Spence, a professor of accounting at Warwick Business School, reckons the company will face a fine, but probably avoid ending up in court.

Given it this has been flagged up and dealt with internally it is unlikely any court proceedings will occur. Tesco could be fined by the authorities, but they will most likely wait to hear what the auditors, Deloitte, uncover first.

Firms quite legitimately play around with their revenue and expenses all the time. However, when they do so aggressively, as Tesco appear to have done, this is usually because the firm is under pressure elsewhere.

In Tescos case, it has been losing market share to its competitors steadily in recent years and losing value quite dramatically in its share price in recent months. Rather than fix the underlying problems, they have been playing around with their numbers to try to make things look better.

Tesco CEO Dave Lewis has admitted that the £250m profit overstatement is only an estimate at this stage; it could be more.

Speaking to the BBC, Lewis also faced more tough questions over whether Tescos finance office is running properly, as we dont even know when outgoing CFO Lawrie McIlwee was last at his desk (see 9.17am)

Just interviewed Dave lewis CEO of tesco. He says 250m is an estimate could be more and discrepancies could date back further than H1 2014

"Do you have a financial officer at the moment?" BBC News wallah asks Tesco's Dave Lewis. Ouch.

Retail analyst Steve Dresser, who has good connections in the supermarket sector, is tweeting some interesting info from Tesco insiders:

One source tells me that Tesco may have banked a full year's money into the half year, or assumed....

that rebates would be paid and booked, however suppliers can withhold if they have compliance concerns - hence 'delayed accrual of costs'

One positive? As a source indicates - Dave Lewis could essentially do a full kitchen sink job now.

Another source reports that all WL3 (senior category heads) are to hand in company laptops and phones today as part of the investigation.

We have now confirmed the identities of the four senior executives who have been put on leave at Tesco.

They are:

Other Tesco execs put on leave I understand are John Scouler Commercial Director (buying) and Matt Simister Group Sourcing Director.

The FTs Alphaville team (always invaluable) are examining the situation at Tesco in their Markets Live webchat.

Heres a flavour, quoting analyst Terry Smith:

This quote from the Tesco chairman is causing a stir:

The wisdom of Tesco chairman Sir Richard Broadbent - "Things are always unnoticed until they're noticed."

Its not been a great morning for shares in the City.

Tescos sliding share price has helped to send the FTSE 100 index of blue-chip companies down 56 points, or 0.8%.

Meanwhile Tescos woes seem to have hit the rest of the sector, with J Sainsbury down 9.1p at 275.2p and Morrisons 4.5p lower at 177.5p

Tescos auditors, PwC, are certain to face tough questions over their performance.

They were aware that payments from suppliers needed to be handled responsibly. The proof lies in Tescos annual report (pdf), where they state that the recognition of commercial income was a top priority for them.

We focused on this area because of the judgement required in accounting for the commercial income deals and the risk of manipulation of these balances.

If everyone has been looking so hard at commercial income, how has the company still managed to make a mess of it?

Chris Choi adds that a can of (finest?) worms has now been opened.....

Tesco: there have been high profile complaints by suppliers about Tesco's treatment now customers will want to know what's really going on

Chris Choi, ITVs Newss consumer editor, is alarmed that Tesco was even in a position to book revenue from its suppliers for promotional activity.

Tesco Fiasco shows supermarket power over producers. it centres on money paid by suppliers Shouldnt payments be going the other way!!

Reuters Breakingviews also reckon Richard Broadbents days as Tesco chairman may be numbered:

#Tesco warns guidance was overstated by £250m. With a lack of retail experience, is Chairman Richard Broadbent approaching his sell-by date?

Tescos shares had been pretty stable this month, as City investors watched to see how Dave Lewis performed.

But todays 8% tumble has wiped around £1.5bn off its market value, from £18.8bn to around £17.3bn right now.

Since Dave Lewis became @tesco CEO on September 1st, the company's market cap has fallen £1.5 billion pic.twitter.com/a1KIuYr6Dn

Heres a summary of the latest crisis to engulf Tesco, after three and a half dramatic hours.

1) Tesco has suspended four senior executives after discovering that it had overstated its profit forecast for the first half of this financial year by £250m.

Wonder how much bonuses/excess pressure to get the numbers up were behind alleged Tesco behaviour?

Tesco chairman says finance director McIlwee hasn't been in the office because he hasn't been "directly involved in recent days or weeks".

Tesco chairman says companys finance functions "working well". Errr....

Tesco Chairman: Shareholders Will Decide If I'm Part of Solution or Problem >> stock's down 8.5%, JFYI

This development may raise, indeed must raise, much more fundamental questions over the Chairmans position and the nature, composition and extent of the Board

FT: "Tesco reveals it overstated first-half results by £250m". It's it an understatement to call in 'overstated', when we talk about £250m.

Dave Lewis concludes the media conference call by insisting that Tescos turnaround wont be deflected by this inquiry.

He tells reporters that he has tried to give as much information as he can today on the accounting problems, and promises to pursue that investigation to its ultimate conclusion.

#Tescos chairman says cant be sure £250mln figure is the limit to the overstatement

How long will the inquiry take?

Lewis wont say, but promises to share what we know at Tescos interim results in October.

Shouldnt your auditors have picked up this unusual accounting practices?

Dave Lewis declines to reach any conclusions until the investigation is complete.

Tesco's Dave Lewis says he has never seen anything like this in all his years as a supplier.

When was Laurie McIlwee, Tescos outgoing finance director, last in the office?

Broadbent doesnt have that information to hand.

Why is Tesco receiving income from its suppliers at all? Shouldnt it simply be paying them for their goods?

Once again, Lewis declined to give details, but he cited issues such as promotional support

Has Dave Lewis seen this kind of misreporting before?

He has not.

Is this a one-off issue, or deeper?

Lewis wont say at this stage

Can Tesco confirm that Robin Terrell has taken over as UK managing director?

Robin will be running and leading the UK leadership team, Lewis replies.

Dave Lewis declines to comment on Cantor Fitzgeralds claim that Tesco has been overstating its gross profits by £200m per year (see 9.02am post for details)

Was Tescos board operating properly, given ex-CEO Phil Clarke had been effectively sacked and the companys finance director had resigned?

Chairman Broadbent insists that Phil Clarke was fully engaged.

So what exactly went wrong in Tescos profit forecasts?

Tesco CEO Dave Lewis explains that the problem centres on the way Tesco reports the income it receives, versus when the activity took place.

Shareholders are voting with their feet this morning, so shouldnt chairman Richard Broadbent resign?

Broadbent replies that I always listen to shareholders

What time period will the investigation cover?

It will cover the commercial income for Tesco.

Tesco chairman broadbent asked about clawing back exec bonuses. Says will "take all necessary actions and won't hesitate to do so".

Who is the Tesco finance director, and why isnt Lawrie McIlwee, the outgoing FD, on the call?

(McIlwees replacement, Alan Stewart, is still serving his gardening leave from M&S).

Dave Lewis wont confirm that Chris Bush, UK managing director, has been suspended. Not prepared to discuss individuals today.

Does Dave Lewis feel he was misled?

No, not at all. What has happened is totally out of the ordinary.

Next question is for chairman Richard Broadbent - will you resign, or is your position under threat?

Broadbent will not be resigning.

Q: Is Phil Clarke (former CEO) still on the payroll, and could bonuses be clawed back?

Yes, Clarke is still being paid.

Tesco is now fielding questions from the media - Im dialled in.

First question - how did this profit overstating come to light?

Update - #Tesco suspends four senior executives including UK managing director Chris Bush while investigation takes place

Just joining us? Get up to speed with our news story on the unfolding crisis at Tesco.

Tesco calls in investigators after overstating profit forecast by £250m http://t.co/Qye1JHvLL4 via @guardian

More speculation about the Tesco chairmans future (as flagged up earlier)

Crikey. It's properly falling apart at Tesco. Amazed if chairman will survive this. Robin Terrell as interim UK MD a good move. Talented man

City firm Cantor Fitzgerald reckon that Tescos CEO Dave Lewis may have had suspicions about accounting practices even before he joined the company last month.

Lewis was lured from Unilever; one of Tescos major suppliers.

We suspect Dave Lewis was aware of Tescos actions while at Unilever and from comments across the UK/Global supplier base so we expect he already had several questions for Tescos commercial team when he joined.

Robin Terrell, the head of Tescos online operations, is taking over Chris Bushs role as UK managing director on a temporary basis, we believe.

Terrell joined Tesco from House of Fraser last year, and also used to run John Lewiss online arm.

Tesco insiders have confirmed to us that Chris Bush, the managing director of the companys UK stores, is one of the senior executives suspended while the inquiry takes place.

Tesco suspends its UK managing director Chris Bush

Richard Hunter, Head of Equities at Hargreaves Lansdown Stockbrokers, says that Dave Lewiss baptism of fire continues.

Whilst this does not come close to jeopardising overall profitability, it follows last months announcement when the market had assumed that, at least, the bad news was out in the open and being dealt with.

Prior to todays precipitous drop, the shares had fallen 39% over the last year, and 21% in the last three months alone.

After that initial slump, Tescos shares have recovered slightly but are still down over 8% this morning.

And thats the end of the Tesco analyst call. But Dave Lewis and chairman Richard Broadbent cant relax -- theres a media call in 25 minutes.

An internal alarm bell went off at Tesco last week, Dave Lewis reveals, triggering this mornings admission that profit forecasts had been overstated by £250m.

Tesco CEO Lewis says problem came to light from "internal alarm bell". Report was given to Tesco general counsel who alerted Lewis on Friday

CEO Dave Lewis has promised that the investigation will uncover whether staff have broken any rules.

1) Tesco CEO Lewis says that on "question about the breaking of rules, we are clear there is an issue here."

2) Tesco CEO Lewis says: "We will let the investigation determine whether any rules were broken and what I need to do to address that."

Tesco CEO Lewis: "This is not in the ordinary course of events. This has been audited by a big reputable firm."

Tescos usual auditors are PricewaterhouseCoopers.

Tesco CEO Dave Lewis confirms that the problem was discovered on Friday.

Tesco is now feeling the wrath of analysts, on a conference call.

CEO Dave Lewis has revealed that a number of people have been suspended from duty while the investigation is underway. That includes four senior executives.

Tesco CEO Lewis says has asked "a number of people to step aside from their role so we can facilitate a full and frank investigation".

Tesco CEO Lewis says four senior people asked to step aside "across commercial and business operations".

Tesco chairman Richard Broadbent getting a hard time from analysts. Says some may argue is governance failure. He says board working well.

Tescos share price over the last couple of years is not a pretty sight:

Tesco share price has hit a low of 202.5p, which I reckon is the lowest level since May 2003.

Tesco shares now down more than 40% in last 12 months.

Shares in Tesco have fallen by 11%, as traders punish the company for its admission that it has overstated its profit forecasts by £250m.

Tesco! Oh my giddy aunt. Never thought it would come to this http://t.co/bTZVKai4tx

Skys Newss Mark Kleinman reports that an unnamed Tesco director flagged up concerns about the companys profit forecasts on Friday, triggering this mornings shock admission.

An unnamed Tesco director raised concern about profit overstatement with company general counsel on Friday, who alerted the CEO, I'm told.

This is simply not how well operated FTSE 100 companies operate, says Clive Black, Shore Capital Stockbrokers.

Black has laid into Tesco, and pinned the blame firmly on the chairman, Sir Richard Broadbent. His position is now at risk, he suggests.

Clearly there can be no suggestion of impropriety on behalf of the new CEO to our minds, who has been in the job less than a month.

However, this development may raise, indeed must raise, much more fundamental questions over the Chairmans position and the nature, composition and extent of the Board, which to our minds has been lop-sided between executives and NEDs [non-executive directors] for far too long; such matters, of course, are for shareholders to decide.

We are flabbergasted by this development and have no choice but to put our HOLD stance, which we only went up to through Mr. Lewis appointment, UNDER REVIEW.

We expect the market to respond in a penal manner on the Tescos shares upon opening, well monitor with interest how the dust settles.

Traders are predicting that Tescos shares will take a fearsome hammering when the London stock market opens....

Tesco called to open lower around 12% according to some brokers....!!

Nick Bubb, retail analyst, says Tescos announcement will go down like a lead-balloon in the City.

One remarkable aspect of this story is that Tesco has overstated its profit forecasts by £250m in a profit warning.

That August 29 statement (online here) was pretty brief, so its not immediately clear exactly how Tesco managed to overstate its income and underplay its cost forecasts so badly.

Leisure analyst Mark Brumby is also alarmed:

Tesco: Group uncovers profit overstatement, has been recognising income too fast. Profits will be £250m lower. That doesnt sound good.

City analysts are amazed, and shaking their heads in disbelief at the news that Tesco has overstated its profit forecast by a quarter of a billion pounds.

Heres some instant reaction:

Just gets worse and worse for #Tesco

Tesco. Mess co.

It never rains but it pours dear old Tesco. It appears profits have been over-stated by £250 mn - shares could be down 5% at the opening

@tesco postpones interim 1H results to 23 Oct, meant to be 1st Oct...as Deloitte investigate overstated profit estimate to tune of ~£250m

Tescos new CEO, Dave Lewis, isnt pulling any punches in todays shock statement, saying:

We have uncovered a serious issue and have responded accordingly. The Chairman and I have acted quickly to establish a comprehensive independent investigation.

The Board, my colleagues, our customers and I expect Tesco to operate with integrity and transparency and we will take decisive action as the results of the investigation become clear.

Good morning, and welcome to our rolling coverage of the financial markets, the world economy, business and finance.

Some breaking news is shaking the City this morning. Tesco has just announced that it has overstated its profit forecasts for the first half of this year, by a jaw-dropping £250m. Continue reading...

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77. Source: Network Front | The Guardian
Item: Scottish referendum vote-rigging claims spark calls for recount
Date: 22 September 2014, 12:15 pm
Tens of thousands sign petitions wanting recount or fresh vote based on videos that purport to show evidence of electoral fraud

By mid-afternoon on Monday the number of names on change.org had topped 87,000. We the undersigned demand a re-vote of the Scottish referendum, counted by impartial international parties, reads the petition, which goes on to cite countless evidences of fraud documented during Thursdays poll on independence.

At 38degrees.org.uk, a second petition had more than 62,000 signatories. Investigate the vote counting procedures, it demands. Allow an independent re-count of all votes.

A yes ballot paper in the No section.... pic.twitter.com/T7Hfg7dBPI

This vote rigging video is disturbing, enquiry required https://t.co/SpM6Qm9i7o #the45 #indyref

To clarify, ballot papers have not yet been sorted into Yes/No and are just resting on table where No will go once sorted. No need to worry. Continue reading...

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78. Source: Network Front | The Guardian
Item: Former New York mayor to defend Call of Duty maker from Noriega lawsuit
Date: 22 September 2014, 12:13 pm

Panamian ex-dictator files suit, against Activision Blizzard over his depiction in video game, is called absurd by Rudy Giuliani

Former New York City mayor Rudy Giuliani said on Monday he would defend Activision Blizzard Inc in a lawsuit filed by former Panamanian dictator Manuel Noriega over his depiction in the companys popular Call of Duty: Black Ops II video game.

As co-counsel, Giuliani will defend Activision on the grounds that Noriegas depiction in the game is protected under the right to free speech. Continue reading...

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79. Source: Network Front | The Guardian
Item: Polly Bergen obituary
Date: 22 September 2014, 12:12 pm
Award-winning actor who starred in Cape Fear, she was also a dynamic entrepreneur

Versatility can be a curse, but in the case of Polly Bergen, who has died aged 84, it was a blessing. She was never out of work in films or on stage or television, in drama, comedy, musicals and game shows. By the mid-1960s, her elegance and beauty was so renowned that she marketed Polly Bergen Cosmetics, which she eventually sold to Fabergé, and then established Polly Bergen Jewellery and Polly Bergen Shoes. She was also the author of three fashion and beauty advice books.

As if to prove that being fashion-conscious was not incompatible with feminism, Bergen lobbied ardently for the Equal Rights amendment and for women's right to choose. She was open about having had an illegal abortion when she was a 17-year-old singer; it left her unable to have children. In 2008, Bergen campaigned for Hillary Clinton to become president. Back in 1964, in Kisses for My President, a rather lumbering sexist comedy, Bergen had been vibrant as the first female US president, though the movie mainly concerned the problems of Fred MacMurray trying to adapt to being First Husband. Continue reading...

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80. Source: Network Front | The Guardian
Item: New murder trial begins for Florida man who shot dead black teenager
Date: 22 September 2014, 10:48 am

Michael Dunn, who killed Jordan Davis in argument over loud rap-crap music, to be retried after first jury failed to reach verdict

A Florida man who shot dead a black teenager in an argument over loud rap music blaring from a car returned to court on Monday for a new trial, seven months after a jury failed to reach a verdict on a charge of first-degree murder.

Michael Dunn, 47, claimed he was acting in self-defence when he fired 10 shots at an SUV containing Jordan Davis, 17, and three of his friends at a Jacksonville petrol station in November 2012. Continue reading...

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81. Source: Network Front | The Guardian
Item: Woman tried to poison mother in plot inspired by Breaking Bad, court told
Date: 22 September 2014, 10:46 am
Kuntal Patel denies trying to murder her controlling mother using poison abrin that she bought online with bitcoin

A woman tried to kill her mother by lacing her Diet Coke with poison in a murder plot inspired partly by Breaking Bad, a court has heard.

Kuntal Patel, 37, allegedly slipped abrin to her controlling and selfish mother, Meena, 60, after she forbade her from marrying her boyfriend. Patel bought the deadly poison from a site based in the US using the virtual currency bitcoin. Continue reading...

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82. Source: Network Front | The Guardian
Item: Referee apologises for awarding goal while opponents were celebrating
Date: 22 September 2014, 10:24 am
Fara Williams scored as Birmingham celebrated in WSL
2-1 victory lifted Liverpool to second place in table

The referee of a womens Super League match, Stuart Richardson, has apologised after he awarded Liverpool an extraordinary opportunistic long-range goal, from a re-start kick-off, as opponents Birmingham were still celebrating a goal of their own.

The goal stood in a 2-1 win for Liverpool that lifted them to second, within a point of leaders Chelsea, in the English Football Association Womens Super League. Losers Birmingham are a further point adrift in third and Richardson has apologised to their management after the goal. Continue reading...

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83. Source: Network Front | The Guardian
Item: Can you read a novel in three hours?
Date: 22 September 2014, 10:06 am

Speed-reading a Man-Booker-shortlisted novel with help from an app called Spritz was a thrilling ride that left me in agony

Last week, I decided to perform an experiment. At midday precisely, I sat on my couch to see if I could knock off a Man-Booker-shortlisted novel by teatime.

Thats not as easy as it sounds. The book I picked was To Rise Again at a Decent Hour by Joshua Ferris at 110,000 words or so, its not particularly lengthy, but given that the average adult reader clocks in at between 250 and 300 words per minute (according to a 2012 study), it would still take around six hours to finish. And thats without considering the weighty subject matter: a Manhattan dentist dealing with a crisis of faith after a religious group steals his identity. Clearly, demolishing it by three or four oclock was somewhat ambitious. Continue reading...

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84. Source: Network Front | The Guardian
Item: Tyson Fury tapes mouth in protest against fine for misconduct charge
Date: 22 September 2014, 9:58 am
Fury refused to speak after BBB of C fined him £15,000
Unbeaten fighter to face Dereck Chisora on 29 November
jury-still-being-out-on-george-groves" title="">Kevin Mitchell: jury still out on Groves

Tyson Fury wore tape over his mouth and refused to utter a single word on Monday in protest against his fine from the British Boxing Board of Control.

Fury was handed a misconduct charge and fined £15,000 for his behaviour at a press conference in June, when the 26-year-old launched into a number of expletive-ridden rants at Dereck Chisora and journalists. Continue reading...

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85. Source: Network Front | The Guardian
Item: TV reporter uses F-word as she quits to fight for marijuana legalisation
Date: 22 September 2014, 8:56 am

Alaskan station apologises after reporter says fuck it, resigns on air and reveals herself as owner of medical marijuana club

There are many memorable ways to quit your job just think of Marina Shifrin, who left Taiwanese animator Next Media Animation with an interpretive dance set to Kanye Wests Gone. But the award for bluntness must go to Charlo Greene, a reporter for Alaskas KTVA, who resigned live on air on Sunday to fight for marijuana legalisation. After fronting a piece on a medical marijuana club, she told viewers: I the actual owner of the Alaska Cannabis Club will be dedicating all of my energy for fighting for freedom and fairness, which begins with legalising marijuana here in Alaska. And as for this job, well, not that I have a choice but fuck it, I quit. A stunned colleague then told viewers: All right we apologise for that well, well be right back. The station later apologised to viewers on Twitter:

Viewers, we sincerely apologize for the inappropriate language used by a KTVA reporter on the air tonight. The employee has been terminated. Continue reading...

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86. Source: Network Front | The Guardian
Item: Hilary Mantels Thatcher assassination story: is thought a crime in the UK now?
Date: 22 September 2014, 8:26 am

Lord Bell has condemned Mantels The Assassination of Margaret Thatcher and called for the police to investigate. But exactly what crime has been committed here?
Read The Assassination of Margaret Thatcher August 6th 1983
An extract from the acclaimed memoir Maggie & Me by Damian Barr

Hilary Mantel is waiting for the soft-knock of Scotland Yard. Where her watch ticks steadily her wrist itches in anticipation of handcuffs. She is perhaps enjoying a final cup of tea before being taken into custody. Why? Because she made something up she wrote a story and it upset some very important people.

The Assassination of Margaret Thatcher took Mantel 30 years to write and was inspired by a real event she spotted an unguarded Thatcher from her bedroom window in Windsor and, passingly, thought: If I wasnt me, if I was someone else, shed be dead. In her story she imagines she is two someone elses an IRA hit man and a seemingly ordinary woman with a fatally good view. These unlikely allies conspire to kill the prime minister. The writer succeeds where terrorists failed. Continue reading...

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87. Source: Network Front | The Guardian
Item: Fiddler on the Roof at 50 mazel tov!
Date: 22 September 2014, 8:22 am

This classic musical is schmaltzy and shadowy and the role of Tevye the milkman continues to reward a star turn

The appeal of Fiddler on the Roof is paradoxical its a celebratory musical about loss. The show opened on Broadway on 22 September 1964, and is still revived 50 years on. Why did it succeed then, and why does it still hold audiences?

Fiddler is a history musical, set in 1905 in a tiny Russian village called Anatevka (underfed, overworked Anatevka). Tevye the milkman and his wife Golde are scraping a living and raising a family in a state where indifference turns to hostility. His story is told in book, music and lyrics by, respectively, Joseph Stein, Jerry Bock and Sheldon Harnick. They were badgered by Jerome Robbins, the shows director, to define its emotional core, eventually replying its about the dissolution of a way of life. On a domestic level, Tevyes daughters sidestep tradition, choosing husbands despite barriers of income, politics and religion. The entire Jewish community moves on in the wake of tsarist persecution Anatevkas fate figuring the upheavals across eastern Europe and the devastation of the shoah. Continue reading...

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88. Source: Network Front | The Guardian
Item: Django Unchained actor asked to apologise over LAPD racism claims
Date: 22 September 2014, 7:29 am

Danièle Watts now asked by civil rights official, who had originally supported her, to retract accusations

Civil rights advocates have called on Django Unchained actor Danièle Watts to apologise for accusing an LAPD sergeant of racial bias, after she was arrested for a public display of affection with her white boyfriend.

The activists, who initially supported Watts, told reporters they were now uncertain whether she had been telling the full truth about the highly publicised incident in the Studio City neighbourhood on 11 September, according to NBC News. Continue reading...

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89. Source: Network Front | The Guardian
Item: Family of veteran arrested at White House: 'This was a cry for help'
Date: 22 September 2014, 7:05 am

Iraq war veteran Omar Gonzalez, accused of scaling a fence and making it to the White House, needs counseling, family says

An Iraq war veteran accused of scaling a fence and making it into the White House before the secret service stopped him posed no threat to anyone and needs counseling instead of prosecution, members of his family said on Sunday.

Omar Gonzalez, 42, was arrested Friday and is expected in federal court Monday to face charges of unlawfully entering a restricted building or grounds while carrying a deadly or dangerous weapon a small folding knife in this case. Continue reading...

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90. Source: Network Front | The Guardian
Item: Israeli gay party promoter criticised for Isis parody
Date: 22 September 2014, 6:52 am
Promotional images for club night in Tel Aviv show orange-clad man kneeling in desert, and man in trunks holding black flag

If youre already a flamboyantly gay, party-going Israeli man, theres an argument that youve got little to lose when it comes to annoying Islamic State (Isis). Even so, promoting nightclub events with homoerotic reinterpretations of the fanatical Islamist groups videos was probably not a very good idea not least for the offence caused to relatives of the journalists who have been Isiss victims.

Drek, a company that organises some of Tel Avivs more popular gay party events, is in hot water after putting together promotional images of extremely questionable taste for a club night last Friday called Drekistan at the Haoman. Continue reading...

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91. Source: Network Front | The Guardian
Item: Memo to Miliband: Britains social order is bankrupt
Date: 21 September 2014, 2:25 pm
If Scotlands near-flight from the union does not provoke a radical reaction from Labour, what will?

A slogan should gnaw at the conscience of every delegate of the peoples party as they throng to Manchester this week: Vote no, its not worth the risk. Here was one of the Labour partys final offerings to the people of Scotland in the climax of the independence referendum. No call for the resurrection of the proud, shared traditions of Scots, Welsh and English people as they defied the powerful to build a better society; no convincing pledge that a new Britain would be forged, just and equal and fair unlike what New Labour failed to deliver. Instead, the hollowed-out husk that is Scottish Labour linked arms with a Tory party consigned by Scots to fringe status, and cheered on corporate titans as they threatened to hit livelihoods or pull the plug on the economy.

Not worth the risk. It is a familiar sentiment, traditionally expressed by elites who oppose any attempt at the most modest of social reforms. Please dont hit our booming bank accounts is not a convincing pitch in a democracy, after all, so a concern for the wellbeing of the population is contrived instead. In the past, Labour defied such disingenuous scaremongering and took risks: building a National Health Service, a welfare state, and granting working people rights and dignity. Each time, the well-heeled squealed that the walls would cave in, but the house remained intact. Continue reading...

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92. Source: Network Front | The Guardian
Item: Jack Thorne: the hardest-working writer in Britain?
Date: 21 September 2014, 10:24 am
After his success with E4's Glue, Thorne is returning to the theatre with Hope, a drama at the Royal Court about local government budget cuts

Despite having been up late last Monday night at a party marking the transmission of his latest TV drama, Jack Thorne was back next morning at the north London library where he writes seven days a week. He aims to work from 10am to 8pm, shifting to a coffee bar when the library closes early.

Thorne, 35, needs to put in those shifts because his scripts are in such demand, having achieved the rare double of winning two Bafta awards at the same ceremony (in 2012): best mini-series for Channel 4's This is England '88 (part of a longrunning recent-historical project with director Shane Meadows) and best drama series for BBC3's supernatural show The Fades. Continue reading...

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93. Source: Network Front | The Guardian
Item: Maggie Aderin-Pocock: how a space-obsessed schoolgirl battled the odds to become a top scientist
Date: 21 September 2014, 3:00 am

Her childhood was divided between 13 schools, and she has dyslexia. But Maggie Aderin-Pocock has since designed a host of space instruments, and now presents the Sky at Night

Standing on a large tripod and lurking conspicuously in the window of Dr Maggie Aderin-Pococks dining room is an enormous telescope. At face value, it is hardly surprising. As a leading space scientist and Sky at Night presenter, it would have seemed curious if she didnt own such a socking great instrument. But as we talk in advance of her gig at the Observer Ideas Festival, I realise this telescope is no passing nod to a day job. Aderin-Pocock grew up with telescopes, and the telescopes have grown up with her.

When I was young we were living in a council flat. We didnt have much money [so] I saved up some money and I got a telescope, she says as I glance enviously at the tripod. But it was really not very good. It suffered from something called chromatic aberration which means that as you look through it, the light coming through gets split up into different colours. It was a disappointment to a youngster desperate to look beyond the glare of the capital and gaze into the depths of the night sky. But then she spotted an advert for telescope-making classes in Camden, north London. Turning up to investigate, she encountered a curious scene. There were lots of middle-aged blokes they had large slabs of glass and they were just grinding away, she laughs. Bizarre or not, the following week she joined their ranks. Continue reading...

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94. Source: Network Front | The Guardian
Item: Does sharing photos of your children on Facebook put them at risk?
Date: 21 September 2014, 1:30 am

Every time you post about your child on social media you are helping to create for them a data-rich, enduring and potentially problematic online profile. Some experts suggest we should exercise more caution

How to share family photos safely

There is an unwritten rule that one does not post photos of other peoples children on Facebook. I know this. And yet in October 2012, swept away with the excitement of the birth of my son (and probably a little sleep-deprived), I made a terrible mistake. My friend, lets call her Katy, invited me over to meet her own new arrival, a little boy exactly one month younger than my son, Max. I took a photo of the two of them lying side by side; one in a red Baby-gro, the other in white. Max was already a good two inches longer than the new baby, which I found startling as he was still so tiny, and he had already started to lose some of that crinkly new-baby look.

On my way home, I looked at the photo and felt a swell of pride. It seemed to say so much: here were two fresh baby boys who would likely grow up with a catalogue of shared childhood memories, their friendship predetermined by their parents relationship. Without really thinking, I opened the Facebook app on my phone and uploaded the photo, alongside a reference to my friend and the caption: what a difference a month makes. Continue reading...

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95. Source: Vispo.com Multimedia
Item: New Directions in Digital Poetry -- Chris Funkhouser
Date: 21 January 2012, 3:50 pm
Funhouser's new book discusses, among other works, my pieces named Arteroids, dbCinema, and the Stir Fry Texts. Chris is also the author of the first book-length study of the history of digital poetry (called Prehistoric Digital Poetry).
96. Source: Victoria & Albert Museum - Art, Design, Culture
Item: V&A CultureCast: July 2006 (enhanced with images)
Date: 10 July 2006, 4:00 am
The July 2006 edition of CultureCast features design historian David Crowley discussing the image of Che Guevara within the context of 1960s culture and politics. It also has an extract from a tapestry gallery talk given by Sue Lawty, V& A artist in residence and an article about the cast of the Portico de la Gloria in the Cast Courts.
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97. Source: Victoria & Albert Museum - Art, Design, Culture
Item: V&A CultureCast: July 2006 (no images)
Date: 10 July 2006, 4:00 am
The July 2006 edition of CultureCast features design historian David Crowley discussing the image of Che Guevara within the context of 1960s culture and politics. It also has an extract from a tapestry gallery talk given by Sue Lawty, V& A artist in residence and an article about the cast of the Portico de la Gloria in the Cast Courts.
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98. Source: The Leonard Lopate Show from WNYC
Item: Breakthroughs in Parkinson's Treatment and Breast Cancer Genes Win Lasker Awards
Date: 17 September 2014, 11:00 pm

The Lasker Awards are among the most respected science prizes in the world. Two of this year’s winners discuss their research and the impact their discoveries have on our lives. The Lasker-Koshland Award for Special Achievement in Medical Science was awarded to Mary-Claire King, of the University of Washington, discovered the BRCA1 gene locus that causes hereditary breast cancer. She also deployed DNA strategies that reunite missing persons with their families and identify remains. Dr. Alim Louis Benabid, of Joseph Fourier University, Grenoble, France, shares the 2014 Lasker-DeBakey Clinical Medical Award with Dr. Mahlon DeLong. He explains his pioneering discovery of the effects of Deep Brain Stimulation in human patients that have revolutionized the treatment of Parkinson’s and other disorders.

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99. Source: The Leonard Lopate Show from WNYC
Item: Major Players: Lasker Award Winners, a Master Art Forger, Race and Theater
Date: 17 September 2014, 11:00 pm

Two of this year’s Lasker Award winners, Mary-Claire King and Alim Louis Benabid, tell us about their research and medical discoveries. Kenneth Lonergan discusses his critically acclaimed play “This Is Our Youth,” along with Kieran Culkin, one of its stars. Jennifer Grausman and art forger Mark Landis talk about his skill at creating forged paintings. He’s the subject of the documentary called “Art and Craft.” Plus: NPR’s Michel Martin and playwrights Kristoffer Diaz and Ayad Akhtar look at the role of race in theater, and how race is explored onstage.

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100. Source: The Leonard Lopate Show from WNYC
Item: Can You Cure Cancer Without Killing It?
Date: 15 September 2014, 11:00 pm

New Yorker staff writer Jerome Groopman investigates a new breakthrough in the battle against cancer—a promising form of treatment restores cancer cells, rather than eradicating them. He discusses emerging research on acute myelogenous leukemia (A.M.L.)—an often deadly form of leukemia—that suggests that at least some cancer cells might be redeemable because they still carry their original programming and can be pressed back onto a pathway to health. An experimental new drug called AG-221, from the pharmaceutical company Agios, is showing promise in clinical trials. His article “The Transformation” appears in the September 15, 2014, issue of The New Yorker.

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101. Source: The Leonard Lopate Show from WNYC
Item: Ian McEwan on Religion, Law and His New Novel The Children Act
Date: 15 September 2014, 11:00 pm

Ian McEwan talks about his new novel The Children Act, about the role religion plays in the court system. Fiona Maye is a leading High Court judge who presides over cases in the family court who is called on to try an urgent case: Adam, a 17-year-old boy, is refusing for religious reasons the medical treatment that could save his life, and his devout parents echo his wishes. The story explores whether the secular court should overrule faith.

The Children Act by Ian McEwan
The Children Act by Ian McEwan

 

 

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102. Source: The Leonard Lopate Show from WNYC
Item: An Inside Account of 13 Hours in Benghazi
Date: 11 September 2014, 9:22 am

On September 11, 2012, terrorists attacked the US State Department Special Mission Compound and a nearby CIA station called the Annex in Benghazi, Libya. A team of six American security operators fought the attackers and to protect the Americans stationed there. Journalist Mitchell Zuckoff  and CIA contractor Mark “Oz” Geist, give an account of what happened during the 13 hours of that now-infamous attack. In the book 13 Hours in Benghazi, written by Zuckoff with the annex security team, he seeks to set the record straight on what happened during a night that has been shrouded in mystery and controversy.

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103. Source: The Leonard Lopate Show from WNYC
Item: An Uneasy New Life in Dubai in Joseph O'Neill's Novel The Dog
Date: 10 September 2014, 10:50 am

Joseph O’Neill, the author of the best-selling and award-winning Netherland, discusses his new novel, The Dog, a tale of alienation and heartbreak in Dubai. After breaking up with his long-term girlfriend, the unnamed protagonist leaves New York to take an unusual job as the “family officer” of a capricious and very rich family in a strange desert metropolis of Dubai.

The Dog by Joseph O'Neill
The Dog by Joseph O'Neill

 

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104. Source: The Leonard Lopate Show from WNYC
Item: How Our Brains Absorb Information - And How to Improve Learning
Date: 9 September 2014, 11:00 pm

Our brains absorb and retain information in surprising ways. Award-winning science reporter Benedict Carey sifts through decades of education research and landmark studies to uncover the truth about how we learn. He discovers that, from the moment we are born, we are all learning quickly, efficiently, and automatically. But in order to systematize the process we have ignored valuable  enjoyable ways of learning—like forgetting, sleeping, and daydreaming. In his book Is sitting at a desk in a quiet room really the best way to study? Can changing your routine improve your recall? Can distraction be a good thing? In How We Learn: The Surprising Truth About When, Where, and Why It Happens, Carey answers these questions and more and explains how to improve how we learn.

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105. Source: National Gallery of Art | Audio
Item: A Sense of Place-Winslow Homer and the Maine Coast
Date: 12 August 2014, 8:00 am
August 2014 - Franklin Kelly, senior curator of American and British paintings, National Gallery of Art. On view from July 3, 2005 through February 26, 2006, Winslow Homer in the National Gallery of Art presented a survey of 53 paintings, watercolors, drawings, etchings, and wood engravings by American artist Winslow Homer (1836-1910) in the Gallery's collection. The exhibition spanned Homer's entire career, from his early Civil War painting Home Sweet Home (c. 1863) to late watercolors of tropical landscapes and his hunting scene Right and Left (1909), completed less than 2 years before his death. In this lecture recorded on January 8, 2006, Franklin Kelly describes the importance of the Maine coast in Homer's life and art. Homer spent his last 27 years living and working in a small, rugged spot called Prouts Neck, located on the Atlantic coast in southern Maine. Through works featured in the exhibition and archival photographs, Kelly illustrates how the Maine coast was an inspiring source of material to Homer throughout his career.
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106. Source: National Gallery of Art | Audio
Item: The Sixty-Third A. W. Mellon Lectures in the Fine Arts: Past Belief: Visions of Early Christianity in Renaissance and Reformation Europe, Part 6: Constantine and Conversion: The Roles of the First Christian Emperor
Date: 13 May 2014, 8:00 am
May 2014 - Anthony Grafton, Princeton University. In this six-part lecture series entitled Past Belief: Visions of Early Christianity in Renaissance and Reformation Europe, Anthony Grafton focuses on the efforts of artists and scholars to recreate the early history of Christianity in a period of crisis in the church from the 15th to the 17th century. In this sixth lecture, entitled "Constantine and Conversion: The Roles of the First Christian Emperor," originally delivered at the National Gallery of Art on May 11, 2014, Professor Grafton argues that in their retelling of the dramatic and exemplary life of Constantine, scholars and artists forged new forensic, historical, and multidisciplinary approaches. They used philological and antiquarian evidence to unpack a layered and incoherent body of evidence that exposed the apocryphal legends of what has been called an "inherited conglomerate." Protestant and Catholic writers concurred in their assessment that Constantine's reign marked a radical transformation of art and religion and was thus a historical moment of great consequence—yet one or two began to see Constantine in less dramatic terms, as the human, political figure that he was. The erudition and imagination of these scholars and artists in the early modern period produced sophisticated and acute views of the early church, from which we can still profit today.
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107. Source: National Gallery of Art | Audio
Item: Image of the Black in Western Art, Part III
Date: 4 March 2014, 7:00 am
March 2014 - Panel discussion includes David Bindman, emeritus professor of the history of art, University College London; Ruth Fine, curator (1972–2012), National Gallery of Art; Henry Louis Gates Jr., Alphonse Fletcher University Professor and director of the W.E.B. Du Bois Institute for African and African American Research, Harvard University; Richard J. Powell, John Spencer Bassett Professor of Art and Art History, Duke University; and Sharmila Sen, executive editor-at-large, Harvard University Press. Moderated by Faya Causey, head of academic programs, National Gallery of Art. In the 1960s, art collector and philanthropist Dominique de Menil began a research project and photo archive called The Image of the Black in Western Art. Through the collaboration of Harvard University Press and the W.E.B. Du Bois Institute for African and African American Research, the project nears its completion. This panel discussion commemorates the publication of the penultimate volume of the series, The Image of the Black in Western Art: The Twentieth Century: The Impact of Africa (vol. 5, part 1). The last two volumes in the series mark the 20th-century transition from the depiction of people of African descent by others to their self-representation in the US and elsewhere. In this program recorded on February 23, 2014, at the National Gallery of Art, the panelists discuss the implications of this dramatic shift in the emphasis of the volumes.
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108. Source: National Gallery of Art | Audio
Item: Jeff Wall on His Work
Date: 3 September 2013, 8:00 am
September 2013 - Jeff Wall, artist. Canadian-born photographer Jeff Wall first became interested in photography in the mid-1960s. He was struck by the perfectionism that characterized the practice at that time—the idea that photographs should, and must, document the world as it is. Photography seemed to be strict reportage, instead of allowing for collaboration between the photographer and subject (as with cinematography). Films were composed of a series of still photographs, but the potential for collaboration within a single photograph had not yet been realized. In this lecture recorded at the National Gallery of Art on April 17, 1999, Wall discusses his work and his relation with what he calls cinematography. He works with performers and prepares the composition to create an image of something that he has actually seen. Through the large-scale photographs for which he is best known, Wall seeks to tell a fragment of a story and allow spectators to finish the story for themselves.
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109. Source: National Gallery of Art | Audio
Item: Bronislava Nijinska: A Choreographer's Journey
Date: 20 August 2013, 8:00 am
August 2013 - Lynn Garafola, professor of dance, Barnard College, Columbia University. Bronislava Nijinska, the sister of famed ballet dancer and choreographer Vaslav Nijinsky, was a pioneer of the modern tradition of ballet. In spring 2013, Lynn Garafola was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship to support her research on Nijinska. In this lecture recorded on July 7, 2013, at the National Gallery of Art, Garafola shares her latest research and thoughts about how Nijinska's life and work not only illuminated modern ballet history, but 20th century culture as a whole. In 1913 Nijinska was evicted from her brother's production The Rite of Spring for getting married, an act that he perceived as a betrayal. Afterward, although she was no longer dancing for her brother, Nijinska still played a crucial role in the dissemination of modernism. The longevity of her career eclipsed that of her brother's, and her work influenced numerous dancers and choreographers. Held in conjunction with the exhibition Diaghilev and the Ballets Russes, 1909–1929: When Art Danced with Music, on view at the Gallery from May 12 to October 6, 2013, this lecture was supported in loving memory of Shirley Casstevens.
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110. Source: National Gallery of Art | Audio
Item: Conversations with Collectors: Robert and Jane Meyerhoff
Date: 5 March 2013, 7:00 am
March 2013 - Robert and Jane Meyerhoff, collectors, in conversation with Irving Blum, collector and co-founder of the Ferus Gallery, Los Angeles. To celebrate the exhibition opening of The Robert and Jane Meyerhoff Collection: 1945-1995 at the National Gallery of Art on March 31, 1996, the Meyerhoffs joined Irving Blum to discuss the history and practice of their collecting. On view through July 21, 1996, the exhibition presented 194 works, almost their entire collection of post-World War II art. The Meyerhoffs' acquisitions have been based wholly on their belief in the quality of individual works and not on any preconceived theory or plan. If they were passionate about an artist, they collected his or her work in depth. Their private residence has a room dedicated to each of the following artists: Jasper Johns, Ellsworth Kelly, Roy Lichtenstein, Robert Rauschenberg, and Frank Stella. The collection is both a tribute to the extraordinarily high level of accomplishment by these artists and to the Meyerhoffs' intuition.
Enclosure (mp3)
111. Source: National Gallery of Art | Audio
Item: William H. Johnson
Date: 19 February 2013, 7:00 am
February 2013 - Gwendolyn H. Everett, assistant professor, department of art, Howard University Gwendolyn H. Everett, scholar and author of the award-winning children's book Li'L Sis and Uncle Willie: A Story Based on the Life and Paintings of William H. Johnson, provides an overview of William Henry Johnson's (1901-1970) career as part of the Five African American Artists lecture series recorded on August 3, 2003. Everett traces Johnson's determination to become an artist, despite a humble upbringing in South Carolina, to his years at a segregated elementary school where art was not part of the formal curriculum. In 1918, during the first Great Migration, Johnson moved to New York to pursue artistic training unavailable in the South. While living in Harlem and working several jobs to support himself, he was accepted into the prestigious National Academy of Design. Noted watercolorist Charles Webster Hawthorne provided critical mentorship at the academy, hired Johnson to work at the Cape Cod School of Art, and sponsored his further training in Europe. Johnson supplemented this sponsorship with prizes awarded by the academy and funds earned working for Ashcan School painter George Luks. In 1920s Paris, Johnson lived in the former studio of James McNeill Whistler and became acquainted with Henry O. Tanner, an African American expatriate artist who had achieved international acclaim and who would become a pivotal figure in Johnson's rise to prominence. Follow along as Everett illustrates Johnson's journey—marked by determination, strengthened by hard work, and bolstered by the support of influential artists—that led him to become one of the greatest American artists of the 20th century.
Enclosure (mp3)
112. Source: National Gallery of Art | Audio
Item: Artists in Residence: Henry O. Tanner in the Holy Land
Date: 12 February 2013, 7:00 am
February 2013 - Gwendolyn H. Everett, lecturer, National Gallery of Art. As part of the Artist in Residence lecture series, Gwendolyn H. Everett focused on Henry Ossawa Tanner's (1859-1937) visits to the Holy Land, and how this travel affected the later religious paintings for which he achieved international recognition. In this podcast recorded on August 9, 1987, Everett explains the formative influence of Tanner's upbringing in an educated, religious family in post-Civil War Philadelphia. Tanner's father was a minister and, later, a bishop in the African Methodist Episcopal Church, and his mother administered a Methodist school. Tanner enrolled in the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts as the only African American student in 1879, graduating in 1885. His professor, the artist Thomas Eakins, encouraged a progressive method of study from live models instead of plaster casts, which profoundly affected Tanner. after 1891 Tanner resided primarily in France; by 1895 his paintings were mostly of biblical themes, and in 1897 he made his first trip to the Holy Land, where his firsthand experience led to mastery of religious subject matter. He visited the region several times to explore mosques and biblical sites, and to complete character studies of the local population, as he had learned from Eakins. Tanner invigorated religious painting with modernism and with his deeply rooted faith, achieving renown in the international art world.
Enclosure (mp3)
113. Source: National Gallery of Art | Audio
Item: Roy Lichtenstein's Kyoto Prize Lecture of 1995
Date: 29 January 2013, 7:00 am
January 2013 - Harry Cooper, curator and head, department of modern art, National Gallery of Art, with original slides courtesy of the Roy Lichtenstein Foundation © Estate of Roy Lichtenstein. On November 11, 1995, Roy Lichtenstein was in Japan to receive the Kyoto Prize from the Inamori Foundation. In accepting the award, he delivered a lecture on the evolution of his work since his Pop breakthrough of 1961. Thanks to the generosity of the artist's estate and foundation, Harry Cooper, the National Gallery of Art's curator of modern art, presented this lecture at the Gallery, with the original slides, on January 9, 2013—in honor of Roy Lichtenstein: A Retrospective, the first major exhibition of the artist's work since his death in 1997. The exhibition was on view at the Gallery from October 14, 2012, to January 13, 2013.
Enclosure (mp3)
114. Source: National Gallery of Art | Audio
Item: Architecture and Art: Creating Community
Date: 12 June 2012, 8:00 am
June 2012 - David Adjaye, principal architect, Adjaye Associates; Elizabeth Diller, principal architect, Diller Scofidio + Renfro; Tom Finkelpearl, executive director, Queens Museum of Art; Sarah Lewis, art historian, author, and curator; and Robert Storr, chairman of FAPE's Professional Fine Arts Committee and dean of the Yale School of Art. In collaboration with the Foundation for Art and Preservation in Embassies (FAPE) and in the spirit of its Leonore and Walter Annenberg Award for Diplomacy through the Arts, the National Gallery of Art hosted this annual panel discussion on May 15, 2012. Featuring noted architects David Adjaye and Elizabeth Diller, and moderated by Robert Storr, the program focused on how architecture and art bring people together in public spaces. Adjaye currently serves as the lead designer for the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture, which is slated to open on the National Mall in 2015. Diller, along with Ricardo Scofidio and Charles Renfro, recently completed the Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts Redevelopment Project. Also participating were Tom Finkelpearl, executive director of the Queens Museum of Art, which broke ground last year on an expansion that will double its size; and Sarah Lewis, a PhD candidate at Yale University who is currently finishing RISE, a book that "explores the advantage of resilience and so-called failure in successful creative human endeavors."
Enclosure (mp3)
115. Source: National Gallery of Art | Audio
Item: Solving the East/West Conundrum in Modern Chinese Art
Date: 1 May 2012, 8:00 am
May 2012 - Martin J. Powers, Sally Michelson Davidson Professor of Chinese Arts and Cultures and former director, Center for Chinese Studies, University of Michigan. At the beginning of the 20th century, artists in China found themselves in a no-win situation: if they made use of Chinese brushwork, their art was considered "traditional," and if they adapted European or modernist methods, it was called "derivative." We may call this the East/West conundrum in modern Chinese art. Against the background of a long history of cultural competition in China, Martin J. Powers explores several ways in which Chinese artists managed to transcend the East/West conundrum in recent decades. Professor Powers delivered this lecture in both English and Mandarin on February 19, 2012, at the National Gallery of Art.
Enclosure (mp3)
116. Source: National Gallery of Art | Audio
Item: Conversations with Artists: Joel Shapiro, Thoughts on the Organization of Form in Modern Sculpture
Date: 13 March 2012, 8:00 am
March 2012 - Joel Shapiro, artist. Following the installation of Joel Shapiro's Untitled (1989) in the National Gallery of Art Sculpture Garden with other major post–World War II sculptures, the artist received an invitation to curate an exhibition of his work alongside the 19th-century sculpture of Jean-Baptiste Carpeaux. In this podcast recorded on March 9, 2003, Shapiro explains that the upcoming exhibition gave him on opportunity to focus on the continuity of thought in sculpture. Although certain ideas for form in sculpture seem radical and contemporary, their ideas have already been discovered and worked with in earlier times. Shapiro finds that the development of form seems to repeat itself, although it is ever-changing, more or less focused, and contextualized by the era in which it was created.
Enclosure (mp3)
117. Source: National Gallery of Art | Audio
Item: A Sense of Place—Norman Lewis in Harlem: "An Inquiry into the Laws of Nature"
Date: 28 February 2012, 7:00 am
February 2012 - Ruth Fine, curator of special projects in modern art, National Gallery of Art. In this podcast recorded on January 15, 2006, Ruth Fine discusses the Harlem-based life and career of Norman Lewis in honor of the Martin Luther King Jr. federal holiday weekend. Lewis was born in Harlem in 1909 and died in New York at the age of 70. Except for short periods spent elsewhere, New York and, in one way or another, the Harlem community remained Lewis' home base throughout his life. Harlem changed radically during the artist's lifetime, becoming the cultural center of black America. He is considered by many to be the first African American artist fully engaged by abstraction. Lewis' drawings, paintings, and prints date from the 1930s to 1970. Supporting himself as an elevator operator, house painter, short-order chef, merchant marine, tailor, and taxi driver, Lewis worked steadily at his art. "I have sustained myself in whatever the moment called for and done what has been necessary to just exist." Lewis' art and attitudes were highly influential on the next generation of African American artists, including Melvin Edwards, Sam Gilliam, and William T. Williams
Enclosure (mp3)
118. Source: National Gallery of Art | Audio
Item: Nazi Loot in American Collections
Date: 21 February 2012, 7:00 am
August 2012 - Nancy Yeide, head of the department of curatorial records and files, National Gallery of Art, and the Ailsa Mellon Bruce Curatorial Sabbatical Fellow, Center for Advanced Study in the Visual Arts, National Gallery of Art. The looting of cultural property by Nazi forces has been called the "Greatest Theft in History." In total, the Nazis looted more than 200,000 individual items, including paintings, sculptures, and tapestries, during World War II, primarily from Jewish owners in the occupied countries. In this lecture recorded on February 2, 2003, at the National Gallery of Art, Nancy Yeide provides the provenance of famous cases to explore how some looted art ended up in American collections and museums. Yeide also discusses how Hermann Göring, founder of the Gestapo and commander of the German Air Force, used his political and military power to amass the largest private art collection in Europe.
Enclosure (mp3)
119. Source: National Gallery of Art | Audio
Item: Conversations with Artists-Compositions and Collaborations: The Arts of Lou Stovall
Date: 21 February 2012, 7:00 am
February 2012 - Lou Stovall, artist, in conversation with Ruth Fine, curator of special projects in modern art, National Gallery of Art. As part of the National Gallery of Art summer lecture series Five African American Artists: Johnson-Tanner-Johnson-Stovall-Thomas, Lou Stovall participated in a Conversations with Artists program with Ruth Fine on August 3, 2003. "Compositions and Collaborations: The Arts of Lou Stovall" is a rare opportunity to hear Stovall discuss his own work and his collaborations with other artists, and to listen as he responds to questions from the audience. Stovall has been a major figure in the Washington, DC, arts community since the early 1960s, when he arrived at Howard University for his BFA program. In 1968 Stovall founded Workshop, Inc., a professional printmaking studio, where he has collaborated with more than 70 artists over the years. In addition to his own drawings and silkprints, and his collaborative printmaking projects, Stovall is a published essayist and poet.
Enclosure (mp3)
120. Source: National Gallery of Art | Audio
Item: Florence: Days of Destruction
Date: 13 December 2011, 7:00 am
December 2011 - Bryan Draper, Collections Conservator, University of Maryland Libraries; Norvell Jones, retired Chief of the Document Conservation Branch, National Archives; and Sheila Waters, calligrapher. Recalling the 45th anniversary of the catastrophic flood of Florence in 1966, the National Gallery of Art, in association with the University of Maryland Libraries presented a rare screening of Franco Zeffirelli's Florence: Days of Destruction (Per Firenze) on November 5, 2011. The famed Italian director's sole documentary is a heartfelt call to action containing the only known footage of the flood, accented by Richard Burton's voiceover commentary. The film is in the collection of the University of Maryland Libraries, College Park. Program speakers included Bryan Draper, Collections Conservator, University of Maryland Libraries; Norvell Jones, retired Chief of the Document Conservation Branch, National Archives; and Sheila Waters, calligrapher, who participated in the conservation efforts in post-flood Florence.
Enclosure (mp3)
121. Source: National Gallery of Art | Audio
Item: Morse at the Louvre
Date: 15 November 2011, 7:00 am
November 2011 - A two-time Pulitzer Prize winning author and recipient of the National Book Award, David McCullough discusses his new book, The Greater Journey: Americans in Paris. In this podcast recorded on September 26, 2011, at the National Gallery of Art, McCullough tells the story of America's longstanding love affair with Paris through vivid portraits of dozens of significant characters. Notably, artist Samuel F. B. Morse is depicted as he worked on his masterpiece The Gallery of the Louvre. McCullough spoke at the Gallery in honor of the exhibition A New Look: Samuel F. B. Morse's "Gallery of the Louvre," on view from June 25, 2011, to July 8, 2012. The exhibition and program were coordinated with and supported by the Terra Foundation for American Art.
Enclosure (mp3)
122. Source: National Gallery of Art | Audio
Item: The Moment of Caravaggio: Part 6: Painting and Violence
Date: 30 August 2011, 8:00 am
August 2011 - Michael Fried, J. R. Herbert Boone Professor and director of the Humanities Center, The Johns Hopkins University In a series of six lectures, Michael Fried offers a compelling account of what he calls "the internal structure of the pictorial act" in the revolutionary art of Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio. The accompanying publication, The Moment of Caravaggio, is available for purchase from the Gallery Shops. In this audio podcast of the sixth lecture, originally delivered at the National Gallery of Art on May 19, 2002, Professor Michael Fried argues that Caravaggio's art should be understood not simply as a monument to a revolutionary style of pictorial realism, but also as an investigation into the psychic and physical dynamic that went into its making. Fried evokes this dynamic with concepts introduced in earlier lectures, including immersion and specularity, absorption and address, painting and mirroring, and optical and bodily modes of realism�what he calls "the internal structure of the pictorial act."
Enclosure (mp3)
123. Source: National Gallery of Art | Audio
Item: The Moment of Caravaggio: Part 5: Severed Representations
Date: 30 August 2011, 8:00 am
August 2011 - Michael Fried, J. R. Herbert Boone Professor and director of the Humanities Center, The Johns Hopkins University In a series of six lectures, Michael Fried offers a compelling account of what he calls "the internal structure of the pictorial act" in the revolutionary art of Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio. The accompanying publication, The Moment of Caravaggio, is available for purchase from the Gallery Shops. In this audio podcast of the fifth lecture, originally delivered at the National Gallery of Art on May 12, 2002, Professor Michael Fried discusses how the "violent" birth of the full-blown gallery picture (as seen in Judith and Holoferenes) is figured in Caravaggio's art as beheading or decapitation, an allegory for the act of painting.
Enclosure (mp3)
124. Source: National Gallery of Art | Audio
Item: The Moment of Caravaggio: Part 4: Absorption and Address
Date: 23 August 2011, 8:00 am
August 2011 - Michael Fried, J. R. Herbert Boone Professor and director of the Humanities Center, The Johns Hopkins University In a series of six lectures, Michael Fried offers a compelling account of what he calls "the internal structure of the pictorial act" in the revolutionary art of Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio. The accompanying publication, The Moment of Caravaggio, is available for purchase from the Gallery Shops. In this audio podcast of the fourth lecture, originally delivered at the National Gallery of Art on May 5, 2002, Professor Michael Fried explores how two polar entities in Caravaggio's art--absorption and address--lead to the emergence of the gallery picture.
Enclosure (mp3)
125. Source: National Gallery of Art | Audio
Item: The Moment of Caravaggio: Part 3: The Invention of Absorption
Date: 16 August 2011, 8:00 am
August 2011 - Michael Fried, J. R. Herbert Boone Professor and director of the Humanities Center, The Johns Hopkins University In a series of six lectures, Michael Fried offers a compelling account of what he calls "the internal structure of the pictorial act" in the revolutionary art of Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio. The accompanying publication, The Moment of Caravaggio, is available for purchase from the Gallery Shops. In this audio podcast of the third lecture, originally delivered at the National Gallery of Art on April 28, 2002, Professor Michael Fried argues that Caravaggio's depiction of his figures as so deeply engrossed in what they are doing, feeling, and thinking is revolutionary.
Enclosure (mp3)
126. Source: National Gallery of Art | Audio
Item: The Moment of Caravaggio: Part 2: Immersion and Specularity
Date: 9 August 2011, 8:00 am
August 2011 - Michael Fried, J. R. Herbert Boone Professor and director of the Humanities Center, The Johns Hopkins University In a series of six lectures, Michael Fried offers a compelling account of what he calls "the internal structure of the pictorial act" in the revolutionary art of Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio. The accompanying publication, The Moment of Caravaggio, is available for purchase from the Gallery Shops. In this audio podcast of the second lecture, originally delivered at the National Gallery of Art on April 21, 2002, Professor Michael Fried addresses Caravaggio's engagement with the act of painting, and contrasts that with specular moments of detachment. Fried argues that this divided relationship lies at the heart of Caravaggio's most radical art.
Enclosure (mp3)
127. Source: National Gallery of Art | Audio
Item: The Moment of Caravaggio: Part 1: A New Type of Self-Portrait
Date: 2 August 2011, 8:00 am
August 2011 - Michael Fried, J. R. Herbert Boone Professor and director of the Humanities Center, The Johns Hopkins University. In a series of six lectures, Michael Fried offers a compelling account of what he calls "the internal structure of the pictorial act" in the revolutionary art of Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio. The accompanying publication, The Moment of Caravaggio, is available for purchase from the Gallery Shops. In this audio podcast of the first lecture, originally delivered at the National Gallery of Art on April 14, 2002, Professor Michael Fried opens the lecture series with a discussion of Caravaggio's Boy Bitten by a Lizard. He argues for its significance as a disguised self-portrait of the artist in the act of painting.
Enclosure (mp3)
128. Source: National Gallery of Art | Audio
Item: Calling the Earth to Witness: Paul Gauguin in the Marquesas
Date: 31 May 2011, 8:00 am
May 2011 - June Hargrove, professor of 19th-century European painting and sculpture, University of Maryland at College Park. Professor June Hargrove discusses artist Paul Gauguin's struggle in the final months of his life, after moving to the Marquesas Islands, to show the world his contributions to the creative process. Recorded on May 15, 2011, and held in conjunction with the exhibition Gauguin: Maker of Myth, this lecture examines the paintings from 1902 and attests that, for all his talk of savagery and cannibalism, Gauguin created some of his most serene masterpieces during this time.
Enclosure (mp3)
129. Source: National Gallery of Art | Audio
Item: Elson Lecture 1998: I. M. Pei in conversation with Earl A. Powell III
Date: 12 April 2011, 8:00 am
April 2011 - I. M. Pei, architect, in conversation with Earl A. Powell III, director, National Gallery of Art Legendary architect I. M. Pei appears in conversation with Gallery director Earl A. Powell III to commemorate the 20th anniversary of the opening of the East Building of the National Gallery of Art. In this podcast recorded on March 26, 1998, Pei discusses the evolution of the East Building�s design and construction from the time Pei was awarded the commission until the building was dedicated by President Jimmy Carter on June 1, 1978.
Enclosure (mp3)
130. Source: National Gallery of Art | Audio
Item: Film Design: Translating Words into Images
Date: 25 January 2011, 7:00 am
January 2011 - Patrizia von Brandenstein, Academy Award�winning production designer. Production designers define the appearance of a film, bringing to life written scripts by working with producers, directors, and their crews to achieve the desired look of a picture. Academy Award winner Patrizia von Brandenstein shared her practical knowledge of production design and used clips from several of her films, including Amadeus (1984), Six Degrees of Separation (1993), and The Last Station (2010), to illustrate the result of many years of research and visual interpretation.
Enclosure (mp3)
131. Source: National Gallery of Art | Audio
Item: Martin Puryear: "Sculpture that Tries to Describe Itself to the World"
Date: 28 September 2010, 8:00 am
September 2010 - Ruth Fine, curator of special projects in modern art, National Gallery of Art. In this podcast recorded on June 22, 2008, for the Martin Puryear retrospective exhibition opening at the National Gallery of Art, curator Ruth Fine discusses the work of District of Columbia native Martin Puryear. The retrospective included 46 sculptures made between 1975 and 2007. The first exhibition in the Gallery's history to be installed in both the East and West Buildings, it provided a unique opportunity to view Puryear's sculpture in modern and classical settings. Fine discusses the installation process for Puryear's work at the Gallery, designed in collaboration with the artist, as well as the intentions behind the placement of sculptures.
Enclosure (mp3)
132. Source: National Gallery of Art | Audio
Item: Graft by Roxy Paine
Date: 8 December 2009, 7:00 am
December 2009, Behind the Scenes - Molly Donovan, associate curator, department of modern and contemporaryart, National Gallery of Art, Washington. In 2009 the National Gallery of Art commissioned American sculptor Roxy Paine to create a stainless steel Dendroid, as the artist calls his series of treelike sculptures, for the Sculpture Garden. In this podcast produced on the occasion of the completed work�the first contemporary sculpture installed in the Sculpture Garden in the nearly 10 years since it opened�associate curator Donovan talks to host Barbara Tempchin about Graft.
Enclosure (mp3)
133. Source: National Gallery of Art | Audio
Item: Rauschenberg's Experiments in Printmaking
Date: 27 November 2007, 8:41 am
November 2007, Backstory - Guest: Charles Ritchie, associate curator of modern prints and drawings, National Gallery of Art, Host: Barbara Tempchin. Robert Rauschenberg has been at the forefront of American art for more than 50 years. His bold, innovative experiments in printmaking are the focus of an exhibition called Let the World In: Prints by Robert Rauschenberg from the National Gallery of Art and Related Collections. In this Backstory, host Barbara Tempchin and Charles Ritchie, exhibition curator, discuss the impact Rauschenberg's prints have had on artists worldwide. Produced in conjunction with the exhibition Let the World In: Prints by Robert Rauschenberg from the National Gallery of Art and Related Collections.
Enclosure (mp3)
134. Source: National Gallery of Art | Audio
Item: Telling the Edward Hopper Story
Date: 3 September 2007, 8:00 am
September 2007, Backstory - Guest: Carroll Moore, film and video producer, National Gallery of Art. The iconic paintings and artistic impact of Edward Hopper are the subject of a new documentary film that accompanies the exhibition Edward Hopper on its Boston-Washington-Chicago tour. Award-winning producer Carroll Moore speaks with Tempchin about the making of this illuminating film.
Enclosure (mp3)
135. Source: AGO Art Matters
Item: Meet the artists of the 2014 Aimia | AGO Photography Prize shortlist
Date: 15 August 2014, 10:19 am

Together with our partners at Aimia, we were excited to announce the 2014 Aimia | AGO Photography Prize shortlist on Aug. 13. Below, learn about the four artists from around the world who were our jurors’ top picks, then head to the Prize website to see more of their work and choose your favourite.


David Hartt

Image courtesy of the artist.

Image courtesy of the artist.

“Our understanding of ourselves is deeply rooted in the spaces we occupy.”

David Hartt was born in Montreal and currently lives and works in Chicago. In his installations, which include photographs, videos, and sculptures, he explores how physical spaces reflect the ideas and beliefs of a particular time and place. By investigating the materials, symbols and histories that shape our surroundings, Hartt calls attention to the ways our built environments exist and evolve. After extensive research and site visits, he distils this material into complex and elegant installations.

Artist’s web page

On David’s work:
David Hartt by Aimee Walleston for Art in America
David Hartt: Stray Light at the Studio Museum in Harlem by Andrew Russeth for Gallerist


Elad Lassry

Image courtesy of the artist.

Image courtesy of the artist.

“The questions for me are about this very mysterious unit that is the picture. It brings on a set of assumptions and built-in ways of looking with which I am in constant battle.”

At the centre of Israel-born, Los Angeles-based artist Elad Lassry’s work is the question: “What is a picture?” His practice suggests that the photograph is an elusive “unit.” Lassry uses multiple aesthetic modes and technologies to create analog images, digital interventions, moving pictures, design applications and applied arts that seem utilitarian but produce complex visual sensations. His ongoing investigation leads him to refer back to and experiment with a variety of visual sources – textbooks, manuals, film stills, marketing materials and science texts – which at turns contradict and play off one another in his work. Lassry uses this dynamic to pinpoint what he calls a “contemporary condition” in which the photograph is a flexible entity, seductively powerful and yet untrustworthy. “Once the photograph is not what it appears to be,” Lassry asks, “what else is at stake?”

Artist’s web page

On Elad’s work:
Elad Lassry by Gillian Young for Art in America
Elad Lassry at David Kordansky via Contemporary Art Daily


Nandipha Mntambo

Image courtesy of the artist.

Image courtesy of the artist.

“I’m interested in uncovering that binary – that in-between space that you can’t always pinpoint or articulate.”

Nandipha Mntambo was born in Swaziland and lives in Johannesburg. She originally trained as a sculptor and then expanded her practice to include photography, performance, and video. Her work investigates such dualities as male and female, attraction and repulsion, animal and human, European and African. Mntambo makes sculptures from cowhide, using her own body to mould the forms. In many of her videos and photographs, she appears wearing her sculptures, suggesting our capacity as individuals to shape the world around us, while also highlighting the forces that form us, including notions of race, gender and history.

Artist’s web page

On Nandipha’s work:
Nandipha Mntambo: Hide & Seek by Kudi Maradzika for AkAthemag
Visiting Artist Profiles – Nandipha Mntambo by Matthew Harrison Tedford for ArtPractical


Lisa Oppenheim

Image courtesy of the artist.

Image courtesy of the artist.

“I want the viewer to ask, ‘What am I looking at? How is it made?’ Somehow, that provides a way of critically reading how images come to all of us through our daily lives.”

Lisa Oppenheim, who lives and works in New York, creates photographs and videos that connect historical imagery and techniques with the present moment. Her process often begins with online research, to source images that she reinterprets using old and new technologies. Oppenheim also employs unusual materials as negatives – fabric, lace, slices of wood – directly recording the objects’ specific textures to create near-abstract compositions. Through her experiments with analog darkroom and digital methods, Oppenheim gives photographic images new forms and new contexts, inviting us to question and to wonder.

Artist’s website

On Lisa’s work:
Lisa Oppenheim by Shama Khanna for Frieze
Lisa Oppenheim: Elemental Process by Brian Sholis for Aperture

136. Source: AGO Art Matters
Item: Meet the artists of the 2014 Aimia | AGO Photography Prize shortlist
Date: 15 August 2014, 10:19 am

Together with our partners at Aimia, we were excited to announce the 2014 Aimia | AGO Photography Prize shortlist on Aug. 13. Below, learn about the four artists from around the world who were our jurors’ top picks, then head to the Prize website to see more of their work and choose your favourite.


David Hartt

Image courtesy of the artist.

Image courtesy of the artist.

“Our understanding of ourselves is deeply rooted in the spaces we occupy.”

David Hartt was born in Montreal and currently lives and works in Chicago. In his installations, which include photographs, videos, and sculptures, he explores how physical spaces reflect the ideas and beliefs of a particular time and place. By investigating the materials, symbols and histories that shape our surroundings, Hartt calls attention to the ways our built environments exist and evolve. After extensive research and site visits, he distils this material into complex and elegant installations.

Artist’s web page

On David’s work:
David Hartt by Aimee Walleston for Art in America
David Hartt: Stray Light at the Studio Museum in Harlem by Andrew Russeth for Gallerist


Elad Lassry

Image courtesy of the artist.

Image courtesy of the artist.

“The questions for me are about this very mysterious unit that is the picture. It brings on a set of assumptions and built-in ways of looking with which I am in constant battle.”

At the centre of Israel-born, Los Angeles-based artist Elad Lassry’s work is the question: “What is a picture?” His practice suggests that the photograph is an elusive “unit.” Lassry uses multiple aesthetic modes and technologies to create analog images, digital interventions, moving pictures, design applications and applied arts that seem utilitarian but produce complex visual sensations. His ongoing investigation leads him to refer back to and experiment with a variety of visual sources – textbooks, manuals, film stills, marketing materials and science texts – which at turns contradict and play off one another in his work. Lassry uses this dynamic to pinpoint what he calls a “contemporary condition” in which the photograph is a flexible entity, seductively powerful and yet untrustworthy. “Once the photograph is not what it appears to be,” Lassry asks, “what else is at stake?”

Artist’s web page

On Elad’s work:
Elad Lassry by Gillian Young for Art in America
Elad Lassry at David Kordansky via Contemporary Art Daily


Nandipha Mntambo

Image courtesy of the artist.

Image courtesy of the artist.

“I’m interested in uncovering that binary – that in-between space that you can’t always pinpoint or articulate.”

Nandipha Mntambo was born in Swaziland and lives in Johannesburg. She originally trained as a sculptor and then expanded her practice to include photography, performance, and video. Her work investigates such dualities as male and female, attraction and repulsion, animal and human, European and African. Mntambo makes sculptures from cowhide, using her own body to mould the forms. In many of her videos and photographs, she appears wearing her sculptures, suggesting our capacity as individuals to shape the world around us, while also highlighting the forces that form us, including notions of race, gender and history.

Artist’s web page

On Nandipha’s work:
Nandipha Mntambo: Hide & Seek by Kudi Maradzika for AkAthemag
Visiting Artist Profiles – Nandipha Mntambo by Matthew Harrison Tedford for ArtPractical


Lisa Oppenheim

Image courtesy of the artist.

Image courtesy of the artist.

“I want the viewer to ask, ‘What am I looking at? How is it made?’ Somehow, that provides a way of critically reading how images come to all of us through our daily lives.”

Lisa Oppenheim, who lives and works in New York, creates photographs and videos that connect historical imagery and techniques with the present moment. Her process often begins with online research, to source images that she reinterprets using old and new technologies. Oppenheim also employs unusual materials as negatives – fabric, lace, slices of wood – directly recording the objects’ specific textures to create near-abstract compositions. Through her experiments with analog darkroom and digital methods, Oppenheim gives photographic images new forms and new contexts, inviting us to question and to wonder.

Artist’s website

On Lisa’s work:
Lisa Oppenheim by Shama Khanna for Frieze
Lisa Oppenheim: Elemental Process by Brian Sholis for Aperture

137. Source: AGO Art Matters
Item: Conservation Notes: Looking at ephemera in Betty Goodwin’s notebooks
Date: 11 August 2014, 3:32 pm

Ephemera 2
Ephemera 3
Ephemera 5
Ephemera 6

Click arrows to see inside the notebooks.

Betty Goodwin’s notebooks and sketchbooks are both interesting documents of the artist’s process and important objects in their own right, offering insight into her daily life and art practice. The term “ephemera” refers to documents or items that were not necessarily meant to last long and are often made of materials that deteriorate quickly. The ephemera found in Goodwin’s notes comprise a variety of materials, including sticky notes, banana stickers, instant photographs, newspaper articles and pressed flowers. Making sure the sketchbooks are preserved in the exact condition that Goodwin left them, with ephemeral items intact where Goodwin placed them, allows researchers to see the artist’s thoughts on her own works.

In the late 1990s and early 2000s Goodwin, with the help of her studio assistant, revisited a number of her sketchbooks from the earlier days of her career, using sticky notes and metal clips to mark key pages, some of which date back to the 1960s. Some sketchbooks have pages that have been removed, with photocopies pasted back in their place, and some of these copied pages even re-appear in later sketchbooks, stuck onto pages or tucked in as loose leaves in agendas or diaries. Maintaining these re-arrangements, along with clips and the sticky notes, lets researchers see which of Goodwin’s own entries, sketches or notes she considered important.

The temporary nature of various ephemeral elements presents some challenges to conservation: the low-tack glue of sticky notes makes them vulnerable to detaching and metal clips will rust. However, each of the individually created enclosures made by Digital Special Collections Assistant Marianne Williams securely contains the ephemera in each volume and ensures no materials or information will be lost. Read about those here.


Curious about Conservation?
If you have a burning question about Conservation, leave a comment below. We’ll do our best to give you an answer in an upcoming Conservation Notes post.


Signature Partner of the AGO’s Conservation Program


138. Source: AGO Art Matters
Item: Conservation Notes: Looking at ephemera in Betty Goodwin’s notebooks
Date: 11 August 2014, 3:32 pm

Ephemera 2
Ephemera 3
Ephemera 5
Ephemera 6

Click arrows to see inside the notebooks.

Betty Goodwin’s notebooks and sketchbooks are both interesting documents of the artist’s process and important objects in their own right, offering insight into her daily life and art practice. The term “ephemera” refers to documents or items that were not necessarily meant to last long and are often made of materials that deteriorate quickly. The ephemera found in Goodwin’s notes comprise a variety of materials, including sticky notes, banana stickers, instant photographs, newspaper articles and pressed flowers. Making sure the sketchbooks are preserved in the exact condition that Goodwin left them, with ephemeral items intact where Goodwin placed them, allows researchers to see the artist’s thoughts on her own works.

In the late 1990s and early 2000s Goodwin, with the help of her studio assistant, revisited a number of her sketchbooks from the earlier days of her career, using sticky notes and metal clips to mark key pages, some of which date back to the 1960s. Some sketchbooks have pages that have been removed, with photocopies pasted back in their place, and some of these copied pages even re-appear in later sketchbooks, stuck onto pages or tucked in as loose leaves in agendas or diaries. Maintaining these re-arrangements, along with clips and the sticky notes, lets researchers see which of Goodwin’s own entries, sketches or notes she considered important.

The temporary nature of various ephemeral elements presents some challenges to conservation: the low-tack glue of sticky notes makes them vulnerable to detaching and metal clips will rust. However, each of the individually created enclosures made by Digital Special Collections Assistant Marianne Williams securely contains the ephemera in each volume and ensures no materials or information will be lost. Read about those here.


Curious about Conservation?
If you have a burning question about Conservation, leave a comment below. We’ll do our best to give you an answer in an upcoming Conservation Notes post.


Signature Partner of the AGO’s Conservation Program


139. Source: AGO Art Matters
Item: Artist’s statement: Christi Belcourt on The Wisdom of the Universe
Date: 7 August 2014, 2:51 pm
Christi Belcourt, The  Wisdom of the Universe, 2014, acrylic on canvas, 171 × 282 cm, purchased with funds donated by Greg Latremoille, 2014 ©  2014 Christi Belcourt.

Christi Belcourt, The Wisdom of the Universe, 2014, acrylic on canvas, 171 × 282 cm, purchased with funds donated by Greg Latremoille, 2014 © 2014 Christi Belcourt.

The AGO has commissioned and acquired an extraordinary painting entitled The Wisdom of the Universe by Christi Belcourt, a Métis visual artist and author who received the 2014 Ontario Arts Council Aboriginal Arts Award at a ceremony held here on July 30, 2014. Below, Belcourt discusses the ecological concerns that inspired the work.

AGO.116615.d02
Christi Belcourt, <em>The Wisdom of the Universe</em> (detail), 2014, acrylic on canvas, 171 × 282 cm, purchased with funds donated by Greg Latremoille, 2014 © 2014 Christi Belcourt.
AGO.116615.d01
Christi Belcourt, <em>The Wisdom of the Universe</em> (detail), 2014, acrylic on canvas, 171 × 282 cm, purchased with funds donated by Greg Latremoille, 2014 © 2014 Christi Belcourt.
AGO.116615.d
Christi Belcourt, <em>The Wisdom of the Universe</em> (detail), 2014, acrylic on canvas, 171 × 282 cm, purchased with funds donated by Greg Latremoille, 2014 © 2014 Christi Belcourt.

In Ontario, over 200 species of plants and animals are listed as threatened, endangered or extinct. Of those, included in this painting are the Dwarf Lake Iris, the Eastern Prairie Fringed Orchid, the Karner Blue butterfly, the West Virginia White butterfly, the Spring Blue-eyed Mary, the Cerulean Warbler and Acadian Flycatcher.

Globally, we live in a time of great upheaval. The state of the world is in crisis. We are witness to the unbearable suffering of species, including humans. Much of this we do to ourselves. It is possible for the planet to return to a state of well-being, but it requires a radical change in our thinking. It requires a willingness to be open to the idea that perhaps human beings have got it all wrong.

All species, the lands, the waters are one beating organism that pulses like a heart. We are all a part of a whole. The animals and plants, lands and waters, are our relatives each with as much right to exist as we have. When we see ourselves as separate from each other and think of other species, the waters and the planet itself as objects that can be owned, dominated or subjugated, we lose connection with our humanity and we create imbalance on the earth. This is what we are witnessing around us.

The planet already contains all the wisdom of the universe, as do you and I. It has the ability to recover built into its DNA and we have the ability to change what we are doing so this can happen.

Perhaps it’s time to place the rights of Mother Earth ahead of the rights to Mother Earth.

– Christi Belcourt


This work is one of two paintings by Belcourt currently on display in the Gallery. In the video below, Belcourt discusses the other, entitled So Much Depends Upon Who Holds the Shovel (2008), which appears in our exhibition Before and after the Horizon: Anishinaabe Artists of the Great Lakes.

140. Source: AGO Art Matters
Item: Artist’s statement: Christi Belcourt on The Wisdom of the Universe
Date: 7 August 2014, 2:51 pm
Christi Belcourt, The  Wisdom of the Universe, 2014, acrylic on canvas, 171 × 282 cm, purchased with funds donated by Greg Latremoille, 2014 ©  2014 Christi Belcourt.

Christi Belcourt, The Wisdom of the Universe, 2014, acrylic on canvas, 171 × 282 cm, purchased with funds donated by Greg Latremoille, 2014 © 2014 Christi Belcourt.

The AGO has commissioned and acquired an extraordinary painting entitled The Wisdom of the Universe by Christi Belcourt, a Métis visual artist and author who received the 2014 Ontario Arts Council Aboriginal Arts Award at a ceremony held here on July 30, 2014. Below, Belcourt discusses the ecological concerns that inspired the work.

AGO.116615.d02
Christi Belcourt, <em>The Wisdom of the Universe</em> (detail), 2014, acrylic on canvas, 171 × 282 cm, purchased with funds donated by Greg Latremoille, 2014 © 2014 Christi Belcourt.
AGO.116615.d01
Christi Belcourt, <em>The Wisdom of the Universe</em> (detail), 2014, acrylic on canvas, 171 × 282 cm, purchased with funds donated by Greg Latremoille, 2014 © 2014 Christi Belcourt.
AGO.116615.d
Christi Belcourt, <em>The Wisdom of the Universe</em> (detail), 2014, acrylic on canvas, 171 × 282 cm, purchased with funds donated by Greg Latremoille, 2014 © 2014 Christi Belcourt.

In Ontario, over 200 species of plants and animals are listed as threatened, endangered or extinct. Of those, included in this painting are the Dwarf Lake Iris, the Eastern Prairie Fringed Orchid, the Karner Blue butterfly, the West Virginia White butterfly, the Spring Blue-eyed Mary, the Cerulean Warbler and Acadian Flycatcher.

Globally, we live in a time of great upheaval. The state of the world is in crisis. We are witness to the unbearable suffering of species, including humans. Much of this we do to ourselves. It is possible for the planet to return to a state of well-being, but it requires a radical change in our thinking. It requires a willingness to be open to the idea that perhaps human beings have got it all wrong.

All species, the lands, the waters are one beating organism that pulses like a heart. We are all a part of a whole. The animals and plants, lands and waters, are our relatives each with as much right to exist as we have. When we see ourselves as separate from each other and think of other species, the waters and the planet itself as objects that can be owned, dominated or subjugated, we lose connection with our humanity and we create imbalance on the earth. This is what we are witnessing around us.

The planet already contains all the wisdom of the universe, as do you and I. It has the ability to recover built into its DNA and we have the ability to change what we are doing so this can happen.

Perhaps it’s time to place the rights of Mother Earth ahead of the rights to Mother Earth.

– Christi Belcourt


This work is one of two paintings by Belcourt currently on display in the Gallery. In the video below, Belcourt discusses the other, entitled So Much Depends Upon Who Holds the Shovel (2008), which appears in our exhibition Before and after the Horizon: Anishinaabe Artists of the Great Lakes.

141. Source: AGO Art Matters
Item: Catching up with Chino Otsuka, 2013 Aimia | AGO Photography Prize finalist
Date: 29 July 2014, 11:22 am

Chino Otsuka, <em>Imagine Finding Me</em>, 1975 and 2005, Spain, Japan, 2005, Chromogenic print, 305 mm x 406 mm.</

Chino Otsuka, Imagine Finding Me, 1975 and 2005, Spain, Japan, 2005, Chromogenic print, 305 mm x 406 mm.

Born in Tokyo and educated in the U.K., 2013 Aimia | AGO Photography Prize finalist Chino Otsuka uses photography and video to explore the fluid relationship between memory, photography, and time. She recently completed her residency at the Nikkei National Museum in Burnaby, B.C., which focused on researching Japanese picture brides and their forgotten stories. We caught up with Otsuka to discuss her residency research, work and experience.

AGO: While you were in Vancouver, you worked inside the archives and collection of the Nikkei National Museum & Cultural Centre. What did your research focus on, and what affect has working in Vancouver had on your work?

Chino Otsuka: The research I conduct is integral to the development of my work. For a while now I have been researching the history of Japanese emigrants. When I found out about the residency component of the AIMIA | AGO Photography Prize and was able to choose anywhere in Canada, I knew I wanted to go to the Nikkei National Museum. Since I had previously done similar research on a group of Japanese who went to the Netherlands in the mid-19th century, I wanted to see the museum’s collections and learn more about the history of Japanese-Canadian immigrants.

During the residency I had the opportunity to access and explore museum collections that are not normally seen or easily accessible. I knew very little about the history of Japanese immigrants in Canada, or the hardships and injustice that they suffered. I read and came across so many moving stories. All of this is a very important part of Japanese history, and I’m so surprised that many of these stories are untold outside of Canada.

As my research progressed I became more and more interested in the stories of young women who came over from Japan as a “picture brides,” young Japanese women usually between 17 and 19 years old who came to Canada as in the early 20th century. Their marriages were arranged by showing the prospective bride and groom photographs of each other. Most of these women travelled from Japan and saw their husband-to-be for the first time when they arrived in Canada. I was drawn to their innocence, ambition and courage — their journey. They all longed for a new life in their new country. Yet when they arrived in Canada the life they had imagined was completely different. Hardship and many tragedies would follow them. They struggled and endured so much.

I’ve looked through many photographs and artefacts in the collection and chose to focus especially on their journey to Canada. There is a sense of anticipation around the little moment in their life when they were dreaming about the future. I’ve been working with the old photographs as well as photographing their belongings that they brought with them from Japan.

With your residency now complete, can you speak to the effect that the overall experience has had on your work? Did your work move in a new direction during the residency? If so, how?

The residency has given me a new perspective on my practice, as well as time to explore and experiment with new ideas. The work I started during my residency is not quite finished yet. I’m done with the research and photographing and am now working with these materials through editing and finding ways to present them.

What has the residency allowed you to do in terms of your work and research?

In my work I mainly explore the notion of autobiographical memory, so the residency at the Nikkei National Museum has given me the opportunity to explore and research the history, the collective memory – how the individual memories weave together to tell a story.

In her essay “Chino Otsuka’s Time Machine” Michiko Kasahara writes that your “journeys into the past are not sentimental and do not display a nostalgic atmosphere,” yet much of your work explores issues of duality, history, memory and self. Can you elaborate on/explain your method? Do you agree with the writer’s statement?

I work with the past and many of my works show my past. How I take my works, restage and rework them is really about today, not yesterday.
My works are personal but by carefully selecting the images, and recreating them in the certain ways, I’m trying to engage the viewers’ internal dialogue of their experiences. I hope to make the images/stories resonate and trigger the viewers’ own memories.

Your work, specifically in the series “Imagine Finding Me,” is extremely personal with the subject being your own self and memory. The Aimia | AGO Photography Prize is awarded by public vote. As the subject of the work, what were your thoughts on it being considered in this way?

I visited the AGO during the exhibition while the voting was going on, and when I wandered around the museum strangers came up to tell me that they voted for me. I guess they recognized me from my work, and that was a really strange experience.


*This interview was conducted via email in July 2014 and has been edited for style and brevity.
142. Source: AGO Art Matters
Item: Catching up with Chino Otsuka, 2013 Aimia | AGO Photography Prize finalist
Date: 29 July 2014, 11:22 am

Chino Otsuka, <em>Imagine Finding Me</em>, 1975 and 2005, Spain, Japan, 2005, Chromogenic print, 305 mm x 406 mm.</

Chino Otsuka, Imagine Finding Me, 1975 and 2005, Spain, Japan, 2005, Chromogenic print, 305 mm x 406 mm.

Born in Tokyo and educated in the U.K., 2013 Aimia | AGO Photography Prize finalist Chino Otsuka uses photography and video to explore the fluid relationship between memory, photography, and time. She recently completed her residency at the Nikkei National Museum in Burnaby, B.C., which focused on researching Japanese picture brides and their forgotten stories. We caught up with Otsuka to discuss her residency research, work and experience.

AGO: While you were in Vancouver, you worked inside the archives and collection of the Nikkei National Museum & Cultural Centre. What did your research focus on, and what affect has working in Vancouver had on your work?

Chino Otsuka: The research I conduct is integral to the development of my work. For a while now I have been researching the history of Japanese emigrants. When I found out about the residency component of the AIMIA | AGO Photography Prize and was able to choose anywhere in Canada, I knew I wanted to go to the Nikkei National Museum. Since I had previously done similar research on a group of Japanese who went to the Netherlands in the mid-19th century, I wanted to see the museum’s collections and learn more about the history of Japanese-Canadian immigrants.

During the residency I had the opportunity to access and explore museum collections that are not normally seen or easily accessible. I knew very little about the history of Japanese immigrants in Canada, or the hardships and injustice that they suffered. I read and came across so many moving stories. All of this is a very important part of Japanese history, and I’m so surprised that many of these stories are untold outside of Canada.

As my research progressed I became more and more interested in the stories of young women who came over from Japan as a “picture brides,” young Japanese women usually between 17 and 19 years old who came to Canada as in the early 20th century. Their marriages were arranged by showing the prospective bride and groom photographs of each other. Most of these women travelled from Japan and saw their husband-to-be for the first time when they arrived in Canada. I was drawn to their innocence, ambition and courage — their journey. They all longed for a new life in their new country. Yet when they arrived in Canada the life they had imagined was completely different. Hardship and many tragedies would follow them. They struggled and endured so much.

I’ve looked through many photographs and artefacts in the collection and chose to focus especially on their journey to Canada. There is a sense of anticipation around the little moment in their life when they were dreaming about the future. I’ve been working with the old photographs as well as photographing their belongings that they brought with them from Japan.

With your residency now complete, can you speak to the effect that the overall experience has had on your work? Did your work move in a new direction during the residency? If so, how?

The residency has given me a new perspective on my practice, as well as time to explore and experiment with new ideas. The work I started during my residency is not quite finished yet. I’m done with the research and photographing and am now working with these materials through editing and finding ways to present them.

What has the residency allowed you to do in terms of your work and research?

In my work I mainly explore the notion of autobiographical memory, so the residency at the Nikkei National Museum has given me the opportunity to explore and research the history, the collective memory – how the individual memories weave together to tell a story.

In her essay “Chino Otsuka’s Time Machine” Michiko Kasahara writes that your “journeys into the past are not sentimental and do not display a nostalgic atmosphere,” yet much of your work explores issues of duality, history, memory and self. Can you elaborate on/explain your method? Do you agree with the writer’s statement?

I work with the past and many of my works show my past. How I take my works, restage and rework them is really about today, not yesterday.
My works are personal but by carefully selecting the images, and recreating them in the certain ways, I’m trying to engage the viewers’ internal dialogue of their experiences. I hope to make the images/stories resonate and trigger the viewers’ own memories.

Your work, specifically in the series “Imagine Finding Me,” is extremely personal with the subject being your own self and memory. The Aimia | AGO Photography Prize is awarded by public vote. As the subject of the work, what were your thoughts on it being considered in this way?

I visited the AGO during the exhibition while the voting was going on, and when I wandered around the museum strangers came up to tell me that they voted for me. I guess they recognized me from my work, and that was a really strange experience.


*This interview was conducted via email in July 2014 and has been edited for style and brevity.
143. Source: AGO Art Matters
Item: Conservation Notes: Artist Betty Goodwin’s thoughts on paper
Date: 28 July 2014, 8:00 am

Marianne at work in the studio

Marianne at work in the studio


As Digital Special Collections Assistant in the AGO Library and Archives this summer, Marianne Williams is building new enclosures to preserve decades’ worth of sketchbooks and notebooks of the late Montreal-based artist Betty Goodwin.

Goodwin bequeathed more than 100 sketchbooks, notebooks, agendas and diaries to the AGO. Many of them were featured in the Gallery’s 2010/2011 exhibition Work Notes, which showcased Goodwin’s artistic practice and process. Once off display, the books were wrapped in acid-free tissue as a temporary storage measure, as seen above.


Click through slideshow to see all the steps

The first step in creating a new enclosure is measuring the dimensions of the notebook to the millimetre and then creating a custom-made box from archival-quality materials to house the book. Using these materials protects the notebook from acid normally found in paper materials that can yellow and deteriorate over time, causing brittleness and increased risk of damage.

The customized box, called an enclosure, is then labelled and tied together with cotton tape in order to secure all of the flaps. This protects the books from shifting around when being handled, prevents scratches or rips and ensures that any loose materials, like pressed flowers or loose leaves of paper, stay snug in their original places.

The individual book enclosures are then placed in larger boxes for storage in the AGO Library and Archives vault.

The re-housed notebooks will be kept in the AGO’s Edward P. Taylor Library and Archives, where curators and other researchers will have access to them to study and examine in the future.


Curious about Conservation?
If you have a burning question about Conservation, leave a comment below. We’ll do our best to give you an answer in an upcoming Conservation Notes post.


Signature Partner of the AGO’s Conservation Program


144. Source: AGO Art Matters
Item: Conservation Notes: Artist Betty Goodwin’s thoughts on paper
Date: 28 July 2014, 8:00 am

Marianne at work in the studio

Marianne at work in the studio


As Digital Special Collections Assistant in the AGO Library and Archives this summer, Marianne Williams is building new enclosures to preserve decades’ worth of sketchbooks and notebooks of the late Montreal-based artist Betty Goodwin.

Goodwin bequeathed more than 100 sketchbooks, notebooks, agendas and diaries to the AGO. Many of them were featured in the Gallery’s 2010/2011 exhibition Work Notes, which showcased Goodwin’s artistic practice and process. Once off display, the books were wrapped in acid-free tissue as a temporary storage measure, as seen above.


Click through slideshow to see all the steps

The first step in creating a new enclosure is measuring the dimensions of the notebook to the millimetre and then creating a custom-made box from archival-quality materials to house the book. Using these materials protects the notebook from acid normally found in paper materials that can yellow and deteriorate over time, causing brittleness and increased risk of damage.

The customized box, called an enclosure, is then labelled and tied together with cotton tape in order to secure all of the flaps. This protects the books from shifting around when being handled, prevents scratches or rips and ensures that any loose materials, like pressed flowers or loose leaves of paper, stay snug in their original places.

The individual book enclosures are then placed in larger boxes for storage in the AGO Library and Archives vault.

The re-housed notebooks will be kept in the AGO’s Edward P. Taylor Library and Archives, where curators and other researchers will have access to them to study and examine in the future.


Curious about Conservation?
If you have a burning question about Conservation, leave a comment below. We’ll do our best to give you an answer in an upcoming Conservation Notes post.


Signature Partner of the AGO’s Conservation Program


145. Source: e-flux » Announcements
Item: 2014 Residency Programme
Asia Art Archive’s Residency Programme catalyses new ideas through invited artists and creative practitioners who engage with the collections we hold, the ideas that shape us, and the sites we inhabit. Encouraging multidisciplinary interaction with flexible time frames, each residency is open to diverse outcomes.   Recent and ongoing Asia Art Archive resident projects and programmes include:   C & G, comprising of Hong Kong artist collaborators Clara Cheung and Cheng Yee Man (Gum), continue their multidisciplinary cross-generational project Meet the Parents.
146. Source: e-flux » Announcements
Item: Autumn 2014 programme
In this first UK institutional solo exhibition of award-winning French-Algerian artist Neïl Beloufa's work, the ICA presents his latest film and sculpture installations. The exhibition explores how we choose to communicate, interact and interpret the world since the advent of the internet. Counting on People presents a series of new sculptures and video works, exhibited in architectural installations specifically designed to break the viewer's conventional engagement with the screen.
147. Source: e-flux » Announcements
Item: Mariana Castillo Deball
Beginning in September, the artist Mariana Castillo Deball (b. 1975, Mexico City)—who was awarded the Preis der Nationalgalerie (National Gallery Prize) in 2013—shows a project especially developed for her solo exhibition in the historic hall at Hamburger Bahnhof. This large-scale installation unites diverse artistic reflections that intersect historical research, philosophy and art; all of which are decisive for Mariana Castillo Deball's work. The artist appropriates specific subject areas for her own works and transfers the emergent research process, which is reminiscent to methods of archaeology, ethnography and the history of science, into a contemporary artistic use of visual forms.
148. Source: e-flux » Announcements
Item: Anicka Yi and Julia Wachtel at Transformer Station
Emerging in the 1980s, Julia Wachtel became known for her paintings employing cartoon characters appropriated from sources as everyday and relatable as greeting cards and magazines, deliberately commenting upon our quickly evolving visual culture. Often comprised of multiple panels, her paintings also include pop stars, figurines from so-called primitive cultures, and scenes from Hollywood films. In her work Wachtel consistently displays a consciousness of the dominance of images, their penetration into all areas of life, and the haziness of their interconnections and juxtapositions.