Nonsense Lab
Mark LombardiBCCI-ICIC & FAB, 1972-91 (Fourth Version)1996-2000graphite on paper52” x 138”

Mark Lombardi
BCCI-ICIC & FAB, 1972-91 (Fourth Version)
1996-2000
graphite on paper
52” x 138”

Department of Biological FlowMecha Butterfly Soundsystem2011 (shown in process)mixed media and performance

- - -

October 5, 2011 at 12:32pm near Surfside, FL

walking to school i saw a monarch butterfly appear out of nowhere. awkward flight — surfacevolumesurfacevolume — it began to venture out over a major four-lane artery. halfway over the turbulence was too much and it flew crazily all over the place before pulling a 180, executing a neat glide back to my side of the road, and landing on flower, orange on purple. nice ride, dude.

- - -

articulations

most insects have tiny hairs on their antennae that help serve to empirically understand their external environments. to the eye, these appear as a sort of fuzziness.

although each of these hairs has a specific coordinate in space and time relative to one another, each detecting perturbations in a particular type of stimulus, they function as a sensory whole. the skin itself has multiplied, increased its surface area by orders of magnitude. and yet each hair retains a singularity within this plurality. what one comes to know, empirically, another has already forgotten.

call this fuzziness a strategy: an attempt towards weak localization (political) or suggestive site-specificity (aesthetic). if i told you this status update comes from fanshawe park road, london and/or surfside, florida, would this be considered an example of the latter?

how do we make the tiny hairs on the back of our necks bristle?

if you had a small enough camera, these tiny insect hairs might appear to the lens as a moiré pattern … … …

Department of Biological Flow
Mecha Butterfly Soundsystem
2011 (shown in process)
mixed media and performance

- - -

October 5, 2011 at 12:32pm near Surfside, FL

walking to school i saw a monarch butterfly appear out of nowhere. awkward flight — surfacevolumesurfacevolume — it began to venture out over a major four-lane artery. halfway over the turbulence was too much and it flew crazily all over the place before pulling a 180, executing a neat glide back to my side of the road, and landing on flower, orange on purple. nice ride, dude.

- - -

articulations

most insects have tiny hairs on their antennae that help serve to empirically understand their external environments. to the eye, these appear as a sort of fuzziness.

although each of these hairs has a specific coordinate in space and time relative to one another, each detecting perturbations in a particular type of stimulus, they function as a sensory whole. the skin itself has multiplied, increased its surface area by orders of magnitude. and yet each hair retains a singularity within this plurality. what one comes to know, empirically, another has already forgotten.

call this fuzziness a strategy: an attempt towards weak localization (political) or suggestive site-specificity (aesthetic). if i told you this status update comes from fanshawe park road, london and/or surfside, florida, would this be considered an example of the latter?

how do we make the tiny hairs on the back of our necks bristle?

if you had a small enough camera, these tiny insect hairs might appear to the lens as a moiré pattern … … …

.085 HE KEXIN

"From the singularity of 9/11 to the multiplicity of signs and their mutations that constituted the Beijing Olympic Games to the multitude that sought to contest a theretofore hegemonic truth. Two information bombs, one nuclear and one genetic, one primarily optic and the other primarily haptic. Where does the political take up from these new aesthetics? It is no longer simply a matter of tracing property forms and lines of ownership, nor a matter of developing a weapon to continue the political by other means. Can politics be resurrected in the liminality between the embodied everyday and the fractalization of space made possible by the camera and screen? If the contemporary condition of our grey ecology is marked by the finitude of extensive planetary space, the pollution of our lived distances by real-time transmission, and the temporary reprieve offered by the foldings and tremblings of the data-virtual, we can ask no less of a question today."

_____

Smith, S. (2009). La bombe philosophique: An archaeology of the stereoscopic present (or, sporting through the shrapnel). In P. Virilio, H. von Amelunxen & D. Burk (Eds.), Grey ecology (97-113). New York: Atropos Press.

.085 HE KEXIN

"From the singularity of 9/11 to the multiplicity of signs and their mutations that constituted the Beijing Olympic Games to the multitude that sought to contest a theretofore hegemonic truth. Two information bombs, one nuclear and one genetic, one primarily optic and the other primarily haptic. Where does the political take up from these new aesthetics? It is no longer simply a matter of tracing property forms and lines of ownership, nor a matter of developing a weapon to continue the political by other means. Can politics be resurrected in the liminality between the embodied everyday and the fractalization of space made possible by the camera and screen? If the contemporary condition of our grey ecology is marked by the finitude of extensive planetary space, the pollution of our lived distances by real-time transmission, and the temporary reprieve offered by the foldings and tremblings of the data-virtual, we can ask no less of a question today."

_____

Smith, S. (2009). La bombe philosophique: An archaeology of the stereoscopic present (or, sporting through the shrapnel). In P. Virilio, H. von Amelunxen & D. Burk (Eds.), Grey ecology (97-113). New York: Atropos Press.

The Facebook Polis

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‎‎‎4. Each subject exists at a not-insignificant remove from equilibrium in the Facebook Polis. The addition of friends known and unknown; the multiplying of relations around a particular node or series of nodes — that is, the development of severals within a multiplicity, each with its own intensity; the steady release of new technologies or interfaces; all of these and more push the expression of the space and its myriad produced subjectivities to disequilibrium. The steady rhythm of signal modulation that is one’s wall (dermis) offers the illusion of an equilibrium or homeostasis to soothe what is otherwise the stress of the system.

-

5. Virilio’s stereoscopics of “here” and “now” are not so much spatiotemporal coordinates on or off the network, but rather qualities of relation(s) in changing modes of embodiment. This suggests they each provide differential modes for *breathing*, either artfully inspired or expired. The Facebook Polis offers one such potential “now” for breathing as a form of political action.

-

‎6. Today we are all “creators,” all able to see ourselves extended into the data networks of the ludic-synthetic. In other words, all complicit in the creation of a new mirror — a slightly kaleidoscopic mirror, mind you — but one that captivates us like Narcissus long beyond that mirror phase of childhood. Like the two-way sort used in clinical psychology, however, this new era of the interactive is at once mirror and screen, at once opportunity for enclosed self-contemplation and open performance. For we all know what lurks behind the silvering of this new mirror in the Facebook Polis and that is the gaze: sometimes manifest as benevolent glance and sometimes as cold, clinical, unblinking stare. Always performance.

Narcissus never suspected that Echo was swimming below the surface of the pool, but we know better.

-

7. This blur between mirror and screen is perhaps best understood in the language used to describe it: “one-way mirror”, “two-way mirror”, “one-way glass” and “two-way glass” are all used interchangeably, two sets of complete opposites in recombination to express the same concept. The fragmented subject only finds confusion in its attempts to articulate its relation to the interface; even with this 2x2 matrix the concept eludes us. Political action in the Facebook Polis must consider both the material element of this membrane between gesture and vision as well as its relative opacity in approaching the speed of light — the panoptic space is obsolesced by our very reflection.

_____

posted in no particular order, these aphorisms are the beginnings of a microbook-in-progress for Delere Press, a boutique e-book publishing venture by Jeremy Fernando and Yanyun Chen

#facebookpolis

The Facebook Polis

- - -

‎‎‎4. Each subject exists at a not-insignificant remove from equilibrium in the Facebook Polis. The addition of friends known and unknown; the multiplying of relations around a particular node or series of nodes — that is, the development of severals within a multiplicity, each with its own intensity; the steady release of new technologies or interfaces; all of these and more push the expression of the space and its myriad produced subjectivities to disequilibrium. The steady rhythm of signal modulation that is one’s wall (dermis) offers the illusion of an equilibrium or homeostasis to soothe what is otherwise the stress of the system.

-

5. Virilio’s stereoscopics of “here” and “now” are not so much spatiotemporal coordinates on or off the network, but rather qualities of relation(s) in changing modes of embodiment. This suggests they each provide differential modes for *breathing*, either artfully inspired or expired. The Facebook Polis offers one such potential “now” for breathing as a form of political action.

-

‎6. Today we are all “creators,” all able to see ourselves extended into the data networks of the ludic-synthetic. In other words, all complicit in the creation of a new mirror — a slightly kaleidoscopic mirror, mind you — but one that captivates us like Narcissus long beyond that mirror phase of childhood. Like the two-way sort used in clinical psychology, however, this new era of the interactive is at once mirror and screen, at once opportunity for enclosed self-contemplation and open performance. For we all know what lurks behind the silvering of this new mirror in the Facebook Polis and that is the gaze: sometimes manifest as benevolent glance and sometimes as cold, clinical, unblinking stare. Always performance.

Narcissus never suspected that Echo was swimming below the surface of the pool, but we know better.

-

7. This blur between mirror and screen is perhaps best understood in the language used to describe it: “one-way mirror”, “two-way mirror”, “one-way glass” and “two-way glass” are all used interchangeably, two sets of complete opposites in recombination to express the same concept. The fragmented subject only finds confusion in its attempts to articulate its relation to the interface; even with this 2x2 matrix the concept eludes us. Political action in the Facebook Polis must consider both the material element of this membrane between gesture and vision as well as its relative opacity in approaching the speed of light — the panoptic space is obsolesced by our very reflection.

_____

posted in no particular order, these aphorisms are the beginnings of a microbook-in-progress for Delere Press, a boutique e-book publishing venture by Jeremy Fernando and Yanyun Chen

#facebookpolis

top:
Brendan Fernandes
Changing to Summer
2005
performance, single channel video, photographs

bottom:
Department of Biological Flow
Ex-position (Program and Thumbnail)
in process
performance and two-channel video

- - -

Brendan Fernandes presented last night as part of the Art in the Public Sphere speaker series at the University of Western Ontario (the same series in which I gave a talk back in September). Fernandes is a graduate of the UWO program, now living and working in New York, and his return was met with a packed house at the Visual Arts Centre.

Brendan’s work is very personal and deals (primarily) with the complexities of identity and diaspora, particularly given his own experiences growing up of mixed Kenyan, Indian and Canadian heritages. Indeed, his practice continually challenges antiquated notions of “authenticity” as they relate to the global flows of migration, culture and commerce.

I mention him here because of one of the works he showed during his presentation, titled Changing to Summer. While perhaps not the most interesting or challenging example he offered during his talk last night, it directly related to work I’ve been considering at the Nonsense Lab concerning exposure and its politics.

In Changing to Summer, Fernandes attends several sessions in an ultraviolet tanning bed with stickers pasted to his body in various motifs, which represent textile imagery from his varied cultural backgrounds. Upon peeling the stickers — voilà! — Fernandes himself becomes a sort of temporary cultural tapestry.

Not only does he mark his body with these various signifiers (for example, an imprint of a mask borrowed from his Kenyan heritage), he also plays with tone, shading his brown skin ever-darker with each session in the tanning salon. As he pointed out last night during his talk, these “degrees” of brown-ness are tied to complex understandings of class in the diasporal contexts from which he draws his inspiration.

In this, Changing to Summer is certainly richer for me than comparable suntan/burn work by Ai Weiwei and Anna Gohmert, given the nuances of signification and how they weave into his broader project. While I appreciate what Fernandes adds to a technique that appears to be quite limited, I can’t help but feel that he remains in a spatialized frame of reference: yes, it takes time to make such a work, but the work itself is not so much about time; rather it is about the spatial surface of the skin providing a canvas on which to collage various images in sun-shaded relief.

There is certainly nothing wrong with this approach, of course, but since I mentioned earlier a work-in-process involving sunburn techniques, it seems like an appropriate opportunity to elaborate on what this project entails (to be completed next summer, as documentation requirements necessitate being outdoors instead of enclosed in a tanning bed).

Currently titled Ex-position (Program and Thumbnail), this work proposes to reference Eadweard Muybridge’s pioneering stroboscopic photography and its subsequent folding into the surveillant imaging of the moving body decades thereafter. To accomplish this I plan to “paint” the skin with sunscreens of various SPF factors, such that image-frames of a moving body appear in succession on the skin of my back.

To put it differently, Ai Weiwei’s work stands apart from that of Fernandes, Gohmert and Dennis Oppenheim insofar as it uses solar intensity in the service of negative space: he has clearly applied some sort of sunscreen on his body everywhere but that space which forms the letters F-U-C-K in his dermal communique, whereas the other three block out the sun precisely in the form of the objects they wish to represent, as with pinhole cameras and rudimentary opacity studies on photographic paper.

Ex-position (Program and Thumbnail) proposes to combine both approaches by painting the back with different degrees of sunscreen protection such that various images emerge at different moments. As the shielding from the sun begins to wear off for lower SPF levels, an image will begin to emerge, before the next, and the next — eventually offering a slow movement of the body across the canvas of the skin.

Instead of painting with colour in space, then, think of it as painting with time — the application of white pigment to produce red pigment.

The entire process will be recorded to video. One channel of the video will be a large-scale image of the entire (slow) process as it unfolds in real time (the program). The second channel will be a small-scale reproduction of the same image, accelerated to more quickly articulate the process involved (the thumbnail). The shrinking of the image will be inversely proportional to the ratio by which the image has been accelerated, thus suggesting a topology of space and time in the presentation of the exposed skin.

The Facebook Polis

- - -

‎1. Gravity is inverted in the Facebook Polis: one is always pulled to the top of the browser window and its deep blue horizon. We may understand this in a temporal sense (most recent stories at the top of the page), but also in a spatial sense (there is simply a disorientation being positioned somewhere in the middle of a scrolled-down web page). Grounding lies upward in our gesture. This is also where our little red indicator panel may be found.

-

‎2. The inhabitants of Facebook Polis primarily offer gestural expressions of the spoken word masquerading in written form. In fact, its processes make explicit this blur between speaking and writing as ideal forms. If, as Virno suggests, the figure of the virtuous public speaker is central to the emergence of the multitude, then we must ask how this blur may or may not develop its political potential. But we must also ask about the virtuosity of the public listener (an active process of communication in its own right) and its masquerade in written form. This is why Manning’s abstract diagram of the tango is so important: it suggests an ontogenetic account of both speaking and listening bodies in relation, perhaps useful even in the blur to the inscribed word.

‎-

3. When a synthetic space such as the Facebook Polis swells to 800 million inhabitants, it becomes more explicitly a political space, perhaps even a “nation”. But among other differences between it and our traditional understanding of a nation-state, there exists a qualitative difference in terms of how we understand “census”: Facebook overcounts the number within its space, maintaining phantom accounts, duplicate identities, “dead” or zombie accounts, etc. within its total. The nation-state, on the other hand, undercounts the number within its space, missing the refugees, migrants, and others being deemed in some contexts “illegal” within its total. The link between corpus and data remains incomplete. Both are quiet noises to their respective governmental apparatuses.

_____

posted in no particular order, these aphorisms are the beginnings of a microbook-in-progress for Delere Press, a boutique e-book publishing venture by Jeremy Fernando and Yanyun Chen

#facebookpolis

The Facebook Polis

- - -

‎1. Gravity is inverted in the Facebook Polis: one is always pulled to the top of the browser window and its deep blue horizon. We may understand this in a temporal sense (most recent stories at the top of the page), but also in a spatial sense (there is simply a disorientation being positioned somewhere in the middle of a scrolled-down web page). Grounding lies upward in our gesture. This is also where our little red indicator panel may be found.

-

‎2. The inhabitants of Facebook Polis primarily offer gestural expressions of the spoken word masquerading in written form. In fact, its processes make explicit this blur between speaking and writing as ideal forms. If, as Virno suggests, the figure of the virtuous public speaker is central to the emergence of the multitude, then we must ask how this blur may or may not develop its political potential. But we must also ask about the virtuosity of the public listener (an active process of communication in its own right) and its masquerade in written form. This is why Manning’s abstract diagram of the tango is so important: it suggests an ontogenetic account of both speaking and listening bodies in relation, perhaps useful even in the blur to the inscribed word.

‎-

3. When a synthetic space such as the Facebook Polis swells to 800 million inhabitants, it becomes more explicitly a political space, perhaps even a “nation”. But among other differences between it and our traditional understanding of a nation-state, there exists a qualitative difference in terms of how we understand “census”: Facebook overcounts the number within its space, maintaining phantom accounts, duplicate identities, “dead” or zombie accounts, etc. within its total. The nation-state, on the other hand, undercounts the number within its space, missing the refugees, migrants, and others being deemed in some contexts “illegal” within its total. The link between corpus and data remains incomplete. Both are quiet noises to their respective governmental apparatuses.

_____

posted in no particular order, these aphorisms are the beginnings of a microbook-in-progress for Delere Press, a boutique e-book publishing venture by Jeremy Fernando and Yanyun Chen

#facebookpolis

SpYrampurban furniture installation

- - -

simile



colon: right
parenthesis

(three openings located in punctuality))

emotive cons
ampersand prose
probes into the State
of emoticon
as one types
or skypes hotwire
relational halfpipes

channels, glinting
grinding

re: winding
many muscle pulleys
pulling apple-cheeks to
backside ollie smile,
90-degrees from
ascii style

grim turns grin
to curl the breeze and
open the bright blue skies

sing away
bingo hall blue haze
and bluing gaze
purple haze is in
my brain
(waving)
to a slow jimi limbo. strung
upside down, bluesy.

violetry and poetics
hand in hand

secret weaving and braiding
and waiting and wading

and fading, it blew away
in the blink of
a 90-second while

~

i hardt you
as a political concept
a politics of joy concept
an it doesn’t mean you Likes this concept

but think about the politics of touch concept

like with punctuation
in three openings we find
less than three openings
and infinite potentials
for ollies and LOLing
so capital-P stick
your tongue out at me
a Rudolph moment of sunlight
and talking,

solar electricity.

SpY
ramp
urban furniture installation

- - -

simile

colon: right
parenthesis

(three openings located in punctuality))

emotive cons
ampersand prose
probes into the State
of emoticon
as one types
or skypes hotwire
relational halfpipes

channels, glinting
grinding

re: winding
many muscle pulleys
pulling apple-cheeks to
backside ollie smile,
90-degrees from
ascii style

grim turns grin
to curl the breeze and
open the bright blue skies

sing away
bingo hall blue haze
and bluing gaze
purple haze is in
my brain
(waving)
to a slow jimi limbo. strung
upside down, bluesy.

violetry and poetics
hand in hand

secret weaving and braiding
and waiting and wading

and fading, it blew away
in the blink of
a 90-second while

~

i hardt you
as a political concept
a politics of joy concept
an it doesn’t mean you Likes this concept

but think about the politics of touch concept

like with punctuation
in three openings we find
less than three openings
and infinite potentials
for ollies and LOLing
so capital-P stick
your tongue out at me
a Rudolph moment of sunlight
and talking,

solar electricity.

Shade

In her Cyborg Manifesto [1985/1991], Donna Haraway sees in the emergent “informatics of domination” a shift from “heat” to “noise” as the friction or entropy within the social system. SHADE seems to offer us a cool respite from a certain insatiable heat that bounds down upon us, unchecked — that is, shade runs contra heat. But doesn’t a flip take place in the age of bioinformatics, with noise becoming precisely that which offers a shady cover?

#dsnformaton

Shade

In her Cyborg Manifesto [1985/1991], Donna Haraway sees in the emergent “informatics of domination” a shift from “heat” to “noise” as the friction or entropy within the social system. SHADE seems to offer us a cool respite from a certain insatiable heat that bounds down upon us, unchecked — that is, shade runs contra heat. But doesn’t a flip take place in the age of bioinformatics, with noise becoming precisely that which offers a shady cover?

#dsnformaton

BEWARE TO ALL YE WHO FOLLOWE THIS HYPER-LINK.

#youheartit

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"was this whole psychogeography shit weird, or what?"

_____

(via tumblr)