Torsion (Variation no. 3)
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"Steel volumes bolted to the concrete bed of the L.A. River (Ballona Creek) during winter rains in January, 2010. After one week in river, the forms, wrapped with accumulated debris, were unfastened and taken back to the studio."
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ACCELERATA: SIXTEEN THESES
1. Whether or not one understands time as unfolding in a linear fashion is immaterial; what matters is that experience and connectedness unfold along multiple and interweaving time signatures.
2. It is the time signature which produces affects, not time itself.
3. A collective energetics remains unevenly distributed. Nonetheless, its collectiveness always remains impressive, inspiring and humbling.
4. Dehabituated rhythms and changed or differential spatial parameters offer an invitation for novel gestural responses to the artwork.
5. When movement moves its way into the “aesthetic experience” proper, it continues to want to move, this time with the artwork, co-composing with it, contouring and creating with it.
6. It is not so much fatigue that one initially notices upon arrival at an artwork, but rather an interference of rhythms between runner and work, which thereafter gradually begin to harmonize or compromise. These resonances are of immediate interest in an aesthetico-ethical sense.
7. Habit can have unrefined pathways; one of these concerns its tempo.
8. Bodies are not “ideal”, and thus neither should goals be. We understand these both in an affirmative sense.
9. The outwardly prosthetic body only makes evident and explicit the co-composition of all bodies.
10. A familiar gesture, machined differently, can be more more useful than a complex gesture known only to a few.
11. We are describing here an unhygienic experience (sweat, snot, traffic, noise, topography). Which is also in some ways to say we have been removed from the laboratory.
12. Speed only demands a greater adeptness with contingency and the aesthetics of failure.
13. There are both inner and outer accelerations that need to be considered in developing and evaluating the program.
14. If one seeks to create a nuclear or exponential energy field, one cannot initiate the reaction at maximum capacity. Rather, the intensity must be slowly increased to avoid the risk of rupture in a very real material sense.
15. The event itself is a collective enunciation — of gesture and energy. But so long as we remain bound to the particulars of language and its transmission, this collective enunciation must retain a spoken or written dimension as well. Breath must become metric rather than simply serving to inspire and expire.
16. Theses are exhausted and replenished much like mitochondrial reactors and muscular fibres. To elaborate: they, too, have relative catalytic points, elasticities and failure thresholds in the generation of things. And they, too, may also become fuel or worm food for future becomings …
sculpture and performative gesture
series begun in 1975
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Milkstone is a solid piece of white marble with a small dip carved into the top of the stone. This small indentation is filled daily with fresh milk, creating what appears to be a solid surface. To get close to the stone, even at eye level, crouching on your knees, you can’t see where the stone begins and where the milk ends. Laib has created a way to make physical endlessness in natural materials.
THE ACCELERATION TOUR
Open Call for Participation // September 7, 2013 // Toronto, ON
curated by Department of Biological Flow
An outdoor tour of public artworks with a twist: instead of walking between each work as a group, we will be running from work to work. And a twist to the twist: instead of running at an even pace for the entire duration between each work, we will practice a form of accelerationist running, in which one is running at approximately 50% of one’s personal capacity by halfway to the next work, 75% of capacity by the three-quarter mark, 95% when almost there …… and arriving at one’s peak velocity.
You are gasping for breath, muscles screaming, heart pounding, sweat pouring.
Now it is time to experience the artwork …… slowly.
THE ACCELERATION TOUR emerges in response to two seemingly disparate strands in contemporary aesthetics: first, the SLOW ART DAY founded in 2009 by Phil Terry (http://www.slowartday.com), which suggests that for one day each year people visit museums and galleries to look at art slowly, recalibrating the practise of spectating “to focus on the art and the art of seeing”; and second, the recent article by Alex Williams and Nick Srnicek titled ‘#ACCELERATE: MANIFESTO FOR AN ACCELERATIONIST POLITICS’ (http://criticallegalthinking.com/2013/05/14/accelerate-manifesto-for-an-accelerationist-politics/), which offers a new direction for Left politics, one that “pushes towards a future that is more modern, an alternative modernity that neoliberalism is inherently unable to generate.”
Though apparently synthetic on the surface of things, THE ACCELERATION TOUR proposes to hold both of these initiatives in tension by challenging certain underlying assumptions in an embodied practice. This is an experiment in speculative aesthetics, exploring questions of synaesthesia, attunement, tempo, intensity, calibration, exhaustion and trauma.
Participants of all fitness levels and skills in running or art spectatorship are welcome—-this is not a competition. The idea is for each runner to understand their own potentials during the course of the event and maximize them accordingly. Furthermore, “running” here can be understood more broadly to encompass mobilities such as wheelchair acceleration.
In case of inclement weather, the event will be postponed until Saturday, Sept. 14. Participation is free of charge.
If you are interested in hosting a concurrent Acceleration Tour in your city, please drop us a line.