Saturday, April 22, 2006

Hi, Do You Take Dictation?

Under the dictatorship, everything is fine, thank you. Let's have another soy latte and download more tunes on to our iPod. Besides, the First Bank of Mom and Dad will take care of the overdrafts as you pursue your elitist investment banking / media relations / art-star career, won't they?

Meanwhile, for those who know better:
RITTER: I’ll say ignorance. How many Americans have read the Constitution and know the Constitution, live the Constitution, breathe the Constitution, define their existence as Americans by the Constitution? Very few. And so what happens is, Americans have no concept of what citizenship is, what it is they’re supposed to serve. Many Americans have become so addicted to a lifestyle that I say they’re better consumers than they are citizens. And it’s these consumers who have wrapped themselves in a cocoon of comfort and who have basically abrogated their responsibilities of citizenship to the government, and as long as the government keeps them waddling down the path to prosperity, they don’t want to rock the boat. And they will go out and attack those who do rock the boat—those who challenge authority.

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Friday, April 21, 2006

The Worst One Yet

Historically speaking:
George W. Bush's presidency appears headed for colossal historical disgrace. Barring a cataclysmic event on the order of the terrorist attacks of September 11th, after which the public might rally around the White House once again, there seems to be little the administration can do to avoid being ranked on the lowest tier of U.S. presidents. And that may be the best-case scenario. Many historians are now wondering whether Bush, in fact, will be remembered as the very worst president in all of American history.

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Thursday, April 20, 2006

We Report, You Decide (Part Two)

So says The Retard:

"I am the egg head, I'm the Commander, I'm the Decider (Koo-Koo-Kachoo)..."

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Wednesday, April 19, 2006

We Report, You Decide

Really, the Rocky Mountain West will decide the near-future of Murica.

We will be the "deciders", not The Retard with his finger on the button...

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Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Plurality Plus

Over at the original video blog (i.e. the first one I ever heard of), text carries the day. The Theorist quotes Barthes saying:
The Text is plural. Which is not simply to say that it has several meanings, but that it accomplishes the very plural of meaning: an irreducible (and not merely an acceptable) plural. The Text is not a co-existence of meanings but a passage, an overcrossing; thus it answers not to an interpretation, even a liberal one, but to an explosion, a dissemination. The plural of the Text depends, that is, not on the ambiguity of its contents but on what might be called the stereographic plurality of its weave of signifiers (etymologically, the text is a tissue, a woven fabric). (p. 159.) Barthes, Roland. “From Work to Text.” Trans. Stephen Heath. Image–Music–Text. London: Flamingo, 1977. 155–64.
This, of course, explodes the idea of Text as is and points back to the polyvocal discourse or "polyphonic dialogue" of the Russian formalists like Mikhail Mikhailovich Bakhtin and Viktor Shklovsky whom early hypertext theorists were quick to glom on to to help nurture their research excursions into the possiblilities of what I am now calling intersubjective jamming. It ends up that these hypertextualists, those who came before all of the hype (like Benjamin, Bakhtin, and Barthes) and those who came after (like Bolter, Landow, and the author of Hypertextual Consciousness) were right: the Text that has an excess, that leaks into the fluid discourse of the compositional playing field, is a writerly text, one that
is a perpetual present, upon which no consequent language (which would inevitably make it past) can be superimposed; the writerly text is ourselves writing, before the infinite play of the world (the world as function) is traversed, intersected, stopped, plasticized by some singular system (Ideology, Genus, Criticism) which reduces the plurality of entrances, the opening of networks, the infinity of languages. (Barthes, again, this time in S/Z)
The key word in the Barthes quote above is, once again, before, as it signals the state of mind the artist-writer must be in in order to create their best unconscious work.

This relates to other posts here and here.

(And this entry gets nominated for the award for Most Italicized Words In A Single Posting...)

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Monday, April 17, 2006

More "Going-On-Ness"

We all know this experience of seeing (or hearing, being surrounded by) things we are all of sudden more consciously aware of. It's as if our unconscious perceptions are projecting what we are finally ready to see (or hear, surround ourselves with). This could be as simple as me seeing new blue Prius cars everywhere in Boulder, especially as I now drive around town in one myself. But it's also coming at me from all directions in relation to my recent art investigations into the unconscious triggers that launch my creative missives in whatever "media form" I happen to be playing around in at any given moment in time. It's also been happening in relation to some thematic connections I have been making between the so-called Muse and the way a work of art manifests itself to me as I create it (or, as the case may be, it creates itself, using me as the "media-form").

These ideas have been floating around for awhile, via Greek mythology, Freud, Jung, Gertrude Stein, Henry Miller, Jackson Pollack, Miles Davis, Kathy Acker, Nam June Paik, and Carlos Castenada, just to name a few. Stan Brakhage too. A video program which featured an interview with Stan was just on our local Boulder Channel 8 over the weekend. During the free-flowing dialogue, I heard Stan improvising some associative thoughts about what he called "film as visual music" and how "the work has to suggest its 'going-on-ness.'"

Which brings up an immediate question: how does a work suggest its 'going-on-ness', especially when you take into account issues of duration, creative momentum, focus/unfocus, distancing, and artistic endurance (aesthetic fitness).

Brakhage spoke about "a magicwork that makes itself" - a creative force that is filtered through the unconscious and that probably only happens once one has freed themselves of the weight of commercial success and can finally blaze the path that they intuitively know they have to make (I'm adding my own associative word-thoughts here now). Sampling more of his phrases from the TV interview, he frequently referred to himself as a "nut" ("now I'm really being a nut..."), and was most self-conscious of his "nuttiness" when talking about the "buzzing of mind" and "vision of muse" that fill his head like bees in a beehive as the work gets created on its own terms without any interference. He was cautious enough to make clear that not every work will be a magicwork, and any artist who has stuck it out over decades of trial and error art-research practice knows this to be the case. Sometimes it just comes out, sometimes not. And when the creative momentum one experiences while making a specific work is lost, you are never really sure if you will get it back. These are the risks one takes when developing their new material in a variety of media/mediums, especially when it's time-based media that they are porting their poetic vibes through.

The instrument needs constant tuning.

The beehive mind needs to buzz.

Some mystic needs to forget themselves.

The unconscious experience of art related to the body...

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