Thursday, May 17, 2007


The Paikamerika postproduction artworks mentioned in the last post, as with all of the other artists whose work I playfully render into vision (digitally capture) with my mobile phone for my exhibition in London this summer, are meant to be experienced as intuitive postproductions that reconfigure the artist as medium. The artist/medium connection is significant especially when one approaches their open source lifestyle as gameplay. Paik did this "mo' better" than anyone, perhaps helping turn it into a kind of fluxus protocol, and as long as I am actively mythologizing my connection to him, I may as well take it as far as it will go.

For example, the new series of Paikamerika postproduction artworks that are part video art, part mobile phone art, and part mythological narrative in public space, will take yet another turn later in the year when, come this Fall, I will introduce the artworks as part of a keynote I will be giving at a conference on "Buddhism and New Media" at the Research Institute on Buddhist Culture located at Dongguk University in Seoul, South Korea. The conference organizers have invited me to discuss the interrelationships between Buddhist thought, Paik, Amerika, and new media art. I see it as an opportunity to remix Paik's writings and recorded statements with What The Buddha Taught (and a few of my own VJ Persona metafictions as well).

The first thing both Paik and the Buddha have taught me is to get rid of the Me (per se) altogether. This artist/medium that postproduces the past in a future-perfect tense still not quantifiable in human terms, is nothing if not-me. Although I do not mention Buddhism at all in my new book, I do riff on the not-me throughout the first third, and when I read excerpts at various events, people do come up afterwards and ask me if I am a Buddhist. To answer in the affirmative would be less than candid, since I have never really studied religion seriously. But to deny my accidental Buddhist tendencies would itself be anti-Buddhist in spirit, which I choose not to do either, and besides, who is to say what it means to be Buddhist or even Jewish for that matter?

Maybe I'm Jedi taking the Red Eye to post-contemporary artist/medium space. Medium is, after all, technological and, as such, about the use of force ("May the Force be with you").

Was Judah a Buddha? Probably not. But the Long Dude is somewhere inside all of us, even as he/she morphs their bi-gender at will.

From What The Buddha Taught:
"To be attached to one thing (to a certain view) and to look down upon other things (views) as inferior -- this the wise men call a fetter."

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