My ‘data painting’ works are short meditations intended to capture a particular mood or moment. This work, created between October and December of 2015, evolves from my witnessing and considering the public struggle of the American people. We remember. There are significant gaps between objective ideals claimed by the United States of America and the behavior and policies of its agents.
No single work of art can lay claim to all of this space. It can open a side door into talking about what we don’t talk about. [ motel black : 1:15 sample here ] That shadow, whatever it is so many white men and women of generation X are shooting up to avoid talking about. The powerlessness we have witnessing the lynching of Black citizens by agents of the state. The poisoned water supply of one of our cities. It is so much, too much.
Datamosh and artefacting open a hallucinatory, a dreamspace, point to the abrupt discontinuity between the state’s professed ideals and its agents’ behaved reality. Citizens struggle to discover / create / dig up a justice [ the badge discovered by the woman digging with her hands ] claimed by the state in its constitution, while past and present acts of the state directly contradict those ideals [ the human bones discovered alongside that badge by the woman ].
A percussive soundtrack carries the viewer through the dream-journey. Colors and stars indirectly evoke the American flag . . .
Artist statement : we are all doors (2013) 6:40 : digital video for gallery projection.
Meditation : The body as container for consciousness. The act of dreaming our compass as we navigate inner space. How do we occupy our bodies?
Source images for the work made available to the artist by creative commons copyright support, a language of consent for content-sharing on the internet. Crowdsourcing implies, how does the royal we support the individual? How do we dream together? How does sharing support the creative mind?
Video dedicated to Aaron Swartz (Nov 8, 1986 – Jan 11, 2013) who assisted in establishing the creative commons in spirit and legal reality. Links posted at http://station-number-six.com/swartz.html connects source content provided by over a hundred and fifty photographers and videographers.
http://creativecommons.org explains what this artists statement (and work of art) cannot, about their approach to facilitating the movement and exchange of created content.
Poetry written and performed by the artist, recomposed and expanded slightly for the soundtrack. Audio mixed in Logic 9, video composited in FCP X, prepared for DVD with Compressor 4, authored for DVD in DVDSP.
Ultimately, the work will reside on the internet. Until then, I’ll be submitting it to screenings and gallery shows.
Text excerpted from Milorad Pavic’s The Dictionary of the Khazars (1984 in Serbian, 1988 in English). The second paragraph of this excerpt was used by singer-songwriter Peter Murphy in lyrics to the song Shy [Deep (1989/90)]. This creation was simultaneous to Neil Gaiman’s Sandman universe, which first began to publish October of 1988 (cover dated January of 1989). In Gaiman’s archetypal system, Dream and Death are brother and sister.
Akshany, Yabir Ibn (17th Century)
Anatolian minstrels (lute and tambourine players) believed that Satan used this name for a while and that he appeared under it before one of the most celebrated lute players of the 17th century – Yusef Masudi. Ibn Akshany was himself a very deft player. There exists a written record of his fingering for a song, so we know that he used more than ten fingers to play his instrument.
He was a good looking man; he carried no shadow, and his shallow eyes were like two trampled puddles. Although he declined to make public his opinions about death, he conveyed them indirectly through his tales, advising people to read dreams or to gain knowledge about death from the dream hunters. Two proverbs are ascribed to him: (1) “Death is the surname of sleep, but that surname is unknown to us”; (2) “Sleep is the daily end of life, a small exercise in death, which is its sister, but not every brother and sister are equally close.”
He once wanted once wanted to show people just how death operated, and he did so by using a Christian military commander whose name has been preserved: he was called Avram Brankovich, and he fought in Walachia, where, Satan claimed, every man is born a poet, lives like a thief, and dies a vampire.